Defending the faith of cryptozoology

My latest post, regarding the rational vs non-rational response to the new cryptozoology book by Loxton and Prothero, Abominable Science, went live on Huffington Post yesterday. Cryptozoology Gets Respect While Bigfooters Behave Badly. When critical thinkers approach the subject of Bigfoot (or cryptozoology in general) with a focus on the evidence, they are met with…

Posted: My atheism talk on skepticism

I’m off to NECSS! The Northeast Conference of Science and Skepticism this weekend to talk about “Sounds Sciencey“. Should be an interesting time. Just yesterday, PA Nonbelievers released a video of my talk from last September at their conference. Now, I was hesitant to speak at an atheist event because promotion of atheism is NOT…

Building Bridges

Last year at TAM2012, I did a workshop on Coalition Building for the Skeptical Activist. Yes, that sounds a touch boring. I lobbied for changing the title, to no avail. The focus was to bring members into a coalition that were NOT self-identified skeptics but can help your cause. It turned out not to be…

Building a wall with values

Throughout the day, I’m reading books and news stories and listening to podcasts. This week, I saw a recurring theme in my media selections: values and the entrenched position. I guess I was predisposed to thinking about it. I spent last week preparing a lecture on ethics for a professional licensure exam review. I included…

Kids at the Funeral

Last month, my Grandma died. She was 94. We were very close. Even in her 80s, she would travel with my Dad to our house for visits and events. When she was in a nursing home, we visited her when we were in town and my young daughter, aged 6, would cavort around the nursing…

Antiscience slidecast

I prepared a presentation with narration for a graduate class. It’s about antiscience – a rather complex social topic, actually. This is about 31 minutes long with my narration. You can also skip slides with the forward button and the narration will still sync with the slide you are on. Questions are welcome!

No Fraud, No God – Drinking Skeptically

In February 2009, I organized Harrisburg’s outlet for Drinking Skeptically – a casual, social meetup for those who value science and critical thinking. Drinking Skeptically has meetups all over the country (including Philadelphia and Pittsburgh) with the numbers growing every month. Originally begun in the UK as Skeptics in the Pub, it served as a…

Pretend science

Playing Pretend Science In order to be technical, like science, pseudoscientists engage in a method of data gathering that is not haphazard or lazy. Intricate collection and analysis is often a part of pseudoscientific activity. They may produce enormous bodies of work. Commitment to a cause can prompt “energetic intellectual effort” [1]. The motives and…

Irrefutable

Science doesn’t work by beginning with the premise and searching for evidence to support it or, holding onto the premise no matter what evidence contradicts it. This is true close-mindedness. A theory can be worded in such a way that it can never be shown to be false. This is made very easy by incorporating…

Animals hearing the earth whispers again

Earthquake in Illinois! Is this the end times? Hot-underground-fictional-place-for-sinners, no! And, I’ll go on record to say End Times stories are totally silly. The world has been going downhill since we humans got here in (more-or-less) present form a million years ago. Enough of that tangent. It was just to get attention anyway. It’s pretty…

Outrage about Religious History Week

I am UNHAPPY in a big way. How dare Congress propose such a huge bag of nonsense! “Affirming the rich spiritual and religious history of our Nation’s founding and subsequent history and expressing support for designation of the first week in May as `American Religious History Week’ for the appreciation of and education on America’s…

Sad state here and abroad

I felt very sad when hearing of the death of Benazir Bhutto. I admired her extreme courage and determination, her vision and her cause. The world has lost a powerful leader who happened to be a woman. I’m sad on many fronts these days, nearing the end of this year. I have a completely illogical…

Flying Spaghetti Gift Monster

This would be my Holiday Greetings card if I decided to send one out. It would totally confound everyone I know. But, that would be funny. Happy Holidays to all, no exceptions. I’d like to remind everyone that a mid-winter holiday was celebrated long before Jesus. It’s sad that some feel they have a right…