Contributions

There is Nothing to Understand
December 17, 2012


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

My blogger’s instinct this morning was to complain about the inconveniences of my weekend. Our move to a new house, the snow, the raging toddler, etc. But it was as we were boxing up the last bits of our old apartment that we read the news of the massacre at Newtown. Now, every time I have something I want to grouse about (and I feel very, very grousey), my mind flashes to the lost children and the devastated families, and how no matter how many things my 3-year-old breaks or how often he melts down, I’m so incredibly grateful that he and his baby sister are healthy and happy and here.

Anyway, welcome to the new work-week, everybody. I’m glad you’re here, and I’m glad you’re, you know, here

There is Nothing Anyone Can Do to Stop This
December 13, 2012


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

Egyptian atheist blogger and activist Alber Saber was convicted yesterday in a Cairo court of blasphemy, and sentenced to three years in prison. 

Human Rights Watch’s Heba Morayef tells NYT:

The spike in prosecutions over the past year and a half was due to complaints being filed by Islamist lawyers on a decentralized basis, but the constitution does more than that, it makes it state policy. And the tragic thing is that I think there is nothing anyone can do to stop this from growing in the future. 

CFI touts the new IHEU report on the persecution of atheists around the world, to which we contributed significant research. Guess who’s on the cover of that report.

CFI Contributes to Major New Report on the Global Persecution of Atheists
December 12, 2012

News

The Center for Inquiry (CFI), along with allied secular organizations, has partnered with the International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU) for its groundbreaking new report on a growing and troubling global phenomenon that directly affects our constituencies.

Happy Y2K12.95
December 12, 2012


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

As insidious as many folks find a confluence of numbers within a date, I think folks will feel much better about 12/12/12 knowing that it’s National Sound Check Day (“one-two, one-two, one-two”). Could also be National 2/4 Time Signature Day. Anyway, CNN rounds up some of the superstitions surrounding today’s date.

Death for Free Speech is a Deal Breaker
December 11, 2012


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

Former Nebraska senator Bob Kerrey, in an op-ed by Frank Bruni at NYT, declares himself an agnostic. Says Kerrey, “If you talk openly about your doubts,” he said, “you can get in trouble.”

Writes Bruni on the problem of religious entanglement in politics:

God’s initial absence from the Democratic Party platform last summer stirred more outrage among Americans than the slaughter in Syria will ever provoke. 

Wait. 31% identify as “nonreligious”? What?? 

A Fetish, an Amulet, a Pack of Tarot Cards
December 10, 2012


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

A major new report has been released by the International Humanist and Ethical Union, and made with the help of us at CFI, on instances of atheist/nonreligious discrimination and persecution around the world. Coverage from Reuters. Billy Hallowell at The Blaze is even moved to write:

Considering [IHEU’s] scope — to advance the cause of non-belief — there is clearly a bias in the preparation and publication of the report. However, many  of the findings are compelling.

Hemant’s reaction: “Read it and weep.”

He Currently Follows Only Himself
December 7, 2012


 

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

The LDS church decides to sort-of embrace LGBT folks, conceding that, while sinful to act upon, homosexuality is not a choice. 

CFI’s Michael De Dora is a guest on Jamila Bey’s radio program discussing the new laws surrounding “gay conversion therapy.” 

Michael also touts a meeting that took place in October, the first time secular groups got a private meeting with the UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief. Oh yeah, we were there. 

Susan Jacoby gives longform props to Robert Ingersoll in a really great piece for American Scholar

 

Weather Elements are Controlled Maybe by Different Things
December 6, 2012


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

And lo, the CFI board of directors did in this blessed time elect Edward Tabash to be its chairman, and yea, it was then joined by new board member Judith Walker, and there was much rejoicing and feasting.

Reba Boyd Wooden, chief of CFI-Indiana, talks about the motives behind our lawsuit for equality in solemnizing marriages:

True, atheists/Secular Humanists, etc. generally see less need for ritual than religious people. However, we feel that we should be able to offer it to those who do. 

69% of Americans Would Hate This Blog
December 5, 2012


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

Ron Lindsay joined a great panel discussion at HuffPost Live on the question of how God can be “perfect” and allow for so much suffering. Definitely check it out

New Gallup uber-survey says 69% of Americans are moderately or very religious, happens to coincide with publication of new book by Gallup’s Frank Newport, God is Alive and Well, which seems more than a little hung up on contradicting the New Atheists. David Sessions at Daily Beast says this data means that secularization is being exaggerated.

Don’t Fetch Coffee for the Devil
December 4, 2012


As we told you yesterday, CFI has had its Indiana case, which challenged the religious privilege in the solemnizing of marriages, dismissed. Well, folks noticed.

Indianapolis Star talks to CFI-Indiana’s Reba Boyd Wooden about the case. Indiana Lawyer talks to me.

Also, AP and Indiana Public Radio

Reba posted a comment to yesterday’s Heresy that I think bears re-airing . . .