News From Around The Blogosphere 7.20.10

July 20, 2010

1. A vaccine patch to replace needles?

The patch has hundreds of microscopic needles which dissolve into the skin.

Tests in mice show the technology may even produce a better immune response than a conventional jab.

Awesome! Of course this isn’t likely to make vaccine deniers any less anti-vaccine. But

2. Lesbian teen Constance McMillen wins $35,000 settlement – Congratulations to Constance, who is the teen who was discriminated against by her high school officials who kept her from attending her own prom. Now she’s won a legal victory against the school, a great topic for a college essay, about 1-year’s tuition towards college, and the respect of a nation.

3. Chinese UFO sighting turns out to not be aliens – I know. Shocking. First of all, it was a rocket. Second of all, the footage wasn’t shot in China but in Borat‘s native country (presumably during the running of the Jew festivities). And third, there’s a lot of Photoshopped images being passed off as this Chinese UFO. So every part of this story turns out to be completely wrong. Brilliant.

Enhanced by Zemanta

News From Around The Blogosphere 6.22.10

June 22, 2010

1. North Carolina Secular Association introduces great new billboard – I really like this one. It’s a bit subtle but it promotes humanist values, separation between church and state, and cannot reasonably be argued to be mean…cause Zeus forbid we’re a little bit critical in our ads.

2. The Penn is mightier than “The Word” – Outspoken atheist and skeptic Penn Jillette (aka the talking half of Penn & Teller) is coming out with a new book titled GOD, NO! SIGNS YOU MAY ALREADY BE AN ATHEIST AND OTHER MAGICAL TALES. I don’t know much about it yet but ya gotta love that title.

3. Snubbed Mississippi lesbian teen going to the White House – Constance McMillen, the Mississippi teen whose high school held the prom without her because of her open homosexuality, was scheduled to attend a Pride reception at the White House tonight where Obama is supposed to have been present and delivering a short speech. She’s also going to be a grand marshall at New York Pride this Sunday. Constance McMillen is having the best week ever. Congratulations!

4. Religious Right bigots protesting Home Depot – Yup, my old friends at the American Family Association are outrage…OUTRAGED that Home Depot signed on as a major sponsor of its 2010 Gay Pride event:

But simply financing the event wasn’t enough for the big box chain.

Home Depot also signed on as a vendor, conducting kid’s craft workshops for children in the midst of loud and boisterous gay activities.

OH NOES! Anything but kid’s crafts workshops! Everyone knows crafts lead to homosexuality, and that homosexuality in turn leads to the apocalypse!

Of course the AFA is launching a protest but it will likely be as effective as their Pepsi boycott that failed to get Pepsi to even acknowledge their existence, let alone cause the company to change its evil, evil, pro-LGBT ways.


Brief update on Constance McMillen

May 24, 2010

You may remember Constance McMillen , the lesbian teen whose Mississippi high school sued her school district for discrimination when they wouldn’t allow her to wear a tuxedo and bring her girlfriend to the prom. The school then childishly announced that they wouldn’t even have a prom thanks to her until they invited her to a sham prom with fewer than ten other students in attendance while they held the real prom elsewhere so that they could humiliate her for the crime of being different, I guess. This led to an enormous amount of support for Constance from all over the country.

Well now there are two news stories about Constance. First, she’s transferred out of the  bigoted Itawamba Agricultural High School in Fulton and into a high school in Jackson. She’ll be graduating from the new high school on June 2.

Meanwhile, her old school district is denying they had anything to do with the ruse. Classy folks they have there in Fulton, Mississippi.


News From Around The Blogosphere 5.11.10

May 12, 2010

1. Psychic scams Oregon man out of $150,000 – In order to remove a demon, a man gave a “psychic” boat loads of cash and a Hummer totaling $150k and now he’s bankrupt. Let that be a lesson for you. Sometimes having a demon around isn’t that bad after all.

2. Mojave cross from Salazar v. Buono Supreme Court decision was stolen – And while I think it’s outrageous that the thing was allowed to remain there in the first place, I have to condemn the actions of whoever was responsible. If it was an atheist or atheists responsible, I apologize for them. I always criticize the religious for not condemning the bullshit actions of their fanatics, so it’d be hypocritical for me to not do the same when it’s possible fanatical atheists were involved.

3.TV stations everywhere fall for fake Yo-Yo trick champ – In one of the best executed pranks in recent memory, some dude fooled a whole bunch of TV stations to give him air time to demonstrate his amazing Yo-Yo skills…which look remarkably like the worst Yo-Yo-ing in human history. But all we really know about “K-Strass,” aka Kenny Strasser aka Karl Strassburg is that he’s gotten on TV at least six times in the past month.

4. Constance McMillen’s Second Chance Prom a huge success – After her high school held a prom without her because she was gay, the American Humanist Association and philanthropist Todd Stiefe donated money to give her and her classmates another prom, an inclusive one. Even the band Green Day donated money  Lance Bass made a personal appearance. Suck it, small-minded assholes running her school!

5. Pope blames church’s own sins for sex scandal – So does that mean then that all the other Catholics like Bill Donohue and Church leaders were lying when they claimed that it was demons, gays, and the media who were to blame?

6. Woman claims 3-D porn got her pregnant…seriously:


Mississippi Burning Stupid

April 27, 2010

Fresh off the heels of the national disgrace revolving around Constance McMillen’s high school prom, Mississippi is at it again. If you remember, McMillen’s high school was run by hatemongers who could not tolerate a lesbian attending the prom with her girlfriend and dressed in a tuxedo, so they tried to exclude her. When the ACLU told them they couldn’t do that, they officially canceled the prom altogether. At least, that’s what they wanted us to think. Another prom was secretly organized that included everyone except McMillen and some other unpopular kids. This led to confusion as to who the adults really were in that school.

Well now yet another lesbian student, Ceara Sturgis, had her photo expunged from her high school yearbook because she was dressed in a tuxedo like a man. I guess there’s nothing Mississippi hates more than androgyny.

But that’s not all. Guess who’s coming to Constance McMillan’s graduation. If you guessed the Westboro Baptist Church planning to protest Constance, you’re absolutely correct!

And the children running Itawamba Agricultural High School better not complain about it either. As far as I’m concerned, the children running Itawamba Agricultural High School have no right to object to the Westboro Baptist Church. As bad as the WBC is, at least they’re honest. They never set up an elaborate ruse in order to break the spirits of a young girl. That’s beneath them.


News From Around The Blogosphere 4.13.10

April 14, 2010

1. Malta’s mayor afraid to show Pope city’s giant phallus – C’mon, the Pope wasn’t embarrassed by half a million children raped by his employees. So why would this bother him?

2. Inkjet-like device ‘prints’ skin cells over burns – Once again, as Carl Sagan said, “science delivers the goods.”

Inspired by a standard office inkjet printer, U.S. researchers have rigged up a device that can spray skin cells directly onto burn victims, quickly protecting and healing their wounds as an alternative to skin grafts.

How cool is that?

3. Constance McMillen named Grand Marshal of NYC 2010 Gay Pride Parade – The Gay Pride Parade is by far my favorite NYC parade. Many prefer the Halloween parade but I have more fun just wandering The Village as NYC treats Halloween like everyone else treats Christmas. But it’s just great being a part of a parade thats very existence is an affront to those whom despise. Congrats Constance. Hope to see you there.

4. Moscow, Idaho gets an American Humanist Assocation billboard


News From Around The Blogosphere 4.7.10

April 8, 2010

1. Carbon dioxide may explain ‘Near Death Experiences’ – I hate to burst Deepak Chopra’s bubble but there’s only one kind of Near Death Experience (NDE), and it’s called life. For some time now neurobiologists have known that there was nothing supernatural or paranormal about these NDEs. But now new research suggests that carbon dioxide may hold the key to explaining this phenomenon.

2. How far we’ve come on the road to AI – New Scientist takes a fascinating look at where research in artificial intelligence is at and how far we still have to go.

3. Researchers confirm Hellmouth of evil beneath Constance McMillen’s high school – As we continue to hear about the dangers of bullying in schools on the news because of a recent tragedy, another major case of school bullying continues to take place in Mississippi where Constance McMillen, the lesbian teen who simply wanted to bring her girlfriend to prom has been the victim of the cruelest of hoaxes from not just her fellow students but from her own school’s administrators. This is just grotesque and these people should be made to feel ashamed of their wretched behavior for the rest of their lives. Where’s Aldo Raines to carve a swastika into their foreheads when you need him? To call the school’s administrators the scum of the Earth is an insult to the scum.

Constance, I have to say that it’s great that you’re better than these people and are maturely rising above it all. But really, nobody would blame you if you went all Carrie on their asses.


News From Around The Blogosphere 3.24.10

March 25, 2010

1. New U.S. state quarters are godless – One thing you won’t see on many, if not all, of the new U.S. state quarters is “In God We Trust.” Instead, the nation’s REAL motto, “E Pluribus Unum” (Out of many, one) is given greater prominence. I wonder how long it will take before we hear Bill O’Reilly or Sean Hannity declaring this part of the evil secular progressive agenda to remove “God” from people’s lives. I bet not long at all.

2. NYPD, The Vampire Slayers – I thing about NYC I never could stand was all the damned vampires.

NYPD are currently hunting a potential vampire who, when rebuffed by a stingy cab driver who refused to hand over the cash, bit his victim about the neck, back, and arms.

If that isn’t proof of vampires I don’t know what is.

3. VSS Enterprise completes maiden voyage into final frontier – The Enterprise is the first spacecraft built for Richard Branson’s commercial spaceflight company Virgin Galactic. And starting next year, Branson hopes it will be ready to take wealthy tourists into space.

4. How are great apes smarter than creationists and other denialists? – Great apes can actually recognize that they could be wrong:

In a series of three experiments, seven gorillas, eight chimpanzees, four bonobos and seven orangutans, from the Wolfgang Köhler Research Center at the Leipzig Zoo in Germany, were presented with two hollow tubes, one baited with a food reward, the other not. The apes were then observed as they tried to find the reward.

In the first experiment, the apes were prevented from watching the baiting but the tubes were shaken to give them auditory information about the reward’s location instead. Dr. Call wanted to see if when the apes were prevented from acquiring visual information, but offered auditory cues instead, they would be able to use the auditory information to reduce their reliance on visual searching.

5. ‘Rare’ new dinosaur fossil discovered

It had a body the size of a sheep, a long neck and tail, and lived some 185 million years ago. Scientists call this dinosaur find “a rare skeleton of a new species.”

For those keeping count, that’s 184,994,000 years before the existence of the whole universe, according to Young Earth Creationists.

6. Judge rules Mississippi school violated Constance McMillen’s constitutional rights

U.S. District Judge Glen H. Davidson refused the American Civil Liberties Union’s demand to force the Itawamba County school district to put on the April 2 prom. However, he said canceling it did violate 18-year-old Constance McMillen’s rights and that he would hold a trial on the issue.

. . .

“The court finds this expression and communication falls squarely within the purview of the First Amendment,” Davidson said.


News From Around The Blogosphere 3.19.10

March 19, 2010

1. Regenerating limbs may be simply a matter of switching off a single gene – I wouldn’t take this story too seriously just yet but the research certainly sounds like it’s worth following. I just hope it doesn’t turn us into The Lizard:

But new research suggests the ability to regenerate isn’t based on something newts and flatworms have that we don’t; rather, it’s something we do have that’s keeping us from regenerating tissues. Researchers think a gene called p21 may control regenerative healing, and that by switching it off, humans could perform our own regeneration.

2. Skeptics to storm Parliament on Tuesday – It’s exciting to see the skeptical movement building a potentially powerful lobby to effect changes in public policy towards a more science and reason-based position. On Tuesday, skeptics in the UK will test the power of this lobby by organizing at the House of Commons to demand libel reform. Of course this is an issue that is not only serious for residents of the UK but everyone who criticizes advocates of bad ideas on the internet because from what some have told me, they too are potential targets of libel suits.

3. Student challenges unconstitutional policy in Alexandria High School in Alabama – The school performs daily Christian prayers over the schools P.A. system. He left a voicemail with the superintendent and contacted the ACLU. . .and it worked. The school is no longer performing the prayers. A job well done.

4. Ellen gives Constance McMillen $30,000 scholarship – I love this story. It shows that those who stand up against adversity can benefit from having the courage of their convictions and standing up for their principles.

5. California Bar now investigating queen Birther Orly Taitz – Another happy story. Taitz, who refuses to budge on her irrational belief that Obama is not a natural born citizen despite undeniable evidence to the contrary, continues to fight the $20,000 fine issued on her for making frivolous filings. And now she runs the risk of actually being disbarred. We can hope right. Of course it’s pretty silly that she even gets to call herself a lawyer given her pathetic credentials. Of course her lawyer is pushing the conspiracy angle and calling this a “witch hunt” but really, if she was an actual threat to the evil president’s position and they’d gone this far to cover up his origins, don’t you think they’d find a far more efficient way of getting Taitz out of the way. And you just know that whatever the outcome, she’ll just insist that the Bar Association is in on the evil conspiracy. So since she’ll attack them no matter what they might as well throw the book at her and make sure she’s never allowed to practice law again.

Not really the BSA

6. Catholics not the only ones covering up abuse – The Mormon dominated Boy Scouts of America (BSA) are facing a lawsuit claiming they too covered up child abuse.

The Boy Scouts of America has long kept an extensive archive of secret documents that chronicle the sexual abuse of young boys by Scout leaders over the years.The “perversion files,” a nickname the Boy Scouts are said to have used for the documents, have rarely been seen by the public, but that could all change in the coming weeks in an Oregon courtroom.

The lawyer for a man who was molested in the 1980s by a Scout leader has obtained about 1,000 Boy Scouts sex files and is expected to release some of them at a trial that began Wednesday. The lawyer says the files show how the Boy Scouts have covered up abuse for decades.

Well what do you expect from a cult who once had a leader named “Brigham Young”? Still the BSA are lightweights compared to the Catholic Church, which is known for having raped at least over a half million kids. And keep in mind that that’s only that we know of and the Church has proven capable of keeping this stuff secret for decades.


News From Around The Blogosphere 3.15.10

March 15, 2010

1. Valedictorian sues Indiana high school for putting graduation prayer up for a vote – Greenwood High School in Indianapolis seems to think their alumni won’t survive the outside world without praying to all mighty Jesus. The top ranked student in the graduating class, Eric Workman, is suing the school. And of course Christians are spinning this as discrimination somehow:

The Rev. Shan Rutherford, pastor of Greenwood Christian Church for more than three decades, said he disagrees with the proposition that such a prayer would violate a student’s rights.

“If I lived in a Muslim nation, a Hindu nation or anything else, I would expect to go along with the majority,” Rutherford said. “He’s trying to go with minority rule. To me, that’s wrong in a democracy, one that was founded on Christian principles.”

“If you don’t agree, I don’t think you should try to stop other people from exercising their rights.”

I’d pay real money to see this guy prayer to Allah or Vishnu right now. Who is he kidding? I think we all know this guy would sooner jump off a bridge to his death before praying to another god.

2. Christian fasts to death for Jesus -Evelyn Boyd decided to lock herself and a room and live only on water for three weeks. It turns out that this behavior leads to death. Who knew?

3.  ACLU sues Constance McMillen’s school – I’ve previously written about McMillen, the 18-year-old lesbian who school canceled prom rather than let her bring her girlfriend. And in retaliation for her going to the ACLU, they made sure it wasn’t exactly a secret as to why they canceled prom. Well, I hope they’re very proud of that decision because it’s now going to land them in court. Not only is the ACLU not backing down but the brave teen is standing up for principles:

“All I wanted was the same chance to enjoy my prom night like any other student. But my school would rather hurt all the students than treat everyone fairly,” said the student, 18-year-old Constance McMillen, in an ACLU news release. “This isn’t just about me and my rights anymore — now I’m fighting for the right of all the students at my school to have our prom.”