Omar Mateen the dead terrorist.

The pen is mightier then the gun
The pen is mightier then the gun

Looks like I am expected to say something about Mr. Omar Mateen, and I really don’t have much to say about him.

He basically shot up 100 people, in a gay bar, killing 50 or so of them, then had to wait four hours for the police to do something about it. I am pretty sure, after texting and talking to his wife, and all his old and newly acquired friends from the police department, he figured he would go out, and wave his gun at them, maybe they invite him to the tailgate party they were having outside the Pulse nightclub, I am sure you are feeling my bitter sarcasm here.

If someone is injured, and they haven’t died immediately following the shooting, due to the severity of their injury, their survival rates is severely reduced after spending 45 minutes to one hour without medical attention. If you take that into account, the fact that the police chose to have the four hour-long stalemate with the shooter, must have contributed a great deal to the number of the dead in this case, since many of the injured would have died waiting for the medical help, that wasn’t going to come. I will not try to guess at how many lives could have been saved, if the medical attention had arrived, say half an hour after the shooting began. I will leave that number to be worked out from the injuries sustained by the dead, and how long would these injuries have led to death, given no medical attention was provided for four hours. I will leave this to the more inquisitive of you to find out.

Mr. Omar Mateen, since this article is about him and his motivation, the son of some high-ranking Afghan official, who just didn’t make the cut for some reason to become the next president of Afghanistan, chose instead to move to the US, and live there, no problem with any of that, Omar himself, well educated and raised in the US, still held to the religion of his father, and his father’s father, Islam, and that is where the problem really started. It is very likely that Omar was gay, and now that he is dead, there is no empirical way of verifying that statement, so if he was, it would have been very difficult for him to square the fact that he is gay, with the other fact, that he is Muslim. So would have been his entire family, and if you have difficulty with that statement, I present you with the multitude of cases, where so many anti-gay, homophobic and outspoken clergy and politician have been discovered to be gay themselves. The pressures and guilt cycle present in Christianity regarding homosexuality is very similar if not exactly the same we find in Islam, with obviously very similar effects and outcomes. Pastor Kevin Swanson as it turns out, came out very vocally and openly in support of Mr. Omar Mateen, and reading his bible, one should not be surprised, nor should anyone be surprised when Mr. Kevin is found out to be secretly gay at some point in the future. Also for the mention, Pastor Roger Jimenez of Verity Baptist Church has found it in his religion, Christianity, to endorse what Mr. Omar Mateen has done, and I am sure there are a few more, but I will stop with the mentions here, mainly for the sake of the point I will make next.

While I could fill a page with the references in support of the Orlando / Pulse massacre, I doubt I have enough disc capacity to merely list the names of those in the Islamic world who would find nothing wrong with what he did.

Islam, the religion, does not take kindly to LGBTQAI people, not just in the generic, “hate the others” sense, but specifically, the story of Lot in the Qur’an is not there to fill the pages, it is there to serve as an example to be followed by the believers of that book. The amount of self-loathing this can generate in the human mind, and the pressures this would induce to do what he did, especially given the potential reward of 72 virgins and an instant ascent to heaven, compared to the assurance of an eternal existence in hell, for being gay, would be enough to crack the will of Mr. Omar Mateen, as it seems to have been the case.

As compelling and strong a case as it might be, I will have to reiterate, we can’t know for sure, if Mr. Omar Mateen was gay or not, we may come to know that later, but currently we simply don’t. So we will have to be satisfied with the second sufficient motivation.

Mr Omar Mateen, given the degree of faith infestation in his mind, might just have had a faith flair-up during the holy month of Ramadan, and figured, his deed of riding the world from this awful sin called gayness would even get him a greater reward, if he did it in Ramadan, given that acts like these are especially rewarded if they are done during the month of Ramadan, even more so, if done in the last 10 days of Ramadan, something he seems to have missed out on, and a thousand times over if done on the night or destiny, which he also missed. Anyways, he skips on the 7200 and the 72000 virgins and settles for the humble 72 virgins, maybe he lacked all that much interest in women, but let’s not go there. For a true believer, a sufficient motive.

But there is bad news for Mr. Omar Mateen. He is dead, and he is not having his 72 virgins either, and as I write this article, his body is being eagerly consumed by a myriad of bacteria, worms and fungi, and let me tell you, they are enjoying their meal, along with the few trees that happen to be nearby. And if he has any functioning brain left, which he doesn’t, he would know by now, that all that hooey about the afterlife, heaven, hell and the virgins is exactly that, a bunch of hooey, and he wasted his own life, and the lives of many other, much nicer people than he ever was, for a fairy tale.

Links and references:

the minus one episode

Well, here we are, this is the minus one episode of the thinkdragons podcast. It is short, informative and optimistic.

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bs&s expo in Saskatoon 2016

Body and soul expo Saskatoon 2016
b&s expo Saskatoon 2016 montage

It was a brisk and sunny Saturday afternoon when we got to our meeting point at the bs&s expo this year, A few skeptics, armed with our sharpened critical thinking skills, our good old baloney detection kits, and a list of the show’s exhibitors, but let’s go back a little and give you a better background on what’s going here. The local chapter of CFI Canada, CFI Saskatoon ,organizes a field trip to this expo every year since I have been here, usually a handful of skeptics and atheists end up going, and having a tremendous amount of fun. This year was no different, Plenty of exhibitors brought all the colourful and scented thingamajigs, most about energy healing, spirit this and that, chacra alignment, colour therapy, yin and yang. We even got to observe a psychic perform on stage

The Psychic
The Psychic

the art of cold reading, and trying to keep a speaking order among the spirits, some where speaking over each other and interrupting them, rude spirits, must have been an election year in the spirit world too. Then we had the pleasure of visiting almost all the exhibits on the show, i say almost, I got tired, and bailed out to have a rest bit, only to joined a couple more of my friends. But let’s not jump the shark here, there where some interesting exhibitions if you could get over all the supernatural qualities of the sold items, Interesting collections of minerals and stone formations where on offer, I even picked up a couple of magnetite stones, fairly large, and very nice once i might add,SAM_0537_800x they even had magical powers, namely attracting and repelling other magnets and iron items. Tho I am pretty sure they also had some effect on my soul too, if I had one. By the way, do I have one soul or a quantity of soul, like five cubic litres of it? Can anyone elaborate on this nagging question? Could I be leaking or evaporating soul? Could I fall and brake it? Could I pinch it accidentally shutting the car door on it? Would it flap in the wind when I open my car’s window as I drive on Circle drive? All these questions where in my mind as I was looking at the exhaustive and meticulous collection of rocks and minerals displayed on the table. SAM_0538_800x Some of these, I am sure would have been quite difficult to get, judging from the quantities available, and the price-tags attached. Moving on to other exhibits, one couldn’t miss out on some of the brilliantly prepared fossils, with added spiritual powers of course, very well cut and shined samples where presented, at somewhat elevated price, given that none of them where particularly rare samples, but I can appreciate the good craftsmanship going into the cutting and the shining work, weather they actually possessed the healing and strengthening powers attributed to the, I have no idea. Just take a look at these here, SAM_0563_800xand you see what I am talking about. There where other fossils available, this image is just to give you a general idea about the quality and quantity without an attempt to cover the entire variety of the displayed items. Some of the displays where simple cute and nice, with no woo woo attachments apart from being cute and nice, which really doesn’t qualify them as woo woo, one of these exhibits was basically the handy work of a group of highly skilled glass artists, they would make a large number of colourful, very detailed but tiny glass figures, very adorable and

Colourful miniature glass art
Colourful miniature glass art

very decorative if you are into that sort of stuff, here take a look, and you get a pretty good picture. I was impressed with the detail and artfulness of the glass workers.  Every little item is made of glass, and the lady is holding the picture of her team in their workshop where they make these awesome peaces of art. Great stuff, but we are not done yet, the best is still to come, yes there is more, and it does get better, or worse, depending on how you want to use the language to express yourself. The next exhibit is nuts, literally, nut shaped humidifiers, SAM_0570_800x should win an industrial art competition if you ask me, unfortunately they are for essential oils, essential oils to prevent some serious diseases like rabies, yes, they had an essential oil to strengthen your pet’s immune system and prevent the onset of rabies, even claimed to negate the need for vaccinating your pet against it, not only a harmful preposition, but also a dangerous one, rabies is deadly, to your pet and surrounding humans alike, if not vaccinated against it, it’s one of the most painful and retched ways to die. Very bad idea not to vaccinate against it. The vaccine in the case of rabies turns out to be very effective, and can stop the infection even when administered soon after the byte. But don’t take my word for it, rabies, meningitis and tetanus are some of the worst ways to go, do ask your doctor or health care specialist about vaccinations, and do get vaccinated when possible. Strolling along the exhibits, we pass by a number of jewellery sellers, they don’t condone the woo woo part, but are just selling their stuff, not bad work, some of it was quite impressive and beautiful, but then I found this; SAM_0545_800x A homeopathic water filter. Yep, you heard it right, a water forgetter, it makes the water forget the trace elements, lead, poisons and chemicals that it encountered. At this point even if I gave then the benefit of the doubt, and assumed that this is a simple ion exchange filter, which i have no reason to believe that it is, i would still be remiss not having serious apprehensions about the homeopathic forgetting abilities claimed this product had. The guy literally said, it resets the water’s memory. So there you have it, a water forgetter, weapons grade 50c woo woo. To wind down the excitement, here are two more examples, I found them nice and interesting woo woo,

Hot and Cold stones

the first one is the hot and cold stones, the white once are the cold stones, the black once are the hot once, I asked her about how hot, her response was 170 degrees, could not get her to say Celsius of Fahrenheit,  so we remain at 170 degrees something, supposed to cure what ails you, there is also an assortment of essential oils you can snort while screaming from the first degree burns, and the frostbite. The next one, SAM_0547_800xis crystal energy healing, and chakra alignment, colour therapy stuff, it was complicated, but so powerful, you have to hold it away from yourself, to avoid the side effects. This is but an example of a dozen of so other, energy crystal, laser, chakra, aura healing exhibits, slightly different flavour, but essentially the same kind of woo woo. There where at least a hundred exhibits, and I only visited about 60 or so, before I was overwhelmed and needed to have a break. Maybe next year, I will train up for the event, so I can last longer, and be able to finish the marathon. Until then, your comments are welcome, in hope this would start a vibrant discussion in the comments section.