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Old 11-25-2009, 07:35 AM   #681
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I'm someone that enjoys searching for the patterns for the way things ought to be (like Plato's Realm of Ideas and Forms).
One last thing, as I think it is unavoidable at this point, remember the Platonic familial ideal? Because it's certainly not the nuclear family.

Plato (427-348 B.C.E.) - The State as an Educational Entity, Family Control - Encyclopedia of Children and Childhood in History and Society

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In the Republic Plato abolishes the family for the guardians, to avoid nepotism and amassing of private wealth (Republic, bk. 5, 464). Wives and children are to be held in common by all, and no parent is to know his own child nor any child his parents–"provided it can be done" (Republic, bk. 5, 457). In the Laws Plato allows family raising for all citizens, with restrictions on child rearing and inheritance (Laws, bk. 5, sec.729). Each family is to have only one heir, to avoid subdivision of the agrarian lots into small parcels. In cases where there is more than one child, the head of the family should marry off the females and the males he must present for adoption to those citizens who have no children of their own–"priority given to personal preferences as far as possible." If too many children are being born, measures should be taken to check the increase in population; and in the opposite case, a high birth-rate can be encouraged and stimulated (Laws, bk. 5, 740).
I know, I know. Maybe this "Plato" is too postmodern for conservative sensibilities. Either way, I know an argument in futility when I see one, and I'm too busy to keep going around in circles.
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Old 11-25-2009, 09:06 AM   #682
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So what should a man do if his wife/partner dies and he's left to raise a daughter alone? Give her up for adoption? All of this silliness that men can't deal with female "issues" is one of the reasons that some parenting is messed up in the first place. I thought we were beyond that. That's part of the job of father-other than that I guess we should just allow gender selection for babies.

Girls are looking to their fathers in these areas-it's one of the things that is key to shaping their self images and their relationships with males. To their fathers gay or straight.
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Old 11-25-2009, 09:07 AM   #683
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One last thing, as I think it is unavoidable at this point, remember the Platonic familial ideal? Because it's certainly not the nuclear family.

Plato (427-348 B.C.E.) - The State as an Educational Entity, Family Control - Encyclopedia of Children and Childhood in History and Society



I know, I know. Maybe this "Plato" is too postmodern for conservative sensibilities. Either way, I know an argument in futility when I see one, and I'm too busy to keep going around in circles.
You fell for my Akbar trap!

Melon, you are obviously a very bright and educated person. Certainly you know that appreciation for a philosopher (or a certain philosophy) does not mean that you must accept everything of the philosopher.

It is unfortunate that you seem to throw out any philosophy that has even a hint of God in it – because that would eliminate your greatest Enlightenment philosophers that you claim to appreciate. It is a bit of an irony then, that I was an atheist when I started college at University of Arizona as a Philosophy/English Lit double major (which I eventually changed to MIS because I wanted a job), and it was the study of philosophy that actually led me to Christianity (it seemed the perfect synthesis of Hebrew theology and Greek philosophy – which is why I also like the writing of Philo).

My point is – you seem to want to place me in this home grown Fundamentalist Christian box simply because I have some conservative views and happen to be a Christian (by the way – as I’ve posted earlier to your accusation of Fundamentalism – I am more in agreement with Narrative/Post-Liberal Theology).

Believe it or not Melon, faith and reason are not enemies.
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Old 11-25-2009, 09:15 AM   #684
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Your comment is all that most people here will need to know about where you stand. It really speaks for itself.
I agree. Why did I go back and read?

Knock it off <>, that's really inappropriate. And you honestly think that Adam Lambert would not know that what he did on stage is not right when he's around kids? Then you shouldn't let Bono babysit your kids either, what with him being a married man and being on top of a young woman on stage and rolling around and such. Right?
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Old 11-25-2009, 09:20 AM   #685
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Melon, you are obviously a very bright and educated person. Certainly you know that appreciation for a philosopher (or a certain philosophy) does not mean that you must accept everything of the philosopher.
And you shouldn't assume that I believe otherwise.

I'm at work, so I don't think it appropriate to respond further until I get a free moment. But I think it's fairly safe to say that our vision of "God" is vastly different; mine molded from a 20th century American Catholic perspective and yours from an evangelical conservative Protestant POV. This alone should inform as to why the separation of church and state is prudent, as religious freedom, by definition, gives no priority to either set of beliefs, while they are clearly incompatible theologically.
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Old 11-25-2009, 09:25 AM   #686
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Oh Lord help us. (Pun.) What part of "I have friends who have adopted, done IVF, etc. They are perfectly capable parents" do you not understand?


are there gay parents who are perfectly capable, nathan, or can they never be?
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Old 11-25-2009, 09:28 AM   #687
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faith and reason are not enemies.


but, by definition, they are opposites.
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Old 11-25-2009, 09:49 AM   #688
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The entire process of preparing for the arrival is preparing to become parents. And yes, when children arrive on the scene, you have become a parent. You don't grow into one. You are one -- a point President Obama clearly made. (Hell, you start becoming a parent when you get the EPT and you suddenly show up at Kids'R'Us to empty the store of every safe baby appliance imaginable, for a kid who has months and months yet to arrive.) So yes, I can safely say, birthing a child is the core process of becoming a parent -- the defining moment. The one we all point to. That day, everything changed. I know it did for me, and I'm willing to bet it did for just about every parent in this forum. I even remember Bono talking about how the day his first daughter was born, he understood why men would fight wars.

you're lovely and romantic, but this has nothing to do with the topic at hand, nor does it have to do with the topics brought up in the thread. you're taking your experience and presenting it as the only true, authentic experience that can be had, and using that to, as you have in the past, slam families who are different from yours. yes, of course birthing a child is the core process of becoming a parent, BUT IT IS NOT AND WILL NEVER BE THE ONLY WAY TO BECOME A PARENT, and just because some people are different from you that does not mean that their families are less sound, that their love for their children is less, that their children will not grow up as well as others, and that they are any less worthy of protection and recognition.





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Sure, there are other, much harder, much more complicated ways to become parents. I have friends who have adopted, done IVF, etc. They are perfectly capable parents. But biologically speaking, the way we have evolved (or were created, depending on your particular cup of tea) is reproduction through the pairing of opposite-sex mates. Can you really so easily and casually discount the biological role that gender distinctiveness and determinism plays in conception?

how are your "friends" who've adopted, who've done IVF, any different from a gay couple who might do the same? the've clearly easily and casually discounted the biological role that gender distinctiveness and determinsim plays in conception since science has let them circumvent these rules. do you look down on them as well?


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And if human beings are social creatures, who learn sociologically, where do you think we learn gender roles from? Certainly from the village you espouse; but first and foremost, from our families. Everything we understand about male and female sexuality comes first from our parents; it only takes a cursory reading of Freud to get that. So don't you think that it might be kind of valuable for girls to learn femininity from their mothers, and masculinity from their fathers? Obama sure thinks so, and he quotes some pretty significant statistics to back him up. Kids need mothers and fathers in healthy marriages -- and boys, in particular, need fathers. I'm not sure what's so controversial about this particular point.

it's controversial, nathan, because you have nothing to back any of this up. children need parents, children need same-sex role models, but nowhere does this mean that the same-sex role model MUST be the parent. in fact, many parents are shitty role models for their kids. the evidence, as we've pointed to you repeatedly, and which you repeatedly ignore, is that kids from same-sex households do every bit as well as kids from opposite-sex households, and that it's the presence of two parents and the quality of the parenting that determines how well a child does. how much longer are you going to keep insisting that this isn't the case when it is?

"learning masculinity" and "learning femininity" are quaint and lovely notions, and i suppose that if i came from a background where i was taught that men are always and for ever one way and women are always and forever another way, and that women must submit to their husbands, then i suppose i might share your concerns. but i don't. it also begs the question -- if biology is destiny as you assert, then why do we need to be taught how to be a boy or a girl? shouldn't thousands of years of evolution have us hardwired? which is it? nature or nurture? you seem to want it both ways. men are always men and women are always women because one has a penis and one has a vagina, but if men don't have other men they'll get confused and become women.

Freud was wrong, btw. and pulling out poppy icons like Freud or Obama aren't adding any credibility to your claims, nor do they count as evidence to support your assertions that children are harmed by same-sex parents.

back it up, nathan. give us more than old wives tales.


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Sure it takes a village. But it starts with a family. And I can say with some authority that fathers and mothers parent differently, and that fathers and mothers parent their sons and their daughters differently. My wife and I certainly do. There are innate characteristics to boys and girls that differ wildly, that require different needs. Again, is this really such a controversial point?

you can speak for yourself, nathan, but it seems quite clear that you don't know many different kinds of families and appear to live in a fairly isolated clique.

but this only becomes a controversial point when you assert -- and this has been your implication from the start -- that children are harmed by two mothers or two fathers. they aren't. they do just as well, and often better because gay parents tend to be very, very well prepared, they are older, more educated, have more income, and have thought long and hard about their decisions to be parents. all of these characteristics absolutely, always and in all ways, trump whatever gender essentialist notions you claim these children will lack.

we have people on this board who have been raised by gay parents, and somehow, they managed to become sexually mature and confident adults without having an opposite-sexed parent walk them through things.


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No, you did. I was sitting casually by, minding my own business, until you asked the question, "What can men do that women can't?" I pointed out two answers. You disagreed. That's your right. But you're the one who brought it up, dude.

you still haven't answered my question. you've given us no answers. i'm still waiting.





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Actually, most people I know these days wait to get married until they want to have kids. So while it's not a requirement, it's certainly an expectation. Always has been, too.

i suppose that's what happens when you substitute your own subjective experiences for objective reality.



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Really? Recognizing differences between the sexes, and conjecturing that maybe there's some value to those differences when it comes to core social structures? I mean, your average science textbook recognizes such differences in primates. You really want to jump down my throat about that?

what are those values, nathan, and how are we disadvantaged when we have families that are cut from a slightly different cloth?

in order to reinforce this "value" to these "core social structures" by implying that there's only one way to do things you're going to have to demonstrate how the alternative does harm to said "core social structures."

so go for it. show us how children are harmed by two mommies and/or two daddies.


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You're the one who said it, dude. Don't get mad when other people call you on it.

except that you haven't answered any of my initial questions. you've given us generalities, anecdotes, misunderstood Obama speeches, and a sloppy reference to Freud. have you got anything? or are you going to insist that how you did it is how it has to be?
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Old 11-25-2009, 09:50 AM   #689
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And you shouldn't assume that I believe otherwise.
Fair enough, like you regarding the origins/foundation of my Christianity, I can sometimes jump to conclusions

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But I think it's fairly safe to say that our vision of "God" is vastly different;
I think I agree with this.

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mine molded from a 20th century American Catholic perspective and yours from an evangelical conservative Protestant POV.
I do not agree with this (at least the second part).

My vision of God originally formed outside of Christianity with Plato's book Phaedo, which led me to think - "Now that I'm convinced there is a God, what sort of God is it/he/she?" - which in turn led me to studying Christianity because if there was a God, that is what he would be like (Christ/Logos). In addition, if there was ever the perfect ideal /form/model of a man, it was Jesus (Man/Christ/Logos)...in my opinion, of course.

Also, I have been reading more Catholic material lately. While I do attend what is generally considered a Protestant church - I also sneak away to Catholic Mass from time to time and pray the Rosary while I jog in the mornings. As I've posted numerous times, I consider my faith outside evangelicalism and I disagree with them on several theological issues.

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This alone should inform as to why the separation of church and state is prudent, as religious freedom, by definition, gives no priority to either set of beliefs, while they are clearly incompatible theologically.
And I have l posted numerous times that I am also a huge supporter of the separation of church and state.
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Old 11-25-2009, 09:53 AM   #690
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but, by definition, they are opposites.
Can one have reasons for their faith? If so, they are not opposites.
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Old 11-25-2009, 09:54 AM   #691
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Some would argue that kids do in fact suffer in this situation as well.

I know there are exceptions. In discussions like this, I'm someone that enjoys searching for the patterns for the way things ought to be (like Plato's Realm of Ideas and Forms).

One of the unfortunate aspects of Postmodernism is that debate essentially is impossible - because in order to have a healthy debate - we must agree on a "common language" - a good Postmodernist loves to destroy the meaning of - well - just about anything. A is not A
So, what, should we just take all the kids away?
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Old 11-25-2009, 09:55 AM   #692
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Can one have reasons for their faith? If so, they are not opposites.


reason, as a verb, is what i was talking about.
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Old 11-25-2009, 10:02 AM   #693
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So what should a man do if his wife/partner dies and he's left to raise a daughter alone? Give her up for adoption? All of this silliness that men can't deal with female "issues" is one of the reasons that some parenting is messed up in the first place. I thought we were beyond that. That's part of the job of father-other than that I guess we should just allow gender selection for babies.

Girls are looking to their fathers in these areas-it's one of the things that is key to shaping their self images and their relationships with males. To their fathers gay or straight.

I'm kind wondering now if my son, a single father of a 10 month old baby girl, should just forget all of this taking responsibility stuff and simply give her to me or her other grandmother so we can properly raise her. He's already asking for advice on her first period and other female issues so he'll be prepared when it happens but who is he kidding, right?
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Old 11-25-2009, 10:22 AM   #694
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reason, as a verb, is what i was talking about.
In my view, faith is not a blind leap into darkness, but a leap from the darkness into the light - and it takes reason to recognize the light as light.

When it comes to faith, Renaissance and Enlightenment philosophy identified there are three different aspects. The first aspect is fiducia - and this is the "supernatural" faith that Christians believe is the work of the Holy Spirit. Unfortunately, this is where many Christians stop - and where the critics such as A_Wanderer attack.

The second aspect of faith is noticia - which simply means the faith has content, or information regarding it (for Christians, this would be the Gospels and the New Testament letters - for secular humanists maybe the writings of Paul Kurtz).

The third aspect of faith is assensus - which is intellectual assent. This is similar to the question, "Do I believe that the Sun is mostly comprised of Hydrogen and Helium?" It is not a question that involves placing your personal trust in the answer, it simply means you use your mind to accept/reject the proposition based available evidence/information.

This is why I say that faith and reason are not opposites. Everyone at some point exercises the noticia and assensus aspects of faith.
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Old 11-25-2009, 10:28 AM   #695
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Light, dark, whatever. It's a blind leap nonetheless. Your "content" is a book some guys just wrote one day and claimed God was involved with, and I don't even know how the sun's composition influences your belief in God.
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Old 11-25-2009, 10:31 AM   #696
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and I don't even know how the sun's composition influences your belief in God.
The point is - reason and thinking are involved. You can disagree with the conclusion, but you cannot truthfully assert that all faith is absent of reason.
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Old 11-25-2009, 10:50 AM   #697
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So, what, should we just take all the kids away?
Not necessarily. Again, we are in the realm of what is preferable over what is acceptable.
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Old 11-25-2009, 11:11 AM   #698
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Not necessarily. Again, we are in the realm of what is preferable over what is acceptable.
Assuming the preferable vs the acceptable argument is valid (which it's not), it still has no impact on the gay marriage issue, since "acceptable" over "preferable" parenting is allowed in the straight community.


Also, to address comments made last night regarding psychological ramifications of this discussion, to take Baron-Cohen's statement regarding empathy and systemizing being hardwired into female and male brains, respectively, is a vast oversimplification, and furthermore, its application within this discussion doesn't fit. There are also problems with his theory of mind as it relates to autism anyway, but that's another discussion.

Regarding the psychological community being too politically correct to publish information to the contrary that homosexual parenting is equal to that of heterosexual parenting, I'd have to wonder how well the person making this statement knows the ins and outs of the psychological research community. Believe me, every researcher is looking to make their mark on the psychological world, and if they had valid data showing that homosexual parenting is inferior to heterosexual parenting, it would be out there. Controversial and valid findings are a way to get your name out there, and for many, if not most researchers, that's a very desirable thing.
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Old 11-25-2009, 11:12 AM   #699
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For one, this isn't "postmodernism," and I'm knowing full well that you're banding this word around at this point as an insult.
One of the aspects of postmodernism is deconstructionism (arguing the definition of the word "is") which inevitably leads to moral relativism (all moral codes are equally correct) which eventually leads nihilism (because if we deconstruct the meaning of everything until all words are meaningless and we accept the proposition that morality is basically meaningless - then it logically follows that life itself is meaningless).

If you seriously look back through your posts, it certainly seems apparent this is where your propositions will eventually terminate.
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Old 11-25-2009, 11:15 AM   #700
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Controversial and valid findings are a way to get your name out there, and for many, if not most researchers, that's a very desirable thing.
In quantum mechanics, I agree. In psychology or sociology, I'm not so sure.
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