All entries by this author

Ian Buruma Points out the Obvious *

Oct 1st, 2007 | Filed by

Religion is sometimes a force for good; other times it’s not; communism can work the same way; etc.… Read the rest

A bit too non-linear

Oct 1st, 2007 11:54 am | By

Did Ian Buruma write this in ten minutes, or what? It’s all over the place.

It has become fashionable in certain smart circles to regard atheism as a sign of superior education, of highly evolved civilization, of enlightenment. Recent bestsellers by Sam Harris, Christopher Hitchens and others suggest that religious faith is a sign of backwardness…

Oh get over it for Christ’s sake. Is there no end to the market for people complaining about this overwhelming flood of atheist books that add up to all of five which is as a grain of sand to a beach compared to the flood of theist bestsellers? There certainly doesn’t seem to be. Is this the top item in The Lazy Editor’s HandbookRead the rest

Skip the plebiscite

Oct 1st, 2007 9:21 am | By

Funny what a hard time people have getting this.

Oddly, some of the people commenting on the UCU decision on the Engage website have expressed disappointment that the boycott proposal has been defeated through legal means rather than by a popular union ballot. This is a puzzling response. The Jim Crow laws in the United States were overturned in the 1950s and 1960s through Supreme Court decisions and civil rights legislation, rather than by popular referendums in southern American states. The civil rights movement did not attempt to argue with segregationists to give up their misguided commitment to discriminatory practices. It invoked legal authority in order to compel them to respect the human rights of African Americans. In a

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Shalom Lappin on the End of the Boycott *

Sep 30th, 2007 | Filed by

In a liberal democracy the rights of minorities against racist exclusion are ensured by legal guarantee. … Read the rest

UCU Told Boycott Would be Illegal *

Sep 30th, 2007 | Filed by

Sue Blackwell said decision is ‘outrageous and an attack on academic freedom.’… Read the rest

Floods Demolish Crops in Ghana and Togo *

Sep 30th, 2007 | Filed by

For those of us used to buying our food in supermarkets, it is hard to imagine the scale of the problem.… Read the rest

Malalai Joya Refuses to Be Silent *

Sep 30th, 2007 | Filed by

Women walk for miles to see her. She is their hope for a better future.… Read the rest

Tablighi Jamaat Plans London Madrasa *

Sep 30th, 2007 | Filed by

‘We can’t change Allah to suit us. Islamically, this worldly glamour is not what we are supposed to be.’… Read the rest

Shiv Malik on Brick Lane and ‘Brick Lane’ *

Sep 30th, 2007 | Filed by

Self-appointed community leaders threatened to burn the novel because it did not present a ‘positive image.’… Read the rest

What is it Like to be a Member of Hizb ut-Tahrir? *

Sep 30th, 2007 | Filed by

It means thinking Sharia law should be imposed over the entire world by force.… Read the rest

How ‘Non-violent’ is Hizb ut Tahrir? *

Sep 30th, 2007 | Filed by

Global leader called for the destruction of Hindus in Kashmir, Russians in Chechnya, Jews in Israel.… Read the rest

No fleece

Sep 29th, 2007 12:41 pm | By

I’ve found Giles Fraser irritatingly woolly in the past, but he’s not woolly on the subject of the Anglican cop-out. He’s very sheared indeed. Nary a punch is pulled.

The deal that the archbishop has brokered with the Episcopal church in New Orleans protects the unity of the church by persuading US bishops that the church is more important than justice…For all the high-sounding rhetoric about how much they value gay people, the church has once again purchased its togetherness by excluding the outsider…OK, so no one has died here…[O]ught we not to get a bit more perspective? No: the struggle for the full inclusion of lesbian and gay people in the life of the church is a frontline

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Jonathan Derbyshire on Edmundson on Freud *

Sep 29th, 2007 | Filed by

Charismatic leaders such as Hitler promise eternal peace in place of conflict, plenitude in place of lack. … Read the rest

Church Buys Unity by Excluding the Outsider *

Sep 29th, 2007 | Filed by

Struggle for inclusion of gays in the church is a frontline battle in the war against global religious fascism. … Read the rest

A Gilded Frame *

Sep 29th, 2007 | Filed by

Scientists are surprised and not pleased to find themselves in a film that makes the case for ID.… Read the rest

How the ‘Framing’ Debate Went *

Sep 29th, 2007 | Filed by

We need activist parents helping teachers oppose the encroachment of the religious on education.… Read the rest

PZ on That Creationist Documentary *

Sep 28th, 2007 | Filed by

‘I certainly haven’t said that “freedom of thought and freedom of inquiry” aren’t part of the university.’… Read the rest

Myers and Laden Encounter Nesbit and Mooney *

Sep 28th, 2007 | Filed by

A reception in Dinkytown will follow the event. Seriously.… Read the rest

Colorado Students Walk Out on Goddy Pledge *

Sep 28th, 2007 | Filed by

The students say the phrase violates the constitutional separation of church and state.… Read the rest

Acid Victim’s Family Blocks Access to Treatment *

Sep 28th, 2007 | Filed by

‘NGOs are involved in un-Islamic activities and it is a sinful act to get treatment from them.’… Read the rest