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  1. mhc48#CB's Avatar
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    #41  
    Originally posted by Toby
    There have been undoubtedly just as many atrocities performed _upon_ Catholics in the past. My own ancestors would have probably never come here were it not for a particular one.
    I'm not a Catholic :-) either, but I know that even at the time of this Country's founding, many, including the founding fathers, were stongly anti-catholic (or anti-Papist as they might have said). On a business trip recently going to argue a motion in another state, I happened to pick up, read and bring home (they encouraged me to!) the Book of Mormon. They would appear, even today, not to be all that enamoured of Catholics.

    One point which we could probably all agree on is that most of the atrocities, as well as most of the lesser forms of discrimination practiced upon those of "other" religions, have occurred in countries where the Bible, or one particular version of the Bible (or Quran or sacred Hindu texts) have been the basis for that country's laws. I'm sure most of these were or began as or thought themselves to be well intentioned ethical people.

    I've little doubt that the Taliban in Afghanistan feel they are righteously doing the proper thing.

    Which brings us, aria da capo, to the implicit question of this thread and hopefully its answer: What's wrong with using the Bible as the basis of U.S. laws?"
    Last edited by MHCohn; 08/20/2001 at 10:20 AM.
    -Michael-
  2. #42  
    Originally posted by MHCohn
    Which brings us, aria da capo, to the implicit question of this thread and hopefully its answer: What's wrong with using the Bible as the basis of U.S. laws?"
    Which is what I was talking about in the first place. Reread the 2nd and 3rd posts. The 3rd post contains 4 requirements that I think and ethical system ought to have in order to be a sound basis for U.S. laws.
  3. #43  
    Originally posted by dietrichbohn
    Why I think Object Utilitarianism is a good ethical standard upon which to base laws:

    1) It makes no statement with regard to religion, class, race, gender, etc.
    2) It is justified by the mutual benefit of a society, which is probably the best common ethical denominator around, unlike systems based on God, or the words of Confucious, or something else.
    3) It can contain general principles upon which laws can be based. Unlike standard utilitarianism, which is often interpreted to be an individualistic, case-by-case ethics.
    4) It is easily understood by many people, unlike a kind of Universal Imperative theory, which usually gets bogged down in its own attempts to justify itself.

    Downsides:

    1) Personal freedom is guaranteed only insofar as it benefits the society as a whole
    2) The primary justification, the benefit of society as a whole, is open to interpetation and mis-interpretation. i.e. it isn't the absolute, undeniable, and universally agreed-upon word of god. (but does such a thing exist, anyway?)

    ...but I think the downsides are easily overcome, and pale in comparison to the benefits.
    The points/guidelines that you made earlier are excellent ones. I agree with them. But as you said, they are "open to interpretation and mis-interpretation". But then again, so is the Bible, or any other religious text. Society will NEVER agree on a single interpretation of the Bible, then again, the majority of the people don't even believe the Bible to be true.

    Those who believe in the Bible (I myself am included), should apply the ethics and morals taught in it to our own lives. We should also hove complete tolorance and understanding of those who do not share the same beliefs. Every person has the right to believe how they choose, and that is a God-given gift. Lets just worry about making ourselves better people.

    As for the law, the founding fathers established a system in which the people can choose those who will represent them. Society needs to take a more active roll in politics, so the laws that are established provide the ethical standards that we would like them to. If, they don't say exactly what we want them to, it is still our duty to obey the law of the land.
    Last edited by chuckster; 08/20/2001 at 03:01 PM.
  4. #44  
    Originally posted by MHCohn
    One point which we could probably all agree on is that most of the atrocities, as well as most of the lesser forms of discrimination practiced upon those of "other" religions, have occurred in countries where the Bible, or one particular version of the Bible (or Quran or sacred Hindu texts) have been the basis for that country's laws. I'm sure most of these were or began as or thought themselves to be well intentioned ethical people.
    The problem, of course, tends to arise _because_ those laws were based on their "bible" (whatever name it goes by). Since the laws are based upon their holy book, anyone who does not follow that holy book may be breaking the law simply by living their life 'normally'.
    I've little doubt that the Taliban in Afghanistan feel they are righteously doing the proper thing.
    Correct.
    Which brings us, aria da capo, to the implicit question of this thread and hopefully its answer: What's wrong with using the Bible as the basis of U.S. laws?"
    "Congress shall make no Law respecting the Establishment of Religion, or prohibiting the free Exercise thereof [...] " Basing laws upon any particular version of a bible is functionally establishing whichever religion follows it as the state-sanctioned religion.
    ‎"Is that suck and salvage the Kevin Costner method?" - Chris Matthews on Hardball, July 6, 2010. Wonder if he's talking about his oil device or his movie career...
  5. #45  
    Society needs to take a more active roll in polotics
    So true...
    We're all naked if you turn us inside out.
    -David Byrne
  6. #46  
    Originally posted by homer


    So true...
    Well, at least we can agree on something.
  7. #47  
    Originally posted by thorin
    And when you ask yourself WWJD, you just know it'd be 'kill that ****** *******'.
    Huh? According to the Bible, Jesus was very anti-capital punishment.
    -Joshua
    I've decided to become enigmatic.
  8. #48  
    Somewhat related to this topic, we had a sexual offender move into our neighborhood and we just got back from the public notification meeting.

    While the crimes the offender has commited are certainly reprehensible, I was equally shocked at the complete lack of civics knowledge that some of my neighbors possesed.

    People were ready to lynch the police officers who attended. They assumed the police made laws and the fact that this person was moving into our neighborhood was their fault.

    The point? The bible isn't going to do a whole lot to educate the common citizen about how they should be involved with their communities and government to help establish their own set of ethical standards.
    We're all naked if you turn us inside out.
    -David Byrne
  9. #49  
    Originally posted by homer


    What does that have to do with the topic of this thread?

    If you are going to reply to a thread with a relevant post, it may help to NOT just skip it...

    Not sure what Jesus would do in this situation...
    um, I think my comment has at least a little to do with 'biblical principals' as well as 'the death penalty'


    Originally posted by ****-richardson

    Huh? According to the Bible, Jesus was very anti-capital punishment.
    I know. I was being sarcastic.
    -thorin

    I have a webcomic. You should read it, or I may do something rash. <b><a href=http://driveby.keenspace.com/>Drive-by Loitering</a></b> is updated every monday, wednesday and friday.

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  10. #50  
    Originally posted by homer

    The point? The bible isn't going to do a whole lot to educate the common citizen about how they should be involved with their communities and government to help establish their own set of ethical standards.
    That is probably because the "common citizen" doesn't read the Bible. They might say that they believe in it, but if someone were to ask them a very simple question about it, they wouldn't have a clue. I wish people would not only say that they believe in something, but act on those beliefs.
  11. #51  
    Originally posted by thorin
    I know. I was being sarcastic.
    Oh.
    -Joshua
    I've decided to become enigmatic.
  12. #52  
    Originally posted by chuckster
    That is probably because the "common citizen" doesn't read the Bible. They might say that they believe in it, but if someone were to ask them a very simple question about it, they wouldn't have a clue. I wish people would not only say that they believe in something, but act on those beliefs.
    Even if you're not the average citizen, but a bible expert, it's not a good ethical standard. Think about it. after about 1500 years in existence in something like its current form, there's no consensus on interpretation. People take hour-long weekly classes (church), read it, and end up with mixed up and confused ideas about it. Even if it did contain the whole and final ethical truth, it too much of a pain in the rear to access it, and I for one am not willing to trust an authority on this one. I want an ethical standard that I can understand, and that joe schmoe the yard boy can understand too.
  13. #53  
    Originally posted by dietrichbohn


    Even if you're not the average citizen, but a bible expert, it's not a good ethical standard. Think about it. after about 1500 years in existence in something like its current form, there's no consensus on interpretation. People take hour-long weekly classes (church), read it, and end up with mixed up and confused ideas about it. Even if it did contain the whole and final ethical truth, it too much of a pain in the rear to access it, and I for one am not willing to trust an authority on this one. I want an ethical standard that I can understand, and that joe schmoe the yard boy can understand too.
    well, I think that it does contain the "whole and final ethical truth" but like you say, it would be very difficult to get that truth because of misinterpretations, etc. I said earlier that it shouldn't be used as a basis for the laws of the country. As we know, our country believes in the separation of church and state. That is one of the reasons why we fought for independence; so the government wouldn't be controlled by religion, and religion wouldn't be controlled by the government.

    So, that leaves us with a very important question: Where/how do we come up with an ethical standard that everyone can relate to and understand? I think that it would be impossible to do it. Everyone has different standards in their own mind, and there will never be a consensus.
  14. #54  
    Originally posted by chuckster
    So, that leaves us with a very important question: Where/how do we come up with an ethical standard that everyone can relate to and understand? I think that it would be impossible to do it. Everyone has different standards in their own mind, and there will never be a consensus.
    <dead horse beating>

    Um, my third post in the thread offered a suggestion. An ethical code for the U.S. should be a code where:

    1) It makes no statement with regard to religion, class, race, gender, etc.
    2) It is justified by the mutual benefit of a society[...]
    3) It can contain general principles upon which laws can be based. [...]
    4) It is easily understood by many people
    I think that Object Utilitarianism fits the bill. I put "2" in there because I think it's the closest you'll come to a consensus for a basis for a code of ethics.

    </horse officially dead>
  15. #55  
    I remember when you wrote that. I think I even quoted it once. I still don't see how anyone will ever agree on what mutually benefits society. There will always be disagreements. Alas, the world is an imperfect place...who would have known.
  16. #56  
    Originally posted by chuckster
    I remember when you wrote that. I think I even quoted it once. I still don't see how anyone will ever agree on what mutually benefits society. There will always be disagreements. Alas, the world is an imperfect place...who would have known.
    You don't think we can agree on what benefits society as a whole? I'm willing to bet we could come to some middle ground, even if you are a christian!
  17. #57  
    Originally posted by homer


    While the crimes the offender has commited are certainly reprehensible, I was equally shocked at the complete lack of civics knowledge that some of my neighbors possesed.

    I'm not sure where this is from, some movie that escapes my feable memory, but I think it applies here:

    "People are ignorant, individuals are stupid"

    Living in Modesto, CA and having the community be in the spotlight due to Gary Condit and listening to my neighbors talk about re-electing him because he's done a good job - the above quote applies.

    Thank goodness we live in a Republic.
    Moose Man
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  18. #58  
    Originally posted by dietrichbohn


    You don't think we can agree on what benefits society as a whole? I'm willing to bet we could come to some middle ground, even if you are a christian!
    Yeah, you are right. That is what polotics is all about; compromise. That is why we shouldn't use religion (I say religion meaning ones personal beliefs, not necessarily an organized church) and not just the Bible, to create a standard. I personally am not willing to compromise my beliefs (God never changes, so I shouldn't change just to make someone else happy). That is why the Nicene (sp?) Creed was such a mistake. It was a bunch of men deciding what was best for them, and basing religious docterine on their compromises. So anyway, trying to find a religious middle ground would be a huge mistake. But, finding a middle ground on what is beneficial to society (putting religious beliefs aside) is in fact possible. That is how we should base our laws. So Dietrichbohn, it looks like (if I am not mistaken) we have agreed on this issue the whole time!
  19. #59  
    Originally posted by chuckster
    That is why the Nicene (sp?) Creed was such a mistake. It was a bunch of men deciding what was best for them, and basing religious docterine on their compromises.


    I hate to be the one to break it to ya, but all the central tenets of Christianity, from the divinity of christ to the nature of salvation have been created through such comprimises.

    That is how we should base our laws. So Dietrichbohn, it looks like (if I am not mistaken) we have agreed on this issue the whole time!
    Damn straight, skippy! Yee-ha
  20. #60  
    Originally posted by dietrichbohn


    I hate to be the one to break it to ya, but all the central tenets of Christianity, from the divinity of christ to the nature of salvation have been created through such comprimises.
    well, I agree with this as well. This is the major flaw with almost all organized religions. I don't want to bring specific religions into the discussion, because that would just be asking for trouble, but my religion does not base any of it's beliefs on such comprimises.
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