Links For Monthly Meeting- January 2015

Thanks to all who made it out to our monthly meeting last Wednesday. What a lively discussion! Here are some links I thought relevant to the discussions that night: http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/List_of_cognitive_biases Here is a link discussing the Pew Research Center survey titled “The World’s Muslims: Religion, Politics and Society  I believe the above survey was mentioned during …

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“You Will Never Change My Decision.”

Space Cadet Glow

Those were the words I read from a “thinking MOM’s”  blog who has decided that she will not be vaccinating her five children. Ever.

novaccines

I always knew there was an “anti-vaccination” presence out there on the “Internets”. I honestly never bothered with them. That is, until a link showed up on my Facebook page, placed there by a friend. I was curious. I checked it out. I read from some of her links and several of her pages. I read some of the articles she recommended by other Moms that, like her, have decided not to vaccinate their children.

And then I got depressed.

The misinformation presented on these websites is voluminous. It would be somewhat humorous if it wasn’t also so dangerous. Statements are made as “fact” without any corroborating data to back them up.  Assertions are presented that are just plain false.

Here’s just one example from an anti-vaccine…

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Skeptics and Atheists of Durango NEWSLETTER January 21, 2014

Skeptics and Atheists of Durango        January 21, 2015 NEXT GENERAL MEETING, WEDNESDAY JANUARY 21 All meetings are at Irish Embassy, 900 Main Street Durango.    Dinner, for those interested, from 5:30PM.  Meeting at 6:00-ish. This month, Kathleen (with a K) will be moderating a discussion of cognitive bias.  As ‘K’ cheerfully observed, “Cognitive Biases, we’ve …

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Free Raif Badawi- How You Can Help

While Saudi Arabia's ruling family condemns the Charlie Hebdo attacks from one side of their mouth, the other side keeps silent on the imprisonment and barbaric flogging of  Saudi free speech  blogger, Raif Badawi. Raif was sentenced to 10 years in prison and exactly 1,000 lashes for the crime of insulting Islam via writings found on …

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Let’s Be Reasonable

Atheists are reasonable people.  I mean that literally: we try to employ Reason when we make decisions, especially about something as central to our beings as our personal World View.  Reasoned decisions require valid evidence because belief, absent evidence, is just a Wish.  Evidence is the key.  As a rational man, I would be the first to drop to …

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A World Without Gods

So much death in the news these days. My heart aches for those families who lost people they love in this latest round of Boko Haram killings in Baga. Boko Haram’s goal? To establish an Islamic State in Nigeria. I can’t help but wonder how people can believe in an all-powerful and influential God amidst the …

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“When it was over, the crowd shouted, “Allah-hu Akbar! Allah-hu Akbar!”

Why Evolution Is True

LiveWire has an eyewitness account of the flogging in Saudi Arabia of Raif Badawi, a 30-year-old with three children who was arrested for apostasy, insulting Islam, and his real crime—running a discussion website called “Free Saudi Liberals.” While the apostasy charges (which could bring a death sentence) remain in limbo, Badawi was convicted on other charges and fined $267,000, sentenced to 10 years in prison, and ordered to be given 1000 lashes. That’s a harsh punishment, but, as the Guardian reports, “Rights activists say Saudi authorities are using Badawi’s case as a warning to others who think to criticise the kingdom’s powerful religious establishment from which the ruling family partly derives its authority.”

His wife divorced him and his family moved to Canada.

Yesterday Badawi received the first 50 of his lashes. An anonymous witness gave a report:

“When the worshippers saw the police van outside the mosque, they knew someone would…

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“A FALSE SENSE OF SECURITY IS BETTER THAN…”

“A FALSE SENSE OF SECURITY IS BETTER…” Our beaming nine-year old son delivered his insight during a family discussion at the dinner table: “A false sense of security is better than no sense of security at all!”  There was a moment of silence as we all considered the proposal he was floating.  My first impulse …

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ON FAITH……..

  The topic of faith among those who are religious has always been an interesting subject to me- one that I would welcome further exploration and discussion of but for now, I just had to share the words of a good friend who so accurately identified the myriad of problems with faith. Thanks to Tony …

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Belief, Non-Belief and Common Ground

I decided to wait a few days before writing about our recent participation in the first of maybe other collaborations with people of different faiths. Overall, I think the night was an enlightening and very valuable first step in better understanding other peoples’ perspectives that differ from our own. Of course, it didn’t hurt that the …

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