I Am So Tired of Hearing About Your Doubts

March 06, 2015

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

Joining forces with our pals at the American Humanist Association, CFI has filed an amicus brief with the Supreme Court for the big Obergefell v. Hodges same-sex marriage case. A snippet from our release:

“The Supreme Court is poised to make a historic decision, potentially extending the protections and benefits of marriage to all Americans,” said Nicholas Little, Legal Director of CFI. “If they affirm the right of same-sex couples to marry, they will have made truly momentous advancements for equal treatment under the law, secular government, and even the fundamental human need for love and companionship.”  

It's not just us. In fact, a titanic alliance of almost 400 super-corporations including Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Comcast, Levi's, Nike, Proctor & Gamble, Wells Fargo, United Airlines, and more file their own joint brief in support of marriage equality. I bet ours is better, but good on you guys.

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Will People Die? Probably.

March 05, 2015

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

67 Members of Congress sign on to a letter to the Saudi king, urging him to release Raif Badawi and Waleed Abu al-Khair. CFI is one of 17 organizations endorsing the letter.

The New York Times editorial board weighs in on the murder of Avijit Roy:

Bangladesh’s government needs to do far more to protect writers and to send a clear message that it will not allow free speech to be silenced by murder. 

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That’s a Really Minimal Minimum

March 04, 2015

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

A court in Turkey blocks access to the website of the country's first atheists' group, The Atheism Association, less than a year after the group formed. The charge? "Provoking the people for hate and enmity or degrading them." Right.

I am not what you'd call a fan of Jimmy Kimmel, let's just say that. But I gotta give him this: his takedown of the anti-vax crowd is one for the ages. 

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Interstellar Spam

March 03, 2015

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

Authorities in Bangladesh arrest Farabi Shafiur Rahman as a suspect in the murder of Avijit Roy, a man who Dr. Roy said in his final article for Free Inquiry had been issuing death threats against him over social media. (Note: Rahman's name is ordered differently depending on the outlet. Dr. Roy referred to him as I have here, the New York Times calls him Shafiur Rahman Farabi.)

The Baltimore Sun notes their local connection to Dr. Roy's murder, noting that his daughter and Free Inquiry co-authorTrisha Ahmed, attends Johns Hopkins. 

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Ceres, and Unfortunate Events

March 02, 2015

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

The punishment just keeps on coming. Raif Badawi may be re-tried under the charge of apostasy, and thereby face the death penalty.

Following the brutal murder of Avijit Roy by Islamic extremists in Bangladesh, our own Michael De Dora (a friend and admirer of Roy's) made the media rounds over the weekend to discuss Roy, his work, and the larger meaning of this tragedy. He spoke twice on CNN (here and here), with deeper coverage from CNN's Ray Sanchez. Roy lived in the Atlanta area of Georgia, and Michael spoke to Georgia pubic radio about him, as well as Buffalo-area WGRZ television, and a lengthy panel discussion on BBC Radio's World Have Your Say. I'm sure there's some I'm missing.

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The Endeavors of Bold Human Beings

February 27, 2015

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

Yesterday was a bad one. As most people on the Internet were rightfully energized by the passage of net neutrality and less-rightfully-so about llamas and dresses, we at CFI lost a close ally to violence.Dr. Avijit Roy, a Bangladeshi-American writer who has worked closely with us on the fight for free expression, particularly in the case of the persecuted Bangladesh bloggers in 2013, was murdered by machete and/or cleaver-wielding attackers yesterday, as he left a book fair in Dhaka with his wife Rafida Ahmed Bonna, who was also badly injured and remains hospitalized. 

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Anti-Duelist Discrimination

February 26, 2015

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

Yesterday we released our 2014 annual Progress Report: Winning Landmark Victories, Confronting New Challenges. 2014 was huge, guys. This report should give you a good idea of the roller coaster ride it was, and how the support of our community helped us score some really important wins.

Jeff Guo at WaPo rounds up the various license-to-discriminate "religious freedom" bills in several states. Meanwhile, Chris Geidner at BuzzFeed talks to Mike Bowers, the man who successfully argued in favor of "sodomy bans" at the Supreme Court, who has done a 180 and now looks at these bills in horror...

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Middle-Class Rain Dance

February 25, 2015

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

So the ultraconservative American Family Association has this "bigotry map," which is their version of an enemies list, showing the groups they say are "anti-Christian." Thing is, CFI wasn't on their list, and we were all "what's up with that," so I had a little fun with it:

“Of course, the Center for Inquiry is by no means anti-Christian, and we work to combat bigotry of all kinds, be it against atheists, Christians, or any other group,” said CFI communications director Paul Fidalgo, nervously, between gulps of overly sweetened coffee. “But come on. The AFA listed Americans United for Separation of Church and State, American Atheists, and, get this, the AARP! The AARP!”

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Poke at It and Sniff It

February 24, 2015

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

I feel like the National Geographic Society is confused. On one hand, their latest magazine cover is a powerful acknowledgement of the assault on science from deniers, magical thinkers, and conspiracy theorists, with the feature store being the exploration of science non-acceptance by Joel Achenbach the Heresy linked to last week. But then our boss Ron Lindsay turns up this gem from NatGeo's books for kids, 1000 Facts about the Bible, released only a few weeks ago, which includes the parting of the Red Sea by Moses as, well, fact! NatGeo, which is it??

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Worldly Babbling

February 23, 2015

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

Mondays are crazy. Don't even think about delving into it without catching up with the previous 14 days with Cause & Effect, the CFI newsletter

Wei-Hock Soon, the scientist heavily cited by those who wish to deny humanity's role in climate change, is exposed as being bought by the fossil fuel industry to the tune of over $1 million. 

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