Metro State Atheists

Promoting Science, Reason, and Secular Values

Food for Freethought 2010

What is “Food for Freethought”?

Food for Freethought, inspired by the Center for Inquiry’s Campaign for Free Expression, is a food drive that also encourages freethought, freedom of expression, and free inquiry.  We plan to accomplish this by giving “Banned” and Freethought books away in exchange for non-perishable food donations that will be going to Food Bank of the Rockies, during “Banned Books Week”, September 27 – October 2 (specific dates below).  Our goal is to raise an enormous amount of food for those in need.  Most food drives are done during the holidays and tons of food is raised and distributed.  That is all well and good, but what about the majority of the time that it isn’t the holiday season?  The hungry don’t stop being hungry after the holidays, they are hungry now too!  Given the existing goals of Metro State Atheists, it is only natural that we would attempt to help the hungry by promoting freethought, freedom of expression, and free inquiry.  With the proper support,  we can  have an immeasurable positive community impact!

The event will be taking place at the Auraria Campus (1201 5th St, Denver, CO 80204).   September 28-30th, 9am-4pm (Times Subject to Change)

Metro State Atheists will have SIGNED COPIES available at Food For Freethought 2010 by the following authors:

Hemant MehtaDaniel Dennett , James RandiMichael ShermerDan Barker, and…RICHARD DAWKINS!. If you’d like to obtain any of these signed copies, donate food!

Largest donors receive signed books!

Metro State Atheists would like to formally thank the above and the following groups  for their support:

The James Randi Educational Foundation

The Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science

The Center for Inquiry

Secular Student Alliance

Skeptic Magazine

Freedom From Religion Foundation

How can I help?

AMAZON.COM Wishlist

Click here and check out the Food for Freethought 2009 wishlist.  From there you can buy the books directly and they will be sent to us!

A special thanks to Tanya J. Higgins of Boulder, CO for setting this up.

Donate Books:

If you have any of the books on the banned book list (http://banned-books.com/bblist.html) and would like to donate it to the cause, please email Joel Guttormson at metroatheists@hotmail.com to set up pick up/delievery of your donation.


July 28, 2009 Posted by | Art, Astrology, Astronomy, atheism, Awards, Bacteriology, Bible, biology, Blurb, Books, Calculus, Censorship, Center For Inquiry, Charity, Chemistry, Christianity, Chromatography, creationism, Differential Equations, Epistemology, Events, evolution, First Century, god, Group Theory, Guest Bloggers, Humor, Interview, Jesus, Jesus Christ, Jesus is Lord, Language, Lecture, Mathematics, Medicine, Metro State Atheists, Microbiology, Morality, Movies, New Testament, News, Newsletter, Noah Mann-Engel, Old Testament, Organic Chemistry, Party, philosophy, Pictures, Poetry, Politics, Poll, Press Release, Pseudomedicine, Pseudoscience, Qoutes, religion, Resume, Rome, Sam Singleton, Sarah Schoonmaker, Satire, science, Scientology, Sirius, Skepticism, splendid elles, The Holy Bible, The Reed Secular Alliance, The Trickster, Troy Conrad, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Joel on MetRadio June 8, 2009

President of  Metro State Atheists, Joel Guttormson, will be on the MetRadio show, “Take Issue”, on June 8, 2009 from 2pm-3pm .  Joel will be on for 45 mins, the first 15 mins are for news.  You may listen to the show on the Auraria Campus on 91.7; best reception is in the Tivoli.  Metro State Atheists is a Center for Inquiry affiliate.  MetRadio is the radio station of Metropolitan State College of Denver.

If you are not on the Auraria Campus you must listen to the show online.

LISTEN TO THE SHOW: (You will need Real Player, get it here)

IN YOUR BROWSER

ON YOUR COMP W/ REAL PLAYER

-SUBSCRIBE TO THE METRADIO PODCAST HERE

June 2, 2009 Posted by | Astrology, atheism, Bible, Blurb, Books, Censorship, Center For Inquiry, Chemistry, Christianity, creationism, Epistemology, Events, evolution, First Century, god, Interview, Jesus, Jesus Christ, Jesus is Lord, Language, Lecture, Metro State Atheists, Morality, New Testament, News, Newsletter, Old Testament, philosophy, Politics, Press Release, religion, Scientology, Skepticism, The Holy Bible, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Boulder International Humanist Institute Presents Gary Marcus

The following flyer and e-mail was sent forwarded to us by the Boulder International Humanist Society

klugeeventflyer3-21

Save the date of Friday, February 13th to celebrate Charles Darwin’s 200th birthday (actually on February 12th) (see attachment for our flyer).  Gary Marcus is a wonderful speaker and professor from New York University.  He also has a good sense of humor.
The Boulder International Humanist Institute’s success will be measured by the attendance at the event.  If we can have a full house and good book signing and sales, we can encourage other compelling speakers in the future.
Please support us in this event by attending and encouraging others to attend.  You can run off the attached announcement on a color printer and show it to friends.  You can refer them to our website to learn more about BIHI.
We may be co-sponsoring an event in October to bring Richard Dawkins to Boulder and can use the fact that we attract a good audience to our events as an inducement to future speakers.
Please consider buying Marcus’s book and having him sign it at the event so we can continue to have the Boulder book store as a co-sponsor of future events.
The American Humanist Association and the Center for Inquiry are co-sponsoring this event and the editor of The Humanist magazine will be joining us and making a presentation.
Thank you for your help in making this a successful event as you have spread the word for past events.  If anyone wants to volunteer to help us on this or future events please reply.
We have tried to reach out to a diverse audience and connect with various disciplines.  We have had speakers in anthropology, psychology, law, journalism, philosophy, religious studies.
The purpose of BIHI is to educate the community about the benefit of policy making, ethics, and values from evidenced based dialogue.  This contrasts with looking to blind faith, unexamined holy sources for our values.  As a nation we have been victim of theocratic influences for the past eight years.  There are think tanks, some legal scholars, and public interest groups that are distorting history by claiming we are a Christian nation and the Constitution’s prohibition of established religion only prohibits favoring one religion over another, but does not prohibit government favoring religion over non belief.
Our principle message is that whatever one’s personal notion of religion or God may be, supernatural authority, God, and one’s faith should not trump evidenced based decisions about what best serves the public interest.  Consequences matter more than commitment to political or economic ideology.  As President Obama said: “The issue isn’t whether we should have more or less government, but what works.”  Pragmatism in solving our severe crisis is what the best evidence indicates works to serve the public interest.
Gordon Gamm
– Chalmer, VP

January 26, 2009 Posted by | Lecture, Metro State Atheists, News, Newsletter | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Schedule of Events 2009

Metro State Atheists

Schedule of Events (Spring Semester 2009)

2/12- Darwin Day party- Time and Local TBA

2/16- Why Intelligent Design is not science. Tivoli Tavern Space. 10am-4pm

3/11- Think you know the 10 commandments? Think Again. Tivoli Tavern Space. 10am-4pm

4/7- R-Harmony: We match you with the religion of your dreams! North Classroom Atrium A2. 10am -4pm

4/22-4/23- Spring Fling Our event will consist of demonstrations of the failure of some pseudo-medicine, including the famous Kinoki Footpads. . Tivoli Commons 10am-3pm

5/9- Skepticamp. This event is being brought to us by the Denver Skeptics. It is a gathering of skeptics in which they will present in a lecture type format, certain findings that they have discovered on phenomena spanning a whole host of different fields. President, Joel Guttormson, and Vice President, Chalmer Wren, will be presenting on the language of pseudoscience. Tivoli room 320 9am-8pm

This list is subject to changes and additions as it is TENTATIVE.

January 25, 2009 Posted by | atheism, Center For Inquiry, Events, Lecture, Metro State Atheists, Pseudomedicine, Pseudoscience | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Joel Guttormson on Bob Enyart Live 1/7/08

In case you missed the show, you can listen to it online here.

Soon, Chalmer and I (Joel) will have blogs up commenting on different aspects of the show.  Watch this page tomorrow as we’ll be posting links to the blogs in this post, in case you don’t see them on the main page.

Joel’s Commentary

Chalmer’s Commentary

Thank you!

Joel

President

Metro State Atheists

January 8, 2009 Posted by | atheism, Bible, Calculus, Center For Inquiry, Christianity, creationism, Differential Equations, Events, First Century, god, Interview, Jesus, Jesus Christ, Jesus is Lord, Lecture, Mathematics, Metro State Atheists, Morality, New Testament, News, Newsletter, Old Testament, philosophy, Politics, Press Release, religion, science, The Holy Bible, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Joel Guttormson debates radio show host Bob Enyart (AM 670)

From Theology Online:

“Atheist Billboard spokesman, Joel Guttormson, (“Don’t Believe in God, You’re Not Alone”) will debate Radio talk show host Bob Enyart this Wednesday on Bob’s radio and Internet show (AM 670, Internet www.KGOV.com) .

Both sides have been sent information on the other (Bob’s show with his interview of Dan Barker was sent to Joel, and Joel’s website https://metrostateatheists.wordpress.com/ was sent to Bob).”

The show will at 3pm MT, Wednesday January 7th.

Here is the  link to Bob’s interview with our friend Dan Barker.

Commentary on the show can be viewed by using the links below:

Joel’s Commentary

Chalmer’s Commentary

Metro State Atheists

January 6, 2009 Posted by | Art, Astrology, Astronomy, atheism, Bacteriology, Bible, biology, Blurb, Calculus, Censorship, Center For Inquiry, Chemistry, Christianity, creationism, Differential Equations, Events, First Century, god, Humor, Interview, Jesus, Jesus Christ, Jesus is Lord, Language, Lecture, Mathematics, Medicine, Metro State Atheists, Microbiology, Morality, Movies, New Testament, News, Newsletter, Old Testament, Organic Chemistry, Party, philosophy, Pictures, Poetry, Politics, Poll, Press Release, Pseudomedicine, Pseudoscience, Qoutes, religion, Rome, Satire, science, Scientology, Sirius, splendid elles, The Holy Bible, The Trickster | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

It’s the most Solstice time of the year.

We are now fast approaching that wonderful time, commonly known as the Holiday Season.  After recently seeing Jeff Dunham’s recent (and hilarious) holiday special, about 6 times, something Walter (one of his puppet personalities) said, captures the feelings of a lot Christians who feel that there is an awful “War on Christmas” and that their (silly) beliefs about a god-baby being born, are being oppressed.  I may sound harsh, but let me tell you about the joke in question. ” Jeff: Happy Holidays! Walter: Ya know, I’ve been meaning to say this for a few years now. Screw you, it’s Merry Christmas! (audience cheers) Jeff: But Walter, there are other religions. Walter: Yea, and they’re wrong!.”  Although this may not be exact, it’s close enough to make the point.  I find it curious that Christianity can take this kind of attitude about other religions yet they are the ones being oppressed and everyone is conducting a War on Christmas.  Now, this blog is not going to do what many similar blogs have done and expound on the debauchery of the history surrounding Christmas. This has be done ad nauseam.  Here, I’d like to talk about the taboo subject of: Christian Intolerance.

To all the moderate, i-don’t-hurt-anybody-with-my-beliefs/they-aren’t-REAL-Christians Christians, I’d like to inform you that, yes they are “REAL” Christians.  If not only because that’s a judgement call your religion isn’t supposed to be making in the first place.  Who are you to decide that? (“Judge not lest ye be judged” ringing a bell?)    And secondly, if you aren’t speaking out or against the following, you’re an enabler and are just a guilty.

First, Happy Holidays to all.  I say this, not to be politically correct, but to show tolerance for the beliefs of others.  It may seem strange to some of the more religiously inclined, to hear that from an atheist.  There are many holidays going on at this time of year.  The most prominent of them are Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa.  I’ve had people ask me over the years, “So if you’re an atheist, does that mean you don’t/can’t celebrate Christmas?”.  This is a loaded question, to some extent, so I’ll try and give the most informative and satisfying answer I can. (*Please note: I do not speak for all atheists, the following is simply my personal account of my celebration practices and does represent, in totality, atheists in general)

After researching the origins of Christmas, which I celebrate for its material value (not its religious value) for many years as an atheist, I found that most of the practices of the tradition (ie the tree, the decorations, Santa and so on) weren’t Christian at all.  So yes, I do, in a sense celebrate Christmas.  On the other hand, Christmas, being stolen almost outright from the Pagans for northern Europe, has a more real meaning in the way it was originally celebrated.  The people of northern Europe equated Winter with death.  Who wouldn’t living there in those days?  The reason for the tree, specifically a fur tree, was because the people of northern Europe observed that those tree were about one of the only things that didn’t die in the Winter season.  Thus, it came to be a representation of life overcoming death (sound familiar to anyone you’ve heard of?…See Easter 😉 ).  Thus, the tradition began of bringing a fur tree into one’s house as to bring this representation, to them the power, of life.  They did this around December 21st because that is the date of the Winter Solstice.  This is, amazingly enough, the time when peoples of the day could notice (because they had no cities to obscure their view) that this was the shortest day of the year and that Winter was going away, however slowly.  This was the cause of great celebration. It meant that soon, but never soon enough, they would be free of the death that was the cold and snow of the season.  Therefore, I, for similar, although not identical reasons, have decided that this celebration is quite a bit more valid than celebrating the mythical birth of a mythical person that more than likely never existed at all.  So the short answer is, I celebrate the material part of Christmas (the presents, who doesn’t like presents) and the naturalistic side of the Solstice.  So, I guess you could say I celebrate Solstmas.  This is a legitimate holiday to celebrate.  Not to sound too conceded, but again, it is my opinion that celebrating the Solstice or Solstmas, is far more legitimate than lighting 8 candles for a seemingly random display of pageantry or reminiscing about events surrounding a mythical baby-god, that probably never happened in what is today Israel.

However, do not take all this to mean I believe that if you DO celebrate the holidays I consider invalid and illegitimate that you should stop.  It is only my opinion and I am entitled to it.  Further, this is a subjective matter about which neither of us is right or wrong.  This is where the joke that Jeff tells, with his character Walter comes into play.  It’s not so much that Jeff, as Walter, says this.  It’s the fact that the audience, upon hearing this, erupts into cheers, as if he made a valid point, which he most certainly did not.  Holidays are not a matter of right and wrong.  Their origins often contain facts which are subject to such boolean objectivity, but their practice of them a purely subjective matter.  Therefore, I implore to those of you who believe that “Happy Holidays” is somehow a phrase meant to keep you from having your traditions and celebrations, to not be so judgmental.  Stand back, look in the mirror and try a pair of shoes on that you’re are unfamiliar with, see how they look on you, see how they feel, maybe even walk around in them a little bit.  Then, Merry Chis-ma-han-a-kwanz-ica it up all you want. Because when you say “Merry Christmas!” to me, I’ll reply (with good intention), “Merry Solstmas!” to you.

Happy Holidays to everyone!

Joel

President

Metro State Atheists

A CFI Affiliate/SSA Member/COCORE Member

November 27, 2008 Posted by | atheism, Bible, Christianity, Lecture, philosophy, Politics, religion, science, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Metropolitan Article

Here is an article about us, written by Nicole Queen, that was going to appear in The Metropolitan but didn’t end up making it past the editors.

Nicole Queen

11/04/08

Slug: Metro State Atheists: You Gotta Have Truth—Not Faith

The MSA is challenging theists and students to question their faith and be          knowledgeable about what they believe in by organizing events and speakers     like author Vic Stenger, at Auraria.

Author Victor Stenger, Ph.D., was raised as a church-going Catholic. As he grew older, his interest in science displaced his interest in God and church doctrine.

Stenger, 73, doesn’t believe in God and is coming to campus to tell Auraria not only why, but how science proves that a God or deity doesn’t exist at all. In fact, according to Stenger, “the world doesn’t look at all like it should if there was a God.”

On Monday Nov. 10 at 1:00 p.m. in the Tivoli Turnhalle, Stenger— a retired professor of physics and astronomy at the University of Hawaii and is currently an adjunct professor of philosophy at Colorado University in Boulder—will present the findings from his 2007 New York Times Bestsellers’ book, “God: The Failed Hypothesis; How Science Proves God Does Not Exist.” He will offer a question and answer session, followed with a book signing.

He was invited by the campus club, the Metro State Atheists (MSA), as part of the club’s mission to question theists and destroy misconceptions about atheism.

In the world of education, students are asked to question. Students are asked to seek answers. The MSA are asking the same of believers of God or any deity on and off campus.

“We give people information [about atheism], but then the next words out of our mouths are to say, ‘Do not believe us, don’t believe anybody just because we say it, go look it up,’” said MSCD junior Joel Guttormson, 22, president of the campus Metro State Atheists club. “We ask people to look it up, and we do ask people to be educated about their faith.”

Guttormson, who is majoring in theoretical mathematics, along with MSCD senior chemistry major and MSA Vice President Chalmer Wren, 22, founded the club three years ago. After changing the club’s name several times, Guttormson and Wren settled on MSA.

“We weren’t very creative with this name, but we figured, you know, that describes us the best,” Guttormson said. “It doesn’t need to be creative; it needs to tell you who we are.”

As the only club at Auraria devoted to secular beliefs, MSA has found their niche.

“The secular influence at Auraria is fleeting at best,” Wren said in an email interview. “The number of religious student organizations is astounding, and when we founded MSA we were, and have remained, the only student organization representing secular-minded individuals on campus.”

Wren and Guttormson hope that organizing events and hosting speakers like Stenger on campus helps to serve those individuals better.

“Authors like Vic Stenger are well-known and influential in the secular community and we hope that by bringing big names to campus we can encourage like-minded students to get involved,” Wren explained. “When we started this organization, I never imagined I would get to shake the hands of some of the very people who helped change my mind.”

As a freshman, Wren was a “church-going Christian,” but with studying science and philosophy, like Stenger, Wren began to doubt his familiar upbringing.

“The harder I fought to justify my belief, the more absurd it became,” he said. “…I came to a point in my life where I had to choose between what I thought to be true and what I knew to be comfortable.”

Not only does the MSA help to bring the secular community on campus together, but they also hope to help those who may not agree, understand what atheism is and isn’t.

“Atheists are not only misrepresented in society,” Guttormson said. “What stems from that misrepresentation is an irrational fear of atheists…We’re just like any other group of people, we just lack a belief in any deities.”

Guttormson said that the MSA’s goals are to educate people about atheism, remove the taboo of questioning religion and to confront pseudoscience (like reflexology) and not to argue and belittle people who have different beliefs.

From time to time, the MSA does run into conflict on campus, according to Guttormson. He recounted that at last year’s Fall Fest, MSA had a table for their club and some people got so irate the club needed to call campus security, and others burst into tears.

While they may not agree with what the MSA is trying to do, some of the religious clubs on campus have no problem sharing the campus with them.

Johnathan Stalls, MSCD senior and non-denominational Christian said he has no qualms with atheists.

“…Some of the atheists I know are some of the most passionate, intelligent people I know,” he said.

Stalls said it’s important to question your beliefs.

“For me, faith should always be tested, always,” he said.

The Rev. Ron Gustman, director of the campus club, Christian Challenge, he’d probably inform members of the Christian Challenge about Stenger’s presentation and some may go out of curiosity.

“I think they have every right to be on campus, just like us,” the Rev. Ron Gustman, director of the campus club Christian Challenge, said. “I believe strongly in the freedom of religion and to practice what you want to believe…”

Despite a niche for them at MSCD, the MSA has struggled within the community to organize humanitarian events like food drives and blood donation. Guttormson said many humanities programs around Denver are sponsored by religious groups and have told MSA they were not willing to work with them. In response, MSA is in the process of finding programs that will accept anybody who wants to help—belief or no belief. However, according to Guttormson, not all atheists simply believe in nothing.

“…I believe in the future of humanity as far as our ability, technology-wise, to sustain ourselves,” Guttormson said. “The other thing I’d say I believe is that human empathy, above all else, and personal responsibility, are the foundations of reality and that’s what drive human compassion and all other emotions that go along with it.”

Sources:

Joel Guttormson: 720-936-6505

Ron Gustman: 303-750-5390

Johnathan Stalls:n 303-908-0076

Chalmer Wren: 303-693-0181 (h)

303-916-2318 ©

lunarnaut@aol.com

November 22, 2008 Posted by | Events, Lecture, News, Newsletter | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

“Sam Singleton Atheist Evangelist, Patriarchs and Penises”

Metro State Atheists

Events

"Sam Singleton Atheist Evangelist, Patriarchs
and Penises"
A one-man "comedy in two acts"
in the form of Brother Sam first
preaching a sermon, then leading
the Bible Class. It runs for about
90 minutes plus one 15 minute intermission.
Purchase Tickets Online

Location: Turnhalle in the Tivoli
          900 Auraria Parkway
          Denver, CO, 80204
Date & Time: December 16, 2008, 7:00pm to 9:00pm
 Price: $15 for non-students, and $10 for
        students with valid ID
        Tickets available online at
        www.samsingleton.com, or 1 hour
        before the show at the Turnhalle.
        Evolvefish merchandise will also be
        available for purchase.
Volunteer: We are looking for people to help
           us sell tickets and promote
           the show.  For each advanced ticket
           sold you will be paid one
           dollar.  Please let us know if
            your interested.  You can also go
           to http://www.samsingleton.com/Street.html

poster_denver_23-234x397


Links
Sam Singleton's Website
Purchase Tickets Online
Tour Dates
Videos of Sam
The Little Things


November 18, 2008 Posted by | Events, Humor, Lecture, News, science | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Carbene Powerpoint

A short powerpoint presentation on carbenes that I did for a chemistry class.  I can’t figure out how to post it so its viewable online, so you can download the file.

Carbene Powerpoint

– Chalmer


November 17, 2008 Posted by | Chemistry, Lecture, Organic Chemistry, science | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment