In this, the 171st edition of the Legion of Reason Diversion, yours truly, the Supreme Irreverend Doctor Randy Tyson makes his case against Black Lives Matter (the organization, NOT the idea of black lives mattering – do not conflate those two!), censorship on Facebook, genetically-modified versus mutagenically-modified organisms, the Anglican church allowing same-sex marriage ceremonies, Catholic bishop in Philadelphia says remarried couples should abstain from sex, and an update on the Stephan case. Enjoy!
Da Prez Kris, Feisty Twyla the incomparable Nate and yours truly, the Supreme Irreverend Doctor Randy Tyson discuss a myriad of issues. Later in the podcast, Ireland votes to enshrine same-sex marriage (http://www NULL.irishtimes NULL.com/news/social-affairs/religion-and-beliefs/vatican-calls-irish-referendum-a-defeat-for-humanity-1 NULL.2226957) in its constitution; in Ontario, a team of Muslim school boys threatens to pick up their ball and go home (http://www NULL.citynews NULL.ca/2015/05/28/exclusive-muslim-boys-high-school-soccer-team-refuses-to-play-against-team-with-2-girls/) rather than play against a team with two girls; a Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan United Church minister writes a letter of apology (http://www NULL.buzzfeed NULL.com/laurenstrapagiel/a-saskatchewan-minister-wrote-a-heartwarming-letter-to-the-l# NULL.bnODB65wX) to the LGBT community and asks for forgiveness; a public elementary school Taber, Alberta – yes, the same Taber which has outlawed crude language – promises to violate the Charter by having school-led prayer every morning (http://www NULL.cbc NULL.ca/news/canada/calgary/saying-lord-s-prayer-at-school-to-continue-for-now-in-s-e-alberta-1 NULL.2441998); a creationist unearths 60 MYA fish (http://www NULL.edmontonsun NULL.com/2015/05/27/alberta-creationist-edgar-nernberg-digs-up-what-scientists-are-calling-the-most-important-fossil-finds-in-decades?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=recommend-button&utm_campaign=Alberta+creationist+Edgar+Nernberg+digs+up+what+scientists+are+calling+the+most+important+fossil+finds+in+decades) fossils and claims we have the same evidence, just different interpretations. But first, we talk about Josh Duggar and his molestation problems. Boo hoo, Josh.
This is the last episode before we pack up and head off to Imagine No Religion (http://imaginenoreligion NULL.ca/) in Kamloops sans Haysn, who will be at Women in Secularism (http://www NULL.womeninsecularism NULL.org/) down south. So we’ll have a lot to report in the next instalment. But first things first. In this episode we discuss an upcoming debate in the Vatica (http://www NULL.latimes NULL.com/world/europe/la-fg-vatican-family-20140430-story NULL.html#page=1)n on its teachings on divorce, birth control and same-sex marriage. Will Randy have to cough up a bottle of whiskey to Kris? The use of herbs is increasingly becoming a major cause of liver damage (http://www NULL.medpagetoday NULL.com/MeetingCoverage/AASLD/42744) according to medical experts. But first, more anti-vaccine nonsense from naturopaths and chiropractors, with Rob Schneider lending his voice to a video (http://www NULL.huffingtonpost NULL.ca/2014/05/02/measles-alberta-naturopaths-anti-vaccine_n_5150252 NULL.html) going around on their websites. Yes, the comedian who brought you such fine films as Deuce Bigalow and The Animal is selling anti-vaccine crap, which is about as funny as his comedy.
It’s December 8 and welcome to the Legion of Reason. We have an extra long one this week and so I’ve split it in two to keep your eyes from glazing over. In this episode, Twylla, Christine, Haysn and I discuss the refusal by the Vatican to submit to a request from the United Nations for information regarding the worldwide epidemic of sexual abuse of children by clergy (http://www NULL.bbc NULL.co NULL.uk/news/world-europe-25204805). How about a little transparency for once without having to pry it out of the Holy See’s dead fingers? In New York, Cardinal Timothy Dolan has engaged the services of a PR agency in an attempt to better sell banning same-sex marriage (http://www NULL.newslo NULL.com/catholic-church-outsourcing-same-sex-marriage-fight-to-top-ad-agency/). I guess the pope’s infallibility isn’t enough anymore. Kenyan sufferers of AIDS are going to Pentecostal pastors to ‘treat’ their affliction (http://www NULL.queerty NULL.com/pentecostal-pastors-in-kenya-burn-hiv-drugs-in-favor-of-prayer-20131207/) while they watch their medications go up in flames. In a Time magazine article we atheists are yet again denigrated (http://science NULL.time NULL.com/2013/11/27/why-there-are-no-atheists-at-the-grand-canyon/). Apparently, no one who goes to the Grand Canyon and sees it in all its splendor and remain a non-believer and must submit to “God did it” as they are over-awed. For a science columnist, he completely gets the science wrong. How many times do we have to say it? The ability to find wonder and awe at nature does not equal god belief! The journal that published an anti-GMO paper by Gilles-Eric Séralini has retracted the work (http://www NULL.cbsnews NULL.com/news/journal-retracts-genetically-modified-corn-tumor-rats-study/) citing methodological flaws and conflicts of interest that peer review somehow missed. We’ve been Andrew Wakefielded again! And we discuss why some of us – not yours truly! – feel that having a life-size statue of Ronald McDonald in the basement or Xmas nutcrackers is creepy. But first, I talk with CFI Canada’s Chief Spokesperson Justin Trottier about yet another secular humanist-positive ad campaign rejection in Vancouver (http://www NULL.calgaryherald NULL.com/news/Atheist+advertising+rejected+Vancouver/9253641/story NULL.html) without explanation.
Still catching up on the backlog… One more to go after this one. Episode 84 was recorded November 24, 2013. Christine, Twylla, Haysn and I present another potpourri episode. Later, Twylla’s head hurts over trying to figure out the thinking process of those who rely on alternative-to-medicine to cure what ails them. Case in point is the recent tragedy of a child who died of strep throat. Let me say that again – STREP THROAT! an infection easily treated. The mother was treating her son with herbal remedies (not homeopathy as we were led to believe prior to the podcast recording, but nary a difference…) and following an eight-month investigation, she was charged with criminal negligence causing death and failing to provide the necessities of life (http://globalnews NULL.ca/news/985030/calgary-mother-arrested-in-connection-to-7-year-old-sons-death/). The Illinois bishop who wanted to exorcise the state’s same-sex marriage law (http://www NULL.queerty NULL.com/illinois-bishop-to-same-sex-marriage-law-i-exorcize-you-20131122/#ixzz2lUY4IKRC) carries out his threat, but did the law’s head do a full turn on its neck? Former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey warns that Christianity is at risk of dying out in a generation (http://www NULL.telegraph NULL.co NULL.uk/news/religion/10458380/Christianity-at-risk-of-dying-out-in-a-generation-warns-Lord-Carey NULL.html). But Carey, I can’t wait that long! And we have found the Evil Empire, and it is Walmart. But first, we lament the demise of self-styled psychic Sylvia Browne (http://www NULL.nytimes NULL.com/2013/11/22/arts/television/sylvia-browne-dies-at-77-self-proclaimed-psychic NULL.html?_r=2&). Why am I reminded of a song from the Wizard of Oz?
Welcome to 2013, Legionarries! This episode was recorded before Christmas, but with the holiday break and a death in the family it has taken me some time to edit and release it, and I apologize for that. Haysn, Twylla and I discussed a number of topics including Andrew Wakefield winning a dubious award (http://goodthinkingsociety NULL.org/projects/golden-duck/420-2/), a supreme court of canada ruling on what to do when cultures clash in the courtroom (http://www NULL.ctvnews NULL.ca/canada/niqab-in-court-ok-in-some-cases-supreme-court-1 NULL.1086463), more paedophile clergy in Canada (http://www NULL.globalmontreal NULL.com/montreal+deacon+facing+child+porn+charges+worked+with+kids+before+arrest+parishioner/6442780133/story NULL.html). But first, the Pope is the gift that keeps on giving, saying yet more idiotic profundities. He’s back on the anti-gay marriage bandwagon (http://www NULL.ctvnews NULL.ca/world/pope-takes-anti-gay-marriage-stance-to-new-level-1 NULL.1087877) after blessing a Ugandan parliamentarian who pushed anti-gay laws (http://global NULL.christianpost NULL.com/news/pope-blesses-ugandan-supporter-of-anti-homosexuality-bill-86667/) there (but, no! The pope does not ‘bless’ anti-gay laws themselves… (http://cvcomment NULL.org/2013/01/04/the-pope-does-not-bless-anti-gay-laws-he-seeks-to-lift-them/) BULLSHIT!) At least he has the cajones to tell his flock in a new book – titled “Jesus of Nazareth — The Infancy Narratives” and presumably NOT written in Latin – that much of the Christmas tradition is not based in fact (http://www NULL.cnn NULL.com/2012/11/22/world/europe/vatican-pope-jesus-book/index NULL.html). He tells them things like Jesus not really being born on the 25th, and such, but the whole virgin birth thing? No problem!
What a yutz.