Created on Sunday, 22 June 2014 16:23
According to abc News, in the wake of a brutal murder by members of a religious sect, the Chinese government is renewing its crackdown on cults.
State-run publications, such as the Xinhua News Agency, are producing a steady stream of articles alarming citizens to the dangers of religious cults, known in Chinese as "xiejiao," which in English means "evil religions."
Xinhua reports that the government has handed out four-year prison terms to 59 of the 1,500 cult members arrested since 2012. These 59 individuals were charged with "using religious organizations to disrupt the legal system."
Created on Saturday, 21 June 2014 00:35
WRITTEN BY CHRIS K, AAI NEWS TEAM
Equality of the sexes, worldwide, is “the major ethical challenge of our times,” said Dr. Robert D. Finch, past president of the Humanists of Houston, at the recent American Humanist Association (AHA) meeting in Philadelphia. Finch went on to detail some of the outrageous abuses against women and girls that are encompassed in a new book by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, titled “A Call to Action: Women, Religion, Violence, and Power.”
In his book (published March 2014), Jimmy Carter stresses the similarity between the racial prejudice that existed in the Deep South at the time when he was a boy and the worldwide prejudice, discrimination, and violence against females as a result of religious teachings and/or political and cultural forces.
When Carter was elected governor of Georgia, he found that black women prisoners staffed the governor’s mansion. It was a terrible injustice, Carter writes.
Created on Thursday, 19 June 2014 22:55
According to Huffington Post, the UK government has banned the teaching of creationism as science in all existing and future academies and free schools.
Creationism cannot be taught as a valid scientific theory in any free school or academy, the government has said.
The British Humanist Association with “Teach evolution, not creationism” campaign, has been advocating for the change since 2011.
Created on Thursday, 19 June 2014 19:49
According to Ex-Muslims of North America, Twitter announced that it is restoring access in Pakistan to several accounts and tweets it had blocked at the request of Pakistan’s government starting on May 18, 2014.
EXMNA, thank Twitter for taking a stand against censorship, and for refusing to use their software to comply with oppressive, theocratic blasphemy laws. Twitter’s actions should strengthen the resolve of other international companies and organizations that find themselves in similar situations. Twitter was forged on the principles of open communication; we are glad to see them once again standing up for freedom of expression, and we hope they exercise due diligence in the future should the company receive demands for compliance with oppressive laws again.
Created on Tuesday, 17 June 2014 02:27
According to Standard Digital, the president of Atheists in Kenya Harrison Mumia has written to Dr. Prophet Owuor challenging him to show up at Kenyatta Hospital on July 19 for purposes of verifying his miracles.
In a letter sent to news rooms, the atheists question the authenticity of Prophet Owuor’s miracles and they claim that there is no sufficient evidence to demonstrate that they happen.
Created on Sunday, 15 June 2014 19:00
According to BBC News, the Sunni extremist group that has taken territory across Iraq has posted photos online that appear to show its fighters massacring Iraqi soldiers.
The pictures, apparently posted by ISIS, are said to show what happened to soldiers after the group took over an army base in Tikrit following the surrender of the garrison there, but it appears that all the people wear civilian not military clothing, ISIS claim they killed 1700 Shi'a men in Salahadin province.
Iraqi military spokesman Lt Gen Qassim al-Moussawi said the pictures were authentic and depicted events in Salahuddin province.
The BBC's Jim Muir, in northern Iraq, says if the photographs are genuine, it would be by far the biggest single atrocity since the time of the American-led invasion of Iraq in 2003.
Created on Thursday, 12 June 2014 13:44
According to The New Civil Rights Movement, a conservative Christian Tea Party Republican candidate running for the Oklahoma House of Representatives says he is OK with stoning gays to death. Scott Esk reportedly said in a Facebook conversation, “I think we would be totally in the right” to stone gay people to death. He also quoted the bible — including Leviticus 20:13 — and added, “ignoring as a nation things that are worthy of death is very remiss.”
In a Facebook conversation, Esk insisted that stoning “was done under the Old Testament, a law that came directly from God.”
Created on Tuesday, 17 June 2014 22:38
According to The Australian, the success of the jihadist group Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham in creating a proto-Islamic state in Iraq, confirms an unmistakable message — Islam, as it is conceived by a quarter of the world’s population, seeks the destruction of the secular world and the imposition of Islamic rule.
To believe otherwise, such as that recent events are the fault of the West arising from a botched invasion of Iraq, is thoroughly delusional.
In broad terms, we can respond in one of two ways. The first option, another military intervention, would again prove a waste of blood and treasure. For the social and cultural destiny of Islam lies in totalitarian or authoritarian religiosity and no volume of drone strikes or boots on the ground can turn this around.
Created on Tuesday, 17 June 2014 02:15
By TOM ODULA and JASON STRAZIUSO Associated Press
The gunmen went door to door in the Kenyan costal town, demanding to know if the men inside were Muslim and if they spoke Somali. If the extremists did not like the answers, they opened fire, witnesses said on Monday.
Al-Shabab, a Somali al-Qaida-linked group, claimed responsibility for the hours-long assault on Mpeketoni in which 48 people were killed. The attack began Sunday night as residents watched World Cup matches on TV and lasted until early Monday, with little resistance from Kenya's security forces.
After daybreak, Kenyan troops and residents stared at the bodies lying on dirt streets by still-smoldering buildings. Two hotels and many vehicles were set on fire.
Created on Sunday, 15 June 2014 09:54
BY Portia Crowe , Chicago Sun-Times
Since Syria’s conflict began in 2011, a stream of jihadist militants has travelled from Saudi Arabia to join rebels fighting the regime of Bashar al Assad. Although travelling fighters are a Saudi tradition going back to the Soviet war in Afghanistan, the Saudi government worries that this time they may return home and take up arms against the monarchy.
So it was perhaps no surprise when the government this year criminalized the act of fighting in foreign conflicts, and named as “terrorist” several groups with which the Saudi jihadists identify: Hezbollah, the Muslim Brotherhood, and various factions of al-Qaida.
What was surprising was the inclusion of another group on the “terrorist” list: Saudi atheists. (join AAI petition and action against this law)
Created on Wednesday, 11 June 2014 05:58
Iraqi PM Nouri Maliki responded by asking parliament to declare a state of emergency after sunni militants with Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) overrun Iraq’s second biggest city, Mosul.
The day's developments mean Isis now has effective control over three cities, including Falluja and Ramadi in neighbouring Anbar.
A rebranded version of the al-Qaeda in Iraq organization that the U.S. military said it had quelled before withdrawing its forces in 2011, ISIS has been expanding its reach for months in Iraq and in Syria in pursuit of its goal of creating an Islamic state.