November, 1999

Mummies Unwrapped
Allison Willcox
Research collaborator
National Museum of Natural History

This slide-illustrated lecture will explore the religious and cultural motivations for mummification in ancient Egypt and explain the value of mummy studies for modern researchers. Mummies have much to contribute to our understanding of life and health in that ancient society, and recent scientific advances have allowed researchers to ask and answer new questions about what it is was like to live and die in ancient Egypt.
Saturday, November 13, 1999, 2pm-3:30pm
Bethesda Public Library
7400 Arlington Road
Bethesda, Maryland

Everyone welcome - members and non-members

Call the NCAS Skeptic Line at 301-587-3827 for further info.

Free Energy

Here's an interesting kind of event coming up that was brought to our attention by Eric Krieg of the Philadelphia Association for Critical Thinking. is a list of performances of a show that is just too good to miss. In particular, if you are in Virginia, you might be interested in:


Richmond Center for Conventions & Exhibitions

Grand Ballroom

400 East Marshall St., Richmond


Virginia Beach Pavilion Theater

1000 - 19th St., Virginia Beach

This guy has been promising free energy for 12 years and pitches all kinds of conspiracy theory, offbeat religion and buggered science. More amazing, crowd flock to hang on his every word and give him money.

Ghosts and spirits

Although this is after Halloween, you might find the following web page interesting if you are interested in ghosts and spirits:

What is skepticism?

For those still not sure what skepticism really is, a good essay can be found on the web. Note that this represents the author's opinions and is not an official position of NCAS:


Evolution on trial

By now everyone should know about the dismal decision of the Kansas School Board to delete evolution from the official curriculum in Kansas. So it is interesting to read that by a unanimous 7-0 vote, the Board of Education of the Poudre School District (Fort Collins, CO) Monday night declared that Liberty Common School (LCS) had breached its contract as a charter school when the latter adopted a policy that prohibited teaching human evolution and failed to emphasize the importance of "macro-evolution" (speciation).

The Board vote was in response to a complaint filed by Linda Rosa and Larry Sarner on behalf of their daughter, Emily Rosa, who is an eighth-grader at the school. They complained LCS's policy denied Emily a full education including a complete discussion of evolution. As a charter school, the school had obtained its charter by pledging to teach the full Core Knowledge Sequence (CKS), "supplemented and aligned" with the Benchmarks for Science Literacy of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), both of which have emphases on evolution, including human evolution. Rosa and Sarner had protested that the anti-evolution policy was a "bait and switch" and went back on the pledge given when LCS was granted its charter. [Emily Rosa is the same teenager whose 4th grade science project in the Journal of the American Medical Association debunked Therapeutic Touch.]

-- From a Skeptics Magazine Email