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Old 05-06-2012, 02:24 AM   #286
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First of all, GREAT POST.

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Originally Posted by Moonlit_Angel View Post
It never fails to amuse me how conservative thought values the concept of personal freedom, then turns around and tells a certain portion of the population they can't do this or that because the Bible says they shouldn't. The government telling us what to do=wrong. The Bible telling us what to do=a-ok. The entity giving orders may be different, but you're still being controlled by someone, aren't you?
From my understanding of it, conservatives believe that other people's entitlement is the downfall of this country. That we as a people have become too greedy, expecting handouts. This isn't entirely untrue, but it is used to justify a bunch of laws/rules that control other people because it's "for a greater good". I don't particularly agree with this at all, but that is how many people view it.

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I'm not a fan of the idea of divorce, or teen pregnancy, either. But while I agree that some people get divorced over the dumbest things and should learn to work out their issues instead of throw in the towel the moment things get the slightest bit hard, I also know people get divorced for very logical reasons. If two people don't love each other anymore, I don't see how forcing them to stay together benefits them or anyone else. The problem, to me, often seems to lie in how the couple DEALS with divorce more than anything else.
I actually disagree with this. Love is a fickle emotion. I don't really view "we just don't love each other anymore" as a valid, logical reason for divorce because it's based entirely on how one feels in the moment. However there's a big difference between "oh we're just not in love anymore" and a couple having serious issues that threaten the mental health of all parties involved. When the relationship becomes unhealthy, it's time to seek marital counseling to see if the relationship is salvageable. If it's not, then divorce.

Two long-term married couples gave me advice when my engagement was announce. One had just celebrated their thirtieth anniversary, and the other has been together for over 60 years. Both of them said the exact same thing. "You will fall in and out of love with each other dozens of times. You go through rough patches in life, you might not feel the 'spark' anymore but it will always come back. Feelings of love are very dependent on how you're feeling about your current life and you may find that, when you are stressed with everything else, you think that a fresh change or divorce will help. It won't." I was even told that there was a five year period in which one of the couples hated each other.

I prefer not to butt into anyone else's business though, so I have no desire to legislate what is and isn't a valid reason for divorce (though I think counselors and psychologists should be required for both parties during a divorce, because of all the emotions flying around).

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Teen pregnancy can be slowed, if not stopped, by properly educating kids on the good, the bad, and the ugly of sex (at age appropriate levels). By teaching girls self-worth from an early age, and teaching men how to be gentlemen. You can tell a kid "Just don't do it" all you want, but if you don't give them a strong, logical reason as to why, that lesson will go in one ear and out the other. If I ever have kids, I will certainly make it clear that I want them to wait until they're adults to have sex. But I'm not going to shy away from discussing the subject and answering any questions they have about it, either. And if they don't wait, as sad as that will make me, and as much as I'd try to convince them to stop, at the same time, I will also hope I've educated them enough to know that they will be responsible and safe, and that if something does happen, they can come to me and we'll handle it as best we can.
A+ The people I know that made the "worst" sexual mistakes were the people who were ultra sheltered as children and taught abstinence only sex education by parents that did not want to have the talk. If you don't understand sex and all the good and bad that comes with it, you won't be able to see the red flags when you're in the real world.

A friend of mine in college, who had great parents but was just very sheltered growing up, ended up in a short fling with another person that had red flags all over it. I remember accompanying them to the doctor when they were told they had Hepatitis C. When they told me the story of the relationship I immediately noticed so many red flags that this person never knew about because their parents never taught them. They were tricked into thinking that something very unhealthy and controlling was "normal" and they had no personal boundaries in mind to set. There are some things you need to be taught, like to always use protection even if you love somebody, and that if you don't personally feel comfortable or okay with sex you need to say "stop".

Under-education, even in great school systems, is a serious problem and can lead to many "mistakes" that can hurt our children for life.

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See, I don't get this. Gay couples are doing the exact same thing straight couples are doing. They're having a ceremony. They're pledging their love to each other. They're planning to spend their lives together. They're celebrating with family and friends. The ONLY thing that is different is the gender of the people involved.

So either gay AND straight couples have "civil unions" and "marriage" is left to the church, or if straight people get to call it a marriage no matter what, so do gay people. This whole thing of, "Well, we'll let you do the same thing we're doing, but you have to call it something different" smacks me as extremely childish. We straight people do NOT "own" the word "marriage".
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Old 05-06-2012, 02:29 AM   #287
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I'd think a gay person might think that saying being homosexual is bad is as bad as implying someone is mentally deficient
It's very different. If a person declares they are gay, it means they are homosexual which has no negative insinuation at all. Mental retardation however is considered to be a handicap and mental deficiency. Being gay is not. I'm not saying it hurts more to be called one thing than it does to be called another, but I am saying that I don't think any term that so blatantly insinuates a mental disease should be used lightly. I've seen first hand how offensive the term "faggot" can be and I don't approve of any term being used to belittle others. I do however feel that if you can, you should word things a lot more tastefully and not use terms that you know can offend other people. The N word applies here too. Keep the slurs and words that are often used as slurs out of debate.

I may have worded my post poorly, because I never clarified one important thing: I don't think any of the words in question should be used in formal debate like that. For example if one of us replied to another person's post and said "wow stop being a faggot" it would be just as offensive as insinuating a person is retarded. It's better to avoid using both terms in formal circumstances. I couldn't care less if you use it among friends who know that you don't mean any harm.
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Old 05-06-2012, 02:43 AM   #288
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ladyfreckles View Post
From my understanding of it, conservatives believe that other people's entitlement is the downfall of this country. That we as a people have become too greedy, expecting handouts. This isn't entirely untrue, but it is used to justify a bunch of laws/rules that control other people because it's "for a greater good". I don't particularly agree with this at all, but that is how many people view it.
Indeed, this seems to be the rationale I've come across, too.

If a case can be made that something is being done for the "greater good", fine. But yeah, what that means can vary from person to person.

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I actually disagree with this. Love is a fickle emotion. I don't really view "we just don't love each other anymore" as a valid, logical reason for divorce because it's based entirely on how one feels in the moment. However there's a big difference between "oh we're just not in love anymore" and a couple having serious issues that threaten the mental health of all parties involved. When the relationship becomes unhealthy, it's time to seek marital counseling to see if the relationship is salvageable. If it's not, then divorce.

Two long-term married couples gave me advice when my engagement was announce. One had just celebrated their thirtieth anniversary, and the other has been together for over 60 years. Both of them said the exact same thing. "You will fall in and out of love with each other dozens of times. You go through rough patches in life, you might not feel the 'spark' anymore but it will always come back. Feelings of love are very dependent on how you're feeling about your current life and you may find that, when you are stressed with everything else, you think that a fresh change or divorce will help. It won't." I was even told that there was a five year period in which one of the couples hated each other.

I prefer not to butt into anyone else's business though, so I have no desire to legislate what is and isn't a valid reason for divorce (though I think counselors and psychologists should be required for both parties during a divorce, because of all the emotions flying around).
Oh, yeah, you're absolutely right on all of this. I should've probably clarified that better. I didn't mean to say that if you're not in love at that moment or something along that line that alone should be enough for a divorce-like you said, feelings change often in marriage over the years (and I think many couples would do well to realize that before they get married. I don't think that's something that gets discussed nearly often enough). I was talking more about what you alluded to, deeply serious issues. And even then, yes, I fully support couples seeking counseling if need be, if they want to do such a thing.

But yeah, if you've done everything possible and things don't look to be improving, and you want a divorce, I fully understand that and think that's a logical choice to make. And then of course, if a relationship is abusive and violent, that's another obvious, understandable reason to seek divorce.

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Originally Posted by ladyfreckles View Post
A+ The people I know that made the "worst" sexual mistakes were the people who were ultra sheltered as children and taught abstinence only sex education by parents that did not want to have the talk. If you don't understand sex and all the good and bad that comes with it, you won't be able to see the red flags when you're in the real world.

A friend of mine in college, who had great parents but was just very sheltered growing up, ended up in a short fling with another person that had red flags all over it. I remember accompanying them to the doctor when they were told they had Hepatitis C. When they told me the story of the relationship I immediately noticed so many red flags that this person never knew about because their parents never taught them. They were tricked into thinking that something very unhealthy and controlling was "normal" and they had no personal boundaries in mind to set. There are some things you need to be taught, like to always use protection even if you love somebody, and that if you don't personally feel comfortable or okay with sex you need to say "stop".

Under-education, even in great school systems, is a serious problem and can lead to many "mistakes" that can hurt our children for life.
EXACTLY. I sure as hell don't want my kid going into any situation uninformed, that's dangerous for them. What would be the benefit of NOT educating them when the time comes? Even if they wait until they're married, I still want them to know what exactly they're getting into. I want them to know there's no shame in sex in and of itself, but I also want them to know that responsiblity and safety are valuable and necessary as well.

Sex may not be the easiest topic for parents to discuss with their kids, but I don't understand how anyone could think just NOT talking about it will solve things. To say nothing of the endless studies that state abstinence-only education does not work.

Thanks for the compliments. I apologize for getting long-winded-to all who read that, I salute you .
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Old 05-06-2012, 11:34 PM   #289
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dan savage continues to talk religion:

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Testaments Old & New
posted by DAN SAVAGE on TUE, MAY 1, 2012 at 11:42 AM

John Mac sent that tweet a few minutes before this dropped into my email inbox:

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Enjoy your brief season. Soon you shall be in hell-fire for not receiving the only payment possible for your sins—the shed Blood of Jesus. Every unbeliever will spend eternity in a lake of fire. Even believers who do not turn away from their sins (like your vile sin of disgusting, unnatural sodomy, wherein you live like a filthy dog), will go to Hell 1000 years, before they enjoy eternity with God. But for unbelievers (like yourself), you will pay for your sins in Hell 1000 years, and then depart into your eternal destination, the lake of fire—but before this, you will likely also begin to reap and feel the effects of your wickedness even in this life. God is not mocked! So mock on. You will soon see Who has the last laugh. Hear the Word of the Lord: Leviticus 20:13: "If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them." The death penalty formerly carried out by the Theocracy, is carried out by God Himself today. Mock on, pervert. This is your time. Enjoy it. It is brief.
Leviticus, of course, is some serious Old Testament shit.

And I stumbled over this gaydar-pinger's video on YouTube a couple of weeks ago. Our YouTube preacher focuses on what the New Testament says about homosexuality—or appears to say about homosexuality (if you haven't watched Matthew Vines' video yet, you should)—but after shoving Paul down our throats, he buttresses his argument with a nod to the Old Testament. At the 7:28 mark: "You can read about that it Genesis 19. Also Leviticus 18 gives some very explicit instructions..." The instructions given in Leviticus 18? Gay people should be murdered. He adds: "The law is good, you guys."

Sorry, John Mac, but the Old Testament is germane. Anti-gay Christian hypocrites—and not all Christians are anti-gay; not all Christians are hypocrites—are constantly citing passages in the Old Testament to justify their persecution of LGBT people. We are far likelier to hear about Leviticus 20:13 and Sodom & Gomorrah in an anti-gay sermon than we are to hear about Corinthians or Timothy. And when conservative Christians toss Leviticus 20:13 in our faces—or get it tattooed on themselves (in violation of Leviticus 19:28)—we have a right to confront them about everything in the Old Testament that they choose to ignore, from the "abomination" of eating of shellfish to God giving dads the okay to sell their daughters into slavery. ("Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve" is a popular an Old Testament reference too.)

But it's only when gay people bring up a passage like Deuteronomy 22:20-21 that you hear anyone say, "Oh, that stuff about stoning daughters to death on their wedding nights if they're not virgins is in the Old Testament, you goof! That's not in the New Testament!" If it's out-of-bounds—totally not kosher—for gay people to bring up what the Old Testament says about clams and farming and personal grooming and tattoos and menstruation and virginity and adultery, then it shouldn't be kosher for conservative Christians to bring up Leviticus and Sodom & Gomorrah. Which they do. Constantly. And it's not like they have to: there are, courtesy of Paul, plenty of anti-gay verses in the New Testament. But those verses aren't anywhere near as hateful or murderous as what you'll find in Leviticus, of course, which is why they're nowhere near as popular with anti-gay bigots who call themselves Christians.

Which brings me to this email:

Quote:
The problem with your Bible bashing speech is that you bash the Old Testament. I guess you haven't heard of the New Testament. It overrides the Old. There are no stonings in the New, no animal sacrifices, no person is turned into a pillar of salt, there are no slaves. The New Testament is a testament of the love of Jesus who, BTW, is the Way, the Truth, and the Life, and no one goes to the Father except through Him. Are you able to comprehend that? It means Jesus loves homosexuals as well as homosapiens. He even loves you—God only knows how, but He does. Christians know this. You are an idiot. Get off your high horse. Shed that arrogant attitude. It is very unbecoming. Yes, your attitude is ugly. Read the New Testament!—Peggy
Okay, Peggy, let's read it:

Quote:
Slaves, obey your masters in all things. Do not obey just when they are watching you, to gain their favor, but serve them honestly, because you respect the Lord.
That slaves-obey-your-masters stuff is from Colossians. Which is in the New Testament. And its meaning is clear. Its meaning was certainly clear to "property" owners in the South who cited it to defend slavery, as was the meaning of Paul's Epistle to Philemon, which was also widely cited in the slave-era South. History lesson:

Quote:
Defenders of slavery noted that in the Bible, Abraham had slaves. They point to the Ten Commandments, noting that "Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's house... nor his manservant, nor his maidservant." In the New Testament, Paul returned a runaway slave, Philemon, to his master, and, although slavery was widespread throughout the Roman world, Jesus never spoke out against it... Defenders of slavery argued that the institution was divine, and that it brought Christianity to the heathen from across the ocean. Slavery was, according to this argument, a good thing for the enslaved.
When was the last time we heard that slavery-was-good-for-slaves argument? Oh, right: In July of 2011. In Iowa. And the person making that argument? A rightwing fundamentalist Christian bigot preacher who has—wait for it—cited Sodom to justify his anti-gay bigotry. (The story of Sodom & Gomorrah is in Genesis! Old Testament! Old Testament!)

So much for the ducks in their barrels. Now here's an email much more thoughtful Christian...

Quote:
Your discussion of Scripture lacks any regard whatsoever for progressive revelation; this is to say that God revealed himself and his word in various matters over a span of many years and that revelation has real historical & cultural considerations which must be taken into account.... Your treatment of slavery is guilty of semantic anachronism; simply, you've read a modern, African-American-oppressive (or Nazi-Jew, etc) preconceived notion of slavery into an earlier description of slavery. Not only that, but you've made the text out to say something it does not—that it endorses the above-referenced evil slavery of the Civil War era. A cursory examination of the New Testament makes it clear that such a type of slavery is wrong and explicitly anti-Christian. (Matthew 7:12, Col 4:1, John 13:34.) While such a slavery no doubt existed at the time [the Bible was being written], the type of slavery which is mainly dealt with by the apostle Paul is more of an indentured servitude which may be voluntary or involuntary and is more akin to a work apprenticeship in most cases.—Josh
Paul never makes a distinction between "good" slavery (voluntary or involuntary servitude) and "bad" slavery (American-style slavery, a kind of slavery that "existed at the time" Paul was writing but that Paul—and Jesus—failed to condemn). Pious Christian slave owners in the Civil War Era did not regard slavery as anti-Christian. Quite the opposite. And the Bible was widely taught and read in the slave-owning 19th Century. (As it was in the slave-owning 16th, 17th, and 18th Centuries.) Presumably Christian slave owners in the South had made more than a "cursory examination" of the New Testament. Did they miss those "explicitly" anti-slavery passages? Or did less ambiguous pro-slavery passages leap out at 'em first? (I wrote back to Josh to ask him if he takes "progressive revelation" into account—to say nothing of "historical & cultural considerations"—when he examines what the Bible appears to say about homosexuality. I'll post his response when he writes back.)

The people who use the Bible to justify the oppression of LGBT people today are just as wrong as the people who used the Bible to justify the institution of slavery then.

In fairness: Christian opponents of slavery in the United States also cited the Bible. Modern Christians who are uncomfortable with the Bible's clear and unambiguous support for and acceptance of slavery—or those who aren't aware of it (because they're incapable of Googling "New Testament" and "slavery" for themselves)—will sometimes toss this fact down like a trump card. But while the actions of Christians who fought slavery speaks well of them, their actions do not exonerate the Bible or erase "slaves obey your masters" from the New Testament. The Bible got slavery wrong. It got other things right—Golden Rule, Greatest Commandment, don't wear white after Labor Day—and, yes, some people were inspired to combat what the Bible got wrong (slavery's okay) with what the Bible got right (we are all brothers in Christ). The lesson here? The Bible is a sprawling and contradictory text that got some stuff wrong—some very big stuff—and sometimes bad people misuse the Bible to justify bigotry, hatred, oppression and persecution and sometimes good people use the Bible to fight bigotry, hatred, and oppression.

Summing up: LGBT people are being attacked by bad people who are waving Bibles over their heads. They claim they have no choice but to persecute us because of what it says in the Bible. We have a right to crack open that same Bible and ask... what about the rest of it then? We have a right to point out the hypocrisy.

And where I'm from "pointing out" a failure of reason—and humanity—is known as "calling bullshit."

Testaments Old & New | Slog


i can agree that Savage is profane, confrontational, and derisive. but, to my mind, such adjectives are much more understandable when it is your family and the very core of who you are as a human being is under attack. while it's nice to wish that all activists were filled with smiles and positivity, it seems an impossible thing to ask when you are blamed for everything from the fall of Western civilization to teen pregnancy to the plight of african-american mothers in the inner city.
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Old 05-06-2012, 11:47 PM   #290
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It means Jesus loves homosexuals as well as homosapiens
This doesn't surprise me in the least
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Old 05-06-2012, 11:52 PM   #291
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Not sure who the first guy is, but man is his diatribe incredibly stupid.

Jesus is also long dead, too, no? How can he love anyone that lived after his death?
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Old 05-07-2012, 01:56 AM   #292
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That first guy's rant was about as nonsensical and weird as it gets. People like that are hilarious and frightening all at the same time.

Excellent catch there, by the way, JT . I also liked the line immediately following that one:

Quote:
He even loves you—God only knows how, but He does.
How generous of him!

I think the same can be said about you, dear.

Quote:
The Bible is a sprawling and contradictory text that got some stuff wrong—some very big stuff—and sometimes bad people misuse the Bible to justify bigotry, hatred, oppression and persecution and sometimes good people use the Bible to fight bigotry, hatred, and oppression.
I don't get how people don't understand this. History has shown that many a leader has warped and altered the Bible from its original text/meaning into whatever they wanted it to be, in the hopes their people would do whatever was ordered of them. The fact that we have multiple translations and versions should probably clue people in that some things are going to be changed around. This is like a written version of that telephone game.

And this whole, "Well, I have to think this way, the Bible told me so." thing is a massive copout. It's not like your hands are tied and you have a gun to your heads here, for cripes' sake. It's a BOOK.

(Now, of course, if Muslims were saying such a thing, those very same Christians would be calling them and their religion crazy.)
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Old 05-07-2012, 02:02 AM   #293
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Let me put it this way. Since the sixties we've moved, for the better I'd argue, more behavior into the sphere of None Of Your Business. But that doesn't remove the sphere of public policy or Hey Wait A Minute, and when private behavior seeks to determine or change public policy those affected have the right to say "Hey wait a minute," don't they? I say debate is healthy. We both get to influence policy and we both get to yell "Hey wait a minute" now and then.
Debate is healthy, and having the opportunity to say "Hey wait a minute," as you have put it, is very important.
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What does it have to do with gay people? If you want to make religious teachings or insulting speech against homosexuals a "hate crime" I think I get to say, "Hey wait a minute." The same for changes in public education policy that would introduce homosexuality to an age group I might deem inappropriate. And I think I can recognize your individual rights and Equal Protection rights though civil unions while preserving the uniqueness of marriage as between a man and a woman.
1. Legalizing same-sex marriage does not automatically make those other things happen.

2. All people want is for gays to get the same rights as other minority groups, nothing more than that as far as I can tell. Being racist is legal. So is being homophobic. What is illegal is beating someone for being a minority or firing someone for being a minority. Why should gays be considered less worthy of those laws than, say, black people?

3. Why would the existence of gays be inappropriate for kids to learn about? I don't understand this at all.

4. Is that really what it's about? Your need for straight couples to feel special, to feel different from gay couples?
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Old 05-07-2012, 02:13 AM   #294
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What will religious zealots say when it is legalised and the sky doesn't start falling in?
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Old 05-07-2012, 02:52 AM   #295
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I kind of like Savage's style. Yeah, it's a little over the top, but it's entertaining and on many ground's, he's right. I myself can be a little confrontational (my entire family is like that--I think I'd be different if I grew up in a different family) but I am no where near as gutsy as he is. He really rips things apart.
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Old 05-07-2012, 03:01 AM   #296
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What will religious zealots say when it is legalised and the sky doesn't start falling in?
and how will we know that Satan and his minions are not high-fiving and dancing up a storm ?
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Old 05-07-2012, 03:46 AM   #297
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and how will we know that Satan and his minions are not high-fiving and dancing up a storm ?
America is a free country, and freedom is having the right to go to hell if we so please.
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Old 05-07-2012, 09:42 AM   #298
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"Is there so much love in the world that we can afford to discriminate against any kind of love?"
-Father Mychal F. Judge, O.F.M.










my word, the pope touching a gay man's helmet. oh, the humanity.



people like father mike... true saintly people... do give me hope that one day those who hide behind religion will, eventually, open up their eyes to reality, and stop using the church to defend their prejudicial, bigoted line of thinking.
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Old 05-07-2012, 07:00 PM   #299
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That's another thing that further shows just how silly and inane this debate really is.

On 9/11, or during the aftermath of a natural disaster, or situations of that sort, notice nobody's walking around going, "Wait, are you gay? 'Cause if you are, I can't help you, God doesn't approve of who you are." Same for your political affiliation, or race, or religion, or ethnicity, or whatever.

No. We just help each other out no matter what, because it's the right thing to do, the humane thing to do.

Life is too fucking short to obsess over stuff like this. I'd like to think God cares more about you being a decent human being than who you go to bed with at night. And if he doesn't, he's kinda pathetic, in my eyes.
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Old 05-07-2012, 10:29 PM   #300
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Okay, Peggy, let's read it:

Quote:
Slaves, obey your masters in all things. Do not obey just when they are watching you, to gain their favor, but serve them honestly, because you respect the Lord.

That slaves-obey-your-masters stuff is from Colossians. Which is in the New Testament. And its meaning is clear.
Actually its meaning is clear only in context.

Quote:
Instructions for Christian Households

18 Wives, submit yourselves to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.

19 Husbands, love your wives and do not be harsh with them.

20 Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord.

21 Fathers,[c] do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged.

22 Slaves, obey your earthly masters in everything; and do it, not only when their eye is on you and to curry their favor, but with sincerity of heart and reverence for the Lord. 23 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, 24 since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving. 25 Anyone who does wrong will be repaid for their wrongs, and there is no favoritism.

4 Masters, provide your slaves with what is right and fair, because you know that you also have a Master in heaven.
Paul wasn't condoning slavery nor did he call for a revolt, he was trying to change the institution from within by both sides practicing Christian principles. It makes even more sense if you know who Onesimus was.

If you apply Savage's logic to the founding of this country than supporters of the 3/5's clause were pro-slavery because they didn't condemn slavery, they only regulated it.

Did both sides in the civil war use the Bible to justify their cause. Sure. Not any different than both sides using the constitution as an argument really. Ever notice how even the great legal minds on the SCOTUS rarely vote unanimously?

Quote:
The Bible is a sprawling and contradictory text that got some stuff wrong—some very big stuff—and sometimes bad people misuse the Bible to justify bigotry, hatred, oppression and persecution and sometimes good people use the Bible to fight bigotry, hatred, and oppression.
What Southerners did in the Civil War to justify their view of slavery is exactly, exactly, what Dan Savage does when he misapplies his biblical references to slavery. Taking scripture out of context and misconstruing definitions. The difference is Southerners in the 1800's didn't have Goggle on which to do 15 minutes worth of research so I can only assume that Dan Savage doesn't want an educated opinion on the subject. No, he would much rather "misuse the Bible to justify bigotry and hatred" I'm afraid.

Quote:
When was the last time we heard that slavery-was-good-for-slaves argument?
Not slaves but certainly the descendents of Western slaves. And you either understand what that means or you don't care to.
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