As reported on here, the harassment and intimidation of Leo Igwe continues. Despite the stated commitment of Awka Ibom State Governor Goodswill Akpabio to rooting out the exploitation of children for the Pentecostal witch industry, people like Leo – who are allies in that cause – are frequently arrested and subjected to other rights violations. Any who have contacts in the Nigerian government, or any other form of influence there, should be aware of this and exert what pressure they can to bring a halt to these attempts to limit Leo in his campaigning for basic human rights in Nigeria.
For some background on Leo’s troubles:
The 2nd annual conference and AGM of the Free Society Institute
Co-hosted by the International Humanist and Ethical Union.
Registrations are unfortunately closed at this time.
Date: September 11th, 2010, 09h30 to 17h00
Venue: The Cape Milner Hotel, 2 Milner Road, Tamboerskloof (click “continue reading” for directions)
Good without god: is a secular viewpoint our best guide to moral clarity?
- 09:30: Tea
- 10:00: Leo Igwe – Opening address
- 10:30: Tauriq Moosa – A critique of sanctity
- 11:30 Signe Rousseau – Dirty Gods: Why #TAPL is bad for our moral health
- 12:30 Lunch
- 13:30 Jacques Rousseau – Common-sense morality
- 14:30 Andrew Dellis – The ‘New Atheists’: Advocacy and public relations
- 15:30 Open discussion – Secularism in South Africa: where to from here?
- 16:30 Adoption of Constitution
- 17:00 Closing
Continue reading FSI Conference 2010: Programme
On hearing that Christopher Hitchens had been diagnosed with oesophageal cancer, one response from a self-proclaimed man of god was the following post on Twitter: “God 1, Hitchens 0”. The motivation for such a callous response to a usually fatal disease (fewer than 5% of sufferers are alive after 5 years) is easy enough to trace: Hitchens, along with Dennett, Dawkins and Sam Harris, is one of the “4 Horsemen” of a groundswell of resistance to the unreason that is exemplified by religious faith, and he is thus a direct threat to the mysterious legitimacy that faith-based claims enjoy.
What our divine scorekeeper does not (of course) dwell on is the fact that according to his beliefs, all deaths are attributable to god, and that he could therefore just as well add another notch to this metaphysical bedpost if his mother, for example, were to die an equally unpleasant death. God’s victory is inevitable, as either she takes a believer “home”, or she smites down an unbeliever. Either way, a civilised response to human trauma is sympathy, rather than gloating.
Read more at Synapses.