This week Twylla, Haysn, Kris and a hoarse Randy take on Calgary Herald writer Kevin Brooker who looks fondly upon his youth when measles “wasn’t so bad” (http://www NULL.calgaryherald NULL.com/touch/story NULL.html?id=9735786&fb_action_ids=10152349436137453&fb_action_types=og NULL.comments&fb_source=other_multiline&action_object_map=%5B855148241168713%5D&action_type_map=%5B%22og NULL.comments%22%5D&action_ref_map=%5B%5D) despite the many, including Twylla (who predictably became quite feisty on the topic), who bear the permanent scars of the disease; another author in the Herald who defends public funding of sectarian charter schools (http://www NULL.calgaryherald NULL.com/opinion/op-ed/Carpay+lose+faith+religious+schools/9776623/story NULL.html) that demand adherence to bigoted values under the guise of religious freedom; accreditation of Trinity University law school has been rejected by law societies in Ontario and Nova Scotia (http://www NULL.cbc NULL.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/trinity-western-blasts-n-s-ontario-law-societies-1 NULL.2622913) because the school violates discrimination laws by demanding that students and staff adhere to their sexual morays. But first, we couldn’t ignore the big event Sunday (http://www NULL.theglobeandmail NULL.com/news/world/unprecedented-canonization-ceremony-has-distinctly-polish-feel/article18287456/) that none of us watched when magic words make demi-gods of ex-popes John XXIII and John Paul II.
Bill Ligertwood joins us in this instalment to talk about the upcoming Imagine No Religion (http://imaginenoreligion NULL.ca/) conference in Kamloops on the May long weekend that most of us will be attending. Afterwards, we as Bill to stick around to help discuss a variety of topics that came up this past week, including calls in Australia to remove homeopathic products from pharmacies (http://www NULL.smh NULL.com NULL.au/national/health/call-to-get-homeopathic-remedies-off-pharmacy-shelves-20140419-36xlk NULL.html), the recent wedding of Nate Phelps to his fiancée Cindi, the upholding of charges against street preacher Artur Pawlowski (http://www NULL.calgaryherald NULL.com/news/calgary/High+court+upholds+noise+traffic+convictions+street/9741095/story NULL.html) for violating city noise by-laws, the public funding of charter schools (http://www NULL.cbc NULL.ca/news/canada/calgary/publicly-funded-school-with-anti-gay-policy-spurs-alberta-review-1 NULL.2610122) which violate human rights legislation under the guise of freedom of religion, and the strange compulsion of the media to ask the most irrelevant people for answers (http://www NULL.calgaryherald NULL.com/news/calgary/Bringing+light+dark+night+Calgary+soul/9749934/story NULL.html) to horrific events just because they are religious authorities (http://www NULL.calgarysun NULL.com/2014/04/18/no-answers-bishop-says-of-deadly-stabbings-of-five-in-calgarys-worst-mass-murder). In this case, the recent mass murder of five university students at a quiet party here in Calgary.
In this, the 105th instalment, Twylla, Kris, Haysn and I discuss a decision by the Alberta government to not pass legislation mandating the formation gay-straight alliances (http://www NULL.theglobeandmail NULL.com/news/national/gay-straight-alliance-bill-for-schools-voted-down-in-alberta/article17871798/) should students wish it, the consequences of provincial governments that do not value reproductive rights manifest themselves in the closing of the last private abortion clinic in the Maritime (http://www NULL.theglobeandmail NULL.com/news/national/frederictons-morgentaler-abortion-clinic-closes-citing-public-funding-gap/article17912762/)s; more on the bigotry convention in Weyburn (http://www NULL.cbc NULL.ca/news/canada/saskatchewan/peter-labarbera-anti-gay-u-s-activist-allowed-into-canada-1 NULL.2606727), Saskatchewan; why homeopaths shouldn’t promote homeopathy awareness week; (http://www NULL.theguardian NULL.com/science/2014/apr/11/world-homeopathy-awareness-week-homeopathic-preparations) and chiropractors in Calgary have a new toy (http://www NULL.calgaryherald NULL.com/life/Electrotherapy+treatment+used+speed+healing+process/9722949/story NULL.html) – they don’t just want to ‘manipulate’ your spine anymore, they want to zap you with electricity. But first, Michael Enright hosted a CBC town hall discussion on religion in the public sphere (http://www NULL.cbc NULL.ca/thesundayedition/2014/04/08/the-public-god---a-sunday-edition-public-forum/). We have our own take on the questions posed to the panel.
Welcome to the Legion of Region, podcasting a critical eye on a sometimes less-than-critical world. I have with me this week Twylla and Kris to discuss a variety of topics. As the number of cases of measles and pertussis rise, so do the calls for mandatory vaccination (http://www NULL.cbc NULL.ca/news/canada/calgary/calgary-measles-cases-spark-vaccination-discussion-1 NULL.2598160) – Calgary and area is no different in this regard; the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, in an effort to protect the freedoms of speech and thought, equates the freedom to not believe part with terrorism (http://www NULL.ibtimes NULL.co NULL.uk/saudi-arabia-new-law-sees-atheism-terrorism-1442819); as church attendance goes down, the question of what to do with the empties is on the rise – first reduce, then reuse and recycle (http://www NULL.businessinsider NULL.com/churches-in-england-are-being-converted-to-bars-photos-2014-3); is the internet responsible for the rise of the nones? We look at a study which says, “yes” (http://www NULL.technologyreview NULL.com/view/526111/how-the-internet-is-taking-away-americas-religion/?utm_campaign=socialsync&utm_medium=social-post&utm_source=facebook), and then from there digress into a discussion on beaver butt juice (http://www NULL.businessinsider NULL.com/castoreum-used-in-food-and-perfume-2013-10#ixzz2yAkKKUzM). Don’t ask, just listen. But first, an anti-choice organization is having a convention in Saskatchewan with the likes of Bill Whatcott and Peter LaBarbera (http://www NULL.cbc NULL.ca/news/canada/saskatchewan/anti-gay-speaker-from-u-s-vows-to-speak-in-saskatchewan-1 NULL.2595034). We’ve talked about Bill Whatcott before, so this time we focus on the latter of the two anti-gay schmucks.
In this instalment of The Legion of Reason, we discuss a freedom of speech issue where someone who, while we vehemently disagree with, feel has had his rights violated by a local university (http://www2 NULL.canada NULL.com/calgaryherald/news/opinion/story NULL.html?id=4fc1828a-9562-4426-9746-7c533c2e367b), more anti-vaccination nonsense in BC (http://bc NULL.ctvnews NULL.ca/b-c-vaccination-rates-drop-amid-misinformation-campaign-1 NULL.1744379) that’s contributing to the current outbreak of measles in that province, the city of Saskatoon is taking a closer look at how untaxed churches are using their property (http://www NULL.cbc NULL.ca/news/canada/saskatoon/saskatoon-churches-coming-under-tax-review-microscope-1 NULL.2584022) to generate income, a couple (http://www NULL.patheos NULL.com/blogs/camelswithhammers/2014/03/a-philosophy-professor-analyzes-gods-not-deads-case-for-god/) of stories (http://www NULL.rawstory NULL.com/rs/2014/03/26/nj-bank-wont-notarize-american-atheist-documents-for-personal-reasons/) that maybe Kevin Sorbo should read before saying how nice the religious are compared to us atheists, and finally someone who yearns for the good ol’ days (http://www NULL.examiner NULL.com/article/tristan-emmanuel-bill-maher-should-be-publicly-whipped-for-blasephemy) where free speech against God should be met with torture rather than itself met with free speech. But first – horror of horrors! – homeopathic remedies are being recalled (http://www NULL.independent NULL.co NULL.uk/news/world/americas/homeopathy-product-recalled-over-fears-it-may-contain-actual-medicine-9217206 NULL.html) because they might have bioactive compounds in them that aren’t diluted into oblivion.