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View Full Version : Extremely religious schools: what to do about them


mur'phon
06-20-2007, 04:35 PM
All over the world, some children are sent to extremely religious schools where they learn that a certain religion is the absolute truth, and some political ideologies are right, and must be supported. The more extreme schools teach that they must folow orders without question, even if it means harming their loved ones, or commiting crimes. In short, the children are brainwashed, as they are taught to not question what they learn.

So, do you think that such schools should be legal?
Is it against the parrents right to decide what they think is best for their children to make such schools ilegal?
Is it against the childrens freedom to choose a religion to let the parents send them to such schools?
If you think they should remain legal, should they have to folow special laws?

mimartin
06-20-2007, 05:04 PM
Iím speaking only of American schools in my comments here.

Yes, schools should be allowed to operate with religious afflation only if they are private schools and not receiving any type of federal government funding. What you are describing here sounds more like a cult and not any religious school Iíve ever seen.

It is not only the parentís right, but their obligation to do what is in the best interest of their child. If the parent decides that a religious school was in that best interest then by it would be appropriate to enroll their child. However, what you are describing here is not the teachings of any religion that I ever heard of. Using your definition of an extreme religious school I would hope parents would look for an alternative. That said it still should be legal do to the idea of freedom of religion.

SilentScope001
06-20-2007, 06:12 PM
I hate bias as much as the next person...but Come on!

There is a difference between public schools and private schools. The difference is that, in private schools, the person already believes in the radical religious teachings and already accepts the bias as fact. All he really need to do is go over there and actually learn what that bias means, but that's about it.

In public schools, you are forced into one school that is public, and therefore, no bias is allowed, due to the fact that you cannot choose what public school's ideology to follow...they all are basically the same. But you do choose what private school to go to.

In other words, these people knew what these schools are teaching, and go there anyway, because they actually believe in what the school teaches. Therefore, I don't think anything should be done about extremely religious schools. It might be best to have no state sponsorship, but even so, I don't think you can condemn "brainwashing"/teaching if the person consents to being "brainwashed"/taught. Really, for those who do believe in free will, can't you trust the child to make a choice in saying, "Wow, this is an awesome religion" and "This religion stinks! I'm converting!"

If you are talking about cults though, well, that's why you got illegal paramilitary groups in the USA who go around kidnapping brainwashed childs in cults and brainwashing them to hate cults. Two wrongs make a right, no?

tk102
06-20-2007, 06:42 PM
All over the world, some children are sent to extremely religious schools where they learn that a certain religion is the absolute truth, and some political ideologies are right, and must be supported. The more extreme schools teach that they must folow orders without question, even if it means harming their loved ones, or commiting crimes. In short, the children are brainwashed, as they are taught to not question what they learn.

What schools are you talking about? Can you give an example or should we just accept what you say is the truth? This pretext sounds hypothetical and could be skewed to make whatever argument you like.

So, do you think that such schools should be legal?
Sure. You say "all over the world" so I don't know what legal system you're referring to. Perhaps under a dictatorship or totalitarian regime they'd be illegal, but that goes against my ideology.

Is it against the parrents right to decide what they think is best for their children to make such schools ilegal?Yes of course if private schools are made illegal it goes against the parents' right to decide. By definition.
Is it against the childrens freedom to choose a religion to let the parents send them to such schools?Children do not have the same rights as adults in, well probably every country I can think of. They don't have the freedom to choose their school or their medical care. That freedom resides with the parent(s) or custodian.
If you think they should remain legal, should they have to folow special laws?Special laws? No. Only that the students demonstrate aptitude and attendance and whatever other criteria enough to qualify for a state-recognized diploma.

GarfieldJL
06-20-2007, 07:18 PM
Okay this is a rather complex topic, and can't be a straight yes or no. I'm assuming you just mean religious schools and are not referring to cults.

It's okay for religion to be incorporated in private schools, and for kids to go to church. That being said there is a line that has to be drawn.


Brainwashing kids to be suicide bombers, or commit violence against others because they aren't of the same religion is immoral.

Many private schools provide students with extremely good educations, including religious schools, most of those students when they come out are pretty descent people. However, in a situation like this it all depends on what goes on in the school and the church, synagog (sp?), mosque, etc. you can't really generalize.

Darth InSidious
06-20-2007, 07:21 PM
What about them? If people send their children their, or their children decide to that's their issue, not yours. You don't like it? Tough. You can't legislate against things just because you don't agree with them.

@Garfield: It is, I believe, "synagogue" :)

GarfieldJL
06-20-2007, 07:38 PM
What about them? If people send their children their, or their children decide to that's their issue, not yours. You don't like it? Tough. You can't legislate against things just because you don't agree with them.

@Garfield: It is, I believe, "synagogue" :)


@ InSidious sp? = not sure on spelling


And it is an issue if a school is brainwashing kids to want to walk into a McDonalds or a mall somewhere and blow themselves up thinking they're go to paradise.

True_Avery
06-20-2007, 07:44 PM
And it is an issue if a school is brainwashing kids to want to walk into a McDonalds or a mall somewhere and blow themselves up thinking they're go to paradise.
That is a problem in of itself, but it still feels like a classification. Ever seen Jesus Camp? They didn't tell them to walk into buildings and blow them up, but they did quite a few other things. People do stuff under the thought that all they have to do is ask for forgiveness and they are clean. I'm not attacking you, and I know it was only an example of many forms of brainwashing, it still seems like classification and possibly dealing with people more overseas than the brainwashing on home turf. Just a thought, but I still agree with you fully. Brainwashing is a terribly thing, but there are other forms other than blowing stuff upm a lot of them more dangerous.

Dagobahn Eagle
06-21-2007, 04:46 AM
There is a difference between public schools and private schools. The difference is that, in private schools, the person already believes in the radical religious teachings and already accepts the bias as fact. All he really need to do is go over there and actually learn what that bias means, but that's about it.

In public schools, you are forced into one school that is public, and therefore, no bias is allowed, due to the fact that you cannot choose what public school's ideology to follow...they all are basically the same. But you do choose what private school to go to.For some reason you're excluding little children, who certainly do not choose which school they want to go to. Second of all, many religious schools do more than 'teach what their bias is about' - they also actively encourage it.

Oh, and I find it strange that apparently public schools are in your eyes something you're forced to by definition to choose, while religious schools seem to be voluntary by definition. If, when I was six, my parents decided I was to attend a religious school, there'd be nothing voluntary about it.

Really, for those who do believe in free will, can't you trust the child to make a choice in saying, "Wow, this is an awesome religion" and "This religion stinks! I'm converting!"Don't give me that. Indoctrination into religion is just that - indoctrination. You can't shove dogma down a kid's throat and at the same time go 'they're free to choose for themselves'. Indoctrination, by definition, is the encouragement of one practice while discouraging all other. If parents are sending a kid to a religious school, most of the time it's because they want the kid to not follow any other religion, while staying true to Jesus or Allah or Ganesh.

If I tell a kid from birth that God is real and I have the kid partake in prayer, church service, and so on, and send the kid to a religious school, I can't at the same time go 'oh, they're free to choose for themselves' without making myself guilty of hypocrisy, because clearly I don't want them to do so - if I did, I'd not be indoctrinating them in the first place, would I now? I'd send them to a regular school where they attempt to teach all sides equally.

Not to mention that indoctrination is a very powerful tool. If something becomes 'part of your culture' and you're never told to question it, you won't. Plain and simple. The female victims of circumcision in the Middle East do not question the practice, regardless of how horrific it is. Why? Because they've been brought up to believe it's part of life and should be carried out.

This movie (http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-8210522903232438954) delves into the subject more thoroughly. For starters, go to 3:40 and listen to his points on children of politically involved parents.

Brainwashing kids to be suicide bombers, or commit violence against others because they aren't of the same religion is immoral.I'd go as far as saying that all indoctrination and brainwashing is immoral, regardless of whether it makes the victim follow God, suicide bombing, Bush, or environmentalism.

Many private schools provide students with extremely good educations, including religious schools, most of those students when they come out are pretty descent people.I don't question their morality, but I do question the fact that many religious schools, not to mention the new Creation museum, actively lie to their victims. Evolution is apparently not real, atheism leads to moral downfall, faith is a virtue (read: the less you question your beliefs and think for yourself, the better you are as a person), and the US was founded as a Christian nation.

It's strange that the very same people who condemn pro-communist propaganda in Red China and all too easily condone the same practices on their own people and children - if only the subject switches from Communism to Jesus. Why is it wrong to indoctrinate kids from childhood to love Chairman Mao, when it's OK to indoctrinate them to love Jesus?

So, do you think that such schools should be legal?I think that news media, schools, museums and other facilities of information and education should be made to follow certain standards of truthfulness and accuracy. It becomes increasingly harder to think for yourself when you live in a society where you're lied to about abortion and condom usage at school, about WMDs in Iraq and Muslims in MalmŲ by FOX News, about evolution by Kent Hovind, and about Muslims by Chic tracts.

If you testify in court, you have to make an oath to tell 'nothing but the truth', and if you're a medical professional, you can't lie to a patient about medicines, his conditions, or anything else related to medicine. Why? Because in certain cases in life, truth simply is a necessity. You say it's wrong to teach kids that blowing themselves up at a McDonald's is wrong? Why? Because it takes lives? The Vatican doctrine on condom usage has killed litterally millions in Africa, and is still staunchly defended by most people.

Totenkopf
06-21-2007, 06:06 AM
The Vatican doctrine on condom usage has killed litterally millions in Africa, and is still staunchly defended by most people.

Naw, that's TOO convenient. It's indiscriminate sexual practice that's responsible for millions of deaths in Africa. Next thing you'll be blaming the Vatican's position on condoms for the size of China's and India's populations. The Vatican also looks down on fornication, but that doesn't necessarily stop people from engaging in the behavior that got them AIDS in the first place. :tsk: You might as well blame the pharmaceutical industry for not flooding Africa with drug cocktails to combat the virus as well.

Keep in mind, DE, that many people who go to religious schools often turn away from that faith. Nothing, including indoctrination apparently, appears irreversible.

True_Avery
06-21-2007, 06:09 AM
Keep in mind, DE, that many people who go to religious schools often turn away from that faith. Nothing, including indoctrination apparently, appears irreversible.
That is a good point. Most of the athiests I hang around with were put into religious schools as children. But a lot of the hardcore religious were put in the same schools. Guess you got like a 50/50 chance of being indoctrinated or running away forever.

Darth InSidious
06-21-2007, 07:02 AM
@ InSidious sp? = not sure on spelling

Yes, that's why I showed you the correct spelling as far as I am aware :)

@DE: If indoctrination is so powerful, how would you explain the mass apostasies certainly happening within the Catholic church, or the frequent accusation that Catholics don't know what they believe in?

Dagobahn Eagle
06-21-2007, 08:22 AM
Naw, that's TOO convenient. It's indiscriminate sexual practice that's responsible for millions of deaths in Africa.And if the people practicing indiscriminate sex were allowed to use condoms, the AIDS epidemic would either have been far less severe. It's very easy to say that oh, who needs condoms? Let's just tell them to not get each others laid. In reality, however, abstinence education does not work.
WASHINGTON -- Students who participated in sexual abstinence programs were just as likely to have sex a few years later as those who did not, according to a long-awaited study mandated by Congress.--Source (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18093769/).

In stark contrast, this report (http://www.advocatesforyouth.org/publications/factsheet/fssexcur.pdf) by Advocates for Youth (http://www.advocatesforyouth.org/about/vision.htm) shows that 'comprehensive sex education', which includes educating children and teens on condoms, has a significant effect:
Research has identified highly effective sex education and HIV prevention programs that affect multiple behaviors and/or achieve positive health impacts. Behavioral outcomes have included delaying the initiation of sex as well as reducing the frequency of sex, the number of new partners, and the incidence of unprotected sex, and/or increasing the use of condoms and contraception among sexually active participants. Long-term impacts have included lower STI and/or pregnancy rates.
You might as well blame the pharmaceutical industry for not flooding Africa with drug cocktails to combat the virus as well.Refraining to fight a problem (not sending 'drug cocktails') and actively worsening it (prohibiting condoms) are two different things. I place far more blame on the Vatican and other anti-condom, anti-sex ed, anti-AIDS education institutions.

Nancy Allen``
06-21-2007, 09:32 AM
Schools shouldn't make any one belief to be better than another, one very simple reason for that is because it's unfair to those who follow a diffirent religion. Perhaps special schools that are dedicated to one religion can teach it but certainly the more extreme stuff, taking some of what's written in holy texts litrially, shouldn't be taught period. Again for a very simple reason, we are meant to fear and hate the big bad Muslim terrorists and their religion, understandably so given their actions if not right, but if we go about killing nonbelievers then we are as bad as we claim them to be.

mimartin
06-21-2007, 12:34 PM
People do stuff under the thought that all they have to do is ask for forgiveness and they are clean.

I'm not speaking for anyone, but my own personal belief and experience. The way I was taught (in church and at home) is I will be forgiven of my sin if I ask forgiveness, but only if I am truly remorseful for commenting that sin. The Sunday school teacher and my mother made it very clear to me that I could not truly be remorseful if I planned ahead to ask for forgiveness and then willfully commenting that sin. So at least in my opinion and the way I was taught this is not true. Also just because I am forgiven by God for my sin does not make me clean, once I first sinned as a very young child I can never be considered clean or pure again in the religious senses. I believe that even if I ask Godís forgiveness, Iím still not released from that sin unless I strive to prevent myself from doing it again. I have to strive to make myself a better person each day. If the said sin was against another I need their forgiveness as well as Godís. Without the victims forgiveness I can not truly forgive myself and while Godís forgiveness of my sin is more important, me forgiving myself is more difficult to achieve and something I have to live with ever minute of every day.

So in my opinion this is not brainwashing, this is people misinterpreting religion to justify living with their own sinful acts. Iíve even read of the church accepting money to grant absolution for a deceased sinner. I have no clue if that works, and my personal views will not allow me to test that theory.

Totenkopf
06-21-2007, 02:33 PM
And if the people practicing indiscriminate sex were allowed to use condoms, the AIDS epidemic would either have been far less severe. It's very easy to say that oh, who needs condoms? Let's just tell them to not get each others laid. In reality, however, abstinence education does not work.

Refraining to fight a problem (not sending 'drug cocktails') and actively worsening it (prohibiting condoms) are two different things. I place far more blame on the Vatican and other anti-condom, anti-sex ed, anti-AIDS education institutions.

Seeing as how the Church can no more stop people from having all that sex it disapproves of in the first place, it's difficult to blame it for their unwillingness to use protection as well. To paraphrase Stalin, where are the Pope's divisions? If the people disobey the proscriptions on fornication, they don't get a pass on not using protection. They are, in effect, disobeying twice. No, it's simply the people there that are to blame. You're also on thin ground in your last statement. By not providing a cure, "Big Pharma" could be accused of as much guilt as "the Church" in actively worsening a problem--the spread of a disease, not less. Same goes for the people who run those countries . However, given your strident atheism, I'm not entirely surprised you seek to place most of the fault on the Vatican. As I said, TOOOOOO convenient.

GarfieldJL
06-21-2007, 03:25 PM
Define what you mean by extremely religious, because it seems that you're painting every religious school as doing the same thing. Not all religious schools try to brainwash their students, unless you consider teaching people to respect life, have compassion for others, etc. to be brainwashing.

mimartin
06-21-2007, 03:28 PM
Seeing as how the Church can no more stop people from having all that sex it disapproves of in the first place, it's difficult to blame it for their unwillingness to use protection as well. To paraphrase Stalin, where are the Pope's divisions? If the people disobey the proscriptions on fornication, they don't get a pass on not using protection. They are, in effect, disobeying twice. No, it's simply the people there that are to blame. You're also on thin ground in your last statement. By not providing a cure, "Big Pharma" could be accused of as much guilt as "the Church" in actively worsening a problem--the spread of a disease, not less. Same goes for the people who run those countries . However, given your strident atheism, I'm not entirely surprised you seek to place most of the fault on the Vatican. As I said, TOOOOOO convenient.

I agree with you 100% that we have to take responsibility for our own action. Many times when we are looking for who is to blame for a problem, we should be looking at our own reflection in the mirror.

Withholding valuable lifesaving information from someone in the name of morality is the same as murder. Giving people all the ways to prevent the spread of the disease and letting them decide which best would work for them, puts all the responsibility on them to behave in a socially responsible way. Of course abstinence would work best and should be taught, but it will not work for everyone no matter how well their intentions.

I am not saying any organization should condone permissive behavior that goes against its belief structure; by the same token if you are there in a humanitarian capacity you should do everything possible to prevent the spread of the disease and save life. Condoms have been proven to be an effect way to prevent the spread of HIV, while abstinence prevents the spread of HIV 100% of the time, condoms have slowed the disease in the western nations.

While I agree with Bishop Maurice Piat that ďThe condom is a stopgap, a lesser evil, but not the solution.Ē I believe condoms would slow the disease down enough to start looking for solutions instead of just digging graves. Until reading this I had no idea that 29.4 million of the 42 million cases of HIV could be found in sub-Saharan Africa.

I personally applauded the Catholic Church and all the other organizations and people helping in this fight, but there is so much more to do.

Totenkopf
06-21-2007, 04:21 PM
Given the plethora of sources of info available today, I find it a bit unlikely that the Vatican can so tightly control information as to render many ignorant in Africa about the efficacy of condom usage. Besides, the Vatican endorsing prophylactics is a lot like SADD or MADD enabling a drunken driver to use his vehicle, all the while warning against getting behind the wheel. Or perhaps like the law telling you not to rob banks, but then providing you with free handguns to heist a bank of your choice, and tips on how to avoid getting arrested. :giveup:

mimartin
06-21-2007, 05:01 PM
There is a very big difference between providing condoms that would save lives and providing booze to an alcoholic driver or guns to a robber that could result in the loss of life.

I never said that the Vatican held the information in tight control, I said if they are there to help save lives then condoms could be an effective tool in that fight. I also that if they are going to teach one proven way to save lives (abstinence), then you should teach other forms that might be necessary if abstinence does not fit into that personís way of life.

Totenkopf
06-21-2007, 05:14 PM
There is a very big difference providing condoms that would save lives and providing booze to an alcoholic driver or guns to a robber that could result in the loss of life.

I never said that the Vatican held the information in tight control, I said if they are there to help save lives then condoms could be an effective tool in that fight. I also that if they are going to teach one proven way to save lives (abstinence), then you should teach other forms that might be necessary if abstinence does not fit into that personís way of life.

The point of the comparison is that no group can give conflicting "advice" and remain even remotely credible, regardless of the outcome. But I wasn't implying that you thought the Vatican held that information (widely dissemenated globally in the first place) too close to the vest. Rather that they aren't the only source of info available on how effective/ineffective condom usage is in the end (no pun intended, btw).

GarfieldJL
06-21-2007, 08:39 PM
The Vatican actually does have a point about Abstainence, seriously that's the best way to not get an STD is not to have sex while you're not married. I really find moral relativism to be rather scary, because you could argue just about anything to moral when in fact it isn't.

As far as Muslim religious schools, to be honest a lot of them receive direct funding from radical groups and preach hate. I don't think all Muslims believe that way, but unfortunately it appears many of those with influence are for lack of a better term lunatics.

On the flipside I do know some people that went to schools with religious backgrounds and they turned out fine.

This isn't a cut and dry topic, and the thing about Muslim schools right now we need to keep careful watch on them because in case people have forgotten we are at war with Islamic Extremists (fanatics).

Nancy Allen``
06-21-2007, 10:01 PM
I really find moral relativism to be rather scary, because you could argue just about anything to moral when in fact it isn't.

I'm gonna use that, you're absolutely right, saying violence is immoral even in the event of saving lives is quite a frightening prospect. Case in point, police having to use lethal force on someone pointing a gun at someone, people can scream blue murder about it all they want but if police don't act then they would have two or more deaths instead or just the one, the assailent's.

You're also right about a great many things, religion for example, not being as simple as some would make it out to be.

Samuel Dravis
06-21-2007, 10:34 PM
I said if they are there to help save lives then condoms could be an effective tool in that fight.

I also that if they are going to teach one proven way to save lives (abstinence), then you should teach other forms that might be necessary if abstinence does not fit into that personís way of life.Not exactly. Religion doesn't exist to save people's lives, per se. It exists to save people's souls. If push comes to shove and a person has to make a decision between their soul or their life, religion says they should choose their soul, because there's obviously more payoff on that one. Catholicism has a number of martyrs that have done exactly that; I think most (or all, perhaps) are considered saints.

Maybe people don't follow their professed religion. However, if the Catholics continue saying that using condoms is inconsistent with their faith, just as they have always done, I don't think they can be blamed for the people dying of STDs.

mimartin
06-21-2007, 10:55 PM
Not exactly. Religion doesn't exist to save people's lives, per se.

Then why are they there saying they want to stop this epidemic? If what you say is true they should give the 29 million infected now as well as the rest of the population last rites and head back to Rome. My understanding of infectious diseases is you first attempt to stop the spread of the infection. While I agree abstinence is the best and most fool proof way to stop the disease dead in it tracks, it is not the only option or even the most practical one.

http://www.cathnews.com/news/310/53.php

Iím all for principles and morals, but if I can save a human life my principles and morals may have to be bent a little for the greater good.

Samuel Dravis
06-21-2007, 11:00 PM
Then why are they there saying they want to stop this epidemic? If what you say is true they should give the 29 million infected now as well as the rest of the population last right and head back to Rome. My understanding of infective diseases is you first attempt to stop the spread of the infection. While I agree abstinence is the best and most fool proof way to stop the disease dead in it tracks, it is not the only option or even the most practical one.

http://www.cathnews.com/news/310/53.php

Iím all for principles and morals, but if I can save a human life my principles and morals may have to be bent a little for the greater good.You can't bend absolutes, good sir. It's just not going to happen.

They say they want to stop the epidemic and I don't doubt they want to. However, that doesn't mean they're going to endorse immoral actions to stop the spread when there are alternatives both within people's capability and reasonable to expect of those who believe the religion.

mimartin
06-21-2007, 11:06 PM
You can't bend absolutes, good sir. It's just not going to happen.

They say they want to stop the epidemic and I don't doubt they want to. However, that doesn't mean they're going to endorse immoral actions to stop the spread when there are alternatives both within people's capability and reasonable to expect of those who believe the religion.

We will agree to disagree and it may be a moot point anyway according to the church.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/3176982.stm

Samuel Dravis
06-21-2007, 11:18 PM
We will agree to disagree and it may be a moot point anyway according to the church.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/3176982.stmLying, however, I have no respect for. Saying that the condoms don't help versus AIDS is demonstrably wrong. Their saying so is quite immoral from my perspective, and they should be condemned harshly for doing so. I believe we can agree on that, at least. :)

GarfieldJL
06-22-2007, 12:38 AM
I'm gonna use that, you're absolutely right, saying violence is immoral even in the event of saving lives is quite a frightening prospect. Case in point, police having to use lethal force on someone pointing a gun at someone, people can scream blue murder about it all they want but if police don't act then they would have two or more deaths instead or just the one, the assailent's.


You took what I said out of context, defending yourself or in the case of police shooting back at a criminal, or defending an innocent morally is considered just. Just going in to kill someone cause you don't like them or are robbing their place and they discover you is not moral...

What I was referring to is the idea that you can use moral relativism to say anything is okay even when it isn't. Things like using illegal drugs cause you feel like it, vandalizing other people's property, etc. If you have to defend yourself from someone breaking and entering your home, both the law, and in most religions it's perfectly justifible to defend yourself and your family with lethal force if necessary. It's called murder in self-defence, and it isn't even considered a crime.



You're also right about a great many things, religion for example, not being as simple as some would make it out to be.


Am I detecting sarcasm?

Nancy Allen``
06-22-2007, 08:42 AM
You took what I said out of context, defending yourself or in the case of police shooting back at a criminal, or defending an innocent morally is considered just. Just going in to kill someone cause you don't like them or are robbing their place and they discover you is not moral...

Actually there's a big debate over violence being immoral no matter what, that you're not even allowed to use it to save your life otherwise you're immoral.

Am I detecting sarcasm?

Not at all. People look at religion, for example, and say that since it causes problems it should be disposed of, people should be convinced out of deluding themselves. That's too simplistic an answer, you may as well not allow cars, cigarettes and alcohol because they kill.

Ray Jones
06-22-2007, 11:21 AM
I think according to the problems and trouble, not to mention the death and pain they have caused (and do cause), alcohol, cigarettes, and religion should go. It's almost necessary. :p

Nancy Allen``
06-22-2007, 11:30 AM
You cannot just lay a blanket solution on all parties involved, not even the Middle East. Just because a few of them are bad doesn't mean they all are. The level of intolerance where people believe something should be wiped something out is the sort of thing you don't want to see take hold, because that's where it starts and it ends in death squads.

Dagobahn Eagle
06-22-2007, 11:34 AM
Seeing as how the Church can no more stop people from having all that sex it disapproves of in the first place, it's difficult to blame it for their unwillingness to use protection as well.The study I referred to has proven that preaching abstinence does not work, while instructing condom usage does increase the usage of condoms and fight HIV and STDs, so yes, the Vatican can be blamed as it's not only not telling people to use condoms - a proven-to-work anti-HIV weapon - it's actively discouraging their use by telling kids they don't work and are immoral. It's as if the fire department caused fire extinguishers and sprinklers to be removed from a building - you would blame them when the structure burned down.

If the people disobey the proscriptions on fornication, they don't get a pass on not using protection.If they're told by the only source of information they have that condoms don't work and are immoral, of course it's not their fault they don't use them. These people actually believe and respect the Catholics who come to them.

By not providing a cure, "Big Pharma" could be accused of as much guilt as "the Church" in actively worsening a problem--the spread of a disease, not less. Same goes for the people who run those countries.First of all, it's not very easy for 'Big Pharma' to mass-produce and distribute medicine for free. Heck, it's not even easy for humanitarian groups who don't have a medical industry to run.

Second of all, I repeat that not helping to solve a problem is not nearly as bad as actively worsening it. If a building was burning, you'd do more damage trying to drive off the firefighters than you'd be by just standing idly by.

The Vatican, like all others spreading lies and misinformation about condom usage, HIV, and safe sex, are the #2 contributor by far to the HIV pandemic - second to HIV itself, of course.

Of course abstinence would work best and should be taught, but it will not work for everyone no matter how well their intentions.I'm not saying abstinence is not the best solution. Which is why I promote comprehensive sex ed, which promotes both abstinence, safe sex, and the fight against myths and stigma on STD/HIV. Why? Because it's been proven to work.

I am not saying any organization should condone permissive behavior that goes against its belief structure.If it goes against the belief structure of the Vatican to let the Africans save themselves, they should get the Hell out. I wouldn't join the fire department if my religion prohibited taking out fires with water, would I?

Condoms have been proven to be an effect way to prevent the spread of HIV, while abstinence prevents the spread of HIV 100% of the time, condoms have slowed the disease in the western nations.

However, that doesn't mean they're going to endorse immoral actions to stop the spread when there are alternatives both within people's capability and reasonable to expect of those who believe the religion.

The Vatican actually does have a point about Abstainence, seriously that's the best way to not get an STD is not to have sex while you're not married.Abstinence education doesn't work, as I've already shown. Preaching abstinence and withholding condoms is like preaching lawfulness while withholding burglar alarms and door locks.

I personally applauded the Catholic Church and all the other organizations and people helping in this fight [...]They. Are. Not. Helping.

Given the plethora of sources of info available today, I find it a bit unlikely that the Vatican can so tightly control information as to render many ignorant in Africa about the efficacy of condom usage.Just that you have a plethora of information available to you, doesn't mean they do. Just that you can look up Kim Jong-Il on Wikipedia and find out he's a monster doesn't mean the people of North Korea can. Just that you are able to research condoms and find out that they're greatly effective... doesn't mean that the Sudanese and Kenyans and Rwandans are. Refugee camps and starving villages typically do not feature Internet cafes.

Besides, the Vatican endorsing prophylactics is a lot like SADD or MADD enabling a drunken driver to use his vehicle, all the while warning against getting behind the wheel.Completely off. Comprehensive sex ed is like telling a driver not to drive drunk, without effect, for then to tell him how to drive safely if he still finds himself behind the wheel, with a proven positive effect.

Or perhaps like the law telling you not to rob banks, but then providing you with free handguns to heist a bank of your choice, and tips on how to avoid getting arrested.Better, but still off by miles. It's more like knowing a gang is going to rob a bank and telling them not to, but then, knowing they're going to do it anyway, providing them with pepper sprays so they won't use AK-47s and kill half the staff of the bank.

Abstinence is favorable over 'fornication', but is not achievable through abstinence education. Distributing condoms cheaply or free and encouraging their use, however, has proven to have an effect, not only on AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa, but also in Europe and America against STDs, the number of unwanted children in orphanages, and, of course, the rate of abortion.

As far as Muslim religious schools, to be honest a lot of them receive direct funding from radical groups and preach hate. I don't think all Muslims believe that way, but unfortunately it appears many of those with influence are for lack of a better term lunatics.

On the flip side I do know some people that went to schools with religious backgrounds and they turned out fine.Of course. Not all religious schools preach idiocy and barbarism.

Corinthian
06-22-2007, 12:24 PM
You know what you get when you dispose of religion? A dictatorship. You can't remove religion unless you want to start arresting and 'disposing' of religious leaders, and not even that will totally dispose of religion, in fact, that kind of thing is the favored food of religions. Christianity, for example, was oppressed for hundreds of years, and now it's the most prevalent religion on the planet.

True_Avery
06-22-2007, 03:05 PM
You know what you get when you dispose of religion? A dictatorship. You can't remove religion unless you want to start arresting and 'disposing' of religious leaders, and not even that will totally dispose of religion, in fact, that kind of thing is the favored food of religions. Christianity, for example, was oppressed for hundreds of years, and now it's the most prevalent religion on the planet.
And you get about the same thing when religion is in power. People should follow a faith, but not follow religious leaders and teachings that turn Christianity into a cult. Being introduced to religion, seeing different beliefs, and making your own to match your spirituality is one thing... but indoctrination is another. People can have their beliefs if they want, but when they are harmful to others and forced down kids throats all you end up with is a group of people willing to drink the Kool-Aid without a second thought.

Religion, especially in America, was kept low and underpowered for a long list of reasons, many of which include many religions having the nasty habit of wiping out large groups of people that didn't agree with them when the church had more power than the government. It may just be me, but I have seen a steady increase over the years of the church gaining more influence in the America government system, like abortion and sexual education for a start. Separation of church and state happened for a great deal of reasons, and I for one don't like the idea of a church having more power than the government that is meant to control it.

Abstinence? I have yet to see any solid evidence that it works. People have sex. People have a lot of sex, especially ignorant teenagers. You cannot and will not ever stop that no matter how hard you possibly try in your entire life. The church cannot stop that no matter how much influence they gain. If kids are going to sleep with each other, then I want to know they are sleeping with a condom or other use of protection with the knoledge of what they are doing to make sure no more babies are born into families that have no concept of taking care of children. But that is to say if those condoms work, as they do not work when idiots poke holes in them in stores. I was introduced to sexual education by my parents when I was 5 years old to make sure I got what I needed to know and knew enough about it until 6th grade when I took it again. Sexual education in schools should be mandatory because, believe it or not, the stork does not bring children to your doorstep and condoms have been proven in countless nights to work.

Darth InSidious
06-22-2007, 03:48 PM
Avery, people have made that argument about a lot of things. Mostly things that are now considered amoral and banned by all of the 'civilised' world.

GarfieldJL
06-22-2007, 04:01 PM
Actually there's a big debate over violence being immoral no matter what, that you're not even allowed to use it to save your life otherwise you're immoral.


Then that means whomever doesn't respect that basically has free reign. Cops trying to beg a robber to surrender, and don't fight back when the robber opens up with a submachine gun. Seriously, there is something called common sense, while I'm all for compassion, if someone was breaking in my home personally I would fight back with lethal force if necessary.


Not at all. People look at religion, for example, and say that since it causes problems it should be disposed of, people should be convinced out of deluding themselves. That's too simplistic an answer, you may as well not allow cars, cigarettes and alcohol because they kill.

Okay that's over simplifying, alcohol if used responsibly in moderation can actually be good for you, particularly wine. Cars are a mode of transportation and it is the person behind the wheel generally that is responsible for deaths in accidents. Cigarettes is a more sticky issue because of second-hand smoke, and you could argue they should be banned though it would be extremely hard to do given the only drug more addictive than Nicotine is caffine.

True_Avery
06-22-2007, 04:06 PM
Avery, people have made that argument about a lot of things. Mostly things that are now considered amoral and banned by all of the 'civilised' world.
A little confused on what you mean.

Darth InSidious
06-22-2007, 04:22 PM
A little confused on what you mean.
Abstinence and human nature. Making hard and fast judgements on the latter can be particularly unwise :)

John Galt
06-22-2007, 07:26 PM
Although they would be 100% effective if followed, abstinence programs do not work because abstinence itself runs contrary to human nature. The desire to reproduce is one of the fundamental aspects of the human psyche(the most important, if you put any stock in Freudian theory). Repressing these desires publicly only forces the actions themselves underground, a setting in which protection will most likely not get used, in no small part due to the "authorities" telling people that protection doesn't work in the first place. In my opinion, fighting the AIDS epidemic should include sex education to warn against unsafe practices, as well as cheaply distributing condoms and other forms of protection(not for free, mind you, as the programs would have to have money to continue themselves indefinitely).

As far as the Vatican or the Pharmaceutical companies being to blame for the ongoing epidemic, as the old saying goes "An ounce of provention is worth a pound of cure." The drug coctails currently in use are nowhere near 100% effective, and they're extremely expensive to manufacture, meaning that giving these drugs away would be nearly impossible on the massive scale of the African aids problem, especially since they're long-term treatments, meaning that even getting one or two doses to each AIDS victim would just be delaying the inevitable for a few weeks or months. Besides, the Vatican deals in teachings and dogma, which can basically be issued until his holiness goes blue in the face. The pharmaceutical companies, however, deal in medicine and cold, hard cash, both of which exist in decidedly limited quantities.

SilentScope001
06-22-2007, 08:56 PM
You do realize, everyone, that you can get AIDS via blood transfusions, IV Drugs (needle-sharing programs FTL, let save people from AIDS while at the same time let them break the law), and by being a child of someone who has AIDS? Sex isn't the only way to get AIDS, you know?

And, what's the whole point? If you have AIDS, you are going to die within 5 years. It's terrible indeed, but it turns out we are all infected with a diease known as "Aging". People get this diease as soon as they are born. After 80 years of living with the terrible side-effects of "Aging", this horrible diease will come in and kill you in your sleep. It will kill all of us. We are not immune. We all will die.

And now what? Who cares if we live for 5 years or 80 years after getting a horrible diease? We still die. And death is a terrible fate. Would an African be happy if he gets an vaccation for AIDS but still die anyway from another cause? And what will give comfort to those who are dying from Aging or AIDS? From my experience, it is religion who helps many of these people cope with the side-effects, and make them long for a better future.

Atheists, want to kill religion? Stop screaming at people turning a blind eye to the plague of AIDS, and come up with a cure for Aging. Because until you do, all your effort is useless. For, as the last time I check,the world's death rate is currently holding steady at 100% (http://www.theonion.com/content/node/39236), despite the best efforts of scientists across the world.

True_Avery
06-22-2007, 10:01 PM
You do realize, everyone, that you can get AIDS via blood transfusions, IV Drugs (needle-sharing programs FTL, let save people from AIDS while at the same time let them break the law), and by being a child of someone who has AIDS? Sex isn't the only way to get AIDS, you know?
Duh, but sex has the highest rate of spreading of all things you listed.

And, what's the whole point? If you have AIDS, you are going to die within 5 years. It's terrible indeed, but it turns out we are all infected with a diease known as "Aging". People get this diease as soon as they are born. After 80 years of living with the terrible side-effects of "Aging", this horrible diease will come in and kill you in your sleep. It will kill all of us. We are not immune. We all will die.
That is a pretty strong statement. Do you even know what happens to you when HIV turns into AIDS? Your immune system dies and something as simple as a common cold can keep you sicker than you can imagine for sometimes months at a time. Skin diseases that live on your skin 24/7 take over and your entire body blows out into blisters, etc. I believe that people who have AIDS would take a painless death in a bed over the torment AIDS brings them in the last stages of life.

And now what? Who cares if we live for 5 years or 80 years after getting a horrible diease? We still die. And death is a terrible fate. Would an African be happy if he gets an vaccation for AIDS but still die anyway from another cause? And what will give comfort to those who are dying from Aging or AIDS? From my experience, it is religion who helps many of these people cope with the side-effects, and make them long for a better future.
OK, so what do you expect us to do? This disease kills either very quickly or waits in your system for years and years. It kills you faster than you age, that is why it is a disease smart one.

OK, lets go by your logic. Next time you get the flu, or get some other germ/disease/bacteria you no longer will be given medication. Why would we give you meds? Waste of money. You are going to die anyway, so why should we waste our time stopping the innevideble? Maybe the idea isn't so fun now huh?

Maybe you hate life, but I bet a damn large group of people with AIDS would want it cured from them and to keep living. People with families get AIDS, people are born with AIDS. Do you not think for a second that they would not want to get rid of it or suppress it so they can live a few more years of life? Yeah, your right, lets let every person who gets sick just die. Maybe when it is one of your family members you can understand that.

Atheists, want to kill religion? Stop screaming at people turning a blind eye to the plague of AIDS, and come up with a cure for Aging. Because until you do, all your effort is useless. For, as the last time I check,the world's death rate is currently holding steady at 100% (http://www.theonion.com/content/node/39236), despite the best efforts of scientists across the world.
Where the hell did that come from? Age is natural, AIDS is a Disease. How about we come up with a cure for AIDS? If an AIDS epidemic hit humanity as a whole it would be the end of us. It has the capability of wiping out all of humanity, as it is with Africa right now. We stop the outbreak a little and that goes a long way in the end.

But, you're right, death happens and we cannot stop it. But what the hell does that have to do with this debate at all? Or are you somehow trying to argue that religion makes you live longer than meds do?

I suppose the fact you're killed prematurely is irrelevant.

I have no idea were any of that came from, but the way I'm looking at it your logic is flawed in a huge amount of places. It would have made sense if you said "They have AIDS, let all who have AIDS die and everyone else survive and it will be cured." I had a person in a class of mine debate that pretty damn well, but all your logic states is why delay the innevideble for anything.

And where are all of you getting this "KILL RELIGION, KILL RELIGION" vibe from? Noone but you has yet to state that in this thread, and the only thing that has been said about religion is to stop indoctrination of children so they arn't -brainwashed-. If stopping brainwashing is really so much similar to stopping religion to all of you, maybe there actually is something wrong.

Totenkopf
06-23-2007, 07:05 AM
The study I referred to has proven that preaching abstinence does not work, while instructing condom usage does increase the usage of condoms and fight HIV and STDs, so yes, the Vatican can be blamed as it's not only not telling people to use condoms - a proven-to-work anti-HIV weapon - it's actively discouraging their use by telling kids they don't work and are immoral. It's as if the fire department caused fire extinguishers and sprinklers to be removed from a building - you would blame them when the structure burned down.


Naturally, of course, there's NO other source of information on rubbers in Africa to offset the Vatican's "advice"? That's a copout, DE. It's too convenient to say that the Church should be responsible for the failure of people to use condoms. Since they don't listen to the Vatican about sexual practices, it's silly to think they place a lot of value in the Churches position on condoms. While the Catholic Church has seen some of it's greatest growth coming out of Africa, are you prepared to show me unimpeachable stats that show that the bulk of AIDS "victims" in Africa are Roman Catholics, ones who use a smorgas board approach to their sexual morality at that (like those in Europe and NA)? You sound a lot like you're saying they don't believe in the Church's teachings on fornication, but strictly abide by its "misinformation" on the efficacy of condoms? :rofl:



If they're told by the only source of information they have that condoms don't work and are immoral, of course it's not their fault they don't use them. These people actually believe and respect the Catholics who come to them.

So, you actually know for fact now that the Vatican is controlling the flow of info throughout Africa on condoms? Again :rofl:





First of all, it's not very easy for 'Big Pharma' to mass-produce and distribute medicine for free. Heck, it's not even easy for humanitarian groups who don't have a medical industry to run.

Second of all, I repeat that not helping to solve a problem is not nearly as bad as actively worsening it. If a building was burning, you'd do more damage trying to drive off the firefighters than you'd be by just standing idly by.

The Vatican, like all others spreading lies and misinformation about condom usage, HIV, and safe sex, are the #2 contributor by far to the HIV pandemic - second to HIV itself, of course.

You assume a lot about what people are listening to down there. Again, you're telling us that the people don't listen to the Vatican on sexual teachings, but place total authority in its position on condom usage. Priceless. You still fail to address the culpability of the leaders' themselves. It must be a knee jerk reaction for you to place all the blame on the Vatican.


Besides, I'm not blaming "big pharma" for anything. Just pointing out that it's easy to apportion blame to everyone else but the victims with the self inflicted wounds.




Just that you have a plethora of information available to you, doesn't mean they do. Just that you can look up Kim Jong-Il on Wikipedia and find out he's a monster doesn't mean the people of North Korea can. Just that you are able to research condoms and find out that they're greatly effective... doesn't mean that the Sudanese and Kenyans and Rwandans are. Refugee camps and starving villages typically do not feature Internet cafes.


Again, where is your proof that everyone in Africa relies solely on the Vatican, that somehow mysteriously controls a monoploy on info.....at least w/in Africa?





Besides, the Vatican endorsing prophylactics is a lot like SADD or MADD enabling a drunken driver to use his vehicle, all the while warning against getting behind the wheel.

Completely off. Comprehensive sex ed is like telling a driver not to drive drunk, without effect, for then to tell him how to drive safely if he still finds himself behind the wheel, with a proven positive effect.

:eyeraise:
Your comment doesn't address mine, just merely sets up your own analogy. I don't address the issue of whether condoms are effective, or even the efficacy of "comprehensive" sex ed programs, Your comment is something of a non sequitur. The Vatican endorsing the use of condoms would be no different from your parents providing you with "safe" joints after telling you to "just say no" to drugs, when they know that some of the kids you hang out with are irresponsible stoners.



It's more like knowing a gang is going to rob a bank and telling them not to, but then, knowing they're going to do it anyway, providing them with pepper sprays so they won't use AK-47s and kill half the staff of the bank.

Abstinence is favorable over 'fornication', but is not achievable through abstinence education. Distributing condoms cheaply or free and encouraging their use, however, has proven to have an effect, not only on AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa, but also in Europe and America against STDs, the number of unwanted children in orphanages, and, of course, the rate of abortion.

This is little better than saying that telling illegal immigrants to stay out of your country is useless, so we should just open our wallets to their continued depredations. Yeah, real smooth :rolleyes: Btw, you're forgetting that the criminals don't need the AK-47s to kill half the staff, as there's more than one way to skin that cat. ;) Seriously, your position is tantamount to saying let people do whatever they want to make themselves happy, b/c we'll just pick up the bill.

Darth InSidious
06-23-2007, 11:50 AM
As an adult, Catholic male, I dispute the claims of others here of the impossibility of abstinence.

SilentScope001
06-23-2007, 12:04 PM
That is a pretty strong statement. Do you even know what happens to you when HIV turns into AIDS? Your immune system dies and something as simple as a common cold can keep you sicker than you can imagine for sometimes months at a time. Skin diseases that live on your skin 24/7 take over and your entire body blows out into blisters, etc. I believe that people who have AIDS would take a painless death in a bed over the torment AIDS brings them in the last stages of life.

Once you die, you can't feel anything. No pain, no misery, nothing. You cannot experience anything.

I do not differnate between dying peacefully and dying violently or dying painfully or dying without pain. Once you die, you die. That's it.

OK, so what do you expect us to do? This disease kills either very quickly or waits in your system for years and years. It kills you faster than you age, that is why it is a disease smart one.

disease: A disease is any abnormal condition of the body or mind that causes discomfort, dysfunction, or distress to the person affected or those in contact with the person. Sometimes the term is used broadly to include injuries, disabilities, syndromes, symptoms, deviant behaviors, and atypical variations of structure and function, while in other contexts these may be considered distinguishable categories. ---Wikipedia

So, yeah, I consider age to be a disease, since it does cause for decreased functionality of the body and disrupts homestatis.

OK, lets go by your logic. Next time you get the flu, or get some other germ/disease/bacteria you no longer will be given medication. Why would we give you meds? Waste of money. You are going to die anyway, so why should we waste our time stopping the innevideble? Maybe the idea isn't so fun now huh?

It's not a waste of money to go and stop the inevitble, and try to prolong life. People want to live, that's understandable.

It is however silly to say: "Take this pig mediciation to heal yourself! What do you mean eating pig is against your religion? You must heal yourself! Stupid religion, telling you pigs are dirty, they have brainwashed you..."

Replace "pigs" with "condoms", and you understand what I am getting at here.

Maybe you hate life, but I bet a damn large group of people with AIDS would want it cured from them and to keep living. People with families get AIDS, people are born with AIDS. Do you not think for a second that they would not want to get rid of it or suppress it so they can live a few more years of life? Yeah, your right, lets let every person who gets sick just die. Maybe when it is one of your family members you can understand that.

Read above. I'm fine with people wanting to prolong life. What I am upset with is people using this AIDS in order to push their agenda.

Where the hell did that come from? Age is natural, AIDS is a Disease. How about we come up with a cure for AIDS? If an AIDS epidemic hit humanity as a whole it would be the end of us. It has the capability of wiping out all of humanity, as it is with Africa right now. We stop the outbreak a little and that goes a long way in the end.

Already have. AIDS sufferers are everywhere, in Europe, in Asia, in USA, in India. Just like many other sexual transmitted dieases. But you do not hear about it because it does grow slowly...

But isn't AIDS natural? I mean, it's part of nature, therefore it is natural that people who get it could die horrible deaths without meds. Not all natural things should be treated as, well, natural, you know?

But, you're right, death happens and we cannot stop it. But what the hell does that have to do with this debate at all? Or are you somehow trying to argue that religion makes you live longer than meds do?

If people are going to die anyway, let PEOPLE decide what to do with their own bodies, including believe whatever a religion tells them to do, irrespective of wheter it would prolong life or not prolong life. Since life is going to end anyway, can't you give human beings the freedom to think for themselves and say, "Condoms are wrong, I'm not going to use them, I'm not going to have sex at all, I'm going to abstain"?

And where are all of you getting this "KILL RELIGION, KILL RELIGION" vibe from? Noone but you has yet to state that in this thread, and the only thing that has been said about religion is to stop indoctrination of children so they arn't -brainwashed-. If stopping brainwashing is really so much similar to stopping religion to all of you, maybe there actually is something wrong.

But if people are not allowed to spread their messages, then you basically destroy the creed. Plus, the term "brainwashed" makes religion looks evil, so you could conclude that they are protraying religion in a bad light and want to harm it.

They are not brainwashing, they are making their views public, and if you don't agree with them, fine. To say they are brainwashing would be akin to saying that YOU are brainwashing, by typing your views to be made public on the web.

And, lastly, if you censor religion's ability to preach their message, then you have engaged in censorship of an ideology because you hate it. You say it is wrong because it can decrease life, but if a person CHOOSES to believe in an ideology, you should not interfere with that choice.

Totenkopf
06-23-2007, 05:46 PM
I would just add that in the case of a "disease", if society at large disagrees with that person's decision, it can always isolate him/her like they did lepers in the past. Besides, keeping such people out of society at large would act better even than condoms at cutting down on the proliferation of a communicable disease. We already do that to a limited degree with prisons, so it's not unfeasible.

True_Avery
06-23-2007, 08:21 PM
But if people are not allowed to spread their messages, then you basically destroy the creed. Plus, the term "brainwashed" makes religion looks evil, so you could conclude that they are protraying religion in a bad light and want to harm it.

They are not brainwashing, they are making their views public, and if you don't agree with them, fine. To say they are brainwashing would be akin to saying that YOU are brainwashing, by typing your views to be made public on the web.

And, lastly, if you censor religion's ability to preach their message, then you have engaged in censorship of an ideology because you hate it. You say it is wrong because it can decrease life, but if a person CHOOSES to believe in an ideology, you should not interfere with that choice.
Brainwashing:
"Indoctrination that forces people to abandon their beliefs in favor of another set of beliefs. Usually associated with military and political interrogation and religious conversion, brainwashing attempts, through prolonged stress, to break down an individual's physical and mental defenses. Brainwashing techniques range from vocal persuasion and threats to punishment, physical deprivation, mind-altering drugs, and severe physical torture."

Schools, parents, and people who throw children into a religion are brainwashing. Telling a child they will go to hell if they sin and burn for what they have done can go under vocal persuasion and threats to punishment. You are telling a child exactly what to believe in life fully and completely as far a spiritually goes and not giving them an option to grow up and form beliefs of their own. Children's brain activity is highly active and they absorb things that are said like sponges, so how is throwing them into a highly religious school when they are young not a form of indoctrination?

They are not, however, making their views public. If it is a private school or parents, they are picking out small groups of kids to teach and indoctrinate to believe in the teachings of the religion fully. I'm fine with people running out into the street and preaching their message, but when you sit 15 or so kids down in a class and tell them everything you are teaching them is truth and they will be punished by God if they do not believe is mental torture used to break down the mind and body through fear into a devoloping mind. There is a word use to describe groups like this: Cult.

I use the term "Kool-Aid Drinker" sometimes, but I wonder how many people know what I am saying. In 1978, the cult of the Peoples Temple, lead by Jim Jones, moved to Jonestown. Late in the year, he then ordered the group to commit suicide by drinking grape-flavored Kool-Aid laced with potassium cyanide. 913 people died that day in one of the largest mass suicides in history. This is known as the Jonestown Massacre (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kool-Aid#.22Drinking_the_Kool-Aid.22). Now, calling religious groups this is like saying Bush is as bad as Hitler, but the phrase can be used to indicate that one has blindly embraced a particular philosophy or perspective. When kids have religion force down their throat, a lot of them grow up to follow it blindly with no real idea why they follow but with the thought that it is 100% right.

Now, I got no problem with people believing what they want to believe, but I will still challenge it now and then. When your belief system harms other people, especially children, then I would like someone to step in and find out why. I grew up in a christian family, but both me and my sister have made our own belief system because my parents told both of us about their religion and explained that we could believe whatever we wanted to believe.

Religion has amazing teachings attached to it, but the majority of it is common sense. You take Jesus, God, and all the miricle stories out of the Bible and you have pretty much common sense written in a book. And that same sense is taught in so many other religions. People should have a good grounding on their morals and common sense, but their beliefs and spirituality should be made themselves instead of taught in a school

EDIT: I'd like to mention that all of the above is aimed towards harmful brainwashing, not the concept of religion as a whole. I respect and support families that will raise children on the groundings of any religion, but my disagreement is when it becomes harmful instead of a spiritual journey.

If people are going to die anyway, let PEOPLE decide what to do with their own bodies, including believe whatever a religion tells them to do, irrespective of wheter it would prolong life or not prolong life. Since life is going to end anyway, can't you give human beings the freedom to think for themselves and say, "Condoms are wrong, I'm not going to use them, I'm not going to have sex at all, I'm going to abstain"?
People should have that right, but that isn't the point I'm trying to make. You can believe whatever you want, but when your beliefs start harming other people and things thats when I think someone should step in.

It is one thing to say "eating pork is against God, so please respect my decision not to eat it" and quite another to say "Condoms are wrong, so I'm going to screw my girlfriend and possibly give her an STD or get her pregnant."

The two are very different things. One is a religious matter, one is a scientific matter. Believing that condoms are wrong and against God will not stop an STD from passing, will not stop AIDS from passing, and will not eliminate the possibility of becoming pregnant. And despite your logic, I highly doubt people actually find it enjoyable to say "Hey, I have an [Insert STD]" or "Oh wow, that one night stand got me pregnant!"

The man may have different religious views, but the woman wants him to wear a condom. Who is right then? If the man wears it, then he is aparently going against his religion yet no harm is done. If he doesn't, and passes on an STD or gets her pregnant then who is to blame here? Vice versa. Unless an STD passing is agreed on before hand, then it should be considered a crime if you know you have the STD. If you get pregnant, then you are bringing a life into the world you did not plan on having, this harming both yourself and the child.

It is also interesting to note that you have basically said that since people will already die and we should have full control over our own bodies, then we should all go outside and just kill people. Why not? You are in control over your own body, and if they are going to die anyway what harm has been done?

It is however silly to say: "Take this pig mediciation to heal yourself! What do you mean eating pig is against your religion? You must heal yourself! Stupid religion, telling you pigs are dirty, they have brainwashed you..."

Replace "pigs" with "condoms", and you understand what I am getting at here.
It makes sense up until you replace it with condom. Eating pig does not harm on a regular basis. Not wearing a condom does. It is scientific fact and is plainly just common sense. Like I said above, one is a religious matter the other is a scientific. Refusing to eat pig is respectable, but not wearing a condom passes STDs and gets people pregnant a lot. Not everytime, but I've seen enough teens ruin their life and enough parents with 15 kids because they refused to wear protection.

disease: A disease is any abnormal condition of the body or mind that causes discomfort, dysfunction, or distress to the person affected or those in contact with the person. Sometimes the term is used broadly to include injuries, disabilities, syndromes, symptoms, deviant behaviors, and atypical variations of structure and function, while in other contexts these may be considered distinguishable categories. ---Wikipedia

So, yeah, I consider age to be a disease, since it does cause for decreased functionality of the body and disrupts homestatis.
Your arguement is flawed. Age is natural in all life. Disease is something that happens to only a few of the vast majority. Diseases are part of nature, but they are not naturally part of the life cycle. They can be worded the same, but scientifically they are different.

Nancy Allen``
06-23-2007, 08:27 PM
However no one is forcing people to take up religion. It's there if people choose to follow it.

Point Man
06-24-2007, 01:15 AM
I have to ask this: how does the Catholic Church's stance on birth control make it responsible for the AIDS epidemic in Africa? So the Pope won't allow Catholics to pass out condoms--how does that make it the Church's fault that people die? Are there no other sources of condoms in the world? DE, if you feel so strongly that Africans need condoms, organize a mission trip to get them into their hands. Don't blame others who are simply following their beliefs that it would be better to try to reduce the behavior that leads to AIDS than to try to eliminate the consequences of that behavior.

Jae Onasi
06-24-2007, 01:20 AM
Moderator Note:

People, be careful of how you're wording things, especially with religion, which is a very sensitive topic for a lot of people. I don't want to see religion-bashing (and likewise, I don't want to see atheists/agnostics getting bashed, either). You can be respectful of peoples' faiths and disagree with that faith, but you need to word your discussions carefully.

Abstinence-exclusive issues need to be discussed in the Abstinence and Related Topics (http://www.lucasforums.com/showthread.php?t=176647) thread--that subject is off topic for this thread.

Personal opinions....
Religious schools--every single religious school I've ever known (admittedly limited to the US) has been just as concerned about kids learning things like reading, writing, and arithmetic as any secular school. This includes private Amish schools, fundamentalist Islamic schools, ultra-conservative Jewish schools, you name it. They spend the vast majority of the school day on the same subjects as any other school. They just also happen to add in religious instruction.

As a parent, I have a right and responsibility to raise my child the way I think they should be raised, including issues of religion. I want zero state influence on that. This right and responsibility includes, in our case, raising our kids in the Christian faith. Aside from wanting them to enjoy a relationship with God and Christ and the responsibility to raise them to love God, we are convinced that there are many, many benefits to being part of a Christian community aside from just the heaven/hell issue. There are a number of studies done on the benefits of faith in terms of health, mental health, improved relationships, a sense of hope, longer life, connection with community, providing outreach and assistence to those in need, among a host of other benefits to self and those around us. Why would I _not_ want my children to be a part of that and receive those benefits from an early age? Denying them those benefits would be child abuse, not "exposing them to religion".

If you raise a child with no faith until they theoretically can make their own decisions, guess what they become when they grow up? An adult with no faith, and an adult who has to rely on subjective criteria for developing morality (which may or may not work for them) rather than having the knowledge of an objective moral basis. What a surprise that radical atheists would admonish people that children should be raised without faith--they _know_ what the outcome is when they recommend that--they've seen the studies. Of course they want their numbers to grow to achieve their agendas, and the only way to do that is to eliminate religion at all points in life, but especially starting with the very young. I want no part of that. We give our kids a solid grounding in Christianity now and a strong moral foundation and spiritual paradigm to work with. If they decide later to turn away from Christianity entirely or seek another religion, I won't necessarily agree with their decision, but I'll know they at least had a foundation from which to work to make an appropriate decision.

@DE--if people aren't going to listen to the Vatican about fornication and adultery, why in the world would they care what the Vatican says about condoms? This sounds like some odd Vatican conspiracy story.

The reason for the epidemic of AIDS in Africa is not lack of condoms. It's a lack of education on the disease in general and widespread extramarital sex and promiscuity. One of the missionaries we support is a physician who works with AIDS patients in Cameroon, and one of the more pervasive beliefs there is that if a man has AIDS, he can cure himself it if he has sex with a virgin. Well, guess what. Now you have an infected man, an infected not-so-virgin-anymore, and an infected child, if she gets pregnant. Women who have HIV are still able to have multiple children until they become extremely ill, and they are passing it on to their children pre-, peri-, and post-natally.

One of the most effective AIDS reduction programs in effect is a program that teaches 3 things in an ABC fashion: Abstinence, Be Faithful, and Condom use in a responsible fashion. It was pooh-poohed in the more 'enlightened' countries because it advocated abstinence and faithfulness, but that completely ignores the fact that if you don't have sex in the first place, or if you do but restrict yourself to only one partner (and that partner likewise limits themselves to a faithful relationship with you), your risk of HIV drops dramatically, far more than simply advocating condom use. Like DI, I disagree that you can't expect people to be abstinent or faithful. Just because it might be a challenge doesn't mean it's impossible, and in a continent where HIV has reached epidemic proportions, it's absolutely essential to work on those issues also to stop the spread of this disease.

You also can't expect pharmacies to bail people out. First of all, the drugs don't work for everyone, and some people cannot take anti-virals due to allergies, severe side-effects, and so forth. In addition, the virus is developing resistance to drugs all the time. The best way to deal with HIV is to never get it in the first place.

If someone would like to start a thread on the AIDS epidemic in Africa to continue this branch off of the main topic, that would be great. Discussion of just AIDS/HIV should go into the Abstinence and Related topics thread since it's classified as an STD.

Nancy Allen``
06-24-2007, 09:19 AM
On the more extreme aspects of religion, I would say these things would actually drive people away rather than make them better at serving their God.

SilentScope001
06-24-2007, 10:06 AM
Brainwashing:
"Indoctrination that forces people to abandon their beliefs in favor of another set of beliefs. Usually associated with military and political interrogation and religious conversion, brainwashing attempts, through prolonged stress, to break down an individual's physical and mental defenses. Brainwashing techniques range from vocal persuasion and threats to punishment, physical deprivation, mind-altering drugs, and severe physical torture."

Alright. The Catholic Church says, "Condoms are evil." Where's the Inquisition? Where's the tortue devicies? Where are the death camps? Where is the threat to physical punishment, physical deprivation, mind-altering drugs, and servere physical tortue?

Fact is, according to your definition, the Catholic Church does not engage in brainwashing at all. They only speak their message and let people say Yea, or Nay. And the Catholic Church happens to NOT be affilated with the Kool-Aid Drinkers, so I suppose that analogy falls flat.

Schools, parents, and people who throw children into a religion are brainwashing. Telling a child they will go to hell if they sin and burn for what they have done can go under vocal persuasion and threats to punishment. You are telling a child exactly what to believe in life fully and completely as far a spiritually goes and not giving them an option to grow up and form beliefs of their own. Children's brain activity is highly active and they absorb things that are said like sponges, so how is throwing them into a highly religious school when they are young not a form of indoctrination?

And if you don't trust kids to think for themselves, then why should we throw kids anywhere else? If we throw them to a secular school, they'll learn secular values, and end up being secular brainwashed idiots, according to your same view. Why don't we blame secular schools for brainwashing? Don't they go and say that you must believe in a liberal government, otherwise if you disagree with it, you'll pave the way to the "State of Nature", of total government anarchy...or the way to a dictatorship (I heard both pieces of nonsene in school, and I know them for what they are, indoctrination)? That sounds like mental tortue to me!

Frankly, the parents have the right to tell kids what they believe they want their child to be. But if you believe in free will, then trust the kids' ability to choose. Because they will choose. And if you don't believe in free will, then no matter what happens, I'll be "brainwashing". Why not brainwash in my creed rather than your creed?

People should have that right, but that isn't the point I'm trying to make. You can believe whatever you want, but when your beliefs start harming other people and things thats when I think someone should step in.

It is one thing to say "eating pork is against God, so please respect my decision not to eat it" and quite another to say "Condoms are wrong, so I'm going to screw my girlfriend and possibly give her an STD or get her pregnant."

"Condoms are wrong, so I'm going to screw my girlfriend and-"

Catholic Priest: "Hey, screwing your girlfriend is also wrong."

"Oh. Well, then, I'm not going to screw my girlfriend."

Either that, or he does screw his girlfriend, and broke the law twice. And how is that first person going to get AIDS anyway? Through unapproved sex, without using a condom?

And, if you trust in a God, then God is likely to frown at the person who does not use a condom and therefore passes on AIDS, because not only has he engaged in an illegal activity, he also has murdered said girlfriend. Therefore, that man is probraly going to get doubly punished.

The man may have different religious views, but the woman wants him to wear a condom. Who is right then? If the man wears it, then he is aparently going against his religion yet no harm is done.

But why are you ignoring the fact that they are going against the OTHER parts of Catholic religion? Why should one pick and choose? Both he and his girlfriend are already harming the religion in the first place.

And if the man refuses, the woman just leaves. Either that, or the woman decides to take the risk, maybe because she is getting paid for the extramartial relations, or maybe because she really doesn't care. Or she could get raped. But in any cases of breaking the law of God, God is supposed to come in and smite all those concerned. So, I'm suprised you seem to neglect that, while condemning some beliefs, you also forget about the belief in God, considered the core belief in religion.

People should have that right, but that isn't the point I'm trying to make. You can believe whatever you want, but when your beliefs start harming other people and things thats when I think someone should step in.

Define "harm".

And as soon as you do that, you will be likely to see people coming in using that "harm" justification to justify any sort of intervention they so desire. Religious people will use that justification to say that atheists are harming childern, therefore, we must do something to stop them. Or some other nonsense.

No, I am opposed to censorship in all forms. Murder is prohibited because it is against the law. But if it is not against the law, then you should speak your mind and say what you desire, without religious and atheistic people breathing down your back.

Your arguement is flawed. Age is natural in all life. Disease is something that happens to only a few of the vast majority. Diseases are part of nature, but they are not naturally part of the life cycle. They can be worded the same, but scientifically they are different.

Age is not part of the natural lifecycle. People once died at the age of 40, and now, they die at the age of 80. Are you telling me that the lifecycle extended naturally? No, they extended because of the improvement of health care, because of new technologies, showcasing that age can easily be extended, and what was once considered the ending point of the human race is now just the middle-point. You can modify that age-cycle, usually to expand it, so if you can modify that life-cycle, it is akin to treating Age.
---
But, as I see it, it seems we reached an impassee. TA, you are arguing that condoms are right because of practical effects, I'm saying it doesn't matter because (1) you'll die, and then after that, religion takes over and (2) people are violating the religion anyway.

Since it seems we'll likely to repeat our arguments over and over, I'm pulling out of the discussion...but one last thing:
===
On the more extreme aspects of religion, I would say these things would actually drive people away rather than make them better at serving their God.

Then you could just form your own religion instead. Hate the dreaded Catholic Church with its prohibiation on Condoms? Then create the Catholic Church (With Condoms!). You worship the Catholic Church, and at the same time, allow for condoms. There you go. Besides, you believe that you are right, therefore, since you are right, God must like you, therefore, you create this brand new religion, and God will send you straight to Heaven after you die.

People do it all the time, creating their own religions. They may consider themselves part of the same religion, but with different beliefs, but I usually consider themselves having spilt. It still essenatily the same thing.

Nancy Allen``
06-24-2007, 10:10 AM
Yeah, I'll go create my own religion. With Jedi. And Twi'leks. In fact forget the religion.

True_Avery
06-24-2007, 05:07 PM
---
But, as I see it, it seems we reached an impassee. TA, you are arguing that condoms are right because of practical effects, I'm saying it doesn't matter because (1) you'll die, and then after that, religion takes over and (2) people are violating the religion anyway.

Since it seems we'll likely to repeat our arguments over and over, I'm pulling out of the discussion...but one last thing:
===
Then you could just form your own religion instead. Hate the dreaded Catholic Church with its prohibiation on Condoms? Then create the Catholic Church (With Condoms!). You worship the Catholic Church, and at the same time, allow for condoms. There you go. Besides, you believe that you are right, therefore, since you are right, God must like you, therefore, you create this brand new religion, and God will send you straight to Heaven after you die.

People do it all the time, creating their own religions. They may consider themselves part of the same religion, but with different beliefs, but I usually consider themselves having spilt. It still essenatily the same thing.
I agree, this can't go anywhere from here. But, I would like to point out that I was not aiming my argument at the catholic church in anyway at all (I personally think the catholic church arguement in this thread is silly) and people go against the core beliefs of their religion all the time without a second thought. I know catholics that got pregnant during high school, so in that respect your arguement falls just as flat as mine does. To be honest, not a single person has the same religion as another person. It isn't possible because of individuality, as everybody thinks slightly different than another. You give me 100 christians, and I'll give you 100 different religions. An we have no chance of agreeing on your death arguement. So yeah, it can't really go much farther than this but thanks for the debate anyway ^^

I think it kind of fell apart when you thought I was aiming this at the catholics.

Yeah, I'll go create my own religion. With Jedi. And Twi'leks. In fact forget the religion
What are you talking about?

Ray Jones
06-24-2007, 05:19 PM
As a parent, I have a right and responsibility to raise my child the way I think they should be raised, including issues of religion. I want zero state influence on that.So, as a parent, everyone has the right and responsibility to raise their children the way they think they should be risen, including issues of religion? The state influence put aside, I would not second that. Because it would mean if parents think their child should learn how to kill people, it's their right and responsibility to do so. I think, parents have the responsibility to prepare their children for the future life the best they can, to give them a home and a family.

Totenkopf
06-24-2007, 06:21 PM
So, as a parent, everyone has the right and responsibility to raise their children the way they think they should be risen, including issues of religion? The state influence put aside, I would not second that. Because it would mean if parents think their child should learn how to kill people, it's their right and responsibility to do so. I think, parents have the responsibility to prepare their children for the future life the best they can, to give them a home and a family.

But by whose definition of "what's best"?

SilentScope001
06-24-2007, 09:24 PM
What are you talking about?

If I understand correctly, Nancy Allen ''' is attempting to say that if you can modify the tenants of the religion in question, then why bother sticking with it?

A reply would likely be: "I don't want to leave my religion, I still believe in God, yadda, yadda, all I disagree with is some incredibly minor issue, so I just change it, and everything will be fine, so there."

That, or she's referring to the Jedi religion.

GarfieldJL
06-24-2007, 10:09 PM
Enough about the condom stuff, if you have sex with someone you run the risk of catching an STD, it doesn't matter if you have a condom or not. So to be blunt the Vatican has a valid point, wait till you're married till you have sexual relations is the best way to avoid getting an STD.

I'm also aware about the Blood Transfusion situation which is how Ryan White contracted the disease. That situation was one that could have been avoided that happened due to negligence, it was also a rare occurance.

Getting back to topic, there is a fine line between a religious school, and cult indoctrination. Seriously, the reason why I want an extremely close eye on Muslim schools is because the people that are conducting terrorist attacks are Muslims. If it were Catholics, Hindus, or any other religion where terrorist attacks on the US were coming from on a regular basis I would want those religious schools closely watched.

To be blunt, the public education system needs a lot of work, part of it can be blamed on Teacher Unions, part of it is the environment the kids live in, etc. Government's answer in the past has just been to throw more money at it when the situation is due to other factors. That's why a lot of people have put their children in private schools, I realize the public schools aren't bad everywhere, however you get the point.

I had a teacher in college that didn't know where my state or any other state west of Pennsylvania (sorry if I mispelled it but I'm rather tired) was until she moved here. She attended Public School in New Jersey and they didn't have any states west of Pennsylvania on the map.

Fact is one could argue parenting is a form of indoctrination by some people's definitions.

This topic really should be more tightly defined. Seriously, I've have two cousins that have gone through Catholic School and they've turned out just fine.

Nancy Allen``
06-24-2007, 10:15 PM
Few people wouldn't want to be a Jedi, the poll I ran on the topic proves as much. And few don't like a kick ass Twi'lek, it's even brought up in Betrayal. Imagine if there really was such a religion.

Actually it's a line from Futurama, you know HK was based on one of the characters there?

Seriously, how religion is interpreted varies greatly from religion to religion of course, but also from religious sect to religious sect (Roman Catholics and Prodestents are both Christian) and even from church to church. One may be very traditional, down to Earth, while another will have rock music and have the preacher doing their best Steve Martin\Leap of Faith impersonation (no I'm not saying they're con artists but they channel the enthusiatic spirit shown in the film, as elsewhere). Or Sister Act, nuns and Whoopi Goldberg, both follow the same message but interpret it in diffirent ways. Anyway, some people would look at a passage, something like 'those who do not follow God will surely be put to death', and see it as they will not be with God when they die. Some however will look at it and think that people who do not follow God must die. Now that's an extreme example but an example of how religion can be interpreted.

Corinthian
06-24-2007, 11:58 PM
The current system is the best we have thought of. But if you have a better solution, please, go ahead. Make my day.

Ray Jones
06-25-2007, 06:01 PM
But by whose definition of "what's best"?By the simple definition of "best". Means: do the job as good as possible.

Totenkopf
06-25-2007, 06:15 PM
Problem is you're dealing with a very subjective concept. What constitutes "good"? By whose standard do we define what is good and bad, and in what specific areas? Remember, someone will have to decide when parents fail to achieve that standard. So, what will be the measuring stick?

Darth InSidious
06-25-2007, 08:49 PM
@Nancy: I suspect most people wouldn't want to wield the Force, carry a lightsabre and have Grand Adventures, but few would want an austerely simple life of meditation, reflection and selfless action, to grind down the self and to act out of pure compassion for others. Sounds nice in some ways, but it's a harsh way of life.

Corinthian
06-25-2007, 09:35 PM
Which is why being a non-Jedi is better. Especially when you can be a Bindo-style one: Just like everybody else, except with a lightsaber and The Force.

Nancy Allen``
06-26-2007, 07:38 PM
We actually discussed this in the Jedi thread. You'd think going to stop butchers would be the right thing to do, right? Wrong, doing that leads to the dark side. But people would look at all the cool Jedi things they do and go for it. And Revan, Bastila, Exile, Brianna, Visas, Mira, Aayla, Mara, ect ect for the guys, and...errr...Revan, Atton, Mical, Anakin, Luke, ect for the girls would only make it more enticing.

Jae Onasi
06-28-2007, 01:57 AM
OK, this total off-topicness has gone on far enough. What the heck do Jedi have to do with religious schools?