Showing posts with label Iraq. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Iraq. Show all posts

Sunday, May 30, 2010

President Obama Wants Pope Benedict Protected from Sexual Abuse Lawsuits

     So, while I was sick, I missed this story.  After reading it, I feel sick again.

     The Obama administration has made a rare foray into the Catholic sexual abuse crisis, backing the Vatican's claim it is immune to lawsuits in the U.S. because it is a sovereign nation.
     In a brief filed on Friday (May 21) before the Supreme Court, the acting solicitor general argued an appellate court erred in 2009 when it ruled the Vatican could be held liable for the alleged sexual abuse of a Seattle-area man in the 1960s.
     The Supreme Court is considering the Vatican's appeal of "Holy See v. John V. Doe." Lawyers from the Department of State and Department of Justice joined the acting solicitor general's brief, which asks the high court to send the case back to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
     With the Supreme Court stacked with six Catholic justices its not hard to guess, which way that ruling will go.

     The report continues:
     "Improperly subjecting a foreign state to suit can in some circumstances raise foreign relations and reciprocity concerns," the Obama administration's brief argues.  In 2005, the Bush administration successfully urged a Texas court to dismiss a suit against Pope Benedict XVI because he enjoys immunity as the Holy See's head of state.
     Whether its invading Iraq under false pretenses or protecting clerics that enabled and covered-up the rapes of thousands of children, the leaders of our institutions are consistent.  

     They place the protection of the members of their own class and elite club of world rulers above that of faceless and voiceless children being killed by bombs and raped by priests.  May the Catholic god bless America.
Image Credit: Reuters

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Oklahoma Legislature: Rape and Incest Victims Must be Tortured before Getting an Abortion


     We should pass a law mandating that all Americans, who voted for George W. Bush and who supported the invasion of Iraq, be sent to the villages and cities of Iraq, the schools and hospitals, where they are required to listen to the beating hearts and laughter of children, to speak to child and adult alike about their dreams and hopes for the future, and to live for a week with them.  Then, those that support the war and voted for Bush (especially those that voted for him the second time) will be handed guns, grenades, or the launch codes to bombs.  They will have to pull the trigger.

     Or how about this?  Those good Christians, who claim that God can forgive anyone who is repentant (unless they blaspheme the Holy Spirit) and still support the death penalty, should be mandated to be spiritual directors to those on death row.  They should be forced to sit in a room and listen to the words of criminals, who have come to conversion and found forgiveness in their Jesus.  Then, those supporting the death penalty are handed the lethal injection needle and shown the vein.

     Or how about this?  Those who support the current Republican filibuster blocking increased regulation of Wall Street, those who support the ability of multinational corporations to strip the middle and lower classes of their dwindling wealth, should be mandated to live with a family who's living on food stamps, to live homeless in the streets with someone who lost everything, and be forced to go without food, a bath, and a bed for a month, before they allow the rich to get richer off the backs of the poor.

     Or how about this?  Let's pass a law allowing the government, especially the President, to lie to the American public about matters of national security and terrorism, so that the President, who is doing his god's will, can get the public to accent to the invastion of another nation and the slaughter of thousands of non-Christian pagans....oh wait.  We don't need a law to let that happen.

    Here's the information on Oklahoma.  The New York Times reports:
     The Oklahoma Legislature voted Tuesday to override the governor’s vetoes of two abortion measures, one of which requires women to undergo an ultrasound and listen to a detailed description of the fetus before getting an abortion. Though other states have passed similar measures requiring women to have ultrasounds, Oklahoma’s law goes further, mandating that a doctor or technician set up the monitor so the woman can see it and describe the heart, limbs and organs of the fetus. No exceptions are made for rape and incest victims.
     A second measure passed into law on Tuesday prevents women who have had a disabled baby from suing a doctor for withholding information about birth defects while the child was in the womb. Opponents argue that the law will protect doctors who purposely mislead a woman to keep her from choosing an abortion. But the bill’s sponsors maintain that it merely prevents lawsuits by people who wish, in hindsight, that the doctor had counseled them to abort a disabled child.
     Gov. Brad Henry, a Democrat, vetoed both bills last week. The ultrasound law, he said, was flawed because it did not exempt rape and incest victims and would allow an unconstitutional intrusion into a woman’s privacy.  Of the other measure, Mr. Henry said, “It is unconscionable to grant a physician legal protection to mislead or misinform pregnant women in an effort to impose his or her personal beliefs on a patient.”
The Republican majorities in both houses, however, saw things differently. On Monday, the House voted overwhelmingly to override the vetoes, and the Senate followed suit on Tuesday morning, making the two measures law.
     Do I want abortions to happen?  Of course not.  But I'm also not a victim of rape or incest, who has my uncle/father/brother/grandpa/priest's sperm growing inside of me.  I can't make the decision for someone else as to whether they have an abortion. 

     The action of these Christians in Oklahoma is vindictive and hypocritical.  They are responsible for the estimated 100,000 civilian deaths that have taken place in Iraq, since their beloved George W. Bush invaded, after misleading the public.   But they would rather pick on victims of rape and incest, than face their own guilt in the murders of children and unborn children in faraway lands.

Image Credits:
Beginning Cheerleading by Y-Coach
Sooners are Bendy by PictureDepot
Oklahoma State Abs by Flickr

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Spiritually Transformed Firearms of Jesus Christ

Question:

     What would Jesus fire?

"The United States is not and will never be at war with Islam." -President Barrack Obama in his first speech to a Muslim nation, Turkey, in 2009

"I was praying for strength to do the Lord's will.  I'm surely not going to justify war based upon God. Understand that. Nevertheless, in my case, I pray that I will be as good a messenger of His will as possible. And then of course, I pray for forgiveness."  -President George W. Bush on his decision to invade Iraq in an interview with Bob Woodward in 2003
Answer:

     I'd like you introduce you to Trijicon, an American company, founded on good old-fashioned Christian values of honesty and integrity, with the following self described morality:
     We believe that America is great when its people are good. This goodness has been based on biblical standards throughout our history and we will strive to follow those morals.
     Yes, "those morals," such as killing in the name of Jesus Christ with what some in the U.S. military are referring to as their "spiritually transformed firearms of Jesus Christ," a onetime pacifist whom I'm sure would be proud of all the Christians who've killed in his name over the past two millennia.

     ABC news reports that Trijicon, holder of a $660 million contract to provide 800,000 gun sites to the U.S. military, prints Christian bible passages on their killing products.  How's that for hypocrisy? (The full Nightline report is embedded below.)


     The military claims that they didn't know, even though some of their soldiers refer to their Trijicon-enhanced weapons as their "Jesus rifles."  These are the same guns being used to train non-Christian Afghan and Iraqi soldiers to protect nations whose trust we are struggling to win.  We tell them we are not waging a Christian religious war, but our guns are inscribed with texts referring to Jesus as the "the light of the world" and being the way to move from darkness into light.  These are the same guns that any moron can find on youtube with gun enthusiasts bragging up the Christian scripture references and ignorantly taunting, "for those of you who aren't Christians, well you know, whatever, get over it!" and "I didn't know there were that many different verses on all the different optics," AND, "They chose some whoppers too!"

     The ABC report continues:
     "It's wrong, it violates the Constitution, it violates a number of federal laws," said Michael "Mikey" Weinstein of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, an advocacy group that seeks to preserve the separation of church and state in the military."It allows the Mujahedeen, the Taliban, al Qaeda and the insurrectionists and jihadists to claim they're being shot by Jesus rifles," he said. He said coded biblical inscriptions play into the hands of "those who are calling this a Crusade." "This is probably the best example of violation of the separation of church and state in this country," said Weinstein. "It's literally pushing fundamentalist Christianity at the point of a gun against the people that we're fighting. We're emboldening an enemy."
     Pushing religion at gunpoint, torture in our military prisons, and religious rhetoric to justify our invasions?  We are no different from the "enemies" we seek to destroy.  I'm so tired of this America.

     When will the majority of people in our nation unite and stand up against the thinly veiled religious wars that our tax dollars are fundingWhen will Christians, who claim to be about love and peace, stand up for the true message of their Jesus and call for an end to the violence in his name?  Apparently not anytime soon.

     In response to the ABC News report,
Tom Munson, director of sales and marketing for Trijicon, which is based in Wixom, Michigan, said the inscriptions "have always been there" and said there was nothing wrong or illegal with adding them. Munson said the issue was being raised by a group that is "not Christian."
     Yes, Mr. Munson, blame the non-Christians for having the audacity to call Christians to their own loving and peaceful values.  You hypocrite!

     The military operates under General Order No. 1, which since 2003 says that there will be no religious prostheletizing by the U.S. Department of Defense personnel in Iraq or Afghanistan.  However, the ABC news report below shows U.S. Army Chaplain Ltc. Gary Hensley preaching the following sermon to our troops:
     We hunt people for Jesus.  We do.  We hunt them down.  We get the hound of heaven after them, so we get them in the kingdom.  Right?  That's what we do. That's our business.
     Mr. Hensley is a hypocrite, not only in violation of the allegedly peaceful gospel of Jesus Christ, but also of the Constitution of the United States and the separation of church and state.  But, he's not alone.  It seems that what we've known for quite some time is now blatantly inscribed upon the guns of our military: our military has been infiltrated by Christian fundamentalists and is what they would call the divine extenstion of their god's wrath and will in the world.  If this is not the Gospel According to Hate, I do not know what is.

     We have yet to see if the U.S. military will do anything to remove the scripture passages from their killing machines.  Until they are removed and General Order No.1 is enforced throughout every branch of our military, we will only continue to hypocritically embolden those who've declared a religious war upon us.


Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Horror of Steve King


     In the wake of the Haitian earthquake, one of the deadliest of all times, Iowa Republican Steve King is at it again, joining in the hateful cries of the likes of Pat Robertson and Rush LimbaughKing called for the deportation of all illegal Haitians living in the U.S. back to Haiti, so they can clean up the earthquake, even though they have no country to return to.  How very compassionate of him!


     As a native of Iowa, I am ashamed of Mr. King and the constituents that voted this fear mongering priest of the Gospel of Hate into office.


King's Racist comments about Obama:

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Let's Put Your Life up for Debate

     Online yesterday, the BBC asked the question, "Should homosexuals face execution?"  Should we gays and lesbians be put to death?  Seriously.  Just asking the question implies that it's up for debate and that both sides have legitimate arguments.


     When the genocide in Rwanda was going on, did the BBC ask "Should Tutsis face execution?"  When the ethnic cleansing in the former Yugoslavia was going on, did the BBC ask "Should Muslims face execution at the hands of Catholic Croats and Orthodox Serbs?"  And what about Sudan and the current Muslim-lead extermination of Christians and animists?  So, BBC, why ask the question of orientation cleansing?

     Why not ask the real question that lies at the root of issue: Should religious people be allowed to continue murdering people in the name of their god?  If the BBC really wanted to ruffle some feathers, they could have asked "Should all religious people be executed?"  This question is just as absurd as asking whether homosexuals should be put to death. 

     The BBC eventually changed the question to "Should Uganda debate gay execution?"  Which in my opinion is not much better.  The government in Uganda is in fact debating this horrendous question and fundamentalist Christians are encouraging it.  BBC, why encourage hate-filled responses calling for the blood of all homosexuals throughout the world?  Do you enjoy rubbing death threats in our faces?


     I have some questions for BBC, the United Nations, and the news media.  Why aren't we also challenging the gay death penalty and life prison sentences in the other countries that have them?  Why not threaten them with the same withholding of aid that we threaten Uganda?

  • Iran
  • Mauritania
  • Saudi-Arabia
  • Sudan
  • United Arab Emirates
  • Yemen
  • Nigeria
     I wonder how many of my tax dollars have gone to aid and finance the governments of these nations, where I would be put to death.  This makes me sick.  Surely, the U.S. could speak to our "ally" Saudi Arabia about this issue, or are we too afraid of losing our oil connections?



     And what of the 86 member nations of the UN that still punish being homosexual with prison sentences up to and including life? Would we allow the same to hold for people with blue eyes, or red hair?  Or for Catholics or atheists?  Or why not execute adulterers or rape virgins and kill them?

     Uganda is the tip of the iceberg.  The calls for justice and equality for homosexuals need to be heard throughout the world.
   
     Postscript: I don't recall any moment in history when the gays banded together to exterminate their religious persecutors or to kill all the straights. 




Saturday, December 12, 2009

Change Dick Cheney Can Believe In

The oratory sugarcoats the poisons, helping to kill hope in the name of it. 





     During the presidential election Candidate Obama promised "Change We Can Believe In" by ending the U.S. instigated war in Iraq and by closing Guantanamo.  Well, Guantanamo is still open and we're still fighting a never ending war in Iraq.

     Obama's Nobel acceptance speech was not one of peace, but one of a condemnation of pacifism and was full of the frighteningly familiar moralizing over good and evil that we came to expect from George W. Bush's diatribes that justified the invasion of Iraq.  President Obama is showing us by his words and actions that he is not giving us change that we can believe in; but hypocrisy we can believe in.

     Here are a few snippets from responses to Obama's peace-winning speech.

      AntiWar.com's response:
     But President Obama’s “acceptance speech” was far from an expression of contrition, spending most of the speech defending his War in Afghanistan as an inherently just war, and rambling on about all the other recent American wars and his ostensible justifications of them.
     Then, in what must’ve been one of the least humble and least appropriate speeches ever given before the Nobel Committee, Obama declared non-violence to be impractical and insisted that the “limits of reason” meant that the American military would continue to have to be used for “moral” reasons.
     In extolling the virtues of war while accepting what was supposed to be a prize for radical advocates of peace, President Obama had what could only be called one of the quintessential jerkass moments of American history, an embarrassing exhortation to the advocates of peace to accept violence as the one true way of solving the world’s problems.
     Truthout's response:
     From President Obama, we hear that peace is the ultimate goal. But "peace" is a fixture on a strategic horizon that keeps moving as the military keeps marching.
     Just a couple of days before Obama stepped to the podium in Oslo, the general running the US war effort in Afghanistan spoke to a Congressional committee in Washington about the president's recent pledge to begin withdrawal of US troops in July 2011. "I don't believe that is a deadline at all," Stanley McChrystal said.
     War is not peace. It never has been. It never will be.

     Yes, I am thankful that Obama is in office and not McCain, or dog-forbid Palin.  Still, after hearing Obama's war rhetoric in what was supposed to be a peace speech, I can only think back to a year ago and mourn for the time when I had so much hope.


The more things change, the more they stay the same.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

More Reasons to Hate Traditional Marriage Laws: Adultery

     Give the people what they want!  Give them their traditional marriage law.  Let religious fundamentalists define and enforce the law.  Twenty-six of our nation's states have laws punishing adultery, and in four states adultery is a felony.  Why aren't the traditional marriage advocates going after those states that promote adultery by decriminalizing it?


     Our nation's civil marriage law was based on English Common Law (not the bible), which outlawed adultery, premarital sex (fornication), and sodomy. So, my traditional marriage supporting friends, let's go all the way.  Let's get adultery outlawed in all fifty states.  Let's outlaw premarital sex.  Let's make sure that the 38.2% of straight men who stick it in the 32.6% of women's asses, no longer deflower traditional marriage and sexual virtue, even within marriage.  (This does happen, as a certain Catholic in good standing, who shall remain nameless, told me that once her husband talked her into trying anal.  Of course, I'm the one who's Satan, gay atheist that I am.  But, I would never stick it in SHE's mangina.  That would be against Gay Natural Law.)

     If you are wondering what life in a nation that allows traditional marriage law to be enforced would be like, just move to Somalia.

     Last year in Somalia, traditional marriage law was enforced.  The BBC reported:
     A young woman recently stoned to death in Somalia first pleaded for her life, a witness has told the BBC. "Don't kill me, don't kill me," she said, according to the man who wanted to remain anonymous. A few minutes later, more than 50 men threw stones. Human rights group Amnesty International says the victim was a 13-year-old girl who had been raped. Numerous eye-witnesses say she was forced into a hole, buried up to her neck then pelted with stones until she died in front of more than 1,000 people.
     Yesterday, the BBC reported:
     Islamists in southern Somalia have stoned a man to death for adultery but spared his pregnant girlfriend until she gives birth. Abas Hussein Abdirahman, 33, was killed in front of a crowd of some 300 people in the port town of Merka. An official from the al-Shabab group said the woman would be killed after she has had her baby.
     "He was screaming and blood was pouring from his head during the stoning. After seven minutes he stopped moving," an eyewitness told the BBC.
     Moderate Somali President Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed accused the fundamentalist stoners of spoiling the image of Islam by killing people and harassing women:  "'Their actions have nothing to do with Islam,' said the moderate Islamist."


     But, they do!  Why is it that religious "moderates" are quick to blame fundamentalists' "craziness" whenever their common religious heritage is used to justify violence?  The root of the issue is the scriptures.  There is precedence for stoning adulterers in the scriptures of Islam, Christianity, and Judaism, so don't be shocked when some of your followers choose to enforce that precedent.

     As far as I'm concerned, if you share those scriptures, you share the responsibility, just as those who supported the U.S. war on Iraq, share the responsibility for the estimated 100,000 civilian deaths of innocent Iraqis since the start of the war.  It's called social sin, according to the Catholic Church (unless, of course, it involves the Catholic Church; then, it's the fault of a few individually misled priests).

Image Credit: motifake.com