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News from Bartlesville

Mar 31st, 2014 3:30 pm | By

St. John Health System issued a statement this afternoon. The Bartlesville Examiner-Enterprise reports:

Contrary to reports last week that contraceptives could only be prescribed for medical reasons, the statement released Monday appears to indicate that physicians employed by SJHS and practicing at Jane Phillips Medical Center can prescribe contraceptives to be used as birth control, leaving the decision to individual physicians.

“Appears to” is right – it’s very muddy. Very Cover Your Ass; very waffling; very You Can Have Both.

The unsigned document states in full:

“Consistent with Catholic health care organizations, St. John Health System operates in accordance with the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services, and therefore does not approve or support contraceptive practices.

Read the rest

(This is a syndicated post. Read the original at FreeThoughtBlogs.)



If Hobby Lobby can do business with China

Mar 31st, 2014 12:51 pm | By

That News Corpse article provides interesting information.

Hobby Lobby pays millions of dollars to stock their shelves with cheap products made in China, a country where abortion is legal and is even provided by the government for free – when they aren’t forcing it on women who want their babies. It is impossible to accept that the company is unconditionally opposed to a voluntary form of preventive health care that obviates the need for an abortion, while supporting a system that encourages abortion outright. If Hobby Lobby can do business with China when the profit motive compels them to, they cannot simultaneously pretend that an American woman having access to an insurance policy that includes coverage for contraception is some

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Christian values

Mar 31st, 2014 12:17 pm | By

Ah yes. Ain’t hypocrisy grand.

Update: the source at News Corpse.… Read the rest

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Under the guise of protecting religious freedom

Mar 31st, 2014 11:58 am | By

The Tennessee ACLU reported that the state dodged a different religious bigotry-enabling bullet last month.

NASHVILLE – A bill that would have made Tennessee the first state in the nation to codify into state law the use of religion to discriminate will not be considered during this year’s legislative session.

The bill was put into General Subcommittee, effectively ending the journey of SB 2566 for this legislative session.

Under the guise of protecting religious freedom, SB 2566 would have allowed individuals, businesses and organizations to use religion to discriminate against LGBT and other unmarried couples by refusing to provide them goods or services.

Religion is really covering itself with glory these days.

 … Read the rest

(This is a syndicated post. Read the original at FreeThoughtBlogs.)



To prevent students from being silenced

Mar 31st, 2014 11:32 am | By

In Tennessee…another one of those “Protect Religious Rights to Talk Shit About People God Hates” laws is on the governor’s desk.

Tennesee’s Religious Viewpoints Antidiscrimination Act, or SB1793/HB 1547, purports to prevent students from being silenced when expressing their religious beliefs in the classroom, when turning in written assignments, and at official school functions, including graduation and mandatory assemblies. In addition to specifying “that a student may express beliefs about religion in homework, artwork, and other written assignments free from discrimination based on the religious content of their submissions,” the bill also requires that students will “not be penalized or rewarded on account of the religious content of the student’s work.” Further, the bill appears to establish special

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Please can you explain?

Mar 31st, 2014 11:11 am | By

The Lawyers’ Secular Society has an open letter to the Law Society.

Dear Sir,

Law Society’s practice note on “Sharia succession rules”

This is an open letter which we have published on our website this morning.

We refer to the above practice note dated 13 March 2014.

(www.lawsociety.org.uk/advice/practice-notes/sharia-succession-rules/)

Please can you explain why and how the Law Society has adopted guidance to assist in drafting wills which treat women far worse than men, and non-Muslims far worse than Muslims? How is this consistent with the Law Society’s claimed commitments to equality?

For your information, you may be interested to know:

  1. We have launched an online petition calling for withdrawal of this practice note (approaching 2,000 signatures at

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Not one woman

Mar 30th, 2014 5:31 pm | By

Brigitte Amiri of the ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project was at the Supreme Court for the Hobby Lobby arguments and blogs about it for the ACLU.

…my heart fell as I watched the attorneys for the parties take their seats. There wasn’t a single woman. Not a single person of color. Although it was great that the government sent their top lawyer to defend the case, it was disheartening to see no women at counsel’s table for either party, especially because the case involves women’s access to contraception. How can that be in 2014?

How indeed. The case involves women’s access to contraception.

But then she cheered up.

Right out of the box, the female justices asked question after

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Mehdi Hasan tells other people to stay classy

Mar 30th, 2014 4:17 pm | By

Mehdi Hasan has really gone into overdrive lately in his public jeering and sniping at people he dislikes – or maybe he’s always like this, I ignore him most of the time so I don’t know. Anyway he’s doing a lot of it. It’s very reactionary right-wing stuff, which for some reason finds a home in more or less left-wing outlets. Why is that? Why do people on the left persist in thinking that the most reactionary Muslims or even Islamists are the ones they should be giving a megaphone?

Mehdi Hasan @mehdirhasan

“Baroness Warsi, Faith Minister, Dismisses Richard Dawkins As A ‘Secular Fundamentalist”

(The quotation marks are a nice touch; he probably wrote that himself, since he’s an editor … Read the rest

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Imagine a world

Mar 30th, 2014 3:39 pm | By

Exactly. I keep thinking this. If being pro-life is your central goal, saving fetuses should be way way way down on your list of priorities. Or, in my view, not on it at all, but even (for the sake of argument) if you think it is a way to save lives, it should still be near the bottom of the list.

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300 out of 26,000

Mar 30th, 2014 3:29 pm | By

Uh oh, Jimmy Carter is going to be in big trouble with the MRAs.

Sexual assaults, honour killings, prostitution, physical abuse – No matter where you look in our world, you will find women and girls being abused. It’s why the 39th President of the United States calls it THE biggest challenge of our times. Today, we hear from Jimmy Carter with his Call to Action and his new book in his only Canadian interview.

In the US military alone 26,000 sexual assaults took place and only about 300 actually resulted in anybody being punished. There’s an aversion to admit what goes on even in our most cherished institutions.

Well that’s because there were 25,700 false accusations of men … Read the rest

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She did not have enough money to travel north

Mar 30th, 2014 3:02 pm | By

So let’s check in with the ACLU on the subject of religious interference with access to birth control. There’s Texas for instance…

Yesterday a federal appeals court upheld a Texas law that has left large parts of the state without an abortion provider. Women who already are struggling to pay rent and put food on the table for their families must now travel hundreds of miles to obtain abortion care. For many, the obstacles will be too burdensome to overcome.

For example, one woman in the Rio Grande Valley who showed up to her appointment the day the law took effect was devastated to learn that she could not have an abortion in her area. She was happily married with

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They can no longer prescribe contraceptives of any kind

Mar 30th, 2014 12:12 pm | By

Stephanie has a post about a town without contraception. I followed her link to get more details on the situation in Bartlesville, Oklahoma.

The Bartlesville Examiner-Enterprise reports:

Some Bartlesville women are taking issue with a recent directive prohibiting doctors affiliated with Jane Phillips Medical Center from prescribing contraceptives, saying the decision is not only an affront to women but could have an economic impact by driving patients away from local doctors.

Confidential sources told the Examiner-Enterprise this week that a meeting was held Wednesday to inform local doctors of gynecology and obstetrics that they can no longer prescribe contraceptives of any kind — if they are to be used as birth control.

Stephanie fills in the missing backgroundRead the rest

(This is a syndicated post. Read the original at FreeThoughtBlogs.)



Keep your Arcadia

Mar 30th, 2014 11:26 am | By

It’s not just Phyllis Schlafly who talks ridiculous crap about the futility of a “war against Nature” and disseminates that crap via the latest communications technology. There is Noah, for instance, if David Plotz describes it accurately in Slate.

Like the last Noah’s Ark movie, this Noah tells a straightforward environmental parable. Expelled from Eden, mankind has gutted and burned creation, chopping down every tree, butchering every beast, and crowding itself into black, sooty cities. Alas for mankind, the heavenly think tank only has one idea for addressing the issue: start over, with a lot fewer of us—like, half a dozen, preferably vegetarians.

Aronofsky’s message to us moderns is clear: We, too, have corrupted our world, just as

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Some student senators said they were concerned

Mar 30th, 2014 10:57 am | By

I can still be surprised. I’m surprised by the student senate at the University of Alabama. Last week it voted to kill a resolution supporting racial integration of fraternities and sororities there.

The resolution cited damage to the reputation of the university, in Tuscaloosa, after it was revealed last year that all-white sororities were denying membership to black women based solely on race.

I did not know that.

Some student senators said they were concerned the language in the integration resolution would lead to an affirmative action-like Greek system. Some asked whether traditionally black or Latino fraternities would be required to admit white students.

Others talked about political correctness gone mad, others said there goes the neighborhood, others asked if … Read the rest

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Begins today

Mar 29th, 2014 3:24 pm | By

Sweet.

Via Global Secular Humanist Movement on Facebook.

 … Read the rest

(This is a syndicated post. Read the original at FreeThoughtBlogs.)



Secularist of the Year

Mar 29th, 2014 2:44 pm | By

The Secularist of the Year prize was awarded today, to Turkish MP and human rights campaigner Safak Pavey.

Safak Pavey is a member of Turkey’s main opposition party and sits for the Istanbul constituency. She is known for her international work in human rights, the promotion of the rights of women and minorities in Turkey, as well as humanitarian aid and peace-building.

She was also the first disabled woman elected to the Turkish parliament and, in 2012, was awarded a Woman of Courage Award by the White House for her efforts to raise awareness of the plight of those with disabilities in countries where resources are limited.

Safak has spoken out about the need for secularism and the better protection

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Sayeeda Warsi disappoints Mehdi Hasan

Mar 29th, 2014 12:10 pm | By

Mehdi Hasan interviews Sayeeda Warsi for the Huffington Post.

Given her work on Islamic finance issues, does she see herself as a Muslim minister, an advocate on behalf of Muslims within the government? “I am a British minister in the British cabinet who happens to be of the Muslim faith. I am not elected, as I keep being reminded by many right-wing blogs. I therefore don’t represent a constituency and I certainly don’t represent the British Muslim community.”

But she goes to chat with the pope as a Muslim – not someone who “happens to be of the Muslim faith” – and agree with him in opposing and hating secularism. Her religion is not a peripheral part of her job. … Read the rest

(This is a syndicated post. Read the original at FreeThoughtBlogs.)



Actively involved in opposition

Mar 29th, 2014 11:27 am | By

Shit just got real at Queen’s University.

Police are investigating after a man allegedly beat up a Queen’s University student who says she received threats for her support of feminist activities on campus.

Police say they haven’t dismissed the possibility the attack was a hate crime.

Danielle d’Entremont said the attack occurred late Wednesday night as she was leaving her home. In a Facebook post, she said the suspect punched her in the face repeatedly, breaking one of her teeth.

Ok but there could be some other explanation. Maybe the guy was just in a bad mood and she was the first person he saw. That can happen.

Police haven’t said whether the fourth-year student’s campus politics are linked

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The food is running out

Mar 28th, 2014 6:15 pm | By

Four daughters of the Saudi king say he is keeping them prisoner, and has been for more than a decade.

Princesses Sahar and Jawaher are the daughters of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia. They say they have been held in the royal compound in Jeddah for the last 13 years, and their sisters Maha and Hala are also being held in separate villas. They claim they are not allowed to travel or leave their home.

Princesses Sahar and Jawaher claim they have little communication outside of their gates – “no-one is allowed in or out.” They say the internet is their only window onto the world. Via Skype, they tell Channel 4 News they are “cut off, isolated… and

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Does Phyllis Schlafly use zippers?

Mar 28th, 2014 4:12 pm | By

Phyliis Schlafly says teh feminists are at war with nature.

Eagle Forum founder Phyllis Schlafly said today in her radio bulletin that the “the peculiar ideology of the feminists” is harming boys because it is encouraging “girls to enter boys’ fields” of study and employment. Apparently, some fields are reserved for boys, who Schlafly laments now “dislike school and have less interest in attending college” due to the nefarious actions of “a powerful network of feminists.”

“The feminists are at war with Mother Nature, and Mother Nature keeps winning, so the feminists are constantly angry at what they call patriarchy,” Schlafly added.

Huh. Notice where she said it. In her radio bulletin. Radio is not natural.

Does Phyllis … Read the rest

(This is a syndicated post. Read the original at FreeThoughtBlogs.)