CFI Canada’s mission is to provide education and training to the public in the application of skeptical, secular, rational and humanistic inquiry through conferences, symposia, lectures, published works and the maintenance of a library.
An international student studying psychology at the University of Winnipeg is afraid he could face persecution if he is forced to go home to Malaysia. Hazim Ismail says he is openly gay and an atheist. He was trying to keep that information from his immediate family but says he was outed by a cousin on social media. Homosexuality is a criminal offence in Malaysia, he said. And his family, who is Muslim, have disowned him and stopped paying for his education in Canada.
Rafida Ahmed Banya, the widow of Bangladeshi-American blogger Avijit Roy, has urged the international community to come forward to help save the voices of Bangladeshi journalists, writers, bloggers, and publishers and help them maintain a healthy secular society.
After the Paris attacks, tensions are running higher than they have in many years over the threat posed by Islamism, how we should talk about it, and how policy should respond to it. One of our most difficult cultural challenges is distinguishing the acts of violent Islamists from public attitudes towards Muslims in general, and specifically how heated and often ugly rhetoric impacts how we confront the massive refugee crisis.
- Regulating alternative medicine adds false legitimacy to anti-vaccine claims; It’s one thing when a co-worker retweets an article about homeopathic vaccination, or an aunt e-mails to tell you actor Jim Carrey says mandatory vaccination causes heavy-metal poisoning. But it’s quite another when the people spreading fear-mongering, inaccurate information are licensed medical professionals authorized by the province to practise.
- Dec.11th, Toronto: (second Friday of each month), CFIC T.O. : Board Games Night! Join us for an evening of relaxing and thinking fun as we mostly play classic and strategy board games, and partake in trivia. Sometimes even charades, jai alai, Octopush – whatever strikes our fancy. Feel free to bring your own games to share. You could even just come and hang out on the comfy-chairs with like-minded folks for a little more conversation and a little less action. –
- Dec 14th, Toronto: Every second Monday, CFIC T.O. – Living Without Religion– The group discusses past and present religious issues and looks at a positive life free of guilt, fear and shame. While the group is still dedicated to dealing with problems and issues revolving around religion, it is also a place for those interested in exploring larger issues in a non-judgmental welcoming atmosphere.
- Dec 19th, Toronto: (Every third Saturday of the month) Come one, come all to CFI Ontario’s Cafe Skeptique, a fun and fascinating discussion group that focuses on a range of topics within the realm of skepticism such as pseudo-science, alternative medicine, conspiracy theories, etc. It’s open to the public and everyone is welcome to join in! See you all at Free Times Cafe, 320 College St. just west of Spadina Ave
- Dec 21st, Toronto; SOS Secular Organizations for Sobriety meeting; Also known as Save Our Selves, Secular Organizations for Sobriety is a program dedicated to providing a path to sobriety without depending upon supernatural or religious beliefs. We respect diversity, welcome healthy skepticism, and encourage rational thinking as well as the expression of feelings. Meet other local people who suffer from alcoholism and other addiction problems (ex: gambling, drug addiction, etc). Gather for support, companionship, and advice.
- Dec 28th, Toronto; CFIC T.O. – Science & Philosophy Book Club. THIS MONTH’S BOOK SELECTION : Enlightenment 2.0: Restoring sanity to our politics, our economy, and our lives by Joseph Heath
- CFI Ottawa UnSermon; Saturday afternoons, meet and share your ideas with Atheists, Freethinkers, and Humanists from the Ottawa area.
- CFI Calgary Skeptics in The Pub: This group meets on the first Tuesday of every month. Join us for drinks, discussion, and debate about all science and skeptical topics
- Okanagan – Secular Social. Now every second and fourth Monday of the month! Come to the pub and hang out with other skeptics and freethinkers. Mission Tap House and Grill, 3110 Lakeshore Rd., Kelowna. If you don’t recognize anyone, look for the table with the CFI sign.
- November 25-27: Canadian Science Policy Centre Conference
Let us know if you have an activity you’d like to share!
Faith-Based Violence and Bigotry
- Bill Nye Explains The Connection Between Climate Change And Terrorism In Paris; Nye’s reasoning hinges on a water shortage in Syria, which researchers have blamed on climate change. As Nye explained, the shortage has stunted farming and pushed young people to look for work in more densely populated areas.
“Young people have gone to big cities looking for work. There’s not enough work for everybody, so the disaffected youths, as we say — the young people who don’t believe in the system, believe the system has failed, don’t believe in the economy — are more easily engaged and more easily recruited by terrorist organizations, and then they end up part way around the world in Paris shooting people.”
CFIC continues to monitor, document and condemn faith based violence and bigotry around the world.
Science, Medicine, and Ethics News
- New York Cracks Down on Female Genital Mutilation; New York has the second highest number of women and girls at risk for FGM in the U.S. New legislation hopes to change that.
Wishful Thinking and Superstition/Religion
Karla’s Atheist Breast Cancer Support Facebook group is now available. It’s private so you have to ask to join. Say you are an atheist with breast cancer and Karla will approve your request.
Critical Links is published every Tuesday And Friday
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