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Love, Laughter and Religion...

Religious campaigners in India and Pakistan take offence at a film titled PK

Link Here31st December 2014
PK is a 2014 India comedy romance by Rajkumar Hirani.
Starring Aamir Khan, Anushka Sharma and Sanjay Dutt. Youtube link IMDb

A stranger in the city asks questions no one has asked before. Known only by his initials, P.K.'s innocent questions and childlike curiosity will take him on a journey of love, laughter and letting-go.

Hindu campaigners have been attacking PK, a recently released Indian film. Bajrang Dal and the Vishwa Hindu Parishad disrupted the screening of the film at several locations demanding that supposedly objectionable scenes insulting Hindu deities and rituals be censored from the film.

In Ahmedabad, protests went violent as over 50 Bajrang Dal activists stormed and vandalised two theaters, Shiv and City Gold Multiplex. Though the miscreants fled before the police arrived, sources said the activists have been identified through CCTV footage.

Religious campaigners burned posters outside Milan cinema in Surendranagar, where the film was being screened, and forced a shutdown of the movie hall for the day. In Rajkot, saffron activists hit the streets against the film.

In Bhopal, sangh parivar activists raised slogans against Aamir Khan and jostled with cops outside Jyoti Talkies in Bhopal. Bajrang Dal and VHP have given a 24-hour ultimatum to the film's producers for removing anti-Hindu scenes. VHP-Bajrang Dal spokesman for central India Devendra Rawat said:

It has become a habit with Bollywood to hurt the sentiments of Hindus. They insult our gods and show our spiritual gurus as villains. Why don't they make a film based on Imam Bukhari and his anti-national statements?

In Delhi, police said they had stepped up security around several theatres after violent protests at Rivoli cinema in Connaught Place on Sunday when religious campaigners had smashed the theatre's window panes.

All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) member Maulana Khalid Rashid Firangi Mahali has demanded that the Censor Board remove objectionable scenes so that communal harmony is not disturbed. He said:

If a film has material that hurts religious sentiments, especially when it has a Muslim actor playing a Hindu, it has the propensity to be misread.

The PK issue has also revealed that chief censor Leela Samson seems to be edged out of her job. She explained:

The ministry has not taken up the issue with me or other officials of CBFC. However, they have often chosen to bypass me and speak to officials appointed by them indicating their 'concern' about a particular film, she adds.

Samson minces no words while criticising the government, alleging that the former I&B minister Prakash Javadekar never kept his promise of allowing the board to appoint for its panels professionals who are well informed about sensitive issues. Panel members who view the films have a heavy dose of party people amongst them.

Meanwhile in Pakistan, a Hindu group named Hindu Kranti Dal had filed a complaint against PK before police commissioner of Jalandhar Yurinder Singh Hayer. Police watched PK with leaders and activists of Hindu Kranti Dal and ordered removed of scenes against which the Hindu outfit raised objections.

Hindu Kranti Dal leader Manoj Nanna said that makers of PK have disgraced Hindu god Shiv. He said that HKD want police action against PK director Raj Kumar Hirani and actor Aamir Khan.



The Messenger of God...

Indian film causes a little religious 'outrage'

Link Here22nd December 2014
MSG: The Messenger of God is a 2015 India action comedy drama by Jeetu Arora and Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh Ji Insan.
Starring Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh Ji Insan, Daniel Kaleb and Fllora Saini. Youtube link IMDb

Guru Ji is a social reformer who works to help people fight against social evils.

Various Sikh organisations are 'outraged' about Gurmeet Ram Rahim's debut movie MSG: Messenger of God, and are seeking a ban.

The All India Sikh Students Federation (AISSF) said that it will soon move the Punjab and Haryana High Court seeking a ban on the film. AISSF president Karnail Singh Peermohammad said even the film's teaser is controversial as it shows the dera chief challenging people (Sikhs) with his dialogue Jo hamse takrayega (who will try to confront me). He said:

We have demanded a complete ban on the screening of the film and have requested the censor board, Punjab government and the Akal Takht to take immediate steps to get the film banned across the world. We are also moving a case in the court seeking a ban on the controversial film.

We have even objected to the title of the film. God's envoy cannot be a criminal. He is facing rape and murder allegations.



Update: Prohibiting Criticism...

Newspaper cartoon criticising Islamic State held as blasphemous in Indonesia

Link Here15th December 2014
The Jakarta Post has defended the publication of a cartoon criticising Islamic State (IS) militants, after its editor was arrested for blasphemy.

The cartoon shows a flag similar to ones used by IS with the words there is no God but Allah , and a skull and crossbones.

The Post, a leading English-language daily, said the cartoon was meant as a critique of the use of religious symbols in acts of violence.

But some Muslim groups said the cartoon was offensive towards Islam. The Post apologised and retracted the cartoon on 8 July, saying it regretted the error in judgement .

But later police named the Jakarta Post's editor-in-chief, Meidyatama Suryodiningrat, as a suspect for supposed religious defamation.

Rights group Amnesty International has condemned the move by police. In a statement the group said the incident went against President Joko Widodo's commitment to press freedom in Indonesia.



Religious Censors...

Indian sikhs to set up a unilaterally imposed film censorship board to ensure that movies and books provide positive propaganda for the religion

Link Here14th December 2014
India Sikhs are attempting to unilaterally impose a new Sikh film censor board on Indian films to force them to portray the religion and its followers in a positive light.

The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) will constitute a Sikh Censor Board to clear movies and books touching on the Sikh religion, history and culture. The board will ensure that films, books and entertainment provide positive propaganda for the religion. SGPC President Avtar Singh Makkar said,

The proposed board is aimed to ensure that the movies made in the future are in accordance with the Sikh 'rehat maryada' (code of conduct). The board will have 11 members, including Sikh intellectuals, historians and experts from various fields, film experts and lawyers.

Akal Takht Jathedar (High Priest) Gurbachan Singh said:

The SGPC was asked to constitute a censor board. Any movie or book related to Sikh history and culture has to be examined to avoid any controversies in the future.

However the unilateral imposition of religious censorship may not have any legal basis whatsoever.

Central Board of Film Classification (CBFC) member Chander Mukhi questioned the legal sanctity behind the proposed censor board by SGPC. He said:

What legal status do they have? Under which law will they enact this board? CBFC is enacted by the Parliament. Any other organisation will come up tomorrow and try to set its own censor board. We have different panels to watch the movies before they are released. The members are different every time. Any objectionable part in the film is cut down.

Makkar admitted that the board would have no legal sanctity:

Filmmakers who don't seek approval from the board would be responsible if there is any controversy. There have been instances in the past when films had to face strong protests.



Deeper Thought Required...

New Zealand manager arrested for an ill advised use of Buddha imagery in a Burmese bar promotion

Link Here13th December 2014

A New Zealand bar manager has been detained in Burma for using a commonplace image of the Buddha wearing headphones in a promotion. Police claimed the promotion was an insult to the Buddhist religion.

General manager Philip Blackwood, owner Tun Thurein and manager Htut Ko Ko Lwin were detained for police questioning and the bar was shuttered after a complaint by an official from Myanmar's Religious Department.

The Facebook posting for the newly opened V Gastro bar , a tapas restaurant and nightclub in a Yangon embassy area, showed a psychedelic mock-up of the Buddha wearing DJ headphones to trail a cheap drinks night this Sunday, AFP reported.

The bar deleted the post and wrote an apology on its Facebook page: Our intention was never to cause offence to anyone or toward any religious group. Our ignorance is embarrassing.



Violence is Acceptable, Sexy is Not...

Audience member at Indian TV studio slaps presenter for wearing short dress

Link Here3rd December 2014
Indian TV presenter and model Gauahar Khan was left audibly traumatised after a member of the audience at a TV competition she was presenting at got up and slapped her for wearing revealing clothes.

Akil Malik took 'offence' at Khan's cutaway outfit as she presented the grand finale of singing competition Raw Star at Film City in Mumbai. He then got up out of his seat to threaten and assault her live on air. He explained: Being a Muslim woman, she should not have worn such a short dress.

Malik was arrested and charged with molestation.



Playing the Morality Game...

Major New Zealand store bans 18 rated games and DVD

Link Here26th November 2014
New Zealand's Warehouse group of stores won't sell any 18 rated games and DVDs in future, saying it wants to promote family values.

Chief executive Mark Powell says the decision was made to remove such games and DVDs from its 92 Warehouse and 77 Noel Leeming stores after controversy surrounding the recently released Grand Theft Auto V . He claimed it was driven by feedback from customers and the community, and its guiding principles, which include making New Zealand a better place to live. He spouted:

This feedback has formed part of what has been an ongoing internal review, to ensure that the products we range reflect our brand values of family, children, and community,

Bob McCoskrie, director of the moralist campaign group, Family First, spewed:

It is completely unrealistic to believe that young people will not be influenced in their attitudes and behaviours by constant exposure to this type of gaming and DVD material.

So-called 'entertainment' and freedom of expression should never be at the expense of the safety of our community, appropriate emotional and moral development of our children, and promoting acceptable attitudes towards women, violence and law enforcement.



Ashes to Ashes, Dust to Lust...

Polish coffin company had fun with a sexy calendar and offends the Polish church

Link Here8th November 2014
A nude calendar advertising coffins has offended the Polish catholic church.

This calendar shoot of topless models caressing coffins is set to become a global hit - despite church whinges.

Polish casket company Lindner devised a unique way to brighten up their gloomy creations by draping them with sexy nude women. A spokesman for the company Bartek Lindner said:

Every edition is different and when we have too many women, female customers complain. But when we have too many men, male customers complain. So here we have men and women in one calendar as a compromise.

The photos were taken in the tourist city of Krakow, in southern Poland, The firm's owner Zbigniew Lindner said:

My son had the idea of creating the company's calendar so that we could show something half-serious, colourful, beautiful; the beauty of Polish girls and the beauty of our coffins. So much work goes into our coffins that are only seen for a few moments at the funeral.

We wanted to show that a coffin shouldn't be a sacred object - it's furniture, it's the last bed you'll ever sleep in. It isn't a religious symbol. It's a product.

The Catholic church in Poland has labelled the campaign inappropriate. A church spokesman has said that human death should be treated with solemnity and not mixed up with sex.



Dangerous Criticism...

Afghanistan newspaper sparks street protests for daring to criticise Islamic State terrorists

Link Here25th October 2014
A newspaper columnist condemning Islamic State and the Taliban triggered demonstrations in several Afghan cities on Friday, with protesters denouncing the article as blasphemous and calling on the government to punish the publication.

In Kabul, a crowd of approximately 500 people, including clerics and several members of parliament, gathered in front of the Eid Gah Mosque, the city's second largest house of worship. Religious leader Fazl Hadi Wazin said:

The government must stop the people who insulted the prophet, the Qur'an and Islam, and prevent them from leaving the country

In an opinion piece published last week in the English-language daily the Afghanistan Express, a journalist named AJ Ahwar admonished Muslims for remaining silent in the face of Islamic State and the Taliban. He also criticised Islam for not accepting other religions and minorities such as homosexuals and Hazaras, a Shia minority in Afghanistan.

The article ended by concluding that human beings are more important than God, which seemed to particularly incense protesters.



Offsite Article: Envious of Miserable Britain...

Link Here23rd October 2014
Full story: Collective Shout...Nutter campaigners against sexualisation and the like
Australia's advert regulator allows a little sexy fun in advertising, and the moralists are not happy about it

See article from



It's History Now...

French feminist group wants to ban statue depicting iconic V-J Day celebrations

Link Here16th October 2014
Unconditional Surrender , a statue of a sailor kissing a nurse, is 25-foot sculpture, by US artist Seward Johnson that, is based on Alfred Eisenstaedt's famous photograph Kissing Sailor capturing celebrations after the end of the war with Japan.

Now the French feminist group Osez Le Feminisme (Dare to be Feminist) is campaigning to have the piece banned from public view.

Osez Le Feminisme have launched a petition asking for the statue be removed from its current location, a war memorial in Normandy. The group claim the statue, and the picture it was inspired by, both portray a sexual assault.

We cannot accept that the Caen Memorial erected a sexual assault as a symbol of peace. We therefore request the removal of this sculpture as soon as possible.

The sailor could have laughed with these women, hugged them, asked them if he could kiss them with joy. No, he chose to grab them with a firm hand to kiss them. It was an assault.

The identities of the nurse and the sailor in Eisenstaedt's photograph have never been officially confirmed, although a book, The Kissing Sailor, says that the girl is Greta Zimmer Friedman who later said in an interview:

It wasn't my choice to be kissed. The guy just came over and grabbed me! I felt that he was very strong. He was just holding me tight. It wasn't a romantic event.



God Swill...

US death metal band wind up religious groups in Russia

Link Here28th September 2014
US death metal band Cannibal Corpse has wound up religious activists ahead of concerts in Russia.

A group called God's Will has had a knock at Cannibal Corpse with leader Dmitry Tsorionov (Enteo) whingeing:

We send mass requests to the prosecutor, the description of what is happening at the concerts of the group, the texts of their songs, which are described in detail in the rape and murder of children.

The Orthodox Union also seeks to ban Cannibal Corpse from playing in Russia. Chairman Roman Pluta wailed:

We seek to ban concerts Cannibal Corpse in Russia. Their work is fully covered by the composition of the crime under the articles of the Criminal Code, for fueling religious hatred, promoting exclusivity, superiority or inferiority of citizens on the basis of their religion.

Cannibal Corpse will be in Russia for a total of eight shows from Oct. 2nd-12th.



Free Speech Denier...

Rajan Zed has a whinge about artwork featuring a Barbie Kali

Link Here28th September 2014
Artists have caused a little 'outrage' by creating a Barbie in the image of the Hindu Goddess Kali.

The two Argentinian artists Marianela Perelli and Pool Paolini have have gotten noticed after previewing pieces from their upcoming exhibition The Plastic Religion , which features Barbie and Ken dolls altered to resemble religious figures such as Jesus and the Virgin Mary.

Rajan Zed, a perennial Hindu whinger and has said:

The Barbie-fication of Kali is simply improper, wrong and out of place, reports The Hindu .

Hindus welcome the art world to immerse in Hinduism but taking it seriously and respectfully and not for refashioning Hinduism concepts and symbols for personal agendas.

Although the artists clearly intended to provoke outrage at their pieces, they commented that they drew the line at creating a Ken version of the Muslim religious character Muhammed.

Free speech denier Zed commented that Hindus strongly believe in free speech ...BUT... claimed that faith is something sacred and attempts at belittling it hurt the devotees .



Moral structure of Egypt saved...

Belly dancing X-Factor style show cancelled due to religious pressure

Link Here8th September 2014
This week, Egypt's first X Factor -style belly-dancing show titled al-Raqisa (The Dancer) was scrapped after just one episode, following demands from the country's religious authorities.

Egypt's Dar el-Ifta, a wing of the justice ministry that issues non-binding religious edicts, claimed al-Raqisa would destroy the moral structure of the country. Shortly after, producers of the show, hosted by Egypt's pre-eminent belly-dancing star, Dina, gave way to the pressure and cancelled the programme.

Egypt's government has waged a year-long crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood and seeks to stamp out religious extremism. But in reality officials have no wish to upset religious 'sensibilities' in a country where Islam is deeply entwined with public life.

Members of the dancing community nevertheless say that things are still slightly better than they were under the Brotherhood. Randa Kamel, a well-known Egyptian dancer, says that before the Brotherhood's fall, she was dancing just twice a week, as the economic crisis and increased conservatism that accompanied the Brotherhood's tenure prompted venues to curb their dancing expenses. Now Kamel is back to dancing every night, even if audiences still have not reached their pre-revolution peak.



Updated: Church Villains...

Croatian church blocks filming of Cersei Lannister's naked walk of shame

Link Here3rd September 2014
A Game of Thrones actress has reportedly been banned from showing her breasts during filming on location. Producers of the hit US TV series have been prohibited from filming a pivotal topless scene at its planned location in the Croatian city of Dubrovnik, according to TMZ.

The magazine says the program's crew applied to the local film commission to shoot the scene in which Cersei Lannister, played by Lena Headey, undertakes a walk of penance through the streets of King's Landing.

But the request was reportedly rejected because the city's Church of St Nicholas has a hardline stance against public displays of sexuality. Advertisement

It's understood the iconic scene, will be shot elsewhere because of its importance to the storyline.

Update: Negotiated peace

3rd September 2014. See  article from

The nude walk was in jeopardy as the Church of St. Nicholas, where the scene would be filmed, banned public nudity.

The film commissioners, however, have now changed their initial ruling, giving permission to filming on the streets of Dubrovnik as long as Lena Headey, who plays Cersei, doesn't film it at the church.

The show's producers, thus, have to compromise with the new term set by the film commissioners. Headey will now shoot the nude scene on a fake church set.



Update: At war with @Peace...

New Zealand campaign group complains against song about killing of the country's prime minister

Link Here26th August 2014
Full story: Family First...New Zealand TV nutters
The New Zealand morality campaign group Family First is outraged about a Hip-Hop song by a group named @peace which contains lyrics about killing the Prime Minister and having sex with his daughter.

National Director Bob McCoskrie says you can't go any lower than this type of personal and offensive attack on a politician and their family. He calls for the election campaign to be lifted to a higher level than burning of effigies, torching candidate billboards, chanting F John Key .

Family First will lay a formal complaint with the Office of Film and Literature Classification.



An Emoticon for Outrage...

Thai Buddhists complain about messaging app emoticons

Link Here25th August 2014
Line Thailand, which operates the country's most-popular mobile-messaging app, has pulled three sets of emoticon images of Buddha in supposedly inappropriate poses following online complaints.

Thousands of Thai Buddhists claimed the images were disrespectful because they portrayed the religious figure in funny, cartoon-like positions.

Led by a group called the World Fellowship of Buddhist Youth, about 40 Buddhist organisations worldwide launched an international protest campaign on to have the recently introduced Buddha , The Mask Revolution and Saint Young Men sets removed. The Stop Buddha Line Sticker petition had attracted about 5,700 signatures..

Line then removed the contentious images from its Thailand sticker shop . However the emoticons remain available for purchase and download elsewhere in the world.

Line Thailand said in a statement:

They are no longer available for sales in Thailand market, since they may cause discomfort in cultural aspect. Line has no intention to disparage Buddhism but we feel deeply sorry for any inconveniences that may have been caused



Update: Bangerz and Twerks...

Dominican Republic and New Zealand recommend Miley Cyrus on tour

Link Here22nd August 2014
The Dominican Republic government commission that oversees public performances is banning a Sept. 13 concert by Miley Cyrus on morality grounds.

The commission said in a statement that it took the action because Cyrus often:

Undertakes acts that go against morals and customs, which are punishable by Dominican law.

Meanwhile Moralist campaigners in New Zealand claim that Miley Cyrus' show is porn and the promotion of substance abuse dressed up as pop music. The singer is set to play an Auckland show in October.

Family First's Bob McCroskrie hyped the show saying that reviews of the Bangerz tour indicated that it featured foul language, highly sexualised imagery, and normalised drug use. He suggested:

Parents should save their money, protect their children and expose them to the far more positive messages of celebrating their achievements, their personality and their uniqueness.

But Cyrus has hit out at the whingers, saying her show is empowering and brings happiness to her fans.



PC Sideshow...

Fairground bikini mural censored after whinges from the Australian Christian Lobby

Link Here15th August 2014
A mural featuring a four-metre high woman in a skimpy bikini has been ordered to cover up after protests from local Christians.

The painting on a ride at the Brisbane Ekka carnival was claimed to be 'inappropriate' by the Australian Christian Lobby. Wendy Francis, Queensland director of the ACL, wrote in an online petition:

Our children's innocence should not be compromised by attending the Brisbane Ekka.

This imagery is situated in the section of sideshow alley where there are lots of little kids rides. If this image was in an adult workplace it would be deemed as sexual harassment and removed.

The petition received more than 1,000 signatures.

Later a representative from the Royal National Agricultural and Industrial Association of Queensland said the inappropriate mural had been covered up with placards.



Offsite Article: If you can't beat 'em...Join 'em...

Link Here11th August 2014
Anti bullying campaigner calls for the government to bully the internet by beating it senseless with a big stick until it submits to censorship

See article from



Dangerous Tweets...

ISIS takes aim at the creator of the islamic comic heroes, The 99

Link Here22nd July 2014
Last week the self proclaimed Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, the militant group better known as ISIS, called for the death of Kuwaiti-American comic creator Naif Al-Mutawa.

The militant group currently engaged in battles in Kuwait claimed on Twitter that Al-Mutawa's series The 99 is slanderous to Islam and that there is no good [for] us if he remains alive for over three days.

The series is about a group of 99 metahumans, each of whom has one of the Virtues of Allah listed in the Koran, including generosity, mercy, wisdom, strength, and courage.

According to the Kuwait Times, Al-Mutawa said on Twitter that he will take legal action for the death threats but I really do not believe in ISIL and Qaeda... I don't care about them.



Update: Confusing Ruling...

Malaysia's highest court upholds the ban on christians using the name Allah for their god

Link Here25th June 2014
Malaysia's highest court has rejected a challenge to the ban on Christians using the word Allah to refer to their god, in a highly divisive legal case.

The case was brought by the Catholic Church, which sought to overturn a ban first put in place in 2007. But the Federal Court said an earlier ruling backing the ban was correct.

The case began over the use of Allah to refer to the Christian god in the Catholic Church's Malay-language paper. Christians argue they have used the word, which entered Malay from Arabic, to refer to their god for centuries and that the ruling violates their rights.

Malaysian authorities claim its use by Christians could confuse easily confused Muslims and lead some to convert to Christianity.

This ruling was handed down by a seven-member panel, which voted by 4-3 to dismiss the challenge.

Herald editor Father Lawrence Andrew said he was greatly disappointed by the judgement which didn't touch on the fundamental rights of minorities .

Reports in Malaysian newspapers suggested the Church could call for a review of the decision.



It's a miracle: turning cheap outrage into 4 million quid...

The catholic church in Brazil threatens to sue Italian state broadcaster over advert promoting World Cup coverage

Link Here 13th June 2014

The Catholic Church in Brazil has threatened to sue the Italian state broadcaster after it ran an advert featuring the landmark statue known as Christ the Redeemer wearing an Italian Football shirt. Rio de Janeiro Archdiocese claims that the depiction is somehow blasphemous and may seek damages in excess of £4m, according to the Local.

The advert ran on Rai to promote its World Cup coverage but the Church was unimpressed, claiming it was exploiting the image of Christ the Redeemer , which it claims is a crime. The advert features children playing football in the streets, then cuts to the statue with the Italy shirt digitally added. The slogan at the end reads Brazil awaits us .

Alessandro Maria Tirelli the lawyer who notified the broadcaster of the potential for a lawsuit said: The archdiocese feels outraged.

Rai have now withdrawn the advert amidst complains in both Brazil and Italy.



Offsite Article: Collective Shout! recommends...

Link Here12th June 2014
Full story: Collective Shout...Nutter campaigners against sexualisation and the like
Fresh One coffee shop in Perth

See article from



Would You Adam and Eve it?...

A few Austrian extremists get wound up by poster for a Vienna's famous Life Ball

Link Here30th May 2014
There's a penis upsetting huge swathes of Austrians, and it belongs to transgender reality TV personality Carmen Carrera. Throughout the country, this amazing David LaChapelle poster is pasted on Austrian streets, advertising this year's Life Ball in Vienna, which is probably the world's most famous AIDS charity event.

Inevitable the easily offended are non too pleased. Austria's far-right party FP has filed a lawsuit against it, and one grandmother took to the streets to paint over every penis in town, supposedly after she was asked by her grandchild if she had a cock herself.



Update: Talking Censorship...

Iranian internet censor bans WhatsApp on grounds of jewish ownership connections

Link Here6th May 2014
Full story: Iranian Internet Censorship...Extensive internet blocking
Iranian censors have reportedly banned the use of messaging service WhatsApp, citing the Jewish heritage of Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, which now owns WhatsApp.

According to initial accounts from Fox News, Abdolsamad Khorramabadi, secretary of the Committee for Determining Criminal Web Content, said the reason for the change is the adoption of WhatsApp by the Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, who is an American Zionist.

The Twitter account of Iranian president Hassan Rouhani retweeted a message from @MeetIran, which said it opposed the WhatsApp blockade.

Despite its massive popularity around the world, WhatsApp has become something of a black sheep in the Middle East. In February, the app was named the No. 1 cause of destruction in Jewish homes and businesses, according to Israeli rabbis, who discouraged its use among the ultra-Orthodox.



99 Atributes of Blasphemy...

Saudi clerics ban TV cartoon superhero series

Link Here26th March 2014
Saudi Arabia's senior clerics have banned muslims from watching the Islam-inspired TV cartoon series, The 99 .

The television series based on a superhero comic book is being aired by Saudi-owned satellite channel MBC3, based in the United Arab Emirates.

But in a fatwa published on Saudi websites claims the series to be blasphemous because the superheroes of its title are based on the 99 attributes ascribed to the religious character Allah in the Koran. The clerics, led by the kingdom's mufti, Abdulaziz al-Sheikh, said:

The 99 is a work of the devil that should be condemned and forbidden in respect to Allah's names and attributes.

The original comic strip version has been sold around the world and has also spawned a merchandise range and a theme park in Kuwait as well as the Arabic-language television series.



Philosophy of Disbelief...

Bangladesh online book seller censored by death threats

Link Here21st March 2014
A popular Bangladeshi online bookstore has stopped selling books by a well-known writer after an Islamic militant issued death threats on Facebook to the website's owner. said in statement that it has stopped selling books authored by Avijit Roy, a Bangladesh-born engineer and author who is currently living in the United States. Roy pioneered the popular Bangladeshi online blogging site Freethinker and rose to prominence with his books on philosophy, scientific thought and human rights issues.

The decision to withdraw his books was prompted by death threats posted to Facebook by Farabi Shafiur Rahman, an Islamist extremist allegedly linked to the hardline Islamist party Jamaat-e-Islami.

Farabi accused Roy of defaming Islam and the religious character Mohammed and accused chairman Mahmudul Hasan Sohag of promoting atheism by selling Roy's books. In his Facebook post, Farabi specified the office address of and called upon his Islamist friends in the adjacent locality to attack. He also told Sohag that he would suffer the same fate as Ahmed Rajib Haider, a popular blogger known by the psuedonym Thaba Baba, who was hacked to death last year by machete-wielding Islamic militants. released a statement saying:

A review committee has already started working to shape a policy under which no book that raises controversy will be shown on our site.

Roy commented:

My books are mostly on modern science and philosophy. These are not the books criticizing religious scriptures or any particular religion. They are mainly scientific books having references from reputed journals, books and newspapers.

He added that his books have never generated complaints over their content and that one of his books was on Bangladesh's annual best sellers' list.



Update: Sultan of Brunei threatens nasty punishments for those criticising his plans to introduce sharia law...

And of course, for those that don't!

Link Here27th February 2014
The Sultan of Brunei has ordered his citizens to stop criticizing his plan to institute a nasty version of Sharia law, telling them they'll be sorry once the law is implemented.

He announced last October that Brunei would gradually institute Sharia law punishments such as flogging, severing limbs and death by stoning beginning April 1.

Criticizing the sultan is forbidden, but the citizens of Brunei have still expressed their displeasure with Sharia law over social media. One poster dared to express displeasure:

It is truly frightening to think that we might potentially be stoned to death for being lovers, that we may be fined for being of a different sexual orientation, and that what we wear will be regulated.

But now the Sultan said in a speech:

They cannot be allowed to continue committing these insults, but if there are elements which allow them to be brought to court, then the first phase of implementing the Syariah Penal Code Order in April will be very relevant to them



Ray Ban...

Turkish province whinges at TV series depicting Mohammed as a beam of light

Link Here23rd February 2014
The govenor of the Turkish province of Konya has banned a TV series from filming in the province after it aired a scene depicting the religious character Muhammad.

The programme known as Sefkat Tepe , two weeks ago was criticized for showing a depiction of Muhammad as a beam of light.

Producers of the show, which is aired on Samanyolu TV, blasted the decision and hit back at criticism, claiming that it was part of a smear campaign against Turkey's Hizmet Movement, which owns the channel.



Update: Insulting Free Speech...

French satirical magazine in court for a trivial insult about the Koran

Link Here18th February 2014
Full story: Charlie Hebdo...Censored by terrorists
Easily offended French Muslims are taking satirical paper Charlie Hebdo to court for blasphemy over a front page insult of the Koran.

A court in Strasbourg set the hearing into Charlie Hebdo's supposed blasphemy for 7 April.

A Muslim legal defence group brought the case over a front page headlined The Koran is shit .

Blasphemy is not an offence in France. The trial will be a test case because, although it bans public insulting religious communities established on the territory , the agreement on the law only recognises Catholicism, three forms of Protestantism and Judaism.

A hearing has also been set for the 7 April in a case against former decentralisation minister Claude Goasguen that accuses him of offending the honour and dignity of the Muslim community . Speaking to a gala organised by a pro-Israel group, KKL, Goasguen claimed that the history of the Holocaust could no longer be taught in French schools because people are so scared of the reaction of young Muslims who have been drugged in the mosques .

 Lawyer Khadija Aoudia, acting for one of France's two major Muslim associations, the CFCM, said that media coverage of Goasguen's remarks feed Islamophobia and create a strong feeling of rejection .



Braced for Trouble...

Air New Zealand has fun with a bikini clad air safety video

Link Here8th February 2014
Air New Zealand's sexy new safety video featuring bikini-clad models from Sport Illustrated magazine has been criticised for supposedly objectifying women.

Air New Zealand says it has produced the the world's most beautiful safety video , dubbed Safety in Paradise .

The video is the latest in a string of safety dramatisations to feature on the national carrier's aircraft and will be rolled out gradually on all routes from February 12.

But gender extremist Deborah Russell, who viewed a preview about the making of the video, said she objected to the use of highly sexualised images in a safety video:

My concern is that as a woman I get on a plane to go to a business meeting say - something serious - and I am confronted by women in bikinis in what are highly sexualised images.

That jars. I want to be taken seriously but it seems that suddenly they are saying that my sexuality is all that matters about me.

The airline said it expected the video would engage customers in core safety messages and drive passenger traffic on its Auckland-Rarotonga and Los Angeles-Rarotonga services.

This is 'money can't buy' global attention focused on a key destination and our airline.

Air New Zealand spokesperson Andrew Aitken said the airline was not concerned about a potential backlash from passengers over the portrayal of women in the video.

Not at all. We have been careful to ensure Safety in Paradise has been produced in a way that is tasteful.

Air New Zealand said extensive tests with a cross section of customers and staff has been done in a bid to ensure the video struck the right balance between entertainment and its important safety messages.



In a Lonely Place...

Iran blocks WeChat and issues a general fatwa against lonely hearts chatting on the internet

Link Here15th January 2014

The religious leader of Iran has banned online chatting between men and women who are not related, repressing the hopes of singletons trying to find love on the internet.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei published a fatwa against the practice on his own website, claiming it to be somehow immoral .

Iranian authorities also blocked WeChat, an app similar to WhatsApp with more than 100million users that enables access to social networks. Both Facebook and Twitter, as well as other social networks, are banned in Iran.

Despite this ban, many Teheran officials have both Facebook and Twitter accounts, including President Hassan Rowhani who has 163,000 followers on Twitter.



Book Burners...

Muslim extremists burn down historic library after being offended by a pamphlet left in one of the books

Link Here6th January 2014
Ancient books in a historic library in the Lebanese city of Tripoli have been torched by extremist muslims, after a pamphlet supposedly insulting religion was found inside one of the books.

Security sources say that up to 78,000 books, many irreplaceable ancient Muslim and Christian texts and manuscripts, are now unsalvageable.

The Al-Saeh library in the Serali neighborhood was set a-blaze after a local gang to objection to a sheet apparently insulting to the religious character Mohammed, found hidden in the pages of one of the library books.

The library's curator, Greek Orthodox priest Ibrahim Sarrouj, received threats from unidentified people who accused him of writing the article, according the Jordan News Agency.

Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati condemned the arson attack:

We denounce the burning of the library and reject any harm being done to Tripoli and its people, as it has been, and will remain, the city of the world and of intellectuals.

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