Topic

freedom of religion

28 petitions

Update posted 2 weeks ago

Petition to Dr. Anthony Barber, Mark Sereni

Fighting back against the FFRF bullying re: "God Bless America" in Springfield SD

The Freedom From Religious Federation (FFRF) sent a letter to the Springfield School District on March 25, 2019  which stated that “The repeated recitation of a religious message in the school setting violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment, which prohibits public schools from advancing, supporting or promoting religion,” FFRF Legal Fellow Chris Line wrote to Superintendent Anthony Barber. “‘God Bless America’ is a prayer. The song that the phrase originates from begins, ‘As we raise our voices in a solemn prayer.’ A prayer hosted by a publicly supported school does not pass constitutional muster.”  Springfield School District, has made the decision in response to the  Freedom From Religious Federation (FFRF) "cease & desist" letter regarding the recitation of "God Bless America at the end of the Pledge of Allegiance (erring on the side of prudence to avoid a costly lawsuit which would ultimately affect us as taxpayers) but without discussing with the parents of the school children affected, nor the community at large (the taxpayers). SSD response to FFRF In agreeing immediately to do so, the school district DID protect us from a potential lawsuit, but has instead allowed us all to be bullied by ONE party via the Freedom From Religious Federation (FFRF), which is supposedly a "free thought" secular/atheist non-profit group.  In doing so, Springfield School District has changed the entire district's tradition and practice simply to appease ONE party and to avoid litigation with the Freedom From Religious Federation (FFRF) while setting a precedent for this group or others like it to BULLY our community and our schools into following the values and traditions of a minority (one parent).   This type of bullying through threatened litigation by one or a small group of people trying to dictate to the masses (tyranny of the minority) has been happening all across our nation and now it has come to small town Springfield, Delaware County, PA.  It has been a long standing tradition to say "God Bless America" after our Pledge of Allegiance at least as long as I have gone to public school in Springfield. It has never been forced and I believe it has always been understood that God does not have to be just Christian, but also Jewish, Islamic, Buddhist, whatever religion you believe - or don't believe. If you don't believe in anything, don't say anything - its really that easy!   But why change what has always been the tradition, which no one has taken offense to prior to now?  What basically amounts to ceremonial deism, which in that case, does NOT go against The Establishment Clause of the First Amendment?  Doesn't everyone know that "God" is whatever higher deity you believe in?  I would certainly think that people who deem themselves "FREETHINKERS” would understand that concept, seeing as they feel they are intellectually superior to anyone who has any religious belief other than theirs - atheism.  Why stop saying it because ONE family is offended by it?  How soon before SSD gets another letter from this FFRF stating that reciting "One nation under God" as part of the Pledge of Allegiance is against the law? I think that this "incident" sets a precedent that will continue possibly causing our school district to quickly cower to the threats of litigation by one person whenever they are offended and change things for all (tyranny of the minority).   If you look at the FFRF's "victory" post regarding their letter to our school district you will see very HATEFUL comments and even additional suggestions of how to go after Springfield School District as well as other districts for things they feel are infractions to The Establishment Cause: https://www.facebook.com/99536044727/posts/10157425815249728?s=644146790&v=i&sfns=mo While I appreciate the district's prudence in wanting to avoid costly litigation for our district based on the whims of one individual backed by an organization hell bent on bullying others into submission to their values, I feel it was communicated poorly and not handled collaboratively with the community, therefore resulting in not exploring options that we could take as a community like enlisting the help of the American Center for Law & Justice:  https://aclj.org/  An open forum where all community members were welcome to DISCUSS the best ways to handle this would have been welcomed and well attended I believe and would have ensured that NO ONE felt excluded and provided transparency of the issue to the community allowing them to explore options as a group to fight this.   STOP LETTING ONE VOICE SPEAK FOR ALL OF US IN THE COMMUNITY, ESPECIALLY WHEN THAT VOICE IS THAT OF A BULLY. We could all use a little more God or whatever it is that makes your life a little brighter and worth living these days as well as a lot less bullying and mandating without reason or provocation. Springfield School District has made a unilateral decision regarding the recitation of "God Bless America: at the end of the Pledge of Allegiance (erring on the side of prudence to avoid a costly lawsuit which would ultimately affect us as taxpayers) without discussing with the parents of the school children affected, nor the community at large (the taxpayers).  In agreeing immediately to do so, the school district DID protect us from a potential lawsuit, but has instead allowed us all to be bullied by ONE party via the Freedom From Religious Federation (FFRF), which is supposedly a "free thought" secular/atheist non-profit group.  In doing so, Springfield School District has changed the entire district's tradition and practice simply to appease ONE party and to avoid litigation with the Freedom From Religious Federation (FFRF) while setting a precedent for this group or others like it to BULLY our community and our schools into following the values and traditions of a minority (one parent).   This type of bullying through threatened litigation by one or a small group of people trying to dictate to the masses (tyranny of the minority) has been happening all across our nation and now it has come to small town Springfield, Delaware County, PA.  It has been a long standing tradition to say "God Bless America" after our Pledge of Allegiance at least as long as I have gone to public school in Springfield. It has never been forced and I believe it has always been understood that God does not have to be just Christian, but also Jewish, Islamic, Buddhist, whatever religion you believe - or don't believe. If you don't believe in anything, don't say anything - its really that easy!   But why change what has always been the tradition, which no one has taken offense to prior to now?  What basically amounts to ceremonial deism, which in that case, does NOT go against The Establishment Clause of the First Amendment?  Doesn't everyone know that "God" is whatever higher deity you believe in?  I would certainly think that people who deem themselves "FREETHINKERS” would understand that concept, seeing as they feel they are intellectually superior to anyone who has any religious belief other than theirs - atheism.  Why stop saying it because ONE family is offended by it?  How soon before SSD gets another letter from this FFRF stating that reciting "One nation under God" as part of the Pledge of Allegiance is against the law? I think that this "incident" sets a precedent that will continue possibly causing our school district to quickly cower to the threats of litigation by one person whenever they are offended and change things for all (tyranny of the minority).   If you look at the FFRF's "victory" post regarding their letter to our school district you will see very HATEFUL comments and even additional suggestions of how to go after Springfield School District as well as other districts for things they feel are infractions to The Establishment Cause: https://www.facebook.com/99536044727/posts/10157425815249728?s=644146790&v=i&sfns=mo While I appreciate the district's prudence in wanting to avoid costly litigation for our district based on the whims of one individual backed by an organization hell bent on bullying others into submission to their values, I feel it was communicated poorly and not handled collaboratively with the community, therefore resulting in not exploring options that we could take as a community like enlisting the help of the American Center for Law & Justice:  https://aclj.org/  An open forum where all community members were welcome to DISCUSS the best ways to handle this would have been welcomed and well attended I believe and would have ensured that NO ONE felt excluded and provided transparency of the issue to the community allowing them to explore options as a group to fight this.   STOP LETTING ONE VOICE SPEAK FOR ALL OF US IN THE COMMUNITY, ESPECIALLY WHEN THAT VOICE IS THAT OF A BULLY. We could all use a little more God or whatever it is that makes your life a little brighter and worth living these days as well as a lot less bullying and mandating without reason or provocation.    

Heather Bodkin
253 supporters
Started 1 month ago

Petition to The Human Rights Watch Board of Directors

We Demand The Resignation of Human Rights Watch CEO, Kenneth Roth

The credibility of the Human Rights Watch (the “HRW”) is in jeopardy because since 2009 and under Roth's leadership, the HRW has received €13.7 million from the Netherlands government through  (De Nationale Postcode Loterij) to turn a blind eye to the ongoing serious and systematic violations of human rights in the Netherlands. Here are some of the violations that have been documented:   Tens of thousands of children face daily discrimination because of school segregation with a religious-political slant.  134 reports about sexual abuse were made last year school year, of which almost half involved a person in a position of authority. Forced conversion of Muslim children has become legalized in most primary schools through cruel methods implemented with impunity. In schools financed by the government, many Muslim children were threatened, humiliated, beaten, forced to sing racist songs, eat pork, pray every day as Protestants and celebrate Christmas. Parents who refused to convert their children have been prosecuted without access to legal assistance. Muslim children have been taken illegally from their parents and placed in non-Muslim homes. Muslim parents have been subjected to deliberate impoverishment. Newborn Muslim babies have been denied essential medical care. Thousands of Muslim families have fled the Netherlands from religious persecution. Some 360 unaccompanied refugee children disappeared from asylum centers in the Netherlands in 2017. For more than fifteen years I have been trying to protect the rights of children. Lawyers were unable to help me do so because the perpetrators enjoy absolute immunity. Thus, Dutch authorities were able to destroy my children’s lives and hamper their futures. In addition, the European Court of Human Rights, along with the EU and UN Human Rights Commissioners declined to do their jobs and protect the rights of children despite most of these serious human rights violations constituting crimes against humanity. Evidence As my last hope, after being threatened many times by my own country’s government, I contacted the HRW, but I was informed that the HRW Netherlands does not provide support to local or individual cases. I conducted some online research and I found this: ‘In September 2010, Human Rights Watch opened its Netherlands office in order to support the work of Human Rights Watch worldwide, as well as to intensify its advocacy on key global human rights issues. The foundation is incorporated under the laws of the Netherlands. The main purpose of the entity is fundraising’. Is this not a clear contribution to human rights violations? What happened ‘To ensure our independence, we refuse government funding and corporate ties’? Mr. Roth, are you aware of the survey (for Members of European Parliament) of 1200 Dutch lawyers which demonstrates that the lawyers are afraid of the Dutch police state? And do you know that Netherlands Justice Ombudsman was dismissed and his website suspended after publishing a report which indicated that ‘The Dutch State is persistently corrupt’?    Moreover, 23 human rights organizations concluded that the human rights situation in the Netherlands has deteriorated over the past five years. This is concluded by a report to the United Nations: Also UNICEF the Netherlands and "Defence for Children" concluded in their annual statement that ‘In the Netherlands, the rights of children are trampled underfoot’. Any country can pay one million Euro a year to hide violations of International Law as the Netherlands did. I am certain that Dutch people will donate more than €2 million a year if the Human Rights Watch begins monitoring and reporting human rights violations in the Netherlands. To restore trust between people around the world and HRW, please sign this petition. Thanks!

Haissam Malas
37 supporters
Update posted 2 months ago

Petition to Michelle Bachelet Jeria, Dunja Mijatović, Antonio Tajani, Hans Christof Graf von Sponeck, ENOC Secretariat, Kenneth Roth, Kumi Naidoo, Dr. Rashid Al Balushi, Thorbjørn Jagland, Pier Antonio PANZERI, Secretary General Yousef bin Ahmad Al-Othaimeen, Emily O'Reilly, Rachel Pulfer, Lucia Nader, Universal Rights Group

Stop Forced Conversion of Muslim Children

In defiance of International Law, the Netherlands has legalized forced conversion of Muslim children in most primary schools with cruel methods and impunity. Parents who refused to convert their children have been prosecuted and I am one of them. Please check evidence link below. Unfortunately, thousands of children are suffering from systematic violations of their rights in the Netherlands because there is no separation of powers. In addition, there is no constitutional and legal mechanism for the protection of human rights. Also, acts of parliament cannot be tested against the constitution, and on top of that, all government employees enjoy absolute immunity. Reports of human rights organizations, along with UNICEF indicate grave violations of human rights in the Netherlands. For more than fifteen years, I have been trying to protect the rights of my children who were threatened, humiliated, beaten, forced to sing racist songs, eat pork, pray every day as Protestants and celebrate Christmas. I was prosecuted without a legal representative for refusing to convert my children. Authorities were keen to take custody of my children and remove them to the homes of non-Muslims, as we were told. To escape religious persecution, my children and wife moved to Russia in 2011. The Netherlands should not be allowed to continue to violate human rights and commit crimes against humanity with impunity. Please sign this petition and share with your friends and family. Evidence #StopForcedConversionOfMuslimChildren

Haissam Malas
1,457 supporters