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Maybe Right, Maybe Wrong Paperback – July 1, 1992


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Paperback: 76 pages
  • Publisher: Prometheus Books (July 1, 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0879757310
  • ISBN-13: 978-0879757311
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.5 x 0.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #378,778 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"...sit down with your children and talk[about] sound ideas couched in real life situations children are likely to face." -- AtheistParents.org

More About the Author

Dan Barker (1949-) is co-president of the Freedom From Religion Foundation and co-host of Freethought Radio. After 19 years as an evangelical minister, Dan "saw the light" and announced his atheism in 1984. His first public appearance as an atheist was on Oprah Winfrey's "AM Chicago." Since that time he has traveled extensively, lecturing and performing on college campuses, and participating in more than 110 public debates defending atheism. A former composer of Christian songs and musicals (for which he still receives royalties), Dan is now a jazz pianist and writer of freethought music, including the albums Beware of Dogma, Friendly, Neighborhood Atheist, and Adrift on a Star. Dan has 5 children, 10 grandchildren, and lives with his wife (and co-president) Annie Laurie Gaylor in Madison, Wisconsin. (Photo at window by Tim Buchanan. Photo at piano by Brent Nicastro. Photos at microphone by Bruce Press.)

Customer Reviews

I highly recommend this book for children of freethinkers and anyone else who prefers rationality to dogma.
Gilker Kimmel
The one that comes to my mind is my daughter going to school and telling her teacher than if daddy ever beats mommy, she won't tell him where mommy is.
goonius
Maybe right and maybe wrong is a great book for honestly explaining morality (both to adults and kids) without any appeals to arguments from authority.
Jon Gibson Mcgill

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

194 of 203 people found the following review helpful By Gilker Kimmel on October 16, 2000
Format: Paperback
Amongst all the WWJD, religion equals morality, preaching stands Dan Barker, willing to say, "Yes, there is such a thing as morality and, no, there's no need to buy into superstition to understand it." Barker never talks down to kids nor does he try to pass off the old shell game of pretending that morality is simply a matter of following someone else's rules.
I highly recommend this book for children of freethinkers and anyone else who prefers rationality to dogma.
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168 of 177 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 28, 2000
Format: Paperback
Teaches young people how to be Good, not through obeying laws and rules without thought, but by remembering certain principles ("do not hurt others", "value life) and fitting them, through thought, to situations. A wonderful answer to the idea that people can't be moral without god and government.
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73 of 77 people found the following review helpful By Jennifer D. O'guin on December 8, 2006
Format: Paperback
I bought this book for my son, who was raised by my dad down south, in the bible belt. To say my son was brainwashed would be putting it mildly. I'm not sure how much the book did, but he's becoming more normal every day, and is now starting to be able to make his own decisions based on his own feelings of guilt and his own moral code, rather than having to ask himself "what would jesus do". I read the book myself, and though very basic and maybe a 2nd-3rd grade reading level, I thought it made some excellent points, and it made me think... no small matter for a book of such a low reading level! I highly recommend it to any agnostic or pagan parents trying to teach their children the true meaning of right and wrong, without the guilt of a higher being being used as an intimidation and scare tactic to twist the child into submission. This book should help to develop the free thinking skills that are required for any child to be happy and have good self-esteem in regards to their choices and actions.
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43 of 48 people found the following review helpful By goonius on January 26, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The beginning of this book - and the part I had access to via the preview function - starts out well enough. We are introduced to Andrea, and immediately to a situation where she determines that fighting solves nothing. It then jumps to a hypothetical situation of Andrea's cat being hit by a car and we are walked through Andrea's struggle between two concepts she knows to be right and realizing that they can't both apply to the situation. Should her cat be 'put to sleep' and spared inevitable pain or kept alive, suffering, in an effort to delay inevitable death. Before Andrea makes her choice, the question is offered, aptly, to the reader. Then next page shows Andrea choosing the difficult but most logical choice -- to end her cat's life, and thus, his suffering. I found this portion of the book to be precisely what I expected in terms of reader interaction and the promotion of free thought the book is supposed to be based upon.

The question regarding Andrea's cat posed on page 20 of the 76-page book, is essentially the last real thought-inducing question posed to the reader. Allow me to express my surprise here, as I believed that this book would gently guide its reader to conclusions, rather than stating them outright.

There are some pages following this discourse which discuss the concept of morality and there being 'good people who do believe in god(s)' and 'good people who do not believe in god(s).' Appropriate enough.

Then it jumps into small segments of 'do and don't' lists, ie. 'Do be fair.' or 'Don't cheat' and most of these have little follow-ups on the 'why' of explaining the reason these are or are not things we should do. I honestly expected more.
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39 of 44 people found the following review helpful By C. T. Kates on March 3, 2006
Format: Paperback
We live in a country where Fundamentalists are pushing religion into every corner of our lives. My 11 year old daughter and her best friend were both told by another "friend" that they would burn in Hell because of their beliefs....my daughter is a Humanist and her best friend is Jewish. (Mind you, we live in a mostly progressive and open-minded city!) We need this book and more authors who are willing to say that all of us can be good and moral without a belief in God.
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47 of 54 people found the following review helpful By Gregory Ellis on December 23, 2004
Format: Paperback
This book is about a young girl, Andrea, who is learning how to make ethical decisions in a variety of situations by acquiring and learning how to use the tools of reason, rather than relying on arbitrary doctrines or dogma decided beforehand by authorities past or present, be it Prophets,
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By 642 on November 29, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Dan Barker is a well-known freethinker, and I bought this book for my young children, to introduce them to the basics of Humanism. At first, I was nonplussed by the artwork of this book; it is not inspired or creative. My kids, however, have read "Maybe..." a number of times now, and seem to really enjoy it.

Mr. Barker shows kids how they can use their brains and hearts to figure out the best course of action in various real-world situations. Because of this, "Maybe Right, Maybe Wrong" deserves a spot on the bookshelf of my young readers. Perhaps for his next book Mr. Barker will work harder on the visual appeal.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Kimberly S. Hall on November 13, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very simple comic style book that covers some pretty serious issues. Both my children enjoyed this book and had a lot of thinking to do as a result of reading it. I highly recommend this to anyone who would like their children to think a little more about what they hear and do.
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