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Methodology

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This is the ninth time Pew Research Center has measured restrictions on religion around the globe.75 This report, which includes data for the year ending Dec. 31, 2016, generally follows the same methodology as previous reports. Pew Research Center uses two 10-point indexes – the Government Restrictions Index (GRI) and the Social Hostilities Index (SHI) – […] …read more

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Acknowledgments

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This report was produced by Pew Research Center as part of the Pew-Templeton Global Religious Futures project, which analyzes religious change and its impact on societies around the world. Funding for the Global Religious Futures project comes from The Pew Charitable Trusts and the John Templeton Foundation. This report is a collaborative effort based on […] …read more

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‘British values’ proving ‘hostile’ to Orthodox Jews in the UK

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Orthodox Jews in north London gathered en masse on Tuesday of this week to protest over what they see as a concerted attack by “secularist forces” on Talmud-based education.

According to this report, a huge show of force by around 7,000 was prompted by education authorities insisting that Jewish faith schools must provide an education in line with “British values” that include issues covered by the Equalities Act 2010.

Community leaders used the occasion to warn against “secular forces” that are seen to threaten Orthodox values, after several inspections by Ofsted downgraded Orthodox schools.

Rabbi Dovid Frand, President of the Union of Orthodox Hebrew Congregations, warned of:

Influential secular forces seeking to impinge on our rights. We have all gathered together in prayer in the fervent hope that we can continue to practice and teach our Torah-true values for generations to come.

Representatives from the Stamford Hill-based Jewish Community Council have been among those lobbying for a more lenient Government line on education, in particular the teaching of different sexualities and genders.

JCC founder Levi Schapiro said the gathering was:

Yet another example of our community coming together to show unity on this issue and how serious we are about it.

He said this …read more

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Humanists UK and BPAS in call for decriminalisation of abortion in Northern Ireland and around the world at UN Human Rights Council

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Dr David Harvey (left) at the UNHRC in Geneva

In a statement made jointly with the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS), Humanists UK will intervene at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva today to call on the UK Government ‘to act without delay and decriminalise abortion in both Northern Ireland, and England and Wales too.’

The joint statement, being made on behalf of the We Trust Women Coalition, will be delivered by Humanists UK representative Dr David Harvey. It draws attention to the fact that 25% of the world’s population lives in countries with highly restrictive abortion laws, noting in particular that in Northern Ireland women cannot access terminations even in the case of rape, incest, or fatal foetal abnormality.

Following the Republic of Ireland’s May referendum, in which voters overwhelmingly supported the repeal of one of the world’s strictest abortion laws, Northern Ireland’s own restrictive legislation is now at odds with the rest of the British Isles. Earlier this month the UK’s Supreme Court handed down a landmark decision finding that Northern Irish legislation surrounding abortion is incompatible with human rights law and that the legislation is ‘untenable’ and needs ‘radical reconsideration’. Following the ruling, campaigners and …read more

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Prevagen goes P-hacking

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Can post-hoc data-dredging produce competent and reliable scientific evidence for Prevagen’s claims of memory improvement? The FTC and consumer groups say “no.” …read more

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Right Wing Round-Up: The Religious Right’s 50 State Strategy

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Right Wing Bonus Tracks: God ‘Doesn’t Love George Soros’

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  • Josh Bernstein declares that “there has never been a more grave assault on America in the entire history of the United States then what was perpetrated by Barack Hussein Obama for eight long years.”
  • Dozens of radical Religious Right activists are demanding that media and other outlets stop citing the Southern Poverty Law Center: “We call on government agencies, journalists, corporations, social media providers and web platforms (i.e., Google, Twitter, YouTube and Amazon) that have relied upon this discredited organization to dissociate themselves from the Southern Poverty Law Center and its ongoing effort to defame and vilify mainstream conservative organizations.”
  • Dave Daubenmire is positive that God “doesn’t love George Soros.”
  • David Lane proclaims that “we need a movement that will expel pagan secularism, presently entrenched as gospel, from public education and America’s cultural mountains of influence. This would be a miracle of similar magnitude to Joshua commanding the sun to stand still.”
  • Finally, Mat Staver will never accept the Supreme Court’s Obergefell ruling: “No matter how many justices or how many people you get to vote on the issue of marriage, it doesn’t change the essence of male and female, husband and wife, man and woman in the union …read more
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On World Refugee Day, Muslim family recalls warmer welcome in decades past

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DURHAM, N.C. (RNS) — Almasa Bass looks around with sadness at the difference 20-plus years have wrought.

The post On World Refugee Day, Muslim family recalls warmer welcome in decades past appeared first on Religion News Service.

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Intercessors For America Backs Trump Lies On Family Separation Just As He Reverses Himself With Executive Order

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Intercessors for America, a group that encourages conservative Christians to make the Trump administration “the most prayed for in U.S. history,” has joined the host of Trump supporters who have publicly backed up his lies, only to be left hanging when he reversed himself.

On Wednesday, the day Trump decided to sign an executive order ending his administration’s brutal family separation policy, IFA’s daily newsletter promoted a Breitbart article by John Nolte claiming that the family separation policy was required by law, as Trump administration officials had claimed.

But, faced with public outrage and bipartisan criticism, Trump signed an order he said would end family separations at the border, which even the conservative Washington Times called “a major retreat for the president, who for the last week had blamed Democrats for the separations and said it would take a change in law to stop it.”

The Breitbart article that IFA included in its newsletter purported to discuss “13 truths the media do not want you to know about President Trump’s legal, humane, and moral handling of adults and children who enter our country illegally.”

The article, published at Breitbart on Tuesday, slammed the “establishment media’s manufactured narrative” for spreading …read more

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Robert Jeffress: Americans Should ‘Thank God Every Day’ For Trump

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While religious leaders from across the political spectrum have criticized the Trump administration’s policy of separating parents and young children at the border, Robert Jeffress, one of President Trump’s earliest and most adoring Religious Right boosters, appeared on Fox News today to spout right-wing talking points and tell Americans that they should thank God every day that Trump is president.

Fox News host Shannon Bream asked Jeffress about recent comments from Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand saying that the Trump’s family separation policy is rooted in ideas that are evil and hateful. Bream said people on the Hill vouch for Gillibrand’s sincere Christian faith.

Well, she may be sincere, but she’s sincerely wrong. To characterize the president’s actions in this as evil, to me is absolutely outrageous. Look, Romans chapter 13 does say God instituted government to maintain order and to punish those who commit evil. And to call the president evil for simply doing what God has given him the responsibility of doing, and that is protecting our borders and protecting our citizens, to me that is outrageous. And I think we ought to celebrate a president like President Trump rather than denigrate this president, for doing everything he can to …read more

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