A city in Florida has recently garnered much attention when a few of its leadership walked out in protest of an atheist invocation given at a government meeting.
Members of the Lake Worth City Commissioners stepped out of their meeting last week when Miami atheist Preston Smith took to the stand to give an invocation.
Lake Worth Mayor Pam Triolo and three other commissioners exited the space, as seen by a video posted on YouTube last Wednesday by Wes Blackman. more >>
A professor at a university in Colorado has garnered controversy after it was reported that he forced students to say an anti-American satirical version of the Pledge of Allegiance.
Charles Angeletti, a history professor at Metropolitan State University of Denver, reportedly compelled students in his American Civilization class to say a mock pledge. The allegations stem from an article by Caleb Bonham of the online publication Campus Reform, which was posted Monday.
"I pledge allegiance to and wrap myself in the flag of the United States Against Anything Un-American and to the Republicans for which it stands, two nations, under Jesus, rich against poor, with curtailed liberty and justice for all except blacks, homosexuals, women who want abortions, Communists, welfare queens, treehuggers, feminazis, illegal immigrants, children of illegal immigrants, and you if you don't watch your step," read the mock pledge, according to Bonham's article. more >>
As protests continue in Berkeley, California, reports of police action and possible offenses have come to light. One of those allegedly injured by police includes intern minister Cindy Pincus, who showed she had a split head after being hit by a police baton.
"The police began walking forward and in 2-3 seconds were pressed up against us with their batons held parallel between them and us," Pincus told the Berkeley Side. "I shouted, 'Be calm, be calm, we're peaceful!' And they kept walking forward. I looked to the left and a police officer had begun jabbing a protestor with the end of his baton. I turned around to retreat and passed a woman who had fallen and was being trampled. I bent down to pick her up under one armpit while another woman grabbed her other arm."
"As we were lifting her backwards I saw an officer raise his baton over my shoulder and was struck on the back of the head as I was bent forward. My vision momentarily blacked out and I saw stars. I put my hand to the back of my head and started running. I felt a welt rise immediately and blood ran down my neck and covered my hand," Pincus added. more >>
In what activists are claiming is a clear use of excessive police force and a violation of civil liberty, an eighth grader at a Texas middle school was arrested and slammed face-first in the ground by a police officer during a school football game after the student refused to remove his spiritually beloved rosary beads from his neck.
Jacob Herrera, an eighth grade student at Sam Houston Middle School in in Amarillo, Texas, was arrested and detained overnight by local police in late October after he argued with an officer over his right to wear rosary beads on school grounds. The rosary was given to him by his now-deceased brother and has religious and sentimental value to him.
While the Amarillo Police Department holds that rosary beads are symbolism for association with gang violence and asks that students in the Amarillo Independent School District not wear them on school property, Herrera had acquired prior approval from the school's principal that allowed him to wear rosary beads underneath his clothing while in school. more >>
A formerly beloved Pakistani pop singer-turned-Islamic televangelist, Junaid Jamshed, is now in hiding in London and has no plans to return to his home country after being accused of blasphemy for allegedly insulting one of the wives of the Muslim prophet Muhammad in a video sermon that has gone viral on the Internet.
Jamshed, who was the frontman for a prominent Pakistani pop band called Vital Signs before quitting music in 2001 to dedicate his life to Islam by joining the conservative Islamic movement Tableeghi Jamaat, is now the focus of a serious local police investigation over his alleged blasphemous remarks.
The investigation, which formally began last Tuesday, was spawned after an opposing Muslim party, the Pakistani Sunni Tehreek, issued a formal complaint to authorities about the content of one of Jamshed's video preaching sessions, which was later posted online. more >>
Several members of the NFL and other national sports organizations have shown their support for Eric Garner and others killed by police in very public ways.
Detroit Lions running back Reggie Bush and Cleveland Browns cornerback Johnson Bademosi both warmed up for Sunday's game wearing shirts that stated, "I can't breathe." St. Louis Rams offensive lineman Davin Joseph wrote the message on his cleats. Rams receiver Kenny Britt wrote the names of Michael Brown, Trayvon Martin, and more on his own cleats. All wanted to show their support for Staten Island resident Eric Garner, who died from a chokehold by a member of the NYPD.
The United States seemingly erupted after a video of the incident was posted online and a grand jury decided not to indict Daniel Pantaleo, the police officer responsible for putting Garner in the fatal, illegal chokehold. However, one week before that grand jury rendered its decision, five Rams players took to the field with their hands raised in the "Hands Up, Don't Shoot" position, showing support for Michael Brown, who was killed by Ferguson, Missouri officer Darren Wilson. more >>