The Morning Heresy 8/30/12: Swedish Space Ghost

August 30, 2012

Your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities. 

I have a chat with Anthony Pratkanis, "Master of the Noosphere," about the topic of his upcoming CSICon presentation on fraud. I hope he wasn't trying to pull a fast one on me.  

Council for Secular Humanism rebuts a misleading statement from a religious advocacy group that falsely claims that religious groups' ability to provide emergency aid in times of disaster are at risk in Florida.

Ed Brayton announces an end to his radio show, and an intention to complete a book on church-state separation battles. 

At the convention last night, Mike Huckabee (in a woefully disappointing speech, I thought, just from an entertainment perspective) snuggled up to Romney and Mormonism, while attacking the sincerity of Obama's faith. 

LaRae Meadows faults scientists for failing to accept reality in their frustrations with the public's appreciation for science. 

CFI-NYC director Stephanie LeRoy gushes about Camp Inquiry at the Rutgers Humanist Chaplaincy website:

It isn’t necessarily that these kids know so much (though many of them do), but that they recognize how much they don’t know and ask exactly the right questions. 

CFI's John Shook shakes his head at the failure of Congress to re-up the Violence Against Women Act. 

Gosh, where will we find enough women speakers for skepto-atheist conferences? Michael Nugent has 1000 suggestions

Toothpaste for Dinner sticks it to the atheists with tomatoes. 

Atlanta's Creative Loafing talks to CSI's Ben Radford about bringing a voice of reason to Dragon*Con. 

Jesus's genealogy is one of the topics covered in the latest edition of The Human Bible <thundercrash!!!> 

AP reporting that Rimsha Masih, jailed in Pakistan for blasphemy, may be 14 years old, not 11, and is being denied bail. 

Greta on the alleged divisiveness of the Atheism+ thing: "Face it. This community is already divided."  

Massimo Pigliucci, while on board with the A+ goals, says:

I am skeptical that something like A+ can get off the ground — as much as I support its aims — for the simple reason that atheism is not a philosophy, and we should stop pretending that it is. 

Indian paper The Hindu talks to director Sajeevan Anthikkad about his bold advocacy of atheism. "My film disparages institutionalised religion and its effect on society."

Research team in Sweden goes in search of a "ghost rocket" UFO. Space Ghost???

Even though they really hate gay marriage, churches in Washington state are being reminded that they can't collect funds to fight it. 

Scientology passing itself off as nonreligious source of morality at RNC. 

Kylie Sturgess is all jazzed about her work in the latest Skeptical Inquirer, as she should be. 

Amendment establishing personhood for the unborn in Colorado fails to get on the ballot

Attention scientists: Do not get into this hall of fame.

The National Atheist Party's convention is a bust

Actually, your baby can't read

The Portland Humanist Film Festival kicks off October 26. 

And now, a woman making out with a walrus for Skittles. 

Quote of the Day      

Must-read, even if you don't agree: Chris Stedman worries that in a world of virulent Islamophobia, atheists are not helping:

. . . silence about the recent spike in bias and violence directed at Muslims, Sikhs, Arabs, and others isn’t a problem exclusive to the atheist community, but by neglecting to tackle it, the atheist movement is opting out of an important conversation about the mistreatment of certain minority groups in the United States. . . . as a Humanist atheist, I feel a sense of moral obligation to stand up against identity-based hatred, no matter whom it’s directed at. Not only is it absurd to hope that people should care about the lack of acceptance for atheists in the United States without also hoping that society will similarly embrace other communities, it’s also selfish. 

Linking to a story or webpage does not imply endorsement by Paul or CFI. Not every use of quotation marks is ironic or sarcastic, but it often is. 

Follow CFI on Twitter: @center4inquiry 

Got a tip for the Heresy? Send it to press(at)! 

The Morning Heresy: "I actually read it." - Hemant Mehta