Thursday, September 17, 2009

AANEWS for Thursday, September 17, 2009 -- Breaking, Darwin film "in bidding war" for U.S. distributor

#1277 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 09/17/09
A Service of AMERICAN ATHEISTS, a nationwide movement that defends
civil rights for non-believers; works for the total separation of
Church and State; and addresses issues of First Amendment public
"ATHEIST is really a thoroughly honest, unambiguous term, it admits
of no paltering and no evasion, and the need of the world, now as
ever, is for clear-cut issues and unambiguous speech."
-- Chapman Cohen

In This Issue...
* Breaking -- U.S. Distributor for Darwin Film?
* Worth Noting: Creation v. evolution, Muslim school daze
* Join American Atheists
* Get blogging at NoGodBlog
* Resources
* About this list...
Following weeks of rejection, the producers of a new film about
Charles Darwin now say that they are in the midst of a "bidding
war" and will have a distributor in the United States "by the end
of the week."
This latest news comes after statements by producer Jeremy Thomas,
who said that the ideas explored in his latest movie "Creation"
were "too controversial for religious America." That resulted
in potential distributors for the U.S. market expressing concern
about protests from fundamentalist Christians in a nation where
the majority of the population do not accept scientific findings
for the origin of life and the universe. Last week, Thomas told
reporters that the production firm "has no distributor in the
U.S." and added, "There's still a great belief that He made the
world in six days. We live in a country (United Kingdom) which is
no longer so religious. But in the U.S., outside of New York and
Los Angeles, religion rules."
Word of the distribution breakthrough is being reported on the NBC
Bay Area News site. The report, " 'Creation' May Cause Big Bang
in U.S.", adds "Church goers eye Darwin Bio-Pic with Concern."
The movie web site is , and the NBC story resides at
Muslims Press for School Holidays in New York City Muslims groups
here are pressing city officials to close public schools on two of
the faith's holiest days, just as schools do for major Jewish and
Christian holidays. But the groups have yet to persuade the man in
charge of New York City schools, Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Muslim
groups have asked the city to cancel classes on Eid Ul-Fitr, which
marks the end of Ramadan, and Eid Ul-Adha, which marks the end of
the annual pilgrimage to Mecca.
Why PeopleBelieve in Conspiracies:A skeptic's take on the public's
fascination with disinformation Aftera public lecture in 2005, I was
buttonholed byadocumentaryfilmmakerwith Michael Moore-ish ambitions
of exposingtheconspiracybehind9/11. "You mean the conspiracy by
Osama bin Ladenandal Qaedatoattack the United States?" I asked
rhetorically,knowingwhat wastocome. "That's what they want you
to believe," hesaid. "Whoisthey?" Iqueried. "The government," he
whispered, as if"they"mightbelistening at that very moment. "But
didn't Osama andsomemembersof alQaeda not only say they did it,"
I reminded him,"theygloatedaboutwhat a glorious triumph it was?"
Ohio town moves to preserve church facing closure A proposal to
protect a landmark Roman Catholic church has the potential to
turn into a fight over private property rights and church-state
separation. Council members and the mayor in this Cleveland suburb
along Lake Erie are moving to create a law that would stop the
Cleveland diocese or any future owner from tearing down the church
or gutting its ornate interior if the church closes as expected.
Have creationists tricked scientists yet again? Creationists
have made a habit out of tricking scientists and historians into
appearing in pro-creationism films. Such "culture warriors" view
their dishonest tactics as fully acceptable. They think their deceit
is working for the greater good, and scientists must increasingly
be aware of who they are being interviewed by. (For a relevant
discussion of dishonesty among evangelicals see the chapters on
conservative philanthropist Howard Ahmanson Jr. in Republican
Gomorrah, particularly the portion about Ahmanson's connection to
the Discovery Institute.)
Can Bill Foster's creation beliefs evolve into valid issue in
St. Petersburg mayoral race? "Dinosaurs are mentioned in Job,
so I don't have any problem believing that dinosaurs roamed the
earth,'' says St. Petersburg mayoral candidate Bill Foster. He
says he believes dinosaurs and humans lived at the same time,
though most scientists say there is a gap of at least 60 million
years between dinosaurs and mankind.
<>s complex loss of faith It is easier to make a film about
a man who allegedly "killed God" than one who studied barnacles
for eight year years. The new film about Charles Darwin, Creation,
does the former and although it has been criticised for historical
inaccuracy, it remains a beautiful, moving and eminently watchable
Here's a "stimulus package" for Atheists! We know that times are
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investment and home value evaporate. And many people are cutting
costs, postponing vacations, cutting back whenever and wherever
they can.
So, American Atheists is making it easier than ever before to join
up in the fight for Reason, separation of church and state, and
the effort to give America's unbelieving community "a place at the
table" in the discussion over First Amendment public policy. You
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