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June 28, 2013

"On Our Knees For America" is a FANTASTIC name for a homophobic hate rally

Really, just top notch. Everyone will be sure to take your rally super serious now, Family Research Council. Especially here in San Francisco. I'm sure a lot of dudes will be on their knees that weekend, thinking about gay marriage. Nice job on the logo, too. On Our Knees for America - Lawyers, Guns & Money : Lawyers, Guns & Money

June 19, 2013

64-year-old woman denied American citizenship for being a pacifist atheist

Apparently you can only have moral objections if you possess a magic tome written by your ancestors. WOMAN BEING DENIED CITIZENSHIP BECAUSE HER MORALITY DOESN’T COME FROM RELIGION - CNN iReport
Margaret Doughty, a 64-year old woman from the UK who has spent the past 30 years in the U.S., is in the process of applying for United States Citizenship and happens to be an atheist. She is currently a permanent resident running non-profit adult literacy organizations, doing her part to enrich the lives of American citizens. In the process of applying for citizenship, all candidates are asked if they’d be willing to take up arms in defense of the United States of America. Ms. Doughty responded, “I am sure the law would never require a 64 year-old woman like myself to bear arms, but if I am required to answer this question, I cannot lie. I must be honest. The truth is that I would not be willing to bear arms. Since my youth I have had a firm, fixed and sincere objection to participation in war in any form or in the bearing of arms. I deeply and sincerely believe that it is not moral or ethical to take another person’s life, and my lifelong spiritual/religious beliefs impose on me a duty of conscience not to contribute to warfare by taking up arms…my beliefs are as strong and deeply held as those who possess traditional religious beliefs and who believe in God…I want to make clear, however, that I am willing to perform work of national importance under civilian direction or to perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States if and when required by the law to do so.” Despite being an atheist, Ms. Doughty was told that any conscientious objection must be based on religious grounds, not simply moral objections. So as someone who was not religious, and didn’t believe in a god, she had no basis for objecting. Her statement has been denied and she has been informed that to move forward in the process she must submit a letter from the elders of her church to prove her conscientious objections are religiously based.

June 05, 2013

The Catholic Church kept a secret set of files documenting hundreds of years of rape and murder and corruption

Sex-abuse investigations rip open Catholic Church's secret files - latimes.com
Preparing for his return to the Archdiocese of Los Angeles after six months' treatment at a center for pedophile priests, Father Michael Wempe sat down to type out a list of concerns. Arrangements for his dog. Counseling and support groups for himself. Above everything, he wrote at the top of the list in the 1987 memo: "Confidentiality — Reports from here destroyed, even this paper." Wempe had good reason for the request. The reports from the center laid out how he had confessedto molesting young boys. Wempe's therapists also urged church officials to immediately destroy everything. If the papers fell in the hands of law enforcement, the priest, the archdiocese and the treatment center could be in serious trouble. But Cardinal Roger Mahony and other church leaders ignored the warnings. Rather than shred or burn the reports, they preserved them in carefully organized file cabinets where they remained until this year. The release of those records — and thousands of pages of other damaging abuse documents in January — begged a question: Why did the church hold on to decades-old evidence of its priests' sins? . . .

May 29, 2013

Catholic School fires teacher for using artificial insemination

Teacher Fired From Ohio Catholic School After Becoming Pregnant While Unmarried
CINCINNATI (AP) — A teacher fired after becoming pregnant through artificial insemination was expected to tell jurors her version of events as the trial in her lawsuit against a Roman Catholic archdiocese and two of its schools entered its second day. Christa Dias has sued the Archdiocese of Cincinnati and the schools over her 2010 dismissal, contending they fired her simply because she was pregnant and unmarried. Her attorney, Robert Klingler, told a federal jury in opening statements Tuesday that the firing violated federal law prohibiting pregnancy discrimination. The trial was set to continue on Wednesday. The archdiocese’s attorney, Steve Goodin, told jurors “there was no discrimination,” saying Dias was fired for violating a contract that he says required her to abide by Catholic doctrine. The archdiocese has said that artificial insemination violates that doctrine and is immoral. Dias, who is not Catholic, alleges in her lawsuit that church policy is not enforced equally against men and women. A man formerly employed in youth ministry at a suburban Dayton parish within the archdiocese testified in a sworn video deposition Tuesday. He testified that some church officials were aware that he and his wife used artificial insemination when they were trying to have a child and that he was not fired or disciplined in any way.