What we're about
Upcoming events (3)
There are nearly 25,000 injection drug users in San Francisco, a great number of them experience mental illness and homelessness. The City is struggling with providing adequate and successful solutions to this growing problem. The presentation by Richard Atkins M.D. and Emanuel Jolish, Ph.D. will offer an objective view of the severity of the problem and a number of viable solutions. Richard is a retired psychiatrist and Emanuel a retired psychologist. We’ll start at 1:00 in the Fireside room. A light lunch will be available for purchase. Everyone is welcome.
Bacteria are under constant attack from viruses. In order to defend themselves, these microbes have evolved a unique and creative immune system that scientists have called “CRISPR.” As researchers began to unravel this perplexing defense system, they quickly realized that CRISPR proteins might not only improve the health of bacteria but could reshape the landscape of human health. Scientists have shown that they can “program” an assortment of CRISPR proteins to cut any sequence of DNA. The ability to precisely edit the genome of nearly any organism has revolutionized biology, medicine, and agriculture. From curing deadly genetic disorders to engineering drought-resistant plants, CRISPR genome editing technology will reshape modern medicine and our food supply. This talk will explore the groundbreaking CRISPR technology and raise pressing questions that society is now forced to confront. Dr. Kevin Doxzen is the Science Communications Specialist at the Innovative Genomics Institute (IGI). The IGI is an academic research partnership between UC Berkeley and UC San Francisco that aims to develop and deploy genome editing technologies to solve real-world problems. Kevin received a B.A. in Biophysics from Johns Hopkins University and went on to receive a Ph.D. in Biophysics from UC Berkeley in the lab of Dr. Jennifer Doudna. The Doudna lab is credited with co- discovering CRISPR genome editing technology and continues to make advancements in this rapidly growing field. In his current position, Kevin aims to educate and empower the wider public to help understand the latest biotechnological advancements in genome editing and beyond. Our Humanist Forum talks begin with an unstructured meet-and-greet at 2:30. ** The presentation itself will start at 3 o'clock.** Most lectures incorporate a long period of Q&A, finishing around 4:45. Afterward, many of us head to the mall next door for an early dinner. The dinner is a great way to get to know people in your local humanist community, and if you're not hungry you can always come along and grab a drink instead. We will be in room 619 on the 6th floor. Please enter the building from the 835 Market St. entrance between Walgreens and the Timberland store.
Join us in the Stong room as we discuss "Once Upon a River: A Novel" by Diane Setterfield. Newcomers are always welcome, as are new book suggestions. We will be selecting the next book from those presented in person at this meeting. If you'd like to add a book to the running, come ready to make a short pitch for it and bring a copy if you can. We will want to know the page count of the book and whether it is available in the SF Public Library. About "Once Upon a River" (SFPL: http://bit.ly/2pZWGvR): "When a man bursts into a riverside inn on the longest night of the year, covered in blood and carrying a dead child, the patrons of the Swan are beyond thrilled to find themselves in the middle of a swiftly unfolding tale—especially when the child is determined to actually be alive. Is the mute girl the long-missing daughter of a nearby wealthy family, or the bastard child of woman who threw herself in the Thames only a day or so earlier? Inquiring minds want to know. Weaving among the turmoil is a buoyant dance between science and superstition, as Darwin's ideas, psychiatry, and scientific observation waltz with skullduggery, a curiously wise pig, and a man—or ghost—who patrols the Thames. As Setterfield (The Thirteenth Tale) juggles a colorful mob of characters whose lives are upended by the mysterious young girl, the joy of storytelling permeates every moment in this lively and wise historical novel. --Adrian Liang, Amazon Book Review" If you have not read the book, you're welcome to attend and learn what we're about. We only ask that you allow those who have done the reading to speak first. If you can't finish the book in time, reading part of it or even watching a talk by the author can help make the discussion more interesting. We typically go to dinner together afterward at a nearby restaurant, for those who would like to stick around. A list of past suggestions can be found at https://go.sfhumanists.org/booklist This is not a Library Sponsored Program.