Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Bryan Fischer Contradicts Himself Again

This one is so simple that I'll just post the evidence without comment.

Bryan Fischer says women are not emotionally fit for combat:

Bryan Fischer says Valerie Jarrett made the Bin Laden call - not President Obama:

Which is it, Bryan?

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

How My Secular Morality Works

There are people in the world who still believe that atheists can't be moral. There are more still who acknowledge that we can be moral but don't understand how we can be so without the "Judeo-Christian" moral framework in which we Americans are so often raised.

This post will show you how I, as an atheist, make moral decisions. Other atheists may do things differently.

Today Nathan and I went grocery shopping. We turned an aisle and spotted a wallet on the floor. He handed it to me and I could see that it belonged to a white woman with dark hair. It felt very compact as if it had money in it or, at least, maybe some credit cards.

First I asked myself, "How would I feel if I lost my wallet?" The answer is afraid. Why? Because someone would have access to my identity, my money, and my private information (address, spare key, etc.).

Second, I asked myself, "What would I want the finder to do if I lost my wallet?" The answer is: turn it in. Don't take the money and credit cards. Don't write down or memorize my private information. Don't take my spare key. Don't rifle through my wallet and look at my kids' pictures (if I had kids). In other words, don't violate my privacy. Just take it to Customer Service and let me claim it intact.

Based on these thoughts (which took only a couple seconds to form), we did just that. We turned the wallet in without pilfering or stealing. The only thing we knew about the lady was her general appearance because that portion of her driver's license was visible on the outside.

After we turned the wallet in, I continued to look around for the lady. We ended up seeing her in the checkout line frantically searching her bag. Nathan asked her if she had lost it (just to be sure it was her) and she said yes. We told her it was at the front desk and she thanked us. The matter was settled. 

At no time did we think about Moses writing his Ten Commandments. Neither did we think about how Yahweh might punish us if we stole. It didn't even really occur to us to steal because we are heavily grounded in a secular morality based on doing what is good and not doing what is harmful. Why do we not steal? We don't want people to steal from us. Why do we return lost property? We would want someone else to return our lost property to us. 

It's just that simple. No gods, no divine wrath, no eternal punishment needed. 

Monday, June 2, 2014

Lessons from Noah's Ark

What Do Christians Learn from Noah's Ark?

Here's the graphic going around. I admit, it's cute and clever:

They may not miss the boat but they sure missed the meat of the story. The only way to sell a  story as horrible as Noah's story (especially to kids) is to dress it up in cuteness and ignore the basic truths it presents. Therefore, I'd like to give you the lessons I've learned from the story of Noah's Ark.

What I've Learned from Noah's Ark.

1. Salvation is a limited-time offer. If you don't act now without thinking it through and doing some research, we may not give you another day to opt in.

2.  We're not all welcome in the boat. If you don't conform to our beliefs and ways, we've got no room for you. Go drown.

3. Let fear and doomsday prophecies rule your life. Make your most important decisions when you're least able to reason. Allow the most bigoted and fearful folks to pressure you into surrendering your present and your future.

4. Your god doesn't care about your physical or mental condition. When he says "Jump!" you say "How high?" You don't get a break. You don't get a rest. You're here to serve him cradle-to-grave and beyond.

5. Don't pay any attention to dissent. Continue with your crazy because you are special and your god has chosen you. Those folks will one day wish they'd listened to your crazy because they will be punished and you'll be safe.

6. Build your future on the word of those who offer no evidence. Compromise your reason and your morality "just in case." This works well with #3.

7. Your main purpose in life is to breed more followers. Unless, of course, you are "clean" or "sacred" in which case your purpose may also be to be sacrificed on the altar of your god. I'm looking at you, Quiverfull, for the first part. 

8. Your god can magically make things work out ok. You don't need a sense of urgency. You don't need to plan ahead for the future. Rely on faith and the words of religious leaders and your god will handle the rest.

9.  When things get tough, turn it over to your god. Don't be responsible for your own outcomes when you can choose to do nothing instead. That way, you can either praise your god for a good outcome or else blame someone else for a bad outcome. You never have to make a hard decision or take responsibility. This works well with #8.

10. Religion trumps science every time. It doesn't matter if there's no evidence of an ark. It doesn't matter that the recipe for the ark in the Bible will, if followed exactly, will produce a monstrosity that will sink like a stone. Scoff at every professional and put your faith in fools. Ignore every benefit you receive from science and give your god the credit.

11. Your god is a bully and he doesn't mind showing off. He can kill every living thing on the planet if he wants to - things that he made, people that he made. He can erase his mistakes without fear of reprisal because who is going to question him? Then he can put his warrior bow in the sky to remind you that you'd better never question or disobey. Not just today but any time he feels like it, he may put that bow up there as if he's going to shoot an arrow through your disobedient ass.

What lessons did you learn from the Noah's Ark story? Share them with us.

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Mississippi Humanists: A Call to Action for Tornado Victims!

NEMSHA Requests Help for Mississippi Residents

NEMSHA (Northeast Mississippi Secular Humanist Association) is calling on everyone to assist Mississippians who were victims of the recent tornado outbreak.

The easiest way to help is to donate money to the Red Cross, local animal shelters, or other local organizations that you trust. Even a small donation can get food, clean water, medicine, and other necessities to those affected.

Women and children have special needs during this time that are often forgotten. Items such as: liquid/powdered formula, bottles, nipples, diapers and wipes for children; soap and feminine hygiene products for women.

Our furry friends need assistance now too. The Louisville animal shelter is currently receiving funds through the Paypal account at Oktibbeha Humane Society and write in that it's for Louisville.

Cash or checks can be mailed to: 
Louisville Animal Control
110 Thompson Street
Louisville, MS 39339

The shelter needs large dog crates, dry puppy food, and cleaning supplies such as paper towels, latex gloves, liquid soap, garbage bags and bleach. Their wish list is on Amazon. They also need families to foster some animals until the influx can be dealt with as well as volunteers. They are desperately trying to avoid euthanizing any animals so please help them out! Call (662) 705-0398.

View Larger Map

We'll let you know if we receive more information. In the mean time, you can always team up with groups who have more organizational power than we do (churches, clubs, etc.) and lend them a hand.

If you'd like to add to the list, please comment below. Come on, Mississippi humanists, let's get to work!

Friday, May 2, 2014

Can Anything Good Come Out of Mississippi?

What's Wrong with Mississippi

Mississippi has had a lot of problems since its inception, not the least of which was its sordid support of slavery. We've come quite a long way since the Civil Rights era but, due to conservative religious saturation and natural human bigotry (we like to call that "tradition"), we still have a whole lot of work to do. Since it is now a public death wish to be known to be a racist, people have taken refuge in the next brand of socially-accepted bigotry...anti-gay intolerance.

SB2681 and Its Real Meaning

This bill was hailed as a "religious freedom" bill but its real intent was to give Mississippi business owners the power to discriminate in their dealings. The bill was pretty much DOA but a quick slap by the Mississippi Southern Baptist Convention reminded our legislators that religion runs Mississippi - not the law.

The law takes place on July 1 and allows people to discriminate against anyone or anything for any "sincerely held" religious reason. When I say "any religious reason," I mean any:
"Exercise of religion" includes, but is not limited to, the ability to act or the refusal to act in a manner that is substantially motivated by one's sincerely held religious belief, whether or not the exercise is compulsory or central to a larger system of religious belief.
So the reason doesn't have to pertain to a particular religious doctrine or belief. It can be any peripheral idea you've pulled out of your ass or any other non-religious belief you hold and slap a "religion" label on it.

Who is the arbiter of what belief is "sincerely held?" The court, by default, will become the decider of what is legitimate religious belief and what is not. So much for religious freedom. The law forces the state to define religion - not stay out of it.

What Is Mississippi's Response?

Many of us Mississippians did not support this bill and we are actively standing against it now, sometimes at great personal risk to our family, friendships, and business interests. 
The beginning of our campaign to fight back was to make this sticker available to those who were against the bill and let people see the very real opposition.

We want people to see that it's ok to fight against the radical, conservative religious agenda. It's ok to publicly say, "I'm not going to discriminate against anybody." We wanted to challenge people to stand up to the bigots in our state whether they are at home or at church. We are trying to be powerful agents for change in this state and this is our FIRST step, not our last. We are strongly encouraged by the fact that the AFA has called this sticker a "bullying campaign" because a) it's obviously untrue, and b) it shows we've got them scared.

Is It Good Enough?

I'd hope that people around the country would rally to our cause and encourage us in the fight but, sadly, that's not always the case. When the AFA's comment was covered on Pharyngula, a couple of commenters made the following statements:

1. @5: It’s worse than that. These stickers aren’t calling for a repeal of the “bigotry is allowed” law — they’re just saying that this store chooses not to avail themselves of their God-given right to be bigots. That the bigots take this as bullying of *them*…….defies all attempts at explanation, however desperate.

2. These non-discrimination signs aren’t even very welcoming. They’re basically saying, “Even though we’re not legally required to recognize your humanity, we’ll take your money.” Fuck that whole state off.

Because Mississippi has allowed the AFA and their ilk to define our state image and speak on our behalf for so long, I can understand why these people feel this way. I sympathize strongly with their weariness at our intolerance and willful ignorance. But I feel I must speak up on behalf of the many Mississippians who don't share those views and have been working tirelessly to try to change this state. Our work here is difficult and it's not always very rewarding. Often we see no personal benefit except to know that we are doing what is right.

We do want this law repealed but we can't start the big legal work on that until it takes effect. As for being welcoming, I suppose we could have made signs that said, "Get Your Cute Gay Ass in Here and Spend Some Money!" but that wouldn't have helped our cause much.

Friends, we need your support badly. Instead of looking for fault in what we do, encourage us and help us do it better. This whole state isn't just conservative, religious nutjobs. There are a lot of decent, caring folks here of all stripes and we're working to find our voice.

What Good Is Coming Out of Mississippi?

We are rising up slowly but surely. We are working to pull our state kicking and screaming into the 21st century. We are struggling to liberate our family and friends from the toxicity of the SBC's rule. We are working to change minds and open hearts (figuratively, mind you).

We successfully fought against the 2012 Personhood bill and we'll likely fight that again this year. The struggle is over once you're done reading the article but it continues daily for those of us who live in these trenches.

We're not going to stop until we accomplish our goals. Support us.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

"Life and Death" Over Lunch


There was a time when I thought that those deeply personal medical decisions regarding my uterus and the contents thereof was a matter between my doctor, my husband and me. How silly! There are others who believe that they are far better qualified to decide what happens to my body and they are arguing their case before the Supreme Court right now. In fact, they are telling the Court that their religious freedom is being violated if they cannot control women's bodies! 

There are several angles from which we could discuss this case but I want to discuss the most obvious consequence of these people winning their case: that employers and government officials would be making decisions about your body and your family size for you.

Your Employer

You can always have another kid.
Think about that for a minute...the first person who would have control over your family size and family health is your boss. That's right, your boss. You know that obnoxious asshole who is always looking for a reason to write you up. Or that dipshit who isn't smart enough to do half of what you do. Or maybe that lazy fuck who makes you do the work and then s/he takes all the credit. Yeah, that boss...the one you duck and dodge on a daily basis. The one you badmouth as soon as you get home. 

That's the person who gets to make your first choice because s/he decides what your insurance can cover:

  • Catholic or Evangelical boss - no birth control.
  • Jehovah's Witness boss - no blood transfusions - not even to save your own life.
  • Southern Baptist boss - no coverage for smoking- or alcohol-related illnesses (those two "sins" are mentioned in the church covenant; abortion is not). 
  • Christian Scientist - no medicine for any reason.
  • Vegan/Vegetarian boss - no medications or treatments containing animal parts or tested on animals.
  • Scientologist boss - no mental health coverage (no therapy, no medicine)
  • Anti-Vax boss - no vaccinations.

But wait, you say. There aren't many of those folks around like that. You'll just work for a "normal" employer. Good luck with that! Have you seen the job market lately? All those jobs you think people should just grab simply don't exist any more. It's highly likely that you're going to find yourself stuck in the job you hate with insurance that doesn't meet your needs. So when one of your kids gets cancer and you depend on that insurance to pay for it, your boss might just decide that it's too expensive and cancel cancer coverage. Good luck paying for these treatments and medications without that insurance too. American medical costs are high enough to put millions of people in bankruptcy.

Your Politician

Then there's your second obstacle to freedom: your politicians. Yes, those men and women who are mostly professional liars and fundraisers. You know, those guys that you don't trust with any of your other rights. The folks you keep saying are going to take your guns and turn this into a police state...that's the people you're going to turn your medical freedom over to? The same people who show little to no knowledge of basic biology and have a reckless disregard for facts...those are the ones who get to decide what happens next?

But babies are so cute!
Just think, if I had gotten pregnant a few years ago, I could have invited Roger Wicker and my Catholic boss to lunch and they could have told me how I'd be allowed to handle it. Of course, neither of them would know that pregnancy is a fatal condition for me but I'm sure they'd at least have sent flowers to my funeral. 

Close your eyes for a second and imagine yourself at lunch with your boss and your representative (or governor or whomever). Imagine that you are explaining your family's medical needs to them and hoping that they will allow you to have the coverage you need - the coverage that YOU are paying for. When I think of sitting down like this with Phil Bryant and Hillbilly Joe Blow, it makes me sick.

Your Choice

As I said before, there are stronger and better legal arguments that these cases can be decided on. But all too often we focus on the cold, hard facts without adding a dose of reality. This is your dose of reality: that two of the people you likely mistrust most in the world are a stone's throw away from deciding what kind of medical care you can get. It's not a choice between you, your spouse, and your doctor for much longer. It's going to between the "man" and the "machine" and their profit, not your health, will be the deciding factor.

The Supreme Court will rule however it wills and I'm sure further legal battles will ensue. But the real fight is not in the court - it's on the ground among our family and friends. There are a lot of people out there who call themselves "pro-life" but, when confronted with the reality of the forced birth movement, they take 'pro-choice" positions. We need those people to come out of the closet as it were. The only way that's going to happen is for them to hear from us, to see that we aren't monsters but people who value independence and recognize the superiority of quality over mere quantity.

So if you don't want to discuss your family's life and death over lunch with Alan and the Bossman, then you'd best speak up now.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

What Doctor Who Teaches Us About Gods

Doctor Who Puts Gods to the Test

Although Doctor Who doesn't directly tackle the question, "Does a supreme creator god exist?" it does address the existence of a variety of entitles who claim to be gods. Through these episodes we can see various types of god figures emerge and we see the value of putting their claims to the test. Today we will examine a few of these through the lens of Josh McDowell's "Lord, Liar or Lunatic?" phrase. 

The Callieach's cult prepares to sacrifice the Doctor.

Spoilers ahead. If you haven't watch every single episode of Doctor Who available, you should do that now.

Gods Who Are Lunatics

In Tom Baker's episode "The Face of Evil," we have two very different groups of people worshipping the same god Xoanon. The Sevateem are a warlike band of hunters whose shaman hears Xoanon's voice through a ceremonial headdress. The Tesh are technologically advanced and more peaceful people who are constantly surrounded by the disembodied voice of Xoanon. Although both groups serve the same god, they hear very different messages from him and consider each other enemies.

When the Doctor gets to the root of this mystery, he discovers that Xoanon is not a god in any real sense. He is just a highly advanced computer with a split personality. Once the Doctor fixes the split, Xoanon is whole and the two tribes must learn to work together under the guidance (but not lordship) of this computer.

Not every self-proclaimed god or spokesperson of the gods is sane. Some are truly sick and in need of compassion and care. 

Gods Who Are Liars

In Tom Baker's episode, "The Stones of Blood," we meet a local druidic cult who believes very strongly in a Celtic goddess known as the Callieach. They believe so strongly, in fact, that they perform blood sacrifices to her on the standing stones. After the Doctor runs afoul of the cult leader, the cult even tries to sacrifice him on the stones! Why would a modern day pagan group be willing to perform a human sacrifice? Because they believe their goddess is real and is literally with them. The trouble is that they are almost right.

The Doctor discovers that the entity known as the Callieach is a real person who has been directing the cult and accruing power throughout the centuries. But she is not a god. She is, in fact, an alien criminal who is pretending to be a god. When her deception is revealed to the galactic authorities, the charge of pretending to be a local god is added to her long list of charges. 

Some self-proclaimed gods and spokespeople of the gods are liars. It's just that simple. And like anyone who defrauds the public, they should be brought to justice.

Gods Who Are Lords

Sometimes, gods really do have enormous power. In Jon Pertwee's episode, "The Daemons," an extremely powerful alien named Azal awakens at the behest of a local sorcerer (who is in fact the Master). Azal's power goes far beyond that of even the Time Lords so he can't be defeated by conventional means. Although Azal makes no claims of godhood, his power is so far beyond anything human that he would be a natural candidate for a god or demon (which is what he is called). But even though Azal has tremendous power, he is amoral and cares nothing for the welfare of humanity. He may be a "lord" but he is not worthy of worship.

Likewise, we see the god Sutekh (or Set) appear in Tom Baker's episode, "The Pyramid of Mars." Sutekh was worshipped by the Egyptians and is known for his great evil. He is, in fact, an alien of tremendous power - again, far beyond that of humans or Time Lords - and, as such, cannot be directly defeated. He is possibly one of the most immoral characters ever known. He delights in the suffering and destruction of every living thing. He is the living embodiment of "Might makes Right." He is a lord in terms of power and he has been worshipped and feared throughout the galaxies but he is evil and not worthy of human devotion.

There may be creatures out there who are more powerful than us humans. They may have powers beyond our understanding. But that does not make them good and it does not make them good candidates for our love and obedience. Even if we could prove such an entity exists, we should take great care in choosing whether to give them our reverence and devotion.

Gods Who Are Legend

What about those deities whose names come down to use through culture and tradition? What are we to make of those who may survive the first three tests?

In David Tennant's episode, "The Satan Pit," we come face-to-face with a nightmare that has haunted every living thing throughout space and time. We don't know its real name but we know it's been called Satan on earth and a million other sinister names beyond. It is evil incarnate - not just the act of evil but every dark wish and desire that might spark evil. 

Where does it come from and what is it? The Doctor freely admits that he does not know. What does it mean to come from "beyond time"? 

And so it is with our legends and our insistence that some entity must be the source of all that is good or evil. We may never fully know the origin of some of these myths and we may never fully understand the nature of suffering. But that does not mean that these things are gods or should be worshipped or feared as gods. When confronted with such legendary concepts, we must do as Tennant's Doctor does - we must turn to the people we love and trust in them. Humanity has proven over the centuries that real acts of compassion and love are more valuable and more moral than evil done in the name of any higher power. 

Put Your God to the Test

Do you have a god that you worship and obey? Put him or her to the test. Can you prove that this god exists or is it more likely to fit in one of the above categories? Do you have a good reason to obey this god? Is it really worthy of your worship? Is its record of conduct spotless? How do you know that your god's claims are real? Put yourself in the Doctor's shoes and check it out. Find the truth. 

You owe it to yourself and to us.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Valetines Gift Package

Looking for a Valetines gift idea? Check out this package from Twink A Dinks!

Supplies are limited and going fast, only 7 left at the time of this posting.

Valetines Gift Package

Check it our here

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Announcing our Skepticon-Valetines Fundraiser!

We are at it again - teaming up with Twink-a-Dinks to help raise money for Skepticon!

Chocodinos+February=Yes http://wp.me/p269Ci-144

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Religion Is Not a Mental Illness

Is Religion a Mental Illness?

 A few posts back, I wrote:
Mental illness isn't always determined by what is real. It's often determined by what is a cultural norm. So if you believe you can talk to your ancestor's spirits and they talk back to you, that's ok in a culture that promotes such belief. But if you stray too far outside your culture's beliefs, you may be labeled "mentally ill." If you think Jesus hears you and gives you the strength to get through the day, you're fine! But if you think some other cryptic deity or power guides you and gives you power, you may be insane. Of course, I'm not saying that irrationality equals mental illness - otherwise, we'd all be labeled as insane! But it does seem rather ridiculous that two people can have the same exact symptoms or delusions but only one person gets the label.
I've been doing a lot of thinking since I wrote that and I'm ready to revisit this topic. 

First, we need to understand that mental illness is a rather abstract concept. Different diseases and disorders present in many ways so it's almost impossible to pin the term down precisely. What we can say about mental illness, however, is that it's always involuntary and causes distress, disempowerment, disability, or sometimes even death. Nobody gets up in the morning and decides to become mentally ill. Likewise, no one can end a mental illness by simply deciding to be well.

Mentally ill people may often say and do things that seem irrational to others but are perfectly logical to them. For example, if someone sees or hears something that is not there, they may respond logically as if that hallucination were real. We know now that when people hallucinate, their brain is working as if the stimuli were real. So if I were to hear a voice behind me say, "Hey, Tweenky!" then I would respond logically by looking back and saying, "What?" because, to my brain, someone really said that. An onlooker would find it puzzling to say the least.

We often make the mistake of thinking that irrationality is the key to mental illness but, as you can see above, this simply isn't so. Irrationality is something we all share - it's part of the human condition. So we cannot say that an irrational person is mentally ill by virtue of being irrational. That would label us all! So what we need to understand is that most irrationality isn't due to illness - it's due to our brains being very prone to mistakes.

That's where religion comes in. The superstitious and irrational elements of religion are almost always due to errors of thinking rather than organic dysfunction. Certainly, the two may be combined in interesting or dangerous ways but they are largely independent. Most people get their religion from their parents and so they are taught in their earliest years that some magic is real and some magic is not. For example, a typical American Evangelical will teach his child that Jesus is real, he works miracles, he listens to your prayers, and he's coming back. That same parent will also teach his child that fairies, wizards, leprechauns, and such are myths that shouldn't be taken seriously. The fact that most such children grow up believing in Jesus but disregarding the old myths is very telling. The ability to discern the difference shows that the child can reason but is working with faulty information and does not have the tools available to self-correct.

Think of your brain as a computer. If the software you are running is written properly (rationally), then you'll get a desired and useful result. If the software is not written properly (irrationally), then your program will crash. When a program crashes, you can either keep running the program and insist that it works (cognitive dissonance) or you can fix the error and try again (skepticism). But what if the operating system itself is messed up? Then it doesn't matter what state the software is in because the brain isn't communicating correctly with its parts (mental illness).

I don't know if that analogy makes as much sense in writing as it does in my head but I'm trying to say that we must differentiate between a faulty brain and a mistaken brain. This is why religious rituals and behavior, no matter how bizarre to an outsider, cannot rightly be assumed to be functions of mental illness. 

Now I know there are many atheists who claim that religion is a mental illness either in earnest or in jest. I'd like for them to consider that this statement is not helpful to either mentally ill atheists or to mentally able theists. It labels both groups as "other" and "crazy" which tends to drive people away. Certainly, the religious engage in behaviors that are irrational and, let's be honest, downright hilarious. But we can mock that without bringing illness into it. 

Remember, those theists aren't a bunch of nutjobs no matter how silly they may seem to you. They are people who are operating with bad information and they often can't or won't fix the problem. Remember also, that you too (just like me) operate under bad information in other areas. If you want people to help you think more rationally, then you need to be willing to help others do the same.

Also, remember that we mentally ill atheists aren't a bunch of nutjobs either. We are people with an illness that science currently can't fix 100%. And yes, some of us come into the world with both mental illness and indoctrination. We have to work extra hard to fix our software problems. We need your help and support - not your scorn (unintended though it may be).

So no, religion isn't a mental illness. It's a software malfunction and we all can work together to help everybody get their code written better. Some need less help. Others need more. The only real question is are you going to help?

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

"I Just Probably Smashed His Face to Hell" (The Tragedy of Kelly Thomas)

The Tragedy of Kelly Thomas

The following video contains disturbing imagery - especially at the 3:48 minute mark. I'm going to ask you to go beyond your normal boundaries and watch it anyway because this happened to a fellow human being. Perhaps if we can bring ourselves to cry, vomit, or react in some uncomfortable enough way, we will do something to stop this.

The schizophrenic man's name was Kelly Thomas. He wasn't being violent. He wasn't hurting anyone. This fatal beating was his punishment for being mentally ill. What punishment did the offending cops get for being morally ill and murdering him? Nothing. A jury let them off.

When I look at Kelly's battered face, all I can see are those awful, bloody tampons in his nose. They are so much like the ones I had in my nose when I had that posterior nosebleed during pregnancy. I can't shake the image in my head of these two cops beating this man so badly that the artery in the back of his nasal cavity broke. And that's not the worst of his injuries apparently. I can't shake the sound of him screaming "Help me!" and the thought of him screaming for his father. This is going to haunt me the rest of my life because one day it may be me.

Let that sink in, those of you who know me. There is no reason why this can't happen to me. If my medication stops working and someone calls the police, they may beat me to death or shoot me in my living room. Who will punish them? No one, apparently. Why? Because I'm mentally ill and, apparently, I deserve what I get.

Let that sink in, those of you have friends and family members who are mentally ill or have autism. There's no room in the world for us where the cops and juries are concerned. We're in the way. We're a liability. It's ok for us to be murdered.

We failed Kelly Thomas. We failed Keith Vidal. We've failed countless other unnamed people.

If this video won't convince us to protect the mentally ill, then  I don't know what will. 

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

"We Don't Have Time for This" (In Memory of Keith Vidal)

Inspired by the story of Keith Vidal...

a young man with schizophrenia who was killed by police in his home, in front of his parents, after he had been subdued (according to news reports).


No time for your sorrow,
No time for your sleep,
No time for you to rage,
No time for you to weep.

No time for your low,
No time for your high,
No time for you to cut,
Or attempt to just die.

No time for your confusion,
No time for your fear,
No time for your delusions,
I wish you weren't here.

No time for your family
No time for your friends
But time enough there is
To bring your life to an end.