I’m a big fan of things that are informative and a big fan of things that are hilariously inappropriate, and the intersection of those sets always brightens my day. So I had to share with you the work of one Gary Gale, who has meticulously crafted an interactive map showing all of the places in the world with vaguely rude names. Continue reading
I wrote a post for Canadian Atheist the other day about Jehovah’s Witnesses handing out literature, that focused on the fact that they seem to be hiding their true intentions at first approach. The thesis was that they must realize that their message is unwelcome or off-putting, and they must agree with that at least to some degree, which implies that they’re at least a little embarrassed about what they’re dealing. Continue reading
My sister got stopped by a Jehovah’s Witness the other day, and handed the usual magazines, but what struck me about her story was that the proselytizer was so coy about giving away what she was – to the point that my sister did not realize she was handed religious material until she had already accepted it and opened it to look inside. The incident prompted me to wonder whether people handing out religious pamphlets on the street realize that what they’re doing is unpleasant and rude, and whether they are actually embarrassed by it. More details on Canadian Atheist.
You may remember that show that CBC aired a few years ago called Little Mosque on the Prairie. It caused a big stir when it was first announced, and remained a moderate hit for its first year or two, though interest waned quickly when it became obvious how empty-headed it was. Pretending to be controversial to get publicity then putting on a banal and inoffensive show gets people in the door, but they don’t stick around. Continue reading
Everyone who follows Canadian politics closely knows how badly we need proportional representation at all levels of government. Atheists, freethinkers, and skeptics need it particularly badly. More details on Canadian Atheist.
In short order, members of both the Law Society of Upper Canada (the bar association for Ontario) and the Nova Scotia Barrister’s Society narrowly voted to deny accreditation to the proposed law school of the homophobic Trinity Western University… despite the fact that 13 years ago the Supreme Court of Canada ruled against the British Columbia College of Teachers when it tried to do the same for the same reasons to the university’s teacher’s college. More details on Canadian Atheist.
There is a lot of crowing in the freethinker blogosphere about the recent court victory by Oliver Erazo over the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board. Unfortunately, much of it is extremely misinformed about just how much impact the decision really had. It turns out that there is actually no substantive change in the separate schools system in Ontario at all due to this ruling. More details on Canadian Atheist.
I don’t think that anyone with a solid and sane grip on the current reality of the world can disagree that the “religious group” that is most discriminated against and most persecuted today is nonbelievers. But sometimes you need a graphic to get a sense of just how bad the situation is. Using the data from the Freedom of Thought 2013, the report by the International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU) about state discrimination against and persecution of atheists, humanists, and the non-religious, I created a map that illustrates this. More details on Canadian Atheist
I didn’t watch the Olympics. Part of it is simply that I’m not much of a sports fan, and even less of a fan of the kind of hyper-commercialized, industrialized sports that the Olympics represent. The other part was that I didn’t want anything to do with them given the political situation in Russia. The upshot of all that is that I needed something else to provide my working background noise. Normally I would keep a 24-hour news channel on, but that would surely just end up flooding me with Olympics crap. So instead I opted to try something really different… I turned on the kids’ network: YTV. Continue reading
No, I’m not dead! I took a brief and somewhat unplanned hiatus in February for personal reasons – nothing serious, though – compounded with the fact that I was sort of living cut off from news and pop culture (and, hence, had nothing to write about).
But I’m alive, and the posts will continue, as sporadically as ever.