The Morning Heresy 8/17/12: Hooligans

August 17, 2012

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

As you may have noticed, the Alexander Aan petition did not gather sufficient signatures, despite our efforts. We'll have more to say about it later (Michael De Dora addresses it well the WaPo piece), and believe me, we are not by any means through in our efforts to help Alexander and those in similar situations, so stay tuned. In the mean time, Russell Blackford echoes my own disappointment

We've been punked! Remember the women-only Saudi Arabian ghetto city? Not real.  

How cool is this: A guy takes a picture of a wet lump, calls it proof of the Loch Ness Monster, and Ben Radford gets to be skeptical about it on Good Morning America! Neat. 

Remember the Reason Rally? Me neither. Luckily, we got hold of video of Ron Lindsay's firey address to the otherwise-damp crowd.  

Also just posted: Annie Laurie Gaylor's extremely well-received presentation at last May's Women in Secularism Conference: "The History of Women in Freethought." 

It's time to serve your secular movement, folks. CFI is looking for a few good suckers, er, employees to fill positions in campus organizing and web development. Unleash the resumes! 

CSI chief Barry Karr wrote you all a lovely letter, and I think you should heed his call to show up en masse to CSICon in Nasheville. Do not ask questions! 

Appeals court leaves Florida courthouse's Ten Commandments display intact, due to the usual "lack of legal standing." 

Sharon Hill points us to a story of parents who use duct tape on their kids' eyes and faces to keep demons out. But what I want to know is, what kind of demons are unable to get around duct tape? Lame. 

Russian band Pussy Riot who challanged Putin by a "stunt" at the Cathedral of Christ the Savior is convicted of, wait for it, hooliganism. I suspect we have not heard the last of them.

Victims of the Wisconsin Sikh temple shooting are mourned, and Bill Leonard at American Baptist Press says that being able to correctly identify a person's religion may be a matter of life or death

Internet Infides' Jeffery Jay Lowder piles on the criticism of the recent American Atheist billboards: "As far as I can tell, all they do is create the impression that atheists are rude."

Rod Dreher, meanwhile, hits AA for the 9/11 cross suit.

Candidate for Orlando County Commission insists he is not an atheist, but he probably is a nudist. 

Tony Perkins, predictably, blames Southern Poverty Law Center for the shooting at the Family Research Council's HQ, Hemant has a thoughtful post on whether the FRC counts as a "hate group." 

Despite the jackassery going on in the Kentucky legislature in regards to removing science from science testing, there is hope: the Kentucky Freethought Convention (Yes, with the initials KFC).  

Two Rivers Tribune: Lots of well-respected people have seen Bigfoot, but they won't admit it to us.

Quote of the Day      

I love this: Vjack says that audiophiles are essentially the opposite of skeptics.   

. . . it does appear to be true that most audiophiles are about as far from skeptical as one can imagine. Many are willing to spend more than I would on a new car to buy audio gear and swear they can hear a difference between various products without conducting any sort of blind tests. Most seem trapped in a never-ending cycle of upgrading components unnecessarily, pursuing a state of audio nirvana that never quite arrives.

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

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