Volcano Erupts at Camp Quest West Southern California

camp quest volcano show wide shot

Sunday night, just like last year, I had the privilege to donate another science presentation for the kids at Camp Quest West, Southern California. They are now using a larger facility still in the Angeles National Forest where stately Ponderosa Pines tower over handsome, well maintained cabins. There is plenty of wildlife, and wow, bringing my show equipment in from my truck, I came face-to-face with a beautiful and unexpectedly large deer.

I usually do these shows for a fee for libraries, schools, clubs, and gem and mineral shows, about 50 to a hundred performances each year, but Camp Quest has now become the repeating highlight of the year for me. Last year the topic was dinosaurs, and this time it was volcanoes, but the awesome power that evening was erupting from the kids, not from the Earth.

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Atheists Counter Christian Protesters Outside Comic-Con

If you visited Comic-Con in San Diego over the weekend, you may have encountered street preachers near the Civic Center trolley stop. It’s really a perfect spot for them, given all the sinners walking into the convention hall…

On Saturday afternoon, though, Brian Stone and a few of his friends decided to respond to them with signs of their own :)

See if you can guess which ones they are:

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It’s Perfectly Acceptable to Mock Church Culture

Richard Clark over at the Christ and Pop Culture blog has a problem with people who “hate-watch” the church, looking for any reason to point out its numerous flaws. He specifically calls out the excellent site Stuff Christian Culture Likes, which is targeted to those “who have been harmed by Christian culture.”

Clark writes:

But these Internet communities too often aren’t about healing. Not really. They funnel all of these triggers into one place, providing an opportunity for us to direct all of our rage, anger, and malice at what we have deemed to be rightful and deserving targets. These places of supposed healing become places of malice and mockery.

Here’s why I find this trend so frustrating and distasteful: biblical healing doesn’t happen this way. Hate doesn’t solve spiritual problems, and God’s Church isn’t sanctified by mercilessly mocking those who have done us wrong. These groups are hate-watching real-life drama, laughing at all the horribly written lines, mocking each villain’s downfalls, and gawking at bizarre plot twists. But these characters are human beings, whom the Bible refers to as neighbors. These plot twists have real consequences.

Clark is ignoring that fact that mockery is a form of healing. It’s why so many atheists love(d) to listen to comedians like George Carlin rail against the Church — he let you know that it was okay not to respect a flawed belief system run by a corrupt organization. Even if you are religious, it’s important that you call out your leaders when they screw up, and SCCL does an excellent job of that.

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Anti-Gay Christian Leader Whines About How Gay Couples Want Equal Treatment at Christian-Owned Businesses

In the wake of state and federal decisions on the side of same-sex couples, the Illinois Family Institute is desperate to find examples of Christians’ rights being taken away (as if civil rights are a zero-sum game).

Of course they can’t find any legitimate examples of that. So here’s what they’re doing: They’re arguing that Christian business owners are being targeted for their beliefs by gay bullies.

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All Wet: Rabbis Give Thumbs-Up to Kosher Sex Lube

It must be hard for believers to keep up with all the perfectly arbitrary requirements of their religion — eat this, don’t eat that; wear this, don’t wear that, and on and on.

Luckily, holy men will help guide the confused, so that God doesn’t get too cranky. And so it was that rabbis from the Rabbinical Council of California came to inspect a 52,000 square foot production plant in Valencia, California, to examine the origins of every ingredient used in the manufacture of a brand of lubricant called Wet (link probably NSFW). The burning (or is that tingling?) question was whether the lube made there would become the first to be declared kosher. Says the company in a press release,

As recorded in the book of Deuteronomy over 3200 years ago, Moses gave us The Ten Commandments and the Kosher laws. Since then, we’ve had Kosher hot dogs, Kosher wine and Kosher matzoh. But now, thanks to Trigg Labs, Wet® personal lubricants and intimacy products are also Kosher!

Yay!

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