Friday, July 11, 2008

8 Tammuz 5768: National Slurpee Day/World Population Day/Day of the Five Billion


Worthy causes of the day: “Object to Privacy-Invading FISA Law”, “Stop the Polar Bear Whitewash”, and “World Leaders Must Fulfill Their Promise”.

Relevant to Divine Misconceptions:
  1. “New legal threat to teaching evolution in the US”: Apparently some people do not understand the concepts of critical thinking and academic freedom or are willing to indulge in Orwellian distortions of language in order to encourage belief in creationism. If I have not said it before, I will say it now: religion is supposed to be about truth. It is hypocritical to lie in order to get people to believe what is allegedly the truth.
  2. On Wednesday, I explained that “if it is natural, it is good” is a moral fallacy.  Also relevant to the discussion of sexuality and morality is “Bisexual Species: Unorthodox Sex in the Animal Kingdom”, which discusses the prevalence of homosexuality among non-human animals in the wild and in captivity and the reasons for its existence.  Noted also is the fluidity of human sexuality.  While it is common these days for people to pigeonhole themselves and others as “heterosexual”, “homosexual”, “bisexual”, and certain less-popular categories, these categories at best only approximate people’s actual behavior; people do not always behave in accordance with the category by which they classify themselves or others classify them, and the lines between categories are regularly crossed in certain situations.  One cannot therefore assume one is permanently fixed in a specific category, which has two moral consequences:  1)  One cannot make the plea that one is predestined to behave strictly according to one category.  Granted, few, if any, humans can switch categories solely at will, and many may never switch, but the potential for change may be there.  2)  One cannot assume one will never find oneself tempted to do anything in a forbidden category.  Granted, temptation is not the same thing as acting on temptation, and many will never be seriously tempted to do certain actions, but the wise are aware of their own potential weaknesses so they may guard against them.
Today’s news and commentary:Today’s weird things are Mark Melchior's Cigar Box Guitars, a much better use for cigar boxes than holding death sticks. Enjoy, share the weirdness, and Shabbath shalom.

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