Democrats & Liberals Archives

Values Voter Values

Tea Partiers and Republicans who love Tea Partiers attended a Values Voter Summit. One by one, conservative luminaries on the podium spoke as righteous Christians against homosexuality, abortion, masturbation and birth control. These represented their “Christian values.” Only Beck said a word about the most important Christian value of social justice, and he denounced it.

Evidently these Tea Partiers and these Republicans are unhappy with sex. Otherwise, why would they spend so much time and effort railing against homosexuality, abortion and anything else related to sex? Why, indeed, would they call these things "Christian values"? Mike Lux did a thorough analysis of the Gospels looking to see what Jesus said about what the radical right calls "Christian values." Here is what he reports:

Oddly enough, Jesus didn't say a single word against homosexuality or masturbation or abortion or birth control, although if you listened to some of our conservative friends, you would think he was obsessed with those topics.

Lux goes on to point out that though Jesus talked little about sex-related problems, he said a great deal - something like 258 verses - "about mercy, forgiving enemies, not judging others, loving all people, helping the poor and woe to the wealthy." In other words, Jesus favored social justice - the same social justice that Democrats are always espousing.

So why do these people who are part of what is called the Christian right complain about these sex-related problems when Jesus asked them to worry more about helping others? Why do they worry about tax cuts for the rich when Jesus said they should be more concerned with the poor? Why do they proclaim that each person should take care of himself when Jesus said:

Love thy neighbor as thyself?

Values? Like their approach to everything else, Republicans are turning religion upside down. They are modifying Christianity to serve their purpose. You know what their purpose is: Helping the rich.

Posted by Paul Siegel at September 20, 2010 8:18 PM
Comments
Comment #308921

Amen.

Posted by: 037 at September 20, 2010 8:37 PM
Comment #308925

Are 037 and Mr. Siegel Christians?

Posted by: TomT at September 20, 2010 10:00 PM
Comment #308926

Paul Siegel, you are just as ill-informed about Christianity as you are about the Tea Party. What a stupid post. I have learned that liberals talk about the thing they fear the most. You fear the Tea Party, which is why you say such ignorant statements. You people on the left have absolutely no love for Christians, and yet you will attempt to quote the Bible. Since when does a liberal care what the Bible says?

Posted by: Beretta9 at September 20, 2010 10:19 PM
Comment #308927

When it comes to voters values, the left mocks what Christian’s believe to be sin and the fact that the sinner is answerable to God, but if these sins were committed by a Muslim, they would be stoned to death. It is ironic that liberals defend the rights of Muslims over the rights of Christians and yet if these same liberals lived in a Muslim nation, they would die, simply for their liberal beliefs. Muslim law would condemn most liberals. It’s a good thing you guys live in America, where our Christian forefathers insisted on the 1st Amendment.

Posted by: Beretta9 at September 20, 2010 10:42 PM
Comment #308928

Comments two, three and four are about the dumbest sentiments written in a long time.

Posted by: jane doe at September 20, 2010 10:46 PM
Comment #308930

Paul-

One by one, conservative luminaries on the podium spoke as righteous Christians against homosexuality, abortion, masturbation and birth control.

What was said and who said it? I searched Media Matters and didn’t see anything on these topics.

Posted by: George at September 20, 2010 11:12 PM
Comment #308931

B’69’ (tee hee) has said it all. He knows that I’m an atheist, so paints all liberals with that brush. He ignores Stephen (and others), when he says he is a fellow Christian. I guess what B’69’ (tee hee) is saying that if you are not a Tea Baggie, you cannot be a Christian, and if you are not a Tea Baggie, you’d just better not quote the Bible…hmmm…what a strange thought pattern it must take to reside in that head.

Posted by: Marysdude at September 20, 2010 11:20 PM
Comment #308932

George, you will never find proof from Mr. Siegel; I have noticed that he simply pulls statements from the air and posts them. He almost never responds to any comments. I too, would like to see his proof that these things were spoken at the summit; because I could not find anything either.

jane doe, I’m glad you don’t actually post anything on WB. You’re comments are more like an annoying insect, i.e. little snippets. You’re a plethora of knowledge.

Posted by: TomT at September 20, 2010 11:27 PM
Comment #308936

Tom T and B9,
Why I don’t care who wants to claim they are a Christian, a Jew, or a Muslim for according to the Bill of Rights an Individual has the unconditional right to believe what they wamt about the Teachings of Religion; however, I do have a problem with those who claim their path to enlightenment is the only trail one can follow to achieve Rightousness and the Truth. In fact, one could make the case that Christians who take that path are no better than those who hide behind the Teachings of Islam in order to defend theio beliefs in Rightousness and Truth.

So why it is truely American to tell another not to judge the way I live my life and I will not judhe the way you live yours. What I have heard from the Value Voters this weekend makes me wonder who side the Tea Party and Conservatives are really on. For should we believe someone who admits to witchcraft or from those who have already broke the Values of Marriage.

Yes, the Value Voters are correct when they state the Founding Fathers of America held the Teachings of Jesus in high standing. And though I doubt if the Far Left or Far Right of America really wants to debate this Unlearned Unbridled Anti-Authoritarian Child of the 70’s by Freewill and Self-Nature over the Guaranteed Civil and Constitutional Rights of all Ladies and Gentlemen of America. I do think the saying “Love thy Neighbor as thyself” goes good with the saying of the Golden Rule.

Because why Conservatives and Liberals can debate until they are blue in the face on about any subject, I wonder what the so-called Chridtian Right would do if the Sibgle Americans decided that married couples no longer deserved to enjoy their current tax benefits or their way of life did not fit to the norm of society?

For yell if you must, but just because one can claim almost anhything they want. Proving that one lives in Peace and Harmony instead of promoting Fear, Hate, and War among others is a Leap of Faith I don’t believe any political party or group to date can claim.

So why the Value Voter wants to believe they are following the Values of Our Forefathers in America, may I remind them that the Freedom of Speech carries the same weight as the Right to Religious Freedom. Now, can to explain why they made it that way?

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at September 20, 2010 11:50 PM
Comment #308941

“Tom T and B9,
Why I don’t care who wants to claim they are a Christian, a Jew, or a Muslim for according to the Bill of Rights an Individual has the unconditional right to believe what they wamt about the Teachings of Religion; however, I do have a problem with those who claim their path to enlightenment is the only trail one can follow to achieve Rightousness and the Truth.”

Then you must have a problem with EVERY religion, because every religion claims they have the path to enlightenment. Muslims believe anyone who is not a Muslim is an infidel, and on their way to hell. Judaism believes if you are not one of God’s chosen people, you are an infidel. Eastern religions believe they are the way to enlightenment. Within nominal Christianity, each denomination teaches there are many different ways to Heaven. Do you honestly expect all religions to agree? If you do, then you live in a fantasy world. Evangelical Christians have their own beliefs based upon their interpretation of Scripture and the left attacks these as being narrow minded, but how are they any different than any other religion? Do you think evangelical Christians are the only ones who are dogmatic about what they believe? Stephen D. has told us many times that he is a Catholic, as if the Catholic Church is tolerant and accepting of all other religions. But, Catholicism teaches, if one is not baptized a Catholic and partaking of the sacraments, they are doomed to hell. So if you have a problem, it is with every religion, not just evangelical Christians.

The founding fathers did not just hold the “teachings of Jesus in high standing”; the founding fathers based our Constitution and Bill of Rights upon Judeo/ Christian beliefs. The 1st Amendment guaranteed not only freedom of speech, but also freedom of religion, because many of these Christian people had been persecuted by other denominations. It was Virginia Baptist who insisted on Freedom of Religion and not “Religious Tolerance”. Hope this answers your question…

Posted by: Beretta9 at September 21, 2010 6:36 AM
Comment #308942

B’69’(tee hee),

Nope, it doesn’t answer a question, it raises one. Why, with all the information available in the information market, do you cherry pick the few little snippets that make your absurd mouthings sound sane and reasoned?

Of course the Constitution is based on Judo-Christian teachings…those are the teachings they were most familiar. They also knew the hazards of spewing those teaching or locking on too tightly to them, so they dampened the necessity to lean on them too closely with wise words in the first. Then wrote profusely about the need to hold no religion sacrosanct, in order to let citizens know the limits of religious power in governmental chambers.

Zealots will twist anything, tell any lie and fabricate much to make folks believe they actually know whereof they speak.

Posted by: Marysdude at September 21, 2010 6:55 AM
Comment #308944

The big subject in the news is not the Values Voter Summit; it is Obama’s town hall meeting. When his administration went out to find people to fill the meeting; that is people who support Obama, this was the result:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/21/us/politics/21obama.html?_r=1&adxnnl=1&adxnnlx=1285065724-JHC0OJjSnudgmIXKoETJQg

“WASHINGTON — It was billed as “Investing in America,” a live televised conversation on the state of the economy between President Obama and American workers, students, business people and retirees, a kind of Wall Street to Main Street reality check.
But it sounded like a therapy session for disillusioned Obama supporters.
In question after question during a one-hour session, which took place on Monday at the Newseum here and was televised on CNBC, Mr. Obama was confronted by people who sounded frustrated and anxious — even as some said they supported his agenda and proclaimed themselves honored to be in his presence.
People from Main Street wanted to know if the American dream still lived for them. People on Wall Street complained that he was treating them like a piñata, “whacking us with a stick,” in the words of Anthony Scaramucci, a former law school classmate of Mr. Obama’s who now runs a hedge fund and was one of the president’s questioners.
“I’m exhausted of defending you, defending your administration, defending the mantle of change that I voted for,” said the first questioner, an African-American woman who identified herself as a chief financial officer, a mother and a military veteran. “I’ve been told that I voted for a man who was going to change things in a meaningful way for the middle class and I’m waiting sir, I’m waiting. I still don’t feel it yet.”
A 30-year-old law school graduate told Mr. Obama that he had hoped to pursue a career in public service — like the president — but complained that he could barely pay the interest on his student loans, let alone think of getting married or starting a family.
“I was really inspired by you and your campaign and the message you brought, and that inspiration is dying away,” he said, adding, “And I really want to know, is the American dream dead for me?”
The extraordinarily personal tone of the session, coupled with more substantive policy questions from the host, John Harwood of CNBC and The New York Times, reflects the erosion of support for Mr. Obama among the constituencies that sent him to the White House two years ago.
It was all the more compelling coming from such a friendly audience; one questioner, a small-business owner in Pennsylvania, began by praising the president for turning around the auto industry, then lamented: “You’re losing the war of sound bites. You’re losing the media cycles.”
As he leads his party into what many analysts expect to be a devastating midterm election for Democrats, the president faces overwhelming skepticism from Americans on his handling of the economy. A recent New York Times poll found 57 percent of respondents believed the president did not have a clear plan for fixing the nation’s broken economy.
Mr. Obama sought on Monday to address those concerns, telling his business critics that he was not antibusiness and his middle class questioners that “there are a whole host of things we’ve put in place to make your life better.” He cited his health care bill, a financial regulatory overhaul measure that imposed tough requirements on credit card companies; an education bill that increased the availability of student loans.”

Obama went on to attack the Tea Party. Neither Obama nor the liberals understand what is going on in the country. The same old business, going on in Washington is about to come to an end. The Tea Party is going to force republicans to become conservative, or the nation will continue down the path of destruction under the liberal democrats. RINO’s are out. Why vote a RINO in, just so they can vote with liberals? And then have the dems come out and say, the republicans voted for it too.

Posted by: TomT at September 21, 2010 7:06 AM
Comment #308946

B9,
Although I do not have a problem with Religion in its purest form, I do find it troubling that those who claim to follow the Teachings of Religion do so in the same manner many Democrats and Republicans claim to be liberals or conservatives. For as Tom T pointed out why vote for a RINO just so they can vote with liberals. So can the same thing be said about those who clainm a Religion in order to defend their actions and words.

And why I realize those under the age of 50 may not remember or have read about the public debate in the 60’s and 70’s which found everyone questioning the Institution of Religion. I do believe limited to the debate of a Better World (MLK I have a Dream)no religious leader in the past 30 years has shown their enlightenment to deal with the Issues of Man in a manner which by Self-Evidence would demostrate the Whole of Human Knowledge and Wisdom.

For though I agree with Tom T that Mr. Siegel needs to prove the Value Voters said those things at their meeting this past weekend. I foubd it funny that one of the speakers stated that citizens who fear the government live in tranny and the government who fears its citizens live in liberty. Especially since in America the government is by, for, and of the People. For are they saying citizens who fear People live in tranny and people who fear citizens live in liberty?

In that case they are both wrong and shows the ignorance of the person. For should one fear the police or those in Authority especially since they do have the guaranteed civil and constitutional right to be Anti-Authoritarian? And to say people living in fear of a citizen or group of citizens is not liberty, but clearly demostrates a form of oppression that predates Mankinds’ Civilized World.

Now, as far as the Foundation of America I do believe one will find it is based on the Rule of Law (both Man & Nature); however, one can make the case (and has as far as I know)that the Freedoms Man and Woman enjoy have strong roots in Judeo/ Christian beliefs, but are by no means limited to them as Ladies and Gemtlemen.

Tom T,
Why I wasn’t going to watch President Obamas’ Town Hall Meting because of the media hype on the subject. I am glad that I took the jour or so to listen to what people had to say about how the past years have treated them.

However, why I heard all their complaints about how life has been unfair to them or President Obama did not go far enough to bring about the type of change they were looking for. I was amazed at the clamness of President Obama when he kept repeating that he is willing to listen to any ideas which can better address the problems faced by All Americans.

For though I agree that wholesale reform is needed across the board and in a time of war halfsteps look like nothing is being done. Looking back to what was known in the 1970’s and how long it took America as a Nation and Society to change their Establishment. I personally wonder if the Far left and Far Right are ready to address the Issues such as hunger and poverty in a manner that leads to every American becoming economically viable and financially independent.

And for the Tea Party, IMHO political ignorance is not the best way forward. Thus, given the option of voting for someone who will represent all the citizens in their district or state or picking one who only wants to promote and represent their own agenda I do believe anyone who understands how government is suppose to work that there is no question on which side of the political spectrum the Tea party stands.

For would it be right of me to start a group that represented only people of poverty and stand in gridlock with anything having to do with helping Wall Street? No, and thus the Conservatives in America may not like the fact the Democratic Party is in charge, how many times can you shot yourself in the foot before you learn that the American Consumer, Small Business Owner, and Taxpayer must work together?

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at September 21, 2010 8:32 AM
Comment #308948
Then you must have a problem with EVERY religion, because every religion claims they have the path to enlightenment.

Although I don’t endorse Henry’s comments, I do think it is best to avoid absolute statements such as this. I can think of a few religions or religious sects that do not claim to have a monopoly on heaven/enlightenment. Most notable are Jainism and the Bahá’í faith, but there is also the long history of Christian sects that believe in Universalism. Today, that group is represented most prominently by Unitarian Universalism. Also, it is a mainstream idea in Hinduism that belief in Hindu Gods (or practice of any Hindu rituals) is not needed to achieve Moksha. For example, Krishna (a human incarnation of Vishnu) in the Bhagavad-Gītā says: “As people approach me, so I receive them. All paths lead to me” and the Rigveda says, “Truth is One, though the sages know it variously.” Lastly, Noahic Judaism has also provided a way for nonbelievers to still achieve a covenant with God.

Posted by: Warped Reality at September 21, 2010 8:42 AM
Comment #308950

TomT,

Congratulations to Obama for having the guts to engage in a true live question and answer session with a cross section of Americans on the economy. No teleprompter. No soft ball questions. No partisan friendly audience (sponsored by CNBC). A true townhall type meeting. Can’t recall any president in recent memory having the courage to do what he did.

Certainly, there was going to be criticism. Unemployment is high. The economy is struggling. People are anxious. It is less than two years since the greatest economic crash since the Great Depression. Recovery will take time, as it always has. Despite the difficult circumstances, Obama accepted and responded to criticism. Now, will, the tea party types accept Obama’s challenge to engage is similar frank discussions as to explicit policy alternatives? Or will they continue to hide behind amorphous slogans?

Posted by: Rich at September 21, 2010 8:47 AM
Comment #308951

Rich;

There were no Tea Party people at the town hall meeting. In fact the meeting was stacked with Obama supporters. When several of them began to actually question Obama on the condition of the economy, some in the media called them conservative plants. If he wants to have a town hall meeting, then he needs to have people of all political persuasions attend. Until then, Obama and his supporters have nothing to brag about. What he did, don’t take much courage. The point of the article was that even those who voted for him are upset at the way things are going. Now, if you want to defend him that is your prerogative.

Posted by: TomT at September 21, 2010 9:32 AM
Comment #308952

TomT, it was open to people of all persuasions. Obama has guts to do this in an open Town Hall. You don’t know what you are talking about in saying who was and wasn’t there. The Secret Service filtered those attendance and not along party lines.

And do NOT misinterpret your own words: “The point of the article was that even those who voted for him are upset at the way things are going.”

Who isn’t upset at the way things are going? Even Obama is upset at the way things are going. We had more than 8 years of structural defects built into our economy. NO ONE can amend those structural defects in 19 months. NO ONE! Ask Bernanke, or any non-partisan economist. It cannot be done, because many of those structural defects require legislative changes, others require other regulatory changes and time to adopt those changes, and still other voluntary changes take time to effect. No one is happy that we couldn’t just hit a light switch and turn the economy back on to full tilt again. But, then, anyone who expected that, knows nothing about economics systems like ours.

Do not confuse Democrat voters being upset with the state of progress, with being upset with Obama personally. Polling shows that is not the case. Democrats still like Obama a lot, personally. That is an entirely different issue than whether they like the job he has done in effecting changes promised on the campaign trail. A number of Democrats are upset that Obama didn’t hold out for the Public Option, but, they aren’t about to vote Republican because Obama passed what he believed he could for Americans dealing with the deficiencies of the former health care system. Remember, that Republicans made it abundantly clear that the Public Option was never going to pass on even one of their representative’s votes in the Senate. Not one. A lot of Democrats upset over the lack of push for the public option are aware of that reality that had to be worked with, and though upset by it, won’t desert Obama over it. Just as Republicans don’t desert the GOP because of their being upset by the Bush years’ effects.

Posted by: David R. Remer at September 21, 2010 9:53 AM
Comment #308954

WR, Wikipedia can provide more enlightenment for you:

These are dos and don’ts: if you do, you attain enlightenment, if you don’t, you do not. No different from any other religion that requires following the rules for enlightenment or salvation:

1. The Bahá’í faith also has laws that must be obeyed: “The laws, when not in direct conflict with the civil laws of the country of residence, are binding on every Bahá’í”
What happens if one disobeys the laws?

2. Unitarian Universalism is not a good example, because they don’t believe anything on their own. They merely adapt all other religions or no other religions. They consider all mankind to be divine and we are in the here and now, no Heaven, no Hell, only now; or maybe they do believe in Heaven or Hell, maybe they believe in the afterlife or maybe they don’t. There are no absolutes, it is what I would term a prostitute religion.

3. Hinduism: is a cast religion, requiring the believer to be obedient in his/her current cast, in order to advance to the next cast and eventually reaching enlightenment. What happens if one does not believe or follow the teachings of Hinduism, can he advance? No, so Hinduism only recognizes those who follow the teachings.


4. Noahic Judaism: requires the non-believer to become an apostle of the Covenant. These are called proselytes and I did not say religions do not accept proselytes, I said religions do not accept those outside their faith to reach enlightenment or salvation.

So everything I said in my original post still stands. You come on here spouting a bunch of religious names and don’t have any idea what you are talking about.

Posted by: Beretta9 at September 21, 2010 10:27 AM
Comment #308964

Something bizarre is happening here. I can’t post. I keep going to the que.

Posted by: gergle at September 21, 2010 1:16 PM
Comment #308966

B9 & WR,
Why I am glad to know both of you are aware of the different religious groups of Mankind, I do know and have met some people who are so narrowly minded that they can only believe in what others have told by others. And why the same thing can be said about politics and their parties, I have to respect the Founding Fathers of America and the Ancient Ones of Songs position on the two subjects. For why they do not define the difference between one being a Human and a Citizen, I am happy that Americas’ Democratic and Republican Civil, Political, and Religious Leaders have chosen to call their citizens Humans especially since all religions hold the same principles and standards. So when one political group wants to degrade another group based entiely on their difference I have to ask if it is out of ignorance or do they believe in a seperate creator.

Yes, Mankind does breakdown citizens into groups such as Learned and Unlearned, Elite and Non-Elite, Rich and Poor; nevertheless, even these groups are made up of Humans from all walks of life. Take for example the Tea Party, you have McDowell who by her own words have made as little as $5,000.00/yr and others who have made ove $12 million in less than a year. Yet, they come together supposely under Common Ground even though history shows that the two have been enemies in the past.

And though I hope that will change in the 21st Century, all one has to do is look back at the 20th Century to find that mankinds’ Societies has used these differences to keep them seperated. For could you imagine today if a set of parents in America refused their children to play with some other child based solely on their income or which side of the tracks they grew up on?

Thus, why a group can call themselves Value Voters and walk around wanting to believe they are better than others. IMHO they do America a disservice and only embolden our enemy. Given that I doubt if the group or any group would freely surrender the idea they are Human, yet for some unkown reason they have no problem calling other Americans Non-Human even though they both came into the world under the same conditions.

Because while I take it that most Americans even today have a hard time believing America as a Nation and a Society can prove to Al Qeada and OBL that the Issues of the 20th Century can be solved over the next 20-50 years. Considering that the Human Race still faces a huge population who cannot read and write as well as lacks the Self-Education to live a Sustainable Life. Where will today’s parents and grandparents draw the line of enlightenment for all the Children of the 21st Century? For in answering that question one might find a Value Voter who is able to discover solutions instead of blaming and complaining others are the reasons for their woes.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at September 21, 2010 1:23 PM
Comment #308967

Paul, lol.

It isn’t just being unhappy with s-x. Some Republicans are quite happy with s-x. They just like to keep it in their dirty little closet, so they think they are getting away with something while railing against other people’s s-x lives.

I think it might have something to do with their latent Kenyan revolutionary anger.:)

I think maybe it was the s-x reference?

Posted by: gergle at September 21, 2010 1:23 PM
Comment #308971

I became a Christian, full-fledged, in my late twenties. Why did I wait so long?

Because too much of Christianity is represented in America by people who don’t represent much of Christianity’s finest values.

When you have proudly Christian governors competing to see who can put the most people to death, even mocking the criminals whose lives are in their hands, that preaches a different gospel than the one I came to know.

When you have a Christ-Happy Congress doing their best to comfort the comfortable and afflict the afflicted, that preaches a different gospel than the one I came to know.

When you have those people shouting to the heavens about the need to use the government’s power to impose morality, and you turn around to find them disgracing themselves in the exact kind of way they’ve been intolerantly preaching a against, that preaches a different Gospel than the one I came to know.

When the politics from the side that claims the mantle of Christian believers is an unforgiving, implacably nasty kind, where not even a twelve-year old accident victim and his family, or the widow of those who died on 9/11 are outside the category of fair game, well, that preaches a different Gospel than the one I came to know as well.

Jesus told people to do good to those who did bad to them, bless those who cursed them, to love their enemy, love their neighbor as they did themselves.

In Mark 9 he explicitly tells them not to interfere with those who seek to do good in his name, even if he isn’t one of them.

There is a beauty to Christianity that doesn’t sometime come across in the actions of its adherents, who, despite having succumbed to worldly temptations and behaviors, still go out there and try to hold themselves up as the holy ones, the crusaders for good. They cover-up terrible behavior and lead double lives, and then are suprised and hurt emotionally when folks get angry with them, and rebuke what they believe in.

The truth is, the actions to further the faith must hew as closely to the good of that faith as possible, or else the religion itself becomes a stumbling block for those looking at the religion from the outside.

People are really wondering out there whether being a Christian or any kind of religious person just means putting on blinders both to the quality of one’s own behavior, and the truths of the world around us, whether it’s a kind of self-imposed ignorance.

So long as the proponents of religion, especially Christianity, use it as barrier, rather than an aid, to reason, so long as the price of belief is an abandonment of other beliefs for which solid evidence exists, then both Christianity and the world it could help heal will suffer.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 21, 2010 2:19 PM
Comment #308973

Stephen,

Since you brought up the subject, would you mind telling us how you became a Christian in your late twenties?

Posted by: Beretta9 at September 21, 2010 2:35 PM
Comment #308974

I guess, Stephen, that you’d be kind of referring to the “hypocritic” oath most of those have sworn to, who flaunt their skewed beliefs while denying others’. We certainly see a lot of that in here……

Posted by: jane doe at September 21, 2010 2:42 PM
Comment #308975

So the conservative luminaries on the podium didn’t speak as righteous Christians against homosexuality, abortion, masturbation and birth control?

Then what is this article about?

Posted by: George at September 21, 2010 2:50 PM
Comment #308980

Beretta9-
I went to Baylor, and part of their course requirements was to take Old and New Testament Survey courses.

You may not like this, but they took a contextualist, rather than a literalist approach to the bible, so I didn’t have to renounce what I knew to be scientifically true in order to be a Christian.

The other value of it, though, was that it lead me to see the bible in terms of what it was intended to do in its culture. This was not a modern work written for modern audiences with modern assumptions. They didn’t have any science to speak of, could not have known whether something was caused by a volcanic eruption or not.

And that wouldn’t be the point, I began to realize. Whether or not the story is documentary fact is not the point. They didn’t really have the system for processing that anyways. They told themselves these stories, passed them and their codes by word of mouth for ages, and told them for the sake of cultural needs and cultural purposes.

The value, I found, was in the internal logic, the themes, the stories themselves.

Additionally, as I read through the New Testament, I found that a lot of the hypocrisy of his times resembled that of our times, and that he too sided against that kind of obnoxiousness in religion. Jesus and Paul answered many of the objections I had to organized religion, to Christianity as a practiced religion.

Finally, I read a couple of books by C.S. Lewis about religion, and his ideas helped me get to the point where I was willing to join a church.

All that said, I think what you have to realize is that a lot of the negativity, fear, and anger surrounding religious conservatives puts off folks, and leads people to see Christianity as a radicalizing, rather than moderating force in society. I think my parent’s generation was hard hit by that sense, as they saw the establishment often standing in the way of change from bad status quos.

People want and expect better from religion, I think, and I don’t think they like being told that they have to give up on what can be proven correct for the sake of what cannot. Truth does not contradict truth, and forcing people to choose creates a stumbling block for those who know enough about the sciences to understand the difference.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 21, 2010 3:34 PM
Comment #308981

B9,

First of all, as a Judeo-Christian Unitarian Universalist myself, I find your characterization of my religion to be not only offensive, but also 100% false. I suggest you spend some time at their website or at your local congregation to learn more.


I understand that all those faiths except for Unitarain Universalism have rules/regulations regarding entrance to Paradise/Enlightenment. However, my examples allow for one to gain entrance into these Paradises without believing in that particular religion’s dieties or following major tenets of the religion. For example, it is possible to believe that Vishnu is a bunch of hocus pocus falsehoods, yet still achieve Moshka according to some Hindus. The general idea among these faiths is that as long as one is a “good and moral” person then that person may go to heaven. When one looks at the definitions of “good and moral” amongst all the world’s relgions there is a great deal of overlap.

BTW, this might be a good place for you to look for info about the Bahá’í faith. While the Bahá’í faith certainly does not condone athiesm, nearly every thiestic belief is considered to be consistent with the Bahá’í faith.

Also, I’d like to add that the Caste System is only one version of Hinduism out of many. Ghandhi, for example, was both a fierce advocate against the caste system and a devout Hindu. Hindu scriptures do not mention any sort of Caste System and characters from the Hindu epics are depicted without castes.

Posted by: Warped Reality at September 21, 2010 3:40 PM
Comment #308984

WR:

I am perplexed at why you would consider my characterization of the Unitarian Universalist religion as offensive. I do not belong to the organization, but after a quick study I found, as I said, no set of rules as to what they believe.

You stated: “I understand that all those faiths except for Unitarian Universalism have rules/regulations regarding entrance to Paradise/Enlightenment.”

So you agreed with me that all faiths except for Unitarian Universalism have rules and regulations regarding enlightenment. We can agree on that. Now, concerning UU, I said it is a religion based upon all religions and you state: “For example, it is possible to believe that Vishnu is a bunch of hocus pocus falsehoods, yet still achieve Moshka according to some Hindus. The general idea among these faiths is that as long as one is a “good and moral” person then that person may go to heaven. When one looks at the definitions of “good and moral” amongst all the world’s relgions there is a great deal of overlap.”

This creates a few problems:

1. If you belong to the UU, and continue in your, say, Hindu beliefs, are you achieving enlightenment because you are a UU or because you are a practicing Hindu within the UU religion?
2. You stated that all religions except UU have rules or regulations and then you state all the world’s religions accept a “good and moral” person into heaven. Which is it, does enlightenment or heaven come from being a “good and moral” person or from abiding by “rules and laws”?
3. Lastly, the UU has no set of beliefs and as I said before; you can believe in heaven hell, or life after death at you own desire. The UU sets no guidelines. If the UU embraces all religions; what about the pantheist, or the atheist who is a good and moral person?

You say, “While the Bahá’í faith certainly does not condone athiesm, nearly every thiestic belief is considered to be consistent with the Bahá’í faith.”

So where does this put the atheist? Is he on his way to enlightenment or not? If the UU accepts Baha’i faith, and the Baha’i faith does not accept atheism, where does that put the atheist?

You see, WW, for all your talk, all religions are still based on a set of rules and laws that control who is enlightened or accepted and who is not.

The whole point of the conversation is that liberals love to bash evangelical Christians for being closed and narrow minded, and yet we find all religions do the same thing.


I have never heard of any part of Hinduism that did not believe in a Caste System.

Stephen;

You never did say, how you became a Christian?

Posted by: Beretta9 at September 21, 2010 4:53 PM
Comment #308985

An earlier writer brought up a good point about Sharia law. The point of this post was to condemn Christians for their values, and these same liberals who want to condemn Christians, are deathly silent when it comes to Muslim Sharia Law.

What is the penalty for adultry, homosexuality, or abortion under Sharia Law? Can I get a amen to condemn the stoning, hanging, or mutilating of people under Muslim law?

Why do the moral values of Christians, upset the left so much?

Posted by: TomT at September 21, 2010 5:08 PM
Comment #308988

Paul,

1)I’m a Christian.
2)Who listens to the fearmongering rants of the far right?
Kooks, judgemental nit wits and dupes.
3) Most importantly, they condemned masturbation?!!!!! Those bastards!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Andre M. Hernandez at September 21, 2010 5:34 PM
Comment #308989

I think the above statement by TomT is unfair. I am a liberal and I regard conservative evangelical Christians in the same light as conservative Muslims. Both are unbending in their belief of what is right and wrong. Both want to make sure that others not of their mindset still be exposed to and live under their rules. Both are sure that the others around them are doomed to a hell. Both are often willing to die for their cause. And both are often willing to kill, jail, punish, and/or harm others who do not believe as they do.

The fact that Muslims living under a government supported Sharia Law have more opportunities to exercise their proclivities does not lessen my opinion that many conservative Christians would do something similar if it was possible.

Regarding the moral values of Christians upsetting “the left”, it is not so much upsetting as it is a recognition of the hypocrisy of the religious right.

Adultery, divorce, usery, greed, murder, malice, and more are all regularly exhibited by these “moral” value Christians. Usually at the same rate that is exhibited by the general public.

All talk… no walk.

Posted by: LibRick at September 21, 2010 5:35 PM
Comment #308992
Can I get a amen to condemn the stoning, hanging, or mutilating of people under Muslim law?

Well, I’m agnostic, but I’ll give an Amen to that.

Why do the moral values of Christians, upset the left so much?

The moral values held by Christians don’t upset people on the left. You’re free to hold whatever moral positions you want. What upsets us is the authoritarianism that all too frequently goes hand and glove with holding those values. Such as when Christians try to claim their position on homosexuality trumps full and equal rights for homosexuals. Or when they insist their personal positions on abortion mean that other people can’t have an abortion. Same goes for when they think they can dictate to the entire country on subjects like masturbation and birth control. Or when they declare that social justice is unnecessary because they say so, and that’s that.

People on the left want to live in a free country where all are equal under the law, whereas too many Christians are trying to turn America into a restricted country under your moral values — and naturally that’s very upsetting.

Posted by: Adrienne at September 21, 2010 6:08 PM
Comment #308993

LibRick, good points.

Posted by: Adrienne at September 21, 2010 6:11 PM
Comment #308997

Tom T,
Why I will not give you an amen I will say that those who follow that type of justice thinking needs to answer the question “Who among you without sin is going to cast the first stone” For though one could make the argument their creator allowed them to carry out such an act, knowing it goes against every line of logic and reason for the last few thousands years I’m not sure you can find where it is written that such moral violations are suppose to be met with such justice in Religious Teachings.

No Man may believe the Rule of Law gives them that Authority, but in keeping with the theme of liberty and the Value Voter I do think Americans do a fair job by keeping such things a civil matter.

And though I can’t speak for the Left, I do see the Christian Right being selective on the issues. For why they quote the Bible (Old Testiment) for God saying marriage is between a Man and Woman, they fail to follow up that statement by pointing out that when asked God told them that Gays were also of his making and as such they would have to come to terms on how to deal with them in Mankinds’ Society.

Thus, IMHO a Value Voter would not follow those who wish to take away another person freedom, but instead enbrace the ideas and reforms which will allow all Humans to be treated equally and fairly.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at September 21, 2010 7:56 PM
Comment #308998

‘for whomsoever God has joined together, let no man put asunder’

Christians don’t get so literal on that verse.

Posted by: LibRick at September 21, 2010 8:05 PM
Comment #309001

Beretta9-
I would not bash Christians for their commitment, but would remind them that this commitment is voluntary, and best that way. God doesn’t honor the religion, according to the scriptures, of those who demonstrated it just for the sake of others, and in any system where the government encourages or supports a religion, men are doing exactly that, encouraging exactly that.

I said quite clearly how I became a Christian. The rest was just going through the confirmation process, since I was baptized as an infant. I had to accept that the bible had some special wisdom. I had to get past misunderstandings on both sides of the debate to find out that many of my objections were answered. I then had to conclude that going to church actually meant somethings, as opposed to just reading the bible by myself, and praying as such. I believe very much in God’s grace, and I believe it’s the only thing that truly converts a person in the end.

But to answer that, I had to get past a lot of misunderstanding based on my cultural encounters with Christianity as some on the Right practice it.

Todays young men and women are faced with the same stumbling blocks. They see folks headlining the Values Voter shindig that they know went to prostitutes wearing diapers, cheated on their wives and asked for divorces on sickbeds, and who generally demonstrate their values by saying nasty things about liberals, Democrats, and other undesirables.

And they wonder, if this is Christian behavior, why should they be Christians. I know enough, because of my studies, to be able to see past the flawed practictioners to the sterling ideals of the religion. But I feel sad that folks have to have those people as their introduction to our ancient, worthy faith.

TomT-
Go and read Leviticus and Deuteronomy. Do some research on what the penalties for Adultery and other offenses were. Ancient folks had some pretty strict ideas about punishment. You could be killed simply for mouthing off to a parent.

But also, go read Paul’s post. He’s not criticizing those who have values, and truly live by them. He’s criticizing those who make great big bales of political hay out of their religion, but whose personal behavior, personal expression of their values, and heck, even the tone and the approach of their speeches, seems to undermine their claims of virtue.

And no, I have not know liberals to be silent about Sharia law in its various applications. We just don’t use it to advocate fighting wars in that region, that’s all. Liberals generally despise what the Taliban and other groups do, and we consider things like Stonings barbaric. The real question is whether fighting a war will lead to these things changing, and so far, the record is pretty poor. Where we’ve fought these long, drawn-out conflicts, we’ve only ended up aiding the cause of these ultraconservative muslims, and undermining that of the moderates.

We would see to change things by other means, but we recognize that for these cultures to change, they have to want to change, and one of the first things that happen to people who you mak your enemies in war, is that they start digging in their heels on cooperating with you.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 21, 2010 8:46 PM
Comment #309002

Stephen,
If the Conservatives and Tea Party really wants to make a statement of a Valued Voter than shouldn’t the Leaders and Speakers of such an event be promting the Values of being A Valued American instead of a Christian, Jew, or Muslim?

Seems to me that Political Ignorance has once again proven to be the course of action instead of pushing forward the Debate of “We the People.”

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at September 21, 2010 9:07 PM
Comment #309003

B9,

After doing a little more research on the Bahá’í Faith, I realize it was a bad example. I apologize for wasting your time. Before today, the only thing I knew about the Bahá’í Faith was that they believed that all the world’s regions were just different manifestations of One True God. I now see that they have quite a bit of dogma that goes along with that.

Regarding Unitarian-Universalism:
I bid you to read the 7 principals of Unitarian Universalism to learn about the 7 beliefs that bind all UUs.
Just so you know, I found the remark comparing Unitarian Universalism to prostitution to be offensive.

Regarding your other points:

1. If you belong to the UU, and continue in your, say, Hindu beliefs, are you achieving enlightenment because you are a UU or because you are a practicing Hindu within the UU religion?
2. You stated that all religions except UU have rules or regulations and then you state all the world’s religions accept a “good and moral” person into heaven. Which is it, does enlightenment or heaven come from being a “good and moral” person or from abiding by “rules and laws”?

Question #1 really has no purpose; it’s just a question of semantics. The point is that someone who denounces a major part of Hindu dogma (in my example the existence of the God Vishnu)

Question #2: Maybe my memory has failed me, but I cannot think of any religion that distinguishes between it’s “rules and laws” and “good and moral”. My greatest experience is with my own particular beliefs which mostly fall in line with Judeo-Christianity (lately, I’ve been experimenting with Messianic Judaism). The Mosaic Laws are not just laws, but are rather God’s way of telling us what is and what is not just/moral.

I guess another way of looking at it is to look at how there is a great deal of overlap amongst what various religions consider sin. Maybe I’m forgetting something, but I am aware of no modern religions that permit crimes such as theft, rape, murder or false testimony.

I have never heard of any part of Hinduism that did not believe in a Caste System.
I invite you to learn more about this topic.Try Here. Posted by: Warped Reality at September 21, 2010 9:16 PM
Comment #309005

WR:

What is Messianic Judaism? Were the Mosaic Laws given to the Jews? What part do they play with non-Jews?

Posted by: Beretta9 at September 21, 2010 9:31 PM
Comment #309007
What is Messianic Judaism?
Maybe this will help
Were the Mosaic Laws given to the Jews? What part do they play with non-Jews?

I don’t think its best to open this can of worms on what is primarily a politics discussion site rather than a religion site. There have been many opinions on this for millennia. A great deal of the Epistles of Sha’ul HaTarsi and the other apostles deal specifically with these issues. I’ll just say that while the Mosaic Laws were primarily intended for Jews, the revelations of Yeshua do not in any way void those teachings or allow any Christian to dismiss them.

Posted by: Warped Reality at September 21, 2010 10:26 PM
Comment #309016

LibRick wrote:

a recognition of the hypocrisy of the religious right.

As an example of this, here’s a link:

Lawsuit: Atlanta pastor coerced males into s*x

Posted by: Adrienne at September 22, 2010 1:29 AM
Comment #309041

Adrienne,

So spake the superior voice of Christainity. You remember that one right? The one that can find severe fault with atheism and every religion other than their own…yeah, that one.

Thanks for the link.

Posted by: Marysdude at September 22, 2010 5:52 PM
Comment #309043

I don’t see much difference in the mob (Mafia/La Cosa Nostra/whatever) and the large churches. One squeezes money out of the addicted, sick, and weak with the threat of physical or economic harm… the other squeezes money out the the addicted, sick, and weak with the threat of social condemnation/ostracism and eternal damnation.

The God of the Old Testament is more model for most of the ‘value voters’ / Tea Party supporters that I’ve run across than Jesus. Not much tolerance, lots of punishment, damnation, hellfire and brimstone.

It is not the message of the New Testament that keeps me at arms length from ever considering joining with its followers. It is many of the Christian people who I’ve met that turn me off of such a religion. I come from a very religious community and family. And my ‘values’ fit many of the positive attributes most Christians espouse. But I am routinely cast as the enemy by the mostly conservative Christian right. Usually over things that I think Jesus would support were he here today.

I’ll end my contribution by taking it back to politics.

The effort of the right to use religion as a means of dividing the country into ‘us’ vs. ‘them’ is not only unChristian… it is flat out evil. Be careful of how you create such a civic movement that uses this as their tool to grow and gain power.

Finally, consider this. The one group of people that I can recall from the New Testament who actually angered Jesus were the religious conservatives of the day. There’s a message there that is not getting into the Christian consciousness.

I paraphrase but: Check the stick in your own eye before you point out the mote in others.

Posted by: LibRick at September 22, 2010 6:02 PM
Comment #309051

Democrats need to police their own WHILE attacking Republican sophists. From FactCheck:

Democratic Rep. Alan Grayson of Florida is falsely accusing his opponent of evading the Vietnam War draft, claiming “he doesn’t love this country.” Republican candidate Daniel Webster didn’t “refuse the call to service,” as claimed in a vicious TV ad featuring pictures of military graves and the sound of “Taps” being played on a bugle. In fact, the former Florida Senate majority leader was given routine student deferments until he completed his undergraduate degree. He then reported for a military physical and was disqualified for medical reasons.

Posted by: David R. Remer at September 22, 2010 6:32 PM
Comment #309079

DRR,

Is that a Grayson ad? Or is it one of those corporate sponsored ads? Or did it come from the DNC?

Posted by: Marysdude at September 22, 2010 11:08 PM
Comment #309457

Obviously the writer is ignorant of the definition of “social justice”. There is nothing Christian about forced redistribution of other peoples assets, which is what social justice is.
It comes from the same source as “collective salvation”.
Do not be mislead.

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Comment #349000

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