9 Feature Stories We’re Reading This Week: Religious Feminists And The Most Expensive Scientific Instrument Ever

This week, we profile four women who are fighting for feminist change within their conservative religions: Orthodox Judaism, Mormonism, Catholicism, and Islam. Read that series and these other great stories from around BuzzFeed and the web.

1. Feminism in Faith: Four Women Who Are Revolutionizing Organized Religion — BuzzFeed

“Why bother? Why fight? If you’re an educated feminist who was born into such a religion, why not convert to another that doesn’t relegate women to a second-class status? For each of these women, the answer relates to not only her devotion to her own faith, but to her community.” Read it at BuzzFeed.

2.The Murders Before the MarathonBoston Magazine

A collaboration with This American Life, this stunning piece by Susan Zalkind examines a gristly triple homicide in Waltham, Mass. Two years later, two suspects were dead: Tamerlan Tsarnaev, and a friend the FBI say was about to confess — when agents shot him in the head. Zalkind asks the big question: Could the Boston Marathon bombing have been stopped? Read it at Boston Magazine.

3. A Star in a BottleNew Yorker

An ambitious piece by Raffi Khatchadourian about an extremely ambitious project: The International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor, which is being built with investment from 35 countries and is the most expensive scientific instrument ever. “But if it is truly possible to bottle up a star, and to do so economically, the technology could solve the world’s energy problems for the next thirty million years, and help save the planet from environmental catastrophe.” Read it at the New Yorker.

4. The Story Behind the SAT OverhaulThe New York Times Magazine

Photograph by Brian Finke for The New York Times

Todd Balf examines new College Board president David Coleman, who saw a clear need for change: “Teachers, students, parents, university presidents, college-admissions officers, high-school counselors. They all were unhappy with the test, and they all had valid reasons.” Read it at The New York Times Magazine.

5. Where the Wild Things Go ViralGQ

Via gq.com

Zach Baron delivers a funny and surprisingly introspective profile of our colleagues, the Beastmasters. “They are the sommeliers of endearing animals. Ask them the difference between a household pet and an Internet star and they can tell you, precisely, the characteristics that make the latter.” Read it at GQ.

6. The Top of AmericaTime


Josh Sanburn discusses the Freedom Tower’s laborious construction, and its significance: “While 1 WTC may not be all things to all people, its completion signals that America’s brawny, soaring ambition — the drive that sent pioneers west, launched rockets to the moon and led us to build steel-and-glass towers that pierced the clouds — is intact. Reaching 1,776 ft. has ensured it.” Read it at Time.

7. Precious MemoriesESPN The Magazine

Illustration by Alexander Wells for ESPN The Magazine

A moving reflection about the beloved, longtime North Carolina coach Dean Smith, who’s now succumbing to dementia. If sports, at their heart, connect us, Tommy Tomlinson writes, “Here is the special cruelty of it: The connector has become disconnected.” Read it at ESPN The Magazine.

8. A Nun’s Secret Ministry Brings Hope to the Transgender CommunityAl Jazeera America

Photograph by William Widmer for Al Jazeera America

Nathan Schneider explores the grave challenges that transgendered Catholics face, and one woman who’s determined to do something about it. “Call this nun Sister Monica, though that’s not her real name. At the request of her congregation, her name can’t be used here.” Read it at Al Jazeera America.

9. Showtime, SynergyThe Awl

A witty literary essay by Matt Siegel about the performance that is courtship “It was an acquaintance and former editor of one of those gay lifestyle magazines who advised twenty-year-old me to tone it down if I ever wanted to find a boyfriend.” Read it at The Awl.

Read more: http://www.buzzfeed.com/sandraeallen/9-feature-stories-were-reading-this-week-3-3

You Probably Didn’t Realize These Famous Americans Were Actually Muslim.

Religion seems like a big deal in this country, but it shouldn’t be. This is one of the few great countries in the world allowing us to follow our own religion without the influence of government. Yet we still get a stink up our nose when we realize certain celebrities aren’t part of the same religion as us.

Islam in particular is a controversial religion to be a part of, even in this “free” society. Liberals like Bill Maher make accusations that Islam is rooted in the desire to murder people of other denominations. It’s a cheap way to make a bad guy out of people you don’t know. In light of this, here are celebrities that you might not expect to be Muslim.

1.) Dr. Oz.

2.) Akon.

3.) Muhammad Ali.

4.) Cat Stevens.

5.) Snoop Lion.

6.) Ellen Burstyn.

7.) Busta Rhymes.

8.) Ice Cube.

9.) Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

10.) Shaquille O’Neal.

11.) Jermaine Jackson (of The Jackson 5).

12.) Dave Chappelle.

13.) Mike Tyson.

Islam is a beautiful religion, practiced by beautiful and talented people that don’t want to kill everyone. Making broad claims like Bill Maher did isn’t going to make millions of people change their religion and culture, and should not be used to scare anyone.

Read more: http://viralnova.com/muslim-celebrities/

America Being Played For Fools By Terrorist Islam

Think honestly to yourself, no matter how liberal or radical you are, if, in 2001, someone told you after 9/11 our next President would have the middle name Hussein and the endorsement of terrorist organizations throughout the world, would you have believed it?

Some may say it is racist, but how can anyone deny it? Obama’s name has a similarity to Osama that is laughably close. To add the middle name Hussein has to be a joke on America. Coincidence like that does not occur. Of 350 million Americans, we are about to possibly elect Barrack Hussein Obama?

It cannot be coincidence. To realize he was raised a Muslim in Indonesia, all you have to do is make any attempt to research his past. For the man to claim he is a Christian is another farce. He has no church!

Obama has had associations with terrorists throughout his life. He claims he is a Christian, but abandoned his Church after his minister preached to “God Damn America”. In addition, the farcical church to which he belonged was not Christian as any sense of the word as Americans would understand it. A Christian church that did not believe in or preach Christian beliefs.

Obama wants to negotiate with Iran without precondition and abandon Iraq just like we did with Afghanistan years ago with disastrous results. Whose interests does this protect or assist? Iran would love the opportunity to walk into Iraq. The Iranian supported Shiites in Iraq would love to resume the genocide of their brethren hated by Iran.

And who endorses Obama? Most of his financial contributions are concealed and appear to be from international sources. Obama has refused to disclose them. And this video speaks of the types of supporters Obama has throughout the world

Obama has amassed a fortune in support from America’s enemies including over $33000 from two Palestinian brothers in a Hamas Refugee Camp. This is reported by Newsweek people, not some fly by night blog like HuffingtonPost.com.  And do you know who Huffington is owned by?  Oil barrons that made all their money off of oil!!  Surprised?

Obama and his money has even fooled American Jews, who apparently have been buffaloed into supporting him despite the fact he has spoken of a divided Jerusalem.

Bush has a very low satisfaction rating. A similar collapse in confidence occurred to Lyndon Johnson in the Vietnam war making him the last president to see such a complete loss of voter confidence. But to blame everything in the world on Bush and to feel that a Muslim associated with terrorists will solve all our problems if elected President is a sick joke on America pulled off beautifully with the money you have paid Arab nations for your fuel over the past several years.

As Obama allies with the Muslim nations that hold us hostage for our use of oil and that had much to do with driving us into this recession, Obama states how Exxon is at fault and McCain as well. This is to defer the actual responsibility from his brethren in OPEC that did everything they could to destroy our economy and drive oil prices higher. Think about what nation the 9/11 terrorists were from. It wasn’t Brazil folks. It was Saudi Arabia! Do you think they saw a huge benefit in the surge in the price of oil that resulted?

Expect Obama to ally with Iran and watch the assimilation of Iraq by the Shiites and Iran. Expect Obama to go into Afghanistan temporarily to justify his withdrawal from Iraq only to hand it back to the Taliban. Expect Obama to install the welfare state he preaches distributing the supposed wealth (operating capital) of small business to those that abuse the welfare system.

Just blame it all on Bush after Obama creates a Socialist state that supports Islam at the expense of a democratic America. To have elected a black man president is an honor. To elect one that is a Muslim with terrorist associations is an abomination.

Olympics, An International Phenomenon: Even Murder and Terrorism Cannot Overcome the GAMES!

People world wide can respect pride in their brethren.  It does not matter if you are American, Iraqi, Iranian, French, British or any other nationality.  Your brother or sister is your friend and garners your respect.  And so we find pride in our participants in the Olympics, as does everyone in the world.  We love this competition, no matter who wins.  But just as most people in the world, we hope our teams/participants win.  It is all about pride and patriotism.  And patriotism extends well beyond our borders.

Could Islam Greet the Olympics?

In the Muslim world, it is considered a crime, punishable by death, to
render a depiction of Mohammed. Many in the US misinterpret this law because they see it as a contradiction to freedom of speech, but, as Christians, we would like to see similar laws against mocking our religion. Watching Christ depicted in satirical ways is often difficult to take. Perhaps we should respect the Muslims here and have respect for all religions in this regard. It is not our place to prevent freedom of religion. Neither is it our place to condemn theirs. We hope to see the next Olympics in Dubai or an equally wonderful place in the world of Islam.

Terrorism and Murder?

One has to reflect on the Munich 1972 Olympics when terrorists massacred the Israeli team to project their fear and horror on America and Israel, but we here in America, and those throughout most of the world,  know that freedom of religion reigns.  Muslims can be champions as well as anyone else, and we love them equally.  There is no prejudice when it comes to the games.  It is all about being a champion.  Mohammed himself would appreciate that and love watching his champions win in the Olympics.  Peace.

Peace, America Loves And Welcomes All Nationalities…

Raj Bhavsar replaced Paul Hamm, who withdrew from the competition. Raj said, “This is a tremendous honor and the first feeling that comes to mind is that dreams can come true. You never know when it will happen, but with enough positive intention and belief, it can. I am ready, willing and able to take on this great opportunity. Unfortunately, this comes at the expense of a great athlete, Paul Hamm. My heart goes out to him. He did an admirable thing, and he will always be a hero in my eyes. I also want to recognize the other two alternates, who are an important part of the soul and spirit of this team.” Raj is among the top American gymnasts for these Olympics. He performed for Team USA when they had no room for an error. And his performance on the rings was his signature event. He killed it, and brought America a huge chance to compete for a medal. We love Raj and hope to see much more of him as the games progress.

Kevin Tan A Huge Example of America’s Free Heritage

Kevin is a captain of the American Gymnastics Team, but he looks more like he should be competing from China. This is not a coincidence, Kevin is of Chinese descent and has great pride in that heritage, as is the case with most Americans in the melting pot that is the USA. Most all of Americans come from somewhere else in the world, and that is what makes America special, because in America, everyone can be great. And Kevin is great.

Kevin, and his father before him, are heroes from China, and we all love and cheer him as our American hero in the Olympics. Isn’t that what we are all about?

The weakest event for the US is the Pommel Horse, but Alexander Artemev from the US proved that this won’t be the case in these games. He smoked the horse and delivered an execution score or 9.150 against a difficulty of 6.1 for a total score of 15.25.

According to Wikipedia “Sasha Artemev was born in Minsk, Belarus (then the USSR) on August 29, 1985. His father, Vladimir, was a member of the Soviet national gymnastics team in the early 1980s. His mother, Svetlana, was a high-level rhythmic gymnast. Artemev came to the United States with his parents in 1994 and became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 2002.”

Alexander, once again, is an example of an American Team born of international heritage. His performance was stellar and exemplary of what makes the US great. We love and welcome everyone. No nation is perfect, and no nation endorses only those that want to be endorsed. But the US endorses everyone that is within its borders. And we protect their rights and love them as our own, because they are our brothers and sisters.