The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.
CFI’s legal eagle (sorry) Nick Little is one of the guests on Science for the People on the topic of mandatory vaccinations.
Also over the radio waves, WSFU covers CFI’s lawsuit over taxpayer-funded sectarian prison rehabilitation in Florida (of course).
This is truly amazing: CFI–DC’s Simon David writes for VICE about the Church of Euthanasia (which I had never heard of), which in the 90s won attention with the slogan “Save the Planet, Kill Yourself.”
On Jimmy Kimmel’s show, Bernie Sanders evades a question about whether or not he believes in God, or sees belief in God as important.
Sarah Pulliam Bailey reports on some interesting findings by Pew about how things like religion changes attitudes toward science:
The study’s findings show only a few areas where people’s religious beliefs and practices have a strong connection to their views about science-related issues. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the two big exceptions to the rule would be human evolution and the creation of the universe. What is surprising, however, is that Pew finds there is little connection between science and religion in other scientific debates … including climate change, experimental drug and medical treatments, artificial organs for human transplant, the safety of genetically modified foods, space exploration and long-term payoffs from government investment in science.
Cathy Lynn Grossman highlights how the reports shows that the more religious one is, the more likely one is to see no conflict between science and religion.
I don’t entirely, or even mostly, understand this, but it looks like “quantum weirdness” has been confirmed at the Delft University of Technology: “objects separated by great distance can instantaneously affect each other’s behavior.”
Atheists in Bogotá protest a church service on public property, and the protesters are attacked.
Lauren Cooper at Consumer Reports explains the non-science behind homeopathy, and warns that one can never be sure what’s been put into the products.
At Huffington Post, Amy Porterfield Levy tells a harrowing story of how her mother, suffering from colon cancer, learned just how damaging the claims of homeopathy can be:
She suffered more than she had to because she wasn’t being cared for by a real doctor with years of medical school and experience. She was thrashing around in desperation, clinging to any shred of hope, and in the process found plenty of people and products to give her false hope for the right price. The cruel, convincing promise of a cure is such an easy sell to someone terrified of dying.
SCOTUS declines to hear a challenge to NYC’s vaccination laws, leaving them in place.
Domna Michailidou and Jonathan Kennedy at Project Syndicate write about the problem of Islamist opposition to vaccination programs around the world.
Ben Radford, writing at Discovery News, looks at claims of footage that allegedly shows a “floating city.”
A dude in Florida (of course) is threatening to sue Lake County if he’s not allowed to give a Satanic invocation to the county commission meeting, all part of the “Satan or Silence Project.”
Apple adds religion emojis to iOS.
Trump will MAKE you say “Merry Christmas”!
Bigfoot ate my Cheetos. I cannot blame him. Cheetos are delicious.
Quote of the Day:
The Onion reports on Ohio’s experiments with homeopathic executions:
“The linchpin of our new system is a potent three-herb cocktail of foxglove, wolfsbane, and deadly nightshade, which will shut down the inmate’s chakras one by one before completely extinguishing their ch’i and then, finally, stopping their heart.” At press time, [Ohio prisons spokesperson Michael] Ewert confirmed that the state had scrapped the new procedure after an inmate’s spirit had been trapped at the threshold of the natural world for three hours before finally passing into a state of infinite wisdom.
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