October 18th, 2021


Signs of the Times; The Campaign Trail

News of the Weird by Chuck Shepherd

By News of the Weird by Chuck Shepherd

Published November 12, 2014

  Signs of the Times; The Campaign Trail

"Selfie fever" has begun to sully the sacred Islamic pilgrimages to Mecca, according to scholars who complained to Arab News in September. What for centuries has been a hallowed journey intended to renew the spirit of Islam (that all Muslims are called upon to experience at least once) has come, for some in the so-called "Facebook era," to resemble a trip to Disneyland, with visitors to the Sacred Mosque texting friends the "evidence" of their piety. (Another scholar complained in a New York Times opinion piece in October that Mecca is often experienced more as a tour packaged by marketers and centered around Mecca's upscale shopping malls rather than religious structures.) [Arab News, 9-30-2014; New York Times, 10-1-2014]

"My Friends, I Am a Man of Action!": Roger Weber, who ran for a Minnesota House seat this month, is now being sued by a neighbor over a property-line dispute near Nashwauk. Rather than working with an arbitrator or mediator, or letting the legal process run its course, Weber in 2013 took a chain saw and sliced completely in half the large, two-car garage that Weber says sat half on his property and half on the neighbor's. [St. Paul Pioneer Press, 9-22-2014]

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