September 2018: The number of Britons who say they have no religion has hit a record high, new data has revealed. More than half of the British public (53 per cent) say they are not at all religious – a figure that has increased by five percentage points since 2015 and by 19 percentage points since 1983, when just three in 10 people deemed themselves non-religious. The news has prompted fresh calls for the Government to cut the amount of public money going to the church and reduce its influence in society.The Independent.
October 2018: Saudi Arabia has been named the worst country in the world to be an atheist in a new report monitoring the rights and treatment of the non-religious. On Monday the International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU) published the latest Freedom of Thought Report, which ranks the best and worst countries to be an atheist.National Secular Society
I am an author, a socialist and an atheist. I've been debating fundamentalists and theists on and off for the best part of thirty years.
I was brought up a Roman Catholic, educated mainly in RC schools, I've been confirmed, an altar boy etc. and I never really thought to the existence of god or otherwise, I just believed. At the age of thirteen, I became addicted to science fiction, learning a great deal of basic science from such books and, only a few years later, ceased to be a practising Catholic. I was an agnostic, or rather an apatheist (one who no longer cared) for the next few decades, just getting on with life as I saw it but studying for a degree in Applied Biology gave me that push towards hard science, moving from laboratory work to science computing support in the late eighties.
During my early computing career, I became exposed to creationism discovering that internet creationists weren't just wingnuts but a real credible force that was out to subvert the science I'd learned to love. They were well organised and funded and scientists had taken their eye off the ball ... which left the fight to supporting science adherents like me. I started to build science-oriented websites & forums and ran several blogs. One of those blogs supported a UK based campaign, "Science, Just Science" which aimed to keep pseudoscience (primarily creationism) out of the UK science classroom ... it was successful, gaining a response from the government that assured us creationism could not be taught as science in any state-run UK science classroom.
Social networks are not ideal as debate platforms but it is where the fight has moved. I am now co-founder and administrator of the Facebook group, Skepticism, Science and Reason
UK Atheist (James C. Rocks)