Excessive Entanglement Prongs
March 18, 2019


The Seventh Circuit Court says parsonage tax exemptions are just fine, reversing a lower court’s decision in a case brought by the Freedom from Religion Foundation. Regarding the “Lemon test’s” third “excessive entanglement prong” for church-state cases, the court said the exemption “has a secular legislative purpose, its principal effect is neither to endorse nor …

Humanity in Retrograde
March 15, 2019


You know what happened. In Christchurch, New Zealand, at least 49 people have been murdered in a terrorist attack on two mosques. At least 48 additional people have been hospitalized for gunshot wounds. Several people are implicated with having roles in the attack, but the most attention is being focused on one man who apparently …

Anti-reality Purgatorial Time Loop
March 14, 2019


So where the hell was The Morning Heresy yesterday? Well, you see, I went down to the Maine State House to testify in a hearing on LD 798, a bill to end non-medical exemptions to vaccination requirements. Little did I know that I would wind up trapped in eight hours of anti-vax insanity, a kind …

Anticipation of a Bad Smell
March 12, 2019


The Trump administration is looking to hack and slash away at science and dump funds into voucher schemes in its 2020 budget request, and we’re not okay with that: “Crippling the country’s ability to conduct scientific research is always a bad idea, but these cuts at this time in our history show an astounding lack …

Paul is Wrong
March 11, 2019


In one of the smartest takes I’ve yet heard on either topic on its own, former CFI president Ron Lindsay shows how “grandfathering” religious monuments into a secular context is just as problematic and wrongheaded as doing the same for Confederate monuments: … the possibility that no thought was given to the message these monuments …

Universal Cosmic Something
March 8, 2019


A new Point of Inquiry episode has been injected into the veins of your podcatcher and will inoculate your brain from ignorance. I may be overstating things somewhat, but only somewhat, because Kavin Senapathy brings us New York Times science writer Carl Zimmer and Vaccinator Supreme Paul Offit, both straight from CSICon Las Vegas. For …

Fist Bumping Asteroids
March 6, 2019


Today in vaccines! The teenager who got himself vaccinated against his mother’s wishes told a Senate committee that his mom got her wacky ideas from—you’ll never guess—Facebook. For the mom’s part, she says, “I didn’t agree with anything [my son] said. They’ve made him the poster child for the pharmaceutical industry.” That’s gotta be a …

Polysyllabic Wad
March 5, 2019


The Supreme Court correctly declines to hear a case from New Jersey about taxpayer funding of the historical preservation of churches. CNN reports: The court decision to stay out of the dispute is a loss for the churches and leaves in place a decision by the New Jersey Supreme Court that held the denial of …

Anti-vax Minibosses
March 4, 2019


Mo’ Momo, mo’ problems. CFI’s Bed Radford stands ready to bring some sanity to communities gripped by fear of the “suicide game” that is actually an internet hoax. So much anti-vaxxer stuff today! SO MUCH! 18-year-old Ethan Lindenberger, who got himself vaccinated against his anti-vax parents’ wishes, will now testify before the Senate Health Committee …

For the Sake of the Collective
March 1, 2019 · 1 


Holy crap, this “Momo” thing. Similar to the Blue Whale game, it’s some internet lore where this unbearably horrific looking Momo character convinces kids to kill themselves. (I can barely glimpse the thing without wanting to kill myself, so there’s that twinge of plausibility there.) Except of course it’s never happened. Benjamin Radford has an …