Ghostless Machine

Overcoming polarization with philosophy

Hi, I’m Ariel Pontes and this is my blog, where I write about atheism, philosophy, science, and sociopolitical issues. I have an MA in analytic philosophy and I am active in several secular-humanist organizations in Brazil, Romania, and at the international level. Read more →

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Latest posts

Can minorities be racist?

Can minorities be racist?

Ariel PontesJanuary 15, 20171 min read

On one end of the spectrum, PC leftists say there’s no such thing as reverse racism because minorities can’t be racist. At all. Ever. On the other extreme, alt-righters say racism…

Is religion compatible with LGBT+ rights?

Is religion compatible with LGBT+ rights?

Ariel PontesDecember 3, 20161 min read

In the age of social media, it’s easy to get stuck in an echo chamber and never get out of your comfort zone. This is a big problem because it…

Why I’m not a theist

Why I’m not a theist

Ariel PontesNovember 2, 20161 min read

As far into my childhood as I can remember, I believed in a god. It was a personal god, who answered to prayers, cared for mankind, etc. As I grew…

The burkini ban and the dangers of political polarization

The burkini ban and the dangers of political polarization

Ariel PontesSeptember 26, 20161 min read

As everybody knows, last month France started enforcing an extremely controversial ban against the so called “burkini”. The ban was eventually overturned, but the debate is still very much alive.…

Six facts free speech fundamentalists love to ignore

Six facts free speech fundamentalists love to ignore

Ariel PontesJuly 10, 20161 min read

Freedom. An apparently simple concept that you’d think people understand pretty well, after all it’s a fundamental human right. But no. It’s probably the concept people abuse and misuse the…

7 Fallacies That Undermine Antifeminism

7 Fallacies That Undermine Antifeminism

Ariel PontesMarch 22, 20161 min read

As a feminist I am often confronted, especially online, by self-declared antifeminists who passionately denounce the ideology resorting to all manner of creative accusations. But is there any basis for so vehemently attacking feminism? With…

Why Django Girls?

Why Django Girls?

Ariel PontesMarch 6, 20161 min read

In February and March this year Django Girls will be organizing free Django workshops for women in cities all over the world. As a Python/Django developer and feminist myself, I naturally…

Gender quotas

Gender quotas

Ariel PontesJanuary 24, 20161 min read

The subject of gender quotas was trending in Brazil a few months ago and I wrote about it in Portuguese. Now that the same topic has sprung in Romania, it’s time to write an English…

Why I write in English

Why I write in English

Ariel PontesJanuary 5, 20161 min read

This is a question I have been asked a couple of times since I moved to Romania and started writing in English. The answer I give is that now that…