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Achilles
09-23-2007, 10:43 AM
Link (http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070922/ap_on_re_us/evangelicals_regroup)BRANDON, Fla. - Headed into the 2008 election season, Christian conservatives are weary. Their movement has lost iconic leaders and the Republican presidential field is uninspiring. But they may have found hope in a trailer on the campus of Bell Shoals Baptist Church.
I found this part particularly interesting:
"I just feel the opposition is growing so strong, I need to grow stronger," said Klingman, 34, who drove two hours from the one-stoplight town of Hawthorne to join activists in this Tampa suburb. Keep in mind that "opposition" = people that just want to live their lives with the same basic rights as everyone else and don't like being told how to think by conservatives. I find it disturbing that there is a group of people that think they are justified in opposing the efforts of others to stand up for their rights.

Jae Onasi
09-23-2007, 12:05 PM
This group has a right to promote their views just like any other group. It's still a free country. Would you censor them because you don't agree with them?

Achilles
09-23-2007, 12:18 PM
This group has a right to promote their views just like any other group.Did someone say that they didn't?

It's still a free country.Perhaps that message would be better served at one of these rallies.

Would you censor them because you don't agree with them? *wonders where the censorship bent came from*
No, Jae, I try to avoid hypocrisy as much as possible, so no, I wouldn't seek to censor them in any way.

Jae Onasi
09-23-2007, 02:08 PM
I find it disturbing that there is a group of people that think they are justified in opposing the efforts of others to stand up for their rights.

What would you suggest be done with them, then, since you're disturbed by what they're doing?

Achilles
09-23-2007, 02:24 PM
What would you suggest be done with them, then, since you're disturbed by what they're doing?Gee, there are so many options. Round them all up and ship them to forced labor camps, march them at gun point off a cliff, tie them to trees and smear them with honey....or I suppose I could just sit here and be disturbed by them. Is there a rule I don't know about that requires me to do anything when something disturbs me?

In a ideal world, we could all sit down to talk and reason this out, but ideology tends to make such interactions difficult. Dogmatic ideologies make them impossible. Is there some way I can cause them to abandon their dogmatic ideologies?

Totenkopf
09-23-2007, 02:34 PM
Ain't "democracy" grand. ;) I agree, I don't think there's pretty much anything you can do but stew. Unless, of course, you want to get involved beyond merely complaining in a forum that the world is not what you'd like it to be.

Jae Onasi
09-23-2007, 04:32 PM
Gee, there are so many options. Round them all up and ship them to forced labor camps, march them at gun point off a cliff, tie them to trees and smear them with honey....or I suppose I could just sit here and be disturbed by them.:lol:

Is there a rule I don't know about that requires me to do anything when something disturbs me?


Oh, got it. Just another anti-Christian rant. Carry on. ;P

Achilles
09-24-2007, 11:48 AM
Oh, got it. Just another anti-Christian rant. Carry on. ;P I notice that you didn't answer the question. Surprising.

There was a second paragraph, Jae. Any commentary on that?

mimartin
09-24-2007, 12:11 PM
Is there some way I can cause them to abandon their dogmatic ideologies?No. Although I disagree that they are truly Christians. Seems to me that to be a Christian you need to follow the example set by Christ. I seem to remember Christ setting down and breaking bread with people that these people would surely condemn. Perhaps the addition of the word Conservatives to Christian changes the definition of what it means to be a Christian.

I have the same problem with these people that I have with other groups that try to force their belief structure on to others through legislation and the courts.

Achilles
09-24-2007, 01:03 PM
No. Although I disagree that they are truly Christians.It seems that many of these conversations end up trying to operationally define what it is to be a christian.

Seems to me that to be a Christian you need to follow the example set by Christ. That would seem reasonable, as would 'striving to be christ-like' or, 'believing that jesus christ was the messiah'. Unfortunately each of these would seem to have varying degrees of commitment.

I seem to remember Christ setting down and breaking bread with people that these people would surely condemn. Indeed. Unfortunately, I frequently hear the argument that jesus would heal the sick and then tell his flock to go forth and sin no more used to condemn these groups while at the same time appearing to accept them with open arms. I guess the question I would like answered is how much of jesus' message leaves us in a position to pass judgment on others (and in turn, how much conservatism "gets it wrong" vs "takes it too far", etc)?

Perhaps the addition of the word Conservatives to Christian changes the definition of what it means to be a Christian. Perhaps.

I have the same problem with these people that I have with other groups that try to force their belief structure on to others through legislation and the courts. In the interest of having a common frame of reference, could I ask you for examples?

Thanks for your post.

mimartin
09-24-2007, 02:05 PM
I guess the question I would like answered is how much of jesus' message leaves us in a position to pass judgment on othersIn my personal opinion it tells me not to judge others at all. I’m a sinner and until I’m no longer a sinner (which will be never) I’m in no position to judge anyone. I also know my belief system is right for me, but I am not under the delusion that my belief system is correct. So for that matter these Conservative Christians may be correct, but they have no way of knowing that.

and in turn, how much conservatism "gets it wrong" vs "takes it too far", etc?Good point. I’d lean towards the “takes it too far” side. I’ve actually seen my church kick someone out that they deemed undesirable. Instead of helping him through his problems they dismissed him from the help he was obliviously asking for by attending church in the first place.

In the interest of having a common frame of reference, could I ask you for examples?
The biggest one on the Christian agenda is abortion (which I happen to agree with them about, but I not willing to force my beliefs onto someone that has a different opinion). Another example is their attempt to circumvent the Constitution by disguising creationism as “intelligent design.”

At the same time, I have a problem with groups trying to change the name of Christmas. If someone wants to call it Xmas or Holiday season that is their right, just as it is my right to call it Christmas. If you don’t like it don’t celebrate it. I’m just as upset with the Christians wanting to change Halloween.

Personally I believe it should be us Christians trying to change the name of Christmas due the commercial mess it is today.

Achilles
09-24-2007, 03:25 PM
In my personal opinion it tells me not to judge others at all. I’m a sinner and until I’m no longer a sinner (which will be never) I’m in no position to judge anyone. I also know my belief system is right for me, but I am not under the delusion that my belief system is correct. So for that matter these Conservative Christians may be correct, but they have no way of knowing that. Well said. I applaud your open-mindedness.

Good point. I’d lean towards the “takes it too far” side. I’ve actually seen my church kick someone out that they deemed undesirable. Instead of helping him through his problems they dismissed him from the help he was obliviously asking for by attending church in the first place. This reminds me of a debate I heard about recently regarding a sex-offender who tried to join a congregation. It was interesting to hear people struggling with the choice between their instincts and following (what they percieved to be) jesus' message. Link (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/17446335/)

The biggest one on the Christian agenda is abortion (which I happen to agree with them about, but I not willing to force my beliefs onto someone that has a different opinion). Another example is their attempt to circumvent the Constitution by disguising creationism as “intelligent design.” Gotcha. Since these are primarily the efforts of conservative christians, I think we're on the same page.

At the same time, I have a problem with groups trying to change the name of Christmas. If someone wants to call it Xmas or Holiday season that is their right, just as it is my right to call it Christmas. If you don’t like it don’t celebrate it. I’m just as upset with the Christians wanting to change Halloween. Interesting. I think I saw this as more of a "christians aren't the only ones celebrating a holiday" thing rather than a "let's change the name of christmas" thing.

Personally I believe it should be us Christians trying to change the name of Christmas due the commercial mess it is today.I'm all for giving up religious holidays altogether :D

Take care.

Rogue Nine
09-24-2007, 03:29 PM
I'm all for giving up religious holidays altogether :D
Well, fine. I'm expecting you in the office at 7:30AM sharp on December 25. :carms:

Achilles
09-24-2007, 03:36 PM
Well, fine. I'm expecting you in the office at 7:30AM sharp on December 25. :carms: You make it sound like I haven't done it before ;)

Just so long as no one gets any funny ideas about screwing with turkey-day.

Corinthian
09-24-2007, 04:02 PM
So, basically, you're angry because she opposes Gay marriage, and refers to people who want to uphold it as her opposition? That's kind of how it works, if someone opposes your goals, they are your opposition. As for her attempting to ban Gay Marriage, good. The less of that the better. Marriage is already screwed up enough what with the divorce rate, I'd like to at least keep a part of it more or less intact.

mimartin
09-24-2007, 04:15 PM
This reminds me of a debate I heard about recently regarding a sex-offender who tried to join a congregation. It was interesting to hear people struggling with the choice between their instincts and following (what they percieved to be) jesus' message. Link (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/17446335/)
Have not seen that, I understand they have to weigh the concerns for the children with that of trying to help this man. To me they are trying to do what they perceive is right, while still protecting the young children.

At the church I’m a member of this would not even be an issue as he would have already been ran off. Sad to say I would have been leading the charge.
We kicked someone out for wearing women’s cloths to church. So I believe it is fair to say we would allow a sex-offender in our congregation. I’d admire this church for even considering it, but I hope and pray they do not come to regret it.

I'm all for giving up religious holidays altogether :D Not me, Christmas dinner makes it worth putting up with all the commercialization of the day. My mouth is watering for Pecan Pie just thinking about it.

Take care. You too.

Achilles
09-24-2007, 04:30 PM
So, basically, you're angry because she opposes Gay marriage, and refers to people who want to uphold it as her opposition? I don't recall stating that I was angry. The term I used was "disturbed". To prevent further misunderstanding, I was using it in this context (root word: disturb):

2 a: to destroy the tranquillity or composure of <the noisy lawnmower disturbed their sleep>.

That's kind of how it works, if someone opposes your goals, they are your opposition. No, I got that part. I think you missed my point though. Her goal is to oppose...we'll use gay marriage since you brought it up...gay marriage. What gives her the right to do so? As Jae pointed out earlier, it's a free country. There is no moral/ethical argument against it. Yes, she and others of similar thinking have the right to stand up and be heard in their opposition, but being a vocal majority does not make them right. And their sanctimonious attitudes fly directly in the face of their professed beliefs (ala mimartin's argument for christ's message being the foundation of christianity). When my choices are "wrong" or "hypocrite", I begin looking for a new ballgame.

As for her attempting to ban Gay Marriage, good. The less of that the better. Marriage is already screwed up enough what with the divorce rate, I'd like to at least keep a part of it more or less intact. Perhaps you'd be interested in providing the rationale for your arguments in the gay marriage thread (http://lucasforums.com/showthread.php?t=177489)?

I’d admire this church for even considering it, but I hope and pray they do not come to regret it. If we were to put religion aside and examine this from a strictly moral/ethical standpoint, would you say that they made the right choice? The mother at the end of the article states that she's concerned that Brugge might fantasize about her daughter during service. What short (or long) term impact do you think his presence might have on the children themselves?

Not me, Christmas dinner makes it worth putting up with all the commercialization of the day. My mouth is watering for Pecan Pie just thinking about it. Funny how we reserve some things for special occations. Too bad we have to wait for them to come around.

mimartin
09-24-2007, 05:10 PM
If we were to put religion aside and examine this from a strictly moral/ethical standpoint, would you say that they made the right choice?From the view point of say a community recreation complex, then no he would not be allow to enter the establishment. Then again, the local gym or pool is not in the so called business of saving someone immortal soul. Unlike private enterprise the church is considered (at least by Christians) to be in the business of teaching the word of god and redeeming the sinner, so there is a huge difference.

Even without the element of religion, is it right to keep someone that paid their debt to society out of this locations? Personally, I believe as a society that we should error on the side of the innocent child and not allow sexual predators around, but is that in reality right?

The mother at the end of the article states that she's concerned that Brugge might fantasize about her daughter during service. What short (or long) term impact do you think his presence might have on the children themselves? Well if the child can actually read his mind then I sure there will be government work in her future. I don’t see where if he is fantasize about her daughter during the service how that can be a problem unless she can read his mind. If he is setting there drooling while staring at the little girl, then the accountability team assigned to observe him should escort him out and call the police. If the parents are still concern may I suggest attending the later service. If I was attending that church I would keep a close eye on my child, but parents really need to be doing that all the time.

Totenkopf
09-24-2007, 05:20 PM
Well, fine. I'm expecting you in the office at 7:30AM sharp on December 25. :carms:

Don't forget......no holiday pay of any sort either. ;)

Achilles
09-24-2007, 05:29 PM
From the view point of say a community recreation complex, then no he would not be allow to enter the establishment. Then again, the local gym or pool is not in the so called business of saving someone immortal soul. Unlike private enterprise the church is considered (at least by Christians) to be in the business of teaching the word of god and redeeming the sinner, so there is a huge difference. So the existence of the soul (and therefore god) would be the fulcrum between this coming down as a moral decision or an immoral decision? Seems to me that evidence for these things would be of paramount importance in a situation like this.

Even without the element of religion, is it right to keep someone that paid their debt to society out of this locations? Personally, I believe as a society that we should error on the side of the innocent child and not allow sexual predators around, but is that in reality right?I have to give you credit for at least trying to answer the question here.

If someone has an illness, then I'm not sure how much "paying a debt to society" matters. Serving a sentence isn't going to cure the illness. Alcholics don't seek support at the local pub, they do so at AA meetings.

I think we have a moral obligation to help those that need help and seek it, but I think we have a larger moral obligation to the safety and welfare of our children. I think this scenario sets up a false dichotomy that won't really benefit anyone.

Well if the child can actually read his mind then I sure there will be government work in her future. I don’t see where if he is fantasize about her daughter during the service how that can be a problem unless she can read his mind. If he is setting there drooling while staring at the little girl, then the accountability team assigned to observe him should escort him out and call the police. If the parents are still concern may I suggest attending the later service. If I was attending that church I would keep a close eye on my child, but parents really need to be doing that all the time.Children are amazingly perceptive. If mommy and daddy are nervous about going to church and everyone is nervous about "the new guy", then the kids are going to pick up on that. If they sense danger and no one explains what the danger is, then I think that would have some effect. Explaining the source of the danger would be the responsible thing for the parents to do, but I'm not sure that would do much to negate the potential negative impact on the children.

In summary, I disagree the telepathy is a prerequisite for problems. My 2 cents.

Thanks for your post.

mimartin
09-24-2007, 07:26 PM
So the existence of the soul (and therefore god) would be the fulcrum between this coming down as a moral decision or an immoral decision? Yes. Seems to me that evidence for these things would be of paramount importance in a situation like this. It is called faith and yes, it may seem rather antiquate and farfetched to you, but that is the belief of us Christians live life with. Excuse me I need to fold up my globe before the sun rotates out of view. :)

I have to give you credit for at least trying to answer the question here. I tried, but I do stand corrected, as you are correct, it is an illness and I was attempting to overly simplifying it. The real question is why are these people being released back into society without being cured of their illness? Would we release someone with Ebola back into society?

I think we have a larger moral obligation to the safety and welfare of our children. QFE

Children are amazingly perceptive. If mommy and daddy are nervous about going to church and everyone is nervous about "the new guy", then the kids are going to pick up on that. If they sense danger and no one explains what the danger is, then I think that would have some effect.I’m corrected again, but again I state that the parents could go to a later service. We also do not know all 17 of the condition the church is placing on him. Would this still be a issue if he had to set on the front row and/or in the balcony away from all the children?

Explaining the source of the danger would be the responsible thing for the parents to do, but I'm not sure that would do much to negate the potential negative impact on the children. But that would mean actually mean they would have to talk to their children about something concerning sex.

In summary, I disagree the telepathy is a prerequisite for problems..It wasn’t a very good attempt at humor either.

Achilles
09-24-2007, 07:52 PM
Yes.Where'd that moral relativism thread go again? ;)

It is called faith Not evidence :D

I’m corrected again, but again I state that the parents could go to a later service. Or he could go to a later service.

We also do not know all 17 of the condition the church is placing on him.That's true. I'm still stuck on the "potentially freaked out children" part though.

Would this still be a issue if he had to set on the front row and/or in the balcony away from all the children? *shrugs* I'm picturing an alcoholic at a bar with pane of glass between him and an open beer.

But that would mean actually mean they would have to talk to their children about something concerning sex.Potentially. At the very least it would mean having to alert their children to there being a dangerous man at the church. Wouldn't take long for them to equate church with danger. And parents forcing them to go to the dangerous place probably wouldn't be a good thing either.

As a fun aside: I bet a similar argument could be made for learning about hell. You're born bad and unless you can convince god that you're good, you burn in hell with satan forever and ever. Oh and he watches everything you do and can read your mind. Don't forget to eat your vegetables. See you next week.

mimartin
09-24-2007, 08:15 PM
Not evidence :D No it isn’t and I feel no burden to present the un-presentable as he must believe or else is really is there trolling for victims. I’m not trying to convince anyone of anything, I am just stating my POV.

Or he could go to a later service. No, he can not, unless the church changes the requirements of his attending the services as he is only allowed to be at the 7:30 am Sunday service. I’m not a regular, especially during football season, but when I do attend the early service with my mother there are not a lot of children there at that time. Things could be different in Reno, but I highly doubt it. You would think the early service here would be more crowded so people could get to the beach, but it is not.

As a fun aside: I bet a similar argument could be made for learning about hell. You're born bad and unless you can convince god that you're good, you burn in hell with satan forever and ever. Oh and he watches everything you do and can read your mind. Don't forget to eat your vegetables. See you next week.
I actually remember being taught this as a child and it was traumatic and confusing. Luckily, I had parents that let me work it out for myself only offering guidance for me to make my own decision. Instead of trying to explain it and scaring and confusing me worst.

Achilles
09-24-2007, 11:45 PM
No it isn’t and I feel no burden to present the un-presentable <snip> Ok, but since we both agreed that the distinction between a moral decision and an immoral one hinges on this, it's still important. I imagine that this speaks directly to the topic as well.

as he must believe or else is really is there trolling for victims. I'm sure on some level he does believe. Again, going back to the topic, I'm not sure how wanting something to be true makes it true which in turn makes it a basis for justifiably discriminating against others. I realize that I'm deviating from our specific discussion, but I'm trying to draw this back to the topic.

No, he can not, unless the church changes the requirements of his attending the services as he is only allowed to be at the 7:30 am Sunday service. Fair enough. My point was that if anyone should have to adjust their schedules it should be him, since he is the one for which the exception is being made. Whether that ends up being earlier rather than later or vice versa, I don't think that multiple families should be inconvienced for this experiment.

I actually remember being taught this as a child and it was traumatic and confusing. Me too.

Luckily, I had parents that let me work it out for myself only offering guidance for me to make my own decision. Instead of trying to explain it and scaring and confusing me worst.Indeed you were very lucky to have parents that didn't reinforce those messages. Unfortunately, not all children are so lucky.

Jae Onasi
09-25-2007, 12:46 AM
Well, this topic exploded while I was away at work today. :) Sigh, no internet access there, they have not entered the 1990's in technology (they're using black-and-white monitors--I kid you not).
Is there a rule I don't know about that requires me to do anything when something disturbs me?I didn't answer that because I assumed it was rhetorical irony/sarcasm and didn't require a response. ;) If you're actually being serious, then no, there isn't a rule, unless Niner came up with something while the forum was down.

In a ideal world, we could all sit down to talk and reason this out, but ideology tends to make such interactions difficult.This is very true.

Dogmatic ideologies make them impossible. Is there some way I can cause them to abandon their dogmatic ideologies?They would ask the same about you, actually, because they would consider you dogmatically atheistic/anti-theistic, and I'm not meaning that in a pejorative way, it's just the way they view the atheistic community. With examples such as Nietzshe and Dawkins and even O'Hair being dogmatically anti-theistic, can you blame them if they don't want to budge on their ground, either? Both you and they would have to find some common ground and work on it from there. It would require someone who can move comfortably in both theistic and atheistic circles, understands both groups, and has respect for and from both groups, and there are precious few people who meet those criteria. It comes down to trust, and I would guess most atheists don't trust the average fundamentalist, and I know most fundamentalists don't trust the average atheist. In addition, how do you bridge a gap when the groups are diametrically opposed on some issues? Is bridging that gap even possible?

Welcoming the sex-offender into church and removing membership of those who've broken Biblical/church rules....
For those who've broken the Biblical rules in our church--if they're sorry for what they've done and agree to not commit the act again (e.g. adultery) then our church doesn't remove them from membership. If they're defiant about their 'sin', and refuse to stop, then our church takes steps according to what's laid out in the New Testament for such situations. That involves 1 or 2 elders going privately to talk with that person, than a small group, then removal as a very last resort after all other options have been exhausted. There's a fine balance between welcoming sinners (which we all are) and allowing someone to openly flaunt their unrepentant involvement with sin.

Two questions I have about the sex offender--what was the actual nature of the offense--actual physical contact, or something else? That does make a difference to me, though since I have kids, I'd err heavily on the side of caution. The fact that he violated parole is a huge red flag for me. Also, is he actually allowed to be on the church site or within a certain distance of groups of children? I imagine there are some heavy restrictions placed on him and any contact with kids, and I'm surprised he's even allowed by the law to do this.

Assuming that he actually is allowed to be on the church property in potential contact with kids--I probably could sit in the same pew with him, but I would not allow my kids, or any other kids for that matter, any where near him. First and foremost, I don't want my children or fellow members' kids harmed. Our church has a lot of families and tons of kids running around, so he'd likely never be able to really be part of our particular congregation. Second, it would be unfair to place him in a tempting situation that could cause him to fall. One may welcome a 'reformed' thief into a church, but that doesn't mean he should be put in charge of the treasury. There has to be some very clear restrictions in place as this Lutheran church has done. Also--how do you handle awkward situations, say if a family (with a bunch of kids) new to town comes in to the 7:30 service and the only pew available is his? Do you move them discreetly? Move him discreetly? He moves, being discreet? Would it be fair not to tell that family? Can his situation be dealt with in such a way that he's not wearing the proverbial scarlet letter, but still recognizes the seriousness of his previous crimes and the likelihood of recidivism?

That brings up an interesting question, though--how can you minister spiritually to someone who's a pedophile? I believe the guy when he says he needs a church family. I'm just wondering if there's another outlet that would meet his spiritual needs without putting kids in danger and him in a tempting situation. I know there's prison fellowship ministry, but I don't know if ex-cons have access to that ministry after they leave jail, though I believe they do in some way.

Achilles
09-25-2007, 01:29 AM
I didn't answer that because I assumed it was rhetorical irony/sarcasm and didn't require a response. ;) If you're actually being serious, then no, there isn't a rule, unless Niner came up with something while the forum was down. Nope, it was actually a serious question. The reason I asked because if the answer was no, then I really wanted to know your intentions behind posts #2 and #4.

With examples such as Nietzshe and Dawkins and even O'Hair being dogmatically anti-theistic, can you blame them if they don't want to budge on their ground, either? Pretty sure all of these examples came around after the creation of the three abrahamic religions. But in the interest of not getting caught up in the whole "who started what when" thing, I guess I would say: yes, I can.

They aren't benefiting mankind. They aren't furthering our general knowledge. It doesn't take long to realize who is being truly dogmatic and who is simply percieved as such.

Both you and they would have to find some common ground and work on it from there. Dogma: a point of view or tenet put forth as authoritative without adequate grounds.
Faith: firm belief in something for which there is no proof.

I'm not sure how one finds common ground with a school of though that accepts conclusions first and asks questions later (and rejects answers that don't match the conclusions formed in step 1).

How many times have contributors in this forum tried to simply start off with what's observable only to be met with opposition? It seems to me, Jae, that both sides have to be willing to have a dialog. And if one side has already decided that they will never change their mind, no matter what (because that kind of thinking is rewarded in that culture), then I don't know how any progress can ever be made.

It would require someone who can move comfortably in both theistic and atheistic circles, understands both groups, and has respect for and from both groups, and there are precious few people who meet those criteria. It would seem that atheists understand theists remarkably well, considering that many of them were formerly theists themselves.

It comes down to trust, and I would guess most atheists don't trust the average fundamentalist, and I know most fundamentalists don't trust the average atheist. In addition, how do you bridge a gap when the groups are diametrically opposed on some issues? Is bridging that gap even possible?:lol: I think that was my question. I guess we can both agree that it's probably not possible.

Welcoming the sex-offender into church and removing membership of those who've broken Biblical/church rules....
For those who've broken the Biblical rules in our church--if they're sorry for what they've done and agree to not commit the act again (e.g. adultery) then our church doesn't remove them from membership. If they're defiant about their 'sin', and refuse to stop, then our church takes steps according to what's laid out in the New Testament for such situations. That involves 1 or 2 elders going privately to talk with that person, than a small group, then removal as a very last resort after all other options have been exhausted. There's a fine balance between welcoming sinners (which we all are) and allowing someone to openly flaunt their unrepentant involvement with sin.Sounds pretty consistent with most shame-based punishment systems. Once part of a group, acceptance/rejection is a powerful motivator.

I believe the guy when he says he needs a church family. I'm just wondering if there's another outlet that would meet his spiritual needs without putting kids in danger and him in a tempting situation. I know there's prison fellowship ministry, but I don't know if ex-cons have access to that ministry after they leave jail, though I believe they do in some way.This is the question I was trying to raise earlier with the analogy to AA. Seems to me that there has to be some sort of program that would cater to ex-cons, although I imagine that he wouldn't find much solace there either.

Rogue Warrior
09-25-2007, 05:26 AM
The extremism that is exhibited by those in the religious debate is a cancer that must be cut out.

Darth InSidious
09-25-2007, 08:54 AM
The extremism that is exhibited by those in the religious debate is a cancer that must be cut out.
ROFLMFAO!

Tysyacha
09-25-2007, 11:56 AM
I guess I wonder what crimes would prohibit one from being permitted to go to church. Where do congregations draw the line? If I were a thief, would a church let me in? What about a prostitute? Or a drunk driver? I agree that the man is a convicted pedophile and should not be allowed too close to children, but in my opinion, that's no reason to completely deny him support and spiritual guidance/fulfillment if he wants it.

As for the Religious Right, I am very concerned and worried about their imposing a particular brand of faith upon other people through legislation, such as the "intelligent design" bit. Fanaticism in any religion scares me, even if the religion is Christianity. It makes me agree with Kreia in a metaphorical sense, as the Avellone interview states:

"Kreia was the personification of that frustration – the fact that some arbitrary force would feel the need to “correct’ the human species at times with mass slaughter in Episodes 1 through 3, and the hypocrisy of the Jedi that took place in IV and V. I’ve never really forgiven Ben Kenobi for his lies in Episodes IV and V, and Kreia definitely echoes that.

"Her one redeeming feature is that for a (former) Sith Lord, she loves the player and what he/she represents. She sees in the player a chance to turn away from predestination and destroy that which binds all things, giving the galaxy back its freedom."

Note: I am not an atheist, but neither am I a fully faithful theist, either. I believe that God exists, but I am nowhere near 100% sure that He does. It's a matter of faith for me, and I have no right to force my own beliefs down other people's throats. If they want to talk to me about it, I'll be glad to explain myself, but I'm not on a conversion mission. Freedom and personal privacy are important to me, as is understanding.

Samuel Dravis
09-25-2007, 12:11 PM
Rogue, you seem to suggest that "extremism" is all bad. However, what if one extreme is actually true? It doesn't seem to make much sense that the people advocating this idea compromise on it if they're interested in the truth, don't you agree?

Here is an example (from here (http://www.nizkor.org/features/fallacies/middle-ground.html))

A month ago, a tree in Bill's yard was damaged in a storm. His neighbor, Joe, asked him to have the tree cut down so it would not fall on Joes new shed. Bill refused to do this. Two days ago another storm blew the tree onto Joe's new shed. Joe demanded that Joe pay the cost of repairs, which was $250. Bill said that he wasn't going to pay a cent. Obviously, the best solution is to reach a compromise between the two extremes, so Bill should pay Joe $125 dollars.

Is this reasonable? No, of course not. I think that the same applies to the arguments to which you refer.

SilentScope001
09-25-2007, 01:53 PM
Rogue, you seem to suggest that "extremism" is all bad. However, what if one extreme is actually true? It doesn't seem to make much sense that the people advocating this idea compromise on it if they're interested in the truth, don't you agree?

Here is an example (from here (http://www.nizkor.org/features/fallacies/middle-ground.html))

A month ago, a tree in Bill's yard was damaged in a storm. His neighbor, Joe, asked him to have the tree cut down so it would not fall on Joes new shed. Bill refused to do this. Two days ago another storm blew the tree onto Joe's new shed. Joe demanded that Joe pay the cost of repairs, which was $250. Bill said that he wasn't going to pay a cent. Obviously, the best solution is to reach a compromise between the two extremes, so Bill should pay Joe $125 dollars.

Is this reasonable? No, of course not. I think that the same applies to the arguments to which you refer.

That being said, well, it makes the most sense and is the great way to end the conflict. Joe won't have to sue Bill at all, and no legal battle, political battle, or military battle have to be fought. Bill still have to pay money, which makes him upset, but at least he doesn't have to pay as much as Joe demanded. Joe doesn't get all the money, but at least he get some compesnation. In the end, I think compromise is reasonable, as it makes both Bill and Joe equally happy (or unhappy) with the result.

It is one very sane method of how to end wars and conflicts and struggles. Reward/Punish both sides. I think this is a really good example.

If however, you don't want such compromise, then prepare for a war, but if you do want peace, then compromise should be supported.

(Yes, I will message you later on the ethical relativism topic. Forgive me for that.)

Jae Onasi
09-25-2007, 02:32 PM
Nope, it was actually a serious question. The reason I asked because if the answer was no, then I really wanted to know your intentions behind posts #2 and #4.
My intentions were to find out what your intentions were with the initial post.

Pretty sure all of these examples came around after the creation of the three abrahamic religions..What does the timing of the creation of these religions or the lives of these atheists have to do with the atheists and fundamentalists trying to find common ground?

They aren't benefiting mankind. They aren't furthering our general knowledge. That's an incredible generalization, entirely fallacious. There are fundamentalists who have contributed to knowledge in the medical field alone, and thus benefited mankind.


How many times have contributors in this forum tried to simply start off with what's observable only to be met with opposition?How many times have you posted anything religious-related as just something that's 'observable' rather than something you think should be ridiculed? Your anti-religious--and I daresay anti-Christian since you don't apply the same intense dislike to other religions--bias is blatantly obvious. Expecting people not to be opposed to that anti-theistic view is unrealistic.


It seems to me, Jae, that both sides have to be willing to have a dialog. And if one side has already decided that they will never change their mind, no matter what (because that kind of thinking is rewarded in that culture), then I don't know how any progress can ever be made.
If you're saying that the sole 'correct' view is yours and that they must be the ones to change, then no, no progress will ever be made. Both sides have to make some changes to find consensus.

It would seem that atheists understand theists remarkably well, considering that many of them were formerly theists themselves. Theists perhaps, not often fundamentalists.

:lol: I think that was my question. I guess we can both agree that it's probably not possible.Probably was your question initially. :) I read through the flurry of posts and didn't reference back--sorry.
It's not impossible, but it is unlikely.

Sounds pretty consistent with most shame-based punishment systems. Once part of a group, acceptance/rejection is a powerful motivator.Sounds like any kind of organization that has developed a set of rules and regulations and wants its members to follow them. If someone breaks a rule in the SCA (a non-religious history group for those who don't know) and won't change their behavior, they get kicked out of the organization. If someone's a member of the Audubon Society, NOW, American Atheists, or Secular Coalition for America, and that member breaks the rules set down by those organizations and refuses to comply with the regulations, they get removed from the organization. Churches are no different, unless you're saying that the Secular Coalition is now an organization that believes in shame-based punishment, which I doubt.

This is the question I was trying to raise earlier with the analogy to AA. Seems to me that there has to be some sort of program that would cater to ex-cons, although I imagine that he wouldn't find much solace there either.
Prison Fellowship has a mentoring program for ex-cons (http://www.pfm.org/contentindex.asp?ID=24), and there are likely other organizations that do. However, I think those are few and far between on both the religious and secular side. Trying to wade through the thousands of links on child abuse in the church when trying to search for church ministries to pedophiles (and assorted other terms) is a challenge....
I think the sex-abuse scandals in a number of churches and the proliferation of child porn on the net have highlighted a deep need we never realized before, or more likely, refused to acknowledge due to extreme discomfort. Most people don't want to talk about how they've been molested, and most molesters are keenly aware of what could happen to them if they got caught molesting a child, even if they somehow stopped doing that activity. The church is struggling to learn how to handle this just as much as anyone. Finding a way to show compassion to a pedophile in a way that puts children at zero risk (because anything above zero risk is unacceptable) is going to be extremely difficult. However, molesters have great spiritual needs, too. It will likely require the church to think outside the box on ways to meet their needs and allow pedophiles to contribute back to the community in safe ways. There's no question that accepting a pedophile unrestricted into a church poses a danger to the children of that congregation, since the recidivism rate for pedophilia is so very high. Starting a public church for pedophiles/sex-offenders might also post a danger to them (target-rich environment....). It's likely that a different approach like small group/home churches/formation of some kind of AA group as you suggested/one-on-one mentoring are going to be required.

Achilles
09-25-2007, 03:07 PM
My intentions were to find out what your intentions were with the initial post. By first insinuating that I wanted to censor them and then insinuating that I wanted to stage some action against them? Next time, just ask please. Thanks.

What does the timing of the creation of these religions or the lives of these atheists have to do with the atheists and fundamentalists trying to find common ground?Your stance seems to be that theists are merely trying to defend themselves from athiests (or anti-theists as you call them). Since theism was around first, it would seem to be more accurate to state the atheists are defending themselves against theists.

That's an incredible generalization, Indeed it is. Would you like to argue that it's not applicable?

entirely fallacious. Sure. Which one?

There are fundamentalists who have contributed to knowledge in the medical field alone, and thus benefited mankind. Via their religious beliefs or via their practice of medicine? I would tend to suspect that it's the latter and not the former. Would you like to present an argument for how these contributions are only possible due to religious belief? It seems that if I am guilty of fallacious thinking, I'm at least doing it in good company. :)

How many times have you posted anything religious-related as just something that's 'observable' rather than something you think should be ridiculed? 27?
FWIW, I think you're confusing "ridiculed" with "questioned".

Your anti-religious--and I daresay anti-Christian since you don't apply the same intense dislike to other religions--bias is blatantly obvious. I think you might not be paying attention then. I think I'm pretty good about using terms such as "theism" and "abrahamic religions", etc. As far as I can tell, I only discuss christianity specifically when the topic is specifically christian or the counter-arguments presented are specifically christian. I would ask you to consider that you perception is biased because you yourself are christian and are therefore more sensitive to criticism against christianity.

Expecting people not to be opposed to that anti-theistic view is unrealistic. That's one way to frame the argument. Another might be, "Expecting people not to be opposed to that rationalist view is unrealistic". I think my point all along is that people being opposed to rational thought is a cause for concern.

If you're saying that the sole 'correct' view is yours and that they must be the ones to change, then no, no progress will ever be made. Both sides have to make some changes to find consensus. It seems that sentiment can be found on both sides don't you think? Do you think that muslims, jews, and christians will ever reach a point where they will be ok with gay marriage, abortion rights, etc, or do you think they will continue to force their conflicting flavors of religious "morality" on the masses forever?

I do not believe that compromise is possible, because "compromise" looks a lot like what we have right now and that obviously isn't working.

Theists perhaps, not often fundamentalists. Fundies too. "Often" is not something I would want to try to qualify.

Probably was your question initially. :) I read through the flurry of posts and didn't reference back--sorry. No apology necessary. I just thought it was funny. ;)

Sounds like any kind of organization that has developed a set of rules and regulations and wants its members to follow them. If someone breaks a rule in the SCA (a non-religious history group for those who don't know) and won't change their behavior, they get kicked out of the organization. If someone's a member of the Audubon Society, NOW, American Atheists, or Secular Coalition for America, and that member breaks the rules set down by those organizations and refuses to comply with the regulations, they get removed from the organization. Churches are no different, unless you're saying that the Secular Coalition is now an organization that believes in shame-based punishment, which I doubt. I think you read into that more than you should have. :D

Totenkopf
09-25-2007, 03:58 PM
Since theism was around first, it would seem to be more accurate to state the atheists are defending themselves against theists.
:eyeraise:
Odd claim, given your position that atheism is the "natural state" (if we're natural born atheists.......atheism was "first"....and apparently found lacking. :xp: )

Rogue Warrior
09-26-2007, 05:30 AM
The house example is not extreme, but common sense. Censoring, or worse, someone with different thoughts and beliefs to you, that is extremism.

Samuel Dravis
09-26-2007, 08:36 AM
Rogue, I wasn't terribly concerned about what would be the most expedient option, merely the one that should be chosen given the responsibilities of the parties involved. The neighbor gave Bill plenty of warning, yet Bill still allowed (and it could be said he intended) the destruction of Joe's property. Simply because Bill doesn't want to pay for the full repair doesn't mean that he should not, as the fault was his. I wouldn't say it was extreme to make Bill pay for all of it.

As far as I know, if the two arguers are really going at it, I doubt they are being censored at the time. Otherwise, they'd have nothing to argue about. ;)

SilentScope001
09-26-2007, 03:37 PM
Rogue, I wasn't terribly concerned about what would be the most expedient option, merely the one that should be chosen given the responsibilities of the parties involved. The neighbor gave Bill plenty of warning, yet Bill still allowed (and it could be said he intended) the destruction of Joe's property. Simply because Bill doesn't want to pay for the full repair doesn't mean that he should not, as the fault was his. I wouldn't say it was extreme to make Bill pay for all of it.

Bill's Lawyer: "But it is NOT my client's fault. The nearby neighbor told my client to cut down the tree, and my client claims not to. Why should my client be forced to go and cut down a tree just because? In fact, my client was already preparing to file an "adverse possession", stating that he has a RIGHT for that tree to pass over his house.

However, it must be noted that if Joe hated that tree so much, he has the right to cut down that tree itself, to ensure that tree doesn't harm him. As we have not filed the adverse claim yet, and since that tree was enroaching on his property, he could contested his claim by CUTTING DOWN THE TREE. If he claimed that tree would have caused chaos, HE should have done something about it. He had all legal right to. The fact that he didn't do ANYTHING to stop it, even when he has the legal right to, showcased that the blame lay solely on him. He should pay it all."

Source: An entire year of "Real Estate" School.

Conclusions: Attmepts to use arguments by analogy doesn't exactly work. Even here, we got some problem in that we have two competiting views of what happened, Bill's view and Joe's view. The moderate position at least guarrantes that you are at least half-way right.

Corinthian
09-26-2007, 03:58 PM
Wow. So now you're using real estate to argue against a metaphor. Here's a better metaphor.

John goes into a store and buys $100 worth of...whatever. Liquor. Sandwiches. Spam. He goes to the counter, and the cashier asks for the payment. But Joe doesn't wanna pay. He doesn't think he should have to pay, because he's a communist or something.

Now, obvious solution is that John should have to pay $50, right?

SilentScope001
09-26-2007, 04:28 PM
Wow. So now you're using real estate to argue against a metaphor.

No, I am merely trying to explore the validity of an argument. We are moving far away from the purpose of the metaphor and begining to arguing over Joe/Bill's responsiblity. Don't bring in another metaphor, for Bill and Joe's personal struggle is far more important than "the Chrisitan right looking to rebound".

Fact is, just because it is a "metaphor" (really, just an "argument from ridicule"/strawman argument by extragratting the positions of your enemy and protraying it in a stupid fashion) doesn't mean it's not open to criticism. And in the end, why not? He claims that Bill has no valid point that argues that he should avoid paying. I counter by providing said valid point. Also, this post was direct to Samuel Dravis, so I would rather that Samuel Dravis comments.

Samuel Dravis
09-26-2007, 06:14 PM
Conclusions: Attmepts to use arguments by analogy doesn't exactly work. Even here, we got some problem in that we have two competiting views of what happened, Bill's view and Joe's view. The moderate position at least guarrantes that you are at least half-way right.Silent, You seem to have been thinking too much about my specific example. My point was that it is reasonable for Joe to make Bill pay for the damages. Similarly, it would be reasonable to argue for one side in religious arguments, particularly if the options allow no real middle-road view. If someone said a (pure) rock was made out of granite, and another said it was made out of limestone, would it be correct to say that it is a grimestone rock? Somehow, I don't think so. The rock is either limestone or granite. God either exists or it doesn't. What people say doesn't necessarily correspond to reality. I don't think it's extremist to pick one side to argue for.

SilentScope001
09-26-2007, 07:43 PM
Silent, You seem to have been thinking too much about my specific example. My point was that it is reasonable for Joe to make Bill pay for the damages. Similarly, it would be reasonable to argue for one side in religious arguments, particularly if the options allow no real middle-road view. If someone said a (pure) rock was made out of granite, and another said it was made out of limestone, would it be correct to say that it is a grimestone rock? Somehow, I don't think so. The rock is either limestone or granite. God either exists or it doesn't. What people say doesn't necessarily correspond to reality. I don't think it's extremist to pick one side to argue for.

Neither do I believe that it is extermist to align yourself with one side or another, but there is also no evidence that the two answers are in fact correct (that God exist or that God does not exist). It is possible that both people are wrong, that the rock is neither limestone nor granite, but rather alien rock or something else enteirly. After all, how smart are those people? Are they really intelligent enough to decide what the rock is? Or it is possible that both people who claim God exist and God does not exist are wrong: God may exist but is so weak that he supposed to be laughed upon.

There is no logical reason why it has to either be "x" or "y". Presenting a false delimma is itself a logical fallacy. That doesn't mean that a combination of x and y must be right, it is probraly stupid to think that way. But it could. Or prehaps z might be correct.

Since I might was well throw links, here's a webcomic series (http://tailsteak.com/archive.php?num=87) that illustrates this point. The main guy, "TQ" is a person who comes up with ideas that showcase that the two prevailing choices aren't the only choices. He's not for "moderatism" at all, in fact his choices are pretty radical.

The phrase "tertium quid" (or "third option" in Latin) refers to something that exposes a dichotomy as false. A tertium quid is not somewhere between the two options (grey is not a tertium quid to the dichotomy of black vs. white), but rather something entirely new, something that escapes the one-dimensional line between two options.

Due to the fact that the site doesn't collect all the TQ in one easy place, please forgive me for spamming direct links, but eh.

Intro (http://tailsteak.com/archive.php?num=87)
Poverty (http://tailsteak.com/archive.php?num=88)
Global Warming (http://tailsteak.com/archive.php?num=109)
Abortion (http://tailsteak.com/archive.php?num=112)
In a car I (http://tailsteak.com/archive.php?num=130)
In a car II (http://tailsteak.com/archive.php?num=131)
Gay Marriage (http://tailsteak.com/archive.php?num=193)
Unemployment (http://tailsteak.com/archive.php?num=204)
Nader (http://tailsteak.com/archive.php?num=284)

Samuel Dravis
09-26-2007, 11:42 PM
Neither do I believe that it is extermist to align yourself with one side or another, but there is also no evidence that the two answers are in fact correct (that God exist or that God does not exist). It is possible that both people are wrong, that the rock is neither limestone nor granite, but rather alien rock or something else enteirly. After all, how smart are those people? Are they really intelligent enough to decide what the rock is? Or it is possible that both people who claim God exist and God does not exist are wrong: God may exist but is so weak that he supposed to be laughed upon.

There is no logical reason why it has to either be "x" or "y". Presenting a false delimma is itself a logical fallacy. That doesn't mean that a combination of x and y must be right, it is probraly stupid to think that way. But it could. Or prehaps z might be correct.The definitions of the words we are using don't change during an argument, however. If a rock fits the definition of limestone, then it is limestone. If it doesn't, then it's simply not limestone. The definition of god is more interesting because monotheists generally regard a definition of him as including such terms as "omnipotent, omniscient" etc. If the entity being talked about did not fit these definitions, then it would not be God, whatever its other attributes may be. An entity that is so weak to be laughed at simply is not God, because that would contradict the definition. Were any theists to compromise on the matter and say that God isn't omnipotent - just VERY powerful - then they just wouldn't be talking about the same God anymore (and they'd have to start the argument over again). So yes, I would say that God either exists as it is defined - typically as that of the Christian god - or it does not, and to pick one side of this argument is still not extremism, nor is it a false dilemma.

I liked those TQ links, SS. Thanks. :)

Rogue Warrior
09-27-2007, 05:08 AM
When I say extremism I refer to condemning others for their views rather than making the paper for new Star Wars novels.

SilentScope001
09-27-2007, 12:35 PM
The definitions of the words we are using don't change during an argument, however. If a rock fits the definition of limestone, then it is limestone. If it doesn't, then it's simply not limestone. The definition of god is more interesting because monotheists generally regard a definition of him as including such terms as "omnipotent, omniscient" etc. If the entity being talked about did not fit these definitions, then it would not be God, whatever its other attributes may be. An entity that is so weak to be laughed at simply is not God, because that would contradict the definition. Were any theists to compromise on the matter and say that God isn't omnipotent - just VERY powerful - then they just wouldn't be talking about the same God anymore (and they'd have to start the argument over again). So yes, I would say that God either exists as it is defined - typically as that of the Christian god - or it does not, and to pick one side of this argument is still not extremism, nor is it a false dilemma.

Gotcha. So the question at hand is: "Does the Chrisitan God exist?" I know agnoists could just say: "I don't really know, maybe?", but that is due to a belief that they don't have all the facts to make a final choice, and they aren't really pushing for others to believe.

Alright, I can accept that definition. You win the argument yet again. :D

When I say extremism I refer to condemning others for their views rather than making the paper for new Star Wars novels.

Sad to say, I think you need to condemn others for their views. Otherwise, how else can you force them to change their views...or at the very least, inform indepedents that the view is wrong and that you have to believe in the correct view? Views affect world views, views affect what people do, views can affect world government. If you believe that one view is wrong, then if they continue down that view, they could do incredibly stupid things. Condemnation, hatred is necessary to make sure the people see the "truth". "Extermism", or, more correctly, "intolerance", is popular presically because it works.

John Galt
09-27-2007, 09:21 PM
I think that ideas, no matter how extreme, should never be condemned for their own sake. The primary hallmark of true intelligence, in my opinion, is the ability to entertain ideas contrary to your own without necessarily accepting them.

Acting on extremist, especially violent extremist, ideals and carrying out physical violence against other people or repressing ideas contrary to the worldview you espouse, IS morally wrong.

SilentScope001
09-27-2007, 09:23 PM
Acting on extremist, especially violent extremist, ideals and carrying out physical violence against other people or repressing ideas contrary to the worldview you espouse, IS morally wrong.

So you are claiming that the US Army, fighting to promote democracy in Iraq, is morally wrong?

I think it's not morally wrong to kill for your cause, but only morally gray. What decides if the killing is okay is if the cause you are killing for is morally right or wrong. That, well, we can't really decide.

John Galt
09-27-2007, 10:40 PM
YES. Even though I have a tremendous amount of respect for the US military(moreso than the rest of the government) and love democracy, I think that if we went to war with Iraq JUST to overthrow Saddam and set up a Democratic government, it was morally wrong. Now that we have found no weapons of mass destruction and Saddam is out of power (which were the first and fallback reasons for being there, respectively), I think we have absolutely no reason to be there and the American people are seeing that and have largely stopped supporting the war now that "victory," whatever the administration chooses to define it as now, in Iraq will no longer have any tangible benefits for the American people, other than soldiers no longer serving in combat and being able to come home, which would happen anyway if we were to pull most of our forces out of Iraq and withdraw the rest to the north of the country to protect Kurdestan.

SilentScope001
09-27-2007, 11:24 PM
YES. Even though I have a tremendous amount of respect for the US military(moreso than the rest of the government) and love democracy, I think that if we went to war with Iraq JUST to overthrow Saddam and set up a Democratic government, it was morally wrong.

Huh. Understood. I guess I'm okay with violence, only because it's the only thing that has worked for us in the past, and animals use violence as well. We are still living due to the slaughters and the murders that previous generations of the human race has pulled off, after all. Since the hands of all nations in existance or in the past are, well, pretty bloody...I would be very uncomfortable calling every one of them immoral. Still, I see your point. To each their own.

Still, following your logic, I would be a bit iffy about even having the US military protect Kurdistan. It will make Turkey, another ally of US, and a democracy, pretty angry about us protecting the Kurds, and many members of the Kurds are sympathetic to the PKK, a terrorist organization that occasianlly pull off car bombs and terror attacks in both Iran and Turkey. And what about the Kurdistan's claim over Kirkuk and all its precious oil? The Kurds are willing to relocate the Arabs who live there, because they "were there first". And if the Arabs don't want to leave, then the Kurds will just move in anyway and force the Arabs to sell. If I follow your logic, if the Kurds are pulling off immoral stuff, should we even help them?

RobQel-Droma
09-27-2007, 11:49 PM
I really don't want to get into this, but I want to just ask....

Why are you dead-set against "Conservative Christians" doing what is perfectly ok for them to do? You keep coming back very antagonistic/sarcastic when someone says something like this, but I'm just wondering why the heck do you take 10 minutes of your time to complain if you don't intend to do anything about it. I may not agree with what they are doing, but its not like everyone else does the same thing. Liberals, Conservatives, Republicans, Christian Conservatives, Anarchists (well ok, I don't know about them), everyone. Who cares?

They aren't benefiting mankind. They aren't furthering our general knowledge. It doesn't take long to realize who is being truly dogmatic and who is simply percieved as such.

Neither are you by posting this, last time I checked. Neither am I by responding. In fact, a whole host of things fall in that category. Doesn't mean a thing.

Faith: firm belief in something for which there is no proof.

Not trying to split hairs, but that is *Blind* Faith.

The biggest one on the Christian agenda is abortion (which I happen to agree with them about, but I not willing to force my beliefs onto someone that has a different opinion). Another example is their attempt to circumvent the Constitution by disguising creationism as “intelligent design.”

Ahem. Wasn't the Constitution written by men who were Christians? Perhaps I'm misunderstanding you, but....

YES. Even though I have a tremendous amount of respect for the US military(moreso than the rest of the government) and love democracy, I think that if we went to war with Iraq JUST to overthrow Saddam and set up a Democratic government, it was morally wrong. Now that we have found no weapons of mass destruction and Saddam is out of power (which were the first and fallback reasons for being there, respectively), I think we have absolutely no reason to be there and the American people are seeing that and have largely stopped supporting the war now that "victory," whatever the administration chooses to define it as now, in Iraq will no longer have any tangible benefits for the American people, other than soldiers no longer serving in combat and being able to come home, which would happen anyway if we were to pull most of our forces out of Iraq and withdraw the rest to the north of the country to protect Kurdestan.

And here you totally ignore the horrors and brutality that innocent people endured that occured under Saddam's reign. You also seem to forget that Saddam was in close contact and was even helping the people that killed thousands of our people on 9/11. Also, I think your viewpoint is selfish - you say that since it has no tangible benefit for us, we should leave. What about the people over in the Middle East that are being murdered by these crazy Iraqi terrorists?

Achilles
09-28-2007, 12:12 AM
I really don't want to get into this, but I want to just ask....

Why are you dead-set against "Conservative Christians" doing what is perfectly ok for them to do? Is this for me? I'm not "dead set" against their right to their opinions. I find it disturbing (there I go with that word again), that they feel justified in opposing the rights of others based on their beliefs. I thought I made that clear earlier in the thread, but my apologies if that's not the case.

You keep coming back very antagonistic/sarcastic when someone says something like this, but I'm just wondering why the heck do you take 10 minutes of your time to complain if you don't intend to do anything about it. Perhaps I consider bringing the matter to the forefront of discussion (if only for a while in this limited forum) "doing something". It takes less time than writing a strong letter to my congressman and generates more awareness. But perhaps you'd rather I burn a church down or something.

I may not agree with what they are doing, but its not like everyone else does the same thing. Liberals, Conservatives, Republicans, Christian Conservatives, Anarchists (well ok, I don't know about them), everyone. Who cares? Obviously, I do. If you don't that's your business and you're welcome to it. If you truly don't care though, why are you wasting your time in this thread? Seems a bit hypocritical, no?

Neither are you by posting this, last time I checked. Neither am I by responding. Perhaps not. Then again, perhaps I am.

In fact, a whole host of things fall in that category. Doesn't mean a thing. I don't find your apathy persuasive if that was your intent.

Not trying to split hairs, but that is *Blind* Faith. Whatever adjective makes you happy. Please feel free to address your letter to Merriam-Webster.

Out of curiosity, what does "sighted" faith look like? Also, how is it related to religion? Looking forward to your response.

Ahem. Wasn't the Constitution written by men who were Christians? Perhaps I'm misunderstanding you, but....Please show me where the Constitution makes any reference to god? Also, many of the Framers were deists.
Here (http://ffrf.org/nontracts/xian.php) is a link you might find beneficial.

And here you totally ignore the horrors and brutality that innocent people endured that occured under Saddam's reign. You also seem to forget that Saddam was in close contact and was even helping the people that killed thousands of our people on 9/11. Says the man that accuses me of watching too much news. :lol:

Bush admits that Iraq Had Nothing To Do With 9/11 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f_A77N5WKWM)

Also, I think your viewpoint is selfish - you say that since it has no tangible benefit for us, we should leave. What about the people over in the Middle East that are being murdered by these crazy Iraqi terrorists? You mean the Iraqi civil war?

RobQel-Droma
09-28-2007, 12:28 AM
Is this for me? I'm not "dead set" against their right to their opinions. I find it disturbing (there I go with that word again), that they feel justified in opposing the rights of others based on their beliefs. I thought I made that clear earlier in the thread, but my apologies if that's not the case.

It just seems a bit.... Oh, forget it. To each his own, I guess. I can condemn you for making a thread about it.

But perhaps you'd rather I burn a church down or something.

Again, the sarcasm. And exaggeration.

Obviously, I do. If you don't that's your business and you're welcome to it. If you truly don't care though, why are you wasting your time in this thread? Seems a bit hypocritical, no?

True. But in answer to your question, I was trying to figure out why you cared.

Perhaps not. Then again, perhaps I am.

OK.......

?

Using the same lack of rational, I could say that these Conservative Christians are too.

I don't find your apathy persuasive if that was your intent.

Apathy? It's fact. There are always things like this. And believe, everything affects the world in different ways. But why don't we just disband LucasArts. It hasn't seemed to do anything that are the likes of what you said, right?

Whatever adjective makes you happy. Please feel free to address your letter to Merriam-Webster.

Out of curiosity, what does "sighted" faith look like? Also, how is it related to religion? Looking forward to your response.

Oh please. You're turning this into something its not. Blind faith is faith in something that you cannot see or know is true, but have faith in it because of your belief. Faith other than that is faith in something that has evidence to which it can be true. I don't understand how you seem to find what I said hard to understand, its what it means. Maybe you might want to brush up on some vocab there, buddy.

Please show me where the Constitution makes any reference to god? Also, many of the Framers were deists.

I concede your point, but all people who are theists/deists belive in God, and Creation. Show me a religion like that that doesn't. That was my point.

Says the man that accuses me of watching too much news.

Bush admits that Iraq Had Nothing To Do With 9/11

No, just believing in it too much.

Besides, what I say isn't just based on armchair theorizing and watching CNN or anything, trust me. And as for Bush, well, I don't support Bush. I think he was a big dissapointment. So what he says I don't necessarily believe in. True, that may not have been his intent when he went into Iraq, but I do believe that it was all interconnected, and that we should have gone in (perhaps differently). Oh, and just was his intent? Hmm? Would it possibly have some kind of connection back to terrorism anyways?

You mean the Iraqi civil war?

What?

Ermmm.... I'm guessing that you don't think Saddam was a problem before we went to war?

mimartin
09-28-2007, 12:35 AM
Ahem. Wasn't the Constitution written by men who were Christians? Perhaps I'm misunderstanding you, but.... But what? I’m a Christian too. I was answering Achilles request for my frame of reference for my comment: I have the same problem with these people that I have with other groups that try to force their belief structure on to others through legislation and the courts.In Edwards vs. Aguilera the United States Supreme Court ruled in a 7-2 decision affirmed the lower courts decision that a Louisiana law requiring if evolution was taught in public school then creationism also must be taught. Therefore, they were saying that the law was unconstitutional. I see “intelligent design” as an attempt by antievolutionist to get creationism taught in schools.

I have no problem if someone teaches their children creationism; I do have a problem when they want to force ALL children to learn creationism.

You are correct most if not all the men were Christians, but they were also learned men and they did not want to force a national religion down the masses throats. I still believe keeping religion out of the governments’ hands guarantees everyone’s religious freedoms.

Achilles
09-28-2007, 01:23 AM
True. But in answer to your question, I was trying to figure out why you cared. Because I have a big heart.

Also, something about an adage about those that don't stand up when one group's rights are infringed find themselves standing all alone when their rights are at stake. Self-preservation through empathy.

Using the same lack of rational, I could say that these Conservative Christians are too. Indeed, I would say that they are. Get it now?

Apathy? It's fact. There are always things like this. And believe, everything affects the world in different ways. But why don't we just disband LucasArts. It hasn't seemed to do anything that are the likes of what you said, right? We all find our spheres of influence where they are, I guess.

Oh please. You're turning this into something its not. Blind faith is faith in something that you cannot see or know is true, but have faith in it because of your belief. Sure. The dictionary just refers to that as "faith" by the way.

Faith other than that is faith in something that has evidence to which it can be true. Hmmm...that sounds like "belief":

conviction of the truth of some statement or the reality of some being or phenomenon especially when based on examination of evidence

I don't understand how you seem to find what I said hard to understand, its what it means. Maybe you might want to brush up on some vocab there, buddy. Says the man that want's to redefine "belief" as "faith". Thanks for the pointers, though.

I concede your point, but all people who are theists/deists belive in God, and Creation. Show me a religion like that that doesn't. That was my point. Deist belief is very different from christian belief. That was mine.

No, just believing in it too much. Twice in one day I've been lucky enough to participate in a pot calling the kettle black exchange. Hooray for me!

Besides, what I say isn't just based on armchair theorizing and watching CNN or anything, trust me. Ok, I will. Hey...you aren't actually George Bush are you?

And as for Bush, well, I don't support Bush. I think he was a big dissapointment. You just happen to swallow his rhetoric hook, line, and sinker. Gotcha.

So what he says I don't necessarily believe in. I, literally, never would have guessed.

True, that may not have been his intent when he went into Iraq, but I do believe that it was all interconnected, and that we should have gone in (perhaps differently). Oh, and just was his intent? Hmm? Would it possibly have some kind of connection back to terrorism anyways? It's possible but he's had 5 years to prove his case and so far, nothing.

What?

Ermmm.... I'm guessing that you don't think Saddam was a problem before we went to war?Ethnic tensions in Iraq go back much further than Saddam, my friend.

Rogue Warrior
09-28-2007, 05:26 AM
People are right to fear those who take an extreme view. Remember the police who had to tazer a protester? The same ire directed at that incident is also prevalent in those who seek censorship of views other than their own.

John Galt
09-28-2007, 06:22 AM
I really don't have time to write a long post right now, but I'll sum up what I was going to say and elaborate later.

1. Yes, my viewpoint is extremely selfish. After all, the American people are the ones who foot the bill interventions like the Iraqi conflict, I just think that the people of America and her allies are the only ones that the US military is beholden to.

2. To sum up my position, I think intervention itself is immoral, unless there is very, very strong evidence that an attack on the US or her interests is about to take place, and even that's something of a stretch. Defensive wars, or if we get declared war on by another nation, the US government and military are morally obligated to carry out.

Jae Onasi
09-28-2007, 09:50 AM
The staff has received a reported post on the tone used in some of the recent posts. Keep it civil, please.

Point Man
09-30-2007, 11:20 PM
In a ideal world, we could all sit down to talk and reason this out, but ideology tends to make such interactions difficult. Dogmatic ideologies make them impossible. Is there some way I can cause them to abandon their dogmatic ideologies?
Oh, I get it. They have no right to disagree with you. They must be forced to abandon their beliefs because those beliefs disturb your sensibilities.

Just so long as no one gets any funny ideas about screwing with turkey-day.
Hey, I seem to recall an official name for that holiday...Now, what was it? Oh yeah, I believe it is called Thanksgiving Day. Who are we giving thanks to, anyway?

Achilles
10-01-2007, 12:07 AM
Oh, I get it. They have no right to disagree with you. They must be forced to abandon their beliefs because those beliefs disturb your sensibilities. That's an interesting conclusion to jump to. I think Jae tried to accuse me of seeking to censor them in an earlier post. Is this a familial thing?

No, Jimbo, they are welcome to whatever beliefs they would have. However, if they were to take action, they would be guilty of doing exactly what you and Jae (and others) have attempted to lambaste me for here. Which makes me wonder if your convictions would still be as strong.

Hey, I seem to recall an official name for that holiday...Now, what was it? Oh yeah, I believe it is called Thanksgiving Day. Who are we giving thanks to, anyway?IIRC, (American) Thanksgiving is holiday held to celebrate the end of the harvest season. According to wikipedia, the "who" is a native american named Squanto (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Squanto). Perhaps you had someone else in mind?

Jae Onasi
10-01-2007, 01:54 AM
We're giving thanks to Squanto? :lol:

I don't buy revisionist history. :)
Yes, we should be grateful for the help he (and Samoset) provided the Pilgrims, but that's not why we have the holiday.

Try a primary historical source instead of wiki, like the 2 (and only 2 for the first Thanksgiving) primary sources from the first Thanksgiving. (http://www.pilgrimhall.org/1stthnks.htm)
Here's another discussion based on the primary documents (http://www.mayflowerhistory.com/History/thanksgiving.php). The first Thanksgiving they had a feast but they also gave thanks to God.

Also, try this site (http://www.earlyamerica.com/earlyamerica/firsts/thanksgiving/)

This historic proclamation was issued by George Washington during his first year as President. It sets aside Thursday, November 26 as "A Day of Publick Thanksgiving anf Prayer."

Signed by Washington on October 3, 1789 and entitled "General Thanksgiving," the decree appointed the day "to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God."

Here's an article (http://gwpapers.virginia.edu/documents/thanksgiving/intro.html) from the George Washington Papers held at the University of Virginia. Here's a transcription of his proclamation (http://gwpapers.virginia.edu/documents/thanksgiving/transcript.html) and a copy of the original handwritten document (http://gwpapers.virginia.edu/documents/thanksgiving/facsimile_2.html). Washington acknowledges that it's a day where one should give thanks to God.

Lincoln also made a proclamation (http://www.nps.gov/history/history/online_books/source/sb2/sb2w.htm) setting Thanksgiving day as a holiday, and also specifically mentioned it was to give thanks to God.

Not once is there mention of the day being set aside to give thanks to Squanto. They were giving thanks to God for the harvest.

Achilles
10-01-2007, 02:06 AM
~snip~

It seems that you missed the point nonetheless (as I assumed that either you or Jimbo would). Thanksgiving is a traditional observance, not a religious holiday. If it makes you feel better to give thanks to god, then knock yourself out. In the mean time, I'll be reflecting on family, friends, and the real things in life that matter.

Jae Onasi
10-01-2007, 09:53 AM
~snip~

History was one of my undergrad majors, and I knew exactly what I was looking for with that--I knew which sources existed, I just needed to find them on the web for the citation. The more technical/medical studies take longer to search for and evaluate just because there's so much material out there.

You're the one who said this in answer to whom we give thanks (emphasis mine):

IIRC, (American) Thanksgiving is holiday held to celebrate the end of the harvest season. According to wikipedia, the "who" is a native american named Squanto.

I was correcting your historical inaccuracy about Thanksgiving being a holiday to give thanks to Squanto, and that was all. I was not making a value statement on what we should give thanks for, nor was I arguing whether or not it's a religious vs. secular holiday. Now, you can try to deflect that with these comments you've made above or go off on a tangent to the purpose of Thanksgiving, but it doesn't change the historical facts.

Achilles
10-01-2007, 10:07 AM
~snip~
You're the one who said this in answer to whom we give thanks (emphasis mine): Indeed I did say that. Your husband was playing cutesy with me and I was playing in kind.

I was correcting your historical inaccuracy about Thanksgiving being a holiday to give thanks to Squanto, and that was all. So the pilgrims were not thankful to Squanto for his assistance? Gotcha.
~snip~

Thanks for your post.

Point Man
10-01-2007, 10:24 PM
The purpose of my mentioning Thanksgiving Day was to point out that there is something inherently contradictory in celebrating a day set aside for giving thanks to God while denying His existence.

The Pilgrims were thankful to Squanto, Samoset, and the others, but Thanksgiving Day was meant, and still is meant, for giving thanks to God for providing for our needs.

Achilles
10-01-2007, 10:50 PM
The purpose of my mentioning Thanksgiving Day was to point out that there is something inherently contradictory in celebrating a day set aside for giving thanks to God while denying His existence. Unless, of course, you're not giving thanks to god. Then there isn't anything contradictory at all.

The Pilgrims were thankful to Squanto, Samoset, and the others, but Thanksgiving Day was meant, and still is meant, for giving thanks to God for providing for our needs.Perhaps in your household.

Ray Jones
10-02-2007, 05:09 AM
Thanksgiving is but one harvest festival among many. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Harvest_Festivals)


Also, the first recorded thanksgiving in North America was celebrated on May 23rd in 1541 by Vásquez de Coronado and the tribe of the Tejas somewhere around where now Texas is. Another one was on September 8th 1565 in St. Augustine, Florida, Pedro Menéndez de Avilés and his henchmen where celebrating their landing. Don Juan de Onate celebrated one on April 30th 1598 around El Paso, together with the Manso Indians.

The first anglophone thanksgiving happened 1578 on Newfoundland, celebrated by Martin Frobisher who thought he found the north west passage between Europe and Asia.

In 1620 a group of pilgrims lost orientation and stranded at Plymouth Rock, Massachusetts. They wouldn't have survived the winter without the help of the Wampanoag Indians whom they where thanking the following autumn with a three day thanksgiving festival.

However, besides those, there is another *story*, which tells that in 1623 a drought hit some pilgrims and the harvest was about to be destroyed, so they decided to have a day to "seek the lord through humble and heartfelt prayer and He decided to give them answer", to thank god they set a holiday for thanksgiving, which US-Americans and Canadians obviously base their Thanksgiving Day on.

:¬:

RobQel-Droma
10-03-2007, 12:10 AM
You just happen to swallow his rhetoric hook, line, and sinker. Gotcha.

Another nice snide remark. You're pretty good at that.

But, hmmmm, didn't I just say the exact opposite thing?

Ethnic tensions in Iraq go back much further than Saddam, my friend.

Nice sidestep.

But my question was: did you think that Saddam (or, Ok, that region, to make you happy) was as problem before we went in?

Achilles
10-03-2007, 01:11 AM
But, hmmmm, didn't I just say the exact opposite thing? You sure did. My comment was meant to convey that I don't believe that to be true based on the things that you say. I would say that actions speak louder than words, however in this case, I think it would be more accurate to say that these paragraphs speak louder than this contradictory sentence.


But my question was: did you think that Saddam (or, Ok, that region, to make you happy) was as problem before we went in? I'm assuming that you meant "as big a problem". Not trying to call out the typo, just want to make sure that I'm addressing the correct question.

No, the evidence would seem to indicate that things are much worse now. That doesn't mean that I don't think we should have taken him out (or put him power in the first place). If it was our job to take him out for what he did to the kurds and shia, then Bush Sr. could have done so back in the early 90's before he left office. Being a "brutal dictator" just happened to be a convenient back up excuse after we didn't find WMDs and could no longer lie to ourselves that Hussein had anything to do with al qaeda.

Rogue Warrior
10-03-2007, 05:11 AM
Do you think maybe, to quote RobQel-Droma, snide remarks and the like undermine your attempts to portray religion, America, ect as the great evil you see it as?