By Daniel Philpott - WP
This post is part of the "Islam and International Order" symposium.
The West's cultural war over Islam has entered an intense new phase since the rise of the Islamic State. The debates are familiar: Is Islam inherently violent and intolerant, or is it peaceful, diverse and often the victim of Western domination? A good criterion for answering the question is religious freedom – the civic right of persons and religious communities to practice, express, change, renounce and spread their religion. Whether the adherents of one religion can respect the beliefs and practices of another, or whether they respond to this otherness by violence or discrimination, is at the heart of these debates.
Whereas some scholars view religious freedom as a Western value derived from Western history, the principle has a claim to universal validity. For one thing, it is ensconced in the major international human rights conventions. It can also be derived from the value of religion itself, in which people across an enormous variety of times and places have sought fulfillment. Considering that religion is at its most authentic when it is freely chosen, the conclusion that the state ought to guarantee the right to pursue that fulfillmentunimpeded follows naturally.
According to Patheos, The Faravahar is an important symbol of Zoroastrianism, depicting a guardian angel of sorts.
So when Snoop Dogg is sitting on a throne, smoking a joint, with the symbol right above him, you can understand why some religious types might get all offended...
It all happens in the music video for "King" by Iranian pop singer Amitis.
And it's pissed off one community to the point where they've filed a completely unnecessary lawsuit:
A public interest lawsuit has been issued by the Calcutta Zoroastrian chapter in the hopes of getting the video, which also features pole dancers in golden underwear and men as cliched Ancient Egyptian servants, banned.
A representative said: "The wrong use of religious and sacred symbols and iconography hurts, insults and outrages the religious sentiments and beliefs of Parsi Zoroastrians."
On July 3, 2015 Ateístas de Puerto Rico (Atheists of Puerto Rico) filed a complaint in the Office of the General Comptroller of Puerto Rico, received and read by Egda Magaly Pagán Rivera. This complaint has also been made in the Office of Gubernatorial Ethics of Puerto Rico on July 6, as a consequence of the known "faith road-block" carried out by the Police Department of Barceloneta City on July 1st, on the street 140, under the bridge of the PR-22 highway, near the Barceloneta Prime Outlets shopping mall. During the "faith road-block", officers stopped people on the road for the purpose of preaching, distributing written religious propaganda and praying for drivers. It was a religious activity in which the Christian faith was professed, particularly of an Evangelical variant.
We understand that the Police Department of Barceloneta City has incurred in violations to the Constitution of the Common Wealth of Puerto Rico, which provide a clause for the separation of church and state, with quite a strong language. Article II, Section III says: "No law related to the establishment of any religion will be approved and the free exercise of religion will not be prohibited. There will be complete separation of church and state". We must also point out that Puerto Rico, as a territory, is under the protection of the Federal Constitution of the United States of America, which also provides a clause for the separation of church and state.
According to The Gaily Grind, just when you thought you've heard every anti-gay marriage argument known to man, Australia's outspoken agriculture minister Barnaby Joyce opened his mouth to claim that legalizing same-sex marriage could damage cattle exports with trading partners in Asia.
Joyce issued his warnings during an interview with the Australian ABC network, where he said it could cause problems trading with countries where gay marriage is illegal.
"Where we live economically is south-east Asia, that's where our cattle go" he argued.
"When we go there, there are judgments whether you like it or not that are made about us. They see us as decadent."
Acoording to The Gaily Grind, a new social network that bans swearing, erotica and gay material has already attracted more than 100,000 members in Brazil since its launch and plans to expand its anti-gay service globally.
Facegloria, which is currently only available in Portuguese, is targeting the 42 million evangelical Christians in Brazil and is setting its sights on global expansion to become a communication tool for people seeking to preserve the principles of family and morality.
"On Facebook there is a lot of violence and pornography, so we thought we'd create a social network where we could talk about God and love and spread His word," web designer and Facegloria co-founder Atilla Barros told AFP. "We want to be morally and structurally better than Facebook."
According to The Daily Star, Bangladesh police said Tuesday seven people belonging to a home-grown Islamist militant group took part in the brutal murder of a Bangladeshi-born U.S. atheist blogger in Dhaka in February.
All seven followed Avijit Roy on the night of February 26 and then brutally hacked him to death in a busy road on the Dhaka Universitycampus when Roy and his wife were returning from a book fair.
"In primary investigation police detectives have identified seven of those who took part in the killing," Dhaka police spokesmanMuntasirul Islam told AFP, adding none of them have been arrested.
"What our investigation has found is that all seven are members of the banned Islamist militant group Ansarullah Bangla Team (ABT)," he said, referring to the little known group whose activists were charged with the murder of another atheist blogger.
74 Children Forced To Fight In Cages And Executed By ISIS For ‘Blasphemy’, Including Refusal To Fast
According to INQUISITR, a recent report filed by the UK based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights has revealed startling figures regarding high numbers of executions carried out by terrorist organisation ISIS in the first year of establishing its "caliphate." With numbers exceeding 3,000 total executions, the report states the organisation have developed a particular interest in the torture and murder of children.
Of the thousands of Arab and Kurdish civilian executions carried out by ISIS, 74 included in the numbers were discovered to have been young children. Many of the murders including beheading, stoning, and being burned alive, however the methods with which ISIS targeted children appeared altogether more insidious.
According to In Touch weekly, a non-Duggar family molestation victim is preparing to file a civil suit against Josh Duggar, sources tell In Touch magazine exclusively in the new issue on newsstands today.
The shocking development means that Josh and his parents Jim Bob and Michelle could be forced to give depositions and testify about Josh's molestation scandal.
The Duggars likely will have to answer every question as they will not be able to invoke their Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination because the criminal statute of limitations has expired.
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