Pope sues over picture of him kissing guy/ more bashing of Obama
There is a doctored photo of Pope Benedict XVI kissing a Muslim cleric. It's an obvious fake. It is an ad meant in part to protest the pope's opposition to gay rights, including same sex marriage equality. Well, the pope is threatening legal action across the world to ensure that this photo isn't shown. A Vatican spokesman stated "It is a serious lack of respect for the Pope, an affront to the feelings of the faithful and an evident demonstration of how, in the field of advertising, the most elemental rules of respect for others can be broken in order to attract attention by provocation."
Well so, what. Freedom of speech means freedom of speech. People aren't obligated to show respect to the pope or any religious cleric. The era where the Vatican or any other Christian cleric could persecute you for offending a pope, bishop, minister or king ended centuries ago. When atheists are told that they are cowards who convert on the battlefield, (no atheists in foxholes) we don't threaten legal action. Suck it up, Benny.
Now, the right-wing is condemning President Obama for not mentioning a deity in his video Thanksgiving adress. But, neither did Bush II during one of his televised addresses. Neither did Clinton during half his addresses. Obama did mention a deity in his written remarks for Thanksgiving. Frankly why so many people need the president and the government to affirm their religious beliefs, I have no idea. This is a secular republic after all, at least for now until one of the Republican theocrats take the presidency.
By the way, many Christian fundamentalists advocate the beating of children for disobedience. That disobedience could be not washing the dishes or doing your homework. No surprise, they are a very authoritarian group. Often these children die, as they die when medical care is denied because of religious belief. Take this example:
"Larry and Carri Williams of Sedro-Woolley, Wash., were home-schooling their six children when they adopted a girl and a boy, ages 11 and 7, from Ethiopia in 2008. The two were seen by their new parents as rebellious, according to friends.
Late one night in May this year, the adopted girl, Hana, was found face down, naked and emaciated in the backyard; her death was caused by hypothermia and malnutrition, officials determined. According to the sheriff's report, the parents had deprived her of food for days at a time and had made her sleep in a cold barn or a closet and shower outside with a hose. And they often whipped her, leaving marks on her legs. The mother had praised the Pearls' book and given a copy to a friend, the sheriff's report said. Hana had been beaten the day of her death, the report said, with the 15-inch plastic tube recommended by Mr. Pearl.
"It's a good spanking instrument," Mr. Pearl said in the interview. "It's too light to cause damage to the muscle or the bone."
Some of the Williamses' other tactics also seemed to involve Pearl advice taken to extremes; the Pearls say that "a little fasting is good training," for example, and suggest hosing off a child who has potty-training lapses. The Williamses have pleaded not guilty and are awaiting trial."