Episode 284 – Antisemitism, the Wall, Mosque Tax, and more!

This week we are joined by Erin Riley and KC Hunt and talk about the difference between Antisemitism and Anti-Zionism, a school contractor in Texas getting fired for refusing to sign a pro-Israel pledge, the government shutdown over Trump’s wall, a West Virgina mom’s lawsuit over Bible in the Schools, and more. Patrons also get our 2019 predictions.

Dustin’ Off the Degree – Antisemitism vs Anti-Zionism

Since Trump’s election we’ve seen quite the rise in antisemitism, but we’ve also seen a large increase in calling the wrong thing antisemitism.


School Contractor in Texas Denied Work Over Pro-Israel Loyalty Oath

We’ve previously talked about these bizarre attempts to pass laws that would criminalize or at least punish people for boycotting Israel, we’ll, now we have a story where it’s not abstract.

Bahia Amawi is a speech pathologist who has worked on a contract basis for a school district in Austin, TX serving children from the area’s growing Arabic speaking community since 2008. Then in August the district sent her the standard contract renewal, except there was something different this time. It included a pledge that she is not current boycotting Israel and will not do anything “that is intended to penalize, inflict economic harm on, or limit commercial relations with Israel, or with a person or entity doing business in Israeli or in an Israel-controlled territory.”

Lindsey Graham claims Trump’s wall is defense against Islamic terrorism

By now you should all be aware that several departments of the US government are shut down, in some cases this means people aren’t working, like at the National Parks, and in others it means they have to keep working with no idea when they’ll get paid as in the case of Dan Ellis of The Godless Rebolution Podcast.

The reason for the shutdown is the Senate rejected the House passed bill that would have funded these departments as well as funded Trump’s border wall and repealed the Johnson Amendment. Trump is doubling down saying that he won’t sign a spending bill that doesn’t fund the wall and Senator Lindsey Graham is backing this up claiming that the wall is needed as a our “last line of defense” against Islamic terrorism.

W.Va. mom says her daughter was bullied after they balked at Bible classes in public school

In first grade Jessica Roe and another girl was sent to a coat closet with another girl and some iPads when her teacher discovered she didn’t have the permission slip required to take part in the pastor lead “Bible in the Schools” class. By third grade the bullying over this separation got bad enough that classmates were telling her she was going to hell and slapping Harry Potter books out of her hands. That’s when her mom transferred her to another school and filed a lawsuit in federal court.

In response to the lawsuit the school suspended the program and the judge dismissed the case since the child was no longer enrolled in the school and the program was not being actively run. A three judge panel of the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals unanimously decided that the cases dismissal was in error, so the case challenging the constitutionality of Bible in the Schools programs will go on.

A Catholic Hospital in Iowa Won’t Perform Vasectomies or Tubal Ligations Anymore

Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare-Iowa a part of Mercy Health, announced at the end of the day on Friday December 14 that they would no longer be allowing vasectomies or tubal ligations to be performed in the hospital. They also included that the press release would be the only public communication about this.

Germany to curb mosque funding from Gulf states

Under new rules the German government is using their intelligence services to closely monitor who is sending money to mosques in the country as well as who is receiving it. They have also asked the Gulf states to report any money that their governments or any religious group in their country sends to a German mosque as well as to report if they receive any requests for money or advice.

They are also considering adding a mosque tax, that like the church taxes, would take money from directly from member’s paychecks to try to increase the financial independence of the mosques as well as reduce foreign influence.

Woman Charged With Fake Witchcraft, Days Before Canada Scraps Old Law

As part of the same modernizing of laws that Canada is doing that removed their blasphemous libel law, they also removed a law that prohibits fake witchcraft. Most of the laws that were repealed haven’t be enforced in the last several decades, but this one was enforced as recently as two days before the law was repealed when a psychic in Ontario was arrested for fraudulent witchcraft, specifically fortune telling.

Patreon banned Sargon of Akkad, Sam Harris quits in protest

Carl Benjamin who goes by the name Sargon of Akkad is a sexist, racist, piece of shit and unfortunately also a prominent atheist on YouTube. At the Mythinformation Conference in 2017 it was his presence and his statements that caused so much controversy. Anyway, Patreon’s Trust and Safety Committee was looking into him when they found an interview he did on another channel that Patreon considers hate speech and they banned him from their platform. What he said is not something I’m comfortable repeating, but you’re welcome to read the transcript if you follow the link in the show notes.

Sam Harris, in response to what he’s calling politically motivated censorship has left Patreon. He previously threatened to leave it in 2017, but apparently it takes going after sexist racist pieces of shit to really get under his skin. Fuck you Sam Harris.

Discussion – Hopes and Predictions for 2019

What news stories are you eager to see break in 2019?
What do you expect to see change in 2019?
What do you think will stay the same?
What are your predictions for 2019?


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  • Survey responses


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