Atheist Republic News Summary: Muslim Youtuber's Home Invaded By Mob Hadmin Atheist Republic

Read More Atheist Republic Muslim Youtuber Mufti Abu Layth’s home invaded over views on Palestine
Location: Birmingham, UK
On May 17th, prominent Youtuber Mufti Abu Layth’s home in Birmingham was attacked by a masked mob waving Palestinian flags. The attack arose from controversial comments that Abu Layth had made many months before regarding the plight of Palestinians living under Israeli rule, where he suggested that migrating out of the land may be a solution to save human lives. These comments resurfaced and were highlighted in light of the recent war between Israel and Gaza. The assault on his home can be seen in an online video released by one of the mob members, and allegedly posted to WhatsApp. In the video, the mob can be seen throwing rocks and then breaking into his home in the early hours of the morning. As the men entered the home, the mob can be heard yelling about how Abu Layth had disrespected Palestine. Abu Layth firmly identifies as a Palestine supporter. Even though his family was unhurt, this incident left his young daughter traumatized. This attack was reported to the West Midland Police, and the unit is investigating the situation.
Circumcision could be banned by anti-transgender Alabama bill
Location: Alabama, USA
In March 2021, the state Senate of Alabama, sponsored by Republican Senator Shay Shelnutt, voted to criminalize gender-affirming treatment of transgender youth. Based on the Alabama Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, the bill could also unintentionally outlaw routine infant male circumcisions. Executive Director Linda Lee said that members became concerned about the language regarding “removing any healthy or non-diseased body part or tissue” under a list of prevented treatments. Executive Director of Chabad of Alabama, Rabbi Yossi Friedman, said that ritual circumcision is one of the oldest Jewish traditions. He also added that he would go to jail because the law cannot stop him from practicing Judaism. Friedman expressed that the concerns about the medical treatment of transgender youth should be addressed outside the legal system.
Full-blown boycott pushed for Beijing 2022 Olympics
Location: China
Human rights groups have called for a full boycott of the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing due to China’s human rights abuses against ethnic & religious minorities. China has been under constant scrutiny by the international community for its reputation of repression of Tibetans, tensions in Hong Kong, and the ongoing Uyghur genocide, which the ruling party vehemently denies. The Winter Olympics are scheduled to begin on February 4th, 2022. Lhadon Tethong of the Tibet Action Institute said in an interview with the Associated Press that “The time for talking with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) is over,” and highlighted that in response to objections to the previous olympics held in China in 2008, the IOC said that hosting the event would help improve human rights in the country.  Several activist groups are calling for the Winter Olympics to be set somewhere other than China. Tethong recommended that activists lobby the IOC’s top sponsors, who generate about 40% of all IOC revenue.
Muslim gym trainer lynched in India, forced to chant “Jai Shree Raam”
Location: Haryana, India
Asif Khan, a Muslim gym trainer from Mewat in Haryana, was lynched to death on May 16th by Hindu vigilante groups. Maktoob media said in its report that the Hindu mob was forcing Asif to chant “Jai Shree Raam,” a prayer turned war-cry by the Hindu nationalist militants. Khan’s family stated that Asif was traveling with his friends from his home village, Khalilpur, to Sohna to get medicines when 30 people attacked him. Asif’s uncle told the media that during the attack the mob was screaming “Kill Muslims.” According to the family, the Haryana police have filed a report against the perpetrators, but no arrests have been made so far.
US Supreme Court to take up major abortion rights challenge
Location: Washington DC
On May 17th, the United States Supreme Court agreed to a showdown over abortion in a case that could dramatically change nearly 50 years of laws on abortion rights. A fundamental question in the case is about viability — whether a fetus can survive independently at 15 weeks. The only abortion clinic still operating in Mississippi conferred evidence that viability is impossible at 15 weeks. The appeals court said that the state admitted that it had no medical proof that a fetus would be viable at 15 weeks. Viability,  the point at which babies are more likely to survive outside of the womb, occurs approximately at 24 weeks of pregnancy. But the state of Mississippi claims that viability is an arbitrary standard that doesn’t take sufficient account of the state’s interest in regulating abortion. The Mississippi law would grant exceptions to the 15-week ban in medical emergencies or critical fetal abnormality. Doctors violating the ban would face compulsory suspension of their license.
Dozens held in Pakistan for trying to lynch brothers accused of blasphemy
Location: Islamabad, Pakistan
Pakistani police detained dozens of men on May 18th on charges of attacking a police station in an attempt to lynch two brothers held in jail accused of desecrating a Muslim mosque. Police took the brothers, accused of blasphemy, to a secure location along with some injured officials. Hamza Shafaat, Islamabad Deputy Commissioner, told Reuters most of the arrested men were refugees from Afghanistan. Police officer Asim Ghaffar mentioned that the mob wanted to behead the accused. The two brothers were accused of blasphemy for allegedly ripping up a banner inscribed with the names of the companions of Prophet Mohammad from the outer wall of a mosque.
Indian Court blocks ‘blasphemous’ movie accused of defaming Catholics
Location: Kerala, India
On May 12th, the High Court in southern India’s Kerala state opposed the release of Aquarium, a movie in the Malayalam language. A member of the Sacred Heart Congregation, Sister Jessy Mani, who filed the petition in Delhi High Court, said the movie trivialized the life of Catholic priests and nuns by “portraying them as mere sex toys.” She elaborated, “There are scenes of sexual relationships among the same sex, between priests and nuns, and sex with animals in a highly derogatory manner.” Her complaint also detailed the “offensive” nature of the movie trailer which “depicted the sexual relationship of nuns with two priests and also an emotional relationship with Jesus Christ, thereby clearly tarnishing the reputation of the Catholic Church and its members…” which she claimed would “demoralize priests and nuns.”
Indian mosque bulldozed in defiance of Court Order
Location: Uttar Pradesh, India
On May 17th, in a highly inflammatory move, a local administration in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh bulldozed a mosque defying a state high court order. The mosque, called Masjid Gareeb Nawaz Al Maroof, had stood for at least six decades since the British rule. A local imam, Maulana Abdul Mustafa, who is on the mosque committee, said that local Muslims were scared and did not dare to protest when the mosque was demolished. The demolition was in violation of a high court order issued on April 24th, which stated that buildings in the state should be protected from any eviction or demolition until May 31st. In the following days, local Muslims said a permanent structure was built by the administration to block access to the mosque. On March 19th, people were stopped from entering the mosque for Friday prayers, causing protests in the area. More than 35 local Muslims who were protesting were arrested and put in jail.
American Secular Groups Hold Historic Meeting with White House
Location: Washington DC
On May 14th, White House officials Melissa Rogers, Josh Dickson, and Ben O’Dell met with the leaders of several members of the Secular Coalition for America. The main topic of conversation was to maintain church and state separation, and equality under the law. The conversation stressed the importance of rescinding dangerous and discriminatory actions taken by the Trump administration. The atheist groups suggested that the judicial nominees take strong stances on religious equality and support those who are nonreligious. The organization American Atheists talked about policies to be made to ensure that no one is rejected from shelter, adoption, or foster agency, or denied access to any other essential service due to religiously motivated discrimination.
AR CEO Susanna to speak with Arabic Youtuber Critical Faculty!
This week, the team talked about how Atheist Republic’s CEO Susanna McIntyre will soon be interviewed by YouTuber Critical Faculty! Critical Faculty is hosted by Hanney Selim, an ex-Muslim atheist, who wishes to “bring the arabic-speaking world into the 21st century” by discussing science, philosophy and religion. As part of this mission, Hanney broadcasts in both Arabic and English, and translates the English episodes into Arabic, so that prominent English-speaking atheists can reach Arabic-speakers across the world! Susanna will be joining live Hanney to discuss secular morality.
You can watch the conversation here (check out the link to see when this talk will be happening live in your time-zone!):