As a teacher, I cannot tell you how much this worries me. I will be striking later this month in opposition to this government push on 'free schools' an academies which is thinly veiled attempt to privatise education and politically liberalise it. I could bore you for hours on the ramifications and implications of such a stupid approach to education, not least adding in the utter stupidity of scrapping a national curriculum and assessment framework whilst neglecting to be organised enough to have something in mind and prepared to replace it. Total idiots. And yes, if I meet Education Secretary Michael Gove in a dark alley...
This has come up recently in conversation so I thought I would post this video I did some time...
So now it is time to return to the idea of homosexuality and Christianity about which I posted the other day.
Having looked at biblical issues concerning the position of deeming h/s morally wrong, let us now look at what makes people h/s and whether it is fair for an all-loving god to judge them.
I would like to give a good synopsis of the current tate of biology and sexual orientation. First of all, it is interesting to note that the drivers for male and female h/s are understood to be often very different. It is not one rule fits all. Furthermore, there are also a whole host of reasons that can lead to h/s – biological, genetic (and epigenetic), and environmental and social.
Let us look firstly at the biological causes and theories.
I am writing a post in reaction to something about which I was talking with my Christian friend (let’s call him Colin). We were talking about homosexuality and his approach to it given his Christian background. Some points were interesting and some I fundamentally disagreed with. Here are his views:
As according to the Bible, homosexuality is wrong.
This morality is grounded in God.
He is not homophobic and detests that label as it automatically halts any further informed discussion.
People can have genetic or environmental variables which help to influence a persons likelihood to homosexuality.
However, to commit to a homosexual act is an act of free will, and thus falls within the moral sphere.
As a result, it is not necessarily the disposition of being homosexual which is wrong, but the decision to act upon it.
He has no ‘problem’ with homosexuals and has / has had homosexual friends.
Hopefully I am not building up a straw man of his position, but it does demand some serious unpicking.
I am co-editing a book of deconversion accounts, recounting personal experiences of leaving religion. We have...
Many people believe ridiculous things. Most of the time, we eventually shuffle off such beliefs. But some remain. In the case of Christianity, this is the belief in Yahweh. I don't mean to be overly rhetorical, but the belief in Yahweh is patently ridiculous, much more so than the belief in God.
So, a few dates are in the calendar for some talks. If you are around the south of the UK, come...
This is still a fantastic debate, primarily because of the format. After 40 minutes, they sit down and thrash...
For Hitchens and co, religion does little good and secularism hardly any evil. Never mind that tyrants devoid of religion such as Hitler, Stalin, Lenin, Mao and Pol Pot perpetrated the worst atrocities in history. As H. Allen Orr, professor of biology at the University of Rochester, observed, the 20th century was an experiment in secularism that produced secular evil, responsible for the unprecedented murder of more than 100 million. (Abramovich, 2009)
Media group opts for self-censorship on terrorism after Taliban admits murder of three employees for critical reports on militants
When it was launched four years ago, the Express Tribune set out to become the house newspaper of liberal-minded Pakistanis.
The long-awaited debate (well, by me, anyway) is here, on You Tube:
Having only listened to...
Divine Command Theory (DCT) is the idea that morality is grounded in God or God's nature such that what God commands is necessarily morally good. Historically speaking, the Euthyphro Dilemma has been used to combat such a position. DCT comes in several forms and is adhered to by a good many theologians and apologists.
A Ugandan tabloid has named the country's "200 top homosexuals", a day after President Yoweri Museveni signed into law a bill toughening penalties for gay people.
Red Pepper's list appeared under the headline: "Exposed", raising concerns of a witch-hunt against gay people.
Western governments have condemned Mr Museveni's decision to approve the bill.
Soon, the Scottish people will be voting in a referendum as to whether they want an independent Scotland....
Kobo is an e-reader device as well as a publishing platform in the same way as Kindle (Direct Publishing) and iBooks. It apparently has up to 20% market share, though this is probably generous. That said, being originally a Canadian company taken over by a Japanese parent company, it does do well in these and other countries and has some good strategic partnerships which mean it IS a viable alternative to the monopolising Amazon (who are taking over the word - be warned). I think you can use the Kobo website to buy EPUB files for various devices, not just the Kobo.
Brighton Fringe is the largest arts festival in England and one of the largest fringe festivals in the world. It sets out to stimulate, educate and entertain a wide audience by providing a showcase for diverse art forms. Everyone can take part, in fact, whilst enjoying a friendly and supportive environment. And all this in an iconic city with unique cultural heritage.
Many people, particularly fundamentalists, still believe in a real and actual Satan. Of course, to everyone else, this is completely incomprehensible. And here's one reason for why, as John Loftus sets out in his book The End of Christianity (p. 100):
So, God and cosmology will be debated tomorrow as cosmologist Sean Carroll takes on theologian William Lane...
Jonny Scaramanga came to do a talk about his experiences with Christian education at Portsmouth Skeptics in the Pub recently. I was gutted to have missed it - I was really looking forward to that one. However, keeping a tab on his blog, it seems clear that he is embroiled in a right ding-dong with his arch nemeses, Accelerate Christian Education, or ACE. Here is his article ion the subject which he wrote for the Guardian.
Some of you the other side of the Atlantic may not know that the Gulf Stream which predominantly dictates weather as it pushes systems from North and Central America over to Europe, has been stuck. For months. This has meant the cold air from the North American weather issues has met warmer air from Southern Europe and Africa, swirling and causing muchos rain. A lot of rain. For two months. Britain has been in the throes of severe flooding, attacked from internal rain and mental seas and tides.