Showing posts with label fundamentalism. Show all posts
Showing posts with label fundamentalism. Show all posts

Thursday, 29 January 2015

First Iran, Now Indonesia: Rocked by 'SelfieGate'!

SINFUL selfie taken with a message to the cleric reading something like (Google Translate):  'So I take another selfie on a matorcyle. I go to Hell now?(source)
In an apparent attempt at one-upmanship with Iranian authorities being ticked off with their football team appearing in selfies with pretty young Australian Iranian expat fans, Indonesian author and cleric Felix Siauw went and called selfies a sin.
A young Indonesian young cleric is taking a stand against selfies. In a 17- point manifesto posted on Twitter last week, popular Indonesian author and speaker Felix Siauw argued that taking a selfie often means succumbing to pride, arrogance, and ostentation—all of which make them a sin under Islam, according to Siauw.
Although utterly absurd, this is insightful on some level. I mean, my selfies are brilliant yet other people's selfies are always lame and over indulgent. Isn't it odd how that works?

Felix, who has over 2.7 million followers on his Twitter page, his own webpage, his own Youtube channel and several books published to his name, must -- sadly -- live in the limelight. However, women don't have this problem and he's taking a stand to preserve their purity from nasty bad bad bad pride in themselves. Pride IN THEMSELVES! What is this world coming to?

Here's are some highlights from his tweetise as per Coconuts Jakarta.
If we take a selfie, sift through and choose our best pose, and then we’re awed and impressed by our selves – worryingly, that’s called PRIDE

If we take a selfie and upload it on social media, desperately hoping for view, likes, comments or whatever – we’ve fallen into the OSTENTATIOUS trap

If we take a selfie and we feel cooler and better than others – we’ve fallen into the worst sin of all, ARROGANCE

These days many Muslim women take selfies without shame. There are usually nine frames in one photo with facial poses that are just – My Goodness – where’s the purity in women?
What's with all these shameful women feeling good about themselves and posting pictures online without shame?

Well, his comments have sparked a huge backlash within Indonesia, land of the selfies, and people are breaking out their selfie sticks and sending him glorious selfies in retaliation.
Go check these out here, here and here.

Look, these people are having FUN and they're HAPPY! What's the deal with these clerics always trying to outlaw happy, anyway? It's like they want a monopoly on it for their imaginary god.

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Excellent Quebec Discussion Show Explores Questions of Secularism, Feminism & Freedom of Expression

« ...that the wounds caused by the lashes were too serious and that my husband couldn't withstand other lashes. » Raif Badawi's wife, Ensaf Haidar (center), explains. Bernard Drainville, author of Quebec's Secular Charters is seated left.
I really wish English television had something even remotely equivalent to the Radio Canada discussion programme Tout Le Monde En Parle. I'm pretty sure something like this might have existed in the past, but everything seems so dumbed down these days. This is a show with intelligent well informed adults having grown up conversations about important topics, not a bunch of talking heads blabbing on about stuff (let them get off television and start blogs!).

The latest episode of the programmed is phenomenal. Take a look at this line up:

Hugo Joncas:
L'intégrisme, même au Québec?
Faut-il s'inquiéter d'une montée de l'intégrisme au Québec? Dans une enquête publiée dans les pages du Journal de Montréal, Hugo Joncas soulève la question en s'intéressant aux registres fonciers de la province.
Fundamentalism, Even in Quebec?
Need we be concerned about an increase of fundamentalism in Quebec? In a study published in the pages of the Journal de Montreal, Hugo Joncas raises the question by consulting the province's land registry.
Okay, it's a little more than just consulting a land registry! Perhaps my translation is off. Hugo's piece, De la propagande intégriste à Montréal, reveals fundamentalist propaganda across some Muslim schools within Quebec -- anti-Semitic, anti-feminist, good terrorism, polygamy, etc. More on that later.

Elizabeth Plank:
Le féminisme, à la mode de chez nous
Même s'il reste beaucoup de chemin à faire pour l'égalité des sexes, on se réjouit de constater que le féminisme occupe une place grandissante dans les débats de société.
Feminism, In Our Own Fashion
Even though much remains of the road to equality between the sexes, we're happy to announce that feminism occupies an ever growing place in social debates.
Yes, they included à la mode, which is stereotypical. However, they didn't even put 'happy' in sarcastic air quotes or italics as I've heard it on other media outlets. Yes, it's that good.

Bernard Drainville:
Le grand retour de la charte
Bernard Drainville présente le deuxième volet d'une longue saga : la charte 2.0!
The Great Return of the Charter
Bernard Drainville presents the second installment of a long saga: the Charter 2.0!
This is a relaxed, not being attacked, discussion about the new charter where people ask Bernard questions and actually listen to his answers.

Sophie Deraspe and Sandra Bagaria (The Amina Profile):
Amour impossible
En 2011, alors que la Syrie est au bord du soulèvement, Amina, une blogueuse militante s'exprime en anglais sur les problèmes qui touchent son pays.
Impossible Love
In 2011, with Syria on the bring of upheaval, Amina, a militant blogger who writes in English about the problems facing her country.
There's more below the cut about this one. It turns out that this is a love story where both women start a relationship online.

Ensaf Haidar:
Je suis Raif
Raïf Badawi purge une peine de 10 ans de prison et a été condamné à 1000 coups de fouet en Arabie saoudite.
I Am Raif
Raif Badawi is serving a sentence of 10 years in prison and has been condemned to 1000 lashes in Saudi Arabia.
This is the first interview I plan to cover separately on this blog. It contains a fair bit of background information about Raif's situation that I don't believe I've read yet elsewhere.

Each one of the above are only the short descriptions of the segments. If you go to the show's page, you can click on any of them for a full description containing much much more information.

Right, I dare you to find a talk program anywhere else as compelling.

Unlike English Canadian media, Quebec media is really not afraid to attack these questions openly. For all its flaws -- which English media seems to enjoy pouncing upon -- Quebec is a very open society.

Again, I intend to cover each one of these, starting with the Ensaf Haidar piece, which is fantastic! If any Francophone readers would like to transcribe it, I would be very grateful! Otherwise, you'll all be stuck with my translation, land registries and all.

This episode's webpage can be found here.

Thursday, 8 January 2015

We Must All Be Charlie


It's so very difficult to write about what happened today at Charlie Hebdo Paris office. It's tragic and I cannot help but feel angry, sad and intensely confused at how people could be possessed to sink to such levels because of hurt feelings. Two masked gunmen executed 12 defenseless people in cold blood because they're feelings were hurt by some cartoons.


These brutes apparently believed their imaginary god was unable to take care of himself, so they took offense on his impotent behalf attacked cartoonists armed with nothing but pens and any bystanders who would get in the way.
Cartoonist Corinne Rey reported that two armed and hooded men, speaking perfect French, threatened the life of her toddler daughter whom she had picked up from daycare, and forced her to type in the code to open the door to the building. The men then moved up to an office on the second floor, where the staff were in an editorial meeting, with approximately 15 members in attendance. The entire shooting lasted between five and ten minutes. Witnesses reported that the gunmen sought out members of the staff by name before executing them with single shots to the head.
They yelled out "Allahu Akbar" and "We have avenged the Prophet Muhammad. We have killed Charlie Hebdo!" You see, they had nothing intelligent to respond with -- no rational counter arguments -- so like trapped animals or thugs, they turned into violent thugs.

People around the world are now rallying behind the hashtag #jesuischarlie. So far, they are not sinking to the terrorists' level. Cartoonists are releasing images of support. There were enormous vigils across the world (some 35,000 in Paris).

Here in Montreal, there were two vigils; one at city hall and one at the French consulate. The JE SUIS CHARLIE banner was hung atop the city hall and will remain there for three days along with all flags half mast. A general disdain for religion was voiced by some in the crowd while Montreal mayor Denis Coderre was speaking.
Shouts of “Religion! Finished!” and loud boos were heard in the crowd of about 200 people as Mayor Denis Coderre called for respect and tolerance among Montrealers of every faith.

“Terrorism is the act of individuals,” he said, prompting more boos and shouts of “no!”

At the back of the crowd, someone yelled, “What are you afraid of?”
One might also ask what journalists at the New York Daily News were afraid of. Take a look at this screen capture I took from their coverage. Just read the text above and below the censored image and think about just how much solidarity this news organization has with Stéphane Charbonnier and Charlie Hebdo. It makes my stomach turn.

Twitter user David Burge (@iowahawkblog) sums up well the apparent cowardice of the Telegraph as well today:

We surrender, indeed. I later checked that part of the coverage and the Telegraph had removed the picture altogether.

I'll try to unpack more of how I'm feeling in later posts. As an atheist blogger myself, this hits home. I just hope that this event doesn't scare too many cartoonists and journalists into some kind of silent submission. If we are to guard our most precious freedom of speech, for our children, we all need to be Charlie Hebdo.


Sunday, 21 December 2014

Saudi Cleric Who Suggested Women Can Show Their Faces Now In Hot Water

Sheik Ahmed al-Ghamedi (source).
It seems like things are not going well for Saudi cleric Sheik Ahmed al-Gamedi, who allowed his wife to display her face and speak on a television program. In the past, he's suggested that women and men should be allowed to mix socially, that women should be allowed to travel without a male chaperone, wear make-up, and go without covering their faces in public.
On Monday, Ghamedi told the Saudi newspaper al Watan that he had received threats since the show aired. Later, Saudi Arabia's Grand Mufti criticized him to the press. "My message to Sheik al-Ghamdi is to fear God," Sheik Abdul Aziz Al Sheik told the Saudi news site Sabq, according to a translation from CNN. "You should ask repentance from God, and to back away from this mistake before you meet God with these sins."
Apparently, some are even threatening a lawsuit.
A number of Saudis in Jeddah are planning to file a lawsuit against Ahmed Qassim Al-Ghamdi, a leading scholar, for allegedly encouraging women to show their faces and appear before the public in style.

Al-Ghamdi’s opponents also believe that his statements would encourage the public to violate Shariah teachings and reject religious edicts of the country’s senior scholars.
Some are even posting pictures of the sheik posing next to a blonde woman!! Apparently, this is a sign of impropriety! Inexcusable!
Best of luck to al-Gamedi. Like any ultra-conservative theocratic country -- North Korea included -- the sheer absurdity of this business make me laugh and then makes me feel guilty for having laughed, because people's lives are destroyed over things like this.

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Irrational Beliefs Have Real World Consequences

By Tim Evanson [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons
There has been another case of parents attempting to faith heal their child. Calgary fundamentalist Seventh Day Adventist couple Jennifer Clark and Jeromie Clark withheld proper medical treatment to their infant son after malnourishing it. The baby died in the hospital from a condition which could have been easily treated if caught sooner.
An autopsy found the child was suffering from a staph infection that was complicated by malnutrition and as a result, the infection was untreatable.
This tragedy keeps repeating itself. At the risk of coming off as an insensitive I-told-you-so, I'll repeat a little of my reaction to another case of a religious family letting a member of their own die due to misguided and delusional blind religious faith.
Again, I wonder how this would have gone down if it were a child instead of the father -- and if the family were of a minority religion or no religion at all (kooky alien cult, etc.). I think this could have turned out quite differently.
My above comment was about Kaling Wald, who believed that prayer would heal her husband's seriously infected foot and then believed that prayer would resurrect him from the dead. Neither worked.

Well, it turns out that this was a repetition of history. Last week, the Clarks were arrested after their infant child wasn't strong enough to be treated for a staph infection. An over the top religiously-motivated diet left him extremely malnourished. They even hid their son's declining health until someone ultimately forced them to bring him to a hospital. No doubt, the child suffered horribly.
“We have no indication that he (the infant) had seen a doctor since his birth and the child was not born in hospital,”  said S/Sgt. Andrus. “And the family took steps to conceal his condition from family members. And it was only after the realization by a family member that the infant was sick [that] they were advised to take him to hospital.”
It apparently took a long time in this case for the authorities to bring about charges against the couple.
Police say the investigation was a long and complicated process, which is why it took time to get the results.
No exact indication about why it was so long and complicated, but the other case seemed to be difficult as well, perhaps due to the religious angle.
“It’s an extremely sad case . . . she truly believed her husband was going to be resurrected from the dead, even after six months,” said assistant Crown attorney Janet Booy.
In the case of the adult victim, the children were left with the mother, even after she admitted that she still believed wholeheartedly in the power of prayer and in resurrection. Thankfully, in this case of the infant, the surviving children were removed at the onset of the investigation and are being cared for elsewhere. I fail to see how one is any less potentially dangerous than the other.

Saturday, 13 December 2014

Indonesian Islamic Vigilante Group Spray-Painting & Burning Women's Pants

Member of the new extremist Muslim group Tadkiiratul Ummah spray painting a woman's jeans.
There's a new fundamentalist Islamic group, Tadkiiratul Ummah, in Indonesia that doesn't like women wearing too tight pants. 
The group, which calls itself Tadkiiratul Ummah and operates in the Indonesian province of Aceh, has recently began a new "moralization" campaign to make examples of women and men who are wearing what the group deems to be "too tight pants." 

Wednesday, 3 December 2014

"Mommy Let Daddy Die & Rot For Six Months In Our House." -- Anyone Thinking About The Kids?

Russell Lee [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
I'm sure you've probably all read about the Hamilton family that left the corpse of dad, Peter Wald, to rot in a sealed off room in the house for six months. If anyone could ever move a mountain with their faith in the Lord, it would be Peter and Kaling Wald.

Peter had diabetes and his foot got infected. Rather than go to a hospital, they prayed for a recovery and he went into a coma and died. Six months later, the police discovered his rotten corpse in a sealed off room of the house. It seems the family got it into their heads that he'd be resurrected, so they stuck a tuque on his head and taped up all the vents. The laws of Nature were not suspended and he didn't come back.

Climate Change Denial Billboard Appears In Downtown Montreal

Remember that insane climate change denial billboard posted in Calgary by the Friends of Science?

Well, take a look at what showed up in my Facebook feed today! The stupid has spread somehow to Montreal!

Climate change denial billboard in Montreal, November 30th. (source)

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Increasingly-Scary Turkish President Has Problem With Feminists & Wants 'More Pious Youth'

İmam-Hatip Lisesi in Kırklareli, Turkey. By User:Darwinek (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 or GFDL], via Wikimedia Commons
So Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan is really starting to give Vlad Putin a run for his money with his increasingly bizarre and less funny comments over the past month or so.

In case you're not keeping score, his government censored genitalia and the proper names of genitalia from Biology textbooks; banned his military from watching nudie shows like Game of Thrones; rewritten history to make it more patriotic and took issue with lip-o-suction kissing on daytime television.

It's hard for me to keep up with this leader who's apparently very concerned about morality and Islamic morals and is not ashamed to show the nation's more fundamentalist religious groups he's serious about it. Well, the rhetoric is getting more severe and it looks like he's trying to make a lasting legacy with generations to come and pretty much screw any sort of secular Turkey.

A few days ago, Ergodan started saying things like this:
Our religion [Islam] has defined a position for women: motherhood,” Erdoğan said at a summit in Istanbul on justice for women, speaking to an audience including his own daughter Sumeyye.

“Some people can understand this, while others can’t. You cannot explain this to feminists because they don’t accept the concept of motherhood.”
How quaintly Victorian sounding. It's strange because most of the women I know with children would easily qualify as feminists by his definition. I'm willing to guess that, save some religious quiverfull types... etc., most women in the developed world would take issue with this. But, you know, it's not Ergodan who's saying this, it's just his religion, you know? You gonna argue with that?

I wonder if the Duggars would get along with him on this point? You know, this all sounds startingly familiar!
“Motherhood is something else,” he said, claiming that it should be a woman’s priority because Islam exalts women as mothers.

He went on to say that women and men could not be treated equally “because it goes against the laws of nature”.

“Their characters, habits and physiques are different … You cannot place a mother breastfeeding her baby on an equal footing with men.

“You cannot make women work in the same jobs as men do, as in communist regimes. You cannot give them a shovel and tell them to do their work. This is against their delicate nature.”
I know, how about letting the women decide what they wish to do and then hire them on the basis of whether they can do it? Canada is still not a panacea of women's equality in the workplace but come on! The only possible excuse for ideas this retrograde are the doctrines of some ancient religion.

Luckily, some of these evil feminists hit back, although I'm beginning to wonder for how long they will be in a position to do this.

MP Aylin Nazliaka:
“Erdoğan has publicly committed a hate crime … But I will continue to fight this man who sees no difference between terrorists and feminists,” she said in a written statement.
Television anchorwoman Sule Zeybek is apparently one of those feminist mothers in which Ergodan doesn't believe:
“I am a feminist and thank God I’m a mum. I wouldn’t kiss my mother’s feet but I have great respect for her,” she said.
In fact, it seems like this new highly religious Islamic government has declared its own war on women:
Erdoğan has drawn the ire of feminist groups for declaring that every woman in Turkey should have three children and with proposals to limit abortion rights, the morning-after pill and caesarean sections.

Seen by critics as increasingly authoritarian, he has repeatedly lashed out personally at female journalists who displeased him.

But the government’s attitude towards women came under even greater scrutiny after the deputy prime minister, Bülent Arinç, caused a furore in August by suggesting women should not laugh loudly in public.
I'm sure some progressives and secularists within and without Turkey are simply waiting for this insanity to pass, but it appears that long lasting damage could be done to the wall of state-mosque separation in Turkey. A recent Public Radio International feature on the phasing out of secular schools in favor of Islamic schools in Turkey in order to 'raise a more pious youth' has got those in the know concerned.

Imam hatip schools were created in the early days of the Turkish Republic to train Sunni Muslim scholars. They’re now open to all students who want an education that emphasizes Sunni Islam.

But what angers Fatma — and many others in Turkey — is that more and more secular schools are being converted into imam hatip schools. Just like the one in Fatma’s neighborhood.
Even people within the educational system see the government's promotion and conversion of secular schools into religious schools as a concerted attack on science literacy -- which lines up well with the recent Biology textbook censorship debacle. Reminds me a little of Texas.
A teacher at a secular middle school, Ozden Aras is worried about the shift. “I think science is more important than religion, but in Turkey now religion is more important than science,” she explains. This summer she found herself fighting to keep her school from being converted into an imam hatip school. Like the majority of Turkey, she’s Sunni. But she says the religious curriculum should be an option, not the norm.
And this is not mere persuation, the increasingly conservative Islamic government is now actively attempting to limit and shut down secular education in the government, putting the future of secularism at risk.
Ozden and her school’s community resisted the government’s plans — and won. But that’s rare. More schools are being converted, and the number of imam hatip schools has leapt more than 70 percent in the past four years. At the opening of a new imam hatip school in Ankara last week, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan boasted that students enrolled in religious education increased 15-fold since he joined Turkey’s leadership in 2002. He has also said he wants Turkey to raise a more “pious youth.”
This started out sort of funny, but now it's getting a bit serious. What's even more curious is how closely a lot of these moves seem to mirror the political activism of the fundamentalist Christian right in the United States. Perhaps different only in degree but the similarities of substance are strikingly similar.

Sunday, 9 November 2014

Game of Thrones is Too Much for Turkish Army

A scene from Game of Thrones
I've admitted it before. I just haven't watched any of that naughty Game of Thrones program. In above link, a Christian preacher informs us that every time we watch this program, Jesus gets recrucified, or cherubs cry, or puppies die, or something. I'm not sure how it could possibly be this good, but people assure me it really is. So as soon as I have time, I'll give it a watch.

However, there will be no nudie programs in Turkey. Well, at least in the army!
The Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) reportedly updated its secondary education regulations and added a new article to the chapter titled “the protection of students.” The new article bans the screening of productions like “Game of Thrones” on the grounds of protecting students from “sexual exploitation, pornography, exhibitionism, abuse, harassment and all negative behaviors.”
Thanks, mom. Sex and nudity scenes -- I do not believe it is hardcore -- are really too much for soldiers in training, but presumably war will be just fine. I mean, are they not being trained to kill people? These are adults -- over 20 -- we're talking about here.

Apparently, four officers were disqualified from being in the military for watching this television program in 2012. 

Turkey is an ostensibly secular nation. I've seen it often touted as the most successful secular democracy in the region. Well, it turns out that the military will be instituting new courses on Islam. Elective... for now.
The new regulations also lay ground for the introduction of elective classes on Islam in military schools for the first time. The new classes will be based on “basic religious education, the Quran and the life of the Prophet Muhammad,” the report said.
Gabriel Bell over at Vocativ sums up the bigger picture here -- an understandable fear of increased fundamentalism in this so-called secular state.
Though nominally secular, Turkey is trending ever closer to Islamic theocracy—something underlined by the Turkish Armed Forces’ recent banning of HBO’s Game of Thrones series at military schools. Their new policy aims at keeping students away from anything involving, “sexual exploitation, pornography, exhibitionism, abuse, harassment and all negative behaviors.” Granted, anyone who’s seen the show knows that Game of Thrones is categorically guilty of all the above—in a fun way. Nonetheless, the extent to which the TAF is adopting a more fundamentalist stance is worrisome.
I wonder how close the violence in this program is to the barbarism of war -- both in modern times and in the days of Muhammad?

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Will Canadian Muslims 'Own' The Radicalization of their Youth?

Syed Soharwardy (source)
I never learned how to play a musical instrument with any sort of proficiency -- although I am very good at whistling. So the musical component of my highschool days was choir. I intensely disliked it but it lead to an interesting observation.

Each group had their own leader or leaders. There was always a single soprano, perhaps a few altos, a single tenor and bass who would always be heard. They often had this revoltingly contrived British accent and would over enunciate constantly. Everyone else would sort of follow their lead and quietly mumble as if they were at church.

Last year, I wrote about an enlightening discussion panel over on NPR about taking the slam out of Islam with feminist and author Asra Nomani. This was in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombing and Asra was bravely declaring that Muslims everywhere needed to own the problem of extremism within their community.
... And I believe that inside of our Muslim community we haven't completely owned up to the real issues of extremism that is laying claim to our young boys.

... To me that means, in fact, acknowledging that we do have ideologues and we have websites and we have awful, awful indoctrination campaigns inside of our communities, well funded, that lay claim to these boys. It's not enough to say they're outside of our community. They are part of us. And we have to take ownership over that. Just as African-American community has had to confront the issue of gangs, we have ideological gangs in our community.

... I think that means identifying and clearly stating that we have ideologies that are called Wahhabism, Salafism and Deobandism that are indoctrinating our kids and our communities, that we have Uncle Mishas inside of our communities, and we all know who they are and we need to point at them - and they are just like the gang leaders in neighborhoods who take the hearts of young boys - and we need to isolate them. And that is how then the entire Muslim community will not be judged, because they will see that we are cleaning up our own community, and that is our responsibility, I believe, as citizens of this country and this world.

... there are wounds in every community and every society, and I think that the idea is that terrorists are wound collectors and we in our societies and our families and our communities have to make it so that folks can have legitimate nonviolent solutions to their grievances and their wounds and not turn to these violent means, and religion should not be used as a means of sanctioning that kind of violence. And we have to take the slam out of Islam. That's very bottom line for me.
I believe we need more brave people like her. In this day of ISIS the situation of youth radicalization in places like the United States, the UK and Canada demands that everyone on the side of a free and democratic secular society -- where all religions and no religion may flourish -- work together. 

One of the most prominent imams in Canada is Syed Soharwardy who is head of the Canadian Supreme Muslim Council and Muslims Against Terrorism. Back in August, he began speaking out against the alarming uptick in Muslim youth radicalization - in particular, the serious number of young recruits to ISIS from Canada, mainly Calgary, his own backyard.

Back then, I noticed a conspicuous lack of this owning that Asra Nomani demonstrated so clearly in the NPR piece. It seemed like he was asking the Federal government to work harder to clean up this problem but I just didn't see anything he or other imams were doing within their communities. It was a shame because Soharwardy seemed to be in the perfect position to make calls to action and bring Muslims together for this cause.

Randy Tyson and I discussed this over the mysterious backchannel that is Facebook. He shared a Facebook exchange he had with Soharwardy on his podcast The Legion of Reason where he asked this very question -- why not own the problem and tell us what the Muslim community is doing to fight radicalization?
Hi Randy, No doubt the Muslim community and leaders work with the RCMP and other law enforcement agencies to help in making Canada secure and safe. If I know any terrorist or a potential terrorist I will report. However, the people who are violent and creating terrorism do not attend my congregation. We follow SUFI tradition and the violent people follow the WAHABI / SALAFI sect.

Goverment has to go after them. I can just educate Canadian and the Canadian govt. about the root cause of terrorism which is a Wahabi ideology. It has nothing to do with Islam and Muslims. Thanks
I can recognize that lumping all Muslims together into a single group is simplistic and counterproductive and his response does point out the very same groups Asra Nomani identifies. However, if you are going to go by the label Muslim then I think it's wise to own the problem of fundamentalist Islamist ideologies translating to violence. I mean, isn't that the right thing to do? This is what Nomani is calling for.

These people are terrorising and dying in the name of -- what they at least call -- Islam. Listen, this atheist isn't terribly interested in which sects are responsible -- this mess is inside the Muslim community, from this vantage point. To this atheist, who's read the Quran at least once, violence does seem to follow rather well from a very literalist, fundamentalist interpretation of the book.

However, whatever your opinions about this, surely those in the best position to combat this sort of violence are those within the broader Muslim community! We're talking about people's children running away to join ISIS here. Surely, this is the most serious thing.

To Soharwardy's credit, he does seem to be the only imam we ever hear about who is at least speaking out strongly against this religiously-motivated insanity.  In the past, he's even reached out to other religious (and non-religious) communities as well. So even though he's wrong about the whole God and religion thing, he appears to be an otherwise reasonable guy. It was rather disappointing though to see him not quite go all the way, to own it.

Then I see this recent update on his Facebook page. Emphasis is my own.
The two faces of “so called” Muslim leaders make me very angry and frustrated. There are Muslims leaders when they speak privately they recognize/identify the sources of radicalization of Muslim youth but when they appear in the media or speak in public they become diplomatic and do not tell the whole truth. Only condemning radicalization and not identifying the source of radicalization is hypocrisy in my opinion.

There are other Muslim leaders who condemn radicalization publicly but privately they are the one who preach the ideology of radicalization. 

Unfortunately, majority of Muslim leaders are like this. So, keep on harvesting what are we sowing. May Allah save Islam from Muslim hypocrites. Ameen.
Now that's better! I mean, it's a start, right?

If only he could rouse some of the other members of the choir to sing a song of truth and shine some real light on this problem. If only I could hear anyone else singing at all!

Friday, 31 October 2014

Jordan Cancels Halloween


Just a few days ago, the holy holiday of Halloween was under dire threat from Muslim clerics and government officials in Malaysia. Now it makes me sad to report that our atheist plot to make all theists in Jordan godless has apparently been thwarted.

Additionally, the Government of Jordan recently announced that public celebrations of Halloween and public appearances in Halloween costume are prohibited.  U.S. citizens should expect police reaction, including arrests, at any public Halloween-themed event.  The U.S. Embassy advises that U.S. citizens traveling from their home to a Halloween party, or vice versa, cover up their costumes while in public or in a car.
The theory is that Islamic government are trying to appease local fundamentalist conservative religionists by taking a tough stand on people dressing up for Halloween.
“This seems like a convenient easy concession, like a bone to throw the Islamists, when the government is struggling a little with its Islamic credentials,” said my friend Alex Simon, a Jordan-based Fulbright scholar who studies the regional impact of Syria’s civil war. “It falls within a broader process of Jordan trying to maintain a tricky balance between in theory being a moderate Islamic country, but still with a relatively conservative population.”
It let's the government appear to be defending their values against Western influences while being allies with the West.

Meanwhile, it's party goers who have to suffer. Oh, I mean Satanist party goers.
This isn’t the first time Halloween has been contentious in Jordan. In 2012, arsonists set fire to the entrance of a West Amman cafe that had hosted a Halloween party the night before; the local Muslim Brotherhood chapter subsequently issued a statement calling the Halloween event a gathering of “Satan worshippers.” This year, the government itself started condemning Halloween celebrations before they began. A spokesman for the Ministry of Interior, Ziad Zou’bi, said such parties were not in keeping with traditional Jordanian values.
So I guess us atheists are running the show in Malaysia while the Satanists are taking care of things in Jordan. Who knew?

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Rising Atheism Identified as 'a Key Challenge' facing Egypt


Egypt has had many challenges recently, like the Arab Spring or that whole military coup back in January.

For mercy sake, the country is still reeling over that televised belly dancing competition, which surely shook society to its very limit! With all these belly dancers on television, is there any hope? Does anyone have any time to consider the political situation in Egypt when pelvises continue to oscillate on national television?

Keep calm, though. Even with belly dancing not completely resolved, the Egyptian government and senior clerics have bravely identified the rise of atheists as truly the largest, most dire threat to their entire civilization.
 In a sign of unprecedented concern, Egypt’s top Islamic official recently warned against the spread of atheism in the traditionally religious country.

“Atheism is no longer a marginal issue,” Shaikh of Al Azhar, Ahmad Al Tayeb, said on Egyptian state TV. “It has become one of the many challenges facing the country. There are agencies and institutions in the country concerned about this issue.”
And because education, employment, healthcare, poverty, secularism and democracy are 'just fine thanks', the Ministry of Religious Endowments and Ministry of Youth have teamed up to ensure young people are 'thinking right' and 'believing the right.'
The ministries of Waqfs (Religious Endowments) and Youth have said they will launch a nationwide campaign to tackle atheism in the predominantly Muslim country. The planned drive will recruit the efforts of moderate clergymen, psychologists, sociologists and political specialists to address the youth, according to local media.
I guess there are two positive  points here. It's obvious that atheism is making some progress in Egypt and it appears to be at least moving the discussion towards a more moderate point. They've even taken to banning fundamentalist Islamic clerics from giving sermons, which seems rather overbearing and unconstitutional to me, frankly.

Like lots of religious people who do not understand atheists, a Christian representative thinks this whole atheism business is some sort of rebellion against tradition.
“After revolting against the political regime, attention is turned to rebellion against the family’s authority and then the religious authorities represented by clergymen. Some people believe that as long as the ruler of the country is deposed, why not depose the chief of the world too.”
Also according to him, high unemployment and materialism is also a cause. Shouldn't the government be concentrating on the unemployment situation? Maybe a little materialism might help in coming up with concrete solutions to jobless rates rather than these pie in the sky witch hunts against belly dancers and atheists.

Apparently, there is an estimated 2 million atheists in the country out of nearly 90 million which is hardly a sizable minority.

If you're caught, you get up to five years in prison as well. That should be the real story here. Maybe Egypt should also concentrate a bit on their human rights and freedom of conscious problems as well.

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Saudi Grand Mufti discovers Source of all Evil and Devastation!

(source)
Finally, someone has figured out what's wrong with the world! It's been Twitter all this time.

The Saudi Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdul Aziz al-Sheikh -- voted 12th most influential Muslim in the world -- revealed this important news on his Monday television programme Fatwa. What a great name for a television show!
... according to Saudi Arabia's top Muslim cleric, Twitter is "the source of all evil and devastation".

Sheikh Abdul Aziz al-Sheikh, the grand mufti of Saudi Arabia, made the comments on his Fatwa television show earlier this week.

"If it were used correctly, it could be of real benefit, but unfortunately it's exploited for trivial matters," he said about the social networking site.

"People are rushing to it thinking, 'It's a source of credible information' but it's a source of lies and falsehood."
According to the Mufti, people are using the site for trivial things -- like posting how they are feeling!  Not acceptable! Well, Twitter is enormously popular in Saudi Arabia, there was a mini revolt against the cleric's declaration.
One user tweeted: "People need an outlet to express themselves, to start to disclose what's hidden and drop the masks, without fear or commands, or censorship from anyone."
Of course Twitter can be used for good. I use it myself to promote things I'd like others to see. However, after reading some of the inanity on social media, I can almost sympathize with the Mufti.
 "These are not the high morals that Muslims should have and I call upon all people to contemplate seriously what they write before they post their tweets."
Think about your tweets, people!

Just kidding. Twitter isn't the source of all evil afterall! He's just wrong, that's all.

 Perhaps the Mufti could focus on all those people getting their heads hacked off for trivial things or all the slave labor and human rights abuses? Instead, the country has been monitoring Twitter to combat witchcraft and gay people. What a waste of resources.

Tragically, I was unable to find a Twitter feed for him or his programme.

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Another Christian Preacher Thinks Ebola Is God's Wrath

Berean Baptist Church Pastor Pastor Ron Baity (source)
First, I posted about Rick Wiles, now Ron Baity.

What is going on? Why do these preachers spew such hateful nonsense and why do people sit in the pews and listen and presumably believe? I mean, I am obviously not a fan of religion but I generally believe that we're all human beings doing our best to make the world a better place. People like this guy really stretch this theory though, a lot.

NC pastor comes unglued over coming gay weddings: ‘You think Ebola is bad now, just wait!’

I mean, is this guy using ebola -- the suffering of thousands of innocent (and mostly not gay) people in Africa -- to prop up his own sick and twisted idea about what he his God thinks about LGBT people? How sick is that?
A Baptist pastor is warning that God will escalate the Ebola crisis when North Carolina begins performing same-sex marriages.

During his Sunday sermon following a series of court actions that effectively struck down North Carolina’s constitutional ban on marriage equality, Berean Baptist Church Pastor Pastor Ron Baity suggested that homosexuality was a sign of the End Times.
He worships this God? What kind of maniac would worship a being that murders whole populations of people because of what the Supreme Court did? Not that I disagree with the Supreme Court, but this fellow's apparent beliefs are the vilest thing I've come across in months.

And the fear-mongering, the targeting of a portion of the population, makes me extremely nervous.
“Listen, folks, it’s on,” he announced. “You might as well get ready for it. It’s on. It’s just a matter of time when they’re going to say to the churches… It’s just a matter of time before our constitution in our churches will be overturned like our state constitution just been overturned this week. I mean, it’s coming.”
In an almost incomprehensible rant he seems to compare gays and lesbians to cows slobbering each other.
“There was never a cow going around slobbering on another cow, sending a signal that I’m in love with this cow,” he said. “And when the bull got in the pasture, we didn’t have to give them a course in bullology or cowology. They had an inborn nature, they knew exactly and precisely what they needed to do to make sure that the Baity family had cows 20 years from now.”
Yes, he reduces human beings to cattle and base sexual nature. Perhaps this is his worldview -- sex. Maybe this is why he cannot seem to get over the basic fact of nature that a percentage of all animals, including people, are gay. They are attracted to those of the same gender by nature.  If he has a problem with this, he can take it up with his God.
“I would hate to think that two skunks in the backyard was smart than a judge that supposed to have studied the laws of the land,” Baity remarked. “Listen, we’re not getting wiser, we’re getting dumber! We’re not getting smarter. My friend, we are meriting, we are bringing the judgement of God on this nation as sure as Sodom and Gomorrah was destroyed, don’t be surprised at the plagues. Don’t be surprised at the judgement of God.”
Finally...
“You think Ebola is bad now, just wait. If it’s not that, it’s going to be something else. My friends, I want you to understand, you can’t thumb your nose at God, and God turn his head away without God getting your attention.”
Do people believe what this person says? How can they live with themselves? What sort of devilish dehumanization must go on within their minds to even allow this?

To think, Tony Perkins at the Family Research Council presented this man with the organization's highest honour in 2012, the very same year he described LGBT people as maggots.

What is wrong with these people?


Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Duck Dynasty GOP Candidate Exposes That Atheist 'YOLO' Saying


That Zach Dasher related-to-Duck-Dynasty-GOP-candidate guy has this podcast where he said things and keeps saying things. The podcast is a goldmine. Back in 2012, he said something a little like this over on his Facebook page.
YOLO right? About a year ago I started to notice all this YOLO business. YOLO on T-shirts, YOLO on wrist bands. YOLO stands for YOU ONLY LIVE ONCE. Rap artist Drake made the phrase famous with his number one hit titled, guess what....YOLO. The lyrics are pornographic so I would not recommend you download it. But what about the message in the title? Do we only live once? If the atheist is correct then yes, you only live once. You have about 80 years if you are lucky. And then it's six feet under you go to push up daisies. If this is all there is I have a bit of advice for you. Go get after it. Consume as much as you can for tomorrow you die. The most dangerous part of YOLO is not the porn lyrics but the clearly atheistic message that has brainwashed a generation. But I have a message for the YOLO generation. A new T-shirt, a new wrist band, a new song, and a new way. IT's YCL2. YOU CAN LIVE TWICE! If the historical accounts of the resurrection are true, then we have proof that our 80 years here are just the first life. We have proof that there will be a 2nd life. It you only live once, live for the moment like an animal driven by instinct. But if you can live twice, use your rational ability to plan for that second life. Folks the bottom line is this, Drake and Little Wayne are wrong and Jesus was right. YOU CAN LIVE TWICE!
Ah yes, The Atheist(tm). That over-generalized guy made entirely of straw who's destroying our youth with vile messages like you'd better get the most of this life because it's the only one you've got.

I'll admit that I've likely only heard this song playing in grocery stores or perhaps in passing. So I don't really recall it. Apparently the saying has gotten flak for being too facile and a catch-all excuse people use for doing stupid and irresponsible things.

Anyway, according to Wikipedia, the phrase goes back much further than this rapper guy, Drake.
The phrase "you only live once" is commonly attributed to Mae West, but variations of the phrase have been in use for over 100 years, including as far back as (the German equivalent of) "one lives but once in the world" by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe in his 1774 play Clavigo and as the title of a waltz, "Man lebt nur einmal!" ("You Only Live Once!") by Johann Strauss II in 1855.
Anyway, all this nuttiness fits into Dasher's religious worldview like peanuts in a Snickers bar. It's no surprise they are there, but it just wouldn't be as delicious if they were gone. The whole production makes for a fascinating and amusing treat. So, I think it's a stretch for Rawstory to refer to this as an atheist conspiracy. Dasher is merely pointing out an evil secular, atheist, secular humanist atheist culture which he sees as pervading the music industry. Nothing new here coming from The Fundamentalist Christian(tm).

Still, what's so wrong with seeing this life as the only one and not wasting it? I'm not talking about doing stupid stuff and then justifying it by yelling YOLO like an idiot -- although, hey, whatever you want -- I'm talking about making the very most out of every day. It's actually a pretty positive message. Even in the unlikely event you do make it up to the pearly gates, what do you think old St. Peter would think if you didn't make the most of this life you were given?

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

South African Pastor Now Tells Congregation to Eat Floral Arrangements

Maxwell Klinger eats a jeep on the television program M*A*S*H: "See? I'm crazy. I'm eating a jeep and I think it's tasty. What could be more crazy than that?" Nom! Nom! Nom!
Remember Maxwell Klinger on M*A*S*H? He would try any stunt to prove to his superiors he was insane so he could be discharged from service in the Korean War? One episode, he decided to eat a jeep to prove he was clearly insane and who wouldn't agree that there are some sort of psychological issues there? Well, this sort of thing doesn't appear to be mental illness to the congregation of one Lesego Daniel, who previously had his congregation eat grass, then ostensibly drink 'pineapple flavoured' gasoline -- he's got religion, so he's a prophet.

This time the pastor is advising his flock to graze on the floral displays around the church.

Pastor Daniel’s flock eats flowers

People started munching on daisies at his command.
“Eat this one,” said Daniel to one of his ushers. The woman ran to the flowers her pastor was pointing to and started chewing off the heads of the daisies and the leaves.

Others started running to the stage to get a taste of the flowers. At first the woman refused to share but Daniel told her to welcome others to also take part in “what the Holy Spirit was doing”.

Soon the whole stage was filled with people chewing away at the flowers.
Well, that must have been a sight. I am relieved, though, that Mr. Daniel chose flowers this time, as some of them are actually edible as far as science is concerned. So there is no miracle there if people didn't get sick -- assuming they are edible flowers. European daisies are at least are edible.
This daisy may be used as a potherb. Young leaves can be eaten raw in salads or cooked, noting that the leaves become increasingly astringent with age. Flower buds and petals can be eaten raw in sandwiches, soups and salads. It is also used as a tea and as a vitamin supplement.
It's pretty apparent he's now simply trolling for attention.
“I’m making news,” Daniel said standing over his congregation as they fought over the flowers.
*sigh*

Maybe it's not a scam though. Perhaps this is just the way South African mega church pastors lose it completely.
On Sunday, he told his congregation that media reports claiming that his private life was falling apart and that he owned luxury cars and huge piece of land where not true and are only attempts to discredit him.
If so, then I suppose this is not really that distinguishable from Maxwell Klinger's situation. Well, on the outside, at least, both cases look insane to us. It's interesting that when religion is involved, stunts like this seem to increase faith and devotion in the congregation, while without religion, in Klinger's case, it was all part of an intentional ploy to draw on as much discredit as possible.

Has anyone seen Pastor Daniel eat the flowers?

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Jessa Duggar Writes Something Else On Her Instagram


It was only one day and already Jessa Duggar -- from the Nineteen Kids & Counting quiverfull-type-evangelical-homeschool-Christian-unreal-reality-television-family fame... Well... Listen... She's gone done written something else on her Instagram!


It's not so much the image, which is a haunting picture of children in a Nazi concentration camp. Nope, it's Jessa's description of the image that made people upset. (Emphasis mine.)
I walked through the Holocaust Museum again today... very sobering. Millions of innocents denied the most basic and fundamental of all rights--their right to life. One human destroying the life of another deemed "less than human." Racism, stemming from the evolutionary idea that man came from something less than human; that some people groups are "more evolved" and others "less evolved." A denying that our Creator--GOD--made us human from the beginning, all of ONE BLOOD and ONE RACE, descendants of Adam. The belief that some human beings are "not fit to live." So they're murdered. Slaughtered. Kids with Down syndrome or other disabilities. The sickly. The elderly. The sanctity of human life varies not in sickness or health, poverty or wealth, elderly or pre-born, little or lots of melanin [making you darker or lighter skinned], or any other factor. "If thou faint in the day of adversity, thy strength is small. If thou forbear to deliver them that are drawn unto death, and those that are ready to be slain; If thou sayest, Behold, we knew it not; doth not He that pondereth the heart consider it? and He that keepeth thy soul, doth not He know it? and shall not He render to every man according to his works?" (Proverbs 24:10-12) May we never sit idly by and allow such an atrocity to happen again. Not this generation. We must be a voice for those who cannot speak up for themselves. Because EVERY LIFE IS PRECIOUS. #ProLife
First off, she has a pretty horrendous picture of what evolution is all about. I've heard it before from the evangelical crowd. Regardless of what the Nazis used to justify their atrocities, evolution is as close to proven fact as any theory in science can ever get. It's right up there with the theory of gravity and the theory of relativity.

However, it was her apparent equation of the murder of millions of self-conscious human beings during the holocaust with the termination of pregnancies -- not self-conscious fully-formed human beings... often not even close -- has offended many of her followers, some of whom were already getting over her anti-atheist comments the day before.
I love you and you are a sweet girl. But I am Jewish and I can't even understand why you would compare the Holocaust to abortion. Women have abortions because their life style or body is not fit for a child. Do you think women feel good after killing an innocent child? It was what they had to do to save a baby from a miserable life. The Holocaust was when 9 million innocent and defenseless people who were deemed 'less than human' were slaughtered. Please don't ever compare those two again. Again I say, you are a lovely girl, just don't compare slaughter to selflessness. -- _mya_butoryak_
Abortion is not murder if you look at science. A fetus isn't viable or alive within the time abortion is allowed. Comparing that to the Holocaust is horrendous. Those people were alive and slaughtered. They were put through hell. To say something that isn't alive is going through the same thing is unjustified. I hope your child does not grow up with the same prejudice and narrow-minded approach to life. Shame on you, @jessaseewald. God forbid you're raped. Would you want that reminder of the attack? And putting a child up for adoption? Well, there are 109,000 children in the foster care system in the United States alone. And millions of ALIVE children around the world waiting for a loving family to adopt them today. I pity you and your lack of compassion. -- mayniacmeg
Ironically, comparing the holocaust with abortion -- many of which are performed when pregnancy is under 12 weeks -- is sort of extra dehumanizing, I think, for the victims of the holocaust. As the last commenter pointed out, these people -- who were completely aware of their situation -- were made to suffer in the vilest and cruelest ways over extended periods. The suffering was totally unthinkably gruesome and horrifying. To say that's the same as abortion belittles the event.

Look, I'm no big fan of abortion. Who is? However, in many situation it's the lesser of several evils and, in the end, it must remain a woman's choice over her own bodily autonomy.

Some of you may wonder why I'm even covering this story. Well, Jessa is the product of her upbringing. It is a cloistered, sheltered evangelical Christian homeschooled upbringing that is anti-evolution, anti-climate change, (anti-science), anti-choice etc. So, this is apparently what you get. It's not Jessa's fault -- by all indications she appears to be an intelligent woman who's simply working with what she's got.

Another reason is that, apparently, half a million people follow this Instagram. It's sad, but these people are looked up to by thousands if not millions of young people. Her words may have more effect on some than all the teachers and public speakers out there.

Friday, 26 September 2014

Americans Sure Are Talking About Those Atheists These Days!

This whole situation's gone to the Birds.
I usually shy away from commenting about all the really interesting things going on in the United States. Usually, I feel ill-equipped to make any sort of useful commentary and Hemant Mehta or Jerry Coyne usually cover it really well anyway. Sometimes, though, I cannot help but point stuff out -- sort of like your clueless Canadian uncle come down to the family reunion who, with the patience of a saint, must explain that our bacons are in fact identical. A man who refuses to pronounce house or boot incorrectly.

I'm working off less than four hours of sleep here, so I will not stumble to the point. It seems like people are talking a whole lot about atheists in the U.S of A. these days. I mean, I'm not able to even keep up with folks telling us all to stop behaving like Dawkins or Maher, or telling us we all should be Kirks instead of Spocks or that Sam Harris has turned us all Buddhist or that being atheist makes you an anti-Christ! Just look it all up on Google! Who can keep their food down these days? It's pretty wild.

We're surrounded on all sides! Troop morale is at an all time low as they peck at our eyeballs while simultaneously complaining they're the most persecuted group in the country! Barricade the doors! Stock up on canned beans! The irony meter has burst past Defcon 5 and we should all retreat soon cower in our bomb shelters or under staircases!

No doubt, the release of Nicholas Cage and Left Behind will spell the end of all of us. We'll all likely facepalm ourselves to death,but until then we have these two devastating occurrences -- prophesying much worse future calamity.

First off, there is this man in the United States who shares DNA with Duck Dynasty star Phil Robertson. We can remember Phil as being the guy who kept saying wild and irrational things about the gays and who very recently suggested that ISIS needs to be converted to Christianity under threat of death -- a point of view remarkably similar to the folks over at ISIS.  Well, his nephew, Republican House Candidate Zach Dasher, very obviously shares the bits of DNA that control brain-mouth functions with his uncle Phil.

GOP House Candidate: ‘Atheist Agenda’ Caused Sandy Hook Shooting
“He was made in the image of God,” Dasher said of the shooter. “But somewhere along the way he believed what the atheist says. He reduced humanity to nothing more than a collection of atoms, to be discarded like an old banana peel. I guarantee you, now this is my hypothesis, that even saw himself as nothing more than chemicals.”
Let this sink in for a moment. He's saying that an atheist cannot help but have a reduced view of humanity and that they must also see themselves as being depraved or sub human. This seems to be a common and highly concerning point of view among theists. I cannot help but think that it's dehumanization like this that can lead to some pretty gruesome actions. Oh, and did I mention this guy is running for the House? I thought I would repeat that to emphasize the absurdity of this situation.
He also said those who blamed the shooting on loose gun laws or mental illness were missing the point: “To blame the acts of a mass murderer on mental illness, for one, is a slap in the face, I think, to reason. It’s the equivalent of blaming lung cancer on coughing.”
No, instead he's implying that anyone who doesn't believe in his god becomes depraved and sub human enough to commit mass murder. I cringe to think what might happen if he should ever try to stop all this mass murder at its root. I wonder how that might go down.

The only thing I can agree with this guy on is his disdain for postmodernism! Well, that's a relief.

In second place here is Jessa Duggar, one of the 19 Duggar children whom Ken Ham recently praised for visiting his Creationism Museum. She had something to say about atheism too.

Jessa Duggar News 2014: ’19 Kids & Counting' Star Angers Fans With Atheism Rant On Instagram


(Nevermind the video on that page, it's just an advert for her new book.)
In her post, Duggar wrote, "Atheism - the belief that there was nothing and nothing happened to nothing and then nothing magically exploded for no reason, creating everything and then a bunch of everything magically rearranged itself for no reason what so ever into self-replicating bits which then turned into dinosaurs. Makes perfect sense."
Magically, eh? I'm not sure why she would have such a problem with that since the family apparently is all for the magic thing according to a new book she wrote along with 3 of her sisters.
"Magic, sorcery, witches, spell-casting and the like are all part of the demonic realm that God wants us to stay away from. One specific thing that our parents have always been careful about is magic, which often shows up in children's movies. As harmless as it may seem, it's not a joke in God's eyes," sisters Jill, Jessa, Jana and Jinger in their book, Growing Up Duggar.
Yeah, seems like anything goes in a belief system like that, while atheist types quite often rely on this thing called science. Did Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar not teach their kids science when they were home schooled? How am I to take her post about atheism seriously at all if she believes in witches and spell-casting and demons?

Jessa, why not pick up a copy of Why Evolution is True? Or any university level course might do.

Why does our culture put such value on those who have such a blatant and open disdain for science?

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Christian Radio Host: Ebola May Solve America's Atheism Problem

Rick Wiles (source)
There's this guy on TruNews Christian radio who keeps on saying these really false and offensive things -- most likely to get attention. Recently he was going on about Gay Nazism.

His name is Rick Wiles, and he just said this:
"Now this Ebola epidemic can become a global pandemic and that’s another name for plague. It may be the great attitude adjustment that I believe is coming… Ebola could solve America’s problems with atheism, homosexuality, sexual promiscuity, pornography and abortion."
"If Ebola becomes a global plague, you better make sure the blood of Jesus is upon you, you better make sure you have been marked by the angels so that you are protected by God. If not, you may be a candidate to meet the Grim Reaper."
Holy cow! Fourteen hundred people have gotten this disease and suffered brutally and over 800 have died. We have orphaned children because both parents have died. Or is that his solution? I suppose if we were all dead we wouldn't have any of those things Wiles is against. Seriously though, wishing a plague on those who you do not approve, really?

Oh, but it's not him... God did it, right? Is he not aware that a large proportion of the affected populations are Christian? Does he even care about those people over there?

In fact the only two Americans infected with the disease so far are both Christian missionaries! Ebola case count in gay San Francisco: zero.

As for having the blood of Jesus upon you, whatever the hell that means, it would appear that the only effective treatment so far is purely scientific. Oh, and then there is the new experimental drug ZMapp being developed by scientists. Wiles can keep his Jesus blood, I'll go for the medical treatments, thank you.