ReasonCon 2015 Coming in April

Hey, Tracie here. I’ve agreed to speak at the 2015 ReasonCon, since I had such a fun time speaking at the one this year in May! That being said, I feel a little obligated to share out some of the promotional materials for the event as part of my due diligence as someone who has agreed to be involved. That being said, here is the link to the promotional video, and here is some information on the initial press release (shared with permission), for anyone interested in attending:

Hickory, North Carolina – November 1, 2014 –“It was beyond anything I would have imagined for such a small town.  To see what these groups pulled together–created for themselves–was an inspiration.  In fact, every time I turned around, I felt inspired this weekend.  The people, the event, the attitudes and dedication-were all inspiring,” Tracie Harris, speaker at ReasonCon One in 2014.

ReasonCon is an event to showcase the existence of a secular community in the southeastern United States.  It is a gathering of atheists, agnostics, secular humanists, believers, and everything in between to join the conversation about what it means to be secular, and the benefits for all in the continued and vigilant separation of church and state.

This is also an opportunity for people in the Hickory area to learn more about what it means to be an atheist, agnostic, secular humanist, etc.  This year, ReasonCon 2015 is being hosted by the Hickory Humanist Alliance, a local chapter of the American Humanist Association with 2 affiliate groups of their own, which gather in the Hickory area once a month.

Over 400 people attended ReasonCon One, as it was called, in May of 2014.  The event took place in the Crowne Plaza Hotel and featured a day full of speakers talking about everything from using analogies in explaining secularism to the question of the authenticity or existence of an historical Jesus.

ReasonCon 2015 will take place on April 24th and 25th, with a VIP dinner on Friday night at which attendees can meet, chat, and dine with the event’s guest speakers, and then a full lineup of speakers and other events throughout the day on Saturday.

Guest speakers will include: Tracie Harris and Beth Presswood of the Atheist Community of Austin, both of whom frequently appear on The Atheist Experience television show; Ryan Bell, the pastor who decided to try a “year without God”; Heina Dadabhoy, a feminist secular humanist author and blogger; Phil Ferguson, founder of Champaign Urbana Freethinkers and investment advisor; and David Fitzgerald, author, activist, and co-founder & director of the world’s first Atheist Film Festival.

Tickets for ReasonCon 2015, as well as official ReasonCon 2015 T-shirts, will go on sale beginning at midnight on November 1, 2014 at http://www.ReasonNC.com.  Early Bird prices will last between November 1 and December 20, 2014, and give attendees a discount for purchasing tickets early.  (All ticket prices will be listed on the website.)  Those who purchase tickets after December 20, 2014 will pay full price.  In the meantime, follow @HickoryHumanist on Twitter, or Hickory Humanist Alliance on Facebook to get further updates, watch for #ReasonCon2015, see the ReasonCon 2015 trailer, and see sneak previews of the events.

Contact:

Rachael Allman or Gene Elliott
HickoryHumanist@gmail.com
PO Box 294
Claremont, NC 28610
Phone: 828-548-0294

Roundup: Some more thoughts on Islamophobia

On the show this Sunday I predicted some angry backlash when I said that yes, sometimes criticism of Islam winds up sinking to the level of racism and xenophobia. I won’t run through everything, although I will throw up a handful of Q&A type responses at the end of this post. I guess the best one was this:

Just wanted to say Russel’s tone is smug and pretentious. Makes it hard to listen to the show even if you agree with him.

Okay. Now I know.

In any case, I’ve been seeing a few related conversations around the web lately, so I thought I’d share them.

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Open thread for AETV #882: Matt and Jen

Looks like this post is a bit late.

On a side note: Blip.tv apparently canceled a whole bunch of accounts including ours, completely without warning, pursuing an unspecified “new business strategy.” The entire archive has been deleted, we have no login, and a complaint we sent was met with a generic message repeating what I just said without further explanation. We’re working to restore our video archives and come up with a strategy for posting new videos. This may or may not involve YouTube. We’ll keep you posted.

Another debate review:  Justin vs. Steven vs. a Barbarian

I had a lot of fun reviewing the Matt vs. Sye debate on my Twitch channel a couple of months ago, so I thought I’d do it again. Justin Schieber, of the very excellent podcast Reasonable Doubts, debated Christian apologist Steven Kozak on the topic “Does the Christian God exist?” You can watch the original debate video here, or just listen to it straight up by subscribing to Reasonable Doubts. But my preferred method of watching a debate is to kill some minions of hell in Diablo III, while commenting at the same time.

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Matt’s comprehensive new takedown of Pascal’s Wager

Matt has been Patreoning a new series of videos in which he plans to take on arguments for belief in as detailed and complete a manner as possible, and the first of these is now available. It’s a full-on brilliant demolition of Pascal’s Wager, which he has addressed many times on AXP itself, but never to this degree of fine-tooth analysis and rebuttal. In particular, he distinguishes between modern colloquial versions of the Wager Christians today commonly use, and Pascals’ original wording. Definitely worth the 27 minutes. Enjoy.