Jack Diehl

Indonesia to ban mini-skirts over “links to rape”

Cliquea aquí para Español. News of Note: 'You know what men are like': Indonesia to ban mini-skirts over links to rape Indonesia's powerful religious affairs minister believes that mini-skirts are pornographic and should be banned under the country’s tough new anti-porn laws. Minister Suryadharma Ali has been appointed to run Indonesia’s new anti-porn taskforce, announced by president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono earlier this month. He told reporters in Jakarta yesterday that before deciding what they must ban as pornography, the taskforce would consult widely to come up with “a set of universal criteria”. However, “one [criterion] will be when someone wears a skirt ...

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Employers ask job seekers for Facebook passwords

(También en Español) News of Note: Employers ask job seekers for Facebook passwords In their efforts to vet applicants, some companies and government agencies are going beyond merely glancing at a person's social networking profiles and instead asking to log in as the user to have a look around. "It's akin to requiring someone's house keys," said Orin Kerr, a George Washington University law professor and former federal prosecutor who calls it "an egregious privacy violation." What about relationship status, sexual orientation, and religious belief? I don't expect all the details of someone's personal life to be completely agreeable with every ...

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The new legal theory that enables homophobic evangelizing in US schools

(También en Español) News of Note: The new legal theory that enables homophobic evangelising in US schools Last month, 8,000 public high school students in Montgomery County, Maryland, went home with fliers informing them that no one is "born gay" and offering therapy if they experienced "unwanted same-sex attraction". The group behind the flier, Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays (PFOX), isn't the kind one expects to find represented in student backpacks. Peter Sprigg, a board member of PFOX who doubles as a senior fellow at the Family Research Council, recently told Chris Matthews that he ...

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Rock Group Delivers Controversial Message at Public School Assembly

(También en Español) News of Note: Rock Group “Junkyard Prophet” Delivers Controversial Message at School Assembly High school students in Dunkerton, Iowa, were expecting an assembly about bullying and making good choices. What they got instead was the Christian rap/hard rock band called Junkyard Prophet delivering an anti-gay and anti-abortion rant. According to the La Crosse Tribune, after the band performed, they separated the girls, boys, and teachers into three breakout groups. "They told my daughter, the girls, that they were going to have mud on their wedding dresses if they weren't virgins," said ...

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PayPal backtracks on “obscene” e-book policy

(También en Español) News of Note: PayPal backtracks on "obscene" e-book policy (Reuters) - PayPal, the online payment service owned by eBay Inc., is backtracking on its policy against processing sales of e-books containing themes of rape, bestiality or incest after protests from authors and anti-censorship activist groups. PayPal's new policy will focus only on e-books that contain potentially illegal images, not e-books that are limited to just text, spokesman Anuj Nayar said on Tuesday. The service will still refuse, however, to process payments for text-only e-books containing child pornography themes. When I heard that PayPal was throttling the sales of ...

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Utah legislature passes bill requiring ‘abstinence-only’ sex education — or none at all

(También en Español) News of Note: Utah legislature passes bill requiring 'abstinence-only' sex education -- or none at all Utah legislature has passed a sex education bill that allows schools to decide whether they will teach students about human sexuality and in the event that they do, requires that it use “abstinence-only instruction materials.” The bill now goes to the governor for approval. Abstinence only education ignores the fact that human beings will inevitably have sex. Parents may be scared to death that their child could become sexually active, but that shouldn't justify denying all children information about contraceptives and ...

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Use Birth Control? You’re Fired!

(También en Español) News of note: Use Birth Control? You're Fired! You may want to sit down for this one. Arizona legislators know that whether or not her insurance covers it, a woman may get the prescription she needs to prevent an unintended pregnancy. They want to give her boss the right to control that too. The bill they are pushing would not only allow employers to take the insurance coverage away, but it would also make it easier for an employer who finds out that his employee uses birth control to fire her. You heard me right . ...

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Pot Legalization Foe Getting Rich off the Drug War

(También en Español) News of Note: Pot Legalization Foe Getting Rich off the Drug War "The lobbyist who helped kill California's Proposition 19, the 2010 ballot measure that would have legalized recreational marijuana, has constructed an entire business model around keeping pot illegal. While fighting against the proposed law, lobbyist John Lovell accepted nearly $400,000 from a wide array of police unions, some of which he also represented in attempting to steer millions of federal dollars toward California's marijuana suppression programs.... "Police unions and their lobbyists weren't the only economic interests with a stake in Prop. 19. The alcohol industry and ...

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US Congress Expands New Anti-Protest Law

(También en Español) News of Note: US Congress expands authoritarian anti-protest law A bill passed Monday in the US House of Representatives and Thursday in the Senate would expand existing anti-protest laws that make it a felony—a serious criminal offense punishable by a lengthy prison term—to “enter or remain in” an area designated as “restricted.” The bill—H.R. 347, or the “Federal Restricted Buildings and Grounds Improvement Act of 2011”—was passed by unanimous consent in the Senate, while only Ron Paul and two other Republicans voted against the bill in the House of Representatives (the bill passed 388-3). Not a single ...

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Santorum backs nullifying existing gay marriages

(También en Español) News of Note: Santorum backs nullifying existing gay marriages There are 18,000 married gay and lesbian couples in California and at least 131,000 nationwide according to the 2010 census, conducted before New York state legalized same-sex marriage in July. Rick Santorum says he'll try to unmarry all of them if he's elected president He would "unmarry" all same-sex marriages? Instead of listing reasons why gay marriage is a good thing and why it should have nothing to do with politics, I'd rather emphasize how terrible Rick Santorum is. I would normally disregard his comments as impossible or beneath ...

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