Friday, July 11, 2008

"Bottoms" Out

Not that I think France is a place where fundamentalist Christians dream about moving to but the country is taking even greater strides to keep those of a conservative nation (religiously speaking) at bay. According to Reuters via MSNBC, the Council of State (a French high court) has put the kibosh on a Moroccan woman's attempt to gain French citizenship. The grounds for rejection were due to their take on the 32-year old woman's adherence to the orthodox Muslim religious practice of wearing a burqa and living in submission to her husband and male relatives. Per the court:
"She has adopted a radical practice of her religion, incompatible with essential values of the French community, particularly the principle of equality of the sexes," said a ruling by the Council of State handed down last month and sent to Reuters on Friday to confirm a report in Le Monde.


"She has no idea about the secular state or the right to vote. She lives in total submission to her male relatives. She seems to find this normal and the idea of challenging it has never crossed her mind," Emmanuelle Prada-Bordenave wrote.
My guess is that the fundies here and abroad will find this ruling as a reason to praise the French (they are, after all, standing up to the European version of the brown menace) and even suggest the US take the same sort of stance in a similar situation. The richness of a Christian fundamentalist argument against the religious orthodoxy of another religion/denomination is how they miss the obvious similarities with their own beliefs.


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Monday, July 07, 2008

South Carolina's limited beliefs

So, South Carolina is still moving ahead with their government supported (initial fee paid for by the Lt Gov, no less) Christian license plates. I'm sure you've all heard about this little state sponsored jem and how the poor, disenfranchised Christians must have these plates available since there is no other way to use their motor vehicle to testify to what good Christians they are. Any one protesting their plate is prejudiced against Christians to the point they are trying to impede spreading the "good news" and message of Christianity. According to SC Lt Gov Andre Bauer this is a free speech issue and it is absolutely necessary that the plate be supported because the overtly Christian plate "allows people of faith to profess that they believe in a higher calling, they believe in God". In addition to Brauer's willingness to front the initial fee (only for the Christian plate, of course) there are a few other little tidbits that haven't been broadly discussed in most coverage of the story is those related to the state's restrictions on any specialty plate that would compete with the Christian one courtesy of CNN:
While individuals can ask the DMV to print plates for other faiths -- for a $4,000 fee -- the request would be subject to significant limits and rules not imposed for the Christian plate. Other tags could feature a religious symbol -- such as the Star of David -- but no words would be allowed.
It's such a shame that nobody has invented anything else that could be used to make a statement using a car. . .


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