||JUL-1: NY: New York Times article
opposing tolerance: Towards Tradition is "a national
educational movement of Jews and Christians dedicated to fighting secular
institutions that foster anti-religious bigotry, harm families, and
jeopardize the future of America." They recently posted a full page
advertisement in the New York Times which attacks tolerance. It said, in
part: "Toward Traditions calls on all Americans of good will to
overturn the idol of 'tolerance' and rally to the defense of our nation's
core values: Biblical morality, Constitutional liberty, patriotism, and
||JUL-6: CA: Appeals Court rules against
Catholic Charities: California law requires employers to include birth
control pills in their employee health plan, if an employee wishes to use
them. Catholic Charities initiated a lawsuit in the year 2000,
stating that the legislation violated its religious freedom. The Roman
Catholic Church opposes artificial birth control. However, birth control
usage by its followers is extensive and differs little from that of
Protestants. The church lost the case.
||JUL-7: USA: Muslim cleric allegedly
calls for death sentence for author: The American Jewish Community
(AJC) commissioned Muslim writer Khalid Duran to write a book "Children
of Abraham," -- an introduction to Islam. Sheik Abdel Moneim Abu Zant
wrote an article condemning the book in the weekly Arab newspaper
Al_Shahed (The Observer). According to AANEWS, "The
cleric-Sheik,...claims that the work is guilty of 'distorting Islam'
because it reportedly dwells on issues such as circumcision, Ramadan
rituals, and the relationship in Islamic nations between men and women.
He called for the shedding of blood.
||JUL-9: CA: Westboro Baptists spread
hatred against gays: Members of the
Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, KS demonstrated against a
memorial for gay veterans at the Desert Memorial Park cemetery in
Cathedral City, near Palm Springs, CA. The Westboro Baptists are well
known for their www.GodHatesFags.com
The Salvation Army wants
discrimination protected: The Salvation Army has long had a policy of
excluding gays and lesbian from employment. They have found state and
local hiring anti-discrimination laws to be a nuisance. They have lobbied
the White House for a federal law that would preserve their right to
discriminate anywhere in the U.S. on the basis of sexual orientation.
||JUL-12: Congo: More than 800 suspected
Witches murdered: A state-run Ugandan newspaper reported that people
in northeastern Congo have killed more than 800 suspected witches, during
June and July.
||JUL-13: NH: Christian group bans Mormons:
Dartmouth's Summer Christian Fellowship (SCF)
is being investigated for discrimination after it barred Meredith Brooks,
a Mormon from a leadership position in the club because of his religion.
||JUL-16: UK: Fatwa allegedly calls
for death for homosexuals: The British Muslim group Al-Muhajiroun
issued a fatwa (religious decree) against a Muslim homosexual rights group
Al-Fatiha. They wrote: "The Islamic ruling for such acts is death.
||JUL-21: India: Muslims assassinate
Hindus: According to the Toronto Star, Islamic militants used hand
grenades to attack religious pilgrims on an annual visit to the Amarnath
shrine in the Himalayas. 14 Hindus died.
||JUL-25: Holocaust scholars suspend investigation: The Vatican established a panel of Jewish and Roman
Catholic scholars in 1999 to investigate its own role in the Nazi
Holocaust. During World War II, six million Jews, 400,000 Roma (aka
Gypsies) and other groups defined as sub-human by the Nazi government were
exterminated. Further research was suspended on JUL-25 because the Vatican
had refused to grant the researchers access to additional materials.
||JUL-27:USA: Fundamentalist Christian
group asks for firing of CDC director: Dr. James C. Dobson, founder
and president of Focus on the Family, called for the ouster of
Jeffrey P. Koplan, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention (CDC). The reason is that Dr. Koplan recommends condom use
to reduce unwanted pregnancy and reduce the STD transmission rate.
China: Stories of torture and execution: Many accounts of detentions, arrests, beatings, torture,
execution and other numerous crimes against humanity continue to flow out
of China. The Falun Dafa authorities say that torture of their followers
is common. 250 have been killed. The state is currently executing about 50
of Falun Dafa members at per month.
||AUG-1: Sri Lanka: Buddhist clergy call
for ban to Christian conversions: Influential Buddhist clergy have
adopted an 11 point plan to combat proselytizers and have called on the
government to pass laws to prevent future conversions. The clergy estimate
that about 23,000 conversions are happening per year.
||AUG: Ireland: Program promoting religious
tolerance: Children's Friendship Project arranges for about 200
Roman Catholic and Protestant teenagers from Northern Ireland to come to
the United States each summer, and stay with American families who support
||AUG-16: World: Religious web sites
converted to porn: A number of disused web site URLs have been rented
by groups and redirected to porn web sites. Gary Bauer, a conservative
Christian and former presidential candidate, abandoned his web site as
required under law after the election. The URL 15 was rented by someone in Armenia
who redirected it to The Adult Movie Network, a pornographic web
site. The same person scooped up an old, little used Web address owned by
the American Center for Law and Justice. Other cases have involved
the Christian and Missionary Alliance, and a New England church.
||AUG-28: Kenya: Religious groups refuses
vaccinations: About 300 members of the banned 'Dini ya Musambwa' ('Religion
of Tradition') faith group have refused to allow their children under
five years of age to be vaccinated against polio. They believe that
vaccinations are "ungodly." They prefer to use traditional healing
||AUG-30: KY: Two agencies discontinue
prayers: For years, two government agency, the Kentucky Commission
on Human Rights, and the Louisville and Jefferson County Human
Relations Commission had started their meetings with what one lawyer
said were a "very, very Christian prayer'' The ACLU negotiated an
end to the practice.
||SEP-11: USA: On this date occurred the greatest outpouring of
religious intolerance and hatred in America, since the government wars of
extermination of Native Americans in the 19th century. A gang of 19
extremist, radical, fundamentalist Muslims piloted four kamikaze jet
liners towards the twin towers of the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and
(probably) the Capitol Building. The latter flight crashed in
Pennsylvania; the others hit their targets, killing over 3,000 people, and
injuring a similar number. Following this terrorist attack there were
hundreds of incidences of harassment and assaults on innocent Muslims,
Arabs -- and people who look like Muslims -- in both the U.S. and Canada.
Three conservative Christian leaders joined in by attacking
other minorities in the country.
SEP-20: USA: Antidote to
homophobic hatred: The webmasters at Straight Dope have decided
to counter hate speech by Rev. Fred
Phelps of Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, KS. He is responsible for
the "GodHatesFags" web site. Straight Dope is collecting
pledges, so that every time that Phelps updates his web site with more
hatred against gays and lesbians, they will donate money to promote equal
rights to gays and lesbians, and to AIDS research. 13
SEP-28: USA: National Council of
Churches to meet with Muslim leaders: The National Council of
Churches in Christ in the USA (NCCCUSA), has announced an agreement to
meet with Muslim leaders in America on a regular basis in the wake of the
September 11th, terrorist attack. The first meeting was held on SEP-26.
General Secretary Bob Edgar said: "Never has interfaith understanding
and cooperation been more important than it is today. The peace of our
neighborhoods, and the true security of nations around the world may well
turn on our capacity to build communities of respect and to bear witness
together for justice and peace."
OCT-1: UK: Church of England
in decline: Crosswalk/Religion Today
reported on a University of Sheffield project which found that only
21% of infants born during 1999 were baptized into the Church. This
compares to 75% in 1933. With the church on the way to minority status, it
may eventually be disestablished. This happened to the Church of
Ireland and the Church of Wales in the past when they were
found to be serving only a minority of the population.
OCT-1: Republic of Georgia:
Defrocked Orthodox priest attacks Protestants: Crosswalk/Religion
Today published a report by Keston
News Service about an alleged attack by defrocked Orthodox priest,
Basil Mkalavishvili, and 25 of his supporters. They are reported to have
burst into a Georgian Evangelical church in Tbilisi on SEP-23, wielding
truncheons, and beating choir members. About 100 local residents observed
the attack but refused to join in.
OCT-8: USA: National
Scarves for Solidarity Campaign: Women, across the United States,
regardless of their faith, wore a scarf or hat covering their hair. Like
friends who shave their heads in solidarity with cancer patients, women
wore the Muslim head covernig -- the hijab (scarf). Many Muslim women had
been afraid to leave their houses because of ignorance and religious
Muslim-Christian riots kill at least 100: After Friday prayers by
Muslims, a quiet demonstration against the U.S. action in Afghanistan
turned violent. 100 to 200 are believed to have been killed; many hundreds
were injured; four churches and four mosques were gutted; 16,000 have been
made homeless. In 2000-FEB, 2000-MAY, and 2001-SEP, a total of 1,700
people were killed during riots that were sparked by the decision in
Northern Nigeria to implement full Islamic Shari'ah law in this country
which has a large Christian minority.
OCT-15: UK: Britain
introduces bill against inciting religious hatred: The British
government is proposing a series of bills to help combat terrorism. One
would make inciting religious hatred a crime. "Civil liberties groups
fear the plan to expand existing incitement to racial hatred laws to
include religion could dampen free speech and even shield extremists from
criticism." It would carry a maximum penalty of seven years.
OCT-24 (approx): DC: Muslim
opens senate with prayer: For just the second time in the history of
the U.S. Senate, a Muslim offered that body's opening prayer. The prayer
was offered by Imam Yusuf Saleem, National Educational Director for the
Muslim American Society of Imam W. Deen Mohammed. Imam Yusuf is also
associated with Masjid Muhammad in Washington, D.C. (A masjid is a
mosque). The House followed suit on NOV-15.
NOV-1: MA: Salem witches
exonerated: Five people who had been convicted of Witchcraft and
hanged in 1692-3 were exonerated when Governor Jane Swift signed a new
bill into law. There were a total of 24 men and women who were hanged,
crushed to death or died in prison.
NOV-2: VA: Virginia Supreme
Court allows cross-burning: A divided court voted 4 to 3 to declare a
Virginian law unconstitutional. It prohibits cross burning. The Court
decided that the U.S. Constitution protects free speech, no matter how
offensive it might be. The majority opinion said: "Under our system of
government, people have the right to use symbols to communicate. They may
patriotically wave the flag or burn it in protest; they may reverently
worship the cross or burn it as an expression of bigotry."
NOV-5: CA: Division of The Salvation Army
offers Domestic Partner Benefits, then is overruled: The
Salvation Army's Western Corporation decided to extend
health-care benefits to domestic partners of its employees. Col. Phillip
Needham, chief secretary of the Western Corporation said: "This
decision reflects our concern for the health of our employees and those
closest to them, and is made on the basis of strong ethical and moral
reasoning that reflects the dramatic changes in family structure in recent
years. The Salvation Army forced the Western Corporation to reverse
NOV-16: USA: Religious
hate-speech by Franklin Graham: MSNBC reported that Franklin Graham,
the son of arguably the best know Evangelical Christian preacher Billy
Graham, called the entire Islamic religion "wicked, violent and not of
the same God." [He presumably meant that the God of Christianity is
different from the God if Islam.] He continued: "I donít believe this
is a wonderful, peaceful religion. When you read the Koran and you read
the verses from the Koran, it instructs the killing of the infidel, for
those that are non-Muslim." When asked by NBC News to clarify his
statement, Graham repeated his charge that Islam, as a whole, is an evil.
"It wasnít Methodists flying into those buildings, it wasnít Lutherans.
It was an attack on this country by people of the Islamic faith."
NOV-22: ID: Fundamentalist pastor
erects offensive sign: Pastor Jeff Cole of the Crossroads Assembly
of God Church in Wilder, ID put up a sign in front of his church which
said: "The spirit of Islam is the spirit of the antichrist." Cole
said that the message reflects the Gospel, not religious hatred. He based
the sign on 1 John, 4:2-3
DEC-8: WI: Politicians attack
Wiccan chaplain: Rev. Jamyi Witch, 43, a Wiccan priestess, started
work as a chaplain at the Waupun Correctional Institution in early
December. She has impressive qualifications, being a mother, a Girl
Scout leader, school volunteer, hospice counselor, crisis counselor. She
also volunteered in the prisons for two years and has helped train
Corrections Department employees about alternative religions. Reaction
to her hiring was swift, particularly among Republican state legislators.
They are exploring methods of getting her fired or of terminating funding
for the entire prison chaplain program.
DEC-12: USA: Alleged
religious-based terrorist attack on Muslims: Several news agencies
reported stories of a plot to bomb the King Fahd Mosque in Culver City,
CA, the offices of Representative Darrell Issa (R-CA) -- a an
Arab-American Christian -- and the Muslim Public Affairs Council.
Irv Rubin, 56, chairperson of the Jewish Defense League (JDL) and
Earl Krugell, 59, a member of the JDL have allegedly been arrested by the
FBI after the last pipe bomb-making component - 2.2 kg (4.8 lbs) of
explosive powder -- was delivered to Krugell's home.
DEC-12: DC: Southern Baptist
Convention threatens to sever support of state body: The SBC has
threatened to terminate its 124 year relationship with the D.C. Baptist
Convention. The SBC's main concern is the D.C. Convention's involvement
with the annual interfaith service honoring the Rev. Martin Luther King
Jr. It is supported by the Convention, and includes non-Christian groups.
DEC-17: Kosovo: British
Soldier Killed While Protecting Church: According to ReligionToday:
Private James Carl Rogers, 17, a British soldier with the NATO
peacekeeping force in Kosovo (K-FOR) died while guarding a Serbian
Orthodox Church in Pristina.
DEC-20: Texas: Judge decides
Ethical Culture is a religion: The Ethical Society of Austin
applied for and received a tax exempt status from the state in 1997-JUN.
Former Comptroller John Sharp cancelled their status one day later. He
cited a long-standing principle that groups who do not require their
members to believe in a supreme being are not religions and thus are not
allowed to have tax exempt status. The Society sued and won.
DEC-23: China: Small scale
genocide continues: According to the Falun Dafa Information Center,
the Chinese government has detained over 100,000 persons for the "crime"
of practicing Falun Dafa -- a spiritually-based exercise and belief
system. Over 20,000 have been sent to labor camps without trial. "Chinese
President Jiang Zemin has called this the 'golden age of human rights' in
China, but this 'golden age' has resulted in the deaths of over 1,600
innocent citizens who practice falun Gong...millions have been devastated
by this persecution. This is state terrorism."
DEC-30: China: Religious
leader to be executed: In defiance of Chinese law, Gong Shengliang
organized the South China Church, a fundamentalist denomination. The
government banned the church as a "cult."
He was convicted on charges including "using a cult to undermine the
enforcement of the law," and was sentenced to death. A second church
leader, Li Ying, a niece of Shengliang was given a death sentence
suspended for two years. Such sentences are usually commuted to life in
2001-DEC-: USA: Beliefnet.com
selects winner: For their Most Inspiring Person of the Year Award,
Beliefnet selected the passengers and crew of Flight 93. They wrote: "It
would have been easier for the passengers of Flight 93 to do nothing but
cower and pray in the back until the plane plowed levelly into the White
House and their lives ended painlessly in a millisecond. Instead they
chose the hard, awful way because that is what morality demanded."