There is an outbreak of Mumps in Franklin county. Even though it isn’t known what led to the outbreak, the event started up discussion on the need to vaccinate. A friend of mine posted a story about the rates of vaccination in the county and I learned that there is a religious exemption to the requirement for childhood vaccinations. This bit of religious privilege makes me angry. I think that if parents decide not to vaccinate their children for non-medical reasons, those children should be registered with the state, like sex offenders are, so we can avoid those children and excluded them from public activities if an outbreak flares up.
I hate the word ‘interfaith’. I’m not religious and don’t have a ‘faith’ so anything labeled ‘interfaith’ doesn’t include me no matter what word spinning you try to do. You just can’t add nonbelief to ‘interfaith’ and be inclusive. Using the word reduces nonbelievers to the level of unwanted step-children. We need a new word to express cooperation between people who have faith and those who don’t. I nominate ‘interpath’.
A tendency with organized atheists that burns me up sometimes is the need to tone police other atheists. Basically someone will have a problem with how someone says something – especially if it’s provocative or might be offensive to believers or even other atheists. So it might seem ironic that I will tone police an essay, written by Ed Brayton, I read yesterday. I’ve been told for years that we need to tell people what we are for and not what we are against but that doesn’t seem to apply when speech is policed by other atheists. I just see far more ‘don’t do this’ and not enough ‘this is better’ essays. These police actions sap energy from organized atheism and actually doesn’t fix anything.
February 12th is Charles Darwin’s birthday. He wrote the seminal book about Evolution titled ‘On the Origin of Species’. He introduced the scientific theory that populations evolve over the course of generations through a process of natural selection. Of course, even in 2014, there are some people who either refuse to accept Evolution or seem to have no idea what it is.
Doug Berger, co-chair Secular Coalition for Ohio, and Monette Richards, President of CFI NE Ohio and Legislative chair for the Secular Coalition for Ohio at the Secular Summit 2.0
On January 28th I joined 20 other secular people at the Secular Summit 2.0 held in the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus. The lobby day event was sponsored by the Center for Inquiry Northeast Ohio and included people from several Ohio secular groups. We had several speakers, a little training in lobbying, and prearranged visits with our elected state representatives and senators.
I wrote a detailed account of the day over at my Secular Left blog. It also includes some pictures I took.
On January 28th, a bitterly cold Tuesday morning, approximately 20 people gathered for the second annual Secular Summit in the Museum Gallery in the Ohio Statehouse in downtown Columbus. The summit was organized and hosted by the Center for Inquiry Northeast Ohio (CFI NE Ohio) but included people from the various secular groups in Ohio. In the morning we had several speakers, some training in lobbying, and then the afternoon was when participants visited their Representatives and Senators to introduce themselves and the issues of importance to seculars in the state. The extreme cold couldn’t keep us from talking to the legislature, most of whom have completely opposite views.
Great Time At The Ohio Secular Summit