The Biskeptical Podcast #45: NaNoCon ’18 Recap

Today on the show we take a break from the dumpster fire we’re all living in, and instead share our experiences attending NaNoCon a few weeks ago. We talk about our favorite sessions, all the cool people we met, and why you shouldn’t give me special Colorado chocolate.

Listen to “The Biskeptical Podcast #45: NaNoCon ’18 Recap” on Spreaker.

Subscribe via iTunes

Subscribe via Spreaker

Subscribe via Stitcher

Support the show on Patreon

Bi Any Means Podcast #143: Going Godless with Max Tang

My guest for today is Max Tang. They were born and raised in a Chinese American Baptist church where they were taught that they must decrease while Christ must increase. After a four-year long process of deconstructing their faith in high school and a painful coming out process, Max is just now giving themself permission to be their true authentic self, and blogs about their experience at Max Goes Godless. Today I have them on the show to tell their story.

Listen to “Bi Any Means Podcast #143: Going Godless with Max Tang” on Spreaker.

Subscribe via iTunes

Subscribe via Stitcher

Subscribe via Spreaker

Support the show on Patreon

Bi Any Means Podcast #142: How to Avoid Activist Burnout—Live from NaNoCon ‘18

Today’s episode is my NaNoCon presentation “How to Avoid Activist Burnout.” The audio you are about to hear is the 20 minute opening talk and my closing words at the end. What you won’t hear is the discussion questions I asked the audience to discuss among themselves because I didn’t want to put people’s voices online without permission. But overall people said they enjoyed my workshop, and I hope you will do the same.

Listen to “Bi Any Means Podcast #142: How to Avoid Activist Burnout—Live from NaNoCon ‘18” on Spreaker.

Subscribe via iTunes

Subscribe via Stitcher

Subscribe via Spreaker

Support the show on Patreon

We Need To Talk About How Non-Binary Invisibility Affects Mental Health — My Latest for Ravishly

It’s no secret that many LGBTQ people struggle with mental health issues, but some struggle more than others.

For example, a 2011 study shows that out of 33% of LGBT students surveyed that reported suicidal ideation during the previous year, 44% of them were bisexual. Other studies have similar results, and they all suggest bisexual invisibility is the underlying cause. Indeed in my own experience as a bisexual, being caught in the middle of the binary of straight and gay often made me feel like I wasn’t queer enough for the LGBTQ community and not straight enough for the heterosexual world, leaving me feel lost in space in the end.

Recent studies reveal being in the middle of the gender binary isn’t any better. A 2017 study, for example, surveyed over 900 trans youth (ages 14 to 25) and found that non-binary participants reported struggling with mental illness more than binary trans participants. As the study authors speculate, “This group [non-binary youth] is likely to be less understood and acknowledged than transgender youth whose gender identity fits into the man/woman binary, and this may mean nonbinary youth are less likely to have social support.” Another study from last year, conducted by Transgender Europe, found similar results; specifically, that twice as many non-binary people reported struggling with mental health problems as binary trans people.

I asked my non-binary Facebook friends about their experiences with non-binary invisibility. Some, like Ingrid, said their transition would have been a lot easier if they had more support.

Read the rest here.

The Biskeptical Podcast #44: A Stormy Rexit

(This episode came out on Friday, but I was on the road to NaNoCon at the time, so that’s why I’m posting it here today.)

Today on the show we first play catch up on the latest drama involving President Trump’s alleged affair with porn star Stormy Daniels and how the White House is trying to shut her up. Then during the second half we discuss the recent firing of Rex Tillerson, who Trump wants to replace him with, and what this might mean for foreign policy.

Listen to “The Biskeptical Podcast #44: A Stormy Rexit” on Spreaker.

Subscribe via iTunes

Subscribe via Spreaker

Subscribe via Stitcher

Support the show on Patreon

Bi Any Means Podcast #141: Philosophers in Space with Thomas Smith and Aaron Rabi

My guests for today are Thomas Smith and Aaron Rabi, hosts of the podcast Philosophers in Space. It’s a new show where Aaron of Embrace the Void and Thomas of Serious Inquiries Only explore philosophical concepts using sci-fi shows and movies. Today I have them on the show to not only talk about the podcast, but also to ask them some philosophical sci-fi questions of my own.

Listen to “Bi Any Means Podcast #141: Philosophers in Space with Thomas Smith and Aaron Rabi” on Spreaker.

Subscribe via iTunes

Subscribe via Stitcher

Subscribe via Spreaker

Support the show on Patreon

What Spirituality Looks Like For An Atheist — My Latest for Ravishly

When I was a Christian, I thought the biggest threat to society was secular humanism. All the preachers told me a life without God only leads to moral depravity, bleak nihilism, and Social Darwinism. “Do not conform to the pattern of this world,” the Bible told me, “but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is— his good, pleasing and perfect will.”

Eventually I did start testing God’s will, which is why I’m now an atheist.

I wanted to know if the unbelievers knew something I didn’t, so I began watching videos of Richard Dawkins, Neil deGrasse Tyson, and Carl Sagan on YouTube to see what they had to say. It turns out the secular worldview was nothing like the preachers had described. In fact, I found more spirituality outside the church than I did within it.

There’s a lot of debate about whether one can be spiritual without religion, even among atheists. I can understand why because for many people, the word “spirit” in “spirituality” implies some sort of supernatural metaphysical soul that leaves the body at death. As someone who walks by sight and not faith, I, of course, don’t believe the soul exists because there’s no evidence that it does. However, some define spirituality as having a deep sense of awe and wonder about the universe, caring for one’s fellow human being, and maintaining inner peace. In that case, I am spiritual, because none of these require supernaturalism.

Read the rest here.

Bi Any Means Podcast #140: Secular Women Work with Stephanie Zvan

Returning to the show today is Stephanie Zvan. She’s helping put together the second Secular Women Work conference, which will be held in Minneapolis from August 24th to the 26th of this year. Today I have her back on the show to talk about the upcoming conference, plus how the mainstream atheist movement can create safer spaces for attendees in the wake of Lawrence Krauss.

As a head’s up, we will discuss rape and sexual misconduct in the atheist movement, so listener discretion is highly advised. But it’s a conversation that needs to be had besides just plugging awesome upcoming conferences.

Listen to “Bi Any Means Podcast #140: Secular Women Work with Stephanie Zvan” on Spreaker.

Subscribe via iTunes

Subscribe via Stitcher

Subscribe via Spreaker

Support the show on Patreon

#MeToo and the Masks We Wear — My Latest for Splice Today

Content Warning: Sexual assault

Standing out in the #MeToo conversation is how we all wear masks. Continuously, men we thought were good aren’t. The latest example is physicist and public speaker Lawrence Krauss. Friends in the atheist movement knew about his reputation for years, but it wasn’t until BuzzFeed published an article detailing his history of sexual misconduct allegations that everyone else found out.

Shortly after, allegations against someone in my own circle of atheist podcasters came to light. I heard some things about him before, but he seemed like the epitome of a male feminist so I had doubts. He spoke about the dangers of White Feminism, giving non-white non-men space to tell their stories, and how all politics are identity politics. That changed last week when several friends shared screenshots that proved he was wearing a mask the whole time. I’ve since cut off all contact with him.

That’s why I try to be as naked (figuratively speaking) as possible. When #MeToo first started, I shared the story of how I was the Creepy Sensitive Nice Guy many years ago. I needed to cleanse myself from the toxic masculinity I inherited from our sexist culture and encourage men to do the same.

Read the rest here.

The Biskeptical Podcast #43: #MeToo in the Atheist Movement

Today on the show, we talk about the recent Buzzfeed article about Lawrence Krauss’ history of sexual misconduct, and how even the atheist movement sucks at addressing these issues. We also take a look at what the fine folks at MythCon have in store for this year (spoiler alert: it doesn’t look good).

Listen to “The Biskeptical Podcast #43: #MeToo in the Atheist Movement” on Spreaker.

Subscribe via iTunes

Subscribe via Spreaker

Subscribe via Stitcher

Support the show on Patreon