A Ridiculous Essay on Rational Outreach (via The Tribal Scientist)

July 19, 2010 § 5 Comments

Fantastic insights. Humor has always reached me better than any other form of communication. Someone is always going to be offended. It is the up to the person that was offended to look at themselves and ask why? Obviously there is some truth in what was said that frightens you and you are not willing to laugh at yourself.

“I don’t think we should go out of our way to insult Islam because it doesn’t do any good to get your head cut off. But we should always say that I may refrain from publishing a cartoon of the Prophet Mohammed, but it’s because I fear you. Don’t for one moment think it’s because I respect you.” -Richard Dawkins, 2010 Global Atheist Convention in Melbourne. Fear can be quite an effective motivator when it comes to silencing your critics. Make peop … Read More

via The Tribal Scientist

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Do you remember the “First Amendment”?

July 12, 2010 § 3 Comments

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

Those words are so simple. So many of us grew up with those freedoms that we take them for granted. We think we know what they mean. We get indigent when someone tells us “You can’t say that”, “You can’t protest here” or “Turn those camera’s off.” But the First Amendment means so much more.

I was reminded of how truly free we are, and how much we take it for granted by a voice reaching out from true oppression. A teacher named Sam in Iran read my post of June 20, 2010 Is it time for scientists to come out of the closet? He posted the following comment on July 11:

“I don’t know why they’re pretending on some nonsense. In a free society where you all live, practically there shall be zero constraints on people’s believes. This is exactly what I don’t understand, when only few people believe in god these days, politicians & scientists still have doubt about speaking out…”

I have been thinking about this comment and Sam. What must it be like to live in a place where expressing your beliefs will get your beaten or killed? I encourage everyone to read Sam’s blog to get some perspective on human rights.

1forAllI also encourage everyone to join 1 for All is a national nonpartisan program designed to build understanding and support for First Amendment freedoms. 1 for All provides teaching materials to the nation’s schools, supports educational events on America’s campuses and reminds the public that the First Amendment serves everyone, regardless of faith, race, gender or political leanings. It is truly one amendment for all.

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