Afghan Ex-Muslim Is Reportedly the First Atheist To Receive Asylum in Britain On Religious Grounds

An Afghan man is probably the first atheist ever to receive asylum in the U.K. for religious reasons. The British Home Office agreed to let him stay indefinitely after it accepted that he could face persecution in Afghanistan for having abandoned his Islamic faith.

From The Independent:

Although he was brought up a Muslim, since living in the UK he has gradually turned away from it and is now an atheist.

His lawyers argued that their client’s forced return to Afghanistan

could result in a death sentence under Sharia law as an “apostate” — someone who has abandoned their religious faith — unless he remained silent about his atheist beliefs.

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Satanic Groups Are Now Arguing Over the Proposed Oklahoma Monument

Last week, the Satanic Temple unveiled the monument they planned to erect on the Oklahoma Capitol grounds:

(Even though they raised the money to build it, it won’t be going up anytime soon given the state’s moratorium on monuments pending the outcome of an ACLU lawsuit.)

In any case, you know who’s *really* upset about that monument?


Different ones.

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Atheists File Federal Lawsuit Against Oklahoma Officials for Allowing Ten Commandments Monument on Capitol Grounds

Oklahoma officials decided to put a Ten Commandments monument on Capitol grounds in 2012 and the decision has been coming back to bite them ever since.

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The Mormon Church Can’t Simultaneously Tell Leaders to Both Oppose Gay Marriage and Respect Gay People

On Friday, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints issued a formal declaration of how Mormons should respond to the recent court decision to allow gay marriage in the state and the Supreme Court’s decision to halt those marriages temporarily until further legal action.

The gist of it was that gay marriage is awful, awful, awful, and church leaders should not perform same-sex ceremonies, and church buildings shouldn’t be used for any activities related to gay weddings, and the church has to remain moral in the face of rampant immorality, and good Mormons should oppose gay marriage… but gay people deserve respect.

I guess they don’t see the inherent contradiction between saying gay people deserve “respect” while simultaneously trying to deprive them of their civil rights.

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Why Are Atheists Overwhelmingly Left-Wingers? In Which I Out Myself As a Libertarian

A funny thing happened in the comments section over the weekend.

First, we had a pretty wonderful discussion about the atheist closet, and about the risks and rewards of coming out as a non-believer.

I did feel a little uneasy about something, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on it.

Then Hemant posted an anti-GOP cartoon. Reading the comments below that post made my vague unease snap into focus. This is what had been bothering me:

I am out as an atheist to all of my friends and relatives, and obviously also to the community that has formed around this blog — a group of mostly funny and insightful people of whom I’ve grown rather fond. But I suddenly realized that politically speaking, I’ve been tiptoeing around other people’s sensibilities in a way that’s begun to feel a little stifling.

That’s because (someone fetch the smelling salt, and cue the choir of hisses!)…  I’m a libertarian.

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