SkepSun #126 (02_15_2015)

After analyzing Obama’s Prayer Breakfast remarks and chastising the “lovely couple” Antonin Scalia and Judge Roy Moore for resisting gay marriage, Annie Laurie Gaylor and Dan Barker announce a new federal lawsuit over religious proselytizing by teachers in a Georgia school. They also celebrate the birthday of Susan B. Anthony and hear the freethought love song “It’s Only Natural,” then  talk with the leading feminist author, activist, blogger, radio host and atheist Robin Morgan about the plight of women in today’s religion-drenched society. Tragically, three young muslims were shot and killed in their home in Chapel Hill, NC last week. The man charged, one Craig Stephen Hicks, 46, identified as an atheist on his Facebook page and some are suggesting that the “New Atheism” promulgated by authors like Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens may have provided motivation for a hate crime.  We’ll listen to a segment of  “All In” which aired on MSNBC on which host Chris Hayes interviews atheist commentator Jamila Bey and muslim and Daily Beast columnist Dean Obeidallah. At the top of the next hour, Gordon Bonnet of Skeptophilia has a look at the absurdities those are led to who insist on Biblical literalism.  We’ll hear a column of his from last week entitled “Loveliest of all was the Unicorn.” Then did Brian Williams, suspended without pay for six months from his job as anchor of the NBC nightly news  lie, exaggerate, or misremember his experience in Iraq?  Is it possible that we all misremembered and confabulate details that are factually wrong?  More worrisome yet, can false memories be implanted in our heads by others? David McRaney on the You Are Not So Smart Podcast talks with two psychologists, Daniel Simons of the U. of Illinois and Julia Shaw of the University of Bedfordshire in the U.K.

Dr. Julia Shaw of the University of Bedfordshire, psychologist studying false memories.

Dr. Julia Shaw of the University of Bedfordshire, psychologist studying false memories.

 

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