Skepdude

From the creator of Video Skepdude

SkepNews-Week ending 5/30/08

  • Egyptian hotel cancels jewish reservation – A trip to Egypt by a Jewish group has been called off after rumors they were going to reclaim nationalized property prompted hotels to cancel bookings. Apparently there was some fear mongering among the Egyptians, due to allegations that the Jews were coming to take back property, confiscated long ago. This is so serious, it seems, that no hotel is willing to accommodate the visitors. Is say these guys are just a bunch of pansies!
  • Zombie Parade blasphemous to Church -“We ask forgiveness for those who yesterday insulted the body of Christ,” said Archbishop Antonio Canizares, quoted in newspaper El Pais. He told worshipers the procession, which also included a Virgin Mary and a Saint Peter, made a mockery of the Catholic celebration of Corpus Christi”. Well, does he really think the parade makes a mockery of the Catholic rituals? I mean they are the ones “eating” the body of Christ and “drinking” his blood! Isn’t that what zombies do?
  • Tax Nonprofits some say – Authorities from the local tax assessor to members of Congress are increasingly challenging the tax-exempt status of nonprofit institutions — ranging from small group homes to wealthy universities — questioning whether they deserve special treatment. Yes, they do deserve the special treatment. I work for a non profit. Why? Because of the mission, the quality of life I get, and the kind of services we provide to people in need. But not for the money. Non profits are already stretched thin trying to make ends meet. If they are forced to pay taxes guess where they’re gonna get the money from? By cutting benefits which is another big plus in recruiting and retaining good workers. Now what kind of incentive would I have to continue working for a non profit if in top of the lower salary my benefits were cut? Quite a few good people would leave and that would only hurt the people that rely on us for the services we provide. So yes, non profits do deserve tax breaks. However, if this goes through I demand that churches and all religious organizations be revoked their privileged tax status as well. And the article, to the author’s credit does mention the 6 evangelical churches that are being investigated for this specific purpose.
  • 37 killed in caste riots in India – Stupid, stupid, stupid! The Gujjars are seeking to reclassify their caste to a lower level, which would allow them to qualify for government jobs and university places reserved for such groups. The government has refused. 37 people died. Wait a minute, these people wanted to be reclassified as a LOWER caste? Am I missing something here? Does lower mean better in the Indian caste system? Any Indian readers of this blog that can clarify that for me?
  • Human rights activist jailed in Saudi Arabia – Apparently for no other reason than being a human rights activist, but we’ll see if more details come out. Who know he may have done something fishy after all, but given that it’s Saudi Arabia I really doubt that.
  • Shrine workers can keep their underwear on – Workers at a shrine in India were being forced to remove their underwear while working at the shrine, due to theft issues. This had been going on for about five years, and now it has been challenged by their union and they are now being allowed to wear them back.
  • Quebec refuses to remove crucifix – The government of the Canadian province of Quebec has rejected a proposal to remove a crucifix from above the speaker’s chair in the parliament.”We cannot erase our history,” said Mr Charest. The crucifix is about 350 years of history in Quebec that none of are ever going to erase, and of a very strong presence, in particular of the Catholic Church.” – Uhhh, by that same logic the German parliament would be justified in having a big swastika on its walls, because hey you cannot erase history. What kind of a crappy argument is that?
  • 19 arrested in Kenya for “witch” burnings – I had previously blogged about this issue. It’s good to hear someone is doing the right thing over there.
  • 3 dead, 17 wounded in Afghanistan over Quran shooting – so some young, bored soldier shoots a book and 3 people die because of that. What the hell is wrong with people that they’re willing to kill themselves and others for some paper and ink? And the president of the US says the soldier will be persecuted? PERSECUTED FOR SHOOTING A BOOK?
  • 15 year old Scientology protester out of the woods – He’s not gonna be charged. It’s a shame we have to rejoice, he shouldn’t have gotten in trouble at all to begin with.
  • Work harder dammit – 82%? Only 82%, get your butts moving atheists.
  • Iranian cleric doesn’t like feminists – he thinks they’re whores and spies. Oh, and women who do not wear the Islamic veil as instructed “turned men into animals.” I see, these guys can keep their penises covered so they want their women to cover up! Freaking geniuses! Oh no monsieur, I’m not a sick fuck…her forehead was showing!
  • Iranian man jailed for supporting feminism – I guess he’s not a whore but he’s probably a spy. And it seems he’s not the only one. Other “spies” have been jailed or are currently still locked up. How freaking insecure are these Iranian men? Is that why they want an atomic weapon (I’m speculating of course, but it makes for a nice pun!)
  • Brazil approves stem cell research – Glad to see that the stem cell research hysteria seems limited to the United States. Of course the Church objected. Why can’t these guys understand that the life of an actual human being is more important than a zygote?
  • Quran critic abducted and to be executed – I already send e-mails to both Obama and Clinton through their campaign websites to do something about this. I doubt they’ll listen, but if more people send in an e-mail maybe this guy won’t die. Let’s all pray!
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May 30, 2008 Posted by | Crimes against Humanity, Critical Thinking, Pseudo-science, Religion, Science, Thinking Out Loud | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Witchburnings in the 21st Century

Burning witches has not gone out of fashion, at least not in Kenya.

Eleven elderly people accused of being witches have been burned to death by a mob in the west of Kenya, police say.

Anthony Kibunguchy, the provincial police officer, told the BBC that the eight women and three men were all aged between 80 and 96 years old.

The mob dragged them out of their houses and burned them individually and then set their homes alight, our correspondent says.

To think that such sort of stupidity still exists now a day, kinda makes you glad to live in a country where we worry about ID and Creationism, and not being burnt on a stake. I find it particularly interesting that there were almost 3 times as many women in the 11 victims.

This kind of behavior is odd, but in no way surprising. It points out the importance of the fight against bigotry and magical thinking. Such extreme behaviors are the reason why we must fight stupidities such as astrology, homeopathy, ID, Creationism, psychics. And I don’t mean to say that if we let such stupidities proliferate they will inevitably lead to people being burned at the stake. But such stupidities require a suspension of reason and logic, and when reason and logic are suspended everything can happen. Burning old people is just one of the many things that are probable in that scenario.

May 21, 2008 Posted by | Crimes against Humanity, Critical Thinking, Thinking Out Loud | | 2 Comments