Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Reflections on a Pale Blue Dot

If you're of a certain age, the name Carl Sagan may be familiar. Throughout the 70's, 80's, and first half of the 90's, Sagan made science accessible and interesting to the the average person. He was able to explain complex issues in ways that made them entertaining. In hosting TV programs like Cosmos, Nova, and others, he helped teach a generation about astronomy and other sciences.

I stumbled on the above video earlier today. The audio is a reading by Sagan about the Voyager program and the images are taken from a variety of sources. I'm not entirely sure where the video came from, but I share it because it spoke to me.

On this Christmas Eve, it is worth reflecting on the significance of a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

However you celebrate this time of year, I wish you happiness, peace, and prosperity in the days to come.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Mocking Dark Age Idiocy

By now, you've probably heard about Marc Shaiman's three minute musical parody of Proposition 8, the recently-passed referendum banning gay marriage in California. Clips have run on a variety of TV shows (ranging from MSNBC to Jon Stewart's The Daily Show) and several articles have appeared in various newspapers and periodicals (including The Rolling Stone and The New York Times).

As far as the larger debate is concerned, I believe The United States Supreme Court has already settled the issue, albeit in a slightly different form. This ruling says (in part), "Under our Constitution, the freedom to marry, or not to marry...resides with the individual and cannot be infringed by the State." Granted, this was with respect to mixed race marriage, but I believe the same legal (and moral) point applies to same-sex marriage.

I believe in equality for all, regardless of gender, race, creed, or sexual orientation. Furthermore, I believe that if two people wish to dedicate their lives to each other and raise a family, then they should be allowed to do so.

I believe that it's time for us to grow up. It's the 21st Century folks; let's stop propagating ideas and views from the Dark Ages. Let's set aside racism and discrimination in any form and work to improve our society.

Source: Funny or Die

P.S. Sorry for the ad displayed on the video. It's from the site hosting the video.