Yes, yes, I know... the whole of the internet is abuzz with how much conservative republicans hate the idea of women having sex without a strict combination of permission and punishment.
Yes... the Blunt Amendment, which would have allowed employers to deny certain types of health coverage to their employees based on their personal convictions (No birth control for you, you dirty slut! No HIV meds for you, you filthy homo!) , was squashed before it grew legs.
Yes... I am going to add to the cacophony, but I'll be brief.
The main argument in support of the Blunt Amendment was that forcing employers to "subsidize" behavior they deemed immoral violated their religious freedoms. Here's evangelical nut-job David Limbaugh:
"The Blunt amendment, it should be noted, wouldn't deny any woman access to contraceptives or even abortifacients; it would just exempt employers from being forced to subsidize them."
So, essentially, forcing employers to pay into insurance plans that cover medications and procedures they disagree with is violating their right of conscience. Sounds reasonable...ish.
Forcing employers to PAY their employees does the SAME DAMN THING. My employer would not be allowed to withhold my paycheck, regardless of how badly it might make baby Jesus cry, even if I explicitly told him how I intended to use that money to slut it up all weekend and then buy a handful of morning after pills to flush any unintended products of my lustful fornication down the toilet. His hand may tremble as he hands me the check, knowing that he's "subsidizing" my hedonistic intentions, but he still has to hand it to me.
Insurance is no different. When comparing salaries, analysts (and anyone else with half a brain) include various benefits like paid leave, annual or performance based bonuses, and INSURANCE. Insurance coverage isn't a means to push employees toward chastity or marital procreation-unto-death, it's part of an employee's compensation for the utilization of their skills.
That's right, moralists - you "subsidize" fucking for fun every time you run payroll. Almost makes me wish I worked for one.
Thanks to a very generous donor (who also happens to be both a charming individual and a brilliant story teller), I've reached my personal goal in one fell swoop!
That doesn't knock the rest of you off the hook, however. My team still has plenty of money to raise before they reach their million dollar goal, so please consider tossing a couple dollars in the bucket by clicking here.
I've just signed up as a Foundation Beyond Belief Virtual Team member in this year's Light the Night Walk, and I need your help! First, a little info from the FBB team homepage:
"The FBB international team is going to be a rallying point around which local freethought, atheist, and secular humanist groups will make teams to participate in Light the Night Walks. Our goal is to unite the Freethought Movement around the world to raise one million U.S. Dollars in 2012 for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS).
The Light The Night Walk is The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's evening walk and fundraising event to pay tribute and bring hope to people battling cancer. Thousands of participants raise funds for vital, lifesaving research and patient services and, on these special nights, they carry illuminated balloons in a show of support from a caring community."
That bit about "they carry illuminated balloons" is why I'm participating virtually. Dying from anaphilaxis thanks to latex balloons probably isn't very effective way to raise money for the LLS. I digress...
"We have chosen Christopher Hitchens as our Honored Hero for 2012. Hitch died from complications due to esophogeal cancer this past year and devoted so much to our movement during his life; now we can give something back in his memory. Although he did not have a blood cancer, drugs developed for blood cancers are often used to treat other cancers as well. As a result, the research that is funded by LLS could very well help treat esophogeal and other cancers. We are being joined in our efforts by our Allies: American Atheists, American Humanist Association, Atheist Alliance of America, Camp Quest, Center For Inquiry, Centre for Inquiry, Freedom from Religion Foundation, Harvard Humanist Chaplaincy & Alumni, Military Association of Atheists and Freethinkers, Secular Student Alliance, and United Coalition of Reason."
As an added kick in the pants, the Stiefel family has pledged to match the first $500,000 raised for LLS and will grant the opportunity for the top fundraising teams to direct up to $5,000 in grants with up to half going to local qualifying freethought nonprofits and the rest to qualifying the FBB Allies of their choice, courtesy of the Stiefel Freethought Foundation.
Here's where you come through for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, the Foundation Beyond Belief, AND for me:
"All walkers are encouraged to become Champions For Cures by raising $100 or more to help fight blood cancer."
Please consider donating a few dollars through the widget below, bringing both me and the Foundation Beyond Belief closer to our goals. As with so many of the people who are walking, I'm taking this fight personally - the CEO of the company I've worked with for the last several years lost his battle with Adult Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia on January 22nd of this year. I miss him every damn day... this is the least I can do.
I suppose, for the purpose of clarification, I should offer a touch more than that single word... It breaks my heart to think of the misery inflicted by generally well-intentioned individuals who stumble upon an unusual pet and adopt it on a whim, completely ignorant of the type of care the poor critter requires to keep it both healthy and happy. Glancing over my recent snake adoption post, I realized that it might appear to readers that this is exactly what I had done; lucked into an opportunity to pick up an exotic animal and made a snap decision to bring it home where it could suffer in a pool of my impulse-tinged ignorance. First, I want to assure that this is absolutely not the case. Then, I'd like to talk a little bit about exotic pets, and offer a little unsolicited advice.
Jackson, our new ball python
I will readily admit that our decision to adopt this snake took all of five minutes, but our decision to adopt a snake took a few months. In weighing our options, we took several different factors into consideration - the general temperament of the species, average size and weight, average life span, feeding issues, susceptibility to disease, climate requirements, space requirements, habitat considerations, common genetic disorders, etc... By the time we were done with our research, we had a fair amount of knowledge and felt confident in our ability to care for up to two constrictors from a number of readily available species; having already identified a local breeder, we planned on adopting one later this year. When the opportunity to adopt our new ball python unexpectedly arose, we were already well aware of our ability to properly care for him; the only decision we had to make was whether or not we wanted to give this guy the loving home he needed... and that was a no-brainer.
I mention this, not as some kind of fallacious, "better than thou" diatribe, but to make it clear that I don't hold other families to different standards than I hold my own.
What exactly are we talking about here?
Before I go any further, I want to clarify just what I mean when I refer to an "exotic pet". Fact is, there isn't universal agreement as to what constitutes an exotic pet, and legal definitions vary by location. Personally, I consider dogs, cats, mice, gerbils, hamsters, small birds, and small freshwater fish to be domestic pets; if it doesn't fit in that list, I consider it an exotic pet. I base these classifications on the concept of common knowledge - most reasonable adults would be able to care for the animals in my list of domestic pets with little or no instruction. Above the threshold of common knowledge, an adopted animal is fairly unlikely to suffer due to the ignorance of it's new caretaker. Below the threshold of common knowledge, ignorance related suffering, injuries, and deaths are depressingly common.
Things to think about
Our family has cared for a number of exotic pets, and we have plans to adopt more in the coming year, so I want to make it clear that I'm in no way against the adoption of exotics as long as they can be cared for properly. Also, while I am against exotic pet bans, I'm generally not against reasonably strict permit requirements; especially in the case of rare, fragile, and dangerous animals. For those among you who are interested in exotic animals, I've compiled a short list of considerations:
Gator, our Golden Gecko
Habitat: The habitat requirements of exotic pets frequently go beyond the simple provision of shelter, which all pets require. Cold-blooded animals require a range of heat zones within their primary habitat, with highs and lows dependent on the species, so that they can properly regulate their body temperature. Specific humidity levels must also be maintained for cold-blooded species, with some requiring a semi-aquatic habitat. The size and shape of the habitat must also be considered; arboreal animals like golden geckos, chameleons, and sloths require largely vertical habitats, whereas vertical space for leopard geckos and ball pythons would be largely wasted. Also, don't be fooled into thinking that the size of the animal determines the size of their habitat - tiny sugar gliders* (which have become VERY popular in recent years) require a disproportionately HUGE amount of space. Responsible pet caretakers learn everything they can about their pet's natural habitat, and do their best to recreate that habitat in their home.
Food: While food for rats, ferrets, lizards, and other popular exotic pets is becoming more common in the pet food aisle, most exotic species require a more specialized diet than your average kibble will provide. Many exotic species, like raccoons and sugar gliders*, require a variety of fresh foods that have to be prepared daily. Predatory species, obviously, need prey, and not all species will accept pre-killed food. Consider the nutritional needs of your desired pets carefully before committing to caring for them; make sure you have multiple sources for purchasing food, the ability to store it, and the money to pay for it.
Social needs: I know a number of individuals that wound up adopting a second domestic pet in order to keep their first domestic pet from feeling lonely, and subsequently destroying their house, while they were away at work or school. For some exotic pets, however, companionship isn't a nicety, it's a necessity. Sugar gliders*, for example, are highly social mammals that experience a significant, and in some cases deadly, amount of stress when denied the companionship of other sugar gliders their same age. Rats and ferrets, also very common pets, have similar needs for same-species companionship. Conversely, hedgehogs, snakes, and many lizard species prefer (or even require) a solitary environment. Those tiny snakes at the pet store, all huddled together like they're enjoying a good cuddle? What they're actually "enjoying" is the stress of attempting to hold on to the territory their instincts say they need to survive.
Veterinary care: My family is extremely fortunate to have an exotic animal veterinarian close by, but most exotic pet caretakers aren't that lucky. Make sure you've located and spoken with at least one veterinarian in your area that has experience with the exotic pet you're considering before you make that final decision to adopt. An emergency is no time to be thumbing through the phone book. Make an appointment for a well-animal check with your vet as soon as possible, and be sure to ask them for an appropriate back-up referral in case your pet needs immediate attention and your primary vet is unavailable.
Back-up care: It can be difficult to find a home for displaced domestic pets when their caretakers are no longer able to care for them due to unexpected circumstances, illness, or death; this difficulty increases dramatically for exotic pets. I would suggest, at the very least, being aware of local exotic animal rescues and discussing with family and friends how you would like your pets cared for in an emergency. Also, please remember that granting custody of an exotic animal to a loved one in a will isn't quite like granting custody of a domestic animal. Make sure that the people you name as caretakers for your animals are well-versed in their care, capable of providing the life they deserve, and above all, willing to take on the responsibility.
Local laws/ordinances: It's easy to assume that any pet you can purchase on the internet is legal to own, but that is absolutely not the case. Poachers and shady exotic animal dealers are more than happy to ship animals all over the world without any regard for the animal's well-being, or it's local legality. Do your homework - there are federal, state, county, city/town, and even HOA/community ordinances to consider before adopting an exotic animal.
HONESTY: This is a big one for me. Lying to yourself about your capabilities to care for an exotic pet is a recipe for stress; both for you and for your pet. My mind boggles at how many people out there actually think they can properly care for exotic animals like kinkajous and sloths, let alone tigers and bears. The number of reptiles, hedgehogs, sugar gliders*, and other more common exotic pets that are relinquished to rescues every year testifies to the fact that even relatively "easy" exotics are too much to handle for many people.
Not a future pet, because I'm sane.
By the way, the fact that a particular exotic animal can be readily purchased online and legally owned in your area isn't any sort of indication that it can be reasonably cared for as a household pet. In my home state, Colorado, there are a number of areas in which I can legally own a freakin' wallaby. SHOULD I own a wallaby? Of course not. Wallabies require fairly large amounts of varied, freshly prepared food every day along with specially formulated pellets. They're easily stressed and are vulnerable to diseases transmitted by domestic animals. They can literally be bored sick, and in extreme cases, to death. They can be dangerous - there have been several incidences in which wallabies have attacked and injured children. They require a great deal of space. They require veterinary care from someone unlikely to scream "IS THAT A FREAKIN' WALLABY???" the second you enter their office, like our vet most certainly would. In essence, captive wallabies require a level of care that is typically only found in zoos or professional wildlife preserves and sanctuaries.
"Can own "and "should own" are very different things; that some people apparently lack the discernment to differentiate between the two is why I'm not against reasonable permit requirements. Again, I'm not against exotic pet adoption, but I don't go out of my way to encourage it either. All too often, exotic animals are purchased as a novelty rather than adopted as a responsibility, and the animals suffer as a result.
This is only a handful of the considerations that should be taken into account when considering an exotic pet. Please, do your homework.
*You may get the impression that I think sugar gliders make horrible pets, but that's not entirely true. More accurately, I think that sugar gliders are extremely difficult pets to care for appropriately and it makes me very sad to think of how many of these adorable critters are suffering the ignorance of less-than-knowledgeable caretakers. Sugar gliders require the companionship of at least one other sugar glider of the same age, though groups of three of more are preferable. They also require very large vertical habitats, made from materials that won't injure their feet, and a varied diet of fresh fruits, vegetables, and insects; they may also require calcium supplements lest they suffer a common form of paralysis. They're nocturnal, and vocal, so keeping them in a bedroom is probably a bad idea, and they are messy, messy, messy critters. Seriously, rats and parrots are practically neat-freaks compared to sugar gliders. Also, unlike other small rodents, sugar gliders can live more than 15 years in captivity, and therefore represent a long-term commitment.
Once upon a time, we had considered adopting two sugar gliders... but in the end, we decided we were unlikely to be able to give them the kind of care they deserved.
*The last New Year's Resolution I made, several years back, was to never again make a New Year's Resolution. It's the only resolution I've successfully maintained, and the one that made the most logical sense. I shove typical New Year's Resolutions into one of two categories, and I don't think either category plays well with human nature.
1. Unlikely Changes.
Get Out of Debt
To maintain any of these resolutions long-term requires a significant life change, and that isn't something most human beings are wired to undertake in the absence of equally significant pressures. It is, of course, absolutely possible to attain every single one of those goals - but it's pretty unlikely if the only motivation to do so is an arbitrary social expectation tied to the dropping of a glittery ball. The concept behind "rock bottom" motivating lasting change doesn't only apply to addicts.
2. Vague Goals.
Spend More Time With Family and Friends
Live Life to the Fullest
Help Those Less Fortunate
Be More Compassionate
Great ideas in concept, but virtually useless in practice. Half of these concepts lack any meaningful measure of progress, and the other half can't even be concretely defined. In my opinion, these aren't even resolutions, they're feel-good-isms; fluffy pronouncements that you intend to improve yourself in some fuzzy way that steadfastly resists any attempt at accountability. Admirable, but unobtainable by nature.
Fuck that noise. I'm not going to wrack my brain every year trying to come up with some gold-standard resolution that's significant enough to placate those who inquire, but vapid enough that my self-esteem won't be terribly damaged when I ultimately fail to maintain it. Sorry, society. I've rejected your merry-go-round of cyclical optimism and disappointment.
The husband-ish and I gathered up the kids this past Sunday and headed over to his family's home for a nice Christmas brunch and gift exchange. We expected to return home a couple of hours later with full bellies, a new game or two, and a handful of gift cards; all expectations that were dutifully fulfilled. What we didn't expect to return home with was a beautiful, nine-year-old, 4'+ long, ball python:
Jackson wasn't part of the gift exchange, coming to us instead by way of a side conversation about my interest in the Encyclopedia of Life; specifically our plans to keep and photograph a few of the mantis species that are currently lacking entries. This led to a brief discussion about other exotic species we've adopted in the past, or intend to adopt in the future... which led to the revelation that their neighbor was looking for a new home for her son's python (he recently moved to a community with a ban on exotic pets)... which led to a quick phone call... which led to the whole family trucking across the street for a peek... which led to our arranging to pick him up and take him home last night.
So, I suppose this officially enlists me in the Anti-Caturday brigade. We're thrilled to have added him to our family, and are looking forward to sharing a long and happy life with him.
*His name, inspired by Samuel Jackson's delightful performance in the Shakespearianesque classic Snakes on a Plane, is pending approval by the kids, who left for a sleepover shortly after his arrival.
Two Action Alerts in one day? Isn't that against the Geneva Convention or something?
Apparently, Congress was reminded that they can't use their office, and the taxpayer money that comes with it, to promote their own personal religion this holiday season; and that has the AFA's panties in a twist. Members of congress are, of course, more than welcome to say whatever they'd like in private messages, paid for with personal funds... but the AFA isn't really all that impressed by freedoms that aren't sticky with the taste of theocracy.
I don't have it in me explain why the fit they're pitching is ridiculous, but one line in their email did catch my eye:
"These rules do not apply to Senators."
They should. Somebody want to do something about that?
Every year, the American Family Association publishes a list of their "accomplishments". Every year the list is a bit more pitiful, a bit more tenuous, and a bit more laughable. I present to you now, with commentary, the list for 2011:
AFA and 2011 - A year of accomplishments for the family
When homosexual activists blasted Chick-fil-A for supporting traditional marriage, AFA responded by promoting "Chick-fil-A Week" in April. Tens of thousands visited the restaurant and gave them a "Thank You!" card. The company said they noticed increased sales that week.
Every time a company supports LGBT rights, the AFA's shrieking demands that the company "remain neutral in the culture wars" can be heard echoing throughout the fundamentalist realms. Of course, when a company like Chick-fil-A decides to take a stand in the "culture wars" by mirroring the bigoted sentiments of the AFA, all calls for neutrality are replaced with calls for support. We won't know until February, when the company typically posts it's annual financial report, whether or not the reported week long increase in sales countered the financial effects of boycotts organized over the same issue.
I must say, however, that I really appreciate the AFA starting their list of yearly accomplishments with a blatant example of their own hypocrisy. It's always nice to start things off with a laugh.
AFA Action Alert was thrilled to report to you in May that Said Musa, an Afghan Christian who was arrested and threatened with execution for his conversion to Christianity, was released from prison.
It is true that Said Musa was released from prison, but the only accomplishment the AFA can claim is their ability to post the news - Musa's release was negotiated by representatives from the American and Italian Embassies in Afghanistan. You modified a press release, good job AFA!
The Home Depot boycott has reached over 600,000 signatures. AFA presented the petitions to HD at annual shareholder meeting in June.
That the AFA considers a failed boycott and petition drive an accomplishment is just sad. They did collect a mountain of signatures bitching about Home Depot's support of LGBT rights, but by the AFA's own account:
"The reception was cool," reported AFA spokesman Randy Sharp, "[Home Depot chairman, Frank] Blake thanked AFA for the petitions but again, as in the past, reiterated the company's support for 'diversity,' which includes same-gender 'marriage'."
AFA warned parents about The Day of Silence, which is sponsored by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN). This day, thousands of public high schools and increasing numbers of middle schools allowed students to remain silent throughout an entire day-even during instructional time-to promote homosexuality.
Crowing about your panic in response to a day set aside to bring awareness to the silence inflicted on LGBT students by harassment, bullying, and suicide is sad, but repeatedly bragging about your ability to send emails is downright pitiful. I can't begin to imagine the fragility of the collective ego that requires recognition for an "accomplishment" less challenging than my response to their nonsense.
The New York Post and Wall Street Journal both carried stories crediting YOU for convincing Sears to remove hundreds of pornographic DVDs from its website.
I had to do a search for the New York Post and Wall Street Journal articles, because the AFA doesn't have the courtesy to link their sources. Technically, this is an actual accomplishment. Of course, it would have been more of an accomplishment if Sears had actually known the porn was being sold on their site. See, Sears allows other companies to offer products on Sears.com in exchange for a portion of the profits; these companies must agree to comply with Sears' product policies, but Sears doesn't actually check the products offered for compliance. Essentially, the products weren't removed from the Sears site because AFA members complained, they were removed because the products violated company policy. The AFA can still count notifying Sears that some of the products on their site violated their existing policy as an accomplishment, though... so... that's something.
Hey, wait... how did the righteous AFA find out the Sears site carried porn?
Following a call from AFA, NBC publicly apologized for editing out "under God" from the Pledge of Allegiance during its coverage of the U.S. Open golf championship.
I can't handle granting this ridiculousness more than a couple of sentences. The AFA managed to force NBC to publicly apologize for a completely unintentional editing error. Their only accomplishment here was making a mountain out of an imaginary mole hill.
AFA asked you to take action on behalf of Florida teacher Jerry Buell, who was unconstitutionally suspended by the Lake County school administration for posting his support for traditional marriage on his Facebook page. Directly related to your taking action, the school immediately rescinded its suspension of Mr. Buell.
The school rescinded its suspension of Mr. Buell after determining that his hateful posts on Facebook did not violate the district's code of conduct, that they didn't have the money to fight a costly legal battle, and that they'd rather not have to deal with the KKK protesting outside district headquarters. There's no indication that the AFA in any way swayed the district's decision, but the heart of the AFA must swell with pride knowing that they align so closely with a hate group as popular as the KKK.
AFA continues to expose AARP. Part of their membership fees or profits are used to advocate same-sex marriage, homosexual adoption, repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" military policy and special rights for immoral behavior.
Again, they send emails complaining about companies that support equality. If I banged the gong of accomplishment every time I sent out a bloody email, I'd have gone deaf well over a decade ago.
Because of your support of the AFA Action Alert, we were able to deliver over 375,000 emails to the Veteran's Administration, contributing to the VA's decision to stop its religious discrimination and allow prayer and religious speech at funerals for our veterans.
More emails, Christ as a cracker... good job. Try as I might, I couldn't find a single article regarding this remarkable victory over the evil Veteran's Administration that didn't emanate from a religious site - the link in the AFA article attributed to the Associated Press actually leads to a defunct Fox News page. Regardless, the Veteran's Association explicitly denied allegations of religious discrimination, explaining that religious language was certainly allowed as long as the family of the deceased approved it. A court settlement was reached, under the advisement of the courts (not the AFA), which essentially did nothing but expound upon the religious freedom policies that were already in place.
A South Carolina cancer center that banned all Christmas decorations that are religious in nature - including the Nativity - reversed its decision as a result of the AFA's intervention.
I spent a loooooong time looking into this one, because it appears to be a flagrant lie. I couldn't find any indication that the Hollings Cancer Center reversed their decision to ban religious decorations, this was the ONLY "achievement" in the AFA's annual achievement newsletter that didn't contain a supporting link, and the AFA site still lists its Action Alert against the Hollings Cancer Center on their homepage:
Walgreens' consumer relations has apologized for offending customers by labeling dozens of Christmas-specific items as "holiday" in its pre-Thanksgiving newspaper inserts in November.
The wording of Walgreens' obvious nonpology exposes this "accomplishment" as dubious at best:
"During the months of October and November, we make greater use of the word 'holiday' to include celebrations such as Thanksgiving and Hanukkah. But as Christmas Day draws closer, you’ll see more references to the word 'Christmas.' That includes the message, 'Merry Christmas,' which will be on the front of our newspaper sales insert on Dec. 25.
"We fully agree with you that – while we're helping customers celebrate a variety of holidays during this time of year – we should continue and increase the use of the word 'Christmas' when referring to items specifically for the Christmas holiday." - Walgreens community affairs director, John Gremer
So... "thousands of phone calls" apparently resulted in Walgreens issuing a statement outlining what was presumably a predetermined marketing strategy.
AFA launched its annual Christmas "Naughty or Nice" listing of national retailers and how they use or ban "Christmas" in their advertising. The list gets millions of website hits and has been promoted by major news television networks.
Well, at least this one amounted to more than the sending of bulk emails, as a certain amount of research was required. You know what? It's the holidays, I'll go ahead and give them this one. Good job, AFA! You further promoted the bigoted notion that the traditions of other religions and cultures at this time of the year should be repressed in order to favor your own. Super proud.
Let's do a quick tally, shall we? Of the 12 items listed in the AFA Annual Achievements Newsletter, I count:
Four irrational campaigns, three of which were based in bigotry, and only one of which had any discernible effect (which may eventually prove moot),
three self-congratulatory pats on the back for composing blog/site posts and mass emails,
two instances in which a company was "compelled" to maintain the status quo,
one ridiculous claim of religious censorship which resulted in a formulaic apology,
one "successful" promotion of religious and cultural exclusion,
and one incomprehensibly blatant lie.
THIS, my friends, is what the American Family Association has to show for its unwavering efforts over the last year. If that's not cause for a bit of holiday optimism, I don't know what is.
Unless you've yet to crawl out from under the rock which serves as your roof, you've no doubt heard the news that Christopher Hitchens has died. While his death was not a shock, long battles with voracious cancers have a tendency to end this way, it was none-the-less a blow to many; myself included. It's an odd thing, shedding tears for a man I've never met. I suppose it's a testament to the power of intellectual intimacy... or perhaps, a testament to the power of the man himself.
I became enamored of Hitchens, first as a writer, and then as a force. The strength of his written word is, thankfully, a legacy we can draw from for decades to come, as are the many videos of his interviews and debates... and though I will sorely miss the opportunity to seek his voice as new events unfold and new predators arise, the remnant echos of the man are greatly preferred to the silence that punctuates the end of his life.
We cannot replace him, his voice was unique; but, together, we can fill the void he left... all we need do is speak.
As many of you know, the American Family Association gathers its regressive brain-trust together every year to publish a list of retailers who simply refuse, regardless of how much of a stink is raised by pious ass-hats with nothing more important to fill their lives, to openly discriminate against their Jewish, Pagan, and otherwise Non-Christian customers by proclaiming it Christmas season, and nothing but Christmas season, from every snow-flocked rooftop.
Since I managed to recover from my fundamentalist lobotomy, I go out of my way to deliver my meager wads of holiday cash to those companies who recognize that their customers shouldn't be boxed into a cross-shaped mold against their will. In the hopes that you will join me in annoying the AFA and their bigoted War on Holidays Other Than Christmas brethren, I present to you... the naughty list.
The following companies are listed as being "AGAINST 'Christmas'" (caps included, of course), which means the company "may use "Christmas" sparingly* in a single or unique product description, but as a company, does not recognize it.":
The Look'it-Me-Bein'-All-Responsible-For-My-Big-Mouth Disclaimer:
The attitudes and opinions expressed here at Daisies and Shit do not necessarily reflect those of the Denver Chapter of Recovering from Religion, or of the Recovering from Religion Organization as a whole.