Archive for the ‘Religious Extremism’ Category

Mercy Ministries has changed it’s name in New Zealand to A Girl Called Hope but it’s still the same old Mercy.

I can’t see any reason they would do this other than to try and hide from the negative publicity now associated with the name Mercy Ministries in Australia.

As the official A Girl Called Hope website states this ministry still has “strong ties” to Mercy Ministries and Nancy Alcorn. Clearly this is just Mercy Ministries with a different name. Perhaps Mercy thought that simply rebranding their product would be enough to silence it’s critics? The official website goes on to say:

“A Girl Called Hope is based on the work of Mercy Ministries which was founded by Nancy Alcorn in America in 1983. Having worked with troubled youth for eight years; Nancy gained insight into the reasons why social problems exist, particularly in young women.

The first home was opened in Monroe, Louisiana, this then extended to Nashville, St. Louis and Sacremento, California in the United States. Mercy Ministries has expanded internationally with homes in England, Canada and here in New Zealand.”

There is no mention at all of the Australian homes they’ve opened and then closed; no mention of the compensation payout; the lies they told the media; the thousands of women who’s lives were damaged; or the fact they only changed the name after the Australian home closed.

I’m sure any woman turning to A Girl Called Hope for help would like to know these important facts.

Regular readers will have read my views on Mercy Ministries and their abhorrent methods. It is still the case that most of the information out there about Mercy Ministries is their own PR rubbish. All over the world people are not being told about the many, many women who were made WORSE by Mercy instead of better.

So I have created The Truth About Mercy as a place where people can read about some of the harrowing experiences of those who’ve been to Mercy.

“Mystic Monk” Dave Vaughan brings his weird religion to the Big Brother house and offends people with his homophobic views.

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Big Brother is upon us again as the final series gets under way. There’s plenty of bad press given to Big Brother but I’ll happily admit that I am a fan!

To me Big Brother has always been interesting as a way to look into how people interact with each other and form relationships. I can’t help but be interested by the concept of taking a load of people who are polar opposites of each other and locking them in a house with nowhere to escape for 3 months.

This year Channel 4 have chosen a classic in the form of Dave Vaughan. Dave runs a “church” called the New Ecstatics in Wales and believes that he can get “drunk” on the “holy spirit”. Let’s make this clear, Dave thinks that he can spontaneously become intoxicated on God’s joy. He also, like most Christians, believes that people should burn in hell simply for being attracted to the same sex. This particular view has already gained him some nominations and scorn.

It is an important point to note that Dave spent many years on drugs, taking the likes of acid and speed. It seems clear to me that this has affected his brain and is responsible for his delusions!

Dave Vaughan is part of a fairly new movement within the Christian church. The “head” of the movement is John Crowder, another man who’s done a lot of acid and “met” Jesus whilst tripping. Crowder then when on to start a movement which uses drink and drug references when talking about God. They like to get “jacked up on God”, “toke the holy ghost”, “snort lines of God” , “drink the wine of God” and “smoke the cross pipe”. It’s pretty obvious these former drug users haven’t let go of their desire to be high and have simply substituted it for religion.

Regular readers of this blog will be all to familiar with my opinions on Christianity, the grip it has on the world and the damage it causes. I’d be ecstatic myself if there was no such thing. Ultimately, however, it is up to the individual what he chooses to believe. If Dave is so mentally unstable that he genuinely believes what he says then he probably needs help more than scorn.

However, it’s not just Dave who is affected. His children have been brought up in this strange environment and, not surprisingly, believe just as he does. It is wrong to pass on your mental illness to your children and I have made my opinion on brainwashing children with religion clear here.

The housemates in the BB house seem oblivious to the extent of Dave’s mental illness. Indeed this is not surprising as he’s kept some of his more extreme views quiet, I suspect if they knew just how weird he was they’d be keeping their distance.

There is a positive to Dave being in the house though, as long as he’s there he’s demonstrating to the whole country how screwed up the religious can be!

I recently wrote about the disgusting chants of a group of Muslim Extremists during a home coming parade by our troops. In the post I said how I wished more Muslims would publicly distance themselves from the warped version of Islam being advanced by extremism.

So I was pleased to read about Hadiya Masieh, a Muslim woman who turned her back on the extremist group who’d brainwashed her into supporting the 9/11 attacks and is condemning those who’ve hijacked her faith. Hadiya now works for the Three Faiths Forum, a group whose aim is to bridge the gap between religions. Given my wish for more condemnation of extremism from the Islamic community I feel I should commend Hadiya.

Anyone familiar with me will know my thoughts on religion and there is plenty wrong with Islam, even in it’s most “liberal” form; but I support anything that aims to drown out the nonsensical noise being made by extremists.

You can read about her story here in the Guardian

This week I had the privilege of watching the 200th episode of South Park. I have to say it was one of the funniest I’ve seen in a long time. In terms of jokes it wasn’t as funny as some episodes but what it did wonderfully was highlight the absurdity of Islamic censorship.

For those who didn’t see it the basic plot saw all the people South Park has previously made fun of bring a class action lawsuit against the town. The only way to stop the lawsuit was to bring the prophet Mohammed to Tom Cruise. Rather than actually depict Mohammed the creators dressed him in a bear suit.

Not surprisingly then, given the willingness for violence of some Muslims when someone dares to depict Mohammed, the writers of South Park, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, have now received death threats. The internet has also been awash with angry Muslims ranting about how incredibly offensive the show was. Funny how those who say they’re “people of God” are the ones making the death threats, a shining example of morality!

I applaud South Park for having the guts to stick their neck on the line. It’s about time the world stopped pussy footing around and pandering to such lunacy. Some may say this episode was trying to purposefully offend Muslims but lets face it, that’s what South Park does isn’t it? It’s important to point out that in the US they have a concept called free speech (It’s a concept they’ve not heard of in the Middle East), one which is far more important than not drawing images of some bloke called Mohammed. This South Park episode screamed from the rooftops “this is America and we allow people to say what they like”.

It’s because of this I was sad to hear they’d censored the follow up episode. I understand that the creators value their lives and I can understand Comedy Central wanting to avoid being the centre of a religious row, but what on earth did they think would happen? The first episode made a point of how Muslims would respond so they were aware of the response it was going to have.

This episode raises an important issue which is deeply affecting the planet at the minute; the issue of why the religious think that the rest of the world has to humour their beliefs. If, as a Muslim, you wish to refrain from drawing pictures of Mohammed then by all means go ahead but that should not give you the right to dictate what the rest of the world does. It seems to be that we have created a new human right: the right to not be offended if your illogical beliefs are questioned.

We need to sort this out. Let’s face it, if we seriously think we can continue this farce of never offending the religious then we’re very mistaken. All religions are built upon ancient superstitions which are slowly being proven fallacious. We are trying to create a ‘free speech’ world yet, at the same time, we’re granting the religious not only the freedom from persecution but freedom from having anything negative said about them. As we push forward into a new age of enlightenment this is only going to cause conflict. The result of sending this signal to the religious, that the world will bend over backwards to accommodate their beliefs, will create a generation of fools who think they can say whatever they want but can’t have anything said back to them. It is nothing more than ludicrous for the religious to demand that non-believers live their personal lives in accordance with a religion they have no interest in.

Situations like this are going nowhere and will happen again. This is why the world needs to get some balls and stand up to religious threats.

The word terrorism brings to mind certain images. The Twin Towers, car bombs, Anthrax in the post etc. Right now the majority of the world’s terrorism has its roots in the Middle East and Islamic extremism. The East is a breeding ground for radicalised young Muslims hell bent on forcing the world to believe as they do. They oppose everything about the western way of life and will go to any lengths to make the entire planet as restrictive and appalling to live in as the Middle East. These young Muslims are a new breed who have found ways to manipulate their holy book to justify just about anything.

It is vital we do everything in our power to maintain the freedom of western life and to oppose the spread of the oppression that Islam brings. As a side note; when I talk about oppression I am not limiting this to the ‘radicalised’ Muslims. I accept that most Muslims want to live a peaceful life and do not condone the use of violence advanced by the extremists and I applaud them for their stance. However, many of these ‘peaceful’ Muslims are still sympathetic to the aspects of their religion which force women to be second class citizens in society. I live in a country free from the rule of the Taliban but witness on a daily basis the lack of freedom women in Islam have. I have known of numerous cases of women being told they can’t decide their own path in life, forced to hide under a veil, shipped out to the Middle East to marry whoever their father wanted them to marry, regardless of their own wishes. Women’s rights are just one of many examples I could cite. It is vital for the health of humanity, and to maintain the freedom we have, that we oppose these ludicrous customs fervently.

But we must not forget that the eastern religions are not the only risk to our freedom. In the USA out-dated, backwards, hateful and discriminatory feelings are stronger than ever before. These feelings are fuelled by the intense ignorance which is prevalent in American society and culture. In what is ironically called the ‘land of the free’, conservative Christianity, and it’s message of precisely the opposite of freedom, still has a stronghold on the nation.

It is a stronghold I fear could only become stronger. It is more than obvious that Islam is making a lot of noise and is currently experiencing a period of rapid growth. This growth seems to scare the Christians, who similarly want us to forget the thousands of years of social evolution we’ve experienced and pretend we live 2,000 years earlier than we actually do. Right now something scary is happening in America. Christian extremists are becoming more vocal and more confrontational than ever before, determined to make more noise than Muslims about their deluded view of how the world should work. The lengths they are prepared to go to in order to spread their message of hatred are increasing.

The Army Of God is a group opposed to abortion. They see the world in a narrow minded, black and white way where every person who aborts a pregnancy is a baby murderer. Their tactics are confrontational; their website contains a plethora of images of aborted babies interspersed with Bible verses which they twist to fit their agenda. They support the murder of abortion doctors and use inflammatory statements like “American Hero Scott Roeder”, glorifying the abhorrent actions of Scott Roeder the mentally deranged man who shot dead a father for performing abortions. ‘Pro-life’ terrorists like Scott Roeder have been responsible for burning and bombing medical centres, I dread to think what else they may be capable of. While stopping short of actually advising people to murder, the Army Of God’s web site is riddled with the sentiment that such murders are ok. Slightly hypocritical that the Army Of God clearly believe two wrongs make a right. These people are no different from the terrorists of the east. They are prepared to use and/or support violence in order to bring fruition to their own agenda.

Repent Amarillo are a group of equally narrow-minded, intolerant bigots who have elevated their religious mission into the realm of terror. They are on a self-imposed war against what they see as the evils of Amarillo and have vamped up their activity in 2010. They use military language, wear military clothing, call themselves ‘soldiers’ and create the impression they like all things violent. It’s difficult to discern what their aim is from their web site as it’s full of rambling non-sensical bullshit. They claim they “cannot stand by and watch [their] neighbours walking through the gates of hell”, which would suggest their mission is to ‘save’ people and bring them into Christianity. Their actions suggest the exact opposite, however, as to date they’ve involved themselves in standing outside strip clubs and hurling abuse at the patrons; finding the contact details of those who visit the ‘evil’ places they despise and intimidating them; picketing outside people’s houses who they disagree with; trying to ruin ordinary people’s lives by informing their employers of their sexual preferences. Not really the actions of a group wanting to save people is it?

Repent Amarillo share a number of similarities with the terrorist groups of the east. For example they exist centred around a small number of people’s personal interpretation of an ancient text which has long been shown to be total bollocks. At the centre of this group is David Grisham, a religious nut who worryingly is an armed guard at a nuclear facility. They are, in many ways, a cult built on the personal delusions of one man and his band of followers. In addition to this most of David’s recruits are young men in their teens or twenties who have found a perfect environment to vent their hatred. These young men have been radicalised in the exact same way the young Taliban and Al’Queda recruits have been.

The worst case scenario is that these new breed of Christian terrorists will ‘up their game’ in the face of this new breed of radicalism we’re seeing. These people are just as dangerous, in my opinion, as the terrorists who carry out bombings against the innocent. These people care not about the rules of decency and kindness, they have no regard for the law (apart from the parts of it which allow them to spout their rubbish) and believe the end justifies the means. I fear we are in for a rough future where these nuts will continue to carry out atrocious acts all in the name of religion.