BEEP! BEEP! IT'S ME.

"Begin at the beginning,and go on till you come to the end: then stop." (Lewis Carroll, 1832-1896)

Alice came to a fork in the road. "Which road do I take?" she asked."Where do you want to go?" responded the Cheshire cat."I don't know," Alice answered."Then," said the cat, "it doesn't matter."

"So long as I get somewhere," Alice added as an explanation. "Oh, you're sure to do that," said the Cat, "if you only walk long enough."

"All right," said the Cat; and this time it vanished quite slowly, beginning with the end of the tail, and ending with the grin, which remained some time after the rest of it had gone. "Well! I've often seen a cat without a grin," thought Alice; "but a grin without a cat! It's the most curious thing I ever saw in my life!"

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I am diagonally parked in a parallel universe. Like Arthur Dent from "Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy", if you do not have a Babel Fish in your ear this blog will be completely unintelligible to you and will read something like this: "boggle, google, snoggle, slurp, slurp, dingleberry to the power of 10". Fortunately, those who have had the Babel Fish inserted in their ear, will understood this blog perfectly. If you are familiar with this technology, you will know that the Babel Fish lives on brainwave radiation. It excretes energy in the form of exactly the correct brainwaves needed by its host to understand what was just said; or in this case, what was read. The Babel Fish, thanks to scientific research, reverses the problem defined by its namesake in the Tower of Babel, where a deity was supposedly inspired to confuse the human race by making them unable to understand each other.

"DIFFICILE EST SATURAM NON SCRIBERE"

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Friday, April 06, 2007

Blog Against Theocracy



Dominionism: ~ Dominionism is a trend in Protestant Christian evangelicalism and fundamentalism, primarily, though not exclusively, in the United States, that seeks to establish specific political policies based on religious beliefs. The dominionist interpretation sees adherents as heeding a command from God to all mankind to subject the world to the rule of the Word of God.

The terminology of dominionism, and the broad concept of the trend described by critics, has been taken from the King James Version of the Bible, Genesis 1:26. Some influences on the Christian Right acknowledge looking to the New Testament to justify theocracy. In Matthew 28:18, for example, Jesus is reported to have said, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. This verse is seen as an announcement by Jesus that he has assumed authority over all earthly authority.

In that light, some theologians interpret the Great Commission as a command to exercise that authority in his name, bringing all things (including societies and cultures) into subjection under his commands.

What differentiates Christian Dominionism from Islamic Dominionism? Not much in my opinion. Both strive for the absolute authority of a theocratic government. Both may reserve the right to punish "evil doers"according to the repressive dogma of their "holy books". Both seek the destruction of secularism in favour of an autocratic religious state.

Whereas secularism protects the right of citizens to be of any religion of their choosing, or no religion at all, theocratic governments demand civilian adherence to the scriptures of ONE religion. That religion and the beliefs of that religion, would be enshrined in all law.

Both of these religions seek to oppress and deny individual rights in favour of the tenets of their religion. Both religions are imperialistic by nature. They each seek to be a religious monopoly. They do NOT ascribe to a pluralistic society. They each prescribe a monotheistic society. In their identical mantras, "There can be only one."






Blog Against Theocracy


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133 Comments:

Anonymous Confused, maybe not said...

beepbeep,
Wow! I have nothing to say. I know, I'll applaud the post. Clapping.

6/4/07 10:07 am  
Anonymous Confused, maybe not said...

beepbeep,

It was too good to be true. Maybe I was seduced by the You Tube clip. But when leaving the theatre, my tongue began to move and speak a protest. You write:

"Both religions are imperialistic by nature. They each seek to be a religious monopoly."

Isn't that a bit reductive? There are a number of different expressions of these two tradtions. I know many Muslims and Christians who are devout, but devoted to secularism and/or pluralism. However, I agree with you regarding those that are looking to make their religion the law of the land.

6/4/07 10:12 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

confused:

I see that many christians and many muslims are different faces of the same coin. The ones I am talking about are those who desire their religion to be the ultimate authority on earth and quite frankly, this type of believer doesn't care how this goal is achieved and who gets minced up in the process.

6/4/07 10:24 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

No one, as far as I know, is saying that all christians or that all muslims are theocratic or dominionist. But enough are, and these are the ones I am concerned about.

The ones who are NOT theocratic or dominionist are too quiet about their opposition to theocracy and dominionism. This allows the more fervent among them to continue their rantings with the tacit consent of those who remain silent.

6/4/07 10:31 am  
Anonymous Confused, maybe not said...

beepbeep said,

"The ones who are NOT theocratic or dominionist are too quiet about their opposition to theocracy and dominionism. This allows the more fervent among them to continue their rantings with the tacit consent of those who remain silent."

I almost agree. But progressive Christian groups are organizing in the States and have started protesting. The United Church for Christ leadership, for example, which is a major protestant movement here, has been very loud in its protests of the Christians of which you speak. They have run numerous commercials.
Unfortunately, some of the major networks have refused to show them. There is also the evangelical Christian, Jim Wallis, who wrote "God's Politics." I disagree with him on many issues, but he is very much against a Christian government. He was, and may still be, editor of Sojourner magazine, a prominent, but progressive Christian magazine. When he was at the white house in Bush's early presidency, he confronted the President. He has not been invited back. But more needs to be done and more Christians need to speak out against the theocrats in this country. American progressives also need to famaliarize themselves with Christian traditions, for most Americans are religious. Recent polls show that (I think I have this right) that 86 percent of Americans believe in God and something like fifty percent do not believe in evolution. We are the most religious (Christian) counrty in the industrialized, democratic west. More Americans identify themselves as religious than do Israelis. We have banks in the mid-west where people pray with the loan officer before and after their loan discussion. As for Islam, I also wish more Western Muslims would speak out against the extremism. (it's probably much harder in Muslim countries.) On the other hand, Western, Muslim organizations are very busy deflecting prejudice and trying to explain Islam.

6/4/07 10:51 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

confused:

What can I say? I see it as state supported insanity.

Praying for a LOAN? What kind of religion is that? I am appalled and disgusted.

6/4/07 10:59 am  
Anonymous remy said...

One cannot "explain" Islam. It is Faith and as such inhabits the realm woo.
And, if you deflect prejudice where does it go?

BEEP, I really enjoyed reading your post.

6/4/07 2:36 pm  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

Confused,

Well, I checked out the United Church of Christ website, hoping to find these commercials you're talking about. I found some reference to a "Stillspeaking informercial" but I'm not gonna pay ten bucks for it.

I also found where UCC said that they wanted to work with churches that disagreed with them. They seem fairly explicit in saying that they don't feel the urge to confront fundie Christian elements.

I'd be interested in something like the text of these ads to demonstrate that they're doing what you say you're doing. (I don't mean this in the sense that you're not being truthful, but in the sense that what you consider a confrontation against fundies is probably not anything like *I'd* call a confrontation with fundies. I suspect people like you are operating on a totally different level than people like me about this.)

6/4/07 3:51 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

I will be away for a few days. So, Happy Spring or Vernal Equinox.

I hope the sun is reborn after the ravges of winter if you live in the northern hemisphere, and for those of you like me who live in the souther hemisphere, Happy Autumn Equinox.

6/4/07 7:20 pm  
Blogger Coffee Messiah said...

Beep: See my previous post on my blog. I just met someone who has indeed walked the walk. I'm surprised as speaking with him was the most enjoyable talk I've had with anyone with a belief, so far in my life.

6/4/07 7:21 pm  
Blogger L>T said...

Speaking of progressive Christians, I have been paying particular attention to one.Rick Warren

He seems to do everything right. He has a huge following. All kinds of politicians & celebrities speak at his church, he pushes enviromental concerns, instead of tithing 10% he only keeps 10%, the list goes on & on. In spite of all this he makes me very uneasy.

Why is that I wonder? Am I just so cynical, I can't reconize a good thing?
Or is it something to do with having too much power? I mean this guy is good, he's got Hillary & Obama playing up to him. Obviously, the Democrats want a piece of the christian vote. But, I can't decide who is using who here.

My point is, it seems Christianity is becoming more intrenched in politics, not less.

7/4/07 1:00 am  
Anonymous Confused, maybe not said...

chris bradley,

I'm not a Christian nor am I religious, unless you're either of these, we're probably not as far from each other as you suggest. But I am not as easily threatened by religion, just theocracy. You might find these on you tube. I haven't seen the adds for over a year. But the president of the movement, Thomas ( I forget his first name) has been very critical of Bush, Falwell, Dobson, and Robertson. Note: Church groups will never truly confront their extremists, but it's important to watch how they side step their extremists. They say, you can do what you want, but the leadership is moving this way. Protestant groups are not Papal, so top down decisions take time to take root in more democratically inclined church organizations. The fact that the UCC is the first major protestant denomination to allow for gay marriage is huge. For the ad, try typing in "UCC and the bouncer" and "UCC and the ejector" on you tube. It's also important to remember this is a Christian organization and will never be or say what atheist, secularists would like to see or hear. But the UCC does support pluralsim in this society. On the other hand, Christianity is a hidden cornernstone of the U.S. Even though our founders did not set up a Christian country and intentionally left the word out of the Constitution, our education system is very protestant. It was founded by Protestants and exercises many Protestant ideals, such as the pioneer spirit, privileging individualism over communitarianism, and so on. But the UCC is very public about keeping the state and the institutions of religion seperate. I have seen and heard the national president speak a number of times in D.C. and have been quite surprised by his progressive politics. He is what academics might call a prophetic christian, one who sees his role to not wed the state, but continually critique it for violating human rights, just as the prophets of the bible critiqued the status quo for exploiting the have nots. However, that does not mean faith will be left out of politics in this country. There is a difference, sometimes, between faith and church institutions. People of faith have always been deeply involved in politics in this country. Furthermore, and on another note, the messianism we find in American foreign policy has its roots in Chhristian universalism, as wrong as we may find it, it's there. The UCC uses Christianity, at least when I have heard Thomas speak, to critique this messianism. I wish more progressives studied Christianity for the sake of using it against the theocrats. Can you imagine if John Kerry said during his debate with Bush, "Mr. President, when Jesus said, 'Love thy neighbor as yourself,' I don't think he meant leaving forty five million Americans uninsured. Theocrats have been very successful at times. At one time, Christians succeeded in passing prohibition. On the other hand, it was Christian movements (not all) that were a major part of the abolition movement in the 19th century, and it was progressive Christians who once argued and fought against social darwinism. (They also argued against evolution, which sucks.)

I>t
Warren also worries me. I don't trust any minister who penetrates the political arena. It's one thing to critique, it's another to hang with politicians. Christian leaders should stay out of helping politicians form policy. Institutinally, the U.S. is not a Christian country and Christianity or any religion should be involved in policy formation. That's not to say Christians should not debate the issues, but Christian Churches and/or organizations should stick to religion and doing what the bible proclaims, helping the have nots. It's funny how so many forget that the major message of the Hebrew and Chritian scripture is anti-poverty.

7/4/07 1:51 am  
Anonymous lanwa said...

chris bradley,
In my above post, I am not saying Kerry is a progressive. But it would have been cool if he said that.

7/4/07 1:54 am  
Anonymous Confused, maybe not said...

oops. the above is from confusd, maybe not.

7/4/07 1:54 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

confused,

Interestingly enough, I didn't say you were a Christian. I said I couldn't find the adds of which you spoke and wondered if you could point me towards the ads (or text of the ads). Apparently, you can't do this.

I did say that you probably have a different standard for what regards confrontation -- but this is due to how I see you post. Indeed, in your response to me, you basically say that you do, in fact, take a softer stand towards religion than I do. You said that faith in American politics is traditional (true) therefore we must live with it (false). (That's, technically, a genetic argument -- the notion that because something was a given way in the past, it'll be so in the future; there is no reason to believe this is the case.) I feel that religion in politics -- even in the form of "people of faith" in politics -- should be gotten rid of (and, for the record, I suspect that there are virtually no people of faith in high level politics). You don't seem bothered by this. Like I said, your standards of critique are probably weaker than mine.

I wouldn't mind getting some of the texts of these speeches you've been to, or similiar ones. I'd like to see the specific fashion of these critiques. As I said, I looked around and couldn't find them unless I was willing to pay money for them. Which doesn't strike me as them trying really hard to get their message out.

I never have such problems finding fundie screeds against people.

7/4/07 4:23 am  
Anonymous Confused, maybe not said...

chris bradley,
I just went to you tube and found the ads. See my earlier comment as to how to find them. You're right, we're different, and your last post shows it. I have no problem living with those who believe differently than I do. If one is a Christian, I don't have a problem with that. If faith informs one politics, I don't have a problem with that as long as one's faith does not speak against plurality. But your position, what little I've seen of it, does speak against plurality - in so far as you matter of factly write:
"You said that faith in American politics is traditional (true) therefore we must live with it (false)."

False? What are you suggesting?

Further, I never said that we must live with it. What I mean is that we have always lived with it and are still living with it and will continue to live with it and that is not a problem for me. I do not presume to own the discourse with those with whom I argue, even when they try to own it. My idea of confrontation is to disrupt, resist, but not to own. I find your posture on this issue as ideologically charged as those with whom you disagree. And for me, that is a cause for worry. I resist and strongly confront all idealogues. And frankly, your ostensible totalizing ant-faith fundamentalism is worrisome.

7/4/07 5:30 am  
Anonymous Confused, maybe not said...

Chris Bradley,
I forgot to mention that I was not committing 'the genetic fallacy,' which is to confuse the origin of something with the value or tradition of it. ;-) For exmaple, Marx confuses the value of religious traditions with his definition for the origin of religion; opiate for the masses. Freud made the same error in calling religion a response to neurosis. I don't see where I have done something like that. It seems though, and I say this playfully, that you might be suffering what you accused me of doing. Aren't you confusing one with the other by suggesting faith no longer has a place? In other words, it seems (emphasis on seems) that you find it may have once addressed needs (whatever they are) that are no longer relevant today. Is that the case? You also seem to be conflating fundamentalism for all those participating in the Christian faith. From your other comments, I suspect you do not buy into such a conflation. Am I right on this? (Please know, on blogs I am playing and alhtough this may not come across in my posts, which I quickly send off, I do send them with a smile on my face.)

7/4/07 6:18 am  
Anonymous Confused, maybe not said...

Chris Bradley,
I just typed in John Thomas & UCC and all types of speeches and things came up. Here's an example I found on someone's blog. For some reason the blog name would not cut and paste, which is most likely my fault.

Sunday, October 16, 2005
UCC President Says Rightist Groups "intent... on destroying our life together" as a Church
Rev. John Thomas, president of the United Church of Christ acknowledged on Friday what mainline protestant church leaders have been reluctant to address for two decades: the rightist Institute on Religion and Democracy (IRD) and allied groups are seeking to undermine if not destroy the mainline Christian churches in the United States.

The conservative movement and parts of the corporate sector have loathed the rise of the social gospel in the mainline churches for a century. They have loathed the social justice traditions that were catalysts for the civil rights movement, women's rights, and principled opposition to the excesses of American foreign policy from Vietnam to Central America. It was the latter that led to the formation of the IRD as a hub of antichurch organizing. Since then, IRD-affiliated "renewal" groups have been at the center of nearly every controversy in mainline Christianity -- most recently, but certainly not exclusively, issues of gay and lesbian equality in church and public life.

Thomas spoke, according to United Church News about groups "within and beyond the UCC" that are "intent on disrupting and destroying our life together."

"Groups like the Evangelical Association of Reformed, Christian and Congregational Churches and the Biblical Witness Fellowship are increasingly being exposed even as they are increasingly aggressive," Thomas said. "Their relationship to the right-wing Instit ute for Religion and Democracy and its long-term agenda of silencing a progressive religious voice while enlisting the church in an unholy alliance with right-wing politics is now longer deniable. United Church of Christ folk like to be 'nice,' to be hospitable. But, to play with a verse of scripture just a bit, we doves innocently entertain these serpents in our midst at our own peril."

UCC seminarian and blogger Chuck Currie has more over at Stree t Prophets. Currie has written about the IRD-affiliated Biblical Witness Fellowship in the past, as have I.

Last year, the IRD and its Association for Church Renewal, (of which the BWT is a member) attacked the UCC for its warmhearted TV ads that had been rejected by the TV networks as "too controversial."

Last summer when the UCC's General Synod endorsed same sex marriage, the Biblical Witness Fellowship (BWT) went ballistic and implied that the UCC is no longer a Christian denomination. Previously, it had called for the resignation of John Thomas.

All of the major denominations as well as the National Council of Churches have been affected by this well-funded, and sustained campaign of attrition over the past two decades.

IRD has received substantial funding and direction over the years, from what some might consider the first couple of theocratic philanthropy, Howard and Roberta Ahmanson who were profiled by journalist Max Blumenthal for Salon.com last year. This article is a must-read for anyone seeking to understand what John Thomas is talking about.

The Ahmansons have reportedly contributed hundreds of thousands of dollars to IRD, on whose board Roberta Ahmanson sits. The institute, Blumenfeld reported, has a
"Reforming America's Churches Project, which aims to 'restructure the permanent governing structure' of 'theologically flawed' mainline churches like the Episcopal Church in order to 'discredit and diminish the Religious Left's influence.' This has translated into a three-pronged assault on mainline Presbyterian, Methodist and Episcopal churches. With a staff of media-savvy research specialists, the institute is able to ply both the religious and mainstream media, exploiting divisive social issues within the churches."

It is a good thing that the courageous leader of a major denomination has publicly acknowledged that his denomination is under attack by politically motivated agencies. I hope the UCC and all of the mainline denominations will begin to take a more forceful posture in relation to groups who have abused their standing in tolerant and welcoming communities in order to sew division and discord.

7/4/07 6:32 am  
Blogger Blueberry said...

Excellent video, beep!

To me, dominionism is the single most dangerous element of religion. It's not only responsible for countless wars and invasions, but for the destruction of the environment (as dominionist humans think that they have been endowed with control over everything in "creation").

I would also like to add that a "theocrat" and a "christian" are not interchangeable terms. There ARE liberal and progressive christians. I am not only married to one, but I know lots of them from the UU church. These are people who admire the teachings and the caring message of the man they think of as Jesus, but don't necessarily think he was divine and is coming back to rapture them up, etc. All that kind of stuff is viewed as mythology (parables, or whatever you want to call it) and is not meant to be taken literally. They are also in favor of separation of church and state. They want their charity money to help the needy and they don't want to invade other countries to take their resources and kill their leaders. They are also tolerant of different people holding different beliefs in this world, and peace being possible between them.

What a concept.

7/4/07 6:50 am  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

l>t said...
Speaking of progressive Christians, I have been paying particular attention to one.Rick Warren

Author of the Purpose Driven Life, right?

He seems to do everything right. He has a huge following. All kinds of politicians & celebrities speak at his church, he pushes enviromental concerns, instead of tithing 10% he only keeps 10%, the list goes on & on. In spite of all this he makes me very uneasy.

Me too, actually.

Why is that I wonder? Am I just so cynical, I can't reconize a good thing?
Or is it something to do with having too much power? I mean this guy is good, he's got Hillary & Obama playing up to him. Obviously, the Democrats want a piece of the christian vote. But, I can't decide who is using who here.


My great uncle read The Purpose Driven Life and then gave it to my husband. Right off the bat, the book asks the reader to make a promise or an oath to complete the 40 day devotional.
It's chalk full of Christian-ese lingo. It's pretty assumptious--claiming that "this book will transform your life".
My husband put it down and never picked it back up.

My point is, it seems Christianity is becoming more intrenched in politics, not less.

It's not right for Christians to want a theocracy. Pluralism is the absolute way to go.
The government needs to stay out of religion and religion needs to stay out of the government. Period.

7/4/07 8:16 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

Further, I never said that we must live with it. What I mean is that we have always lived with it and are still living with it and will continue to live with it and that is not a problem for me. I do not presume to own the discourse with those with whom I argue, even when they try to own it. My idea of confrontation is to disrupt, resist, but not to own. I find your posture on this issue as ideologically charged as those with whom you disagree. And for me, that is a cause for worry. I resist and strongly confront all idealogues. And frankly, your ostensible totalizing ant-faith fundamentalism is worrisome.

Why is it worrisome? See, this bugs me. It bugs me a lot. Because it comes off as way arrogant.

Yeah, I'm pretty anti-religious (or, perhaps, anti-American-style religion; my European friends are often fairly surprised at the strength of my feelings until I point out, y'know, how religion in America effects the entire social fabric of our country and my personal experiences with religion (and those of my friends) since coming out as an atheist; at least in one place I was physically attacked by religious people for daring to walk through a picket line in front of a family planning clinic . . . and I thought Maria was being reactionary for wanting someone to go with her!).

In America, religion does great damage. It is a powerful force for bigotry, racism, sexism, homophobia, war, torture. All that dominionism stuff BBIM mentioned? That's real.

But you're worried about me?! Whoa.

7/4/07 8:32 am  
Anonymous ted said...

Sadie: It's pretty assumptious--claiming that "this book will transform your life".

I've read many a volume, both christian oriented and otherwise that have made the same claim. Can't say that many of them actually have though.

My mum has always said; "Self praise is no recommendation" and for the most part, I think she's right.

It's not right for Christians to want a theocracy. Pluralism is the absolute way to go.
The government needs to stay out of religion and religion needs to stay out of the government. Period.


Couldn't agree more. And very well said...:)

7/4/07 11:29 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

Mine will be in tomorrow.

7/4/07 11:45 am  
Blogger L>T said...

I really understand where Chris B. is coming from.
I've also felt the arrogance of American style religion.

What is most important to me is humankind moving ahead & reaching our full potentual. The only way we can do that is to get rid of the bullshit propoganda (to put it bluntly)
I really think that's what we are all trying to do here. I find it very encouraging.

7/4/07 4:33 pm  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

Mine is up here.

7/4/07 5:05 pm  
Anonymous ted said...

Thanks for reminding me KA, mine is here...

7/4/07 10:31 pm  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

l>t--
I think Christians need to step up to the plate and rebuke Christians that are misusing the name of Christ, quite frankly and it's Biblical to do that--

8/4/07 12:32 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

I think Christians need to step up to the plate and rebuke Christians that are misusing the name of Christ, quite frankly and it's Biblical to do that--

And then in her own blog, she says, because I checked to see if she was gonna put up or shut up:

"Our job is to reclaim America for Christ, whatever the cost. As the vice regents of God, we are to exercise godly dominion and influence over our neighborhoods, our schools, our government, our literature and arts, our sports arenas, our entertainment media, our news media, our scientific endeavors -- in short, over every aspect and institution of human society." - James D. Kennedy

Emphasis not added, I should note, tho' I think it's D. James Kennedy.

Kennedy is opposed to gay marriage. He's is for a law that would impeach judges for not "who fail to acknowledge 'God as the sovereign source of law, liberty, or government'" and "limit the power of the federal judiciary to rule in religious liberty cases" as quoted by that Wikipedia article. He's a young earth creationist, saying evolution lead to the Nazi holocaust. He is a dominionist, and a big shot in the Moral Majority.

When a person says that Christians needs to rebuke folks for misusing the name of Christ, it's fair to ask them who'd be rebuked and why. I think that Sadie has answered this question fairly conclusively by now.

8/4/07 4:15 am  
Blogger L>T said...

chris, yeah, that's one of the problems of being a Christian. You are boxed into a mindset that has definate limits.

What I mean is this:

Speaking of my own experience, when I was struggling to come to terms with what I saw as fundimental problems of Christianity, when I was trying to "walk the walk" & be true to myself & humanity, as a born again Christian...
My conclusion was, after many years of trying to come to terms with it, that Christianity had too many contradictions for me to come to any real unbiased honest opinion that I could live with.
(& I'm not saying that I'm there yet or have all the answers, either.)

What I would like to say to sadie is, "Look, your Christian leaders don't have all the answers either. If you look to them for the answers (or guidence?), you are just going to keep going around in circles."

8/4/07 5:30 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

Chris - to be fair, I got Kennedy's name wrong too. I've corrected it on both my posts.
Let's not dog-pile on sadie: we finally find a moderate xtian who's willing to speak up on the issue.

ted: I can't find your post on it. Your link goes to the 'thinker' post.

8/4/07 6:02 am  
Anonymous remy said...

Chris,
I went to Sadie's blog. She says she is GOING to write about Kennedy's quote. I am not as forgiving as KA but we shall have to wait and see what she says.

8/4/07 8:26 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

L>T, KA and Remy,

Y'all are more tolerant than I am, hehe. Perhaps I've just seen this sort of thing enough to be deeply suspicious, but IMO she has made her positions abundantly clear and I feel she's trying to take y'all for a ride. But, I'll not say more about it here, tho' it's possible I'll post about it on my own blog. ;)

8/4/07 9:00 am  
Blogger L>T said...

Chris, nobodys taking me for a ride. :)

I choose not to be suspicious about sadies motivations. Because, I understand what it's like "in the box" when your honest motivations come in conflict with the religion you've put your trust into.
tha's all I'm saying.

8/4/07 11:54 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

Chris - likewise, I don't take rides from strangers. ;)
I've seen my share of bloggers too: & I fancy I've gotten a bit better at scoping people out.
Time will tell. I give folks the benefit of the doubt - but that doesn't make me naive, just optimistic.

8/4/07 12:03 pm  
Anonymous remy said...

Chris,
I'd love to take a ride on Sadie. Oops, is that inappropriate? Sorry.

From what I've read the Christian in question is a la cart; keep the warm fuzzy bits, jetison the blood-n-guts.

I am baiting my breath 'til the thoughts on Kennedy find me.

8/4/07 12:50 pm  
Blogger MichaelBains said...

"There can be only one."

In my head, I always hear Off with her Head! following that Highlander mantra.

Sinclair Lewis's quote has nailed it: wrapped in the flag and a cross... blech...... Cool song though!

8/4/07 8:48 pm  
Blogger BEAJ said...

Hey Beep, your wisdom would be appreciated here.
It is one of your favourite topics.

8/4/07 11:31 pm  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

Chris--you're so one dimensional sometimes. I put that quote up to blog against it. I was just letting people meditate on it's words before I rip it apart.
I got the quote off of KA's blog--go read on his blog what I said about it--and said about you too.
:)

9/4/07 1:56 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

Sadie,

Well, I GUESS I could have posted the bit where you praised the Republican war effort and condemned the Democrats for wanting to use the power of purse to end the war (the specific reason, I should note, for Congress having the power of purse), oh, but you took that one down and then put up a whining post instead about how your blog isn't the right place to talk about politics. *rolls eyes*

However about this. If you're so into critiquing fundie Christian nutjobs, tell us where you do it. Show us the record of your confrontations with the whackjobs out there that want to turn American into the Kingdom of God. Convince me you're not playing the nice Christian card in order to covertly witness to us godless atheists, or at least trying to get us to soften our attacks against the massively and wildly corrupt mainstream Christianity in America by demonstrating that you do actually confront the people in your religion that are wrecking the world.

Heck, even show me where your church opposes a right-wing agenda. Indeed, I'd be interested in hearing about your church -- specifics-wise. It's name, website, denomination, affiliations, etc. Let's take a look at the real church you really attend. As you've said, I'm a veritable open book. I'm one-dimensional (I'm sure you said that full of Christian charity this Easter season). So, open up the book, Sadie. Where do you attend church? What's your denomination? Affiliations? Do tell.

9/4/07 2:46 am  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

Chris,
How can I trust you? If I point you to a website, how do I know you're not some Christian hater that's going to come stalk me or my family or bomb my church? You're certainly hostile enough, sometimes.

I'm one-dimensional (I'm sure you said that full of Christian charity this Easter season)

Don't call me to a standard you don't subscribe to yourself, friend. I'll work my own 'Christian charity' out with my Lord--with fear and tembling because I believe he is my God--so I'll thank you not to dress me down with my own faith.
Convince me you're not some psycho Christian-hater and I'll point you to my church's website (which just got a sweet overhaul lately and I'm proud of it.)

9/4/07 5:27 am  
Blogger L>T said...

sadie, HUH?

Honestly, you don't really think Chris might be a psycho Christian hater who'd stalk you & bomb your church, do you?

Please! What kind of fear-mongering propaganda are you being taught?

I haven't seen where Chris has threatened you in any way. ???

9/4/07 10:09 am  
Anonymous remy said...

The last church that I can recall being bombed in America was by racist xians. Please correct me if I have got this wrong.

9/4/07 11:26 am  
Anonymous JollyRoger said...

I'd like to quote Brother Tim, of the Blog of Revelation. Here s what a true believer in Christ has to say about the Dominionists of Jesusistan.

The people you have quoted are NOT Christians. They are psuedo-christians with a fascist agenda. Some may call it theocracy, but it is fascism, pure and simple. The people you quoted are the bin Ladens of christianity.

I too, am against theocracy, but for different reasons. The carnal nature of man will not allow for a true theocracy. In a TRUE theocracy, especially a Christian Theocracy, there would be no poverty, hunger, homelessness, political cronyism, bigotry, hatred, or capital punishment. Justice would be meeted out equally, to all.

Reed, Robertson, Dodson, Falwell, et al, spew from their mouths more vile bile than any 'terrorist' I can think of. Not only have they hi-jacked the Republican Party, they are hi-jacking Christianity.

Do they honestly believe that God will be proud of them for hi-jacking Jesus????????

9/4/07 1:03 pm  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

sadie, HUH?

Honestly, you don't really think Chris might be a psycho Christian hater who'd stalk you & bomb your church, do you?


No. I don't. I was exaggerating but the main idea is that this is the world wide web and I don't give my address out or my real name on my own blog and yet, if I direct people I don't know to my church's web address--It's sort of letting down those personal walls that are there to protect your real life, it makes me a little nervous. Surely you can understand that?
And the other part is Chris was asking me to prove that I'm not just his self described "nice Christian"--so I was asking him to prove he's not just another Christian hater.
What is giving him my church's web address going to prove to someone who won't like a Christian anyways (because they are simply, a Christian)? I'm not saying Chris is that 1 dimensional but he's given me zero signs he's open minded to the idea of respecting me.

Please! What kind of fear-mongering propaganda are you being taught?

I haven't seen where Chris has threatened you in any way. ???


Settle down, sistah. This was actually an exchange between Chris and I. I'm thinkin' we should have kept it on our emails. I need a whistle to blow when I'm getting dogpiled.
*wink*

9/4/07 1:26 pm  
Blogger L>T said...

Yet, if I direct people I don't know to my church's web address--It's sort of letting down those personal walls that are there to protect your real life, it makes me a little nervous. Surely you can understand that?
sure sadie, I understand, but why didn't you just say that in the first place?
Why say something you didn't mean?

Settle down, sistah. This was actually an exchange between Chris and I. I'm thinkin' we should have kept it on our emails.I need a whistle to blow when I'm getting dogpiled.

You come over to an atheist blog & say exaggerated stuff you admit you don't mean then complain that you are being picked on?

Hmmm...what was that you were saying, Chris?

9/4/07 2:53 pm  
Anonymous ted said...

Sheez..! I go and spend a couple of days with my kids and miss everything. Oh well, I probably had more fun with my kids anyway. Who am I kidding? I definitely had more fun...:)

But seriously guys, Sadie's ok. She's quite happy to discuss and defend her position against any number of us nasty atheists (that's a joke...:)) and hasn't once resorted to name calling (that I've seen) like so many do. I don't think we need to ask any more than that, we're only exercising our intellects here, after all. What's to discuss if we all agree?

9/4/07 3:43 pm  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

Sadie,

Uh, you're suggesting I'm a mass murderer looking for a church to bomb?! This is either a fantastic misconception of my character (for the record, I don't think violence solves any problems and is only justifiable for purposes of immediate self-defense -- I would not attack anyone, physically, for any reason whatsoever, save immediate self-defense, and this is a position I've publicly held for many years) or just a cowardly way of having to reveal your real beliefs.

I'll leave to the readers to decide which one it is.

I will go on to say that's fucked up and insulting. Again, however, I'm sure you're saying I'm a mass murdering looking to kill people in the nicest way possible.

9/4/07 4:15 pm  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

Er, a cowardly way of avoiding having to reveal your real beliefs.

9/4/07 5:14 pm  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

Chris--
You don't actually read everyone's comments do you? That's bad form in an ongoing, back & forth style conversation between muliple people. I won't repeat anything I've already said--you'll have to go back and look.

Thanks, Ted. I had a wonderful Easter too. I came here to kill time during my baby's nap and before we went to dinner at the in-law's.

l>t--
I apologize for trying to make this discussion lighter rather than so serious. I don't think sarcasm translates very well here so I'll try to keep it in check.
Bottom line: Sharing personal information like addresses and phone numbers over the internet scares me.
Period.
I don't know Chris--or you, so why would I feel comfortable directing you to my church that shows a physical address? Maybe after I get to know your character's a little better?
You're going to blame me for that?

Chris said...
Er, a cowardly way of avoiding having to reveal your real beliefs

And you're going to have to apologize for that one if I ever do feel comfortable enough to give you my church's home address--don't assume so much, Chris.
It makes you look foolish when you stare the facts in the face.
And for the record, Beep already asked me what denomination I am--too bad nobody noticed.

10/4/07 2:03 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

Sadie Lou,

Oh, I read what you said. So I also read that the person you said it to was, like, "Why didn't you just say that"?

It's also the most absurd sort of defense to say, "It was just a joke." Racist jokes are still a joke, f'rex. So, when you call someone a potential mass murderer, saying afterwards it was just "exaggeration" doesn't dismiss that you said what you said. If I call someone a nigger and then say, "Oh, no, I was just bein' sarcastic!" I'd still be a racist pig. When you call someone a mass murdering stalker with a bomb? Well, that's offensive.

But I'm sure you meant it in the nicest, most charitably Christian way possible.

I'll also point out that it's absurd that you're so careful about your information. Sadie, on one of your blogs, you give out WAY MORE than enough information for anyone to hunt you down. You're a licensed child care provider and have put your license number on your blog. With that a a couple of calls to various state agencies, anyone could get the address of the license holder as well as the address of their business, which you then say is also your home. If you're seriously gonna say you're worried about me hunting you down or harassing you in any fashion whatsoever, well, take that down. Seriously. Just some advice.

However, having just dimissed the notion you're against giving out delicate personal information (your sites are, after all, peppered with it), I'm still curious about your church.

10/4/07 2:26 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

Beep:
The Wikpedia entry on Dominionism is a bit reductionistic. It is both more and less than what's being taken here.

Essentially Christian Dominionism aims much higher than merely politics. It is the idea of taking all thoughts captive to Christ (2 Cor. 10:3-5). There is a broad range of "Dominionists" and the ones mentioned are just one segment (as with Atheists). Probably the most broadly accepted views of Christian Dominionism is that advanced by Abraham Kuyper.

10/4/07 4:59 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

Kuyper divides it up into three spheres of sovereignty - the individual (including family), the church & the state. Most Christians agree with him that there is some overlap but that there is within these three spheres some things that the other spheres are not allowed to infringe upon.

Relevant to your discussion, most Christian dominionists belief that freedom of religion or freedom not to have religion falls within the realm of individual (family) sovereignty and that neither the state nor the church has the right to coercively interfere with that.

10/4/07 5:02 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

Relevant to your discussion, most Christian dominionists belief that freedom of religion or freedom not to have religion falls within the realm of individual (family) sovereignty and that neither the state nor the church has the right to coercively interfere with that.

This is one of those bizarre statements that makes a weird sense, when viewed standing on your head while drunk.

Not gadfly's statement, per se, but the dominionist belief that it is possible to have a Christian state, with Christian laws, with state imposed Christian holidays and ceremonies (such as school prayer), to be denied offices of importance, and face systemized discrimination but think that isn't coercive.

Makes me wonder how many of them wouldn't find living under Sharia law coercive even tho' it's clear in Sharia law that you can't coerce a Christian to convert. Somehow, I suspect they'd find it pretty coercive. ;)

10/4/07 5:27 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

Sadie:
How can I trust you? If I point you to a website, how do I know you're not some Christian hater that's going to come stalk me or my family or bomb my church? You're certainly hostile enough, sometimes.
Maybe I should just butt out, but IHMO, I think you owe Chris an apology. That is significantly lacking in any grace whatsoever. Perhaps you should use more emoticons, no?
& as I understand it, a church is supposed to be open to all comers, regardless of chances. 1 would think that your deity would protect it, no?
& I would like to see any stats in re: any sort of non-believers indulging in this behavior.
Don't call me to a standard you don't subscribe to yourself, friend. I'll work my own 'Christian charity' out with my Lord--with fear and trembling because I believe he is my God--so I'll thank you not to dress me down with my own faith.
Again, sorely disappointed.
This is a tactic regularly employed. "Don't judge me according to my own standards" is an insufficient defense. Especially when religious folks say 1 thing & do another.

10/4/07 6:58 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

gadfly:
Not to put too fine a point on it, but are you nuts?
You cite someone who died 87 years ago (a Dutchman, no less), who also said, & I quote:
"Kuyper famously said, "No single piece of our mental world is to be hermetically sealed off from the rest, and there is not a square inch in the whole domain of our human existence over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry: 'Mine!'"
What his impact on Rushdooney's POV is, is tenuous at best.
The dominionists had best keep their filthy hands outta my govt. They can just sit back & wait for it.
Otherwise, there'll be hell to pay.
'Reductionist' my homesick ass.

10/4/07 7:06 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

I'd really rather she just told me her church. I don't need an apology, hehe. I just feel with increasing strength that she's hiding information about her real religious beliefs.

I say this not simply because I'm hostile towards religious folks. (To some extent, I know I am. I feel this is fair because so many religious folks are hostile towards me, and I include Sadie Lou in this number, I should add.) I'm certainly suspicious of them because I've been in the position a number of times of some Christian going on about how they're different, and their church is different, and then I find out what church they go to and it's always this fundie setup, talking about how wrong gay marriage is, how wonderful Bush is, with links to the Promise Keepers and the rest.

What specifically made me realize that Sadie Lou was hiding her beliefs, however, is when she posted to her blog about how WRONG it was for those filthy Democrats to use the power of the purse to defund the war (which ignores that's why Congress has the power of the purse, to do precisely that sort of thing, but whatever), along with praise for the war and Bush and Co. I said something along the lines that she was a hypocrite warmonger, and so much for the nice Christian routine. I checked, some days later, to see if there'd been any responses to my post -- not to post to her blog, again, which I haven't done since my last post there -- but the post she'd made had been removed. It felt to me like she was hiding her real beliefs, which I've seen done with other people in this sort of discussion (in the flesh, when I start to talk about religion, which is fairly often because I'm writing a book about religion, I always *start* by asking the other person's religious position and clearly say I'm a fairly militant atheist . . . and I do this because of the number of times I've been suckered into talking about religion by people who were NOT forthcoming about their religious beliefs).

So, I decided to ask her for concrete information about her religion -- her actual church (I asked this rather than just denomination because there can be considerable variance between churches inside a given denomination). The method in which she told me she wasn't going to say was a combination of controversial and deceptive. (Deceptive because she, fairly demonstrably, is fairly open about her personal information. She has given a license number for her family care business, the city where she lives, the names of several of her friends, etc., etc. She has already spilled the beans about a lot of her personal data, but suddenly with her church she's afraid of giving data out? C'mon.) But the controversial thing she has said about me being a potential stalking bomber -- ugh -- has handily changed the point.

I don't care if she apologizes. But I'd still be interested to know what specific church she goes to. I feel she's hiding things, not personal things, normal things that normal people reveal in the course of normal conversation: where do you go to church, Sadie Lou?

10/4/07 7:29 am  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

Chris,
I truly am sorry I suggested you could be a mad Christian-hater/bomber. Even if I was half joking. I say "half" because sometimes your hostility seriously makes me flush with anger and that's letting you get the better of me instead of just stepping back and letting go a deep breath.

Here:
http://www.nccfweb.com/Site/Home.html

Have at it.
Unfortunately, the mission statement is in PDF format and we can't copy and paste unless you guys know a secret on how to do that.

10/4/07 9:52 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

Chris - well, to be fair, she's apologized. I wasn't aware of the ongoing discussion as per the war. I wasn't even aware of the anti-Dem slant (which now, I can't check either of your stories - now it's he said/she said, literally).
& it could be that you got her to reconsider her stance (though I'm guessing).
& truthfully, I know I've gotten a bit more careful about what I tell folks on the blogosphere.

sadie - Chris brings up a point you should consider. You have kids & a day care business. I can fairly guess that you're safe from all us 'mad atheist bombers' (I'm kiddin', dear!) - but who knows what strange freak might get that info by inadvertently stumbling onto it.
You're not the 1st person I've advised NOT to be too free w/their personal info, BTW. Please consider that.

10/4/07 11:23 am  
Anonymous ted said...

KA: & as I understand it, a church is supposed to be open to all comers, regardless of chances.

I once blogged about Melbourne's head Presbyterian Church because they hung a "Trespasses Will Be Prosecuted" sign out and hired security guards to look serious during a protest. How do they work that one out?

10/4/07 2:46 pm  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

The short version. ;)

Sadie Lou,

Apology accepted. Everyone gets mad. And as far as I can tell, the church isn't a fundie nutjob church, hehe.

KA,

Yeah, I was just charting the causes of my discontent, not trying to say she's a horrible person for deleting a conversation or whatever. Probably the only reason I specifically brought it up is because the post she replaced the deleted post with mentioned me specifically, which sorta makes it fair game in my book.

10/4/07 2:48 pm  
Anonymous ted said...

Sadie: Forgot to mention. I have to agree with Chris and KA about your details being available out there. If you are concerned, then you need to deal with that.

What KA says goes for me too: You're not the 1st person I've advised NOT to be too free w/their personal info, BTW. Please consider that.

10/4/07 2:50 pm  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

Ted:
I once blogged about Melbourne's head Presbyterian Church because they hung a "Trespasses Will Be Prosecuted" sign out and hired security guards to look serious during a protest. How do they work that one out?
Hmmm....sounds like the song 'I'm a Believer' isn't in their hymnals. Did they have a lotta desecrations, or something?

Chris:
Yeah, I was just charting the causes of my discontent, not trying to say she's a horrible person for deleting a conversation or whatever.
I gotcha. I've been known to blow my fuse more'n once. Just ask Beep.
Probably the only reason I specifically brought it up is because the post she replaced the deleted post with mentioned me specifically, which sorta makes it fair game in my book.
Fair enough.

10/4/07 3:26 pm  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

KA
Re: Not to put too fine a point on it, but are you nuts?

Hi KA - I see you haven't mellowed any since I have been on Easter break. Now if you will actually read what I said.

Re: You cite someone who died 87 years ago .... who also said, & I quote: "No single piece of our mental world is to be hermetically sealed off from the rest, and there is not a square inch in the whole domain of our human existence over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry: 'Mine!'"

Exactly - I said that Wikpedia's definition of "Dominionism" was too reduced. Dominionists - more precisely Christian Reconstructionists" aim for much more than just a few governmental functions - they aim for the reconstruction of the entire sphere of human existence.

10/4/07 9:22 pm  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

KA
As for Kuyper being dead - so is Rushdoony and yes he was heavily indebted to Kuyper, both he and Kuyper were even more heavily dependent on another dead guy - John Calvin (a Frenchman of all things).

Re: The dominionists had best keep their filthy hands outta my govt. They can just sit back & wait for it. Otherwise, there'll be hell to pay. 'Reductionist' my homesick ass.

Now that doesn't sound very pluralistic KA and it really does sound very totalitarian. What ever happened to "our" government and "democracy" where "majority rules"?

Are you in favor of actively suppressing a religious group's right to pursue political power?????

10/4/07 9:30 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE gadfly:

"more precisely Christian Reconstructionists" aim for much more than just a few governmental functions - they aim for the reconstruction of the entire sphere of human existence."

Which makes them as nutty and as dangerous as any other religion, in my not so humble opinion.

Nothing is more offputting and diabolical than people who wish to impose a theocratic dictatorship masquerading as an act of benevolence.

Oh, and hi everyone. I am back.. I ate the easter bunny. He was delicious with sage and onions.

10/4/07 9:33 pm  
Anonymous gadfly said...

Beep
Re: Nothing is more offputting and diabolical than people who wish to impose a theocratic dictatorship masquerading as an act of benevolence.

That's a pretty long jump - from seeking to reconstruct the sphere of human existence to equating that to a theocratic dictatorship - something which neither Rushdooney, Kuyper, Calvin or anyone else that I know in the Reconstructionist camp have ever said or intended.

It seems a lot more "scientific" to know what people actually teach before you make such statements.

Rushdooney, for example, has about as much to do with Pat Robertson (both believe that Christians should participate in government) as Anne Coulter has with Maureen Dowd (both believe in women's right to vote, participate in political process, etc.).

10/4/07 11:05 pm  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

KA--Thanks for the concern. I am in the process of changing a few things as per the suggestions made here.

Chris said...
Sadie Lou,

Apology accepted. Everyone gets mad. And as far as I can tell, the church isn't a fundie nutjob church, hehe.


I'm glad my church passed the "Fundie Nut Job" test.

10/4/07 11:36 pm  
Anonymous ted said...

KA: Did they have a lotta desecrations, or something?

None whatsoever. It was purely a precautionary thing, or so we were lead to believe...

11/4/07 12:25 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

gadfly:
As for Kuyper being dead - so is Rushdoony and yes he was heavily indebted to Kuyper, both he and Kuyper were even more heavily dependent on another dead guy - John Calvin (a Frenchman of all things).
Can you perhaps establish said link?
Are you in favor of actively suppressing a religious group's right to pursue political power?????
Have you heard of the Separation of Church & State? Like they don't have enough say in our lives already.
That's a pretty long jump - from seeking to reconstruct the sphere of human existence to equating that to a theocratic dictatorship - something which neither Rushdooney, Kuyper, Calvin or anyone else that I know in the Reconstructionist camp have ever said or intended.
Wow. I'd advise you do some more research. Standard fare - marginalization thru re-framing.
Here:
http://www.theocracywatch.org/biblical_law2.htm
These people are on record as stating as much.

11/4/07 2:06 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

Further on this:
Are you in favor of actively suppressing a religious group's right to pursue political power?????
I oppose this group's 'right' as vigorously as I would oppose a UFOlogist's 'right', or a KKK member's, or a Nazi's, or a Mansonite's.
I am not in favor of elected crazies. Putting the lunatics in charge of Bedlam.
Now that doesn't sound very pluralistic KA and it really does sound very totalitarian. What ever happened to "our" government and "democracy" where "majority rules"?
You obviously don't have a clue as to how this country is run.
A. It's a federal republic,
B. The individual has as much say as your precious 'majority',
C. These nutjobs are ON RECORD as to re-instituting OT punishments for 'sins', and
D. As a liberal, I didn't sign any damned memo, or see a job description that entails my allowing the crazies carte blanch.

So you can put that in your pipe & smoke it.

11/4/07 5:46 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

KA
Re: Can you perhaps establish said link?

This is just a quickie... Check out - The Meaning of Theocracy, by Rousas Rushdooney,

http://www.chalcedon.edu/articles/article.php?ArticleID=2718

"Few things are more commonly misunderstood than the nature and meaning of theocracy. It is commonly assumed to be a dictatorial rule by self-appointed men who claim to rule for God. In reality, theocracy in Biblical law is the closest thing to a radical libertarianism that can be had."

"There are thus a variety of spheres of government under God. These spheres are limited, interdependent, and under God's sovereign government and law-word. They cannot legitimately exceed their sphere. The legitimate financial powers of all are limited. The state has a small head tax. The tithe finances all other spheres."

This language (sphere sovereignty), for any who has read Kuyper, shows Kuyper's immediate influence. For any more extended proof I would have to refer you to his published works.

11/4/07 5:58 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

KA
typo - "carte blanche"

Re: Federal Republic vice democracy

Re:You obviously don't have a clue as to how this country is run.
A. It's a federal republic,
B. The individual has as much say as your precious 'majority',
C. These nutjobs are ON RECORD as to re-instituting OT punishments for 'sins', and
D. As a liberal, I didn't sign any damned memo, or see a job description that entails my allowing the crazies carte blanch.

So you can put that in your pipe & smoke it.


LOL - That's hilarious KA - ideological liberals trot out the idea that politicians should govern in accordance with the will of the majority because it is a democracy when they want it that way, and then you turn around and tell me I don't have a clue because it is really a federal republic.

The hypocrisy is exquisite.

11/4/07 6:10 am  
Blogger MichaelBains said...

Are you in favor of actively suppressing a religious group's right to pursue political power???

I know of no sane person with a shred of familiarity with the Constitution (of the U.S. at any rate) who is not in favor of such an antithesis to Liberty.

Coolish, KA. You answered both of the sillier statements which had me LOL at their even being asked.

Glad that E-Rabbit was tasty, Beep! I'm pretty sure my E-dog was kosher anyhow. Not so sure 'bout the salsa I put on it though...

11/4/07 6:12 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

gadfly:

My comment > "Nothing is more offputting and diabolical than people who wish to impose a theocratic dictatorship masquerading as an act of benevolence."

You consider this a large leap. I don't. Monotheistic religions ARE at their foundations theocracies. They are the government of people with a strictly enforced hierarchy of supposed god at the top, followed by its claimed enlightened members who claim to know the will of this god, then those who do the will of the "enlightened members" by keeping the rest of the population obedient and subservient. That's a theocracy in a nutshell.

What makes it dicataorial is the very supposed nature of the supposed leader. A supposedly all powerful, all knowing entity is the epitome of a dictator. That this supposed dictator is also supposedly omnibenevolent only adds to the malordorous actions which can be perpetrated assuming the will of this dictator.

A supposed omnibenevolent dictator has carte blanche to consider that killing or oppressing people is for their own good, as omnibenevolence becomes whatever the dictator or his henchmen consider it to be.

Both islam and christianity fit this pattern historically.

11/4/07 8:02 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

gadfly:
typo - "carte blanche"
So what?
LOL - That's hilarious KA - ideological liberals trot out the idea that politicians should govern in accordance with the will of the majority because it is a democracy when they want it that way, and then you turn around and tell me I don't have a clue because it is really a federal republic.
I might point you to the branches of govt. - electoral colleges have been known to overturn election results.
I might also point you to examples where the majority was in favor, but was overturned by the Supreme Court. Or Congress.
I might also point you to multiple quotes of the founders:
"In a society under the forms of which the stronger faction can readily unite and oppress the weaker, anarchy may as truly be said to reign as in a state of nature. - James Madison, Federalist No. 52, February 8, 1788"
"The passions, therefore, not the reason, of the public would sit in judgment. But it is the reason, alone, of the public, that ought to control and regulate the government. The passions ought to be controlled and regulated by the government. - James Madison, Federalist No. 49, February 5, 1788"
"There is no maxim in my opinion which is more liable to be misapplied, and which therefore needs elucidation than the current one that the interest of the majority is the political standard of right and wrong.... In fact it is only reestablishing under another name and a more specious form, force as the measure of right.... - James Madison, letter to James Monroe, October 5, 1786"
The hypocrisy is exquisite.
You can play w/that red herring all you like - all you'll get are smelly hands.
I find it vastly amusing that you seem to think 'mob' rule is the final arbiter - when the majority is so often wrong, it's known as a logical fallacy to appeal to numbers. Hence, the argument ad numerum.
If all it takes is for everyone to agree, then we wouldn't have 3 branches of govt., using checks & balances, would we?

11/4/07 10:41 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

gadfly:
This language (sphere sovereignty), for any who has read Kuyper, shows Kuyper's immediate influence. For any more extended proof I would have to refer you to his published works.
A clearer violation of SOCAS I've yet to see.
You & the rest of you Dominionist scumbags can take those spheres, & shove them right up your asses.
I don't care how much they sugar-coat their crap - it's still crap.
You want to run a country according to your book of fables? Then go establish 1 somewhere else.
I'll be damned if I let some crazy temporal-lobe epileptics take away OUR country.
Theocracies don't work - they never have. Even C.S Lewis was against them.

11/4/07 10:54 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

Beep
Re: .... That's a theocracy in a nutshell. (and all the rest in context)

I think you are too broad in your sweep here.

Without referring to other religions, but only to Christian theocratic principles, I think you are missing the primary point.

Christian theocratic (reconstructionist) reasoning is concerned with two primary principles - the unmediated relationship of every individual before God and the universal problem of sin.

In the first case, it is the primary concern that each person understands that they are responsible before God to honor Him in their lives and actions within the sphere of their own individual sovereignty. They have liberty of conscience within that regard and are directly accountable for to Him for how that freedom is exercised.

In the second case, Christian Reconstructionist are always concerned that government tends toward replacing God rather than ruling under Him. The effects of sin in all human beings is that we desire to be like God (Gen. 3:5). Thus the natural tendency of Government is to interfere with and impinge upon the freedom of the other spheres (individual/family & church).

Christian Reconstructionists therefore are among the most vehement in advocating limited government, with balance of powers distributed so as to mitigate the tendency of Governments to usurp God's direct rule of His people.

So... as I said before, I think you need to differentiate among those whom you oppose so that the actual issues are not confused.

11/4/07 11:24 pm  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

typos - "for to Him" = "to Him", "Reconstructionist are" = "Reconstructionists are"

11/4/07 11:28 pm  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

KA
re: A clearer violation of SOCAS I've yet to see.

I told you that it was a quickie... I have not gone out and tried to find some specific quote which links Calvin, Kuyper & Rushdooney - something which is self-evident to any who have ever read them.

Kuyper & Rushdooney are "Calvinist" theologians - which means their overall theology is "Reformed" as opposed to Roman Catholic, Lutheran or Baptist (etc.)

Calvin's best known work is the Institutes of the Christian Religion which (in the preface) was addressed to the King of France for the purpose of explaining to him what Biblical Christianity is all about. One section of that work (in Book IV) has to do with Christian views of Government, the authority and responsibility of magistrates, the limits of that authority & the responsibilities and limits of obedience individuals should render them.

I have no idea what SOCAS means but it is probably not complimentary. But so be it.

It is amusing that the more ill-informed you are, the louder you seem to express your opinions.

12/4/07 12:05 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

Gadfly:
SOCAS = Separation of Church & State.
It is amusing that the more ill-informed you are, the louder you seem to express your opinions.
Like most religious nutters, you disregard all points, gloss over the quotes I provide, & poison the well.
I do not care that there are 'nuanced' Reconstructionists. I do not care that you claim there are more 'liberal' sorts as opposed to 'right-wingers'. These people are on record as to their specific aims: you can bet your bottom dollar that they'll be quick to strip out anything 'secular' in a heartbeat, if they come to power. There'll be 'atheist colonies' much akin to leper colonies. There'll be gay concentration camps, secret tribunals, children taken away from their gay adopted parents, 'faith' trials for the testing of infidels.
As a fellow American, you should be outraged, you should be against this - not providing mealy-mouthed apologia for them.
& before you laugh & dismiss all this w/a wave of your hand: show me a theocracy that has EVER kept the interest of the individual first.

12/4/07 2:17 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

KA
SOCAS - thanks for clearing that up.

Now, exactly where in the constitution does it say that laws may not be enacted upon religious grounds or principles?

Where does it say that a religious party, like say, the Whigs, is not allowed to campaign against Thomas Jefferson because they considered him a heretic?

Why is Lev. 25:10 inscribed on the Liberty Bell and why is "In God We Trust" the national motto of the US?

Why did John Jay (our first Chief Justice) say that "Providence has given to our people the choice of their rulers, and it is the duty as well as the privilege and interest of our Christian nation to select and prefer Christians for their rulers?"

What did John Adams (2nd President) say that "Religion and virtue are the ONLY foundations, not only of republicanism and of all free government, but of social felicity under all governments and in all the combinations of human society"?

Furthermore - how do you explain this- J. Adams also said "Our constitution was made for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other"?

So.. KA ... how do you maintain that we are all "religious nutters" when virtually everything that is being advanced by Christian Reconstructionists (including SOCAS) was intrinsic to the formulation of the Constitution and our Federal system from the very beginning?

12/4/07 4:20 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

KA
Re; show me a theocracy that has EVER kept the interest of the individual first

Show me any government that has EVER kept the interest of the individual first.

Governments exist to promote the interests of the nation not the individual. Some governments have been better than others at preserving the "rights" but not the "interests" of the individual, and certainly never has any government ever kept the interests of the individual "first."

All you have to do is look at the idea of a military "draft" to show that the "interests" of the individual have not been kept "first" even in OUR country.

Think about such things as "eminent domain" and apply your standard to that.

12/4/07 4:31 am  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

gadfly--
Would you be interested in forcing people to follow God's laws?

12/4/07 4:51 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

SL
Re: Would you be interested in forcing people to follow God's laws?

The question more appropriately should be phrased - "should the moral framework of God's laws be used to formulate laws appropriate for our time and society?" The answer to that would be yes.

Any question of this type has to avoid the bumper sticker mentality that is prevalent on both sides.

For example - many of God's laws are mandatory only for God's people - like Baptism. Some are mandatory for all who bear God's image (Thou shall not kill). Keeping the Sabbath Holy has a principle of society managementt that has different but complementary applications across the structures of society.

So... forcing people to follow God's laws applies in some areas but not all - I believe abortion for convenience is murder and violates the command thou shall not kill. That is an example that I believe should be encoded into law. So called "blue laws" or laws governing the misnamed "victimless crimes" requires more nuanced discussion.

This is really too big a topic for a comment.

12/4/07 5:57 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

typo - managementt = management

12/4/07 5:59 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

gadfly:
Now, exactly where in the constitution does it say that laws may not be enacted upon religious grounds or principles?
It doesn’t. Likewise, it states no religious oaths are required for office.
Where does it say that a religious party, like say, the Whigs, is not allowed to campaign against Thomas Jefferson because they considered him a heretic?
That falls under free speech, not freedom of religion.
Why is Lev. 25:10 inscribed on the Liberty Bell and why is "In God We Trust" the national motto of the US?
There’s no rule that stipulates a secular government can’t use a religious motto. ‘In god we trust’ isn’t the national motto, it was put on the paper money in 1957, & the coinage didn’t show it until the 1860’s.
Why did John Jay (our first Chief Justice) say that "Providence has given to our people the choice of their rulers, and it is the duty as well as the privilege and interest of our Christian nation to select and prefer Christians for their rulers?"
That was his opinion. Note that when the issue of Muslims getting elected was raised,
"Some early opponents of the Constitution attacked it for Article VI, which prohibits religious tests for national office, precisely on the ground that it made room for Muslims to become lawmakers. Defenders of the Constitution, however, argued that this was a good thing, not something to be feared.
"The issue came up most directly in the North Carolina ratifying convention of 1788. One speaker asked whether the absence of religious tests might allow "Pagans, Deists, and Mahometans [to] come among us." To which James Iredell, a fervent supporter of the Constitution and later a Supreme Court justice, replied: "How is it possible to exclude any set of men" from office, "without taking away that principle of religious freedom which we ourselves so warmly contend for?"
What did John Adams (2nd President) say that "Religion and virtue are the ONLY foundations, not only of republicanism and of all free government, but of social felicity under all governments and in all the combinations of human society"?
Sure, he said that. However, from the Wiki entry:” Adams rejected most Christian theology but supported Christian ethics and thought it was good that most other people were religious.[37] John Quincy Adams wrote a treatise against Islam.[38]”
Furthermore - how do you explain this- J. Adams also said "Our constitution was made for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other"?
From the same fellow who signed the Treaty of Tripoli (Article 11 states that the US is NOT founded on xtian principles):
"Where do we find a precept in the Bible for Creeds, Confessions, Doctrines and Oaths, and whole carloads of other trumpery that we find religion encumbered with in these days?"
So.. KA ... how do you maintain that we are all "religious nutters" when virtually everything that is being advanced by Christian Reconstructionists (including SOCAS) was intrinsic to the formulation of the Constitution and our Federal system from the very beginning?
I said ‘most’. Everyone’s a little nuts: there’s more nuance on that than there is about folks who want to take over my country.
If you want to go-rounds on ‘original intent’, be forewarned: most of that shit is easily debunked.
So be prepared to get your ass kicked.
Here's a hint: the louder I get, the more I know on the subject.

12/4/07 6:36 am  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

You're right. It is a really big topic. But just for the sake of discussion, take your abortion issue. many nonbelievers believe abortion for the sake of convience is wrong too--so why do we have to claim that we Christians vote this way based on Christian morals--God has given unbelievers a moral standard too. I'm sure you believe that morality comes from God, right?
I do.
But plenty of unbelievers are moral--even more moral than I am sometimes.
So how do you explain this? Because they were made in God's image and he has given them common grace. So it should be said that all of have the ability to vote and pass laws based on our personal convictions, Christian or otherwise. The part that worries me is when Christians make laws that are really only designed for Christians--like teaching the Bible in school.
James Kennedy is trying to get the Bible taught in public school. What would be the benefit of this?

12/4/07 6:44 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

KA
OK - taking your previous comment
>You want to run a country according to your book of fables? Then go establish 1 somewhere else.
I'll be damned if I let some crazy temporal-lobe epileptics take away OUR country.<

You now agree that there is nothing in the constitution that prevents a religious party from seeking political power (my previous post), and that it would not be "taking away our country" because it is clear that at least some of the founding fathers of this country saw that organizing the country along a basic Christian morality was exactly what needed to be done.

So... any movement toward Christian Reconstruction would be completely in line with historical precedent and not the least needful of us going out and founding our own country.

Thanks

12/4/07 7:56 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

SL
What KA cannot believe is that what Christian Reconstructionists fear government coercive powers more than they want to control it. When it comes to moral issues, Christians should most be concerned with changing the societal environment in which government operates than seeking to impose certain moral standards by force.

It is, in this country, primarily a liberal thing to seek to accomplish cultural transformation through government decrees (growing out of the transformed role of the Supreme Court and active judiciary of the middle 20th century).

What Christians desire, or should desire, is the battle for people's minds which make Christian presuppositions generally second nature, in other words, a Christian cultural context, such as did exist in this country for nearly 200 years. The government, as governments do, simply operated within that context and people were elected by the way they responded to it.

So.. the real issue here is not primarily political but social.

If the Christian majority (if it actually does still exist) in our country would simply start acting like Christians, then most of the issues would go away.

But as long as Christian marriages, abortions, Sabbath keeping, drug use, etc. etc. etc. is indistinguishable from those who make no pretense of Christianity, then all of this fun were having here (especially with KA) is moot.

For the overwhelming majority of cases, government does not lead, it follows - when it comes to moral decisions.

As far as non-Christian morality - it is not a problem when it results in identical behavior. It just has no eternal merit.

12/4/07 8:15 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

gadfly:

RE: "Christian Reconstructionists therefore are among the most vehement in advocating limited government, with balance of powers distributed so as to mitigate the tendency of Governments to usurp God's direct rule of His people."

So, no laws based on religious laws then.

12/4/07 8:24 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

gadfly:

RE: "If the Christian majority (if it actually does still exist) in our country would simply start acting like Christians, then most of the issues would go away."

I smell a "no true scotsman fallacy" as WHO gets to decide what a REAL or a TRUE christian does? And who gets to decide what the punishments are for those who are not up to scratch.

12/4/07 8:27 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

gadfly:
You now agree that there is nothing in the constitution that prevents a religious party from seeking political power (my previous post), and that it would not be "taking away our country" because it is clear that at least some of the founding fathers of this country saw that organizing the country along a basic Christian morality was exactly what needed to be done.
Oh, now hold on a fucking second. No, I don't 'agree' at all
No, there isn't any law that forbids religious people from running for office. That would be against their 1st amendment rights.
Likewise, it would be against MY 1st amendment rights if they were to 'religionize' this country. There's a vast difference between a 'basic' set of xtian morals as opposed to your 'spheres of influence'. Note that Rush applauded both Buddhist & Muslim morals, Jefferson cut the NT (threw out the OT) & created his own bible (sans miracles), Madison clearly delineated a 'line between church & state', I could go on, but by NO means whatsoever does this coincide w/the dominionist agenda.
I note you completely ignored the Treaty of Tripoli citation, among multiple other points I've raised.
How conveniently cowardly.
So... any movement toward Christian Reconstruction would be completely in line with historical precedent and not the least needful of us going out and founding our own country.
IN LINE WITH XTIAN RECONSTRUCTION?!?!?
Wow, you do live in your own world, don't you? It's obvious that it was left deliberately ambiguous.
The SOCAS is NOT uni-directional. Most of the Founders were religious to some degree, but they founded this country on primarily SECULAR values. This was the FIRST country that had no state religion. It was DELIBERATELY done that way, after witnessing the chaos inflicted on Europe.
& after seeing how xtianity's track record in re: tolerance, there's absolutely no way that any 'xtian nation' would've ever allowed a religious clause as we have in the BOR, or deny the requirement of a religious oath. Note that YHVH, nor Mr. Mythical, or the resurrection is in ANY of the founding documents, that 'trinity' being foundational to your epistemology.
Consider yourself schooled

12/4/07 8:29 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

gadfly:
What KA cannot believe is that what Christian Reconstructionists fear government coercive powers more than they want to control it. When it comes to moral issues, Christians should most be concerned with changing the societal environment in which government operates than seeking to impose certain moral standards by force.
Oh yeah, you people have a great historical track record in that regard.
It is, in this country, primarily a liberal thing to seek to accomplish cultural transformation through government decrees (growing out of the transformed role of the Supreme Court and active judiciary of the middle 20th century).
Oh, this old tired saw. Do I hear 'activist judges' buried in there? Did you read any of those quotes I gave you? Apparently not.
Religion is to STAY out of our lives. It is up to the individual.
Oh, here's the quote for your previous question:
"All, too, will bear in mind this sacred principle, that though the will of the majority is in all cases to prevail, that will to be rightful must be reasonable; that the minority possess their equal rights, which equal law must protect, and to violate would be oppression.
Thomas Jefferson, First Inaugural Address, March 4, 1801"
What Christians desire, or should desire, is the battle for people's minds which make Christian presuppositions generally second nature, in other words, a Christian cultural context, such as did exist in this country for nearly 200 years. The government, as governments do, simply operated within that context and people were elected by the way they responded to it.
Subliminal induction, is it? & you wonder why I don't trust you people. Let's plant the seeds of presupposition, that we might reap the chaff of the uninformed.
So.. the real issue here is not primarily political but social.
& by the transitive value, the social impacts the political.
You're not my brother, nor my keeper.
Besides which, the Dominionists violate their own standard: "My kingdom not of this earth", remember?
Oh wait: the bible doesn't mean what it says.

12/4/07 8:45 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

So called "blue laws" or laws governing the misnamed "victimless crimes" requires more nuanced discussion.
Less nuanced version: "We'll discuss it (so we appear to be fair), and then we'll say NO."
You control freaks really piss me off.

12/4/07 9:48 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

Beep:
Re - smell a "no true scotsman fallacy" ...

Nope - not in the particular comments I made to SL. It was a rephrasing of Jesus' statements that we need to take the log out of our own eye before we talk about the splinter in another's. If you prefer 1Pet. 4:17 - "it is time for judgment to begin with the house of God."

Furthermore - the "true scotsman" fallacy only is applicable where there is such a thing as a "true scotsman" as opposed to a "false one." It applies only to criteria which does not properly distinguish between the two.

It is entirely right and proper for someone to be declare not a "true" Christian if they deviate from the fundamental principles of Christianity. I remember a time when a man told me that he was a "born again" Christian even though he didn't believe that Jesus was the Son of God, that the Bible was true in virtually any particular, and that God was not involved in the conduct of history at all.

When I inquired as to why he thought he was "born again" he replied that his grandmother had him baptized when he was 10 and therefore he was a "born again" Christian.

He was not and I told him so.

12/4/07 10:20 pm  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

KA
Re: This was the FIRST country that had no state religion.....there's absolutely no way that any 'xtian nation' would've ever allowed a religious clause as we have in the BOR, ...Consider yourself schooled

If this is an example of how you will school people in your Brave New World then I fear that the advance of illiteracy will be completely overwhelming.

The US was not the first Western Republic nor was it the first to incorporate Freedom of Religion and SOCAS.

That distinction belongs to the Dutch (remember that guy Kuyper? Also, Rushdooney is not an Irish name either.) Their Republic preceded ours by almost 2 centuries, they were a haven for differing religious groups, they were pioneers in Christian secular capitalism, they exerted great influence on the US through the history of New Amsterdam, and John Adams himself acknowledged that the US form of government was in many ways identical to theirs.

If you want to actually read a book on the topic try
Richard Shorto - The Island At The Center of the World:The Epic Story of Dutch Manhattan, the Forgotten Colony that Shaped America

Or do you only read bumper sticker web sites?

12/4/07 10:41 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

gadfly

RE: "If the Christian majority (if it actually does still exist) in our country would simply start acting like Christians, then most of the issues would go away."

I consider this to be an example of the fallacy because you imply that there is a defined behaviour that describes all christians. Christianity is a broad category, so to suggest that if all christians started acting like christians, has very little meaning.

As those who call themselves christians continually disagree about what it IS to be a christian, your comment implies that there is one definition which all people who call themselves christians agree with.

This is simply not the case.

Further more, the statement concerning the issue of being "born again" implies that for christians there is only ONE recognized process of being born again. This simply is not true either. The term "Christian" and the term "born again" are used by a wide and disparate variety of people.

13/4/07 12:46 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

The Netherlands has had a state religion (Dutch Reformed Church) since 1795.

My understanding was that the discussion was about nations, not isolated, small communities.

As a mater of interest, the section in the Australian Constitution applicable to this discussion reads : -

Section 116 [Freedom of Religion, Secular State]

"The Commonwealth shall not make any law for establishing any religion, or for imposing any religious observance, or for prohibiting the free exercise of any religion, and no religious test shall be required as a qualification for any office or public trust under the Commonwealth."

13/4/07 1:16 am  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

gadfly said...
If the Christian majority (if it actually does still exist) in our country would simply start acting like Christians, then most of the issues would go away.


SO TRUE!! Hey, you might like a book review I just did on a book that really resembles your remark. I didn't read all the comments about the "No True Scotsman thing" because I totally agree with this statement:

It is entirely right and proper for someone to be declare not a "true" Christian if they deviate from the fundamental principles of Christianity. I remember a time when a man told me that he was a "born again" Christian even though he didn't believe that Jesus was the Son of God, that the Bible was true in virtually any particular, and that God was not involved in the conduct of history at all.

13/4/07 2:26 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

Re: The Netherlands has had a state religion (Dutch Reformed Church) since 1795.

The Dutch were not a small, isolated community from c.1600 - 1790 or so after which Napolean did them in. They were a major sea-faring, commercial republic, a competitor and sometime opponent with Great Britain.

Wikpedia is superficial on this but here is some info.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dutch_Republic

13/4/07 2:39 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

Beep
Re:
I consider this to be an example of the fallacy because you imply that there is a defined behaviour that describes all christians. .... your comment implies that there is one definition which all people who call themselves christians agree with.

It is not necessary that everyone who calls themselves a Christian agree on what it means to be a Christian, else there would be no reason for anyone to be declared a false one.

The true scotsman fallacy is based on violating the "generally accepted" definition. The generally accepted definition(s) of Christianity are contained in the ancient creeds ("the faith handed down to us").

Every church has a responsibility to monitor its membership and when a person is excommunicated the title "Christian" is no longer applied to them by that church. It doesn't mean the person is sentenced to Hell, God alone does that. It means that they are no longer "communicants", hence recognized as having the rights and privileges of a Christian within the Church.

If they continue to call themselves Christians, they do so without the Church's recognition, hence they are "false" Christians in the eyes of the Church.

13/4/07 3:47 am  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

It is not necessary that everyone who calls themselves a Christian agree on what it means to be a Christian, else there would be no reason for anyone to be declared a false one.

The Bible teaches many times how to recognize a false teacher. Because they're out there and they cause problems for the church by leading people astray and they cause problems for the world by giving a false representation--this blog is evident of this. Beep, a lot of your posts focus on false teachings. The short amount of time I've been reading this blog, I have yet to see a true representation of Christian life in the Original Post. You're certainly historically accurate in Christianity's origins and things of that nature but as far as representing anything other than false teachings, I daresay it's no wonder people get the wrong idea about Christianity. I wish people could resent Christians for the truth of God's word instead of hating us for the lies spread by false teachers.

13/4/07 4:05 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

I, myself, have never been able to find a generally accepted definition of Christian. Christians excommunicating each other, each side claiming to be the "right" one, is as old as Christianity, itself.

Plus, the current beliefs of Christians aren't the only early Christian beliefs, they're just the ones that have survived. Unless one believes in divine intervention to resolve early Christian squabbles, such as the Arians vs. the Catholics, or the Gnostics vs. the Catholics, or what have you (and I know many Christians do), then saying that the "church founders" had special access to the truth of Christianity doesn't make much sense. They were just guys, guys, prone to error as any of us. Maybe the real Jesus was Gnostic, or Arian! However, my larger point is that there is no real uniformity amongst primitive Christians on which to base the notion that those early church fathers, themselves, had a "standard" Christianity. Hell, the struggles between early factions of Christians are talked about in Acts, between the Jewish faction lead by Peter and the Greeks lead by Simon, and then again with the Gentile faction lead by Paul.

No such thing as "standard" Christianity from antiquity. Just a bunch of Christians squabbling over what being a Christian "really is" and calling each other names. It is literally the second oldest story in Christianity, coming as it does from Acts.

13/4/07 5:14 am  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

Chris,
Isn't that what you want Christians to do? I mean, if there is a weird brand of Christians out there spreading lies--shouldn't I speak against it? I've been told by many atheists, something along the lines of "If you don't like what some Christians are saying-speak out against it" Then when we do speak out against it, outsiders just sit back and laugh at it. So we don't speak out against false teachers just as a special favor to atheists, it's because the Bible tells us to rat them out as false. And of course there are going to be many false teachers--Christianity is wide spread and powerful--people always want to control and corrupt an idea or a religion that many people gravitate towards. It's the nature of the beast.

Just a bunch of Christians squabbling over what being a Christian "really is" and calling each other names.

While I do squabble over what being a Christian means, I don't resort to name calling. But it's our duty as Christians to weed through the many people that enter our church disguised as fellow Christians--it's smart business.

13/4/07 5:35 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

gadfly:
If this is an example of how you will school people in your Brave New World then I fear that the advance of illiteracy will be completely overwhelming.
Nice how you put little dots in between the salient points, instead of fisking & copping that you’re wrong on certain points.
If this is how you teach honesty in YOUR xtian empire, you’ll have a bunch of liars.
The US was not the first Western Republic nor was it the first to incorporate Freedom of Religion and SOCAS.
Nice try. I didn’t say the US was the 1st WR. I stand corrected on the 2nd 1/2. Christian Rome had a separation (or tried to), but still had a state religion. Freedom of religion dates back to Asoka, of India.
At least I’m honest enough to admit I’m wrong.
That distinction belongs to the Dutch (remember that guy Kuyper? Also, Rushdooney is not an Irish name either.) Their Republic preceded ours by almost 2 centuries, they were a haven for differing religious groups, they were pioneers in Christian secular capitalism, they exerted great influence on the US through the history of New Amsterdam, and John Adams himself acknowledged that the US form of government was in many ways identical to theirs.
What being Irish has to do w/anything is a mystery. This is the 1st I’d heard about the Dutch influence. I know the Founders borrowed the court systems from Presbyterianiasm, based the legal system on English law (NOT the 10 C’s), as well as borrowing from other cultures (Amerindians, for 1). I’ll need a reference on that quote, please (in context).
If you want to actually read a book on the topic try Richard Shorto - The Island At The Center of the World:The Epic Story of Dutch Manhattan, the Forgotten Colony that Shaped America
You always recommend these odd little books. I might suggest you read Liars For Jesus - because there’s a whole lotta that going on.
Or do you only read bumper sticker web sites?
Bite my ass. I actually used to go around spouting that ‘America was founded as an xtian nation’ until I actually sat down and did some real research. That was YEARS before I became an atheist.
I might add, that you don’t pay Barton any attention: the man’s a liar, xtian or not.

13/4/07 6:13 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

sadie:
The Bible teaches many times how to recognize a false teacher.
Then please share w/us, some examples of 'true' teachers.
Because they're out there and they cause problems for the church by leading people astray and they cause problems for the world by giving a false representation--this blog is evident of this.
Well, honestly, for me, the mis-representation was secondary. Primarily, I sat down & analyzed (w/in my limited ability) the bible itself. I applied the arguments both pro & con. I hadn't even REALIZED there were other sides to the argument (I'd assumed everyone agreed - naive, I know). I'd had an ingrained habit of assuming that everyone respected religion.
So it went: bible 1st, representation 2nd.
It's sad, really. I'd expected better from both.

13/4/07 6:22 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

Sadie,

Well, except that you're not policing Christians here. What you and gadfly are doing is talking to atheists, offering an apologia for Christianity. You say that Christians "aren't really like that" to us, and we spend our time arguing about the definition of Christian, but does it matter what atheists think Christianity is?

I've asked you in the past, and I'll ask you again -- what are you doing to change Christianity? Why are you talking to us atheists and not spending a bunch of time on fundie conservative blogs calling them out on their hateful, ugly definition of Christianity? I've asked for some proof, and I'll ask for it, again. You spend a lot of time offering apologia to atheists for the sins of your co-religionists -- where are you confronting them as you confront us?

13/4/07 6:43 am  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

krystalline apostate said...

Then please share w/us, some examples of 'true' teachers

Okay:
1Timothy 3:1 This is a faithful saying: If a man desires the position of a bishop, he desires a good work.
1Timothy 3:2 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, temperate, sober-minded, of good behavior, hospitable, able to teach;
1Timothy 3:3 not given to wine, not violent, not greedy for money, but gentle, not quarrelsome, not covetous;
1Timothy 3:4 one who rules his own house well, having his children in submission with all reverence
1Timothy 3:5 (for if a man does not know how to rule his own house, how will he take care of the church of God?);
1Timothy 3:6 not a novice, lest being puffed up with pride he fall into the same condemnation as the devil.
1Timothy 3:7 Moreover he must have a good testimony among those who are outside, lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil. 

chris bradley said...
Sadie,

Well, except that you're not policing Christians here. What you and gadfly are doing is talking to atheists, offering an apologia for Christianity. You say that Christians "aren't really like that" to us, and we spend our time arguing about the definition of Christian, but does it matter what atheists think Christianity is?

Do you really believe this is where I spend all of time? I have a blog. I have a blogroll--blogs I go to more than this one. For the record, I got booted off Christianity.com because there were so many complaints against me as I debated false teachers in the forums.
I'm sure you can try to look up my arguments in the archives. I might try to do that sometime. I was there as an active member between 2003-2005. I took on Catholics, Seventh Day Adventists, Mormons, JWs--I simply asked them questions about their false teachings and eventually they all got so pissed off, I was put on limited restriction by the moderators there just so they could keep the peace. I suppose they were flooded with emails about me and about a handful of people that stood with me.

How do I prove this? I'm not technical and my email address doesn't gain me access to my old account at Christianity (CrossWalk) anymore. I've tried to get an account again since my restriction has been over for awhile. Any suggestions?

13/4/07 7:59 am  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

I found my old account. My user name was 'sadiebelle'.
http://forums.crosswalk.com/showProfile.aspx?memid=266
I had over 200 posts. I especially like my work on the sinless perfection threads. I fought the false doctrine of sinless perfection quite a bit.
It was my debates with the Seventh Day Adventists that got me the boot.
I kept insisting that their flase teacher, Ellen B. White should have been thrown out of the church on her ass. She said Christ was coming back every year for like 12 years. Or it could have been when I told some Mormons that their faith was built racism.

13/4/07 8:16 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

Sadie,

Well, no, I don't have any suggestions. Christianity.com is a trifle too fundie for my tastes at the best of times. I don't see my picking through it for discussions that you did two or more years ago.

But, if you're all about gettin' up in bad Christian's grills, throwin' down with the heezy sheezy, well, certainly there's been something more recently, right?

*points to gadfly* I suggest a target, now. He's the guy who wants American law to conform to his interpretation of the Bible. You started to get in his face, a little, but then backed down when he said the discussion wouldn't be necessary if Christians acted like Christians (whatever that means). If that's the kind of confrontation you do . . . well, maybe you should work on that.

13/4/07 8:26 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

Sadie,

I had to get a login to see that link. To do that I had to agree to this:

You will not promote by repeated statements, by provision of URLs to other Web sites, by recommendation to engage in non-community activities such as watching programs, reading books, or attending events, or by any other means, beliefs or teachings contrary to those of Christianity as articulated by the historic creeds, as understood by Evangelicalism, and as interpreted by Salem Web Network in its sole discretion.

It hurt me to do that. The bias of the site is pretty obvious. The TOS goes on a while about how you can't "promote" homosexuality (along with "adult entertainment" by which I guess they mean porn, "sexual immorality" [does that mean you can't talk about Lot?!], or "pagan or false religions").

I have to admit to being amused that they needed to prohibit "the exercise of prophecy, dream interpretation, "words of knowledge," speaking in tongues and praying for or coaching others in the receipt of speaking in tongues, within chat and forums." But, "This is not, however, reflective in any way of the views of Salem Web Network or its staff on the legitimacy of such practices in a local church setting."

So, in whole, the amusement I got from reading the TOS was pretty incredible, hehe.

Let me look through your profile there before responding to it, natch. Regardless of what I end up thinking about it, thank you for responding as you did and addressing my points.

13/4/07 8:35 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

sadie:
Er, ummm, I meant people in the here & now.
Most liberal theologians think Tim. 1 is a forgery.

13/4/07 8:51 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

Sadie,

OK. In the thread “The Forbidden Fruit” you seem to be arguing that women should not be church leaders based on Bible sources. Do you say that women can't be church leaders. (You seem to argue in the thread “Equal Value Different Roles that women are, in fact, limited in their participation in church and society, too, so it's in more than one place.) Because, if you do, that's fairly fundamentalist. It is also, however, an issue of doctrine, not applicable to larger society, which is what I'm looking for.

And in the thread 1 Tim 1:2, you largely seem to be attacking celibacy amongst Catholic clergy as leading to sexual immorality. Which isn't much of an attack on the politics of the Catholic Church, as the Catholic Church, itself, condemns the actions of those priests, too. I mean, it's trivially easy to find Protestant pastors who are homosexuals, adulterers, pedophiles, etc., but that doesn't say anything about the organization those pastors belong to, right? If you found out, tomorrow, that your own pastor was an adultering pederast, would that cause you to reject your faith? I doubt it, because you'd make a distinction between the sins of an individual and the message of the church. So, this isn't one of the issues I was talking about. (I will also point out that about sixty percent of Christians are divorced in America. Again, perhaps you should minister to your own and address the pandemic of divorce amongst Christians.) But this is a doctrine dispute, not the sort of social and political agitation against fundamentalism I'm talking about.

You also seem to attack the Papacy. Again, this doesn't address what the Papacy condones, but merely that it exists. Again, this isn't what I'm talking about, which is trying to change the social and political behavior of Christians, as opposed to doctrine disputes.

It is true that in that thread you were being quite confrontational. But . . . to my eyes, it seems you weren't so much confronting fundamentalism as joining in on it – that you're an anti-woman Christian who hates the Papacy. That you believe that the woman is subservient to the man in a relationship, such when you said that when you don't understand something you pray and then ask men you respect for their opinions – but not women.

Part of what I have asserted for a long time is that most people who claim to be moderate Christians are really pretty fundamentalist, and that their protestations that not all Christians are right-wing conservatives justifying homophobic, sexism and racism through religion is literally a lie.

Sadie, the awareness in me continues to grow that you're simply not one of those Christians who do the right thing, but you're . . . sort of a fundamentalist. Sure, you're no Jerry Falwell or Pat Robertson, but . . . you're not a Quaker, either, and you're closer to Jerry and Pat than the Quakers.

What I am looking for is something like . . .

Some Christian on one of these boards talks about how homosexuals are going to hell, and YOU coming out and saying, "You're a homophobe, and homosexuals are welcome in church and in Heaven." Stuff like that. Stuff that isn't just doctrinal disputes amongst Christian factions.

Like I said, Christians calling each other names over internal doctrinal issues is the second oldest story in Christianity.

13/4/07 9:10 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE gad

"If they continue to call themselves Christians, they do so without the Church's recognition, hence they are "false" Christians in the eyes of the Church."

This assumes that there is only one church of Christianity. There are hundreds and each has a different standard for excommunication.

Having said that, which church's standard do you adopt as the test? Who gets to enforce it? And specifically what criteria do they use? What are the punishments for calling yourself a catholic, a lutheran, a calvinist, an anglican, a presbyterian, a baptist, an episcopalian, a dutch reformed etc etc AFTER excommunication?

Good luck with getting christians to decide what makes a "good christian." The evidence of hundreds of brands of christianity shows that there are different views concerning who is a "good christian" or a "true christian" and who is not.

13/4/07 9:21 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

gad:

"In 1579, a number of the northern Netherlands signed the Union of Utrecht, in which they promised to support each other in their defense against the Spanish army."

It seems that the union had more to do with religion than not.

The treaty was a reaction of the Protestant provinces to the 1579 Union of Arras in which the southern provinces declared their support for the Catholic Spanish.

in 1581 the United Provinces declared their independence of the king in the Oath of Abjuration.

So, it appears to have a reaction to the divine rule of kings and a reaction to imperialist forces.

13/4/07 9:34 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

The fact that there are hundreds of different churches all which claim to represent the "true version" of christianity suggests strongly that those who call themselves christians can't really agree on even the basics.

This is where the catholic church has the upperhand, (Yes, I know there are even christians out there who consider that catholics aren't christians - amazingly, many catholics don't consider you to be christians either .)

Catholicism is not a religion of personal revelation, therefore the hierarchy and decision making powers rest where they have always rested - with supposedly god's representative on earth, da pope.

Because of this well-defined hierarchy, the decision as to who is a catholic and who is not, is able to be made quite simply. (I might consider the process to be a crock of old dingoes kidneys, but they have the procedure and the establishment of hierarchy to do this easily.)

Similarly with the Church of England where the Archbishop of Canterbury has the authority over anglicans. (This is because the Church of England modelled its hierarchy on catholicism.)

The other christians, but especially those who belong to a christian religion which is based on personal revelation, do NOT have an explicit hierarchy or procedure for dealing with those who they consider may not be acting as christians.

Once personal revelation becomes the modus operandi for christianity, those who ascribe to this concept see their own interpretation of the scriptures as being as revelant and as "christian" as anyone elses.

In other words, once you democratize a religion, there is very little hierarchy to decide the rules.

Everyone's personal opinion of what scripture says becomes as valuable or as worthless as the next persons.

The quote from George Bernard Shaw expresses this process quite well.

"No man ever believes that the Bible means what it says; he is always convinced that it says what he means." - George Bernard Shaw

13/4/07 9:58 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

Beep -
No time today for anything other than this...

If there is no such thing as "true" Christians then there is no criterion by which a person can be distinguished as one in distinction from a non-Christian. If they apply the label to themselves they, by your analysis, must be accorded the distinction of being a Christian regardless of what they actually believe.

If that being so, then you have no enemies to rail against. A person could be an atheist and yet call themselves a Christian. A person could call themselves a Christian and yet adopt all of the life styles which orthodox Christianity prohibits.

The logical implications of your analysis above is that it leaves you without a "group" to oppose and you should stop labeling your opponents as Christians.

If you distinguish some subset within the mass of humanity as being Christian so as to speak against them you are doing the same thing that you are critical of the Church for doing.

The point is - modern confusion in terminology, mass improper use of terms, does not invalidate how they ought to be used and yes, a sufficient definition of the word Christian can be made so as to distinguish between those who are and those who aren't, even if they profess to be.

The fact that modern muddle-headedness ignores basic definition of terms in conversation doesn't mean that such is the way it has to be or ought to be.

13/4/07 11:33 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

gadfly

RE: "The fact that modern muddle-headedness ignores basic definition of terms in conversation doesn't mean that such is the way it has to be or ought to be."

OK, so define what a christian is and then get all christians to agree with the definition.

Good luck.

14/4/07 12:01 am  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

OK, so define what a christian is and then get all christians to agree with the definition

I agree. It's time for another council of nicea. And also, I don't think I'm going to post here anymore. So maybe I'll you guys around on some other atheist blogs but not this particular one--waste of time.
gadfly--if you and I stopped posting here, we could stand back and watch the comment count go WAY down. Over 100 comments on this post? Ridiculous. Chris, I can't convince you anything of anything.

14/4/07 1:11 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

Re: then get all christians to agree with the definition

Again... as I said before... it is not "all Christians" that must agree.

Not "all" Christians agreed at the Nicea, Chalcedon, or Constantinople councils. J. Gresham Machen & other early 20th century leaders had to fight against the encroachment of "liberal" views. However the fact that the fight has been going on for centuries does not mean that it is not worth fighting nor that it has not been successful.

Note Rev. 2 &3 where Christ commands the Churches to continually guard against those who call themselves Christians but are really not.

The general parameters of Evangelical Christianity are sufficient to broadly distinguish between those who should truly be called Christian and those who should not.

I'll be back Monday.

14/4/07 1:25 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

Sadie,

You can't convince me of anything because, I believe, definitional issues. See, when I read eighty posts where you say that women have no place in church leadership, and attacking Catholics and the like, I see behavior that is 100% consistent with a fairly fundamentalist evangelical Christian. Sure, there are people who are waaaaaaaaay worse than you, but you're not a member of UU or UCC, and explicitly pro-woman, pro-gay, pro-choice, anti-war, etc., etc. Which is where a Christian would have to be before I said, "Well, OK, maybe you're alright, even tho' I'm sketchy about that religious thing, still." And it seems to me that you want me to treat you as if you were that kind of Christian, but I can't, because you're not. Every time I have the opportunity to see into what you think politically, or even religiously, I find it fairly disturbing and immoral. Which is just the way things are, unless you change my mind (which is unlikely) or change your morality.

14/4/07 5:11 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

I'll take this one, hehe.

The general parameters of Evangelical Christianity are sufficient to broadly distinguish between those who should truly be called Christian and those who should not.

Then, in fact, "real Christians" are a bunch of intolerant war-mongering, sexist, racist, bigoted, anti-Islamic, homophobes! Thank you for clearing that up.

14/4/07 5:13 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

chris:
You started to get in his face, a little, but then backed down when he said the discussion wouldn't be necessary if Christians acted like Christians (whatever that means).
Apparently there's some kind of special codewords that defuses arguments between them.
For 2000 years, they've had plenty of time to iron out differences, & establish some kind of standard.

gadfly:
The general parameters of Evangelical Christianity are sufficient to broadly distinguish between those who should truly be called Christian and those who should not.
Which 'general' parameters? Pietism, Methodism, Great Awakening?
You people can't agree amongst yourselves who's up to snuff, & who ain't.
I found this particularly amusing, under the answers.com (American History entry) for Evangelical Christianity:
"Eighteenth-century evangelicals, known as New Lights, helped shape American culture in the revolutionary era and beyond. Evangelicals generally lined up with the Patriots during the Revolution, and evangelical leaders joined Enlightenment deists in an unlikely alliance to press for religious disestablishment."
But of course, that doesn't count: they weren't 'true' xtians. So dump the historical precedent.
Tsk, tsk: we should let YOUR bunch run the show?

14/4/07 7:18 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

Gadfly

RE: "Note Rev. 2 &3 where Christ commands the Churches to continually guard against those who call themselves Christians but are really not."


And equally, who is to say that this does not apply to you? That is the point. Each person and each church believes it has the "true version" and represents the "real christians."

sadie

It would be a shame if you left this blog just because people don't agree with you. I have enjoyed hearing a contrary opinion, even if we don't agree.

The same comment is extended to gadfly. A difference of opinion is always interesting as far as I am concerned.

14/4/07 8:33 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

Chris Bradley
Re: Then, in fact, "real Christians" are a bunch of intolerant war-mongering, sexist, racist, bigoted, anti-Islamic, homophobes! Thank you for clearing that up.

Let's see... this is an example of how liberals argue against stereotyping? I suppose you agree with Imus' fate and yet this is how you deal with another ethnic distinction??????

17/4/07 9:36 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

I'm not a liberal. I'm a libertarian socialist consensualist, which puts me in pretty squarely in the "radical" category. Sorry if I don't fit into your box.

Also, I speak for no-one but myself. It's pretty hilarious, tho', that you think that I speak for liberals. Trust me, buddy, I'm not a fan of them, either. I think liberal politics sucks, protecting privilege, wealth and capitalism just as much as conservatives -- just with a SLIGHTLY different slant.

However, your suggestion that Don Imus was anything other than a miscreant that deserved to get shit-canned speaks more eloquently for your position than anything I can suggest. (Note: that a shock jock getting fired is no more a violation of free speech than anyone else being kicked off the air. Is every DJ who gets fired an attack against freedom of speech? I think not. Imus wasn't fired for what he said, but because sponsors were withdrawing their money from his show. Which is why pretty much all DJs get fired -- they can't make money for the owners of their station(s). That's capitalism in action. You're a fan of capitalism, right? So, I doubt you have any reason to be upset about Imus getting fired.) If you're looking for a place where liberals erred, you can do MUCH better than Imus. C'mon. You're not even trying.

17/4/07 9:55 am  
Anonymous Gadfly said...

Chris
Nope, you jumped to conclusions even as I suppose I did in assuming you to be liberal. My politics are closer to libertarian than anything else also, although I fit under some conservative categories. So, at some point, we probably hold some things in common.

The point I was making, which seems fairly clear to me, is that you rightly hold Imus to be immoral in making the statement he made while at the same time you categorize Evangelicals with "hate" labels.

How are you doing anything different than he did??? He resorted to stereotypes based on race, you stereotyped based on faith.

I suppose that means you should be "fired" from internet discussions.

17/4/07 11:49 pm  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

gadfly:
The point I was making, which seems fairly clear to me, is that you rightly hold Imus to be immoral in making the statement he made while at the same time you categorize Evangelicals with "hate" labels.
Well, you folks start behaving a little better, maybe y'all won't be in the news so much.
Track records speak so much louder than words.
How are you doing anything different than he did??? He resorted to stereotypes based on race, you stereotyped based on faith.
Can't speak for Chris, but as a rule, I tend to judge folks by how well they behave.
If y'all didn't act in such predictable manners, maybe we'd not 'stereotype' you.
I suppose that means you should be "fired" from internet discussions.
Really, who cares about Imus, anyways? Most companies are 'at will' in this country. Meaning, you can get fired for picking your nose at the wrong moment.
Even pro raconteurs can get canned (like Savage did).
If either of those clowns said it on their personal blogs, I'd say being fired was unfair. But they both were at work, so no dice on the 1st amendment thing.
'Free speech' isn't by any means an untrammeled ability to spew anything you want to say.
Nice try, no cigar.
Your red herrings are getting a little rank.

18/4/07 6:29 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

gadfly,

I am amused how you ignored all those other arguments to focus on mine, which WERE spurious name-calling. However, I just went through the list of Evangelical parachurch organizations, and calling evangelicals hate-mongering racist and sexist homophobes continues to be an accurate description of them, as a group.

Your characterization of generalization is also stupid. Yes, stupid. The question shouldn't be if I generalize. I do. EVERYONE DOES. The question should be, "Is the generalization accurate?" In the case of evangelical Christians, I believe the answer is, yes, as a group they are racist, sexist, homophobic and warmongering. I still wait for evidence to the contrary, but every time I see something for the Promise Keepers or the Billy Graham Crusade (my god, he calls it a CRUSADE!) I am confirmed in my beliefs about evangelicals.

On the other hand, that basketball team were not "nappy headed hos". He also leveled a personal attack at them -- he attacked not their conduct, but their physical appearance. He also called them prostitutes in crude language. If you can't see the difference between an accurate generalization and an inaccurate, demeaning generalization, you're a fool.

18/4/07 7:45 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

Chris:
7.6 on the Richter scale. Nicely said!
I get more than a little sick of these folks that give us grief about being 'intolerant' or 'illiberal'.
Tolerance isn't something administered carte blanch.
(P.S, blanche is the old-fashioned way of spelling that.)

18/4/07 8:35 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: The concept of tolerance.

This is an interesting concept because from the outset it seems to suggest that no matter what the belief is, either religious, political, economic, social or cultureal, that one should automatically not question the foundations of the respective belief.

In other words, it is the implicit claim that to question a belief is to be intolerant, or to be disrespectful.

It hasn't been demostrated to me that skepticism, no matter who uses it, is evidence of intolerance or disrespect.

If skepticism, was, by default, evidence of intolerance and disrespect, many theists would NOT according to this argument, be able to question anything they also disagreed with.

18/4/07 11:40 am  
Blogger Chris Bradley said...

KA,

Yeah, it is a tired argument. "If you're tolerant you've got to accept what *I* say, no matter how stupid it is! You're just changing the standard of intolerance." Well, uh, sure, OK, I can accept that.

Yeah, I don't think we should be tolerant of racists, sexists, classists, or anyone else that promotes violence towards any group of people whatsoever. Just as I don't think we should be tolerant of murderers and rapists.

WHAT a person is intolerant of and WHY they are intolerant is very important, as well as what they propose doing about things. I mean, I don't propose that Christian fundies be denied good work, the opportunity to vote, their personal liberty. I just want to call a spade a spade. I just want other groups of people to have the same rights and privileges that fundie Christians enjoy in our society. And I'd really like it if they stopped hurting people, and I think it is both just and reasonable to create a society where they CAN'T hurt people (or, more accurately, where no one hurts other people) but I'd altogether prefer a society where no one would even consider hurting other people. ;)

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