Festering Theological Fruitcake
December 20, 2013
The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.
Kimberly Winston reports on how atheist do-gooders, trying to infect the helpless and downtrodden with their poisonous blasphemy, are being rebuffed by various charities.
The elf on the shelf is like a gateway drug to theism. Or the NSA. Either way, Ryan Cragun opines on the evils of Santa in the first Free Inquiry web exclusive.
Kelly J. Baker is also unhappy about the shelf elf:
[M]agical elves can report your naughtiness, so you'd better be nice. In the name of family tradition and good behavior, what does The Elf on the Shelf teach our children? That someone’s always watching.
The State Supreme Court of New Mexico rules in favor of same-sex marriage.
Not to spoil that for you, but Uganda's legislature passes a new law which calls for life imprisonment for gays, and even prison time for not reporting that someone else is gay.
I just finished my guest stint on Wisconsin Public Radio's The Joy Cardin Show on atheism in politics, and I presume it will post here when it's online. The wee mini-book referenced in the show is this one.
Brian Pellot tells of a new Reporters without Borders report on the use of blasphemy as a weapon against free speech and dissent:
Ultimately these laws on religious offense serve political ends. If a theocratic government wants to suppress an unflattering story, it can cry blasphemy and knock off the reporter. In (somewhat) less draconian states like Indonesia or Russia, officials can appeal to wholly subjective and ambiguous laws pertaining to the “sensibilities of believers,” “religious feelings,” “religious discord” or “traditional values” to suppress dissent and bolster state authority.
The Bible says that Jesus was the son of God, right? Right?!? You best check to make sure with the latest episode of The Human Bible!! <thundercrash!!!>
UN Ambassador Samantha Power is dispatched to the Central African Republic to try and end the sectarian violence between Muslims and Christians.
You can't defeat the common cold.
A group in New Zealand is warning about the evils of Wi-Fi and how "too much of this stuff [is] really bad for you." (In New Zealand, is wireless Internet known as Ki-Wi-Fi? GET IT??)
Bulgaria is now like the Disneyland of vampires.
Rev. Frank Schaefer, the Methodist minister who officiated at his gay son's wedding, is defrocked.
No one does Xmas like the secular humanists.
Florida says no to a Satanic holiday display at the State Capitol, despite the inclusion of a Festivus pole and the Flying Spaghetti Monster.
We may be having trouble closing Guantanamo, but we can at least close its Nativity displays.
Another year is upon us, which means another endless schedule of skepto-atheist conferences and events. Good thing Tim Farley is keeping track.
Quote of the Day
Rob Boston on the War on Christmas:
In short, there’s no war on Christmas. There’s just the same old fight against fundamentalist zealots who believe their crabbed, narrow and exclusionary interpretation of Christianity is the only valid one. They have taken the message of a man dedicated to peace and turned it into a hate-filled rant – and then they puzzle why so many people are repelled by it. Of course, they still insist that they have the right to hijack the power of government and shove this festering theological fruit cake down everyone else’s throat.
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#1 Randy (Guest) on Saturday December 21, 2013 at 8:36pm
“what does The Elf on the Shelf teach our children? That someone’s always watching.”
Can we honsetly say this is a bad lesson? Someone IS (almost) always watching. If not the NSA, it’s Facebook, your cellphone provider, or another criminal gang. But it’s someone.