Atheist Billboards in Religious Cities Say: “Dear Santa, All I Want for Christmas is to Skip Church!”

A new billboard campaign from American Atheists shows a little girl writing a letter with the (very blunt) message: “Dear Santa, All I want for Christmas is to skip church! I’m too old for fairy tales.”



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Nepal Blood Festival Draws to a Close; Hindu Faithful Hack More Than 200,000 Animals to Death

Every five years, the Hindu goddess Gadhimai works up quite the bloody appetite. In Nepal, besotted believers sacrifice goats, pigs, buffalo, and roosters to her. Accompanied by their animals, they undertake a twice-a-decade pilgrimage to Gadhimai’s temple in the south of the country. Many participants are from neighboring India. CNN describes the festival as “the biggest religious slaughter in the world.”

“From my village everyone has made a vow [to offer animals],” says Kushwaha from Bariyarpur, a community in Bara district about 60 miles south of Kathmandu. Some, he explains, are glad they have got a son or a daughter, others that a different form of good fortune has befallen them.

The ritual sacrifice of goats, buffaloes and roosters in temples and at home is widespread in Nepal where 80 percent of the population are Hindu. Some five million people from adjoining districts — and also from the bordering Indian states of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh — will attend the festival, according to local authorities, although only two days are dedicated to the sacrificial ritual itself.

The slaughter follows a set pattern: on Friday male water buffalo calves are killed while on Saturday attentions switches to goats. Officials estimate that up to 10,000 buffalo calves and 150,000 goats will be offered to Gadhimai — the goddess of power — during the ritual.



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Duggar Family Sex Tips

Given the “side hug” and abstinence before marriage, the New Yorker‘s Paul Rudnick informs us of other Christian sex tips inspired by the Duggar family:



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Canadian Homeopaths Tell Parents to Give Their Babies Sugar Pills as an Alternative to Vaccines

CBC’s Marketplace, an investigative consumer program in Canada, ran a wonderful (and disturbing) report on what homeopaths are telling parents to do in lieu of vaccinating their children. We know what they said because Marketplace had mothers visit these homeopaths with a hidden camera in tow.

Turns out the “doctors” are spreading Jenny McCarthy-style misinformation (like telling them that measles is virtually harmless for children over the age of one) and telling parents to give their infants sugar pills as an alternative to vaccines.

One of the graphics in the segment even made clear how much of an active ingredient was in those sugar pills:



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To Michelle Duggar, Michael Brown, and the Rest: Stop Attacking Trans Women

19 Kids and Counting, the oddly popular TLC show about a gigantic evangelical Christian family, may be approaching its final days.

Or so we hope. There are plenty of reasons to find the Duggar family (all 19+ of them) nauseating, and many LGBT folks, atheists, and others who don’t agree with their aggressive conservatism may have been rooting for them to go off the air for years. But the last straw came when the show’s matriarch, Michelle Duggar, recorded a robocall urging Fayetteville, Arkansas residents to vote against a transgender rights law. The ordinance (which passed) allows trans people to use public facilities, such as restrooms and locker rooms, that correspond with their gender identity, rather than their sex assigned at birth.

Duggar’s call reiterated tired, defamatory claims that trans people (particularly trans women) are sexual predators:



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