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Pagan News Beagle: Fiery Tuesday, April 12

An Indian public figure react to the recent Panama Papers scandal. Concern rises about LGBT rights in Indonesia, the world's fourth most populous country. And the role of masculinity in the current United States presidential election is considered. It's Fiery Tuesday, our weekly segment on political and societal news from around the world! All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!

In just under two weeks, the Panama Papers scandal (surrounding the use of offshore accounts by major public figures to hide large financial assets) has resulted in the resignation of Iceland's prime minister and increased public scrutiny of Britain's. Now India's popular actor Amitabh Bachchan is now under fire, responding to the discovery that he was among the clients serviced by the Panamanian firm Mossack.

In many ways, Indonesia has made a lot of progress since 1998 when the dictatorial Suharto regime was deposed. With economic growth and political liberalization, many see Indonesia as a rising star among Southeast Asian countries. But not everything is rays of sunshine. For Indonesia's LGBT community, recent years have been in many ways terrifying.

For many Evangelical Christians the certainty of right and wrong provided by religious fundamentalism can be comforting. But it doesn't always work that way. Indeed, living with an assumed certainty about a world of sin on the verge of apocalyptic devastation can be traumatic, even if you believe you're on the side of right.

Concerns continue to rise in Poland about the rise of the Law and Justice Party under Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski. Speaking to the German newspaper Der Spiegel, activist and former Kaczynski supporter Jadwiga Staniszkis speaks about how she believes the new government is undermining Polish democracy and modeling itself after Putin's autocratic Russia.

Do you have to be "manly" to be president? That's the question FiveThirtyEight's staff are asking themselves as they take a look at the politics of gender surrounding the current presidential contest in the United States. They examine Republican front-runner Trump's bombastic rhetoric, Democratic contender Bernie Sanders' specific appeal to young men, and how Hillary Clinton's identity as a woman positions her against her competitors.

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Aryós Héngwis (or the more modest Héngwis for short) is a native of the Pontic-Caspian steppe, born some 5000 years ago, near the village of Dereivka. In his youth he stood out from the other snakes for his love of learning and culture, eventually coming into the service of the local reǵs before moving westward toward Europe. Most recently, Aryós Héngwis left his home to pursue a new life in America, where he has come under the employ of BBI Media as an internet watchdog (or watchsnake, if you will), ever poised to strike the unwary troll.


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