American Atheists Convention 2013 recap: Friday

Russell here. Lucky me, the 2013 American Atheists convention was held in Austin this year, which meant that all I had to do was shell out money for a ticket and no travel or lodging fees. I’d be crazy to pass up such an opportunity! I’m a couple of days behind on blogging the experience, but trying to catch up now before Jerry DeWitt begins his “Easter Service.”

I took a day off of work on Friday so I could arrive at the Hyatt early in the morning and help my friend / our product guy Mark Vandebrake to set up the Atheist Community of Austin’s table with t-shirts, keychains, and bumper stickers. Lots of credit to Mark for creating and ordering our new polo and t-shirts.

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Kirk Cameron, Shithead: “Kill the infidel!”

Okay, we all know that Kirk Cameron is a has-been actor from the ’80s whose minimal intellect has reduced him to partnering with professional joke Ray Comfort, a deal which, in a country full of similarly stupid people, has proven more lucrative than actually pursuing acting work would have been for him. So you’d already expect him to be too unintelligent to understand the legal and Constitutional distinction between decalogue monuments on private property versus public (ie. government-owned) property. That’s a given.

At the same time, this is the first instance I’ve seen of him making smirking, approving comments about how people who fight for church/state separation should be murdered. Of course, if you were to call him on it, I’m sure he’d explain it’s all “a little joke.” Still, you know…what a shithead, huh?

Somewhere, an al Qaeda guy is thinking, "There you go, Christians. That's how you do it!"

Somewhere, an al Qaeda guy is thinking, “There you go, Christians. That’s how you do it!”

Something else amusing: Apparently there was an earlier version of this post (that Kirk has since redacted), where he mistakenly referred to the 9th commandment, the one about bearing false witness, instead of the 6th.

"So you heathen liberals better not tell this hotel owner to take this monument down...'cos some good ol' boy might just decide to TELL YOU THE TRUTH!"

“So you heathen liberals better not tell this hotel owner to take this monument down…’cos some good ol’ boy might just decide to BEAR YOU FALSE WITNESS!”

Did I mention he wasn’t very intelligent?

Open Thread – AE 805

Topic discussion focused on some emails from people who conflate marriage equality with adoption of children by LGBT people. The adoption issue is moot – we have over 40 years of research that shows that the sexual orientation of a child’s parents is not a relevant factor in how well that child does. The issue that’s before SCOTUS this month is whether or not to extend marriage to include gay and lesbian couples. If your argument against marriage equality is that you’re advocating for our children, let me assure you, you’re not helping anyone’s child. All you’re doing is arguing for second-class status for families like mine.

Open thread on episode #804: Russell and Tracie

Posted this preemptively before the show aired. I have added some notes since the show. Here are some things I mentioned in my intro:

The crew is aware that there were technical problems again with the live Ustream feed. They have ruled out problems with the laptop hardware. The current working theory is that the public access studio has limited internet bandwidth, and this is somehow interfering with streaming. It might be fixed in the future by switching to a lower quality stream.