Bernie believed in God. He believed that God wanted people to enjoy life to the fullest, not drench themselves in aversion and prejudice.
Sadly, atheists are becoming everything they aren't supposed to be: obnoxious, oppressive, loud, pushy, smug, condescending and annoying. Since when did the definition of atheism become an anti-religious person? It's one thing to say I don't believe in God because I see no proof in God. We'll just agree to disagree. It's another thing to make it your sworn duty to put down and berate religious people, to view them as primitive morons, to turn every conversation into a debate and to make it your mission to put forth this vision of a faith-free society fueled only by science and technology. This kind of oppression is against everything atheists stand for. Atheists believe in the freedom of choice, the choice to not be religious if one does not want to be. This does not mean being pushy or rude towards anybody else who has made their own choices to be religious. For some people, religion gives them a purpose, helps them cope with trauma and grief, gives them hope, gives them something to hold onto. So, as long as they aren't pushing their faith on others, why should atheists do the same thing to them?
Imagine for a moment that you are the proud owner of a large house which you have spent years of your life painting and decorating and filling with everything you love. It's your home. It's something you've made your own, something for you to be remembered by, something that, perhaps years later, your children and grandchildren can visit and get a view of your life in. It's part of your creativity, your hard work... it's your property.Now suppose you decide to go camping for a couple of weeks. You lock your door and assume that nobody is going to break in... but they do, and when you return home, to your horror you find that not only do these trespassers break in, but they also have quite uniquely imaginative ways of disrespecting, vandalizing and corrupting everything within your property. They light fires on your lawn, your topiary hedges are in heaps of black ashes. There's some blatantly obscene graffiti splattered across your front door, offensive images and rude words splashed on the walls and windows. Your television has been tipped over. Your photographs of family and friends have had the heads cut out of them. There's mold growing in the refrigerator, bottles of booze tipped over on the table, and cigarette smoke embedded into the carpeting. Your beloved houseplants are dead, your furniture has been stripped down and ruined. Basically, the thing you've spent years working for and creating within your lifetime has been tampered with to the point where it is just a grim joke.So, I feel terrible for poor Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Jane Austen and Lewis Carroll, who must be spinning in their graves since they have no rights to their own works of fiction anymore. I'm all for readers being able to read books for free once and only when the deceased author's copyright eventually ends. Still though, did Doyle ever think in a million years that his wonderful characters would be dragged through the mud of every pervy fanfiction that the sick internet geek can think of to create? Did Carroll ever suspect that Alice and the Hatter would become freakish clown-like goth caricatures in Tim Burton's CGI-infested films? Would Austen really want her writing to be sold as badly-formatted ebooks?The sharing of this Public Domain content isn't really an issue. Stories are meant to be told, meant to echo onward forever. That's what makes them magical. That being said, in the Information Age, there's a real lack of respect towards the creators of this original content. If, when I've been dead for 70 years and I then no longer have the rights to my novels, somebody gets the bright idea of doing anything funny with any of those novels, my ghost is going to rise from the grave and do some serious ass-kicking.
I’ve got money!” Eve exclaimed in a frantic frenzy of hope, her eyes dancing wildly with the notion that there was some way out of this. “I mean, I don’t know what use money is to the Grim Reaper, but I’ve got a ton of cash! It’s in a hat box under my bed! I’ve got a bright red Lexus in the garage, I’ve got my engagement ring upstairs, it’s real gold… there must be something we can trade off with…”“You can’t bribe me away, I’m afraid,” said Mr. Azrael. “Money means nothing where I come from.
You’re not exactly up for the Humanitarian of the Year award, so save your altruism for someone who can't see through you like cellophane.
Science is not a democracy. Therefore to try to pass of global warming as real just because 98% of scientists say they agree makes no sense at all. If 98% of psychiatrists said that all mentally ill people needed lobotomized, does that make it true? If 98% of your friends jumped off a building, would you jump, too?
Personally, I believe if it ain't broke, don't fix it. I'd rather use film cameras and vinyl records and cathode ray tubes than any sort of the digital technology available. Look around! The streets are full of people who would rather have their eyes on their cell phones than on the world around them! Scientists are researching technology to erase specific memories from people! Our thrown-away digital technology is showing up overseas in huge piles of toxic heavy metals and plastic! And yet there are still people who keep wanting technology and the future to keep going. They dream of flying cars, or humanoid robots, of populated cities on Mars. But do we really NEED this stuff? Maybe before we try to keep turning our world into an episode of The Jetsons, we should focus more on the problems that are surprisingly being overlooked now more than ever. Before we design another stupid cell phone or build a flying car, let's put a stop to racism, to sexism, to homophobia, to war. Let's stop buying all our American products from sweat shops overseas and let's end poverty in third-world countries. Let's let film photography never go obsolete, let's let print books continue to be printed. Let's stop domestic violence and child abuse and prostitution and this world's heavy reliance on prescription drugs. Let's stop terrorism, let's stop animal cruelty, let's stop overpopulation and urbanization, let's stop the manufacture of nuclear weapons......I mean come on, we have all these problems to solve, but digital tech enthusiasts are more concerned that we don't have flying cars or robotic maids yet? That's pathetic.
Geraldine keeps her eyes trained on him as she slowly reaches into her purse, wrapping her fingers around her gun. “…Callo, I’m so sorry that your life ended up this way,” she sighs as she gets out of her side of the car, her feet burning from the cold as her high heels sink into the fallen snow. “Aren’t you scared?”“I’m you, Geraldine… I fell into the same trap as you, anyway,” Callo answers. His large eyes are shining with tears, but he doesn’t seem afraid in the least. “…The dead don’t feel anything, you know… not even guilt or regret. So, what is there to be afraid of?
He didn’t remember the very first time he actually died very well. It wasn’t as bad as remediation, but he remembered being afraid and worried… and when he found himself alive again a few hours later with Mearth’s wild green eyes peering down at him, he remembered still being afraid and worried. It was strange, he thought, to be afraid of being alive… but being alive was worse than being dead in his mind.
People are often wary of reading or watching anything in the horror genre because in their minds, it's just senseless gore, death and violence. Well, I can tell you from avid experience, that's not what horror is about. The horror genre teaches us that sometimes really bad things happen to really good people, but that hope always prevails in even the darkest of situations. That's a very important lesson, no matter how frightening you think the teacher is, and to be in the top of her class, all you need to do is to go in with an open mind.
Terrell is weeping soundlessly, and despite the guard’s objection, he raises his hand up to the glass. Geraldine mimics him, lining her fingers up with his. It’s lonely to think that one little sheet of glass could create such a thick distance between them, but all the same, regardless of what he’s done, he’s still one of the closest friends she has.
…I love you,” he said to her, although at that point he was certain she could no longer comprehend the words. “I’d trade places with you in an instant, Mandy Valems… you never deserved this… why would anyone do something so terrible!?” A cold chill froze his heart when he saw her empty eyes again.The fluorescent lights in the dim room sparked to life all of a sudden, brightness so sharp that it startled him. In a flash, sharp and sudden, quicker than a lightning strike, the bulbs flickered and exploded with a few jingling pops.
Um, thanks,” Jackson told her. “And your name is…?”“I’m Margaret, Margaret Van Der Graaf,” she answered with another eerie smile. Her teeth were so white that they looked bleached.“Van Der Graaf?” Jackson repeated, trying to stifle his laughter. He didn’t want to be rude to the only person in sight, to this kind-hearted stranger who was offering to help him, but… Van Der Graaf?“What are you laughing at?” Margaret asked with curiosity, flashing him a calculating gaze. “I like my name. If you’re going to be a jerk, then I won’t help you. You can stay out here on the street through the night for all I care.”“…Harsh,” said Jackson, giving her a quizzical glance back. There was something ‘off’ about her, something that Jackson couldn’t quite place, something that bordered on horrible loneliness and longing. “Who else lives here, Margaret Van Der Graaf?” He couldn’t resist saying her name aloud. Despite its hilarity, it had a nice ring to it. “Who else lives here?” he urged.“Me, myself and I,” said Margaret simply, snickering when she saw his horrified and annoyed expression
Well, you’re not exactly social, are you, Mandy Valems?”“Oh yeah, sure, because I’m just surrounded by genius to be social with in this day and age,” Mandy replied with razor-sharp sarcasm. “Hey, I don’t need anyone else! I’ve got you, you’re my friend, and you’ll be with me forever!”“…You won’t be with me forever, though…” said Alecto cynically. “I’m like a spider’s web; anyone who is friends with me gets dragged into my troubles and eventually dies.”“…Poetic, dear friend,” Mandy sighed, shaking her head. “Morbid, but poetic.
I wish I could run away,” Rudger told Jersey as they both rushed in and out of various patients’ rooms, darting around like little ants. “I can’t leave and be on my own though, not right now, anyway.”“Why?” asked Jersey, waving her flashlight in mid-air.Rudger froze for a second, a regretful haze emanating from his eyes. “It’d break her heart if I left.”“Ain’t that normal? For parents to have mixed feelings about their kids growin’ up?”“Not for me, it isn’t.”Jersey made a pitying face in his direction. “So, you wanna keep bein’ towed around with your mom, livin’ in a gross town like Danvers?”“Is there a choice?”“Yeah, there sure is. You can run away and try to be a whole person before it’s too late, or you can live with mommy dearest forever and turn into Norman Bates.
It's going to happen soon, a nuclear war. Someday, somewhere, some jackass politician will get in over his head and push the button, and us? Society? We haven't really grasped the full reality of the situation. If a nuclear bomb were detonated, we'd all just be collateral damage. That's why it has to be prevented, because trust me when I say that nobody will be standing up for our rights or life when there's no one left to do so.
The child psychologist's clinic: where imaginary friends go to die, where dreams go to burn, where creativity goes to drown.
Tony and Peg have two kids, Terry-Lynn and Harvey, both of whom are enrolled in so many extracurricular and afterschool clubs that they hardly ever see their parents. If Terry-Lynn is in Girl Guides, she doesn’t have to see Peg inviting the Purolator man in for “a cup of coffee”. If Harvey is in the anime drawing club, he doesn’t have to see Peg kissing Mr. Cooper from across the street, even if all the other neighbours secretly know what’s going on. Tony has no idea, all he knows is that Peg isn’t the same Peg he married back in 2003. All he knows is that she’s changed a great deal, and not for the better, like a beautiful butterfly regressing back into a devouring, ugly caterpillar in the span of only a couple of months.
Alecto, have you noticed how downhill this little island is becoming?” Mandy questioned sadly. “All these organic food stores and yoga studios and cellular phone towers… Cape Breton was one of the only places left where it still had that nostalgic small town atmosphere but now… I’ve only been away for a year, how could things have changed so quickly? I mean, how can the world accept it?”“C'est la vie,” said Alecto, looking extremely tired as he stared out the window at the late November maple keys fluttering down from vibrantly red trees lining the streets on either side of the windshield.
Why hoard away so many back-issues of People Magazine? Fashion magazines are just empty promises. You can go bankrupt blowing all your cash on expensive beauty products, but the only way you’ll ever look just like the people on those glossy front covers is if you know how to use computer editing software for photographs. Besides, people who think they are ugly, are never really all that ugly anyway. People who think they are pretty, are rarely ever all that pretty.
Nobody has ever taken a photograph of something they want to forget. We can build a wall of happy Kodak moments around ourselves, a wall of our Christmases, birthdays, baby showers and weddings, but we can never forget that celluloid film is see-through, that behind it, all the misery of real life waits for our wall to collapse someday.
Growing up in the digital age, I'm expected to embrace all forms of modern technology with blissful ignorance. Books were always one of few escapes from this, because reading a book means not having to look at another damned glowing screen - which is why, no matter how convenient or enhanced digital enthusiasts claim that Ebooks are, I'll never see them as real books. They're just files of binary data, and while they might be considered books by a large amount of people, Ebooks have lost the human quality that real books have. You can argue that this is pretentious or stupid or nostalgic, but ultimately what will you pass down to your children and grandchildren? A broken old Kindle device with the same files that millions of other people have, or the dog-eared paperbacks that you fell in love with and wrote your name in and got signed by the author and flipped through in the bookstore and kept with you for years, like an old friend?
Why is it these days that so many people hate reading? Some people won't even touch a newspaper or magazine. It isn't television that kills reading, or cinema or radio, or even those accursed little things known as video games. People used to read all the time, but when the century shifted subtly, somewhere along the way, people forgot how to imagine. When did it happen? At what point? Who or what is to blame? Maybe it's just because the world has become so cold and scientific and shallow in recent years.
Her gaze wavered towards one of the books on the sales counter beside the register, a hardcover copy of Shakespeare’s Hamlet with many of the pages dog-eared and stained with coffee and tea. The store owner caught her looking at it and slid it across the counter towards her. “You ever read Hamlet?” he questioned.“I tried to when I was in high school,” said Mandy, picking up the book and flipping it over to read the back. “I mean, it’s expected that everyone should like Shakespeare’s books and plays, but I just….” her words faltered when she noticed him laughing to himself. “What’s so funny, Sir?” she added, slightly offended.“…Oh, I’m not laughing at you, just with you,” said the store owner. “Most people who say they love Shakespeare only pretend to love his work. You’re honest Ma’am, that’s all. You see, the reason you and so many others are put-off by reading Shakespeare is because reading his words on paper, and seeing his words in action, in a play as they were meant to be seen, are two separate things… and if you can find a way to relate his plays to yourself, you’ll enjoy them so much more because you’ll feel connected to them. Take Hamlet for example – Hamlet himself is grieving over a loss in his life, and everyone is telling him to move on but no matter how hard he tries to, in the end all he can do is to get even with the ones who betrayed him.”“…Wow, when you put it that way… sure, I think I’ll buy a copy just to try reading, why not?” Mandy replied with a smile.
I love the smell of old books,” Mandy sighed, inhaling deeply with the book pressed against her face. The yellow pages smelled of wood and paper mills and mothballs.
These days we have Smartphones, Smartcars, Smartboards, Smarteverything, but consider this: if technology is getting smarter, does that mean humans are getting dumber?
People who mock incidents in history such as 9/11 or the Holocaust, referring to it all as a hoax or stirring up crazy conspiracy theories about it, should really stop and think about their words first, both because it shows flaws in logic and rationality to deny the obvious, and because to play pretend with incidents which killed innocent people, well, that's just like laughing in the face of tragedy. It's as if to say, no, it's not horrible enough that these people were killed, oh no, we have to drag on these incidents by indulging in melodramatic fantasies! In essence this means that those who lost loved ones not only have to live with these losses forever, they also have to live with the people who deny that any of it ever happened. It does no good to forget history or to deny it. All it does is desensitize people; it tells them that it's all just a game, which then risks the possibility of nobody taking it seriously enough to prevent something similar from happening again.
When did the very first case of racism even occur? When did such blind hatred devour the souls of men and make them turn on their own brothers and sisters? What ever taught them that it was normal to be such monsters?
More pathetic than the digital age is the people who love it. They buy right into the newer is always better ideology and they can't seem to grasp that the fun of VHS tapes, super 8 film, darkroom photography and vinyl records is far more worthwhile and human than the cold, high-tech atmosphere of everything being digitized. As the 21st century progresses, yeah, we'll have our Netflix and our cellular phones and our artificial intelligence and our implanted microchips - and future generations will have lost something valuable. Sadly, they won't even know what they've lost because we're taking it all away from them.
Winters are a desolate time where all senses are wiped away, and here in Canada, this is especially true. All smells are sucked clean from the air, leaving only a harsh, icy crispness. Colours are stripped away, leaving a stark white landscape, a sky which stays black at night and gray in the day, a world of only three shades. Stay outside too long, and your hands will get so cold that they’ll go numb and turn red, like the claws of a lobster. During a whiteout, even sight itself is reduced to nothingness.
Cell phones are certainly not necessary, and but I'm from the digital age, this is what everyone in my generation is doing! isn't a very good excuse for being hooked on a glowing screen 24/7. In the 1960's every teen of the times was tripping on acid and running off to find themselves in communes and love buses. It was a fad, there was no excuse for it and it passed, just like I think that this generation's cell phones are necessary for socialization fad will eventually pass. What will it bring afterwards? I don't even want to know, but I'll keep my fingers crossed and hope that it isn't anything else digital.
7 Up soda pop mixed with bright pink grenadine with a chemical-tasting maraschino cherry stuck to the plastic straw. It was one of those drinks marketed for children, but Mandy could see that she wasn’t the only adult ordering one. For some reason or other these old-fashioned restaurants always seemed to attract old ladies ordering strawberry Jell-O with whipped cream, truck drivers ordering “worms and dirt” (chocolate pudding with Oreo cookies squished over the top in a glass bowl, fruit-flavoured gummy worms over the cookie crumbs) and businessmen trying not to get syrup from their hot fudge sundaes on their neckties and tailored suits. Mandy figured that maybe they were all trying to grasp a time way back in the past when they were all little children, excitedly ordering desert for a special occasion under the warm incandescent light from above, cheerful and bouncing music filling their minds. Hurriedly she ate the food, paid the tab and hurried back to her car in the bitter wind, not wanting to stick around for very long.
She shakily rushed towards the car to find Alecto casually standing beside it, smoking a cigarette and staring fixedly on the radio as it played the song 'Draggin’ the Line' by Tommy James, his expression thoughtful. “What are you thinking about?” Mandy questioned.“Wouldn’t the world be a very loud place to live if we said everything we thought?” Alecto asked quietly.