How can God allow these things to happen

I was browsing today through TED's videos and came back to one of my favorites. Reverend Tom Honey, an anglican priest, is seen in this video pondering how a mighty and kind God could have allowed a terrible event like the asian tsunami of 2004 to happen. Very much like it has happened to me, Rev. Honey finds that he cannot reconcile the existence of God and this event. He then acknowledges his ignorance - declares himself agnostic as to this big why.

I am posting the link to the video here for you to see. A highly recommended and powerful presentation, like most of TED's.

Skepticism - is it global?

Browsing through the fora* of the Skeptics Guide to the Universe, I found someone is using a Frappr map of the SGU listeners, which I am showing above. Interestingly, most of the listeners are bunched together in North America and not surprisingly, most of them in the U.S. A couple show up in Mexico and south of there, I seem to be the only one! There are other bunches in Europe and elsewhere.

Arguably, the SGU is one of the most influential podcasts on skepticism and there are tens of thousands of downloads every week. It is in english, which should help people understand it. However, maybe because of iTunes' preference for the US and other first world countries, it is not being widely listened outside of North America.

So I began to wonder if skepticism is a regional phenomenom, in North America and some english speaking countries. It would make sense that in Latin America, with the historical influence of the Catholic Church and, now, the rising influence of the protestant religions, skeptics have not found a foothold as yet. Clearly, we have to do something.

There are only a few skeptic societies in LA. There is one in Colombia and apparently there is one in Costa Rica. I haven't found others and I think we should find and contact these fellow free thinkers in order to make the movement grow.

So, any fellow latin american skeptics, leave your comments. Contact me. Let us get together so that we can promote the advancement of science, education and critical thinking. Our countries are in bad need of educated people.

*Footnote: Fora is the plural for forum. Forum-s is not correct in latin. Sorry about that.