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Religious zealots hog the headlines as swine flu spreads

Posted in The Freethinker by Skepdude on May 1, 2009

AS swine flu began its spread across the globe, first to step up to the pig ignorant podium was Israel’s deputy Health Minister, who wanted its name changed to “Mexican” flu to avoid ruffling Jewish feathers.

Then up stepped imam Amadia Rachid, based in the Italian city of Salerno, who claimed this week that the swine flu virus affirms Islam’s teachings. Said Algerian-born Rachid:

We believe that what is happening shows the truth of our faith. Even Muslims who live in Italy are talking about swine flu at the moment … many believe the disease confirmed the teaching of the Koran

He added:

The Islamic faith doesn’t explain exactly why pigs should be considered unclean animals. But it’s clear that, for most theologians, it is precisely to avoid the spread of disease that Islamic tradition tends to keep men away from pigs.

Shortly after – despite the fact that global health experts insist that the mass slaughter of pigs is entirely unnecessary and a waste of resources – Egypt, one of the few Islamic states which allows pig breeding, began giving the chop to the country’s estimated 300,000 pig population.

pigs

According to this report, at one large pig farming center just north of Cairo, scores of angry farmers blocked the street to prevent Health Ministry workers in trucks and bulldozers from coming in to slaughter the animals. Some pelted the vehicles with rocks and shattered their windshields and the workers left without killing any of the animals.

READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY AT “THE FREETHINKER”

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