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Old 03-31-2009, 10:02 AM   #29
Jae Onasi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Achilles View Post
The OP doesn't get to decide whether or not your argument is a strawman. If you and I are dialoging about X and then you present a counter-argument as though we were discussing Y, then it's a strawman. We may discuss Y at some point, but for the sake of our discussion involving X, the Y argument is unrelated.
I thought your point was directed at the OP originally. I did go off on a tangent, and I apologize for the confusion. The OP states that Christians get blamed for the evil done in the name of Christianity but not credit when Christians do positive things in the name of Christ. If non-Christians are going to slam Christians for the bad things, then they should acknowledge when good things are done. If not, it's hypocritical. If your argument is that these good things are done whether or not someone was Christian, then why does that not apply to the bad things also? You can't blame but then not give credit when it's due. It seems to me that atheists (not necessarily those here, to be clear) like to pick and choose what to blame or give credit for, and there's no rational basis for that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Achilles
This largely addresses the circumstance in which he acted. I was more interested in his motivation.
Social justice, love for mankind based on the love Christ showed us, his experience with racism at a young age, and assorted other experience the source documents describe.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Achilles
The argument that I thought I heard the OP making (and which I seem to be hearing here as well) is that Dr. King would have had no interest in the civil rights movement had it not be for his belief in jesus.
That's not the argument I heard, so I think we're on two different tracks, then. I'm hearing 'if Christians are getting blamed for things like religious wars, they should be getting credit for good things done in the name of Christ.' I think we end up doing this a little too often--we think each of us are arguing the same thing when we're off on subtle differences, and I'd like to avoid frustration/contempt issues based on misunderstandings over what we're actually talking about. I'll try to remember to ask if we're on the same page. If you could take that as a legit question on clarification instead of me trying to be a smartass, please, I would appreciate that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Achilles
A reoccuring argument that I hear from theists is that non-theist are incapable of moral reasoning or moral involvment. If that is the arguement that you would like to make, then I would like to discuss that, rather than whether or not he needed to appeal to the circumstances in order to accomplish what he did.
Why would I want to make that argument? You and other atheists are certainly capable of doing positive things. Theists get underlying moral justification for acts confused with the acts themselves, Zacharias discusses the philosophical basis for morality far better than I ever could if you really want to pursue that for your own interest. However, that's not a direction I want to go in. You and I suck at discussing religion with each other in a civil manner so I'd just rather we avoided the subject as much as possible.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Achilles
And had I been sourcing, your argument would have significant merit. However as I stated before and I will state again here, I'm simply providing an introduction for those not familiar with the history.
Let's give them some good, solid information, then, please, rather than something like this, since both of us appear to enjoy educating when people are interested in the topic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Achilles
It seems as though you want to introduce the claim that Gandhi had no influence on Dr. King without actually making it.
Well, I said three time now that King read Gandhi and utilized his methods. I'm kind of confused why you're thinking I'm making the claim in that case.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Achilles
If you accept that Gandhi had some influence on King, then we can move on. If you want to deny this or try to minimize it because you feel it helps your argument some how, then we can continue on the track we're on now. Just keep in mind that quotes that mention jesus don't tell me anything about Gandhi.

If you really want to make your case, please present a quote something along the lines of "Yeah, Gandhi was cool and all, but he was like, number 57 on my list. Jesus? He was definitely in the top 5". While it's possible such a quote exists, I suspect that it's highly unlikely, hence my bewilderment at why you would wish to make such a huge issue out of this and take a stance which seems almost impossible for you to defend.
It is possible to look through documents and determine the amount of influence of both Christ and Gandhi by looking at how many times both are referenced. The lion's share of quotes that King makes in speeches, sermons, and his books are from Christ or the Bible, not Gandhi. If you count up the references (which someone may have done), you'll find your answer on who had more influence on him. It's an indirect measure, but that makes it no less valid than the quote you're asking for.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Achilles
I'm sorry, why I would try to imply what?
You're implying that I'm arguing Gandhi had no influence. I don't know why, and don't know why you're continuing this line of thought.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Achilles
If you acknowledge Gandhi's influence, then I suppose I'm confused as to why you seem to want to minimize or dismiss it.
I'm confused why you're wanting to make the influence equivalent to Christ, but I'm beginning to think we're arguing about something that is way off on a tangent from what we're actually trying to get to. If we want to skip this as not what's germaine to the argument, I'm OK with that.


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