What It’s Like to Be an Atheist in Palestine: Waleed Al Husseini spent 10 months in prison for being an atheist

We must do all we can to protect religious minorities – and areligious minoritites – living under the yoke of totalitarianism everywhere.  Liberal and free thinkers in the Muslim world are a case in point.

‘I was beaten by prison guards who demanded to know who had made me write against Islam. In their minds, I could only say these things as the result of some plot, some conspiracy. The idea that I might simply want to express my independent thoughts was alien to them.

The 10 months I spent in Palestinian prison were the worse of my life. I faced constant pressure to retract my statements. I was told they had removed my blog and that I must apologize for publishing it. Even once I was freed, I was told I should never again use the Internet, nor meet with the media.
For months after my release, I was harassed by the security services, who further interrogated me and detained me without cause. I received letters from people saying they wanted to kill me.’

Read the rest here.

It takes no courage to speak up and repeat the popular points of view:  we must give absolute protection to freedom of speech even to those voices we disagree with.  And we must support people willing to speak up, even at personal risk, whether we agree with them or not!

As for regimes that limit and oppress freedom of speech:  we must fight them every step of the way!

Egyptian Human Rights Activist Ahmad Harqan: ISIS Is Doing what the Prophet Muhammad Did

He is, of course, correct.

Bill Maher and Sam Harris vs, Ben Affleck Battle Over Radical Islam – ” They Will F*cking Kill You! “

Plus a bit of commentary:

In Solidarity with Persecuted Minorities

A big rally was held in Ottawa yesterday, the 6th of September, 2014, to show support for the minorities – religious and ethnic – in the Levant.  And to voice the outrage at what the barbaric Islamic State criminals are doing…

(At the 2:19 mark, you can see yours truly holding up a sign “In solidarity with persecuted Iraqi Christians we stand”.)

Here were a few good speeches:

It was an interesting rally – they even had an imam speak (that went well and he unequivocally condemned violence against Christians) and a representative for a second imam speak.

It was with this second Muslim speaker that I had great difficulty.

Not only did he employ the ‘usual’ linguistic tricks that we have come to expect from Islamists and Sharia supremacists (like never condemning violence against Christians and/or Yazidis but only condemning ‘violence against innocents’*), he went on to foment hate against atheists.

Yes, while he was there ostensibly to condemn hateful crimes against religious minorities, he took the time to equate the Islamic State butchers to atheists and to say that both are equal to each other.

And the organizer of the rally called it ‘an excellent speech’!

No wonder they did not have even one atheist speaker!!!

So there I was, getting sunburned as I, a person of no faith, showed support for religious minorities and condemn violence against them – and the organizer of the shindig agrees with a speaker who equates me with the evil I am protesting.  I felt awful – betrayed.  It just goes to show that the only time religionists will stop killing each other and unite together is to take down those of us who prefer listening to reason rather than imaginary friends.

I’m afraid this was a bit of a downer…

 

* In Islam, every person is considered to be born as a Muslim, knowing intrinsically that Islam is the only religion.  If that person is then raised in a faith other that Islam, they are said to have committed the crime of apostasy – of leaving Islam.  (This is why one cannot become a ‘convert’ to Islam, they say one is a ‘re-vert’ to Islam because one is returning to their original faith.)  And Leaving Islam is a crime – so Christian and other non-Muslims are not ‘innocent’.  When Sharia supremacists condemn the slaughter of ‘innocents’, they are very deliberately excluding non-Muslims from the list of people whose slaughter they are condemning.

 

So what, specifically, would you have the Israelis do?

That was a question CodeSlinger asked me.

I replied in a comprehensive manner, explaining my reasoning:  but thought it worthy of a post of its own.  So, here it is:

CodeSlinger,

I really, really don’t know that I would have them do anything other than what they are doing now.

The Israelis are in a very, very difficult position: the UN is stacked with anti-Semites, the Europeans are afraid to upset their anti-Semitic Islamist colonists (and yes – the Muslims who are true immigrants are integrating as best as they can – it is the Islamists who are entering Europe who are colonists, not immigrants who are preventing them), and the US is more anti-Semitic than ever. It seems that Canada is the only major ally of Israel – and we are small potatoes on the world stage.

So, the Israelis are stuck in a highly unenviable situation.

Israeli civilians are bombarded by rockets fired from Hospitals and UN schools within Gaza. It is only because of their investment in bomb shelters that the Israeli casualties are minimal.

But, the Hamas ruled Gazans have taken billions in ‘humanitarian aid’ and instead of bomb shelters and the equivalent to the iron dome, they built underground tunnels into Israel, often undermining kindergartens as particular targets in order to add shock value to their anticipated attack during a Jewish holiday. They have even worked several hundred Gazan children to death in mining these tunnels…

The Israelis MUST do something to primarily stop these tunnels which are extensive and through which Gazans dressed in Israeli military uniforms have snuck into Isrel and murdered people, secondarily to stop the rocket fire because a civilian population cannot indefinitely function under such conditions.

But, if the Israelis do not take extreme care to do what they are doing – dropping leaflets to warn people, phoning them to let them know an attack is coming, sending a harmless, warning shot against a building with enough time for civilians to evacuate before the real missile which will demolish the building is fired, if they did not call off air strikes when children are in the target area….they would be sinking beneath their own level of civilization!!!

After all, some of these Gazans may have voted in Hamas, but others did not and the children, of course, are innocent. Brainwashed – yes, but killing them would be barbaric. Israelis would be abandoning their own civilized state – not in the past, but now.

But if this were not a sufficient reason, if you wanted a purely pragmatic one, I can supply one of those as well.

Israel cannot survive if the whole world – with the exception of Canada and a few other little nations, like the Czech Republic – refuses to trade with them and completely isolates them.

And every dead Palestinian child – whether killed by Israeli weapons or by Palestinian rockets aimed at Israel and accidentally landing in Gaza – is a source of money for Hamas. So, Hamas will make sure that each and every real and imagined dead Palestinian child makes headlines. (And, yes – they have been caught not only passing off scenes from a horror movie as ‘Palestinian children killed by Israel’ – but also passing the photographs of the Isaeli Fogel children(including a suckling infant) who were murdered by a Palestinian terrorists as they slept in their beds, these too are being passed off as ‘Palestinian children killed by the Israelis’!!!

The Israelis – both Jewish and non-Jewish – may have much going for them, but they are a tiny country surrounded by nation states that share an ideological imperative to destroy Israel as a State AND to kill every Jew alive on this tiny little planet. And if the Jews pack up and colonize another planet, the Islamists will follow them to that planet nd try to murder them there.

Because their desire to kill every Jew in general and destroy Israel in particular is dogmatic, rooted both in the Koran and in the Hadith.

Regarding Israel:

The Islamic prophet Muhammad had sheltered with both Jewish and Christian communities while he was, for reasons not known to history, excommunicated from Mecca. Both the Jewish and the Christian communities excommunicated him in their turn, also for reasons unknown. At least, that is what I was taught at Carleton University many decades ago when I took a course on Arab history.

While with the ‘People of the Book’ (Christians and Muslims), he learned a lot of their mythology. In particular, he latched on to the idea that the Jews had been God’s chosen people – which is why all the Old Testament killing and raping and genocide to get the Jews their ‘promised land’ was OK. God was fine with genocide – as long as the genociders were God’s ‘chosen people’. But, according to Muhammad, the Jews got too comfortable and broke their covenant with God (the whole Jesus thing, money-changers in the Temple and all that stuff) – which is why God punished them by kicking them out of the magical promised land, Israel.

Because, if Israel is ‘the promised land’, then only God’s chosen people get to live there – right?

And, the punishment that Muhammed is said for God to have inflicted on the Jews – to prove they were no longer his favourite people – was to deny them a homeland at all. As in – no matter where the Jews would have set up their new nation state, it would have made Muhammed wrong for saying they will never have a homeland as divine punishment. That is, the moment the Jews have a nation state of their own, Muhammed is proven wrong and all of Islam is proven to be a false religion…

But, setting it up in the promised land is an order of magnitude worse, because that is reserved for God’s favourites. And if the Jews get a homeland there, that means that they ARE God’s favourites…which means the Muslims are not, which means that Islam is not 100% correct….which it claims to be, so if one part is falsified, then all of it is….which is why them Jews have got to be kept out of Israel.

As do the Christians and everybody else.

Because if the Muslims are not God’s favourite people, then their whole religion is proven to be false…

So, now that we know why only the Muslims may live in Israel, we get to the secondary reason: all the Jews, including children, must be killed.

Why?

Because the Koran says that only when all the Jews are exterminated will the day of judgment (and paradise on Earth) take place.

So, you see, the Palestinian Islamists have very logical reasons for not wanting peace with Israel:

1) More dead Palestinian babies = more money for Hamas

2) Permitting Jews in ‘the promised land’ would bestow the title of ‘God’s favourite people’ on them and not Muslims, falsifying Islam

3) Killing all the Jews will bring Paradise to Earth and ought to be accelerated

Thus, Israel has no hope of a peace treaty with Hamas.

If Israel acts as any other country would to protect its people, the international community (weighted by Muslim and Islamist-fearing State votes) will destroy it through isolation.

Therefore, doing what they are doing now – pursuing their objectives while taking every possible precaution to save civilian lives is the only reasonable course of action open to the Israelis.

 

Evolution and HIV

The following videos are most excellent – but, if you have not ever been exposed to the language of ‘immunology’ or the latest theories in this branch of science, you may find the following few explanations useful.  Otherwise, please, proceed to the videos themselves!

Backgrounder:

Our body is made up of cells.

The outer layer of the cell is called a cell membrane.  It is made up of a waterproof ‘double-layer’ of ‘phospholipid bilayer’ – which make it very difficult for either water or fat-based substances to make it into the cell.  (A phospholipid is a thigie that is water-soluble on one end, fat-soluble on the other.  When they form a bilayer (a two-layer), they line up in just such a way that neither water nor fat soluble stuff can enter the cell through – which is why they are so useful in forming the cell wall.)

But, in order to live, the cell needs to exchange chemicals (like food and oxygen) with the outside.  In order to do this, each cell has some proteins built into the cell wall.  These proteins form channels that permit specific chemical reactions to occur – thus permitting the cell to ‘eat’ and ‘breathe’.

These proteins are not ‘flush’ with the rest of the cell wall – they form very specific ‘bumps’ on the surface of the cell wall that are unique to each protein…and each cell has a unique pattern of these proteins.

Thus, each different type of cell has a ‘fingerprint’ pattern of protein ‘bumps’ in the cell wall – that is how the body recognizes each cell for what it is and what function it performs.

Virus cells also have a unique ‘fingerprint’ pattern of proteins in their cell walls – and it is by this ‘fingerprint’ that our immune system learns to recognize them.  It then builds specific anti-bodies that check for this specific ‘fingerprint’ on the virus wall and if they detect it, they bind to it and eventually kill it.

Viruses are notorious for changing their ‘surface proteins’ and thus their ‘fingerprints’, making it impossible for our immune systems to identify the virus cells and mark them for destruction.

But, even if you are not educated in this field, the conclusion in the second video will make sense!

 

 

C0nc0rdance: Individuality by Robert Ingersoll

Remember, I am posting this before setting off on my holidays:  it may refer to the 4th of July, but, in my never-humble-opinion, this piece is timeless!!!

 

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