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K8

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Looking at the issue from a legal standpoint, outlawing gay marriage makes no sense. To allow homosexual relationships, and yet refuse to allow a marriage to take place within such relationships makes no sense from a legal standpoint.

The slippery-slope argument that legalising gay marriage will lead to marriage being allowed between adults and children, people and animals and/or more than two people fails in all aspects. The first two relationships are outlawed, so marriage would never be allowed in such situations, and polygamous or polyandrous relationships would never be made legal as they defeat the whole purpose of marriage.

If the law agrees with homosexual relationships, it has no legal justification for disallowing gay marriage. To support two consenting adults in their relationship with each other and yet state they have no legal right to marry is disrespectul, hypocritical and legally unjustifiable.

The only argument against gay marriage is religiously-based, so by criminalising gay marriage, the law is failing in its responsibility to keep church and state independent of each other, and hence failing the citizens whom it governs.
 


Posts: 292 | Posted: 8:12 PM on March 2, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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From a legal standpoint co-habitation is already outlawed (in some states).  Not enforced.  Just outlawed.  I'm unsure just how "homosexual relationships" are "allowed".  Last I knew sodomy was against the law (again, don't think anyone is actually enforcing this in the states that it exists).  To be fair, I don't see how anyone can make a legal argument for or against gay marriage.  To the average American it is a moral issue, not a legal one.  And most people don't think allowing gay-marriage is going to bring about pedophile-marriage or bestial-marriage.  I think you're confusing the issue with the fact that the current idea that "homosexuality is how I was born and not my choice" leads to an acceptance of other sexual urges that would then have to be lumped in with the "born, not my choice" argument.  No one believes that marriages are going to be allowed for these people.  It just makes rather hard to actually police these behaviors if, from a legal standpoint, it is "just how they were born".  Homosexuality is a half-way house (not for the individual, but for the argument) on the way to these other behaviors.  


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 8:48 PM on March 2, 2006 | IP
K8

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Quote from EMyers at 8:48 PM on March 2, 2006 :
Homosexuality is a half-way house (not for the individual, but for the argument) on the way to these other behaviors.  


Please explain to me just how it is a half-way house to sexual acts that violate and harm people and animals (besides the argument that since it's considerd sexually immoral in the Bible that it will lead to other sexually immoral acts).
 


Posts: 292 | Posted: 10:49 PM on March 2, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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Perhaps I didn't explain that as well as I could.  I was attempting (by my comment that it did not pertain to the individual {homosexual} but to the argument {sexual orientation is not a choice}) to show that there is growing concern that if you find (legally) that sexual orientation is a choice, then any consequences of a sexual orientation (referring to bestiality, etc) will be hard to enforce.  If the parenthetical comment was unclear, I apologize.


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 11:17 PM on March 2, 2006 | IP
K8

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It should be an issue looked at from a legal standpoint - those who believe homosexuality is immoral have absolutely no right to tell those in homosexual relationships that they cannot marry. It will not hurt anyone, it will not affect anyone and it doesn't involve anyone other than those wishing to get married.

Government and legislators have the opportunity and responsibility of looking at a controversial issue such as this with objectivity. Even if the majority of society does not wish gay marriage to become legal, the legislative body must see past this subjectivity and evaluate the situation according to the facts and protect a minority's rights also.

It does not matter of sodomy is outlawed in some states - sodomy is not another word for homosexuality, it as an act that both heterosexual and homosexual couples can participate in.

And furthermore, homosexuality is certainly not a half-way house to things such as pedophilia, necrophilia, bestiality and the like - the latter all involve natural sexual urges that have accompanying actions which are outlawed because they harm and violate other people/things. Homosexuality, on the other hand, is a natural sexual urge that has accompanying actions that do not harm or violate other people/things. That's why sodomy is not outlawed everywhere and not enforced where it is (because you can't enforce it, and heterosexual couples participate in it also).  

The opinions of the majority must not be allowed to dictate the fate of a minority in regards to private matters such as marriage and relationships that are completely within the law.
 


Posts: 292 | Posted: 02:33 AM on March 4, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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Actually, I believe that sodomy is only outlawed against non-married couples (and since co-habitation is already outlawed, it seems redundant).

Although I can't say that I agree with you on letting the minority decide the rules for the majority.

And again, I did NOT say that homosexuality is (for an individual) a half-way house to those other behaviors.  (I've said this twice now, I'm not sure how simply I have to put it to be understood).  I said the argument that it is NOT a CHOICE is a half-way house argument for those other behaviors.

Hebrews 13:4


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 10:04 AM on March 4, 2006 | IP
thelmoose

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Quote from EMyers at 10:04 AM on March 4, 2006 :
Although I can't say that I agree with you on letting the minority decide the rules for the majority.



"Like other tyrannies, the tyranny of the majority was at first, and is still vulgarly, held in dread, chiefly as operating through the acts of the public authorities. But reflecting persons perceived that when society is itself the tyrant — society collectively over the separate individuals who compose it — its means of tyrannizing are not restricted to the acts which it may do by the hands of its political functionaries. Society can and does execute its own mandates; and if it issues wrong mandates instead of right, or any mandates at all in things with which it ought not to meddle, it practices a social tyranny more formidable than many kinds of political oppression, since, though not usually upheld by such extreme penalties, it leaves fewer means of escape, penetrating much more deeply into the details of life, and enslaving the soul itself. Protection, therefore, against the tyranny of the magistrate is not enough; there needs protection also against the tyranny of the prevailing opinion and feeling, against the tendency of society to impose, by other means than civil penalties, its own ideas and practices as rules of conduct on those who dissent from them; to fetter the development and, if possible, prevent the formation of any individuality not in harmony with its ways, and compel all characters to fashion themselves upon the model of its own. There is a limit to the legitimate interference of collective opinion with individual independence; and to find that limit, and maintain it against encroachment, is as indispensable to a good condition of human affairs as protection against political despotism."

— On Liberty, John Stuart Mill

 


Posts: 40 | Posted: 8:37 PM on March 4, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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The difficulty is not avoided by having recourse to the popular theory of a natural faculty, a sense or instinct, informing us of right and wrong. For- besides that the existence of such- a moral instinct is itself one of the matters in dispute- those believers in it who have any pretensions to philosophy, have been obliged to abandon the idea that it discerns what is right or wrong in the particular case in hand, as our other senses discern the sight or sound actually present. Our moral faculty, according to all those of its interpreters who are entitled to the name of thinkers, supplies us only with the general principles of moral judgments; it is a branch of our reason, not of our sensitive faculty; and must be looked to for the abstract doctrines of morality, not for perception of it in the concrete. The intuitive, no less than what may be termed the inductive, school of ethics, insists on the necessity of general laws. They both agree that the morality of an individual action is not a question of direct perception, but of the application of a law to an individual case. They recognise also, to a great extent, the same moral laws; but differ as to their evidence, and the source from which they derive their authority. According to the one opinion, the principles of morals are evident a priori, requiring nothing to command assent, except that the meaning of the terms be understood. According to the other doctrine, right and wrong, as well as truth and falsehood, are questions of observation and experience. But both hold equally that morality must be deduced from principles; and the intuitive school affirm as strongly as the inductive, that there is a science of morals. Yet they seldom attempt to make out a list of the a priori principles which are to serve as the premises of the science; still more rarely do they make any effort to reduce those various principles to one first principle, or common ground of obligation. They either assume the ordinary precepts of morals as of a priori authority, or they lay down as the common groundwork of those maxims, some generality much less obviously authoritative than the maxims themselves, and which has never succeeded in gaining popular acceptance. Yet to support their pretensions there ought either to be some one fundamental principle or law, at the root of all morality, or if there be several, there should be a determinate order of precedence among them; and the one principle, or the rule for deciding between the various principles when they conflict, ought to be self-evident.


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 10:05 AM on March 5, 2006 | IP
thelmoose

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I am not clear on what this had to do with the issue of my concern for “tyranny of the majority”, which is a concept that is at work when tight-assed moralizers pass laws that prevent me from being a complete citizen, like the first post, “Non-Sensical Illegality” of gay marriage as well as K8's last sentence, "The opinions of the majority must not be allowed to dictate the fate of a minority in regards to private matters such as marriage and relationships that are completely within the law."

Just because someone questions the status quo, that does not mean they have abandoned all morality. You imply that if we don’t think exactly like you, we have no concept of right and wrong.

Your unattributed quote states (and I assume it is a quotation, because that’s awful fancy talk for a red-stater) says, “Yet to support their pretensions there ought either to be some one fundamental principle or law, at the root of all morality…” Even if you ascribe to that (and I am NOT saying I don’t), I don’t think that yours and anyone’s interpretation of some ancient, and in my opinion, anachronistic book is necessarily the basis for that one fundamental principle. I wouldn’t think YOU would be a fan of Mill’s Utilitarianism. It is sooo “relative”.


(Edited by thelmoose 3/5/2006 at 3:00 PM).
 


Posts: 40 | Posted: 1:12 PM on March 5, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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1)  Sorry for not attributing the quote.  Figured you'd be familiar with Mill's Utilitarianism.

2)  I'm an independent.

3)  You go out of your way to mention that you do NOT not ascribe to Mill's quotation.  If you do ascribe to it, what fundamental principle do you ascribe to?


"What is the meaning of human life, or of organic life altogether? To answer this question at all implies a religion. Is there any sense then, you ask, in putting it? I answer, the man who regards his own life and that of his fellow creatures as meaningless is not merely unfortunate but almost disqualified for life."
---Albert Einstein


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 6:10 PM on March 5, 2006 | IP
thelmoose

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This will be my last post to reply to any of EMyers' comments. You absolutely refuse to maintain any intellectual honesty – you change the subject, focus on irrelevant details, twist words, refuse to answer any questions put to you and, except for your brand of religion, you don’t seem to know what you are talking about.

1.I don’t know why you would assume I would be familiar with “Mill’s utilitarianism.” I have no idea why you even brought the topic up. My Mill quote was on another topic altogether, which related to a previous post. I was speaking to some problems that occur with majority rule (see also de Tocqueville). In is not always in the interest of liberty for a majority to dictate morality as it can result in terrible consequences, such as slavery, no suffrage for women, and the lack of equal civil rights for gays.
2.Do you even know what utilitarianism is? Everything you have posted to date is directly contrary to this. Your posts absolutely contradict “the most good for the most people.”
3.I did not “go out of your way to mention that you do NOT not ascribe to Mill's quotation.” I merely meant that I was not giving an opinion either way. Again you changed the subject to ask me what fundamental principle [at the root of all morality] I ascribe to. I would really have a difficult time answering such a profound question with a simple answer. How about, “It’s nicer to be nice.”?
4.I have no idea what the hell the Einstein quote is related to. By the way, even though the quote mentions religion, he was by no means religious in any traditional sense. He was an atheist regarding any biblical god, but he is regarded as a Deist, and he was spiritual about nature.
5.When I called you a red-stater I wasn't implying a political affiliation. I was merely implying you are a knuckle-dragging, bible-thumping rube.



 


Posts: 40 | Posted: 2:46 PM on March 6, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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How can I be a knuckle dragger and a bible thumper?  Bible thumpers don't believe in knuckle draggers.


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 3:16 PM on March 6, 2006 | IP
K8

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Quote from EMyers at 10:04 AM on March 4, 2006 :

Although I can't say that I agree with you on letting the minority decide the rules for the majority.



The rules that would be decided would not be for the majority anyway, but for the minority. It would not be a case of the minority deciding the rules for the majority at all, as it would not affect the majority.


 


Posts: 292 | Posted: 02:07 AM on March 7, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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So you're saying that there should be a class of laws that only apply to minorities?  I always thought laws should be all-inclusive (and hence, more fair).  If you're trying to say that this law would only affect gay people, since only gay people are gay.... that's like saying laws against murder only affect murderers, since only murderers murder.  Sounds like you are following Christ's logic that the law is only for the unrighteous (since the righteous would already be doing what is right).  Do you really think the unrighteous need another law aimed at them?


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 08:19 AM on March 7, 2006 | IP
K8

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The laws against murder are indeed only used against murderers.

And legalising gay marriage would indeed only affect gay people wishing to marry.

I'm not saying there should be a class of laws that only apply to minorities - they aren't their own little society. It's just that not all laws apply to everyone and minorities often need special protection under the law due to the majority trying to deny them their rights (for example...).
 


Posts: 292 | Posted: 12:54 AM on March 8, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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for example....?  


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 09:37 AM on March 8, 2006 | IP
K8

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Gay marriage.
 


Posts: 292 | Posted: 7:14 PM on March 8, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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Right (adj)  Conforming with or conformable to justice, law, or morality

What "rights", precisely, are being denied by not changing the definition of a word (marriage) that has meant the same thing for thousands of years?  What legal ability (power of attorney, right of survivorship, beneficiary, etc) is currently being denied any couple (of any age, sex, race, etc)?  I can apply for most any legal standing with anyone I choose, whether I'm married to them or not.  Anything else is a privilege, not a right.  Worst thing this country ever did is make a Bill of Rights.  It's a Bill of Privileges that would cease to exist in almost any other country in the world.  It will cease to exist when this country falls (and almost every empire, nation, whathaveyou falls eventually).

"I sought for the greatness and genius of America in her commodious harbors and her ample rivers, and it was not there; in her fertile fields and boundless prairies, and it was not there; in her rich mines and her vast world commerce, and it was not there. Not until I went to the churches of America and heard her pulpits aflame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power." - Alexis deTocqueville


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 01:35 AM on March 9, 2006 | IP
K8

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I believe people in a relationship that is of a consenual, two-party, human-adult variety that hurts and violates no one have the right to have their relationship recognised by the law.

Marriage thousands of years ago (lets say, oh, around Biblical times) was not the same as it is now. What was considered marriage back then is now known as 'polygamy' or 'bigamy'.

Gay marriage is the Government's prime opportunity to finally show that there is indeed a separation between church and state. Obviously, they haven't yet found a sharp enough blade to cut that particular tie.
 


Posts: 292 | Posted: 12:46 AM on March 11, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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1) Polygamy was against the law (God's) in biblical times as well.  Before anyone points out David, et al, please note that he also committed adultery and murder.  All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.  Just because it can be found in the O.T. doesn't mean that the person who was doing it was doing something right.  For the TWO shall become ONE flesh.  No room for three or more in this equation.  The biblical definition of marriage does NOT include polygamy.

2) Separation of church and state (as mentioned in the letter by Thomas Jefferson) referred to keeping the state out of church affairs and not necessarily the other way around.  Let us not forget that during his entire reign as President, Thomas Jefferson not only attended church every Sunday, he attended the largest church in the area which met where?... in the House of Representatives.  Which kind of kills that whole no religion on public grounds thingy doesn't it?!


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 09:42 AM on March 11, 2006 | IP
thelmoose

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Quote from EMyers at 09:42 AM on March 11, 2006 :
Separation of church and state (as mentioned in the letter by Thomas Jefferson) referred to keeping the state out of church affairs and not necessarily the other way around.  

That is completely incorrect. Jefferson was absolutely equally concerned with religion meddling in government as the other way around.
EMyers at Sat March 11, 2006 - 09:42 AM Let us not forget that during his entire reign as President, Thomas Jefferson not only attended church every Sunday, he attended the largest church in the area which met where?... in the House of Representatives.  
Jefferson postured as though he was religious as most presidents have since, to appease the masses and get votes. He was most definitely not a religious man. He clearly called himself a Deist as did many of the founders in that Age of Enlightenment.  

I don't understand why you would have thoughts along these lines when
EMyers at Thu March 9, 2006 - 01:35 AM Worst thing this country ever did is make a Bill of Rights.
 you seem to have a problem with the First Amendment. This statement in itself is appalling.


"I never submitted the whole system of my opinions to the creed of any party of men whatever in religion, in philosophy, in politics, or in anything else where I was capable of thinking for myself. Such an addiction is the last degradation of a free and moral agent."

-Thomas Jefferson, letter to Francis Hopkinson, March 13, 1789





(Edited by thelmoose 3/11/2006 at 1:13 PM).
 


Posts: 40 | Posted: 12:49 PM on March 11, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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I don't understand why you would have thoughts along these lines when EMyers at Thu March 9, 2006 - 01:35 AM Worst thing this country ever did is make a Bill of Rights.
 you seem to have a problem with the First Amendment. This statement in itself is appalling.


I notice that you leave out the very next sentence....

It's a Bill of Privileges that would cease to exist in almost any other country in the world.

Anybody with half a mind can tell that my issue is with calling them Rights and not with their induction.  They are Privileges and as such can be revoked.  For instance, I have the Privilege to bear arms, but it can be removed from me if I become a convicted felon.  It is not a Right.  It is a privilege.

Jefferson postured as though he was religious as most presidents have since, to appease the masses and get votes. He was most definitely not a religious man.

So you are saying that Jefferson was deceitful?  How then can we trust anything he says?  How can we accept his position (according to you) on separation of church and state and then ignore his other words and actions (after all, don't actions speak louder than words?).

"Among the most inestimable of our blessings, also, is that... of liberty to worship our Creator in the way we think most agreeable to His will; a liberty deemed in other countries incompatible with good government and yet proved by our experience to be its best support." --Thomas Jefferson: Reply to John Thomas et al., 1807. ME 16:291

"In our early struggles for liberty, religious freedom could not fail to become a primary object." --Thomas Jefferson to Baltimore Baptists, 1808. ME 16:317

"The constitutional freedom of religion [is] the most inalienable and sacred of all human rights." --Thomas Jefferson: Virginia Board of Visitors Minutes, 1819. ME 19:416

"Religion, as well as reason, confirms the soundness of those principles on which our government has been founded and its rights asserted." --Thomas Jefferson to P. H. Wendover, 1815. ME 14:283

Lastly, Thomas Jefferson himself, when he was serving as the superintendent of schools for Washington, D.C., had only two books on his required reading list. A collection of hymns by Isaac Watts and the Bible.  Yes, required reading list for public schools.


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 2:19 PM on March 11, 2006 | IP
thelmoose

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Quote from EMyers at 2:19 PM on March 11, 2006 :
So you are saying that Jefferson was deceitful?  How then can we trust anything he says?  

That's a rather naive position. He was a politician, of course. I suppose you actually believe that George Bush is a Christian. He got borned again as a clever ploy to denounce his years of party boy behavior in a way that gullible christians would buy.

Although Jefferson believed in a Creator, his concept of it resembled that of the god of deism (the term "Nature's God" used by deists of the time). With his scientific bent, Jefferson sought to organize his thoughts on religion. He rejected the superstitions and mysticism of Christianity and even went so far as to edit the gospels, removing the miracles and mysticism of Jesus leaving only what he deemed the correct moral philosophy of Jesus. (There is a Jefferson Bible)

“Millions of innocent men, women and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burnt, tortured, fined and imprisoned; yet we have not advanced one inch towards uniformity.”
-Thomas Jefferson, Notes on Virginia, 1782

“Question with boldness even the existence of a god; because if there be one he must approve of the homage of reason more than that of blindfolded fear.”
-Thomas Jefferson, Letter to Peter Carr, August 10, 1787

“In every country and in every age, the priest has been hostile to liberty. He is always in alliance with the despot, abetting his abuses in return for protection to his own.”
-Thomas Jefferson, letter to Horatio G. Spafford, March 17, 1814

“And the day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerve in the brain of Jupiter. But may we hope that the dawn of reason and freedom of thought in these United States will do away with this artificial scaffolding, and restore to us the primitive and genuine doctrines of this most venerated reformer of human errors.”
-Thomas Jefferson, Letter to John Adams, April 11, 1823




 


Posts: 40 | Posted: 2:51 PM on March 11, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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So which Jefferson can we believe?

The one who REQUIRED that the Bible and Watts Hymnal be taught in all schools under his jurisdiction or the one who thought it was bunk?



(Edited by EMyers 3/11/2006 at 8:14 PM).


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 8:12 PM on March 11, 2006 | IP
thelmoose

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What is your point?
They are both the same man.

"At the first meeting of the board of trustees held during August 1805 in the United States Supreme Courtroom, Thomas Jefferson, then President of the United States, was elected first president of the Board of Trustees of public schools in the City of Washington." http://www.k12.dc.us/dcps/offices/dcpshistory.html

Note: not "superintendent"

Do you think he actually was picking out books while he was President? I think either that the choice of those books was do to some policital force if he had anything to do with it; or more likely, you have your facts wrong. Do you think those were the only two books they studied and Jefferson, the scientist, philosopher and free thinker that he was, chose those as the curriculum?

As always you are way off course here.
It is an easily verifiable fact that Jefferson was no fan of religion. His opponents often accused him of being an atheist. And most assuredly, he advocated that the separation of church and state went both ways.
You are not correct in your understanding of that doctrine nor in your characterization of Thomas Jefferson.
 


Posts: 40 | Posted: 8:32 PM on March 11, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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Actually, I'm sure they studied other books however, those were the only two books on the REQUIRED reading list for the school district he presided over.  I find it odd, that you of all people, seem to put more emphasis on Jefferson's PERSONAL belief on religion than on his actions as a POLITICAL figure when deciding what the founding fathers intended.  


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 09:23 AM on March 12, 2006 | IP
thelmoose

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Once again, what is your point?

To bring things back on topic, K8 stated many posts ago that “Gay marriage is the Government's prime opportunity to finally show that there is indeed a separation between church and state.” You countered by saying that doctrine was about keeping government out of religion “and not necessarily the other way around.” To support that you implied that was Jefferson’s intent, because he went to church and some silly, irrelevant comment about schoolbooks.

I chimed in because I am a big Jefferson fan and I am quite certain you are completely incorrect in your assertion. There are mountains and mountains of very clear evidence that Jefferson was no fan of religion. While he thought that religion was superstitious hogwash and the followers were sheep who forsake reason, he was an even bigger believer in liberty. He recognized that religious beliefs are personal and citizens held these beliefs as important to them, and the government has no business interfering with one’s wishes in that respect. However, you are absolutely and completely incorrect in implying that the converse was less important to him. He strongly felt religious intrusion into government was a dangerous thing and that the wall of separation between church and state should go both ways. Anyone who knows anything about Jefferson knows this is incontrovertible. Drop it.

I will admit that you were correct in bringing up Jefferson, because constitutional scholars and jurists from across the political spectrum all concede that his intent is the true basis of the Establishment Clause.

 


Posts: 40 | Posted: 12:21 PM on March 12, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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From wikipedia....

In the United States, separation of church and state is sometimes believed to be in the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and by legal precedents interpreting that clause, some extremely controversial. The Establishment Clause states that, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion." However, the U.S. Supreme Court decided that the Fourteenth Amendment (one of the Reconstruction Amendments) makes the Establishment Clause and other portions of the Bill of Rights binding on state and local governments as well, although it is arguable that this restriction on state and local government existed in Article VI of the unamended Constitution and that the Fourteenth Amendment was a clarification on the limitation of government power. Many other democratic governments around the world have similar clauses in their respective constitutions.

The phrase "separation of church and state" does not appear in the Constitution, but rather derives from a letter written by Thomas Jefferson to a group identifying themselves as the Danbury Baptists. In that letter, Jefferson referred to a “wall of separation between church and state.”

The Danbury Baptist Association wrote President Jefferson in an attempt to persuade him to use his Executive Powers as President to intervene in their behalf. In his letter of reply to the Danbury Baptist Association, Jefferson argued that the U.S. Constitution forbade any interference from the Federal government with a Connecticut law which required membership in a particular church in order to hold public office.

Jefferson's point in the letter was that the Federal or State governments had no Constitutional authority to prohibit the practice of any religion. Jefferson refused their plea on the grounds cited in his letter. Thus, with the adoption of the Jeffersonian phrase '...wall of separation between church and state...', by those who seek to use Federal power to remove from the public square any religiosity of any sort, the inversion of the meaning intended by Jefferson as he wrote it.


Hmmm, the inversion of the meaning intended by Jefferson....   Guess you can only misunderstand what was meant by both the Wall of Separation statement and the Establishment Clause if you really twist the meaning.  I'd reckon you'd really have a personal aversion to what he meant if you needed to do that.


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 12:51 PM on March 12, 2006 | IP
thelmoose

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That is idiotic.
That is saying that those who invoke that doctrine to remove public displays of religion, do so inversely to the way that the original issue began. Again, off topic of the bidirectional nature of the doctrine of separation of church and state. Please let it go before you embarrass yourself further. Do you really think plucking a tiny irrelevant fact from Wikipedia (like this and that book thing) is the way to have a debate? You need to discuss IDEAS. It is futile to discuss things intelligently with you. I regret I jumped in, contrary to my previous commitment. I am sorry that the boys made fun of you in high school, but that is no reason for you to carry on this way.

Now I'll let you go to scour the Internet to find some out of context factoid from who knows what source that vaguely supports what you call a position.
 


Posts: 40 | Posted: 1:24 PM on March 12, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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Have you ever noticed that most of your points tend to rant and rave and not actually discuss the point that was brought up?  You accuse people of doing the exact things that you do to the extreme.  I'm almost embarassed for you.  I've spent some small time here showing you the error of your ways and yet you continue to throw around third grade insults instead of debating the issue.  If you really need me to fill up page after page of information until the rest of the readers are bored to tears, then I will be happy to do so.


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 7:44 PM on March 12, 2006 | IP
corvettegurl99

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I'd like to raise a point brought up a while ago... the statement someone mentioned that sex is a choice.

Well, the act of sex is, obviously. But love is not. You can't help who you fall in love with.

And if a man or woman falls in love with someone of their same sex, why shouldn't they be allowed to be together?

No matter how hard they try to deny their feelings, eventually they have to face the truth.

And also, scientific scans have shown that a portion of a gay man's brain actually resembles a woman's. The size of that part of the brain changes from male to female, but in gay men, the size is that of a woman's.

So if this is the case, how can anyone possibly argue "it's their choice"? First of all, look at the science!! Also, why would anyone pretend to be gay for their entire lives?


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To love, to hope, and to dream...
 


Posts: 1 | Posted: 3:11 PM on March 18, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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Well, the act of sex is, obviously. But love is not. You can't help who you fall in love with.

And if a man or woman falls in love with someone of their same sex, why shouldn't they be allowed to be together?


Adultery is illegal as well.  Polygamy is illegal.  This whole "falls in love" thing is a fallacy.  You can be infatuated with someone, but you certainly can't "fall in love" with someone.  Love is a choice.  There is a difference between "true love" and the whole "butterfly feeling" that you get because you are in lust with someone.  As you mature, I'm sure you'll come to realize this.  I hope you figure out the difference before you dedicate your life to somebody.


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 8:45 PM on March 18, 2006 | IP
K8

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There are different kinds and stages of love, and it can certainly not be controlled as you imply. Yes, lust is different to love, but it can be the jumping-off point for love to develop between two people - just as friendship can be.
 


Posts: 292 | Posted: 02:36 AM on March 24, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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I find that surprisingly naive.


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 08:53 AM on March 24, 2006 | IP
K8

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In what way, may i ask?
 


Posts: 292 | Posted: 07:54 AM on March 25, 2006 | IP
EMyers

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You state that "love" can not be controlled.  By your standards I might find tomorrow that I no longer love my wife and children and I now love the guy next door.  It's not my fault!  I had no control!  You can't choose who you "love"!...  Bologna.  Nobody over the age of 18 believes that "soap opera" version of love you're buying into.  Love is just as controllable as any other emotion.  To say we can't control love is the same as saying we can't control anger.  You can't hold me accountable for killing him, your honor, I was angry.  Not my fault!  See how ludicrous it sounds?


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"Thou believest that God is one; thou does well: the demons also believe, and shudder." James 2:19 - Belief is never enough.
 


Posts: 1287 | Posted: 1:56 PM on March 25, 2006 | IP
    
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