Love Thy Neighbour: February 2007 Archives

February 20, 2007

Killer priest sentenced

Romania: A priest has received a 14 year prison sentence for his part in an exorcism which killed a young nun. Daniel Petru Corogeanu led the ritual to cast the Devil out from the woman.

Irina Cornici, 23, died after being starved and chained to a cross at a secluded convent in the north-east.

Four nuns were also convicted of manslaughter and received sentences of between 5 and 8 years. They plan to appeal their sentences, although the Orthodox Church is unlikely to be on their side:

The Orthodox Church, which described the Tanacu incident as abominable, has promised reforms, including psychological tests for those seeking to enter monasteries.

It banned Corogeanu from the priesthood and excommunicated the four nuns.

Priest jailed for exorcism deathBBC News, 19th February 2007.

British politician opposes veil

United Kingdom: Britain's first Muslim peer has come out against wearing the veil. Lord Ahmed of Rotherham said that they were a mark of separation and defiance against mainstream British culture, and that he felt the way they are used today is contrary to the original intention.

Lord Ahmed, who became the first Muslim peer in 1988, told the Yorkshire Post: The veil is now a mark of separation, segregation and defiance against mainstream British culture.

“But there's nothing in the Koran to say that the wearing of a niqab is desirable, let alone compulsory. It's purely cultural. It's an identity thing which has been misinterpreted.

“They were supposed to be worn so that women wouldn't be harassed.

Some of us would suggest that in these circumstances, it's the men who are at fault and should be kept indoors to stop them causing trouble, but this is a digression.

But my argument is that women, and communities as a whole, are now being harassed because they are wearing them.

He said that the veil was a physical barrier to integration.

He pointed out that Westerners in Muslim countries were expected to dress according to local norms, and felt British Muslims ought to return the courtesy:

The peer said that Muslims in Britain had to become more sensitive to their surroundings, in the same way as westerners walking around Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia, would have to wear a head covering and long clothing before they could expect to engage with local people.

He said that he did not want to see a ban on veils, but added: Muslims need to have a debate among ourselves about whether we need them.

Veil should not be worn, says Muslim peerThe Guardian, 20th February 2007.

February 12, 2007

Robertson in yet another demonstration of Christian love

United States: A bodybuilder has told a court that televangelist Pat Robertson threatened to kill him and his family in an argument over a milk shake.

According to a complaint Phillip Busch filed with the Norfolk police, Robertson made the threat when he entered a room in the courthouse Wednesday to be questioned for a deposition....

Busch is suing Robertson for what he says is misappropriation of his image to promote Robertson's protein diet shake.

Man Claims Pat Robertson Threatened HimThe Guardian, 10th February 2007 (thanks, Red Wolf).

February 4, 2007

Sunday miscelleny

A handful of stories from the last few days which I was too lazy to write about at the time:

  • Teachers get advice on how to spot signs of ritual abuseThe Guardian, 2nd February 2007. Note the word being repurposed to mean the abuse of children by Christians who believe the child to be possessed or a witch. Many of the signs are a bit crap, and others would apply to more mundane forms of child abuse too.

  • Brought to book: the poo lady's PhDThe Guardian, 3rd February 2007. Ben Goldacre find Gillian McKeith's PhD thesis:
    There are lots of grand statements about research, with nice superscript numbers relating to references in the back. But when you chase to the back of the book to see what these academic documents are, they include such august periodicals as Delicious, Creative Living, Healthy Eating, and my favourite: Spiritual Nutrition and the Rainbow Diet.

    Some of it is plainly absurd. As we get older, she explains, the levels of RNA/DNA decrease. Okay. If you do not have enough RNA/DNA, she goes on, you may ultimately age prematurely. Stress can deplete your DNA, but algae will increase it. And that's not all. Chlorophyll within the algae is a powerful oxygen generator for human beings. Back to GCSE Biology: it'll only make oxygen if there's light inside me, Gillian ...
    I found You are What you Eat frustrating and full of errors—it cited the safe drinking levels which were revised upwards in the early 1990s, for example. There are some good recipes in there, but often they are made needlessly complicated, and use exotic ingredients which would put it out of the price range of mere mortals.

  • New Conspiracy: Israeli Genocide Against Lebanese — With Poison BalloonsThe MEMRI Blog, 1st February 2007. This sort of panic is well recorded, and has a long history. There are examples of similar panics during the First World War, but this one seems to have the added legs of organisations willing to exploit it for political reasons.

  • An indictment that the liberal left is oblivious toThe Guardian, 3rd February 2007, isn't on the web site, presumably due to intense embarrassment about the ungrammatical title. Oliver Kamm alleges that a mysteriously monolithic liberal left puts the rights of religious organisations over that of the individuals they oppress:
    In the past century, material betterment and the steady diminuation of discrimination advanced progressive goals. Much of the left have [grr...—F.] yet to come to terms with this achievement. At the extreme, some who were once on the left have adopted the language and outlook of the right. They argue for what by any objective standards are reactionary positions. These include promotion of religious obscurantism in place of secularism; segregation of the sexes at public events; abridgement of free speech in deference to the sensibilities of those who claim themselves victims of Islamophobia; and, most pernicious, the resurrection in political debate of some highly traditional motifs of anti-semitic conspiracy theory.
    If you can get yourself to the library, it's on page 31.

  • Tolerating intolerance is still this country's besetting sinThe Guardian (Comment Is Free), 4th February 2007. More comment on a related matter to the above.

  • Muslims are now getting the same treatment Jews had a century agoThe Guardian (Comment Is Free), 2nd February 2007. One major difference, which is mentioned, but not dwelled upon, is that 19th century radicals-who-happened-to-be-Jewish were not fighting to impose Judaism on the populace as a whole, nor were they the ones wearing traditional Jewish dress as they had pretty much rejected religion. The tiny minority of violent Islamist fundamentalists claim to be fighting for their faith.

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries in the Love Thy Neighbour category from February 2007.

Love Thy Neighbour: January 2007 is the previous archive.

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