Thursday, February 23, 2006

Bloody Mary

Catholic Church leaders in New Zealand are urging a boycott of the already infamous 'Bloody Mary' episode of South Park, saying that the programme, during which a statue of the Virgin Mary appears to bleed out of her ass, is "ugly and tasteless."

Watch it here.

And then do penance for your sins of downloading free stuff by buying lots of South Park merchandise from Amazon.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Some guys are bigger than others

A study by Brigham Young University professor has concluded that members of the Church Of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints weigh on average 4.6 pounds more than their fellow Utahns. The same study found that Mormons were 14 percent more likely to be obese.

The study was made by BYU health science professor Ray Merrill from data obtained in 1996, 2001 and 2003-2004 by the Utah Health Status Survey. It actually marks an improvement on 1996 figures when adult members of the Church were found to be 5.7 pounds heavier and 34 percent more likely to be obese.

It's been suggested that Mormons are eating so much as it's just about the only vice they are allowed, since smoking, drugs, drinking and other forms of fun are strictly prohibited.

Associated Press report that Steve Aldana, a BYU professor who presented some of the study's findings at a recent heart conference at Utah Valley Regional Medical Center said: "For years, the church has focused on the don'ts -— don't smoke, don't drink, and all the other things that you shouldn't do that are heavily enforced... There has been little emphasis on the do's - eat good foods and exercise," he said. "In the church, we have a lot of don'ts, and now finally here's a do -— go ahead and do eat and boy, do we eat."

A spokesman for the church declined to comment, said the church-owned Deseret Morning News.

Friday, February 10, 2006

While everyone's been worrying about those damn cartoons...

... the terrifying news from The House Of Yahweh group has gone unnoticed!

Yisrayl Hawkins has announced in their latest newsletter that "The End Is Almost Here!" According to his latest newsletter: "Those Left Alive At The End Of The Last Three And One-half Year Time Period Will Be Keeping Yahweh's Sabbaths".

He predicts pandemics, epidemics, fear, hatred and nuclear wars... which will grow worse each month "as the pains upon a woman with child."* Ouch. Only those who follow Yahweh's Laws will survive. And there won't be many of them.

*Yisrayl Hawkinsmay be wrong... It won't be the first time. Readers of The Joy Of Sects may recall how he expeccted to be murdered by Satan in the year 2000. "Thankfully we only have a year left of this madness," he said in 1999

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

So that's what all the fuss is about...

No, that is not a man making fun of The Prophet. It's Jacques Barrot, a pig squealing contestant at the French Pig-Squealing Championships in Trie-sur-Baise’s annual festival... Although a grainy version of the same photo is currently doing a tour of the Middle East as part of the "dodgy dossier" gathered by the Iman's objecting to the cartoons originally published in Denmark's Jyllands-Posten.

Click here for more details.

Does Barrot know how much trouble he's caused?

Thursday, February 02, 2006

It's just a poxy picture...

Not even a very good one.

But there is a principle at stake. And given a choice between mild bad taste and repressive and murderous religious bigotry I'd go for the crappy cartoon every time.

To see the twelve cartoons that have caused such an uproar click here. They're all of equally dubious quality.

More details on the boycott of Danish goods, the withdrawal of the Saudi Ambassador to Denmark because one of their papers first printed the image - and the concomitant furor (bomb threats, storming of the EU embassy in Palestine and savage beatings meted out on Danish workers in the Middle East) can be found here.

To see that there's nothing new about making caricatures of God or Mohammed, even within Islamic culture, click here.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

UK MP drubs Scientology

During last night's debate on the Religious Hatred Bill Dr Tony Wright said:

"I have no hesitation in saying, safeguarded by privilege as I am, that I regard Scientology as an evil cult founded by an individual purely in the interests of enriching himself and sustained by those who are either wicked or wayward. But if the Bill were to pass and I were to repeat those comments outside this House as an ordinary civilian, I would lay myself open to prosecution simply for having sought to point out the dangers of a fraudulent organisation masquerading as a religion."

Rational thought and criticism of religion not illegal yet.

The UK government's attempt to make using "threatening, insulting and abusive" language against religious groups an offence has been defeated. A revised version of the Religious Hatred Bill has passed through the House Of Commons where intent to foment hatred has to be shown and only "threatening" language will merit prosecution.

What splendid news!

I hope that I'm one of the first UK citizens online to say "yah boo sucks" to all religious groups in the light of this reprieve for freedom of speech.