Friday, December 31, 2010

Have A Happy New Year!

I wanted to get this post out before I am too drunk/high to find a keyboard. I am not going to complain about how Obama is a fucking asshole or how the Republicans are trying to rape me up the ass, nor am I going to talk about how every single religious person in the world is a moron. No no, this is a time for happiness!

Happy New Year to all of my friends! Have a wonderful night, be safe, and get wasted! I am going to take some video and pictures of tonight's festivities and my tribute to my wonderful friends and readers.

I, personally, am getting pretty faded already. I have smoked a bowl and had a sixer (it's only 17:00). Tonight is going to be epic! I love you all!

My Year In Review

Well 2010 sure was productive. I started this blog when I found out that there was going to be a traveling creationist museum coming to our town. We had a great time arguing with the "curator" (a.k.a. guy that drives a dirty white van with fake shit in it) and almost got kicked out of the whole event. Perhaps a little dickish, but it was necessary.

This year also saw the first state-wide campaign in North Carolina promoting a secular nation, which came in the form of a billboard on Billy Graham Parkway. The billboard was vandalized the very next day and got us more recognition than we knew what to do with. I was the media spokesman for the campaign in Charlotte and had my ugly mug plastered all over the TV. This lead to some serious problems with my job. I was actually kicked out of my largest customer because they didn't like the fact I was an atheist. Still hanging on to that job, though!

Finally, I saw the end of my hair. Not by genetic disposition, but by choice. Actually, I just said "fuck my job" and shaved a mohawk into my head. It's totally badass! So tomorrow while we are all out getting so drunk that our faces fall off, remember that this was an awesome year. When 23:59 rolls around tomorrow night and I take the last shot of the year, it will be a shot to all of you fine two or three people who read my mind vomit. Cheers!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

When Cancer Makes You Crazy

Ugh! Stories like this make me so very sad. People who are ill will try anything to get better. I cannot let this woman’s illness get in the way of the absolute stupidity of the situation though.



I do not see Jesus in the x-ray. I see what looks like a wire from a pace-maker or some other medical device that loops its way around inside this woman’s chest. There is nothing there. It is called pareidolia and I recommend everyone become familiar with the phenomenon so as to be able to recognize it so that you don’t go on national television and make a complete ass of yourself.

I would challenge anyone who has been diagnosed with cancer to explain to me how they reconcile Jesus being with them and this supposedly benevolent God giving them cancer in the first place. If it’s God’s will, then stop complaining about it give up hope, because obviously God’s will was for you to suffer and die a horrible death for no reason at all.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

America Isn't A Secular Nation, Unless You Believe In Facts

I wish this article were true. I think the country would be better off if the president was actively pushing for a secular nation. However, anything posted on NewsMax should be treated as if it were a truck load of bullshit, even if it were true. I am, of course, talking about the article titled “Historian Kidd: Obama Pushes US to Secularism.” If only I could dream of such a president.

The article is a stream of consciousness from Thomas Kidd, who is a crazy Christian historian at Baylor University. I am just surprised this guy isn’t at Bob Jones University, as if Baylor is any better. (Note: a quote from Thomas Kidd from the Baylor University website - "I came to Baylor because of the balance the university offered me between teaching and research, and because of the appeal of working at a university with a Christian commitment.") The article amounts to a lot of half-truths or outright falsehoods. What I was most interested in was this niblet:
“This has fueled a concern that many people have that President Obama is at least quietly trying to construe America as a secular nation instead of a nation based on important religious principles like the idea that all men are created equal,” Kidd said. “That principle is, I think, the most important idea that comes out of the American Revolution, and it is an explicitly religious principle, even though it’s a very general religious principle, and I don’t think it’s something that we should give up intentionally or unintentionally.”
Trying to construe America as a secular nation? Oh, the horror! I fail to see how any principle from this guys beloved Christianity, or any religion for that matter, puts forth the idea that all men are created equally. As I recall, in the Bible all men were created equally, unless they weren’t Jews. Women and non-Jews need not apply. What about the explicit endorsement of slavery? It should also be added that this nation was founded on the institution of slavery and was endorsed for a very long time. Women and non-whites need not apply.

This article is also a little confusing. I thought Obama was a secret Muslim. I guess this proves that anyone can be a historian.

Richard Dawkins Has A Holiday Message For The Pope

I don't like to repost entire articles with no commentary, but when you come across something this good... well, see for yourself.
Was it for this that I broke the habit of years and accepted the Guardian's invitation to listen to Thought for the Day? Was it for this that the BBC, including the director general himself, no less, spent months negotiating with the Vatican? What on earth were they negotiating about, if all that emerged was the damp, faltering squib we have just strained our ears to hear?
'A giant of the mind and model of courage'

We've already had what little apology we are going to get (none in most cases) for the raped children, the Aids-sufferers in Africa, the centuries spent attacking Jews, science, women and "heretics", the indulgences and more modern (and tax-deductible) methods of fleecing the gullible to build the Vatican's vast fortune. So, no surprise that these weren't mentioned. But there's something else for which the pope should go to confession, and it's arguably the nastiest of all. I refer to the main doctrine of Christian theology itself, which was the centrepiece of what Ratzinger actually did say in his Thought for the Day.

"Christ destroyed death forever and restored life by means of his shameful death on the Cross."

More shameful than the death itself is the Christian theory that it was necessary. It was necessary because all humans are born in sin. Every tiny baby, too young to have a deed or a thought, is riddled with sin: original sin. Here's Thomas Aquinas:

". . . the original sin of all men was in Adam indeed, as in its principal cause, according to the words of the Apostle (Romans 5:12): "In whom all have sinned": whereas it is in the bodily semen, as in its instrumental cause, since it is by the active power of the semen that original sin together with human nature is transmitted to the child."

Adam (who never existed) bequeathed his "sin" in his bodily semen (charming notion) to all of humanity. That sin, with which every newborn baby is hideously stained (another charming notion), was so terrible that it could be forgiven only through the blood sacrifice of a scapegoat. But no ordinary scapegoat would do. The sin of humanity was so great that the only adequate sacrificial victim was God himself.

That's right. The creator of the universe, sublime inventor of mathematics, of relativistic space-time, of quarks and quanta, of life itself, Almighty God, who reads our every thought and hears our every prayer, omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent God couldn't think of a better way to forgive us than to have himself tortured and executed. For heaven's sake, if he wanted to forgive us, why didn't he just forgive us? Who, after all, needed to be impressed by the blood and the agony? Nobody but himself.

Ratzinger has much to confess in his own conduct, as cardinal and pope. But he is also guilty of promoting one of the most repugnant ideas ever to occur to a human mind: "Without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness" (Hebrews 9:22)
Thank you, Dr. Dawkins.

From: The Guardian

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Criticize Israel? Jew Hater!

Since when is criticizing the policies of a nation tantamount to antisemitism? When you criticize anything Israel does, of course. A recent bus ad campaign in Seattle has drawn the attention of people from as far away as, you guessed it, Israel.

This past week, a group called the Seattle Mideast Awareness Campaign was moving forward with plans to put up ads on area buses that said "Israeli war crimes: Your tax dollars at work" and showed a picture of some Palestinian kids standing next to a pile of rubble. Sounds reasonable to me, especially when you look at the fact that the United States has given Israel over $107 billion since the 1940's and signed a deal to give Israel $30 billion over the next 10 years. I hope no one is deluded enough to think that none of that money is being used to push the Palestinians out of their homes and squeeze the Gaza Strip until the people have no other recourse but to turn to violence.

I guess pointing out that fact makes me a Jew hater, though. Pointing out the fact that the state of Israel is currently stealing property from Palestinians by going in and putting up new settlements makes me as antisemitic as Hitler. But I digress.

The group in Seattle was previously given permission to put up then bus ads, then permission was rescinded when a couple of war-crimes apologist groups like "Stop Islamization of America" and the disgustingly-named "David Horowitz Freedom Center" sent in letters of protest to King County officials. Both groups have since attempted (but were turned down) to buy ad space on the buses to put up parody ads; you know, because nothing says "we are a legitimate group" like satirizing the suffering of an entire group of people. I could only imagine the fallout from a campaign that poked fun of the people that died during the holocaust.

So there it is, people. You have a group that is trying to bring to light the amount of money that the US gives to Israel and what Israel does with that money. Then you have other groups shut down any conversation by calling them "Jew-haters." Forget the facts, forget the news, just follow Israel blindly and allow them to continue displacing and murdering thousands of Palestinians.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

BoA Stops Payments To Wikileaks. So?

Bank of America decided to take action against Wikileaks this week allowing them join the ranks of such moral internal policy upholding companies such as Mastercard and Paypal.
In a statement, the North Carolina-based Bank of America said it would "not process transactions of any type that we have reason to believe are intended for Wikileaks"
 What are they going to do add a check box to withdrawal slips “Will you be using your funds to support Wikileaks?”

Well I must say I’m impressed. Now people will have to go buy a money order, iTunes gift card, or worse yet use actual cash (how out dated) in order to help support their beloved leak source. Seriously what is it these companies feel they have accomplished? They may have been able to slow down the support process, but they are far from stopping it, and why are they hiding behind ethical policy upholding? Just admit you're mad you may fall victim to bad publicity. A little honesty would be appreciated. If people want to donate money you won’t be able to stop them.

The way I see it if you don’t want your dirty laundry hung out for all to see, find a better hiding place. Even the US government, the most powerful force in the modern world with every resource at it’s helm, can’t fend off a guy with Ass in his last name, Really?

"We ask that all people who love freedom close out their accounts at Bank of America," WikiLeaks said on its Twitter page. "Does your business do business with Bank of America? Our advice is to place your funds somewhere safer."
This is a piece of advice I personally agree with. If everyone their money in local banks or credit unions there would be a lot more money pumped into their communities in the form of small business loans for local business and patrons. That's only one of the benefits of moving your money local. Big banks use risky finical practices and that alone should be enough. This does bring up another interesting point. 

Who cares if wikileaks is shut down? I just demonstrated a much more effective way to stick a thorn in big business than reading. The problem is most of you would rather read about it in your version of a tabloid than sacrifice a lunch hour to actually do something that has an effect. Because that’s hard and it would take time and effort. You’re just a voyeur. Watching from the shadows doing nothing to actually help. Now to be clear I’m no freedom fighter, I’m not starting any revolutions myself. But at least I can admit it, I don’t consider myself noble or well informed because I read about something. Why I don’t care? Simple, I won’t be around to watch the bottom drop. So why worry about it.
"The revolution is just a marketing tool" - Gabriel Saporta
 I don’t think Assange deserves to face an legal action for his role with Wikileaks. I wont say what he has done is profound or a necessity but its certainly not illegal to expose people, companies, or a large organizations for what they are. So what do you think, Wikileaks hero or flavor of the week? Well I certainly hope I've got you thinking about small changes you can make to really have an effect rather that sit around and bitching about it.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Happy Holidays?

It's that time of year again. Christmas, Hannukah, Kwaanza and the New Year all come between the first of December and January. And sooner or later, you're going to face the decision as what to say when giving some kind of greeting that's seasonal. Many people are inclusive by saying "Happy Holidays." It seems harmless and about as innocuous as any greeting you can give. Yet there are some who will sneer and get upset because you didn't say the exclusive "Merry Christmas." A local car dealership will give you a plastic sign for your lawn that has that greeting on it, explaining that it's the "reason for the season."

To those holiday snobs, I say that you need to get over yourselves. Guess what? As much as you'd like it to be so, you're not the only people out there and you aren't alone in your celebrations. By insisting that everyone bow to your whims, you tell the world that nobody's feelings are as important as yours. You are showing an arrogance and pride that seem to run counter to the teachings of Christ.

There is also the problem of whether or not Christmas should be celebrated in December. All indications are that if Jesus existed at all, he wasn't born in December but more likely in the spring or early summer. The date of December 25 was chosen in the 5th century AD as a means of co-opting the Roman holiday Saturnalia, the celebration of the unconquered sun. It was a common practice in the early church to take the pagan holidays and make them their own.

Almost every society throughout history has had some kind of solstice celebration, generally related to making sure the sun started turning back north after descending to its lowest point in the sky. This time of year is all about celebration.

So don't be a holiday snob. When someone tells you "Happy Holidays," be gracious and greet the other person in kind.

Happy holidays.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

A Deceitful Preacher? Surely Not!

I find small stories to be the most hilarious sometimes, like this story in which a 'reverend' in Watertown, PA plead guilty to stealing from his church and tricking the congregation.
Court documents in Jefferson County accused Marr of soliciting money from dozens of parishioners and friends and turning it over — perhaps as much as $613,000 — to another parishioner, Arthur Eith, who claimed to be investing the money in Nigeria. Sometimes Marr told people he needed the money to help people down on their luck. Other times he said it was for a down payment on a house for himself and another priest.
$613,000?! That is amazing. What I found funny about this is that the aforementioned “tricking” was the lies that he told about where the money was going, not about him standing in the pulpit every Sunday and telling the greatest lie in history. You know, the one about there being a god.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Atheist Don't Understand Religion?

What a boring piece of tripe I found on the National Post. Charles Lewis wrote a 'scathing' article against atheists, telling us the he doesn't care what we think. Then he goes on a bitching binge for a few paragraphs about how he is all mad and bothered that atheists criticize religion.
But the debate is useless for one simple reason: most atheists do not have a clue what religion is about. They see religious people as blind sheep following a series of incomprehensible rules and dogmas and then scoff at their lack of enlightenment. They find the flaw in the painting and say it is all now ruined. Atheists are utopians who believe a perfect society can be built if only religion was not in the way.
I skipped over quoting this highly quotable square of toilet paper to make one thing clear: most atheists have been religious and know exactly what it's all about. I am never left without wonder when I here the religious idiots say that 'atheists just don't understand because they don't believe in god.' Well, I don't believe in the tooth fairy or the easter bunny but I can come up with a list of logical reasons why they don't exist without still believing in them. I'm not even sure his statement makes any sense.

Are the religious 'blind sheep following a series of incomprehensible rules and dogmas'? They have had thousands of years to prove they are not and a mountain of evidence that says they are. I will stick with the evidence on this one.

By the way, the way to show that you don't care what someone thinks is not to write an article in the National Post.

NCSE Promotes Creationism

Is the National Center for Science Education (NCSE) a parody group that I am unaware of? They seem legit, that is until you find out about this trip through the Grand Canyon they are offering.
Explore the Grand Canyon with Scott, Newton, and Gish! Seats are now available for NCSE's next excursion to the Grand Canyon — as featured in The New York Times (October 6, 2005). From June 30 to July 8, 2011, NCSE will again explore the wonders of creation and evolution on a Grand Canyon river run conducted by NCSE's Genie Scott, NCSE's Steven Newton, and paleontologist Alan ("Gish") Gishlick. Because this is an NCSE trip, we offer more than just the typically grand float down the Canyon, the spectacular scenery, fascinating natural history, brilliant night skies, exciting rapids, delicious meals, and good company. It is, in fact, a unique "two-model" raft trip, on which we provide both the creationist view of the Grand Canyon and the evolutionist view — and let you make up your own mind. To get a glimpse of the fun, watch the short videos filmed during the 2009 trip, posted on NCSE's YouTube site. The cost of the excursion is $2545; a deposit of $500 will hold your spot. Seats are limited: call, write, or e-mail now.
What the hell? A dual-model trip that shows both the creationists view and the evolutionist view of how the Grand Canyon was created? Ok, let me dunk my head in a bucket of ice water to cool down. Now it's time to regulate.

Point 1: Creationism is not only false, it is a fucking joke. It is not serious and should not be catered to even as a joke. It should be ridiculed until it becomes taboo to even hold the thought in your head. For proof that creationism is a goddamned lie, I direct you to this site.

Point 2: The theory of evolution has nothing to do with the creation of the Grand Canyon! It drives me insane that the word 'evolutionist' (which isn't a real fucking word) is applied to anyone who holds a different view of than creationists in any discipline. Think the Grand Canyon was created by a river over a long time? Evolutionist. Think the Earth is warming and god isn't going to save us? Evolutionist. Think the universe is older than 6000 years? Evolutionist. Don't have your head up your ass when it comes to facts? Evolutionist. It isn't a real word. Why don't we call it what it is: those who are creationists shall henceforth be known as “fucking idiots” and people who accept an Earth that is older than 6000 years are called “people who are not fucking idiots.”

Point 3: Why do we keep allowing these national organizations to set up the false dichotomies between science and religion? There is fact and then there is whatever the hell you want to call the views of fucking idiots. How about we do a tour of concentrations camps, but a dual-model trip that shows the side of holocaust deniers? Or perhaps we could take a tour of NASA with those who think that there is a giant alien conspiracy and we never landed on the moon? Do you know why we wouldn't do that? Because it would be stupid.

So remember, if you have $2545 to burn and are a moron, there is a rafting trip for you to take through the Grand Canyon.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Fundamentalist Jews Becoming As Bad As The Nazis

Just when I think the extremists in Israel can’t be any more loathsome, they do something to prove me wrong. A group of 50 rabbis (who are civil servants, yeat another reason not to mix government and religion) signed a letter that urged the nation not to rent or sell property to non-Jews.
"It is known that due to selling or renting one apartment, all the apartments of the neighbors devaluate even if the buyers or renters are nice at first ... and the one that sells and rents first causes his neighbors a loss and causes others to rent and sell after him and leave the place."
Wow. They just came right out and said it. I have to agree with them about devaluation of property. However, they are directing it at the wrong people. You know who I really don’t want to live next to because they are dirty, filthy things who devaluate property? Jews.

How horrible does that sound? It is horrible and racist. However, when the good rabbis say it, its religious doctrine and must be followed. I remember reading about a country who thought a group of people devalued their land and dirtied everything up.

Jesus Loves Doors

Tis the season for Jesus to start showing up in weird places. As always, he can never appear as himself on the sic o’clock news. Instead he appears on the back of a bathroom door or a grilled-cheese sandwich. Here are a couple of his most recent appearances.

-Joe De Nuncio of Tampa, Florida was recently told do give a bathroom door back to a company that he used to work for. Joe asked for the door and the company gave it to him. Why did he want a bathroom door from a plywood company? Because Jesus was on it, of course! Don't forget to check out the pictures.

-An Irish pub in Australia has found an image of Jesus in the chipped paint of their door.
These types of sightings often lead people to believe the Lord is sending some sort of message of hope. In this case, according to Keohane, the only sign it may be sending is about what's served inside.
I know when I am looking to post a message of hope, I head to the nearest pub in a tiny town in eastern bumble-fuck Australia.
The tavern has no intention of repairing the stripped paint. Aside from enjoying the attention Jesus attracts, it's also treasuring the image at the request of a local parish.
Of course they aren’t going to repair it. They are making money off of a shitty paint job. This is further proof that Jesus is a capitalist and an alcoholic.

-A Bishop in Green Bay has certified that some visions of Mary by Adele Brise were real. This marks the first bullshit claim appearance of Mary in the United States. Mary and Jesus are like UFO’s: They only appear to slack-jawed yokels with no education who live in the middle of nowhere. Maybe they are real and they just like screwing with people.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

A History Of Weakness

Two years ago we had just elected Barack Obama as President. The nation was elated because they thought that finally we would have someone who would change the way the government runs and how we do business as a nation. I, like many people at the time, was fully on board with the President coming into office and getting us back on some sort of reasonable course, a course that had been shifted so far to the right that Reagan started to seem like a left-of-center Democrat. As of this week, what little confidence I had in the President to do the right thing came to a halt.

My discontent had been growing with this administration since the health care debate. I was angry enough to declare that I would not be voting for him again, with good reason. The health care bill gave us so little change that it may as well have not even been passed. Health care costs continue to rise, health insurance companies who are forced to cover preexisting conditions in children are just refusing to cover children at all, and the bill as a whole won't start to take a real effect until 2014. In 2014, the bill will have been gutted because it wasn't strong and it wasn't immediate. This entire episode would have been attributed to a new administration trying to find their way. Things would surely get better after this. Right?

Since the health care debate the President has been cowering in a corner, or more precisely he has been on his knees under Mitch McConnell's and John Boehner's desks. He collapses under any kind of pressure from the right and them throws his arms in the air and says “What could I have done? I had to compromise.” I haven't seen compromise, all I have seen is capitulation. There is a lot of big talk coming from this guy. He says he would love to fight the Republicans on every piece of major legislation that he can. When the opportunity presents itself, he runs and hides behind the curtains in the oval office.

Then there are the areas that he has stood up to fight which is a long list of right-wing goals. He failed to close Guantanamo Bay, he continues to policy of warrantless wiretapping, and seems to be apathetic to the issue of Net Neutrality. The only conclusion I can draw from any of these issues is that he doesn't care. If you do not take a stand against a bad idea than you may as well be a supporter of the bad idea. There is no room for compromise when it comes to failed or bad ideas from the Bush Administration.

Now comes to two issues that the President could have redeemed himself on: Repeal of “Don't Ask, Don't Tell” and repeal of the Bush tax cuts. On the issue of DADT, how can he expect anything to get done while he is doing nothing but sitting on his hands waiting for the turtle of congress to take action? I agree that the bill has to be repealed through congress, but there is the option of enacting a stop-loss in the mean time. Then you start to tighten the screws on congress until they scream for mercy. The public is for the repeal of DADT and so is most of congress, minus John McCain who should be treated like a child and told to go stand in the corner until he calms down. Instead, we get a President who pays great lip service but does nothing in the end. Gays are still being discharged under DADT and congress has still not taken up the issue. You know why? Weak leadership, which also applies to Pelosi and Reed.

On the second issue, why is the President making the case for the Republicans? It doesn't make any sense at all. He went out as he usually does and crumbled at the first sign of pressure from the right. Not only did he crumble, but he gave away all of his bargaining chips before negotiations even started. As with DADT, the repeal of the Bush tax cuts was supported by a majority of the nation. The middle class should get to keep their tax cuts (that's anyone making less than $250,000 a year, which is too high in my opinion) and the wealthiest 2% of the nation has to go back to what their taxes were under Clinton (which is way too low in my opinion). However this President can't seem to wrap his mind around standing on principle. He actually thinks that he lost the House in 2010 because he wasn't enough of a Republican. What really happened was people started to wake up to his bullshit and realize that he has no back bone. The people voted for the Republicans because they had no other choice. Why would they vote for a spineless Democrat?

I can only urge the Democrats to run a primary against the President. After he stood on stage and blamed all of his problems on the liberals (his base, you know the ones who support him most) and said that we were being sanctimonious, the entire party should have started the process of finding someone who wasn't going to be a weakling who cowers in fear every time a Republican walks into the room.

I stick by my decision to never vote for this guy again. He is a lost cause at best and a Republican at worst. The question now is who is going to challenge him? Who can beat him for the nomination or who could run as a viable third-party candidate? I'm looking at you Russ Feingold.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

The Five Homophobes You Meet In A Religion Class

Does anything go hand-in-hand better than homophobia and religion? According to the religion class I am taking right now, not at all. I had an extra elective to take this semester, so I figured “Old Testament As Literature” would be a fun class to take. I knew I would be in for a good time when I found out that the instructor is actually a Baptist preacher. What can I say, I am a glutton for punishment.

Well, not actually. The instructor turned out to be a Francis Collins-style Christian who puts a lot of stock in science. The man is a biologist but just can't seem to shake off the trappings of Jesus. Oh well, I can deal with namby-pamby Christians. Especially ones that think that most of the Bible is allegory and the Old Testament is not true.

Enough background. During last nights class I was able to have an interesting and enlightening argument with another student, which turned in to an argument with all five students in the class. The conversation came out of nowhere and had nothing to do with religion, aside from the obvious fact that the only arguments that can be made against homosexuality can come from the Bible or the Koran.

The argument started with this one imbecile stating that he hasn't been able to run in a local park lately because he has been sick. However, that was the least of his worries since he has notice more and more lately that “the park system in Gaston County is being overrun by degenerate homosexuals. I know that I couldn't get away with saying this is most classes, but I feel like you guys would understand.” What part of that I am supposed to understand is... not understandable.

This devolves into a discussion between the other members of the class about how gay people are everywhere, lurking like some sort of 1930's propaganda piece about Jew's waiting to steal good Aryan children. I should have said something before this point, but it took me a minute to process what was happening and form a coherent sentence. Then came the gem that sent me off my rocker. “You know, not all homosexuals, but most homosexuals' idea of a good time is getting straight guys drunk and raping them. They thing the only thing that separates a gay man from a straight man is blood-alcohol content. That's why we shouldn't drop 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'.”

This is the point where I lost my mind. Here is a summery of what I said to this schlemiel: “You are telling me that you have never served with a gay person? Bullshit. Gay people are in the military, they just can't be open about it. If they are allowed to be open about it tomorrow, they still aren't going to find you, or any of you attractive. Your are all a group of bigoted assholes who can't come up with an argument against homosexuality that doesn't involved your stupid, fictitious religion. Have I ever tried to rape anyone in this class? Guess what; I am fucking gay! The lot of you are just as bad as the racists in the 1950's who argued against integrating black people in the military because of the looming spectra of the black rapist, coming to tear your white wives open from the bottom up. Spare me your bullshit.”

I am pretty sure that effectively shut down the conversation. I am not interested in sounding like a diplomat when idiots spout their opinions and expect everyone to go along with them. Would any of you handled it differently?

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Physicists Have Morons Amongst Them

There was a lecture given this past Tuesday that I am sorry I missed, not that I am anywhere near where the talk was being given. It was a lecture by a physicist named Dr Don DeYoung about... creationism. What, you thought that a physicist would be giving a lecture on physics? What would give you that idea?
And that’s just the tip of the iceberg, says Dr. DeYoung, who is a professor, author and current president of the Creation Research Society (CRS), a 1700-member international group that funds research and publishes a peer-reviewed scientific journal. The fact is, the designs of nature are so perfect for their purpose that they have inspired countless innovations over the years.

This phenomenon is one of the topics Dr. DeYoung will present to the Creation Science Society of Milwaukee. ...For this part of his talk, he will draw from his fascinating book 'Discovery of Design: Searching Out the Creator’s Secrets'

I found this interesting, "They say that if you’re looking for a scholar to debate a creationist, don’t bother asking the Physics Department – physicists tend to side with Creation Science."
None of the physicists I know side with creationism, not that that means anything. I am trying to figure out why anyone would listen to this quack just because he has a Ph. D in physics (which someone should get on checking that out to make sure it didn't come from Liberty University). Does the nature of physics give this guy some peep into the mind of gawd? I am a physics student and have yet to see anything that would make me believe in a god.

Besides, what does physics have to do with creationism and god anyway? If there is a god then physics are rendered useless when trying to understand the beginning of the universe. Way to work yourself out of a job.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Lack Of Basic Understanding Strikes Again!

Lack of basic scientific knowledge has struck again! Some buffoon named Parrish Myers wrote in the Gainesville Times that atheist don't believe in god, but we believe in air, gravity, and magnetism. I think this guy has been listening to too much Insane Clown Posse.
You can't see air, yet you breathe it and it sustains your life. You can't see gravity, but jump off a building and you'll find out just how real it is. Germs are too small to see with the naked eye, but get one and it will make you sick. Magnetism is an invisible force, but it attracts and repels whether we see it or not.

Personally, I have never known anyone who has denied the existence of things such as air, gravity, germs and magnetism. Yet I have known plenty of people who have denied the existence of God. The reason they deny his existence? Because they cannot see him.
OK you troglodyte, here is the difference between the list of things we can't see and god: we can actually observe the effects of gravity directly, we can observe the force of magnetism directly, we know what air is and can observe it, and we can see germs. Anyone with a third grade science education that wasn't given in a Christian school would be able to tell you that. Just so there is no misunderstanding, let me direct you to the Wikipedia entries on air, germs, magnetism, and gravity.

Do you know why you have never met anyone who denied the existence of air, etc? Because we have proof of such things existing. They actually do have a measurable effect on the physical world. What about God? Anything? Can anyone give me any kind of proof that doesn't amount to a feeling they get or some grand delusion that is all in their head? I'll be waiting, but I won't hold my breath.

Atheists are not a group of babies who have yet to develop object permanence. We understand that on a cloudy day that the sun is still there just as we understand that the air we breath is real and the force of gravity is real. I wonder if Parrish Myers would lock himself in a closet somewhere, would anyone believe he still existed? Let's give that experiment a shot.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Atheists Can Celebrate Christmas Too!

The following post was written by my friend Mark from Mark Bryan Is An Asshole. I thought it a fitting post for the holiday season. Enjoy, and don't forget to check out his blog.
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Hi, my name’s Mark and I’m and Atheist who celebrates Christmas. (Hi, Mark!) There is a lot of talking going on about how an Atheist should treat the holidays, it has been brought up on our group forum and in the headlines even "Christmas Season Sees US Atheists' Billboard Claiming Nativity A Myth"

The group claims the $20,000 billboard is “to raise awareness for the movement” and “designed to discourage existing vulnerable atheists, of going against their reason, to celebrate Christmas” They seriously spent the equivalent of one thousand Snuggies, in hopes of Atheists not celebrating Christmas? Good Luck. It’s going to take a lot more than a billboard to bring down the giant that is Christmas.

I know, I know. You don’t need to remind me that they are after the idea of celebrating Christ’s birth, but only a few real die hard Christians really revolve their holiday around the nativity scene anymore. Unless you‘re Ricky Bobby and baby Jesus is your favorite Jesus. People are more interested in giving and receiving this years hottest fad gifts. Case in point, I worked with a guy who would argue with me till he was blue in the face about my not believing in a God, when Christmas came around he mysteriously got a “cold” so he didn’t have to be in the live nativity scene his church hosted. He seemed just fine at work that day and I'm sure he was healthy on Christmas day, when it came time to open gifts and eat.

A few Excerpts of the discussion thread on our group forum.
“I have no problems celebrating Christmas at all. The whole holiday is just a complete fabrication anyhow and I always liked Christmas so I'm not stopping celebrating it just because Christians assign imaginary significance to it.“

“Christmas at this point has become so commercialized and almost secularized that it's not even about Jesus being born (which isn't historically accurate anyway). So I don't worry about it. These things are more like cultural norms than they are Christian events for the vast majority of the population.”

“We have holidays in our house because we're a family. Until there are more secular holidays to take their places, we'll celebrate the ones that are there in our own secular way. With our work and school schedules, we don't often get the chance to spend an entire day together.”

“I celebrate both Thanksgiving and Christmas and I see no hypocrisy in doing so. I consider it a shared cultural experience. We all know the stories associated with those holidays and like it or not, they are significant within the culture. Enjoying the traditions that were spurred by those stories doesn't mean we have to accept those stories as true (the original T-day is mythological too). I can enjoy Christmas - complete with manger scenes and traditional music (much better than those shitty pop Christmas songs) without believing the Christmas story in the same way I can enjoy great Cathedral architecture without buying into what's preached there. Indeed, I'm happy to participate in the shared cultural experience.”
My point is that people for the most part just don’t care about Christ’s birth Atheist or Christian. Christmas is really about gifts, childhood memories, food & family. Usually in that order. I for one never once celebrated a Christmas in a church service. December came around and I knew time to shape up cause Santa was going to bring me free stuff. I never have and never will associate Christmas with religion. I was thirteen when I finally asked what the baby was doing at the petting zoo under grandma’s Christmas tree. I celebrate Christmas this year in hopes of eating my families favorite foods, spending what time I have left with my family happy together, and pray that Justin Bieber’s book is waiting for me under the Christmas tree.
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Thank you Mark. I couldn't have said it better myself.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Home-School: Responding To Comments

There were a couple of comments left on my blog post about my life as a home-schooled child that I think need to be addressed. The comments came from anonymous posters (imagine that), so I have no way of contacting these people directly. Therefore, I shall do my best to demolish them in full view of my readers.

Anonymous said...
While I agree that there are many parents who have no business schooling their children, your premise is flawed.
http://suite101.com/content/homeschool-laws-for-north-carolina-a39919
November 23, 2010 6:15 PM

First of all, thank you for commenting. Now, the link that you provided did not in any way invalidate the premise of my argument. Perhaps I should have provided a link to the NC Department of Non-Public Education. I am rectifying that mistake now.

NCDNPE - Requirements, Reminders, and Recommendation

There is nothing in the rules of the NCDNPE that controls what I explained. I remember quite vividly my mother sitting down every now and then to make up my school records, grades, etc. I was required to take a CAT every year, which was administered by a family friend who would change the grades on sections of the test that we didn't do so well in. I was great at reading and sucked at math. When the results of the test came out, I was awesome on all levels of my education.

If you want to invalidate my argument, please come at me with something a little stronger than a list of vague regulations that are easily circumvented.
____________________________________________________________________

I am going to take this comment in pieces so that it makes more sense.
Anonymous said...
I agree with most of what you're saying; I was also home schooled, not just for a year but for my entire k-12 education. My experiences, especially in my science and history education, were almost exactly like yours.
A horrifying time. At least I was lucky enough to make it back to public school for my 11th and 12th grade years. I am sorry to hear that you were stuck in that situation for your entire school life.
Even though home school kids are notorious for having poor social and science skills, don't they often outscore the publicly educated children on skills like reading and mathematics? Parents may not be the most effective teachers, but most of them are not outright neglectful of their children. Saying home schooling shouldn't exist is a little extreme, since that is based off of just your experience.
The children who do well in home-school would have done well in any setting. Children who are home-schooled already have parents who have an interest in their education for the most part. I would like to see how children that have parents who are concerned with there education score against home-schooled children. I can almost guarantee that the difference would be within the margin of error.
I guess my take on home schooling is this: I personally dislike it; I think it should be regulated by the same testing system our public schools have (if a parent neglects to teach their children, they lose the right to teach at home; just like if a parent abuses their kids they lose the right to keep them); but I also think that freedom of thought and religion is too important to compromise by forcing everyone who is too poor for the private schools to go through the public schools. If a parent thinks that a religious education is more important than a science education, I disagree, but I think that is one of the excesses that a free society needs to tolerate.
November 27, 2010 12:07 PM
Freedom of thought and religion is great. However if you are teaching children something that is false, then why do you get a pass because of a ridiculous belief in an invisible man in the sky? If I believe that the Lord Of The Rings trilogy is 100% true, do I have the right to teach my child only things that are said to be true in those books? Rubbish! I would be ostracized and would be forced to put my child in an accredited institution, and rightly so.

Home-schools are generally not used by poor families, just families with poor educations. So to say that just because a parent thinks a child should have a religious education, then who is supposed to administer that? Most religious people have no idea what their own “holy” books say.

Your statements sound more like a relativistic view on how society should operate. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but society is not all rainbows and butterflies. When you make it to a university or to the real world, a home-school education isn't going to help you in the least, that is unless you are going to become a preacher.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

A Home-School Survivor

One important part of my life, as with all humans (except those who are in some way mentally handicapped) is social interaction. I love being around people regardless of their belief structures, personalities, or political leanings. I would rather be around a group of people that I disagree with than to be alone. I haven't always been this way though. There was a pretty bleak period in my life when I was home-schooled and social interaction with new people (or anyone outside of my immediate family) was impossible. My parents were well-meaning, but were also stiflingly overprotective.

When I was in the 5th grade, I was taken out of the private Christian school that I attended because my parents could no longer afford the tuition. Instead of doing the right thing, the thing that would have been best for me, my parents decided to take my education into their own hands. It sounded like a great idea; not having to get up early, getting to go play when I got my work done early, getting to stay up late. These should also be reasons that parents wouldn't want their kids at home all of the time. That great feeling of freedom from a structured school system faded quickly however.

My parents are fairly smart people. My dad has a degree in agricultural science and my mom, while not having a degree, was smart when it came to English. However, my family was poor. My dad worked all of the time and my mom stayed at home to teach me, even though her own problems with depression usually lead to her lazing about the house, almost as if she were uninterested in my education. That may not have been what she felt, but that was my observation as a child. When my dad did have time to try to teach me math or science, he would get so frustrated and annoyed that I would just turn off my ears and not ask questions for fear of being yelled at. My parents were smart people, but they had no business teaching anyone anything, much less being in charge of someone else's entire education.

What made this experience so unbearable was the crushing loneliness. It was just me and my mom. My sister by this time had already left the house (I can't understand why she would rather leave than stay under the watchful eye of my parents) so there was no one for me to talk to, no one for me to play with, and no new people to meet. It is amazing how fast a person in that situation can retreat into their own mind. There were programs at the time for home-schooled children to meet each other and have some sort of interaction even though it usually revolved around some sort of church function. However, the laziness that I described earlier prohibited such activities. Again, sheer loneliness.

After about a year of home-school, I had successfully removed myself from the rest of the world. I fantasized all day about a life that wasn't mine. I had plenty of time to do this since no one was making sure I was keeping up with my work, which I wasn't. My parents were supposed to be in charge of my education; it wasn't supposed to have been left up to the 5th grader. What child would police themselves and make sure their work was up-to-date if there were no deadlines, no tests, and no teachers to answer to?

Not being content with having me at home all of the time, my school material had to come from a good Christian institution which for our geographical local happens to be Bob Jones University. Not only was I alone and poorly educated, the education I was getting was skewed so hard by religion that I could scarcely tell my biology book from the Bible. I liken it to receiving an education about lung disease from the Tobacco Institute.

Herein lies the problem with home-school. There is no regulation as to what you teach your child. When the libertarians stand up and scream about abolishing the Department of Education, what they are saying is they want to decide what their children are taught on a level that the vast majority of them do not have the education to understand. I am sure there are some smart libertarians out there, but the vast majority of people who had that much control over their child's' education would end up like I did: getting a great education of how the Bible has all of the answers and science is wrong, wrong, wrong! There are standards and regulations of the education system (not enough, in my opinion) for a reason. Overall, most of the information out there is solid science, minus textbooks from Texas and Louisiana of course.

The other problem with home-school is the lack of social interaction. I am sure that there are some die-hard parents out there who are members of organizations that let their socially inept kids meet up with each other on a weekly basis, but they are in the minority from my experience. There is an institution set up that allows kids to interact with each other now; and amazing system called “Public Education”. There are standards that the kids have to adhere to and regardless of how I feel about the testing system or the way money is divided amongst schools in the affluent areas and the inner-city schools they work pretty damned well.

The education options for people are not perfect; the public school system has it fair share of inadequacies and private schools have loose standards and have to be examined carefully when choosing , but the home-school system is one that is in such a poor state that it shouldn't exist. I think the vast majority of parents who home-school their kids have no business trying to train a dog, much less teach another human being about the world. Home-school is a bad idea and the injustices that are visited upon the children involved amount to child abuse. Giving your children no other option than to sit at home all day and maybe get some work done all while retreating into their own imagination is not only wrong, but immoral.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

But God Told Him To!

I don’t understand how people can square their belief that God was a burning bush, talked through a donkey, and commanded Abraham to kill his own son can turn around and not apply the same logic to modern-day crimes.

During the opening of the trial for Brian David Mitchell, the guy that kidnapped Amy Smart, the argument was made that Mr. Mitchell was insane because he claims that God told him to go do a load of insane things.
According to his attorney, Parker Douglas, Mitchell believed that God was giving him direct commands – and ordering him to give up his children for adoption, to take multiple wives and to take Smart, who was 14 at the time, as his wife.
Sounds like a story straight out of the Bible. Why would any Bible-believing Christian have a problem with someone following Gods directions?

Giant Jesus? Watch Out For Lightning

Great giant Jesus! No, seriously. The giant Jesus of Sweibodzin, Poland is complete. This monster is 52 meters tall! Just think if the talent and money had went towards something that wasn't stupid and gaudy. I don't think anyone informed the good people of Sweibodzin what happens when you build a giant Jesus though.

Like Father, Like Son

I think this video says more about Christians than I ever could. Enjoy Donnie Swaggart, son of Jimmy Swaggart.



Violence, homophobia, racism... sounds like Christianity to me!

Monday, November 15, 2010

MomLogic: Actually Something Logical

I thought this article I found on MomLogic was going to make me scream, bash my face against the pavement, and set my leg on fire. The title made me cringe in a very uncomfortable way. However, after reading it, it actually gave me a warm fuzzy.
...and I told her something I learned in therapy -- which is my church; the place I seek wisdom. I explained that good and bad exist in all of us. It's not either angels or demons. We choose who we are, we choose our lives and goodness comes to us not because we prayed for it, but because we shared it and reached out for it.
Bravo, godless child. It takes a lot of guts to say there is no god, even more so at the age of 11 (if only I had been so smart/brave at the age of 11). I think the mother did a good job on her part also. I think it is interesting that after years away from the church, the mothers gut reaction was “did I do something wrong?” Brainwashing at its best.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

This Is The Tea Party

Sarah Palin is the gift that keeps on giving, kind of like herpes. She recently retweeted a tweet from one of her friends that said the following:
The entire post read: "The blood of Jesus against Obama History made November 2008 a Taliban Muslim illegally elected President USA: Hussein."
What? That doesn't even really make any sense, but I get the picture. I am less interested in this bat-shit crazy moron who thinks Obama is an al Qaeda operative than I am of the response of Palin.
"I've never purposefully 'favorited' any Tweet," she told ABC News. "I had to go back to my BlackBerry to even see if such a function was possible. I was traveling to Alaska that day ... it was an obvious accidental 'favoriting'."
Didn't know anything about being able to “favorite” another twitter-head? As much time as she spends on the damned software, you would think she would know about the “favorite” function. This is example 4289743 of Palin allying herself with the crazy and then denying it when it backfires on her. Oh well, she could just be a moron who doesn't know any better.

I Guess He Wants More Kids Around To Molest

It's the year 2010 and still people seem to care what the Pope has to say, at least that is how it is reported. During the Dark Lords' recent visit to Spain, he blessed the first stone of a disabled children's residence that will bear his name. I am not sure that I would want the name of the pope associated with children in any form. Anyway, the guy shows up and dumps some “holy” water on a rock that is going to be part of the building. Big deal. Here is what caught my eye:
"Therefore, it is indispensable that new technological developments in the field of medicine never be to the detriment of respect for human life and dignity, so that those who suffer physical illnesses or handicaps can always receive that love and attention required to make them feel valued as persons in their concrete needs," he said.
Respect for human life and dignity? That is rich coming from the evil head of an organization that was responsible for the Crusades, the Inquisition, the blind eye turned towards the Jews during World War II (and the endorsement of Hitler), the millions of people who have died in Africa because the Catholic church says condoms cause AIDS, and the rape of scores of children that has most recently came to light. How about their stance on women's rights? Spare me your righteous indignation at the idea that some fetuses are aborted because they are diseased.

I bang my head against the wall and ask the same questions that has been asked a million times before by a million different people: why does anyone give a shit about what the pope thinks about anything, especially when it comes to medicine and technology. If I want to know how to waste my time doing something unproductive while simultaneously convincing people to do things against their best interests, I will ask for the popes opinion and guidance.

Many of the children in the homes for the disabled could have been taken care of before they were born, especially in the case of severe disability. I understand that abortion is a hard decision and it may sound cold and heartless, but disabilities that are so severe that the person is not aware what is going on around them should be eliminated before birth. There are parents who would never think of aborting their disabled fetus, and while I think they are selfish, I also have a great deal of sympathy for them. I think they should be given all of the help in the world to raise their child. However, for the pope to have a voice on this issue is mind-boggling. What has the church done for these children, other than rape them continuously?

One bit of truth and some rather good news was stated in this piece.
"We know that the number of these people has declined mostly because a good number of them are eliminated before they are born," he said.
As it should be. Why should these children be allowed to suffer because of the selfish actions of their parents or because some weird old man in a pointy hat told them the lie that there is a god and he cares about their disable children?

Monday, November 8, 2010

I don't Think The Pope Is Welcome Anymore

Who doesn't love to watch the Pope, the infallible duke of douche, fall flat when he goes to pay a visit in another country? The dude with the giant hat recently visited Spain, to what was described as sparse crowds and a cool reception by the Prime Minister who pushed the legalization of gay marriage, if that is what you call not showing up to see the Pope.

What was awesome about this visit is the 100 or so gay couples that staged a protest where the pope would be driving through. Their protest? Making out with each other so that Darth Sidious could see them.

I like this kind of protest. Had I been there, I would have joined in.

When will the pope get the point. He didn't get it in the UK and he isn't getting it in Spain: Europe is becoming more secularized and modern. The pope represents the worst parts of our past. Perhaps every city in Europe should have giants signs with a picture of the baggy-eyed wonder with the title "Not Welcome Here."

Does anyone in any European country want a roommate?

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Republicans And Libertarians: A Vote Against The People

Here in the US, today is the day to vote. It's pretty sad how many people actually end up voting. I won't be the one saying “this is the most important election of our lives”, which is the same thing said at every election. I think all elections are important and change the course of our country in their own way. What I will tell you is this: don't vote Republican or Libertarian. Make sure you vote progressive.

I tell you not to vote Republican because those guys have already had their chance. From 1994-2006, the Republican party had control of the government and nearly destroyed us all. We saw the ridiculous trial of a president for getting a blowjob, we saw Newt Gingrich try to legislate morality only to end up getting caught in an affair, we saw numerous 'family values - anti-gay' Republicans end up with their dicks inside of other men, the largest terrorist attack on US soil (as much as no one wants to admit it, the Republicans were in control when this happened), the near-collapse of the economy, two wars that are draining the country, an intelligence drought, the rise of the Christian right, etc. etc. etc. They shouldn't be allowed a seat at the table until they can either admit publicly that they only care about businesses and their own wallets or they change their ways and start giving a shit about regular people.

I tell you not to vote for Libertarians because they don't make any sense. I have been assured that all Libertarians want is a small government and personal freedom. But when you look at what bill of goods they are selling, it is nothing more than an anarchist platform. They want no regulations because the “market will correct itself.” In what fucking universe? The country was running awesome back in the early 20th century when we had no oversight of meat production, food production, drug production, labor rights, and economic activities. Take a look at that time period and tell me you want to see the day that we have another 'Great Depression', complete with bread lines and a massive homeless population. The areas in which I agree with Libertarians ends at personal freedom. Hell, I am not sure I would agree 100% with them even on that matter. What the Libertarians end up doing is schilling for big corporations so they can conduct their business with no oversight. If they end up destroying a nation of killing a few thousand people, so what? That would effect the people that aren't rich. 'Pick yourselves up by your bootstraps' they would say. Well, what happens when you don't have any bootstraps?

The bottom line is Republicans and Libertarians don't give a shit about people. They are all selfish children who only care about their money. So, if you want this country to descend further down the spiral, then vote Republican/Libertarian (because they are all essentially the same thing). However, if you actually care about what happens to this nation and the people in it, the VOTE PROGRESSIVE.

Monday, November 1, 2010

The Crystal Cathedral Goes Bye-Bye

Oh! The Crystal Cathedral is filing for bankruptcy. What a sad day for America. The church is $55 million (!) dollars in debt. They have been forced to cut back on the number of channels that they transmit the “Hour of Power” from and have also had to sell off some land.

I want to know how a church gets that far in debt? I can imagine the pastor of the church wasn't working for peanuts, so I am sure that his salary was a large contributing factor. That coupled with the fact that churches produce nothing but diluted people, fear, homophobia, and racism.

-----------------------------

Update:
The poor-mouthing founder of the church has taken it upon himself to shake down the members of the congregation for more money.
“I need more help from you,” Schuller said, according to an account in the Orange County Register. "If you are a tither, become a double-tither. If you are not a tither, become a tither. This ministry has earned your trust. This ministry has earned your help."
He wants the people to bail him out because he has shitty money management abilities. The church is $50 million in debt and he wants to place it all on the sheep of the church. Who didn't see this coming?

On a side note, how ironic is this?
“We will be out of Chapter 11 once we have a repayment plan,” which could take a “few years” to carry out, she said. “This is a chapter. God will have the last word, and it will be good.”
So when the doors are shut on the church because they decided to not pay the vendors that they owe money and pay their mortgage, I guess the last word of god will be “Fail”.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

This Guy Obviously Wants His Church To Pay Taxes

I wonder why churches get special tax exemptions just because they are churches. It doesn’t make much sense to me. Most of the churches in this area are huge, opulent, hulking masses of wasted money. It must be nice to be able to not pay taxes just because you are delusional.

Well, it seems that a certain pastor in Minnesota wants to start paying taxes. Why else would this happen?
Americans United for the Separation of Church and State filed a complaint with the Internal Revenue Service Monday against Hastings’ Berean Bible Baptist Church and its pastor, Brad Brandon, for violating the ban on tax-exempt churches endorsing candidates. Brandon endorsed a slate of conservative candidates during his Sunday sermon after challenging the “liberal media” to report on his activities. AU urged the IRS to “investigate this matter and fully enforce our laws.”
So this guy endorses political candidates and Americans United calls him on his bullshit. Way to go Barry Lynn!

I am not sure what kind of stand this guy is trying to take. The law is pretty clear: be politically active and lose your 501(3)(c) status. This pastor really wanted to have a big deal made over his endorsement though.
Brandon had been threatening the endorsements for a week on his radio program. To the “liberal media” he said, “Little immature human beings that are so wrapped up in your emotions that you couldn’t make a rational decision if it killed you, so please make this one decision for me — do it based on emotion. Do it out of hatred for me. File a complaint against mean old Pastor Brandon who is going to come out and endorse candidates.”
It’s always the liberal media’s fault. It’s never the fault of the jackass who thinks the law doesn’t apply to him. See you in court!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Steal Candy, Lose A Hand

The judiciary of Iran is a barbarous entity. The strict interpretation of Sharia law for any reason should send people screaming into the night. So it should come as no surprise that a man has been sentenced to having his hand amputated. His crime? He shoplifted from a candy shop.

Why is it that when someone follows a strict interpretation of any kind of religious law, some kind of body mutilation or the death penalty is issued for a either a minor infraction or something that isn’t a crime (i.e. apostasy)? How long are we going to continue lying to ourselves, claiming that ‘true Islam is a religion of peace’?

There is no such thing as a religion of peace. Any sort of religion that would condone cutting someone’s hand off or stoning to death (for that matter, the death penalty) should never be allowed to control anything.

Hey Islam, your religion is idiotic.

Faith Healing To Be Regulated In Malaysia

Faith healing is not just a problem in the western world. The problems that we have with homeopathy and the Bible believers are echoed across the world, it really just depends on what book of nonsense is being used to "heal" a person with. In Malaysia the book of nonsense is the Qur'an, but the trappings and rituals are still the same. Homeopathy, exorcisms, and general faith healing is undoubtedly in wide use.

So when you hear of the government starting to crack down on these purveyors of perjury, you would assume that it would be a good thing.
Dr. Ramli Abdul Ghani, head of Traditional and Complementary Medicine at Malaysia’s Health Ministry, said that people use it, and they feel the need to regulate the practices to prevent abuse and ensure that the practitioners are qualified. The new law is to be called “The Traditional and Complementary Medicine Bill”, and is scheduled for review in parliament next year.

The bill also covers issues concerning acupuncture and homeopathy, and requires over 11,000 practitioners to apply for a license from the ministry. The Islamic Development Department will draw up guidelines to be followed by Muslim faith healers. This is to avoid a prevalent trend of fake practitioners victimizing innocent people.
Isn't that lovely. Not only are they going to regulate it, but they are going to put the government stamp of approval on these archaic practices. Does this sound familiar to anyone who lives in the UK? Faith healers in the UK have the backing of the crown, which gives some sort of credence to the ridiculous claims of homeopaths.

If good Dr. Ghani was truly interested in the health and welfare of the people of Malaysia, then he would recommend that faith healing, in all of its forms, be banned. There is no scientific evidence that homeopathy works. Just because you have 11,000 practitioners of nonsense does not make it viable or effective. I would like to add that I lump homeopathy, acupuncture, and exorcisms under the heading of "faith healing". It's all faith-based "medicine".

As for avoiding the trend of fake practitioners victimizing innocent people, that's what all practitioners are and do. They are all fake and they are all victimizing the public. Anytime you deny someone proven medicine and allow them to take homeopathic "remedies", then you are harming people.

Again, faith healing is fake. It has never worked and it never will.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Fake Threats And Real Fear At Fox News

Trying to find truth at Fox News is like trying to find a snow storm on the sun. Why anyone considers them a viable news source is beyond me. They have proven themselves to be nothing more than an extension of the Christian Right and the Republican Party: kind of like the Information Bureau in 1984. The disinformation and fear-mongering coming from this organization would be funny if so many people didn't buy into it. Just check out the headline of this article: “Why Did Media Ignore Threat of 'Flag of Islam' Flying Over the White House?” Well, this should be interesting.

The article is simply a delusional screed from an awfully terrified Republican that goes about actually believing that threats made by Islamic fundamentalists are actually going to happen. The author also wants to know why the sucky media didn't cover the story. To that I say “You wrote your article at Fox News. Your are the media, douchebag!” It always blows my mind when media figures say that the media is terrible and doesn't cover anything. It's like when Republicans talk about how terrible the government is and how it can't do anything right. “Hello! You are part of the government, douchebag!”

In the recounted tale of this cleric that said the “flag of Islam would fly over the White House”, the author makes a few interesting comparisons.
Across the oceans, radical Islamists would likely do as they did during the Koran burning episode or after the Danish cartoons were published. They would riot. Cars, businesses and maybe even embassies might burn. People might die.
I gather from this that Mr Gainor would prefer that the Christians in this nation should riot, burn buildings, and turn cars over when they don't get their way. If the Muslims in France can do it, then so should the Christians in America! Way to make your case. I think he is saying Christians are better because they don't do this, which if you look at the history of Christianity you will find a different story. Christian history is rife with violence, bloodshed, genocide, and pride about the previously mentioned acts. Maybe I am the crazy one though.

The idea that Christians don't use the same terminology is just wrong. What about the Billy Graham Crusade? What about Crusaders for Christ? Mr Gainor can't see past his own nose and realize that Muslims are saying the same things that Christians have been saying for a long time. Take for example:
According to Choudary, “Islam has a solution for all of the problems that mankind faces.” You don’t need to read between the lines to know what he was talking about.
Well, Mr. Gainor is right about one thing; you don't need to read between the lines on that statement. However, I would posit the question: How many preachers stand in the pulpit every Sunday morning and proclaim that Christianity is the only solution to the problems that mankind faces? They go even further and say that Jesus is going to come back and destroy the world! A loving god indeed.

This guy goes a little wacky by attacking Christiane Amanpour as being pro-Islamist, whatever the hell that is supposed to mean. I guess because she doesn't walk around the news set waving a Christian flag and reading from her Bible then she must be a secret agent of al-Qaeda. In my opinion, Christiane Amanpour is one of the most reliable people in the media. She reported on the Israeli incursion into Lebanon by giving the facts and putting a face on “the enemy”, not by singing the praises of how great Israel is. That, Mr Gainor, is called journalism, which is something that Fox News wouldn't know if it surrounded their building and started throwing eggs at it.

There are a few side points that this guy tries to sidetrack his readers with, like somehow turning this into a treatise on how the sucky liberal media is painting the Teabaggers as a group of morons. Well, they are what they are. However, if we were to judge an entire group by the actions of the extremists... well, I don't think I need to go on. What is funny about this is that in the same breath Mr. Gainor connects liberals and the media to Islam. Get a load of this gem.
If you laid all of the lefty/media attacks against the right end to end, they’d probably reach all the way to Mecca. Convenient that.
So, if you don't report the Republican talking points, then you are a Muslim, and therefor a terrorist. Also, if you don't think that the government should tell you who you can fuck, but would like your tax money to go towards something better than war (like, I dunno, healthcare?), then you are also a Muslim Terrorist.

This guys is fond of definitions also, so let me throw out a few.
Crusade
[kroo-seyd]
–noun
1. ( often initial capital letter ) any of the military expeditions undertaken by the Christians of Europe in the 11th, 12th, and 13th centuries for the recovery of the Holy Land from the Muslims.
2. any war carried on under papal sanction.
3. any vigorous, aggressive movement for the defense or advancement of an idea, cause, etc.: a crusade against child abuse.

Terrorist
[ter-er-ist]
–noun
1. a person, usually a member of a group, who uses or advocates terrorism.
2. a person who terrorizes or frightens others.

Propaganda
[prop-uh-gan-duh]
–noun
1. information, ideas, or rumors deliberately spread widely to help or harm a person, group, movement, institution, nation, etc.
2. the deliberate spreading of such information, rumors, etc.
3. the particular doctrines or principles propagated by an organization or movement.
Now, maybe this guy can explain the aforementioned Billy Graham Crusade, The Crusaders for Christ, and how he is not using terrorist tactics by trying to scare the hell out of everyone who reads his brain vomit (and I use the term brain loosely). Take the point that he made about Jihad al-Islami and use the logic as applied to Billy Graham, etc. I know, Christians don't like when facts are pointed out.

What is amazing to me is that when he mentions the plot that was uncovered in France, he only mentions the stock prices of the airlines. True to Republican form, always looking out for the business above the people. This was actually a real terror cell that was caught before they could do any harm. No fear mongering, just the truth. And yes, people could have died. However, the stock prices of the airlines are what this jerk cares about.

In the end, Mr Gainor poses a question that I would like to try to answer.
Finally, how many terror attacks will it take before the media stop blaming America and start blaming radical Islam? The sad answer is: too many.
Well, that depends. When will America start seeing the republican party for what it is: a group of old white racist assholes who are more interested in stock prices and their bottom dollar than they are about their fellow human beings? The sad answer: probably when its too late.

Never would I defend Islam, but I think it is important to point out the similarities.

Thoughts?

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The Anti-Gay Screed Of An Idiot

The blood is boiling. Angry.

Sometimes I hate opening my inbox and finding the new batch of solitary hells that are contained within like some sort of festering cancer. Today was no exception.

The “editor-in-chief” of LifeSiteNews.com, John-Henry Westen, spoke to a hoard of anti-choice, anti-gay monsters this week in Italy at what can only be described as a convention of hate. I don’t like bringing any attention to these douche-bags unless it is absolutely necessary, which it seems to be. Here are some choice excerpts from the article.
It is an act of love, he said, for parents to correct and discipline their children. “It is not love,” he said, “to allow your children to rampantly misbehave without correcting them.”

“So too the Church, especially Her shepherds – the fathers of souls - must feed the flock, must teach the truths however difficult and politically incorrect. That is true love.”
So gay people are children who need to be corrected and disciplined. I think the church has had a pretty good display of its discipline for the “wrongdoings” of society, from the Inquisition to the “Kill The Gays” bill in Uganda. Perhaps John-Henry should be addressing the lot of priest who were less interested in correcting their flock than they were “feeding the flock” of children as much of their penises as they could.
Christians, he said, have balked at defending their beliefs in all the areas of concern in the Culture Wars, from abortion, adultery, homosexuality and divorce to human embryonic stem cell research.
Does anyone truly think that the church is quiet on any of these subjects? There is proof about 30 miles from my home that the church is quite vocal on the areas of abortion, homosexuality, and stem cell research. Who is blowing up abortion clinics? Who is attacking gay people? Who couldn’t keep their damned noses out of stem cell research? The church, that’s who.

Take Prop 8 in California, for example. The Mormon Church bankrolled the entire fight against allowing two people who love each other to get married. Before you ask, I do lump all churches in together. Mormons are the same as Muslims are the same as Hindus are the same as Satanists. It all the same bullshit lies and myths with a different Brand Name.

The Catholic Church is the worst offender when it comes to human rights. A group that has a history of fostering hatred for Jews, assisting the Nazis, and raping children should have a better mind to keep their opinions about society to themselves.
Westen posed the question of how Christians can now begin to present their beliefs forthrightly in a culture that is so firmly rejecting them. The answer, he said, is to be found in the Christian principle of love of neighbour. Specifically, the love of those suffering from homosexual temptations and those men and women in the grip of a destructive lifestyle.
I don’t think this guy gets it. Society rejects his beliefs because they are fucking stupid! This isn’t 1500, as much as the church would like it to be, and no one gives a shit about what the church has to say about subjects that they obviously have no idea about. Their version of Christian Love ™ consists of smiling to your face and telling you that you are scum and are going to burn in hell for eternity if you don’t denounce who you are. The only reason that homosexuals are suffering is because of fucking bigots like this guy.

I can’t bring myself to quote any more of this tripe. This is the face of the church. This is what they all think of those who don’t buy in to their bullshit. The problem lies in the fact that people like John-Henry have the ear of many politicians and world leaders. The tragedy is that anyone listens to what he has to say.

What should we do about people like this, if anything?

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

A Case Of Atheist Discrimination

During most of my life as an atheist, I have heard a few of the same statements made about discrimination when it comes to being an atheist. “At least no one is killing atheists here”, “You can't get fired for being an atheist”, and “Why can't you just be quiet about your beliefs” are three of the most common statements (which have all been said to me during to course of one 10-minutes long radio interview). I have become proof the second statement is false.

In my day job, I deal with customer relations. I have spent a lot of time building a good working relationship with my customers over the past 5 ½ years. I have had nothing but glowing reviews (which they have to give periodically). Needless to say, I found it quite odd when I was called into a meeting with my manager and informed that the customer no longer wanted me in their warehouse. This happened about 3 weeks after I appeared on TV and the radio, on my own time, promoting the billboard.

I will not divulge the name of the company that kicked me out, mainly because I don't want to be sued, but it is a very large company that produces undergarments. I had my suspicions as to why they didn't want me in their building, but they were confirmed when one of my supervisors pulled me to the side to let me know what happened during the meeting with the customer. They didn't like what I was promoting on my free time. They thought I was doing them a disservice by being in their building and being an atheist, I guess.

This is very serious because in my job, if you are dismissed from a large account, your job pretty much has a 3 month lifespan. The only reason my job is in danger is because I refuse to believe in fairy tales and I refuse to be quiet about it, especially in a place like Charlotte, NC that names every other road or building after Billy Graham. I never talked about my personal life while at work because its personal. I do not talk to my coworkers about my family or my friends and vice-verse.

I am reminded of the radio interview I did with Tara Servatious, our own local Glenn Beck. She made the comment that atheists were just playing the victim and no one every really discriminates against atheist. It's against the law and as we all know, businesses never break the law. Well, here is your discrimination. I now have first-hand knowledge of what it is like to be in danger of being fired at any moment for a lack of belief. No matter what is said, it still isn't OK to be an atheist in America. Land of the free, indeed.

Has anyone else seen this type of, or have been the object of,discrimination like this?

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

American Gay

In case you haven't seen it, Dan Savage's It Gets Better project is just awesome. In light of the recent, tragic suicides by gay teens who obviously had no support in the various shitty places they lived, Dan set up a YouTube channel for people to send in their own videos telling how things got much better once they became adults and moved on with their own lives.

It really is an awful situation: you're gay, lesbian, bi, or hell anything other than straight, skinny, and white, and you live in Bumfuck, Tennessee, and if you so much as part your hair the wrong way someone will call you a fag and kick your teeth in. A lot of people understand being bullied; it happens to many kids, true. However most people who are bullied go home to a supportive family that will pat them on the back and tell them they love them.

It's different to be bullied for the very essence of who you are, and then have that bullying come from the adults around you too. As Sarah Silverman succinctly puts it:

"...don't be fucking shocked and wonder where all these bullies are coming from that are torturing kids and driving them to kill themselves because they're different---they learned it from watching you."

I guess it's something that I'm destined never to understand---why it is that people go apeshit when someone is different. And when people start matter-of-factly explaining to me that the bible (or what about the Koran?) clearly lays out what is expected from the sexes---besides the obvious ridiculousness of people holding up a haphazard collection of thousand-year-old letters as instructions for life---my brain can't figure out whether to kill that person or die laughing.

Here's how I feel about it: men and women come in various, ever changing forms that run a broad spectrum and often bleed into each other. Not only does society constantly re-evaluate what it means to be a "man" and a "woman", but the very traits we deem masculine or feminine shift camps constantly. Androgyny is more common than people realize. Hermaphrodites and even newer combinations of sex do occur. Whatever a person's physical sex is, they can be attracted to any or all or combinations of any sex; their preferences may be fixed, or may change over time. I think all of this is a good thing, and just makes for more interestingness. If someone wears something that's odd, it makes my day interesting----what it doesn't do is invoke fear or rage, which seems to be exactly how people who oppose gay rights feel after seeing a gay person.

If a guy wants to wear women's clothes and fuck dudes, that's cool. If a guy wants to wear women's clothes and fuck women, that's cool too. If a girl is a totally girly-girl to the point that she just loves eating pussy, that is awesome. If a man feels he was born into the wrong body, and pursues treatment to alter his physical sex, I wish him the best in finding his true self. And if regular old straight people want to fuck each other however they want to, that's cool too. Because I don't believe in interfering in the sex lives of consenting adults. How is this hard to understand? Why do people get fixated on the "grossness" of what other people who are enjoying what they are doing are doing?

But mostly, it's very irritating that gay people don't have full rights, when the only opposition comes from religion, and our government is supposed to be secular---not imposing one group's religious beliefs on the rest of the nation. So someone doesn't like the clothes that someone wears and who they're in love with, so they get to deprive them of basic civil rights? What century is this? As it's been said, it's no wonder that gay teens with no support system feel lost to the point of no return.

Friday, October 1, 2010

French People Are Everywhere!

Ah, Montreal! What a wonderful city. I’m not saying that I would want to live here, but it has been a nice change of pace. Perhaps I need to explain the hiatus and what has brought me to this fine city.

First off, this semester of school has been particularly trying. There has been quite a few assignments in pretty much all of my classes. This has taken up quite a bit of my time since I am torn between my wife and daughter, a full time job (which is part of this story), school, and this blog, along with various side projects. It is taking me a bit to find the balance between all of these projects, but everything is finally coming together.

Second, my job is starting to affect my health, and not in a good way (as if any job as ever made someone healthier). I am going to write a separate post about the trials and tribulations involved in my job. It has everything to do with atheism and my involvement therein.

Third, I am in Montreal with my lovely wife for a vacation and the Atheist Alliance International Convention 2010. The convention has been pretty fun so far. It started this afternoon with a workshop with Jeremy Patrick titled “The Curious Persistence of Blasphemy Laws and Their Modern-Day Counterparts.” This was just a basic rundown of the structure of laws in places like Ireland, UK, Australia, US, Canada, and Pakistan. Nothing noteworthy, but interesting none-the-less. Then came “Intelligent Design vs Scientific Theory” by Christine Shellska, who is a Ph. D student at the University of Calgary. What a snooze! This could have been a great workshop, but it ended up being a goddamned reading of a doctoral thesis. Flat, unengaging, and not interesting at all. Then we saw Justin Trottier who spoke about Atheist Activism. I will just link to his site because he was too interesting to summarize.

Then we get to Chris diCarlo. He gave the plenary speech titled “The Veneer of Tolerance” in which he talks about discrimination against non-believers and how acceptable it is. He made some good points and was entertaining, but overall he was very namby-pamby in his treatment of the issue of religion. He trotted out the old line of “well, that’s not a very Christian-like thing to do” at which point he got shut down by a lady in the crowd who politely told him that he needed to look at the history of Christianity and see that Christians being assholes is actually the Christian thing to do. Well said.

I must bid you all farewell. It is time to sleep, for tomorrow is a full day!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Donuts For Jesus

I find it extremely annoying when people give me things that have hidden messages. Like if I decide to stop at Cook Out, which is a local food chain that has excellent milkshakes, only to find bible verses printed on cups and on the receipt. If I am actually paying for something, keep your imaginary friends off of my products!

It’s a sneaky way that Christians try to push Jesus onto you. Some students at a Roswell, NM high school attempted to do the same thing recently by giving teachers donuts with bible verses attached to them. The students were disciplined for proselytizing, as they should have been.

"My son was showing kindness ... and he was punished? What did my child do that was so wrong?" she asked.

Your son was not showing kindness, your son was being obnoxious by trying to foist his idiotic beliefs onto someone else, all disguised as a donut.

The students behind this are part of “Church on the Move”, which specializes in hounding people for no good reason. This is the same group that handed out fetus dolls last year at school as a protest of abortion.

If these kids want to be obnoxious and bother people to this degree, then they need to learn that there is a time and a place of which school is neither. They also need to learn that not everyone is going to smile and take their bullshit.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Science Minister? You Mean "Science" Minister

Ireland is trying to become a safe-haven for crazy, at least that is how it seems when you see stories like this:
In pre-publicity material for the book, the author accuses Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens and other campaigners for atheism of having "sacrificed reason on the altar of chance, mutations and randomness".
This book is going to be a great read, I am sure. I am also sure that John May will also single-handedly overturn the entire scientific theory of evolution. If you can’t tell, I am not impressed.

What is annoying is this little tidbit.
Mr Lenihan confirmed on Tuesday that he will not attend the launch, but added that he thought that diversity of opinion was a good thing.
Diversity of opinion is a great thing when that diversity follows a possible path. When the diversity is between something that can be proven and some crazy old man ranting for 300 pages, then diversity of opinion is nonexistent.

If this is what diversity of opinion is, I am going to overturn the theory of gravity because a tree in my backyard said that it isn’t true. I will also say that Conor Lenihan is a carrot. No one can prove it otherwise, facts be damned!