Off to Wichita to give the mental illness talk.

Today I’m off to Wichita for Skeptics of Oz.  After I gave my Skepticon 4 talk on mental illness I got flooded with requests to give the same talk.  I was touched, but had to decline all of them.  I’m glad I gave the mental illness talk, but it took a lot out of me.  [Read More...]

Art show to premier at the American Atheists conference.

I got a press release from American Atheists in my inbox the other day that made me smile (which is good, because so far my day has been filled with insipid commenters who think lending tacit support to high-ranking Catholic criminals makes them better than me).  At their 50th anniversary conference in Austin later this [Read More...]

Let’s talk about what’s “genuinely sad”.

Joseph Svarty is back. You guys remind me of Ricardo Montalban as Khan in Star Trek II. Specifically that glorious scenery-chewing death scene, in which the battered, bloodied and dying Khan vents what remains of the hatred in his spleen towards Kirk, misattributing Shakespeare, spitting invectives into space as he drags his broken body across [Read More...]

I care because the accuracy of beliefs matters.

A person with the handle Joseph Svarty came into my post about Mark Shea loving the new Pope to ask: Why do you people care? Well Joseph, you know how Mark Shea was filling his pants with excitement over the old Pope (the one who shielded child rapists from persecution) and the new Pope (the [Read More...]

Same sex civil unions legalized in Colorado.

Yesterday Colorado quietly legalized same sex civil unions.  Each time LGBT people get closer to equal rights, it’s progressively met by a softer whimper from equality’s detractors.  When gays are finally allowed by federal law to get married, anti-equality people will stare at the ground and mosey into their churches to whine about how the [Read More...]

Bad Catholic thinks the conclave is pretty keen. I don’t.

Onward and…not necessarily upward…to Bad Catholic. It is very, very good to be Catholic. By comparison to what? We have the remarkable capacity to actually care about the conclave. Atheists have the capacity to care, we just reserve it for things that truly contribute to human knowledge.  That’s not the conclave.  Ed Brayton sums up [Read More...]

Mark Shea loved the last Pope. Big shock, he loves this one too.

As one might expect, Mark Shea is practically touching himself over the new Pope (no worries, I’m sure he did ten hail Marys and now his soul is safe again).  He thinks the new Pope represents progress.  His example? This will cause the normal exploding heads at the Reporter and MSNBC.  No “Progress” for you! [Read More...]

New study: atheists and agnostics more driven by compassion.

This should surprise nobody: Atheists and agnostics are more driven by compassion to help others than are highly religious people, a new study finds. That doesn’t mean highly religious people don’t give, according to the research to be published in the July 2012 issue of the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science. But compassion seems [Read More...]

A look at how the Pope selection reflects on Catholics and LGBT rights.

Gay marriage is going to happen.  Equality for LGBT people is going to happen.  However, it will happen faster if we’re praising a Pope for hauling the Catholic Church out of the Dark Ages rather than criticizing him for failing to let the Catholic Church grow up.  Sadly, I think we’re in for a lot [Read More...]

Law and Secularism – The Week in Review

Reproductive Rights News In a refreshing change from the abortion restrictions imposed elsewhere in the country, the Hawaiian Senate wants to do something different. Hawaii’s senate has just passed SB 526, which mandates that hospitals provide unbiased information and access to emergency contraceptives. Republican lawmakers decried the measure, claiming that it violated the hospital’s right [Read More...]

The smoke is white, just like every pope ever.

Apparently a new pope has been elected by mortals, rather than appointed by god.  Again.  I’m sure this guy will be an absolute gem, and that reading the Catholic blogs on my reader over the next week won’t make my brain bleed. As Matt Dillahunty tweeted, are we sure the white smoke isn’t just god [Read More...]

Excommuncation app.

Want to formally request excommunication from the Catholic Church?  There’s an app for that. Welcome to the Excommunicate App the formal application people can use to express and request a formal Excommunication from the Roman Catholic Church. People for differing reasons may wish to be excommunicated; perhaps simply they don’t wish to be counted as [Read More...]

Rand Hultgren: abstinence-only education has “incredible success records.”

“Use, do not abuse.  Neither excess nor abstinence ever rendered man happy.”  ~ Voltaire Rand Hultgren just went on the Washington Watch to trumpet his new legislation, and to brag about how abstinence-only education works. Rep. Randy Hultgren (R-IL) appeared on Washington Watch yesterday with Family Research Council Tony Perkins to discuss his legislation that [Read More...]

CIA Director takes his oath of office the right way.

New CIA Director John Brennan has been sworn in, not on the bible, but upon a draft of the Constitution. The Christian Post reported that shortly after Brennan took office, White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters that Brennan had been sworn in on “an original draft of the Constitution that had George Washington’s personal [Read More...]