A man … admitted the horrific rape and stabbing of a lesbian couple in Seattle two summers ago, saying God told him to do it.
“I was there and I was told by my God, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, to attack my enemies, and I did so,” Isaiah Kalebu said under questioning by one of his lawyers.
Well, it certainly sounds like God…
Yes, he’s mad. But if he had learnt to recognise unreason as madness rather than divine inspiration, more innocent people might be alive today.
…and fined 200,000 rupees!
A Pakistani man was awarded death sentence on Wednesday by a court in Punjab province after being convicted under the country’s controversial blasphemy law.
Muhammad Rafiq was sentenced to death by Additional District and Sessions Judge Malik Riaz Ahmed in Bahawalpur city, 400 km from Lahore.
Rafiq was convicted for committing blasphemy against the companions of Prophet Mohammed.
Rafiq, a resident of Jalalpur Peerwala, was also ordered by the judge to pay a fine of Rs 200,000….
Police official Chaudhry Safdar said Rafiq was caught by local residents with a wooden slab around his neck that was inscribed with blasphemous remarks about the ‘Sahaba Ikrams’.
I’m no Sherlock Holmes, but isn’t it just remotely possible that someone else hung the slab there? No, I guess a religious court couldn’t possibly get it wrong…
An Egyptian Christian telecom mogul has angered Islamic hard-liners by posting an online cartoon of Mickey Mouse with a beard and Minnie in a face veil.
The ultraconservative Islamists, known as Salafis, called the cartoon posted by Naguib Sawiris on Twitter a mockery of Islam. They launched an online campaign calling on Muslims in Egypt to boycott Sawiris’ mobile phone company Mobinil.
In other news, fundamentalists also objected to the Warner Brothers character Daffy Duck. “Daffy is irascible, gullible and incoherent. He’s obviously meant to represent a typical theist,” said a spokesman. He added: “It’s dethpicable!”
Michael Tuano Hermogenes, 25, plied the girl with alcohol before choking her with one of her stockings, raping her, taking photos of her while she was naked and unconscious, then setting her and her house alight to hide his crimes.
She suffered permanent injuries including burns to half her body, amputation of her right toes and spent almost a year in hospital.
But which church? The news is surprisingly reticent on this point. I suppose it doesn’t look good in the promotional literature when one of your trusted officials is charged with rape and attempted murder. But don’t other schoolgirls have the right to know?
“I think it would just be nice that in any sport, if there’s a lady who covers her arms and legs … they could still be involved,” Abdullah said. Turning to her chosen sport, which is male-dominated, she adds: “With the dress code (as it is) Muslim women might think it’s not something they should do.”
So Abdullah is taking her case to the IWF. She has created a 43-page presentation detailing clothing options that she says would meet her Muslim modesty requirements, allow competition officials to make clear calls and avoid concerns that she was obtaining any competitive advantage.
So much ingenuity spent on finding new ways to be stupid!
Lebanon’s highest Sunni Muslim authority on Friday rejected a bill aimed at protecting women against domestic violence and marital rape, saying it would lead to the demise “of the family as in the West.”
Dar al-Fatwa also slammed as “heresy” a clause in the bill that criminalises marital rape, accusing those behind the draft law of “inventing new types of crimes.”
Because if a man can’t rape his wife, who can he rape?
And the real winners: suffering people who want the right to die with dignity.
Bishops Betrayed on Assisted Suicide | Crisis Magazine.
Even as the nation’s bishops react with alarm to a recent Montana Supreme Court ruling allowing physician-assisted suicide, their efforts are being undermined by ethics and law professors at several Jesuit universities.
…threaten to sulk and stop hectoring people.
Religious leaders slammed the state’s new gay marriage law on Saturday, vowing to ban politicians who supported the measure from any Catholic church and parochial school events.
The city’s top Catholic clergy released strongly worded statements in the hours after the state Senate voted 33-29 to legalize gay unions.
Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio, of the diocese of Brooklyn, called on all Catholic schools to reject any honor bestowed upon them by Gov. Cuomo, who played a pivotal role in getting the bill passed.
He further asked all pastors and principals to “not invite any state legislator to speak or be present at any parish or school celebration.”
In the immortal words of Deep Thought: “And who will that inconvenience?”
When the police arrived Hasle squares he came out again and was furious that the cars honked. He claimed that it interfered with his work in peace. He pushed the people and the police asked him to calm down. The police gave him the choice to leave voluntarily or be taken to the police station. Then he pushed the police.
Maybe Xenu was giving him a hard time…
THE meat industry has joined animal welfare groups in opposing the religious slaughter of sheep while they are conscious, amid calls to ban the “unnecessary and unconscionable” practice in Australia.
The Australian Meat Industry Council chairman, Terry Nolan, said it was in the industry’s “best interests to have the most humane treatment of animals”.
Rabbi Mordechai Gutnick, from Kosher Australia, said calls to ban such practices were motivated in part by ignorance and anti-semitism.
Which should we respect, animals or theists? They both squeal when they’re under threat, but only animals make rational efforts to escape.
The incident occurred Saturday in the Azra district of Logar province when a truck packed with explosives detonated, according to Sifatiullah Haqmal, a member of the provincial council.
The head of the U.N. Assistance Mission in Afghanistan said “much of the damage was in the maternity ward of the hospital, and many of those killed and injured were women and children.”
And these are the people the British government is ‘negotiating’ with…
Mr Singh, 65, has not bathed or cut his 6ft-long dreadlocks since 1974, shortly after he married.
Explaining his unconventional decision, Mr Singh claimed a priest guaranteed him a much-prized son and heir if he followed the advice.
So obviously it worked, right?
Despite neighbours joking the sweaty farmer would be lucky [to] persuade his wife to have any children at all, his religious guidance clearly failed – he has seven daughters.
Your answer for ten: It’s obviously stupid and fails at what it’s supposed to achieve, but you go on doing it because somebody told you to a long time ago.
Hmmm… I’m going to guess ‘What is Religion?’, Tony. Although ‘politics’ is good, too.
…but parental email responses are junked.
A NSW school whose students participated in a Facebook site used for cyber-bullying has threatened to expel students under 13 who are using the social networking site.
In an email to parents the principal of Northern Beaches Christian School, Stephen Harris, warned that students registered on Facebook and under the social network’s age limit of 13 would have their enrolment reviewed.
Either children had lied about their age or their parents had helped them join Facebook, he said. ”Let me be very clear – it is an immense parenting mistake to allow for either to happen,” Mr Harris wrote in the email sent on Tuesday.
The principal of the school said on Thursday she had not received complaints of cyber-bullying until contacted by the Herald. But the department conceded yesterday that a clerical officer at the school did recall receiving emails addressed to the school’s email account that referred to Facebook.
”As such emails are often spam or contain viruses, these were deleted, without being read,” a department spokesman said.
As usual, the school sends a clear message: “We are technological incompetents.”
About 700 individuals from all over West Texas traveled to San Angelo Monday for a seminar on exorcism and diabolical influence.
“It’s one of the best presentations we’ve ever had,” said Bishop Michael Pfeifer with the Catholic Diocese of San Angelo. “It’s something very, very unique. The people were enthralled, and they had so many questions to ask.”
The seminar was led by the Rev. Dennis McManus, whose appointed ministry with the Archdiocese of New York is exorcism. Priests, deacons and lay people attended the free and public presentation Monday; the seminar then was extended for clergy throughout Tuesday and Wednesday morning.
Pfeifer said he believes there is demonic influence in West Texas manifested through cults and Satan worship, but more so through secular things in the world that can be used for good, such as the Internet. He listed voodoo as a type of possible cult, but said it wasn’t very prevalent in West Texas.
Maybe they just can’t find enough people there prepared to believe bizarre, extreme nonsense. Nah, that can’t be it.
“West Texas: Voodoo-Free by twenty-twenty-three!”
Lopez’s digital version of the Virgin of Guadalupe will go on public display in UCC today as part of her Our Lady and Other Queer Santas exhibition which runs alongside the conference, organised by UCC’s Centre for Mexican Studies.
In a statement issued yesterday, Bishop of Cork and Ross, Most Reverend Dr John Buckley, said: “It is regrettable and unacceptable that this exhibition seeks to portray the Mother of God in such an offensive way.”
Fine Gael Cork South Central TD Jerry Buttimer also issued a statement saying it is not acceptable for any person or artist to denigrate another’s beliefs or to use art as a catch-all excuse for bigotry, prejudice or blasphemy.
If you don’t want other people to ridicule your beliefs, then don’t have ridiculous beliefs.
But wouldn’t you think the Irish Catholic Church would have more to worry about than Mary in a bikini? “Look! A distraction!”
It’s a quiet day today, so to keep you interested while we wait for some more religious thuggery…
Famous Dead Mormons.
Today’s front-runner, Alexander the Great. Yes, that Alexander the Great.
Update 2012-08-03: The roster now includes Carl Sagan, Richard Feynman, Groucho Marx and CS Lewis. At least nobody can accuse the Mormons of playing favourites.
DC’s Improbable Science
One wonders about the standards of peer review at the British Journal of General Practice. The June issue has a paper, “Acupuncture for ‘frequent attenders’ with medically unexplained symptoms: a randomised controlled trial (CACTUS study)”. It has lots of numbers, but the result is very easy to see….
There is no need to wade through all the statistics; it’s perfectly obvious at a glance that acupuncture has at best a tiny and erratic effect on any of the outcomes that were measured.
But this is not what the paper said. On the contrary, the conclusions of the paper said:
The addition of 12 sessions of five-element acupuncture to usual care resulted in improved health status and wellbeing that was sustained for 12 months.
Once you lose touch with reality it’s so easy to float away into fantasyland.
…as long as they’re not homosexual.
The Church of England is ready to approve the appointment of openly gay bishops, providing that they are celibate.
Britain’s established church was to publish its legal advice on the issue yesterday in an attempt to clarify its policy following years of controversy and debate.
The document, Choosing Bishops – The Equality Act 2010, summarises the points that those involved in the nomination process ”need to keep in mind” when considering candidates in order to avoid breaking the law.
It states there is no bar to the promotion of gay clergy to a bishopric as long as they are not sexually active and never have been while in the priesthood.
A spokesman for the Archbishop of Canterbury said: “Of course we have no objection to our bishops being openly merry and cheerful. After all, that is what ‘gay’ means, isn’t it?”
Just wear a burqua when you file a false complaint. Then if you get rumbled, it wasn’t you.
Yesterday, Judge Clive Jeffreys said there was no evidence the statutory declaration had been made by Mrs Matthews or even that it was knowingly false.
”All we know is that a person with a black burqa came in [to Campbelltown police station] with a man in a brown suit with an envelope and that’s it,” he said.
”I’m not satisfied beyond reasonable doubt that she made the complaint and even if I was … I would not be satisfied beyond reasonable doubt that it was knowingly false.”
Time for a face-mask-off-when-you-need-to-be-identified law?
A JERUSALEM rabbinical court has condemned to death by stoning a dog it suspects is the reincarnation of a secular lawyer who insulted the court’s judges 20 years ago….
Despite attempts to drive the dog out of the court, the hound refused to leave the premises.
One of the sitting judges then recalled a curse the court had passed down upon a secular lawyer who had insulted the judges two decades previously.
Their preferred divine retribution was for the lawyer’s spirit to move into the body of a dog, an animal considered impure by traditional Judaism.
Clearly still offended, one of the judges sentenced the animal to death by stoning by local children.
Because, you know, you have to do something to keep the kids amused.
Besides, they never did like that son-of-a-bitch.
By mid-afternoon a handful [of women] had driven in Riyadh, a few in the southern port city of Jeddah, a couple in Dammam in the east, perhaps 30 or 40 overall in a country with a population of 27 million including migrant labourers.
But it was a breakthrough. In the closed and authoritarian kingdom, such open and premeditated dissent is extremely rare. Under the spotlight of international attention, Saudi Arabia’s rulers had clearly decided to allow the protest to go ahead.
Last month seven women were arrested for driving. Manal al-Sharif, a 32-year-old who had posted a video on the internet of herself at the wheel, was held for 10 days, made to sign a pledge not to drive again and banned from talking to the media.
In this week’s Dukes of Riyadh: can Fatima make the county line in her souped-up Camaro before Boss Q’hogg realises the burqua’d figure in the cell is really Emmy the goat?
Update 2011-09-28: Another woman has been arrested for driving and sentenced to ten lashes. Maybe the religious police are trying to get all their jollies in before women get the vote.
Tony Baldry, the Second Church Estates Commissioner, said Tory MPs and ministers were “dismayed” and felt “monumentally misunderstood” after Dr Rowan Williams attacked the coalition last week.
Mr Baldry, who acts as the link between the Church of England and Parliament, likened Dr Williams to a woman who stands on the pavement outside the Palace of Westminster and shouts at MPs as they leave the building.
But there’s really no comparison. The Archbishop has much nicer frocks.
…so what are we waiting for?
Salwa Al-Mteiri: “I asked [a Saudi mufti]: What is the law with regard to slave girls? The mufti told me that the law requires there to be a Muslim country raiding a Christian country – sorry, a non-Muslim country – and taking POWs. I asked him whether it was forbidden [to turn them into slaves], and he said that Islam does not prohibit keeping slave girls – on the contrary.
“I very much hope that such a law is legislated. Just like they allow servants, they should allow slave girls and legislate a proper law in this regard. We don’t want our children to fall into the abyss of fornication and similar filth, God forbid. Allah willing, things will work out.
Because if you permit fornication, pretty soon people will move on to having sex. And then there will be more people. And it will all get really messy.
Minneapolis News – The Blotter.
[T]wo lesbian women from Minneapolis — were recently scolded by a Target Field security guard for what they call a “brief kiss.”
After seeing the quick peck on the lips, the guard told the women that “we don’t play grab ass here” and that they must “adhere to the 10 Commandments” while at the stadium.
Two gay men who were part of a program that helps people with developmental and intellectual disabilities were kicked out of a public swimming pool in Hazard, Kentucky — and were told it was because they were gay.
The stadium guard has been reprimanded. No word yet on the pool police.