God the Father vs. the Godfather

January 05, 2015

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

Kimberly Winston interviews Phil Zuckerman about his new book and his ideas about nonreligious "aweism," in a piece that also has response from our own Tom Flynn from a piece inFree Inquiry

Tom also declares the biggest untold church-state story of 2014 to be the Vatican's involvement in U.S.-Cuba relations

Would you like a chance to change American culture by introducing the country to a non-jerky atheist fictional TV character? Here's your chance with a contest sponsored by CFI and FFRF.

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Meet the New Year, Same as the Old Year

January 02, 2015

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

It's 2015, and wow, everything feels different! A universe of fresh possibility! It's a whole new plane of existence! It's...nah, I'm just kidding. Everything is the same. Happy New Year anyway.

Snopes rounds up the 25 most widely-circulated urban legends of 2014. It's amazing how many of them have to do with body parts and fluids of various species.  

The Monterey Herald covers SkeptiCamp, with a nod to CFI-Los Angeles, Skeptical Inquirer, and the Independent Investigations Group. 

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The Continent of Magical Realism

December 31, 2014

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

It's a light day, folks, but, you know what they say: No news is good news, because it means a short Heresy

Uki Goñi at The Guardian clears up the whole thing about adopting a baby to prevent lycanthropy:

Like all good urban myths, the articles were based on a grain of truth: by tradition, the seventh son (or daughter) born to an Argentine family is eligible to become the godson (or daughter) of the president. Until this month, the honour had only been bestowed on Christian babies, but on Wednesday, Iair Tawil – not a baby, but the strapping 21-year old son of a rabbi – became the country’s first Jewish presidential godson.

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I’d Take the Lycanthropy

December 30, 2014

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

People love disagreeing with Tom Flynn: Phil Zuckerman rebuts Tom's dismal assessment of 2014 for we seculars:

In terms of swelling numbers, broadening organizational opportunities, increasing affiliations, spiritual innovations and a deepening sense of the values and virtues that support and sustain secular culture, things are as bright and shiny as the stars on the uniforms of the members of our Air Force who -- as of last September -- no longer have to assert a belief in God in order to serve their country with pride. 

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Primate Change Deniers

December 29, 2014

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

Are the holidays over yet? No? One more to go? Ugh.

Special for Christmas day, Point of Inquiry producer Nora Hurley put together a short bonus episode of the show to talk to Tom Flynn about his 30th year of being a yule-free Anti-Claus. It's great! Tom also fires another anti-Christmas volley, responding to David Koepsell's claim that he's the one Kirk Cameron should fear most.

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Christ Died for the Entire Cosmos

December 24, 2014

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

(Note: The Heresy is off Thursday and Friday, and will be back on Monday.)

Sony: Did we say we weren't releasing The Interview? We meant we are releasing it. We are. Really. Hehehe. Ahem.

For what it's worth, we at CFI, who offered our HQ to screen it, are glad to see Sony change its mind. Ron Lindsay told Buffalo Business First, "Whether it's shown at Center for Inquiry or other places, we'd be happy either way." Now we can all go back to focusing on how bad the movie probably is. 

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You Might As Well Just Hibernate

December 23, 2014

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

I spoke to Buffalo Business First about our offer to Sony to screen The Interview, where I said, "We fight for free expression usually in the context of political or religious dissidents, but if we're going to fight it over there, we're going to fight for free expression over here too." That mostly made sense I think. 

North Korea's Internet goes down. I think it was running off a single 9-volt, so they just need to replace that thing. 

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Undeniable Likable Sass

December 22, 2014

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

Note: I'm tired of nativity scene stories, so if you want to read about them, use the google machine. 

On Friday, CFI wrote a letter to Sony Pictures volunteering our headquarters for a screening of The Interview, the release of which Sony canceled entirely due to shadowy threats:

Much of our work is centered on securing the right to hold and express unpopular opinions and beliefs in places where dissent is crushed through persecution, violence, imprisonment, and death. It is a sad turn of events that a powerful source of free expression such as Sony Pictures could choose to give in to a shadowy group’s intolerance of dissent. ... We believe strongly enough in the right to the free expression of even unpopular ideas that we are willing to shoulder the risk of doing so.

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War on Hanukkah, Anyone?

December 19, 2014

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

Scientists tally up the medical advice given by Dr. Oz and it's as bad as you think. Reports Julia Belluz at Vox:

[W]hat they found was disappointing but not exactly surprising: about half of the health recommendations had either no evidence behind them or they actually contradicted what the best-available science tells us. That means about half of what these TV doctors say to their millions of satellite patients is woo, and potentially harmful and wasteful woo at that. 

In Skeptical Inquirer, we have the transcript of Josh Zepps' Point of Inquiry interview with the most excellent Ann Druyan of Cosmos.

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You’ve Been Pope’d!

December 18, 2014

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

CFI boss Ron Lindsay joined the panel on HuffPost Live yesterday, hosted by Point of Inquiry's Josh Zepps, and including Faisal Saeed Al Mutar and Deina Abdelkader. The topic: the treacherous line between being critical of Islam without attacking Muslims as people.

Gather 'round, children, and abandon all your dreams of sugarplums or whatever else, and let's listen to ol' Tom Flynn tell us the origin story of the Anti-Claus. You see, there was this radioactive spider...wait... 

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