Texas Republican’s Bill Would Withhold Salary from State Employees Who, in Future, Issue Gay Marriage Licenses

A new bill in Texas sponsored by Republican Rep. Cecil Bell would cut off the salary of any state official who issued a wedding license to a gay couple… if that ever became legal. (Texas is currently one of only 14 states where gay couples can’t get married.)

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Don’t Celebrate a Best Selling Book if You Think It’s Okay to Game the System

Christian author Eric Metaxas‘ latest book Miracles just hit the New York Times best sellers list.

As it turns out, however, Metaxas also made an interesting comment to Christianity Today regarding buying your way onto that list — like disgraced Pastor Mark Driscoll did:

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Why Do Cartoonists Draw Insulting Images of Muhammad? (Spoiler: Not Just to Upset the Religious)

Philosopher Stephen Law offers an explanation for why cartoonists lampoon faith:

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Myanmar Anger Over Buddha With Headphones Shows No Sign of Abating; Bar Owner Now Faces Four Years in Prison

Remember the recent case in Myanmar of the bar owners who got arrested and threatened with serious jail time after they’d Facebook-posted a colorful image of a Buddha wearing headphones?

Despite removing the image and replacing it with a statement apologizing for “embarrassing ignorance,” [New Zealander Philip] Blackwood was arrested on December 10 along with nightspot owner Tun Thurein, 40, and co-worker Htut Ko Ko Lwin, 26.

NBC News has an update, including this stark fact:

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U.S. Strangely Missing from Map of “Top 50 Countries Where Christians Face the Greatest Persecution”

Open Doors USA, a non-profit group that tracks Christian persecution around the world (and helps Christians in need), released its annual World Watch List yesterday, highlighting the “50 countries where the persecution of Christians is most severe.”

Incredibly (to the surprise of Religion Right leaders, I’m sure), the United States didn’t make the cut:

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