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Fundamentalists desecrate the very idea of museums


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Isn't that just a huge copout?

 

Never said I believed it. Only that if one believes in the Noah story and the power of God, then one could use that as a defense. I agree that it's just a bit too convenient. Probably should have used smilies or so to demonstrate they weren't my personal beliefs, just a demonstration of the type of response those proponents could/would fall back on if pushed.

 

----------------------------------------------

a.k.a. "goddunit", a.k.a "goddidit".

you are correct....sir. If such a God does in fact exist, such would be child's play. But.....does He exist? Now thats the rub.

 

What is not debatable is that the U.S. government has been helmed by fundamentalists for the last 7 years.

I'm curious as to how you've come to the conclusion that the US government is being run by fundamentalist principles, not simply by people in this current government who you arguably view as such . Most Christians (esp. Catholics and many of the "splinter" protestant sects) aren't fundamentalists. Perhaps, though, it might help if you explain what YOU mean by fundamentalist. Some of the issues that secular progressives hold as dear currently (abortion, fetal stem cell research, etc..) are not merely opposed by "people of faith". Nor or all those people "fundamentalists". As regards Roe v Wade, it's now known to have been based on a fraudulent case (the "plaintiff" has since admitted as much). But more importantly, it was just another example of a one branch of government overstepping it's constitutional role. Sadly, many in Congress (hell, the legal profession in general) are slaves to precedent and dropped the ball. Just like another court invented constitutional position, seperation of church and state (read as seperation of church FROM state), you don't find "abortion rights" anywhere in the US Constitution.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Fact is....... it does not mean that the US is not a secular society.

 

---Hmmm. IMO, this debatable.

debatable only really if you make secular synonomous with atheistic.

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

People here often seem more taken with worldly concerns, all the more so when you look at pop culture and academia and law. When the Pope chastizes the western world for being too materialistic (ie worldly), he doesn't exclude the US from his admonitions.

 

---Again, this is debatable. While you seem to see rock n' roll, Berkley, and Roe v. Wade, I see the growing influence of christian rock, Bob Jones University, and the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act.

 

I do think that the U.S. has some cultural problems, but I do not think that the "solutions" offered by the fundamentalist agenda are anything other than an alternative set of problems. They want to swing the pendulum the to one side when the real answer is to try to keep it somewhere in the middle.

Frankly, most things are debatable, especially if people don't work from the same set of principles. However, I don't see the "growing influence" of christian rock (influence being key concept here) having any major impact on society, neither currently or in the forseeable future. Are there groups out there? Yes. Have they tapped into an unserviced market? Apparently. What impact will that have? None that is obvious at the moment. Besides, God found more of a home in country music long ago. While I don't know about you, I've seen little evidence of any significant impact by Christian rock on the music scene, let alone pop culture. Berkely has long been a "hotbed" of "other side of the pendelum" politics and cultural mores. Nowhere near the "center/middle". BTW, what exactly do you see as the middle? I once heard Al Franken describe himself as being "in the middle". Now, that's more than just a laugh. What examples of influence do you refer to when citing BJU (pardon the pun of sorts ;) )? Parial birth abortion ban opposition is not universally religious. Most rational people would see it for what it is. A form of infanticide. One could easily support such a ban for humanitarian reasons alone. My guess is that you're really referring to the "slippery slope" argument. Considering how close the SC vote was (5-4), and how divided the country is in general on the subject of abortion, I don't see any credible threat to abortion on demand (beyond cutting off all govt funding and making it a strictly private affair) over the horizon. The greater threat in that sense will come from advances in medical technology, not merely "ideology". Furthermore, less Bush or someone conservative follows him and appoints the next crop of SC justices, that fear is also overstated.

 

I don't know that I would agree that it's a "fact" that "most" politicians do this.

I probably should say that in presidential politics it's usually neccessary to play to the "extremes" in the individual parties b/c they have the greatest impact on the primary process. In that light, it should be interesting (even if anticlimactic in the end) to see who gets the nod in the GOP.

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Now, if the Christian "fundies" used the same playbook as the islamofacists, you'd have some cause for concern. But to declare that the USA will become a YEC Saudi Arabia goes beyond hyperbole.

 

---I'm only allowed to be afraid of fundamentalists if they fly planes into buildings? I'm not allowed to be concerned when the executive branch (comprised of fundamentalist christians) completely circumvents separation of powers and suspends citizen rights? In fairness to you on my last point, they didn't do it alone. They had the help of the other two fundamentalist-controlled branches as well. Really? Why? Because no one in power here is trying to accomplish something like

that?

Achilles, you're free to fear whomever you like. "Stripping" of civil rights actually has nothing to do with fundamentalism, but everything to do with power hunger. PC thinking (one of the byproducts of the poisonous influence of places like Berkely) is a much greater current threat to your constitutional rights. Concepts like hate speech (about as elastic as sexual harrassment) are a direct threat to the first amendment and strict gun control laws run counter to the second amendment, both actual parts of the constitution. The rise of the "secular nanny state" is a greater near term threat to your freedoms than than a bunch of "religious nutters". Frankly, last I checked, I didn't see anything that suggested the the "fundies" you believe "control the government" have any intention of rounding up the atheists and making them wear a crimson A on their garments or to cut their tongues out for "spewing heresy". I don't recall them stating a desire to execute peope or flog them for "sexual offenses", etc.. This are the types of things you would have to fear if the fundamentalists wanted to ape the islamofascists. Furthermore, and this is more what I mean by taking a page, if that group engaged in the types of tactics currently employed by the arguably errant followers of Islam, how much do you want to bet that publicly professed attitudes toward christians would be much more proscribed? And no offense, but the claim that Congress and the SC are controlled by fundamentalists almost sent me into paroxsyms of laughter.

As I've already said, it depends on the issue. If you're not going to pursue it further, then I'm not going to chase your point down for you ;)

Well, to put it differently, on which topics do you find yourself in agreement with the dems and why? Abortion? Civil rights? Hate speech/crimes? Gun control? School choice? Foreign relations? Border issues? The environment?Where, if at all, are you closer to the repubs/conservatives on these issues? On which particular issues do you find yourself at odds with both parties?

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I broke my self-imposed rule of not writing anything too serious when I have a fever. I have written some truly spectacular things when I've had fevers and thought at the time that they were perfectly reasonable. Then a couple days later I re-read them and said to myself 'Oh, Lordy, I really was somewhere in a galaxy far, far away with that comment....' So I try not to post too much when I'm unwell.
Sorry to hear you aren't feeling well. I hope you get better soon.

 

It was meant as a general commentary more than anything else, and I actually didn't have you in particular in mind. In fact, if you had told me you didn't vote, I'd have been extremely surprised.
I'll take that as a compliment :D

 

I just realized reading thru the thread that people were complaining about fundamentalists being active, but not doing anything about it.
Actually, I consider my "work" here as "doing something about it". I probably won't change your mind, but I might change someones. Other than that, I'm not sure what could be done to counter the fundamentalist movement (besides voting for non-fundies of course, but I can only do that every couple of years).

 

If someone's going to gripe about something, then they should consider possible solutions. All the complaints about ultra-conservative Christians being in power in the White House bothers me--where were these complainers 7 years ago in Ohio, Florida, and other states where the race was close, when their votes really could have made a difference?
I seem to remember quite a bit of controversy over Florida. Bush didn't win the popular vote. He was put into office by the Supreme Court and the electoral college.

 

I was pretty upset about Ohio too, but have to admit that I probably succumbed to learned helplessness a little. My state was called for Bush without even counting the votes that were mailed in.

 

The fact is that Bush's supporters put together a great grassroots get-the-vote-out campaign at the state level and were very organized in getting people registered to vote, and that made a huge difference in some places.
That's one way to put it. Another way to put it might be: The rapture right did a excellent job of campaigning every sunday and producing voter guides (which helped their congregations identified which candidates were "christian enough"). This sure seems like a violation of church and state to me, however for some reason the administration only sought to hand out stern warnings along with gov't funds for the promotion of faith-based initiatives.

 

Aren't we supposed to vote for the one who most accurately represent our views anyway?
Indeed. How many issues did you disagree and the person that you voted for disagree on? 90%? 80%? 60%? I'm happy if I get 50%.

 

Religion is just one part of a person's life.
Oh, I wish that were more true. The actual act of worship is one thing, but dogma affects political decisions everyday.

 

When I evaluate someone's ability to do the job in Congress, religion actually plays a very small part for me, if it's an issue at all.
That's because you evaluate someone's ability to do the job based on how their views match yours. You ignore that both sets of views are based on religion.

 

I would not vote against someone for being atheist if they were more qualified for the job.
You would be the first :)

 

Forty-two percent of Americans say they would not vote for a 72-year-old candidate, even though the majority (57%) still would. That is about the same willingness found for a hypothetical homosexual candidate (55%). An atheist would seem to have the hardest time getting elected president, as a majority of Americans (53%) say they would not vote for a presidential candidate who was an atheist.

http://www.galluppoll.com/content/?ci=26611

 

I don't actually think this is a conservative Christian country in the least. If it truly was, we wouldn't be seeing or hearing the crap we see/hear on TV/radio/other media, spectacular amounts of fraud in major corporations (Enron comes to mind), among many other things.
I'd suggest some research on Bush's ties to Enron (Thisshould get you started). Also, the Parent Television Council. This group does nothing except watch television all day and file complaints with the FCC. Something like 98% of all complaints come from this one group.

 

This is a secular society that happens to have a lot of people who say they are Christians and darken the doors of a church maybe once or twice a year.
I'm more concerned about those in the driver seat and their extremist constituencies. The moderate christians you refer to simply provide a safe haven for the fundies.

 

Pelosi and Boxer are not conservative Christians, and most of the members of Congress don't bother with church except to make an appearance for some political reason. Clinton and Gore may say they're part of the Baptist church, but they certainly don't espouse traditionally Baptist views in the least or act in traditional Baptist ways.
You say that as though it were a bad thing or as if those were the people I'm concerned about. Pick an issue and we'll compare Bush to Clinton.

 

Many other politicians are the same way, and if the fundamentalists truly had as much power as liberals/atheists fear, then there would be many more fundamentalists in office, at least in Congress.

Many more than what? Your entire argument seems to be based entirely on your opinion while ignoring the fact that the rapture right has been working to control all three branches of gov't for several years.

 

In terms of the museum, if we say 'you can't build a museum because of religion' we set a dangerous precedent, because then we could equally extend that to other free speech rights.
No one is saying that we should. The point is that this is an embarrassment and a shame and it should be seen as such. The Spam museum that you offer as a comparison is certainly representative of how quaint we can be, but this is something else entirely. This is a $26 million message to the world that many of the citizens of the world's sole superpower are still living in the dark ages.

 

I don't like the idea of a Satanic museum or a cult museum, but they have the right to express themselves (in appropriate ways). If we cut that off, we could lose too much and we'd find ourselves in the middle of a state-controlled communication situation. If there is a Satanic museum, I simply won't go visit.
This isn't now, nor has it ever been, an issue of free speech.

 

Get well soon!

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To clarify: It's not an issue of content, it's a matter of accuracy. It's not that they're idiots who believe God created the Earth 6000 years ago that makes me want them shut down, it's that they present their ideas as fact. I'd be equally opposed to a museum making wicked lies about fundies.

 

Museums should have a standard of accuracy, regardless of content. Plain and simple.

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you are correct....sir. If such a God does in fact exist, such would be child's play. But.....does He exist? Now thats the rub.
Indeed.

 

I'm curious as to how you've come to the conclusion that the US government is being run by fundamentalist principles, not simply by people in this current government who you arguably view as such.
I'm not sure that I understand the distinction that you're trying to make.

 

Most Christians (esp. Catholics and many of the "splinter" protestant sects) aren't fundamentalists.
No argument. I don't think I've stated that most christians are fundamentalists. I think my message has been that christian fundamentalists appear to be in control.

 

Perhaps, though, it might help if you explain what YOU mean by fundamentalist.
Main Entry: fun·da·men·tal·ism

Pronunciation: -t&-"li-z&m

Function: noun

1 a often capitalized : a movement in 20th century Protestantism emphasizing the literally interpreted Bible as fundamental to Christian life and teaching b : the beliefs of this movement c : adherence to such beliefs

2 : a movement or attitude stressing strict and literal adherence to a set of basic principles <Islamic fundamentalism> <political fundamentalism>

 

Some of the issues that secular progressives hold as dear currently (abortion, fetal stem cell research, etc..) are not merely opposed by "people of faith".
Like who? If there is a 3rd position on these issues, it's been so marginalized that I'm not aware of it. Of course there is a portion of the population that probably falls under the category of "undecided" but I don't consider "undecided" an argued position.

 

As regards Roe v Wade, it's now known to have been based on a fraudulent case (the "plaintiff" has since admitted as much). But more importantly, it was just another example of a one branch of government overstepping it's constitutional role.
Could you expand on this please (specifically the last sentence)?

 

Sadly, many in Congress (hell, the legal profession in general) are slaves to precedent and dropped the ball. Just like another court invented constitutional position, seperation of church and state (read as seperation of church FROM state), you don't find "abortion rights" anywhere in the US Constitution.
You don't find separation of church and (or from) state in the constitution either. That's why we have a branch of government whose role is to determine what the Framers would have intended. So that we could adapt the constitution to modern issues.

 

Also, the courts didn't "invent" the concept. They lifted it from a letter that Jefferson wrote to Madison (at least I think it was Madion). Therefore the courts determined the intent...just like they are supposed to.

 

Debatable only really if you make secular synonomous with atheistic.
Not at all. This is like Ann Coulter stating that if you aren't neo-con then you're liberal.

 

Frankly, most things are debatable, especially if people don't work from the same set of principles. However, I don't see the "growing influence" of christian rock (influence being key concept here) having any major impact on society, neither currently or in the forseeable future.
Link

If more people are listening to this than other forms of music, then that's influence. What societal change might be there is unknown, but my point was not christian music is reducing crime, etc.

 

Berkely has long been a "hotbed" of "other side of the pendelum" politics and cultural mores. Nowhere near the "center/middle".
At no point did I say that it was "center" or "middle". I seem to recall listing some thing that are generally perceived as being liberal and something things that are generally perceived as being conservative. Nowhere did I list things that are generally considered centrist.

 

Are you deliberately attempting to mis-characterize my argument or did you simply misunderstand?

 

BTW, what exactly do you see as the middle?
Depends on the issue. In case you haven't noticed, I'm very sensitive to context.

 

What examples of influence do you refer to when citing BJU (pardon the pun of sorts ;)
Well, my intent was to cite it as the largest christian university in the U.S. but apparently I misspoke. It's actually Abilene Christian University. I guess Bush kicking off his 2000 SC campaign at BJU just made me assume that it was the largest.

 

Parial birth abortion ban opposition is not universally religious.
Universally? Yes, I suppose that you have a case that it's not a "universally" religious position. Of course, I don't recall taking such an indefensible position. I think there's a pretty strong case that the 70% of americans that oppose the procedure do so on religious grounds. I've yet to hear a single secular argument against the procedure, but that doesn't mean they don't exist. Do you have an example of one?

 

Most rational people would see it for what it is. A form of infanticide. One could easily support such a ban for humanitarian reasons alone.
Since you seem so knowledgeable about the subject here's a pop quiz for you:

 

-What percentage of abortions utilize this procedure?

-Why are they performed?

-How do existing laws already restrict such procedures?

 

Answers:

 

1) Less than 10%. I don't know how many of 2nd trimester abortions are performed using the now-illegal method, but it is the only form used for 3rd trimester abortions, which are less than 1% of all abortions. 2) Several reasons. All of them medical (deformed child, mother's health, inviable pregnancies such as Ectopic pregnancies, etc) 3) 3rd trimester abortions are already illegal unless there is a serious health risk. In other words, all the courts have accomplished has been to put more womens lives at risk.

 

 

I suspect that you jumped on the pro-life bandwagon without taking the time to do a whole lot of research. I don't think any reasonable person would support this type of abortion unless there was a very good reason. Unfortunately, the right has so oversimplified the counterargument as only being "a woman's right to choose", that most people don't take the time to learn what the argument is actually about.

 

My guess is that you're really referring to the "slippery slope" argument.
Nope, and I hope that you're not trying to put words in my mouth.

 

The courts have put more women at risk by forcing them to undergo potentially life-threatening labor in the 3rd trimester. However, there are still options for 2nd trimester abortions (although some of them might be more risky for late term abortions...again with women's health), so I don't see the need to invoke slippery slope. Maybe this will be the catalyst for new medical breakthroughs that help catch genetic defects even sooner.

 

However if this does result in increased traction for 2nd trimester abortions or abortion in general, then I think we can throw "slippery slope" out the door and just call a spade a spade.

 

Considering how close the SC vote was (5-4), and how divided the country is in general on the subject of abortion, I don't see any credible threat to abortion on demand (beyond cutting off all govt funding and making it a strictly private affair) over the horizon.
It's my understanding that the ban was on the procedure itself, not on gov't funding for the procedure. Did I miss something.

 

What disappointed me was the decision to completely disregard the implications for women's health. That was the only reason the ban was shot down before and it seemed to be perfectly reasonable to do so.

 

The greater threat in that sense will come from advances in medical technology, not merely "ideology". Furthermore, less Bush or someone conservative follows him and appoints the next crop of SC justices, that fear is also overstated.
Are you aware of how SC justices are appointed?

 

Achilles, you're free to fear whomever you like. "Stripping" of civil rights actually has nothing to do with fundamentalism, but everything to do with power hunger.
First, I'll concede that some decisions were obvious political rather than religious. Second, I still argue that some decision were equally religious and political. Third, I'd like to point out that I do not necessarily differentiate between religious fundamentalism and power-mongering. Both are about control.

 

PC thinking (one of the byproducts of the poisonous influence of places like Berkely) is a much greater current threat to your constitutional rights.
Could you expand on this please?

 

Concepts like hate speech (about as elastic as sexual harrassment) are a direct threat to the first amendment
You can say whatever you would like, so long as no threats are made. I agree that having separate laws for hate speech and hate crimes are counterproductive, but I consider these separate from political correctness.

 

and strict gun control laws run counter to the second amendment, both actual parts of the constitution.
The constitution says that every individual has the right to bear arms, which in the vernauclar of the time, meant that local government had the right to maintain a militia. However, the supreme court, once again doing their job of interpreting the constitution, determined that it would mean that citizens would have a right to own guns. I'm perfectly ok with this, just as I am perfectly ok with considering reasonable legislation that would promote public safety.

 

The rise of the "secular nanny state" is a greater near term threat to your freedoms than than a bunch of "religious nutters".
Jury's still out.

 

Frankly, last I checked, I didn't see anything that suggested the the "fundies" you believe "control the government" have any intention of rounding up the atheists and making them wear a crimson A on their garments or to cut their tongues out for "spewing heresy". I don't recall them stating a desire to execute peope or flog them for "sexual offenses", etc.. This are the types of things you would have to fear if the fundamentalists wanted to ape the islamofascists.
That's one rather extremeist interpretation. I, for one, consider basic discrimination the alienation of rights. I do consider the blurring line between church and state a threat that we should be vigilant rather than blasé about. I do consider the fundamentalist war on science to be dangerous to our long-term sovlency as a nation. So while you paint visions of concentration camps, I focus on the real concerns.

 

Furthermore, and this is more what I mean by taking a page, if that group engaged in the types of tactics currently employed by the arguably errant followers of Islam, how much do you want to bet that publicly professed attitudes toward christians would be much more proscribed? And no offense, but the claim that Congress and the SC are controlled by fundamentalists almost sent me into paroxsyms of laughter.
Well, sir, you are of course entitled to your opinion. Did you have something other than contemptuous attitude to support your argument?

 

Well, to put it differently, on which topics do you find yourself in agreement with the dems and why? Abortion? Civil rights? Hate speech/crimes? Gun control? School choice? Foreign relations? Border issues? The environment?Where, if at all, are you closer to the repubs/conservatives on these issues? On which particular issues do you find yourself at odds with both parties?
To cover each of these would take some time and I think I've touched on several of them here and elsewhere. Keeping in mind that you still haven't been very specific (i.e. which democrats vs. which republicans), I'll assume that you're intending the most polarized of each. Let's take your last suggestion: Environment.

 

I agree with the left that it's a serious concern. I disagree with those on the left that want to adopt a "sky is falling" approach. I agree with those on the right that argue that we should be putting more effort into determining specific actions which will have the greatest impact. I disagree with those on the right who are more concerned with making the left out to be idiots than taking the time to educate themselves on the issues. My stance is that we need to quit bickering and commit to some science that will give us specific action plans. And we need to marginalize the opinions of those that feel that god gave us the earth to abuse as we see fit and that jesus will be back soon anyways so it doesn't matter.

 

Thanks for reading.

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I'm not sure that I understand the distinction that you're trying to make.

 

Well, if an atheist were elected president tomorrow, would that mean that the government was controlled by atheists? The president is not a dictator and his control is obviously limited. The idea that either the Congress or SC is run by fundamentalists borders on conspiracy theory. If the "fundies" are running all 3 branches of the government, they've done a pretty poor job of demonstrating any real serious threat to nonbelievers (who btw are about as statistically significant as the number of partial birth abortions).

 

...I don't think I've stated that most christians are fundamentalists. I think my message has been that christian fundamentalists appear to be in control.

 

Perhaps appearances are deceptive.

 

Like who? If there is a 3rd position on these issues, it's been so marginalized that I'm not aware of it. Of course there is a portion of the population that probably falls under the category of "undecided" but I don't consider "undecided" an argued position.

 

Not sure what to make of this other than draw the conclusion that pos#1 is that of religious and pos#2 that of atheists (somehow monolithic it seems).

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

As regards Roe v Wade, it's now known to have been based on a fraudulent case (the "plaintiff" has since admitted as much). But more importantly, it was just another example of a one branch of government overstepping it's constitutional role.

Achilles:

-Could you expand on this please (specifically the last sentence)?

 

Basically put, it's not the purview of the court to create rights out of thin air. Congress sets the laws and the SC makes pronouncements about how they view said laws. The SC, however is not an oligarchy and can be overridden (much like the prez can veto a bill, but also be overridden).

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Sadly, many in Congress (hell, the legal profession in general) are slaves to precedent and dropped the ball. Just like another court invented constitutional position, seperation of church and state (read as seperation of church FROM state), you don't find "abortion rights" anywhere in the US Constitution.

Ach:

You don't find separation of church and (or from) state in the constitution either.

Tot:--as I noted above.

 

Ach:-That's why we have a branch of government whose role is to determine what the Framers would have intended. So that we could adapt the constitution to modern issues. Also, the courts didn't "invent" the concept. They lifted it from a letter that Jefferson wrote to Madison (at least I think it was Madion). Therefore the courts determined the intent...just like they are supposed to.

 

 

Seeing as how Jefferson wasn't the only one involved in crafting the Constitution, it's rather spurious to allow the misgivings(?) of one man to somehow give the court the right to "interpret" the concept of seperation of church and state to be morphed into a total divorcing of any state support for religious activities. Seeing as how the the US SC also elevated secular humanism to religious status, perhaps they too should be excluded from any government support. Given the importance many of the founding fathers of the US viewed religion with, it seems more likely the concern was vis-a-vis the creation of a theocracy, not whether Fr. Jones was reminding/informing parishoners about their duties as members of a congregation when exercising their civic right/duty to vote. Just as atheists have their own peculiar set of values when making decisions, so does any other group. It's basically silly to say that a Catholic school cannot receive any government funding, but a "secular" private school can. Unless the Catholics are absolved of any tax burden (at EVERY level), then you don't really have seperation, merely a one sided relationship where the state exploits religion to its own benefit.

 

Not at all. This is like Ann Coulter stating that if you aren't neo-con then you're liberal.

 

Quite the contrary. It's quite a stretch to say that secular means that a society has to believe in no gods/God to qualify. Secular does not=atheism. Athletics is a secular activity, as is taking out the trash. Neither has an inherent spiritual component. Paying taxes is another type of secular activity. One of many things that define a culture.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Frankly, most things are debatable, especially if people don't work from the same set of principles. However, I don't see the "growing influence" of christian rock (influence being key concept here) having any major impact on society, neither currently or in the forseeable future.

Ach:

If more people are listening to this than other forms of music, then that's influence. What societal change might be there is unknown, but my point was not christian music is reducing crime, etc.

 

Not altogether actually clear on the relevance of your point here. In a country of 300 million (+/-), how many people are actually listening to christian rock? What evidence do you have that demonstrates that it's having any impact outside of a niche group? Do you also fear the "influence" of country and gospel music? You seem to fear some kind of nebulous effect.

 

At no point did I say that it was "center" or "middle". I seem to recall listing some thing that are generally perceived as being liberal and something things that are generally perceived as being conservative. Nowhere did I list things that are generally considered centrist.Are you deliberately attempting to mis-characterize my argument or did you simply misunderstand?

 

Perhaps you were merely unclear. I didn't accuse you of making any such statement. Perhaps, however, you should make clear what exactly constitutes the middle ground you referred to at the end of your statement. Your apparent fear of CR, partial birth abortion bans, etc.. seem to reflect "left of center" concerns. These would be clear examples of Berkely values/fears.

 

Universally? Yes, I suppose that you have a case that it's not a "universally" religious position. Of course, I don't recall taking such an indefensible position. I think there's a pretty strong case that the 70% of americans that oppose the procedure do so on religious grounds. I've yet to hear a single secular argument against the procedure, but that doesn't mean they don't exist. Do you have an example of one?

 

One doesn't have to cite religion to see how wrong headed and barbaric such a procedure is. Unless you have solid statistics which demonstrate that each and every pba was medically necessary, then you know it's objectionable that any, let alone 5000+/-, should be killed in that way. One can try to make the technical argument that LEGALLY the child is a still born, but then the holocaust and slavery were legal within the confines of thier own systems at the time. Most people who actually know what the procedure entails object to it. I know many people who are pro-choice, but find pba's to be offensive. Even the medical profession has admitted that these procedures are not necessary.

 

I don't think any reasonable person would support this type of abortion unless there was a very good reason. Unfortunately, the right has so oversimplified the counterargument as only being "a woman's right to choose", that most people don't take the time to learn what the argument is actually about.

 

No offense, but I think you've swallowed the "health of the mother" caveat kool aid on this topic. The fact that anyone would engage in this process demonstrates they are unreasonable in the first place. Frankly, the argument, such as it is, is that the pro-abortion crowd wants absolutely no restrictions on abortion regardless of the circumstances.

 

 

No, and I hope you're not putting words in my mouth.

 

No, I'd say you seem to have handled that on your own. Banning one type of abortion does not equate banning all abortions. Will the pro-life crowd see this as a victory of sorts? Sure. Does it mean that they will succeed in banning ALL abortions? Highly unlikely in our lifetime. Even if Roe v Wade were overturned, abortion would not disappear in America. Regulation would merely be punted to the state level. As you well know, that means that the laws in the "blue states" would be fairly abortion friendly.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Considering how close the SC vote was (5-4), and how divided the country is in general on the subject of abortion, I don't see any credible threat to abortion on demand (beyond cutting off all govt funding and making it a strictly private affair) over the horizon.

Ach:

It's my understanding that the ban was on the procedure itself, not on gov't funding for the procedure. Did I miss something.

 

Seems to me that you were arguing that pba bans seemed to signal the beginning of the end for abortion. Otherwise, given that the procedure in question is statistically insignificant, you wouldn't be too worried about the ramifications of only banning one type of particularly gruesome and admittedly unnecessary procedure. My point was that given the slim vote margin (on what you consider the fundie controlled SC--shouldn't the margin have been much greater if that were true?) on the pba-ban issue, that the only real arguable threat in the forseeable future would be the complete defunding by government of ANY abortion procedure. But hey, PP and others make ample $$ to help subsidize the abortion industry should that happen.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

The greater threat in that sense will come from advances in medical technology, not merely "ideology". Furthermore, less Bush or someone conservative follows him and appoints the next crop of SC justices, that fear is also overstated.

Ach:

Are you aware of how SC justices are appointed?

 

Uhhh... the president pulls their names out of a hat and then throws darts or reads goat entrails to see who he should pick and then Congress consults a magic 8 ball to see which ones to approve and then thanks the bones for any kind of answer at all? :laughing:

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Achilles, you're free to fear whomever you like. "Stripping" of civil rights actually has nothing to do with fundamentalism, but everything to do with power hunger.

Ach:

First, I'll concede that some decisions were obvious political rather than religious. Second, I still argue that some decision were equally religious and political. Third, I'd like to point out that I do not necessarily differentiate between religious fundamentalism and power-mongering. Both are about control.

 

Perhaps, but you seem more concerned about WHO is controlling, than that anyone is doing so at all.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Concepts like hate speech (about as elastic as sexual harrassment) are a direct threat to the first amendment.

Ach:

You can say whatever you would like, so long as no threats are made. I agree that having separate laws for hate speech and hate crimes are counterproductive, but I consider these separate from political correctness.

 

Actually you're incorrect. Ask Don Imus or anyone whose been thrown out of work and/or sued for sexual harrassment b/c of nonthreatening, but "offensive" comments. There are also nonlegal ramifications here as well. Universities are notorious for causing students a world of trouble if they don't kowtow to PC thought. Kind of funny for instituions that are supposed to encourage free expression of ideas. Still the very concept of hate speech is steeped in PC thinking and thus not seperate.

 

The constitution says that every individual has the right to bear arms, which in the vernauclar of the time, meant that local government had the right to maintain a militia. However, the supreme court, once again doing their job of interpreting the constitution, determined that it would mean that citizens would have a right to own guns. I'm perfectly ok with this, just as I am perfectly ok with considering reasonable legislation that would promote public safety.

 

Oddly enough, the constituion doesn't specify exactly what type of weapons the citizenry is restricted to should the state have the need to call upon them to form a militia. So, what in your mind specifically constitutes "reasonable legislation"?

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

The rise of the "secular nanny state" is a greater near term threat to your freedoms than than a bunch of "religious nutters".

Ach:

Jury's still out.

 

--yeah, like in the case has already been closed.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Frankly, last I checked, I didn't see anything that suggested the the "fundies" you believe "control the government" have any intention of rounding up the atheists and making them wear a crimson A on their garments or to cut their tongues out for "spewing heresy". I don't recall them stating a desire to execute peope or flog them for "sexual offenses", etc.. This are the types of things you would have to fear if the fundamentalists wanted to ape the islamofascists.

Ach:

That's one rather extremeist interpretation. I, for one, consider basic discrimination the alienation of rights. I do consider the blurring line between church and state a threat that we should be vigilant rather than blasé about. I do consider the fundamentalist war on science to be dangerous to our long-term sovlency as a nation. So while you paint visions of concentration camps, I focus on the real concerns.

 

Somewhat overheated concerns, btw. First, what "basic discrimination" do you refer to specifically? Please provide specific examples of the blurring line you refer to above. We've managed to avoid a theocracy so far. By the assault on science I take it you refer to the whole creationist line of thinking, opposition to man-made global warming theory as well as fetal stem-cell/cloning (what else?)? It's only natural that in a democratic republic people of all stripes will seek to gain some kind of influence in the government policy making process. The fundies, as you refer to them, are a small segment of the US population. You appear to overestimate their influence, all the more so with the next election less than 2 years away and the socially progressive secular lib driven dems in a good position to take the WH.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Furthermore, and this is more what I mean by taking a page, if that group engaged in the types of tactics currently employed by the arguably errant followers of Islam, how much do you want to bet that publicly professed attitudes toward christians would be much more proscribed? And no offense, but the claim that Congress and the SC are controlled by fundamentalists almost sent me into paroxsyms of laughter.

Ach:

Well, sir, you are of course entitled to your opinion. Did you have something other than contemptuous attitude to support your argument?

 

--Sorry, but which argument are you referring to exactly?

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Well, to put it differently, on which topics do you find yourself in agreement with the dems and why? Abortion? Civil rights? Hate speech/crimes? Gun control? School choice? Foreign relations? Border issues? The environment?Where, if at all, are you closer to the repubs/conservatives on these issues? On which particular issues do you find yourself at odds with both parties?

Ach:

To cover each of these would take some time and I think I've touched on several of them here and elsewhere. Let's take your last suggestion: Environment.

 

I agree with the left that it's a serious concern. I disagree with those on the left that want to adopt a "sky is falling" approach. I agree with those on the right that argue that we should be putting more effort into determining specific actions which will have the greatest impact. I disagree with those on the right who are more concerned with making the left out to be idiots than taking the time to educate themselves on the issues. My stance is that we need to quit bickering and commit to some science that will give us specific action plans. And we need to marginalize the opinions of those that feel that god gave us the earth to abuse as we see fit and that jesus will be back soon anyways so it doesn't matter.

 

 

Well, can't say I disagree with most of what you're saying on this specific subject. Only add that the catastrophists you reference on the left should also avoid labeling their opponents as well.

 

Thanks for reading.

 

No problem.....

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Just a quick clarification because it's always important to me for people to have accurate medical info--ectopic pregnancies are never terminated at the 3rd trimester, but rather always the first, and if the docs get to it soon enough before it bursts.

It's a pregnancy that starts in the fallopian tube, and if it's not dealt with, the fallopian tube bursts, which can lead to life-threatening bleeding. An ectopic pregnancy would never make it to the 3rd trimester for a partial-birth abortion to occur. This actually happened to a friend of mine. She collapsed at home and would have died from blood loss if her husband hadn't come home an hour early from work.

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Well, if an atheist were elected president tomorrow, would that mean that the government was controlled by atheists?
Not at all. Separation of powers is supposed to ensure that no one branch "controls" the whole thing. If an atheist were elected president tomorrow, and atheists had the majority in both houses of congress, and there was an athiest majority in the supreme court,and atheists were using this advantage to push an "atheist agenda" that completely marginalized all other opinions, then I would say that atheists controlled the government.

 

The president is not a dictator and his control is obviously limited.
Not very limited when the other two branches are using the same play book and certainly not limited when the checks-and-balances branches are willing to turn over power.

 

The idea that either the Congress or SC is run by fundamentalists borders on conspiracy theory.
Congress just recently lost republican (fundamentalist) control. Even if you were to argue that a majority of republicans aren't fundamentalist but were cowed into submitting via politics, that's still a case for fundamentalist control. Another party has the majority now, so I'd say that some concerns have abated.

 

As for the SC, it's clear that the conservatives now have the majority.

 

So help me understand how that's a conspiracy theory?

 

If the "fundies" are running all 3 branches of the government, they've done a pretty poor job of demonstrating any real serious threat to nonbelievers (who btw are about as statistically significant as the number of partial birth abortions).
Do Muslims counts as non-believers?

 

Perhaps appearances are deceptive.
Incredulity is not an argument.

 

Not sure what to make of this other than draw the conclusion that pos#1 is that of religious and pos#2 that of atheists (somehow monolithic it seems).
You said that people other than "people of faith" oppose ESCr, abortion, etc. I asked what group that was. You replied with an argument that doesn't appear to have anything to do with the point.

 

So, opposition to "ESCr, abortion, etc" (as you referred to it) comes from where?

 

Basically put, it's not the purview of the court to create rights out of thin air. Congress sets the laws and the SC makes pronouncements about how they view said laws. The SC, however is not an oligarchy and can be overridden (much like the prez can veto a bill, but also be overridden).
So tell me how Roe v. Wade differs from Brown v. Board of Education? Both were landmark decision regarding civil rights. Was the SC out of line by failing to support Jim Crow segregation? Seems to me that this is very much one of the responsibilities of the SC.

 

Seeing as how Jefferson wasn't the only one involved in crafting the Constitution, it's rather spurious to allow the misgivings(?) of one man to somehow give the court the right to "interpret" the concept of seperation of church and state to be morphed into a total divorcing of any state support for religious activities.
You can argue the validity of it all you want, but that doesn't change what happened. The Framers didn't stop to fill out NPATs, so we all have to make due with what's available. Jefferson wrote to Madison. Madison drafted the Bill of Rights. Not a whole lot of mystery to solve there.

 

Seeing as how the the US SC also elevated secular humanism to religious status...
...for the purposes of religious discrimination.

 

...perhaps they too should be excluded from any government support.
What kinds of support are you referring to?

 

Given the importance many of the founding fathers of the US viewed religion with, it seems more likely the concern was vis-a-vis the creation of a theocracy, not whether Fr. Jones was reminding/informing parishoners about their duties as members of a congregation when exercising their civic right/duty to vote.
I think the Establishment Clause is pretty clear. You're more than welcome to debate the catalyst for it.

 

Just as atheists have their own peculiar set of values when making decisions, so does any other group.
Really? What are "atheist" values?

 

It's basically silly to say that a Catholic school cannot receive any government funding, but a "secular" private school can.
I don't recall making that argument. Was this directed toward me or someone else?

 

Quite the contrary. It's quite a stretch to say that secular means that a society has to believe in no gods/God to qualify. Secular does not=atheism.
You:Fact is, while the population of the US is not nearly as atheistic as current day Europe, it does not mean that the US is not a secular society.

Me: Hmmm. IMO, this debatable. <snip unrelated point>

You: debatable only really if you make secular synonomous with atheistic.

Me: Not at all. This is like Ann Coulter stating that if you aren't neo-con then you're liberal.

You: Quite the contrary. It's quite a stretch to say that secular means that a society has to believe in no gods/God to qualify. Secular does not=atheism.

 

Indeed it is a stretch to say that, however I did not make that argument. What I did say is that it's debatable to say that the U.S. is secular. Prayer in schools, god in the pledge, god on our currency, gov't funding for faith-based initiatives, and now legislation based on religiosity rather than reason. Help me understand how secularism is a slam-dunk case for you.

 

Not altogether actually clear on the relevance of your point here. In a country of 300 million (+/-), how many people are actually listening to christian rock? What evidence do you have that demonstrates that it's having any impact outside of a niche group? Do you also fear the "influence" of country and gospel music? You seem to fear some kind of nebulous effect.
Actually, at this point, I almost have to say that it's your point. I off-handedly mentioned christian music as part of example and you've blown it up into a cornerstone of the debate.

 

Who listens to christian music? Muslims? Atheists? Buddhists?

 

Pick an identifiable group. Give them their own genre of music. If that genre of music suddenly undergoes a surge in popularity, what conclusions could you possibly draw about the group itself?

 

Lastly, please try to avoid making similar strawman arguments in the future.

 

Perhaps you were merely unclear.
That's possible. Please feel free to ask for clarification if you're uncertain about my meaning. I'd rather have to answer a few extra questions that chase down a bunch of red herrings.

 

I didn't accuse you of making any such statement.
Me:Again, this is debatable. While you seem to see rock n' roll, Berkley, and Roe v. Wade, I see the growing influence of christian rock, Bob Jones University, and the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act.

 

You:Berkely has long been a "hotbed" of "other side of the pendelum" politics and cultural mores. Nowhere near the "center/middle".

 

Please help me understand what I'm missing from your comment. Seems as though you meant to imply that I'd characterized Berkley as "center/middle".

 

Perhaps, however, you should make clear what exactly constitutes the middle ground you referred to at the end of your statement.
The middle changes depending on the issue. Which issue would you like for me to expand upon?

 

Your apparent fear of CR, partial birth abortion bans, etc.. seem to reflect "left of center" concerns. These would be clear examples of Berkely values/fears.
Again, "if it ain't neo-con, then it must be liberal", eh?

 

CR = Fear of growing religiosity in an allegedly secular society.

partial birth abortion bans = Fear of policies based on religious concerns rather than medicine.

 

One doesn't have to cite religion to see how wrong headed and barbaric such a procedure is.
Ok, do you know why the procedure is done the way that it is?

 

Unless you have solid statistics which demonstrate that each and every pba was medically necessary, then you know it's objectionable that any, let alone 5000+/-, should be killed in that way.
Burden of proof fallacy. As I have already pointed out 3rd trimester abortions are illegal without medical cause. P&X would only be used in the 2nd trimester if it was very late.

 

One can try to make the technical argument that LEGALLY the child is a still born, but then the holocaust and slavery were legal within the confines of thier own systems at the time.
Because the procedure is sometimes used to extract fetuses the die in the womb does not mean that anyone has tried to use "still born" as a justification.

 

Most people who actually know what the procedure entails object to it.
Like medical professionals? Or by "most people" do you mean the uninformed that allow their opinions to be influenced by conservative rhetoric?

 

I know many people who are pro-choice, but find pba's to be offensive.
And?

 

Even the medical profession has admitted that these procedures are not necessary.
I'm sure it won't be difficult for you to provide a few sources then. *waits for Totenkopf to post links to pro-life websites*

 

No offense, but I think you've swallowed the "health of the mother" caveat kool aid on this topic. The fact that anyone would engage in this process demonstrates they are unreasonable in the first place.
That is an opinion. You are welcome to it, but that doesn't make it fact. I find it strange that you are so quick to label me when it appears that you aren't very well informed on the topic in the first place.

 

Frankly, the argument, such as it is, is that the pro-abortion crowd wants absolutely no restrictions on abortion regardless of the circumstances.
Really? I've never heard anything from the pro-abortion machine that sounds like "we demand the right to kill babies whenever we want". Why is it these groups haven't put more effort into repealing the existing laws that covered this procedure? Your caricature of pro-abortion proponets is largely inaccurate, but clearly you don't seem interested in objectivity.

 

No, I'd say you seem to have handled that on your own. Banning one type of abortion does not equate banning all abortions.
Please show me where I said it did.

 

Will the pro-life crowd see this as a victory of sorts? Sure. Does it mean that they will succeed in banning ALL abortions? Highly unlikely in our lifetime. Even if Roe v Wade were overturned, abortion would not disappear in America. Regulation would merely be punted to the state level. As you well know, that means that the laws in the "blue states" would be fairly abortion friendly.
Unless there was a federal ban like the one passed yesterday. You are aware that state law cannot supercede federal law, correct?

 

Seems to me that you were arguing that pba bans seemed to signal the beginning of the end for abortion.
Please point to anything that I may have said that would indicate that. Please watch the strawmen.

 

Otherwise, given that the procedure in question is statistically insignificant, you wouldn't be too worried about the ramifications of only banning one type of particularly gruesome and admittedly unnecessary procedure.
False premise. I'm terribly worried that the government is trying to tell the medical community what it can or cannot do. I'm terribly worried that women who's babies have died in the womb will have to have the additional slap in the fact of going through labor to deliver the dead child. I'm terribly concerned that some women will have to undergo risky labor after it's been determined that childbirth could damage her health. What I'm not terribly concerned about are the women that won't be able to change their mind about being pregnant in the 3rd trimester. Why? Because 3rd trimester abortions for that reason were already illegal.

 

My point was that given the slim vote margin (on what you consider the fundie controlled SC--shouldn't the margin have been much greater if that were true?) on the pba-ban issue, that the only real arguable threat in the forseeable future would be the complete defunding by government of ANY abortion procedure. But hey, PP and others make ample $$ to help subsidize the abortion industry should that happen.
5-4 is all you need. I never said the entire SC bench were fundies, I just said it was now controlled by fundies. Which appears to be the case.

 

Uhhh... the president pulls their names out of a hat and then throws darts or reads goat entrails to see who he should pick and then Congress consults a magic 8 ball to see which ones to approve and then thanks the bones for any kind of answer at all?
So in other words you don't know. Let me help. SC appointments are made by the president and are life-terms. Supposing that everyone remains in good health, it might be 10+ years before another opening becomes available. So it's not like the next president gets to wipe the slate clean and start all over again.

 

Perhaps, but you seem more concerned about WHO is controlling, than that anyone is doing so at all.
If some other left-wing democrat were president and looking to turn our gov't into a communist state, I'd be complaining just as loudly.

 

Actually you're incorrect. Ask Don Imus or anyone whose been thrown out of work and/or sued for sexual harrassment b/c of nonthreatening, but "offensive" comments.
Sexual harassment is threatening. That's why it's called harassment.

 

There are also nonlegal ramifications here as well. Universities are notorious for causing students a world of trouble if they don't kowtow to PC thought.
Like BJU?

 

Kind of funny for instituions that are supposed to encourage free expression of ideas. Still the very concept of hate speech is steeped in PC thinking and thus not seperate.
Opinion, not fact.

 

Oddly enough, the constituion doesn't specify exactly what type of weapons the citizenry is restricted to should the state have the need to call upon them to form a militia. So, what in your mind specifically constitutes "reasonable legislation"?
Reasonable legislation would be legislation that is objective and considers both sides of the argument. What exactly that looks like is up in the air right now.

 

--yeah, like in the case has already been closed.
Your opinion.

 

Somewhat overheated concerns, btw. First, what "basic discrimination" do you refer to specifically?
Preferential treatment of one group over another.

 

Please provide specific examples of the blurring line you refer to above.
I provided about half a dozen earlier in this post. Some of them aren't the critical (i.e. god on currency), while others are pretty significant (i.e. specifically the last two).

 

By the assault on science I take it you refer to the whole creationist line of thinking, opposition to man-made global warming theory as well as fetal stem-cell/cloning (what else?)?
Creationism is a big one. Opposition to global warming I'm ok with so long as it is scientific opposition and not blatant undermining like Bush's science adviser was found to be doing a few years back. Stem cell research is another big one. How many examples do you need? Three of the biggest scientific issues of this generation and the Bush administration is on the wrong side of all three. 2 of which for blatantly religious reasons and arguably the 3rd as well.

 

It's only natural that in a democratic republic people of all stripes will seek to gain some kind of influence in the government policy making process. The fundies, as you refer to them, are a small segment of the US population. You appear to overestimate their influence
I've presented my arguments. You've yet to offer much more than incredulousness and fallacies. Anytime you're actually ready to refute my points, just let me know :)

 

all the more so with the next election less than 2 years away and the socially progressive secular lib driven dems in a good position to take the WH.
Yep, I'm glad there will be another election soon. And yes, I will be voting democrat unless the republicans can do better than McCain or Giuliani.

 

--Sorry, but which argument are you referring to exactly?
Any of them, really.

 

Well, can't say I disagree with most of what you're saying on this specific subject. Only add that the catastrophists you reference on the left should also avoid labeling their opponents as well.
Of course. It would be hypocritical to bash the right for name-calling if the left is doing it too. :)

 

@Jae: you're absolutely correct. I wanted to make the point about non-viable pregnancies, and picked the first example that sprang to mind without regard for trimesters. Thanks for the correction.

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I don't listen to Christian rock just because of the message, though there is a certain truth to the adage garbage in/garbage out. I listen to Christian rock because I know for sure that it's not going to have filthy language and obscene references. I don't have to worry about content or whether my kids are going to hear the f-bomb.

 

I've found it really difficult in the last 5 years or so to find secular radio stations that don't use expletives or talk about off-color topics or make innuendos on some kind of semi-regular basis, including the light rock stations. Now, I can speak innuendo with the best of them, and I've said my share of expletives and dropped plenty of f-bombs in my life. My music tastes run anywhere from Sting to Eminem to medieval motets to Handel and back to Don Henley and Meatloaf and Beatles. However, now that I have kids in the car with me a lot of the time, I have to think about what they're hearing because they're young. I don't want them to hear a bunch of swear words, I don't want them to hear Howard Stern-type topics, and I don't want them hearing Imus-style racism. Even on talk radio WGN has 'sex Thursday'--not something my kids need to be hearing about at their tender ages. With Christian radio I know for sure that I'm not going to hear bad language out of song or the DJ, I'm not going to hear questionable or embarrassing topics, and I'm not going to hear rude or mean-spirited conversation. If secular music/radio wants to win me back, they're going to have to clean up their act and make things a little more family friendly again, instead of catering to the lowest common denominator of smut or foul language.

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Not very limited when the other two branches are using the same play book and certainly not limited when the checks-and-balances branches are willing to turn over power. Congress just recently lost republican (fundamentalist) control. Even if you were to argue that a majority of republicans aren't fundamentalist but were cowed into submitting via politics, that's still a case for fundamentalist control. Another party has the majority now, so I'd say that some concerns have abated. As for the SC, it's clear that the conservatives now have the majority. So help me understand how that's a conspiracy theory?

 

Your very arguments demonstrate that you are conspiratorially minded. You haven't shown fundamentalist control, but have merely displayed a rather paranoid personal pov. Well....it's a free country.

 

 

Perhaps appearances are deceptive.

 

Incredulity is not an argument.

Neither is paranoia.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Not sure what to make of this other than draw the conclusion that pos#1 is that of religious and pos#2 that of atheists (somehow monolithic it seems).

 

--You said that people other than "people of faith" oppose ESCr, abortion, etc. I asked what group that was. You replied with an argument that doesn't appear to have anything to do with the point.

 

You should be a little more careful. You automatically assume a lot of things about the people who don't share your values. You throw out figures and make vague arguments about how other's arrive at their opinions/pov. My counterpoint to you is that you seem to believe from your statement that there are only two points of view: yours (ie the atheistic) and everyone else (at least who seems to have a pov) as fundies/unthinking religious folk. Hardly a rational position. Am I to understand that you believe that everyone who opposes your pov is automatically a fundie (or secretly "mind controlled"/cowed by them)?

 

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Basically put, it's not the purview of the court to create rights out of thin air. Congress sets the laws and the SC makes pronouncements about how they view said laws. The SC, however is not an oligarchy and can be overridden (much like the prez can veto a bill, but also be overridden).

 

--So tell me how Roe v. Wade differs from Brown v. Board of Education? Both were landmark decision regarding civil rights. Was the SC out of line by failing to support Jim Crow segregation? Seems to me that this is very much one of the responsibilities of the SC.

 

In at least one very important way. The civil right of BvBoE was access to better education, while Roe was about terminating another persons right to live (hardly civil, I'd say ;)).

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Seeing as how Jefferson wasn't the only one involved in crafting the Constitution, it's rather spurious to allow the misgivings(?) of one man to somehow give the court the right to "interpret" the concept of seperation of church and state to be morphed into a total divorcing of any state support for religious activities.

 

--You can argue the validity of it all you want, but that doesn't change what happened. The Framers didn't stop to fill out NPATs, so we all have to make due with what's available. Jefferson wrote to Madison. Madison drafted the Bill of Rights. Not a whole lot of mystery to solve there.

 

Your spin, perhaps. I'd guess that the elactic clause in the Constitution must be one of your favorites. The Necessary and Proper clause is big enough to run a train through. Maybe just pick a sentence out of some historical letter and create law or even adopt the "living" constitution" model. Then a SC could invent all the rules it likes. :)

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Seeing as how the the US SC also elevated secular humanism to religious status...

 

--for the purposes of religious discrimination.

 

Explain, otherwise it seems your paranoia is blazingly radiant here.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

...perhaps they too should be excluded from any government support.

 

--What kinds of support are you referring to?

 

Any and all. If there is none now, so much the better. Fair treatment for all, eh?

 

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Given the importance many of the founding fathers of the US viewed religion with, it seems more likely the concern was vis-a-vis the creation of a theocracy, not whether Fr. Jones was reminding/informing parishoners about their duties as members of a congregation when exercising their civic right/duty to vote.

 

--I think the Establishment Clause is pretty clear. You're more than welcome to debate the catalyst for it.

 

So, what exactly is this state religion that the government is shoving down our throats? I don't see any clergy running the government or engaging in inquistions. Or is it just your paranoia about those pesky christian fundamentalists?

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Just as atheists have their own peculiar set of values when making decisions, so does any other group.

 

--Really? What are "atheist" values?

 

C'mon, every group has it's values. Now you just appear to be disingenuous.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

It's basically silly to say that a Catholic school cannot receive any government funding, but a "secular" private school can.

 

--I don't recall making that argument. Was this directed toward me or someone else?

 

Wow, and you said incredulity's not an argument. It's completely germaine to your whole paradigm. You have made quite clear that ANY government funding of any body or institution affliated with or religious in nature, is unconstitutional. That it offends your understanding of the establishment clause.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Quite the contrary. It's quite a stretch to say that secular means that a society has to believe in no gods/God to qualify. Secular does not=atheism.

 

--Indeed it is a stretch to say that, however I did not make that argument. What I did say is that it's debatable to say that the U.S. is secular. Prayer in schools, god in the pledge, god on our currency, gov't funding for faith-based initiatives, and now legislation based on religiosity rather than reason. Help me understand how secularism is a slam-dunk case for you.

 

It's both presumptuous and arrogant to assume that opposition to this practice is somehow based solely on religion and not reason. Your last statement rather does show that you equate secular with atheist. There is an undeniably secular as well as religious component to the US. The fact that you call the argument debateable reflects your stance that secular=atheist.

 

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Not altogether actually clear on the relevance of your point here. In a country of 300 million (+/-), how many people are actually listening to christian rock? What evidence do you have that demonstrates that it's having any impact outside of a niche group? Do you also fear the "influence" of country and gospel music? You seem to fear some kind of nebulous effect.

 

--Actually, at this point, I almost have to say that it's your point. I off-handedly mentioned christian music as part of example and you've blown it up into a cornerstone of the debate. Who listens to christian music? Muslims? Atheists? Buddhists?Pick an identifiable group. Give them their own genre of music. If that genre of music suddenly undergoes a surge in popularity, what conclusions could you possibly draw about the group itself?

 

Spare the strawman argument. You brought up those topics b/c they concern you, not merely "just b/c". Afterall, you stated "..I (that being you of course) see..." If this example is merely so offhand as you suggest, why would it bother you at all that people listen to "christian rock"? Especially when you haven't demonstrated any real impact on US culture. Don't know about you, but I couldn't name a Christian rock band or song to save my life.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Perhaps you were merely unclear.

 

--That's possible. Please feel free to ask for clarification if you're uncertain about my meaning. I'd rather have to answer a few extra questions that (sic)chase down a bunch of red herrings.

 

I can only respond to what you are saying. If you are unclear, you must seek to correct yourself in the followup. Otherwise, how will anyone know they've actually misinterpreted your point?

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

I didn't accuse you of making any such statement.

 

Me:Again, this is debatable. While you seem to see rock n' roll, Berkley, and Roe v. Wade, I see the growing influence of christian rock, Bob Jones University, and the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act.

You:Berkely has long been a "hotbed" of "other side of the pendelum" politics and cultural mores. Nowhere near the "center/middle".

Please help me understand what I'm missing from your comment. Seems as though you meant to imply that I'd characterized Berkley as "center/middle".

 

Your "offhand examples/concerns" are in line with "Berkely-style values". And you fail to define the ever elusive middle (you make it sound like a case of situational ethics). If they re representative of your values, I can only wonder what you really mean by the "center/middle".

 

Again, "if it ain't neo-con, then it must be liberal", eh?

 

Ah, yes, it seems you're equally obsessed with the neocons as well.

 

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

One doesn't have to cite religion to see how wrong headed and barbaric such a procedure is.

 

--Ok, do you know why the procedure is done the way that it is?

 

The real question is do you? You've already demonstrated by Jae's correction that your understanding isn't exactly on solid ground. Which pro-abortion sites do you get your propoganda from, btw.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Unless you have solid statistics which demonstrate that each and every pba was medically necessary, then you know it's objectionable that any, let alone 5000+/-, should be killed in that way.

 

--Burden of proof fallacy. ...

 

Wrong. Given that a doctor is paid to perform abortions, and that the "health of the mother" clause is like a "get out of jail free card", you don't really know whether those abortions are legitimate or not. Seems your quite willing to assume that they are telling the truth b/c what they're doing is in line with your values. As long as the paper work looks ok, alles ist gut, ja?

 

Because the procedure is sometimes used to extract fetuses the die in the womb....

 

"Die in the womb", very euphamistic. Perhaps you should familiarize yourself with the actual procedure, rather than PP style propoganda.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Most people who actually know what the procedure entails object to it.

 

--Like medical professionals? Or by "most people" do you mean the uninformed that allow their opinions to be influenced by conservative rhetoric?

 

I could ask the reverse of you. How many supporters of the procedure are anything other than knee-jerk pro-abortion kool aid drinkers?

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

I know many people who are pro-choice, but find pba's to be offensive.

 

--And?

 

Well, you did ask earlier what kind of people.

 

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

No offense, but I think you've swallowed the "health of the mother" caveat kool aid on this topic. The fact that anyone would engage in this process demonstrates they are unreasonable in the first place.

 

--That is an opinion. You are welcome to it, but that doesn't make it fact. I find it strange that you are so quick to label me when it appears that you aren't very well informed on the topic in the first place.

 

It's pretty obvious your grasp on this is quite fragile. And realllly, you're quite quick to throw around a lot of labels (fundies, neo-cons, uninformed...) at those who don't go lockstep with your views.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Frankly, the argument, such as it is, is that the pro-abortion crowd wants absolutely no restrictions on abortion regardless of the circumstances.

 

--Really? I've never heard anything from the pro-abortion machine that sounds like "we demand the right to kill babies whenever we want". Why is it these groups haven't put more effort into repealing the existing laws that covered this procedure? Your caricature of pro-abortion proponets is largely inaccurate, but clearly you don't seem interested in objectivity.

 

Really, someone as biased as you clearly are, talking about objectivity, is epicly ironic.

 

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Will the pro-life crowd see this as a victory of sorts? Sure. Does it mean that they will succeed in banning ALL abortions? Highly unlikely in our lifetime. Even if Roe v Wade were overturned, abortion would not disappear in America. Regulation would merely be punted to the state level. As you well know, that means that the laws in the "blue states" would be fairly abortion friendly.

 

--Unless there was a federal ban like the one passed yesterday. You are aware that state law cannot supercede federal law, correct?

 

This is the problem with an overrelying on parsing someone's statements. Federal laws, precedent aside, can be overturned if the SC overturned RvW. Also, you are too myopically focused on a procedure that you admit is statistically insignificant anyway. Besides, the bonus for federal candidates is that the onus of taking a stand on abortion would be removed as it was now relegated to state legislatures.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

My point was that given the slim vote margin (on what you consider the fundie controlled SC--shouldn't the margin have been much greater if that were true?) on the pba-ban issue, that the only real arguable threat in the forseeable future would be the complete defunding by government of ANY abortion procedure. But hey, PP and others make ample $$ to help subsidize the abortion industry should that happen.

 

--5-4 is all you need. I never said the entire SC bench were fundies, I just said it was now controlled by fundies. Which appears to be the case.

 

One case doth hardly prove your point.

 

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Uhhh... the president pulls their names out of a hat and then throws darts or reads goat entrails to see who he should pick and then Congress consults a magic 8 ball to see which ones to approve and then thanks the bones for any kind of answer at all?

 

--So in other words you don't know. Let me help. SC appointments are made by the president and are life-terms. Supposing that everyone remains in good health, it might be 10+ years before another opening becomes available. So it's not like the next president gets to wipe the slate clean and start all over again.

 

I'm gonna be charitable and guess you missed that great big smily at the end of my cheerfully sarcastic reply. ;)

 

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Perhaps, but you seem more concerned about WHO is controlling, than that anyone is doing so at all.

 

--If some other left-wing democrat were president and looking to turn our gov't into a communist state, I'd be complaining just as loudly

 

More likely a socialist nanny-state (which I somehow doubt you'd protest).

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Actually you're incorrect. Ask Don Imus or anyone whose been thrown out of work and/or sued for sexual harrassment b/c of nonthreatening, but "offensive" comments.

 

--Sexual harassment is threatening. That's why it's called harassment.

 

Were only it so clear cut. You telling me a dirty joke at work and being overheard by an "offended" party is enough to constitute a form of "threat" to get you fired, and very possibly sued. All so perfectly harmless, though, eh?

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

There are also nonlegal ramifications here as well. Universities are notorious for causing students a world of trouble if they don't kowtow to PC thought.

 

--Like BJU?

 

Try our great institutions of lower learning (Hardvard, Yale, etc...) as well as many of the "lesser" schools.

 

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Kind of funny for instituions that are supposed to encourage free expression of ideas. Still the very concept of hate speech is steeped in PC thinking and thus not seperate.

 

--Opinion, not fact.

 

Yeah, your opinion's not fact.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Oddly enough, the constituion doesn't specify exactly what type of weapons the citizenry is restricted to should the state have the need to call upon them to form a militia.

 

So, what in your mind specifically constitutes "reasonable legislation"?

 

--Reasonable legislation would be legislation that is objective and considers both sides of the argument. What exactly that looks like is up in the air right now.

 

Funny, you talk of reasonable in vague terms (seems like an MO here). I suspect it would be a lot like beauty....in the eyes of the beholder. Perhaps you're able to provide an example of what YOU think is reasonable. I'm all eyes.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

yeah, like in the case has already been closed.

 

--Your opinion.

Yours is as well.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Somewhat overheated concerns, btw. First, what "basic discrimination" do you refer to specifically?

 

--Preferential treatment of one group over another.

 

examples:????

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

It's only natural that in a democratic republic people of all stripes will seek to gain some kind of influence in the government policy making process. The fundies, as you refer to them, are a small segment of the US population. You appear to overestimate their influence

 

--I've presented my arguments.

 

Unfortunately, not very convincing. Mostly overheated paranoia served with a side order of theophobia. ;)

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

all the more so with the next election less than 2 years away and the socially progressive secular lib driven dems in a good position to take the WH.

 

--Yep, I'm glad there will be another election soon. And yes, I will be voting democrat unless the republicans can do better than McCain or Giuliani.

 

Far as I'm concerned, no one so far appeals to me. No doubt I'll have to "divine" the lesser of two evils in '08.

 

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Well, can't say I disagree with most of what you're saying on this specific subject. Only add that the catastrophists you reference on the left should also avoid labeling their opponents as well.

 

--Of course. It would be hypocritical to bash the right for name-calling if the left is doing it too.

 

Indeed. :)

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C'mon, every group [including atheists] has it's values. Now you just appear to be disingenuous.
Then give me a list of blond morals. Or left-handed people morals. Or city people morals.

 

Atheism isn't an organized religion with a code of morals set in stone. Some atheists are pro-life, others are pro-choice and raving supporters of all kinds of euthanasia. Some atheists are vegetarians reluctant to eat even plants, others throw weekly barbeque parties frying everything they can get their hands on.

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Your very arguments demonstrate that you are conspiratorially minded. You haven't shown fundamentalist control, but have merely displayed a rather paranoid personal pov. Well....it's a free country.
This is not an argument.

 

Name-call all you'd like, sir, however it will not help you make your point (assuming that you have one). You've made no effort to refute any of my points, rather you look for opporutunities to issue school-yard taunts and dismiss arguments without actually making any of your own.

 

Neither is paranoia.
Again, not an argument. Please address the point or move on.

 

You should be a little more careful. You automatically assume a lot of things about the people who don't share your values.
The only one that has demonstrated this behavior is you, sir.

You've yet to describe this "third group". I'm more than willing to consider that there is one, but you've yet to tell me what it is. Therefore, you comment has absolutely nothing to do with the discussion.

 

My counterpoint to you is that you seem to believe from your statement that there are only two points of view: yours (ie the atheistic) and everyone else (at least who seems to have a pov) as fundies/unthinking religious folk.
You caution me against generalizing and then make this your very next sentence. Interesting.

 

No sir, there are actually three possible pov that I can think of:

 

1) Those that oppose abortion for fundamentist Christian reasons.

2) Those that do not oppose abortion.

3) Those that oppose abortion for some other reason.

 

This third group seems to be what you're relying on, yet you aren't willing to tell me who they are, on what grounds they oppose abortion, etc. I've never heard from them, so I don't know. You've been invited to educate me, but instead of doing so, you prefer to create strawmen.

 

Hardly a rational position. Am I to understand that you believe that everyone who opposes your pov is automatically a fundie (or secretly "mind controlled"/cowed by them)?
Agreed, which is why I never made that argument.

 

No, not at all. It's not about my opinion. If you can present an informed, rational argument against abortion I'm more that willing to hear it. However, every single argument you've present thus far has been remarkably uninformed, emotionally-based, and I suspect based on religious doctrine.

 

In at least one very important way. The civil right of BvBoE was access to better education, while Roe was about terminating another persons right to live (hardly civil, I'd say ;)).
False premise. They were both civil rights cases, whether you choose to ignore that or not. This is that "objectivity" thing that I mentioned earlier.

 

Your spin, perhaps.
Please explain how that's "spin".

 

I'd guess that the elactic clause in the Constitution must be one of your favorites. The Necessary and Proper clause is big enough to run a train through. Maybe just pick a sentence out of some historical letter and create law or even adopt the "living" constitution" model. Then a SC could invent all the rules it likes. :)
Please avoid the strawmen and red herrings. The topic was Establishment Clause. Your thoughts?

 

Explain, otherwise it seems your paranoia is blazingly radiant here.
Err...secular humanism, atheism, agnostism, etc were catagorized by the federal gov't as religions for the purposes of protection from religious discimination. Please explain to me how that is "blazingly radiant paranoia".

 

Any and all. If there is none now, so much the better. Fair treatment for all, eh?
No, sir. Which secular humanist group currently recieves gov't funding and for what cause? This was key to your point. Please don't limp out now.

 

So, what exactly is this state religion that the government is shoving down our throats?
Christianity.

 

I don't see any clergy running the government or engaging in inquistions. Or is it just your paranoia about those pesky christian fundamentalists?
Strawman.

 

C'mon, every group has it's values. Now you just appear to be disingenuous.
DE has already addressed this. What he was too kind to point out is that this statement belies a complete lack of understanding of atheism on your part.

 

Wow, and you said incredulity's not an argument.
Indeed it is not. I'm not being incredulous. I never made the argument that attributed to me and I challenge you to show where I have. Pointing out your error is not being incredulous. Perhaps you are confused about the word's meaning?

 

It's completely germaine to your whole paradigm. You have made quite clear that ANY government funding of any body or institution affliated with or religious in nature, is unconstitutional. That it offends your understanding of the establishment clause.
Government funds cannot be used to promote religion. This is why public schools cannot have bible class or teach creationism. Private schools can do what ever they would like. Which part do you feel that I am unclear on?

 

It's both presumptuous and arrogant to assume that opposition to this practice is somehow based solely on religion and not reason.
If you would like to show me otherwise, please feel free. Thus far you have not.

 

Your last statement rather does show that you equate secular with atheist.
My last point shows that your argument was flawed. And this comment is a red herring.

 

There is an undeniably secular as well as religious component to the US. The fact that you call the argument debateable reflects your stance that secular=atheist.
False premise. Debate or don't but please try to avoid all the fallacies.

 

Spare the strawman argument.
Not a strawman at all. I was merely pointing out your strawman while clarifying my point.

 

You brought up those topics b/c they concern you, not merely "just b/c". Afterall, you stated "..I (that being you of course) see..." If this example is merely so offhand as you suggest, why would it bother you at all that people listen to "christian rock"?
*sigh* You made a comment regarding pop culture, academia, and law. I provided right and left examples of each (christian rock was my right example for pop culture). Nothing more. You've ballooned it way out of proportion.

 

Especially when you haven't demonstrated any real impact on US culture. Don't know about you, but I couldn't name a Christian rock band or song to save my life.
Wow. Considering what a force they seemed to be a few years ago, I thought everyone would have heard of Creed.

 

I can only respond to what you are saying. If you are unclear, you must seek to correct yourself in the followup. Otherwise, how will anyone know they've actually misinterpreted your point?
Right, so please respond to what I actually say and avoid using strawmen. I was quite clear, just as your strawman was quite clear.

 

Your "offhand examples/concerns" are in line with "Berkely-style values".
LOL. That's because my off-hand examples were examples of "berkely-style values". At no point did I say they were my own, although you assume that they are.

 

And you fail to define the ever elusive middle (you make it sound like a case of situational ethics). If they re representative of your values, I can only wonder what you really mean by the "center/middle".
I've offered several times to do so. You provide the issue and I'll tell you what I consider the "center/middle" to be. Pretty sure this is the 3rd or 4th time I've said this.

 

Ah, yes, it seems you're equally obsessed with the neocons as well.
Complete red herring. I pointed out that you appear to categorize anything non-conservative as liberal. Would you care to refute this or should I take your red herring as admission?

 

The real question is do you?
Yes, I do. Please quit dancing and answer the question: Do you know why D&X is performed the way that it is?

 

You've already demonstrated by Jae's correction that your understanding isn't exactly on solid ground.
Strawman. Jae's correction had nothing to do with the procedure, but rather complications of pregnancy.

 

Wrong. Given that a doctor is paid to perform abortions, and that the "health of the mother" clause is like a "get out of jail free card", you don't really know whether those abortions are legitimate or not. Seems your quite willing to assume that they are telling the truth b/c what they're doing is in line with your values. As long as the paper work looks ok, alles ist gut, ja?
You can deny it all you'd like but your previous comment is a burden of proof fallacy. Expounding your argument isn't going to make that go away. You're making the claim that legal boundaries are being ignored. Therefore it is on you to demonstrate where this is actually happening.

 

"Die in the womb", very euphamistic.
You are aware the sometimes the fetus dies in the womb, correct? What would you call this? The body still has to come out you know.

 

Perhaps you should familiarize yourself with the actual procedure, rather than PP style propoganda.
I'm very much familar with the procedure, as I am with D&E. In fact, I know why the procedure is done the way that it is, even though it remains to be seen if you do.

 

I could ask the reverse of you. How many supporters of the procedure are anything other than knee-jerk pro-abortion kool aid drinkers?
I'll be happy to answer your question right after you answer mine.

 

Well, you did ask earlier what kind of people.
Right. And I'm still waiting for you to tell me who these people are.

 

It's pretty obvious your grasp on this is quite fragile.
Really? How so? I understand that you think this, but you've yet to demonstrate how it's actually true.

 

Really, someone as biased as you clearly are, talking about objectivity, is epicly ironic.
Can I assume that since you only replied to one word that you won't be addressing my other points as well? If so, I'll assume that you concede them.

 

And you can call me biased all you'd like, it isn't going to make it true.:)

 

This is the problem with an overrelying on parsing someone's statements. Federal laws, precedent aside, can be overturned if the SC overturned RvW. Also, you are too myopically focused on a procedure that you admit is statistically insignificant anyway. Besides, the bonus for federal candidates is that the onus of taking a stand on abortion would be removed as it was now relegated to state legislatures.
Yes, I'm aware that the SC can overturn federal law. Your point was that states can make separate laws and I corrected you by pointing out that state laws cannot supersede federal laws. In other words, if the federal government bans something, state governments cannot turn around and allow it.

 

Considering that the government and fundamentalist lobbies put all this time, money, and effort into banning a procedure that only puts womens' health at increased risk, I don't know how you can accuse me of being the one myopically focused on a statistically insignificant procedure.

 

One case doth hardly prove your point.
Sure it does. What magic number do you need?

 

I'm gonna be charitable and guess you missed that great big smily at the end of my cheerfully sarcastic reply. ;)
No, I saw it. I also saw that you didn't answer the very simple question, so I assumed that you didn't know. Since you're not refuting what I said, I'm also assuming that you actually didn't know and are dropping the point now that you do.

 

More likely a socialist nanny-state (which I somehow doubt you'd protest).
The fact that is your response to the post where I said I would protest makes this response particularly amusing.

 

Were only it so clear cut. You telling me a dirty joke at work and being overheard by an "offended" party is enough to constitute a form of "threat" to get you fired, and very possibly sued. All so perfectly harmless, though, eh?
No, not harmless. That's why it's harassment.

 

Try our great institutions of lower learning (Hardvard, Yale, etc...) as well as many of the "lesser" schools.
You made a argument. I refuted it. Not sure what your response accomplishes. I think you'll need to reframe your argument if you want to make your point.

 

Yeah, your opinion's not fact.
Did you want to defend your point or are you simply going to repeat the argument that I used to refute it and expect it to have some bearing?

 

Funny, you talk of reasonable in vague terms (seems like an MO here). I suspect it would be a lot like beauty....in the eyes of the beholder. Perhaps you're able to provide an example of what YOU think is reasonable. I'm all eyes.
As I stated in my last post, I'd would need to see what was put forward. I could probably make a reasonably accurate guess at each side's position, but rather than try to punch around in the dark, I'll just wait.

 

Yours is as well.
No, sir. Your opinion is that the case is closed. The fact is that it is not. Unless you can present how the "secular nanny state" (whatever that means) is a threat to personal freedoms, your point is nothing more than assumption.

 

examples:????
*sigh* Go read the civil rights act of 1964. Religion is a protected class as the gov't amended religion to include "non-religions" as well for the purposes of CRA protections. The document more that adequately defines discrimination. If that isn't enough for you, then I don't know what would be.

 

Unfortunately, not very convincing. Mostly overheated paranoia served with a side order of theophobia. ;)
Well at least I can take comfort knowing that they were better than your counter-arguments which were based on fallacy, based on name-calling, or just non-existent.

 

Far as I'm concerned, no one so far appeals to me. No doubt I'll have to "divine" the lesser of two evils in '08.
That happens sometimes. I wish I could feel sorry for you, however you captured my sentiments regarding almost every election I've participated in.
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No sir, there are actually three possible pov that I can think of:

 

1) Those that oppose abortion for fundamentist Christian reasons.

2) Those that do not oppose abortion.

3) Those that oppose abortion for some other reason.

Achilles,

 

You have my most profuse apologies for not answering you more fully, or at all in other threads. I swear to you I will do so, but at the moment, well...ever heard of the blue-arsed fly? ;)

 

Just thought I'd posit that while I oppose abortion, I would like to think I am not a fundamentalist. If you wish to challenge this, perhaps we could conduct a poll?

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Just thought I'd posit that while I oppose abortion, I would like to think I am not a fundamentalist. If you wish to challenge this, perhaps we could conduct a poll?
LOL. Interestingly, based of what I've read in your posts, I've always taken you for one (you don't seem to adopt many moderate positions). :D

 

The important distinction that I tried to make there was "fundamentalist christian reasons". You don't have to be fundamentalist yourself to adopt a fundamentalist stance. Moderates are likely to lean toward fundamentalist positions, especially if the fundies themselves have done a passable job of demonizing the opposition (i.e. calling their movement "pro-life" which implies the other group is "pro-death" as opposed to pro-abortion).

 

You might not consider yourself a fundamentalist, but you're probably more likely to vote for a fundamentalist presidential candidate than an atheist presidential candidate. Same thing with abortion. You might not necessarily buy into the idea that there are doctors who get their jollies off killing the unborn babies of free-love hippie mothers who suddenly decided in the 9th month that they didn't want to be pregnant after all, but you're probably going to vote like those that do for very similar reasons. And ultimately this boils down to the strictly religious idea that every fetus has a soul and that soul has rights and needs protection (I especially like the way that we get around the argument for the mother's soul but automatically assuming that she's a whore or otherwise irresponsible and therefore deserves to be at risk).

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LOL. Interestingly, based of what I've read in your posts, I've always taken you for one (you don't seem to adopt many moderate positions). :D

 

The important distinction that I tried to make there was "fundamentalist christian reasons". You don't have to be fundamentalist yourself to adopt a fundamentalist stance. Moderates are likely to lean toward fundamentalist positions, especially if the fundies themselves have done a passable job of demonizing the opposition (i.e. calling their movement "pro-life" which implies the other group is "pro-death" as opposed to pro-abortion).

 

You might not consider yourself a fundamentalist, but you're probably more likely to vote for a fundamentalist presidential candidate than an atheist presidential candidate. Same thing with abortion. You might not necessarily buy into the idea that there are doctors who get their jollies off killing the unborn babies of free-love hippie mothers who suddenly decided in the 9th month that they didn't want to be pregnant after all, but you're probably going to vote like those that do for very similar reasons. And ultimately this boils down to the strictly religious idea that every fetus has a soul and that soul has rights and needs protection (I especially like the way that we get around the argument for the mother's soul but automatically assuming that she's a whore or otherwise irresponsible and therefore deserves to be at risk).

Fortunately, I don't have to choose between just two candidates, and here in the UK, there is no parliamentary representation for pro-life groups.

 

Would I vote solely on the issue of abortion? No. That would be like voting for someone solely because they oppose the Act of Settlement. It would very much depend on the overall manifesto, personality and competence of the candidate.

 

EDIT: I have conservative moral views that tie in with the Catholic Church. If that makes me a fundamentalist, then fine. But I still take a degree of umbrage at being lumped in with Creationists, Biblical Literalists, the KJV-only-ites, et al.

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Would I vote solely on the issue of abortion? No.
Understood. I think my point was more towards how would you vote regarding abortion itself rather than voting on a candidate who either did or did not support abortion.

 

It seems to me that even moderately religious people take a religious stance on abortion. A religious stance framed by fundamentalists (like it or not).

 

EDIT: I have conservative moral views that tie in with the Catholic Church. If that makes me a fundamentalist, then fine. But I still take a degree of umbrage at being lumped in with Creationists, Biblical Literalists, the KJV-only-ites, et al.
Fair enough. I would like to point out that there is more than one flavor of creationist (young-earth and old-earth). YEC are literalists that believe the earth was created 6,000 years ago by god and that he made everything as it is (ala the flood, the fall, etc). OEC adopt most of the tenets of scientific discovery except they attribute it all to god (source of the big bang, guided evolution, etc). So it very well may be that you are a Creationist and just didn't realize it :D
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Understood. I think my point was more towards how would you vote regarding abortion itself rather than voting on a candidate who either did or did not support abortion.

Ah. Well yes, I would vote against abortion. I happen to believe it is wrong, as you believe it is not.

It seems to me that even moderately religious people take a religious stance on abortion. A religious stance framed by fundamentalists (like it or not).

All thought is framed by fundamentalists, in that case.

Fair enough. I would like to point out that there is more than one flavor of creationist (young-earth and old-earth). YEC are literalists that believe the earth was created 6,000 years ago by god and that he made everything as it is (ala the flood, the fall, etc). OEC adopt most of the tenets of scientific discovery except they attribute it all to god (source of the big bang, guided evolution, etc). So it very well may be that you are a Creationist and just didn't realize it :D

I believe in God as Prime Mover. He set things in motion, and where necessary, nudged things along somewhat indirectly in my belief :)

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Ah. Well yes, I would vote against abortion. I happen to believe it is wrong, as you believe it is not.
I would urge caution with absolutes. I have no doubt that you consider it patently wrong, however I do not consider it patently alright. Luckily, I feel that most of my reservations regarding abortion are already adequately addressed by law.

 

All thought is framed by fundamentalists, in that case.
No, not all thought :D

 

I believe in God as Prime Mover. He set things in motion, and where necessary, nudged things along somewhat indirectly in my belief :)
That sounds like OEC then.
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It seems to me that even moderately religious people take a religious stance on abortion. A religious stance framed by fundamentalists (like it or not).

 

Catholics were around long before fundamentalists ever existed, and have been pro-life since, well, pretty much Christ. Mormons are also very much pro-life. Fundamentalists get the press because there are more of them making more noise. If the predominant religion in the US was Mormonism or Catholicism, fundamentalists would be taking a backseat.

 

This isn't an exclusively Protestant issue.

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When it comes to abortion, I am a pro-choice type of person. I don't think it is wise to tell someone what to do with themselves. If they are caught between hell and chaos, I don't see what would be wrong with an abortion. When it comes to having tax-payers picking up the tab, I don't believe we should pay for someone else's choice. However, I do support their right to choose. We tell so many people what they can do with themselves, and it takes away from some of our fundamental constitutional laws.

 

When it comes to my religious beliefs, I try to seperate my religion from laws. Even though the United States was founded on a regonition of god, I do believe the bible doesn't address abortion directly. We would have to find a biblical definition of life, which references the cell level of existance.

 

We would also have to define when a soul is present. Does a soul exist when we are in a primitive state of maturation? When does the soul become involed with the host? Does the host have a soul right at the start, or does it receive a soul a few months before birth. How does god do it? We may never know.

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Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Your very arguments demonstrate that you are conspiratorially minded. You haven't shown fundamentalist control, but have merely displayed a rather paranoid personal pov. Well....it's a free country.

 

This is not an argument.

 

Name-call all you'd like, sir, however it will not help you make your point (assuming that you have one). You've made no effort to refute any of my points, rather you look for opporutunities to issue school-yard taunts and dismiss arguments without actually making any of your own.

 

Your conclusion, I'll be charitable here, is no more than an overblown concern that you consistently fail to prove is indeed fact. You make the breath taking leap that b/c one SC decision (by the narrowest margin) doesn't go your way, that it's those "evil fundies" that have hijacked even the SC. How you expect that kind of argument to be taken seriously is a great mystery.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Neither is paranoia.

 

Again, not an argument.

 

Once again, you provide no cedible arguments either, hence I'm left scrathching my head at your "reasoning".

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

You should be a little more careful. You automatically assume a lot of things about the people who don't share your values.

 

The only one that has demonstrated this behavior is you, sir.

 

Patently false. Remember, you're the one who accuses all people that don't buy into your atheistic paradigm as only religious, or guided around by the nose by those people.

 

You've yet to describe this "third group". I'm more than willing to consider that there is one, but you've yet to tell me what it is. Therefore, you comment has absolutely nothing to do with the discussion.

 

Wrong, you oversimplistically divide all sides of the argument into one of one 2 possible camps (three if you consider "the uninformed" a seperate group it seems). You have not proven your contention that the majority of opposition to any particuar issue you beleive in is in fact "religious", just making an unsubstantiated claim that you could make a case that X% is religious, but not something else. The fact that you seem to want names suggests that you wear such blinders. Or do you seem to believe that the number of positions on any given argument are ONLY reflected by the number of groups lobbying for a particular point of view?

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

My counterpoint to you is that you seem to believe from your statement that there are only two points of view: yours (ie the atheistic) and everyone else (at least who seems to have a pov) as fundies/unthinking religious folk.

 

You caution me against generalizing and then make this your very next sentence. Interesting.

 

actually, you were the one that basically lumped people into 2 groups: yours and your opponents. The uninformed MAY have been a defacto third group (an afterthought) that didn't really count.

 

There are actually three possible pov that I can think of:

 

yeah, now maybe.

 

1) Those that oppose abortion for fundamentist Christian reasons.

2) Those that do not oppose abortion.

3) Those that oppose abortion for some other reason.

 

I have to guess this third group was previously lumped in with the uninformed.

 

This third group seems to be what you're relying on, yet you aren't willing to tell me who they are, on what grounds they oppose abortion, etc. I've never heard from them, so I don't know.

 

once agiain, am I supposed to provide you w/phone #s and addresses? (rhetorical sarcasm--just so you don't have trouble identifying it)

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Hardly a rational position. Am I to understand that you believe that everyone who opposes your pov is automatically a fundie (or secretly "mind controlled"/cowed by them)?

 

..which is why I never made that argument.

 

False, you have relegated all opposition to abortion as being either "fundie" in nature or pawns of the "fundies."

 

No, not at all. It's not about my opinion. If you can present an informed, rational argument against abortion I'm more that willing to hear it. However, every single argument you've present thus far has been remarkably uninformed, emotionally-based, and I suspect based on religious doctrine.

 

Yeah, well, I'd suspect that from someone who'd use NPR as an "unbiased" source of info on ESC/ASC to feel that way. You also jumped to the conclusion that I would knee jerk go to "pro-life" sources to counter your positions. Your objectivity is sadly lacking.

 

So tell me how Roe v. Wade differs from Brown v. Board of Education?

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

In at least one very important way. The civil right of BvBoE was access to better education, while Roe was about terminating another persons right to live (hardly civil, I'd say ).

 

False premise. They were both civil rights cases, whether you choose to ignore that or not. This is that "objectivity" thing that I mentioned earlier.

 

False nothing. You asked how they were different, I replied, you didn't like the reply. Tough.

 

..Establishment Clause. Your thoughts?

 

Already covered before. Christianity, your own lack of objectivity aside, is NOT the state religion. It's obvious the founding fathers sought to keep the US from becoming a theorcacy.

 

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Explain, otherwise it seems your paranoia is blazingly radiant here.

 

Err...secular humanism, atheism, agnostism, etc were catagorized by the federal gov't as religions for the purposes of protection from religious discimination. Please explain to me how that is "blazingly radiant paranoia".

 

Am I to understand then, that if the members of these groups don't have things the way they want them that that is automatically religious discrimination? Where is the statist discrimination against SH, atheists and the like? You fail to show why the opinions of the minority should trump the opinions of a majority (mind you, this is neither Nazi Germany or the USSR) on issues not directly related to physical well being. As Jay pointed out to you before, you'll just have to mobilize yourselves and hang in for the long haul. Of course.....there's always emigration to lands more conducive to your point of view if you really believe your being oppressed.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Any and all. If there is none now, so much the better. Fair treatment for all, eh?

 

No, sir. Which secular humanist group currently recieves gov't funding and for what cause? This was key to your point. Please don't limp out now.

 

No, you misidentified my main point which was that either everyone gets funding or no one gets funding. YOUR point is the other.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

So, what exactly is this state religion that the government is shoving down our throats?

Christianity.

Your paranoia, on this issue, is bursting through again.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

I don't see any clergy running the government or engaging in inquistions. Or is it just your paranoia about those pesky christian fundamentalists?

 

Strawman.

 

Not at all. If the "big bad religion" really controlled all three branches of governments as you assert, this would be evidence that your ruminations had any real value.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

C'mon, every group has it's values. Now you just appear to be disingenuous. DE has already addressed this. What he was too kind to point out is that this

statement belies a complete lack of understanding of atheism on your part.

 

Ah, so you're saying that there are NO common values among atheists that allow them to be recognized as a "group" rather than an eccentric mishmash of individuals? Besides, DE's point is negated by the fact that his examples, blond (not bottled) & left handed are genetically predetermined, not chosen.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

It's completely germaine to your whole paradigm. You have made quite clear that ANY government funding of any body or institution affliated with or religious in nature, is unconstitutional. That it offends your understanding of the establishment clause.

 

Government funds cannot be used to promote religion. This is why public schools cannot have bible class or teach creationism. Private schools can do what ever they would like. Which part do you feel that I am unclear on?

 

If you show me where all activity by religious groups on a public school campus is directly related to actually proselitizing (sp?), you'd have a point that the govenrment was pushing a particular religion down someone's throat.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

It's both presumptuous and arrogant to assume that opposition to this practice is somehow based solely on religion and not reason.

 

If you would like to show me otherwise, please feel free.

 

Seeing as how you attempt to marginalize all those who disagree with you as being little better than misinformed or religious nuts and/or theirtheir pawns, why bother?

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

There is an undeniably secular as well as religious component to the US. The fact that you call the argument debateable reflects your stance that secular=atheist.

 

False premise. Debate or don't but please try to avoid all the fallacies.

 

Your whole argument, your limp protests notwithstanding, demonstrates my point. I can only gather that your particular subjectivity blinds you to the obvious.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

You brought up those topics b/c they concern you, not merely "just b/c". Afterall, you stated "..I (that being you of course) see..." If this example is merely so offhand as you suggest, why would it bother you at all that people listen to "christian rock"?

 

*sigh* You made a comment regarding pop culture, academia, and law. I provided right and left examples of each (christian rock was my right example for pop culture). Nothing more. You've ballooned it way out of proportion.

 

Incorrect again, I merely asked for a clarification as to how "you saw" something like christian rock to be threatening. You replied with essentially a nonsequitur that amounts to "any religious influence" in society represents a dire threat to "secular values". Unfortunately, you failed to demonstrate why that "offhand" point should even be taken seriously. Not too mention that the way you made your point.. "you see...I see", which reasonably leads one to conclude you were referring to values you shared, not merely pulled out of the air. Which is why I questioned your concept of what constitutes a middle ground position.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Especially when you haven't demonstrated any real impact on US culture. Don't know about you, but I couldn't name a Christian rock band or song to save my life.

 

Wow. Considering what a force they seemed to be a few years ago....

 

I guess that means they were something of a fad....

 

I thought everyone would have heard of Creed.

 

so many bands, so little time..... ;)

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

I can only respond to what you are saying. If you are unclear, you must seek to correct yourself in the followup. Otherwise, how will anyone know they've actually misinterpreted your point?

 

Right, so please respond to what I actually say....

 

Endeavor to be clear..... ;)

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

And you fail to define the ever elusive middle (you make it sound like a case of situational ethics). If they re representative of your values, I can only wonder what you really mean by the "center/middle".

 

I've offered several times to do so. You provide the issue and I'll tell you what I consider the "center/middle" to be. Pretty sure this is the 3rd or 4th time I've said this.

 

Saying that the middle position varies with an issue is no different than saying the left take varies, the right take varies, the extreme varies, b/c all issues are different. You're the one who laments the lack of "middle/center" values, but essentially say nothing. Even on the issue of gun control, when asked, you answer with vague generalities. Sounding like....I don't know how to define the middle, but I know when I hear it. Besides, I listed multiple topics for you to expound upon at the end of a previous post. Perhaps you don't read everything before you reply, eh? (see below). They gave you ample opportunity to stake out what you viewed as the middle.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Well, to put it differently, on which topics do you find yourself in agreement with the dems and why? Abortion? Civil rights? Hate speech/crimes? Gun control? School choice? Foreign relations? Border issues? The environment?Where, if at all, are you closer to the repubs/conservatives on these issues? On which particular issues do you find yourself at odds with both parties?

 

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Ah, yes, it seems you're equally obsessed with the neocons as well.

 

Complete red herring. I pointed out that you appear to categorize anything non-conservative as liberal.

 

Given your demonstrated complete lack of objectivity throughout, I find it very humorous that you make this demand. You categorize, as you've so far demonstarted, all pov's that clash with yours as basically fundy, the mirror opposite of what you accuse me of now. Perhaps you should fish in your own pond before looking for "herrings" in another's.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

The real question is do you?

 

Yes, I do. Please quit dancing and answer the question: Do you know why D&X is performed the way that it is?

 

As you have mischaracterized the procedure of pba, a practice you seem to know nothing, I still wonder if you understand what the furor is all about.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

You've already demonstrated by Jae's correction that your understanding isn't exactly on solid ground.

 

Strawman. Jae's correction had nothing to do with the procedure, but rather complications of pregnancy.

 

Not remotely, you demonstrated an ignorance of medical procedure and then would have me (or anyone) take you seriously as some kind of authority on the subject. Where perhaps did you get your degree (if any) that demonstrates your expertise on the subject? Your bad, not mine.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

"Die in the womb", very euphamistic.

 

You are aware the sometimes the fetus dies in the womb, correct? What would you call this? The body still has to come out you know.

 

Removing a fetus that died "in the womb" is different from killing it there, then removing it. PBAs are not an example of removing fetuses that merely died (presumably of natural causes) in the womb (ie uterus).

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Perhaps you should familiarize yourself with the actual procedure, rather than PP style propoganda.

 

I'm very much familar with the procedure, as I am with D&E. In fact, I know why the procedure is done the way that it is...

 

That's debatable.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

I could ask the reverse of you. How many supporters of the procedure are anything other than knee-jerk pro-abortion kool aid drinkers? I'll be happy to answer your question right after you answer mine.

 

Apparent rhetorical impasse.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Really, someone as biased as you clearly are, talking about objectivity, is epicly ironic.

 

..you can call me biased all you'd like, it isn't going to make it true.

 

Saying you aren't proves nothing either.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

This is the problem with an overrelying on parsing someone's statements. Federal laws, precedent aside, can be overturned if the SC overturned RvW. Also, you are too myopically focused on a procedure that you admit is statistically insignificant anyway. Besides, the bonus for federal candidates is that the onus of taking a stand on abortion would be removed as it was now relegated to state legislatures.

 

Yes, I'm aware that the SC can overturn federal law. Your point was that states can make separate laws and I corrected you by pointing out that state laws cannot supersede federal laws. In other words, if the federal government bans something, state governments cannot turn around and allow it.

 

Considering that the government and fundamentalist lobbies put all this time, money, and effort into banning a procedure that only puts womens' health at increased risk, I don't know how you can accuse me of being the one myopically focused on a statistically insignificant procedure.

 

Equally important, the obstacle of precedence notwithstanding, Congress can also repeal laws. So, it can be addressed at two levels. You still fail to demonstrate how even the removal of one statisically insignificant procedure will be the undoing of abortion rights (your true fear on this issue). Short of a civil war, abortions will always be accessible many places in the US (in our lifetimes, I'd wager), even if the range of options is somehow curtailed by only one type at the federal level.

 

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

One case doth hardly prove your point.

 

Sure it does. What magic number do you need?

:eyeraise:

 

Well, certainly a lot more than one. Afterall, control implies a helluva lot more than one case, especially for the degree you seem to think the "other side" has on the organs of government.

 

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

I'm gonna be charitable and guess you missed that great big smily at the end of my cheerfully sarcastic reply.

 

No, I saw it. I also saw that you didn't answer the very simple question, so I assumed that you didn't know. Since you're not refuting what I said, I'm also assuming that you actually didn't know and are dropping the point now that you do.

 

I guess I was regreatably too charitable. It's not unfair to say you don't recognize levity when it's slapping you in the face. I see the operative word here is ASSUME.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

More likely a socialist....

 

The fact that is your response to the post where I said I would protest makes this response particularly amusing.

 

You merely mentioned communist control. Good thing I asked so you could spell out your position here as well. :)

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Were only it so clear cut. You telling me a dirty joke at work and being overheard by an "offended" party is enough to constitute a form of "threat" to get you fired, and very possibly sued. All so perfectly harmless, though, eh?

 

No, not harmless. That's why it's harassment.

 

 

A rather expansive definition you hew to there.

 

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Try our great institutions of lower learning (Hardvard, Yale, etc...) as well as many of the "lesser" schools.

 

You made a argument. I refuted it. Not sure what your response accomplishes....

 

Was merley a clarification in response to your reply of BJU (which, btw doesn't realistically count as a counterargument).

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Yeah, your opinion's not fact.

 

Did you want to defend your point or are you simply going to repeat the argument that I used to refute it and expect it to have some bearing?

 

Merely pointing out that you confuse a lot of your opinions with fact.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Funny, you talk of reasonable in vague terms (seems like an MO here). I suspect it would be a lot like beauty....in the eyes of the beholder. Perhaps you're able to provide an example of what YOU think is reasonable. I'm all eyes. I could probably make a reasonably accurate guess at each side's position....

 

Paging Capt. Obvious...Trouble is, anyone can identify what either side's position is likely to be as they are not shy about spelling it out for you. Yet you still fail to demonstrate any concept of what YOU see as reasonable middle ground (as mentioned above) when confronted with a specific issue (other than the environment issue). You answers are akin to my asking you what you think of the alphabet and you responding that it depends on which letter or group of letters I'm asking about.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

examples:????

 

*sigh* Go read the civil rights act of 1964. Religion is a protected class as the gov't amended religion to include "non-religions" as well for the purposes of CRA protections. The document more that adequately defines discrimination. If that isn't enough for you, then I don't know what would be.

 

Fact is, I was asking you for specific examples of the discrimination that you allege, but you fail to provide any. I shall chalk it up to empty rhetoric on your part.

 

Originally Posted by Totenkopf

Far as I'm concerned, no one so far appeals to me. No doubt I'll have to "divine" the lesser of two evils in '08.

 

That happens sometimes. I wish I could feel sorry for you, however you captured my sentiments regarding almost every election I've participated in.

 

Probably more often than just sometimes. :fist:

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Also, if anyone would like an example of what an intellectually rigorous, bias-free conservapedia article looks like, check out the entry for "evolution

 

i think that was one of the funniest things ive ever read.

Another good one is the Homosexuality page. that one gave me a good laugh.

 

EDIT: aparently there is also a creation wiki here: http://creationwiki.org/

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  • 3 weeks later...

Sorry this took so long to respond to. I was out of town for a convention/certification and I'm just now getting my affairs back in order after the trip.

 

Taking it all in, I'm a little disappointed by the continued use of fallacious thinking and personal attacks. I had hoped that by pointing them out, you would own the behavior and take steps to curb it. Unfortunately, this doesn't appear to be the case, and as such, it is going to make my response a little less in-depth than I had hoped since I will largely be repeating myself. I'll do my best to respond to any points you do make, but there isn't very much to work with.

 

Your conclusion, I'll be charitable here, is no more than an overblown concern that you consistently fail to prove is indeed fact. You make the breath taking leap that b/c one SC decision (by the narrowest margin) doesn't go your way, that it's those "evil fundies" that have hijacked even the SC. How you expect that kind of argument to be taken seriously is a great mystery.
Continued mischaracterization and personal attacks. My arguments have been posted therefore if you would like to respond to them, I'd be very much interested in reading your response. If you aren't going to respond, then I suggest we agree to move on.

 

Once again, you provide no cedible arguments either, hence I'm left scrathching my head at your "reasoning".
Red herring. Again, since you're not going to respond to what I said, perhaps we should move on to something else.

 

Patently false. Remember, you're the one who accuses all people that don't buy into your atheistic paradigm as only religious, or guided around by the nose by those people.
I'd very much like to know how you determined that this is "patently false". Perhaps you are confused about the term's meaning? The rest of this comment is a red herring. Please try to stick to the topic at hand.

 

Wrong, you oversimplistically divide all sides of the argument into one of one 2 possible camps (three if you consider "the uninformed" a seperate group it seems). You have not proven your contention that the majority of opposition to any particuar issue you beleive in is in fact "religious", just making an unsubstantiated claim that you could make a case that X% is religious, but not something else. The fact that you seem to want names suggests that you wear such blinders. Or do you seem to believe that the number of positions on any given argument are ONLY reflected by the number of groups lobbying for a particular point of view?
Not at all. There are two fairly vocal sides in this debate. I'm not aware of a third, however you seem to insist that there is. I've repeatedly asked for you to simply tell me what their group is called and what their stance in the debate looks like. I don't think I'm asking for too much. Until that happens I'm only aware of pro-abortion and anti-abortion. The anti-abortion stance is based entirely upon religious concerns. If that isn't clear for you, please let me know and I'll be happy to expand upon that.

 

actually, you were the one that basically lumped people into 2 groups: yours and your opponents. The uninformed MAY have been a defacto third group (an afterthought) that didn't really count.
Red herring. Since you didn't actually counter my point, I don't think there's anything more for me to add here.

 

yeah, now maybe.

<snip>

I have to guess this third group was previously lumped in with the uninformed.

*shrugs* I think it would probably make more sense to lump them in with group 1, but since it's "your" group, I guess you'd have to tell me.

 

once agiain, am I supposed to provide you w/phone #s and addresses? (rhetorical sarcasm--just so you don't have trouble identifying it)
You can if you would like. I would just settle for a group name and a summary of their stance. I don't think this needs to be as complicated as you're making it.

 

False, you have relegated all opposition to abortion as being either "fundie" in nature or pawns of the "fundies."
I'm having difficulty following your train of thought. Am I supposed to defend a stance I never took, but you assigned to me? Since you didn't mention abortion specifically in your last response, this response is a strawman. If you are speaking about abortion specifically, then yes: my stance is that all anti-abortion arguments are founded on Christian fundamentalism. If you're talking about my point of view in general (which seemed to be the case), then automatically assuming such a thing would be absurd and indefensible, hence why I said I would never make such a claim (nor have I).

 

Yeah, well, I'd suspect that from someone who'd use NPR as an "unbiased" source of info on ESC/ASC to feel that way. You also jumped to the conclusion that I would knee jerk go to "pro-life" sources to counter your positions. Your objectivity is sadly lacking.
Would you like to debate the merits of my source or simply respond with rhetoric? Since you didn't respond with any source, it's difficult to tell whether my assumputions were correct or not, now isn't it? ;)

 

False nothing. You asked how they were different, I replied, you didn't like the reply. Tough.
False premise is a logical fallacy. You used it. I pointed it out. If you would like to demonstrate how Roe v. Wade was not a civil rights case, I'd be willing to read what you have to write, but thus far all you've responded with is fallacy. In other words, you've presented no arguments.

 

Already covered before. Christianity, your own lack of objectivity aside, is NOT the state religion. It's obvious the founding fathers sought to keep the US from becoming a theorcacy.
I didn't say that it was. I've stated repeatedly that I have serious concerns about the direction we appear to be taking and how I feel we are dangerously close to adopting a state religion, but that isn't the same thing now is it? I agree that the Framers didn't want a theocracy, which is why I feel they would probably be concerned as well.

 

Am I to understand then, that if the members of these groups don't have things the way they want them that that is automatically religious discrimination? Where is the statist discrimination against SH, atheists and the like? You fail to show why the opinions of the minority should trump the opinions of a majority (mind you, this is neither Nazi Germany or the USSR) on issues not directly related to physical well being. As Jay pointed out to you before, you'll just have to mobilize yourselves and hang in for the long haul. Of course.....there's always emigration to lands more conducive to your point of view if you really believe your being oppressed.
Nope, I think you might be on a tangent here.

 

The civil rights act prohibits discrimination based on protected classes. One of those protected classes is religion. Ok, well what about those that aren't religious; can we discriminate against them? To close that potential loop-hole the gov't stated that non-religious groups would be considered religions classes for the purposes of discrimination.

 

Therefore, my very christian organization can't use my "religious" beliefs as a basis for hiring or promotion decisions. If they do, then that's religious discrimination (even though I'm not a religious person).

 

I am not aware of any anti-discrimination laws that state that my boss has to become an atheist to make me happy or otherwise avoid a discrimination lawsuit. However he would probably run into some legal problems if he tried to institute mandatory prayer time at the office. Does that help to clarify at all?

 

No, you misidentified my main point which was that either everyone gets funding or no one gets funding. YOUR point is the other.
It's possible, but I don't think so. Unfortunately, I'm not sure whether you want to debate with me whether or not Federal funds can go to private, religious schools or if you're just lamenting the philosophy of such a policy, in general. If it's the former, then you're wrong (don't argue with me. I didn't write the law). If it's the latter, then I disagree.

 

Your paranoia, on this issue, is bursting through again.
This personal attack completely misses the point of the argument. Is there another religious group that has made huge plays over the last 50 years to dominate the gov't? If so, then I'll stand corrected.

 

Not at all. If the "big bad religion" really controlled all three branches of governments as you assert, this would be evidence that your ruminations had any real value.
This is still a strawman. It seems that you think the only possible evidence there would be for religion-dominated gov't would be inquisitions. Sure that would be a dead-givaway, but I don't agree that it's the only possible indicator. Even if it were, it would only be an indicator of a draconian religious regime.

 

Ah, so you're saying that there are NO common values among atheists that allow them to be recognized as a "group" rather than an eccentric mishmash of individuals? Besides, DE's point is negated by the fact that his examples, blond (not bottled) & left handed are genetically predetermined, not chosen.
Yes, that's exactly what I'm saying. The only common "value" is that atheists don't believe in a god or gods. This group includes kittens, piles of rocks, and free-thinking human beings. Just like the only common "value" that left-handed people have is that they aren't right-handed or ambidextrious (or unable to use their hands at all, etc).

 

If you show me where all activity by religious groups on a public school campus is directly related to actually proselitizing (sp?), you'd have a point that the govenrment was pushing a particular religion down someone's throat.
I think you might be missing the point. The fact is that it's illegal. I don't wish to debate with you the merits of such a law, I'm only pointing out that such a law exists. I hope that helps to clarify.

 

Seeing as how you attempt to marginalize all those who disagree with you as being little better than misinformed or religious nuts and/or theirtheir pawns, why bother?
Once again, I invite you to present your case and you decline. It's very difficult for me to consider (let alone take seriously) your arguments when you refuse to present them in the first place.

 

Your whole argument, your limp protests notwithstanding, demonstrates my point. I can only gather that your particular subjectivity blinds you to the obvious.
Again, I'm not sure what this has to do with the point. If you would like to demonstrate how your comment was not based on a false premise, then we could move forward, however this red herring does not move the conversation forward. This is the 2nd time that I've pointed out a fallacy on this point.

 

Incorrect again, I merely asked for a clarification as to how "you saw" something like christian rock to be threatening. You replied with essentially a nonsequitur that amounts to "any religious influence" in society represents a dire threat to "secular values". Unfortunately, you failed to demonstrate why that "offhand" point should even be taken seriously. Not too mention that the way you made your point.. "you see...I see", which reasonably leads one to conclude you were referring to values you shared, not merely pulled out of the air. Which is why I questioned your concept of what constitutes a middle ground position.
Then don't take it seriously. The whole point of me pointing out that it was an aside was to show that you were taking it too seriously and that you shouldn't. You appear to be conceding my point. If makes you feel better to posture like you've made a point, then feel free.

 

I guess that means they were something of a fad....
Thank goodness. They sucked (I thought so before I found out they were a Christian band, just so I'm not accused of bias).

 

Endeavor to be clear..... ;)
I'm not the one hemmoraging fallacies. ;)

 

Saying that the middle position varies with an issue is no different than saying the left take varies, the right take varies, the extreme varies, b/c all issues are different. You're the one who laments the lack of "middle/center" values, but essentially say nothing. Even on the issue of gun control, when asked, you answer with vague generalities. Sounding like....I don't know how to define the middle, but I know when I hear it. Besides, I listed multiple topics for you to expound upon at the end of a previous post. Perhaps you don't read everything before you reply, eh? (see below). They gave you ample opportunity to stake out what you viewed as the middle.
The middle position on abortion is going to be different from the middle position on same-sex marriage. I don't think asking you to narrow your request down to one topic is asking for too much. I have neither the time nor the inclination to chase down every hot-button issue and present individual disertations on "the middle". If that doesn't suit you, then tough cookies :).

 

Given your demonstrated complete lack of objectivity throughout, I find it very humorous that you make this demand. You categorize, as you've so far demonstarted, all pov's that clash with yours as basically fundy, the mirror opposite of what you accuse me of now. Perhaps you should fish in your own pond before looking for "herrings" in another's.
Well, I'm glad I could amuse you. Considering that I disagree with several "liberal" arguments as well, it is patently false (see, I know how to use the term correctly) to say that every pov that conflicts with my own is "fundy". Red herring stands until you present an argument that shows that it shouldn't. Unfortunately, wishing it away doesn't achieve that.

 

As you have mischaracterized the procedure of pba, a practice you seem to know nothing, I still wonder if you understand what the furor is all about.
I've asked you pointed questions that you have ignored, yet you presume to accuse me of being ignorant on the subject. Interesting.

 

At least I know enough to know that it's a medical procedure referred to as D&X/D&E and not "PBA".

 

Not remotely, you demonstrated an ignorance of medical procedure and then would have me (or anyone) take you seriously as some kind of authority on the subject. Where perhaps did you get your degree (if any) that demonstrates your expertise on the subject? Your bad, not mine.
Really? How? Because I didn't fall over after reading your opinion? Are you positing that a degree is necessary to speak about a medical subject? If that's the case, then what's your opinion based on? That blade is sharp on both sides, my friend.

 

I've asked you if you know why the procedure is done the way that it is. You have not responded. If you don't know that's ok, but don't assume that I don't.

 

Removing a fetus that died "in the womb" is different from killing it there, then removing it. PBAs are not an example of removing fetuses that merely died (presumably of natural causes) in the womb (ie uterus).
Indeed it is. However the procedure is exactly the same regardless of the status of the fetus. The ban was on the procedure, which was my point.

 

That's debatable.
Sure. So how about you present an argument and we debate? Feel free to test my knowledge.

 

Apparent rhetorical impasse.
Not at all. I don't think it fair that you can dodge my question and expect me to answer yours. That's a double-standard.

 

Saying you aren't proves nothing either.
It doesn't need to :)

Burden of proof is on you since you're making the claim.

 

Equally important, the obstacle of precedence notwithstanding, Congress can also repeal laws. So, it can be addressed at two levels. You still fail to demonstrate how even the removal of one statisically insignificant procedure will be the undoing of abortion rights (your true fear on this issue). Short of a civil war, abortions will always be accessible many places in the US (in our lifetimes, I'd wager), even if the range of options is somehow curtailed by only one type at the federal level.
First, I made a point to deny a slippery-slope argument the first time you insinuated that I was making one. The fact that you insinuated it again tells me that you're either not reading what I write or are purposely being disingenuous. Not once I have raised the argument that this ruling will unravel the entire abortion debate. Please do not put words into my mouth.

 

What my argument has been is that outlawing this procedure without women's health clause is a political/religious move made by the Right. If you would like to discuss that, please let me know.

 

Well, certainly a lot more than one. Afterall, control implies a helluva lot more than one case, especially for the degree you seem to think the "other side" has on the organs of government.
Two then? Three? One hundred? You make it sound like no one saw this coming. Simple majority wins. With 4 conservative, 4 liberal, and 1 "swing" vote on the bench it was much easier to say that no one ideology "had control". With 5 conservative and 4 liberal votes, its very clear that there is a strong conservative bias on the bench now. The press made a big deal about the 5-4 vote, but I was asking myself what other vote there would be. Perhaps you have an answer.

 

I guess I was regreatably too charitable. It's not unfair to say you don't recognize levity when it's slapping you in the face. I see the operative word here is ASSUME.
Perhaps I don't. You still haven't the question though. Should I assume that you won't be?

 

A rather expansive definition you hew to there.
Indeed it is. Since I'm not the etymologist that crafted the definition, I'm afraid that I can't be held accountable for the scope of the word. Since I'm not one of the law makers that decided that harrassment was illegal, I can't be held accountable for scope of the law. You'll have to take your concerns up with them (assuming any of them are alive).

 

Was merley a clarification in response to your reply of BJU (which, btw doesn't realistically count as a counterargument).
Sure it does, but it's an ancillary point anyway.

 

Merely pointing out that you confuse a lot of your opinions with fact.
This point has degraded to the "I know you are, but what am I" stage. Seriously, this is the 3rd or 4th time you've come back with essentially the same thing. I tried to break the cycle by asking for an actual argument however you still haven't presented one. Perhaps that is a cue that we should move on.

 

Paging Capt. Obvious...Trouble is, anyone can identify what either side's position is likely to be as they are not shy about spelling it out for you. Yet you still fail to demonstrate any concept of what YOU see as reasonable middle ground (as mentioned above) when confronted with a specific issue (other than the environment issue). You answers are akin to my asking you what you think of the alphabet and you responding that it depends on which letter or group of letters I'm asking about.
You quoted yourself here, so I'm not sure what your point was. Assuming that is has something to do with "middle ground", I'll repeat myself once more by asking you for a specific topic or issue. As I stated ealier, the middle position on abortion is going to be different than the middle position on some other controversial topic. I guess I assumed that would be obvious, however it appears that it's not. Unfortunately, I can't change that reality, so I guess I'm counting on you to break the impasse.

 

Fact is, I was asking you for specific examples of the discrimination that you allege, but you fail to provide any. I shall chalk it up to empty rhetoric on your part.
Feel free to do whatever you would like. I didn't realize that I would have to provide specific examples of actual religious discrimination cases for you to believe that there was a law on the books against it. This isn't to say that there aren't any actual cases lodged, but if there are, I don't follow them. It's not pertinent to the point either way.

 

Probably more often than just sometimes. :fist:
We all have to do the best we can with what we're given. If push comes to shove, maybe we can agree on Chris Dodd. He's religious (for you), but also has the ability to form his own opinions (for me).

 

Thanks for reading and once again, my apologies for the delayed response.

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Given that neither of us is willing to concede anything to the other, Achilles, I've decided it's better just to drop this. I'll just say, in keeping with the spirit this forum was created, that I hope your convention/certification went well. Almost thought you went off to join a monastery....... ;)

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I've repeatedly asked for you to simply tell me what their group is called and what their stance in the debate looks like.

Name: "The People Who Don't Give a Flying Hoo-Haw"

Stance: "Pretty Much Don't Care, Now I'm Going Back to My Beer and the Latest Episode of '24', 'Desperate Housewives', 'Texas Hold 'Em', and/or the Latest Sporting Event"

 

You all are being a little too hot and sassy to each other here. Time to take a break and cool this down a bit.

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