Heliocentrism is So Second Millennium

December 12, 2013

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

Yet another "student religious-freedom" bill emerges, this time in Michigan. Reports Brian Smith:

Under the proposed language, instructors would not be permitted to grade a student's work differently based on religious content, and schools could not prevent students from participating in religious activities on campus before or after classes. Schools also would not be able to limit access to facilities to religious organizations if the facilities are made available to the general public. 

Holy moly, there's a sneaky-looking "documentary" coming next year that promotes, wait for it, geocentrism. And the trailer is full of scientists who I'm pretty damn sure are down with Copernicus. And, ugh, that's Captain Janeway at the beginning. (hat tip Rob Boston, who I'm kind of upset with for showing this to me) 

Hide yourselves, unwashed, unschooled heathens!!! The latest Human Bible episode is (finally) up! <thundercrash!!!>

The FDA finally comes knocking for quack cancer doctor Stanislaw Burzynski.

This guy can make amazing and huge patterns and images in the snow using only his walking feet, but, you know, crop circles must be aliens. (I stole that zinger from Barry Karr.)

UK's highest court makes it official: Scientology is a "religion" in Britain.

Scientists see evidence of comet crashes on Jupiter's moon Europa that might have delivered organic materials. 

Jennifer Michael Hecht is coming to CFI-DC next month!

It would be totally cool if these UFO detectors available on Amazon were delivered by drones. 

Billy Hallowell at The Blaze is intrigued by photographer Mark Schacter, an atheist who's published a book of photos of houses of worship.

Many things are Bigfoot-ish without actually being Bigfoot. Joe Nickell explains in Skeptical Inquirer

Dawkins and Jerry Coyne both go to bat for the selfish gene concept, taking apart the recent disavowel of it by David Dobbs. Begins Dawkins:

Dobbs makes some sensible points about all this, but there’s not a single one of them that I wouldn’t be happy to make myself – and in most cases did make, either in The Selfish Gene itself or in my other books. But his headline conclusion, namely that recent findings negate the thesis of The Selfish Gene, is not just untrue but deeply and perversely untrue. 

Michael Shermer writes in SciAm about the decline of religious belief around the world. 

North Carolina Christian school opts out of voucher funding after being called out for discriminating against gay kids and parents. 

Fake psychics in 2013 as fake as ever.  

RealClearScience rounds up what it considers the worst of junk science in 2013, though it's in one-entry-per-page listicle (gah!) form, so I couldn't be bothered to look at all of it.

Note: No Morning Heresy tomorrow as the Morning Heretic has to do a thing.  

Quote of the Day

I dig this: An atheist couple adopts four children, on top of the three they already have. Parent Veronica Chenik Gilmore writes at Friendly Atheist:

We became adoptive parents because we were qualified and we had the qualities that these children needed. We did it without any help from god and without the support from Lutheran Family Services of Virginia. And while we weren’t expecting that many children, we can no longer imagine our lives without each one of them.

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