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Indonesian Man Faces Five Years For Atheist Facebook Post 907

An anonymous reader writes "31-year-old Alexander Aan faces a maximum prison sentence of five years for posting 'God does not exist' on Facebook. The civil servant was attacked and beaten by an angry mob of dozens who entered his government office at the Dharmasraya Development Planning Board on Wednesday. The Indonesian man was taken into protective police custody Friday since he was afraid of further physical assault."
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Indonesian Man Faces Five Years For Atheist Facebook Post

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  • by vlm ( 69642 ) on Sunday January 22, 2012 @02:42PM (#38783021)

    The future is already here, its just unevenly distributed. This will be coming to the USA soon, although with christian PR, its just not here yet. Give it time.

    Also the guy is an idiot. Don't just make a statement, issue a challenge, like "If god existed he would strike me with lightning". That makes for a much more entertaining court trial.

  • by vlm ( 69642 ) on Sunday January 22, 2012 @02:46PM (#38783053)

    Indonesia ... recognises the right to practice six religions ... Buddhism ... Atheism is, however, illegal.

    Isn't this kind of contradictory?

  • by SlippyToad ( 240532 ) on Sunday January 22, 2012 @02:57PM (#38783149)

    I am not sure how religious bigotry proves your thesis that government is inherently illegal.

    Howeer, as I often say to people who hate government (usually for no coherent reason), you are welcome to try the alternative. It's called feudalism, and it will develop wherever nobody is in charge.

    Ignoring this is retarded, and it is what stupid fucking people without a real education do.

  • by DoofusOfDeath ( 636671 ) on Sunday January 22, 2012 @03:00PM (#38783187)

    I dunno... pretty much every tough-minded Christian ever?

    You'll be very hard pressed to pose a question which Christian theologians haven't come to grips with over the past 1900 years. You may challenge their premises, but you're very unlikely to identify an internal inconsistency for which no resolution has been proposed.

    There are plenty of people who have poor justification for even their accurate beliefs, including for mathematics and physics. It would be a mistake to dismiss sampling theory just because someone on Fox News made a dumb statistical inference. If you really want to know the truth about a religion, you'll need to dig deeper than just knocking down persons who pose poor arguments for it.

  • by Penguinisto ( 415985 ) on Sunday January 22, 2012 @03:07PM (#38783267) Journal

    Sorry, but Sagan turned out to be, well, wrong:

    Pope John Paul II - "Faith can never conflict with reason" []
    an interview with the gent who runs the Vatican Observatory []
    Why Catholics Like Einstein []
    A small peek into the whole controversy []
    a bit of insight []

    Everyone points at Galileo (quite a few centuries back) and screams, but turns a blind eye towards everything else that's been going on ever since.

  • by PolygamousRanchKid ( 1290638 ) on Sunday January 22, 2012 @03:08PM (#38783273)


    Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim nation, recognises the right to practice six religions in total: Islam, Protestant, Catholic, Hindu, Buddhism and Confucianism. Atheism is, however, illegal.

    I'd go with Confucianism. If nobody can understand what he said, nobody can understand if you are practicing it or not.

    If you live amongst a horde of unpredictable religious fanatics, it's best to keep your mouth shut.

    My God told me so.

  • by realityimpaired ( 1668397 ) on Sunday January 22, 2012 @03:19PM (#38783363)

    Assuming "he" exists, he probably has better things to do with his time than worry about some carbon-based life form on one of billions of planets in one of billions of solar systems that makes up "creation"....

    Personally, I like the pagan version of it... yes, gods exist, no they're not omnipotent, they're certainly not perfect, and Yahweh is a self-absorbed twat with delusions of adequacy. The best analogy I ever heard was that he's like the cheerleaders in high school... petty, vindictive, cliquish, and vain.

  • by walshy007 ( 906710 ) on Sunday January 22, 2012 @03:22PM (#38783393)

    I don't know anyone who is "pro abortion", but plenty who are "pro choice".

    Pro life and pro choice are just market speak, the real issue is for or against the ability of women to legally have abortions. People who use pro life and pro choice are attempting to change the framing [] in order to get people on their side.

    imho, people should be blunt about a topic, speaking as eloquently as possible about their real point without trying to dodge things. This is not a dig at you, but at oh so many idealists that refuse to do so.

  • Re:This is terrible (Score:4, Interesting)

    by JaredOfEuropa ( 526365 ) on Sunday January 22, 2012 @04:01PM (#38783779) Journal
    100 years? I give it less than 10. Not for sharia law to be implemented, but for someone to get prosecuted for publicly claiming there is no god. Already, many EU countries have laws against insulting religion, and with tensions between various religious groups in Europe on the rise, that law is being applied more strict than before, and the European Court isn't making things any better with their guidelines on this matter. Already, advertising companies refusing ads like the "there's probably no god" campaign draws very little comment except statements like "that's understandable", while the same companies do show ads like "god is great" or "jesus loves". This same kind of thinking is argued in court cases: promoting your god is merely the exercise of freedom of religion, whereas stating that there is no god amounts to an insult to religion. As I said, I give it less than 10 years before this makes it into law, or at least into a EU court directive or guideline, or a ruling from the (batshit insane) EU Human Rights Committee.
  • by K. S. Kyosuke ( 729550 ) on Sunday January 22, 2012 @04:04PM (#38783805)

    Same with creationists and evolutionists. If you tell a creationist that evolution is not a religion he will get really angry because it made evolution harder to attack.

    But evolution is not a religious conviction (in the way that atheism is), it is a postulated observable natural process with potential to being proven or disproven by evidence (as far as the scientific method can be said to generate proofs). If creationists can't grasp it, they clearly belong to a group of people incapable a rational discussion in the first place, and any effort is best spent elsewhere, isn't it?

  • Re:He deserves it (Score:2, Interesting)

    by todrules ( 882424 ) on Sunday January 22, 2012 @04:51PM (#38784251) Journal
    LOL. Name one time that Dawkins ever got violent because somebody else didn't believe what he did? Let me answer that for you. Never. I'm sorry, but atheists argue their points using intelligence and logic. They don't have to resort to violence because they think through their arguments. The religious (at least in this case and many, many others) can't fight back against logic, so they lash out in frustration. Kind of like a kid throwing a tantrum.
  • Re:He deserves it (Score:5, Interesting)

    by todrules ( 882424 ) on Sunday January 22, 2012 @05:05PM (#38784381) Journal
    And the Old Testament also tells you that slavery is OK and even goes so far to tell you how to beat your slave. Damn those heathens for outlawing slavery!!! The Bible says it's OK!
  • by narcc ( 412956 ) on Sunday January 22, 2012 @07:09PM (#38785725) Journal

    Are they pro-life with respect to the organisms that cause the plague?

    You don't have to go that far. Just ask them if they support the death penalty.

    You'll be amazed at how many "pro lifers" think that killing people a few years after they're born is fantastic.

  • by MightyMartian ( 840721 ) on Sunday January 22, 2012 @09:36PM (#38787037) Journal

    You could check out the Umayyads that ran Spain. During their time in power, Spain was the most advanced state in Western Europe; and Jews were shown far more tolerance than in almost anywhere in Christendom. As well, check out medieval Baghdad, which was one of the great centers of learning and scholarship in the Medieval world, up until the Mongols burned it to the ground, with the loss of thousands of Classical and High Muslim volumes.

    Modern Islamism, by and large, is a response to the failure of the Ottoman Empire and the fallout from that (which, one way or the other, the Middle East is still going through). The first seriously effective hard core conservative Islamist sect was the Wahabis, who were striking out against what was viewed in the Arabian peninsula as the decadent ways of the Ottoman Empire.

  • by stdarg ( 456557 ) on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:43AM (#38788173)

    Atheism is a religion the same way not collecting stamps is a hobby.

    That's catchy but pointless.

    We don't have a commonly used word that describes the state of not collecting stamps, or a word that describes people who avoid collecting stamps. People don't identify themselves as not-stamp-collectors.

    If we did... it would in fact be a hobby.

    It's just the way language works. You can't fight it. Atheists who beat this horse to death just sound stupid. Atheism is a religious conviction because it's in the same class of answers as all the other religious convictions. It's why black is considered a color by most even when some people define it as the absence of color. Others consider white the absence of color, yet white is also a color in the broader population. Some see white or black as the presence of all "real" colors. Why is that? Hmm so mysterious! Not really.

    It's like this. "What do I see? I'm calling that orange. Oh what's that? Hmm, I'll call it mauve. Oh look, when I mix it all together I get what I call white/black. So all my positive answers to the question of what I see should have a common name so I can refer to them generally... since I can see white and interpret it in my mind just like how I see red or green or dull pink, they are the same kind of thing, I'll call that color." And thus we have colors that are really not-colors or all-colors.

    And religions that are really not-religions or all-religions.

    I think on some level atheists understand the language roots of why people call them a religion, but they refuse to acknowledge it because they don't want to be *associated* with other religions..

"You can have my Unix system when you pry it from my cold, dead fingers." -- Cal Keegan