Monthly Exile for Menstruating Hindu Women in Nepal: It’s Lonely and Dangerous, ‘But the Fear of Sin Is Bigger’

This is the kind of place where Durga Buda spends four miserable nights every month. In her case, it’s a backyard shed that the locals call a goth, erected from bamboo and straw, with walls made of mud and dung. It’s four feet wide, four feet tall, and dangerous. Buda is afraid of wild animals, including snakes, and also leery of drunk villagers who may disrespect or even attack her.

Were it up to Buda, she’d sleep in the main house, the one that’s made of bricks, where her family of eight resides, including her in-laws. But she’s not allowed to when she has her period. During that time, she’s dirty, and everything she touches becomes dirty too.

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Should Scientists Debate Creationists? I’ve Changed My Mind…

The video below, part of The Atheist Voice series, answers the question: Should scientists debate Creationists?:

We’d love to hear your thoughts on the project — more videos will be posted soon — and we’d also appreciate your suggestions as to which questions we ought to tackle next!

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Indian Taliban? Hindu Group Forces Destruction of American Scholar’s ‘Blasphemous,’ ‘Offensive’ Book

A Hindu activist group in India that had brought a lawsuit against the publisher of an American scholar’s book is getting its way in a hair-raising settlement.

Penguin India, which had published Wendy Doniger‘s The Hindus: An Alternative History, has pledged in writing to stop selling the book and pulp all remaining copies. The political and religious group that forced the book’s removal and destruction charged that The Hindus was offensive and inaccurate and full of “sexual connotations.”

Neither Penguin nor Doniger have admitted to any gross mistakes or mischaracterizations.

Doniger is incensed about her Indian publisher’s capitulation, and issued a riot-act statement:

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The Nudist Church: No Fig Leaves For This Congregation

At the church that’s situated in the White Tail Nudist Resort in Virginia, you can come just as God made you before He gave you underpants.

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South Carolina State Senator Stops Evolution Standard from Being Adopted Because He’d Rather ‘Teach the Controversy’

The way it works in South Carolina, the state Board of Education and the state’s Education Oversight Committee have to agree on new educational standards before they’re adopted for the public schools to implement. On Monday night, the BOE adopted new science standards, which is all well and good… but the EOC refused to approve the following clause:

Conceptual Understanding: Biological evolution occurs primarily when natural selection acts on the genetic variation in a population and changes the distribution of traits in that population over multiple generations.

Performance Indicators: Students who can demonstrate this understanding can:

Analyze and interpret data, using the principles of natural selection, to make predictions about the long term biological changes that occur within two populations of the same species that become geographically isolated from one another.

Why wouldn’t they approve it? Ask State Sen. Mike Fair:

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