Bi Any Means Podcast #92: Race, Atheism, and CPAC with Tiffany Harding

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My guest for today is Tiffany Harding. She’s one of the co-hosts of Road to Reason TV, a weekly TV show which airs on Fairfax County Public Access channels that discusses issues involving atheism and skepticism. Today we’re going to talk about her backstory, representation in the atheist community, and sneaking into CPAC.

Listen to “Bi Any Means Podcast #92: Race, Atheism, and CPAC with Tiffany Harding” on Spreaker.

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Bi Any Means Podcast #85: The Hispanic Atheist with Luciano Gonzalez

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My guest for today is Luciano Gonzalez. According to his bio: “Luciano Gonzalez is a vocal atheist. He’s also Latin American. As a Latin American born in the United States, and raised in Latin America, he has had quite a lifetime of experience with the Church. By the time Luciano was halfway through his freshman year of college he had realized that he was an atheist. Shortly after realizing that he had gradually lost his belief (having been raised by Catholic Puerto Ricans, in North Carolina, Georgia, Honduras, Colombia, and Panama), he made the decision to become a vocal and open atheist, a decision which isn’t easy for many Latin Americans, especially given that he lived (and lives in) the Bible Belt. Luciano is a college student who is studying history at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. He also runs the Honduras Report, a digital news group which translates news from Honduran sources (in Spanish) into English and presents them to 900+ people in Honduras, many of whom don’t speak Spanish, or aren’t native speakers and don’t feel comfortable with their level of Spanish who live in Honduras in places like Copan or Roatan. Luciano can be found on Facebook as The Hispanic Atheist and is a founder/administrator of the Secular Latino Alliance, a Facebook support group for Latinos who are no longer (or never were) religious and instead either don’t identify with any religious identity, or consider themselves someone who is irreligious. ” So today we’re gonna get to know Luciano and all that he’s doing.

Listen to “Bi Any Means Podcast #85: The Hispanic Atheist with Luciano Gonzalez” on Spreaker.

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The Biskeptical Podcast #17: WTF Are Identity Politics?

Just in time for Inauguration Day, today Morgan and I discuss identity politics. What the hell are they, and did they put Trump in the White House. Tune in to find out!

Listen to “The Biskeptical Podcast #17: WTF Are Identity Politics?” on Spreaker.

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The Biskeptical Podcast #14: Black Santa Claus is Coming to Town

Today on the show, Morgan and I look at this year’s War on Christmas. From Black Santa to Festivus Poles to Starbucks cups, we give you the rundown on how we godless heathens are taking away Christmas.

Listen to “The Biskeptical Podcast #14: Black Santa Claus is Coming to Town” on Spreaker.

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Bi Any Means Podcast #76: Indigenous People’s Rights with Taté Walker

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My guest for today indigenous rights activist Taté Walker. According to her bio on Everyday Feminism, Taté is a Lakota storyteller, feminist activist, blogger, photographer, and social services professional who promotes cultural competency and inclusion for professionals in the workplace. Her experience includes more than 12 years as a professional multimedia journalist. She is the editor of Native Peoples magazine, which provides an international audience with fair and accurate representations of Indigenous perspectives and experiences in ways that educate, entertain and empower through journalistic storytelling. She also spent eight years within the social services sector in the fields of juvenile justice, civil rights, and youth and family advocacy. So today we’re going to talk about her background, issues facing indigenous people today, and why native peoples’ rights are humanist issues

Listen to “Bi Any Means Podcast #76: Indigenous People’s Rights with Taté Walker” on Spreaker.

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Bi Any Means Podcast #73: The Ebony Exodus Project with Candace Gorham

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My guest for today is Candace Gorham, author of the book “The Ebony Exodus Project: Why Some Black Women are Walking Out on Religion—and Others Should Too.” She is also a licensed counselor, and a member of both the Secular Therapist Project and the Clergy Project. Today we’re going to talk about her journey, her work, and her book. I also offer a brief word of encouragement in the aftermath of the election results. Enjoy!

Listen to “Bi Any Means Podcast #73: The Ebony Exodus Project with Candace Gorham” on Spreaker.

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Bi Any Means Podcast #66: Bisexual Activism with Faith Cheltenham

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My guest for today is Faith Cheltenham. She is a bisexual activist who currently serves as president of BiNet USA, which is “America’s oldest advocacy organization for bisexual, pansexual, fluid, queer-identified and unlabeled people.” So for Bi Week 2016, we’re going to talk about her story, her activism, and BiNet USA.

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The Biskeptical Podcast #8: Indigenous Rights and Free Speech Warriors

Today Morgan and I discuss the North Dakota pipeline protests, followed by a discussion about the rise of the so-called “cultural libertarians.” Also, the President makes a public statement about the importance of free speech . . . at least for some.

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Bi Any Means Podcast #65: Intersectional Humanism with Diane Burkholder

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My guest for today is Diane Burkholder. According to her bio, Diane is a social advocate for misrepresented and marginalized communities, particularly focused on issues concerning young adults, LGBTQ, people of color, and individuals living with and affected by HIV/AIDS. She is co-founder of Kansas City Freethinkers of Color and a co-founder of One Struggle KC, a coalition of Kansas City activists seeking to connect the struggles of oppressed black communities, locally and globally. Today we’re going to talk about her background, her activism, and how to take a more intersectional approach to humanism.

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I Am Lena Dunham

You all know the story: Lena Dunham told Amy Schumer a story about how football player Odell Beckham Jr. allegedly ignored her because, according to her, he didn’t think she was “not the shape of a woman by his standards.”  Several people called her entitlement and mind reading on Twitter. Dunham at first chalked it all up to the “outrage machine,” but a few days later she publicly apologized on Instagram. I haven’t been following the story too closely because, quite frankly, I don’t care about Dunham. I’ve never watched “Girls” because it looks like your typical Quirky White People Having Awkward Sex in New York show. However, I did read Zeba Blay’s Huffington Post article about Dunham today, and it really got me thinking. Blay writes:

Lena Dunham is probably not a bad person. There’s nothing wrong with acknowledging the reality of white entitlement, even if it complicates a carefully cultivated narrative of oppression which revolves largely around being an average-bodied white woman. This reality doesn’t mean Dunham hasn’t dealt with misogyny, and it doesn’t negate her insecurities and fears. But by her own admission, her lack of self-awareness, coupled with her privilege and platform, can lead to the sort of tone-deaf characterizations of black men that are ultimately more harmful than they may seem.

Part of being a public figure means accepting that your learning is going to take place on a public stage. Dunham and other celebrities who make (even unintentionally) harmful comments should be held responsible for their words ― especially when those words perpetuate damaging ideas about real human beings. Dunham is entitled to her own perspective and story, but not to the minds and thoughts of the black men around her. [Emphasis mine]

I hate to admit it, but in a way I’m Lena Dunham. I’ve said problematic things and then got incredibly defensive when I was called out. I’ve refused to acknowledge my blind spots. In fact, I still do from time to time.

I don’t say all this to make people pat me on the head and say, “There there, Trav, you’re an awesome person!” Neither am I saying we should let Dunham off the proverbial hook. She has a history of saying problematic things. I’m just saying I can’t stand on my high horse and act like my hands are clean.

As I recently told a friend, there comes a time in every activists life where you think you’re being an excellent activist until someone says, “You think you’re helping us, but you’re not. You’re just giving us table scraps. You’re too busy making yourself look good. We’re literally dying, and you’re not doing a damn thing about it.” At first you just write off your critics as the Rage Police, and maybe even yell at them, but then you realize you’re wrong. Talk about getting egg on your face!

Fortunately, we’re all works in progress. We’re all trying to figure this shit out. The key is whether or not you learn from your mistakes. Hopefully someday Dunham will. And hopefully someday I will, too.