Archive for the ‘Religion’ Category

eg2vZynW_400x400Over international protests, according to some new sites, Iran has already executed Rayhaneh Jabbari, 26. However, Fox News is reporting that the execution has been delayed. Jabbari claimed that a former Iranian Intelligence Ministry employee tried to rape her and that she stabbed in him the shoulder to escape. Despite the fact that a drink given to her was found to contain a date rape drug, the Iranian officials still wanted her hanged and they have now carried out their intent. As she was being led away to be hanged, a guard showed mercy and gave her his phone to type a final message to her mother. Her reported message below is poignant and tragic as a final goodbye to her mother. [Update: there are both reports that the execution has occurred and that the execution has been delayed. Amnesty is reporting that the execution is "imminent."]

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Muriithi-300x300nolen-facebook-twoWe have been discussing the alarming and baffling migration of Muslim men and women from the West to join the blood-soaked Islamic State or ISIS forces as they behead and murder their way through captured territories. While the vast majority of Muslims are disgusted by ISIS, the chilling reality is that there is a large portion of people who do not just support but long to behead and torture other people. Oklahoma is facing precisely that reality in two cases involving Muslim men who appear to identify with ISIS and relish the concept of beheading people in the name of Islam. It is a fatal attraction that may explain the thousands flocking from the West to the ranks of the Islamic State.

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220px-Bonnat021966909_278774508978953_6179710600367701004_nVarious media outlets are reporting the latest outrage from Sharia courts. Iranian authorities have reportedly executed Mohsen Amir-Aslani, 37, for allegedly “insulting” the prophet Jonah and accused him of committing adultery. For that exercise of free speech and freedom of religion, a Sharia court had him hanged.

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200px-BYU_Medallion_Logo.svg175px-Brigham_Young_by_Charles_William_CarterThere is an interesting protest growing on the campus of Brigham Young University where students are opposing a rule imposed by the school. The subject of the protests is rather unique. No it is not a war protest or some other usual campus cause. It is facial hair. The university has banned beards, a curious rule to be sure for a school named after Brigham Young who would have been banned from campus due to his facial hair.

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By Mike Appleton, Weekend Contributor

“All governments are theocracies. We now live in a secular humanist theocracy. I want to change that to a government with God at its head.”

-Gary DeMar (quoted in John Sugg, “A Nation Under God,” Mother Jones (December, 2005)

When I started first grade in 1951, each school day began with the Pledge of Allegiance. We recited “one nation, indivisible,” because people understood that fidelity to one’s country is not a religious virtue. The National Prayer Breakfast was not on anyone’s calendar because it didn’t exist. Politicians felt no compulsion to invoke God’s blessings on the United States at the conclusion of every speech. Protestants opposed every effort to secure public funding of Catholic parochial schools in order to preserve the “wall of separation” between church and state. The corner grocer didn’t care whether a customer was gay or had been born again. Textbooks were not reviewed by religious committees for conformity with the King James Version. No serious person had yet suggested that insentient, artificial commercial entities could magically channel the religious beliefs of their shareholders. And no one complained that a war was being waged against religion.

But following some of the events at this year’s Values Voter Summit, I have become nostalgic for 1951.

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124934515-e57055cd-e51d-400f-9705-9aecf3e4626cSamira Salih al-Nuaimi died last week as she lived: a brave symbol of human rights in a region of religious extremist and oppression. Al-Nuaimi, a mother of three and lawyer, was taken from her home in Mosul by Islamic State fighters and taken to a Sharia court for trial for apostasy in her abandoning of true Islamic teachings. This true Islamic path for ISIS then included days of torture and the executive of Al-Nuaimi.

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220px-El_Al_Rhodes_041009Passengers on a flight from New York to Tel Aviv were put through what one passenger described as “an 11-hour long nightmare” on El Al after ultra-orthodox passengers refused to sit near women and demanded segregation of the sexes in line with their religion. The men in black hats and curly tendrils refused to take their previously selected seats for take off. They then jumped out of their seats and stood in the aisle protesting that women were near them . . . for 11 hours.

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