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  1. #141  
    Yes, and it is good for a gov't to be secular.

    Understand that this does NOT MEAN the gov't can force that on the individual. Again I say this IS NOT ROCKET SCIENCE people. The 1st Amendment is a gloriously simple concept. The gov't won't favor any religions and it won't tell you how or what you believe in.

    sec·u·lar·ism Audio pronunciation of "Secularism" ( P ) Pronunciation Key (sky-l-rzm)
    n.

    1. Religious skepticism or indifference.
    2. The view that religious considerations should be excluded from civil affairs or public education.
  2. #142  
    Quote Originally Posted by daThomas
    Yes, and it is good for a gov't to be secular.

    Understand that this does NOT MEAN the gov't can force that on the individual. Again I say this IS NOT ROCKET SCIENCE people. The 1st Amendment is a gloriously simple concept. The gov't won't favor any religions and it won't tell you how or what you believe in.

    sec·u·lar·ism Audio pronunciation of "Secularism" ( P ) Pronunciation Key (sky-l-rzm)
    n.

    1. Religious skepticism or indifference.
    2. The view that religious considerations should be excluded from civil affairs or public education.
    Near as I can tell they dont favor any religion nor do they tell me what to believe in. People within the government may favor a particular religion but thats certainly different.
    “There are four boxes to be used in defense of liberty: soap, ballot, jury, and ammo. Please use in that order.”
    — Ed Howdershelt
    "A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have."- Thomas Jefferson
  3. #143  
    Quote Originally Posted by daThomas
    People are not secular. The Gov't is.
    Why arent people secular? I dont see where the definition is exclusive to governmental bodies.
    “There are four boxes to be used in defense of liberty: soap, ballot, jury, and ammo. Please use in that order.”
    — Ed Howdershelt
    "A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have."- Thomas Jefferson
  4. #144  
    Quote Originally Posted by daThomas
    That's all well and good. The 1st Amendment also protects the individual from the gov't.

    As a teacher you can wear a crucifix and tell your pupils what religion you are (preferably if asked first) . This is the individual part.

    However, when you start reading the Satanist's Bible in front of your pupils, say, during quiet time, or saying satinists prayers quietly to yourself during quiet time, you're crossing the line from individual to gov't employee endorsing a religion.
    So then if the teacher were to read a book about the Dalai Lama that would be bad too? Not a religious text specifically but a book about a religious figure. Is that the same or different? If the teacher reads a James Patterson novel during quiet time is that ok just because it's no religious in nature? Would the playboy or Hustler be deemed ok due to it's non religious nature?
    Personally I'd rather have the teaher of my kids reading his/her bible during quiet time that checking out centerfolds.
    “There are four boxes to be used in defense of liberty: soap, ballot, jury, and ammo. Please use in that order.”
    — Ed Howdershelt
    "A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have."- Thomas Jefferson
  5. #145  
    Quote Originally Posted by daThomas
    People are not secular. The Gov't is.
    Granted (for discussion sake). However, "the government" as a discrete entity does not exist. Rather, a system of government is implemented, by people.

    Our constitution and other such documents specify how we desire/expect to be governed by those people.
  6. #146  
    Quote Originally Posted by Woof
    Would the playboy or Hustler be deemed ok due to it's non religious nature?
    C'mon Woof
  7. #147  
    Quote Originally Posted by Joebar
    C'mon Woof
    The playboy/hustler argument is legitimate. The pornography industry makes its argument every day that being available does not mean people have to look at it. Likewise, they would argue that seeing a teacher peruse such a magazine would not influence the student's behavior or attitude.

    But, if that is the case, and I think it is, then the satanist could make the same claim regarding his/her bible.

    The answer is teaching critical thinking. As such, students can weigh the pros and cons of a given subject, and can choose a course of life based on their considerations (and be free to change course as further consideration dictates). At that point, no endorsement is a threat. The only concern need be attempts at enforcement (which seems more the concern of the 1st amendment).
    Last edited by shopharim; 02/09/2005 at 02:28 PM.
  8. #148  
    Look s like people are saying some religious stuff is ok as long as it's their religion. That's the issue here. That will never be fully satisfied for everyone so the gov should just stay out of it.
  9. #149  
    Quote Originally Posted by daThomas
    Look s like people are saying some religious stuff is ok as long as it's their religion. That's the issue here. That will never be fully satisfied for everyone so the gov should just stay out of it.
    I am not religious. In fact I think religion is a poison on society. That is my choice. I dont go to church, I don't pray, I don't read any specific tome. I do read various religious texts for the historical aspects and there are lots of good allegorical messages contained therein. I don't believe in a God as described by the major or minor religions of the world.

    So far probably very similar to many of those who feel our government should religion free.

    Ok now the other side. I do have friends who are religious. I have said the Pledge of Allegiance thousands of times.I have stayed in motels and hotel with bibles in them. I have bowed my head in many cases where a prayer was said and even said Amen. I have been in schools and government buildings where religious symbols are present. I have been in churches during religious ceremonies, mostly weddings and funerals. I have been sworn to tell the truth in court on a bible. I listen to a Christian radio host for financial advice. I have read books by authors of various religious persuasions and have been exposed to their beliefs. I could go on and on because religion is everywhere, but the smart ones will get my point.

    What has all this to do with the topic? I have the power of choice. I have done all these things by choice and yet I have also chosen to not be converted or influenced or bullied or baptized or anything else. I have chosen to respect the beliefs of others and acted accordingly. I have played along in many cases to show respect for anothers beliefs even though I dont hold the same beliefs. It's called being polite.

    I know what I believe and I am fine with that. It doesnt mean everone else needs to believe or bend to suit me. I dont care if it says In God We Trust on our money. It has no bearing on my spending. I have no problem w/the Ten Commandments because taken on their own they are good rules. I dont worry about what other people believe or worhip because for them thats what they need. I dont need it, but who am I to say they cant have it if they think they do? Thats what I think the founding fathers meant when they wrote the first amendment. The right to be religious if you want and the right not to have other people give you crap if you do.

    To me it all boils down to respect. If you are an athiest, I respect your choice. Or a Jew or Buddhist or what ever. Good for you. It doesnt affect me because I choose not to let it.. Same as what i do doesnt affect you as long as you choose not to let it. Why is that such a problem.

    Now as far as the government goes, when they roll out plans to impose a national religion, we'll have something to go on about. That hasn't happened yet and there are no efforts underway to do so, so whats the big issue? As long as there are religious people in government at whatever level, there will be religion in government. Nothing you can do about it. If you tried to keep religious people out of government then you would be saying only nonreligious people could be in govt and since its a govt of the people, you would be in essence picking the religion (or nonreligion) of the country. 1st amendment says you cant do that. So just ignore it and move on. Have respect for others beliefs. Stop putting yourself and your ideas first and stop thinking you know best and have all the answers. You don't. No one does. It takes all kinds to make this work. Look at the USSR. They took religion out comepletely and look how well that worked.
    “There are four boxes to be used in defense of liberty: soap, ballot, jury, and ammo. Please use in that order.”
    — Ed Howdershelt
    "A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have."- Thomas Jefferson
  10. #150  
    Ok, I'll just add two points.

    1) Slippery Slope. A little here, a little there, and pretty soon your standing in the middle of a religious state. I personally think "Faith-Based Initiatives" are WAY over the line.

    2) If you would allow for In God We Trust" on your currency then you should also allow for "In No god We Trust" "In Allah We Trust" "In Budda We Learn" etc etc.

    So why not just keep the gov't out of the mess?
  11. #151  
    Quote Originally Posted by daThomas
    Ok, I'll just add two points.

    1) Slippery Slope. A little here, a little there, and pretty soon your standing in the middle of a religious state. I personally think "Faith-Based Initiatives" are WAY over the line.

    2) If you would allow for In God We Trust" on your currency then you should also allow for "In No god We Trust" "In Allah We Trust" "In Budda We Learn" etc etc.

    So why not just keep the gov't out of the mess?
    Ok I'll bite. Why now? Why all of a sudden after 229 years of everything working fine are YOU suddenly worried about a national government? Two possible answers. 1. We are in danger of a national religion being imposed and something must be done. 2. You think we're better of with no religion in anything because thats the way you want it.

    Neither is an option, because one the is prohobited by the constitution and two is prohibited by the people. Why not just try to live within the system like the rest of us.

    As to your slippery slope comment. If this is a slippery slope then so is legalizing gay marriage. If one faith-baised initiative can bring about a national religion then one gay marriage can bring about incestuous marriage, animal marriage and anything else that can be thought of. If the slippery slope works in one place it works everywhere.
    “There are four boxes to be used in defense of liberty: soap, ballot, jury, and ammo. Please use in that order.”
    — Ed Howdershelt
    "A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have."- Thomas Jefferson
  12. #152  
    As to your slippery slope comment. If this is a slippery slope then so is legalizing gay marriage. If one faith-baised initiative can bring about a national religion then one gay marriage can bring about incestuous marriage, animal marriage and anything else that can be thought of. If the slippery slope works in one place it works everywhere.
    Puleez! This is a horrible argument and actually insults the men and women. The argument for gay marrriage is not just to be FREAKS. It's a simple one of fairness under the law for two consenting ADULTS.

    Ok I'll bite. Why now? Why all of a sudden after 229 years of everything working fine are YOU suddenly worried about a national government? Two possible answers. 1. We are in danger of a national religion being imposed and something must be done. 2. You think we're better of with no religion in anything because thats the way you want it.

    Neither is an option, because one the is prohobited by the constitution and two is prohibited by the people. Why not just try to live within the system like the rest of us..
    No one is suggesting that things have been fine for 229 years and suddenly now it's an issue. This has allways been an ongoing struggle. However, the current president IS a fundamentalist christian which at it's definition involves imposing itself on others.

    Your point on 2 is not true. The majority do not get to make the law IF it disagrees with the Constitution. Conservatives try to label this legislating from the bench when in actuality, it's part of the balance of powers in our gov't to prevent the majority from trampelling the rights of the minority.
  13. #153  
    Quote Originally Posted by daThomas
    No one is suggesting that things have been fine for 229 years and suddenly now it's an issue. This has allways been an ongoing struggle. However, the current president IS a fundamentalist christian which at it's definition involves imposing itself on others.
    Love to see some cases where we as a country have struggled to avoid a national religion. Gotta think that would have come up in history clas at some point.
    “There are four boxes to be used in defense of liberty: soap, ballot, jury, and ammo. Please use in that order.”
    — Ed Howdershelt
    "A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have."- Thomas Jefferson
  14. #154  
    Quote Originally Posted by daThomas
    Puleez! This is a horrible argument and actually insults the men and women. The argument for gay marrriage is not just to be FREAKS. It's a simple one of fairness under the law for two consenting ADULTS.
    Did I say freaks? Nope. My point was the slippery slope argument is crap. It either works or it doesnt. Doesnt work for gay marriage according to you but does for religion. How come you can pick? Easy. You are against religion in any form as related to govt and for gay marriage. I have the exact opposite view on both, but I think slippery slopes are for hills and not legal arguments.
    “There are four boxes to be used in defense of liberty: soap, ballot, jury, and ammo. Please use in that order.”
    — Ed Howdershelt
    "A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have."- Thomas Jefferson
  15. #155  
    No one is suggesting a national religion. Again you are thinking that is all that's imposed by the line, "make no law respecting an establishment of religion" and is simply not the meaning of it and I will not debate that issue further.
  16. #156  
    Did I say freaks? Nope. My point was the slippery slope argument is crap. It either works or it doesnt. Doesnt work for gay marriage according to you but does for religion. How come you can pick? Easy. You are against religion in any form as related to govt and for gay marriage. I have the exact opposite view on both, but I think slippery slopes are for hills and not legal arguments.
    Slippery slope arguements are not crap. I offered as an example "Faith Based initiatives". The founding fathers would drop a jaw at that.

    To compare people marrying animals to the struggle for equal treatment under the law by two adults is disgusting and one of the conservatives talking points against gay marriage. Disgusting.
  17. #157  
    Quote Originally Posted by daThomas
    No one is suggesting a national religion. Again you are thinking that is all that's imposed by the line, "make no law respecting an establishment of religion" and is simply not the meaning of it and I will not debate that issue further.
    That is what it says. But of course being so much smarter you know what was meant by the authors. Or maybe you have a copy of the constitution with liner notes.

    If you dont want to talk about it any more fine. That just shows that your mind is closed and you are unwilling to explore the possibility that your veiwpoint isnt the definitive answer. I have actually learned something in this debate, but then thats why I debate.
    “There are four boxes to be used in defense of liberty: soap, ballot, jury, and ammo. Please use in that order.”
    — Ed Howdershelt
    "A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have."- Thomas Jefferson
  18. #158  
    Quote Originally Posted by daThomas
    Slippery slope arguements are not crap. I offered as an example "Faith Based initiatives". The founding fathers would drop a jaw at that.

    To compare people marrying animals to the struggle for equal treatment under the law by two adults is disgusting and one of the conservatives talking points against gay marriage. Disgusting.
    the founding fathers reaction is not within your realm of knowledge. You can certainly guess their reaction but projecting your viewpoint on them for the purpose of strengthening your argument is weak,

    Conservative or not I dont think marriage is anything but a relationship between a man and a woman. Nothing but. Why? simple, a marriage consists of a husband and wife. How can you have both in a gay marriage? Cant. Gay union is fine and all the legal stuff that goes along with it. I have no issue with that.

    And why should "struggle for equal treatment" be any more important than anything else. They have equal treatment. If they want to get married they can. It just has to be a member of the opposite sex. But of course your a proponnent of changes the definition of something or rules if you will just to make it possible for a small minorty to attain it. So I guess using your logic we should might want to lower the grade scale in schools so the small minority of students who fall below the passing score would then be able to get better grades. Maybe we we should figure out a way for men to have babies because at some point one will want to even though its never been done before.

    Wait lets just eliminate all the rules and let you do whatever you want. why have rules at all right, it just infringes on your ability to be free.
    “There are four boxes to be used in defense of liberty: soap, ballot, jury, and ammo. Please use in that order.”
    — Ed Howdershelt
    "A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have."- Thomas Jefferson
  19. #159  
    What has all this to do with the topic? I have the power of choice. I have done all these things by choice and yet I have also chosen to not be converted or influenced or bullied or baptized or anything else. I have chosen to respect the beliefs of others and acted accordingly. I have played along in many cases to show respect for anothers beliefs even though I dont hold the same beliefs. It's called being polite.

    I know what I believe and I am fine with that. It doesnt mean everone else needs to believe or bend to suit me. I dont care if it says In God We Trust on our money. It has no bearing on my spending. I have no proble*T€
  20. #160  
    Conservative or not I dont think marriage is anything but a relationship between a man and a woman. Nothing but. Why? simple, a marriage consists of a husband and wife. How can you have both in a gay marriage? Cant. Gay union is fine and all the legal stuff that goes along with it. I have no issue with that.

    And why should "struggle for equal treatment" be any more important than anything else. They have equal treatment. If they want to get married they can. It just has to be a member of the opposite sex. But of course your a proponnent of changes the definition of something or rules if you will just to make it possible for a small minorty to attain it. So I guess using your logic we should might want to lower the grade scale in schools so the small minority of students who fall below the passing score would then be able to get better grades. Maybe we we should figure out a way for men to have babies because at some point one will want to even though its never been done before.

    Wait lets just eliminate all the rules and let you do whatever you want. why have rules at all right, it just infringes on your ability to be free.
    I'll only make one response to this in this thread. If you want to continue this topic, please start a new thread for it.

    This is very simple. There are very specific legal rights allowed married couples. To get married, states require the application of a marriage license signed by some kind of officiant approved by the state. You CAN NOT under the law have laws which benefit a group of people and deny one membership of your citizenry access to that should they be willing to make the commitment.

    Now as to how religions want to define "marriage". That's their business. Gov't can't exclude. Also, before you post your reply. Please substitute the concept of interracial marriage for gay marriage when you proof read to make sure it doesn't sound like a 1950's editorial.
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