Why Evolution Is True

Spiffy Darwin “Origin” tee shirt

Spiffy Darwin “Origin” tee shirt

Reader Peter called my attention to this lovely Origin of Species tee shirt. I know I’ve put it up before, but here it is again, and it has 40,000 words of The Origin on it imprinted by dye sublimation. That’s not the whole book by any means: as my friend Andrew Berry just found out by […]

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Here’s the katydid!

Here’s the katydid!

As promised, here’s the hidden katydid, photographed by Mark Sturtevant, that was presented this morning. Did you find it? Click photo to enlarge.

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Hijab news: The Independent becomes HuffPo, touting “modest wear” for Muslims that’s quite alluring; Marine Le Pen refuses to don hijab

Hijab news: The Independent becomes HuffPo, touting “modest wear” for Muslims that’s quite alluring; Marine Le Pen refuses to don hijab

If you saw the headline below on a website, you’d think it was from the Huffington Post, right? The combination of fashion news (with Muslim attire called “modest wear”), gratuitous editorializing, and fetishizing of the hijab and body covering are all characteristic of that liberal clickbait site. But if you click on the headline, you’ll see that it […]

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Jesus ‘n’ Mo ‘n’ humanism

Jesus ‘n’ Mo ‘n’ humanism

Today’s Jesus and Mo, called “best,” came with this accompanying note in the email: This one is in response to a story this week about the British Humanist Association sending out books to schools in the UK, and the ironic clerical reaction to it. There’s a religious curriculum in these schools, and the humanists are trying […]

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Matthew on the BBC

Matthew on the BBC

Matthew Cobb was too modest to tell me that he was on Radio 4’s episode of The Infinite Monkey Cage (a science/comedy show) yesterday, but reader Kevin called it to my attention. You can download the broadcast by clicking on the screenshot below, and here’s the BBC’s summary: Making the Invisible, Visible Brian Cox and Robin Ince […]

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Spot the katydid!

Spot the katydid!

Reader Mark Sturtevant has another puzzler for us today. Can you spot the katydid? Click twice in succession (with a pause between clicks) to enlarge the photo. I’d rank this one “moderately difficult.” I’ll put up the answer at noon Chicago time.

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Readers’ wildlife photos

Readers’ wildlife photos

Please send in your photos; there’s always a need. Today’s batch comes from reader Tony Eales from Queensland, who sends us pictures from the western part of his country. His notes and IDs are indented: I recently went to Western Australia for a very short visit. It is my first time there and it’s like […]

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Wednesday: Hili dialogue

Wednesday: Hili dialogue

It’s Wednesday, February 22, 2017: remember that there  are but 28 days in this month. The temperatures remain high in Chicago, and today we may hit another record: a high of 71° F (22° C) is predicted. It’s another triple-header food holiday: National Cook a Sweet Potato Day, National Margarita Day, and National Cherry Pie Day. I doubt I’ll […]

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Milo falls on his sword

Milo falls on his sword

Here’s a video from today showing a cowed Milo Yiannopoulos falling on his sword—resigning as an editor at Breitbart. Within just 24 hours, his life has fallen apart: his book deal with Simon and Schuster was canceled, as was his keynote speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference, and he’s lost his job at Breitbart. He’s […]

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Which scientists saved the most lives?

Which scientists saved the most lives?

Scientists are the unrecognized benefactors of humanity. How many laypeople will recognize the name of Fritz Haber or Karl Bosch? Togetether they’re estimated to have saved over a billion lives. What about Norman Borlaug? He saved over 259 million lives. Ann Holloway, Samuel Katz, Kevin McCarthy, Milan Milovanovic, Anna Mitus, and Thomas Peebles? Together—over 100 […]

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Did women chess players’ wearing of the hijab help Iranian women? A reader weighs in

Did women chess players’ wearing of the hijab help Iranian women? A reader weighs in

The Women’s World Chess Championship is underway in Iran, and, as I’ve mentioned repeatedly, the country (and the World Chess Federation) is requiring that all women wear hijabs. This is not only an infringement on women’s freedom (both the foreign players and the Iranians themselves), but I can imagine that playing in a hijab could be an […]

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Ideologically motivated teachers indoctrinate students into thinking that science and religion are compatible

Ideologically motivated teachers indoctrinate students into thinking that science and religion are compatible

UPDATE: I forgot to include the blurb from the ASU news office summarizing the accommodationist study discussed in this post. It says this: Then, the class discussed that science can answer certain questions and religion can answer other questions. According to Brownell [one of the study’s authors], evolution and science in general are excellent when […]

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A new Field Museum video on non-alternative fact

A new Field Museum video on non-alternative fact

This new short video, including several of my colleagues at Chicago’s Field Museum, shows scientists at the Museum standing up for the facts about ecology and evolution. I like that, and I also like the absence of anything overtly political. But of course we all know why this was made: it is a political video made in reaction to the […]

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Readers’ wildlife photos

Readers’ wildlife photos

It’s warmed up a bit in Ontario, and Diana MacPherson has some lovely photos of emerging chipmunks. Below are her notes for a series that could be called “Four Ways of Looking at a Chipmunk”, but which Diana calls “Someone is awake from torpor”: With the warm weather, the resident chipmunk has woken from torpor and […]

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Tuesday: Hili dialogue (and a Gusiversary special)

Tuesday: Hili dialogue (and a Gusiversary special)

Good morning on a tropical February 21 (2017) in Chicago, with a predicted high temperature of 64° F (18° C) today. It’s a triple-header food holiday, too: National Pancake Day, National Sticky Bun Day, and National Biscuits and Gravy Day. I can get behind all of those, and if you haven’t had good Southern biscuits and gravy for […]

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Every Best Picture Oscar winner—ever!

Every Best Picture Oscar winner—ever!

Yesterday we had a video of every film that ever won an Oscar for Best Cinematography; now it’s time to see every film that won an Oscar for Best Picture up to last year (Spotlight won the award for 2016). I have seen most of these; below are the winners I didn’t see: Cimarron Cavalcade The Great Ziegfeld […]

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Jeff Tayler on what the US should do about Russia

Jeff Tayler on what the US should do about Russia

Jeff Tayler has lived and worked in Russia for many years, writing for The Atlantic as a correspondent and editor.  (He also promotes atheism and criticizes religion at places like Slate and Quillette).  This is to say that he has considerably more experience and knowledge about Russia than those of us who rely on the […]

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“Islamophobia motion” in Canada stirs controversy

“Islamophobia motion” in Canada stirs controversy

There’s a great to-do in Canada about a motion (“M-103”, which is not a law but a recommendation) about discrimination, one that singles out “Islamophobia” as deserving special mention. The bill was introduced last December by the Liberal MP Iqra Khalid, a Pakistani-Canadian, and is being discussed now in the House of Commons. Here it […]

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Protests against Trump at the University of Chicago

Protests against Trump at the University of Chicago

I read the twice-weekly University of Chicago student newspaper, the Chicago Maroon, and have noticed over the past few years a clear movement towards identity politics and Regressive Leftism. There is pretty much a unanimity of opinion among its writers, with little attempt to present alternative viewpoints, and many of the op-ed pieces are written by privileged […]

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