Update on the DuWayne Brayton and Dave Malarky

So the results of the fundraiser.

We raised a lot of money. In fact a LOT more than we needed. Nearly 200 pounds between us.

We raised enough to get not one walker but TWO out there to Dave. The logic is this. For indoor use there is a walker (A zimmer frame with two wheels) which allows him to use it indoors and in closed spaces. This won’t help him play around. When he is stronger there is a different type of walker that will let him move more surely while providing support (It’s a rollator. A walker with wheels). This will allow him to  walk longer distances unaided and indeed play since he can move faster.

To get one in his size was a big search. I must have called two or three different places and looked at medical supply shops. The thing is 5 year olds are so very rarely hurt in our society so they simply “don’t make them that small”.

Except these two devices.

These were designed for people his age. While the second is mainly for cerebral palsy children it will help strengthen his back and stop him from slouching about too while the first will build his upper arm strength (remember you have to lift it with each step).

So well done to all of you for making this possible. Dave should get his walkers by next weekend. Hopefully before he leaves the hospital.

And in return? Dave may have something special for you guys. They are planning to video him walking and I figure you guys need to see what you have done to realise how important this was to him. The remaining money is to go to Uttrakhand flood relief and will help house and feed dozens of people.

So if DuWayne has to put up with Dave getting up to mischief it is entirely our faults.

So… round of applause. Thank you for helping out.

How to Break your Heart

 

 

There is nothing happy in this post. There is however something you can do to make others happy. Just writing this broke my heart and genuinely made me tear up. I couldn’t continue writing what I had written without crying. The following post is just that sad. You can’t make this kind of sadness go away. But remember no matter how sad you feel from reading about it, you can do something to help those who feel worse than this.

[Read more…]

A Beehive Of Erotic Exploration – Fear Mongering About the Scouts

Now that I have your attention… This is a perfectly safe for work article. Except for the title. We all know why you clicked here. It’s to satiate your sordid bee lust. And yes I am not above sinking to sexing up my boring articles with pictures of titilation. Want more? Well then you just have to click on the link… [Read more…]

Sugar and Spice

Madeline Kara had diabetes. Childhood diabetes is one of the most common chronic diseases of children with type 1 diabetes affecting around 1.7 per 1000 Americans and a varying amount for type 2 (because ethnicity and socio-economic status plays a role).

I said “had”, because Madeline Kara passed away from a diabetic HONK coma. (Hyperglycaemic Hyperosmolar Nonketoic Coma – Uncontrolled diabetes is deadly.)

Because her parents would rather pray to god than let humans use their skill, ingenuity and knowledge to save their daughter’s life.

To realise how dangerous religion can be, we must first understand what a Delusion is. You are delusional can mean “You have no grasp of what’s going on”. But in medicine? A delusion is a psychiatric disorder where the patient holds a firm belief in something that can be empirically proven to be false. However any proof provided will be rejected out of hand and any attempts to convince the patient that their delusion is incorrect will merely become part of the delusion.

Leilani and Dave Neumann were so deluded by their faith that even after their daughter died they insisted that she would come back to life…

If we ignore the faith aspect of things, Leilani and Dave would be sectioned. They are clearly delusional. No psychiatrist in the world would consider them to be responsible for their actions because they are genuinely not thinking using the same logic that we come to accept as normal. They don’t believe in something we understand as real. However what complicates this is faith. Religion is the world’s most acceptable delusion. The joke amongst psychiatrist is that “God” is the only acceptable voice in your head.

Many people don’t know this but you are legally obligated to pull in an ambulance if someone is in trouble. This case is remarkable in Wisconsin because it sets a precedence for parents being liable for their actions with regards to faith. In the USA a whole bunch of states (I tried researching and I got up to 12) have clauses for the protection of parents who use prayer rather than medicine.

When tried both were sentenced to 25 years in prison, except the judge reduced the sentence to a month in prison every year for six months and then 10 years of probation. But here is the thing.

Why? If the reason they did this was “Aliens” they would be sectioned under various mental health acts (Insanity isn’t “getting off lightly”. Insanity Pleas are often WORSE than prison since they can keep you forever because your condition may require permanent care and it’s actually pretty hard to get it). But their sentence was reduced because they believed in a god. Wisconsin is one of those states with a law protecting faith healing. At best it can be tried as child abuse, not homicide.

It doesn’t matter what the outcome of the case is. The parents are not “guilty” of anything. It’s clearly a mental health issue and they are ill. They cannot be held responsible because they are clearly medically delusional about their actions. Punishing them will not make them understand. It won’t bring back Madeline and it won’t convince the faith healers to stop and take responsibility.

What matters is there is religion out there that CREATES these people. That feeds and creates this delusion.

It’s Not All Doom and Gloom – Rachel’s Water

I am a big fan of Russel Howard’s Good News (It’s a british comedy show) and every episode ends with something good. News generally is just horrible things. Good things rarely make the news. And for all my rants about various really sad issues and about idiots who think ignorance is an equal viewpoint to science there are beautiful things in the world done by real people. I wanted to start a series of posts on stuff that isn’t bitterly sad and deeply disturbing.

So this week’s story of amazing things is Rachel. Rachel tried to raise $300 to send to Africa for clean drinking water. She fell short with just $220. It was her birthday wish to give people in Africa water. A 9 year old refusing presents to send money to Africa to help create infrastructure is a good thing. A month later she passed away in an accident.

When people heard about her birthday wish they raised over a $1,000,000 for water infrastructure.

Clean drinking water is a necessity not a luxury. Show them some love too. Charity: Water still is out there building infrastructure. Give some money, if you cannot pass it on so someone else can.

 

A Foundation built on lies is no foundation at all

Ah! The simpler life of barn dances, buggy rides
and kalashnikov

Erin Friar, thinks that religion makes a strong foundation for children.

I believe it makes one of the weakest of foundations, because it is a foundation built on the concept of culturally acceptable superstition. To put it into perspective, I had a couple of americans (online ones) get a bit angry when I pointed out that the Taliban’s ethos are no different from the Amish. Both believe in a simpler life, it’s just that the Amish don’t believe in modern guns and forcing other people to do their bidding while the Taliban do. They are both luddite societies, it’s just that we “like” the amish despite their insane sexism (the finest of the 17th century). Mainly because in the USA the amish are seen as harmless and quaint while the taliban are seen as backwards.

I don’t have a belief in any gods.  Hinduism? Christianity? Islam? Scientology? Hippy Tree malarkey? None of it. I do not believe in any higher power as there is no evidence for these viewpoints and vehemently oppose religious indoctrination of anyone because it clouds the reality of the situation and allows people to be controlled easily resulting in some horrific abuses of human dignity throughout civilisation. From the deaths of those who opposed the believers of the Old Testament Gods to those who were sacrificed on the pyramids of central America to the million or so dead from the Partition of the British Raj. From the holocaust to the Japanese war crimes, from the crusades to the ethnic cleansing of Rwanda and the Balkans, from the encouragement of ignorance and virtual slavery of the mind to the molestation of children and bigotry, through it all religion has controlled people. And it’s why I am stating that his stance is wrong. 
I don’t believe in a god, there isn’t any proof and I find that any proof provided is laughably naive. To me standing up and stating that Religion Provides a Strong Foundation For Children is like standing up and saying that Homeopathy is a strong foundation for Science or Creationism is a strong foundation for Evolution. And it shows here. Erin Friar’s article makes the implication that the USA was founded on Christian principles rather than humanist ones and that the secular founding fathers enshrined freedom of religion rather than “Christian principles” with good reason. Do you really think the vision of Christians is one that will lead to a strong and powerful USA? Or do you think it’s constructing a balanced society that doesn’t believe in magic? 
Religion can provide a structured environment, but so do a lot of other things. Have schools stopped doing that? I mean it’s not even 10 years since I left high school and I vaguely remember having structure in my life. My parents also ensured that I had a structured life too. Maybe I am just weird in thinking that child care is the parent’s job rather than some guy in a robe with questionable sexual habits. Spend some time with your kids, plan things out with them. Follow the plan. Your kids will be more structured than going to a big building and following pointless ritual that doesn’t really achieve anything.  There is necessary structure and unnecessary structure. If 6 to 8 PM is homework time then 6 – 8 PM is useful. If 8 to 8:30 is sit crosslegged and chant Om at an idol time (replace with appropriate religious ritual) then that’s pointless piece of structure in your child’s life. You may as well make it run around with your pant’s on your head time. The child is just learning superstition. I used Hinduism as an example because Christians will read it and go “Heh! That’s nonsense.” but the same applies to saying hail marys or reading the bible because that’s part of your structure. 
Pictured! Someone whose
family believed in Mazda.

The person who wrote this doesn’t care about structure in so much as the Christian ritual, the child is only considered to have a structured day if the child is doing a Christian structure.

Next, Erin moves onto the aspect of humility. Stating that religion encourages humility in each of us by the use of Saviour Mythos (eg. A rescue from a divine source be it Jesus or Prometheus or Mazda or Krishna).
Humility is learnt from our parents, it is learnt from being taught scale and realising how utterly brilliantly small yet monsterously large we are. The magic words of Science are “I Don’t Know”. No religion has stood up and held it’s hand up admitting ignorance when they know a lot less. Do not confuse ignorance with humility, humility is understanding your limitations and not exceeding them. I am humble enough to not give you any advice regarding dating, driving a car, plumbing, stock market investment, wedding plans, particle physics and organic chemistry. I know I can’t give any proper advice due to my ignorance in the field. But religion? Religion’s assumption of divine purpose exceeds any humility. It is a fake kind of humility aimed squarely at outdoing each other in claiming to be more humble than the next. The most important words in human civilisation are “I don’t know but I wonder how it works” not “maybe if we close our eyes and chant some words it will work out for the best”
Erin then takes a whack at the usual idea of taboo, and how it can shape you into a sensible adult. 
The ideals of the church do shape people the minds of young people, they don’t know any better. Children are ultimately ignorant and stupid and gullible. These are survival traits, you are meant to impart knowledge to them which will make them stop being stupid, ignorant and gullible and to use their education and other people’s experiences to avoid the same faults. It ensures our kids learn how to be spear makers, farmers, legionnaires, alchemists, doctors and lawyers… It means we can teach them a skill set that doesn’t appear in the wild. However it also means you can teach them to fear a non existent being and give their money to a man with a special book because the book says so.

Pictured. The result of the Church’s
measured stance of taboo on sex.

The Church plain lied about drugs, alcohol and sex. The marijuana advertisements of yesteryear are naive and the church doesn’t spread the truth about it which results in more people of faith using and doing drugs simply because they don’t hear the actual truth. Alcohol is fine in moderation, and treating it as a product of the devil makes people blame the devil for their weakness and addiction rather than working on fighting it themselves. Sex is great, the church’s stance on sex actually causes greater amounts of underage sex because kids quickly figure out the church is lying and then spend all their time trying to get the “nice happy feeling” because obviously their adults are a bunch of tools who don’t know what they are talking about. This is exacerbated by a combination of the anti-contraception and pro-life stance of the churches and by the anti-homosexual stance of it. Not all drugs are equal and many religious people treat marijuana like shooting up heroin from a needle used by a HIV patient when the only thing they have in common is that both are illegal to use.

The problem is the use of Taboo and Satanic to describe problems. Why is sex such a taboo? Why are drugs bad? Why is excess alcohol bad? Not because God Says So. But because sex needs to be taken in context of the various kinds of relationships and with safety into mind and with your own choice and dignity rather than church’s implied teachings of female servility. Because some drugs such as crack, meth and heroin are nasty as hell while some drugs such as marijuana, ecstasy and LSD seem to be a lot more safer, labelling all drugs as equal to Heroin is stupid. Alcohol needs to be taken into context of normal usage and balance rather than telling kids not to do it until they leave the house when they just go nuts. The reason religious kids are so prone to going off the rails is because they are lied to about these things and a single try turns them into a life of excess. .
We finally come to the lines that state that faith in God helps fight suicide. People who commit suicide are depressed or have reached the bottom and have given up. Some change their minds due to a random occurrence and find god (I wanted to jump off a bridge but it was closed today so I saw it as a sign). Some don’t (I cut my wrists and didn’t die so I am going to hang myself to make sure.). And remember the amount of people particularly gay children and mothers who have had an abortion who are hounded and harassed by the faithful often driving them to depression and suicide by bullying.

A suicide is a person who needed help. I have read suicide notes, a few of my friends attempted it. My best friend was gay and wouldn’t come out because I was a bully myself and both of us took pleasure in the usual “gay jokes”. I found out when I found his suicide note, he hadn’t acted on it yet. I lost a distant cousin to it when he failed an exam and the stress got to him. What saved him was the luck that I came across the note and the response of me and my friends to confront him that we knew and that we didn’t care about his love of men that he was still our friend and that it was okay. That we would stop referring to things as gay or making jokes about others being gay. We basically grew up and realised how stupid we were. 

Most suicide attempts that fail are failed during the ideation stage. They are foiled not by something as inelegant as god but by humanity. The brotherhood of man and the kinship between people who know what a rough day means. The words you need to know to save a suicidal person’s life is not “Believe in My god” but “Are you alright? A penny for your thoughts?”. People like the Samaritans or just passer bys in the street often show the true potential of humanity, of our limitless potential for kindness, compassion and love by spending time with a complete stranger in kinship to save a life in a little way.  God doesn’t enter into this one bit and you don’t need to be superman to do this. You just need to show humanity. My one little piece of humanity stopped my friend from killing himself. I wouldn’t have had to show it if I was not a horrid little teenager in the first place but that’s the point of being a teenager. It gives you the time to be stupid and to learn. As the same friend said last year as I was the best man at his wedding. “This was the boy who bullied me at school, this is also the man who saved me from myself and gave me the chance to be here”.

To me that shows  the vital difference, the note made me grow up and be responsible and sensible and good. 

People kill themselves for a variety of reasons. There are the delusional, people with psychiatric issues who believe no harm will come to themselves despite the suicide or that it’s part of a greater plan. There are the religious suicides which range from the Jonestown massacre to the suicide bombers of Islam and the empire of Japan. There are the forced suicides that also come from the Islam (a lot of the suicide bombers are coerced with threats to their family). There are suicides for honour, for love, for politics… Then there are the depression suicides. These are the ones we are most familiar with, the people who kill themselves because they don’t want to live anymore. Depression is no joke and it must be faced with therapy, drugs and compassion rather than insulting their condition with the idea that somehow it’s due to insufficient faith in magic. You fight depression by teaching people to have faith in themselves, and to try and be the changes they want to be. You treat their mood and then try and encourage them to take care of themselves and find things that make them see life the way we do.
There is no right way to raise a child, each is different. If you want to raise a well rounded child then what you want is to teach them the truth about the world and you do this through science and education and by being involved in their lives rather than encouraging them to believe in a mythological creature.

Having children behave around christmas is cute but eventually they are told Santa isn’t real. Having adults behave the way they do around their myriad gods is just embarrassing.