Weekly Update: to

Here’s your Canadian Atheist Weekly Update for to .

[A cartoon of God working on a typewriter, with an angel saying, "So... you wrote yourself into the story as the misunderstood, persecuted main character who dies to save everyone?" God replies: "What? You're a literary critic now?"]

Jesus is the ultimate Gary Stu.

  • [] “Correlation CAN Imply Causation! | Statistics Misconceptions” (Video: 4:11)

    “Correlation does not imply causation” is a mantra repeated by nonbelievers… but it turns out that’s not necessarily true!

  • [] Paula Simons: Canada defined by inclusion, says Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin

    It’s no secret that I’m a bit of a McLachlin fanboy, but this article should justify that. There is a certain subset of atheists who argue that multiculturalism – or rather, their straw man version of it – is some kind of failed experiment, and a bad idea in general (this despite all the actual data that shows the opposite). McLachlin explains that the opposite is true; they reason Canada has managed to avoid most of the hate and strife in the US and Europe is because of that simple principle: whenever it does not clearly violate our principles, always lean toward tolerance and inclusion.

  • [] Why Canada Missed its Best Chance to Deradicalize the Alt-Right

    That we’ve been ignoring right-wing extremism with a blinkered focused on Islamist extremism is old news now. But this piece points out that this irrational bias has actually helped Islamist recruitment.

  • [] Jagmeet Singh Explains Why He Didn’t Tell That Heckler He’s Sikh, Not Muslim

    As mentioned in another item NDP leadership candidate Jagmeet Singh masterfully deflected a heckler trying to disrupt his speech with anti-Muslim rhetoric… even though Singh is Sikh. Singh’s brilliant move, though, was not to point that out… because even though it’s technically true, it’s irrelevant.

  • [] Sikh Canadian Politician Brilliantly Foils Racist Woman During Event

    A woman tried to disrupt a speech by NDP leadership candidate Jagmeet Singh, accusing him of promoting sharia law and working with the Muslim Brotherhood (Singh is a Sikh, not a Muslim), and Singh masterfully drowned her out by getting the audience to chant his campaign slogan, “With Love & Courage”. What major news sources didn’t report was that this woman is Jennifer Bush, member of Rise Canada, who has been photographed at numerous hate events. She has since done interviews trying to justify herself.

  • [] Province of Ontario intervenes in TWU case

    This week the wonderful news broke that the government of Ontario was intervening in the TWU law school case… againstTWU. And their factum is a thing of beauty. My favourite point is that they are argue that while TWU’s religious beliefs (assuming an organization can even have beliefs) may say “homosexuality is wrong”… they don’t say “you must stop people from being gay”. It’s a really subtle thing, which makes it so awesome; TWU can’t claim their religious right to discriminate is being violated when they don’t have a religious belief requiring them to discriminate in the first place.

  • [] What happens when an ISIS member returns to Canada? The story of one Toronto-area man

    Dozens of Canadians have travelled abroad to join terrorist groups… and then returned. Many return disillusioned – Daesh isn’t the heroic utopia they imagined it to be. So what next? Not an easy question. But the humane answer seems to be to help them complete their recovery from their radicalization.

  • [] IHEU defends freedom to wear religious dress, at OSCE

    Oh, snap. For years I’ve been writing about how stupid and unjust a ban on wearing religious symbols is. The Supreme Court of Canada agreed with me, but that still wasn’t enough to dissuade proponents. Well, now the IHEU has stepped in. Is there any major SHAFT group still backing this horrible idea?

  • [] Organizations don’t have a religion

    The BCHA has shared their factum in the TWU law school case. As the title implies, they’ve focused on the argument that organizations don’t have beliefs – or if they do, they shouldn’t be given the same protections as personal beliefs. The BCHA’s concerns are far broader than just the current case; hidden between the lines are concerns about religious hospitals being able to deny abortions, medical assistance in dying, and so on. I honestly can’t decide which factum I like better – I love Ontario’s laser-focus on precisely what’s wrong with TWU’s particular case, but the BCHA’s arguments’ universal nature makes them so much more important in the long run.

  • [] Want To Disrupt Racism? Change Your Everyday Behaviour

    It’s an indisputable fact that we all have a few racist biases we’ve picked up along the way; that’s simply an unavoidable consequence of living in a society steeped in racism. The best way to fight racism is simply to follow the advice of “SJWs” and “check your privilege”. If we all turned our skeptical lenses on ourselves, and watched alertly for racist biases in our thinking – which can be very subtle – we could go a long way toward truly eliminating racism.

  • [] “Punching Nazis… With The Law!”(Audio: 48:14)

    This dude’s story is incredible; seriously, this cast is definitely worth a listen.

  • [] “Creative writing” by Andrés Diplotti (Flea Snobbery)

    The Bible actually makes a lot more sense if you look at it this way. Also, this cartoon actually has an even funnier sequel.

  • [] “Conspiracy Theorists Just Want to be Special Snowflakes” (Video: 4:54)

    I mentioned this study in last week’s WU, but Skepchick’s Rebecca Watson digs way deeper into it, and reveals an absolute fascinating, if crazy, result.

  • [] This Controversial Alt-Right Group Is Recruiting on Canadian Campuses

    Hate in Canada is generally not coming up from the States, but is instead being imported from Europe.

  • [] The Trinity case isn’t about religion. It’s about whether our laws matter.

    You’ve likely heard all manner of atheist perspectives on the TWU law school case. Well, it’s always good to peek out of the echo chamber and see what others are saying, so, check this out. Coren concludes that it’s not atheists pushing Christianity out of public life, but rather (conservative) Christians themselves. I’d say he’s right.

  • [] Catholic sexual abuse partly caused by secrecy and mandatory celibacy, report finds

    This is a round up results from over two dozen royal commissions, including Canadian.

  • [] “AAAAH” by Zach Weinersmith (Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal)

    This is what it feels like trying to deal with people repeating the myth that “the left”/“the West”/etc. actually tolerate Islamic fundamentalist bullshit, or that they refuse to criticize it. I ask for just one name, just one organization that actually fits that trope… just one… and of course, no one can give me a single name… but they all still think it must be true because they’ve heard it so many times!

  • [] Forbidden Intersectionality: Liberal + (Ex) Muslim

    Fresh off her fantastic Cracked interview (featured in last week’s WU), Eiynah of Nice Mangos expands on some of the ideas there.

  • [] On the limits of tolerance

    Jade Saab offers an interesting three-part plan to deal with the abuse of “free speech” by bigots. Saab admits the plan is somewhat radical – it includes expanding hate speech laws to criminalize racist groups. What do you think?

  • [] Study Shows Censoring Hate Speech Works

    Another item in this week’s update mentions a proposal to expand hate speech laws to include racist groups. That suggestion probably triggers a lot people, for whom any restrictions on free speech are anathema. But here is real, scientific evidence that… it actually works. So here’s the dilemma… if you want to stamp out bigotry, do you actually put your money where your mouth is and do what the evidence says works… or do you stick to ideology, even when it’s unjustified by the data? Hell of a sticky problem!

  • [] Quebec police probe possible cases of child sexual abuse in Jehovah’s Witnesses congregation

    The particular charges are terrible, but read deeper, and you find several horrifying facts about the JWs’ failure to report these crimes to police. There are 30 steps a JW has to follow before they can testify in court about child abuse. And in Australia, over 1,000 people were accused of child abuse… none of them were reported.

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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