A chapter of the American Humanist Association and The Alliance of Secular Humanist Societies.

June 2001 Volume 3, No. 3




This month's meeting

. . .Will be 7 p.m. Wednesday, June 13, at the Westside UU Church (on South McCart).

The speaker will be Dr. Ron Flowers, talking about "Charitable Choice." See below for more details.



Last month

We had an excellent turout to hear our fellow Humanist Laura Blessing gave a talk on public libraries,

pornography, and freedom of access. Her talk was timely and fascinating, and allowed for a great discussion.

Special thanks to Laura for her team spirit and hard work.



Talkin' trash

As we've all noticed, it's getting pretty darn hot outside -- and that means it's just about time

for another trash pickup along our adopt-a-street. The tentative date for the pickup is Saturday --

EARLY Saturday -- June 23. However, we will confirm a date at Wednesday's meeting.

Watch this space for another announcement in the future. And speaking of watching this space . . . .


Technology marches on

Beginning next month, these newsletters will be e-mailed to you through a different route. T

hat's because the Humanists of Fort Worth will soon be broadcast on "Yahoo Groups."

This new arrangement will make it easier to maintain our email roster.  In addition, any member

of the mailing list will be able to 'post' a message to the whole group. All you have to do is send

an e-mail to It's just that easy! Special thanks to

Bruce Berggren for getting this set up; this is just another example of how technology

continually works to improve our lives.



On the other hand . . .

Last month, the hard drive on my computer crashed, taking with it a whole bunch of

Humanist e-mails and e-mail addresses. I believe I have tracked down all of the information I lost,

but I can't guarantee it. So if you think I've overlooked you -- or something you wrote to me about --

please don't hesitate to let me know, and I will take care of it immediately. And thanks for your

patience; this is just another example of how technology continually manages to mess up our lives.



In the news, part 1

One of the nice benefits of our organization is that it allows is to exchange information about

interesting news relevant to our organization. For example, the current issue of Newsweek

magazine has two articles of note to our group. The first is an essay written by a teenager in

Virginia. Her school has instituted the "moment of silence" practice at the start of each day,

but the girl refuses to participate, believing it is a not-too-subtle attempt to put prayer in the

schools. So instead of bowing her head, she stands out in the hall -- usually, by herself.


Then, a few pages later in the same issue, there is a short profile of Country-Blues singer

Lucinda Williams. Turns out that when Lucinda was in high school, SHE refused to

participate in school's "moment of silence," too. She gives credit to her Daddy, who she says,

always taught her to think for herself. Gee, what a concept . . .


Anyway, no matter how old someone is, doing something like this is not easy. These 

ladies deserve a pat on the back for having the courage to act on their convictions.



In the news, part 2

Did you come across something interesting in your readings or TV viewing? Why not share

it with the rest of the organization? Now you can use our yahoo group to pass the tip along to

all your fellow Humanists. This is just another example of how technology -- aw, skip it. . .



In the news, part 3

In the "Viewpoints" section of Sunday's Star-Telegram is a guest column by Fort Worth

resident Greg Hughes. It's a good piece, and of even more interest to Humanists because

Greg is tentatively scheduled to speak at our July meeting. As you'll see, Greg has some

interesting things to say about what's going on in our community -- check it out if you can.



Charity begins at . . . church?

Since taking the office, President Bush has been touting his "faith-based initiative" plan, which

would provide federal funding to religious organizations for the delivery of government benefits 

and social services. Is this a violation of church and state, or a harmless way to give more

assistance to the needy? This is the question we will be addressing this month.


Dr. Ron Flowers is a professor at TCU, and head of the local chapter of the Americans

United for the Separation of Church and State. Dr. Flowers is a wonderful speaker who has

addressed our group before, and we also have a particularly compelling topic this month.

You won't want to miss it!



Just for fun (cotton gin edition)

Once upon a time, there were two boll weevil brothers growing up in South Carolina.

The first brother was hard-working, kind, honest and ambitious. Eventually, this boll weevil

went to Hollywood, where he appeared in many commercials and became famous.

Needless to say, his family was very proud of him.


But the other boll weevil was a lazy sort. He liked to spend his days in the cotton fields, just hanging out.

He had no plans, no ambition, and he never did amount to much. As you might expect, the family

did not look as kindly upon this boll weevil. They constantly compared him to his more successful brother,

and no one knew quite what to do about him.


But over time, the second brother took on a special identity in the family: He became known as . . .

the lesser of two weevils.


See you Wednesday,





How to reach us


Jeff Rodriguez, Chairman



Mike Haney, Vice Chairman


Bruce Berggren, Treasurer