Saudi Arabia’s top Islamic clerics have renewed a prior religious edict or fatwa that warns against playing Pokemon in order to expressly denounce the playing of the wildly popular mobile phone application Pokemon Go as UnIslamic and evil. This will come as a shock to my kids and their cousins who recently coerced me to drive around the neighborhood to bag a few Pokemon (while correctly me that it is not pronounced “pokeMAN.”) One would have hoped that with Sunni following the Saudi Wahhabi sect beheading people and enslaving girls, Pokemon Go would seem fairly low on the list of “to do” subjects for clerics.
Yesterday, we discussed how the case against Disney in the death of two-year-old Lane Graves seemed to be getting worse for the company by the day with a new controversy over a poster instructing employees to mislead tourists asking about the risk of alligators. Many of us felt that Disney richly deserved to be sued and that such a lawsuit could produce valuable deterrence for Disney and other companies in the future. However, to the surprise of many, Matt and Melissa Graves of Elkhart, Nebraska have announced that they will not sue Disney for the death of their son in the lagoon at the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa at Florida’s Walt Disney World.
We have previously discussed the troubling efforts to bar conservative speakers from college campuses and social media, particularly Breitbart Tech editor Milo Yiannopoulos who has become something of an icon for young conservatives. Twitter has long been criticized for banning or harassing conservative figures, including repeated suspensions against Yiannopoulos. Now, the company is under fire for permanently banning Yiannopoulos — just 20 minutes before his “Gays for Trump” event takes place at the Republican National Convention.
We previously discussed the tragic death of Lane Graves, 2, at a Disney resort after an alligator attack. Things are already pretty bad for the company, but there is yet another twist. A Walt Disney World intern was fired after she posted objected to a sign advising employees to tell guests that they do not know of any alligators in the waters. After an outcry, the company has rehired Shannon Sullivan. The question remains whether such evidence could be introduced to show the company’s alleged continued misrepresentation or concealment of the risks associated with the alligators.
By Darren Smith, Weekend Contributor
A fortnight ago we featured an article reporting that the The Pacific NW Annual Conference voted to not enforce church law proscribing homosexuality. Now, The Western Jurisdiction Conference elected the first openly-lesbian United Methodist Bishop.
The Rev. Karen Oliveto, senior pastor of Glide Memorial Church in San Francisco was elected on the 17th ballot which included The Rev. Frank Wulf, another openly gay candidate.
Such ordinations are in direct contravention to The Book of Discipline which reads as follows:
304.3 Qualifications for Ordination
“While persons set apart by the Church for ordained ministry are subject to all the frailties of the human condition and the pressures of society, they are required to maintain the highest standards of holy living in the world. The practice of homosexuality is incompatible with Christian teaching. Therefore self-avowed practicing homosexuals are not to be certified as candidates, ordained as ministers, or appointed to serve in The United Methodist Church.
1. “Self-avowed practicing homosexual” is understood to mean that a person openly acknowledges to a bishop, district superintendent, district committee of ordained ministry, board of ordained ministry, or clergy session that the person is a practicing homosexual.
With several Annual Conferences adopting non-conformity to enforcing bans against gay individuals, the election of gay bishops I believe certainly shows evidence of effective inertia toward acceptance of our gay community members
Israel is in the midst of a growing controversy over the replacement of chief rabbi, Brig. Gen. Rafi Peretz, of the Israeli Defense Forces. His replacement will be Rabbi Col. Eyal Karim, who has been denounced for suggesting that Israeli soldiers are morally justified in raping Muslim women during wartime as well as other misogynistic statements.
The growing tensions in the South China Sea just got more tense. A tribunal in the Hague has ruled that there is no legal basis for China’s expansive claims in the South China Sea. With a huge investment in the construction of artificial islands, China has responded by simply dismissing the arbitration ruling on international law. China boycotted the proceedings before the five-member panel from the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, Netherlands. Many felt that the boycott reflected the weakness of the Chinese claims, which were unanimously rejected by the panel. Immediately after the ruling, China issued a statement that said that China “solemnly declares that the award is null and void and has no binding force. China neither accepts nor recognizes it.”