WELCOME TO HAFTA
Thank you for your interest in HAFTA, which stands for Humanist, Atheist, Free Thinker and Agnostic. Our Montrose branch of HAFTA was started in 2014 to add a secular voice to the community dialog in this bible belt area of the Western Slope, and we are actively seeking members who share our values and goals. The recent PEW religion poll points out that “The Christian share of the U.S. population is declining, while the number of U.S. adults who do not identify with any organized religion is growing…”, so the need for more non-church, non-religious groups such as ours, where people can meet and feel free to discuss issues in a rational, logical, and scientific way is growing too.
Our goals are to educate the public to promote separation of church and state, promote the acceptance of non-belief as a valid, rational, and ethical way of life, and enjoy the camaraderie of people with similar outlook. We are in the process of discussing what efforts, projects, and social activities we can undertake to promote these goals, so we encourage you to attend our twice monthly meetings and learn about our group, and contribute your own ideas.
“Science has questions that may not be answered (yet!). But religion has answers that may not be questioned.”
Give Al Read a call (970-209-4058) or email for more information
EYE ON RELIGION SECTION
James Madison, the principle author of the Bill of Rights amendments to the Constitution, had his eye on religion and its dangers, because he well knew the devastating religious wars in Europe over sect and doctrine. He therefore, in the wording, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;" sought to protect us from the strife and persecutions arising from power struggles among religions and denominations.
We also have our eye on religion here in order to provide you with the latest religious craziness, examples of religious interference in public schools and government, and the best religion jokes. Enjoy!
JOKE OF THE MONTH:
A little girl asks her mother, “Where did all the people in the world come from?”
The mother answers, “Many years ago God made Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, and they had children, so that’s where all the people came from.”
A couple days later, the girl asks her father the same question. Dad replies that “Many years ago the monkeys climbed down from the trees, changed into apes, and eventually evolved into people.”
The girl returns to her mom and asks, “How come you said we came from Adam and Eve and dad says we came from monkeys?”
“Don’t be confused, sweetie,” she replies. “It’s very simple. I told you where my side of the family came from and daddy told you about his.”
RELIGIOUS CRAZINESS OF THE MONTH:
Woodward County Oklahoma is perhaps the exact center of the buckel of the Bible Belt, and not surprisingly a poll revealed that they also have the highest percentage of climate change deniers. A CNN reporter went there to check this out, and encountered this amazing creature in the middle of the town. A sign in front of this statue reads, "A dinosaur like this roamed the Earth 5,000 years ago." The fellow who paid for the statue said he put a child on it to promote his belief that humans and dinosaurs roamed the earth at the same time. Was this before or after Noah's flood?
CRAZINESS NOT JUST IN OKLAHOMA:
Colorado state Rep. Gordon KLINGENSCHMITT recently proclaimed during one of his "Pray in Jesus Name" videos that the horrific attack on the pregnant victim in Longmont in which her fetus was cut out took place as a result of our rebellion against God.
He said, "This is the curse of God upon America for our sin of not protecting innocent children in the womb, and part of that curse for our rebellion against God as a nation is that our pregnant women are ripped open," Klingenschmitt said.
NOT to be outdone, Pat Robertson, that crazy Christian preacher watched by millions on his "700 Club" show, revealed to his audience that gays in San Francisco reputedly wear a ring with a special needle that will - when shaking hands - infect people with HIV. This despicable nonsense is very similar to the rumors spread during the Middle Ages that the plague was due to Jews poisoning the wells. Scary that we still have people on this planet who believe such stuff!
MIKE HUCKABEE, one of the dozen Presidential candidates and possibly the most fundamentalist among them, recently said that he was unsurprised when a deranged shooter murdered 20 children at the Sandy Hook elementary school, and proclaimed that the carnage was due to TAKING GOD AND PRAYER OUT OF OUR SCHOOLS. Does this mean that the Aurora theater massacre was caused by taking prayer out of movie theaters? What is certain is that to believe this stuff requires taking logic out of your brain!
Isn't it curious how these ultra-rightwing Evangelicals always seem to know exactly what their imaginary god is thinking and doing - they must have the special long distance to God phone plan. Since the current Republican presidential candidates will be trying to appeal to conservative Evangelical voters, we can expect a rich harvest of nutty and offensive comments to come. Watch this column for updates!
RELIGIOUS & MEDICAL QUACKERY COMBINED!:
Medical and pharmaceutical science is not advanced enough yet to treat and relieve many chronic conditions, so people affected by them are easy marks for quacks who promote "snake oil" treatments. Here is an amusing example of a "triple play" cure which promises even the intervention of Jesus to sooth the pain from your bunion (or where ever else yer hurtin').
It is worth noting that the Bible says nothing about germs and lays the blame for disease and mental illness on demons. St. Augustine, still considered a notable authority on Christian doctrine, wrote in the 5th century that "All diseases of Christians are to be ascribed to demons." Fortunately, over the last 200 years, thoughtful and questioning people - many of them religious skeptics - used their powers of reasoning and observation to develop natural explanations for disease, thus giving us the wonderfully advanced medicines and treatments that we enjoy today.