Two posts for the price of one:
It’s probably just as well that the current generation of atheists seems to know so little of the longer history of atheist movements. When they assert that science can bridge fact and value, they overlook the many incompatible value-systems that have been defended in this way. There is no more reason to think science can determine human values today than there was at the time of Haeckel or Huxley. None of the divergent values that atheists have from time to time promoted has any essential connection with atheism, or with science. How could any increase in scientific knowledge validate values such as human equality and personal autonomy? The source of these values is not science. In fact, as the most widely-read atheist thinker of all time argued, these quintessential liberal values have their origins in monotheism.
2. How can you have an “evangelical atheist”? “Evangelical” has now pretty well officially picked up the meaning of “evangelistic,” “proselytizing.” For a good ten years I tended to think this usage was an error; “evangelical atheist” was a contradiction in terms. But I hereby give in, at least in public discourse. Too many intelligent writers—as the author of this article clearly is—read and understand and even expect this sense.
If you’ll make regular checks of the OED a part of your intellectual diet, you’ll find that the OED is often decades ahead of you. It turns out that this sense of “evangelical” was added to the 1993 draft, and there is a citation going back to 1952: