Since Senior Rambler Jeff Dunn is driving cross-country at the moment, it has fallen to me, Adam Palmer, the completely stationary Junior Rambler, to sweep up the iron filings from the floor of the iMonastery’s smithy.
Here we go:
This week Christian apologist and all-around smart fellow Terry Mattingly wrote a thought-provoking essay about the faith of Anders Breivik, better known as the “Christian” terrorist in Norway who killed 77 people. It’s an interesting look not only at faith but also at the way different cultures define different words, in this case: “fundamentalist.”
Are women now more in dangers of the flames of hell than ever before? It would seem so, according to a new report issued this week by “researcher and pollster” George Barna. The most tantalizing part of this report: “If women become less of a mainstay in what occurs within churches, will ministries respond by increasing the male-friendliness of the proceedings? And, as women become less front-and-center, will men be pressured to upgrade their church involvement?” Yes, what will churches do now to attract an audience?
Apparently women aren’t just falling away from the faith, they’re also pulling back from nature itself. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control released findings this week that hospitals aren’t doing enough to support breastfeeding for new mothers. Dr. Thomas Freiden, director of the CDC, makes a good point about the financial aspects of nursing: “Promoting breastfeeding will in the long run reduce costs because it will lower the burden of illness in these children.”
Speaking of birth, celebrated smart-person Stephen Hawking is weighing on the creation of the universe. This week he promoted a new television special where he answers the question of whether God created the universe. You’ll never guess his answer (spoiler: no).
As long as we’re on the topic, and since I’m an astronomy dork, we had a couple of fascinating stories this week about our own solar system. One scientist has posited that Earth, at one time, had two moons, while NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has snapped a series of photos of the Martian surface that indicate the Red Planet may have liquid water. Or, as the article puts it, is it possible that Mars “is only mostly dead?”
And lastly, what would an Adam Palmer version of Saturday Ramblings be without a link to Popular Science? This week, they reported on an African rat that smears poison on its fur (hair? coat?) as a means of protection from predators. Surely there’s a joke in there somewhere about Evangelicals or the Tea Party or something. Feel free to find it and make it in the comments.
We all sang “Happy Birthday” this week to President Barack Obama, who turned a half-century old (and who is starting to look it), Francis Scott Key, who wrote the President’s favorite song, NFL quarterback and all-around hunky bloke Tom Brady, former WKRP heartthrob Loni Anderson (who is now eligible for social security benefits), Herman Melville, Peter O’Toole, Martha Stewart, for our UK contingent, Elizabeth, the Queen Mother.
And since we always like to close with a video that might brighten your weekend, I picked this delightfully original song from one our national treasures, Weird Al Yankovic. Heed it well.