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    Florida Teachers Indoctrinated with Christian Nationalism

    12 GIU 2024 · Florida civics teachers are still being indoctrinated with Christian Nationalism Friendly Atheist, By Hemant Mehta, on MAY 29, 2024 https://www.friendlyatheist.com/p/florida-civics-teachers-are-still?utm_source=share&utm_medium=android&r=oa4eg&triedRedirect=true  Governor DeSantis' program is part of a broader effort to reshape the educational landscape in Florida. By offering monetary rewards, the state encourages teachers to undergo training that aligns with Christian nationalist principles. The courses aim to transform educators into advocates for these religious ideals, effectively turning them into missionaries within the public school system. The program has sparked a heated debate. Critics argue that it blurs the line between church and state, undermining the secular nature of public education. They express concerns that this initiative could lead to the indoctrination of students and marginalize those from diverse religious backgrounds. The fear is that schools, which should be neutral grounds for learning, might become platforms for religious proselytization. Supporters of the program, on the other hand, argue that it promotes a set of moral values and community cohesion. They believe that integrating these principles into education can help build stronger, more virtuous citizens. Proponents see the initiative as a way to counteract what they perceive as a decline in moral standards within the education system. However, the implications of this program extend beyond the classroom. It reflects a growing trend of religious influence in public institutions, raising broader questions about the future of educational neutrality. This shift could lead to increased polarization, as schools become battlegrounds for ideological conflicts. The controversy underscores the ongoing struggle to balance religious freedom with the principles of a secular state, particularly in the realm of public education. As Florida continues to implement these changes, the rest of the country watches closely. The outcome could set a precedent for other states grappling with similar issues. The debate over this program highlights the enduring tension between different visions of education and the role of religion in public life. The Non-Prophets, Episode 23.23.2 featuring Scott Dickie, Kara Griffin, Cindy Plaza and Jason Friedman
    18 min. 19 sec.
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    Texas Gov: Millions & Anti-LGBTQ+ Rhetoric to Defund Schools

    10 GIU 2024 · Texas’ governor is spending millions & using anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric to defund public education LGBTQ Nation, By Daniel Villarreal , on May 24, 2024 https://www.lgbtqnation.com/2024/05/texas-governor-is-spending-millions-using-anti-lgbtq-rhetoric-to-defund-public-education/  In Texas, Governor Greg Abbott is promoting a school voucher program to redirect taxpayer funds to private schools, aiming to enhance parental choice. Abbott's push faces resistance, even within his own party. He argues parents should support vouchers to avoid LGBTQ+ teachers educating their children, despite past legislative failures. The program's supporters say it expands parental rights by financially supporting private school attendance. Critics claim it undermines public schools and worsens inequality. Abbott's campaign involves substantial financial backing for pro-voucher candidates, targeting GOP dissenters. Jason Friedman likens Abbott's campaign to a business operation aimed at consolidating power. Cindy traces the GOP's effort to weaken public education to the Reagan era, noting Texas ranks low in educational attainment. She argues Abbott's rhetoric is a distraction from real issues like underfunding. Kara discusses the social impact, arguing the fear of LGBTQ+ teachers is baseless and manipulative. The panel also suggests Abbott's campaign might lead to lawsuits against public schools over race and LGBTQ+ issues, potentially influencing Supreme Court rulings. Overall, the Texas voucher debate intertwines political maneuvering, financial interests, and ideological battles, with significant implications for education's future. The Non-Prophets, Episode 23.23.1 featuring Scott Dickie, Kara Griffin, Cindy Plaza and Jason Friedman
    23 min. 45 sec.
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    Desantis has Beef with Lab Meat

    8 GIU 2024 · Florida lab-grown meat ban: DeSantis says it protects beef industry USA Today, By Ana Goñi-Lessan, Dan Rorabaugh and Mike Snider, on May 5, 2024 https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/food/2024/05/05/florida-lab-grown-meat-ban/73569976007/  Today's spotlight falls on Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, a figure who seems to have a knack for stirring up controversy. As we delve into the fray, we learn of DeSantis' latest tangle, this time with the cultivated meat industry. In a state known for its vibrant agriculture and culinary scene, DeSantis' beef with cultivated meat might seem like just another day in the Sunshine State's political theater. However, this particular skirmish appears to be misdirected, raising questions about the governor's priorities and understanding of emerging industries. As we dive deeper into the cultivated meat controversy, it becomes clear that DeSantis' stance is more than just a spat over semantics. It's a clash between tradition and innovation, with implications for the future of food production and environmental sustainability. From the marbled halls of Florida's Capitol to the cutting-edge labs of cultured meat startups, the battle lines are drawn. DeSantis finds himself at odds with a burgeoning industry poised to disrupt the status quo. But amidst the political posturing and media frenzy, it's important to remember the stakes at hand. Cultivated meat represents not just a culinary curiosity, but a potential solution to some of the most pressing challenges facing our planet, from climate change to food insecurity. As we shed light on DeSantis' beef with cultivated meat, we're reminded of the complexities of governance in an era of rapid technological advancement. And as the episode draws to a close, we're left pondering the age-old question: will tradition prevail, or will innovation carve out a new path forward? The Non-Prophets, Episode 23.22.4 featuring Kelley Laughlin, Eli Slack, Jimmy Jr. and Cynthia McDonald
    19 min. 17 sec.
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    Harrison Butker Shanks his Commencement Speech

    7 GIU 2024 · Harrison Butker speech: The biggest mistake he made in his controversial commencement comments CNN, By AJ Willingham, on May 17, 2024 https://www.cnn.com/2024/05/16/sport/harrison-butker-commencement-speech-analysis-cec/index.html In this episode we confront the unsettling reality of misogyny through the lens of one individual: Harrison Butker. Amidst societal shifts and growing awareness of gender issues, Butker's words emerge as a stark reminder of the pervasive nature of sexism and its impact on discourse. With each utterance, Butker reveals the depths of his misogyny, weaving a tapestry of gendered insults and demeaning remarks. His rhetoric serves as a damning indictment of toxic masculinity, perpetuating harmful stereotypes and reinforcing oppressive power dynamics. As we dissect Butker's misogynistic musings, we're confronted with the ugly truth of gender-based discrimination. Each statement becomes a painful reminder of the systemic barriers faced by women in society, from the workplace to the home. Butker's words not only reflect his own warped worldview but also serve as a call to action for broader societal change. Through his verbal assaults, we're reminded of the urgent need to dismantle patriarchal structures and create a more equitable world for all. As the episode draws to a close, we're left with a sense of outrage and determination, a reminder that misogyny has no place in our discourse or our society. And as we reflect on Butker's hateful rhetoric, we're galvanized to stand up against sexism in all its forms, ensuring that voices of hate are drowned out by the chorus of progress and equality. The Non-Prophets, Episode 23.22.3 featuring Kelley Laughlin, Eli Slack, Jimmy Jr. and Cynthia McDonald
    20 min. 6 sec.
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    Lawmaker Wants to Teach Myths in Science Class

    5 GIU 2024 · MN lawmaker: Public schools engage in 'censorship' by not teaching Creationism The Friendly Atheist, By Hemant Mehta, on May 07, 2024 https://www.friendlyatheist.com/p/mn-lawmaker-public-schools-engage In this episode  the hosts discuss a heated debate over an education bill in Minnesota, introduced by Republican State Senator Glenn Grunhagen. The bill, known as SF 3567, aims to prevent book banning by school districts. However, Grunhagen opposes a section of the bill that would allow parents and librarians to restrict material for students, provided the restrictions are not based on viewpoint or content. Grunhagen, a known climate change denier and Christian nationalist, argues that liberals support censorship when it suits their agenda. He draws a parallel between this bill and the exclusion of creationism from science classes, framing both as censorship. Grunhagen's background and previous attempts to introduce creationist views into school curricula are discussed, highlighting his persistent efforts to infuse his religious beliefs into public education. Cynthia critiques Grunhagen's flawed reasoning, pointing out his reliance on outdated creationist arguments like the cosmological argument and the watchmaker analogy. She shares a personal anecdote about her past belief in similar reasoning and underscores the importance of teaching evolution and critical thinking skills in schools. The conversation shifts to the bill's implications. While some see it as a necessary measure to protect intellectual freedom, others worry about its potential to limit children's access to diverse information. The hosts agree that critical thinking and access to information are crucial for students' development. They debate whether decisions about educational content should rest with individuals or committees, emphasizing the need for oversight to prevent biased decision-making. Jimmy expands on the broader political context, noting the rise of aggressive tactics and mob-like behavior among certain conservative factions. He underscores the importance of maintaining a separation between religion and government, lamenting the influence of figures like David Barton, who distort historical and scientific facts to fit their agendas. Cynthia echoes these concerns, expressing hope that rationality will prevail but acknowledging the persistent push from certain groups to undermine scientific education. She highlights the broader societal implications of this trend, warning that replacing factual education with religious ideology could hinder future generations' ability to navigate an increasingly complex world. The episode wraps up with a reflection on the importance of qualified oversight in educational decisions, ensuring that children's access to knowledge is not unduly restricted by individual biases. The hosts agree that while the bill has its flaws, its intent to safeguard intellectual freedom is a step in the right direction. The Non-Prophets, Episode 23.22.2 featuring Kelley Laughlin, Eli Slack, Jimmy Jr. and Cynthia McDonald
    21 min. 26 sec.
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    First Books, Now Art: GOP's New School Ban

    3 GIU 2024 · A GOP school board member tried to ban a student's art for being 'offensive' to Christians The Advocate Mag, By Ryan Adamczeski, on May 9, 2024 https://www.advocate.com/news/virginia-augusta-school-board-gay-art The panel delved into the story of Abby Driscoll, a queer student at Fort Defiance High School in Virginia, whose artwork sparked significant controversy. Driscoll's piece depicted praying hands holding a red rosary, surrounded by a rainbow-colored Bible with the caption, "God loves you but not enough to save you." This provocative artwork was an expression of her experience navigating her identity in a predominantly Christian environment. The artwork drew the ire of Tim Simmons, a conservative school board member, who found it offensive to his faith. Simmons went to great lengths to have the artwork censored, even calling for an emergency school board meeting. Despite being mocked by constituents and lacking support from his peers on the school board, Simmons continued his efforts, highlighting a persistent tension between personal beliefs and public education. The episode also touched on broader themes of artistic freedom and the role of art in challenging societal norms. Eli, one of the panelists, argued that the true offense lies in the discrimination faced by LGBTQ+ individuals, not in the artwork itself. He emphasized the importance of confronting uncomfortable truths to foster personal and societal growth. Jimmy pointed out that Simmons' lack of support from other school board members and his subsequent appeal to social media were indicative of a broader issue. He criticized Simmons for prioritizing personal offense over the educational needs and emotional well-being of students. Jimmy further discussed the inherent value of art in provoking thought and encouraging dialogue, suggesting that the controversy itself underscores the power and importance of Driscoll's work. Cynthia elaborated on the implications of censorship in schools, noting a troubling trend where parental and ideological pressures increasingly dictate educational content. She highlighted the importance of maintaining a clear separation between church and state in public education, ensuring that curricula are shaped by educational rather than religious or personal beliefs. The panel unanimously agreed that the function of art, especially in an educational context, is to provoke thought, inspire conversation, and reflect diverse experiences. They applauded Abby Driscoll for her courage in expressing her truth through art, despite the backlash. The discussion underscored the vital role of artistic expression in addressing and challenging societal injustices, particularly for marginalized communities. In summary, Abby Driscoll's artwork and the subsequent controversy with Tim Simmons serve as a poignant reminder of the ongoing struggle for LGBTQ+ acceptance and the critical importance of protecting artistic freedom in educational environments. The Non-Prophets panel highlighted how art can serve as a powerful catalyst for social change, fostering essential conversations about identity, faith, and human rights. The Non-Prophets, Episode 23.22.1 featuring Kelley Laughlin, Eli Slack, Jimmy Jr. and Cynthia McDonald
    19 min. 6 sec.
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    Assisted Dying: What does it mean and what is the Law?

    1 GIU 2024 · What do assisted dying, assisted suicide and euthanasia mean and what is the law? BBC.com, By BBC News, on March 24, 2024 https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-47158287 Assisted dying, a deeply sensitive and contentious topic, has been gaining attention as several regions in the UK consider legal changes that would allow terminally ill individuals to end their lives with medical assistance. This issue is complex, varying significantly across different regions. Cindy, hailing from a country where euthanasia is legal, explores the experiences of other nations that have legalized such practices, aiming to glean lessons applicable to the US context. The terminology in this discussion is crucial. Words like "assisted dying," "assisted suicide," and "euthanasia" must be clearly defined to ensure meaningful debate and legislative clarity. As Cindy notes, living in a country with legal euthanasia offers unique insights. In Belgium, where euthanasia has been legal since 2003, strict safeguards are in place. The process requires convincing two independent doctors, with at least a month between the request and the procedure. This thorough approach has led to a societal acceptance and normalization of the practice, demonstrating that well-structured laws can provide compassionate options without leading to misuse. One significant point raised is the importance of bodily autonomy and the right to choose how one’s life ends. This choice is often about regaining a sense of control lost to terminal illness. It allows individuals to avoid prolonged suffering and make decisions surrounded by loved ones, rather than in isolation. This aspect of control and dignity is a cornerstone of the argument for legalizing assisted dying. However, there are valid concerns about the impact of such legislation on vulnerable populations, such as those with disabilities or mental illness. Infidel highlights the need for stringent safeguards to ensure that individuals are making informed, voluntary decisions. Research indicates that some individuals requesting assisted death may have psychiatric symptoms affecting their competence, underscoring the necessity for thorough evaluations and oversight beyond just a primary physician’s approval. Kelley emphasizes the importance of public discussions about assisted dying to alleviate the guilt and shock often experienced by those left behind. Open conversations can help loved ones understand and accept the decisions of those suffering, reducing the emotional burden and promoting a more compassionate societal view on the matter. Reflecting on personal experiences with terminally ill loved ones, Cindy and Kelley discuss the profound impact of suffering and the desire for a dignified end. They argue that stigma around assisted dying prevents necessary conversations and compassionate solutions. In countries like Belgium, where euthanasia is integrated into healthcare, there is less resistance and more acceptance of this practice as a compassionate choice. As the debate continues in the US, it is evident that any potential legislation would need to be carefully crafted with robust safeguards to protect vulnerable individuals while respecting personal autonomy. The goal would be to provide a compassionate, dignified option for those facing unbearable suffering, similar to the successful model seen in Belgium. Ultimately, while the US may not be fully ready for widespread acceptance of assisted dying, it is a conversation that needs to be had. Public understanding, legislative clarity, and compassionate discourse are essential steps toward addressing the ethical, emotional, and practical dimensions of this complex issue. The Non-Prophets, Episode 23.21.4 featuring Cynthia McDonald, Infidel64, Cindy Plaza and Kelley Laughlin
    22 min. 43 sec.
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    TX Superintendent Resigns after Trans Student Removal

    31 MAG 2024 · Texas superintendent resigns after trans student’s removal from ‘Oklahoma!’ NBC News, By Jo Yurcaba, on May 2, 2024 https://www.nbcnews.com/nbc-out/out-news/texas-superintendent-resigns-trans-students-removal-oklahoma-rcna150479 In a significant turn of events at the Sherman Independent School District in Texas, Superintendent Tyson Bennett resigned following a highly controversial incident involving the removal and subsequent reinstatement of a transgender student, Max High Tower, from a high school production of the musical "Oklahoma!". This decision came after the controversy garnered national attention and sparked widespread outrage. The school board convened in a closed session to address the situation, ultimately accepting Bennett's resignation and appointing Thomas O'Neal as the interim superintendent. The controversy began in March when Max High Tower, a transgender student, was initially barred from playing a role that did not align with his sex assigned at birth. This decision led to a significant backlash from the community and beyond, prompting the school to reverse its stance and reinstate the original cast and script. Max's father, Philip High Tower, publicly praised the school board's decision to advocate for all students, expressing hope that this incident would signal a move towards greater inclusivity and a stand against discrimination. The entire episode has highlighted the ongoing struggles and debates surrounding the rights and inclusion of transgender individuals in educational and extracurricular settings. This story, reported by Joe Yuhakaba for NBC News on May 2, 2024, underscores the broader national dialogue on transgender rights and the challenges faced by educational institutions in navigating these complex and often polarizing issues. Cindy expressed skepticism about the long-term impact of Bennett's resignation on the district's handling of transgender issues. She pointed out the broader, hostile political climate towards transgender people, suggesting that one resignation might not lead to substantial change. Kelley, speculated about the dynamics behind Bennett's resignation. He raised questions about whether Bennett was directly responsible for the initial decision or if he was merely a scapegoat. Kelley suggested that there might have been a backroom deal allowing Bennett to resign without being fired to avoid a more significant controversy. He emphasized the importance of understanding the decision-making process and the role of other school officials in the incident. The discussion highlighted how public pressure and media attention can influence institutional decisions. The panelists drew parallels to historical civil rights movements, where media exposure played a crucial role in driving societal change. They discussed the necessity of education and critical thinking in combating misinformation and fostering inclusivity. Ultimately, the incident at Sherman Independent School District serves as a microcosm of the larger debates over transgender rights in America. It demonstrates the power of public opinion and media scrutiny in holding institutions accountable and the ongoing need for education and advocacy to combat discrimination and promote inclusivity. The Non-Prophets, Episode 23.21.3 featuring Cynthia McDonald, Infidel64, Cindy Plaza and Kelley Laughlin
    22 min. 21 sec.
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    Unlicensed Teachers Dominate New Teacher Hires in Rural TX

    29 MAG 2024 · Unlicensed teachers now dominate new teacher hires in rural Texas schools San Antonio News, By James P. Van Overschelde, on May 6, 2024 https://www.mysanantonio.com/news/article/unlicensed-teachers-now-dominate-new-teacher-19441399.php In recent developments, Texas schools have increasingly turned to unlicensed teachers to address the growing shortage of educators. This trend is particularly evident in the 2022-2023 school year, where nearly half of the new teacher hires lack traditional teaching certificates. The reliance on unlicensed teachers has sparked a heated debate regarding the potential long-term consequences for students and the overall quality and integrity of the state's public education system. Supporters of this approach argue that it offers a practical solution to the pressing issue of teacher shortages, especially in underfunded and rural districts where attracting certified teachers can be a significant challenge. They claim that unlicensed teachers, often bringing diverse backgrounds and real-world experiences, can offer fresh perspectives and innovative teaching methods that benefit students. Additionally, expedited hiring processes help to fill vacancies more swiftly, ensuring that classrooms are not left without educators. However, critics raise serious concerns about the efficacy and preparedness of these unlicensed educators. They worry that a lack of formal training and certification might undermine the quality of education that students receive, potentially affecting their academic performance and future prospects. Critics also argue that this trend could devalue the teaching profession, sending a message that certification and professional standards are less important. The long-term impacts on the state's educational outcomes remain uncertain, but many fear a potential decline in educational standards and student achievement. This situation places additional pressure on the existing certified teachers, who may need to support their unlicensed colleagues, further stretching their already limited resources. Teachers in Texas are facing an increasingly complex and demanding environment, with concerns about maintaining educational quality amidst the growing reliance on unlicensed staff. The debate continues as stakeholders, including educators, policymakers, and parents, seek to find a balance between addressing immediate staffing shortages and ensuring the long-term integrity and quality of the education system in Texas. The Non-Prophets, Episode 23.21.2 featuring Cynthia McDonald, Infidel64, Cindy Plaza and Kelley Laughlin
    19 min. 47 sec.
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    Justice Alito Bemoans Loss of Freedom of Religion

    27 MAG 2024 · Justice Alito warns of declining support for freedom of speech on college campuses NBC News, By Lawrence Hurley, on May 11, 2024 https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/supreme-court/justice-alito-warns-declining-support-freedom-speech-college-campuses-rcna151817 In a recent commencement speech at Franciscan University of Steubenville, Justice Samuel Alito sparked a discussion about the current state of free speech in the United States, particularly focusing on college campuses. Alito, addressing a crowd at this Catholic college in Ohio, expressed his concern that free speech is in sharp decline, especially in academic settings. This speech comes amidst a backdrop of national debates on free speech, often highlighting the tension between open expression and social and political unrest. Justice Alito's remarks seemed to indirectly reference ongoing controversies, such as the unrest over Gaza, to underline his point. He suggested that the erosion of free speech is particularly evident on college campuses, which he believes should be bastions of open dialogue and debate. However, Alito did not provide specific examples or elaborate on the exact nature of the threats he perceives. This lack of detail has led to speculation and critique, with some questioning whether his speech was more about defending particular viewpoints rather than an unbiased defense of free speech. The setting of Alito's speech is noteworthy. Franciscan University, known for its strong Catholic identity, may not necessarily reflect the diversity of thought found on many secular campuses. Critics argue that Alito's choice of venue and his broad statements on free speech could imply a bias towards protecting speech that aligns with certain ideological or religious perspectives. This has raised questions about whether Alito is advocating for a truly open discourse or merely for the freedom to express views that align with his own. Additionally, Alito's track record on the Supreme Court has been scrutinized in light of his speech. His voting history often shows a complex relationship with free speech issues. For instance, in 2011, Alito was the sole dissenter in a case that upheld the Westboro Baptist Church's right to picket military funerals, a decision grounded in free speech protections. Alito argued that such actions constituted a vicious verbal assault rather than protected speech. This decision suggests that Alito's commitment to free speech may have boundaries, particularly when it comes to speech that he views as harmful or offensive. Moreover, Alito  often advocates for holding onto traditional values, even in the face of changing societal norms. This perspective is evident in many of his opinions, where he frequently supports decisions that uphold religious and conservative values. In discussing the broader implications of Alito's speech, it is essential to consider the current political and social climate in the United States. The nation's highest court has become a battleground for deeply divisive issues, and justices' public comments are increasingly seen as reflections of their ideological leanings. Alito's speech, therefore, can be interpreted as part of a larger narrative about the role of free speech in a polarized society. Ultimately, Justice Alito's commencement speech serves as a provocative entry point into the ongoing debate over free speech in America. While his concerns about the erosion of free speech align with a broader conservative discourse, the lack of concrete examples and the specific context of his speech invite critical examination of his motives and the implications of his rhetoric. This speech underscores the enduring complexity and contentious nature of free speech issues in the modern era, particularly as they intersect with politics, religion, and education. The Non-Prophets, Episode 23.21.1 featuring Cynthia McDonald, Infidel64, Cindy Plaza and Kelley Laughlin
    19 min. 6 sec.
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    Supporters Club

    Shiny Happy People Not Holding Hands

    28 LUG 2023 · The Non-Prophets, Episode 22.29.3 featuring Cynthia McDonald, Aaron Jensen and Teo el Ateo ‘Get back in line with God’: Fundamentalism Christian YouTubers furious with Duggar documentary ‘Shiny Happy People’ Daily Dot, By Catherine Caruso, Jul 11, 2023, https://www.dailydot.com/debug/christian-youtube-shiny-happy-people/
    19 min.

And we are The Non-Prophets!... airing on the first and third Sunday of every month, starting at 3:00 PM Central (01:30-03:00 UTC) on our Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/thenonprophetsaca. The Non-Prophets focuses...

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And we are The Non-Prophets!... airing on the first and third Sunday of every month, starting at 3:00 PM Central (01:30-03:00 UTC) on our Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/thenonprophetsaca. The Non-Prophets focuses on atheism and the separation of church and state.
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