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  1. #21  
    Quote Originally Posted by samkim View Post
    The Quran denies the validity of the US government?
    The Quran makes it clear that Muslims should strive to enact an Islamic political system wherever they can. Since the Islamic political system necessarily promotes Islam over other religions it is antithetical to the political system envisaged by the US Constitution. A true Muslim politician could not, it seems to me, unreservedly uphold the US Constitution. At best, they could make an oath to uphold the US Constitution for as long as it takes to enact an Islamic one.
  2. #22  
    Quote Originally Posted by samkim View Post
    Hmm. That puts a whole new light on the vision of democracy in the Middle East.

    I wonder how the Muslim lawmakers in Turkey, Palestine, Lebanon, Afghanistan, and Iraq reconcile their work with the Quran. Even al Sistani supports democracy.
    Many Islamic scholars state that democracy, within the framework of al shariah, is not un-Islamic. They provide examples where their prophet held counsel with "the people" to make certain decisions. However, a true democracy, where the people reign, is completely un-Islamic because in an Islamic political system Allah must reign supreme. Even the US form of representative democracy can be seen as un-Islamic because it does not specifically point to Allah (specifically, the Muslims god) as the primary source of all laws.
  3. #23  
    Quote Originally Posted by hoovs View Post
    Many Islamic scholars state that democracy, within the framework of al shariah, is not un-Islamic. They provide examples where their prophet held counsel with "the people" to make certain decisions. However, a true democracy, where the people reign, is completely un-Islamic because in an Islamic political system Allah must reign supreme. Even the US form of representative democracy can be seen as un-Islamic because it does not specifically point to Allah (specifically, the Muslims god) as the primary source of all laws.
    The less religion in policy, the better. That also applies for Western cultures.

    It seems quite clear that a dogmatic interpretation of the Quran does not help in making an Islamic society successful in the sense of prosperity, freedom, economic advancement, etc.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  4. #24  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup View Post
    The less religion in policy, the better. That also applies for Western cultures.

    It seems quite clear that a dogmatic interpretation of the Quran does not help in making an Islamic society successful in the sense of prosperity, freedom, economic advancement, etc.
    Right. Any mixing of any religion (reliance on faith, less scope for reasoned discussion of issues) and governance is potentially explosive.

    We have discussed this endlessly in threads on atheism.
    --
    Aloke
    Cingular GSM
    Software:Treo650-1.17-CNG
    Firmware:01.51 Hardware:A
  5. #25  
    Quote Originally Posted by aprasad View Post
    The real official ceremony doesn't use any text. The private ceremony afterwards uses the Bible (typically).
    Exactly! The big flap over a photo op. By the time the Member of Congress places his hand on the Bible, he will have already been sworn in hours ago.

    I've met Ellison, and he's going to make a great Congressman and represent his constituents well. It shouldn't matter to the rest of us what book his photo op includes.
    Gimme the P-Funk!
  6. #26  
    Quote Originally Posted by samkim View Post
    Hmm. That puts a whole new light on the vision of democracy in the Middle East.
    My thoughts, exactly.
  7. #27  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim View Post
    Humorously, your last statement reflects the same type of stereotyping you're criticizing ("Goode holds this view, therefore all Viriginians hold this view?" )
    Not at all. Now your making statements not supported by the facts. No where did I state, or even imply, that ALL Virginians hold this view. Clearly I don't, so your statement is wrong on it's face.

    Aside from that, I didn't even imply that MOST Virginian's hold this view. Only that I'm embarrassed to live in a state where ANYONE holds the views of Mr. Goode.

    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim View Post
    Is it your understanding that every elected and/or appointed official who has taken oath of office using a Bible, and every citizen who has given sowrn testimony in court having given oath on a Bible is a christian? I haven't conducted the research, but my guess is many non-christians have taken oaths on the Bible, without thinking that such a deed in any way was a declaration of faith.
    Many people have done many things with the Bible. People swear on it, and people swear at it. People pray to it, and people curse at it. People have enshrined it in museums, and other people have thrown it in the trash or burned it. But, no matter what you do with it, or to it, it is the central document of the Christian faith, and nothing can change that. Asking a non-Christian to swear on a bible is no different than asking a Christian to swear on the Talmud, or the Koran, or a book of witchcraft.

    It never ceases to amaze me that many Christians see nothing wrong with forcing their religion on others, but recoil in horror at even the slightest suggestion that someone else's religious beliefs should intrude on their lives. And Goode is going even further than that. He doesn't just want to ensure that he doesn't have to use the Koran, he want's to ensure that no one can use the Koran.

    Literacy tests for voters were banned a long time ago. But I think a test on the constitution should be mandatory for all elected officials before they can run for office. Actually, a test on the constitution for voters wouldn't be a bad idea, either.
    Bob Meyer
    I'm out of my mind. But feel free to leave a message.
  8. #28  
    Amen.
    Thank goodness the Constitution was written in 1700's when people were more rational, tolerant, and wiser than today!!

    Can you imagine the mess it would be if it was written today? We are trying our best to screw it up with amendments these days....
    --
    Aloke
    Cingular GSM
    Software:Treo650-1.17-CNG
    Firmware:01.51 Hardware:A
  9. #29  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim View Post
    I haven't conducted the research, but my guess is many non-christians have taken oaths on the Bible, without thinking that such a deed in any way was a declaration of faith.
    Not in the least. Why would this be so? It would be like taking an oath on the life of a dead person, iow, meaningless.

    Also, you cannot be serious about taking an oath on the bible and saying things like "so help me god" not being a religious act.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  10. #30  
    Quote Originally Posted by impish View Post
    Or Playboy?


    Agree!
    If swearing is necessary, we need a document that galvanizes and unties us as a nation: something we ALL have in common.

    tv guide?
    ~bean

    palm IIIxe, tungsten t, tx, and now...a treo 700P
    palm all the way.
  11. #31  
    I'm one of those wackos who thinks having a religious text within 20 feet of a government building is a bad idea. Obviously I'm in the minority there, so I'll settle for at least diversifying the types of religious texts within 20 feet of a government building.

    Full disclosure: Happily voted for Ellison.
  12. #32  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup View Post
    Not in the least. Why would this be so? It would be like taking an oath on the life of a dead person, iow, meaningless.
    I do not think it to be so. I was responding to this statement:
    Quote Originally Posted by meyerweb
    To ask a non-Christian to swear on the bible is insulting and demeaning if the oath is to be taken seriously, or a mockery otherwise.
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup View Post
    Also, you cannot be serious about taking an oath on the bible and saying things like "so help me god" not being a religious act.
    Hmmmmm. If saying things like 'so help me god' is a "religious act", we have been experiencing "religious acts" in legislative and judicial houses across this nation for MANY years.
  13. #33  
    Quote Originally Posted by meyerweb View Post
    Not at all. Now your making statements not supported by the facts. No where did I state, or even imply, that ALL Virginians hold this view. Clearly I don't, so your statement is wrong on it's face.

    Aside from that, I didn't even imply that MOST Virginian's hold this view. Only that I'm embarrassed to live in a state where ANYONE holds the views of Mr. Goode.
    My apologies. I was trying to rationalize why someone would be embarassed that people who hold offensive views live in the same state. I mistakenly concluded that you felt Mr. Goode's views some how reflected on Viriginia.

    Quote Originally Posted by meyerweb View Post

    Many people have done many things with the Bible. People swear on it, and people swear at it. People pray to it, and people curse at it. People have enshrined it in museums, and other people have thrown it in the trash or burned it. But, no matter what you do with it, or to it, it is the central document of the Christian faith, and nothing can change that. Asking a non-Christian to swear on a bible is no different than asking a Christian to swear on the Talmud, or the Koran, or a book of witchcraft.
    Perhaps. I was only meaning to point out that it is doubtful that everyone who has ever taken an oath of office or has sworn to give trutfhful testimony in a legal proceeding was a christian.
    Quote Originally Posted by meyerweb View Post

    ...

    Literacy tests for voters were banned a long time ago. But I think a test on the constitution should be mandatory for all elected officials before they can run for office. Actually, a test on the constitution for voters wouldn't be a bad idea, either.
    It's kinda hard to get a handle on a "living, breathing document"
  14. #34  
    Back-tracking for a moment. Two of my statements were quoted, followed by this assessment:
    Quote Originally Posted by meyerweb View Post
    Sorry, but I think this is Hogwash. ...
    Here is statement 1:

    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    The Bible's standing in U. S. History is that of having and being a significant influence on our laws and our values.
    Here is statement 2:
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    It's use in vow-making is not a nod to Judaism nor Christianity (the religious movements most closely affiliated with the text), but a recognition of and deference to the ideals that undergird this 230 year old experiment.
    Which of these statements earned the designation, "hogwash"? Based on the follow-on conversation, I'm guessing the 2nd statement. But, my conclusions have been off here lately.
  15. #35  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim View Post
    Hmmmmm. If saying things like 'so help me god' is a "religious act", we have been experiencing "religious acts" in legislative and judicial houses across this nation for MANY years.
    Yes we have. We not only have religious oaths; we even have prayer.
  16. #36  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim View Post
    If saying things like 'so help me god' is a "religious act", we have been experiencing "religious acts" in legislative and judicial houses across this nation for MANY years.
    Good to see that you start realising the problem - even if it is only because a member of another religious group wants to do the same with his brand of religious items and acts.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  17. #37  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup View Post
    Good to see that you start realising the problem - even if it is only because a member of another religious group wants to do the same with his brand of religious items and acts.
    Why is it a problem?
  18. #38  
    Quote Originally Posted by hoovs View Post
    Why is it a problem?
    Because it is in violation of the constitutional separation of church/religion and state?
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  19. #39  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup View Post
    Because it is in violation of the constitutional separation of church/religion and state?
    How?
  20. #40  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup View Post
    Good to see that you start realising the problem - even if it is only because a member of another religious group wants to do the same with his brand of religious items and acts.
    It is really only a "problem" for those who don't like religion in the public square. Another perspective is to say it is a realisation that the modern interpretation and implementation of "separation of church and state" deviates significantly from the views of prior generations.

    Historically, the citizens of the nation have shared a common ethic and sense of values. All were not Christians, but most were theistic and shared a sense of right and wrong. Even within "Christianity" there is Catholic and protestant (and who knows how many variations of that), but again there is a shared sense of right and wrong.

    Ironically, it is that shared ethic, espousing personal liberty within the context of societal harmony, that allowed for other religions and cultures to be expressed without threat.

    And, on the matter of constitutionality...

    The very fact that prayer and Bible-backed oaths have each been such a long standing practice in government proceedings is indication that it is not a Constitutional violation. Now, I know that long standing practice, in and of itself, is not basis for Constitutionality (eg. various racial segregation practices). But, in the case of prayer, we see the practise undertaken by the framers themselves. No reasonal person would conclude that they, with all the effort they put forth in trying to forge a more perfect union, were violating the very principles they were establishing.

    Even if the "enlightenment" of the age demonstrates that their beliefs were irrational, it does not indicate that their practices were unconsitutional. And, as such, they are no more unconstitutional today.

    Offensive to some? Perhaps. But, that is not the same as unconstitutional. Insulting? Perhaps. But, not unconstitutional. Irrational? Perhaps. But, not unconstitutional.
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