Monday, January 30, 2017

Voyage of the Damned..lest we forget.



In 1939 the SS St. Louis left Germany for Cuba. Aboard were over 900 Jewish refugees escaping Nazi Germany.  After their two week voyage, Cuba refused them entry.  The ship sailed to the US in the hopes of finding sanctuary. They could see the lights of Miami from the vessel.

The ship's captain, and many of the passengers sent ship to shore cables to the State Department and to President Franklin Roosevelt appealing for refuge.  The State Department told them they must return to Germany and apply for official visas and "wait their turn". The cables to FDR went unanswered.

The ship returned to Europe.  Four European nations accepted them ... three of whom were eventually over run by the Nazis.    
                             

By the end of the war, 257 of those 900 refugees would die in Nazi concentration camps and be fed into the ovens. Here are some of their pictures.  You don't need to know their names, just remember what religious prejudice and hate and fear can do, and that with all our desires to be "Great Again", we failed miserably at greatness in 1939. We're failing miserably at greatness again in 2017.

Write your senators, your congressperson. Tell them, the world is watching.




















Saturday, January 28, 2017

Rage against the kidnapping of Liberty.

After today's executive action banning Muslims from entry we have crossed a threshold I never thought we'd see again after the Japanese internment during WWII, and our turning away of Jewish refugees - sending them back to their deaths in Europe.

History will judge us harshly for this, and we deserve it as a nation. We are no longer the "land of the free", nor "home of the brave". That faded on January 20, 2017 and disappeared today.

Contact your senators and congressperson. Tell them to rage against this injustice and those  that will surely follow. And may the Founders forgive us.

Friday, January 27, 2017

How much further can we fall as a nation of liberty? Here's a hint:


Trump has declared he will be releasing the names of immigrants who commit crimes in the US. Click on "here" for the whole story.

Anyone who is blind to what is happening is ignorant. Anyone who isn't horrified by what this represents spits on the graves and the memory of every member of "The Greatest Generation" who sacrificed and died fighting fascism in Europe.  Those who do not speak out against it deserve every  condemnation that history heaps upon them. 

Perhaps it's just by chance that Trump announced this "initiative"today; it's
Holocaust Remembrance Day. 

"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." - George Santayana.

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Important New Book: Women Beyond Belief





When I read a book that I think my readers will enjoy and benefit from, I like to share the good news. "Women Beyond Belief" is one of those books.

Karen L. Garst has compiled twenty-two essays into a book entitled “Women Beyond Belief: Discovering Life without Religion,” which can be found on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and bookstores. Dr. Garst became incensed when the U. S. Supreme Court issued its decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby in 2014. This decision said that because of its religious views, Hobby Lobby, a craft store, would not be obligated to follow the dictates of the Affordable Care Act and provide certain forms of birth control to its employees. “Will we never end the fight for women’s reproductive rights?” Garst stated. Once again, religion has influenced the laws of our land. Politicians cite their religion in supporting restrictions on abortion, banning funding for Planned Parenthood, and a host of other issues that are against women.


 The mainstays of the modern atheist movement - Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, Christopher Hitchens, and Daniel Dennett - came with backgrounds in science and philosophy. They launched a renewed effort to show people how destructive religion can be and how all Abrahamic religions are based upon a late Bronze Age / Iron Age mythology, borrowing from other mythologies of the time.  Dr. Garst wants to add a focus on women and the role this mythology has played in the culture of many countries to denigrate and subordinate women. She states that “Religion is the last cultural barrier to gender equality.” And she is right. More and more women atheists are speaking out. And as we all know, if women leave the churches, they will collapse.

The twenty-two essays are all written by women who describe their journeys and experiences from religion to reason. They are varied and compelling.   Here is an excerpt from one of the contributors:



“But at the end of the day, I kept coming back to one simple realization: I fundamentally did not believe that one religion (Christianity) could tell another religion (Hinduism) that it was wrong, that its deities did not exist, that its moral compass was askew, that the beliefs of its people—while noble—did not coincide with the lord-and-savior Jesus Christ and his father-in-heaven God, and therefore could not possibly be valid.

To me, Hinduism embraced beliefs and morals and a lifestyle that was so much more relatable and beautiful than anything Christianity, even in the Seventh Day Adventist form, had ever taught me. The thought of discounting all of it to adhere to a religion that I was essentially born into by way of my geographic location was completely backward. I couldn’t get over the notion that devout faith to one religion obliterates the ability to believe in another, despite the fact that so many millions of Hindus formulated their realities and structured their (in my opinion much more meritorious) belief systems based on those religious principles.”
  Taylor Duty



Dr.Garst has received support with reviews by Richard Dawkins, Valerie Tarico, Peter Boghossian, Sikivu Hutchinson and other atheist authors.

If you know of a friend or family member who may be struggling with their religious upbringing, and who may benefit in their transition  into reason and reality by the sharing of these stories you'd be doing them a great service.  I don't think you'll find a better resource.  I found it eye opening and very revealing, myself having not been raised in a religious environment thus never having experienced the escape to modernity and reasoning.   

I encourage you to check out Dr. Garst’s blog at www.faithlessfeminist.com and consider pre-ordering this excellent book.



Friday, December 23, 2016

Happy Holidays


Wishing you and your family a happy holiday, and a better 2017.
Stay safe.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

On Defamation and Veneration



I listened as they called my President a Muslim.
I listened as they called him and his family a pack of monkeys.
I listened as they said he wasn't born here.
I watched as they blocked every single path to progress that they could.
I saw the pictures of him as Hitler.
I watched them shut down the government and hurt the entire nation... twice.
I watched them turn their backs on every opportunity to open worthwhile dialog.
I watched them say that they would not even listen to any choice for Supreme Court no matter who the nominee was. I listened as they openly said that they will oppose him at every turn.
I watched as they did just that.

I listened.
I watched.
I paid attention.
Now, I'm being called on to be tolerant.
To move forward.
To denounce protesters.
To "Get over it."
To accept this...
I will not.
I will do my part to make sure this great American mistake becomes the embarrassing footnote of our history that it deserves to be.
I will do this as quickly as possible every chance I get.
I will do my part to limit the damage that this man can do to my country.
I will watch his every move and point out every single mistake and misdeed in a loud and proud voice.
I will let you know in a loud voice every time this man backs away from a promise he made to them.
Them. The people who voted for him.
The ones who sold their souls and prayed for him to win.
I will do this so that they never forget.

And they will hear me.
They will see it in my eyes when I look at them.
They will hear it in my voice when I talk to them.
They will know that I know who they are.
They will know that I know what they are.
Do not call for my tolerance. I've tolerated all I can.
Now it's their turn to tolerate ridicule.
Be aware, make no mistake about it, every single thing that goes wrong in our country from this day forward is now Trump's fault just as much as they thought it was Obama's.
I find it unreasonable for them to expect from me what they were entirely unwilling to give.

Author unknown.