Pareidolia Play Along 6: Creation Myth

This is a post by guest blogger Ellen Bulger.

In Pareidolia 5.0, I’m ramping it up a notch. The game has changed:

YOU are a fast-talking wannabe shaman in a not-as-distant-as-we’d-like future that is straight out of a Paolo Bacigalupi novel. That is to say, the petrofuels are gone, the climate has degraded and civilization as we know it is hanging on by a thread. Safety nets are no longer an issue, because save for the few whose ancestors were Bushes or Romneys or the likes of the Koch Brothers (Did those guys breed? Can creepy fucks with asbestos hearts actually reproduce?) everybody is at goddamn rock bottom. At least Mad Max had a dog. You had to eat yours.

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The Hyde Amendment: 36 Years of Abortion Restriction

The Hyde amendment was passed on September 30th, 1976. The amendment bars certain federal funds, primarily  Medicaid, from being used to pay for abortions. It is a mean, vile, arguably unconstitutional  provision that disproportionately affects low-income women and families. Every year it’s tacked on to an appropriations bill, and so 36 years after Hyde’s initial passage we’re still telling one portion of the population that they don’t get to have affordable access to abortion, that we don’t think they’re capable of making their own health care and family planning decisions, that we know what’s right for them, that if they were so stupid as to go get knocked up when they knew they didn’t want a baby then they shouldn’t expect us to help them out after the fact.

The National Network of Abortion Funds has a petition that you can sign to show your support of all women’s right to safe, affordable abortion:

Sign the petition below and join our call for coverage of abortion in public insurance programs as a part of comprehensive health care for all. Please also join our call for support for low-income women to care for their children with dignity. Take a stand for reproductive justice and a world in which all women have the power and resources necessary to make healthy decisions about their bodies and their families.

Petition:

It is time for Congress to repeal the Hyde Amendment and restore Medicaid coverage for abortion. We must close the gap between the legal right to abortion and genuine access to care. I call on my Senators and House members to repeal the Hyde Amendment and ensure dignity and justice for all women.

Pareidolia 5: The Reveal

This is a post by guest blogger Ellen Bulger

In this installment, Ellen reveals the answer to Pareidolia 5: Your Results May Vary.

Pareidolia 5 Reveal: There’s a Light at the End of the Tunnel!

Most of you literal folks could tell it was food, something of a flat and grain-flour based and fried nature. It is not a tortilla or a cannoli. What it is, is a dosa, which is kind of an Indian crepe, but huge. What you are seeing out beyond the dosa is another table full of happy diners, gobbling up all kinds of good breads and fritters and snacks and washing them down with cold beer and cocktails and lassi.

Delicious Dosa © Ellen Bulger

I took the shot a couple of years ago. I was on Broadway in New Haven, waiting for a friend. We had plans to get some shawarma. You know how good a Connecticut autumn can smell? Even in the city, it makes you flare your nostrils and take deep breaths.

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Creation Evidence Expo Report

This is a post by guest blogger Louise Kellar about her visit last weekend to the Creation Evidence Expo in Indianapolis, Indiana. Louise says feel free to share this story and the photos far and wide, but attribution is appreciated. She can be reached at @Spa_yediMonster on Twitter or by email at louise@womenthinking.org

It turns out creationism is still alive and kicking. Okay, maybe not kicking so much as floundering so it doesn’t drown. On Saturday, September 22nd, a handful of other skeptics/atheists and I attended the Creation Evidence Expo held in Indianapolis, Indiana. This was my fourth year in attendance and it almost lived up to my expectations. Last year, I outed myself as a non-believer in front of all the expo participants. Their reaction was that of applause and thanks, and a gentleman even stopped me outside to shake my hand. Flash to this year and that same gentleman was manning a table right inside the door. Of course he remembered me and we exchanged some pleasantries and he thanked me again for coming.

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Gravity Is Just a Theory

This is a post by guest blogger Ellen Bulger.

You Know, Gravity is Only a Theory Too © Ellen Bulger

If I hear “Evolution is only a theory!” one more time, my head might very well explode.

What in hell goes on in the schools? Maybe, instead of the dumbed-down GEE-WHIZ-WATER-IS-WET science that is designed to break the hearts of the kids who really care and bore the living snot out of the rest of the class, we should step it up a bit. It’s not like the kids who aren’t already motivated are learning anything anyway. Maybe we should start explaining the difference between a hypothesis and a theory about the same time kids start growing their little bean plants in paper cups at the back of the classroom. Good gravy, they are taught all kinds of cockamamie prayers at the same age that you have to convince them that library paste is not a foodstuff, no matter how lovely it smells.

If they are old enough to study the life cycle of a frog, they can be exposed to the scientific method*. Just give it to them along with their dip nets and food coloring and magnets. Kids are a lot smarter than we give them credit for and this is a good thing.

* This probably wouldn’t fly in Texas.

Road Trip to UM Duluth for Loren Cameron

I’m leaving work  a little early this afternoon to road trip up to Duluth. Loren Cameron, a photographer and transgender activist, is doing a talk at the University of Minnesota-Duluth called “Transgender Images”. There is a lot of fugly, slimey reporting about Cameron’s presentation (google “University of Minnesota Duluth Loren Cameron”) because it will have NAKED PICTURES OF A TRANS MAN ZOMG ZOMBIESEARTHQUAKESFLOODSLOCUSTSDEADBABIES, and over the fact that the campus GLBTA student group is spending $4000 of oh crap that’s my tax money in action Jesus is gonna be so pissed at me for funding teh gay agenda their club money to bring Mr. Cameron here.

Imma go see what all the fuss is about. I’ll probably do some live tweeting, so please follow me at @abiodork if you’re interested in that.  And I’ll do a write up and post it here in the next couple of days (it may not be tomorrow as all of my writing time will be spent in transit tonight). If you’re going to be at the event I’d love to meetcha, so feel free to come say hello. Cameron’s talk starts at 6pm at the UMD Kirby Ballroom.

Pareidolia Play Along 5 – Your Results May Vary

Okay, you can guess what this is and I will certainly tell what it actually is. But gee whiz, the theists can look at at ketchup stain on a t-shirt and see the face of Zeus himself, or whatever their frenzied suggestible brains desire. Can’t we be as creative? C’mon stare HARD at this sucker.

What do you SEE?

Pareidolia 5 © Ellen Bulger

Pareidolia Play Along 4: The Reveal

This is a post by guest blogger Ellen Bulger.

In this installment, Ellen reveals the answer to last week’s Pareidolia Play Along.

Hey, careful, man, there’s a beverage here!

Coffee © Ellen Bulger

I simply love this early morning light.

Last week’s Pareidolia Play-Along was indeed a beverage. It was not booze. It was not whisky or rum or anything of that sort. It was merely coffee, Ethiopian Yrgacheffe, to be exact. Coffee in the Pareidolia, Coffee in Brianne’s Cross Country Connections. We’re waking up and smelling it.

wanstronian, Jesus supposed healed the sick. And coffee can cure all manner of ills. It is a MIRACLE!

Pareidolia 5 will be up later today.

6 O’Clock BS: Damn You Minnesoooota

Oh, thyat Minnahsooohta accent.

Image is an xy graph entitled “Why My Old Friends From Illinois and My Family Laugh At Me When We Hang Out”. X-axis title is “Time I Live in Minnesota (Years)”. Y-axis title is “Time It Takes Me To Say Words Containing a Long “O” (seconds). Trendline indicates a proportional relationship between x and y.