Monday, November 10, 2008

In Which I Return To Los Angeles With Fond Memories of BlogFriends

We did have a simply grand time.

To get to reconnect with my friends from last year and meet in person other fave bloggers was very much a treat. From last year (in addition to the aforementioned bloggers in the last post):

Vast Left and Lambert Strether from Correntewire
Bruce from Mainstream Baptist
Leo from the Neural Gourmet (and proprietor of Carnival of the Liberals!)
Dennis from One Pissed Off Veteran

And new this year:

Ed from Dispatches from the Culture Wars
DCap from Distributorcap NY (even younger-looking and cuter than his picture!)
The very darling and fun Fran of Fran I Am
The devilishly handsome - and award-winning - Kevin from Mock, Paper, Scissors
Sue, who totally has the coolest blog name ever - Nailing Jello to the Wall
The wise and witty Card-carrying Buddhist at No Blood for Hubris
The esteemed Dr. Zaius of Zaius Nation
And...we were honored by the testosterone-soaked ├╝bermanliness of the one and only Patriot Boy, Jesus' General!

But the real star of the show was BAC of Yikes! for putting it all together and making it look easy. I don't know how she manages to appear so unruffled and charming in the midst of chaos.

An august gathering indeed. And for a worthy cause - spreading the word about Americans United for Separation of Church and State. I think that this organization epitomizes the core of the democratic and liberal values that defend the liberty that our Declaration of Independence promises, and our Constitution delivers, and I'm very proud to be a member. AU is equally comprised of people of faith and atheists working together for a common cause, and is at the forefront of the issues important to me - keeping science from becoming just another 'belief', subject to religious interpretation; keeping politicking out of the pulpit; keeping my tax dollars from supporting discrimination - keeping a rational point of view in a world gone mad. They support womens' rights, LGBT rights, voting rights, privacy rights.

They are First Amendment fanatics - who can't love that? In a culture which has come to bash anything that smacks of education or intellect, AU is unapologetically not only intelligent, but wise. Executive director Rev. Barry Lynn is an ordained minister who passionately and articulately makes the case for keeping religion out of government and extends that case to not only the right but equally to the left, which gives me confidence in the intellectual honesty of AU. They are one of the groups along with the ACLU who filed (and won!) the historic Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial over attempts to insert the idea of 'intelligent design' into science curriculum.

I got to give copies of my book to Barry Lynn, my blogger friends and other AU attendees.

I just wish our trip wasn't so short, and that I hadn't been so tired that I forgot my phone on the way to the airport.


Fran said...

Alicia! It was great to meet you too. And we must be vigilant about how the religious right will work to impose their will upon us all.

Thanks for the book too! It is excellent!

Comrade Kevin said...

I'm about to buy your book, just as soon as I finish with the two in my stack of "to read".

Sue J said...

I'm sorry I didn't get a chance to talk with you -- i kind of did a drive-by meetup! Hopefully next year!

Alicia Morgan said...

Sue, that was my only complaint about the Meetup - it was too short to get to talk to everyone I wanted to get to know!

As I said to FranIAm, I suggest we start now on planning for a few extra days in Washington - maybe start a kitty for that purpose, and try to clear our work schedules (for those of us in thrall to The Man) and really have a serious blogger hang.

If we all start throwing a few bucks a week into a kitty, by next year we'll be able to afford it, and those of us who have a little extra can help out those who don't, and a good time will be had by all. We can share rooms, find cool local places to eat and drink at, see the sights (which I never have time to do.)

In fact, Sue, now that you mention it, I think I'll make a post of this comment - thanks for the impetus! I'll be by to visit you soon.

BAC said...

Alicia you are the best! It was great seeing you again, and thank you so much for the book! Now that things have settled down a bit I intend to read it!

See you again next year!!