Faking a Bigfoot Sighting Can Get You Killed

I tend to get a lot of flack for being too skeptical, but here’s another story showing why I’m usually more right than wrong. BoingBoing.net has a story about a man who wanted to start his own Bigfoot hoax and subsequently was run over on a highway dressed like an idiot. Is there a more embarrassing way to die?

It’s both tragic and funny at the same time. Randy Lee Tenley thought his best chance for cryptozoological fame was to wear a “military-style camouflage ghillie suit” and went walking on the highway. Perhaps he just liked a good joke at the expense of the gullible. It’s too bad he didn’t use some commonsense (which isn’t as common as we think).

By this time, I would think people would have given up on the Bigfoot myth. If new evidence comes in, sure, we can examine it,  but there has been no good evidence found since the first claims of an upright man-like beast prowling in the northwest. It is also a claim that doesn’t have any bearing in science. With all the other possibilities of finding unknown species on land or water, alive or extinct, why waste our time with Bigfoot…except to maybe make a couple of horror movies for the fun of it?


Circumcision is Still Cutting Something Off

Yahoo News has an article on “5 Things You Didn’t Know About Circumcision” (well, yes, some of us did) which leads in by saying that circumcision lowers the risk of HIV transmission as well as other venereal diseases. I’m not going to dispute that this may be true based on the foreskin being a moist area where infections can easily start. I will, however, dispute the idea of cutting off a part of the genitals to solve the problem of sexually-transmitted diseases. It’s a bad reason to cut off part of your body. And why are we afraid of an infant getting a sexually-transmitted disease? Isn’t circumcision of a newborn being a bit too proactive if this is the reason (how many infants have had their penis cut by circumcision mistakes?)

Think about this. If medical science articles came out that the female hood for the clitoris due to moisture increases the chances of a venereal disease–do you think parents would start cutting that off too? Per this article, the hood for the clitoris is the equivalent of the male foreskin and actually develops from the same tissue in the womb. The purpose is the same, to cover a particularly sensitive area of the genitals.

The reason for circumcision is tradition (a herd mentality) and pointlessly so as gentiles were never required to perform circumcision. It’s Biblically unsound unless you’re Jewish. Paul teaches circumcision is spiritual, not physical and is no longer necessary. This seems to be the overall message after the gospels including other Jewish traditions thrown out the window (like forbidden meats).

So why do American Christian parents keep circumcising their kids? For no justified reason at all except that they worry their kid’s dick will look funny to others if it’s not chopped off like the others. I’m not being sarcastic here, though, it’s morbidly funny. Remember the Seinfeld episode where Elaine and Jerry were talking about if either of them had ever seen one that was not circumcised and it creeped them out.  If every guy had an uncircumcised penis it would no longer be strange. It would be normalized.

The other possible reason American Christians might have started chopping is that the foreskin can increase sexual pleasure, especially when the hormones hit and teenage boys start masturbating.

There are no good reasons to chop your kid’s penis. He can make that decision later on and with a little anesthesia fix it the way he wants.  This is nothing more than genital mutilation on babies who can’t object because parents  have an ideal of what a dick should look like (I guess God just likes to attach useless skin to the genitals so we can have the fun of cutting it off?).

SIDENOTE: As for secular reasons, if medical science suddenly came out and said that circumcision will prevent venereal diseases including HIV by over 70 percent, that would be a statistic to pay attention to. I would still be in the camp that says not to circumcise an infant though. An infant is not sexually active. If we’re going to have a circumcision tradition then it should be at the age of 14 to 16 or the supposed “age of manhood” such as what was mentioned about Egyptian tradition in the article. We should also be encouraging the use of condoms, but ultimately, before having sex with a partner, it’s a damn good idea to get tested. Yes, it ruins the mood, but the mood is even worse when you get genital herpes or some other horrible affliction down there.

SIDENOTE 2: I was always told circumcision was necessary for male cleanliness. Moisture can cause infections. What is not mentioned is the other parts that have moisture issues. Per this Health and Human Services descriptionMost STD germs need to live in warm, moist areas. That’s why they infect the mouth, rectum and sex organs (vaginal vulva, penis and scrotum). The vagina seems to be an especially sensitive area. The point being that, again, the solution is not to mutilate the area but treat it. Our bodies have numerous “moist” areas that need to be cleaned.

It’s ‘Facts of Life’ Christian Gal on Survivor

I wouldn’t even think this was worth mentioning on Freethunk if it were not for an appalling interview I heard between Dr. James Dobson and Lisa Whelchel on the radio. Lisa Whelchel, if you do not already know, played rich girl Blair Warner on the eighties comedy Facts of Life. After her sitcom wound down and ended she married a pastor and became an outspoken Christian mom and an advocate of home schooling. Now she is going to be the next contestant on Survivor when the show goes to the Philippines.

Apparently, she’s been a fan of the show since season 1. “I love the game and was born to play it.” I haven’t watched Survivor since season two, but as I recall part of the game is about building alliances and deceit–oh, and eating god’s creation (bugs). I guess Christians can play too.

Once I saw the article on Yahoo.com I knew we would be hearing about her dedicated Christian mothering in the news items and press releases.  I don’t object to her being herself and talking about her religion or being a mom, I’m noting it because it because she is embraced by guys like James Dobson. I do object to him. In the radio interview I heard, Dobson went over her life after Facts of Life and kept steering the conversation with Lisa back to women staying in the home and being bible-bound mothers–even when it didn’t seem relevant to what Lisa was talking about and in the end Lisa paid lip service to Dobson’s antiquated ideas about women. James Dobson is an old-fashioned chauvinist who masks his biblically based ideas as psychology and family counseling. In his view women are equal to men, but men are in charge (or rather, “more equal” than women).

Now as a man myself, that idea sounds kind of fun–ordering my equal-woman partner to stay home, have kids, cook dinner and tidy up the kitchen. But in this economy, in the way we’ve been savaged by home budgets, mortgages and debt, both man and woman (or man and man for you gay couples) are required to work. It’s not a choice. Old-fashioned ideas are out the door. And what woman, with a taste of freedom, is going to want to be known as a homemaker? Even homemakers would prefer to be known for something other than homemaking like blogging about homemaking or crafts or running a side business. In other words, raising kids is important but it’s not a complete identity. It’s also a pain in the ass. However, Dobson’s ideas are that a woman is joyfully submissive both to her husband–as head of the household–and to her kids. With that kind of sacrifice, you might as well nail a woman to a cross.

It’s doubtful you will hear criticism of Lisa’s ideas on submissive homemaking on and embrace of the religious right. You’ll be hearing how pretty she is after all this time. Just check out the comments on Yahoo’s article.

SIDENOTE: James Dobson is also a big homophobe, if you didn’t guess that already. Surprisingly though, he believes in evolution, much to the chagrin of creationists.

SIDENOTE 2: Since Lisa’s kids are all grown up and living their own lives I suspect we will see Lisa acting again and this time in the new wave of Christian movies.


60, Instructions from Shadows

Whew, sorry I was gone for a week. I didn’t get a chance to put out a “on hold” message for The Littlest Atheist. I finally finished a big animation project so I can move on and pay more attention to the Littlest Atheist and other comics projects. Eventually need to get some of the first stories put out on Kindle.

This shadow organization will be revealed more and more as we progress here. Needless to say, Bertrand is unaware of them but may soon be.