Freedom of worship or freedom of religion?

The citizen test given by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services speaks of “freedom of worship.”  Senator James Lankford (R, OK) has been trying to get the agency to change the test and the study materials so that they refer to the “freedom of religion.”  The agency has finally agreed to do so.

Do you see the difference? [Read more…]

Now a French magazine ridicules Mohammad

First an American puts up a YouTube video inflaming the Muslim world and now a French magazine has published cartoon inflaming the already inflamed Muslim world.

A French magazine ridiculed the Prophet Mohammad on Wednesday by portraying him naked in cartoons, threatening to fuel the anger of Muslims around the world who are already incensed by a film depiction of him as a lecherous fool.

The drawings in satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo risked exacerbating a crisis that has seen the storming of U.S. and other Western embassies, the killing of the U.S. ambassador to Libya and a deadly suicide bombing in Afghanistan.

Riot police were deployed to protect the magazine’s Paris offices after it hit the news stands with a cover showing an Orthodox Jew pushing the turbaned figure of Mohammad in a wheelchair.

On the inside pages, several caricatures of the Prophet showed him naked. One, entitled “Mohammad: a star is born”, depicted a bearded figure crouching over to display his buttocks and genitals.

The French government, which had urged the weekly not to print the cartoons, said it was temporarily shutting down premises including embassies and schools in 20 countries on Friday, when protests sometimes break out after Muslim prayers.

via Cartoons in French weekly fuel Mohammad furor – Yahoo! News Canada.

So is this freedom of the press or religious bigotry?  Or both?  Is there a point at which religious bigotry can become an infringement of freedom of religion?  Are elements in the West–France, no less!  and what’s been coming out from the ultra-tolerant Danes and the Dutch! — coming together in an anti-Islamic reaction?

“Freedom of Religion” vs. “Freedom of Worship”?

Some human rights and religious freedom activists have noted that President Obama and the State Department are referring to the “freedom of worship” rather than the “freedom of religion.”  They worry that this is toning down our country’s traditional stand for human rights.  “Freedom of religion” includes beliefs and practices, whereas “freedom of worship” can refer to just the right to meet together to pray.  Under this construction, still-Communist China and Muslim countries could permit Christians to gather together for worship services, but not allow them to evangelize, teach their faith publicly, or assert their beliefs in the public square.

Is this shift in language something to be concerned about?

For the issue and what people are saying about it, see Why is Obama Changing “Freedom of Religion” to “Freedom of Worship”? | NewsReal Blog.

HT:  Rick