Faith-Based Hats

April 27, 2018

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

Did you know that Stephen Fry is going to be at CSICon 2018? Do you need to know anything else about it?? If you MUST, then I can tell you that Steven Pinker, Richard Dawkins, James Randi, Kavin Senapathy, Yvette d’Entremont, and approximately a bazzilion other great speakers will also be there. Go act on this new knowledge.

HubPages does a big profile on our Teacher Institute for Evolutionary Science (TIES), interviewing its director (and force-of-nature) Bertha Vazquez. 

In a letter to the editor in the San Antonio Express-NewsRetired U.S. Army Col. Jim Douglas responds to our own Jason Lemieux’s op-ed on attempts to divert Impact Aid funds to private school vouchers:

Mr. Lemieux is correct. Vouchers would have been utterly useless for this “military kid” and his brother. Yet somehow — as in having a deep respect for education — we made it. 

Julia Duin at Get Religion begins to chronicle the meltdown that just happened at Religion News Service.

Justin Trudeau presses the case of imprisoned blogger Raif Badawi to the king of Saudi Arabia. 

Republicans in Louisiana are soft on bestiality. I mean, how else can you explain the fact that they’re opposed to strengthening the state’s anti-bestiality laws? Here’s how: They don’t want bestiality separated from the state’s anti-sodomy laws. Oh, Louisiana. Oh dear.

This is sketchy: Paul Ryan forces the resignation of the House chaplain, Patrick Conroy, and the rumor is that it’s because Ryan thought Conroy is too nice to Democrats. 

Hindu-Muslim interfaith couples in India are finding themselves on hit lists assembled by Hindu extremists.

The Satanic Temple is taking legal action against the display of the Ten Commandments monument at the Arkansas Capitol. 

Rewire reports that Crisis Pregnancy Centers (fake clinics) are using federal funds to propagandize against abortion to women and, in their own words, to “share Christ.” 

A Manhattan court says it’s okay for a bar to discriminate…against Trump supporters:

The bar’s lawyer, Elizabeth Conway, pointed out that only religious, and not political, beliefs are protected under state and city discrimination laws, saying, “supporting Trump is not a religion” … “Plaintiff does not state any faith-based principle to which the hat relates,” [Judge] Cohen said in tossing the case.

Thomas Larson at Church and State says that secularism has already won its cultural battle, and yet it’s invisible:

When I think of the secular, I note that nearly everything in our social structure is secular. If there’s been a smackdown between religious and secular we’ve endured as Americans, I haven’t seen it in my sixty-eight years. But I know secularism won. We are not a Christian nation. We are a secular one. Yet secularists struggle to identify the volume, weight, and quality of its air everywhere around us, faithful and unfaithful alike. Why?  

Quote of the Day

Gary Wills reviews (kind of) Jimmy Carter’s new book Faith: A Journey for All, and starts by noting that Carter definitely snubbed the right people:

When Billy Graham died recently, we were treated to a roll call of presidents whom Graham had visited in the White House to impart the kind of cheap-grace blessing only he could dispense. One name was missing from this list: Jimmy Carter. How could that be? Here was our putatively most religious president and the nation’s premier relayer of endorsements from God. But Graham was not invited precisely because Carter was our most religious president — a proud Baptist who followed in the tradition of Roger Williams, the man who created the first Baptist church in America and believed in the strict separation of church and state. 

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