Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Atheists Spread Unholy Water to Counter Christian Blessing

The Humanists of Florida Association, in an attempt to "cleanse Polk County from the influence of Christianity" spread "unholy water" upon a stretch of Highway 98, along the county line. They chose the specific spot as it is one of many that had been blessed as a part of the Polk Under Prayer project.

PUP's "objective is to place Holy Angels at all roads that lead into or out of Polk County. A strip of anointed oil has been placed over all lanes of highway at the county line and a prayer has been given at each location asking God to have angels inspect every vehicle that travels into or out of this county and to bring under conviction to those who seek evil and we asked God to bring them to a state of submission and repentance. If they will not submit to God’s way of living, then the prayer is to have them incarcerated or removed from the county."

Apparently it is working as HFA president Ellen Beth Wachs, who has won awards as Florida's Atheist Activist of The Year, has been arrested twice since the anointing. The first time it was for pretending to be a lawyer. The second for lewd and lascivious behavior. Wachs has in the past offered to shoot any Christian so that they can prove there is a heaven.

According to PUP there have been an increase in arrests of many different kinds of criminals in the county, since the anointing. Specifically in the drug trade and manufacturing sector. They also say that crime in general has gone down since they blessed the highways.

PUP may have gone a little over board with their desire to see non Christians removed from the county. That definitely does not sound like freedom of religion, and maybe they could have worded it better. But it is completely ironic that one of the main arrests since their blessing was that of someone who has made a mission of attacking them.

The HFA clearly seems to think that cursing the site will free their leader of her criminal mindset. I'm almost scared to ask, but what exactly is "unholy water"? Vinegar? Piss? Did you do a prayer of cursing over it? Black magic? O and if you're atheists, how does any form of religious ceremony have anything in it for or power over you?

Mysterious Sounds Troubling Clintonville, Wisconsin

Clintonville, Wisconsin has been assaulted the last few days by strange booming noises and shaking. The town of 5,000, located near Green Bay, has become greatly concerned as no reason for the noises and shaking has been discerned so far. Residents have begun to leave to town due to their concern about them.

"I think we can rule out that standard earthquake activity, [that] some swarm of earthquakes is happening in that region. It also really looks like it’s not connected to, say, unusual drilling activity or some other kind of real obvious human induced signal," Harold Tobin, one of those professors in the Geoscience department at the University of Wisconsin told WKOW.

Tobin, and other scientists that have been called in, have not yet been unable to figure out what could be causing the noises. So far they've managed to rule out problems with the water and sewer system, elevated gas levels, area blasting or mining, industrial businesses, and even military operations. They hope to bring in instruments that record noise in the air, and also ground vibrations at a higher frequency. In doing so they would hopefully be able to identify the sounds, and locate the source.

"I think that right now the greatest possibility is that it is some sort of natural phenomenon. I think that it’s a possibility that there is some earth shifting going on underneath the ground that creates those popping sort of exploding popping or vibrating noises that people feel," City Administrator Lisa Kuss said to WBAY.

Man Flies With Custom Made Wings

After eight months of designing, creating, and testing Jarno Smeets has successfully flown with the wings he made.

After the 60-second flight he said, "At one moment you see the ground moving away, and then suddenly you're free, a really intense feeling of freedom. The true feeling of flying. A magical moment. The best feeling I have felt in my life."

Using Wii controllers, accelerometers harvested from an HTC Wildfire Android phone and Turnigy motors he, and neuromechanics expert Bert Otten, built the wings to react to his body the way a robotic prosthesis would.

The electronics respond to his movements and multiply the strength enough to make the thirty-seven ounce wings carry his 180 pound self, plus the forty pounds of equipment.

The actual design was based off of the famous drawings by Leonardo da Vinci.

UPDATE: Jarno Smeets and His Flight are Fake

Boulder Residents Against Home for The Homeless

Boulder Housing Partners director Betsey Martens
Boulder residents are complaining about a planned home for the homeless, stating that it will effect their own quality of life. Opponents of the 30,000 square foot home say that Boulder already has the Boulder Shelter for the Homeless, so why would they need another location.

Some are concerned that the complex of thirty-one apartments will lower the safety in the surrounding area. The housing authority has already said it would provide security around the clock, including surveillance cameras and restricted access to the apartments. They add that anything possible to ensure the safety of everyone involved will be done.

Betsey Martens, executive director of Boulder Housing Partners, indicated the agency plans to go forward with the project unless the council takes decisive action to prevent it. "In the face of such passionate opposition, the (Boulder Housing Partners) board remains committed to the project," she said.

The project would be completely funded already, without a need for tax increases, thanks to low-income housing tax credits and grants. The project has already received more than $400,000 from the city and $800,000 from Boulder County.

Boulder Housing Partners has the right to develop the apartments under existing zoning. The council also has been warned by City Attorney Tom Carr that changing the law to prevent the development might put the city at risk of being sued under the federal Fair Housing Act, which prevents municipalities from discriminating against a class of people.

St. Augustine Introduces Ordinance to Regulate Garage Sales

The city of St. Augustine is proposing a garage sale ordinance, limiting the number of sales per year at four, with a maximum of three days per sale. City Commissioner Nancy Sikes-Kline was called by frustrated neighbors after they observed what they called a "large, multi-day sale". The commissioner visited the neighborhood, observing around thirty to fifty cars parked along the street, and then brought the matter to the city’s attention.

Mark Knight, city director of planning and building, drafted the ordinance at the request of the City Commission. A public hearing coming up March 26 will allow comments from the public and bring on a second vote.
"They had asked what we had on the books regulating garage sales, and we had to tell them that there wasn’t really anything specifically directed at them," Knight said. "So, they asked me to draw something up for them to look at. So, I went to Google to see what kinds of ordinances were out there in other cities."
Knight said he found a very simple ordinance "in Arkansas somewhere" that he thought would be a good starting point, then went to work customizing it to St. Augustine.

Many St. Augustine residents are rightfully upset with the proposed ordinance. Laura Forte, who had a garage sale last Saturday, said:
"To me, yard sales are like a fundamental right, part of American life," said Forte, who has owned her home for 13 years. "I’m not completely sure how I feel about this new ordinance the city is considering, but I don’t think it’s right."
Barbara Chapman, who was holding a sale in front of her apartment on Arricola Avenue on Anastasia Island, says:
"I don’t think it’s fair at all... I think as long as you’re not disturbing anybody, they should leave you alone. I should not have to register with the city to hold a sale in my own yard."
Assistant City Attorney Isabelle Lopez said she understands residents’ frustration with the proposed ordinance, but the city needed something on the books regarding garage sales, because there was nothing.
"You hate to have to regulate these things. And we want to hear what the public has to say about this. Our intent is [to] create a scenario where people would register, either online or in person, and we could track these things."
Personally, I see this as another excuse to put a tax on the people of St. Augustine. Six years ago, an ordinance was approved to ban artists and street performers from historic St. George Street without a proper permit. If you've ever been to St. Augustine, you know that the street performers are part of their culture and their local economy.

There seems to be a pattern across the country of increased government regulation assaulting private property rights. In Blytheville, AR. last year, residents were warned to remove their basketball goals off the edge of their lawn or face removal from the city. In Coralville, Iowa, 4-year-old Abigail Krutsinger had her lemonade stand shut down.

When will enough be enough?

(h/t The St. Augustine Record)