Friday, December 19, 2014

Mafia Jesuit Pope Lauded By The New York Times

Pope Francis S.J., who supports massive human rights violations for drug racketeering scheme to protect cigarettes, alcohol and pharma from God-given natural herbs and their perversion into ultra concentrated forms of drugs, is called "a uniquely credible voice in the developing world" by The New York Times.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Obama & Pope Francis Worked Together On Cuba - US Diplomatic Recognition

announced on Pope Francis' 78th birthday- December 17

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Whatever Francis Wants, Francis Gets – Pope Clinches US-Cuba Pact

Not many people get to celebrate their birthday with a diplomatic romp... but as he turns 78 this Wednesday, the Pope can now claim precisely that.

Announced this morning by President Obama in a televised White House address, the US' "reset" paving the way toward full bilateral relations with Cuba and enhanced economic ties has largely been credited to the influence of Francis and concerted back-channel work on the part of the Holy See's geopolitical apparatus.

As Obama put it, at their March meeting in the Vatican, "His Holiness Pope Francis issued a personal appeal to me" to enter into talks with President Raul Castro to negotiate the release of Alan Gross, the American humanitarian worker imprisoned on the island for five years, while the pontiff urged Castro to pursue the reeturn of three Cubans jailed in the US with the White House. After initial discussions indicated a mutual openness toward resolutions, a November meeting of both sides at the Vatican sealed the agreement that saw Gross returned to the US this morning (along with a long-jailed US intelligence operative) and the Cubans likewise freed to the island.

"In particular," Obama said in closing his speech, "I want to thank His Holiness Pope Francis, whose moral example shows us the importance of pursuing the world as it should be, rather than simply settling for the world as it is."

Shortly thereafter, in a rare evening statement, the Vatican Secretariat of State said that Francis "wishes to express his warm congratulations for the historic decision taken by the Governments of the United States of America and Cuba to establish diplomatic relations, with the aim of overcoming, in the interest of the citizens of both countries, the difficulties which have marked their recent history." The Holy See promised to continue "its support for initiatives which both nations will undertake to strengthen their bilateral relations and promote the wellbeing of their respective citizens."

In sum, as Papa Bergoglio's June Holy Land peace summit scored global headlines yet failed to achieve discernible progress, today's development after a half-century standoff represents the signal diplomatic triumph of Francis' 21-month pontificate. Behind the scenes, meanwhile, even if the initial push came from the Pope, the breakthrough represents a no less sizable victory for Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Secretary of State who Francis chose for the role with a mandate to restore the Vatican's traditional standing as a geopolitical powerhouse in its ability to serve as both a peerless "listening post" and trusted mediator in international disputes.

In this case, the experience of Rome's key players provided an even more critical advantage: in his prior posting as Nuncio to Venezuela, Parolin had a rare insight into Cuba as the Vatican's mission-chief to what's become Havana's most significant Western ally, while his top deputy, the Sostituto Archbishop Angelo Becciu, had been Nuncio to the island itself for two years before returning to Rome as the Curia's "chief of staff" in 2011.

On another major front, the Vatican's role in securing the deal has likely been the reason for the holdup on Francis' intensely-awaited appointment of the next archbishop of Havana, which ops in Rome and Latin America have expected to take place sometime this fall following August's celebrations for the 50th priestly anniversary of Cardinal Jaime Ortega y Alamino, who at 78 is three years past the canonical retirement age.

While the Cuban church has been granted an enhanced space with which to work over Ortega's two-decade tenure at the helm – a reality sizably aided by two papal visits (in 1998 and 2012) – the new inroads have come at the expense of unrelenting criticism and suspicion toward the cardinal by the influential exile community, which has assailed Ortega as an accommodationist to the island's Communist regime in exchange for the church's increased freedoms.

The US deal's announcement notably comes 48 hours after the US Secretary of State, John Kerry, met with Parolin for the second time at the Vatican.

As Francis' SegStat was ostensibly briefed in confidence on the accord's release by his Stateside visitor, the Holy See's readout of the conversation revealed that Kerry sought the Vatican's aid on finding "adequate humanitarian solutions" for the treatment of terrorism-related prisoners at the US' detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, which the Obama administration has long aimed to close.

Back to the White House, yesterday likewise saw an appearance in the Oval Office from the USCCB President, Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville, for his first meeting with both Obama and Vice President Joe Biden (all above). No statement on the sit-down was given from either side.

Though today's policy reboot will widen the US' permissions for citizens to travel to Cuba and enable Cuban-Americans to increase their ability to send fiscal aid to their families and friends on the island, it's important to emphasize that the Federally-approved Stateside Catholic entity to help fund the Cuban church – the Boston-based Friends of Caritas Cubana – was already limit-free before the shift and is able to continue its work without change.

* * *
While the USCCB's international policy chief, Bishop Oscar Cantú of Las Cruces, issued a statement welcoming the Cuba accord as "past due" and urging even "more engagement" across the 93-mile strait, on this day, the national church's lead word comes from a different Mothership... the one "so close to the United States."

Amid no shortage of blaring speculation on the Pope's so-called "possibilities" for the red hat at next February's Consistory – even as, by the Faith and law alike, the Roman Pontiff freely acts however he deems fit – it's admittedly been rather amusing that mention of the archbishop of Miami has been conspicuous by its absence.

Put kindly, it's a surprise – at least, it's been if you expect folks who fancy themselves "smart" to evince some degree of actual intelligence or a basic grasp of reality. Then again, when it comes to the bearer of the most self-aware motto of any American bishop, our glut of armchair pontiffs of whatever stripe would simply have too hard time exploiting Tom Wenski as an easy canvas for any of their political fantasies, or nightmares.

Ever since the native son took his talents back to South Beach in 2010, the first-ever red hat for the American Southeast – lest anybody forgot, the site of the now-US' oldest Catholic settlement – has hung in the balance. Add in that, over the time since, the 64 year-old championed Bergoglio's manifesto at Aparecida long before it became fashionable and counts two of Francis' lead confidants as his own longtime allies – all in the context of leading what's now a 1.4 million-member church in a key continental outpost – and all around, whatever happens in early January, the church's lead voice in what'll soon be the third-largest state has become a force to be reckoned with well beyond these shores... and that's just how he likes it.

Having grown up in the context of the Cuban Revolution's seismic impact on South Florida, ministry among the exiles has been a fixture of Wenski's life from his days as a seminarian – so much so that the community's legendary "godfather," the late, saintly Bishop Agustín Roman, preached his first Mass. Later, as head of Miami's Catholic Charities, the young auxiliary coordinated 75-ton food drops onto the island while moonlighting as a fixer for fresh immigrants, zipping his Harley past the bench's crop of exiles in the process to become the US church's de facto spokesman for Cuban affairs.

Accordingly, as today's news hit Calle Ocho with the force of a bomb, a horde of TV trucks instead charged Miami Chancery, which gave the place the feel of what an on-site op termed "a war room." And fresh off being honored by the local Hispanic press, it was just another instance of the man in his moment.

In a prepared statement, Wenski echoed the call he gave from the chair of the archbishop of Havana during a 2012 Mass in the capital's cathedral, where he implied in his homily that the Cuban leadership was "doomed to die... in their sins because they have refused to recognize [Jesus] as the 'I am' of human history," while urging "a 'soft landing'" for the island's people, "a landing that is open to a future of hope."

Ready to ride as ever, here's Wenski's response today:

Both President Obama and Raul Castro expressed appreciation to the role of Pope Francis in making possible what seems to be a real game changer in the historically strained relationship between Cuba and the United States. Pope Francis did what popes are supposed to do: Build bridges and promote peace. He acted much like his namesake, Francis of Asissi, who during the fifth crusade, went to Egypt to meet with the Sultan al Kamil in the interest of peace.

The Church in Cuba has always opposed the embargo, arguing that it was a blunt instrument that hurt the innocent more than the guilty; and the U.S. Church has supported the Catholic Church in Cuba. We have consistently advocated that the U.S. should revise this policy, in the hope that engagement and dialog would prove more helpful in improving conditions in Cuba than a policy of confrontation and isolation.

In comments that Raul Castro made, he seemed to indicate that his government was open to engage in conversations with the U.S. on issues related to democracy and human rights. Progress in this area is normally the result, and not the precondition, of such talks - and so the prospect of such talks is a positive development. As president Obama said, to seek the collapse of Cuba is not sound policy. Cuba needs change. Today's announcement is a game changer as I said - but as Cuba transitions through such changes we all should encourage a soft landing - that is, change that is peaceful and offers real hope for the Cuban people on both sides of the Florida Straits.
True to form, with ferocious protests over the policy-shift having emerged from much of South Florida's exile leadership, late word from Miami says Wenski's slated an early Thursday meeting with the group.

All that said, however, the Quote of the Day – at least, on the ecclesial front – belongs regardless to Francis' marquee domestic appointee to date: in his own quickly-released statement, Archbishop Blase Cupich of Chicago observed that while "usually people receive gifts on their birthday," thanks to his involvement in the lead-up to the accord, as he turned 78, today's news instead made for a gift the Pope "has generously given to the world."

posted by Rocco Palmo at 16:14

Thursday, December 11, 2014

'Freedom from Religion Foundation' Thread FREE PASS to Rome Geopoliticking

Blames "Christians' for the crimes of the various religious inquisitions in Europe and North America with virtually NO mention of the Papacy, the Vatican, the Roman Catholic Church, nor Eastern Orthodoxy.  A few good statements with most apparently oblivious to the crimes of he Vatican.

“Who burnt heretics? Who roasted or drowned millions of 'witches'? Who built dungeons and filled them? Who brought forth cries of agony from honest men and women that rang to the tingling stars? Who burnt Bruno? Who spat filth over the graves of Paine and Voltaire? The answer is one word--CHRISTIANS.”

—G.W. Foote, author, editor, and convicted blasphemer in "Are Atheists Wicked?," chapter from Flowers of Freethought (1894)

- See more at:
    • John DeMartini Orthodox religion is all about control, having nothing to do with a creator.
    • Tom Branner Christianity has oppressed everyone for thousands of years, now they're crying wolf as they're barely being oppressed.
    • Herbert Davis Are those the same folks who killed the ERA equal rights amendment?
    • Tony Messina the bio on this guy is incredible. He's a great man worthy of more admiration for sure....
    • Tony Messina It's sad that if your not a christian "suck-up" then your not worth a historical mention. So many non-christians have done so much in this country and it needs to be point out.
    • Angela Heslip agreed wholeheartedly..hell they ven try to claim that all the founding fathers are chritians and that this country is founded on christian faith..that is such crap for if it were true there would be no 1st ammedment and seperation of church and state would be non existent. They need to read Thomas Paine.All national institutions of churches, whether Jewish, Christian or Turkish, appear to me no other than human inventions, set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit.
      Thomas Paine

      Enjoy the best Thomas Paine Quotes at BrainyQuote. Quotations by Thomas Paine, English Writer, Born...
    • Mark Peters Religion... that which divides a species .....
    • Judy Foulds Exactly, Angela. And I do point out every day the thoughts and quotes from's my FB status!
    • Sandra Kral Mr. Foote was wrong about one thing -- millions of "witches" were not killed. It was more like 200,000 at most, according to academic research, over a period of 3 centuries or so.
    • Renaroo de Lisieux Now, now...let's share the wealth. Over 6 millions Jewish and 3 millions Christians died in concentration camps in WWII, not including our historical favorites Mao, Stalin. Human beings are capable of great beauty, and darkness, regardless of beliefs. With that said, Christians who committed evil will suffer greater accountability.

      History documents ample, ridiculous monstrosities from both sides of the aisle.

      We have the present to work for a better future for ourselves and children.

      We must fight against oppression, intolerance, brutality and evil together.
    • Sally Ann Cassan-Archuleta Throughout history, worshipers of deities have stood behind the guise of their god to inflict the most hideous of pain unto others.
    • Tyler Kendall Though I agree with the sentiment, I think millions of witches may be an exaggeration.
    • Russell Edgington What happens to freedom of speech if a Christian speaks there mind it's gay bashing or infringing on non beloved rights if a atheist does it is there right to do so from freedom of speech I have yet to see post of Christians bash omg back most of there responses are I will pray for you why does that bother atheists if they don't belive in God just trying to understand!!!!!!!!!
    • Chris Turner Thing is Russell, those "bashing" posts get removed by admin

      We're constantly being threatened with hell and told we are immoral. We're often told to leave the country.

      Threats of violence and death are not unusual either.
    • Airnoi Phongsavath It doesn't bother me that Christians believe in god, what bothers me is they try to control and condemn me with their self righteousness. That's what bothers me.
    • Dennis L. Howell "If she weighs the same as a duck, she's made of wood! And therefore . . . A witch!!!" Monty Python and The Holy Grail
    • Brian Beasley Can't argue with history.
    • Jeremiah Policky ...and that's almost the least of what they've done
    • Wes Bryant Hitler was not atheist, he was against the Jewish origins and influence if Christianity. A common silly misconception. The others were also not necessarily atheist, merely stressed church and state separation- so that was highlighted by Christian radicals as the reason for the rest of the atrocities that ended up occurring under their reign. So, the atheist-atrocity models so often cited by the fundamentalists are unfounded actually. Ah well, they'll keep being cited though... they've got to have something to come back with.
    • Osman Atif Arpad Christians OK but what about other religions
    • Amy Anderson Osman if it makes you feel better, religion was created to control the masses. The biggest threat to religion is an education.
    • Lillian Maxie It's funny how defensive Christians get when their true history is pointed out! Nobody ever said other religions don't commit atrocities. This post just happens to be about the REALITY of Christianity, and talking about these facts drives Christians crazy.
    • Rogelio De Las Casas I have had the experience with many believers that they feel amazed when they learn that I am atheist. Even they always try to convince of the contrary.
    • Rogelio De Las Casas The believers are always showing their religion point of view, like they have the right to do it but, if I try to do the same about my atheistic understanding of the world, they feel threatened and treat me like I am a bad person. They are always prejudiced.
    • Rogelio De Las Casas I think that exposing them self help them to confirm their believes.
    • Amy Anderson My favorite. "But you are such a nice person?" WTF? lol
    • Craig Miller I agree tom, but I think it's a stretch to even say that they're being oppressed at all. For some reason I've never understood, we're all supposed to have some special respect for religion, and it's been out of bounds to criticize religion or question its special privileges; and now that more and more people are starting to question this, theists cry about being "oppressed"...tragic
    • Craig Miller Russell Edgington, I'd love to answer your questions, but first I'm going to need you to translate them to answer what I think is your question, most atheists aren't bothered by religious belief as such; what bothers all atheists is the fact that an overwhelming majority of theists want to push their beliefs on others, and force everyone else to live by their rules through legislation. Believe whatever you want, nobody cares...but give others' beliefs the same respect
    • Lindy Dangelmayer Too many people have died in the name of religion. How many wars have been fought in the name of atheism? In the words of John Lennon, "imagine no religion..."
    • Susan Collins Earlier estimates put the numbers in the millions, and later estimates put it in the 100-200 thousand range. Given the much smaller population at the time, it was a horrendous percentage.

      "Mr. Foote was wrong about one thing -- millions of "witches" were not killed. It was more like 200,000 at most, according to academic research, over a period of 3 centuries or so"
    • Deborah Mills If god makes people so good, why do we need so many lawyers?
    • Neil David Brown Renaroo de Lisieux The hatred that fueled the holocaust has its origins in the Jewish rejection of jesus as the messiah. You do realise this, don't you?

      Every year on hitlers birthday prayers were said in every catholic church in germany that asked god to help the fuerher prosper.

      The catholic church and european fascism had a 'brother and sister' relationship.
    • Mike Hanauer The Church's history of virtually always being wrong on moral issues has resulted in more human suffering than perhaps any other institution. The crusades, slavery, science denial, abortion, public education, population growth, birth control, divorce, tolerated atrocities, environment, evolution, right to die, women’s equality and rights, gay rights, organizational democracy and transparency, child abuse... The list goes on and on with no indication of any ability to learn from past mistakes or to acknowledge the existence of shades of gray.

      The Church has proven to be a dictatorship more concerned with control than anything else. I believe the church may well be the most dangerous institution on the planet. And nothing changes over 2000 years. It saddens me that this continues to be tolerated.
    • Neil David Brown Russell Edgington Christians speak their mind? Close to being an oxymoron - surely? They have no minds of their own. They were captured by their church, and they don't seem to want them back.
    • Jillian Christine Russell,

      I will answer some of your points. Let me know if I have missed any:

      Freedom of Speech just means the government can't restrict your speech. It doesn't mean that you can say any bigoted, intolerant garbage you want and the rest of us have to sit quietly. It just means the government can't restrict speech. People have the right to judge others for their speech. If you say something disgusting, there are social consequences for it.

      Christians come here constantly to bash, judge and torment. They get removed quickly though.

      You think it's okay for them to just say, "I will pray for you?" It's not. Who asked them anyway? Really, who in the heck asked for some religious prayer? That's got to be one of the most passive aggressive things a Christian says. It's a polite way of saying,"fuck you" to people they know who don't want their prayers. What are they praying for anyway? For everyone to agree with them?

      Unless someone asked them to pray then their declaration is just for attention. They aren't really going to pray for anyone, they just want to let everyone know that they say they're going to and they think it will bother us that they are. In reality it's just a pathetic stunt for attention and a middle finger to atheists. If you're going to pray than pray. Don't run around telling everyone.
    • Marc Breuning All religion is nothing but fear based indoctrination to control others. If we do that in any other setting it is illegal. Why isnt religion?
    • Shawn W. Nippard All 4,200 or so religions on the planet are an insult to the intelligence of the human race! Religion = mass delusion! Thank goodness for science & atheism!
    • Darla Lundell All of this points to religion being man made.
    • Tracey Frankcom Sandra Kral posted, "Mr. Foote was wrong about one thing -- millions of "witches" were not killed. It was more like 200,000 at most, according to academic research, over a period of 3 centuries or so."

      I'd be interested in some academic articles on this topic. With that said, how can one quantify totals for something that is still going on today?
    • Renaroo de Lisieux Injustice shows that morality is not relative.
    • L'Aguila Forte They continue today. However, because our more civilized world, they can only attack verbally and politically using the money given to them by their brainwashed followers. roflmao
    • Kimberly Ireland Many believe atheist and satanic are synonymous. They simply don't understand the difference, lol.
    • Paul Davis I see religion as a crutch for the masses. Some use alcohol or drugs to numb themselves from the harsh reality of life. Others use religion in the same manor. A crutch is a crutch. Too bad there's no industry to rehab religious fanatics, like the drug addicts. And for the ones trying to bring religion into politics----
      " you can't run a country by a book of religion,
      Not by a heap or a lump or a smidgen,
      Those foolish rules of ancient date,
      Designed to make you all feel great,
      While you fold spindle or mutilate,
      Those unbelievers from a neighboring state!" FZ
    • Dorian Newton Religion is man made.
    • Matt Bauman Musn't forget the millions killed for being jewish, gay, black, or just not arian by the nazi's during and after the holocaust.
  • Sylvia Wirthlin so tired of their imaginary friend...
  • Timothy Steele I doubt it was ever actually "millions" of witches. probably more along the lines of hundreds of thousands.
  • Chris Miller Always gotta bring up the Muslims. Read history. The Muslims have never done this. Jews and Christians top the list for mass murdering campaigns. If you want to count the recent acts of those who do not follow the Koran and instead follow insane Imams than your numbers aren't would the bullshit pouring out of your mouth.
  • Tracey Frankcom You know, a few people have corrected the assertion in the quotation regarding the number murdered as supposed witches. Does it matter if it was hundred of thousands vs millions? Is there an order of magnitude beneath which we cease to be concerned about atrocities being committed in the name of religion?
  • Neil David Brown And the cry goes up, "but these weren't 'true' christians. No true christian did a terrible deed - because as soon as they do, they are no longer being a christian." Which is a nice move if you think about it.

    Suddenly it matters not that the perpetrators of genocide, inquisition, crusades and subjugation of women SAID they were Christian - because we can retrospectively re-label them based on their behaviour - judged by today's standards.

    Well - I'd be personally Ok with this if Christians agree three things.

    *First - they agree to return the riches and power their attrocities achieved for them. (If Id gotten rich from immoral earnings - Id want to give it back.....)
    *Second - they agree that the moral standards with which they condemn said attrocities were not achieved by religion - but despite it.
    *Thirdly - that they agree the Bible has provided ample justifcation for immoral behaviour in the past, and is there to do so in the future and so should be moved to the restricted section of every library.
  • Bill Cross And Josef Stalin, one of the biggest mass murderers in history, was an atheist. Can we just admit that humans are capable of atrocious behavior and if they can claim religion as a justification, they will? If they can't claim religion, they will still behave atrociously.
  • Frank Wagle -
    "Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion."
    ~ Steven Weinberg
  • Andrew Gilbert Mr Weinberg was incorrect. Good and evil is a false dichotomy, so "evil" people do good things and "good" people do evil things all the time, regardless of their religion.
  • Neil David Brown Bill Cross - You make a false correlation and Wienberg was bang on the money. Joseph Stalin was an atheist but he didn't commit attrocities 'in the name of atheism'. There is all the world of difference. I'm not saying that being an atheist doesnt mean you cant be an evil sh*t as well. You can - and Stalin is a great example of that. But your non-belief in a deity isnt likely to drive you to commit attrocities....

    Where as a christian may commit attrocities because his bible (or priests interpretation of same) has mandated it (kill gays) or provided a clear example to follow (Amalekites). You show me the atheist texts that provided Stalin with his inspiration - and Ill take it all back!

    The attack is on religion - because of what it can get an otherwise normal person to do in it's name. The implication of what you say is that if you take religion away there will still be the same amount of attrocity in the world - and Im just not buying this.
  • Jillian Christine Bill,

    **** And Josef Stalin, one of the biggest mass murderers in history, was an atheist. ****

    .Stalin didn't murder in the name of atheism. Nice try on the strawman though.

    ***Can we just admit that humans are capable of atrocious behavior and if they can claim religion as a justification, they will? If they can't claim religion, they will still behave atrociously*****

    Here is a good quote that answers your comment:

    "Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it, you'd have good people doing good things and evil people doing bad things, but for good people to do bad things, it takes religion."
    ~Steven Weinberg
  • Susan Collins He was also a Russian and a man. Men are bad. Russians are bad.

    //And Josef Stalin, one of the biggest mass murderers in history, was an atheist//
  • Martha Guyer Don't forget how it was the American Pioneer Christians who tried killing off all the NATIVE American Indians here
  • Susan Collins They did wonderful things in Africa, India, and China, too.
  • Linda D. Meyer All religions have a history of killing. Look further.
  • Tracey Frankcom Some of the American evangelicals are still preaching a wonderful gospel of hatred toward homosexuality in Africa, since they can't really get much traction on calling for the execution of homosexuals in their own country. And, as noted by Jillian and Neil above, this is being done explicitly in the name of the Christian god, and not at all despite or coincidental to their religion. No, it is being done citing the authority of scripture, with all the associated self-righteousness, hellfire, and brimstone.

    And, as I noted earlier, people are still being killed as alleged witches, this again being done with the authority of local pastors. (Again, this is in Africa.)
  • Tracey Frankcom Then there's that dipshit (now former) teacher in Ohio who somehow seemed to think it was OK to use a Tesla coil to brand one of his students with the sign of the teacher's religion - a cross.
  • Renaroo de Lisieux Morality cannot be relative. When men and women define their own codes of morality, it makes possible for unimaginable atrocities as we have witnessed in history and recent memories.

    What is to prevent a bully from imposing his/her morality over you or your children?

    Democracy? Nyet, democracy coded slavery as an institution and reversed it at huge human and national costs. It could reverse course again by popular consent. Mob rule and lynching is another illustration of the fall failacy of relative morality.

    In our own families, our children squabble and fight. The strongest or allied group would prevail unless the parents or guardians invoke their codes in the same way our government is constraint by the constitution.

    But as we have discussed earlier, relative morality affects the rules if law even our wonderful (if not one of the best) democracy.

    However flaw governments are, we must rely on them to guarantee equal protection under the law. This is the standard, the theorem I submit to you gentle readers that relativism is a poison to society.
  • Jessica Kopish If morality is objective, then what is the source and how do we all know it?
    A better question is if morality is objective, then why do we have different morality now than in the past? If morality was objective, then why should we look at historical acts and laws "in context"? If morality is objective, then it doesnt change at the whim of the majority, and yet that is exactly what happens all the time.
  • Chris Turner So who gets to define and interpret this absolute, objective morality Renaroo?

    What rationale do they use to define and interpret it?
  • Neil David Brown Renaroo de Lisieux I doubt you realise how much of what you wrote applies to religion.

    You seem too be under a very infantile misapprehension. That morality gets fixed by popular consent, and that humans if left to our own devices will descend overnight into self-pleasuring, selfish wantonness.

    is it possible to have a lower opinion of your species than this? Doubtful.

    Morality is a label we give to a set of behaviours that allow our species to collaborate more effectively. Collaboration is possibly our greatest evolutionary advantage. Without it, the tribes of israel would not have made it as far as Mount Sinai.

    You seem to confuse individual behaviour with morality like other people confuse weather with the climate.

    Morality evolves and adapts to the circumstance of our species. The more recent 'advances' include the rejection of slavery, misogeny and homophobia. None of these advances were made with Gods guidance- rather, inspite of it.

    (Your responses are often very ambiguous, so apologies if I have taken them the wrong way. However the implication behind them is that we must look to religion for our moral compass, where as the reality is the bible has been toxic to moral progress for two millenia)
  • Robert Guesman Just as many bad things were done bye people and groups that were not affiliated with any religions.
  • Suzane Watkinson no Robert, if atheists were less moral than believers there would be more atheists in prison. non bleivers are now about 20 % of the population but we are less than 1 % of the prison population.
  • Dave Dundon It is more likely people will listen to the argument that the error is of "all" religions in general rather than attacking Christianity or any one religion. Religion most often interferes with real morals and ethics in its attempt to get everyone to accept one religious belief based on faith rather than fact. The important message is that morals and ethics can be based of common sense and observation of the outcome of actions. Morality does not require religion. In fact religion seems to always be more important than actual morality by those who believe in any religion. Question: In what way would the world be different if there were no God?
  • Amy Anderson LOL Bs David, but keep dreaming if that makes you feel better.
  • Chris Turner So David, you're trying to tell us that the prison population is actually made up of atheists who convert whilst in prison!?

    You do realise that people have to declare their religion as they enter the prison system, not during their stay...?

    The institutions need to know this info in case (for example) that person dies and religious practices / rituals need to be observed.
  • Jessica Kopish I always am surprised when people blame the government for no being so big as to tell all american children who to pray to and how to do it. With such an overwhelming majority of Xtians in this country, blaming the prison population on the small government seems silly, as there are over 3 times as many churches in this country than public schools.
  • Chris Turner Irrelevant to the point being made. The majority of prisoners identify as religious, AS THEY ENTER THE SYSTEM.

    Btw - people don't "convert to Christ", they convert to Christianity. I understand quite a few people convert to Islam too.
  • Chris Turner Example please of "atheist shoving their crap down ours".
  • Jessica Kopish Wait. Are you trying to claim that church SHOULD be mandatory?
    It is because school is mandatory by our government that it cannot be seen as promoting any one religion, otherwise you have the tyranny of the govt coercing and promoting a religion to all children, regardless of parental choices. Is that what you support, David Rayburn? What happens when it isn't your version of your religion that is forced on children by our govt? Because individual and group prayer by students in public schools is perfectly legal, as you know. As long as the student is not disrupting class time or their peers, or attempting to coerce other people's children to the religious ritual. That is why in some school districts, they have opted for a room set aside for kids to pray (often for Muslim students, but also for anyone else who wants to avail themselves of the option). Afterschool groups can include the Good News Club, ACA, etc. The only thing not allowed in public school with regard to religion is teacher or school administrator or other agent (coaches, for example) who are working in their capacity as a govt official cannot promote nor denigrate any religious activity. They cannot participate, nor stop religious activity by their students as long as that student is not violating other student's rights.
    Why is that not enough for you?
  • Chris Turner "Why is that not enough for you?".

    Going out on a limb a bit here, but is the answer Dominionism!?

  • Chris Turner "Among nearly 300,000 prisoners released in 15 states in 1994, 67.5% were rearrested within 3 years. A study of prisoners released in 1983 estimated 62.5%."

    If, as posited by David, many in-mates convert to Christianity DURING their time in the system, surely you'd expect that figure to be much lower?

    Of course, that's also making the presumption that Christians have superior morals.
  • Jessica Kopish I always wonder why some of the religious would attempt to weaken and erode the separation of church and state at the same time they complain about their religious population going down and other religions (often Islam for Xtians) going up. Do they seriously not know that the thing that keeps them from having a government that supports a religion they despise is the same one that keeps me from supporting theirs? What is funny is that when I was a die hard Xtian, I still agreed with an absolute separation of church and state, knowing that I would not want a religion not my own in my government. maybe I am just a little better at seeing the "unintended consequences" of these dominionist actions.
  • Jessica Kopish no true scotsman fallacy in 3...2...1...
  • Chris Turner Buddha, Allah, Shiva/Vishnu/Brahma etc. are equally not endorsed or promoted in public schools. Publicly funded schools are also not allowed to endorse or promote atheism.

    If it were truly about letting children make up their own minds, then ALL major world religions should be taught, along with atheism as an option. That's (partly) why we have comparative religion classes which look at all the options academically, without promotion or endorsement of any specific one.
  • Jessica Kopish No one has taken your god out of schools. We have ensured that the government is not coercing other people's children to a religion, but otherwise children have the right to practice whatever religion they want in schools.
    It seems you are complaining to the wrong people.
    I'll point out that this country was also founded on slavery and the rape and murder and theft from our native peoples, women as chattel, etc. so if that is what you mean by one nation under god, then I'm glad we are going away from it.
  • Chris Turner So it wasn't about giving kids the facts on various religions and letting them choose for themselves at all.

    As I guessed, it's dominionism.

    ...and in what way has there been a failure (other than failure to indoctrinate)?
  • Amy Anderson Treaty of Tripoli was ratified by unanimous vote by Congress in 1797. Article 11 states that the US is in no sense founded on the christian religion. One nation under god wasn't added to our pledge before the 1950's. It was added due to the Red Scare. Before the 50's it was simply one nation indivisible. In god we trust wasn't added to our paper currency until that time also. Before the 50's our paper money said simply E Pluribus Unum (From many One). History is a wonderful subject, might I suggest you studying it.
  • Jack Costa So did plenty of Muslims, Hindus, Atheists, Socialists, Fascists, Communists, etc.

    Whenever someone has an idea that they believe strong enough to kill over... that is when massacres happen... especially when such is done by the government.

    The lowest common denominator between all of histories massacres, isn't religion... It's the state.

    Libertarianism is really the only *REAL* cure to this problem. Religion nor lack of religion will solve it alone... as the State, given enough power, will corrupt men of all creeds, religions or non-religions, in an endless quest for power over their fellow man.