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Organized Hypocrisy

July 14, 2020

Katherine Stewart (The Good News Club) writes in the Daily Beast that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and his “Commission on Unalienable Rights” represent the stirrings of religious authoritarianism in the U.S.:

… the regime goes on to strip everyone else of their rights, bolster hyperconservative religious allies with public funds, and consolidate a kleptocracy where religion is too often reduced to organized hypocrisy.

Speaking of organized hypocrisy, in a letter to the LA Times, CFI’s own Jim Underdown decries churches trying to have it both ways: “It’s time to start taxing the churches — all of them.”

We put out a statement with Leo Igwe of Advocacy for Alleged Witches condemning the attacks in Nigeria on people accused of being witches: “Nigerian authorities should be promoting critical thinking and the understanding of science; the only real cures for belief in dark-age superstition.”

Paul Djupe looks to see if people think “Christian witness” (not whiteness, which is what I kept thinking it said) is being harmed by American Christianity’s association with Trump. (It depends.)

Rev. Jim Wallis on Trump’s racism: “The white identity politics that are clearly animating Trump’s campaign are also white idolatry politics.”

Tina Nguyen at Politico: Trump isn’t just winking and nodding at QAnon, he’s promoting and protecting them.

China says it is sanctioning four U.S. officials—Sens. Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz, Rep. Chris Smith, Ambassador for Religious Freedom Sam Brownback—for criticizing China’s egregious human rights abuses against Uighur Muslims and other faith groups. Can do that? Impose sanctions against four guys? I guess so.

You can definitely get COVID-19 twice. Crap crap crap crap crap.

Trump says he likes Fauci just fine, even though he retweets Chuck Woolery (because apparently it’s 1985) saying that Fauci and the CDC are all a bunch of liars.

News Center Maine has some tips on negotiating real life with people who refuse to wear masks. “Listen first; speak last.” Except listen at least 6 feet away.

Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan is the celebrity spokesperson for the Indian government’s coronavirus awareness campaign, as well as an advocate of homeopathy. He’s also now a patient with COVID-19.

Pastor Kelvin Page of the Westmore Church of God in Tennessee has let a lot of his church members get COVID-19. How many? “I don’t even know. … we gave up on keeping a count.” Something-something let God sort ’em out.

Alex Jones devotee, Flat-Earther, and white supremacist Kurt Cofano was aiming to add “terrorist” and “murderer” to his titles before he was arrested in Pennsylvania with a car full of bombs and guns, and an ambition to blow up buildings and shoot people.

If you have $5000 lying around that you were planning on, say, setting on fire, you might instead decide to invest it in the Juvent vibrating platform which makes your life better by, I dunno, shaking you while standing up.

Mythbusters and White Rabbit Project host Grant Imahara has died of a brain aneurysm at the age of 49. Adam Savage tweeted: “I’m at a loss. … Grant was a truly brilliant engineer, artist and performer, but also just such a generous, easygoing, and gentle PERSON.”

47 years ago, Mississippians Charles Hickson and Calvin Parker reported that they’d been abducted by aliens, and a recording of their interview with local authorities has resurfaced. It looks they were terrified by what they think happened to them.

Harvard astronomers are going to find out if Planet 9 is a thing, and whether it’s a planet or a black hole, a distinction you’d think would be fairly obvious, but, look, these things are really far away.

Please enjoy the comet Neowise in the background of Earth in glorious 4K.

Maybe this can be your favorite thing: Bob Mould has a new song that’s a “sharp critique of religious institutions that seem to have shelved some of the ostensible tenets of their belief system to support President Donald Trump.” And if he can’t change your mind then no one will.

We’re keeping track of COVID-19 pseudoscience, snake oil, fake cures, and more at CFI’s Coronavirus Resource Center. Separate fact from fiction and inoculate yourself from misinformation at

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.