Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent.
Is he able, but not willing?
Then he is malevolent.
Is he both able and willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able nor willing?
Then why call him God?
Sometimes one gets depressed over the latest bit of religious thuggery – Jesus-happy textbooks in Texas, a conviction of "blasphemy" in some Muslim land – but those distract from the big picture. It's always refreshing to take a step back and appreciate anew the incredible fall religion has taken, from its near-global rule of raking in tithes and appointing kings and burning dissenters, to... what's increasingly the position of a "Will Work for Food" bum. At least in some parts of the world.
Is it just me, or are news stories like these more common every day?
Heh. Who says the news is always bad? : )
(Yes, there are legitimate worries over the loss of any beneficial community functions performed by a given church or mosque or temple. But there isn't, and never has been, anything stopping people – believers or not – from continuing those activities without throwing in lies about sins and afterlives and magic bread and the inferiority of women and on and on.)