From Tampa Bay Online:

It’s time to start thinking.

Tampa’s Center for Inquiry joined supporters worldwide today for International Blasphemy Day.

Organizers say the day is not to offend the religious.

It’s to call attention to the threats against free expression posed by blasphemy laws, said Rick O’Keefe, executive director of Center for Inquiry Tampa Bay.

“We’re not interested in offending anyone,” O’Keefe said. “We are interested in saying open up your eyes; you will be happily surprised with the results.”

The center will host a “tasteful” discussion on the meaning of blasphemy and the playing of the board game, “‘Playing Gods,” in which gods fight for world domination.

Also in honor of Blasphemy Day students at the University of South Tampa hosted “Read a Banned Book!” in front of the campus bookstore which featured banned books throughout American history.

The event ran in conjunction with “Banned Books Week” that ends Saturday.

Books on display included “Brave New World, “Lord of The Flies” and “Their Eyes Were Watching God.” The event was to raise awareness for freedom of speech and promote the student’s group, said event organizer Molly Martin, president of Freethinkers@USF.

“The information should still be out there,” Martin said. “Whether you like the book or not, it should be anyone’s right to read these books.”

In addition to the events in Tampa, the Center for Inquiry scheduled events in Los Angeles, New York, Toronto, Montréal, Indianapolis, Washington, D.C., Tucson, Austin, Grand Rapids, and Amherst, N.Y.

Tonight’s blasphemy discussion and board game begins at 6 p.m. at the Center for Inquiry of Tampa, 5201 W. Kennedy Blvd., Suite 124. Admission is $5 for non-members, pizza will be served. Space is limited, to RSVP call (813) 849-7571.