Home - List All Discussions

Thoughts on Legislating Morality

Comments from MLK

by: MaleNurse

So then is "life" itself a fundamental right? I believe so. The constitution says it is. Does anyone know what angle R v W took to win their case? It appears obvious that elective abortions are unconstitutional. How in the world did that ever get passed in 1973?

reply from: Sigma

So "life" is a fundamental right, huh? Why is there no "right to life" in the Constitution?
Regardless, however, "liberty" is also a protected right. In Roe the question was "Does the State have any 'compelling interest' to restrict a woman's access to abortion?" (basically, at least). The judges examined the Constitution and determined that there is no basis for claiming the State had such an interest since the fetus was not considered a 'person' for the purposes of the Fourteenth Amendment and so had no rights to protect, and so there is no justification to restrict the woman's liberty. Thus States cannot restrict abortion in the first trimester.
The Federal Legislature doesn't even have the authority to restrict it at all.

reply from: yoda

This is just a guess, but they may have thought that a right to life was so obviously the most basic right that only a complete dummy would question it.

reply from: MaleNurse

It looks pretty clear here to me. The reference to "creator" not only means God, but also gives reference to before they existed (pre-born) These people were "created". Inalienable rights can't be separated from the person, because God (above all other authority) gave these rights.
I hate to be simplistic especially with you, but it's the plain truth.

reply from: nsanford

This is just a guess, but they may have thought that a right to life was so obviously the most basic right that only a complete dummy would question it.
True, but the rights of the mother clearly outweigh the fetus's.

reply from: Sigma

Unfortunately, the Declaration of Independence is not a legally enforcable document in that way. The Constitution is.

reply from: yoda

MORE euphemisms? MUST you constantly speak in euphemistic codes?
HOW can you equate the concept of one person's rights "outweighing" another's with the concept of giving someone the right to KILL someone else?
Can you HONESTLY say that you don't see any difference between rating the relative rights of one person to another, and giving one person the RIGHT TO KILL the other?
How can you pimp the "right to kill" with such euphemisms?

reply from: MaleNurse

A minor technicality !
But you must admit, it is clear what their intent was. (despite being written a few years earlier)

reply from: nsanford

I am for giving a woman the right to her body. That is all. I am not happy to see babies being killed everyday, but that does not give me the right to go out and take someone's rights. That seems to be our major diffference. You are for restricting rights to accomodate you beliefs, and I am not.
And yes, I can honestly say that. Women have the right to remove something attached to them. The right to our bodies cannot be denied.

reply from: Sigma

The Declaration's intent was to, appropriately enough, declare our independence from England. It was a rallying cry. The Constitution was intended to be the foundation of our gov't and our rights.
I really don't think pulling rights from the Declaration is valid in this context. However, was my description of the Roe rationale clear enough or do you want to know more?

reply from: MaleNurse

Hey Nsanford, you said you are against killing babies, but don't want to stop others from having the choice to kill babies.
Do you believe in standing up for what is right and just?

reply from: MaleNurse

Please tell me more. I believe if the founders made this statement in the declaration of independence, it was still their beleif when they wrote the constitution as well as the bill of rights.
They (being Christian) were most likely consistant in this view throughout their life. What they considered "fundamental" probably didn't change.

reply from: nsanford

Yes, I do. But not at the price of someone else's rights. You cannot deny the right to our bodies. It's a basic right.

reply from: Sigma

They also considered "liberty" fundamental then. What is your evidence that they were Christian? From what I've seen, many of the founders were Diests or Athiests, not Christian.
However, regardless of their beliefs, the Constitution does not currently apply to those in the womb anyway.

reply from: theamericancatholic

Why is it so clear? Why do her rights outweigh the rights of the unborn child?
Who, might I ask is their "creator"? If you accept that "creator" means God, than you must accept that their IS moral truth and that truth comes from God. IF "creator" means something else than what? Who might their "creator" be? From a purely biological viewpoint a persons "creator" is their parents and more specifically, their mother.

Explain to me what this means. To me it would appear that the right to life itself is granted by our parents by that act of creation.

reply from: MaleNurse

Then you're not standing up for what is right.
The fetus akaifferent body, different DNA, different heartbeat, different person, different.....ect. --> is NOT your body. sound familiar?

reply from: nsanford

Then you're not standing up for what is right.
The fetus akaifferent body, different DNA, different heartbeat, different person, different.....ect. --> is NOT your body. sound familiar?
Agreed. But forcing women to carry to term interferes with the right's of the mother. So I'm not going to help you guys take the first step towards fascism.

reply from: Sigma

Not really, no. It was a rallying cry; it is symbolic more than than anything. It is akin to people placing their hands on a bible to be sworn in. It is not a gesture of belief, it is symbolic.
Even if what you said were true, it would be an indication of the founder's belief, not what they codified into law. They included a separation of church and State for a reason. God was not meant to be a part of the legal process in this way.

reply from: nsanford

Why is it so clear? Why do her rights outweigh the rights of the unborn child?
Who, might I ask is their "creator"? If you accept that "creator" means God, than you must accept that their IS moral truth and that truth comes from God. IF "creator" means something else than what? Who might their "creator" be? From a purely biological viewpoint a persons "creator" is their parents and more specifically, their mother.

Explain to me what this means. To me it would appear that the right to life itself is granted by our parents by that act of creation.
Number one, I am an atheist, so I do not believe in any "creator". Number two, I believe that all rights are given, even if they are not the laws of the land. That was main point of the Declaration, was it not? And thirdly, the mother has had her right's for a much longer time. Her losing her right's is also of much more danger to society in general. So her right's outweigh the fetus's.

reply from: theamericancatholic

Who is our posterity? Are we not passing on these rights to our children? Do we have a right to kill our unborn posterity for whom we are indeed obligated to establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty? Or is The Constitution merely symbolic as well?

reply from: yoda

When such "rights" deny the right to life of a gestating human, they are not rights at all, they are a license to kill the innocent.
So you are all about giving mothers a license to kill their babies, just because nature forces us to be attached to our mothers.
What a pitiful excuse to use to kill your baby.

reply from: nsanford

When such "rights" deny the right to life of a gestating human, they are not rights at all, they are a license to kill the innocent.
So you are all about giving mothers a license to kill their babies, just because nature forces us to be attached to our mothers.
What a pitiful excuse to use to kill your baby.
That happens to be your opinion, Yoda. Stop spinning it as fact.

reply from: yoda

Do you have any idea what fascism is?

reply from: MaleNurse

How would an atheist know right from wrong?
What do you use as a standard of measure?
("If it feels good - it's okay")
You're the authority on moral issues alright!

reply from: Sigma

The Preamble is a statement of general purpose and is not technically enforcable. However, within that it also says that we are to secure the Blessing of Freedom for ourselves as well.

reply from: yoda

What's wrong, ns? Getting a little too close to home for you?
Want me to cover it up a little with some pretty euphemisms? How about "disengage her reproductive activities"????
Doesn't that sound better than "KILL HER BABY"?

reply from: Sigma

Are you claiming moral superiority?

reply from: nsanford

What's wrong, ns? Getting a little too close to home for you?
Want me to cover it up a little with some pretty euphemisms? How about "disengage her reproductive activities"????
Doesn't that sound better than "KILL HER BABY"?
It means the same thing, Yoda. You don't seem to get that.

reply from: MaleNurse

Over an atheist? - Yes

reply from: nsanford

I guess you are saying these people have no moral code.
http://www.godlessprolifers.org/home.html

reply from: yoda

NO, IT DOESN'T mean the same thing. The euphemism could mean anything....... anything I want it to mean.
The plain honest truth means what IT SAYS............. AND NOTHING ELSE!!
WHY can't you HANDLE THE TRUTH????

reply from: nsanford

I think it is you who cannot handle the truth, Yoda.

reply from: Sigma

Under what reasoning?

reply from: yoda

What IS the truth, ns?
Is abortion not about killing babies?
What IS the truth, ns?

reply from: nsanford

What IS the truth, ns?
Is abortion not about killing babies?
What IS the truth, ns?
The truth is that this is as much about protecting rights as it is about fetus's.

reply from: yoda

WHICH "right" is that, ns?
WHICH "right" are you trying to "protect"???
Would it happen to be the "right" to KILL YOUR BABY???
Is that the "right" you're talking about?????

reply from: MaleNurse

Yes, no moral code
They believe in the same thing I do (pro-life) (and that's all great) but they can't explain why. Their site reads:
"... because life is all there is and all that matters."
I'm here to tell you, that morals are an extention of God's will. We measure morals by a standard. (Jewish, Hindu, Buddhist, Christian, Eskimo, Scoobie-Dooist) whatever religeon you choose, provides a moral standard. A measure of moral right. An atheist has nothing compare against. Or your term "code"
I have nothing against an atheist, but I wouldn't sit in a Physiology class taught by an accountant.

reply from: nsanford

Yes, it is. But it is also called the right to our bodies.
It goes both ways!

reply from: nsanford

Yes, no moral code
They believe in the same thing I do (pro-life) (and that's all great) but they can't explain why. Their site reads:
"... because life is all there is and all that matters."
I'm here to tell you, that morals are an extention of God's will. We measure morals by a standard. (Jewish, Hindu, Buddhist, Christian, Eskimo, Scoobie-Dooist) whatever religeon you choose, provides a moral standard. A measure of moral right. An atheist has nothing compare against. Or your term "code"
I have nothing against an atheist, but I wouldn't sit in a Physiology class taught by an accountant.
You deny that men and women have a natural moral compass? Maybe I should give you a list of famous athiests:
Abraham Lincoln
Albert Einsein
Ernest Hemingway
and the list goes on...
I guess we should re-enslave all the blacks and split up the Union, because an atheist saved this country.

reply from: Sigma

Is this your only reasoning? That an athiest decides what is right without someone else telling him or her what is right, therefore they are morally inferior?

reply from: theamericancatholic

So the oath before testimony is a symbol as well as the Declaration of Independance and the preamble of the Constitution is unenforceable?
Is there anything else that you would care to get rid of to justify abortion?

reply from: Sigma

Is there anything provably enforcable that would disallow abortion?

reply from: MaleNurse

Famous Atheist:
Abraham Lincoln was a Christian
Albert Eistein was a scientist - (not an authority on morality)but I've heard 2 views on him;
Ernest Hemingway - who cares? wasn't he a drunk poet by a lake or something?
"Four score and eight years ago.....
"....dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal..."
Reference to God (the creator) here
I also read a site stating he was raised as a Christian - When his first love Ann Rutledge died he lost faith. Later while in Kentucky he re-ignited his faith and died as a Christian believer.

reply from: MaleNurse

Yes they are morally inferior.
No standards = nothing higher than or more important than "self"
"self" is the standard by which moral conduct is measured to the atheist.
"If it feels good - do it"
Sometimes, these atheist fall into "good". But they couldn't tell you how they got there. Maybe someone DID tell them earlier in life what is right and wrong, but I'd garantee you THAT person believed in something higher than "self"

reply from: Sigma

This is interesting. I would like to delve further into this, but it will have to be tonight or tomorrow as I don't have the time right now for a lengthy discussion.

reply from: ThunderKitten

Religion does not dictate morality. Being told what is right or wrong, either by society, one's parents, the Bible, or what have you, does not determine whether a person will behave morally. Believing in God does not stop someone from stealing, lying, raping, or watching Barney. ALL people require an "internal compass", or conscience, in order to behave justly. If one were to treat all people with kindness and help them whenever possible, but is an atheist, would that person be morally inferior to a Christian who embezzles, vandalizes, and gets into bar fights constantly?
Now, the Bible is a nice guidebook, and guidebooks are useful in helping someone understand what is and isn't right, but that doesn't mean I'm going to act any more evilly than you just because I don't think that this big, vindictive monster named God will send me to hell to burn in agony for all eternity if I screw up.

reply from: Hereforareason

"
Religion does not dictate morality. Being told what is right or wrong, either by society, one's parents, the Bible, or what have you, does not determine whether a person will behave morally. Believing in God does not stop someone from stealing, lying, raping, or watching Barney. ALL people require an "internal compass", or conscience, in order to behave justly. If one were to treat all people with kindness and help them whenever possible, but is an atheist, would that person be morally inferior to a Christian who embezzles, vandalizes, and gets into bar fights constantly?
Now, the Bible is a nice guidebook, and guidebooks are useful in helping someone understand what is and isn't right, but that doesn't mean I'm going to act any more evilly than you just because I don't think that this big, vindictive monster named God will send me to hell to burn in agony for all eternity if I screw up."
Where do you get your standard of right and wrong? Is it whatever feels right to you?
Do you believe in the bible, or just the parts that you like?
(By the way, if someone is candalizing, gets into fights constantly and such, he is not a Christian. To know what a true Christian is, you need to read the bible)
Amber

reply from: Sigma

I wish to clarify what you believe in this.
Your belief is that an athiest believes that there are biological reasons for actions, that there is a determinism of actions, while a belief in God allows for a "ghost in the machine", a soul, that is a free agent. Thus you believe that only those who believe in God can be held responsible for their actions, while a belief in evolution and biology instead can excuse themselves from moral responsibility.
As Steven Pinker explains, we can only blame people for an evil act when they intend the consequences and could have chosen otherwise. We don't convict a hunter who shoots a friend who he mistakes for a deer because they could not foresee and did not intend the outcome of their actions. You believe there is an "uncaused soul" that is free of biology to make decisions?
With the athiest, there would be no soul and so we would be animals with no higher concern than our own biology. Thus an athiest who murders would merely blame his biology, a pixel on the brain scan that places him apart and thus excuses his behavior as determined.
Is this a fair representation of your view?

reply from: MaleNurse

Naw! That's a bit too complicated. Understand that there's a difference between a "MORAL ACTION" ie. someone does something good.
and
Having "MORALS" Having the ability to understand Morality.(loosely defined)
An atheist can still DO something good.
I wouldn't at this point endorse a "ghost in the machine". The most simple example is: (Thou shall not murder) --> the bible says this. The Hindu writing might say this, the Torah says this, the Buddha writings say this. Each religeon says murder is bad. AND provides the rationale for WHY it is bad. This gives the empty cranium key insight and understanding to a simple moral issue.
The atheist on the other hand, will simply adhere to the law of the land. He doesn't know why murder is "bad" s/he simply avoids the consequences set by the law.
I'm not dismissing some inherent biological mechanism we're born with either. BUT, and that's a big BUTT ! - If you wanted to meaasure "moral ability" based on moral understanding, the atheist is inferior. How could s/he possibly understand WHY something is right or wrong without something codified to measure against.
And also the atheist does have a soul.

reply from: Sigma

You do not believe athiests can have an explanation for morals that does not involve God?
Were there to be a biological and evolutionary explanation for morality, do you still claim that their reasons are inferior?
In the absence of laws athiests would have no reason to behave morally? I don't believe you can support this to be so. Do you know, the system of gov't set up by our founders took human nature into account? The economic theory of capitalism as well? There is a reason that communism does not work, at least as it has been put into practice.
This appears to be contradictory. You admit there is an inherent biological mechanism, yet seem to deny that an athiest can use evolutionary reasoning as to why something is morally wrong. Why is evolutionary pressure an inferior reason for altruism than "God says so"?

reply from: dignitarian

Looks like I missed out on some interesting conversation in this thread.
I have previously asked nsanford whether he believed in the inalienability of rights, and his answer was yes. However, when it came to the first application of this principle, he flunked the "litmus" test hands down. Sigma though seems to naturally sense where it must lead, and is thus obviously reluctant to even go there.
I suspect Sigma and nsanford both appreciate the basic goodness of this principle (who wouldn't?), but neither has the honesty, backbone, and conviction to actually stand up for it as a matter of truth.
Instead, they abandon this most fundamental element of political freedom the first moment it happens to violate their own subjective sensibilities. Their responses do not reflect a personal philosophy based upon vision, reason, and principle at all, but rather superficiality, timidity, and vanity.
Here's the deal; either we (as a culture) embrace the concept of inalienable rights or we do not. It would be neat to pick and choose from within this principle as it might suit our material convenience. But then it wouldn't be a principle in truth at all would it?
If we abandon the principle of inalienable rights, what then is the ultimate guard against the ultimate human abuse? For it certainly it does not exist in law, as law can be formed by the will of any majority (or any tyrannical minority for that matter). Whether civil injustice, human slavery, or genocide; all can be (and have been) "justified" on a basis of law. The point is; good law can only exist on a basis of good principle, and to violate principle is to abandon principle.
Just one question for Sigma and nsanford:
Do you believe in the inalienability of the fundamental rights of human existence or not?
Regards,
Dignitarian
Edit: I apologize. I still don't know why my paragraph marks did not work. Can anyone guess what I might have done wrong?

reply from: Sigma

No. In our society, any right you would consider inalienable can be violated by due process of law (though depending on the right in question it can be more difficult than this). The Constitution was meant to change through amendments and interpretation, so, yes, as you said an overwhelming majority can make their will law. This is called "democracy" (though our gov't is not strictly such).
The system of gov't you wish is not the one you live in. I would suggest moving to a new society if you wish to live in the society you envision.

reply from: dignitarian

Sigma:
So based on your analysis, if the majority claimed that people with red hair did not deserve tha right to life, you would be fine with this?
Dig

reply from: Sigma

It doesn't work that way. Unless the Constitution were completely re-written I do not believe such a thing can happen. Certainly the Constitution can be torn to shreds if the vast majority of people hate a certain group (or if virtually all of the members of Congress did), but that is the fault of the vast majority of people, not the system itself.
Theoretically speaking, however, no I would not be fine with that. I am not fine with some things being legal, I am not fine with some things being illegal. I am, however, content for the most part with the way our gov't and society is supposed to work. This does not include inalienable rights.

reply from: Tam

This is just a guess, but they may have thought that a right to life was so obviously the most basic right that only a complete dummy would question it.
True, but the rights of the mother clearly outweigh the fetus's.
Do you think ANY right the mother has outweighs EVERY right the child has? Do you think her right to free speech, for example, outweighs her child's right to life? If there was a conflict between a speech the mother wanted to give, and the child's life, would you say she has to be permitted to give the speech, even though doing so would kill her baby? Or is it that each right the mother has supercedes the SAME right in the child? In other words, is it that the mother's right to life supercedes the child's right to life? What is your opinion?

reply from: MaleNurse

No. He can not (God being someone higher than self).
Instinct, survival mechanism, brain love center, hormones - all fall under helping ME get through the here and now. "Sacrifice" for example goes to a higher level.
Yes. An act of kindness is still good. But staying on "moral inferiority" their ability to judge moral issues that are outside of the box(of self) is by chance alone. I would rather have the ability to understand and apply moral thought than to constantly be acting on instinct. Instincts are usually intended to save ME here and now.
Be truthful now. If we didn't have laws what would stop them? If s/he had some "nature - religeon" or something - the "nature - power" would be higher than "self" but outside of that - without laws we'd surely have anarchy.
Yes.
So now you'll buy into the federalist papers as to what our founders had in mind?
What religeon are you Sigma? I know I asked b4 but can't remember where you said it. While your at it...political party?

reply from: dignitarian

It doesn't work that way. Unless the Constitution were completely re-written I do not believe such a thing can happen. Certainly the Constitution can be torn to shreds if the vast majority of people hate a certain group (or if virtually all of the members of Congress did), but that is the fault of the vast majority of people, not the system itself.
Theoretically speaking, however, no I would not be fine with that. I am not fine with some things being legal, I am not fine with some things being illegal. I am, however, content for the most part with the way our gov't and society is supposed to work. This does not include inalienable rights.
Sigma:

Your statement; "Unless the Constitution were completely re-written I do not believe such a thing can happen." is an interesting way to say something without actually saying anything. Am I to understand that legalized human abuse is impossible or am I to understand the Constitution cannot be "re-written" to allow such a thing to happen. In any case, based upon history, neither assertion appears believable in the least.
Also, it is good to understand that you are "content" about how our government and society work. However, your statements leave no clues whatever about how it is that you think; "our gov't and society is supposed to work", except that you inexplicably must insist that it can have nothing to do with inalienable rights whatsoever.
But nevertheless (and interestingly) you do state that to do so (allow legal human abuse) would ultimately be the fault of the people. And to this I agree. However, all you have accomplished here is a journey in circular logic, as the only fact remaining before us is that a healthy cultural belief in the basic rights of human existence is an absolute necessity to avert legalized human abuse. (Translate this as a belief in the inalienability of the basic rights of human existence.)
And all you have to say is that; "It doesn't work that way."
Well, if; "It doesn't work that way."? What way does it work?
Regards,
Dignitarian
Edit: If anyone thinks they might know why the paragraph function is not working for me, please let me know. Thanks.

reply from: MaleNurse

Nice to hear you in this thread.
To help with paragraph functions do as follows.
click "reply" to whatever post you choose.
Then appearing in the left margin of the reply box you will read:
"HTML code is not permitted. Special SYMBOLS(in blue)....
Click on "symbols"
This will give you basics on the functions we have available.
Hope that helps!
Dave

reply from: Sigma

Hold on, I want to make sure we're both clear about what we are discussing. Are you saying that everyone, atheists included, make moral decisions based on God or some higher power and that atheists are morally inferior because they do not know or do not accept where those morals are coming from? Or are you saying that the evolutionary sociobiological explanation for altruistic behavior and other social behaviors is inferior?
Then you believe that a biological understanding would lead to moral nihilism? If we are not created by God for a higher purpose then we are amoral egoists who look out only for number one?
As Madison wrote, "What is government itself but the greatest of all reflections on human nature?"
The legal scholar John McGinnis argues that our Constitution was consciously designed to implement the goal of reciprocity, which is a part of human nature. The Commerce Clause encourages reciprocal exchange; the Contracts Clause protects us from cheaters; the Takings Clause protects us from rulers who confiscate the fruits of our labors. It also embodies the feature of human nature that most impressed the framers: the drive for dominance and esteem. This, they feared, imperils all forms of government. How to anticipate and limit the corruption of the someone that must be empowered to make decisions consumed a large part of their attention. Thus the separation of powers with checks and balances were made. "Parchment barriers" were not enough, said James Madison. "[A]mbition must be made to counteract ambition."
These facets of human nature would still exist were gov't to be abolished.
I don't generally align myself with any particular party, but I generally view myself as having libertarian ideals. I also generally view myself as agnostic.

reply from: Sigma

Dignitarian, you misunderstood and I apologize if I was not clear. Your statement of if the majority claimed that people with red hair did not deserve tha right to life [...] was what I was responding to. The Constitution has a process that must be followed to modify it. A majority of people does not satisfy this, thus my statement "it doesn't work that way". Unless the Constitution were re-written to allow a simple majority control, this cannot happen (unless a legal loophole exists, but I do not believe one does).
Our gov't and society is supposed to work as it is laid down in the Constitution. I say "supposed to" because I'm not convinced our society is working that way currently.
It is true that the Constitution is not a guarantee of a happy and moral society, of course. It failed to stand in the way of the genocide of native peoples, the slavery and segregation of black people and the disenfranchisement of women. However, this can be addressed by changes that the document itself allows. The Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth amendment expanded the legal circle to include those groups.
There are other failings, such as saying little about the conduct of foreign affairs, but this is perhaps unsolvable by a national document. It also is incapable of stipulating values and customs, perhaps consciously. Those we determine as individuals, as individual freedom was considered of paramount importance.
However, there has been relative success with our constitutional democracy, and inalienable rights that cannot be infringed upon is not a part of our Constitution.
I don't believe your claim that a cultural belief in basic human rights ("healthy" or otherwise) will avert legalized human abuse (I suppose this depends on your definition of "abuse"), or even that such a society exists (and perhaps the possibility of such a society existing).

reply from: Uruviel

Wow. Atheists cannot possibly have an explanation for morals that do not involve God? So unless humankind has this big fearsome God threatening them with hellfire and monsters eating their flesh for eternity unless they're good, then humans will naturally revert to lawlessness and immorality, that's what you're saying. In other words, humankind would be no better than any other animal, without understanding or possession of a sense of morality. That's kind of equating God with an executioner. The executioner says: be good and live long and prosper, or be bad and you get to ride the lightening. God says: be good and enjoy the beauty of heaven, or be bad and Satan will roast the flesh off your bones. It's also putting humankind on a level with any other lowly dumb animal of the earth...we need that fear of retribution from God in order to act in a civilized and moral manner? Without it, we're dogs fighting over a scrap of meat in the gutter?
My question is, Why bother to save any humans, then, if we're all a bunch of immoral animals without a fearsome God flying around in the sky to keep us in line? How about the fetus of an atheist woman, is it worth saving? What if there is a "gene" or a disposition toward atheism that is passed on to the fetus from the mother? We don't know if there is or isn't so you can't arbitrarily say "bullsh*t" because nobody really knows. Would that fetus be worth saving, knowing that it likely will grow to be an atheist? Why or why not?
I'm reading here: Take God out of the mix, and we would have no clue as to a sense of what we should be doing or not doing as this so-called "higher species" that we're supposed to be.
To which I say: codswallop. We are a higher species because we have the capability to understand that murdering each other at will is not in the best interest of a peaceful society, and a peaceful society is what we all want to live in because the alternative means hardship and grief for all. It is my opinion that we do not need the concept of a fearsome God to threaten us with damnation in order to "be good". Being "good" is in our best interest as a society, and as a higher species, we recognize that and live accordingly.

reply from: MaleNurse

No, the atheist doesn't believe in a higher power. That's at least my own definition of an atheist.
This part by itself is true. Just to clarify, Do you understand that I'm not referring to a particular moral action(good). It's analogous to giving medicine for an illness.
A patient with a sore throat gets some penicillin from a friend. The sore throat goes away. OR A patient gets some penicillin from the Pharmacist and the sore throat goes away. One of these 2 guys is "pharmacologically inferior".
I don't know about that. Being created by God(higher power) doesn't necessarily lead to true moral understandings. Being connected to what/how God thinks (though the bible,Torah,Koran, Wikinpedia,ect.) gives the true moral insight.
Most simply I can say the biological view doesn't have the big picture moral understanding.
Doesn't this enforce what I'm saying? Are you agreeing with me here?
I can't tell

reply from: MaleNurse

First of all; You jumped into discussion on moral inferiority. The point where you jumped in is not at all the focus.
Acting/behaving morally (good) is different than having a moral understanding.
Having the component of moral understanding in ones knowledge base, gives one the edge of moral superiority over the one that does not.
Any religeon could provide this understanding.
Which religeon is correct has not been a focus.
Now maybe you can jump in from this point and I'll disregard your previous post.

reply from: yoda

I hope we can get away from the concept of "superior morality", as that sounds rather egotistical. I prefer simple, honest, modest morality without any claim of superiority, myself.

reply from: Sigma

You believe, then, that both perform moral actions but only the one believing in a higher power knows why he or she performs that moral action?
I must point out again that there is an evolutionary explanation for moral behavior that atheists can point to for the reasons behind their moral behavior. Are you saying then that this explanation is inferior because it does not contain the "big picture", as you say?

It supports either the viewpoint that moral behavior is instinctual regardless of a belief in a higher power or the viewpoint that all moral behavior is influenced by a higher power, whether the actor knows it or not. The only apparent explanation of this would be that altruism and moral behavior exist because of their evolutionary advantages.
In neither case would it support the contention that anarchy would be the result of the lack of laws.

reply from: dignitarian

Dave:
Thanks. Good to see that you're here too.
I looked at "Special symbols", but it didn't give me a clue as to why I can't impose a new paragraph.
Dig

reply from: Sigma

If I may break in, what are you trying to accomplish? To merely create a new paragraph you should not require HTML tags, just hit enter to make white space.

reply from: dignitarian

Sigma:
You are a lot of work.
You escaped the intent of my last question, simply by implying or saying that a (simple) majority can not modify the Constitution.

Okay then. Permit me to re-phrase my question.
So based on your analysis, if a 2/3's majority in the Senate and House plus 4/5's of the state legislatures claimed that people with red hair did not deserve the right to life, you would be fine with this?
I gotta tell you though Sigma; the creativity and verbal gynastics you employ to "substantiate" the pro-choice position is astounding.
Now for that I stand impressed.
Now if I could just get that paragraph function to work.
Regards,
Dignitarian

reply from: dignitarian

If I may break in, what are you trying to accomplish? To merely create a new paragraph you should not require HTML tags, just hit enter to make white space.
Sigma:
I hate to state the obvious (once again), but I already tried that.
Dig

reply from: dignitarian

test
test
sorry, just testing again
still can't get it to work
The preview actually looks fine, but when I post the message, the paragraph breaks disappear.

reply from: Sigma

I answered that question. I said: Theoretically speaking, however, no I would not be fine with that.
Is there something unclear with that statement? It is within the realm of possibility, but would not realistically happen.
I was not attempting to be pedantic. I was using "vast majority" (since I don't really care exactly how many are required in this discussion), and when you used "majority" I wanted to make sure you knew it was a more complicated process than simply having a majority.

reply from: Sigma

testtest
Looks like the horizontal rule creates a line break Would look sort of funny but then you could organize your posts into paragraphs

reply from: Uruviel

Do what you like, makes no difference to me. This is a message board, isn't it? Thus I will jump in where I feel like it.
I stand by what I say, and hold that your concept of needing a vengeful God, or the need for any religion for that matter, in order for a person to have morality, is pure and utter bunk. By needing this vengeful God to "keep us in line", you are inferring that we as humans are an inferior species and incapable of understanding that the need to act in a civilized manner will only benefit us immensely, and that we need the threat of a "big daddy" with a nasty temper who will throw us into some fiery pit if we transgress.
I also agree with Yodavater. This "superior morality" you speak of is nothing but egocentric blow-talk that most religions like to espouse. Morality is morality. If someone has "superior morality", then the opposite must be said, that someone has "inferior morality". And if someone has "inferior morality", then they have NO morality at all because there is no such thing as "inferior morality", it is an oxymoron. Which makes the concept of "superior morality" utterly ridiculous.

reply from: dignitarian

Thanks Sigma.I will try it.edit: Looks like it works. Thanks

reply from: dignitarian

Sigma:
Thanks for the discussion on inalienable rights and the Constitution.

You have clearly demonstrated what is necessary in order to "rationally" support a position of pro-choice:
No inalienable rights.
No sense of the natural law.
No universal order of right and wrong.
No objective order of justice.
No intrinsic human worth and dignity.
Regards,
Dignitarian

reply from: ThunderKitten

Ok, that is true. I recognize that fish are sentient beings deserving of life (moral understanding), yet I eat them (acting immorally).
You see, it's that superiority bit that irks me. You've been claiming religous folks are morally superior to atheists. You are religous, I am an atheist, therefore you are claiming to be morally superior to me! If you'll exscuse me, I find that to be highly offensive.
You know, Christianity wouldn't bother me if Christians weren't so obnoxious about it. If it was just "I believe this, this is what I think is right and wrong, etc., etc." I'd probably be like, "Oh, that's interesting, yeah, I can respect that," but that's not the kind of behavior I've encountered. It's always been stuff like the pagans are evil, we've gotta cram Christ down your throat, we must cast the demons out of you because you don't want to wait your turn for t-ball (yes, that happened to me once when I was a kid), the list goes on. And now this superiority bunk? What ever happened to humility and love thy neighbor, eh?
I knew a Buddhist once. He had some interesting things to say about his beliefs, and it didn't make me uncomfortable at all. I actually liked hearing what he had to say. Maybe it was the fact that he wasn't into holding his religion over anyone's head.
Since you mention it, is there a "correct" religion in your view, or all they all pretty good?

reply from: MaleNurse

I never mentioned moral action under the threat of a "vengeful God"
I never mentioned heaven and hell
I am strictly referring to moral knowledge.
How do you acquire it? Born with it?
I see I'm not articulating what I mean.
I know many pro-choice Christians, Jews, Hiddhu
I know some pro-life atheists .
You see, with respect to the moral ACT - religeon makes no difference.
Exactly the opposite. I give up all science and logic to believe in something I can't prove. Furthermore, I surrender my "egocentric" view of my life to revolve NOT around what I want, but rather to revolve around God and His will.

What is morally good to one person, might not be to another.
Obviously this is the case with abortion
How does the gov't establish what is morally good vs evil?
It has boiled down to what the supreme court justices view/ed as the moral intent of the framers of the constitution.
They were Christians. You can decide for yourself what their intent was with respect to the value life in the unborn fetus.

reply from: ThunderKitten

Exactly the opposite. I give up all science and logic to believe in something I can't prove. Furthermore, I surrender my "egocentric" view of my life to revolve NOT around what I want, but rather to revolve around God and His will.
But revolving your view around God is *what you want*. If you didn't want that, you wouldn't do it. It's all about you, MaleNurse.
You know, I used to believe in the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, Santa Claus, all of that. Was I giving up all science and logic to believe in something I couldn't prove? Yes. Did I eventually learn that all that stuff was a load of hooey? Yes. What's your point?
Do you have anything better to do than get people's dander up? Are you gonna give up this self righteous bit, or do you get your jollies infuriating the heathens?

reply from: theamericancatholic

I dont know about male nurse, but I love infuriating the heathens.
But seriously, I am not sure why it is that ideas, such as abstinance, or morality and others, while they may have religious overtones, are automatically rejected out of hand by the non-religious. Abstinance for example, while it may be practiced by Catholics, it could certainly have many benefits for anyone.

reply from: MaleNurse

I said a prayer for your enlightenment - ThunderKitten.
http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=ecclesiastes%2012&version=31

reply from: yoda

As a "heathen", I find that puzzling.
I am a "heathen", and I don't reject either of those things. Please don't generalize or stereotype, it doesn't help our "joint effort".

reply from: theamericancatholic

Perhaps I should have many or some non-faithful, particulary among the pro-choice movement. Most pro-choice people tune a pro-lifer out the moment they think that anything you say has a remotely religious overtone.
As for heathens, I refer to people that are genuinely ambivelant towards religion and pro-life people. We are in this together Yodavater and think that your presense as a non-religious pro-life individual is particularly vexing to the pro-abortionists. The mistake they make is believing that morality and religion are the same thing.


2017 ~ LifeDiscussions.org ~ Discussions on Life, Abortion, and the Surrounding Politics