Found to Contain Toxins

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
July 14, 2014

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities. 

Tomorrow, atheist Dan Courtney delivers his invocation before a meeting of the Town Board of Greece, NY, and CFI will be there to represent our movement. AL.com previews the event

Michael De Dora explains why CFI is suspending its support of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA):

We cannot and must not accept broad religious exemptions from prohibitions of discrimination in federal law simply to receive a sliver of equality. Indeed, such broad religious exemptions are a direct threat to true equality and a secular, constitutional government....As the debate on ENDA continues, the Center for Inquiry will settle for nothing less than a strong federal law that protects from employment discrimination all LGBT individuals. 

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Why CFI Is Suspending Its Support for ENDA

Democratic Discourse with Michael De Dora
July 11, 2014

After the Supreme Court's decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc., the Center for Inquiry has decided to suspend its support for ENDA until the bill's religious exemption is either greatly narrowed or scrapped altogether.

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Inherit the What?

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
July 11, 2014

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.   

Don't forget: This Tuesday, CFI is in Greece, NY for the atheist invocation at the center of the Greece v. Galloway Supreme Court case. There's a press conference right after the invocation by Dan Courtney, and our own Ron Lindsay is speaking there. 

Ron finally angers the folks at right-wing outlet Breitbartwho call out his recent Huffington Post piece on the power of the Catholic justices in the Hobby Lobby decision "chilling." (And they apparently think Ron works at HuffPo, but what can you do, they're not known for their research prowess.)

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An Exorcism for Joe Biden

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
July 10, 2014

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.   

It's a full morning, so let's get started with an action alert: Tell your U.S. senators to fix part of what Hobby Lobby broke to guarantee access to birth control. (Then come right back here, okay?)

I was finally able to get ahold of Josephine Macintosh, the CFI representative who confronted Saudi Arabia at the UN Human Rights Council last month and drove them into a tizzy, and I have an interview with her up at Friendly Atheist. Josephine says:

I am deeply convinced that societies should allow for a plurality of voices and opinions to be voiced, whether people or a government agrees or disagrees with these. Badawi and al-Khair represent the minority that undertake the courageous step of speaking up and defending their fundamental rights despite dangerous consequences. We cannot have any kind of development without people like them doing what oppressive systems fear most: on-the-ground dissent. In a sense it is an expression of their dignity. It is important to keep their voices and actions heard within the hallowed halls of the UN. 

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Has American Secularism Succeeded or Failed?

by David R. Koepsell
July 09, 2014

In the wake of the Hobby Lobby case, should we rethink the brilliance and effectiveness of the First Amendment's guarantee regarding the establishment of religion? Has it helped or hindered the valuable goal of seperating church and state, or are there other models and forces at work around the world that can achieve it?

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Magnificent Desolation

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
July 09, 2014

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.   

CFI's Michael De Dora discusses the Keep Health Care Safe and Secular campaign on the Token Skeptic podcast, as well as his own journey to secular activism.  

Michael also wrote a post giving background and context to the prison sentencing of Saudi Arabian rights activist Waleed Abu al-Khair.

Director of CFI-KenyaGeorge Ongeresubmits a report on his organization's outreach activities, including their efforts to assist and educate children, orphaned as a result of witchcraft belief. 

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CFI–Kenya Report: African Humanism and its Agenda

by Paul Fidalgo, Communications Director
July 08, 2014

This is a special guest post by George Ongere of CFIKenya.

One of the problems that have arisen in the recent times amongst humanists in Africa is the definition of “African Humanism”, or what should be termed as Africa humanism. Thus, confusions have always caught up with many Africans when it comes to connecting the two terms; “Africa” and “humanism.”

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Saudi Rights Activist Sentenced to 15 Years in Prison

Democratic Discourse with Michael De Dora
July 08, 2014

Waleed Abu al-Khair was sentenced to 15 years in prison, a 15-year travel ban after his release, and fined 200,000 riyals for "inciting public opinion against the government" and "insulting the country's leaders and judiciary."

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Dumb Enemies

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
July 08, 2014

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.   

Waleed Abulkhair -- Saudi human rights advocate, brother-in-law and attorney to Raif Badawi -- is sentenced to 15 years in prison for "inciting public opinion against the government" and "insulting the country's leaders and judiciary." CFI spoke out against their persecution before the UN Human Rights Council last month, which led to this infamous confrontation with Saudi Arabia's representative. A silver lining is that this has moved the U.S. to express that it is "troubled" and that it intends to address it with the Saudi government.

In 2013, CFI hosted a symposium centered on the question posed by legal scholar Brian Leiter's book Why Tolerate Religion? (Here's video of his presentation.) This week, he comes to Point of Inquiry to talk about the Hobby Lobby case and its long-term implications. 

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“Finding [the] Bigfoot [Bear]”

Investigative Briefs with Joe Nickell
July 07, 2014

The television show, Finding Bigfoot, continues. While the hairy man-beast still remains elusive, the Animal Planet’s “team” keeps looking, assisted by local good ol’ boys and gals, their imaginative children, producers trying to make something out of nothing, and cool night-vision equipment.

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