Religion is like a bad virus!

Richard Dawkins wrote about sexual apartheid in UCL.

When he got to the meeting he discovered that actually the seating in the auditorium was indeed segregated by sex. There was a men’s section, a women’s section, and a “couples” section. Did the “couples” have to produce a marriage certificate, one can’t help wondering? And, while wondering such things, what would have been the reaction of the audience if they had been segregated, as in apartheid South Africa, into a black section, a white section and a “coloureds” section?

It was actually like Saudi Arabia, the audience was segregated into a men section and a women section. Lawrence Krauss took a good decision to leave. He should have refused to return to that auditorium of gender segregation.

University College, London is celebrated as an early haven of enlightened free thinking, the first university college in England to have a secular foundation, and the first to admit men and women on equal terms.

It is so sad to see that Islamization is not limited to Muslim majority countries, or Islamic republics –the vultures are spreading wings–Western secular countries are now targets. But not in the allies, or mosques, or Muslim neighbourhood, it is in the places of enlightenment, the places that educate students about the equal rights of women, and encourage them to fight against misogyny, sexual apartheid or gender segregation.

Richard Dawkins asked a very important question:

Isn’t it really about time we decent, nice, liberal people stopped being so pusillanimously terrified of being thought “Islamophobic” and stood up for decent, nice, liberal values?

Yes, it is time to revolt or it will be too late. We decent, nice, liberal people do not want to see that UK is having sharia laws, girls get whipped in public for wearing trousers, people get beheaded in car park, women get stoned to death in the middle of the Hyde Park.


  1. Hamad Hussain says

    Let me get this straight. A nice, decent, liberal society is one which there is no punishment(other than divorce) for extra-marital affairs,watching pornography is ok, and it’s perfectly ok for a man to watch women take off their clothes for money in strip clubs, but no gender segregation at public events. How very decent.

    • Thorne says

      A nice, decent, liberal society is one which there is no punishment(other than divorce) for extra-marital affairs

      What other punishment would you suggest? Just remember, the male should be punished equally with the female. It’s the decent thing, after all.

      watching pornography is ok

      Why not? Who does it harm? As long as those making the pornography are compensated, what’s the problem with it?

      it’s perfectly ok for a man to watch women take off their clothes for money in strip clubs

      Again, what’s the harm? As long as the stripper is performing voluntarily, and is compensated for her performance, no one is hurt by it. I enjoy looking at the female body. That doesn’t mean that every woman who displays herself is giving tacit approval for me to rape her. It doesn’t make me evil for looking at what she is displaying. No one is harmed. And by the way, there are many women (and not only lesbians) who enjoy watching strippers. And many who enjoy performing as strippers for their mates. And, something which I’m sure would absolutely horrify you, there are many husbands who actually enjoy seeing their wives display themselves in front of strangers. Knowing, of course, that she will be coming home with him!

      but no gender segregation at public events

      You’re right, Hamad. They should have forced the men to sit in the back of the room, covered from head to toe in heavy wool cloth, and forbidden to speak. They should have allowed the women to sit in the front, free to ask questions and participate. That would have been fair, right?

    • No One says

      Your red herring argument is noted. As is the previous promise to Professor Krauss that there would be no segregation at the event. But it’s OK for a muslim to lie to an atheist, no big deal right? Because you are morally superior right? We see through your smiling polite lies to the violent, misogynistic, authoritarian, rotten core.

    • pianoman, Heathen & Torontophile says

      That’s right, Hamad, there is nothing wrong with watching porn or going to strip clubs (if those involved are doing it voluntarily and are compensated as one commenter put it) . Maybe some Muslim men should learn how to control their inhibitions towards sex instead of projecting their frustrations on women.

    • Hamad Hussain says

      @Thorne- The punishment in Islam for adultery is death, for BOTH the man and woman. Also, there are countless studies that show the harmful effects fo pornogrpahy, everything from divorce to health issues. in fact, just a few weeks ago the country of Iceland (non-Muslim country) was looking into ways to ban pornography(they already ban strip clubs considering it a violation of women’s rights) .You can read more about it here if you wish And yes, the fact that there are men who enjoy watching their wives take off their clothes for other men does horrify me!!Finally, who is saying that segregation at this event means the women should be covered head to toe and not allowed to ask questions? I haven’t been to many of these events, but the ones I have been to the women were full participants.

      @No One Muslims are not supposed to lie to anyone, whether Atheist or not. Islam has categorized sins as major and minor and lying falls into the major sin category. If the organizers lied to the professor then it is totally wrong.

      • No One says

        Hamad Hussain

        @Thorne- The punishment in Islam for adultery is death, for BOTH the man and woman.

        I’m speechless. You actually agree with this barbaric practice?

        • Hamad Hussain says

          The punishment is meant to be a deterrent, who in their right mind would have an extra-marital affair knowing this is the punishment? Islam allows for divorce, so there is absolutely no excuse to have an affair with someone.

          • says

            Then the punishment is wildly disproportionate. If you have sex with someone else, you have at worst caused some disappointment to your partner (and that’s assuming your partner is bothered by it – some people are not hugely concerned about exclusive sexual fidelity, so there is no justification at all for punishing the partners of such people).

            How can you possibly think that causing some disappointment to your partner can be so heinous an evil as to deserve death? If you think the punishment fits the crime, you will have to explain that.

            No state should be in the business of executing its citizens – the risk of accidental execution of innocent people is too high. But the only possible grounds on which execution could even be hypothetically considered proportionate is if someone represents such a danger to other people’s lives that the state cannot adequately protect the public except by killing that person. How does having sex with someone other than your regular partner meet that criterion?

          • No One says

            Deterrent? So if the mother of my children “strays” the solution is to kill her and deprive my children of their mother. How is this to be done beheading, stoning, or a shot to the back of the head with an AK 47? Do the children get do watch? Would you be willing to do the execution yourself? What if she repents and joined islam, would your 1st act be to kill her?

            Listen to yourself. That thing you think is god talking… that’s you.

          • Thorne says

            Except that, according to Islam, adultery is ANY kind of relationship outside of marriage! Even if the women were to divorce her husband, she would be forbidden from engaging in any sexual acts outside of marriage. And I’m not too sure about the ability of a woman to obtain a divorce within Islam, anyway. How many articles have we read where a woman tried to obtain a divorce, only to be murdered by her family for damaging their “honor”?

            There have even been reports, documented accounts, of women being murdered for simply speaking with a man of whom their family disapproved. Apparently that is also considered adultery.

            Let’s face it, any religion which has to rely on murder and torture of it’s people to maintain control has no right to call itself “peaceful”. Most “modern” religions, when faced with a member who sins without remorse, kick that member out of the church. Excommunication, if you will. Islam kills them. As far as Islam is concerned, it’s do as you’re told, or die. And sometimes, even when you do as you’re told, you die anyway.

          • Hamad Hussain says

            First, and I should have mentioned this earlier, in an Islamic state the Islamic rules only apply to Muslims(unless the non-Muslims voluntarily go to an Islamic court). The punishment of death for adultery would not be applicable to non-Muslims. The non-Muslims are free to drink alcohol, eat pork,etc.

            Many of you mentioned that the punishment is very harsh. If you think about it though, the act of having an affair while being married to someone else is indeed a very terrible thing to do. You are destroying many lives, your spouse’s life, the person with whom you’re having an affair with(if you decide to not carry on and leave the person hurt), and your children if you have any.That’s why the death penalty is prescribed for married people and not for unmarried people who have sex outside of marriage. If the route of divorce is available, having an affair is the coward’s way out. Again, if the marriage is not working you have a way to dissolve it in a moral way.The death penalty is there not to kill, but to prevent lives from being ruined. Only a truly crazy person would have an affair knowing the death penalty is there and still not go through the divorce method. And this punishment is ONLY for sex, not for talking to someone else,flirting with someone else,etc.

          • No One says

            Deterrent? Is that how you rationalize it? What a steaming pile of rationalization. If having an affair is traumatic, how does summary execution make it less so? I’m sure the children will grow up thankful that their parents were executed.

            “If you think about it though”… We are thinking about it. More than you are. That god talking to you? It’s just you.

          • says

            Listen Hamad, killing someone is *bad*. Always. Sometimes it can be justified, but it is bad nonetheless. Institutionalized killing is bad as well, perhaps even more so. There can be *no* justification for taking anyone’s life. If a god orders the life of someone taken, it’s a bad god. If you help that god, you are bad. If you, as you are, trying to rationalize killing is a good thing, you are bad. So Hamad, you are a bad person. You are a bad person for choosing to follow a religion that is bad. You are a bad person for defending the bad aspects of it. You should be deeply ashamed for it, but instead you proudly wave your flag of ignorance, barbarity, misogyny and hatred. Bad. There’s no other word for it.

          • says


            in an Islamic state the Islamic rules only apply to Muslims

            That is untrue and you know it. Any sufficiently theocratic Muslim-majority country enforces its religious taboos against non-Muslims. Just look at the Christian community in Pakistan who recently had their homes torched because of accusations of blasphemy against Islam. If what you said were true, the only people who would ever be punished for blasphemy against Islam would be Muslims.

            Only a truly crazy person would have an affair knowing the death penalty is there and still not go through the divorce method

            This is also a lie. You know full well that some Muslim-majority countries actually do execute people for adultery – which proves that some people do take the risk – i.e. are not deterred by the death penalty. You are surely intelligent enough to understand that no matter how unpleasant a punishment is, it will only be a truly effective deterrent if it is coupled to a reasonably high chance of getting caught. Since sex is generally done in private, it is impossible to police every bedroom, every secluded spot 24 hours a day, so there will be plenty of opportunities to have sex with someone other than your regular partner and and not be caught. The death penalty merely ensures that an outrageously disproportionate punishment is inflicted on the unlucky few that do get caught.

            By analogy, some countries also execute people for other consensual crimes, notably drug use in places like China, Iran, Malaysia and others. Do these countries have zero-rates of drug use? Obviously not, because they keep killing people for it.

            having an affair while being married to someone else is indeed a very terrible thing to do. You are destroying many lives

            First, this completely fails to address my point that not everyone demands exclusive sexual fidelity from their partner. Do you think that people should be killed for adultery even in cases where their partner has explicitly said that they have no objection to them having sex with other people? If so, then that totally undermines your claim here.

            Second, even in cases where one party is hurt, you are using a very metaphorical sense of the phrase ‘destroying … lives’. Yes, it is hurtful to learn that your partner you thought and hoped was sleeping with you alone was sleeping with someone else, if you are the sort of person to be bothered by that. Is that hurt as bad as death? Yes, it is inconvenient for children if their parents split up due to an infidelity. Is this as bad as death?

            Would you, personally, kill yourself, if you found out that your spouse was cheating on you? If yes, if that would genuinely make your life not worth living any more, then so be it (though I submit that you would be quite unusual – most people get over that sort of thing). If no, then you have admitted that having a partner cheat on you is not as bad as being killed and therefore to wish the death penalty on the cheating partner is an excessively harsh punishment.

            Likewise, if you had been a child, and one of your parents had cheated on the other, would you have killed yourself? If no, then, again, you acknowledge that haing one of your parents cheat on the other is not as bad as being killed, and the death penalty is therefore excessively harsh. Moreover, if you were in such a position as a child, and your parents split up as a result of an infidelity, would you reallyclaim that it would be better for you if the unfaithful parent had been put to death? You need to give an answer; you can’t get out by saying that the death penalty would have been a deterrent, because obviously there are some cases where it isn’t, for the reasons explained above.

          • Hamad Hussain says

            @DavidHart It is absolutely true that in an Islamic state the Islamic rules do not apply to non-Muslims. Pakistan is not an Islamic state, it is a state where the majority are Muslims.There’s a difference bewteen a Muslim state and an Islamic one.In any case, the actions of some people within a country do not always reflect the laws of that country.It is true that religious minorities in Pakistan, and other Muslim countries have had attrocities committed against them. No argument. This does not mean that this is correct Islamically speaking.I’m originally from Pakistan and I can tell you that most men there are uneducated and violent thugs. They do not value education so they spend most of the day looking for trouble.

            On to the issues you raised about extra-marital affairs. I never said it would eliminate all affairs. It does however greatly reduce them. You raised the issue of what if one spouse has no objection. In that case, one can obviously assume that this spouse would not seek any charges against the other spouse so no punishment would be carried out. You then pointed out as to what degree of hurt is actually done. Actually, there is great damage done, both physical and mental. I’ll leave out the mental issues here since these are fairly obvious. There was a recent study that showed males involved in affairs are more likely to have heart attacks. Here is an excerpt from a link that I will provide; “The precise reasons for the increase in heart attack death are still unclear, but researchers suggest that a guilty conscience, stress from keeping the affair a secret, and the stress of wining, dining and satisfying a woman who is likely to be younger than the man’s wife could all contribute to the link.Using key terms such as ‘unfaithfulness’, ‘extramarital affairs’, ‘infidelity’ and ‘men’, University of Florence researchers analyzed the frequency and context of heart attacks in men and revealed that both fatal and non-fatal heart attacks were relatively rare when a man had sex with his wife, but significantly more frequent when he was with a mistress.”


            When you combine this with other factors like the risk of STD’s, you can see why this rule is there to save lives, not kill.

            As for your last point, I’m not sure what you are trying to say. I don’t understand why not wanting to punish yourself for a crime someone else committed invalidates the pusnishment. If someone, God forbid, hurt your family in some way would you not wanting to punish yourself mean the criminal should get no punishment? If I have misunderstood your point, please clarify.

          • Thorne says

            When you combine this with other factors like the risk of STD’s, you can see why this rule is there to save lives, not kill.

            If you permit, and even encourage, the use of condoms the risk of STD’s is greatly minimized, and far more lives would be saved. Does Islam permit the use of condoms? Or are they like the Vatican, falsely claiming that condoms cause more problems than they solve?

      • Thorne says

        they already ban strip clubs considering it a violation of women’s rights

        And I’m quite sure that all of those women who were dependent upon the income from their work to feed their children are very happy about the government “protecting” their rights. Hungry, but happy, right?

        The vast majority of studies dealing with pornography which seem to show “harmful effects” were either done by, or paid for by, religious organizations or groups with political motivations, and were rarely, if ever, done by reputable companies. The truth is far more complex. Yes, there are some people who can be emotionally harmed by pornography, just as there are some people who can be physically harmed by alcohol or smoking. There are others, however, who are not harmed, not damaged and not horrified by it. Why must all suffer for the failures of a few? The same kinds of arguments are often used (in the US, at least) by people trying to link gun violence to video games. There are far more people who are NOT affected by the games than there are those who are affected. Do we ban the games because of the few who can’t handle them? Should we ban all fiction because there are some people who can’t seem to distinguish between fantasy and reality? Should we prohibit soap operas on TV because there are some people who honestly believe they are real?

        YOU (and others like you) don’t like pornography. That does not give you the right to prohibit others from enjoying it if they wish. You want to protect women? Then police the pornographers, make sure they are paying their models fairly, and make sure those models are performing freely. You want to protect the rights of strippers? Then regulate the clubs, make sure they treat their employees fairly. Taking jobs from women who may actually enjoy stripping, even if only for a while, isn’t protecting them from anything. It’s only protecting YOU from having your sensibilities hurt.

        And I honestly don’t care if you are horrified by how other people live their lives. As long as they aren’t harming others, who is to say that what they do is wrong? This is the biggest problem with every dogmatic religion in history: the shaman decides what’s right and wrong, based on his own sick personality, and then forces everyone to follow his rules. Well, here’s a chance for you, Hamad. Slip away from those rules and decide, FOR YOURSELF, what’s right and wrong. Still want to believe in a god? Go ahead! Worship him as YOU see fit. But keep your beliefs, your rules and your hate, to yourself! Stop trying to force them down MY throat.

        • Hamad Hussain says

          Who is forcing you to do anything? I’m just explaining the Islamic reasoning, not forcing you to believe in anything. I live in a Western,secular country and I have many non-Muslim friends who go to strip clubs, drink alcohol,etc. We have friendly debates about secularism vs religion,and at the end of the day we’re still friends.You do bring up an interestingt point when you say that if they are not harming others, who is to say they are wrong. By that same logic, why would you have a problem with gender segregation at public events, or a woman wearing a headscarf? Are they hurting you?

          • No One says

            Who is forcing you to do anything?

            You are, by supporting gender segregated tickets, doorways and seating in a public secular university venue. Woman wears a headscarf, her business. Prohibiting seating to members of the public based on religious belief is forcing the issue. Which was the point of doing it in the first place. To force the issue.

            Your arguments are filled with special pleading, obfuscation, category errors, false equivocacies … It’s painful to read. Do you do this on purpose or was this how you were taught?

          • No One says

            One more thing…. you say you live in a western secular country. So if a practicing muslim commits adultery with a non-believer which law is followed, the secular one or the religious one? My guess is the secular one. Unless of course somebody uses islamic reasoning and takes matters into his own hands.

          • Hamad Hussain says

            When I talk of gender segregation at public events, I’m talking of Muslim-only events, I should have made that clear. I agree with you that you shouldn’t force the non-Muslims to adopt this at a public event. When I mentioned earlier that it seemed odd to me that gender segregation would be considered unacceptable in society but not strip clubs or something similar, I was referring to a situation where a Muslim-only event would have gender segregation. To answer your second question. the secular law would be followed. In an Islamic country with Islamic law- the Muslim would be given the death penalty(unless the accused can prove some extreme circumstance which lead them to the act), the non-Muslim would not be given the death penalty.

          • No One says

            When I talk of gender segregation at public events, I’m talking of Muslim-only events, I should have made that clear.

            You are talking in circles. The talk at UCL was not a muslim-only event.

            …it seemed odd to me that gender segregation would be considered unacceptable in society but not strip clubs or something similar,

            Strip clubs are on private property and the actions therein are amongst consenting adults. Gender segregation in a public venue (in a secular society) removes consent and free will from individuals. There is no parallel between the two.

            To answer your second question. the secular law would be followed.

            That must suck. Because if it had been in country with the correct religious laws in place you wouldn’t have to live with the pain of having an adulterer escape with their life.

          • Hamad Hussain says

            Did you read the part where I said that the segregation shouldn’t have been imposed on the non-Muslims? My original comment was that I just found it a bit amusing personally that gender segregation at an event like this is considered such an outrage and women taking off their clothes for money is perfectly ok,even if the women consents to that. That does not mean I support Muslims enforcing gender segregation at public events in a secular country. My personal view is even if women consent to stripping, it is demeaning for women in general, a view shared by a secular country like Iceland which banned strip clubs.Just for the record, some people in secular countries think having men’s and women’s only bathrooms is gender segregation. Goes to show that even in secular countries peoples ideas of equality are not uniform. I am of the belief that even if no one preaches against some aspects of secularism, the majority will start demanding measures that are considered religious on their own since these aspects of secualrism are destructive to society as a whole. Like secular Mexico did when they introduced gender-segregated buses in 2009.


          • Thorne says

            I’m just explaining the Islamic reasoning

            I haven’t seen much actual reasoning in Muslim culture, to be honest. Mostly just reactionary crap which benefits the rule makers and punishes everyone else.

            And you’re right, there is no direct harm to me from you following your rules. But I am also concerned about the harm to others. You claim that women voluntarily stripping in public is demeaning, yet your culture demands that women not only cover themselves but actually hide themselves away, buried in heavy cloth so that there is not even a hint of their humanity, much less sexuality. And you don’t consider that demeaning? Contrary to what you believe, there are women who actually enjoy displaying their bodies to strangers, both male and female. There are men who enjoy displaying their bodies as well. The only demeaning aspect of it is when those strangers, usually men, think that being allowed to see is tacit allowance to touch. Or worse.

            We repeatedly see articles from Islamic countries in which an innocent woman, who happened to fall in love with a young man, is killed by her family because they disapprove. And the Islamic authorities do nothing to punish the family! There was even a case where a woman ran away to another country to marry, was lured back to her family for a visit when they said they forgave her, and was then killed by that family, to preserve their “honor”. And again, no charges against the family. How many woman have been beaten to death by their husbands, for no good reason, without the husband being arrested and charged with murder? How many children? Yet, if a woman yearns for a gentler touch and falls in love with another man, she must be executed by the state? What harm has she done to the state by her actions?

            And you claim that non-Muslims are not subject to Muslim law, yet we are seeing just this past week that Christians in a Muslim country are having their homes destroyed, their lives ruined, because some Muslim argued with a Christian man! How many NON-Muslims have been made targets of a Fatwa for “violating” Muslim sensibilities? Even though these non-Muslims aren’t subject to Muslim law!

            Understand, I am not saying that all Muslims are bad. Many of them see the problems, and some are trying to fix them. Some, possibly even some of your family, have left Muslim countries and come to Western countries to escape the terrors of Muslim law. And yet they try to institute that same law here. Why?

            Yes, if you are having a Islamic gathering, a religious gathering, I have no problem with you instituting segregation in seating. But the specific gathering in question, while arranged by Muslims, was supposed to be an open debate, for anyone interested. And when two men tried to violate the seating rules they were forcibly removed! THAT is forcing YOUR rules down OUR throats. Condemning non-Muslims in non-Islamic countries to death for drawing a picture of Muhammad is forcing YOUR rules down OUR throats. While your semi-mythical founder may be important to YOUR faith, he is nothing but a standard religious conman to the rest of the world. Right now in London there are groups of Muslim men who are forcibly converting entire neighborhoods to Sharia control. Forcing YOUR rules down OUR throats.

          • No One says

            “Lower your shields and surrender your ships. We will add your biological and technological distinctiveness to our own. Your culture will adapt to service us. Resistance is futile.”

          • Hamad Hussain says

            @Thorne No, Islam does not say women should hide themselves away. I’ve mentioned this before, but the face-covering is not a requirement. Additionally, women are free to work and to go to school. You said women stripping is fine as long as everyone consents to it. Would you be ok with a father and his daughter having intercourse if both are ok with it, or 2 brothers getting married if they’re both ok with it,etc,etc Assume all birth control methods are used where applicable

            I do agree with you that many disturbing stories can be seen in Muslim countries today, and many disturbing stories about the way Muslims behave in non-Muslim countries. There are many stories about Muslim men raping or trying to rape non-Muslim women in Western countries. Unfortuantely, many Muslims today are backward, uneducated, violent scum who do nothing but cause problems for the societies that they live in. The religious leaders in Muslim countries are money-obsessed with little care for improving society. A true Muslim should be one who is not feared by society. I do not defend the actions of these Muslims, I defend Islamic teachings which are the opposite of what these morons do.

            I also agree that Muslims should not force their views in a secular country. There was a case where the local Mosque (Muslim Chruch) wanted the call to prayer to be heard by the neighbourhood. I voiced my argument against this since it would disrupt the non-Muslims in the area, especially since one of the prayers is before sunrise. The decision was made to not go ahead with this. Hopefully, more Muslims will consider the feelings of the non-Muslims.

          • Thorne says

            the face-covering is not a requirement.

            Then why are Islamic women in Iran, for instance, forced to wear the full-body coverings, including impenetrable face coverings and even gloves, when out in public? Just reading some of Taslima’s accounts of her childhood, as well as the reports she posts from other Islamic countries, shows that the rule of women covering themselves is endemic and violently enforced.

            Would you be ok with a father and his daughter having intercourse if both are ok with it, or 2 brothers getting married if they’re both ok with it,etc,etc Assume all birth control methods are used where applicablet.

            Actually, such a situation would be perfectly acceptable to me, provided all parties involved were consenting adults, free to choose, educated about the possible consequences, and able to choose to abort any resulting children which might be found to be defective because of the close genetic ties. Yes, there are good, solid genetic reasons for such close matings not to occur, although that wouldn’t be a problem with any same-sex pairings. The important part of it is that all parties understand what they are doing and have the freedom to choose their own path, with no force from the other(s).

            Your comments about the brutality and ignorance which is rampant in so many Islamic countries, and your story of the local mosque, speak volumes about your own understanding of the concept of peaceful coexistence. Unfortunately, as you note, not all Muslims are so understanding. I have no quarrel with which god any person chooses to believe in, but they should always have the choice. With so many Muslims ready to execute those who abandon the faith, or those who “insult” the faith, it’s little wonder that so many around the world think that all Muslims are thugs and barbarians. When the peace-loving members of ANY faith sit idly by and let their religion be hijacked by terrorists, they must expect to get caught in the backlash.

          • Hamad Hussain says

            The vast majority of the women in Iran do not wear the face covering. The only place that I know of that forced women to wear the face covering was Afghanistan under the Taliban. If you go to large Muslim countries like Egypt, Pakistan, Indonesia,etc you will find that only a very small fraction of the women cover their faces.

            In any case, I think this dicussion has run its course. It was nice debating with you. I wish you the best.

      • says

        “The punishment in Islam for adultery is death, for BOTH the man and woman” – Which about sums up why Islam is barbaric. Also, the punishment for being raped is being forced to mary your rapist. That skews the equal treatment a bit.

        “who in their right mind would have an extra-marital affair knowing this is the punishment?” – Well, given that stoning for adultry happens quite often in barbaric countries like Saudi Arabia and Iran, quite some people. That, or Islam condones stoning to death of the mentally insane. Did I already mention Islam is barbaric?

    • steve oberski says

      Well it’s certainly not a society that worships a fictitious 7th century paedophilic, ethnic cleansing, misogynistic tribal chief, stones women to death, sexually mutilates children and murders homosexuals.

      There’s still a lot of work to do for post enlightenment civilization but a regress to an Islamic bronze age tribal morality run by psychopaths like you is not the answer.

  2. Aaroninmelbourne says

    I always find religions’ sexual phobia to be fascinating. Imagine a religion that had a fear of pet animals:

    “Let me get this straight. A nice, decent, liberal society is one in which there is no punishment for petting someone else’s cat or dog, watching nature shows narrated by David Attenborough is okay, where it’s perfectly okay for a woman to shamelessly enjoy watching a kitten play with a ball of string, yet there’s no requirement for people to just choose one species of animal for pets in their homes, and there are animals of various types in zoos all on open public display? How very decent *snark*”

    Of course the real reason why Abrahamic religions are so gender-phobic is that sexuality is intimacy. And intimacy, unlike diversity, is at the core of a social species like us. So the only intimacy you’re allowed to have in those religions is limited to, and through the religion itself. All relationships need to be within the confines of the religion, so that your whole world is inseparable from your obedience to that religion’s priests. Want to sit next to someone of the opposite sex? Then you have to marry someone (and just one!)… by getting a priest’s permission.

    Such desire to have absolute control of people’s actions and thoughts is what is truly obscene.

  3. smrnda says

    A nice liberal society would also be okay with women watching pornography, or women watching men take of their clothes for money, or other women taking off their clothes for money, provided all parties were willing participants. I mean ,there are women who do that too. To the extent that this can negatively impact a marriage or other long-term relationship, in a nice liberal society a couple is free to work out their own boundaries of what is acceptable.

    On gender segregation, sometimes, if I’ve been sexually harassed in public lately or have been hit on when I’m minding my own business I think ‘wow, a women’s only bus might be nice’ but to me, that solution, if you can call it that, is admitting defeat. It’s deciding men won’t respect women or treat them properly and that there’s no improvement to be made.

    The problem with ‘gender segregation’ (especially with the couples section) is that it seems to imply that men and women should only interact if they are a couple, which isn’t usually a good policy for getting men to treat women decently. It always ends up the ‘we treat you okay IF you’re a good submissive wife or daughter, otherwise not.’

    • Thorne says

      A nice liberal society would also be okay with women watching pornography, or women watching men take of their clothes for money

      Many years ago there was a male strip show which came through this nice, Bible-belt town. (Full disclosure: my wife went to the show with some friends, with my knowledge. My permission was neither sought nor needed, though I would have given it gladly.) During the second night of the show the wife of a prominent local Baptist preacher was seen, and photographed, at the show. Starting the third night, naturally, all of the churches began protesting the show!

      Probably apropos of nothing, but an amusing memory all the same. I often wonder which was considered the worst offense: that she had seen naked male bodies (though NOT genitalia, unless my wife lied to me 🙂 ) or that she was caught at it, embarrassing her husband and his church. I can only hope that this woman eventually “saw the light” and left him in her dust.

      • TxSkeptic says

        Surely the ministers wife was there on a “fact finding mission”. That’s her story, and she’s sticking to it.

        • Thorne says

          That was one hypothesis floating around at the time, which was belied by the reports of those there that she had “thoroughly enjoyed herself.”

      • No One says

        Well there was that moment when Tzortzis tried to corner PZ in a street interview. They were “dicussing” embryology when Tzortzis wryly asked “What, are you an embryologist?”. To which PZ replied “Yes as a matter of fact I am.”. The man had no idea who he was engaging. He encapsulated his ignorance and hung it out in public for all to see. In my mind was victory #1.

  4. Thorne says

    It only seems right that any person, or organization, which denies the right of freedom to others, which in fact denies even the existence of free speech or freedom, should lose its freedom! If you do not believe in free speech then you should lose the right to speak freely. Or you’re a hypocrite! Which seems to apply to Tzortzis and his ilk.

  5. Laurence Burris says

    Pretty disgusting that the audience wasn’t free and enlightened enough sit mixed together. BUT IF THEY DON’T GET IT, THEY DON’T GET! WE SHOULD NOT TOLERATE SUCH THINGS TO ACCOMMODATE THEIR “CULTURE” IN OUR WESTERN INSTITUTIONS.

    • Thorne says

      Except that, from the reports, a couple of men who tried to sit in the “women’s section” were manhandled by the Muslim security people and ejected from the hall. It was only after they were brought back in that Krauss proceeded with the debate. He might have been better off if he’d required them to allow mixed seating, or at least demanded that the women be given the best seats in the place, relegating the men to the back of the room.

  6. smrnda says

    I had to weigh in on pornography. I spent some time researching porn, and a lot of it is misogynistic trash. I think misogynistic trash is harmful, but I don’t think that misogynistic trash necessarily has to be sexually explicit, nor do I think that all sexually explicit materials must be misogynistic trash.

    On sexism, we see harmful, sexist messages even in pretty tame media. The mistake is freaking out because there’s nudity and not because the message about the roles of men and women in society is bad. Religion promotes the same misogynistic nonsense that a lot of pornography does, and lacks a sophisticated enough perspective on media and sexuality to really examine the issue.

    Also, there’s massive amount of evidence that the death penalty isn’t a deterrent to anything. It’s just institutionalized blood-lust.

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