Search results for your modern world

Your Modern World: Sorcerous Shenanigans

The headline says it all:

Ahmadinejad allies charged with sorcery

Wow. And this guy wants to get his hands on nuclear weapons. I was kinda scared about that happening before. Now I’m terrified.

"The goggles! They do nothing!"

Your Modern World: Slutquake!

According to an Iranian religious leader, promiscuous women cause earthquakes. Too many girls tramp it up and hit the town? God puts His foot down.

Uh huh. Guess I better start speaking to some people about that Illinois earthquake a couple months back, and tell the school board they better set up a burkha budget before the next quake hits. Oh, and we’ll have to watch for California to slide into the ocean on Monday when the Boobquake hits!

Really, Iran? These are the people you want ruling your country? Nothing like keeping a nation under your thumb with fear and superstition.

Oh, right. I forgot some people want that for us, too.

Crummy Sequel of Your Modern World

In today’s entry, I learned that a Saudi family is suing a genie that has been harassing them.

I honestly don’t know where to begin. It’s in a Sharia court, so that tells us why the case even made it that far.

My next question is how do they prove the genie is there, much less get it to show up? Even better, how would you like to be the guy who gets to deliver the summons? Then, supposing the court even finds in the family’s favor, what are they supposed to do about it? Wave a restraining order at it? If it is an all-powerful entity straight out of the Quran, why would it care what a bunch of humans had to say?

Best case scenario.

Best case scenario.

Please, please, please follow up on this story, CNN, because I would love to see where it goes from here.

Your Modern World Punches Your Brain

There’s a lot of debate over the cause or source of homosexuality, mostly involving nature vs. nurture, biology vs. desire, and so on. We can all agree, however, that it’s not caused by demonic possession.

Or so I thought.

It stuns me that these things still happen. Most people of faith can reconcile science and psychology with their beliefs and move on with their lives. Unfortunately whackjobs like this make them look bad. As far as I’m concerned, these people are no different from the pinheads who kill albinos for their magic, sacrifice goats to fix airplanes, or marry their daughters off to frogs.

At least this kid lived through his ordeal. Another boy died, and police rescued a young girl as her own grandfather strangled her.

Welcome to progress, people. This is your modern world.

Seventh Son of Your Modern World

I don’t know what’s funnier about this story: the fact the vigilantes captured a goat or the police are actually keeping the goat in custody.

Said goat is allegedly a car thief. No, the goat didn’t try to steal the car; the vigilantes claim the actual thief turned himself into a goat to evade capture.

I tell you what, you want to get away with a crime, Nigeria is the place to be. Just leave a goat at the end of an alley, rob a bank, and run down the alley to make your escape. Throw a couple bucks around the goat to complete the picture, then hide and watch the authorities drag the goat off to justice.

The best part of the article is this quote from a police spokesman:

“We cannot confirm the story, but the goat is in our custody. We cannot base our information on something mystical. It is something that has to be proved scientifically, that a human being turned into a goat.”

Let me get this straight. His actions indicate he’s at least willing to entertain the notion that a human being can turn into a goat, but he’s worried about the scientific basis in proving it? I have to question this guy’s understanding of “science.” In fact, I imagine the trial will go something like this:

With luck the goat will turn the magistrate into a newt and call it a day.

Your Modern World Kicks Your Balls In

Two more entries to Your Modern World tonight.

First up, diseases are a common problem in the modern world. Sure, we’ve made many advances and have eliminated things like smallpox, but we still have to deal with the occasional outbreak. Most societies deal with this through immunizations and vaccines, as well as prevent the spread of disease through hygiene, germ cleansers, and in extreme cases, quarantine.

That’s just not good enough in the backwater villages of India. How do they deal with it? They marry their daughters off to frogs. Yeah, that’s going to end well.

Next time I catch pneumonia, I’ll marry the Little Bird off to a hamster. Fix me right up.

In our second entry, we’re drawing closer and closer to the dreaded 2012 apocalypse as predicted by the Maya. There have been books and TV shows devoted to the date, and theories abound as to what the world-destroying event could actually be.

Putting aside the failure to learn a lesson from Y2K hysteria and the fact that the date is just a nice round number in the Mayan calendar (just like 2000 on our Gregorian calendar), has anyone stopped to realize they’re worried about predictions from people who practiced human sacrifice to appease their gods?

They needed rain, they sacrificed people. They needed more crops, they sacrificed people. They needed the sun to come up the next morning, they sacrificed people. I’m just not going to get myself too worked up over the last page of a calender worked out by some assholes who’d cut my heart out as an insurance policy for reaching that last page.

Makes me wonder if we’re really making any progress after all.

Your Modern World Spites Your Face

In today’s entry of Your Modern World, we find motorcyclists in Nigeria are using dried pumpkin shells as helmets in an attempt to comply with new helmet laws. Many of them are being arrested, yet they still refuse to comply with the law.

The first question a rational human being asks is “why not wear a helmet?” Good question. The first reason is because they’re afraid the helmets will be stolen. This is especially problematic for the motorcyclists who use their bikes as a taxi to get people through the insane Nigerian traffic; the drivers claim they get to the destination and the passenger runs off with the helmet, which costs $29US. That may not sound like a lot, but consider they only make about fifty cents a ride.

Okay, fair enough. What else?

I know some bikers who don’t wear helmets, and their arguments include: helmets restrict vision; helmets dampen hearing; helmets are uncomfortable; you don’t get to feel the wind in the face; forcing helmets on us hampers personal freedom.

Not a big deal in Nigeria. No, it’s their next concern that makes them a prime candidate for a Your Modern World entry:

Stories have also appeared in the local papers highlighting passengers’ fears that the helmets could be used by motorcyclists to cast spells on their clients, making it easy for them to be robbed.

“Some people can put juju inside the helmets and when they are worn the victim can either lose consciousness or be struck dumb,” passenger Kolawole Aremu told the Daily Trust newspaper.

Yes, you read that right: they’re afraid of magic!

I would kill to see ABATE present that argument to the state legislature.

Spawn of Your Modern World

In this edition of Your Modern World, we have a group of farmers bringing suit against the government because they think RFID tagging of livestock constitutes the mark of the beast per the Book of Revelation. These farmers, primarily Amish, refuse to use RFID tags to identify their cows, pigs, and so forth, because it goes against their religion and they object to the government forcing them to use the technology.

I’m all for the separation of church and state, and I think it works both ways: the government shouldn’t be interfering with the Amish’s religious beliefs any more than the Amish’s beliefs should influence government policy. However, if the Amish expect to sell their products outside of their communities, they need to suck it up and abide by the law. I fail to see how placing an inert tag in a pig’s ear — which will later be scanned by the buyer — violates their tenets against the use of technology. They could use a paper tracking system, in which case an RFID tag would be no different than a stamped tag, until they make the hand-off to the buyer.

Of course, saying all that validates the stupidity of the mark of the beast allegation. Do we even know what the mark is? The bible quote in question is:

Rev. 13:16-17 – “He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.”

Okay… What is this mark? What does it look like? Is it literal or figurative? Also, it refers to men with the mark of the beast, not beasts with the mark of men. Whether we define the beast as an animal, a demon, or Lucifer, it seems to me an RFID tag doesn’t apply. Men created RFID tags, not cows or mythical monsters.

An RFID tag is nothing more than a number, period (and it’s a lot bigger than 666). It becomes the key in a database of whatever information the farmers and/or the government decide to associate with said key. It’s no different from branding an animal to say “Hey, this cow is mine.” Or tattooing a number on an animal. Or hanging a stamped tag from their ear. Or whatever method these farmers use to track their animals.

One thing separates a database maintained by pencil and a databased maintained by computer: convenience. They both do the exact same thing. Yet somehow once electrons become involved, some people move off into the world of magic and superstition.

Reading deeper into the article, I love how the prevention or avoidance of terrorism is becoming a convenient excuse to justify lawsuits. In a nutshell, the suit claims that if the farmers have to quit farming because they refuse to participate in placing the mark of the beast upon their livestock, the terrorists win.

Whatever. If this suit actually makes it to court, I’ll lose a lot of faith in our legal system.

Son of Your Modern World

I just read that albinos are being murdered in Tanzania for the alleged magical properties of their limbs and organs.

We’ve split the atom, condensed the sum total of human knowledge onto silicon chips, and have shot satellites into the depths of space, yet a significant portion of the world’s population is still living in the Dark Ages. There may be parts of some cities I wouldn’t walk through at night, but at least I don’t have to live in fear of marauders hacking my legs off with machetes because they want to mix up some potion or another.

Yeah, I’m glad most of us have put superstition and magic behind us. Modern societies just don’t have room for — oh, wait… never mind.

Your Modern World Strikes Again

A school in India has named the monkey god Hanuman chairman of the college.

“The position comes with an incense-filled office, a desk and a laptop computer. Four chairs will be placed facing the empty seat reserved for the chairman and all visitors must enter the office barefoot, said Vivek Kangdi, the school’s vice chairman.”

The real kicker? It’s a technology school! They hand out bachelor’s degrees in engineering and management, and it only opened last year. I’m guessing either Hanuman’s tenure will be short-lived or the college will go bust.

Of course, it’s a good way to dodge solicitors.

“Hi, I’m Vijay, and I’m here to sell these wonderful new textbooks to your school.”

“Ah, welcome Vijay. Let me show you to Lord Hanuman’s office.”

Then they just leave the guy to sit there and twiddle his thumbs for a couple hours.

It makes me wonder if there are any US companies who might have nominated Jesus to a similar post. Then the shareholders would be pissed, the board of directors would vote Him out, and the headlines would probably read something like this:

GENERIC AMERICAN WIDGETS FIRES JESUS CHRIST
Board sites lack of shareholder faith

There may be a bright side for Generic American Widgets, though. If they did hire the big JC as CEO, he’s probably not prone to throwing his feces.

Revenge of Your Modern World

A Florida teacher has been fired because — I kid you not — he’s been accused of wizardry. When Tim sent me the article, I wasn’t sure whether to laugh or scream. In a nutshell, this guy performed a magic trick with a toothpick in front of a middle school class and he got fired for it.

I first have to laugh that someone is dumb enough to believe this guy performed an actual feat of magic and not simple sleight of hand. I also find it funny that their school board had the stones to actually list this, on record, as a reason for his termination. This makes the Kansas state board of ed look progressive.

On the other side of it, I find it infuriating. I work in education myself, and I’m seeing one of two scenarios going on: 1) they needed an excuse to get rid of the guy and they used this parental complaint to do it; 2) a parent complained, and rather than stick up for the teacher they dropped the hammer. The other reasons cited for his termination (not following lesson plans, letting students on unapproved computers) are very flimsy reasons for termination, especially if the guy was in a tenured position. Hidden reasons or not, terminating the guy for alleged wizardry is beyond ridiculous.

What’s next, Pasco County? Adopting the Malleus Maleficarum into your school board policies?

Return of Your Modern World

Only you can prevent penis theft.

Wha…?

It would seem the Congolese think penis theft is a legitimate problem, and it’s led to a number of beatings and lynchings.

It’s like a perverse take on stealing a child’s nose: “I’ve got your dick! Yes I do!”

Sadly, unlike your average four-year-old child, these idiots actually believe it.