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March 22, 2012

The Catholic Church castrated boys for being gay and if they reported priests who molested them

Dutch Roman Catholic Church Castrated Boys As 'Treatment' For Homosexuality Hank Heithuis is the second from the left in this picture.
Shocking reports have surfaced that reveal at least ten teenage boys were castrated in the 1950s by the Dutch Roman Catholic Church as a "treatment" for homosexuality, the Telegraph reports. Dutch journalist Joep Dohmen, reporting for the NRC Handelsblad uncovered ten cases of the castrations, one of which was suffered by Henk Heithuis, who was castrated as a minor for reporting to police sexual abuse by a priest that he endured while in the boarding home. Although the priests were convicted of the abuses, Heithuis was still transported to a Catholic hospital, and underwent a surgical castration as a treatment for homosexuality and, according to the report, a punishment for tattling on the clergy. . . .

On the infancy gospel of Thomas; or, Baby Jesus was a dick

Read the whole thing. Benito Cereno does this thing where he answers questions about history and religion and just drops like atomic bombs of knowledge on your head. Here he tackles some of the non-canonical biblical works that bounced around for 1,500 years. BURGEONING LADS OF SCIENCE | Hello, friends. Today we have a question from...
The two most influential infancy gospels were the Infancy Gospel of Thomas (not to be confused with the Gospel(s) of Thomas or the Acts of Thomas) and the Infancy Gospel of James (which is actually about Mary). These were the earliest, and basically every subsequent infancy gospel is a variation or combination of these two works, with the most popular later one being the Infancy Gospel of Pseudo-Matthew, which is both a combination and a variation of Thomas and James. Here’s the thing about the Infancy Gospel of Thomas: It is crazy. Here are some things that actually happen in a book that could have ended up in the Bible: 1) A five-year-old Jesus makes a bunch of sparrows out of mud and then makes them come alive when he is reprimanded for working on the Sabbath. 2) Another boy drains the puddle Jesus was playing in, so Jesus causes him to dry up like a mummy and then blow away as dust. 3) A boy running through a crowd bumps into young Jesus, so Jesus kills him immediately, with magic. 4) Some people in town tell Joseph (Jesus’s stepfather) about Jesus, you know, murdering some kids, and Jesus strikes all these people blind. 5) Joseph yanks Jesus’s ear as punishment for murder, and Jesus cold tells Joseph to his face, “Don’t you know that I don’t really belong to you? Don’t make me upset.” 6) He schools his teacher on the mysteries of the alphabet (no murder this time). 7) When another child Jesus is playing with falls off a roof, Jesus raises him from the dead to escape from the—let’s be honest here, completely justified—suspicion of murder. 8) He heals the foot of a man who chopped it off while cutting wood. 9) At age six, Jesus accidentally breaks a pitcher, so carries all the water home in his cloak (cloth is porous, you see, so this is a miracle). 10) He sowed one measure of grain but managed to reap one hundred measures. He gave this extra grain to the people of the village. This is at age eight. 11) When Joseph accidentally cuts a board too short, Jesus stretches the short board until it matches the other one. 12) Jesus embarrasses another teacher, but this time the teacher makes the mistake of smacking Jesus’s head in exasperation. Jesus killed him with God bullets. 13) A snake bites Jesus’s brother James, so Jesus explodes the snake with his mind. 14) Jesus raises a baby from the dead and emphasizes the importance of breast-feeding. 15) Jesus raises from the dead a construction worker who fell from a building.

March 10, 2012

90 Iraqi teens publicly stoned in February for having emo haircuts

Warning: Graphic picture of dead Iraqi teen on the linked page. Dozens of Iraqi teenagers stoned to death for ‘emo’ haircuts: activists
Iraqi activists sounded the bell over the killing of dozens of teenagers by religious police for having “emo” haircuts. Activists told the Cairo-based al-Akhbar daily that at least 90 Iraqi teenagers with “emo” appearances have been stoned to death by the Moral Police in the country in the past month. The violent crackdown against “emo” Iraqi teenagers came after the Iraqi interior ministry declared them as “devil worshippers.” “The ‘Emo phenomenon’ or devil worshiping is being probed by the Moral Police who have the approval to eliminate it as soon as possible since it’s detrimentally affecting the society and becoming a danger,” according to a statement by the interior ministry. “They wear strange, tight clothes that have pictures on them such as skulls and use stationery that are shaped as skulls. They also wear rings on their noses and tongues, and do other strange activities,” the statement added. The statement said that Iraq’s Moral Police was granted approval by the Ministry of Education to enter Baghdad schools and pinpoint students with Western appearances. . . .