Weekly Update: to

Here’s your Canadian Atheist Weekly Update for to .

[Photo of Sam Harris.]

Not a white nationalist, but a proven gateway drug to white nationalism.

  • [] No, the Rapture Isn’t Coming on April 23 Because of Nibiru (Which Doesn’t Exist)

    We have another rapture scheduled this weekend!

  • [] For These Women, Their Religion’s Push For Purity Made Sex Unholy

    Nobody should be surprised at the news that religion has always been bad for women’s sexuality. These stories personalize the damage.

  • [] e-1264 (Discrimination)

    Justice Minister Wilson-Raybould has made an official response to the petition calling on the government to study discrimination against atheists. It’s a disappointing response.

  • [] Grey Matters: Alternative therapy can be deadly, says study

    This is a pretty light article, but there is one really interesting thing in it: the story of a Vancouver pharmacist who is actually challenging people to run their own experiments on the efficacy of “alternative medicines”. Personally I don’t think it’s a very effective method on the grand scale, but hey, maybe it’s convincing a person here or there.

  • [] Quebec mosque killer confided he wished he had shot more people, court told

    Because mosque shooter Alexandre Bissonnette pleaded guilty, we didn’t get a trial to really dig into the question of who Bissonnette is and what motivated him. All we’ve had is statements released from the defence about how sorry he is, how confused he was, yadda yadda. Now the other side of the story is starting to leak out. And it appears Bissonnette is every bit the hateful piece of shit we all assumed he was.

  • [] Bissonnette was a far-right internet junkie whose addiction turned him into a killer

    As we learn more about Bissonnette and his motives, the completely unsurprising revelation that he was a far-right nutter was inevitable. Toula Drimonis pulls no punches in naming names, and calling out the memes and bullshit that he bought into. Unfortunately, some of those things are people and “facts” you’ll hear mentioned within atheist circles (like the absurdly inflated numbers for radical Muslims).

  • [] Halton Catholic school board rejects education minister, leaves fundraising restrictions in place

    I have to admit that I’ve been very surprised by the legs this story has had. Everyone has stepped up to condemn the Halton Catholic District School Board for their policy – teachers, parents, and students in the district; the general public in the area; and now even the Ontario Education Minister and Kathleen Wynne herself. Astonishingly, despite all this pressure, the Board is sticking to their guns (well, 5 out of 9 of them, in any case). And now there’s even talk of a court challenge. This would be a perfect storm for the push to abolish the separate school system in Ontario… if only Ontario’s political parties weren’t all craven cowards unwilling to stand up for the issue.

  • [] Conservative MP opposes motion calling on Pope to apologize for residential schools

    Okay, that there are Catholic priests and bishops defending the Pope’s asshole position is unsurprising. But an MP?! And the “concerns” about how the Canadian government shouldn’t be getting involved in religion or dictating rules to religious leaders are all so much bullshit! A motion asking the Pope to apologize is not “ordering” anyone to do anything, and it has nothing-the-fuck-at-all to do with any entanglement between religion and government or violation of secularism – the motion would be exactly the same and for the same reasons if the Pope were the head of a secular corporation. The point of the motion is that the government of Canada should be standing up for its people – of which the indigenous people abused in the residential school system very much are its people. The motion would send the message that the government officially recognizes that those people were abused, that they were abused by organizations under the Pope’s control, and that that organization needs to step the fuck up and make amends.

  • [] How rabid dog saliva became an approved and endorsed remedy in Canada

    Last week we broke the story of the naturopath who boasted on the Internet that she dosed a child with dog saliva laced with rabies because she thought the child was acting dog-like. One of the more alarming parts of that item – and there were many – was that the naturopath association defended the naturopath, saying that dosing people with diluted rabies was a perfectly legitimate practice in naturopathy. It turns out they were telling the truth: diluted rabies is a Health Canada approved remedy. How the fuck could that happen? Read this article.

  • [] Separate school funding foes gear up for election battle

    This is an excellent article. As I’ve mentioned, and the article agrees, separate schools is not an issue that the parties want to discuss leading up to the Ontario election. However, this article is packed with information about the myriad actions and fights happening right now.

  • [] Why Are Secular Skeptic Communities Failing To Address Sexual Crime?

    Movement atheism does deserve some measure of credit for actually taking action about accusations of sexual misconduct; it’s hard to imagine most other movements or groups taking such quick and decisive action once credible accusations come to light as American Atheists did in the case of David Silverman. But that credit only goes so far, because there are two lingering questions: How did people like Silverman and Lawrence Krauss even manage to maintain their positions in the leadership as long as they did? (Particularly Krauss; Silverman’s tendencies were not very widely known, but everybody knew what a sleaze Krauss was.) What about all the other people in leadership positions who continue unchallenged, like Michael Shermer or Richard Carrier? We aren’t doing terribly as a movement… but we’re not doing great, and we’re certainly not doing as good as our rhetoric suggests we believe we are.

  • [] McInnes, Molyneux, and 4chan: Investigating pathways to the alt-right

    There have been many critics who have accused Sam Harris of being a gateway to the alt-right, myself among them. And everyone who has made that point – myself included – has been greeted by a cacophony of outrage; atheists are furious at us for daring to equate His Holy Reasonableness Harris with the tiki-torch-wielding bigots of Charlottesville, or the murderous hate of people like Alexandre Bissonnette. Well, this is where I get to say, “I told you so.” This is not just another opinion piece. What the SPLC did was monitor a major white nationalist forum, and wait for them to say themselves who inspired them to join the alt-right. These are the racists themselves saying who they think are good people to use to indoctrinate others into the movement. And there are some well-known problematic Canadian names like Gavin McInnes and Stefan Molyneux. But then there are some names that are very popular in the atheist movement like Sargon of Akkad and… yes… Sam Harris. Sam Harris was cited as an inspiration into white nationalism the same number of times as Ben Shapiro, Lauren Southern, and r/The_Donald, for fuck’s sake! I’m not going to repeat again the point that yes, yes, I know Sam Harris isn’t a white nationalist himself, he’s just laying down an intellectual foundation for the path to it, yadda yadda… because if you’re still defending Harris at this point, I know you’re just not fucking listening. But if you’re even pretending that your worldview is based on facts and evidence… there, there it is. The facts. The evidence. White nationalists themselves say Sam Harris a good way to bring people to white nationalism. “I told you so.”

  • [] Death threats, graffiti, ripped Qur’an among 91% spike in Peel anti-Muslim hate crimes

    This is alarming but unsurprising evidence that we do have a serious problem with rising hate in Canada. Or maybe the hate was always there, but is now just emboldened. Either way, the facts in this article are concerning, and if you’re looking for hard numbers this Star article provides them.

Canadian Atheist’s Weekly Update depends on the submissions of readers like you. If you see anything on the Internet that you think might be of interest to CA readers, please take a minute to make a submission.

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