Wednesday, July 31, 2013

No, you'd sell out in a heartbeat


Tutu, who retired as Archbishop of Cape Town in 1996, has long campaigned for gay rights.  
'I would refuse to go to a homophobic heaven. No, I would say sorry, I mean I would much rather go to the other place,' he said. 'I would not worship a God who is homophobic and that is how deeply I feel about this.'
This is the sort of pointless posturing I hear now and then, typically from atheists, and each and every time it just strikes me as not only tremendously stupid, but a goddamn obvious untruth besides.

Take a long, hard look at what Tutu here is saying: if heaven were a place where anal sex was unwelcome - if, at the end of the day, it really was a sin to engage in sodomy - Tutu would choose hell. You know, alternately 'utter oblivion' or 'everlasting damnation' or the like. This is where Tutu would draw the line: either ass-fucking is allowed past the pearly gates, or Tutu requests hell, thank you. Tutu never seems to stop and wonder if 'homophobia' may well be active in 'the other place' too... but that's besides the point.

The point is... who is this fucker kidding?

No, Desmond Tutu is not going to defy God to His face and explicitly ask to be sent to hell out of moral outrage that heaven doesn't allow gay marriage. Desmond Tutu, in all likelihood, is going to fall prostrate in fear and - after he's soiled himself - beg and plead for forgiveness for his past transgressions. At least if hell is anything akin to 'obviously tremendously unpleasant and eternal at that'.

But let's say it's not. Maybe hell really is, a la CS Lewis, a place where the doors are locked from the inside, not out. Possible, I believe. But even still, imagine what Tutu would be saying. He's dead. He's in the afterlife. God's existence is quite certain. And he's damn certain he's not about to second-guess himself over this topic? He's got Cartesian certainty that anal sex is holy and pure and not even the apparent express disagreement of God Himself will give him pause?

Bullshit. People should be laughed at when they say what Tutu said, or at the very least be regarded as obvious nitwits or fools. Say you'd resist an earthly power. Say you'd resist whatever cultural or social or political forces. But anyone who says, or even strongly implies, that they'd stand up in rebellion against the omnipotent, omniscient ground of all being over, frankly, one of the pettiest of sociopolitical causes that there ever was, really deserves to be taken down a peg then and there.

In fact, they deserve to be reminded that in the case of an omniscient, omnipotent God - or really, even a mere sufficiently powerful one - if He decides to make them become Lord High King of the Homophobes (or Homophiles, for that matter), that's what they'll become upon the instant. Atheists, meanwhile, need to be reminded they're an inconvenient series of natural causes away from the exact same thing.

Friday, July 19, 2013

So is the president going to talk about the riots?

So, as bash mobs sweep through Southern California, I have to wonder - will the president be spending much time telling people not to riot, attack bystanders, or smash anything over being upset that a man the state had insufficient evidence to find guilty was not, ultimately, found guilty?

Or have we reached the point where it's just acceptable for certain classes of people to cause crime and vandalism when they dislike a political outcome?

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Apparently religious people have better sex

So sayeth this survey, anyway.

I always wondered why no anti-contraception Catholic ever came out and flatly said, 'Sex is better without a condom.' Who's going to deny it?

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Analyzing bias in the media

Let's look at USA Today's article about the Texas abortion law.
Republicans in the Texas Legislature passed an omnibus abortion bill that is one of the most restrictive in the nation,
So right away, 'most restrictive'. Nice and negative wording.

but Democrats vowed Saturday to fight both in the courts and the ballot box as they used the measure to rally their supporters.
No mention that Democrats support some of the most permissive abortion laws in the world. Instead, they vowed to fight the most restrictive laws in the country.

Democrats offered 20 amendments to the bill, which will ban abortions after 20 weeks, require abortion doctors to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital and require all abortions take place in surgical centers. They ranged from exceptions for rape and incest to allowing doctors more leeway in prescribing abortion-inducing drugs. But Republicans would have none of it. 
Again, notice the framing: 'Republicans would have none of it'. Now, the GOP view is that they're making sure that abortion services don't turn into Kermit Gosnell house-of-horrors situations, by requiring the best medical services available for abortion, under the safest conditions. But the theme is 'this is so restrictive', and the article runs with that.
The bill is just one of many across the nation championed by anti-abortion groups set on a constitutional challenge to Roe vs Wade, the U.S. Supreme Court decision guaranteeing a woman's right to decide on an abortion before the fetus is viable outside the womb. 
 Mandatory Roe v Wade reference.

Those arrested or removed from the chamber included four women who tried to chain themselves to a railing in the gallery while singing, "All we are saying is give choice a chance." One of the women was successful in chaining herself, prompting a 10-minute recess.
Not mentioned: the protestors who tried to sneak in jars of urine and feces.

Sen. Glen Hegar of Katy, the bill's Republican author, argued that all abortions, including those induced with medications, should take place in an ambulatory surgical center in case of complications.
Democrats pointed out that childbirth is more dangerous than an abortion and there have been no serious problems with women taking abortion drugs at home. 
Now, here's where the bias gets subtle. Notice that Glen Hegar 'argues', but the Democrats 'point out'. This could have just as easily been written as 'Glen Hegar pointed out that complications can arise from abortion, so having them take place in the best facilities available is a reasonable precaution. Democrats argued that abortion is safer than childbirth.' But, that wouldn't have worked. If you 'point out', you're not making an argument - you are asserting a fact. If you 'argue', you're trying to make a case, and may fail to make it.
The dedication of those activists will be tested during the 2014 elections. Democrats have not won a statewide seat in Texas since 1994, the longest such losing streak in the nation.
"Dedication of activists". You can practically smell the rallying cry here.

Secular humanism in a nutshell

It's hard to find a more apt summary of the in-practice spirit and intellectual application of secular humanism than what you see illustrated here:

Forcing women to adhere to the anti-choice attitudes of state legislators forces men to do the same, and will have serious consequences both on men's lives and lifestyles.....
Your sex life is at stake. Can you think of anything that kills the vibe faster than a woman fearing a back-alley abortion? Making abortion essentially inaccessible in Texas will add an anxiety to sex that will drastically undercut its joys. And don't be surprised if casual sex outside of relationships becomes far more difficult to come by.
Oh crap! The Texas legislature wants to ban abortions that occur after 20 weeks in most situations. Those stupid sluts you want to nail are going to get freaked out! They may not spread their legs as easily if they only have 5 weeks to get an abortion! You better oppose this if you want to get laid, because nothing's more of a turnoff than the thought of a back-alley abortion. (Apparently, clinic abortions get some women's nipples hard?)

But it's useful, because it really illustrates secular humanism in the wild: the fear that, someday, you may be forced to moderate your desires for anything other than the liberal cause of the moment. What a standard! Humans should never be expected to do such things, ever.

It's a little like reading a reaction to news that health insurance companies are going to raise rates for the morbidly obese. How terrible! These anti-choice fat cat businessmen are *making life for binge eaters uncomfortable*. They may be forced to skip one of their three daily visits to the all you can eat buffet. People may actually *lose weight*. Will these nutjobs never see fit to let us live by the standards of our choosing?

Monday, July 1, 2013

And yet sex isn't always a big deal

I think it's possible to take a look at my previous post and come away with the idea that I have this deep dislike of homosexuals/"sodomites" (God, we need a more modern name than that.) The fact is, that's pretty much as far from the case as you can get. Sex acts are central the moral and ethical issues, but at the same time the realization that that's the case also tends to put the real issue in context as well. Really, the homosexually active aren't doing anything that the heterosexually active aren't entirely capable of doing as well, morally speaking - and that many probably DO do, as a matter of fact. Sure, there are some specific differences, but I honestly think the individual-level similarities overwhelm those factors.

The problem is that 'homosexual' - the bare person who has same sex attraction - is now intellectually wedded to 'devoted LGBT agitator' in the public consciousness. I'm sure that's both the fault of conservatives and liberals, and it's one of the things I think needs to end. In fact I sometimes wonder if a number of gay men really wish they could liberate themselves from the LGBT movement to one degree or another. France certainly showed that there are gays for whom 'gay marriage' is offensive. How many of them are there?

(I say 'gay men' specifically because the impression I always get is that lesbians are a different thing. With rare exception, the self-described lesbian has at least some kind of political/social agitation going on to begin with.)

I suppose the short way to say what I'm saying here is that I really don't give a shit if someone is same-sex attracted. It means next to nothing. Now, the SSA person who is also sexually active and 'out and proud' and trying to make it so condemning anal sex is a hate crime that can get you fined and imprisoned? Fuck them and their rainbows, frankly. But the two are not the same thing, and I hope more and more people start to recognize that.