Friday, April 22, 2011

Temporary Leave of Absence

Hey, sorry for all the lack of posting that's going on.

And for the fact that it's going to continue until I've finished writing the billion papers I need to turn in, and studying for and taking finals. And acquiring a job.

I'm just really busy at the moment. I'll be posting again once the semester's over, and maybe I'll sneak something short in between then and now.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

More Information

As more information comes to light, I would like to restate that Mr. Alex Huppert needs help and support, not judgment and condemnation. Free@VT has extended our support to his family and friends, should they need it, and we hope for the best for Mr. Huppert as he faces a difficult period in his life.

At present, it appears that Alex's behavior may have been due to his taking a drug that he believed to be Paxil -- for which he had a prescription -- but wasn't.
More information is available in this follow-up article in the Virginia Tech Collegiate Times.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Today's Events: the Awesome and the Terrifying

Today was National (or International, depending on who you ask) Ask an Atheist Day. I planned and ran the Free@VT-sponsored booth here at Virginia Tech, and as one of my fellow participants said, the day was "99% totally awesome open dialogue, and 1% horrible obscene worst-case-scenario."

First, the awesome stuff. While the day started off slowly, we had a definite increase in interest and traffic as the day went on. By noon, we had a pretty much constant group of students around the booth, and several atheists who hadn't known about Free@VT had dropped by to pick up a meeting schedule or sign up for our listserv (including a student in the Corps of Cadets, who was feeling a bit out outcast in the military setting and was excited to hear of an atheist-friendly group on campus!). Even more delightful was the number of people who were actually asking us questions.

We had a veritable flood of students from some of the on-campus Christian organizations, most notably from Campus Crusade for Christ. Both sides of the discussion -- and, surprised as I was, it was, in all cases, a discussion, not an argument -- were very polite, and genuinely interested in having an open dialogue. Questions ranged from wondering whether we celebrated Christmas, to where we got our morals, to our thoughts on the origin of life and the universe, to whether we believed if Jesus ever existed, and beyond.

Perhaps a measure of the respect we were treated with was due to the fact that many of our volunteers were grad students, but I don't really think that's what it was. At Virginia Tech, there seems to be a high expectation from everyone, not just from the establishment, that others be treated with respect until they've done something showing that they're not worthy of that. Hokies, as a whole, are a family, and while we may disagree on some things, we try our utmost to be, at least, civil.

As I said, however, there was that 1% of the day that was heinously awful.

Saturday, April 02, 2011

It's My Birthday, Have A Present!

So, I just turned 21! Fear not, I'm safely in a bar somewhere having my parents buy me alcohol in a strange attempt at parent-daughter bonding, and this is being published automatically! (Assuming I do this right and it works...)

Because I'm awesome (and also because I wanted an excuse to post this up), here's an excellent Flash game, Tower of Heaven, as a backwards birthday present: