Activism

Nigerian Humanist Activist Mubarak Bala Illegally Detained for Over 1 Year

On April 28th, 2020, Mubarak Bala (age 37), an Ex-Muslim atheist and President of the Humanist Association of Nigeria, was apprehended at his home and then taken to the northern state of Kano. There he faced blasphemy accusations from religious figures. Blasphemy is punishable by death in the region where sharia law is enforced on Muslims despite Nigeria’s own Constitution.

French Senate Bans Hijab for Muslim Women Under Age 18

France’s move to outlaw wearing the hijab in public places for girls under age 18 was proposed under France’s “Separatist Bill” and approved by Members of Parliament (MP) on February 16th. The French Senate decided in favor of the bill on March 30th.

The Separatist Bill was officially named for “reinforcing Republican principles.” The objective of this legislation is to give France the resources to fight Islamic radicalism.

 

New Law Allows Medical Workers To Refuse Treatment To LGBTQ People

On March 26th, Arkansas’s Governor, Asa Hutchinson (R), enacted Senate Bill 289 (Medical Ethics and Diversity Act,” into law.This legislation will allow doctors and medical professionals to refuse treatment that conflicts with their religious or moral beliefs. Opponents say this legislation will give providers an easy path to deny LGBTQ patients the medical treatment they need.

Argentinian Ex-Priest Disavows Decree Against Blessing Same-Sex Unions

On March 14th, the Vatican office that manages doctrine announced that the Catholic Church is not authorized to bless same-sex unions.

A former priest in Argentina, Andrés Gioeni, formally disavowed his Catholicism after the Vatican’s decree. In recent years, Gioeni became an LGBTQ activist lobbying for a more open Catholic Church. He has blessed same-sex unions in Argentina, where Pope Francis was born and initially became part of the Catholic Church.

New Study Finds That Being ‘Godless’ May Be Good For Your Health

Several studies in recent decades found that being religious correlates with good health. New studies have challenged the finding that being an atheist correlates with poor health!

Believers who attend church services regularly are less likely to smoke, use drugs or become obese. They may live longer than those who do not attend any religious church services. Some have been led to conclude, according to those findings, that if religion is good for you, then being an atheist must be bad for your health. 

 

Pakistani Court Grants Bail to Christian In Blasphemy Case

Nabeel Masih, a 16-year-old Christian, was accused by Akhtar Ali on September 18, 2016, of committing blasphemy in a Facebook post. Ali claimed the post “defamed and disrespected” the Kaaba in Mecca. Ali also claimed that he and some friends discovered a picture on Masih’s timeline depicting a pig on top of the Kaaba.

Indian Gov Opposes Same-Sex Marriage in Court

As it sought dismissal of the petitions to recognize same-sex marriages within existing laws, the Centre told the Delhi High Court (HC) that marriage in India depends on “age-old customs, rituals, practices, cultural ethos and societal values.” In the Indian Penal Code (IPC), Section 377 that covers homosexuality, the Supreme Court only decriminalized “a particular human behavior,” but it did not legitimize the human conduct in question. 

New Bill Forbids Sexuality Displays In Public Schools In Anti-LGBT Move

West Virginia Legislature introduced a controversial bill on February 10th, 2021, to remove essential teachings from public schools.

House Bill 2157 proposes eliminating any teachings of sexuality and forbids displays meant to promote understanding among all students related to such instructions in public schools. Although it doesn’t specify any particular group or sexuality in written form, it is widely known as an attempt to ban any mention of the LGBTQ+ community.

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