In Sharia-Happy Malaysia, Not Being a Muslim Might Cost You Your Kids

A marital spat over religion cost one Malaysian Hindu woman her baby. Her husband insisted his spouse become a Muslim; when she refused, he grabbed their 11-month-old daughter and disappeared. That was more than five years ago. Though a civil court granted the mother custody, she never saw her child again, because her legal victory was canceled out by the father gaining custody in a Islamic (Sharia) court. As reported by the Associated Press,

Police have been unwilling to enforce the civil court’s decision.



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Christian Conference Organizers Asked Me to Share My Views on Gay Marriage… So This is What I Sent Them

A couple of weeks ago, I got an email from the organizers of the NINES, an online-only conference for evangelical Christians. (People would presumably purchase the live-stream and watch it with their small groups or church staffs.) Because the theme was “Culture Crash,” they asked me if I wanted to make a video discussing my views on same-sex marriage. They gave me five minutes and no restrictions (other than, you know, please don’t swear because there may be kids watching).

That was quite courageous of them to do, I thought, and the video I made is now online on the Atheist Voice channel. Take a look:



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Atheist Billboards Go Up in Iowa

It’s been a while since we’ve seen these, hasn’t it? Welcome back, billboards!

The newly-formed Central Iowa Coalition of Reason and Eastern Iowa Coalition of Reason have put up billboards announcing their presence:



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Turkish Military Sheds (Some) Secular Principles: Game of Thrones Is Out, Studying the Qur’an Is In

Remember how proudly secular Turkey was since the days of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk? Unusually for a country where 98 out of a 100 citizens still self-identify as Muslims, Turkey became a secular, democratic republic close to a century ago. In the last two decades, driven in part by its remarkably thin-skinned, immoderate Islamic leader, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who rarely misses a chance to push his religious agenda, that ideal has been hollowed out.

And so we get this:

The Turkish Armed Forces has updated its set of regulations for the high school academies that it administers, inserting an article in the chapter for “protection of students.” It advises a ban on screening films or shows that depict “sexual exploitation, pornography, exhibitionism, abuse, harassment and all negative behaviors.” [The national newspaper] Hurriyet cites Game of Thrones as one of the main culprits.



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Christian Right Group Reminds You Which Stores Make Baby Jesus Cry

The American Family Association, which only seems to care about your family if you’re Christian, has released its annual “Naughty or Nice” list of places that don’t deserve your business because they RUIN EVERYTHING by not acknowledging the birth of Jesus. And sometimes, they say awful things like “Happy Holidays.”



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