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Christian Fundamentalism and American Politics, Part 2

 
 
Ethel2
 
Reply Mon 15 Dec, 2003 11:49 pm
Let's try this again. And please, everyone behave!

This thread is for discussion and accumulation of data about religion and politics. But it's not about the helpful or harmless forms of religion. It's about religion of over simplified polarities, religion that devalues science and aims to control through guilt and deceit. The guidelines of the discussion are broad. So we can follow our noses............but I would like to make a request before we start. I would like everyone who posts here to consider their wish to convince or win and accept the fact that this is not the only goal of discussion. I know we all wish to convince. But if we count winning as the only worthwhile goal, we'll only fight and the possibility for productive discourse will be lost.

All are welcome here. If you are a fundamentalist Christian, please feel free to participate. But as you can see, I am not neutral on this subject. So I'll begin by admitting my perspective, and everyone else can do the same.

Here's today Washington Report from the Family Research Council. These people have no understanding about separation of church and state.

Quote:
December 15, 2003
Saddam Capture Could Affect Issue Line-Up in 2004


For most people, being told "President Bush sends his regards" would be seen as a welcome holiday message. I doubt, however, that Saddam Hussein appreciated that statement when it was delivered to him by our troops in Iraq on Saturday. His capture is a positive development for many reasons, and I'm certainly hopeful that it will not only make our soldiers safer, but that it will also bring them home sooner.

If the situation in Iraq stabilizes and the economy continues to improve, the debate over marriage could become one of the defining issues of the 2004 election. And it is that issue, the sanctity of marriage, which provides voters a clear opportunity to distinguish candidates for office. Pro-family voters would be wise to use the sanctity of marriage as their yard stick in determining who should be leading America over these next crucial years during which the definition of marriage will either be strengthened or demolished.


Morning-After Pill: Over-the-Counter it Goes?


Tuesday morning I will be featured in a news package on NBC's "Today" program during which I discuss a disturbing trend over at the FDA: substituting political ideology for medical necessity. The FDA will hold a hearing tomorrow to debate whether the morning-after pill - a version of the birth control pill that is 50 times stronger and works to prevent a fertilized egg from attaching to the uterus wall - will be available in pharmacies and grocery stores alongside Tylenol and baby aspirin.

Pushed by Planned Parenthood, this move would have the same dire consequences in America that it is already having in European nations: the endangerment of women's health, exponential increases in sexual promiscuity, skyrocketing STD rates, and the risk of undiagnosed ectopic pregnancy.


We sure better watch that sexual promiscuity and preventing birth control is a sure way to do it. Everybody knows how rules and prohibition is an effective method of behavior control. (not)

Quote:
The FDA has a history of making rash abortion-related decisions without properly studying the long-term effects, in an effort to appease the pro-abortion lobby. Its approval of RU-486 is one recent example. Making the purchase of the morning-after pill easier doesn't make it safer and America's young women will likely pay the consequences. Please contact the FDA and ask them not to make the morning-after pill available over-the-counter. You can do that by calling 1-888-INFO-FDA (1-888-463-6332).


(And then we can have even more abortions to protest.)


Quote:
FRC On the Road, Working in the States


Last week we told you about a trip to Boston by several of our key staff members in order to bring FRC's resources to the fight to preserve marriage in Massachusetts. Also last week, Vice President for Communications Genevieve Wood and Director of State and Local Affairs Kristie Rutherford attended the American Legislative Exchange Council national meeting in Phoenix, which brings together conservative state legislators from across the country. While there, Kristie briefed these elected officials on our efforts here in Washington to protect marriage and she heard feedback from them about different strategies we could jointly employ to work more effectively in the states. And since the way you deliver your message is often as important as the message itself, Genevieve worked with more than 50 of these men and women on their television and public speaking skills. We look forward to working more closely with ALEC and it's members in the months ahead to promote pro-family policies at the state level. For more information on ALEC, click the link below.


Additional Resources
American Legislative Exchange Council
http://www.frc.org/index.cfm?i=LK03L60&f=WU03L13
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Type: Discussion • Score: 0 • Views: 14,164 • Replies: 330
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husker
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 12:15 am
Is this about devaluing human life?
0 Replies
 
Ethel2
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 12:28 am
This is about irrational thinking and the denial of everything we know about how people are motivated and controlled, Husker. How are you, btw?
0 Replies
 
husker
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 12:37 am
doing well - thought about you today and that book I want you to read. I'm working at trying to get you a copy - either print or PDF - I'll just take wha I can get at this point.
0 Replies
 
pistoff
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 04:53 am
Gay Marriage.
I don't understand how that would devaluate marriage.

I don't see how the morning after pill has anything to do with anybody's business but the person that takes it.

I don't understand why some people want to control other people's sexual lives.
0 Replies
 
Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 06:29 am
Quote:
I don't understand why some people want to control other people's sexual lives.


pistoff- I DO understand it. There are some folks who are hell bent on superimposing their religious values on others. That some are attempting to do this through legislation is, to me, an abomination, and completely counter to the American concept of individual freedom.
0 Replies
 
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 07:44 am
Phoenix gave my take on this.
0 Replies
 
Fedral
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 08:23 am
I personally find abortion disgusting and morally repugnant, it must be remembered by those people that share this opinion that they are dealing with an area of PERSONAL FREEDOM.

No matter how strongly you feel about an issue, it DOES NOT give you the right to control someone elses right to make their own decision in that issue.

I count myself as a very moral Christian as well as a Conservative Republican, but none of these things give me the right nor the moral superiority to force my will upon others.

I speak against the practice of abortion in discussion boards, but I don't support groups who block clinics.

If my sister was planning to have one I would counsel her against it. But in the end, it would remain correctly, HER decision.

Sorry for the rant, I just have strong feelings about this topic.

Remember, abortion clinic bombers aren't heros or righteous warriors of God, they are just terrorists!

Just my 2 cents, pre tax
0 Replies
 
McGentrix
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 08:33 am
I am pro-abortion, pro-death penalty. I am not a fundamentalist anything and am not a christian.

The morning after pill is the same as using a condom. It is a way to prevent an unwanted pregnancy. Simple as that.

I agree with Fedral that personal freedoms should be protected from the animosity of the majority in some cases. Obviously the community is more important than the individual, but without the individual, there is no community. So, each must look out for the other.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 08:38 am
Just for some perspective, it is important to remember that our nation had a very powerful religious heritage, going into the revolution. The Massachusetts Bay Company was originally just that--a commercial company. But it's merchant members were Puritans, and with the domestic situation going to hell in a hand car, they made a decision to "erect a shining city on the hill"--to create a godly republic in the wilderness. In 1630, John Winthrope was sent to the colony to effect this desireable end. People like Roger Williams were considered heretical by the Puritans in Boston, and so the colonies of Rhodes Island and Connecticutt were established as havens for those driven from Boston. The oldest colony, Virginia, was not particularly religious in character, but the Anglican church was the legally established church, just as Congregationalism was legally established in Massachusetts, and later in Connecticutt. The Society of Friends were not by nature a proselytizing group, so Pennsylvania was, more or less, secular. Nevertheless, the governor was appointed by the Penn family, and policy was deeply affected by "Quaker" values. The government of the colony could never get it together to provide militia to protect the Scots-Irish and German settlers on the frontier from the French and Indians because of Quaker obstruction. The Carolina backcountry was settled by Scots-Irish, and by French Protestants--both of whom came from areas of religious strife.

In the early 18th century, a wave of revivalism swept through the colonies, analogous to the "enlightenment" in England which eventually lead to Wesley and Methodism. In the colonies, it caused deep and bitter divides, between "Old Light" and "New Light" believers, as they were known in Connecticutt. In that colony, there was a very bitter resentment toward the colonial government's active repression of the itinerant preachers and their followers. The Congregationalists, the Presbyterians and the Baptists all experienced permanent splits in their corporate bodies.

The "no estalishment" clause of the first amendment arises directly from this experience, and the historical memory of the Wars of the Reformation, the Thirty Years War and the English civil wars. So it is important to realize that in the United States, there is a strong, dichotomous historical heritage at work--a tendancy toward religious devotion, and a tendancy to assure a secular state. These two warring concepts have been at the heart of this particular public debate for well over 200 years.
0 Replies
 
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 09:06 am
Well, unlike McG, I am not "pro-abortion" -- in fact, I think abortion is a rather ugly procedure.

But I am pro-choice -- and it is my opinion that any woman who decides to terminate a pregnancy should be allowed to do so without interference from anyone else -- including the supposed impregnator or the government.

I also want to go on record as saying that Fedral's last post was exceptional.
0 Replies
 
Scrat
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 09:16 am
Re: Christian Fundamentalism and American Politics, Part 2
Lola wrote:
This thread is for discussion and accumulation of data about religion and politics. But it's not about the helpful or harmless forms of religion.

Precisely what part of "Freedom of Religion" don't you understand? What bigotry to stand up and say, "I'm now going to help you identify which religions are okay and which ones are not." Rolling Eyes

Think about it.
0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 09:42 am
scrat

There is a religious practice on an island of Micronesia which involves young men moving into manhood through orally injesting the sperm of an older man.

In Polynesia, as a part of their religious practice, any baby with a birthmark was bashed on a rock or tossed into the ocean.

The Taliban, as you know, are fond of stoning women to death who've committed adultery.

Our freedoms are never absolute, but are commonly in conflict with our other freedoms. But the key freedom is the freedom to speak and argue, so that we can work these things out.

Lola is not talking about all faiths, or even all of christianity, she is talking about a single aspect of one branch and how it is acting to usurp other freedoms.
0 Replies
 
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 10:35 am
I gotta identify with the concept Scrat was trying to share.

Once everyone decides that "tolerance" is, as Martha Stewart might say, a "good thing" -- how can you possibly propose that we separate chaff from wheat when deciding what to tolerate and not tolerate in various religions?

Let me go beyond what Scrat said:

Personally, I don't think tolerance is all it is cracked up to be.

I could not tolerate the kind of thing Hitler had in mind. I don't intend to tolerate the kind of thing some fundamental Islamics consider okay -- and perhaps because they have a more direct impact on me personally, I don't intend to tolerate some of the stuff Christians want to impose on society.

We have to discriminate. It is our duty! (Damn near wrote, It is our sacred duty...but recovered before doing so.)

I have a personal bias which some may consider radical. I consider religion in general to be such an enormous negative to society that I would like to see it eradicated completely -- or at very least made to be the kind of thing one does in private and does not discuss in polite company.
0 Replies
 
Scrat
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 10:58 am
blatham wrote:
Lola is not talking about all faiths, or even all of christianity, she is talking about a single aspect of one branch and how it is acting to usurp other freedoms.

Then perhaps she talk about the actions of individuals and let those actions be judged on their merits, and leave it at that. We've been down this road before, and I remain convinced that the problem Lola has with these people is not actually their faith, but the actions they take. The issue of why they take those actions is really not important to a discussion of whether or not the actions are good or bad for our society. Otherwise, we end up arguing that we shouldn't consider the opinion of someone who is against X for religious reasons, but should consider the same position from another person if that person is not motivated by faith.
0 Replies
 
Scrat
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 11:11 am
Frank - I agree completely that we have to discriminate, to make qualitative choices about what is good or bad for society. Ronald Reagan was frequently quoted as saying that he advocated the maximum level of freedom consistent with an ordered society. While we could spend lots of time debating what that level is and how our society ought to be ordered, I think he had the right idea.
0 Replies
 
hobitbob
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 11:26 am
Now that its the christmas season (brought to you by Visa!) the "family values" will be shoved down our throats until we vomit. Mad
0 Replies
 
McGentrix
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 11:32 am
hobitbob wrote:
Now that its the christmas season (brought to you by Visa!)



Laughing
0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 11:56 am
Quote:
Then perhaps she talk about the actions of individuals and let those actions be judged on their merits, and leave it at that. We've been down this road before, and I remain convinced that the problem Lola has with these people is not actually their faith, but the actions they take. The issue of why they take those actions is really not important to a discussion of whether or not the actions are good or bad for our society.

scrat...actually it is their actions to which she directs her attention. But those actions are connected intimately to aspects of the faith they hold - more exactly, to the particular corners of their brand of american evangelism. We can't, I think, get away from identifying them by the creed which they hold, because it is within that creed that the rationale for her worries sit.
0 Replies
 
Scrat
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 12:13 pm
blatham wrote:
Quote:
Then perhaps she talk about the actions of individuals and let those actions be judged on their merits, and leave it at that. We've been down this road before, and I remain convinced that the problem Lola has with these people is not actually their faith, but the actions they take. The issue of why they take those actions is really not important to a discussion of whether or not the actions are good or bad for our society.

scrat...actually it is their actions to which she directs her attention. But those actions are connected intimately to aspects of the faith they hold - more exactly, to the particular corners of their brand of american evangelism. We can't, I think, get away from identifying them by the creed which they hold, because it is within that creed that the rationale for her worries sit.

I understand what you are writing, and it is not an unreasonable point of view, but I think it is one that adds no value to a discussion of issues and merely wraps that discussion in at least the smell of anti-religious bigotry (if not the real McCoy) in the same way as would a discussion of the negatives some perceive to the "black" agenda, if that discussion began with the suggestion that a specific race was undesirable because of the positions and actions taken by many who share that race. There are plenty of issues for which it is easy to identify the position of the larger "black community" (or at least the self-appointed mouthpieces thereof), and I could make a reasonable argument against their position on a number of those issues, but to argue that we should focus on their race--rather than simply their positions, actions, and what I think is wrong with those statements and actions--would at least smell like bigotry to most people, don't you think?
0 Replies
 
 

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