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"A woman who shot her son dead then killed herself at a US shooting range said she was the anti-Christ and that she needed to save her son. In rambling, teary audio recordings left for her boyfriend and authorities, as well as shorter suicide notes, Marie Moore, 44, apologised several times and said repeatedly: "I had to send my son to heaven and myself to hell." (Read the full article)

Last month, I wrote about Freedom Of Speech, Religion and the UN arguing against the dangers of such anti-blasphemy resolutions. Alas, the UN passed this resolution. It is 'non-binding' and it is up to each nation to decide what to do about blasphemy.

Like I said: I also want to protect human beings from being discriminated against and they should NOT be subject to physical violence because of their religious beliefs, or lack thereof. This issue, however, is not about protecting people from other people. It is about taking our right to think for ourselves and to speak our minds. The push for anti-blasphemy laws is not about protecting people from other people. It is about immunising religious ideas from intellectual probing and enquiry. We cannot protect ideas from other ideas. The ability to explore a full range of ideas is important because truth cannot be arrived upon unless all points are considered first.

Regardless, here is the resolution. It is ironic that the term Human Rights is written in the same document when stopping people to think for themselves is the biggest human rights abuse I can think of.

It is non-binding but it is the next step to it being binding, isn't it?

With fatal terrorist attacks on the decline worldwide and al Qaeda apparently in disarray , it would seem a time for optimism in the global war on terrorism. But the war has simply shifted to a different arena. Islamists , or those who believe that Islam is a political and religious system that must dominate all others, are focusing less on the military and more on the ideological. It turns out that Western liberal democracies can be subverted without firing a shot...

Saturday, 11 April 2009 10:00

Beheading in the Name of Islam

The purpose of terrorism is to strike fear into the hearts of opponents in order to win political concession. As the shock value wears off and the Western world becomes immunized to any particular tactic, terrorists develop new ones in order to maximize shock and the press reaction upon which they thrive. In the 1970s and 1980s, terrorists hijacked airliners to win headlines. In the 1980s and 1990s, the car bomb became more popular; Palestinian terrorists perfected suicide bombings in the 1990s. But what once garnered days of commentary now generates only hours. Decapitation has become the latest fashion. In many ways, it sends terrorism back to the future. Unlike hijackings and car bombs, ritual beheading has a long precedent in Islamic theology and history.

Saturday, 11 April 2009 10:00

Textbook Lies About Islam

Here is an article written by Raymond Ibrahim. You must read the whole article but the main quotes I gathered from it are:

  1. "What people are taught about Islam needs a serious overhaul before we can expect to formulate strategies that make sense."
  2. "The senior service colleges of the Department of Defense had not incorporated into their curriculum a systematic study of Muhammad as a military or political leader. As a consequence, we still do not have an in-depth understanding of the war-fighting doctrine laid down by Muhammad, how it might be applied today by an increasing number of Islamic groups, or how it might be countered."
  3. "due to political correctness and/or fear of Muslim activists, "key subjects like jihad, Islamic law, [and] the status of women are whitewashed." Regarding the strikes of 9/11, one textbook never mentions Islamic ideologies, referring to the 19 al-Qaeda hijackers as "teams of terrorists" ? this despite the fact that al-Qaeda has repeatedly articulated its hostile worldview through an Islamist paradigm, with a stress on hating "infidels" and waging holy war..."
  4. "The greater irony is that not only do children's textbooks in Muslim countries openly teach hatred and hostility for non-Muslims, or "infidels" ? those same people fervently trying to whitewash Islam in the U.S.? but so do Muslim schools operating on American soil ."

This adds weight to the arguments I wrote about in my book. The whole article is a must read. I am keeping this for reference.

Read the article .

Friday, 10 April 2009 10:00

Pale Blue Dot by Carl Sagan

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p86BPM1GV8M

Published in Science
Thursday, 09 April 2009 10:00

Terrorism or Genocide?

From the little information that is filtering through, it looks as though the Sri Lankan Government is using the propaganda of "the war on terror" as a fig leaf to dismantle any semblance of democracy in the country and commit unspeakable crimes against the Tamil people. Working on the principle that every Tamil is a terrorist unless he or she can prove otherwise, civilian areas, hospitals and shelters are being bombed and turned into war zones. (Source)

One of the biggest arguments in my mind is this:

Do I believe that there are people whose behaviour and actions are best kept in check if they are manipulated by the fear of an ethereal policeman (God)? I can think of examples of people who may continue to behave against the best interest of society, even if they are educated in ethics, morals, etc... not because they are malicious but perhaps they cannot grasp the concepts intellectually or emotionally. Religions, however, communicate to people in simple terms. If a religious leader says to its constituent: "Do this because God says you should and if you don't do it, you will burn in hell". That is simple, clear and functional enough to keep any believer behave.

Religion in this case is a tool for governance. The question is: Should we govern people with simple ideas and concepts, even if they are not true? Or is it better to tell people the truth first, and deal with the repurcussions later.

Should the human race simply be treated like a flock of sheep to be guided by the very few 'smart', 'knowledgeable' shepherds, forever? If we say yes to this, it implies to me that we are saying yes to religion and censorship (restriction of freedom of speech and information).

Published in Scientific Advances
A team led by Jonas Fris?n from the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm has shown that adult human hearts make new muscle cells, albeit very, very slowly (Source).
Published in Scientific Advances
Sunday, 05 April 2009 01:12

Muslim students weigh in on evolution

This news article shows how religious doctrines conflict with reasoning based on evidence:

"...85% of students agreed with the statement that millions of fossils show that life has existed for billions of years and changed over time. But when students were asked if "the first humans on planet Earth were created by God, not gradually, but in their present form", 80% of Pakistani students and 49% of Indonesian students surveyed agreed." (Source)

Published in Scientific Advances
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