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Re: [atheists-501] 2 meetings, attached article

From: user 9.
Sent on: Wednesday, June 17, 2009 3:09 PM
Hi Byron,
if you want action, I can offer an action to sign a letter and send it to your local MP.
Of course it needs to be changed.
What the heck are chaiplans doing in schools?



by Keith S Cornish

An AFA Committee member, who has been concerned by the access granted to Christian Options in the Area School in his district, alerted us to the attempt by the Schools Ministry Group (SMG) to appoint a chaplain in this school. Our approach to the Principal has not resulted in the hoped-for response so we must try other avenues. In an article sent to the local weekly newspaper for the area, we have presented our arguments against chaplaincy and also written to the State Minister of Education. In the absence of legal advice it appears that the State Government could well be in breach of the laws in regard to discrimination and human rights.
 Children in State schools should not be exploited by religious groups and organisations. A secular education system should aim to impart factual information to encourage children to think, to question, to examine differing viewpoints and, if need be, to reject the primitive concepts of their ignorant parents and forebears.
 Religious belief in the supernatural, of a universe existing for only 7000 years, of Adam, Eve, Noah and the slavery of the Hebrews in Egypt, has no part in preparing a child for life in this century.
 We can no longer stand aside While children are brainwashed into believing in virgin birth, restoration of life to dead and decaying humans and into belief in demons, ghosts, angels, cherubims, unicorns or persons rising visibly to 'heaven'.

Nor can we be blameless if we allow children to be taught that believing in a Jesus of the gospels guarantees eternal bliss in a never-ending 'heaven' of the imagination.
 Our children need to be told that they are responsible for their own actions and that guilt and punishment for immoral behaviour cannot be offloaded to an innocent scapegoat. They should be told that ethics are determined by society, not by ancient writings of ignorant men or undemocratic organisations sponging on society for their own benefit.
 With religious wars and confrontation so obvious today children should be made aware of the terrible history of religion and accept that the Age of Reason has dawned and belief systems have no valid place in the world now or in the future. Men and women are equal in rights. Women are not men's chattels.
 The only way to solve the problems that our earth is now facing is for people to have factual information and to apply the necessary solution to meet the criteria of scientific research.

To this end the Atheist Foundation of Australia Inc has submitted an appraisal of the Draft Education and Children's Services Bill, whereby we hope that religious indoctrination of children in State schools will no longer be permitted and that that time will be given to the basic aims of the education of children in the secular schools.


Original Message -----
From: byron
Sent: Tuesday, June 16,[masked]:02 PM
Subject: Re: [atheists-501] 2 meetings, attached article

hi, my name is byron barillas, i added my name recently to your group.  i have read the e-mails going from a to z. it is interesting what you are doing.  i really do not know what activities you had in the past or what are your plans for the future. but i can notice some interesting things; to start with, for me atheists is a name without purpose, from my point of view, we are humans first of all. what make us different from other animals is our brain and humanity. so we must to put this two in ACTION, otherwise what is the purpose. one other thing are the topics you discuss, practically you are all over the place: Brain development, global warming, etc. they are important topics of course, but what is the aim. knowledge and action is the best combination and going from general to specific is a good  way to go, overpopulation is the big thing, to prevent teenager pregnancies in Brisbane could be one specific achievable target. (you show your brain and humanity).

the fact that there is no god, is providing us with freedom; it make us owners of our acts in this life, there is no devil or god forcing us or pushing us to do or not to do anything.  thanks

From: Jaime Francisco Mejia <[address removed]>
To: [address removed]
Sent: Tuesday, 16 June,[masked]:00:44 PM
Subject: RE: [atheists-501] 2 meetings, attached article

After reading Geoffrey's email, I feel compelled to reply. Please accept my apologies if I have acted inappropriately, but I believe this is a very important issue and as someone involved in air quality research I feel obliged to join in the debate.

There is no doubt that there is a genuine concern about the current state of the environment and the future of the planet. And I am firmly convinced that there is a lot of good-will among ordinary people. But good intentions alone are not sufficient. We cannot cure a disease unless we have a knowledge of medicine, and we cannot guide a ship unless we have a knowledge of navigation. In the same way, we cannot restore the earth's ecological balance unless we have an understanding of the causes and processes causing the environmental crisis.

There are several arguments about the causes of the environmental crisis and the scientific community is divided about these issues. However, there is a general agreement (except among those who have put personal interests over professional ethics) that the earth's is getting warmer as a result of increased greenhouse emission.

We need to look at the real causes of this crisis, and we need a concerted effort at international level, because this is a global crisis, transcending national boundaries.

Our solution should seek to balance the needs of society and the environment. Blaming the crisis on the population explosion does not solve the problem, because it is in my view a very dangerous proposition. If we believe this argument, what would our solution be? Reduce the size of the population? How are we going to achieve this? By killing entire nations? Through mass sterilization of "inferior" people? Why not trying to find new environmentally sustainable technologies? Why do some of the biggest polluters, for example the coal mining sector, has consistently attempted to discredit the scientific findings that the earth is getting warmer?

I believe we need to integrate social, technological and scientific approaches to deal with the crisis. The social component will seek to identify alternatives to satisfy social needs with minimal environmental impacts, for example, through improved public transport services to minimize the dependence on private vehicles; the technical component will explore the available technologies selecting those with the lowest environmental impacts; the scientific component will continue investigating the physical, chemical and biological processes in the environment, monitoring the progress and effectiveness of the applied environmental policies and technologies, and doing more research to stop and even reverse the existing damage to the environment.

Well, this is what I think and I might be probably be wrong. And please once again accept my sincerest apology if I have acted inappropriately by replying to Geoffrey's comments.

Yours in solidarity,

Jaime Mejia

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