Sunday, August 17, 2014

Featured Meetup - Food Bank Volunteering


The Oklahoma Atheists meetup group has grown by leaps and bounds since our first meetup back in January 2003. We'd like to share some of what we do with other atheist groups that are on the upswing and looking for ideas that go a bit beyond the usual communal dining.

VOLUNTEERING!

Once a month we send a group of godless bleeding hearts to the regional food bank to do, well, whatever it is that they need us to do that day. Yesterday morning, that meant bagging and sealing and boxing an incomprehensible amount of frozen sliced zucchini. (Actually, it was only 5,400 lbs.)

The general idea is to find a local secular cause (one you can support) that has an open process for group volunteering on a regular basis. This means you may well find yourselves working across from church volunteer groups, at least some of the time, which can lead to heartwarming dialogue or cold stares.

If you have other ideas for group volunteering, please leave them in the comments below.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Podcast #104 - Conor Robinson

Conor takes a break from building latrines in Haiti

Last week the Godcasters had the privilege of spending some time with Conor Robinson of the Pathfinders Project, a group that seeks to put humanism in action through international service. We covered a wide range of topics, including a few that you might not expect. Conor is really a great guy, and we look forward to hearing more from him at FreeOK 2014.

Share and enjoy!

Links to the podcast archives:
iTunes ] [ RSS ] [ HTML ]

Monday, May 12, 2014

Podcast #103 - Adam Brown

This week's guest is Adam Brown, an artist with a magnetic personality and an altruistic soul. Brown has helped Amanda Brown create We Are Atheism where they share personal stories from atheists coming out of the closet and much more. Adam created Atheism Resource which is a hub of information regarding evolution, psychology, history and the bible. And you can find Adam's art here where Damion is going to submit his request to commission a painting of Julia Sweeney. In this episode we talk about Adam's art, the work he does with his wife, the Atheists Giving Aid campaign and his amazing Atheist Super Highway analogy.

Direct link.

Share and enjoy!
Links to the podcast archives:
iTunes ] [ RSS ] [ HTML ]

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Podcast #102 - Miranda Celeste Hale

The Oklahoma Atheists Godcast is on a 2 week streak of releasing podcasts now. This is a bona fide flurry of production because we've got MC Hale following Karen Stollznow's appearance on the show. In this episode, Hale tells all about growing up in a Catholic school and let's us know that all those evil characteristics I have bestowed up on the Church have merit. 

Show note: just like last week, the conversation goes in to a dark place even as our interviewee is seemingly a happy-go-lucky person so I have to wonder what kind of interviewers we are.

Direct link.

Share and enjoy!

Links to the podcast archives:
iTunes ] [ RSS ] [ HTML ]

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Podcast #101 - Karen Stollznow

The Godcasters had a delightful time interviewing Karen Stollznow this week about her latest book, God Bless America: Strange and Unusual Religious Beliefs and Practices in the United States. We had a fun preparing for this interview and she blew away my expectations for the podcast. God Bless America covers Scientologists, Amish, Mormons, Voodoo practitioners, Satanists and Charismatics, describing what they believe and what the consequences of their practices are.

Karen Stollznow is a linguist, contributor at Skeptical Inquirer, JREF fellow, and a host of Monster Talk as well as many other distinctions that seem to stretch on and on. This was a big time interview for us so I hope you share and enjoy!

Direct link.

Links to the podcast archives:
iTunes ] [ RSS ] [ HTML ]

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

The House is Busy

HB 1674, The Science Education and Academic Freedom Act, has passed the house with an overwhelming majority of votes and has now been read by the Senate.

The summary of the bill is as follows:
The measure requires the State Board of Education, district boards of education and administrators to endeavor to create an environment that encourages students to explore scientific questions and respond appropriately to differences of opinion about controversial issues. Educational authorities will endeavor to assist teachers to find more effective ways to present the science curriculum where it addresses scientific controversies and teachers will be permitted to help students analyze the scientific strengths and weaknesses of existing scientific theories. No student will be penalized because the student subscribes to a particular position on scientific theories.
The wording is all very broad including "education authorities" (which could be the Discovery Institute???) but the main thrust of this bill is to allow for teachers to help students analyze certain scientific controversies. Also, I'm afraid that teachers may misinterpret this line:
Students may be evaluated based upon their understanding of course materials, but no student in any public school or institution shall be penalized in any way because the student may subscribe to a particular position on scientific theories.
Of course, no students should be graded based on their personal opinions but they MUST, not "may", be evaluated based on their understanding of all of the scientific references. This necessitates that the curriculum be appropriate and this act is no help. Please contact the Senate Education Committee and inform them that you would rather our government work to strengthen the education system instead of cut the legs out from under it.

And please do so quickly. Our government is in a great hurry.