Historical Gravity

July 27, 2016

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

Hillary Clinton was formally nominated last night by the Democratic Party, the first woman ever to be the candidate of a major party in U.S. history. You knew that already, but it seemed weird not to mention it. 

Wendy Kaminer (a Women in Secularism 4 speaker) is the guest on Point of Inquiry this week, having a rather pointed discussion with Lindsay Beyerstein on the conflict over things like free speech and safe spaces.

Eric Zorn writes in favor of a Pastafarian's right to don a strainer on her head for her driver's license:

The deliberate absurdity of FSM's claims represents a comprehensive atheistic/humanistic worldview that courts have found worthy of legal protection. The satirical jabs of Pastafarians may not have the historical gravity of scriptural pronouncements, but they're part of a serious philosophy that does, in fact, directly address "deep and imponderable matters." 

Oh, and I love this part:

State officials are "just trying to use a little common sense," secretary of state spokesman Dave Druker told Tribune freelance reporter Lee V. Gaines. "It almost looks like Pastafarians are a mockery of religion."

WHAT??? Why I...how DARE you????

Stephen Law speaks up for the benefits of appeals to emotion when trying to persuade people of the truth, with the application of reason as the foundation. 

Billy Hallowell at Deseret News explores the faith of Bernie Sanders in the wake of the DNC emails that spurred us to make some noise

Mark Kingwell at the Globe and Mail steals uses the stained-lass ceiling metaphor for atheists in politics, which I used in the title of my little book from a few years ago, which you can still buy for a buck if you want, no big deal. 

Oh hey, Gary Johnson and Jill Stein say they want atheist votes too, I guess. 

Speaking of Stein, Bo Gardiner does a good overview of Stein's many pseudoscientific predilections

Virginia man Peter B. Adeniji is busted for selling a fake cancer cure for $1200 a bottle.

Nessie's carcass found on a beach! Or, as WPXI puts it in their headline, "Come on, really?"

Remember those fake bomb detectors that were sold in Iraq? They only just now banned them.  

Miss Cleo, the 90s-era TV fake-psychic known for the "CALL ME NOW" catchphrase, is dead at 53

Quote of the Day

Really a GIF of the day: How to exit after a speech.

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#1 SpiderHugger on Wednesday July 27, 2016 at 10:07am

Please don’t fix the typo “stained-lass ceiling.” It’s my favorite new term of the day. I imagine it refers to the career limits placed on a woman with a bad reputation.

#2 dewdds on Wednesday July 27, 2016 at 11:40am

The POI interview with Kaminer was indeed spirited and I think the generational divide between her and the host was all too apparent on matters of free speech in modern context. That said, I noticed that the POI site has gotten rid of its comments section. Perhaps the folks over there are looking to their own ‘safe space’?

#3 Randy (Guest) on Wednesday July 27, 2016 at 12:50pm

“they want atheist votes too, I guess”

Regardless of their other views, this is the first step to removing nonsense from government.  Aside from one guy (Booker), the Democrats (like the GOP) are in the business of promoting religion.

#4 Randy (Guest) on Wednesday July 27, 2016 at 12:53pm

“It almost looks like Pastafarians are a mockery of religion.”

How can you tell?  (Serious question)

#5 Randy (Guest) on Wednesday July 27, 2016 at 12:55pm

“it seemed weird not to mention it”.  The only weird aspect is that people seem consider this a reason to vote for her, in violation of the principle of equality, and yet found Romney’s Mormonism (also a first) a reason NOT to vote for him.

#6 Buck (Guest) on Wednesday July 27, 2016 at 5:01pm

I’m baffled as to how in the world Bo Gardiner’s overview of Stein’s beliefs qualifies as “good”.

Her repeated emphasis on “we need regulatory agencies we can trust” (citing the FDA) is presented as “accusations that the U.S. vaccination program is untrustworthy and corrupt” and that Gardiner is part of a group “conspiracy to smear her”. The quoted text has no obvious relation to such things.

Perhaps she has made statements that justify his criticisms, but the quotes provided make the piece look unreasonable…perhaps even a bit paranoid.

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