Wednesday, December 16, 2009

It's not about how many times you fall down...

In an effort to stave off obesity I joined a flag football team this fall. I played exactly two games before I tore the ACL in my left knee. I had surgery to replace the damaged ligament, then spent the next seven weeks in a Vicodin haze. I tried to record a video for YouTube, but zombie isn't a good look for me.

I kicked the Vicodin, did some physical therapy, and now I'm well enough to start posting on a regular basis again. I'll be going back to school for the spring semester, but I don't expect that to make too much of an impact on what I do here.

Tomorrow I'll be back with more Rational Thoughts for Atheists, and I hope you'll join me.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Hypocrisy So Potent, It'll Make You See Czars

With video clips this damning, and a title that awesome, I think I'll let the gentlemen speak for themselves.

Avoiding Jailtime on a Wing and a Prayer

Two Florida educators escaped unscathed from the hot water they were in late this week when they were found to not have violated a federal court order which barred them from praying at school events. Pace High School Principal Frank Lay and Athletic Director Robert Freeman avoided possible fines and jail time when U.S. Supreme Court Judge Casey Rodgers decided the two hadn't “willfully”(read:intentionally) violated the consent decree they signed just nine days prior to the school event. I don't believe for a second they weren't aware of what they were doing, but the judge has ruled, and they are under even more scrutiny now. So I really don't care too much about it. I'll post a few links to other stories that lay out the issue greater detail.

Upon hearing about the pair's ordeal, several members of the Congressional Prayer Caucus Foundation wrote a letter supporting them. 58 other members of our government read and signed a letter that stated "The tradition of offering prayer in America has become so interwoven into our nation's spiritual heritage that to charge someone criminally for engaging in such a practice would astonish the men who founded this country on religious liberty."

I think those congressmen that signed that letter should think about the idea that there are many traditions this country was founded on that would not be acceptable today. Civil rights and Suffrage are two that come to mind right away.

By the way, just in case anyone forgot, not only is what they did unconstitutional, there was a consent decree signed just
nine days earlier that prohibited this very kind of action.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Do we need the word “atheist”?

Theists often ask me why I care so much about something I don't believe in. When I first started openly questioning supernatural beings, I couldn't answer that question. I knew why, but I just couldn't put it into words yet. The reason is because the claims and actions of theists can be harmful to people, on a psychological and physical level. I don't refute the claims of Bigfoot sightings because while I don't believe in them, I also don't believe that other people believing in Bigfoot will have a negative effect on society in general, or even that person specifically. A belief in god can have profound effects on one's actions and thoughts, cognitive dissonance notwithstanding.

All of that is well and good, but why does this community of people need to have their own label? Well, the only reason there is a need to call attention to the fact that we haven't been convinced there is a god is because there are people out there trying to convince others there is a god. I can't speak for anyone else, but I didn't wake up one day and decide to boycott God Inc.. I don't hate god, the same way I don't hate Bigfoot because I don't believe in either one.

When I really think about it, I can understand why some theists might think atheism is this group that dissenters join when they are mad at god, or if they don't want to be responsible for their actions, allowing them to “live it up” with a clear conscience. Sometimes I hear some atheists speak as if they are speaking for atheists everywhere, and while it bothers me slightly because speaking on behalf of a group indicates that everyone in the group thinks the same way, and possibly because there is a doctrine that says they have to, I can't be too mad because usually atheists only speak in those kinds of terms for wholly accepted truths.

So yes, the word atheist is a necessity. In 100 years, I would hope it won't be. I'd love to just do like the London bus ads say, and get on with enjoying my life, but as long as there are people in the world that want to poison minds and are willing to destroy science in an effort to force others to see the world the way they do, there will be people in the world like me that will be there to enforce honesty and integrity. If we can't get that, then we will point you out as the liars you are. And we'll do it on a global stage. Welcome to the Information Age.

Monday, June 29, 2009

How do you teach them about integrity?

I was watching a video that Jezuzfreek777 posted on his YouTube account. He was taking his daughter to a park, and while she was playing, he was preaching. I watched the video, and it got me to thinking about integrity.

One of the main things I learned in the Army was to have integrity. To do the right thing all the time, not just when you know someone is watching. Now I know no one can have a perfect record of integrity, but in my opinion that's what people should strive for. Being as honest as possible to the highest degree that you can.

Anyhow, I was wondering how a religious person could teach a child both about God and integrity, seeing how a believer is never without at least one being watching them.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Steve Harvey's Barometer Must Be Broken...

Longtime comedian turned relationship "guru" Steve Harvey has been touring to promote his new book, titled Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man, but he's also been offering his opinion on atheists and their morality in the media during the recent months.

His first comment(video below, link
here) came on a March 24th appearance on the Tyra Banks Show, where he stated, "You sittin' up here talkin' to a dude and he tells you he's an atheist, you need to pack it up and go home!" while doling out relationship advice to a receptive crowd. There was some backlash in the atheist community, but Steve Harvey isn't a household name outside of the black community, so it wasn't such a big deal.

However, during his appearance on CNN's Larry King Live(hosted by Joy Behar on this particular evening) he decided to go into greater detail about atheists. Let us all bask in Steve's wisdom:

Charming. I find it interesting that Harvey chooses the word idiot to describe atheists. When you say things like "this spun out of a gastrous(?) ball, and then all of a sudden we were evolved from monkeys, why we still got monkeys?..." and "...if you don't believe in God then where is your moral barometer?" you have very little room to insult the intelligence of others.

And in the very small chance that this actually gets to Mr. Harvey's eyes, stop calling it a moral barometer. The term I think you're looking for is moral
compass. A barometer measures atmospheric pressure and is therefore an ill fitting comparison for morals. A compass works as a much better example because it can point you in the right direction.

Invisibly yours,
The Invisble Pink Unicorn

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

SpongeGod Squarepants?

Let me start with the following disclaimer: This is NOT an attack on the small yellow sponge "who lives in a pineapple under the sea!".  I have some issues with him but I'll save that for another day. So I'm one of the lucky ones that gets a decent amount of time to spend with my kids while basically holding a full time job. SpongeBob is fairly funny despite the ambiguity about his age, the fact that he lives alone, and that he also has a full time job. Today my daughter and I were watching an episode on Nickelodeon(also known as Nick) and during a commercial break I was quite disturbed to see an ad for the Prayer Cross, an allegedly crystal laced, sterling silver cross that contains the Lord's Prayer, which becomes visible when held up to the light.

There isn't a logical reason that comes to mind when trying to figure out why a company would attempt to market its religious message to children. Especially when they are watching a show that raises as many questions as SpongeBob does. And the damage is twofold; they have children in the commercial wearing the item as well as a shot that shows an adult sized pendant with a child sized pendant. A sad day indeed for children's programming. I have contacted both Nick(called after hours) and IdeaVillage and am eagerly awaiting both responses.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A Mighty Fine Day to Return...

Allow me to start off by saying I'm not superstitious or anything that could fit into that category, but I have an affinity for things that seem to link up in one way or another. My very first post here was on September 11th of 2008 but I haven't really done anything here since then. I've been working on myself, and fighting an internal battle that will come to light when the time is right. With today being a very important day, and the day of my first post also being signifigant, I thought what better way to really get a fresh start than to coincide with the day the America made change. For a dollar. (I say, I say, thassa joke son!)

Speaking of change, I saw something this morning that reminded me that even though we are on the dawn of a new day, there are things that still need to be addressed. Watch the video below.