Wednesday, December 21, 2016

HISTORIC: Barack Obama Signed A Law To Protect Atheists

By David Chutlashvili

President Barack Obama has signed into law the Frank Wolf International Religious Freedom Act. The new law protects atheists, humanists, antitheists and other freethinkers around the world from religious persecution. 

American Congress passed the international religious freedom bill protecting atheists, humanists, antitheists and other non-theists with overwhelming bipartisan support, and Obama signed the legislation into law last Friday, Dec. 16.

According to PATHEOS, the new law explicitly protects atheists, humanists, and other non-theists, and upgrades the 1998 International Religious Freedom Act. In particular, the new law states:

The freedom of thought, conscience, and religion is understood to protect theistic and non-theistic beliefs as well as the right not to profess or practice any religion.


The Act also condemns “specific targeting of non-theists, humanists, and atheists because of their beliefs” and attempts to forcibly compel “non-believers or non-theists to recant their beliefs or to convert.” 

Commenting on the new law, Caroline Mala Corbin, professor of law at the University of Miami, said:


"The new law has some really interesting language in it. It takes an expansive view of religious liberty, saying freedom of religion is not just about the right to practice religion. It is also about the right to have your own views about religion including being agnostic and atheistic."

President Obama was the first president to explicitly acknowledge nonbelievers in his inaugural address, so this seems to fit into his legacy vis-a-vis nonbelievers.

The American Humanist Association is celebrating the new law. In a press release the group explains the importance of the new, updated legislation:

"The persecution of openly humanist and atheist writers has become an area of increasing concern especially after the string of murders of secular bloggers and publishers by religious extremists in Bangladesh. The American Humanist Association, along with other international advocates for religious freedom, have also been critical of the flogging of secular writers in Saudi Arabia, as well as a Saudi law that equates atheism with terrorism."

In a statement, Roy Speckhardt, executive director of the American Humanist Association, said:

"The American Humanist Association is proud to see this historic legislation signed into law and looks forward to working with the US Department of State to ensure religious liberty for non-theists and religious minorities abroad. That non-theists are now recognized as a protected class is a significant step toward full acceptance and inclusion for non-religious individuals, who are still far too often stigmatized and persecuted around the world."

The recognition of atheists, humanists, antitheists and other non-religious freethinkers as a protected group is good news for international liberty and democracy. This step will strengthen freedom around the world. This step is a clear signal for undemocratic regimes. These regimes will well know that atheists, humanists, antitheists and other non-religious freethinkers are not "devilish," but they are an equivalent group, and this group has the right to be protected and recognized. 

Thank you, Mr. President! You were always a good human. 


President Barack Obama. Image via YOU TUBE


Saturday, December 10, 2016

American Christian Religious Leaders Met Up With Congress Members to Drive Satan Out of the “Halls of Legislation”

By David Chutlashvili

“If God rules in the halls of legislation, it’s the pulpit’s benefit of being there, being on site and standing up and speaking the law of God to our elected leaders and praying for them,” [Tennessee Pastors Network’s Dale] Walker said. “It’s been the absence of the pulpits is the reason why Satan has ruled in the halls of legislation.”

According to Patheos, Kistler also revealed that in addition to praying in the Kennedy Caucus Room in the Capitol, pastors were given access to the U.S. Senate chamber by Rep. Louie Gohmert. In the senate chamber, he said, “we got on our knees. and it sounded almost like a labor room as people were crying out to God for the revival that Chaplain [Barry] Black believes is coming and that we believe is coming.”


“To do that in the Senate chamber was an absolutely astounding opportunity,” Kistler said, “and again it puts an exclamation point on the Senate chaplain’s assessment that revival is on the way and may indeed begin in the halls of Congress.” 



Secularism and separation of church and state are very important for any democracy. "Separation of church and state" is a phrase used by Thomas Jefferson. First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States explains: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..." 

Thomas Jefferson understood very well how important Secularism is. But these pastors do not understand that. They do not want to understand that. They want what makes them richer and more powerful. And these very powerful people speak always "in the name of the people." They are incredibly powerful, but they cry always that they are "persecuted." They cry and scream so loud that we do not hear the voice of the really persecuted people. And that must have an end.



Cartoon via TRUTHDIG

Via Right Wing Watch

Friday, December 2, 2016

Mike Pence's Neighbors Are Covering The Street In LGBTIQ Flags


By David Chutlashvili

Many tolerant people in America do not love Mike Pence. Every reason for this hatred is clear and understandable: During his first run for Congress in 2000, Pence advocated for 'conversion therapy' to 'cure' homosexuals. And as governor of Indiana, he signed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which many have said allows business owners to discriminate against LGBTIQ people. 

RELATED: Vice Presidential Nominee Mike Pence Doesn’t Accept Evolution or Climate Change

Pence recently moved into a house in Chevy Chase, Washington D. C., where he'll remain until moving to the Vice President's official residence next year. Today Pence's new neighbors want to remind him of his past and his duty to protect the rights of LGBTIQ people. Pence's neighbors - these very good people protest against fanaticism, homophobia, and possible violation of human rights.

After hearing about her new neighbor, Ilse Heintzen decided to hang a flag from her house in solidarity with her gay friends. 

According to Distractify and WJLA Heintzen says that she managed to convince a few of the other houses on the street to follow her lead and that the protest is quickly taking off.

There are roughly a half-dozen pride flags hanging on the block, and many of the residents in houses without flags said they planned on joining in.  

Heintzen described the idea as “a respectful message showing, in my case, my disagreement with some of his thinking. She said: "I have no idea what he will think about, but I hope he will change his mind. This is one way that I can show my disagreement."

Mike Pence will always remember that his Electoral College not everything is and the majority of the American people is against homophobia and bigotry. 

RELATED: Mike Pence believes in creationism and he wants to teach that to kids


Images via YOU TUBE







Friday, November 11, 2016

Trump’s leaked Cabinet shortlist is even more horrifying than you think

Mike Huckabee, Sarah Palin, Ben Carson and Pam Bondi are just some of the extreme anti-LGBT Republicans up for crucial posts in Trump’s cabinet, according to a leak.

In the latest in a string of major leaks from President-elect Trump’s transition team, Buzzfeed News today published a preliminary list of proposed Cabinet picks.

Despite running on an anti-establishment platform, the leaked list – which is not finalised and includes multiple choices for many of the roles – is comprised primarily of establishment Republican politicians and millionaire business lobbyists, including an oil tycoon and a venture capitalist.

A number of names on the list will not go down well with LGBT people.
One of the most concerning mooted appointments is Attorney General, with Florida’s Pam Bondi on the shortlist.

While Obama’s Attorney Generals Eric Holder and Loretta Lynch have tirelessly supported LGBT rights, filing many briefs in support of marriage equality and anti-discimination protections, Bondi has the polar opposite record.


Serving as Florida’s top law official, Ms Bondi fought bitterly against same-sex marriage until the very week that weddings began – filing desperate taxpayer-funded attempts to stall on the issue, and later being dubbed Loser of the Year for her actions.

See more at: www.pinknews.co.uk


(Photos by Ty Wright and Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Friday, October 28, 2016

Christmas tree faces protests because it looks like a sex toy

Homophobic people in Paris (France) are protesting a very big inflatable Christmas tree – because it looks too much like a butt plug.

The 24m high inflatable sculpture was erected this week by Paul McCarthy, in Vendome / Paris.

However this installation has faced protests from far-right group "Printemps Francais," ("The french spring") because of its resemblance to a sex toy. 

The homophobic group claimed the privately commissioned work had “disfigured” Paris, adding: “This is where your money goes, taxpayers!”

Other Parisians have also voiced skepticism that the installation is actually meant to be a Christmas tree – with some joking: “Frankly it’s more appropriate to have a giant buttplug in the middle of Paris than to have a Christmas tree up in October.”


Image: PINKNEWS


Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Proved: Religious people understand the world less

People, who believes in the existence of a god or gods, are more likely to have a poorer understanding of the world and are more likely to believe objects like rocks and flowers have human qualities, study finds.  

Related: Religious fundamentalism could soon be treated as mental illness.

Researchers at the University of Helsinki (Finland) compared believers in God or the paranormal to people with autism after finding they tend to struggle to understand the realities of the world around us.

Believers were more likely to think that inanimate objects such as iron, petrol, clothes and paper can think and feel, and agree with statements such as "Stones sense the cold."

Marjaana Lindeman and Annika Svedholm-Häkkinen, who completed the study, said: “The more the participants believed in religious or other paranormal phenomena, the lower their intuitive physics skills, mechanical and mental rotation abilities, school grades in mathematics and physics, and knowledge about physical and biological phenomena were… and the more they regarded inanimate targets as mental phenomena.”

Researchers said their findings suggest people’s lack of understanding about the physical world means they apply their own, human characteristics to the whole universe, “resulting in belief in demons, gods, and other supernatural phenomena”. 

This confusion between mental and physical qualities “has [also] been recognised mainly among ancient people and small children”, they added.

Ms Lindeman and Ms Svedholm-Häkkinen asked 258 people in Finland to report how much they agreed that “there exists an all-powerful, all-knowing, loving God” and whether they believed in paranormal phenomena such as telepathy and visions of the future. They then matched their answers with a range of other factors, including exam results, survey answers and performances on different tests. 

They also found that religious people are more likely to base their actions on instinct rather than analytical thinking.

Previous studies have suggested religious people tend to have a lower IQ and are more likely to believe literally in what scientists called “bullshit statements” including phrases like “Earth wants water” and “Force knows its direction.”


Image: USNEWS



Monday, October 24, 2016

Strange messages coming from the stars are ‘probably’ from aliens, scientists say

'It is too early to unequivocally attribute these purported signals to the activities of extraterrestrial civilizations,' a group of scientists looking for aliens have warned – but the signals are encouraging

Scientists have heard hugely unusual messages from deep in space that they think are coming from aliens.

A new analysis of strange modulations in a tiny set of stars appears to indicate that it could be coming from extraterrestrial intelligence that is looking to alert us to their existence.

The new study reports the finding of specific modulations in just 234 out of the 2.5 million stars that have been observed during a survey of the sky. The work found that a tiny fraction of them seemed to be behaving strangely.

And there appears to be no obvious explanation for what is going on, leaving the scientists behind the paper to conclude that the messages are coming from aliens.

“We find that the detected signals have exactly the shape of an [extraterrestrial intelligence] signal predicted in the previous publication and are therefore in agreement with this hypothesis,” write EF Borra and E Trottier in a new paper. “The fact that they are only found in a very small fraction of stars within a narrow spectral range centered near the spectral type of the sun is also in agreement with the ETI hypothesis,” the two scientists from Laval University in Quebec write.

The research has been accepted for publication in the journal Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific, under the title 'Signals probably from Extraterrestrial Intelligence'.

See more at: www.independent.co.uk



Image: WALL-PAPERS.info

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Gender theory is part of 'global war' on marriage and family, Pope Francis says

Pope Francis warned on Saturday of a "global war" against traditional marriage and the family, saying both were under attack from gender theory and divorce.

Francis made his comments in an impromptu response to a question at a meeting of the small Catholic community in Georgia (Country).

RELATED: High Sparrow From Game Of Thrones Looks Exactly Like Pope Francis

"You mentioned a great enemy of marriage: gender theory," the pope said in response to a woman who had asked about it being taught in schools.

"Today, there is a global war out to destroy marriage," Pope said. "Not with weapons but with ideas... we have to defend ourselves from ideological colonization."

The pope has used the phrase "ideological colonization" in the past to denounce what he says are attempts by rich countries to link development aid to the acceptance of social policies such as those allowing gay marriage and contraception.

Francis, who has been more accepting of homosexuals than his predecessors but opposes gay marriage, also appeared to be referring to it when he said "marriage is the most beautiful thing that God has created" adding that the Bible says God created man and woman to become one flesh.

Gender theory was formally introduced by Sandra Bem in 1981 as a cognitive theory to explain how individuals become gendered in society, and how sex-linked characteristics are maintained and transmitted to other members of a culture. Gender-associated information is predominantly transmuted through society by way of schemata, or networks of information that allow for some information to be more easily assimilated than others. 

According to this theory, core gender identity is tied up in the sex typing that an individual undergoes. This typing can be heavily influenced by child rearing, media, school, and other forms of cultural transmission. Bem refers to four categories in which an individual may fall: sex-typed, cross-sex-typed, androgynous, and undifferentiated. Sex-typed individuals process and integrate information that is in line with their gender (Bem, S. L. (1981). Gender schema theory: A cognitive account of sex typing. Psychological Review, 88, 354–364). 

Gender theory is broadly the concept that while a person may be biologically male or female, they have the right to identify themselves as male, female, both or neither. 

Pope Francis is for many Georgian LGBT activists and feminists a "true Christian." These poor people are happy that they are not burnt, as in the Middle Ages. They do not understand that the Catholic Church is its enemy, as always. This news is a good evidence for this bitter reality.


Pope Francis visits the Svetitskhoveli Cathedral in Mtskheta, Georgia, October 1, 2016. REUTERS/David Mdzinarishvili

By David Chutlashvili | 02 October 2016

www.davidchutlashvili.com

Sources: REUTERS and WIKIPEDIA

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Georgia pastor arrested for raping 10-year-old homeless girl

Danny Wells, a pastor from Georgia, has been taken into custody after a 10-year-old girl told police she had been raped at the homeless shelter he founded, reports the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Pastor Danny Wells was arrested by Cobb County police on Thursday and charged with rape and aggravated child molestation.

Wells founded 7 Bridges to Recovery ministry and runs The Garden, a homeless shelter he founded in Smyrna. 

His church says, he was a "philanthropist."

According to the website for his church, Wells created his ministry after being released from prison saying, “While in solitary, God came to 7 and whispered in his ear that He would never leave him or forsake him.” And this website also states that The Garden is home to 60 women and 40 children who have been rescued from the streets.

According to Cobb Country police, the young girl was staying at the shelter with her family and revealed details during an interview.

Police state that they are interviewing others who have stayed at the shelter looking for other victims.


Pastor Danny Wells. Image: Cobb County police

Source: www.ajc.com

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Muslim Cleric: Girls Who Put On Perfume Deserve to Be Raped

Muslim Cleric: Girls Who Put On Perfume Deserve to Be Raped – A Cologne imam has said the victims of the New Years Eve mob sex attacks had themselves to blame because they wore perfume.
Sami Abu-Yusuf added that he was not surprised the girls were sexually assaulted, groped and raped, because of the way they dressed.
Hundreds of women were attacked by a mob of men in Cologne’s city centre on New Years Eve, with the number of alleged sexual assaults now tallying up to 521, including three rapes.

‘The events of New Year’s Eve were the girls own fault, because they were half naked and wearing perfume,’ Mr Abu-Yusuf told Russian TV according to Breitbart.
‘It is not surprising the men wanted to attack them. [Dressing like that] is like adding fuel to the fire’.
Sami Abu-Yusuf is the Imam of the Al Tawheed mosque in Cologne, preaching Salafism – an ultra-conservative form of Sunni Islam.
The mosque has been investigated by German intelligence in the past, and was raided in 2004 to break up a ‘secret network of Arab Mujahideen’, according to Breitbart.
This comes as German prosecutors say the number of complaints filed in connection with the New Years Eve attacks in Cologne has now passed 800.
About 521 complaints allege some kind of sexual assault, including three rapes. The overall number of complaints has grown from 766 on Monday to 809 on Tuesday.
Cologne police are investigating 21 people from North African countries in connection with the New Years Eve attacks for robbery, theft and trafficking stolen goods. Eight suspects are currently in detention, with one of them is accused of sexual assault for allegedly groping a woman.
Police logs from the night reveal the full horror the women experienced when they were set upon by the out-of-control mob of men on the steps of the city’s historic cathedral.

Sami Abu-Yusuf. Image via YOU TUBE


Catholic Church to hold worldwide day of prayer for sex abuse victims

Pope Francis on Monday announced plans for a worldwide day of prayer for the victims of sexual abuse, in line with a proposal from his child protection panel.

The panel, a commission of experts which advises Francis on efforts to combat clerical child sexual abuse, said the initiative had been made by an abuse survivor.

“The commission believes that prayer is one part of the healing process for survivors and the community of believers,” a statement said.

“Public prayer is also an important way of consciousness raising in the Church.”

The move was announced after the latest week-long meeting of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors in Rome.

Established in 2014, the panel suffered a setback earlier this year when one of its members, British abuse survivor Peter Saunders was sidelined after complaining that it was doing nothing to break down a culture of complacency and cover-ups within the Church.

And its emphasis on prayer and education is unlikely to appease critics who say the Church remains reluctant to hand paedophile priests over to the judicial authorities.

The day of prayer will complement similar initiatives already announced in various Church regions.

The panel said it was pushing ahead with educational initiatives — including setting up its own website — designed to raise awareness about the issue of paedophilia in church communities across the globe and to train Church leaders how to handle the issue effectively.

And it welcomed Francis’s announcement in June that members of the Church hierarchy can now be dismissed from office if they fail to display the diligence required of them in ensuring the protection of children.

Francis has also put in place a legal framework for paedophile clerics to be tried in the Vatican and he has been praised for holding meetings with victims of abuse in Rome and in the United States.

But some critics say his overall record on the issue is patchy and he has come under fire for standing by his finance chief George Pell.

The Australian cardinal has been accused of groping boys during his time as a priest and of failing to deal with paedophile priests under his charge when he was a senior figure in the Australian church.

Francis said last month there were “doubts” about the claims made against Pell and warned of the dangers of condemning him to a “media verdict.”


Pope Francis attends the Via Crucis torchlight procession on Good Friday at the Colosseum on March 25, 2016 in Rome. (AFP/Filippo Monteforte)


Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Before European Christians Forced Gender Roles, Native Americans Acknowledged 5 Genders


We-Wa, a Zuni two-spirit, weaving. Both the Spanish settlers in Latin America and the English colonists in North America condemned them as “sodomites.”

It wasn’t until Europeans took over North America that natives adopted the ideas of gender roles. For Native Americans, there was no set of rules that men and women had to abide by in order to be considered a “normal” member of their tribe.

In fact, people who had both female and male characteristics were viewed as gifted by nature, and therefore, able to see both sides of everything. According to Indian Country Today, all native communities acknowledged the following gender roles: “Female, male, Two Spirit female, Two Spirit male and Transgendered.”

“Each tribe has their own specific term, but there was a need for a universal term that the general population could understand. The Navajo refer to Two Spirits as Nádleehí (one who is transformed), among the Lakota is Winkté (indicative of a male who has a compulsion to behave as a female), Niizh Manidoowag (two spirit) in Ojibwe, Hemaneh (half man, half woman) in Cheyenne, to name a few. As the purpose of “Two Spirit” is to be used as a universal term in the English language, it is not always translatable with the same meaning in Native languages. For example, in the Iroquois Cherokee language, there is no way to translate the term, but the Cherokee do have gender variance terms for ‘women who feel like men’ and vice versa.”

The “Two Spirit” culture of Native Americans was one of the first things that Europeans worked to destroy and cover up. According to people like American artist George Catlin, the Two Spirit tradition had to be eradicated before it could go into history books. Catlin said the tradition:

“Must be extinguished before it can be more fully recorded.”

However, it wasn’t only white Europeans that tried to hide any trace of native gender bending. According to Indian Country Today, “Spanish Catholic monks destroyed most of the Aztec codices to eradicate traditional Native beliefs and history, including those that told of the Two Spirit tradition.” Throughout these efforts by Christians, Native Americans were forced to dress and act according to newly designated gender roles.

One of the most celebrated Two Spirits in recorded history was a Lakota warrior aptly named Finds Them And Kills Them. Osh-Tisch was born a male and married a female, but adorned himself in women’s clothing and lived daily life as a female. On June 17 1876, Finds Them And Kills Them gained his reputation when he rescued a fellow tribesman during the Battle of Rosebud Creek. An act of fearless bravery. Below is a picture of Osh-Tisch and his wife.

Osh-Tisch (left) and his wife (right). Of all of the foreign life ways Indians held, one of the first the Europeans targeted for elimination was the Two Spirit tradition among Native American cultures.


In Native American cultures, people were valued for their contributions to the tribe, rather than for masculinity or femininity. Parents did not assign gender roles to children either, and even children’s clothing tended to be gender neutral. There were no ideas or ideals about how a person should love; it was simply a natural act that occurred without judgement or hesitation.

Without a negative stigma attached to being a Two Spirit, there were no inner-tribal incidents of retaliation or violence toward the chosen people simply due to the fact that individuals identified as the opposite or both genders.

“The Two Spirit people in pre-contact Native America were highly revered and families that included them were considered lucky. Indians believed that a person who was able to see the world through the eyes of both genders at the same time was a gift from The Creator.”

Religious influences soon brought serious prejudice against “gender diversity,” and so this forced once openly alternative or androgynous people to one of two choices. They could either live in hiding, and in fear of being found out, or they could end their lives. Many of whom did just that.

Imagine a world where people allowed others to live freely as the people nature intended them to be..without harm..without persecution..without shame. Imagine a world where we are truly free.

By Pearson McKinney| 19 June 2016


Reprinted with permission from the author.

Pearson McKinney is a life-long outspoken liberal political activist, freelance writer, and Managing Editor of Bipartisan Report and Americans Against The Tea Party.

Native America before European Colonization:

Friday, September 9, 2016

After a Youth Pastor Raped a Girl, Their Church Asked the Victim to Apologize to the Pastor’s Wife


Image via Shutterstock

The Columbia Road Baptist Church has responded to this controversy by denying that they ever asked the victim for an apology, calling it a “serious misunderstanding”:


…the accusation that an apology was required from the victim or her family to return was a result of a serious misunderstanding and does not reflect what actually transpired. The church arranged for outside counseling for the victim and her family at the church’s own expense…

What was the misunderstanding? What did they ask of the victim and her family? What did they ask for that the mother somehow took to mean an apology to the youth pastor’s wife?

Without that information, this statement leaves much to be desired.

Brian Mitchell, a former youth pastor from Ohio, will spend a decade in jail after being convicted of raping a 16-year-old girl who told the court, “I did not give him permission… I clearly said ‘no, didn’t want to.'”

The story is disturbing enough as it is, but one detail will make your jaw drop.

The girl has nightmares to this day. There are days when she can’t get out of bed. She “struggled in school” as this ordeal played out. She has “symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder.”

And here’s how her church allegedly handled the situation when it all finally came to light:

The girl’s mother said in court that church officials told her their family couldn’t return to the church until she apologized to Mitchell’s wife.

Because her “relationship” with the pastor was all her fault.
Mitchell’s lawyer said he was unaware of that happening, and no one has confirmed or denied that aspect of the story, but it wouldn’t be the first time Christian church leaders have blamed the victim.


The family no longer attends the church.

The Inquisition – one of the most appalling gifts to human tyranny

Those who celebrate Christianity’s contributions to Western civilization might want to remind themselves of one of the church’s most appalling gifts to human tyranny, the Inquisition, a heresy hunt ordained by the papacy that wreaked misery upon Europe from the early thirteenth century until well into the eighteenth. Endowed with nearly limitless authority, shrouded in secrecy, and freed from all accountability, the inquisitors indulged in unfettered butchery and rapacity, taking lives and confiscating property, growing rich in the process, treating the accused as having no rights, and treating everyone, from the meanest to the highest, as potentially suspect.
The victim’s guilt was assumed in advance and confession was to be extracted by guile or ordeal. One’s regular church attendance and generous oblations, one’s verbal professions of strict devotion to orthodox doctrine, one’s willingness to subscribe to whatever was demanded by the tribune—all were as naught. For the accused might still be nursing a secret heresy. The Inquisition had to uncover the impossible: the unspoken thoughts in a person’s head. But luckily, the task was made easier by the procedure itself. The victim need not be proven guilty; suspicion alone was enough to bring on the fatal judgment. The inquiry almost always ended in execution or, less frequently, life incarceration in a dark dungeon.
Along with its judges, the Inquisition had its armed retainers, extortionists, spies, and of course, torturers and executioners. Henry Charles Lea writes that, except among the Visigoths, torture had been “unknown among the barbarians who founded the commonwealths of Europe, and their system of jurisprudence had grown up free from its contamination.” Not until the thirteenth century did it begin to be employed “sparingly and hesitatingly” in judicial proceedings, after which it rapidly won its way into the Inquisition, administered at first only by secular authorities—on command from the Inquisitional tribune. In 1252, church canons prohibited ecclesiastics from being present when torture was administered, perhaps an implicit admission that the procedure was morally tainted. Yet within a few years, inquisitors and their servitors were absolving each other of “irregularities” under the papal bull so that they might directly supervise torture sessions.
Those who confessed were burned as admitted heretics. Those who withstood all pain and mutilation and did not confess were burned as unrepentent heretics. Heresy itself retained a conveniently vague and elastic meaning. Prisoners who confessed under torture were tortured again to gain information about other evil-doers among their own family and friends, then tortured again if they subsequently recanted any of the coerced testimony—after which they were burned at the stake. Witnesses too were sometimes tortured in order to extract properly damning testimony. Anyone who showed sympathy or support for the accused, who dared to question the relentlessly self-confirming process, was doomed to meet the same fate.
In 1484 German princes were reluctant to give the Roman Inquisition entry into Germany. The Inquisition loomed as a rival authority, one inclined to go into business for itself, condemning not only the poor but some of the rich and well born and expropriating their estates. But the grave anxiety occasioned by peasant insurrections made the princes more tractable. The Inquisition opportunely arrived upon the scene, in Jules Michelet’s words, “to terrorize the country and break down rebellious spirits, burning as Sorcerers today the very men who would likely enough tomorrow have been insurgents,” channeling popular restiveness away from the ruling interests and against witches and demons.
Some historians actually have apologetic words for the Inquisition. Ignoring all evidence to the contrary, Carlton Hayes and his associates claim that the Inquisition’s most frequent penalty was a mere fine and confiscation of property, with imprisonment reserved only for the “more severe cases.” And some suspects were required to undertake expensive pilgrimages, or “wear distinctive markings on their clothes.” Hayes makes no mention of torture, and claims that the death penalty was applied only to the “relatively few” who refused to recant their heresy or who relapsed after recantation. The inquisitors, it seems, did not burn heretics but conscientiously strove to save their immortal souls through conversion.
A different summation of the Inquisition is offered by Lea, who has done the monumental study of this subject: “Fanatic zeal, arbitrary cruelty, and insatiable cupidity … it was a system which might well seem the invention of demons.” In fact, it was the invention of the Christian church of that day. A religion is not something entirely apart from the crimes committed in its name. The church’s war against heresy began in the first generation of its existence and continued without stint for more than sixteen hundred years. Centuries of Christianity’s meanspirited, violent propagation of a monopoly faith created the fertile soil upon which the Inquisition took root and flourished.
This piece by Michael Parenti was originally published at Third World Traveler.
Michael Parenti is an internationally known award-winning author and lecturer. He received his Ph.D. in political science from Yale University. He has taught at a number of colleges and universities, in the United States and abroad. Some of his writings have been translated into Arabic, Azeri, Bangla, Chinese, Dutch, French, German, Greek, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Persian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Serbian, Spanish, Swedish and Turkish.
Secret Files of the Inquisition – part 1 – Root Out Heretics:


History Channel The Dark Ages Complete Documentary:



Power of the Church in the Middle Ages:

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Japan's Unprecedented Warning To UK Over Brexit

Japan pulls no punches in a 15-page report, warning that companies may leave the UK if Brexit negotiations are unsatisfactory.

At the start of the G20 Summit, the Japanese government has taken the unprecedented step of warning of a series of corporate exits, "great turmoil" and harmful effects if Brexit leads to the loss of single market privileges.


An official Japanese government task force on Brexit, has collated views of big Japanese companies from car companies to banks and pharmaceutical companies that invest in the UK.

It has produced a 15-page list titled "Japan's message to the UK and the EU", detailing requirements from Brexit negotiations.

It lists the consequences if the requirements are not delivered.

Half of Japanese investment in the EU comes to the UK including companies such as Nissan, Honda, Mitsubishi, Nomura and Daiwa.


"Japanese businesses with their European headquarters in the UK may decide to transfer their head-office function to Continental Europe if EU laws cease to be applicable in the UK after its withdrawal," the report concludes.

It says: "In light of the fact that a number of Japanese businesses, invited by the Government in some cases, have invested actively to the UK, which was seen to be a gateway to Europe, and have established value-chains across Europe, we strongly request that the UK will consider this fact seriously and respond in a responsible manner to minimise any harmful effects on these businesses."

The list is the most tangible account anywhere of what businesses are asking for from the Brexit negotiations.

It suggests Japanese car companies fear that they will be hit by a double whammy of trade tariffs.

There were fears of levies being imposed twice "once for auto parts imported from the EU and again for final products assembled in the UK to be exported to the EU - which would have a significant impact on their businesses."

The report also states that the UK leaving the EU would damage exports from Britain to third countries because of trade privileges within the EU single market around so-called "rules of origin".

"Brexit would make such products unable to meet the rules of origin as EU products, which means that Japanese companies operating in the EU would not be able to enjoy the benefit of the Free Trade Areas concluded by the EU," the report said.

See more at: www.news.sky.com


Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Image: You Tube

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

A Black Atheist is Running for U.S. Senate in Oklahoma


Of the many atheists running for higher office this year, most are seeking positions in state legislatures. There’s one (Jamie Raskin, who doesn’t even like the A-word) who has a chance at a seat in the U.S. House, but that’s about it.

In Oklahoma, however, there’s an independent candidate on the ballot to become U.S. Senator, and he’s openly atheist.
Incumbent James Lankford holds the seat that’s considered among the safest in the nation for Republicans, even with Donald Trump at the top of the ticket.

But Sean Braddy is challenging him, anyway.

While his lack of religious faith isn’t evident on his campaign website, he wasn’t hiding it in 2013 when The Oklahoman ran an article on local atheists:

Sean Braddy, 41, of Norman, said he grew up in church but decided when his son was born in 1982 that he was completely done with religion.

“I wanted him to be able to think for himself and not be controlled,” Braddy said.


Braddy, who is black, said he grew up in the 1970s and saw the Ku Klux Klan and other white opponents of desegregation do many un-Christian-like things — all in the name of religion.

See more at: www.patheos.com

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Ultra-Orthodox Jewish sect bans women from going to college


© Keith Bedford / Reuters

According to a document, obtained by 'The Independent,' conservative Jewish Rabbis are banning women from obtaining college degrees because “It is very dangerous.”

The decree warns: 

“It has lately become the new trend that girls and married women are pursuing degrees in special education. Some attend classes and others online. And so we’d like to let their parents know that it is against the Torah." 

“We will be very strict about this. No girls attending our school are allowed to study and get a degree. It is dangerous. Girls who will not abide will be forced to leave our school. Also, we will not give any jobs or teaching position in the school to girls who’ve been to college or have a degree.
“We have to keep our school safe and we can’t allow any secular influences in our holy environment. It is against the base upon which our Mosed was built.”


This is taking place in the same community (the Satmar sect), by the way, where women and girls are told that they can’t drive (Satmar was founded in 1905 by Rabbi Joel Teitelbaum, in city of Satu More, Transylvania/Romania).

israel is a highly developed country, where women and men have equal rights in law. The majority of the population is democratic. But some religious organizations want to have their own 'laws.' They often oppress women and LGBT people

Saturday, August 20, 2016

The non-religious are now America’s largest religious voting bloc


Image: ACLJ.ORG

More American voters than ever say they are not religious, making the religiously unaffiliated the nation’s biggest voting bloc by faith for the first time in a presidential election year. This marks a dramatic shift from just eight years ago, when the non-religious were roundly outnumbered by Catholics, white mainline Protestants and white evangelical Protestants.



These numbers come from a new Pew Research Center survey, which finds that “religious ‘nones,’ who have been growing rapidly as a share of the U.S. population, now constitute one-fifth of all registered voters and more than a quarter of Democratic and Democratic-leaning registered voters.” That represents a 50 percent increase in the proportion of non-religious voters compared with eight years ago, when they made up just 14 percent of the overall electorate.

“In 2008, religious ‘nones’ were outnumbered or at parity with white mainline Protestants and white Catholics,” the survey’s lead researcher, Greg Smith, said in an interview. “Today, ‘nones’ outnumber both of those groups.”

The growth of the non-religious — about 54 percent of whom are Democrats or lean Democratic, compared with 23 percent at least leaning Republican — could provide a political counterweight to white evangelical Protestants, a historically powerful voting bloc for Republicans. In 2016, 35 percent of Republican voters identify as white evangelicals, while 28 percent of Democratic voters say they have no religion at all.

But while the religiously unaffiliated are making up a larger share of American voters, that doesn’t necessarily mean that that will translate into actual votes. 

Exit polls of people who actually cast votes — as opposed to preelection polls of registered voters — have traditionally shown that the unaffiliated underperform at the ballot box relative to their raw numbers.

For instance, in the 2012 election, the unaffiliated made up 18 percent of registered voters in preelection polls but only 12 percent of the people who actually voted, as measured in post-election exit polls. Some of this difference may be due to the different ways the two polls ask religious-affiliation questions, but Pew’s researchers say that the underperformance of the non-religious is a very real phenomenon.

“While the group is growing rapidly in the general public, its growth has been much less dramatic in the electorate,” Pew’s Smith said. “It could be the ‘nones’ are not connected, almost by definition, to religious institutions, which can play an important role in spurring turnout and interest in politics.”

Smith also points out that the unaffiliated tend to be younger than the religious and that young people tend to vote less than older people.

Still, the Pew study finds other evidence that religion may be becoming a less potent force at the ballot box. In 2008, for instance, 72 percent of voters said it was important for a president to have strong religious beliefs. That number is down to 62 percent today.

Similarly, Americans see religious institutions as playing a smaller role in the public sphere. In 2008, 75 percent said that churches and other houses of worship contributed a great deal to solving social problems. Today, that number has fallen to 58 percent.

By Christopher Ingraham | 14 July 2016
The Washington Post

Imagine If All Atheists Left America (2009):