The Week in Review: Feb 7 thru 13

An update on Richard Dawkin’s condition in his own words

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Rabbi ejected from Chino Valley, AZ city council meeting for protesting Christian prayer

by Ken Sain at The Daily Courier

Chino Valley Mayor Chris Marley said he’s drawing a line in the sand and the Town Council backed him up, saying they have no intention to change their invocation, which ends by praying in the name of Jesus.

Rabbi Adele Plotkin of Chino Valley’s Beit Torah congregation attended the Tuesday, Feb. 9 council meeting and protested when Marley, also a minister, began reading a disclaimer that he intended to do an invocation, and then protested again when Marley ended his prayer by saying “I pray all these things in the name of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.”

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Mom murdered her autistic son after seeking help from therapist who believes in ‘Satanic mind control’

by Bethania Palma Markus at Raw Story

In May, New York millionaire Gigi Jordan was sentenced to 18 years in prison for crushing a lethal dose of Ambien and Xanax into a cocktail of juice and vodka and forcing her 8-year-old autistic son, Jude Mirra, to drink it with a syringe while holed up in a luxury hotel room.

Now, an activist is questioning whether Jordan’s horrific act was influenced by a shady and bizarre brand of psychology focused on a conspiratorial idea that Satanists and witches are conducting rituals in which children are sexually assaulted and tortured. Jordan spoke to at least one such psychologist before murdering her child in 2010 while laboring under the belief he was being sexually tortured in Satanic rituals.

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Banned in Pakistan: A Muslim Porn Star’s Sexual Crusade

by Aurora Snow at The Daily Beast

A woman enters. Donning a hijab, she prepares and serves dinner for her turbaned husband. She appears subservient, but when the man isn’t looking, swipes his car keys, slips on a pair of high heels, sneaks out the door of their posh mansion, and speeds off. When she returns, the enraged man grabs her by the neck and drags her into the house. She pleads with him not to use “the stones” to torture her, so he opts for beating her with a switch. The woman screams, “I’m sorry! I did something for you,” but he doesn’t relent. He begins to get aroused by the pain he’s inflicting, and before you know it, the veil is lifted and we’re in the midst of a full-fledged porn scene.

Welcome to Women of the Middle East, a controversial adult film that comes with the tagline, “They may look suppressed, but given an opportunity to express themselves freely, their wild, untamable natural sexuality is released. This may just be what was in bin Laden’s porn collection, experience it for yourself.”

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Idaho Governor Wants to Investigate Deaths Among Faith Healing Adherents

by Nathan Brown at Magic Valley

Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter is calling on lawmakers to create a work group to study faith healing and child deaths in Idaho.

“I understand it is a challenge to balance the desire to protect children while still being supportive of religious freedom, but I believe we must give this issue a thorough examination,” Otter wrote in a letter to House Speaker Scott Bedke and Senate President Pro Tem Brent Hill.

“I am therefore asking that you consider convening a legislative workgroup to assess the Child Fatality Review Team’s report along with other sources of research and testimony regarding this policy issue.”

The report is one the review team released last year that found two children died in 2012 from likely preventable causes who didn’t receive medical treatment because of their parents’ religious or personal beliefs.

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Moderate London imam ‘forced to resign from his mosque after physical and online threats were made against him for joining anti-extremism group Quillam’

by Keiligh Baker at The Daily Mail

A moderate imam has been forced to resign from his mosque after he was threatened with violence for joining anti-extremism group Quillam.

Sheikh Dr Salah Ansari al-Azhari has announced he is leaving Palmers Green Mosque in London because he was threatened shortly after he revealed he was joining the counter-extremist London-based think tank.

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More than half of all teenage girls in Pakistan believe domestic violence is justified, report reveals

by Victoria Richards at The Independent

A report carried out by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) has revealed that troublingly, more than half of all teenage girls in Pakistan believe that domestic violence is justified for at least one reason.

Refusing sex was just one of the reasons girls aged between 15 and 19 believed a husband would be justified in beating his wife, while more than 30 per cent of girls of the same age had already experienced physical or sexual violence in Pakistan.

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Haters (Not) Gonna Hate: Infamous N.Y. Anti-Gay Church Now For Sale At Auction

by Sarah Jones at Americans United for Separation of Church and State

The state of New York has foreclosed on a virulently anti-LGBT church in New York City. DNAInfo New York reports that Atlah Worldwide Church and its pastor, the Rev. James Manning, owe $194,000 for unpaid water bills.

That’s not Manning’s only debt: In his capacity as Atlah’s pastor, he owes the state more than $28,000 for other bills. There are also nine federal tax liens against him in excess of $355,000, and he owes private creditors at least $30,000. Manning failed to meet an April 2015 deadline to pay the debt.

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Mississippi Lawmaker Trying to Get Creationism Taught in Schools

by Kate Royals at The Clarion-Ledger

A Mississippi lawmaker wants to strengthen a public school teacher’s ability to express beliefs that challenge climate change and evolution, among other subjects.

Rep. Mark Formby, R-Picayune, said a constituent told him a teacher had been questioned after bringing up the theory of creationism, or the religious belief that the universe originated from acts of divine creation.

“I just don’t want my teachers punished in any form or fashion for bringing creationism into the debate. Lots of us believe in creationism,” Formby, the chairman of the House Revenue and Expenditure committee, said. “To say that creationism as a theory is any less valuable than any other theory that nobody can scientifically prove I just think is being close-minded.”

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