My alma mater, The University of Chicago, was recently in the news for an overtly politically correct act for replacing its historic Bond Chapel's pews for Muslims to worship. This act is raising hackles reminiscent of the university's other, recent, tone-deaf decision to demolish the childhood home of former President Ronald Reagan, on its campus, and replace it with a parking lot and a commemorative plaque.
The school, founded by the Rockefeller family in the late 19th century as a Baptist-affiliated institution of higher learning, with an English-style undergraduate college, and German-style graduate research school, today positions itself as completely non-denominational research university.
However, being a non-denominational organization means that the organization is Christian, in terms of values, but does not express its Christianity in a particular form, welcoming all baptized Christians, regardless of denomination. more >>
Political Islam is the major force shaping the Middle East region today, and a dangerous one at that. The real question is if it can be tamed, and, more pointedly, what the West can do to bring about positive change during this pivotal time in history.But first, we have to understand what we're dealing with.
Political Islam, or "Islamism" as it's called in the West, is an armed political ideology similar to Bolshevism and Maoism. It's essentially religiosity cloaked as a movement that operates as a virulent ideology of warfare (jihad). It demands radical reorientation of Muslim societies to comply with Sharia Law that repudiates modernity in all its forms, bringing death and devastation both in and outside of the Muslim world.
In some ways, Islamism is more dangerous than outright terrorism, as terrorism can be identified by violence, while Islamism is a war of ideas. more >>
The filmmaker behind the controversial "Innocence of Muslims" film, the trailer for which was initially blamed for the violence that led to four Americans being killed at the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, in September 2012, has said that he is not anti-Muslim and wants to finish up his movie. His mission is to fight terrorism.
"It is not [a] religion movie," Nakoula Basseley Nakoula shared with Fox News. "I have a lot of Muslim friends and not all the Muslims believe in the terrorism culture. Some of them believe in this culture. That's why we need to fight [against] the culture, not the Muslims. My enemy is the terrorism culture; this is my enemy."
In September 2012, Muslim extremists stormed the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, killing U.S. Ambassador to Libya J. Christopher Stevens and three other Americans. After Anti-American protests ranged in front of other Western embassies in the Middle East, reports came out linking a trailer for "Innocence of Muslims" as a motive behind the attacks. more >>
Tel Aviv just hosted its 15th annual Gay Pride Festival, attended by a record-breaking 100,000 spectators and participants, including some of Israel's most powerful politicians. Here is The Times of Israel report on the event:
"Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai kicked off the festivities with a speech that reflected on the journey since the first annual Pride Parade, which he emceed in 1998...[T]he finance minister [said] that every couple, gay or straight, has the right to get married and have children [and mentioned] his…party's 'deep indebtedness' to the LGBT community.
"Also addressing the crowd, US Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro [said] 'There's no better place to celebrate than in Tel Aviv, the friendliest city in the world to the LGBT community,' he said. 'We learned from Israel to let our troops serve in the military without having to hide who they love,' Shapiro added… more >>
Recently released findings from Pew Research indicate that nations which are more secular and affluent have higher rates of acceptance of homosexuality.
Pew's Global Attitudes Project released their results Tuesday, which were based off of surveys conducted on over 37,000 respondents in 39 countries from March 2 to May 1.
"The survey of publics in 39 countries finds broad acceptance of homosexuality in North America, the European Union, and much of Latin America, but equally widespread rejection in predominantly Muslim nations and in Africa, as well as in parts of Asia and in Russia," reads Pew's press release in part. more >>
The gruesome murder of a soldier outside London by a Muslim convert, Michael Adebolajo, is just one example of throat slitting and beheading, which are Islamically sanctioned forms of execution. Although these occur particularly often in the course of family-related crimes – think, for example, of the case of Aasiya Hassan in suburban Buffalo, N.Y., killed by her husband in 2009, stabbed with two hunting knives more than forty times in the face, back and chest, then beheaded – this monstrous form of violence is also used in non-family instances.
Here are some examples that have taken place over the past decade in the West:Ariel Sellouk – Houston, August 2003: throat slit attempted but incomplete beheading. Sébastien Selam – Paris, November 2003: throat was slit twice; his face was mutilated with a carving fork and his eyes were gouged out by a Muslim neighbor who boasted, "I killed my Jew, I'll go to paradise." Theo Van Gogh – Amsterdam, November 2004: shot, throat slit, and five-page paper pinned to his body. Hossam Armanious, Amal Garas, Sylvia Armanious, and Monica Armanious, – Jersey City, N.J., January 2005: necks, throats and bodies stabbed, mutilation of Coptic tattoo. (A non-Muslim was found guilty of this crime; I do not accept that verdict.) Brendan Mess, Erik Weissman, and Raphael Teken - Waltham, Massachusetts, September 2011: throats slit, probably by Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the Boston Marathon bombers. Hany F. Tawadros and Amgad A. Konds – Jersey City, N.J., February 2013: shot, decapitated, hands severed. Lee Rigby – Woolwich, England, May 2013: run over by car, mutilated, beheaded.
In addition, Ibragim Todashev, who was shot and killed while being interviewed about the Waltham murders. He reportedly grabbed a knife and stabbed an officer several times, including in the head. It was so threatening that the officers used deadly force and on the spot killed Todashev. more >>