Florida Secular Rally

Whenever I post some prior notice of some event I intend to attend, my wife says it looks like I’m ‘pimping’ myself.  If I don’t do that, then people complain that they live down the street from whatever it is and are mad that they didn’t know about it in time.  I got several messages from folks in Arkansas who didn’t know about Reason in the Rock, and woulda been there if I had just said something.  So fine.

This Saturday, November 3rd, I will be in Tallahassee Florida for a secular rally.  We’ll be there to raise awareness -and opposition- to that state’s Proposition 8, which threatens to strip religious protections from tax appropriation direct from the state to whatever religious group is favored at the moment.

The event is free!  It’s sponsored by practically every atheist or secular group in the state, and will be held in Tom Brown Park.  So if you live in range, and you’d like to go, don’t bitch that I didn’t tell you.  Otherwise please don’t bitch that I DID tell you.

Going to have to burn my new Secular Humanism T-Shirt by Lilandra

WTH?! I followed a link from a blog comment linking the Tea Party to Fascist government to a secular humanist site.  You know you have to be ever vigilant against fascism. Right?  But then what is up with this site’s banner…

What are they trying to say?

Why make a point to everyone that visits the site that you are “Beyond Atheism” and “Beyond Agnosticism”?  Are they trying to say they are better than atheists and agnostics?

Normally I wholeheartedly endorse human efforts to make the world a better place, because just praying for it isn’t going to make it happen.   I spent 25 dollars on that t-shirt, but I can’t endorse Secular Humanism as presented in this motto.   I sure as hell wouldn’t wear a motto that proclaimed I was beyond atheism and agnosticism.

Don’t blame the atheists

How often do you get microphone from the steps of the state capital, right?

Here is a link to the recordings wherein our governor, Rick Perry declared ‘spiritual warfare’ against secularists and atheists.



Update on Malala

The Girl Shot by the Taliban, Becomes a Global Icon
Not what the Taliban had in mind.

The unfolding story of Malala Yousafzai comes with an inspirational quote:

“If Pakistan has a future, it is embodied in Malala Yousafzai,” the editorial reads. “Malala has shown more courage in facing down the Taliban than Pakistan’s government and its military leaders …. The murderous violence against one girl was committed against the whole Pakistani society. The Taliban cannot be allowed to win this vicious campaign against girls, learning and tolerance. Otherwise, there is no future for that nation.”

And this quote:

“the global struggle for gender equality is the paramount moral struggle of this century, equivalent to the campaigns against slavery in the 19th century and against totalitarianism in the 20th century.”

You’d think religious extremists would understand martyrdom.  :-/

Malala Yousufzai

I love this girl.  How could you not?  And her story evoked my favorite quote from any media source this whole year:

Religious extremists all make the same mistake.  They all fail to understand that all of the foundational holy books of major religions -all of them- have really really crazy dangerous stuff in them; stuff that was written by men, men who were not just fallible, but men who were wrong.

There is also this gem:

There is not one follower of the holy Bible left on Earth who believes there should be a death penalty for not observing the sabbath.

A new meaning for right-brained vs left brained

I hardly have time to do or read anything anymore, so I haven’t read the associated study behind this article from Discover magazine, only the article itself.  Past experience has taught me to cautious of conclusions based only on that.  The interesting implication herein is that having more gray matter in the anterior cingulate cortex grants more tolerance of uncertainty, making one more likely to consider extenuating circumstances rather than permitting only simple dichotomies.  Having more grey matter in the amygdala instead implies more fear and loathing and a greater likelihood of being a paranoid disgusted fundamentalist.  So whether you’re a reasonable liberal or a conservative bigot isn’t determined by the size of your brain, but rather how bent out of shape it is.

As an amusing coincidence, associated articles indicate that college students question the conflict between religion and science, while Rush Limbaugh talks out of his ass in on how to use any weak excuse to justify your Dunning-Kruger level of overconfidence.