Was it Right for Atlanta’s Mayor to Fire the City’s Fire Chief Over His Anti-Gay Book?

This week, Atlanta’s Fire Chief Kelvin Cochran was fired after a lot of controversy surrounding his self-published 2013 book Who Told You That You Were Naked?. It included these passages:

“Uncleanness — whatever is opposite of purity; including sodomy, homosexuality, lesbianism, pederasty, bestiality, all other forms of sexual perversion.”

“Naked men refuse to give in, so they pursue sexual fulfillment through multiple partners, with the opposite sex, the same sex, and sex outside of marriage and many other vile, vulgar and inappropriate ways which defile their body-temple and dishonor God.”

Of course, writing a book like that isn’t grounds for punishment unless you do something actually illegal like pushing it to your employees at work or promoting it not as a private citizen but as a public official.

And wouldn’t you know it

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Raif Badawi, While Receiving 50 Lashes, Reportedly “Did Not Flinch”

Earlier today, Saudi blogger Raif Badawi was given 50 lashes (the first of his 1,000 lashes punishment) for the “crime” of “insulting Islam.”

I’m also encouraged by this report from @ElhamManea:



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Bill Maher: “There Are No Great Religions. They’re All Stupid and Dangerous”

On Jimmy Kimmel‘s show the other night, Bill Maher gave his first take on the Charlie Hebdo attacks, calling out liberals who tiptoe around the religious angle of this story:



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U.S. State Department Defends Raif Badawi Just Before He is Lashed 50 Times for “Insulting Islam”

It doesn’t look like there’s much we can do now. Raif Badawi, the Saudi Arabian blogger, will receive the first batch of his 1,000 lashes today. All for the “crime” of running a progressive website that called for, among other things, religious tolerance and women’s rights.

Yesterday, the U.S. State Department issued a statement in defense of Badawi:

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“Traditional Values” Are Losing Ground with Voters and We’re All Better Off as a Result

When you hear politicians talk about “traditional values,” it’s usually just code for anti-gay, anti-women, pro-Christianist thinking. Saying gay people should not be allowed to marry may be politically toxic these days, but no one has a problem with “values,” right?

I’m happy to say that voters, who may finally be catching on to the con, are caring less and less about traditional values these days. Aaron Blake at the Washington Post explains:



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