God Gave Us the Brains
January 14, 2019


Last week I told you about how a Massachusetts teacher used a 2003 Free Inquiry article on the signs of fascism for a class assignment, asking students to weigh whether Trump exhibited these signs. There’s a lot more (pretty shallow, frankly) coverage from the weekend that is mostly a lot of pearl-clutching. Here’s a good …

Pearls of Unscientific Wisdom
January 11, 2019


Lots of interesting stuff today, folks. It’s a good day to be the Morning Heretic. Or to read stuff from the Morning Heretic. Or to read the stuff that the Morning Heretic finds and then comments on. Or something. Never mind. Most important of all: Point of Inquiry, the flagship podcast of the Center for …

The Kids You Don’t See
January 10, 2019


Frederick Clarkson at Rewire looks at the Christian right’s efforts to turn Religious Freedom Day into a day to assert Christian supremacy as per the “Project Blitz” legislative playbook. “Their model resolution for Religious Freedom Day celebrates a day devoted to something they oppose: religious freedom.” Bruce Wingate, founder of Protect Idaho Kids, talks about …

Hemsworth Heathenry
January 8, 2019


A study in The Lancet (still kicking themselves over Wakefield, I bet) shows that crowdfunding campaigns have raised almost $1.5 million for homeopathics and other fake treatments for cancer. Timothy Caulfield (author of Is Gwyneth Paltrow Wrong About Everything?) says: It really is a [worst-case] scenario. These are often desperate people leveraging the good will …

An Extra Hand Dangling Off One Arm
January 7, 2019


Oh look, it’s 2019 already. I’ve been off for the holidays so there’s a lot to catch up on. I’ll try to be succinct (ha!). China put humanity’s first lander on the far side of the Moon. That’s cool but New Horizons got a picture of space-snowman Ultima Thule, the farthest object ever explored. Hear …

Sing a Song of Cryogenics
December 21, 2018


The Pope shakes his fist at the sexual abusers of children his church has worked so hard to make comfortable: To those who abuse minors I would say this: convert and hand yourself over to human justice, and prepare for divine justice. … Let it be clear that before these abominations the Church will spare no …

Mindless Computation
December 20, 2018


The Catholic dioceses in Illinois are accused by the state’s attorney general of withholding the names of at least 500 priests accused of child sexual abuse. The dioceses had previously disclosed the names of only 185, which is mind-boggling to begin with. Meanwhile, in Middletown, New York, Rev. Donald G. Timone is preaching and leading mass at St. …

Great Mind, Mighty Fists
December 19, 2018


The New York Times has a major feature on how climate change is screwing with the Galápagos Islands: As climate change warms the world’s oceans, these islands are a crucible. And scientists are worried. Not only do the Galápagos sit at the intersection of three ocean currents, they are in the cross hairs of one of the …

Insert Coming Disaster Here
December 18, 2018


According to VICE, a 16-year-old immigrant came to the United States after being raped by a group of men and becoming pregnant as a result. Seeking to have an abortion, the girl was instead sent to an anti-abortion counseling facility and given Bible verses. Smart Pakem, the Indonesian government’s app for reporting heresy to the …

Unbundled
December 14, 2018


Michael Gerson: Republican, conservative, former George W. Bush speechwriter, humanist. Wait, what? Most Western societies, including the United States, have reached the stage of secularism without humanism. Our greatest efforts are spent on getting and keeping. Our defining creed is consumerism. … What we need is a revival of humanism. This need not be secular humanism …