The Morning Heresy 8/10/12: Getting NPawkwaRd with David Barton

August 10, 2012

Your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.

Today’s morning heretic is Cody Hashman. Your regularly scheduled Morning Heresy with Paul Fidalgo will return on August 13th.

This is important: There is less than one week left to sign the petition the Center for Inquiry submitted to the White House to ask the President and the administration to publicly address the plight of jailed Indonesian atheist Alexander Aan, as well as that of religious dissidents and nonbelievers in Indonesia.  

The Religious Right’s favorite history hack, David Barton, is back with another book, The Jefferson Lies. Well, was back, but more on that in a second. Anyway, NPR did a little exposé on Barton and his attempts to shed us all of our “secular” (I use scare quotes becaue I think Barton would appreciate that) indoctrination about the nature of the United States’ religious history. Facts are funny things and NPR decided to look into some of Barton’s claims. This didn’t bode well for him. 

We looked up every citation Barton said was from the Bible, but not one of them checked out. Moreover, the Constitution as written in 1787 has no mention of God or religion except to prohibit a religious test for office. The First Amendment does address religion.

Things didn’t necessarily get better for Barton or his “facts” for the remainder of the article either. One final note: Barton’s publishers have decided to halt distribution of The Jefferson Lies, citing a loss of confidence.

Many of you may know, or should know, that Robert Ingersoll’s birthday is tomorrow. Take a second to read this awesome article on “the most remarkable American most people never heard of.” He would have been 179 years old tomorrow.

Speaking of old things, this article from 2010 about the Pope lifting the ban on condom use keeps showing up in my Facebook and twitters. Get with the program, people! I’ll let it slide this time because the Morning Heresy was not around in 2010.

Some fossilized skulls have been discovered that help settle a long-standing dispute and show that at least three distinct species belonging to the genus Homo existed between 1.7 million and 2 million years ago.

Amnesty International has an online petition calling for the release of the three members of the activist group Pussy Riot. They are being charged for “hooliganism.” For more information about the whole Pussy Riot fiasco, check out Debbie Goddard’s post over at Skepchick.  

Someone doesn’t like r/atheism. Another person disagrees with that opinion

The “U.S. Should Adopt Higher Standards for Science Education,” says Scientific American.

Dori Hartley over at the Huffington Post reflects on her “atheistic journey.”

Check out Carl Sagan’s childhood vision of outer space.

Quote of the Day   

An honest God is the noblest work of man.

— Col. Robert G. Ingersoll, “The Gods”, 1876

Linking to a story or webpage does not imply endorsement by Cody, or CFI. Not every use of quotation marks is ironic or sarcastic, but it often is. 

Follow CFI on Twitter: @center4inquiry 

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