Paul Fidalgo is Endorsed by Optimus Prime

May 15, 2013

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

Persecuted Bangladeshi atheist bloggers Subrata Adhikari Shuvo and Russel Parvez are released on bail.

From our Office of Public Policy, we're on board with 70 other groups pushing to keep abortion restrictions out of the congressional appropriations process.

A lot of Point of Inquiry action. . . 

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Comprehensive Broomstick Reform

May 14, 2013

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

Minnesota will soon be the 12th state to allow gay marriage. 

CSICOP.org starts a new column by Kyle Hill on what the real-world implications would be if some paranormal claims were true. To kick off: Magnet people -- how do they work? 

Guys! It's cool. The Catholic League says there is no sex abuse crisis. Whew! 

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Too Many Popes!

May 13, 2013

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

Apparently, some plants are communicating with each other. Call Peter Singer! (Or, as Ron Lindsay said in response on Twitter, "Clearly the only morally acceptable stance is to limit oneself to drinking Ensure.")

Too many saints! Pope Francis dubs literally hundreds of new saints from the "Martyrs of Otranto" - Italian Catholics beheaded in 1480 for refusing to convert to Islam.  

Ack! No wait! Too many popes! Francis, Ratzinger, and Egypt's Coptic Pope were all in the Vatican at once!

Last Friday, Ben Radford dished on the disaster that is fake-psychic Sylvia Browne on CKNW's Simi Sara Show (scroll to the bottom for the "Hour 2" section) and KIRO's Seattle's Morning News (I can't find a link, but trust me, I heard it, he was on).

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Disavow the Holy Spirit, Get 10% Off

May 10, 2013

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

There's lots more reaction coming in regarding fake-psychic Sylvia Browne and her super-wrongness about Amanda Berry being, you know, not dead.

Joe Nickell, outraged over Browne's fake predictions, notes that it's not the first time she's been wrong in almost the exact same way. 

At Discovery News, Ben Radford looks at how psychics "play the odds" and are given enormous latitude . . .

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The Tidy-Up God

May 09, 2013

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

Well here's a thing. Jessica Ahlquist just won herself a First Amendment Award. Oh, let me clarify: She's won the Hugh M. Hefner First Amendment Award.

You can't make this stuff up: Three folks found guilty of breaking into a National Security Complex, including an 83-year-old nun:

The trio spent about two hours inside the Oak Ridge facility in July, cutting through fences to reach a facility known as the “Fort Knox of uranium.” Once there, they painted slogans, chipped off a part of a wall with hammers and splattered human blood on the exterior.

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The Most Dangerous of All Possible Delusions

May 08, 2013

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

Stop whatever you're doing. Like, don't even read the Heresy right now. Because Point of Inquiry has a special video edition this week with both hosts (swoon!) and! And! Guest Jared Diamond (double-swoon!), author of books like Guns, Germs, and Steel and The World Until Yesterday. Go now! Click! Watch!

Oh, Sylvia Browne. Being a fake psychic is not paying off like it used to. After determining with her magical mind powers that kidnap victim Amanda Berry was dead, Browne isn't talking to anyone about how her super-magic-brain could have been so entirely, ridiculously, and thankfully wrong.

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Mostly False

May 07, 2013

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

Whoa! Eugenie Scott is stepping down as head of NCSE! Oh no! 

Here's an interview I did with Scott before last year's CSICon. She was awfully nice.

PZ Myers declares his disaffiliation from the skeptic movement (so he is now only an atheist, and not what I call a "skepto-atheist"). Massimo Pigliucci will not miss him, but sees trouble within the movement:

I think the primary problem with the skeptic movement — of which I am and remain a proud member — is that too many people, both among the “leaders” and the rank-and-file, seem to be in it for the sheer pleasure of calling others out as idiots. 

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I Just Squirm Untelegenically

May 06, 2013

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

Washington Examiner interviews CFI chief Ron Lindsay on his beliefs regarding religious freedom:

On the one hand it's clear from our constitution the founders wanted the government to stay outside of church internal affairs. We don't want the government deciding who should be a bishop, don't want the government deciding religious dogma, etc. I definitely agree with that position...

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Blur Some of the Battle Lines

May 03, 2013

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

I was very proud to work under the skeptical-yet-welcoming glow of the Big Blue Meatball of CFI yesterday, as we and our allies held protests in cities around the world to raise awareness of, and demand action in response to, the persecution of atheist bloggers and other dissidents in Bangladesh. Things didn't turn out as we had hoped a couple of weeks ago, as a tragic building collapse in Bangladesh killed hundreds, and as a result, some groups went ahead with protests on the country's day of mourning, and others, including ours, postponed. So things were more thinly spread, but as a result, we got days and days of secular activists talking, tweeting, posting, and demonstrating against crackdowns on free expression. So while things did get a little confusing, and a little jumbled, what we did still mattered, and continues to matter. Thank you, sincerely, to everyone who made an effort.

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If I Worked That Mysteriously, I’d Get Fired

May 02, 2013

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

It's the National Day of Reason, and today, secularists and our allies around the globe will tell Bangladesh and the world that the persecution of atheists and dissenters will not be tolerated, with protests planned in DC, Ottawa, Calgary, Toronto, Dhaka, and London. At Friendly AtheistI make the case for taking this seriously, and forcing the world to care about this by the sheer strength of our message. If you're taking part or helping to promote the cause, tweet using the hashtag #DefendDissent. 

We have a guest post at the CFI blog from freethought activist Dr. Avijit Roy of Bangladesh, who documents and opines on the swirl of activity and danger around this issue.  

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