California Governor Signs Bill to Defend Against Religious Registries | Electronic Frontier Foundation

On the last day to act on legislation in 2017, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill creating a firewall between the state’s data and any attempt by the federal government to create lists, registries, or databases based on a person’s religion, nationality, or ethnicity.

S.B. 31 was one of the earliest bills introduced by the legislature to oppose discriminatory policies floated by Pres. Donald Trump and his surrogates during the 2016 campaign. S.B. 31, authored by Sen. Ricardo Lara, was a direct response to Trump’s and his surrogates’ support of a so-called “Muslim Registry.” Although the bill places California at odds with the White House, both parties in the California Senate unanimously approved the bill, as did an overwhelming bipartisan majority in the Assembly.

Source: California Governor Signs Bill to Defend Against Religious Registries | Electronic Frontier Foundation

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Witch-hunting, a curse in Rajasthan – The Hindu

Dalit women in Rajasthan are being hunted by ‘bhopa’ sorcerers, who exploit superstitions on health

When a 75-year-old woman, labelled a witch by an influential Jat family and locked up in her own home was rescued by a team from the administration in August, the ugly face of medieval-style witch-hunting was revealed in the Mewar region of Rajasthan. The incident at Bholi village in Bhilwara district is not an isolated one.

Sunita Devi (name changed), who spent 18 days in a room measuring 10 ft x 10 ft without a window, was held responsible for the illness of a school-going girl from a Jat home. A ‘bhopa’ (exorcist) told the family that Sunita was a witch, and Jats responded by attacking her modest house – the only one belonging to the backward Nai community in the village – and thrashing her husband and sons.

In another instance, Lakshmi Bai (name changed), 65, has been forced to live in Bhilwara for 12 years after being driven out of her native Dariba village on the suspicion of being a witch. Living with her husband as a social outcast, she attended the caste panchayat five times pleading that the odious tag be removed, but to no avail. Sunita Devi and Lakshmi Bai came to Jaipur this week to narrate their sufferings to State Women’s Commission chairperson Suman Sharma, after the occult practices of ‘bhopas’ were exposed in a sting operation led by social activist Tara Ahluwalia. Hundreds of ‘bhopas’ have gone into hiding in Bhilwara, Chittorgarh, Rajsamand and Udaipur since their torture of innocent women came to light.

Source: Witch-hunting, a curse in Rajasthan – The Hindu

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Cobb County Genealogy Society to have meeting on Salem Witch Trials | News | mdjonline.com

The Cobb County Genealogy Society will have its monthly meeting on Oct. 24 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church of Marietta, 189 Church St. in Marietta.

The program will be Exploring the Salem Witch Trials. The trials, synonymous with paranoia and injustice, will be presented by Candy Parrow whose ancestor was accused of witchcraft. The trials took place in colonial Massachusetts during a two-year period from 1692 to 1693. Parrow will set the stage for how the witch panic started and the possible reasons for it.

Source: Cobb County Genealogy Society to have meeting on Salem Witch Trials | News | mdjonline.com

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New York Church Defaced With Spray-Painted Images of Upside-Down Crosses, ‘Witch Spells’

A New York pastor dismissed the vandalism attack that hit his church last week as just “paint on the walls [and] no one got hurt,” but it still spelled trouble for the Christian community and the police.

Source: New York Church Defaced With Spray-Painted Images of Upside-Down Crosses, ‘Witch Spells’

Awww… The little kiddies and wanna-be satanists are out and got hold of spray paint. Just check the local Halloween costume shop.

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The Summer Solstice Brings Out the Pagan in All of Us—and Some Christian Leaders Don’t Like It

Roll up your yoga mats, hide the virgins, grab your sleeping bags. It is the summer solstice and time to get in touch with your pagan soul.

And some Anglican Church parishes in Australia have gone still further, denouncing the practice of yoga as linked with Satanic worship and “confusion” about which God is being prayed to.

Someone always wants to spoil the party. But on a midsummer night? Dream on.

Source: The Summer Solstice Brings Out the Pagan in All of Us—and Some Christian Leaders Don’t Like It

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Are Witches Against Trump Bad Joke or Sign of Global Plague of Satanism? – Breaking Israel News | Latest News. Biblical Perspective.

At the stroke of midnight on Wednesday, some 13,000 people will connect via internet in yet another attempt to cast a curse on President Donald Trump, this time on the summer solstice. Though spell-casting may seem too absurd to be taken seriously, a rabbinic authority maintains that the ‘witches’ are tapping into Satanism, a disturbing theology making a strong comeback today in the guise of atheism.

Source: Are Witches Against Trump Bad Joke or Sign of Global Plague of Satanism? – Breaking Israel News | Latest News. Biblical Perspective.

Once upon a time I thought insanity was a particularly American thing. Good to see it’s common everywhere.

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The Party We’ll Have in Hell

I remember the precise moment I stopped believing in hell.

Over a decade ago I was at a Christmas dinner party in the home of a gay couple. From the outside it looked like any holiday gathering: a warm, beautifully decorated room filled with people laughing and telling stories in the glow of the tree, while the silky voice of Johnny Mathis wafted through the air along with the heavenly smells from a well-used kitchen.

Most of the guests that night happened to identify as LGBTQ, which hadn’t really occurred to me, until as I smiled and surveyed the room a sickening thought rudely interrupted: “Many Christians believe that these beautiful people are all going to hell. For no other reason than their sexual orientation, every one of them are doomed to spend eternity beyond this life in perpetual torment at the hands of a God who apparently made and loves them.” And as a Christian and a pastor, I was supposed to believe and preach this too. It simply no longer rang true for me. I couldn’t reconcile this with the character of a loving Creator.

Source: http://johnpavlovitz.com/2017/04/03/the-party-well-have-in-hell/

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Witches & Bitches: How Political Discourse Demonizes Women

If you’re a woman reading this, chances are you’ve been called a bitch in your life. Worse (or better, depending on your alchemic life choices), you’ve been called a witch.

For females in the public eye, the chances are infinitely higher. And for female politicians, well, you’d need an eye-wateringly strong potion to avoid either label.

Where there is criticism aimed at a female political figure, more often than not, the insults – and memes – spread to her hair, clothes, age and chance of witchcraft. Hillary Clinton, Theresa May, Angela Merkel, Diane Abbot, Melania Trump and more recently Kellyanne Conway have all been the subject of misogynistic political commentary en masse. They’re not the first, and I doubt they’ll be the last.

Source: Witches & Bitches: How Political Discourse Demonizes Women


In a debate class you learn that when your opponent resorts to ad hominem attacks it means they’ve lost and know it.

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Night of the witches – The Hindu

 

The first Friday of March…and I flew off to Catermaco. A sight not to be missed, whether you believe in magic or not.

It was the first Friday of March and I was restless. The winter cold still hung in the air and I wanted something that would shake out the chills from within me. It was then I heard about the Noche de Brujas. It sounded like a delicious snack but, no, it was not…in fact, it translated as Night of the Witches. It sounded exciting enough, so I made further enquiries and found that this festival happens in Catemaco, a city south of the Mexican state of Veracruz and is located on Lake Catemaco.

Source: Night of the witches – The Hindu

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‘Neo-Pagan Sexual Morality’ Spreading Throughout Church, Warns Conservative Archbishop | Christian News on Christian Today

An influential conservative archbishop is warning ‘neo-pagan sexual morality’ in the Church of England is at risk of spreading throughout the global Anglican Communion.

Source: ‘Neo-Pagan Sexual Morality’ Spreading Throughout Church, Warns Conservative Archbishop | Christian News on Christian Today


He says that likes it’s a bad thing.

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