UK / NIGERIA
Nigerian ‘witch hunter’ Helen Ukpabio is launching a legal case against the British Humanist Association, suing them for half a billion pounds for misrepresentation. Ukpabio claims that the BHA misrepresented her by saying that she believes that if a child under the age of two screams at night, cries, is always feverish, suddenly deteriorates in health, puts up an attitude of fear, and doesn’t feed well is possessed by the devil. In fact, she believes the child is possessed by witchcraft spirits. Obviously, the lawsuit is about silencing critics, not about the devil or witches.
Presidential candidate Marina Silva took back her initial support of same-sex marriage. Silva, an evangelical Christian and missionary for an “Assembly of God” in Brasilia, had included a plan for a constitutional amendment to allow same-sex marriage, but she said it was a misunderstanding after the negative reactions from religious groups. Reports say she sometimes makes difficult decisions with the help of a“bible roulette”, where she opens a bible at random to find guidance. If elected, which is unlikely, she would be the first black president and the first president from the Amazon.
An Ultra-Orthodox Jewish community of about 200 members was expelled from the town they had settled in a few years ago. The elders of this mostly Mayan village voted to expel the newcomers because many of the villagers felt they were being ill-treated by them. Secular Guatemala has an interesting take on the conflict and the terrible (and racist) reporting of it.
A Christian pastor admitted to killing a 14 year old girl out of jealousy. The 31 year old pastor had been having a “relationship” with the girl since she was 12, but she left him to date someone her own age. The linked article, as all others I saw, refers to the girl as “his lover” and only mentions rape in passing.
The law that came into effect this week that allows people to change their legal gender without having to fulfill any surgical, psychiatric or medical requirements, is the first of its kind in Europe and could set a new precedent for the fair and humane treatment of trans people in the region.
Featured image: Orthodox Jews in San Juan La Laguna, Guatemala. Prensa Libre: Ángel Julajuj