That Chaos is Our Destiny

January 28, 2015

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.      

Our own Debbie Goddard gave the opening remarks at FTBCon, and the people, they really liked it.

James Randi announces his retirement.  

The Federal Trade Commission declares that the weight-loss supplements hawked by Dr. Oz are junk, and it’s no innocent mistake on Oz’s part. Here’s a behind-the-scenes look at his snake oil show. 

Michelle Obama did not wear a veil for the visit with Saudi Arabia’s rulers, and many Saudis did not like that. Hehehehe.  

Nothing makes sense anymore, as John Stossel cites CFI, in the person of David Koepsell, approvingly. The topic is copyright.  

AP’s Rachel Zoll reports on the big shifts in attitudes toward LGBT folks by the Mormon church:

Church leaders condemned discrimination against gays in stark terms, speaking of centuries of “persecution and even violence against homosexuals.” 

“Ultimately, most of society recognized that such treatment was simply wrong, and that such basic human rights as securing a job or a place to live should not depend on a person’s sexual orientation,” Neill Marriott, a member of the church’s Public Affairs Committee, said in a prepared text ahead of the news conference. 

Cognitive scientist Julien Musolino says you don’t have a soul. So there! 

A Utah couple that killed themselves and their kids last year are said to have believed that the apocalypse was nigh

Beware Georgia’s House Bill 29, a “religious freedom” bill that is, yet again, a license to discriminate

At Tricycle, thinkers weigh in on whether the Buddha was an atheist, which I thought was kind of implied. 

French comedian Dieudonné M’bala M’bala will stand trial for his “die in the gas chambers” comments. 

Health officials in India distribute homeopathic medicines for swine flu prevention. Uh oh. 

Judge Roy “Ten Commandments” Moore is apparently Ruler of Alabama, and can decide whether or not clerks can issue marriage licenses to gay couples. 

Alana Massey talks to Daniel C. McGuire about how fear is the main thing preventing a predominantly nonreligious world:

I think the main passion of the conservative mind is fear and there’s no greater fear than that the universe is without meaning. That chaos is our destiny. So I think the God concept is very consoling. 

Bobby Jindal Gods it up at a prayer revival: “Let’s all go plant those seeds of the gospel … Share the good news with all whom we encounter.” 

Statue of the mythical god Manannán mac Lir in Northern Ireland is taken down by vandals who replace it with a wooden cross with the words, “You shall have no other gods before me.” discovers what might be “the New York Timesiest thing ever written” (emphasis mine, hat tip Friendly Atheist):

At first glance the official slogan and emblem of the Houthis, who are now the dominant force in Yemen, does not offer much hope to American policy makers. It includes the words “Death to America, death to Israel, damnation to the Jews.” Houthis shout it when they march, wear it on arm patches, paint it on buildings and stick it onto their car windows. When pictured, those words are rendered in red, framed by “God is great” and “Victory to Islam” in green, on a white background. 

Sometimes the red words are shown dripping blood.

But for all their harsh sloganeering, the Houthis may be a lot more moderate than it suggests, according to many diplomats and analysts… 

Not “godparents,” but “guideparents.” I love it.  

Quote of the Day

Before visiting with the Saudis, President Obama had at least some good words to say in India:

In our lives, Michelle and I have been strengthened by our Christian faith. Still, as you may know, my faith has at times been questioned — by people who don’t know me — or they’ve said that I adhere to a different religion, as if that were somehow a bad thing. Every person has the right to practice their faith how they ch
oose, or to practice no faith at all, and to do so free from persecution and fear. 

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Linking to a story or webpage does not imply endorsement by Paul or CFI. Not every use of quotation marks is ironic or sarcastic, but it often is. 

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