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ACLU chastised by Federal Appeals court

 
 
McGentrix
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 07:43 am
Mortkat wrote:
my post stands-UNREBUTTED!


I find that amazing considering the number of asses around here.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 08:55 am
Mortkat wrote:
In the meantime, my post stands-UNREBUTTED!


Till moderators us do part.
0 Replies
 
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 08:58 am
Finn d'Abuzz wrote:
8 pages and not a hint of an intelligent discussion.

Your contribution is noted.
0 Replies
 
Amigo
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 09:12 am
The separation of church and state is not tiresome. It's why America is not like Israel or Iraq. What is tiresome is that we have to waste time energy and resources combating Christians from usurping such a fundamental and valuable American ideal. Look at the rest of the world and ask yourself if seperation of church and state is not a good idea? The last thing in America we need is more ways to seperate eachother.

Most of the founding Fathers were Deist not Christians.
0 Replies
 
Wolf ODonnell
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 09:27 am
Mortkat wrote:
You may be right, Francis. You may indeed have a good crap detector.

On the other hand, you may be wrong. Your assertions may only be a cloak for inablity to respond.

You believe what you want to believe and Ill believe what I want to believe. In the meantime, my post stands-UNREBUTTED!


It's rather difficult to be able to rebut your post from my particular point of view, as it is difficult to access the graduation lists for Oxford University, which in itself is not a University but comprised of several semi-independent colleges.

I have also lost my graduation list for King's College London, yet another prestigious University. I can guarantee you, however, that many of those who have top honours are not "white". In fact, they were in the minority, then again, the ceremony I attended only had mainly science graduates and Caucasians tend not to do science.
0 Replies
 
McGentrix
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 09:44 am
Amigo wrote:
The separation of church and state is not tiresome. It's why America is not like Israel or Iraq. What is tiresome is that we have to waste time energy and resources combating Christians from usurping such a fundamental and valuable American ideal. Look at the rest of the world and ask yourself if seperation of church and state is not a good idea? The last thing in America we need is more ways to seperate eachother.

Most of the founding Fathers were Deist not Christians.


I take exception to your argument.

Deism is defined in Webster's Encyclopedic Dictionary, 1941, as: "[From Latin Deus, God.Deity] The doctrine or creed of a Deist." And Deist is defined in the same dictionary as: "One who believes in the existence of a God or supreme being but denies revealed religion, basing his belief on the light of nature and reason."

I am sure Blatham can shed light on our case if so wishes.
0 Replies
 
Amigo
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 01:14 pm
The only correction I have is that I said most were deist. Most were not Christian and among the most important were deist.

www.deism.org/foundingfathers.htm
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 01:46 pm
Of interest to those blatherers on the topic of the "founding fathers" and deism would be the Jefferson Bible.

Writing for PBS, Marilyn Mellowes wrote:
The White House, Washington, D.C. 1804.

Thomas Jefferson was frustrated. It was not the burdens of office that bothered him. It was his Bible.

Jefferson was convinced that the authentic words of Jesus written in the New Testament had been contaminated. Early Christians, overly eager to make their religion appealing to the pagans, had obscured the words of Jesus with the philosophy of the ancient Greeks and the teachings of Plato. These "Platonists" had thoroughly muddled Jesus' original message. Jefferson assured his friend and rival, John Adams, that the authentic words of Jesus were still there. The task, as he put it, was one of

Quote:
abstracting what is really his from the rubbish in which it is buried, easily distinguished by its lustre from the dross of his biographers, and as separate from that as the diamond from the dung hill.


With the confidence and optimistic energy characteristic of the Enlightenment, Jefferson proceeded to dig out the diamonds. Candles burning late at night, his quill pen scratching "too hastily" as he later admitted, Jefferson composed a short monograph titled The Philosophy of Jesus of Nazareth. The subtitle explains that the work is "extracted from the account of his life and the doctrines as given by Matthew, Mark, Luke & John." In it, Jefferson presented what he understood was the true message of Jesus.

Jefferson set aside his New Testament research, returning to it again in the summer of 1820. This time, he completed a more ambitious work, The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth Extracted Textually from the Gospels in Greek, Latin, French and English. The text of the New Testament appears in four parallel columns in four languages. Jefferson omitted the words that he thought were inauthentic and retained those he believed were original. The resulting work is commonly known as the "Jefferson Bible."

Who was the Jesus that Jefferson found? He was not the familiar figure of the New Testament. In Jefferson's Bible, there is no account of the beginning and the end of the Gospel story. There is no story of the annunciation, the virgin birth or the appearance of the angels to the shepherds. The resurrection is not even mentioned.

Jefferson discovered a Jesus who was a great Teacher of Common Sense. His message was the morality of absolute love and service. Its authenticity was not dependent upon the dogma of the Trinity or even the claim that Jesus was uniquely inspired by God. Jefferson saw Jesus as

Quote:
a man, of illegitimate birth, of a benevolent heart, (and an) enthusiastic mind, who set out without pretensions of divinity, ended in believing them, and was punished capitally for sedition by being gibbeted according to the Roman law.


In short, Mr. Jefferson's Jesus, modeled on the ideals of the Enlightenment thinkers of his day, bore a striking resemblance to Jefferson himself.


Jefferson could nominally be described as a christian. However, the contention that he was an orthodox chrisitian holding scripture to be inerrant revealed truth is nonsense. The only member of the founders whom i would consider it reasonable to assert to have been a conventional orthodox christian would be George Washington, raised in the Anglican church, and a member of the vestry of Truro parish in which Mount Vernon was situated. Even he avoided any but strictly "neutral" deist statements in public, and he was also a member of the Freemasons, as were thirteen other signatories of the constitution and as have been fourteen Presidents of the United States. John A. MacDonald, one of the two "founding fathers" of Canada and the father of the Tory Party (read, Conservatives) was also a Freemason. Modern evangelicals wax absotively rabid about the Freemasons--in the words of one of the milder fundy web sites: "Freemasonry has a plan of salvation and a false savior." Others claim the Masons are in league with Satan. There are worlds of difference between the canting fundy fanatics who rant about the "christian" foundation of the United States and those who actually made the revolution and the constitution.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 01:49 pm
Walter Hinteler wrote:
Mortkat wrote:
In the meantime, my post stands-UNREBUTTED!


Till moderators us do part.


Damn, Walter, that really cracked me up . . . that' s one of your finest pieces of wit here, and wasted on the clueless . . .
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 03:00 pm
Thomas Jefferson, writing to William Short:

"I have examined all the known superstitions of the world, and I do not find in our particular superstition of Christianity one redeeming feature. They are all alike founded on fables and mythology. Millions of innocent men, women and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burnt, tortured, fined and imprisoned. What has been the effect of this coercion? To make one half the world fools and the other half hypocrites; to support roguery and error all over the earth."

Jefferson's personal papers contain the following passage:

"Rogueries, absurdities and untruths were perpetrated upon the teachings of Jesus by a large band of dupes and importers led by Paul, the first great corrupter of the teaching of Jesus."

John Adams:

"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?"

James Madison:

"What influence in fact have Christian ecclesiastical establishments had on civil society? In many instances they have been upholding the thrones of political tyranny. In no instance have they been seen as the guardians of the liberties of the people. Rulers who wished to subvert the public liberty have found in the clergy convenient auxiliaries. A just government, instituted to secure and perpetuate liberty, does not need the clergy."

James Madison (writing to Edward Livingston, July, 1822):

"Religion and government will both exist in greater purity, the less they are mixed together."

James Madison (writing to Robert Walsh, March, 1819):

"The civil Government, though bereft of everything like an associated hierarchy, possesses the requisite stability, and performs its functions with complete success, whilst the number, the industry, and the morality of the priesthood, and the devotion of the people, have been manifestly increased by the total separation of the church from the State."

James Madison, speaking during the First Congress' debates on the amendments to be sent to the States, August 1789 (form The Annals of Congress, 1789):

"Congress should not establish a religion and enforce the legal observation of it by law, nor compel men to worship God in any manner contary to their conscience, or that one sect might obtain a pre-eminence, or two combined together, and establish a religion to which they would compel others to conform."

From the collected papers of George Mason, Vol. 3, as compiled by Robert Rutland:

That Religion, or the Duty which we owe to our Creator, and the Manner of discharging it, can be directed only by Reason and Conviction, not by Force or Violence, and therefore all Men have an equal natural and unalienable Right to the free Exercise of Religion, according to the Dictates of Conscience, and that no particular religious Sect or Society ought to be favored or established by Law, in Preference to others.

Rufus King, a Massachusetts man and a member of the Congregational church, which was the established religion of that colony, wrote:

"I never liked the Hierarchy of the Church--an equality in the teacher of Religion, and a dependence on the people, are republican sentiments--but if the Clergy combine, they will have their influence on Government"

Thomas Jefferson, in notes for a speech, c. 1776, from Gorton Carruth and Eugene Ehrlich, eds., The Harper Book of American Quotations, New York: Harper & Row, 1988, p. 498, Wrote:

"I may grow rich by an art I am compelled to follow; I may recover health by medicines I am compelled to take against my own judgment; but I cannot be saved by a worship I disbelieve and abhor.

Thomas Jefferson, writing in "Notes on Virginia," in 1782, wrote:

"It is error alone which needs the support of government. Truth can stand by itself."

Thomas Jefferson, writing to Elbridge Gerry, January 1799, wrote:

"I am for freedom of religion and against all maneuvers to bring about a legal ascendancy of one sect over another."

While President of the United States, Jefferson wrote to the Baptists of Danbury, Connecticutt in 1802:

"I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibit the free exercise thereof, thus building a wall of separation between church and state."

(This is the famous "wall of separation" passage which the fundy fanatics are so desparate to deny. Baptists had been riven badly by the turmoil of the "Great Awakening" in the early eighteenth century, before the revolution, and were convinced that religious purity, as with government, derives from the people. They were anxious to assure that there be no religion in government, and no government in religion--Jefferson wrote to reassure them of his adherence to that principle.)

Jefferson, writing to Benjamin Rush in April, 1803, wrote:

"It behoves every man who values liberty of conscience for himself, to resist invasions of it in the case of others; or their case may, by change of circumstances, become his own.

Jefferson, writing to Samuel Kercheval in 1810, wrote:

"But a short time elapsed after the death of the great reformer [i.e., Jesus] of the Jewish religion, before his principles were departed from by those who professed to be his special servants, and perverted into an engine for enslaving mankind, and aggrandizing their oppressors in Church and State.

James Madison, writing to William Bradford in April, 1774, wrote:

"Religious bondage shackles and debilitates the mind and unfits it for every noble enterprize, every expanded prospect.

While President, in 1811, Madison vetoed a bill establishing an Episcopal church foundation in Alexandria, Virginia, and shortly thereafter vetoed another bill reserving land for a Baptist church in the Mississippi Territory. He also vetoed bills for chaplaincies for the Congress and for the Army and the Navy, and late in 1811, he commented as follows:

"Religious proclamations by the Executive recommending thanksgivings and fasts are shoots from the same root with the legislative acts reviewed. Altho' recommendations only, they imply a religious agency, making no part of the trust delegated to political rulers."

In an undated letter (probably written in the 1830's) to Robert Walsh, Madison wrote:

"It was the Universal opinion of the Century preceding the last[i.e., the seventeenth century--the 1600s], that Civil Government could not stand without the prop of a Religious establishment, and that the Christian religion itself, would perish if not supported by a legal provision for its Clergy. The experience of Virginia conspicuously corroborates the disproof of both opinions. The Civil Government, tho' bereft of everything like an associated hierarchy, possesses the requisite stability and performs its functions with complete success; whilst the number, the industry, and the morality of the Priesthood, and the devotion of the people have been manifestly increased by the total separation of the Church from the State."

George Washington, writing to the "Religious Society called the Quakers" in September, 1789, wrote:

"Government being, among other purposes, instituted to protect the consciences of men from oppression, it is certainly the duty of Rulers, not only to abstain from it themselves, but according to their stations, to prevent it in others."

George Washington, writing to Edward Newenham in October, 1792, wrote:

"Of all the animosities which have existed among mankind, those which are caused by difference of sentiments in religion appear to be the most inveterate and distressing, and ought most to be deprecated. I was in hopes that the enlightened and liberal policy, which has marked the present age, would at least have reconciled Christians of every denomination so far that we should never again see the religious disputes carried to such a pitch as to endanger the peace of society."

When Parson Weems (as in, chopping down the cherry tree, "I cannot tell a lie," etc.) was creating the Washington hagiography in the 1830s, Bird Wilson, an Episcopal Minister in Albany, New York, who had met Washington and most of the members of the First Congress, wrote to The Albany Advertiser that: ". . . among all our presidents from Washington downward, not one was a professor of religion, at least not of more than unitarianism."

John Adams, writing to his son (and soon to be sixth President) John Quincy Adams in November, 1816, wrote:

"Let the human mind loose. It must be loose. It will be loose. Superstition and Dogmatism cannot confine it."

Isaac Backus, a Baptist Minister, wrote in 1773:

"Religious matters are to be separated from the jurisdiction of the state not because they are beneath the interests of the state, but, quite to the contrary, because they are too high and holy and thus are beyond the competence of the state."

Samuel West, upon his election to the Deaconship of the Congregation of Dartmouth, Massachusetts in 1776 (which colony then had a Congregationalist establishment), said, in a widely-published sermon:

"For the civil authority to pretend to establish particular modes of faith and forms of worship, and to punish all that deviate from the standards which our superiors have set up, is attended with the most pernicious consequences to society. It cramps all free and rational inquiry, fills the world with hypocrites and superstitious bigots--nay, with infidels and skeptics; it exposes men of religion and conscience to the rage and malice of fiery, blind zealots, and dissolves every tender tie of human nature."

Baptist Minister John Leland wrote in 1820:

"The liberty I contend for is more than toleration. The very idea of toleration is despicable; it supposes that some have a pre-eminence above the rest to grant indulgence; whereas all should be equally free, Jews, Turks [i.e., Muslims], Pagans and Christians. Test oaths and established creeds should be avoided as the worst of evils."
0 Replies
 
Mortkat
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 03:25 pm
Wolf_O'Donnell- Thank you for your response. I am aware of the multiplicity of colleges in Oxford. I am heartened to hear that the Osford system produces many graduates who are "minorities". Am I correct in saying that Oxford Colleges draw from people all over the world? Do you know whether the top "minority" graduates are indeed from the British Isles or are they from other countries also.

I can assure you that 90% of the "minorities" that I listed are from the United States and not foriegn students since their home addresses are given next to the pictures in the Harvard yearbook.

You probably realize that the discussion began when Francis decried the presence of "meritocracy" as a guideline as to who gets what.

That may be true in France, which I understand is a bureaucratic nighmare riddled with lifetime timeservers and in Germany also which has a school system which has gone down precipitously ever since the Germans chased out all of their great German Jewish scholars and scientists who made up the bulk of their academic aristocracy but it is not true in the United States.

Some of the students I listed are sons and daughters of immigrants. Some are refugees from Vietnam. The US, with the best University system in the world, does indeed have a meritocracy of intellect.

That is precisely the point I made with my list for Francis.
0 Replies
 
Mortkat
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 03:38 pm
You are correct, Setanta. And, of course, the reason why Walter Hinteler is so witty and learned is because he is the product of the German University system. I think they still have some Universities operating there. I am informed that the University of Munich is still running and the Tech University is still going in that city. Of course they are listed as Number 51 and 52 in a current list of Universities ranked by prestige. It is possible that Walter may have matriculated at the University of Heidelberg( 71st on the list) or Gottingen(84th on the list) or Freiberg(91st on the list). I must admit that I am stumped. I cannot understand how so much wisdom, erudition and know-how can come from a country that only has four uinversities listed in the top 100. The US lists 55 of the top Hundred and 19 of the top 25 yet it is clear as I read these posts that the US, if it is wise, is forced to turn to the most brilliant minds in Europe to solve its problems.

Perhaps our US University system needs a shake-up.
0 Replies
 
ralpheb
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 03:46 pm
Morkat, where do you get your rankings from? I'd like to take a look (got kids I need to send somewhere)
0 Replies
 
Cycloptichorn
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 03:51 pm
Perhaps you should let your kids decide for themselves where to go. After all,

In another thread, Ralph wrote:
Quote:
So you are implying that high school students are not capable of making decisions?


Cycloptichorn
0 Replies
 
Mortkat
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 03:52 pm
I really must obtain a better reading list from someone as erudite as Setanta. Here I have been laboring under misapprehensions since I have what may be a deficient tome in my library. The book
"The Declaration of Independence" by Edward Dumbauld-University of Oklahoma press may be downright misleading.

Why, Dumbauld quotes Jefferson as saying, in his "Summary View" that

QUOTE

The God that gave us life gave us liberty at the same time; the hand of force may destroy but cannot disjoin them.

and

"And can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their ONLY FIRM BASIS, A CONVICTION IN THE MINDS OF THE PEOPLE THAT THESE LIBERTIES ARE OF THE GIFT OF GOD. THAT THEY ARE NOT TO BE VIOLATED BUT WITH HIS WRATH."

After reading the excellent PBS presentation, I would have thought that Jefferson would never have mentioned "his wrath". Jerry Falwell-certainly--but not Jefferson.
0 Replies
 
ralpheb
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 03:55 pm
They will make their own decision, with me as part of the process.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 04:37 pm
Typical dead kitty idiocy . . . the point is that Jefferson was a deist, but not necessarily an orothodox christian. The dead kitty seems to think that there are only two confessions in the world--Jesus freaks and atheists. How tedious the feline nonsense we get . . .
0 Replies
 
Mortkat
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Jan, 2006 04:41 pm
Setanta gets his jollies by calling me dead kitty= Why? well he is doing a translation. Mort- dead and kat- kitty. I must therefore ask him whether his name- Sentanta) which in Italian means seventy refers to his age or his IQ.
0 Replies
 
 

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