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Sunday, January 05, 2014

Spring 2014 Meeting Dates and a New Facebook Page!

Hello Freethinkers!

I hope you all enjoyed your break and are gearing up for a great semester. We're staring off on a great foot, as we've confirmed that Jamila Bey, host of The Sex, Religion, and Politics Hour on NPR, will be coming to speak on behalf of Gator Freethought and MCDA on January 30th! More details will come about as soon as I get them!

Also, we have a new Facebook page! Check it out at www.facebook.com/gatorfreethought. The new format is a little bracing and will take some getting used to, but the page has some interesting new features we'll be taking full advantage of. Please like the page to stay informed!

Lastly, I've decided our meeting schedule for the Spring 2014 semester. Luckily, we jump right over Spring break and end on the last day of class, much like last semester. The topics will be specified when they're decided during our first meeting. All meeting times are at 7pm unless otherwise stated, and as of now we'll be meeting in Matherly 103 while we wait for the Registrar's room assignment.
  1. January 15th
  2. January 29th
  3. February 12th
  4. February 26th
  5. March 12th
  6. March 26th
  7. April 9th
  8. April 23rd
As always, we'll be having other events in between: socials, movies, and talks! Keep a look out here and on our Facebook page for upcoming events!

Wednesday, October 02, 2013

Updates: Off-Week Meeting #4, Tabling Event, and Meeting #4

Hey Freethinkers! I hope all is going well with you.

First off, tonight at 7:30pm, the new group Humanists on Campus will be meeting on the first floor of Matherly (just look for us, I can't remember the room number and the room may change). Instead of holding an off-meeting, we'll be meeting with them and partaking in their club to help them out and boost interaction between our organizations.

Next Monday from 5:00pm - 6:30pm in the Rion Ballroom, we will be participating in the SG Interfaith Cabinet's Religious Organization Tabling Fair. There will be about 25 organizations there, and I think we're the only non-religious group of this event, although I could be wrong. This would be a perfect opportunity to work towards interfaith dialogue with all of the various religious organizations on campus. That being said, any type of proselytization will NOT be tolerated, both from our own members and towards our group. If you come (and we certainly want you to!) please keep an open mind, be kind, and engage in some nice discussion with the various organizations on campus!

Lastly, our next meeting will be next Wednesday at 7pm in Matherly 105, as per usual. Our topic this go around is "Consumer Rights in the Tech Era." We will be discussing various ideas, such as to what extent can we as consumers manipulate the technology of another company, are there limits as to what we can do with another company's technology (think: Maker-Bot and 3D printing), and so on. Bring your friends and come on out to our next meeting with all your questions, comments, and concerns!

If you have any problems or want some clarification on anything, please email us at gatorfreethought@gmail.com and we will work to help you out!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Updates: Off-Week Meeting Tomorrow, GB Meeting #3, and a Social Event

Hey everyone! I hope all is going well!

Tomorrow at 7pm, we will be having another off-week meeting. We'll meet at the potato in Turlington Plaza (that large rock thing in front of Turlington). From there, we'll find a nice place to chill and discuss any topics the group wants. We'll leave no later than 7:15. In the event of rain, please look for us near the vending machines behind the black barricade poles under Turlington Hall.

On September 25th, also at 7pm, we will be having our third meeting of the semester! The topic for that meeting is Language Rights, specifically looking at linguistic pluralism and diversity in the US, and the potential of a universal language for human society. We will be having a guest lecturer joining us in the conversation: Dr. Jesse Aaron from the Hispanic Linguistics Department. So please come out and show some gratitude for her stopping by to speak to our club!

Lastly, we are in the midst of planning a social event with the newly formed Humanists on Campus! The date has yet to be decided, but we are planning on doing a movie showing somewhere on campus, probably with some free snacks (or more likely, a potluck type event). I will send out more information as soon as the event is planned.

Also, I will send out reminders the day before our next official meeting and the social event, just to make sure everyone is in the loop. Remember to join our group on Facebook so that you can receive event invitations and updates!

I hope to see you all at our next events!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Updates: Fall Meeting 2, 9/11/13; Topic Schedule; and Tabling Events

Join us Wednesday, September 11th in Matherly 105 from 7pm to 9pm for a discussion about the nature of free will and consciousness, including such issues as the mind-body problem.

Some questions common to this topic are: Do we have free will? Does the mind exist separate from the brain? What constitutes a human being (are we just a computer in a biological machine)? But of course, bring your own questions, comments, and claims to the meeting!

If anyone has any recommended media for this topic to get people in the mindset (brainset?), feel free to post links below!

Also, a few changes will be taking place that were brought up during the first meeting: we will now be opening with some (completely optional) opening statements, and we'll finish the meeting, as per usual, with individual closing statements and last words.

I hope to see a lot of you there, and remember to bring a friend!

Additionally, I've worked out a tentative schedule for the rest of the semester. If you really want to attend a specific meeting but can't make it, talk to me and we'll consider moving the meetings around.

Sept. 11
Free Will and Consciousness: What makes you, you?
Sept. 25
Language Rights: Dial 9 for Galician?
Oct. 9
Consumer Rights in the Tech Era: To crack, or not to crack?
Oct. 23
Do winners need to be assholes?
Nov. 6
Hero Worship in Atheism: All hail Sagan?
Nov. 20
Pacifism in Foreign Politics: Can we be friends with everyone?
Dec. 4
Neurology and Criminality: How do we deal with culpability?

The group has also decided to put on some informal meetings and discussions on the off weeks during the semester, with the time, location, and topic up to the discretion of the attendees! If you have a preference for a date, time, and location, email us or hope over to our Facebook group and let us know!

The last thing I want to mention is our upcoming tabling event! Tuesday, September 10th from 11:40am until 1:40pm, I will be on the Reitz Union North Lawn tabling for the Student Organization Fair. I'd love it if I could have someone else work the table with me and possibly pass out fliers. If you're interested, shoot me an email! Or if you just wanna stop by and say hello, feel free to do that, too!

I'll post more information about upcoming events and meetings as they are solidified. Until then, happy freethinking!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Fall Meeting #1: Topic Selection and Welcome, August 28th, 2013

Howdy freethinkers! It's finally time to announce our first official meeting of the semester!

During out first meeting, we'll give a brief overview and introduction as to who we are and what we do, as well as select our topics for this year. The format is simple: come teeming with ideas about great discussion topics, tell us during the meeting, and we'll hold a vote to find the most popular topics for this semester!

We'd also love to hear any advertisement or activity ideas for the semester, and we'll also be talking about our weekly Freethought in the Plaza event.

So bring your friends and come out to our first meeting, Wednesday August 28th (one week after classes start), tentatively in Matherly 105 (but if the room changes I will spam the group to make sure everyone knows!). The meeting begins at 7pm and ends officially at 9pm.


And, from XKCD comics, here's a little humor:
http://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/settled.png

Sunday, March 31, 2013

April 10th, Meeting #7: The Nature of Morality

Hey everyone! Our next meeting will be April 10th at 7pm in Matherly 113, as always. This time, we'll be discussing the nature of morality, such as its objective- or subjectiveness, and the various methods through which it manifests. Given the vagueness of the topic, Nate and I will try to get some type of starter going like last meeting, which seemed to work very well.

Also during this meeting, we will be holding officer elections for next year. If you wish to run, please nominate yourself so that during the final meeting, we can vote. The actual nomination process will be explained in detail next week, either before or during the meeting.

We hope to see you all there!

From xkcd.com

Monday, March 18, 2013

March 27th, Meeting #6: The Case of Abortion

During our next meeting, we'll be talking about the morality, ramifications, justifications, and arguments for or against abortion. Included within this discussion will be other pertinent topics, such as: the definition of personhood, where it begins, and what this entails.

As a side note, Nate and I certainly don't want this event turning into a sniping competition between the different sides of the debate, so I will stress this here and at the meeting: respect is a key value of Gator Freethought. We do not attack a person, insult them, or degrade them in any way, shape, or form during our discussions. Those who become too rowdy and rude will be either asked to leave or prohibited from continuing in the discussion.

As always, the meeting will be held in Matherly 113 from 7pm until 9pm. We hope to see you there!

Saturday, March 09, 2013

March 13th, Meeting #5: What is The Men's Right's Movement?

During our next meeting this coming Wednesday, we'll be discussing The Men's Rights Movements, namely what it is and what it means in today's society. So, bring your questions, comments, and concerns to our next meeting! As always, it'll be in Matherly 113 at 7pm.


http://him.uk.msn.com/in-the-know/do-we-need-a-mens-rights-movement

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

February 27th, Meeting #4: The Right to Die

Join Gator Freethought next Wednesday, February 27th at 7pm in MAT113 to discuss and debate all things related to the so-called "right to die." We'll explore sub-topics such as suicide, assisted suicide, euthanasia, and others.

Please note that we'll be discussing these topics as philosophical and political issues. Suicidal thoughts are serious, and if you are considering suicide, please use one of the following, or any other, resources:

The Counseling and Wellness Center at UF: 352-392-1575
The Alachua County Crisis Center: 352-264-6789

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

February 13th, Meeting #3: The Cost of Education

For the third meeting of the semester, we'll be discussing the cost of an education: namely, should it have a cost? And is it worth it or not? Perhaps you have a better system? Bring your ideas and we'll do our best to tackle this issue!

Also, since I've been forgetting to put the dates up, I'll reiterate it here: February 13th at the usual place and time of Matherly 113 at 7:00pm! And for future reference, here's our schedule for the rest of the semester:

          February 27th: The Right to Die
          March 13th: The Men’s Rights Movement
          March 27th: Abortion
          April 10th: The Nature of Morality
          April 24th: The Boundaries of Free Speech