The Freedom From Religion Foundation will broadcast a weekly television show beginning today.
“Freethought Matters” will be a half-hour talk show hosted by the foundation’s co-presidents, Dan Barker and Annie Laurie Gaylor, and featuring notable “freethinking celebrities,” Gaylor said.
CBS affiliate WISC-TV Channel 3 will air the program at 11 p.m. Sundays with photojournalist Chris Johnson as the first guest. Johnson recently produced the book and film “A Better Life: 100 Atheists Speak Out on Joy & Meaning in a World Without God.”
The Madison-based Freedom From Religion Foundation was founded in 1978 to promote the separation of church and state and to educate others on atheism, and Gaylor said the show will work toward the same goals.
Viewers will also be able to watch the interviews on the foundation’s YouTube channel, with each episode being uploaded the day after its original air date.
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Gaylor called the show an “antidote” to religious broadcasts on Sunday mornings but said that atheists and religious people alike could learn from the discussions.
A television show had been on Gaylor’s list of goals for the foundation for more than 10 years, , she said, but it couldn’t come to fruition until the foundation’s Downtown office expanded in 2014.
“We were able to do the production in-house,” which scaled back cost, Gaylor said.
Production of the show started over the summer, Gaylor said, and episodes with several guests — including author Steven Pinker, comedian Julia Sweeney and New York Times columnist Michelle Goldberg — have already been recorded.