“Best Bar Mitzvah Speech”

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Here is a 13-year-old kid at the graduation of his elementary religious education. Becoming a man in the eyes of his religion and in that same moment eloquently, intelligently reflecting on it in a way that renders all of it completely meaningless and ridiculous to him is quite remarkable. Taking this special moment as an opportunity in front of his whole family, his friends and their rabbi, to powerfully articulate his rejection of all of it in real-time is something we don’t get to witness every day. This was, we think, unthinkable only ten years ago. The maturity and lucidity of the Bar Mitzvah boy’s remarks are striking. It says not only that the earth has shifted under our feet, whether we know it or not, but that it is actually evolving while we post this here. The video itself was uploaded in 2007, making this family way ahead of it’s time. We are excited to be capturing America’s journey through uncharted territory in its religious identity, or lack thereof, as it happens.

REFUSING MY RELIGION On Air w/ Jamila Bey this Thursday, April 11th from 6-7pm, est.

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We are so fired up to be on the air with the great Jamila Bey this Thursday, April 11th from 6-7 PM est. We will be on for the entire hour discussing our experiences making our documentary REFUSING MY RELIGION. Please listen in and feel free to share the info. Listen to us here live: http://ruvr.condensa.ru/ruvr05_eng_us.html Thank you!

Jamila’s show is also carried by:
Washington, DC: AM 1390 AND WTOP 103.5 FM HD-2
NYC: AM 1430
Chicago: WILV 100.3 FM HD-2
Miami: 99.9 HD-2.

Jamila’s website: http://sparwithjamila.com

Jamila Bey is a journalist based in Washington, D.C., where she hosts the weekly radio show: SPAR with Jamila Bey, which airs on AM 1390 in Washington and AM 1430 in New York City.

Jamila is also a contributor to the Washington Post blog, “She the People,” and a frequent guest on the MSNBC show, “Up With Chris Hayes.”

Can't wait to be on Jamila Bey's SPAR radio program!

Can’t wait to be on Jamila Bey’s SPAR radio program!

RMR’s – ‘BEHIND THE CURTAIN’ – Investigated By Cops With Brother Jerry In Rosepine, La.

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“BEHIND THE CURTAIN” is a backstage glimpse of of our experiences shooting the documentary ‘Refusing My Religion’. We look forward to sharing content as the project evolves.

To donate to our project please go to http://www.refusingmyreligion.com

Investigated By Cops With Brother Jerry DeWitt In Rosepine, La.

Life is hard for an atheist in DeRidder, Louisiana. Especially if you’re a former pastor who “came out” and is now the ONLY open atheist there, a town of ten thousand with nearly as many churches. Marc and I grasped the gravity of living here for a nonbeliever when we were filming our documentary REFUSING MY RELIGION with Clergy Project member (and its first “graduate”) Jerry DeWitt. Driving peacefully through the unassuming town in January 2013, Jerry guided us to his high school where we pulled over for a figurative stroll down adolescent lane, camera rolling as we sat in our rented car. While Jerry reminisced about the sexual follies to which we all fell prey in high school, we noticed an elderly man repeatedly riding past us on a four-wheeler about 20 yards away. City slicker that I am, I just thought this gentleman was mowing his lawn or going for a late-afternoon joy ride. But by the fourth time he cruised past us, the intrusive noise caught our attention. So after about 15 minutes parked there, we took off and went to visit Jerry’s elementary school a mile away to talk about how children are indoctrinated as a matter of course here and throughout the Bible belt. A few minutes later as we stood outside it, about to film Jerry again, a police SUV suddenly barreled off the roadway and up onto the school’s grassy sidewalk a few feet from where we were standing. A pancake-stack of a man lumbers out of the SUV and approaches us, uniformed and armed. “I got a call from an off-duty sheriff’s deputy about some folks filming something and he thought I oughta go investigate it, so that’s what I’m doing, investigating what y’all are up to.” In his soothing, quintessentially southern manner, Jerry ably takes the reigns and asks how “So-and-so” is doing today. Officer Flapjacks drawls, “Oh, he’s doin’ just fine.” Turns out, So-and-so is the chief-of-police in DeRidder, and Jerry obviously knows him. But that doesn’t seem to impress this implacable agent of law enforcement. So Jerry sallies forth, “We’re just shooting a film, they’re kinda following me around, ya know, and I was tellin’ ‘em a story. I live here, lived here my whole life. I’m Jerry DeWitt.” The stoic pillar of crime prevention, there to humbly serve and protect the citizens of DeRidder from all forms of menace and danger, without looking any of us in the eye, simply snarls at Jerry: “Oh, I know who you are…” After we finished our shoot at the second school, we got back in the car and Marc said, “I’ve never seen a cop before who wouldn’t look you in the eye. Usually they look dead at you to see if you’re high, or messed up in the head, whatever. But that guy, he wouldn’t even look at me.” Maybe Officer Flapjacks understood that he and DeRidder were not being very Christian in their treatment of Jerry.