The Most Privileged Dirty Old Men

April 04, 2016

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

Brandon Withrow at the Daily Beast looks at the places around the world where Christians really are persecuted (hint: not Starbucks), and the larger problem of blasphemy and apostasy laws. Oh, I'm quoted here too:

We have to “look beyond our borders,” adds Fidalgo. We need to recognize that “people truly are suffering in unthinkable ways—being beaten by mobs, imprisoned, executed, flogged—for holding certain beliefs or questioning the majority. And then we need to start bringing to bear our diplomatic and economic influence and making serious efforts to make change."  

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Insidious Superfluous Consonants

March 31, 2016

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

Housekeeping note: No Heresy tomorrow, which is good, because it'll be April 1, and that means a miasma of not-funny hoax news pieces that I'm perfectly content to avoid sifting through.

Morton E. Tavel's Skeptical Inquirer cover story on why lie detectors are more or less crap is now online, and it's good stuff. He says:

Given such overwhelming evidence of inaccuracy as I have presented here, how can we, as a society, react to such a perversion of science? The logical solution is to completely abandon this method of testing. 

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Psychological Acupuncture

March 30, 2016

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

Jaweed Kaleem at The Atlantic looks at the homeschooling phenomenon among atheists

Utah goes off a pseudoscience deep end, passing a law requiring anesthesia for abortions performed after 20 weeks, all in a pointless move to keep the fetus from feeling pain, which it can't anyway, and thereby putting the woman's health at risk -- a risk that the law says women aren't supposed to know about. 

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A Muddled and Troubling Lesson

March 29, 2016

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

Georgia's governor Nathan Deal -- a Republican! -- vetoes the state's anti-LGBT "religious freedom" bill. Wisely not being North Caroline, Deal says:

I do not think we have to discriminate against anyone to protect the faith-based community in Georgia, which I and my family have been a part of for generations.

You should read Kimberly Winston's piece about the blasphemy law in Pakistan, about real religious persecution, and how it's all really sad.   

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You Know Nothing of My Work

March 28, 2016

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

Get caught up with all the Important Things™ we juggle here at CFI with the latest edition of Cause & Effect, which is heavy with International Important Things™, such as Michael De Dora's work at the UN Human Rights Council, which he also summarizes here

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Garry Called Me Up and Asked If I Would Write His Link Blog

March 25, 2016

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

Indiana's governor-dudebro, Mike Pence, signs into law a ban on abortions where the fetus has a known disability, which critics say "only serve to shame women who are seeking out a legal medical procedure." Just to twist the knife into secularism's guts, Pence says, "I sign this legislation with a prayer that God would continue to bless these precious children, mothers and families." 

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“Etiquette”

March 24, 2016

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

North Carolina, which is obviously trying very hard to win the race for "worst state," passes a horrid bill overturning LGBT protections, and requires transgender folks to use public bathrooms that correspond to their biological sex. Gov. Pat McCrory, who signed the bill, tweeted:

I signed bipartisan legislation to stop the breach of basic privacy and etiquette, ensure privacy in bathrooms and locker rooms.

Wow, right? First of all, it's not a bipartisan bill, because Democrats in the state senate walked out in protest. And secondly..."etiquette"??? Like, denying people their rights is like using the correct fork with your salad? 

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Everybody Should Watch Out

March 23, 2016

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

After the Brussels attack, Ted Cruz wants to "empower law enforcement to patrol and secure Muslim neighborhoods before they become radicalized." He means in the United States. I'm sure a constant, threatening police presence will prevent any radicalization that would otherwise have occurred. Trump, meanwhile, says, "Everybody should watch out." He may as well have just said, "BOO!"

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The Sad Reality

March 22, 2016

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

A terror attack in Brussels: Three explosions, two at the airport, one in a metro station, killing what looks to be a couple of dozen people, but it's early yet.

Remember to be skeptical of early reports, as On the Media reminds us in their breaking news guide.

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There’s Gold in Them Thar Pills!

March 21, 2016

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

Maria Konnikova was a recent guest on Point of Inquiry, talking about con artists. In The New Yorkershe applies her insight to Donald Trump:

If Trump were a con artist, he would be interested in politics only as a means to some other end...

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