Posts Tagged ‘ FTB ’

Millions for selling children into slavery

Jun 21st, 2014 8:53 am | By

Kuwait has a form of slavery, but then so does the US. A 2013 New York Times book review gives details:

In “Kids for Cash,” the investigative reporter William Ecenbarger tells the story behind a corruption scandal so brazen and cruel it defies imagination. Between 2003 and 2008, two Pennsylvania judges accepted millions of dollars in kickbacks from a private juvenile detention facility in exchange for sending children — girls and boys, some as young as 11 — to jail.

It is a harrowing tale, lucidly told by a journalist with a good eye for detail. The children’s stories continue to unsettle long after the book ends: the 13-year-old incarcerated forthrowing a piece of steak at his mother’s boyfriend; the

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



Or that makes our gathering toxic

Jun 20th, 2014 6:16 pm | By

This is almost funny, but really – it’s not, it’s disgusting. Paul Elam warning his posse not to talk violent threatening crap at their shiny conference because someone might hear them. David Futrelle at We hunted the mammoth has the story:

Well, you probably shouldn’t post a public announcement warning the raving misogynists who will be attending your conference to refrain from launching into violent anti-woman rants at the drop of a hat because someone might hear them. Because the fact that you feel it necessary to issue such a warning is kind of a giant clue that a significant number of the conference attendees are raving misogynists given to launching into anti-woman rants at the drop of a hat.

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How they josh each other at Eton

Jun 20th, 2014 6:03 pm | By

Meanwhile, among Britain’s political elite…a Tory MP says publicly that he’d like to punch Yasmin Alibhai-Brown in the throat to shut her up.

She was on a tv chat show with the vile (and misogynist) Rod Liddle, and she told him she loathed him.

Fabricant, who has his profile picture on Twitter as ice skater Jimmy MacElroy from Blades Of Glory, chipped in.

I could never appear on a discussion prog with @y_alibhai I would either end up with a brain haemorrhage or by punching her in the throat

He then retweeted someone who called for Alibhai-Brown to be deported.

Then later he said he was just out of the dentist and anybody who knows him will know … Read the rest

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All 30 girls in one class

Jun 20th, 2014 5:48 pm | By

Meanwhile in Norrköping in eastern Sweden, there’s a lot of FGM going on.

Some 60 cases of genital mutilation have been discovered in Norrköping in eastern Sweden since March with all 30 girls in one school class found to have undergone the procedure.

Of the 30, some 28 of the girls were found to have been subjected to the most severe form of genital mutilation, when the clitoris and labia are completely cut away and the genital area sewn together except for a small opening.

Infibulation, in other words. What volumes that speaks of the horror of women. Why not just seal the whole thing off with a few inches of concrete? That would be fatal of course, but … Read the rest

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Fugitive slaves in Kuwait

Jun 20th, 2014 5:37 pm | By

One of those times when the jaw actually drops in astonishment. Al Jazeera reports:

Kuwaiti domestic workers are being named and shamed on an Instagram (link is external) account called Mn7asha, or “runaway”.

The account description reads, “An account to display pictures of servants fleeing in Kuwait, together to put an end to this phenomenon.” The account lists a number to send photos to via the mobile messenger Whatsapp and says, “Hand in hand we can make a difference, even a small one.”

“Runaways” are “fleeing” – quite as if slavery were legal.

The Kuwait Society for Human Rights estimates(link is external) 600,000 domestic workers contribute to the country’s migrant labour force. Foreigners make up the vast majority

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Some huge blinders

Jun 20th, 2014 4:45 pm | By

Penn Jillette’s assholeness goes way back. (I wasn’t paying attention to him then. I can’t pay attention to everything. I’m a nerd. Quit looking at me like that.) Massimo Pigliucci was pointing it out way back in 2009.

…as we have learned recently from the Atheist Alliance / Dawkins Foundation / Bill Maher fiasco, “skepticism” is sometimes too broad a label, as someone can be properly skeptical in politics but not about pseudoscience (Maher), while someone else may be great at debunking astrology and magnetic therapy, and yet also unable to shed some huge blinders when it comes to politically charged issues. The latter is, unfortunately, P&T’s case, as made excruciatingly clear by the 2008 (season 6) episode “Being

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A libertarian feminist interviews Marwa Berro

Jun 20th, 2014 3:55 pm | By

Oh yes, there are such people as libertarian feminists. No not Christina Hoff Sommers, but there are such people.

Marwa is there to talk about her Ex-hijabi fashion blog.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ItL4XJ_OfsRead the rest

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Will’s untutored eye

Jun 20th, 2014 2:55 pm | By

The St Louis Post Dispatch decided it can get along without George Will after that column he wrote last week about how women long for the high status of being a rape victim.

St. Louis Post-Dispatch Editorial Page Editor Tony Messenger writes that readers — both liberal and conservative ones — have lobbied the paper to change its lineup of conservative columnists. But apparently a bit of a push was necessary.

That came from a recent controversial piece by Washington Post columnist George Will — the one about the “supposed campus epidemic of rape” and the way in which “victimhood” serves as a “coveted status that confers privileges.”

It’s so fashionable right now, all this yelling about “victimhood” and “patriarchy” … Read the rest

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Evangelical teachings on repentance and forgiveness

Jun 20th, 2014 12:01 pm | By

Libby Anne talks about the way evangelical concern with “forgiveness” makes things harder for victims and a lot easier for perps.

Evangelical teachings on repentance and forgiveness create a tremendous problem when it comes to rape or other forms of abuse. If you commit a sin and repent of it, God forgives you. I remember hearing Psalm 103:12 quoted constantly: “As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.” Of course, this was always said in a positive way—isn’t it awesome that God forgives us no matter what? But it doesn’t must mean God forgives us. It also means God forgives rapists, child molesters, and so on—fully and completely.

I

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Target – see what they did there?

Jun 20th, 2014 11:51 am | By

I hate most kinds of shopping, and most kinds of shops. Confined spaces, lots of strangers everywhere, no trees or birds or large bodies of water – what’s to like about them? But I can tolerate them for the time it takes me to find the milk or socks or shampoo I need to get, usually. Unless there is Christmas music playing – then I really can’t tolerate them, and postpone non-essential shopping until after the season is over.

But there are some extras I can think of that would make a shop even more hellish. A bunch of polar bears roaming around hungrily? A raging fire? A broken sewer pipe?

Shoppers roaming around with shotguns slung over their backs?Read the rest

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Forced to marry at 14

Jun 20th, 2014 11:24 am | By

Another item from the Annals of Brutality – in Iran a woman who was forced into marriage at 14 is going to be executed for killing her husband.

Razieh Ebrahimi was forced to marry at the age of 14, became a mother at 15, and killed her husband at 17. Now at 21, she is on Iran’s death row.

They left out a step: she was raped at 14, no doubt repeatedly.

“I married our neighbour’s son when I was only 14 because my dad insisted,” Ebrahimi was quoted as telling officials working on her case, according to Mehr. “My dad insisted I should marry him because he was educated and was working as a teacher. I was 15 when

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BQ goes to Brighton

Jun 20th, 2014 10:30 am | By

Have another Big Questions, this one asking: Should the British stop tolerating intolerance? (Michael Frayn got there long ago, in the 60s, with BBC talking heads and all.)

Five minutes in, Maajid Nawaz responds to the host’s devil’s advocate question “If an area is 95% Muslim shouldn’t the schools in that area focus on that?” with a forthright defense of secularism including in state schools.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=67L_T9ieXuURead the rest

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Look for the root sin

Jun 19th, 2014 6:30 pm | By

Bob Jones “University” tells rape victims to look for the sin in themselves that caused them to be raped. No, I’m not making a tasteless joke.

Coming from a conservative Mennonite family, Katie Landry, who at age 19 had never even held hands with a boy, was raped multiple times by her supervisor at her summer job. Two years later, haunted by the attacks, and attending Bob Jones University, she sought help from then dean of students, Jim Berg.

According to Landry,  Berg asked whether she’d been drinking or smoking pot and if she had been “impure.” He then brought up her “root sin.”

“He goes, ‘Well, there’s always a sin under other sin. There’s a root sin,’” Landry explained.

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Guest post by Brony: Every one of us is a “God of Jokes”

Jun 19th, 2014 6:02 pm | By

Originally a comment on Penn Jillette on how to Professional Comedy With Added Misogyny.

What pompous overblown impulsive reactivity!

We all individually have a say in what is funny and what is not. Every one of us is a “God of Jokes” and a comedian should realize that. I’m pretty sure that comedians don’t totally ignore the surrounding culture and adapt to it in order to hone their craft. That culture has a structure made up of our individual dispositions, experiences and beliefs that are the source of jokes. It’s a pretty clear attempt to use his authority to bully a disliked opinion down.

We should consider why things are funny and what the effect of humor is on … Read the rest

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It’s not me, it’s you

Jun 19th, 2014 12:19 pm | By

So what next? American Atheists tweets:

Yeah. I’m afraid this just isn’t working out.… Read the rest

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She even includes the obligatory elevator reference

Jun 19th, 2014 12:09 pm | By

A bit of annotation on the substance of Jaclyn Glenn’s anti-feminism video.

At 45 seconds she makes an elevator sneer – “He invited me to have coffee in his hotel room; sexual harassment, patriarchy!”

But I feel like the term “feminist” is exclusionary.

She points out “humanist” is a great word too so why don’t we use that word?

But the word “feminist” has gotten such a hawwrible reputation from modern feminists and like I said it’s exclusionary.

It’s gotten such a hawwrible reputation from people like Glenn talking stupid garbage about it, too.

So stop the nonsense, stop saying patriarchy for every damn thing, and stop making everything about you [with a forceful gesture].

Which is rich coming from … Read the rest

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Battling the feminist demon

Jun 19th, 2014 11:48 am | By

Jaclyn Glenn has a new video. This one is about her contempt for feminism. I’ve managed to watch 29 seconds so far.

Glenn is the Latest Big Thing among the atheists – this shit is the Latest Big Thing.

It’s the New Left all over again. Oh, it turns out I’m a second class citizen? Oh. I thought I was a citizen like any other. Bye then.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ji4t7HhIjwRead the rest

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Penn Jillette on how to Professional Comedy With Added Misogyny

Jun 19th, 2014 9:46 am | By

Well that’s one good thing: Penn Jillette has gone public – more public than before, at least – about what a sexist asshole he is.

Dave Muscato did a public Facebook post yesterday* about how to deal with sexist jokes. He was spinning off a post of Miri’s (that I had seen) about the uses of playing dumb when you hear a sexist or racist etc joke, because this puts the joker in the position of having to spell out what the joke rests on. Dave’s post was about why he prefers the calling out approach. Who knew that would motivate Penn Jillette to out himself? But he did.

Penn JilletteWho fucking made you the god of jokes?

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Everything normative Islam stands for

Jun 18th, 2014 6:17 pm | By

It’s helpful when reactionary theocrats spell out how reactionary and theocratic they are. There’s this guy Ghulam Esposito Haydar for instance. He’s not pleased that a liberal Muslim has been invited to speak at the Living Islam festival.

So at this years Living Islam, the ISB have invited a speaker from the BMSD.. who’s also a part of Tell Mama..

Don’t feel it’s appropriate. Wasn’t required. .

Really? He doesn’t want the founder of British Muslims for Secular Democracy there? So he disapproves of secularism and democracy, and thinks they’re not “appropriate” at such a festival?

Wow. Good to know.

His last comment on that post is even more informative.

 I know fairly well who she is. She’s from

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A morbid fascination with human credulity

Jun 18th, 2014 5:04 pm | By

PZ has some thoughts on skepticism. He starts with a continuum of belief, with the very gullible at one end and conspiracy theorists at the other.

And then, somewhere in the middle lie science and skepticism. People readily conflate those two, unfortunately, and I think that’s wrong. Science is all about following the evidence. If a bit of evidence supports a hypothesis, you willingly accept it tentatively, and follow where it leads, strengthening or discarding your initial ideas appropriately with the quality of the evidence. You end up with theories that are held provisionally, as long as they provide fruitful guidance in digging deeper. It is ultimately a positive approach that winnows out bad ideas ruthlessly, but all in

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