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Happy Easter (Zombie Jesus Day)!

I hope everyone had a fantastic Easter. I know most people on this site will not have celebrated Easter like the majority of people that I saw and heard from today. Some people reading this may be offended to even hear me say Happy Easter. To those people, I can only stress that you must take deep breaths and not get so worked up about verbal expressions.

I celebrate Easter much like I celebrate Christmas: as a time to be with family and eat larger-than-average amounts of food. To me, there’s no shame whatsoever in calling the holiday “Easter”, since it has little to nothing to do with Christianity in its origins. Christians are the ones who look like assholes celebrating the day with chocolate bunnies and plastic eggs. After all, aren’t they supposed to be celebrating the resurrection of the man that made the ultimate sacrifice for them? Seems like Pagan fertility icons wouldn’t fit in very well with the whole “dying for your sins” nonsense.

Online PhD has information on degree programs for people who are looking to further their knowledge about topics like religion and philosophy. Of course it’s well documented that atheism is more prominent with people holding advanced degrees. Make up your own mind. 🙂

Either way, I hope everyone had an enjoyable day. If you speak to any Christians tomorrow, ask them how they reconcile the Pagan origins of the celebration with their intended meaning. Maybe it’ll make them think twice in December before they launch another War on Christmas campaign for their evergreen trees and twinkle lights on Jesus’ birthday.

Happy Mother’s Day!

holy-motherFirst, I would like to wish all of the mothers out there a very Happy Mother’s Day! While I am personally a big fan of letting my mother know how much I appreciate her every time I speak to her, I am not out to rain on anyone’s mother-loving parade.

I would, however, like to rain on some theists’ nonsensical-beliefs parades.

I was listening to XM earlier, and instead of playing music, the DJ, who was blabbering on about shit that I could care less about, decided to close his verbal segment with some quotes about mothers. I don’t subscribe to XM to hear talk on a music channel, but I was too close to home to be channel zapping for alternate programming. One quote, as I’m sure you’ve guessed, stood out.

“God couldn’t be everywhere. That’s why he invented mothers.”

Yeah, I get it. You’re setting out to raise mothers to a godlike standard because they do indeed balance a frightfully heavy load when it comes to child rearing. But in repeating this, what every Christian is actually doing is impugning the omnipresence of their own Lord and Savior. For my Christian-troll readers, I don’t want to hear any of your, “It’s a joke you angry atheist! If you stepped down off your soapbox once in a while to stop persecuting people, maybe you’d have a sense of humor.” To responses like that I can only respond that this phrase does indeed lower God, and should be phrased so many of the other infinite ways it could be worded to give a boost to moms. Why, like so many other “cute” and “fun” sayings, has this caught on as an oft-repeated maxim without any critical thought given to its meaning?

It reminds me of a shirt, sign, or some other crap that I saw at Cracker Barrel that said, “And on the 8th day, God created chocolate.” No he didn’t. He just didn’t. There is no scripture to back this up, and instead of critically analyzing the natural processes that have formed every living thing on this planet, you instead create humor out of one of the most nonsensical leaps in logic in the world: the creation story. This gets repeated with many other things apart from chocolate: beer, Marines, tattoo artists, Legos, hairdressers, ad infinitum. Unlike moms, who deserve more than a pat on the back, these selfish people seek to create some kind of humorous inference related to the creation story that they are somehow special. Guess what? You’re not. You’re a sheep, and a dumb one at that.

Happy Mother’s Day! Unless you are a mother that stifles her children’s learning and discovery of the world by force feeding them bullshit stories from ancient, poorly-edited texts. If that’s the case, I hope the Mother’s Day Fairy leaves you coal in your apron.

Intelligent Debate on Intelligent Design

I was searching for something in my email archives, and I came across this fictional, though hilariously illustrative, dialogue between a scientist and an advocate for Intelligent Design©. The email was dated October 2005, so I figured it merited being dredged up from the internet meme catacombs and (re)introduced to you all.

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Moderator: We’re here today to debate the hot new topic, evolution versus Intelligent Des—

(Scientist pulls out baseball bat.)

Moderator: Hey, what are you doing?

(Scientist breaks Intelligent Design advocate’s kneecap.)

Intelligent Design advocate: YEAAARRRRGGGHHHH! YOU BROKE MY KNEECAP!

Scientist: Perhaps it only appears that I broke your kneecap. Certainly, all the evidence points to the  hypothesis I broke your kneecap. For example, your kneecap is broken; it appears to be a fresh wound; and I am holding a baseball bat, which is spattered with your blood. However, a mere preponderance of evidence doesn’t mean anything. Perhaps your kneecap was designed that way. Certainly, there are some features of the current situation that are inexplicable according to the “naturalistic” explanation you have just advanced, such as the exact contours of the excruciating pain that you are experiencing right now.

Intelligent Design advocate: AAAAH! THE PAIN!

Scientist: Frankly, I personally find it completely implausible that the random actions of a scientist such as myself could cause pain of this particular kind. I have no precise explanation for why I find this hypothesis implausible — it just is. Your knee must have been designed that way!

Intelligent Design advocate:
YOU BASTARD! YOU KNOW YOU DID IT!

Scientist: I surely do not. How can we know anything for certain? Frankly, I think we should expose people to all points of view. Furthermore, you should really re-examine whether your hypothesis is scientific at all: the breaking of your kneecap happened in the past, so we can’t rewind and run it over again, like a laboratory experiment. Even if we could, it wouldn’t prove that I broke your kneecap the previous time. Plus, let’s not even get into the fact that the entire universe might have just popped into existence right before I said this sentence, with all the evidence of my alleged kneecap-breaking already pre-formed.

Intelligent Design advocate: That’s a load of bullshit sophistry! Get me a doctor and a lawyer, not necessarily in that order, and we’ll see how that plays in court!

Scientist (turning to audience): And so we see, ladies and gentlemen, when push comes to shove, advocates of Intelligent Design do not actually believe any of the arguments that they profess to believe. When it comes to matters that hit home, they prefer evidence, the scientific method, testable hypotheses, and naturalistic explanations. In fact, they strongly privilege naturalistic explanations over supernatural hocus-pocus or metaphysical wankery. It is only within the reality-distortion field of their ideological crusade that they give credence to the flimsy, ridiculous arguments which we so commonly see on display. I must confess, it kind of felt good, for once, to be the one spouting free-form bullshit; it’s so terribly easy and relaxing, compared to marshaling rigorous arguments backed up by empirical evidence. But I fear that if I were to continue, then it would be habit-forming, and bad for my soul. Therefore, I bid you adieu.