The week in fundie . . .
- In a “family values” forum in Mexico City, a Catholic priest justified rape thusly: “When we show our body without prudence, without modesty, we are prostituting ourselves.” (Chicago Tribune)
- Bill Donahue, professional whiner and president for the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, fresh from trying to get a university student disciplined and a university professor fired for insulting his precious little disc of unleavened bread, has launched a campaign to have gay bloggers barred from the Democratic National Convention. (Edge Boston)
- Following in the footsteps of Random House in the United States, the Serbian publisher of Sherry Jones’ The Jewel of Medina has pulled the book from the shelves after members of the local Islamic community complained that the novel, depicting the life of Muhammad’s child bride Aisha, “offended their feelings.” (Reuters)
- In one of the most rip-roaring, side-splitting pieces of unintentionally Swiftian comedy you are ever likely to see, Malaysian Islamic scholar Dr Wan Azhar Wan Ahmad propounds the thesis that:
Religious freedom, for example, does not imply an unregulated liberty to choose or change religions as one pleases.
Rather it means freedom to practice that particular religion in accordance with the established teachings of that religion.
Religious freedom. He’s doing it wrong. Later on in the article he tells us how—get this—“Islam was also the first religion, from its very inception, which tremendously elevated the status of women.” From what? Microbes to livestock? (The Star)
- In Tanzania, police are obliged to protect the nation’s albinos from superstitious machete-wielding thugs who believe their flesh is magical. In Ghana, it is humpbacks who require police protection from the credulous. There is apparently a belief among some that humpbacks “have mother lodes of cash in their humps,” or that the blood of hunchbacks is “spiritually potent,” and these beliefs have led to the murder of two hunchbacks in the township of Bibiani. The victims’ humps were removed, as was the hump of a deceased hunchback who had been exhumed for that purpose. (ABC News Online)
- Oh, did you know Michael Shermer was in Perth recently for National Science Week? (Actually, he’s speaking at UWA on the evolution-religion conflict as well as the use of statistics and theory in conspiracy theories.) He’s sunk the boot into the local “reality” TV show The One, which purported to have discovered Australia’s leading psychic (decided by audience vote, of course—what other criteria would one use?), prompting one commenter to assert:
I have always thought that there was something very sad about Mr. Shermer, and now that I know about his foray into the paranormal, I can understand him better. He wanted so badly to have a paranormal experience, but he failed, probably due to his own negativity. Because it didn’t work for him, he has to believe that anyone who claims to have these types of experiences must be a fraud. I feel very sorry for Mr. Shermer. I hope that he will someday find what he is looking for.
I bet Shermer hates God, too. (PerthNow)