April 17, 2010

Hate Crimes 2

Thanks for all the support for our son. He is recovering well. But trouble is on the way. We are afraid that the attack on him will be called a hate crime. His attackers were black and evidently called him a cracker as they beat him. They also kicked at his face as much as possible. The six guys were from out of town. They evidently out hunting and they found our son a convenient target. There is no convenient explanation. It was very hateful what they did, but still the designation bothers me.

From the personal, practical point of view, I am afraid this will get to be a lot of trouble for us and our son. People on both sides of the debate will try to use it. Perhaps our son will be accused of provoking the incident, as if one guy alone a block away from his home would provoke six guys who came many miles to create havoc. I can imagine pin-headed protesters bothering us. On the other hand, he could become a symbolic victim, which he is not. We just don't need that.

I don't think calling it a hate crime will do any good. I want the perpetrators punished, so that they don't do it again. But I think the "hate crime" designation could dilute the lesson and slow the justice process. They will go from being bad kids to symbols and may even come to see themselves as that. They could come to see themselves as the victims.

The bottom line is this. Six guys beating a person with beer bottles and kicking him in the face, trying to cause disfigurement, is an obvious crime. As we learn more details, I have a lot less understanding for the perps. Nobody who didn't have hate in his heart would do such a thing. But calling it a "hate crime" will just complicate this, making it a matter of politics as well as justice. Justice can be clear; politics never is. We should mix them together as little as we can.

Posted by Christine & John at April 17, 2010 04:11 PM
Comments
Comment #299128

I am glad to hear your son is doing well.

I hope the DA in VA is able to prosecute the perpetrators to the fullest extent of the law and that the perpetrators are given their rightful due process in court as outlined in the Constitution.

Regarding Hate Crimes, I think I said this before:

What is often called a “Hate Crime” is really two crimes.

The first is the actual act of violence.
The second is the crime of intimidation against a community. For example if it appeared that the perpetrators were trying to defend some unspoken social rule about how they people from different races should interact, then I think the perpetrators should be punished more harshly.

Perhaps we need a better term than “Hate Crime” as many have pointed out that all crimes are rooted in hatred.

Posted by: Warped Reality at April 17, 2010 05:16 PM
Comment #299129

Warped

The problem is that we have to get into internal narratives, which are often confused even to the person himself. For example, did these guys want to go hunting in a place they felt was someone else’s place? That is a plausible scenario that they could have mentioned, “yeah and we can wail on some of them” but it probably was not their dominant motivation.

The other thing I think is very dangerous is the creation of an us and them feeling. Even if these guys came specifically to bash someone different from them, making it into a racial thing actually enhances the power of the incident. You can imagine how that would work out. Look what THEY did and soon it become more than six assholes and becomes a group thing.

As I wrote, our son (or any victim) becomes a symbol, as do the perps.

IMO it is better the punish the crime and don’t talk cultural motivation that is hard to understand and complex to address.

You may recall the early PC example of the official in British India who was accused of not respecting local customs of burning widows on the funereal pyres of their late deceased husbands. When the British official was pressed to respect local custom, he responded, “Yes, I will respect your customs and you must respect mine. It is your custom to burn widows, but it is mine to hang anybody who does it.”

Posted by: C&J at April 17, 2010 05:53 PM
Comment #299131

C+J,

You make some good points. Regarding your son, I agree that it may not be a good idea to pursue Hate Crime charges against the perpetrators. It would certainly create a symbolism that your family might not be comfortable with, which is okay.

We discuss politics on this site, and that means whether or not the law should contain extra penalties for someone convicted of a Hate Crime. I think the law should be on the books so that if a community feels victimized it can take a stand. It seems like that you and your son don’t feel intimidated. I don’t know that much about JMU or the city it’s located in, so I can’t comment on any particulars.

However, perhaps if you look at other examples which are bit more explicit you will see my point.

Posted by: Warped Reality at April 17, 2010 06:37 PM
Comment #299132

C&J
One of the slippery slpopes to the hate crime law is that double jeopardy is employed. For the act that those six committed against your son, they could be tried as committing a hate crime and for the same act they can be tried for a&b. I know this is done all the time, but I think it is illegal and unconstitutional. My personal take is go briskly for the a&b and get heavy sentencing and forget the hate crime approach. One of the reasons for this is that the hate crime law is some day probably going to be thrown out. It is another case of terrible legislation.
Also, is your son still in the hospital or home now? I will continue to pray for his recovery as well as grace, mercy, and peace in his life.

Posted by: tom humes at April 17, 2010 07:15 PM
Comment #299136
One of the slippery slopes to the hate crime law is that double jeopardy is employed.

Point taken. How do we avoid prosecution for double jeopardy currently? There are many crimes that can prosecuted for different things. How do we prevent a person acquitted of first degree murder for being tried again for second degree murder or manslaughter?

Posted by: Warped Reality at April 17, 2010 07:51 PM
Comment #299137

C&J,

Are you stating that the prosecutor is seeking Hate Crime charges?

I think Warped Reality has reasonably explained the purpose of Hate Crime charges. It is usually to increase the penalties involved.

Prosecutor’s hold a great deal of power and have a wide leeway in discretion. Hate crime charges should not be oversimplified by over emphasizing the term hate. They are simply a tool for use by prosecutor’s.

Prosecutor’s not infrequently misbehave or prosecute based on political impact. That is why one should be very careful electing them, and quick to remove them for misconduct.

Posted by: gergle at April 17, 2010 08:03 PM
Comment #299141

Warped et al

I worry about the group think idea. I don’t want my son to feel like a member of a group and that other groups of Americans are hostile or dangerous. That can make too much of an unfair impression. I was attacked by a group of Hispanics when I was 17. They didn’t really hurt me very much, but a bunch of them just jumped out of a truck and started pounding on me and a friend of mine. We learned later that there had evidently been some kind of problem with some white guys dating one of their sisters. I was suspicious of the whole group for a while afterward and that was wrong.

When our son was attacked, I was really hoping that is was not something racial or ethnic. I figured given the demography of Harrisonburg, the chances were small. But it didn’t work out that way.

I think it is too easy to exacerbate differences by bringing them up too much. Maybe the guys who attacked our son were indeed racists. Or maybe they were just violent young men and almost anybody they chose at random to attack in Harrisonburg would be white.

You talk about the hate and fear and I understand that. I just think that more hate and fear is created if we make every violent confrontation between races a hate issue.

I think there are some legitimate hate crimes. If you have an organized hatred, for example, and an incitement to violence. But even there, we have ordinary laws.

I recall the case of Mathew Shepard, the gay young man killed in Wyoming. Wyoming already had the death penalty, so you couldn’t threaten the perps with anything more. Beyond that, the perps didn’t seem to have any particular animosity toward gays BEFORE the crime. They picked on a weak man who happened to be gay and after the crime was in progress the hate came up. Having a hate crime statute would not have affected that outcome.

gergle

I don’t know yet what the charges will be. I would not push him to do it and would discourage if possible.

They have been fairly aggressive in trying to get the bad guys. They don’t have many crimes like that in Harrisonburg.

Tom

He is out and seems to be recovering very rapidly. He will have a few scars on his face, which makes us all very sad, but they will not be grossly disfiguring.

Posted by: C&J at April 17, 2010 09:03 PM
Comment #299150

tom humes-
I would be careful about rendering legal judgments if you are not yourself a lawyer. Besides, as far as much amateur understanding goes, It’s not necessarily a separate charge, but rather a charge they make instead of a normal one, or an aggravating factor at sentencing.

C+J-
I would say the option should be there, and people should be aware if they take their bigotry to the next level, their crimes will be judge more heinously for it. You are within your rights not to seek it, but it should be within somebody else’s rights to make sure that those seeking to intimidate them with their crimes have something to be intimidated about themselves. You mention the Murder of Matthew Shepard, but I’d point to your son’s case and say that as there, the crime doesn’t have to be fatal for their to be an element of intimidation to it.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 17, 2010 10:34 PM
Comment #299151

Jon and Christine, so very sorry about what happened to your son. My daughter went to school at JMU, 4 years in the 80’s with no incidents I knew of. Now, for some reason we are seeing a flurry of such crimes. Punishment is needed for sure but IMO the root of the problem is a much much harder fix. Bundled up in the lack of religious upbringing, parents, for whatever reason, incapable of providing proper parenting for their children. Tends to feed off itself, one groups disabuses another group/person thru jealousy, seen lack of opportunity, resentment, etc.

Talking heads are on cspan as we speak re an uptick in militia activity relating to political activism. Stems from the same perceived problems above, IMO.

It’s going to take a tight knit national community to get through the next decade or two, IMO.

I hope and pray your son will return to his full potential.

Posted by: Roy Ellisl at April 17, 2010 10:43 PM
Comment #299154

C&J
Happy your boy is recovering.
Hate crimes mean the victim is selected because of what they are not who they are. It means enhanced sentencing. If found guilty the perpetrators will serve longer sentences. A more likely outcome is that only some will go to trial,if any, and the rest negotiate a plea bargin. Adding a hate crime designation gives the DA more leaverage to demand stiffer penalties.This is a good thing.
Don’t worry about it becomming a cause celebre. It looks pretty clear they are guilty. If there was a serious doubt hate crime designation might attract some some attention but it is not likely in the circumstances.

Posted by: bills at April 18, 2010 12:03 AM
Comment #299156

Bills

A couple years back I wrote a blog post in my own name about a controversial topic. I wrote the truth as I saw it. People started to write about me. At first, it was more or less truthful. But as time went on, it got farther and farther from reality. I really didn’t matter after a while. I had become a symbol to be used. This still sometimes affects me. Occasionally I meet someone who is surprised that I am not what they thought and what they thought came from the image.

I don’t trust the media and I don’t trust activists. They manipulate images and the people. The underlying truth may matter less than the effect. What if someone like Al Sharpton decides to take up the case?

I hope you are right. My best case scenario is that nothing really comes of this event.

Posted by: C&J at April 18, 2010 01:31 AM
Comment #299157

C&J
Sharpton is not in the habit of defending barbarity. I assume the local PD acted with professionalism.If so you have little to worry about except your boy. In time you might want to suggest some martial arts trainning as a confidence restoritive.

Posted by: bills at April 18, 2010 02:25 AM
Comment #299162

>I don’t trust the media and I don’t trust activists. They manipulate images and the people. The underlying truth may matter less than the effect. What if someone like Al Sharpton decides to take up the case?
Posted by: C&J at April 18, 2010 01:31 AM

I don’t blame you for not trusting the media…not many of us do, but your inference to activism is somewhat contrary to your own actions and writings. Does it mean you don’t trust your own activist traits? Does it mean you don’t trust activism in general? Does it mean you don’t trust activism that runs contrary to your views?

Apparently you think the designation ‘hate crime’ was somehow a knee-jerk reaction to some crimes that were committed in some fantasy land far far away, and not crimes used to intimidate entire groups of peoples, in the here and now.Perhaps you think laws were changed for no good reason and without reasoning thought. Hate crime is separated because it is different, and the difference impacts more than those upon whom the crime is committed.

I do not know the circumstances of your son’s situation…but, if he was attacked because he was white, and not just because his wallet was showing, or he had insulted someone’s girl, or, or, or…it places every white person who walks down those streets in jeopardy, not because they have made a stupid or ignorant error in flashing a wad of money, or, or, or, but just because of the color of their skin. I’m trying my hardest to figure out a thought process that cannot or will not address the significant differences between a mugging, which is perpetrated against an individual, and a lynching which is perpetrated for the expressed purpose of intimidating a race of peoples.

Posted by: Marysdude at April 18, 2010 07:53 AM
Comment #299165

C&J:

Beyond that, the perps didn’t seem to have any particular animosity toward gays BEFORE the crime. They picked on a weak man who happened to be gay and after the crime was in progress the hate came up.

I’m afraid that isn’t true. During the trial, both of their girlfriends testified under oath that they had plotted beforehand to target a gay man, even pretending to be gay themselves to lure him from the bar. In addition, the pair themselves attempted to use “gay panic” as a justification for their attack, only later claiming robbery as their motivation. Other testimony during the case corroborates this.

Sergeant Debree, the lead investigator for the Albany County Sheriff’s Department, testified that he conducted a tape-recorded interview with Mr. McKinney on Oct. 9, two days after the beating and three days before Mr. Shepard died in a hospital in nearby Fort Collins, Colo. In that interview, Sergeant Debree recalled, Mr. McKinney said he and Mr. Henderson had identified Mr. Shepard as a robbery target and had then lured him out of a Laramie bar and into their truck by pretending to be gay.

By Mr. McKinney’s account, the detective said, the attack began after Mr. Shepard had placed his hand on Mr. McKinney’s leg as they drove through Laramie. “Guess what, we’re not gay,” the detective quoted Mr. McKinney as saying he had told Mr. Shepard. “You’re going to get jacked. It’s Gay Awareness Week.”

A Laramie police officer, Detective Ben Fritzen, testified that he had interviewed Kristen Price, Mr. McKinney’s 18-year-old girlfriend. Detective Fritzen said that in explaining the violence, Mr. McKinney had told Ms. Price, “Well, you know how I feel about gays,”
Posted by: Jarandhel at April 18, 2010 09:53 AM
Comment #299166

Bills

I recall Sharpton with the Twana Brawley and the Duke Lacrosse case. Of course, I don’t think it really will get that big, but I don’t want it to get anything at all.

Re my son - as I wrote, they didn’t rob him, ask him for anything or even look at his face before the beating started. There are two overlapping options. Either it was completely random or it was a hate crime. Either way, the response should be the same.

Re activists - IMO many activists attack the people, not the issue and are interested in pushing the agenda over the morality of it. We don’t do that.

I don’t want my son, or the bad guys either, to become mere roles.

Posted by: C&J at April 18, 2010 10:17 AM
Comment #299167

Jarandhel


Sorry if I got some of my facts wrong. But as I still understand it, the primary motivation was robbery. It was a robbery that got out of hand.

Beyond that, calling it a hate crime could not have made a difference, since Wyoming already has the death penalty and there could be no additional punishment had they decided to give that.

Posted by: C&J at April 18, 2010 10:19 AM
Comment #299171

C&J:

How exactly does a robbery “get out of hand” in such a way that it turns into a pistol whipping with at least 18 separate blows to the victims head and repeated kicks to the groin?

I’m sorry, but you seem to have bought into the perpetrators own rhetoric that this was just a robbery gone bad. Were that the case, why did they target a gay man specifically? Why did they use his gayness as justification for the violence both to their girlfriends and in court? This was a hate crime that included robbery, not a robbery gone bad.

As for your question, let me pose one in return: do you believe that terrorists like McVeigh and Padilla should be charged only with multiple counts of murder in the legal system, as long as the death penalty is an option? Or do their crimes, and the motive of causing terror in the US population, go beyond that?

Posted by: Jarandhel at April 18, 2010 11:06 AM
Comment #299172

Why is the Fort Hood shooter not considered a terrorist, and why does the Obama administration refuse to refer to Islamic Terrorist as Islamic Terrorists? But it is ok for the Obama administration, former president Clinton, the MSM, and all liberal bloggers to refer to Tea Party members as terrorists and potential threats to society?

This is the real question about hate crime. Is the left guilty of instigating hate toward a group of people simply because these conservatives down roll over and play dead to a socialist takeover of our nation?

Posted by: Beretta9 at April 18, 2010 11:37 AM
Comment #299176

C&J,

I don’t think the designation ‘hate crime’ has as much to do with increasing penalties for a crime, as it does opening an investigation to include federal agents, who many times have better investigative techniques and expertise, in order to close those type cases. Hate crimes, by their very nature, affect more than just a local community, and more than just the parties directly involved in the crime.

If a black church is blown up by a pickup full of white guys wearing hoods and yelling racial epithets, the crime far exceeds the destruction of a building. Local authorities may be in cahoots, or have inadequate facilities to investigate thoroughly. The designation ‘hate crime’ allows for a far more professional investigation and better evidence presentation at trial.

Posted by: Marysdude at April 18, 2010 12:44 PM
Comment #299177

C&J,

You separate activism into at least two catagories, in order to justify your own activism, but resist separating crime into at least two catagories…hmmm…because…hmmm…

Posted by: Marysdude at April 18, 2010 12:49 PM
Comment #299193

Jaran

I will defer to you on all the details of the case itself. In general, it is fairly common for armed robberies to go bad and get people killed. It seems like they used the gay thing as a lure, much like a woman might lure a man into a trap. I think that hate is always present when someone is beaten or killed. But I still don’t see how calling it a hate crime does much to deter the act. If someone is willing to kill someone, adding the hate thing won’t make much difference.

Re McVeigh etc – Theirs is an act of mass murder. I don’t think a person can be a terrorist unless he commits or incites specific acts of violence. They can say that they hate America and that they hope the country is destroyed, but until they actually plan or carry out violence, it is just somebody talking.

The problem I have with hate crimes is not the crimes part. It is the definition of hate crime to include what are really thought crimes.

The guys that attacked my son were racists as indicted by their speech and they were violent as indicated by their actions. I want to punish them for what they did, not for what they are. The same goes for the other things mentioned.

Marysdude

I think my definition of activism, good and bad, tracks with my thinking on hate crimes. I speak freely and expect others to do the same. I do not advocate persecuting anybody because of what they say.

There are many ideas I hear expressed that I find odious, but I don’t smear the person who holds them. There are a few people on this blog that I will not respond to at all. But until activists start targeting people, i.e. bother us at work or at home, I don’t have a problem with it.

Posted by: C&J at April 18, 2010 09:37 PM
Comment #299206

C&J:

I will defer to you on all the details of the case itself. In general, it is fairly common for armed robberies to go bad and get people killed.

Sure… and in those instances, people are generally stabbed and shot. A split-second bad decision by the perp. Pistol-whipping is not a split-second action. Beating someone in the head at least 18 times and fracturing their skull, and repeatedly kicking their groin, all while having them at gunpoint is not a split-second action.

It seems like they used the gay thing as a lure, much like a woman might lure a man into a trap. I think that hate is always present when someone is beaten or killed. But I still don’t see how calling it a hate crime does much to deter the act. If someone is willing to kill someone, adding the hate thing won’t make much difference.

By the same logic, should we stop differentiating between premeditated murder and murder committed in the heat of the moment, on the grounds that the differentiation does not make much difference in deterring the actual act of murder?

Re McVeigh etc – Theirs is an act of mass murder. I don’t think a person can be a terrorist unless he commits or incites specific acts of violence. They can say that they hate America and that they hope the country is destroyed, but until they actually plan or carry out violence, it is just somebody talking.

But McVeigh & Padilla did carry out specific acts of violence. As did the murderers of Matthew Shepard, and as did the attackers of your son. In each case, the act was designed to cause terror: in the case of McVeigh & Padilla it was intended to terrify the general populace of the US and cause political change. In the case of Matthew Shepard and your son, the act was designed to instill fear in a segment of the population… gays in Matthew Shepard’s case, and “crackers” in the case of your son. It’s no different than the message that used to be sent to the African American populace by lynchings, draggings, and beatings in the past. The message is simple: we did this to one of you, we can do it to any of you. Next time it might be you.

The problem I have with hate crimes is not the crimes part. It is the definition of hate crime to include what are really thought crimes.

But the definition of hate crime has nothing to do with thought crimes. Someone can think and even say what they like all day long: it’s when they actually commit or incite a violent act that their motivation comes into the picture.

The guys that attacked my son were racists as indicted by their speech and they were violent as indicated by their actions. I want to punish them for what they did, not for what they are. The same goes for the other things mentioned.

I’m sorry, but it seems to me that you want to punish them for one aspect of what they did, and excuse another aspect of what they did as just “what they are” or what they are thinking. You want to punish them for the actual assault, but you seem to want to excuse the fact that this assault was a means of instilling fear in the local white community. As such, it was an attack on more than just your son. Hate crime laws are meant to deal with such acts of violence that are directed against groups rather than just individuals.

Posted by: Jarandhel at April 19, 2010 09:56 AM
Comment #299211

SD
I can render any kind of decision outside the courtroom. It is non-binding and not subject to appeal. People interpret law all the time; sometimes rationally and sometimes irrationally. All law is subject to interpretation by the citizens it controls. If a citizen mis-interprets the law, there could be serious consequences. If the law is interpreted sanely and properly one can still end up getting some kind of judicial review. So, thank you for your cautionary note.

Posted by: tom humes at April 19, 2010 02:50 PM
Comment #299212

Jarandhel
The whole hate crimes farce was a promotion by the homosexual, lesbian, et al community. They wanted additional penalties applied for people that committed wrongs against their small percentage of the population and with special protection. The irony of the hate crimes bill is that it does not specifically protect seniors, military personell, preachers, and others. It only adds protection because of sexual persuasion. So there is concern that one could be prosecuted for a hate crime because they speak their mind but do not aggitate for action. One of two things will happen the hate crimes legislation passed last year will be struck down or some preacher while preaching on sin and warning people about their sinful nature are going to hell. You do not have to agree with that but if it is spoken the real world says “hang the preacher”.

Posted by: tom humes at April 19, 2010 03:06 PM
Comment #299213

tom humes:

You may want to do more reading on the issue. Federal Hate Crime legislation was adopted in 1969, and allowed federal prosecution of anyone who “willingly injures, intimidates or interferes with another person, or attempts to do so, by force because of the other person’s race, color, religion or national origin” during six types of federally protected activities. Sexual orientation was not part of it.

The next federal hate crime legislation was the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act adopted in 1994, which required the United States Sentencing Commission to increase the penalties for hate crimes committed on the basis of the actual or perceived race, color, religion, national origin, ethnicity, or gender of any person. Again, sexual orientation was not part of it.

Finally, the Matthew Shepard Act became law in October of last year, and expanded the coverage of these existing laws to include gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, and disabilities.

So to say hate crime legislation was a promotion of the lgbt community, when they predate any inclusion of homosexuals by 40 years, is simply incorrect.

As for those who are afraid of being prosecuted for hate crimes for speaking their minds without agitating for action, answer me this: when was the last time a white supremacist in this country was arrested for speaking his mind about African Americans but not agitating for violence towards them? That should tell you how likely it is for a preacher or anyone else to be charged with a hate crime for speaking their mind about gays, if they really aren’t agitating for action.

Posted by: Jarandhel at April 19, 2010 03:32 PM
Comment #299215

Jarandhel:

I believe Tom said, “So there is concern that one could be prosecuted for a hate crime because they speak their mind but do not aggitate for action”

The operative word is “concern”. I know of many pastors who are concerned, not so much about criminal prosecution, but rather about their churches tax-exempt status being taken away. This is a threat that would not just affect the pastor, but also every member of the church. The question is; would the Federal Government try to intimidate pastors and churches into keeping quiet and IMO, yes they would.

White supremacists would welcome the free advertisement of charges of racism, but most churches would not want that stigma.

Posted by: Bereetta9 at April 19, 2010 05:39 PM
Comment #299216

Beretta9:

Sure they’re concerned, but the concern is entirely unfounded. It’s being used by those who don’t want any form of gay rights acknowledged in our society to whip up otherwise moderate churches and pastors against including gays in hate crime legislation. It may be your opinion that the Federal Government would try to intimidate pastors and churches into keeping quiet, but there is absolutely no evidence of this nor would any existing hate crime legislation make this possible.

Posted by: Jarandhel at April 19, 2010 07:01 PM
Comment #299217

Jarandhel
What kind of sand should I send to to further burry your head. The hate crimes bill did pass as you said(not sure of date; will take your word for it). The addition last year was the homosexual part of it. And if we are so righteous that we should include sodomites, then why can’t we include others, such as I mentioned above. The military personnel are hated all the time. Fred Phelps is one so called church leader that does practice hatred against the military. Where is the prosecution of his actions. Most certainly disturbing the peace and fomenting negative actions of hate at his gatherings should cause the hate crime prosecution.
Now if I go to the local gay pride outing and I laugh and yell lezzy and queer continually, how are they going to make an example out of me. That is what they want to do. Treating someone who does badily harm to a double jeopardy because the victim is homosexual is not what justice is all about. I hate carrots, asparagus, and spinach. Does that mean I hate vegans. All I am trying to show you is the slippery slope this legislation has traveled. More of the same liberal, progressive, left wing activity.

Posted by: tom humes at April 19, 2010 08:08 PM
Comment #299219

Jarandhel

And if we are so righteous that we should include sodomites, then why can’t we include others, such as I mentioned above. The military personnel are hated all the time. Fred Phelps is one so called church leader that does practice hatred against the military. Where is the prosecution of his actions. Most certainly disturbing the peace and fomenting negative actions of hate at his gatherings should cause the hate crime prosecution.

You’re seriously trotting out Fred Phelps, the owner of GodHatesFags.com, the man who picketed Matthew Shepard’s funeral long before he picketed any soldier’s funeral, as an example of why the military needs protection from hate crimes but the gay community does not? Seriously?

And you’ll notice, Phelps has never been charged with a hate crime against gays either. He and his children are all lawyers by profession, and they’re very careful about not crossing the line into illegal activity. Instead, they try to provoke the people they are protesting into assaulting them, and then make money for their church by suing them. It’s despicable, but it’s not illegal and therefor their words do not rise to the level of a hate crime either under the old laws or under the new addition.

And the new law did include people other than “sodomites”. It included the disabled.

Now if I go to the local gay pride outing and I laugh and yell lezzy and queer continually, how are they going to make an example out of me. That is what they want to do.

They’re not. Nothing in the new law allows them to “make an example out of you”. Not one thing. Not unless you commit a crime or incite others to do so. Just making a jackass out of yourself is your constitutionally protected right.

Treating someone who does badily harm to a double jeopardy because the victim is homosexual is not what justice is all about.

It’s not double jeopardy. You might want to do some research into the law, specifically the concept of dual sovereignty doctrine. In brief, if someone violates both state and federal laws concerning the same matter, both jurisdictions may prosecute him without double jeopardy applying.

As one example, in 1922 a man named Vito Lanza was convicted of violating the Washington State Prohibition Act. He was then charged by the federal government with violating the National Prohibition Act. He appealed the case to the supreme court, claiming this was double jeopardy. The court found that: “…an act denounced as a crime by both national and state sovereignties is an offense against the peace and dignity of both and may be punished by each. The Fifth Amendment, like all other guaranties in the first eight amendments, applies only to proceedings by the federal government, and the double jeopardy therein forbidden is a second prosecution under the authority of the federal government after a first trial for the same offense under the same authority. Here the same act was an offense against the state of Washington, because a violation of its law, and also an offense against the United States under the National Prohibition Act. The defendant thus committed two different offenses by the same act, and a conviction by a court of Washington of the offense against that state is not a conviction of the different offense against the United States, and so is not double jeopardy.” (United States v. Lanza, 43 S. Ct. 141, 142-143)

I hate carrots, asparagus, and spinach. Does that mean I hate vegans. All I am trying to show you is the slippery slope this legislation has traveled. More of the same liberal, progressive, left wing activity.

Frankly, all you seem to be showing is that there are people completely misinformed about the hate crimes legislation and what powers it gives the government.

Posted by: Jarandhel at April 19, 2010 09:32 PM
Comment #299222
then why can’t we include others, such as I mentioned above.

tom humes

I have no problems with expanding the language to include crimes targeted against people for their membership in an organization. The point is, committing violence is one thing; committing intimidation is another. Both things are crimes and if a person commits both then they should be punished for both.

Also, from what I know, a Hate Crime is not a separate crime unto itself. It is only an additional description to another crime which may result in a stronger sentence. Just like how we have manslaughter, 2nd degree murder and 1st degree murder.

Re: Fred Phelps
The first amendment protects his church’s right to protest no matter how repugnant its views. Unless his people actually commit violence, they won’t be targeted by American law. He has had legal troubles in Canada & Europe for his speeches (which are very hateful).

Also, Phelps’ real motivation is his profound hatred for homosexuals; all his other hate speech is periphery to his anti-homosexual views.

Now if I go to the local gay pride outing and I laugh and yell lezzy and queer continually, how are they going to make an example out of me.
Fred Phelps and his ilk have done far worse than yell lezzy & queer, and they have never had any legal troubles for it or “made an example out of” by the LGBT community. If someone in the LGBT did commit an act of violence in an attempt to “make an example out of” a heckler that person would be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law; there is not loophole that allows one to legally commit violence if that violence constitutes an escalation of a conflict. Posted by: Warped Reality at April 19, 2010 10:13 PM
Comment #299224

Jarandhel,

Been a while since I’ve seen you post. Thoughtful, articulate and sound posts…thanks.

Posted by: gergle at April 19, 2010 11:43 PM
Comment #299226

The bottom line is hate is an attitude. Why prosecute someone for attitude. All crime is hateful. So why add hate to the law books when it is an attitude and not a physical expression. Just another law that should not be on the books. When a defendant is being sentenced, there are aggravating and mitigating factors involved. That is where all the things get balanced out. Do child molesters get the “hate crime” treatment? I have never heard of it. Have you ever heard of a man getting the “hate crime” treatment for hating women in the commission of a crime? When have you ever heard of a defendant being charged with the “hate crime” treatment because his crime was against an ethnic group?
It is wrong to hate, period. To prosecute someone for hate is equally wrong. There is no justification for either one, but to criminalize it is a serious flaw.

Posted by: tom humes at April 20, 2010 12:18 AM
Comment #299227

tom humes,
You focus on the word hate, but there’s more to “Hate Crime” than hate. A more accurate term would be “intimidation crime” because that is more descriptive. I mentioned earlier that “Hate Crime” might not be the best word.

I hope you acknowledge that intimidation can be a crime in some situations.

Posted by: Warped Reality at April 20, 2010 01:48 AM
Comment #299228

I agree with Tom, all crime is hate crime of one sort or another.

The specific passing of “Hate Crimes” IS in itself “intimidation crime”. The purpose of even talking about hate crimes is to shut some people up by intimidation. The left will use the term “hate crime” to shut down anyone who opposes them. Has the left ever applied the word hate crime to Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, or Sarah Palin? Yes, they have. Even Bill Clinton has used the same words to identify these people. The left can never look at any problem for what it is. It can’t be just a crime; it has to be a hate crime, a racial crime, a sexual crime, and so on. When you accomplish this, then you can continue down the road to class warfare, which is the real goal of the left. Every time Obama and the left try to push through an agenda; they first have to attack and make an enemy of a certain group of people. Hense, Wall Street is the enemy, Insurance Companies are the enemy, Big Banks are the enemy, CEO’s are the enemy, Oil Companies are the enemy, talk radio is the enemy, Fox News is the enemy, Sarah Palin/Glenn Beck/Rush Limbaugh are the enemy,and conservatism is the enemy.

Posted by: Beretta9 at April 20, 2010 10:21 AM
Comment #299230

Baretta9
The speakers on the left are masters of Orwellian speak. Hate for them is love or some other nice word. They must have a dictionary with dual meanings one for them and one for the infidels. This is applied daily in the media and in the halls of Congress and all places inbetween. We cannot use the word gay as we grew up to use. It was hijacked. We are mast approaching the word marriage as being a hijacked word. And there are others. The hardest part is to conduct a conversation with someone who wants to be a doctor of semantics and hyperbole.
How was your weekend outing? Any good catches?

Posted by: tom humes at April 20, 2010 12:05 PM
Comment #299231

Wow, Fodo and his faithful sidekick, all innocent and nice as can be.

No one on the left, that I know of has a problem with Limbaugh et al, per se, we have a problem with the ditto heads and goony-goons and pistol packers who listen to and parrot them. Their hate is their business and their freedom of speech is unchallenged…but, what kind of fruitcake would actually LISTEN to that crap? Only those whose partisanslip is showing for what it is, ie, hate, bigotry and malice toward America and all she should be standing for.

Posted by: Marysdude at April 20, 2010 12:25 PM
Comment #299232

You on the left must be listening to that crap because you are always refering to Limbaugh, Beck, Hannity and the like. Or do you get a half truth from the likes of Ed, Olderman or Maddow.

Posted by: MAG at April 20, 2010 01:09 PM
Comment #299233

MAG,

You should learn to read more than is required to wipe its little butt. I was responding to the entries above mine, which explicitly mentions those lofty souls of which you speak. Since you have so much trouble with the written word, you must be a rabid follower as well, else you’d not be able to figure out what the subject matter is.

Posted by: Marysdude at April 20, 2010 02:01 PM
Comment #299234

Marysdude,

the ditto heads and goony-goons and pistol packers who listen to and parrot them.
what kind of fruitcake would actually LISTEN to that crap? Only those whose partisanslip is showing for what it is, ie, hate, bigotry and malice toward America and all she should be standing for.
You should learn to read more than is required to wipe its little butt.

Is this vitirol really necessary or even consistent with critique the message not the messenger?

================================================

To those on the Right,

I have no problem with the right-wing media doing what they do. I just wish they wouldn’t pedle so many falsehoods.

I have no knowledge of the Left using hate crime legislation to target rightist pundits, perhaps one of you can point this out to me? Just make sure you don’t confuse “Hate Crime” with “Hate Speech”. I have heard leftists use the term “Hate Speech” to describe certain rightist commentators. However, that is just a deragory label based on hyperbole not related to any threat to prosecute for any crime. In fact “Hate Crime” is only a modifier on some other crime. IE if there is no other crime, Hate Crime charges may not be brought.

In any case, I disagree with the characterization of rightist speech as “hate” speech. A much better word is false speech.

I’ve said before that we may be better off using a different term than “Hate Crime”. Many of the complaints levied in this conversation have been derived from the definitions of the word hate which is leading some people to false conclusions. They key thing is our society believes it is criminal to use violence to intimidate, and that violence used to intimidate should be punished more harshly than the violence would be punished on its own.

Apart from the already discussed laws that specify terrorism as a crime we also have crimes against witness intimidation. If C beats up A, that’s one thing; wothy of many years in jail. If A was a witness to B killing D, and B is C’s friend that is quite another. If it can be shown that C’s beating of A was an effort to prevent A from testifying in order to convict B (C’s friend), then without a doubt A should be punished more harshly for his/her crime.

Likewise, let’s say again C beats up A. And let’s say that it can be shown that C’s motivation was to enforce an unwritten code of how vowels and consonants are supposed to interact. C believes vowels shouldn’t hang out at the begining of the alphabet or maybe C thinks vowel’s & consonant shouldn’t date and C believed A was dating C’s sister, B or something else along these lines. In this case C should serve a harsher punishment for his/her deeds than a beating would normally merit.

The bottom line is using violence to intimidate should be punished more harshly than the violence would have been by itself. If Y beats up Z in order to take Z’s wallet, C wil still end up serving a longer sentence than Y because Y’s crime did not include intimidation.

Posted by: Warped Reality at April 20, 2010 02:14 PM
Comment #299235

gergle:

Thank you. It’s been a rough year, and I’ve had to distance myself from political debate a bit… it can just consume your time, not to mention the emotional toll of some of these debates. Especially when the people we’re debating start pulling out slurs like “sodomites”…

tom humes:

The bottom line is hate is an attitude. Why prosecute someone for attitude. All crime is hateful. So why add hate to the law books when it is an attitude and not a physical expression. Just another law that should not be on the books.

No one is being prosecuted for an attitude, they are being prosecuted for specific criminal actions taken or incited to terrorize groups of people.

When a defendant is being sentenced, there are aggravating and mitigating factors involved. That is where all the things get balanced out. Do child molesters get the “hate crime” treatment? I have never heard of it.

I think you’re comparing apples and oranges. Child molestation is a crime in and of itself. One separate, you’ll note, from the crime of rape. Why would it be covered under hate crime laws?

Have you ever heard of a man getting the “hate crime” treatment for hating women in the commission of a crime?

Until the Matthew Shepard Act this past year, gender was not a class under which crimes could be prosecuted as hate crimes under federal law. Hate towards a specific gender could be used only for sentencing under the 1994 act, to increase penalties.

When have you ever heard of a defendant being charged with the “hate crime” treatment because his crime was against an ethnic group?

All the time. That’s what these laws first protected against, and they still account for 55% of all hate crimes reported. Hell, there are at least two such in the news this past week: one in New York and one in California.

It is wrong to hate, period. To prosecute someone for hate is equally wrong. There is no justification for either one, but to criminalize it is a serious flaw.

No one is prosecuting someone for hating. They are prosecuting them for inciting or committing a hate crime. There is a difference. A hate crime is when a victim is targeted specifically because of their membership in a certain group, and which are intended to broadly intimidate that group.

Posted by: Jarandhel at April 20, 2010 02:18 PM
Comment #299236

Dude
It was a general statement as was yours. Rarely do I read anyone on the right putting down Maddow, Olderman And Ed. Like the left does the right. At times I watch each just to see the propaganda they are pushing and I find at times they are just as hateful as those on the right are with their speech sometimes more so in the case of Maddow.

Posted by: MAG at April 20, 2010 02:59 PM
Comment #299238

C & J, it takes a person of rare integrity to stay true to their principles when something so personal as you have experienced might be seen as calling them into question. I admire your opposition to the concept of “hate crimes” and your unwillingness to change this view in light of the attack on your son.

As a father, I can only imagine how terrifying the phone call must have been and the agony in your heart as you drove through the night to get to your son’s side.

Glad to hear that he is going to make a full recovery.

I have always found the concept of hate crimes troubling, because it would seem to criminalize thoughts as much as actions, and it seems to make a value judgement about the relative value of certain classifications of humanity, the kind of value judgements that are anathema to any sense of equality before the law. If X is black and kills Y because Y is white, should the penalty be more severe than if X killed Y simply for the “thrill” of killing? I don’t think so.


Posted by: Jack Romano at April 20, 2010 03:50 PM
Comment #299239

Jack,

If X kills Y because it is a thrill, only Y is affected, but if X kills Y because of his color, everyone of that color is affected in some negative way, not just Y. Much like the difference between a killing of passion and one of cold blood are treated different, ‘hate’ crimes should also be treated differently.

Posted by: Marysdude at April 20, 2010 04:58 PM
Comment #299241

Tom;

We are here for the week and yes we have caught a few fish.

Jarandhel;

The word “Sodomite” is a good biblical word for homsexuals. There was a city named after them and God destroyed the city; was that a hate crime?

MD:

Dude does have a lot pent up anger toward Rush, Beck, and Palin.

Actually, if X kills Y for the thrill, then everyone is in danger because X is deranged.

Posted by: Beretta9 at April 20, 2010 05:24 PM
Comment #299244

If X is caught and goes to jail after the thrill killing, the problem ends for everyone but Y’s family, but even jail will not negate the negative impact on the ‘hate’ group, if Y died because he was a member of that group…it is a matter of degree.

If your pocket is picked you lose your wallet. If you are held up at gun point you lose your wallet. But, I’m pretty sure you would feel the effects of the lose more after the latter…it’s a matter of degree.

Posted by: Marysdude at April 20, 2010 07:13 PM
Comment #299245

Beretta9:

The word “Sodomite” is a good biblical word for homsexuals. There was a city named after them and God destroyed the city; was that a hate crime?

You might want to read your bible more closely; the sin of Sodom was attempted gang-rape of strangers, a breach of hospitality, not homosexuality. Look at Ezekial 16:48-49.

 48As I live, saith the Lord GOD, Sodom thy sister hath not done, she nor her daughters, as thou hast done, thou and thy daughters.

 49Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy.

Homosexuality was not referred to as the sin of Sodom until the 5th century AD, when the Roman emperor Justinian declared it so as part of a campaign to outlaw homosexuality and blame earthquakes and other natural disasters on it. The city was most certainly not “named after them”, rather the other way around. It was invented as a way to depict homosexuality as a sin so abhorrent God had wiped out a city because of it, and thereby drum up public sentiment against homosexuals. As such, it belongs to the same class of rhetoric as blood libel or the good old “Jews killed Jesus.”

Posted by: Jarandhel at April 20, 2010 07:18 PM
Comment #299247

Sodom isn’t even in the original Bible,

סדם is though.

Posted by: Warped Reality at April 20, 2010 09:23 PM
Comment #299248

Jarandhel:

“You might want to read your bible more closely; the sin of Sodom was attempted gang-rape of strangers, a breach of hospitality, not homosexuality.”

1. Main Entry: sod·omy
Pronunciation: \ˈsä-də-mē\
Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English, from Anglo-French sodomie, from Late Latin Sodoma Sodom; from the homosexual proclivities of the men of the city in Gen 19:1–11
Date: 13th century
: anal or oral copulation with a member of the same or opposite sex; also : copulation with an animal

2. Main Entry: Sod·om
Pronunciation: \ˈsä-dəm\
Function: noun
Etymology: Sodom, ancient city destroyed by God for its wickedness in Gen 19
Date: 1594
: a place notorious for vice or corruption


3. Main Entry: sod·om·ite
Pronunciation: -ˌmīt\
Function: noun
Date: 14th century
: one who practices sodomy


4. Gen 13:13 “But the men of Sodom were wicked and sinners before the LORD exceedingly.
Gen 19:4 But before they lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both old and young, all the people from every quarter:
Gen 19:5 And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? bring them out unto us, that we may know them.
Gen 19:6 And Lot went out at the door unto them, and shut the door after him,
Gen 19:7 And said, I pray you, brethren, do not so wickedly.
Gen 19:8 Behold now, I have two daughters which have not known man; let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes: only unto these men do nothing; for therefore came they under the shadow of my roof.”

The word “men” in Gen. 13:13 and “men” in Gen. 19:4 are not speaking of mankind, it is the Hebrew word “iysh” and refers to males. It was not mankind that was wicked; it was the men of this city.

Secondly, the word “know” in Gen. 19:5 is the Hebrew word “yada” and is the same word that is used in Gen 4:1 (“And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD”) and is referring to knowing a person sexually, for the purpose of procreation. Hence, the men of Sodom wanted to know the two strangers sexually. This is further proved in Gen. 19:8, when Lot offered his two daughters to the men, who were virgins, to be done with as the men wished.

You quote Ezek. 16:48-49, but you failed to quote verse 50, which says, “And they were haughty, and committed abomination before me: therefore I took them away as I saw good.” First there is a colon after the word “me” and a colon means an explanation is to follow. The explanation is God “took them away” or destroyed the city because they had committed abomination before God. The Hebrew word for “abomination” is “to ebah, to ebah” and means “properly morally disgusting”. So God destroyed Sodom for being morally disgusting.

The definition of the words Sodom, Sodomy, and Sodomite is based upon what they practiced when God destroyed them.

God told Israel in Deu 23:17 “There shall be no whore of the daughters of Israel, nor a sodomite of the sons of Israel.” The Hebrew word for “sodomite” is “qadesh” and means “a male devoted to prostitution”.

We can add to that two verses from the book of Romans; Rom 1:26 “For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:”
Rom 1:27 “And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.”

The Greek word for “unseemly” is “aschemosune” and means “an indecency”.

Are there any more bible verses you would like to look up?


Posted by: Beretta9 at April 20, 2010 09:32 PM
Comment #299253

Baretta9
Very good. I might add that before God destroyed the city He asked Lot to find him 10 righteous people and then 1 and then had Lot and his wife to leave the city and don’t look back. Lot’s wife did and turned into a pillar of salt.
It is sad that some people do not get it. Sodomy is a sin and is wrong. There is no argument on this.

Posted by: tom humes at April 20, 2010 11:17 PM
Comment #299261

There is no argument by the self-ritious and the thumpers, but there is actually plenty of argument for sane, reasonable people.

Posted by: Marysdude at April 21, 2010 08:12 AM
Comment #299268

Jarandhel:

For space reasons, I’m not going to quote your dictionary definitions, but please look carefully at each of them: they were all established well after the 5th Century AD when Emperor Justinian spread the story of Sodom’s homosexuality as part of his campaign to criminalize homosexuality in the Roman empire.


The word “men” in Gen. 13:13 and “men” in Gen. 19:4 are not speaking of mankind, it is the Hebrew word “iysh” and refers to males. It was not mankind that was wicked; it was the men of this city.

Correct. But would the men of the city have been less wicked if they had wanted to gang-rape two strange females than two strange males?

Secondly, the word “know” in Gen. 19:5 is the Hebrew word “yada” and is the same word that is used in Gen 4:1 (“And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD”) and is referring to knowing a person sexually, for the purpose of procreation. Hence, the men of Sodom wanted to know the two strangers sexually. This is further proved in Gen. 19:8, when Lot offered his two daughters to the men, who were virgins, to be done with as the men wished.

Certainly, they were referring to sex. But again, this was an act of gang-rape of strangers to whom Lot had offered hospitality. Lot even specifically stated: “only unto these men do nothing; for therefore came they under the shadow of my roof.” This specifically references the hospitality he has offered to them, and that treating them this way would be a breach of that hospitality.

You quote Ezek. 16:48-49, but you failed to quote verse 50, which says, “And they were haughty, and committed abomination before me: therefore I took them away as I saw good.” First there is a colon after the word “me” and a colon means an explanation is to follow. The explanation is God “took them away” or destroyed the city because they had committed abomination before God. The Hebrew word for “abomination” is “to ebah, to ebah” and means “properly morally disgusting”. So God destroyed Sodom for being morally disgusting.

Certainly, but the abomination they had committed was to breach hospitality (not strengthening the needy); not laying with males. Men laying with men was not mentioned once by Ezekiel in reference to Sodom. Further, the line you reference is a summary of the lines that preceded it: this can be seen in the fact that pride and being haughty both mean the same thing. Or did God forget he already listed pride?

The definition of the words Sodom, Sodomy, and Sodomite is based upon what they practiced when God destroyed them.

No, it is based upon Emperor Justinian’s story about why God destroyed them. Look at Jewish sources, they’re quite clear on the matter. From Nachmanides in the 13th Century: “According to our sages, they were notorious for every evil, but their fate was sealed for their persistence in not supporting the poor and the needy.” Rabbenu Yonah, a contemporary of Nachmanides, agrees: “Scripture attributes their annihilation to their failure to practice tzedakah [charity or justice].” This is confirmed in Christian tradition by the Book of Wisdom, considered apocryphal by some denominations: “And punishments came upon the sinners not without former signs by the force of thunders: for they suffered justly according to their own wickedness, insomuch as they used a more hard and hateful behavior toward strangers.
For the Sodomites did not receive those, whom they knew not when they came: but these brought friends into bondage, that had well deserved of them.”

God told Israel in Deu 23:17 “There shall be no whore of the daughters of Israel, nor a sodomite of the sons of Israel.” The Hebrew word for “sodomite” is “qadesh” and means “a male devoted to prostitution”.

Nice try, but qadesh is not even linguistically related to the word Sodom or to the later term sodomy. It means, as you say, a male devoted to prostitution. You do realize that homosexuality and male prostitution are two very different things? These are references to the practice of temple prostitution that was part of pagan worship in that area. That’s why whore is considered the female equivalent.

We can add to that two verses from the book of Romans; Rom 1:26 “For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:” Rom 1:27 “And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.”

The Greek word for “unseemly” is “aschemosune” and means “an indecency”.

Are there any more bible verses you would like to look up?

None of this supports the view that the sin of Sodom was homosexuality. Paul does not mention Sodom at all in Romans 1. It’s also important to note that homosexuality in this passage is described as the penalty God enacted upon them, not the sin itself (that being idolatry).

And, btw, even if every last thing you claimed about the contents of the Bible WAS true: calling homosexuals sodomites would still be just as much a slur as calling Jews “Christ-killers”.

Posted by: Jarandhel at April 21, 2010 11:21 AM
Comment #299274

Jarandhel
You have shown a classic case of confusion. Homosexuality is sodomy. Take sodomy away and there is no homosexuality.
Sex is the key. The balance of your post where you try to make the Bible a lie, just does not work. There are thousands of books that try to make the Bible a lie. None of it works and almost to a T the authors are sooner or later discredited. Those that try to discredit the Bible usually will take a word or two and twist the meaning according to more modern use of the word. There is no use of calendars then in use or the customs of the time. A more classic case is the use of the word “gay”.
Your attempt to explain away sodomy is amazing. The abomination referenced in paragraph seven was in fact referencing sexual behavior. “Breach of hospitality” is not an abomination.

An abomination is a spiritual wrong, which has physical perspectives with it.

Posted by: tom humes at April 21, 2010 01:28 PM
Comment #299280

tom humes:

You have shown a classic case of confusion. Homosexuality is sodomy. Take sodomy away and there is no homosexuality.

That’s like saying that if you are celibate there is no heterosexuality. It doesn’t stand even the most basic test of logic. And again, you have not shown that homosexuality was the sin of sodom, so saying that homosexuality “is sodomy” is again buying into the rhetoric of a 5th century roman emperor rather than either the plain text of the Bible or Jewish rabbinical tradition.

Sex is the key. The balance of your post where you try to make the Bible a lie, just does not work. There are thousands of books that try to make the Bible a lie. None of it works and almost to a T the authors are sooner or later discredited. Those that try to discredit the Bible usually will take a word or two and twist the meaning according to more modern use of the word. There is no use of calendars then in use or the customs of the time. A more classic case is the use of the word “gay”.

Perhaps you’d care to demonstrate where I’ve twisted the meanings of any words based on modern usage? I’ve stipulated the meanings you yourself provided, such as “male devoted to prostitution”. Are you now going to claim that prostitution had a wildly different meaning back then? If anything, you are the one relying on more modern meaning, such as your definitions of sodomy from the 13th century and later.

Your attempt to explain away sodomy is amazing. The abomination referenced in paragraph seven was in fact referencing sexual behavior. “Breach of hospitality” is not an abomination.

If it was referencing sexual behavior, then why did Ezekial not mention anything sexual when he stated “this is her iniquity”? And again, why mention pride and haughtiness separately? The verse is recapping the one that came before it.

Another proof that the sin of Sodom was not homosexuality is found in Judges 19, where a situation identical to the one Lot found himself in is replayed:

22Now as they were making their hearts merry, behold, the men of the city, certain sons of Belial, beset the house round about, and beat at the door, and spake to the master of the house, the old man, saying, Bring forth the man that came into thine house, that we may know him.

23And the man, the master of the house, went out unto them, and said unto them, Nay, my brethren, nay, I pray you, do not so wickedly; seeing that this man is come into mine house, do not this folly.

24Behold, here is my daughter a maiden, and his concubine; them I will bring out now, and humble ye them, and do with them what seemeth good unto you: but unto this man do not so vile a thing.

25But the men would not hearken to him: so the man took his concubine, and brought her forth unto them; and they knew her, and abused her all the night until the morning: and when the day began to spring, they let her go.

If the men in this story, acting identically to those in the story of Sodom, were homosexuals then why would they take the concubine and know and abuse her all night? Very clearly they had heterosexual desires.

An abomination is a spiritual wrong, which has physical perspectives with it.

Really? Pray tell what is the “spiritual wrong” found in eating shellfish, then? And you don’t see a spiritual wrong in violating hospitality? It was considered so spiritually wrong that Christ himself would come to speak out against it in Matthew 25: 31-46, where he says that those who do not offer hospitality to their brethren will be sent into eternal punishment but the righteous who did offer hospitality will enter into eternal life. I’d say that’s a fairly strong condemnation of being inhospitable as a spiritual wrong with physical perspectives (not offering water, not offering clothing, etc.)

Posted by: Jarandhel at April 21, 2010 02:42 PM
Comment #299283

jarandhel
You are straying even further. You lay claim to quotes I did not make. I made the claim that there was much wrong in the city of Sodom and that sexual perversion was only a part of it. Does that help clarify my inability to get the message to you?

Then you bring shellfish into the picture. Go figure.

Every possible sin was being committed in Sodom and also Gomorrah.

I encourage you to study the Bible more for more answers. Man does not possess the wisdom or knowledge to tell others about the meaning of the Bible in a complete way.

Time to move on.

Posted by: tom humes at April 21, 2010 04:40 PM
Comment #299290

tom humes,

“Man does not possess the wisdom or knowledge to tell others about the meaning of the Bible in a complete way.”

And yet you attempt to do so, and accuse Jarandrel of his lack of knowledge.

IMHO some people around here need to spend a bit more time with the history books than Jarandhel needs to spend with the Bible.

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at April 21, 2010 05:33 PM
Comment #299292

Jarandhel:

It is interesting that you agree with most of what I say and yet try to turn the conclusion to accommodate your own beliefs.

All sexual perversion is a sin against God. Adultery is a sin because it having sex with another man’s wife, fornication is a sin because it is sin outside of marriage, and homosexuality is an abomination before God. Sex was meant to be within the confines of marriage, it was meant to be pleasurable, and it was meant for procreation. Homosexuality enjoys the pleasure with no chance of procreation. God did not tell Adam and Steve, “be fruitful and multiply”

You pull verses from all over the bible and yet you have no knowledge of what those verses mean.

1Co 2:14 “But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.”

Discussing bible passages with someone who wants to justify sin can only lead to one thing:

Mat 7:6 “Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.”

And, 1Co. 14:38 “But if any man be ignorant, let him be ignorant.”


If you or anyone else wants to be a homosexual, it means nothing to me. But, remember this, no matter how much you try to justify it, a day of reckoning is coming! Gal. 6:7 “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.”

Posted by: Beretta9 at April 21, 2010 05:48 PM
Comment #299294

tom humes:

You are straying even further. You lay claim to quotes I did not make. I made the claim that there was much wrong in the city of Sodom and that sexual perversion was only a part of it. Does that help clarify my inability to get the message to you?

No, Tom, you specifically made the claim that the sin of Sodom was homosexuality. In your own words: “Homosexuality is sodomy. Take sodomy away and there is no homosexuality.” You also stated: “Sodomy is a sin and is wrong”, referring to homosexuality.

Then you bring shellfish into the picture. Go figure.

I bring shellfish into the picture because eating it is also described in the bible as an “abomination” in both Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 14:

9 These shall ye eat of all that are in the waters: whatsoever hath fins and scales in the waters, in the seas, and in the rivers, them shall ye eat. 10 And all that have not fins and scales in the seas, and in the rivers, of all that move in the waters, and of any living thing which is in the waters, they shall be an abomination unto you: 11 They shall be even an abomination unto you; ye shall not eat of their flesh, but ye shall have their carcases in abomination. 12 Whatsoever hath no fins nor scales in the waters, that shall be an abomination unto you.
9 These ye shall eat of all that are in the waters: all that have fins and scales shall ye eat: 10 And whatsoever hath not fins and scales ye may not eat; it is unclean unto you.

If, as you claim, an abomination is a “spiritual wrong”, then what is the spiritual wrong represented by eating shellfish? Indeed, Christ himself put it thusly: “not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man, but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man”.

Every possible sin was being committed in Sodom and also Gomorrah.

No, very specific sins were committed in Sodom and Gomorrah. You might not like that fact, but the Bible is very specific on what their failings were. I’ve already quoted the passages that speak about the sin of Sodom. In fact, Ezekiel specifically condemns Jerusalem as committing more and worse sins than Sodom ever did. That alone tells us that “every possible sin” could not have been committed by Sodom.

I encourage you to study the Bible more for more answers. Man does not possess the wisdom or knowledge to tell others about the meaning of the Bible in a complete way.

I’ve studied it a lot more closely than you think. It doesn’t say what you think it says about homosexuality.

Time to move on.

Very likely, yes, it is. David will probably be upset to see so much discussion of religion, rather than politics, here… though it’s hard not to get into it when some people consistently use religion to inform (or at least justify) their political views.

Posted by: Jarandhel at April 21, 2010 05:58 PM
Comment #299296

Beretta9:

Jarandhel:

It is interesting that you agree with most of what I say and yet try to turn the conclusion to accommodate your own beliefs.

I agreed with your definitions of the words. Unfortunately for you, the definitions do not lead to the conclusions you have reached. How can you even get from “male devoted to prostitution” to “homosexual”? You don’t see any difference between a gay man and a male prostitute?

All sexual perversion is a sin against God. Adultery is a sin because it having sex with another man’s wife, fornication is a sin because it is sin outside of marriage, and homosexuality is an abomination before God.

Again, even if all of that were true it neither supports the idea that homosexuality was the specific sin comitted by Sodom, nor the idea that calling modern homosexuals “sodomites” is anything other than a slur. Do you refer to members of other religions as heathens and infidels, as well?

Sex was meant to be within the confines of marriage, it was meant to be pleasurable, and it was meant for procreation. Homosexuality enjoys the pleasure with no chance of procreation. God did not tell Adam and Steve, “be fruitful and multiply”

Ah, the old Adam and Steve argument. It never gets old. By this logic, because sex can have one use (procreation), it should never be used for any other purpose. Also, despite explicitly denying homosexuals the right to marry, we’re told that sex is meant to be within the confines of marriage.

Tell me, did God also outlaw sex (or marriage) with barren women? That too is pleasure with no chance of procreation. What about sex (or marriage) with sterile men? No, didn’t think so. Think maybe sex (and marriage) are about a little more than just procreation?

You pull verses from all over the bible and yet you have no knowledge of what those verses mean.

So far, I’ve demonstrated that I do know what they mean. I’ve even pointed out the verses that explain earlier verses and confirm my understanding of them, not to mention the additional context provided by Jewish rabbinical writings which have debated the meaning of biblical verses for longer than Christianity has existed. They all point to one thing: the sin of Sodom was not homosexuality.

1Co 2:14 “But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.”

Ah, the whole argument that the bible cannot be approached by reason but only through the inspiration provided by the Holy Spirit? You assume that you are the one who has such inspiration, and I am the one that lacks it. But by their fruits ye shall know them. Hatred isn’t exactly a fruit of the spirit.

Discussing bible passages with someone who wants to justify sin can only lead to one thing:

Mat 7:6 “Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.”

And, 1Co. 14:38 “But if any man be ignorant, let him be ignorant.”

I think this one is more apt for you:

Luke 18:9-14 “9 And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: 10 Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican. 11 The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. 12 I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. 13 And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. 14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.”

If you or anyone else wants to be a homosexual, it means nothing to me. But, remember this, no matter how much you try to justify it, a day of reckoning is coming! Gal. 6:7 “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.”

Sorry to break it to you, but I’m not Christian and I’m really not afraid of any coming judgement day. I read and understand the bible, that doesn’t mean that I believe it. It’s even harder to believe in an interpretation of the bible such as the one you’ve made: an all-powerful God, capable of creating heaven and earth, omniscient and omnipresent, who’s ready to condemn flawed fallable human beings whose lives fly by in a flash compared to his existence, to ETERNAL torment because they stuck tab a in slot c instead of slot b? Really? Somehow, I think a deity might just have bigger concerns. Like how we actually treat one another.

Posted by: Jarandhel at April 21, 2010 06:28 PM
Comment #299298

Baretta9
I am taking the risk of having a lot of junk mail, but here is my email addr; Like to discuss some items that are not blog items.

kf7anq@gmail.com

If you would rather not contact me this way that is perfectly understandable.

God Bless

Posted by: tom humes at April 21, 2010 06:50 PM
Comment #299299

tom humes:

Just as a friendly word of caution, you may not wish to publish that particular email address where everyone can see it. It could easily lead back to personal information about yourself that you may not wish to share with the world. It’s your choice, of course, but I strongly recommend asking the moderators either of the column or the site to remove the comment it appears in.

Posted by: Jarandhel at April 21, 2010 07:04 PM
Comment #299306

Tom,

I have sent you an email. It might be best to get your address off WB.

Posted by: Beretta9 at April 21, 2010 09:35 PM
Comment #299353

Tom,

In the lower right hand corner of this page is the blog managers contact information. Please ask him to remove that entry with your personal info in it.

Posted by: Marysdude at April 22, 2010 02:54 PM
Comment #299355

Marysdude:

I’ve spoken to Tom privately, and according to what he’s told me he’s comfortable with that email address (and any personal info it may lead back to) being public. He said this after I provided him specific examples of the information it could lead to in his case, so he is aware of the risks.

Posted by: Jarandhel at April 22, 2010 03:28 PM
Comment #299362

Gotcha, thanks for trying.

Posted by: Marysdude at April 22, 2010 06:18 PM
Comment #299366

Jarandhel;

In Matthew chapter 24, Jesus’ disciples came to him and asked him about the events of the last days. He began a dissertation explaining the events that must take place. To get to the main point, we find Jesus using two examples of how the world will be when judgment comes upon the earth and Jesus returns. One is found in, Mat 24:37 “But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be”, and the other is found in, Luk 17:26 “And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man”, and Luk 17:28 “Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded;”. These same verses are found in both Gospels.

So what we find is, judgment is preceding the Lord’s return, because the world, at the time of Christ’s return, is like it was in the days of Noah (the Flood) and the days of Lot (Sodom and Gomorrah). Now the question is, what condition was the world in, in those days? The answer is sexual perversion. You agree that the definitions of the words I gave you are correct and yet you deny these words lead to homosexuality. You come off with some lame examples of words gaining their meanings in later centuries. What is the definition of the word “Sodomy” today? There have been and still are laws against sodomy in some states. What is the definition of the word “sodomite”? Isn’t a sodomite one who practices sodomy? When we read the word “Sodomy” in a book written in the year 2010, doesn’t it have the same meaning as when written in a book 2000 years ago, or 4000 years ago.

Secondly, we read that the last days will be like those in the days of Noah and the Flood. The days of the Flood were days of sexual perversion also. The proof of that is found in Gen 9:24 “And Noah awoke from his wine, and knew what his younger son had done unto him.” Noah’s younger son had gone in unto his father, who was drunk and naked in his tent. When Noah awoke from his drunkenness, it says, he knew what his younger son had done to him. The connotation of the verse implies something sexual was done. Noah’s son, Ham, may have escaped the flood that wiped all life off the earth, but he managed to bring with him some of the evil that existed before the flood. It was bad enough for Noah to pronounce a curse upon the descendants of Ham, until this day.

You play a game with benefits of sex with a married partner. Yes, it was for procreation, but God also meant for it to be enjoyed between a husband and wife. In fact, the Apostle Paul dealt with this very thing in I Corinthians, 1Co 7:2 “Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband.”
1Co 7:3 “Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband.”
1Co 7:4 “The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife.”
1Co 7:5 “Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.”

Paul said sex between husband and wife was good and a healthy relationship prevents fornication.

Concerning interpretation of Scripture: men who were inspired by the Holy Spirit wrote the Bible. It is a history book with spiritual meanings. It is only logical; that only those indwelt by the Holy Spirit can understand its meanings. So you are correct when you say, “Ah, the whole argument that the bible cannot be approached by reason but only through the inspiration provided by the Holy Spirit? You assume that you are the one who has such inspiration,” I don’t assume I have the indwelling Spirit; I know I do. As for you, I don’t know!

I don’t hate you or anyone else.

By your own words, you say you are not a Christian. You also say you have read and understand the Bible. This is an illogical statement: first, the Bible says one has to be indwelt by the Spirit to understand Spiritual things. Secondly, I assume you do not believe the Bible, so why would you quote it; unless you quote only for the purpose of trying to trap me? The discussion of the Bible is a moot point. So why would you try to justify homosexuality with the Bible?

Now, in conclusion, how does this apply to this post about hate crime? The left believes it is hate on the part of evangelicals who believe homosexuality to be a sin, based upon their belief in the Bible. Am I right?

Posted by: Beretta9 at April 22, 2010 08:14 PM
Comment #299370
The left believes it is hate on the part of evangelicals who believe homosexuality to be a sin, based upon their belief in the Bible. Am I right?

Wrong. It’s okay to believe homosexuality is a sin. It’s okay to say that. It’s okay to preach that and try to convince others that homosexuality is a sin.

I believe homosexuality is a sin; you can go on and on about Sodom & Gomorrah and try to figure out what their transgressions were, but it doesn’t matter. The Law was given to Moshe and the Law forbids intercourse between two men. End of story.

What’s not okay is hurting someone just because they are a homosexual. A “hate crime” doesn’t exist unless there is some other underlying crime such as murder or Assault/Battery.

I assume you do not believe the Bible, so why would you quote it
How do you know Jarandhel isn’t Jewish?

I believe Jarandhel’s point was that we cannot be sure of the original crime of the original Sodomites. All we know is that they tried to rape Lot’s male guests and refused Lot’s offer to rape Lot’s daughters instead of the guests. Rape, homosexuality and hostility to guests are all serious transgressions of God’s covenant with mankind. In the centuries that have elapsed since Sodom & Gomorrah mankind has decided that homosexuality was the sin of the original Sodomites and our language has evolved to fit that decision. Remember, that the language you and I use has been crafted by man and therefore is an imperfect tool to encode the Word of the Almighty. B’resheet was written in Hebrew and the word sedom originally had the meaning of “burnt”. This is probably a reference to the fire & brimstone used to destroy the city of sinners. Association of Sodom with homosexuality only became firmly established in the centuries after the Tanakh was first written.

Personally, I regard anyone who wallows in sin and does not repent to be a sodomite, regardless of what that sin is. Before God, all sin is equally disgusting and He hates it all, whether it’s homosexuality, disrespect for guests, rape, murder, theft, adultery, false testimony, jealousy, eating unacceptable foods, disrespecting the Sabbath or not honoring the rest of the Laws given to Moshe.

Posted by: Warped Reality at April 23, 2010 01:17 AM
Comment #299372

I, the atheist, looking from a distance, see that fundamentalist Christians are hypocritical on this issue. They say, “hate the sin, but love the sinner”, while defiling, beating and killing the sinner, and making every attempt to cause the sinner to be a second class American citizen. To me it makes them not Christian, in the true sense, and not patriotic in the practical sense. That must be why so many of them have adopted the Republican Party…;)

Posted by: Marysdude at April 23, 2010 07:22 AM
Comment #299375

Marysdude,

It’s the secrcet decoder ring you get when you become “indwelt”.

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at April 23, 2010 09:23 AM
Comment #299378

RM,

I want one of the decoder rings, but I don’t want to dig through the whole box to get to it…;), is there a short cut to indwelling?

Posted by: Marysdude at April 23, 2010 02:43 PM
Comment #299379

WR,

Do you know what the greatest sin committed in Sodom? It was committed by Lot when he offered up his daughters in substitution for his guests. It would have been heroic if he’d offered up himself. IMHO Lot’s sin was the abomination.

I am cognizant of history and the place in it that the Bible categorizes females, but what kind of human being would give up daughters to a life wherein no other male would wed or touch, and which might cause them to be stoned to death after the shame of being forced to copulate with neighbors, or put them in the position of becoming prostitutes? And, I’m sure he did it to please or placate his God. Then after that, his God looked upon him with favor…that speaks volumes of his God, don’t you think?

Posted by: Marysdude at April 23, 2010 02:56 PM
Comment #299385

Dude, in many of the middle eastern countries women are treated basicly like dirt even today which I agree is appalling. But did you also know that those same daughters got Lot drunk and had sex with him and had a child by their father, who’s decendents are now of Syria and Jordan.

Posted by: MAG at April 23, 2010 06:15 PM
Comment #299388

Actually the children became the fathers of the Ammonites and the Moabites. I wonder if it was the influence of their environment, which caused them to commit incest?

Posted by: Beretta9 at April 23, 2010 06:58 PM
Comment #299389

Baretta, Jordan today with some spill over to Syria. I’m not sure but I think incest was pretty common at that time.

Posted by: MAG at April 23, 2010 07:17 PM
Comment #299394

The Ammonites and the Moabites no longer exist. God removed them in Ezek. 25, along with the descendents of Esau (the Edomites). Whoever the Jordanians and Syrians are, they are not the descendents of Ammon and Moab.

Incest was common among the gentiles, but not Israel. Cousins did marry, but not siblings or parents. Although, as in all things, some disobeyed God, but that does not mean He condoned it.

Homosexuality was rampant among the Greeks and Romans, why are you on the left in such denial that Sodom and Gomorrah were dens of perverse sexual behavior and homosexuality? Is it because God judged and destroyed these cities as a result of their sin? The left is guilty of revisionist history and rewriting the history books does it. But you can’t rewrite the Bible, and no matter how much you want to change it’s meaning, you can’t.

Is there one among you with enough honor and intelligence to say, “yes, homosexuality was the sin of Sodom, but I’m having a problem with God destroying these cities because of this sin”? Come on, you can do it, quit playing games and be truthful for once.

Posted by: Beretta9 at April 23, 2010 09:14 PM
Comment #299399
but not Israel. Cousins did marry, but not siblings or parents.
If you believe what he says, Avraham & Sara were siblings, however they predate Israel by two generations. In any case, humans were not told incest was wrong until Moshe received the Law.

I don’t have a problem with God destroying the cities because of their sins. The Sodomites committed multiple sins when they attempted to gang rape Lot’s visitors. They breached the hospitality extended to a guest, they committed a homosexual act, they attempted to have sex forcefully. Also, the Scriptures are pretty clear that the Sodomites were sinful in general (ie there are many other sins they committed that are not specifically depicted in B’resheet, however the Talmud tells of many other sins commited in Sodom). I think it has been demonstrated that the use of the Latin word Sodomia as a synonym for homosexual and not as a synonym for a sinner in general only became popular in the last 1500 years. Personally, I’d rather use the term sodomite to refer to someone who sins recklessly without regard to what that sin is. I would regard a kleptomaniac to be a sodomite; I would regard a person engaged in heterosexual promiscuity or heterosexual adultery to be a sodomite; I would regard a person with pseudologia fantastica to be a sodomite.

Posted by: Warped Reality at April 23, 2010 10:29 PM
Comment #299400

I’m still trying to figure out why Christians are so hung up on homosexuality. Honor? Wow! What a strong term. I don’t believe all the stories of the Bible to be true depictions of life, or stories about real people. I believe the book was written over the course of centuries by several old Jews and a Gentile or two, all of whom fed upon the same fears, and encouraged others to feed upon those fears as well. Sodom may have existed as a small town in the desert, and may have been used by some myth maker to sell a point he was trying to make. All kinds of crap ended up in a book that is not even close to historical, and a billion people believe in it or want to believe in it or pretend to believe in it. That is just about the same number of people who believe in the Koran and about the same number who believe in Shiva and Buddha. People, for some unknown reason need a religion…well you believe in one of several available on the fantasy market…good luck with that. Was THAT honorable enough?

Posted by: Marysdude at April 23, 2010 10:48 PM
Comment #299401

WR:

God was in the process of destroying Sodom and Gomorrah before the two strangers ever entered the city. Abraham had made a deal with God: if there were ten righteous people, He would spare the cities. But there weren’t. The strangers entered the city and sought out Lot for the purpose of sparing him and those that would leave with him. So the idea that God destroyed the city because of the two strangers is incorrect.

MD:

“I’m still trying to figure out why Christians are so hung up on homosexuality.”

Perhaps it is because we consider it an abomination before God.

“Sodom may have existed as a small town in the desert, and may have been used by some myth maker to sell a point he was trying to make.”

Sodom and Gomorrah were large cities and they existed where the Dead Sea is today. How big is the Dead Sea?

“All kinds of crap ended up in a book that is not even close to historical,”

Then why do archeologists use it today for research purposes, when searching sites in the Middle-East?

Posted by: Beretta9 at April 23, 2010 11:05 PM
Comment #299411

Those archaeologists miss as much as they hit. No nation at that time was as large as a normal city, most were sheikdoms or towns in todays world, so ‘city’ is a loose term to begin with, and one of the reasons for denying the Bible as historical.

This is the wrong place for this argument, as it is a political site. We can take this subject up in our next seminary class, Bible 101.

Posted by: Marysdude at April 24, 2010 05:53 AM
Comment #299424

You guys are the ones that won’t let the issue die.

“Those archaeologists miss as much as they hit.”

I will merely quote the last paragraph of this link, you can read the rest for yourself, if so inclied to learn:

“There has never been a shortage of of people who are hasty to speak against the Bible. But the growth of the sciences have always tended to support the Bible instead of refuting, contrary to what was desired by many of these men. The same is the situation in archaeology. Critics of the last century thought that here is ultimately the science that will completely refute and destroy the Bible. Unfortunate to them, archaeology has turned out to be the greatest friend of the Bible and Bible believing people.”

http://biblicalarcheology.net/?p=319

Concerning the size of cities: Babylon was 5 to 6 square miles in size, and Nineveh was 3 to 4 square miles. These may be small by todays standards, but hey were large cities.

Posted by: Beretta9 at April 24, 2010 11:31 AM
Comment #299433

Jeeminy Crickets, please let it rest. Us guys rarely bring up the subject of religion, and we never quote from the Bible until or unless we are faced with an argument that contains only religion or the Bible to back it up. This has got to be the one sillyest bunch of entries ever in a political blog site.

C&J I apologize, and am embarrassed, for those of us who can’t seem to get back on track here.

Posted by: Marysdude at April 24, 2010 01:22 PM
Comment #299448

Marysdude

It is an open forum. We often get off track after the first dozen posts, but it is interesting to see the riff.

Posted by: C&J at April 24, 2010 07:32 PM
Comment #299451

Yes, there is a riff. What the left fails to understand is that many conservatives are also evangelical Christians. And just as Obama said, we cling to our guns and religion. It was a stupid blanket statement, but it does show the importance religion plays in our everyday lives. As an evangelical, I can say, our religious beliefs are not something we do; they are a part of our lifestyle. Our faith and our belief in God’s Word affect every aspect of our lives. The decisions we make; from career, to buying property, and even our votes is an intrical part of makeup. I know it is impossible for the left to understand these things.

Our views on abortion or on sexual promiscuity are based upon our religious beliefs. To ask us to accept homosexuality as an alternate lifestyle is impossible, because we consider it to be sin. We do not condemn others for practicing it; that decision is between them and God. But we find it disturbing that those on the left would try to use the Bible, of which they don’t believe, to trap us into believing a lie. And to get back to the thread of the post, the left accuses us of “Hate Crimes” simply because of our religious convictions.

Posted by: Beretta9 at April 24, 2010 09:13 PM
Comment #299457

I am going to throw in another nickels worth and I want my change. Christianity serves a living GOD. No other practice does. I am not embarassed to serve my living GOD who has his words in writing by his appointed servants. I do not pick and choose what is right in the Bible. Because that would make a lie out of everything in the Bible if only sertain parts were true. Either it is truth or a lie and I believe it is truth. After all truth is what man seeks in this world. As far as abortion and homosexuality are concerned they are no greater sin than any other. The magnitude they play on society is larger because they directly affect and effect family relationships.

Posted by: tom humes at April 24, 2010 11:43 PM
Comment #299464

The God of Abraham, the one God, the only God. Yahweh, Jehovah, Allah. Jews believe in a living God, who will someday send a Messiah who will lead them to paradise. Christians believe in the same living God, who has already sent a Messiah, who will one day return to lead them to paradise. Muslims believe in the same living God as the other two, who sent Muhammad to lead them to paradise. The differences between those three religions is not so separate from the differences between Catholicism, Pentecostalism and/or Mormonism. So, when you say you believe in a living God…you are not alone. But, that is not enough for you. You don’t believe there is room in this world for anyone who does not believe in the same God you do, in the same way you do.

Thankfully we live in the United States of America, and not in the Disunited States of Christianity. There is actually room here for all of us, even the homosexuals, the blacks and the atheists, or perhaps even the black homosexual atheist? Civil rights in this nation, gives you the right to worship as you please, just as it gives me the right not to, and should give that homosexual the same rights to live among us as we have to live along side him. Why America else?

Posted by: Marysdude at April 25, 2010 12:39 AM
Comment #299467

So we all can assume that you two are fluent in both Ancient Hebrew and Greek….

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at April 25, 2010 01:11 AM
Comment #299488

Allah and the God of Christianity are not the same.

Posted by: tom humes at April 25, 2010 12:14 PM
Comment #299498

Who was Ishmael? Who was Isaac? Who was Abraham?

The monogod, the living God, the God of Abraham, ie, Jehova to Christians, Jahweh to Jews, and Allah to Islamics. He may be studied in different ways and he may have over the centuries become quite different to each sect, but the SAME he is, and the same he will always be…until the last person who requires him dies, or sees reality (quits living in the fantasy land of faith in a higher being).

Posted by: Marysdude at April 25, 2010 01:44 PM
Comment #299499

PS:

Oops! I forgot…who was Jacob? Now the plate is full…

Posted by: Marysdude at April 25, 2010 01:48 PM
Comment #299505

MD:

Exactly what do you want from Bible believing Christians? How many times do others or I have to say, “We do not condemn homosexuals”? It is between them and God. What bothers you the most, is that we believe their lifestyle is a sin. So what? Who cares what we believe? Just because we believe their lifestyle is sinful, we are not condemning them.

For someone who claims to be an atheist, you seem to be overly concerned about our beliefs.

Again, you want to brand us with “Hate Crimes”, simply because of our religious convictions. What happened to separation of church and state? You as a liberal democrat are condemning us because of our religious beliefs, and the scary thing is, democrats would pass legislation, if they could, to condemn us. You will never change our convictions, so why do you try so hard. If the left cannot change us, then they call us names and persecute us.

Posted by: Beretta9 at April 25, 2010 04:55 PM
Comment #299517
you want to brand us with “Hate Crimes”, simply because of our religious convictions.

Untrue. There is no one trying to brand anyone with a “Hate Crime” charge simply because of one’s religious beliefs. I agree with you that homosexuality is a sin, but I don’t have any reason to believe that I am threatened because of my belief.

Only someone who carries out violence against homosexuals needs to fear Hate Crime Prosecution.

Posted by: Warped Reality at April 25, 2010 10:06 PM
Comment #299523

B9,

Come off it…it is not your belief as a Christian, nor your hatred of homosexuals I have problems with. It is your penchant for doing everything possible to keep homosexuals from exercising their civil liberties. Knuckle draggers have held sway over black people, women, and homosexuals for over two centuries. In present days progressives have been able to expand the rights of blacks and women until they are treated as almost American citizens, but you are firmly holding out against gay people. In America, that should be considered intolerable and unconscionable.

Posted by: Marysdude at April 26, 2010 01:18 AM
Comment #299542

The redundant statement they some of us hate homosexuals is getting weary. Your argument has run so thin that you have to repeat yourself over and over because there is no argument for you. There also is no hate. There is no hate. There is no hate. There, I have covered the next three posts.

Posted by: tom humes at April 26, 2010 11:15 AM
Comment #299556

MD said:

“Knuckle draggers have held sway over black people, women, and homosexuals for over two centuries. In present days progressives have been able to expand the rights of blacks and women until they are treated as almost American citizens,”

I’m not sure who the “Knuckle draggers” are; but it was a Republican President Lincoln who went to war to free the slaves; it was a Republican Congress who passed civil rights.

It is so disgusting that democrats spread this revisionist history. I will give you, MD, a web site to read, if you have the courage to read the truth, and then restate whom the “Knuckle Draggers” are:

http://stoprepublicans.blogspot.com/2006/05/history-of-republican-evil.html

Add to that the state of slavery; the democrats have placed minorities in by the use of welfare. Democrats are no friends of blacks. History has proven the democrats to be the racists and they still are.

Posted by: Beretta9 at April 26, 2010 01:34 PM
Comment #299557

MD:

You might also want to revise your false statements about the womens sufferage movement. Your statements prove you have no concept of American history. And you call who, “knuckle draggers”?

Posted by: Beretta9 at April 26, 2010 01:41 PM
Comment #299558

If you think the Republican party resembles the Party of Lincoln, it is YOU who needs a lesson in history.

Who just this year signed the Equal Pay For Equal Work bill?

Posted by: Marysdude at April 26, 2010 01:52 PM
Comment #299561

MD:

Eleven minutes is not enough time to read the history lesson I sent you. If your not going to read real history, and your going to continue to spout revisionist history, we are both wasting our time.

Posted by: Beretta9 at April 26, 2010 02:00 PM
Comment #299572

You have certainly wasted mine, and at seventy, I may not have that much time left to waste.

Posted by: Marysdude at April 26, 2010 04:06 PM
Comment #299576

Marysdude
I am 69. I have eternity in paradise looking at me in the face. What a glorious time that will be. No tears. No sin. No fear. Maranatha.

Posted by: tom humes at April 26, 2010 04:57 PM
Comment #299577

MD:

Sorry to hear you are 70. God only promised a man 70 years:

Psa 90:10 “The days of our years are threescore years and ten; and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away.”

You’ve reached the end of the line:)

Posted by: Beretta9 at April 26, 2010 05:08 PM
Comment #299606

Touche’

Posted by: Marysdude at April 27, 2010 11:00 AM
Comment #299784

All those who are serious in your quest for purity in sexual relationships, I looked into the word abomonation, and found severl uses of it in the KJV. I’m now wondering why the concentration of bile toward the one sin at almost the exclusion of all the others. Do you react as strongly to those who touch pork or shellfishor cavort with eagles?

Shiqquwts Shiqquwts is used in the following ways:

1.In Daniel’s prophecies in Daniel 11:31 (cf. 12:11), it is generally interpreted as referring to the fearful calamities that were to fall on the Jews in the time of Antiochus IV Epiphanes, saying “And they shall place the abomination that maketh desolate.” Jerome, and most of the Christian fathers, suppose that the reference is to Antiochus as the type of Antichrist, and that the description passes from the type to the antitype.[1] Idolatry is presented as the chief sin in the Bible, and shiqquwts is often used to describe such.
2.In his campaign of Hellenization, Antiochus caused an altar to be erected on the altar for burnt-offerings of the Second Temple, on which sacrifices were offered to Zeus Olympios. (Comp. 1 Maccabees 1:54). Following the wording of Daniel 9:27, this may have been the abomination of desolation of Jerusalem.
3.sinful sacrifices (Isaiah 66:3)
4.idolatry (Deuteronomy 29:17, Ezekiel 20:7,8, 1Kings 11:5-7)
5.witchcraft (2 Kings 23:24)
6.sexual sins (Jeremiah 13:27)
The word sheqets is used with eating:

1.seafood that lacks fins and scales (Leviticus 11:10-12)
2.all insects (Leviticus 11:23, Leviticus 11:41)
3.eagles, ossifrage, and the ospray (Leviticus 11:13
other biblically unclean animals or touching certain things,(Leviticus 7:21)

Shâqats is rendered in the KJV as follows:

1.abominable (Leviticus 11:43, Leviticus 20:25)
2.abomination (Leviticus 11:11, Leviticus 11:13)
3.abhorred (Psalms 22:24)
4.detest (Deuteronomy 7:26)
[edit] Tōʻēḇā
Tōʻēḇā is used in the following ways:

1.Every shepherd was “an abomination” unto the Egyptians (Genesis 46:34). This aversion to shepherds, such as the Hebrews, arose probably from the fact that Upper and Lower Egypt had formerly been held in oppressive subjection by the Hyksos (a tribe of nomad shepherds), who had only recently been expelled, and partly also perhaps from this other fact that the people of Egypt detested the nomadic habits of these wandering shepherds.
2.Pharaoh was so moved by the fourth plague, that while he refused the demand of Moses, he offered a compromise, granting to the Israelites permission to hold their festival and offer their sacrifices in Egypt. This permission could not be accepted, because Moses said they would have to sacrifice “the abomination of the Egyptians” (Exodus 8:26); i.e., the cow or ox, which all the Egyptians held as sacred and so regarded as sacrilegious to kill.
3.Proverbs 6:16-18 lists six things which are also abominations: “haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are swift in running to mischief.”
Tōʻēḇā is also used in Jewish (and Christian Old Testament) scriptures to refer to:

1.idolatry or idols (Deuteronomy 7:25, Deuteronomy 13:14, Isaiah 44:19)
2.illicit sex (Ezekiel 16:22,58, Ezekiel 22:11, Ezekiel 33:26)
3.illicit marriage (Deuteronomy 24:2-4)
4.male homosexual and (collectively) heterosexual immorality (Leviticus 18:22, Leviticus 18:27-30, Leviticus 20:13)
5.temple prostitution (1Kings 14:24)
6.offerings from the above (Deuteronomy 23:18)
7.child sacrifice (Jeremiah 32:35)
8.cross-dressing (Deuteronomy 22:5)
9.cheating in the market by using rigged weights (Deuteronomy 25:13-19, Proverbs 11:1)
10.dishonesty (Proverbs 12:22)
11.dietary violations (Deuteronomy 14:3)
12.stealing, murder, and adultery, breaking covenants (Jeremiah 7:9,10)
13.violent robbery, murder, oppressing the poor and needy, etc. (Ezekiel 18:10-13)

Posted by: Marysdude at April 29, 2010 06:53 AM
Comment #299836

MD,

Those are all sins and equally detested by God. I stated earlier that homosexuality is a sin and it is. So is eating “unclean” food. This is why all have fallen short of God’s standard, because we all have violated one of these numerous commandments at one point or another; it is only by God’s grace that we may enjoy everlasting life.

Posted by: Warped Reality at April 29, 2010 11:14 PM
Comment #300100

WR,

I don’t know that you have ever tried to impose your will or you beliefs on the rest of us. I know you believe homosexuality to be a sin, but do you also believe they should be deprived of their American citizen civil rights? I don’t think so. My pointed references were aimed at the holier than thou crowd…the ones who are so strong into their Bible that they forget they are also Americans.

Posted by: Marysdude at May 4, 2010 07:16 PM
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