#1m1w in the Bible

Polygamy

[Since the Supreme Court struck down part of DOMA this week, anti-gay Christian groups have been trying to start a trend on Twitter, under the hashtag "#1m1w", to promote the "one man-one woman" view of marriage that the Bible allegedly teaches. With that in mind, it's probably a good time to repost this essay from 2008 about the biblical endorsements of polygamy, to remind the religious right about these verses they inexplicably seem to keep forgetting.]In recent years, anti-gay bigots … [Read more...]

Friday Night Music: Churchill

America went through some major changes this week, so in honor of the occasion, here's a great song by Churchill, an alt-rock band from Colorado (not the U.K., in spite of their name). I first saw this video playing (silently) on a TV at my gym, and it intrigued me enough to check it out later. I'm glad I did! … [Read more...]

Atlas Shrugged: The Invention of Fire

Ashtray

Atlas Shrugged, p.63-64To finish out this section, there's a short scene in the Taggart Terminal at night (the same place where the statue of Nat Taggart stands that Dagny uses for ancestor worship). She's leaving work after an argument with Jim, who's found out that she's only running a few old and broken-down trains on the San Sebastian Line, but who, as always, refuses to take the responsibility of changing anything when she invites him to.In the corner of the concourse, by the main … [Read more...]

A Constitutional Rollercoaster

ParisLGBTRights

I had another post written for today, but there's much too much going on! This week has been a rollercoaster of disappointment, despair, joy and exaltation, and it's only Wednesday.On Tuesday morning, the Supreme Court issued an awful ruling that struck down a key section of the Voting Rights Act. As compiled by Slacktivist, a flurry of Republican-controlled state legislatures immediately began efforts to pass restrictive voter-ID laws and redraw electoral maps to dilute minority votes - … [Read more...]

The Republicans Can’t Help Themselves

SoapBubble

Almost lost in the furor last week over the NSA spying story, the Republican-controlled House of Representatives voted to ban all abortion after 20 weeks. The debate over the bill brought forth some ludicrous moments, such as when Rep. Michael Burgess defended it by arguing that male fetuses at that stage of development can masturbate. This led to one of the better Twitter jokes I've seen lately:Life begins at masturbation. #masturbatingfetus http://t.co/64SuFRbYtF— Julia Ioffe … [Read more...]

Ron Lindsay Apologizes: A Small Step in the Right Direction

When I wrote about the CFI board's disappointing non-statement addressing the blowup at Women in Secularism 2, I thought that would be the last thing I'd have to say about this. That statement gave no hint that any further action was being contemplated, so I assumed the board's plan was to hunker down and wait for this all to go away.To my surprise, there's been a new development: Ron Lindsay has apologized for his remarks that touched off the controversy. His statement is short enough for … [Read more...]

Atlas Shrugged: The Ruling Class

Atlas Shrugged, p.56-66I've lingered on this section for a while, but the few brief scenes in these pages provide a wealth of unintentional insight into Rand's thinking and her ideas about what motivates her characters. There's one more insight I think we can glean, and it comes in the form of our introduction to a character who'll be important later on, Francisco d'Anconia:At the age of twenty-three, when he inherited his fortune, Francisco d'Anconia had been famous as the copper king … [Read more...]

Why Edward Snowden Should Be Pardoned

AllSeeingEye

I've been assembling some thoughts on the NSA leaker Edward Snowden who revealed the existence of top-secret government surveillance programs, including the PRISM project to tap into the customer data of the nation's largest internet companies, and a court order requiring Verizon to turn over metadata on all calls in its system on an ongoing basis (I'm still astonished that any court could ever have considered that request to comport with the Fourth Amendment).Already there are fierce … [Read more...]

New on IHEU: Atheists Aren’t That Terrifying

Tonight, I'm very pleased to announce that I've had an essay published on a new forum: the website of IHEU, the International Humanist and Ethical Union, an umbrella organization representing humanist groups all around the world. It's titled We're not that terrifying - A response to "Atheism Has Failed", and in it I respond to Jonathan Sacks, the chief Orthodox rabbi of the U.K., who frets that atheism is destroying Western civilization as we know it. A big thanks to IHEU for offering me this … [Read more...]

CFI Accidentally a Controversy

AtheismPlus

So, I was at a restaurant yesterday for Father's Day dinner and had a terrible experience. Everyone else at my table was served what they ordered, but the kitchen got my order very badly wrong. I'd ordered a soup and salad, but they brought me a plate of wilted, slimy brown lettuce and a bowl of what appeared to be dirty gray dishwater. I complained heatedly to the waiter, who fetched the manager in short order."Excuse me," I said to him, "but this food you've served me is inedible. Can you … [Read more...]


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