Read this story:
Change is possible: Former ‘ex-gay’ activist Yvette Schneider ‘celebrates the worthiness and equality of all people’
Read this story:
Change is possible: Former ‘ex-gay’ activist Yvette Schneider ‘celebrates the worthiness and equality of all people’
1. State that religion no longer needs clergy……and replace them with leaders that are as authoritarian as the clergy ever was.
2. Claim that men and women should be equal……but then deny women membership in the all-powerful leadership council of the religion.
3. Condemn as heretics those who believe in your religion but dare to challenge the claims of your religion’s current leadership, while at the same time claiming to welcome as friends the followers of other religions.
4. Claim there is harmony between science and religion, but also claim that anything your leaders say is absolutely true, even if on topics science is expected to address.
Any one of these makes a religion not worth following, but what do you do if you find a religion that has all four such contradictions?
This article struck me as a case of Earth’s core irony:
Orthodox NYC Jews protest proposed Israeli draft
I sometimes do wish there was a hell, but I also think that hell could not be hot enough for some rank hypocrites out there! For example:
Imagine my shock at the sheer stupidity and arrogance of this group of radical “Christians”:
On the weekend of Black Friday, a group of three people emptied a calendar stand of its entire stock of sexist and objectifying products.
Every day on the way to work, we had to walk by this kiosk. Each passing encounter forced a specific sexuality and beauty standard upon us, and we couldn’t take it anymore. We were sick of being told that our worth is equivalent to what aesthetic pleasure our bodies can afford someone else (typically a man).
If your environment disturbs you, disturb it.
Or even better, disturb it with your friends. Together, we formulated a plan and decided upon roles that we were all comfortable with: the distraction, the bagger, and the lookout. The area was scoped out beforehand for cameras, number of employees, and general foot traffic, and escape routes were elaborated. We created placards with anti-sexist rhetoric to replace the calendars, being cautious to touch them only with gloves on.
The distraction pretended to shop until the other two entered separately, and then began to engage the sole employee in conversation. The bagger stashed the product in a trash bag, while the lookout stood beside watching for passersby and police. After the product had been replaced with the placards, the bagger took the trash out through a side door, appearing as a mall employee. Once sure the bagger hadn’t been followed, the lookout exited and headed to the meetup spot. The distraction ended the conversation with the employee and walked away without incident. We all left laughing.
A big part of any action is strengthening bonds of trust with those whom you already know and love. We invite you to disturb your own environments, with these suggestions:
- Always use gloves for everything you handle (no fingerprints)
- Make sure you have enough bags/baggers (we had to make several trips, and the employee at your kiosk may not be so inattentive)
- Wear a very different change of clothes underneath your outfit–if followed, you can hide and remove the outer clothing.
- Wear something to obscure your face from cameras and passersby (if a hat, look down at the ground while passing a camera)
Be cautious, but don’t be paranoid. This was (and should be) easy and fun!
I would have expected this sort of crap from a group of radical atheists and feminists, not Christians! But then again, we do have Christian bigots that have murdered abortion doctors too, even though the Bible says “Thou shalt not kill.”
If these people were at all sincere, they would have destroyed the calendars in front of the store employees and customers and allowed themselves to be arrested and proceed afterwards to take a stand for their cause in court. Instead, they are just cowards, thieves and self-righteous @$$holes. In any case, I would put them in jail for a long time and/or fine them thousands of dollars!
OK, let me get this straight.
And yet the facts are that:
Why aren’t the nations of the world demanding that WE give up our weapons of mass destruction? How can we condemn others for wanting such weapons to protect themselves from invasion when we have had them for many decades? Can you spell H-Y-P-O-C-R-I-S-Y?!
It would be like a man armed at his home with dozens of machine guns being alarmed that his neighbors want to get themselves a few pistols. We Americans really do seem like a bunch of chickenshit cowards, don’t we?
August 3, 2013
To the concerned citizens of the United States of America,
The Republicans in the House of Representatives have tried dozens of times to repeal Obamacare and every time they have failed. They will always fail as long as the Democrats have a majority in the Senate and Obama, or any other Democrat, is President. So why do they bother? If anyone else was caught wasting as much time at their jobs as the Republicans have, they would be fired. So the obvious solution is to vote at least some of the Republicans out of the House next year.
The truth is that the Republicans are living on borrowed time. It is a given that they will never capture the Presidency again; George W. Bush will be the last Republican ever to hold it. But once Obamacare is fully implemented and its benefits become obvious, the insane opposition the Republicans have shown to it will cause them to never be able to hold a majority in either chamber of Congress and their status as a major party in the United States will be finished.
If you really want limited government, vote for Libertarians. Most of them are not hypocrites. They are indeed the only true followers of the U S Constitution left. No, not even the “Tea Party” bigots among Republicans. The Tea Party was just another right-wing scam to get votes from people who were scared out of their wits by the election of a black man to the Presidency. Ironically, I think Obama has not been liberal enough and that we need to push government even more to the left over the next few decades.
Indeed, if we were true to the ideals of the Declaration of Independence (“we hold there truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights…..”) there would be absolutely NO place in American politics for Conservatism. Why? Because Conservatism by its very nature is based on trying to maintain some sort of social inequality; some traditionally privileged class seeking to maintain its exalted status as opposed to some other disadvantaged class. It could be rich vs. poor, whites vs. blacks, men vs. women, Christians vs. non-Christians, or heterosexuals vs. homosexuals. Conservatism works by constantly appealing to the irrational prejudices of those who are in power and seek to keep the power to themselves rather than share power with those who do not have it. Both the Democrats in the late 19th Century and the Republicans in the late 20th Century to today were infested by Conservatism.
The Republicans today have caved in so deeply to bigotry that they are not even capable of representing the real needs of the people anymore; they are controlled by giant corporations that have been holding most of our economy hostage for decades and own media outlets like FOX News to lie to the American people constantly. These same corporations that outsourced so much of our manufacturing to China, but blame illegal immigrants for taking jobs from real Americans. Those same corporations that make vast profits from wars overseas and a military budget at least six times greater than that of any other nation while causing us to drown in public debt. Hypocrites! They are the real parasites and traitors to our nation, not welfare recipients or those who dare to blow the whistle on the corruption and abuses of our government!
So let us destroy the Republican Party! The madness must end!
Dale Husband, the Honorable Skeptic
The Center for Inquiry hosted a conference for women in which it’s CEO, Ron Lindsay, made a total idiot of himself and offended a LOT of the women (and enlightened men) for whom the conference was made by implying that feminists who wanted men to listen to them were no better than the men who were being disrespectful to them.
The media has been buzzing about Angelina Jolie’s decision to have both her breasts removed to prevent her from coming down with breast cancer.
(CNN) — Actress Angelina Jolie announced in a New York Times op-ed article on Tuesday that she underwent a preventive double mastectomy after learning that she carries a mutation of the BRCA1 gene, which sharply increases her risk of developing breast cancer and ovarian cancer.
Read this, which I have edited for the sake of brevity:
We want religious believers to police their own.
We want religious believers to stop being silent about atrocities committed in the name of religion. …….And when they don’t, we call them hypocrites.
So why is it that when atheists speak out against screwed-up shit that other atheists are doing, it gets called “divisive”?
I have been hearing a lot of calls for unity in the atheist community. I have been hearing a lot of calls for an end to the debates, an end to the infighting. I have been hearing a lot of calls for atheists to stop focusing on our differences, and look at our common ground….But all too often, calling for unity equals silencing dissent. All too often, calling for unity equals a de facto defense of the status quo. All too often, calling for unity equals telling people who are speaking up for themselves to shut up.
I do not want to be in unity with atheists who [speak, write, or behave in misogynous ways]. And I do not want to be in unity with atheists who consistently rationalize this behavior, who trivialize it, who make excuses for it.
And I don’t think I should be expected to. I don’t think anyone in this movement should be asking that of me. I don’t think anyone in this movement should be asking that of anyone.
And when people, however well-meaning, make generic calls for unity — when they tell all of us to stop fighting and just get along — they’re basically telling those of us on the short ends of those sticks to shut up.
Quite simply, we as civilized people cannot unite around atheism. Atheism is merely rejection of theism, and lots of people who rejected theism in the past were part of governments that not only mistreated women, but mass murdered people outright.
So if you wish to profess atheism, go for it. But we cannot define ourselves only as atheists. Doing so is meaningless. The Atheist movement itself is meaningless.
Let us turn to this instead:
There are seven principles which Unitarian Universalist congregations affirm and promote:
- The inherent worth and dignity of every person;
- Justice, equity and compassion in human relations;
- Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations;
- A free and responsible search for truth and meaning;
- The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large;
- The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all;
- Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.
What Greta Christina wrote about on her own blog is exactly why I have fought with atheist fanatics and hypocrites on the internet. Being an atheist is not enough, and there is nothing wrong with someone choosing to believe in a god of some kind if he affirms the seven principles stated above.
We do not need atheism, nor do we need religious bigotry. We do need tolerance and a world embracing vision and thus we need firm principles, which we may find among Unitarian Universalists. Let it be so.
……neither should Pakistan. BOTH states were founded after World War II by followers of a specific religion who wanted to establish a society in which that religion would dominate it. Pakistan excluded Hindus and remains a hotbed of Muslim extremism to this day (which is why it was stupid for President Bush Jr. to accept Pakistan as an ally in his “War on Terrorism”, when in fact Osama Bin Ladin was hiding out in Pakistan for years until President Obama finally had him killed). And Israel continues to violate the rights of Palestinians by building and keeping Jewish settlements on the West Bank, thus stealing land the United Nations said was not theirs in 1947. Yet the United States also continues to support Israel, no matter what. Why is Jewish extremism more acceptable than Muslim extremism? Either accept both and the states made from them or condemn both and the states made from them. Not only one or the other, unless you are a religious bigot.
This understanding came to me after reading this:
While other countries are “Muslim” or “Islamic” because they just so happen to have a large Muslim population, Pakistan was founded by Muslims as a Muslim country in rather deliberate fashion.
Likewise, Israel was founded by Jews as a Jewish country in rather deliberate fashion. If one is illegitimate, so is the other. Can you discuss this too?
That isn’t at all part of my focus or within my scope as a blogger. There are plenty of critics of Israel and Zionism who can speak to such matters better than I can.
I understand. My actual point is that I know of no anti-Zionists that also attack Pakistan for its existence as a Muslim state founded to separate its people from mostly Hindu India. Proving that they are more biased towards Islam and against Jews than any just person should be.
As an non-theist, I’m one of those “a plague on both your houses” people that gets it from both sides.
This is a sequel to
Last night, my faith in one of the oldest and largest guilds in all of World of Warcraft, Order of Knights Templar (OKT) of Lothar realm, was destroyed after several of its officers conspired to kick my main character, Bichorak, from the guild, claiming I caused “drama” in it. My actual crime: Reporting to Blizzard cheating activities by one of the members, Kibblenbits, and discussing it privately with at least two of those same officers, one of whom dismissed it with the comment “Who cares?”. The actual officer who kicked me from the guild, with no warning whatsoever, was Kymophobia.
This was after I had been a member of the guild for many months and worked hard to help make the guild one of the best and most popular in Lothar realm. I’d had many, many great experiences with the guild and its members and thought nothing would ever end that. But another member, who had first alerted me to the cheating, also warned me that the corruption of the guild was not limited to that one member. I should have listened to her! Continue reading
The Heartland Institute (HI), a think tank devoted to “pro-business” policies and climate change denialism, has suffered its own embarrassing data breach, simular to what happened with Climategate to some climatologists. The results have been most amusing and show clearly the hypocritical nature of the HI.
BTW, we never did find out who leaked the stolen e-mails that started the Climategate uproar, did we?
During the television broadcast of this years SuperBowl, former Congressman Pete Hoekstra had the gall to put out a ridiculous commercial attacking his opponent in the 2012 U. S. Senate race, Debbie Stabenow. It has since been removed from Hoekstra’s YouTube account.
Fortunately, another person made a copy of that video with an explanation for how stupid it really was:
Feel free to comment there.
Indeed, Republicans have actually been the biggest “spend it now” lunatics since Reagan was President. We had a chance to start paying off the U. S. public debt under Clinton, but Bush Jr ruined it with his absurd tax cuts for the rich! Pete Hoekstra is a LIAR!
Oh, and when he was a Congressman, and even Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, he committed some blunders which should have got him removed from that Committee, if not expelled from Congress outright!
Don’t allow this bastard to come anywhere near the U. S. Senate! We already had a disgusting racist, Jesse Helms, in the Senate for decades. We don’t need another!
In August of this year, I was looking into Facebook like I did almost every day, and I saw this ad that said “World of Warcraft – Free to play up to level 20″. Up until this time, I’d had no interest in any MMO games, thinking they were just for teens. I’d read about Everquest, but my reluctance to pay for games like that made me miss out on what could have been some great experiences.
Prior to seeing that ad, I saw these videos:
Even though World of Warcraft was never mentioned, they sparked my interest in the game. The Facebook ad only pushed me to take the plunge I otherwise never would have.
Once I was in the game, I proceeded to experiment with different races and classes of characters, but the one I came to love playing with the most was a Gnome warrior I named Bichorak.
Then in October, I paid for an upgrade to the game and played it more than ever. The limited exposure to the game from the trial account had only made me eagar to get more from it.
Some critical thoughts on the game and concepts related to it:
I’ve not been blogging much lately, mainly because I’ve been spending much of my free time since April (1) looking for a job and (2) playing World of Warcraft. A blog entry about World of Warcraft will be produced later, but other issues must be dealt with first.
First, read this article:
ATLANTA (AP) — Republican Herman Cain said God convinced him to enter the race for president, comparing himself to Moses: “‘You’ve got the wrong man, Lord. Are you sure?'”
The Georgia business executive played up his faith Saturday after battling sexual harassment allegations for two weeks, trying to shift the conversation to religion, an issue vital to conservative Republicans, especially in the South.
In a speech Saturday to a national meeting of young Republicans, Cain said the Lord persuaded him after much prayer.
“That’s when I prayed and prayed and prayed. I’m a man of faith — I had to do a lot of praying for this one, more praying than I’ve ever done before in my life,” Cain said. “And when I finally realized that it was God saying that this is what I needed to do, I was like Moses. ‘You’ve got the wrong man, Lord. Are you sure?'”
Once he made the decision, Cain said, he did not look back.
Four women have now accused Cain of sexually harassing them when he led the National Restaurant Association more than a decade ago. Cain, who has denied wrongdoing, was silent about the allegations and did not take reporters’ questions.
Cain isn’t the first to say God prodded him toward a campaign. Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s wife, Anita, has said she felt God was speaking to her about the race, adding that her husband needed to see a “burning bush,” a Biblical reference to God’s first appearance to Moses.
During his speech, Cain also criticized President Barack Obama for canceling the space shuttle program — a decision actually made by President George W. Bush — as NASA shifts its focus on travel farther from Earth’s orbit.
“I can tell you that as president of the United States, we are not going to bum a ride to outer space with Russia,” Cain said to loud applause. “We’re going to regain our rightful place in terms of technology, space technology.”
Cain was talking about U.S. plans, now that the space shuttle is retired, to use Russian rockets to send astronauts to the International Space Station. In the meantime, NASA is focused on explorations deeper in space.
It was Bush who decided in 2004 to retire the space shuttle program. The Republican president still supported sending astronauts to the moon and Mars.
Obama, once in office, dropped the goal of a moon mission. Instead, NASA has plans to build a giant rocket capable of sending astronauts to an asteroid and eventually Mars. It wants to outsource to private companies the task of ferrying astronauts and cargo to the space station — a job previously performed by the space shuttle.
Until private companies are ready, NASA will keep buying seats on Russian Soyuz capsules to get astronauts to the space station. The cost per person to fly on a Soyuz is expected to rise from $56 million to $63 million, which is still cheaper than flying on the shuttle.
Cain spoke in advance of a Republican debate Saturday in South Carolina focused on foreign policy.
Cain is an idiot! If he thinks dragging God into his campaign is going to save it after being accused of sexual misconduct, he should talk to some Catholic priests who have been convicted of sexually abusing children. Not to mention getting a basic fact about the Space Shuttle cancellation wrong!
And while you can criticize those women for not revealing their claims until after Cain began running for President, the simple fact that Cain took such desperate measures to do damage control shows he is losing credibility with all but the most delusional religious bigots.
And why is there so much media hype about Herman Cain anyway? I think just because he is a Black Republican. Indeed, it seems the Republicans have been struggling ever since Obama became President to project the image of rejecting racism. But combating racism is more than just having a few token black people in your party; it’s about really doing what’s best for both black and while people in general. That the Republicans have not been doing.
I remember when George Bush Sr was President and he said he was against racial quotas for helping more black people get jobs and education. But he proved to be a total hypocrite when the venerable Thurgood Marshall, who had been a prominent civil rights activist in the 1960s and later a Supreme Court Justice, retired from the bench. Bush Sr then appointed to replace Marshall with…..another black man, Clarence Thomas. And then there was the uproar over Anita Hill and her accusations of sexual harassment against Thomas. Despite this, Thomas got on the court and has been a consistently conservative justice ever since, just as the Republicans wanted.
Being black means absolutely nothing if you are selling out and backstabbing most of your own race to get yourself ahead, that’s for sure!
With Barack Obama, the first black man to become President of the USA, the Republicans countered by electing Micheal Steele, another black man, as Republican National Committee Chairperson. But Steele proved to be so incompetent and controversial that he was replaced this year by a white man, Reince Priebus. Steele later made appearances on the Rachel Maddow Show of MSNBC as a political commentator. Poor fellow!
This nonsense has to stop. It is only tolerated because so many people are too ignorant to understand how stupid it is.
The following are screenshots of a woman who clearly was going off the deep end of drama queendom. Since she made this a public matter on her own Facebook wall, I feel no shame in exposing her here.
Take a look at this video:
There are several issues here that the video does not address.
First, Islamic immigrants who come to a Western nation tend to be more moderate in their views even upon arrival, and their children and grandchildren may become even more liberal in turn. The only reason why some Muslims may become radicalized later is because they are treated as second-class citizens in a country they were born in because they are Muslim.
Second, immigrants are allowed into a European country because its native population is falling or not growing fast enough already, and such a situation results in workers becoming more valued for their labor, thus labor movements become stronger and workers’ wages will increase, making it harder for business owners to get extremely rich. To counter this, corporations that dominate an industry will seek to increase the workers’ population through encouraging immigration. But doing this means introducing new people with different cultures. And this is a problem? Only for bigots.
Third, European nations seemed to have no problem invading and taking over Islamic parts of the world in the past. In particular, France not only conquered areas like Algeria and Tunisia, it legally made Algeria a part of France, not just a colony, and the Algerians had to fight long and hard to throw off French rule.
Note that immigration of Latinos to the United States is also mentioned in the video. Bigotry against Hispanic culture also fuels immigration restrictions in the USA. Also, the USA conquered and still holds land once controlled by Mexico.
You cannot take in millions of people to lower workers’ value, then turn around and scream about those workers being different from you. That sort of crock needs to be put down.
If you expel the Muslims from Europe, then the workers remaining will demand greater wages because there are fewer of them. Are you prepared to pay them more?
If you keep the Muslims in Europe, then treat them as equals, and accept that your demographics will change.
Also, people raised in Muslim families do not necessarily stay Muslim forever. There are plenty of former Muslims:
Need I also mention that the idea that a culture will die out because its population growth drops and reverses itself is bull$#it? You can have a culture evolving and prospering no matter what the size of the families that make it up. You just pass on that culture to the fewer children you have, period.
Religions as tools for social cohesion are indeed valid reasons for having them, since people are by nature social beings. However, using any religion that has demonstratively false dogmas as that tool is by nature unethical because you are encouraging people to lie to others about reality. It is even worse when you have a government take that religion and use force to make everyone follow it. All this does is make many people into hypocrites who act a certain way in public while privately doubting or denying the religion. This results in greater corruption. It is no coincidence that the ones who often come across as the most moral and are also deeply religious also turn out to be the most hypocritical. I think the reason for this is because their moral values are simply not based on anything real and things that are not based on reality are themselves not real. If you need to believe in the Bible, the Quran, or some other scripture to believe in God, to be moral or function in a social order, then you are actually a dangerous person because you will resort to all sorts of dishonest arguments, claims and assertions to keep your faith. Likewise, getting a government to enforce your religion on everyone merely makes the government dishonest. We shouldn’t tolerate this any more than we should tolerate mob bosses taking over a government.
Thus, Islamic states like those of Saudi Arabia and Iran are contemptible and should be condemned and opposed at every turn, and the concept of Sharia (Islamic law) should be completely thrown out in all societies. They are simply phony by nature!
The controversy over “Elevatorgate” just keeps getting more riotous. Now Rebecca Watson has gotten into a catfight with another “freethinking” blogger and student named Stef McGraw.
First, McGraw attacked Rebecca for her supposed hypocrisy:
Someone who truly abides by feminist principles would, in my view, have to react in the same manner were the situation reversed; if a woman were to engage a man in the same way, she would probably be creeping him out and making him uncomfortable and unfairly sexualizing him, right? But of course no one ever makes that claim, which is why I see Watson’s comment as so hypocritical.
If you really want social equality for women, which is what feminism is, why not apply the same standards to men and women, and stop demonizing men for being sexual beings?
I found the ignorance of McGraw’s criticism appalling. Several years ago, I was at a gas station when I was approached by a woman I soon realized was a prostitute. She asked me if I wanted to go on “dates” with her and then asked for money. After figuring out that she was propositioning me for sex, I was so repulsed that I immediately went into station and told the employees about the woman, and the promised me that they would get rid of her, even as she was proceeding to hit on other men at the station!
Rebecca certainly did not say that men shouldn’t object to women hitting on men in an elevator at 4 AM, did she? No, and that made McGraw’s rebuke of her pointless, if not flat out stupid!
Rebecca then dealt with the attack by taking it right to McGraw’s own territory. No, not her blog, but at the CFI Student Leadership Conference, in Amherst, New York, on June 26, 2011.
That video is almost 50 minutes long. To focus on the part relevant to the dispute referred to here, look at this:
[12:04] There’s another comment I found on a blog from actually one of your own. And, I wanted to use it as an example, not to embarrass this person, but to point out that we have a serious problem when young women [quoted part of McGraw's blog post shows up under previous YouTube comment] are this ignorant about feminism. So let me read it to you. This is from the UNI Freethought blog. Stef McGraw, she posts a transcript of the story I just told you, the elevator story, and she writes:
[12:37] “My concern is that she takes issue with a man showing interest in her. What’s wrong with that? How on Earth does that justify him as ‘creepy’? Are we not sexual beings? Let’s review. It’s not as if he touched her or made an unsolicited sexual comment. He merely asked if she’d like to come back to his room. She easily could have said–and I’m assuming did say, ‘No thanks. I’m tired and would like to go to my room to sleep.'”
[13:00] So, there are many things wrong with this paragraph; I won’t really go into them all. I’ll mention that asking someone back to your hotel room at four in the morning who you’ve never spoken to is the definition of ‘unsolicited sexual comment’. And in the transcript that Stef posted, she conveniently edited it to begin after I told everyone at the bar that I was exhausted and going back to my room–kind of an important point in which I state exactly what my desire is because later this man in the elevator specifically tried to talk me out of doing that. So I did actually make it quite clear that I was tired and going to my room to sleep.
[13:45] But the real problem is actually in the first sentence, and it’s sort of the same problem that the other commenter has [note that McGraw's quote is still shown below the YouTube comment ending with "Congratulations" on the screen]. “My concern is that she takes issue with a man showing interest in her.” This is unfortunately a pretty standard parroting of misogynistic thought. And it’s not new; it’s something that feminists have been dealing with for ages. In fact, it’s Feminism 101. [Slide changes to a page taken from some website.] In fact, it’s covered on a blog called Feminism 101 [laughs] which you should definitely check out because it’s great. They go over a lot of concepts that may be new to many of you. But in this case, what we’re talking about is the difference between sexual interest/sexual attraction versus sexual objectification.
McGraw responded with this:
Then, a day later at the conference, Watson delivered a keynote speech on the religious right’s war against women. Before she got to her main content, though, she decided to address sexism in the secular movement, which she views as a rampant problem. I shared her disgust as she showed screenshots of people online calling her demeaning names, making comments about her appearance, and, worst of all, making rape comments.
Then, switching gears, Watson made a remark to the extent that there are people in our own community who would not stand up for her in these sorts of situations; my name, organization, and a few sentences from my blog post then flashed on the screen before my eyes. She went on to explain how I didn’t understand what objectification meant and was espousing anti-woman sentiment.
My first reaction was complete shock. I wasn’t surprised that she had seen my post, but I didn’t think she would choose to address it during her keynote, let alone place it in a category with people advocating for her to be raped. In fact, I was excited to possibly speak with her afterward in order to discuss the matter face-to-face. Instead, all I could do was just sit there and watch myself being berated for supposedly espousing anti-woman views and told that I wouldn’t stand up for women in sticky situations with men, as one hundred of my peers watched on. I found both of those accusations to be completely and utterly incorrect, as anyone who actually knows me could tell you I care deeply about fighting sexist thought. I started thinking, how can I respond? It didn’t feel right to have to endure a widely respected keynote speaker’s accusations that I was a living example of what was wrong with our movement while I sat there unable to defend my position.
There was no time at the conference where I, as a student attendee, could appropriately make any sort of public statement addressing what Watson claimed about my argument and me. She has said over Twitter that “An attendee has every right to counter during Q&A or by publicly blogging again later,” but there are issues with both of these approaches. First, the Q&A was not an option in my mind, as I wasn’t going to get up after her great talk and argue with her about something unrelated; I have more respect for a speaker than that. And second, yes, I currently am blogging about the issue, but this won’t reach everyone who went to the conference; I write for a successful student blog, not one like Skepchick that a large percentage of the secular community reads.
The real issue, of course, was that Rebecca used McGraw’s own words against her, right in front of her no less, in such a way as to make her look clueless before her peers. That would never have happened if McGraw had not actually made a complete idiot of herself on her blog in the first place!
And for that, Rebecca has been called a bully, and her critics have said what she did was unprofessional and inappropriate. Oh, and Richard Dawkins’ sarcastic response to Rebecca several weeks ago wasn’t?!
So who’s the damned hypocrite now?
The Declaration of Independence here refers to the document drafted and signed in 1776 declaring the separation of 13 colonies along the Atlantic coast of North America from the British Empire. It is indeed one of the greatest writings ever made in human history…..but that hardly means it is flawless. Indeed, in this age it may be considered obsolete and merit some serious criticism. I will post text from it in red and my critiques of it in green.
When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
Considering that the colonists involved were mostly of the same European-Caucasian stock as the people still in Britain, this is odd. If this had been written by black people of Africa striving to break free from British rule, this would have made better sense. But in fact, the blacks in the colonies were mostly slaves and their freedom was not an issue here.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
No, those ideas are NOT self-evident. What about that slavery issue? And if by “Creator” they meant the Biblical God, that is certainly not valid. That God was by nature an absolute monarch and ruled his subjects like kings and emperors did, even condemning to hell those who rejected his rule. What rights do people have in such a system? NONE!
— That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,
This was derived from the political philosophy of John Locke. In reality, kings and other absolute rulers never attempt to get consent from their people to rule. They simply take power by force and keep it by force…..until another tyrant overthrows them. The American Revolution was the first serious attempt in modern times to break that cycle, and it worked. But it would have been far more accurate for the Declaration to have said, “Governments should be instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”
— That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.
This makes perfect sense. It should be that way everywhere.
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.
Maybe that explains most of the absolute monarchies and dictatorships that have existed for many decades in many parts of the world. But is it not better to say that NO evils should be considered sufferable, in order for the people to constantly seek and establish the best possible governments?
But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.
The recent revolts overthrowing the dictators of Tunisia and Egypt were all about this. Ironically, the USA supported the regime of Hosni Mubarak until this year because it did not attempt to destroy the State of Israel, despite Mubarak being abusive to his own people. Can you spell H-Y-P-O-C-R-I-S-Y?
— Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.
He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected, whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers.
He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.
I cannot comment on most of the supposed violations of the king referred to here, but I will make note of this one: Libertarians ofter refer to this and claim that many of governmental offices established in the USA are no better than what the British monarch did. Including the IRS, the FBI, and the Department of Homeland Security.
He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
Today, the USA has by far the largest military budget in the world. In fact, it is six times larger than that of any other nation!
He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
This refers to the Boston Massacre. Ironically, the British soldiers who committed it were defended at their trial by John Adams, who would later become the second President of the United States. Hardly a “mock trial”, the proceedings were an attempt to give the soldiers a fair one. Thus, this statement was totally unjustified.
For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
The purpose of the colonies was to increase the wealth of the United Kingdom. Imposing taxes was part of this. You might as well have asked for there to be no colonies.
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury:
For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:
For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies
This refers to Canada, which remained in the British Empire, partly because so many Loyalists from the colonies fled to it as the American Revolution took place. Even more ironically, part of Canada was Quebec, a French colony which had been conquered by the British in the French and Indian War decades earlier. But the British were able to hold onto Quebec anyway. Maybe if the French and Indian War had not been fought, the British would not have lost the other American colonies. Even the strongest national empire can only do so much.
For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
Many of these mercenaries came from the German kingdoms and provinces. But the colonies soon got their own mercenaries from France and other countries.
He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
This was known as impressment and was similar to the draft or conscription that was done to increase the membership of armies in most countries, then and now. After the Revolution, the United States never did this, and after the Vietnam War the draft for the land based American Armed Forces was abolished as well. Drafting and impressment are forms of slavery.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.
This is a statement of blatant racism. Native American tribes, like all other human groups, have a variety of behaviors. Plus, they were fighting in most cases to keep the land they had been living on that the whites were stealing from them. And consider what the U S Army did to Native Americans in the Wounded Knee Massacre, which until recently was called the “Battle” of Wounded Knee.
In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.
Here are some examples of Earth’s core irony: In addition to killing off Native Americans and imprisoning the survivors in concentration camps called “reservations”, we Americans conquered Hawaii and disposed of its own native government for American business interests and then fought a war to keep control of the Phillippines after taking those islands from Spain. I cannot imagine a Native American, a native Hawaiian, or a Philippine reading the Declaration of Independence and regarding it with anything other than scorn. And I swear, if I ever hear another conservative American politician claim that we owe our freedom to the American troops, I will scream! It’s simply one of the biggest lies ever told. It wasn’t generals who wrote the Declaration of Independence or the U S Constitution of 1787, it was LAWYERS. And you don’t hire a soldier to fight for your rights in a court, do you?
Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.
Maybe those British subjects were as blind to their wrongdoings as Americans today are often blind to many of their nation’s wrongdoings over the past 200 years.
We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. — And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.
Wikipedia has become so immensely successful and useful that it has caused others to create competition to it. Some delusional people with extreme political views have even created alternatives to it, in the interest of countering Wikipedia’s supposed “left-wing bias”. Thus we have things like the laughingstock known as Conservapedia, founded and run by Andrew Schlafly, son of Phyllis Schlafly.
That is bad. But this is WORSE!
Welcome to ClimateWikiThe Definitive Climate Change Encyclopedia
Global warming is a complicated issue. It’s easy to get confused by all the scientific arguments and conflicting claims. We created this site to help everyone from high school students to scientists working in the field to quickly find the latest and most reliable information on this important topic.
ClimateWiki is an encyclopedia of climate change research organized by topic. If you are new to the issue, consider reading the Introduction to Global Warming. If you are already well versed in the issue, search the Featured Categories in the search box to the right or use some of the other navigation tools on this page.
ClimateWiki is moderated and edited by The Heartland Institute, a free-market think tank with offices in Chicago and Washington, DC. Interested in becoming a contributor? Contact John Monaghan at email@example.com
What kind of an idiot would take such an openly biased source at face value?
Look at this:
“There is ample evidence that a warmer world is also a safer and healthier world, yet this fact is seldom mentioned in the debate over climate change. Economists can measure the impact of climate change on various measures of economic wellbeing and calculate, for example, the effect of warmer temperatures per-capita income, the price of food and other essentials, and even on life expectancy. They can also measure the loss of income and jobs that result from restricting access to inexpensive fossil fuels. “
Yeah, because the increasing spread of tropical diseases like malaria are very safe and healthy! NOT! Also, if this new web encyclopedia is really about climate, why mention economics at all? Need I also mention that since fossil fuels are non-renewable, the jobs they provide will eventually disappear anyway and as those resources become increasingly scarce, their price will skyrocket? We must break our dependence on fossil fuels before our world economies are broken in the next few centuries, whether or not we have to worry about climate change.
To show how worthless ClimateWiki really is, just look at this:
Vincent Gray has had a long career in research laboratories in the United Kingdom, France, Canada, New Zealand, and China. He has specialized in climate science for the past 17 years. He has been an expert reviewer for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Reports from the beginning and submitted 1,878 comments (16 percent of the total) on the 2007 report.
Gray has published widely on a variety of topics. His work on the climate includes The Greenhouse Delusion: A Critique of ‘Climate Change 2001.’ He was a visiting scholar at the Beijing Climate Center in 2006 and attended the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Bali.
I wrote about that bastard here:
But ClimateWiki goes even further than Conservapedia in making sure its claims are not challenged by anyone, at least not on site. When you click on what appears to be the discussion page on any entry and try to edit it, you get:
You do not have permission to edit this page, for the following reason:
The action you have requested is limited to users in the group: Users.
On other words, the Heartland Institute, which is supposed to champion a free market, censors this site by not allowing any critics to post anything on it! HYPOCRITES!!!
One of the first lessons I learned in algebra was: When you multiply a negative number by a negative number, the result is a positive number. But when you multiply a positive number by a negative number, the result is a negative number.
What is true in math seems to also be valid in politics or religion too. It is the height of arrogance and dishonesty for anyone who is intolerant of other political views or other views on religions to demand tolerance for their beliefs.
One of the biggest mistakes the ACLU ever made was to defend the right of neo-Nazis to march through a mostly Jewish neighborhood in Skokie, Ill. It should have been obvious to the membership of that organization that they were cutting off the branch they were sitting on; if the neo-Nazis ever took over the government of the USA, the ACLU would be among the first organizations to be wiped out. By defending the “right” of the neo-Nazis to parade in front of Holocaust survivors, the ACLU made a mockery of the First Amendment. That amendment protects freedom of SPEECH, but NOT the freedom of people to be assholes anywhere they please! Had the ACLU merely defended the right of the neo-Nazis to publish literature and appear at public places well away from Skokie, that would have made sense. What about the right of Jewish people to NOT have anti-Semites marching in front of their private property? This is why I will never support the ACLU. They are irrational extremists.
If people do not control themselves, then someone else will have to control them, or we will have social chaos and ruin. There is NO absolute freedom in any society. When you make offensive speech, others have the right to speak in response. When we tolerate what we see as evil, we become like the evil ones ourselves.
And yes, I’m thinking of those lunatics from the Westboro Baptist Church who claim that “God hates fags” and protest near funerals of war veterans. Those blasphemers should not be allowed to disrupt the ceremonies of the families of those who gave their lives for their country. The First Amendment was not made to allow bigots who hate America and claim that God does also to disturb those families!
I sometimes wonder why more and more people in the USA don’t convert to atheism, seeing what religious bigots do when allowed to run riot. If I were God, I would have struck down this one, Bradlee Dean, immediately for his opening prayer at the Minnesota State legislature. He said:
“I know this is a non-denominational prayer in this Chamber and it’s not about the Baptists and it’s not about the Catholics alone or the Lutherans or the Wesleyans. Or the Presbyterians the evangelicals or any other denomination but rather the head of the denomination and his name is Jesus. As every President up until 2008 has acknowledged. And we pray it. In Jesus’ name.” [Emphasis mine]
See for yourself!
In short, this was a swipe at Barack Obama, implying that he isn’t a Christian. Since it is common knowledge that Obama is a member of the United Church of Christ, that preacher just told a bald-faced lie while saying a prayer to God. And in my judgement, that makes him a blasphemer.
Even the Republican Speaker of the Minnesota House of Representatives, Kurt Zellers, was offended, and he stated that Dean would be banned from ever appearing there again.
First, read this:
If you actually said what Rebecca Watson quoted of you, then you are one contemptible hypocrite. Not a true skeptic anymore, and certainly not an Honorable Skeptic like I try to be. Close friendship is no excuse for selling out!
Jeffrey Epstein is the infamous media mogul who was jailed in 2008 for paying underage prostitutes who said they were recruited by his aides. Some girls were allegedly flown in from Eastern Europe, their visas arranged by his bookkeeper.
Then she quotes you as saying:
Based on my direct experience with Jeffrey, which is all I can base my assessment on, he is a thoughtful, kind, considerate man who is generous to his friends, and all of the women I have known who have been associated with Jeffrey speak glowingly in the same words……jeffrey apparently paid for massages with sex… I believe him when he told me he had no idea the girls were underage, and I doubt that people normally are asked for or present a driver’s license under such circumstances… Moreover, I also believe that Jeffrey is an easy target for those who want to take advantage of him…
You sound like an IDIOT there! WTF is wrong with you?! I wonder if you are a sex offender yourself, to rationalize away the actions of Epstein and claim that he isn’t so bad because he has so many other “good” qualities. NO! A MURDERER is a MURDERER, and child rapist is a child rapist, period! And a skeptic is a skeptic also, and you are NOT one anymore!
Another thing I am adamant about is my sense of honor, which I hold more dear to me than my life. It allows for no exceptions whatsoever. So if I have lost friends or even made enemies for standing up for my honor, so be it. If I see someone who comes across to me as a liar, a bully, or just plain rude and stupid, then I usually try to fight back. If I see someone doing or saying things that damage the credibility of the causes I happen to believe in, I deeply take offense at that because I want those causes to be protected, even at the expense of picking fights with those who are unworthy to support those causes. I believe in absolute standards of right and wrong and so I see no point in ever excusing something that is wrong because the wrongdoer is otherwise a friendly or nice guy. That’s how corruption sets in.
No matter how great the pressure, I feel that one must never “sell out”. It is being able to stand up to the urge to conform to the shallow desires and priorites of others who have a limited vision that makes one truly heroic. I choose my friends according to my ideals; I never bend my ideals for the sake of keeping friends.
That is MY standard, and I am saddened that it is not yours. Grow up!
I like a lot of Green Day’s songs, but the one I love the most is “Jesus of Suburbia”. It seems, more than any other song I’ve ever heard, to spell out the shallow, hypocritical, and self-serving nature of mainstream American Christianity. Continue reading
For many centuries, all clergy in the Roman Catholic Church have been required to be celibate, despite the total absence of any scriptural basis for this policy. Indeed, there is a clear statement in the New Testament against it!
This is a bio of Answers in Genesis “scientist” Georgia Purdom.
Quotes from it will be in red and my responses will be in green.
Dr. Georgia Purdom is a compelling and dynamic lecturer and well qualified to speak on the relevance of Genesis to the issue of biblical authority.
So she has the gift of gab. You need that to be a successful preacher, but that has nothing to do with being an effective scientist.
She is the only female Ph.D. scientist engaged in full-time speaking and research for a biblical creationist organization in North America.
This actually violates Biblical teachings! 1 Timothy 2:12 – “I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent.”
Dr. Purdom states, “A proper understanding of Genesis is very important because it is foundational to biblical authority and a Christian worldview. It’s about so much more than the creation/evolution controversy. It’s about the truthfulness and authority of God’s Word.”
Sure, as long as you ignore that verse from 1 Timothy. Or maybe she thinks it is not God’s Word? After all, it IS in the Bible. So can she, her boss Ken Ham, or other Creationist advocates specify what parts of the Bible are the Word of God and what are not?