Should Atheists Oppose Legislation to Make the Bible Mississippi's State Book?

Tamil Holy Bible
By Jegan.M (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0]
Two Democrats in our state House of Representatives, Tom Miles (Forest) and Michael Evans (Preston), have proposed a bill to make some sort of bible our official state book. A Republican who also happens to be a pastor, Rep. Tracy Arnold (Booneville), has proposed a similar bill. A true bipartisan effort! This raises many important questions. For example, what bible are they trying to make our state book?

Based on evidence such as the dire circumstances in which Mississippi's poor find themselves compared to the luxuries enjoyed by the wealthy, our inadequately funded system of public education, and our oppressive grocery tax, I assume that we are probably talking about The Satanic Bible. This would seem to embody the philosophy of blaming the poor for their misfortunes that prevails here in Mississippi. It has been decades since I read this bible, and I wasn't particularly impressed. Still, I suppose it might make for an interesting state book.


Humanist and Atheist Groups in Gulfport-Biloxi

Billboard GulfCoastCoR
If you are a secular Mississippian living in the Biloxi-Gulfport area, you should be aware that you are living in what might be one of the best parts of the state for atheists and humanists. Why? If you are interested in atheism, humanism, and/or freethought, you have two groups in your area in which to get involved:
That's two more groups than secular individuals living in much of the rest of our state have. And now you even have a billboard not too far away in Pascagoula thanks to the Gulf Coast Coalition of Reason.

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Mississippi Atheists' Most Popular Posts in 2014

These were the 10 most viewed posts at Mississippi Atheists in 2014, based on number of pageviews recorded in Google Analytics:
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Cleaning Up After the Storm

After writing yesterday's post about the tornadoes Jesus sent through Mississippi on December 23, I waited for the sun to come up before going outside to see if I had any damage. There are two things I've learned to look for after the storms: fence damage and fallen trees.

As soon as I went outside, I saw that I'd had two trees come down. Fortunately, neither was too large for me to manage and neither managed to hit anything critical on the way down. I was able to cut them up and get them down to the curb without more than a pulled muscle in my arm. It hurts quite a bit this morning, but I'll survive. Pain medication often works where prayer doesn't.


Tornadoes Wreak Havoc in Most Religious State

Tornado with no funnelExactly two years ago today, much of Mississippi was under the threat of tornadoes, severe thunderstorms, and damaging hail. At the time, I wondered why Jesus would send Christmas tornadoes to the most religious state in the nation. It didn't make much sense. With all our religious groveling, we should have it far better than we do. Fortunately, the weather that day did not turn out to be nearly as bad as was predicted, resulting in "a Christmas miracle."

Mississippi did not do quite as well yesterday when tornadoes ripped across portions of the state, killing four people we know of so far, injuring several others, flipping over cars, damaging homes and businesses, and knocking out power to thousands. Based on some of the live reports I saw on Twitter, it sounded like a daycare in Sumrall with children inside was damaged. While I have since learned that none of the children were injured, the initial uncertainty around the reporting was scary. I understand that our local news media, at least the TV stations in the area where I live, are largely staffed by poorly trained amateurs with little support, but I find the quality of their storm coverage to be appalling for an area that desperately needs competent professionals.