There is Nothing That isn’t Instantly Boring

April 26, 2016

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

One day after the latest murder-by-machete by Islamic extremists in Bangladesh, two more people are hacked to death: Xulhaz Mannan, editor of the country's only LGBT magazine and former US Embassy employee, along with his friend and colleague Tanay Mojumdar. This has prompted responses from John KerrySen. Ben Cardin, and the U.S. Ambassador to Bangladesh, Marcia Stephens Bloom Bernicat.

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Green Eggs and Shame

April 25, 2016

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

This'll have to be a quick one, folks, because I'm in Amherst, NY today to see my coworkers (imagine that) for something like Team Building Exercise '99 (not really) at CFI–Transnational Cosmic Headquarters, or as I refer it, the Meatball Mothership™. 

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He Was Tryin’ to Rest, Y’all

April 22, 2016

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

So, Prince. I don't have anything of use to say about him on this particular blog, but there is one thing about his death that actually falls right into the skepto-secular wheelhouse is that Prince has previously refused medical treatments due to his religious beliefs.

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, who last year introduced a resolution on the violence against religious minorities in Bangladesh that CFI supports, took to the House floor yesterday to shine a brighter light on the issue, warning that violence against atheists, secularists, and other religious minorities has "become a regular occurrence," and that we need to defend the right of free expression for everyone, even and especially those with whom we disagree.

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Sitting in the Kitchen, Making Things Up

April 21, 2016

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

CNN publishes an op-ed by me and Michael De Dora on Bangladesh's great shame: the prime minister and other officials blaming the murdered secularists for their own deaths because of their "filthy words." We write:

By reprimanding the victims of these attacks, and doing little to bring the killers to justice, the Bangladesh government is abandoning its commitments and implicitly encouraging the killings to continue.

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Where Spirituality Meets Narcissism

April 20, 2016

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

Holy moly there's a lot going on today.  

Yesterday we announced a new member of our Board of Directors, Y. Sherry Sheng, a naturalist and organizer with a dizzying array of experiences in helping nonprofits get better at what they do. So she's a good get, is what I'm saying. 

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Beer-Stained Shroud

April 19, 2016

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

We have a must-read from Carrie Poppy at Skeptical Inquirer: an exposé of sorts of the inner working of Peter Popoff's televangelist operation, from a former employee.  

Point of Inquiry this week talks to journalist Tamar Wilner about another instance of a person who claims he can heal you and almost certainly can't, the case of Stanislaw Burzynski

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They Might Be (Satan’s) Giants

April 18, 2016

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

Sarah Palin, promoting the science-denying documentary Climate Hustle, says Bill Nye is not a real scientist, which might be technically true, but is also beside the point. But Melanie Ehrenkranz at Mic says he actually is a scientist:

Nye, the science educator, television host and CEO of the Planetary Society and fellow of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry, has a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from Cornell University, where he also taught as a visiting professor. Nye worked at Boeing for years before becoming an entertainer. He is still an active scientist: Nye even developed sundials used in NASA's Mars rover missions. 

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Filthy Words!

April 15, 2016

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

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina of Bangladesh goes off the deep end in attacking freethinkers for criticizing religion (emphasis mine):

I consider such writings as not free thinking but filthy words. Why anyone would write such things? It's not at all acceptable if anyone writes against our prophet or other religions. This is a characteristic fault, expression of distorted or filthy mindset. I hope no one would write such filthy things. ...  Everyone should maintain decency. Otherwise in case of any uncivilised attitude, the government wouldn't take the responsibility

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Team Inky

April 14, 2016

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

Johann Hari is back on Point of Inquiry, talking about the horrors of the drug war, and how on the eve of a big UN conference on drugs, many nations are beginning to reach a consensus about what a disaster it's been. 

Saudi Arabia's religious police (aka "the Committee for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice") will no longer be allowed to "chase" or arrest anyone, but will primarily act as "promoters" of virtue "in a gentle and humane way," and, of course, as informants.  

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FSM on the Far Side

April 13, 2016

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

Yuri Milner, Stephen Hawking, Ann Druyan, and a bunch of other smart folks are going to send a swarm of baby-probes, pushed by lasers, to Alpha Centauri within a generation. Said Hawking, "Today we commit to the next great leap in the cosmos, because we are human and our nature is to fly."

People around the world claim to hear "the Hum," a mysterious auditory phenomenon that might be very low frequency waves, or might be entirely imagined. Colin Dickey at The New Republic takes a long look at what's going on.

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