Category: History

February 6, 2012 / Anti-science
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As the old proverb goes “Better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt.” On Sunday 02/05/2012, GOP presidential sideshow Rick Santorum removed all doubt that his extreme religious views make him an idiot when it comes to science. He told his friends on FOX “news” that abortion causes breast cancer. Current science and public health policy has shot that kind of “scientific” thinking down. It only proves that Santorum should stick to his frothy day job.

January 10, 2012 / Definitions
image of the logo for Religious Freedom Day

January 16th is National Religious Freedom Day. The day commemorates the Virginia General Assembly’s adoption of Thomas Jefferson’s landmark Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom on January 16, 1786. The Virginia Statute was the basis of the 1st Amendment of the US Constitution and also can be used to support Jefferson’s idea of the separation of church and state. The Religious Right have of course co-opted the day by mass marketing misleading information about what real religious freedom means in this country. Luckily, Americans United for Separation of Church and State (AU) has some help available to tell the truth.

The Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom was passed at a time when state support and protection of churches was the norm in what would become the United States. Thomas Jefferson offered the statute as a way to protect the church and the state. It is obvious from reading the text that separating church and state was the goal.

December 30, 2011 / Entanglement
image of Rep. Diane Black R-TN

Rep. Diane Black R-Tenn. sent a letter to her 6th Congressional District constituents that ranted about not being able to wish them a “Merry Christmas” and spouting some false ideas about the role of government and religion. The problem is she knew she was breaking Congressional rules in sending out the letter. Like other theists, Black is upset if she can’t tell you how religious she is and she really wants you to pay for the privilege.

Rep. Black wrote:

December 9, 2011 / Entanglement
image of FOX news graphic

Like the ubiquitous terror warnings we all enjoyed during the Bush administration, the “War on Christmas” is another conservative dog whistle meant to piss off conservatives and other believers who fall for the false warnings from conservative propaganda machines like FOX “news”. The latest “fire storm” was the lighting of the holiday tree in the capital building in Providence, Rhode Island. The incident shows that efforts to be inclusive in what is a religious holiday, is shouted down by conservative bigots trying to protect Christians privilege.

I hate writing about this fake war so I’ll let Jon Stewart and the Daily Show talk about it:

October 30, 2011 / Entanglement
Image of President Obama speaking

Joshua DuBois, Executive Director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, responded to two recent citizen petitions asking that ‘In God We Trust’ be removed from the currency and ‘Under God’ be removed from the Pledge of Allegiance. As I expected, DuBois makes a long reach to justify rejecting the petitions.

One recent method of citizen engagement that the Obama administration is trying is called “We the People” that harkens back to the Declaration of Independence and our current right to petition government for redress of grievances. The White House set up a website for people to create petitions on issues and the administration promised to respond if the petition got a certain number of “signatures”.

September 11, 2011 / Events
Image of WTC before the attack with US Flag in background

Today is the 10th anniversary of the worst terrorist attack on US soil. The World Trade Center in New York was attacked shortly before 9 AM on a bright and sunny Tuesday in 2001. By the end of the awful day both towers were destroyed, the Pentagon had been hit, and people were killed in a fourth plane that crashed in Pennsylvania. Five days later I wrote an essay about the attacks from my secular humanist perspective. I went through it this week and have posted it again – changed little from the day I wrote it.