Lawmakers From The Great Theocracy Of Utah Looking To Block Porn On Cell Phones

from the pron dept

When we've talked in the past about government attempting to outright block pornography sites, those efforts have typically been aimed at sites hosting child pornography. Blocking child porn is a goal that's impossible to rebel against, though the methods for achieving it are another matter entirely. Too often, these attempts task ISPs and mobile operators with the job of keeping this material out of the public eye, which is equal parts burdensome, difficult to do, and rife with collateral damage. Other nations, on the other hand, have gone to some lengths to outright block pornography in general, such as in Pakistan for religious reasons, or in the UK for save-the-children reasons. If the attempts to block child porn resulted in some collateral damage, the attempts to outright censor porn from the internet resulted in a deluge of such collateral damage. For this reason, and because we have that pesky First Amendment in America, these kinds of efforts attempted by the states have run into the problem of being unconstitutional in the past.

But, as they say, if at first you don't succeed, just try it in an even more conservatively prudish state again. Which brings us to Utah, where state Senator Todd Weiler is leading the effort to purge his state of any access to porn on mobile devices.

Utah Senator Todd Weiler has proposed a bill to rid the state of porn by adding Internet filters and anti-porn software on all cell phones and requiring citizens to opt-in before viewing porn online. It's to save the children, he says. Weiler successfully pushed an anti-porn resolution through the state Senate earlier this year, declaring porn a "public health crisis." He now hopes to take his movement a step further by making it harder for Utah citizens to have access to digital porn.

"A cell phone is basically a vending machine for pornography," Weiler told TechCrunch, using the example of cigarettes sold in vending machines and easily accessed by children decades ago.

This is where we'd usually talk about how this sort of thing is almost certainly unconstitutional, not to mention how easily circumvented the attempt would be. And both of those remain true for this case. But I would like to instead focus on the lazy analogies Weiler chooses to make and let them serve as an example of how easily twisted people's opinions can become if you simply add "saving the children" to the goals of a particular piece of legislation.

Let's start with the quote above, although I promise you there is more from Senator Weiler that we'll discuss. He claims that a cell phone is basically a porno vending machine, like a cigarette vending machine. The only problem with his analogy is how wildly untrue it is. A cigarette vending machine has no other purpose than, you know, vending smokes. A cell phone, on the other hand, has a few other purposes. Like playing video games, for instance. Or serving as a music device. Or making god damned phone calls. A claim that a phone is simply a vending machine for porn shows either a tragic misunderstanding of basic technology or, more likely, is simply a veiled hate-bomb at the internet itself. Regardless, it is not upon government to decide how our property is used lawfully. And it isn't on government to parent children. We have people for that. They're called parents.

But Weiler wasn't done.

The senator says England was successful in blocking porn on the Internet. Prime Minister David Cameron pushed legislation through in 2013 requiring U.K. Internet service providers to give citizen's the option to filter out porn.

The good Senator must have a strange definition for success, because the UK law is easily circumvented, has managed to censor all kinds of educational and informational non-pornography sites and material, and was created by a lovely chap who was later arrested on charges of child pornography himself. If one wishes to draw upon the success of something in order to push his own interests, that something probably shouldn't be a complete dumpster fire.

Local Utah ISPs are already calling the plan unrealistic and comparing it to censorious governments that I am certain Senator Weiler would recoil from. Not that this matters, I guess, since Senator Weiler fantastically admits that he has no idea how this will all work under his law.

Weiler says he doesn't know how it would work but just wants to put the idea out there and that his main concern is kids looking at porn.

"The average age of first exposure to hard-core pornography for boys is eleven years old," he said. "I'm not talking about seeing a naked woman. I'm talking about three men gang-raping a woman and pulling her hair and spitting on her face. I don't think that's the type of sex ed we want our kids to have."

Look, I usually like to back up my rebuttals to these types of things with facts and figures, but I just don't have them in this case. That isn't going to stop me from declaring that the average first exposure to pornography is an eleven year old boy seeing exactly three men gang-raping a woman is a line of bullshit so deep that the Utah Senate certainly must provision knee-high boots to its membership for such a thing to even be suggested. And this should tell you everything you need to know about Senator Weiler's plans: he doesn't know how successful it's been elsewhere, he doesn't know how it works, and he's willing to sell it to the public on the basis of a scary lie.

Oh, and it's unconstitutional, so screw your law altogether.


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  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 25 May 2016 @ 1:04pm

    As a little reminder...

    Assuming the stats haven't changed in the six years since the infographic was thrown together(and given the underlying reasons behind them I highly doubt they have), take a wild guess as to which state has the highest porn subscription rate per thousand home broadband users:

    Utah.

    As for '...the type of sex ed we want our kids to have.'

    From Wikipedia

    -25 states require abstinence to be stressed.

    Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Washington, Wisconsin


    In his shoes I'd spend more time worrying about the actual sex-ed the kids in his state were getting rather than the theoretical 'education' some hypothetical 11-year old might be getting.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 25 May 2016 @ 6:38pm

      Re: As a little reminder...

      Assuming the stats haven't changed in the six years since the infographic was thrown together(and given the underlying reasons behind them I highly doubt they have), take a wild guess as to which state has the highest porn subscription rate per thousand home broadband users:


      I don't understand your point here. Is this supposed to be a giant ad hom attack against the whole state?

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      • icon
        That One Guy (profile), 25 May 2016 @ 7:54pm

        Re: Re: As a little reminder...

        Pointing out statistics is not an ad-hom as far as I'm aware, so no. If my comment had a point it would probably be 'Someone in a state with high porn use should probably focus on why so many of their fellows are interested in porn before they start going on about how bad it is, especially if they're proposing laws on the subject, as apparently a good number would disagree with them.'

        As for the 'underlying reasons' I mentioned, that's basic biology/psychology. Take a bunch of hormonal teenagers just finding out about sexuality and what it involves. Then tell them that doing anything about those new urges of theirs with someone else is 'sinful' and to be avoided.

        The hormones and the urges from them are still there, but they are told not to do anything about them with anyone else outside of marriage. Put those two together and a high rate of porn usages isn't exactly surprising; it acts as a release valve for said urges, can be done privately, and doesn't involve anyone else.

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      • icon
        Uriel-238 (profile), 25 May 2016 @ 10:34pm

        Regarding porn involvement as a negative...

        I think that Senator Todd Weiler may regard porn consumption as a bad thing. There are plenty of people, including, evidently, a large number of Utahns who seem to not regard porn use as a bad thing.

        Western culture is generally easy about sexuality, a product of The Church being uneasy about sexuality and influencing culture for fifteen-plus centuries. And as a result expressions of sexuality, including porn, serve not just for its prurient functions but also as an expression of liberty.

        Hence, Spain's stripping years after the fall of Franco's regime, in which gratuitous sex scenes in otherwise mainstream Spanish cinema were included in celebration of finally being free of Franco's strict censorship regimen.

        Denmark, similarly has the most extensive rights to free speech, and so Danes are pretty proud that their nation features the greatest, most diverse selection of available porn. They also sex up their movies because they can.

        Here in California we celebrate California v. Freeman which explicitly enshrined the right to create pornographic film and video, and to have performers engage in sexual acts for the process. As a result California is the porn capital of the world and shows that if anti-porn pushes too hard in a society that wants free speech, you may end up with law that specifies that you can make porn, and what kind of porn you can make.

        Which is something that a lot of prudish legislators would rather not explicitly on the books.

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        • icon
          Uriel-238 (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 2:15am

          Re: Regarding porn involvement as a negative...

          Because I'm dumb sometimes.

          Western culture is generally uneasy about sexuality...

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          • icon
            Richard (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 3:28am

            Re: Re: Regarding porn involvement as a negative...

            I find it interesting that religions that are the most prudish in these matters (Islam, and it seems now Mormonism) often seem to be quite the opposite when it comes to the rights and behaviour of the ruling patriarchy. In particular both of these have allowed and in fact encouraged polygamy and even child marriage. I don't really take kindly to the idea of being given lessons in sexual morality from a bloke with four wives!

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            • icon
              Uriel-238 (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 10:37am

              Child Marriage

              Actually child marriage has only been recognized as a problem recently, with the pedo-witchhunt triggered ironically by an incident without merit.

              The early eighties saw a moral panic due to Repressed Memory Therapy (a dubious use of hypnosis to resurface repressed memories and as we discovered, add suggestions by the therapist) which lead to the McMartin preschool trial and the scare over Satanic Ritual Abuse.

              Before that we were less concerned about presexualizing our kids, and throughout the twentieth century, Christian marriages to girls as young as nine years old were acceptable and practiced. (Which, yes, included obligating them to their bridal duties.)

              It was only in the nineties that US state laws were revised to preclude child marriage except in special cases, say, when overseen by a family judge. But until recently, some states had no lower age.

              Sadly, of course, we've swung the other way, now with parents freaking out and kids going to jail for playing doctor or experimenting around below the Romeo-and-Juliette window. Our scare about teen sexting is influenced by the SRA scare. It's one of the reasons that brass boobs aren't allowed on Facebook and sex in video games (already rated for adults) is frowned upon.

              I can't speak for the UK or the EU, but yeah, forcing children into marriages before they could legally consent is a long standing tradition with church backing here in the US.

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              • icon
                Richard (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 11:31am

                Re: Child Marriage

                forcing children into marriages before they could legally consent is a long standing tradition with church backing here in the US.

                And those same churches were also extremely prudish - which is exactly the point I was trying to make.

                The key issue here is people in authority making one set of rules for everyone else - whilst living by a quite different set themselves.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 6:57am

      Re: As a little reminder...

      You forget. These kinds assholes aren't concerned with trying to make sure kids get the right sex education, they're generally concerned with trying make sure kids get no sex education whatsoever.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 May 2016 @ 2:22pm

    Back in April, Weiler said that pornography was ruining marriages and thus creating a burden for the state by having women and children without fathers on welfare.

    But among the more common reasons and demographic scenarios for divorce involve lower levels of education and income, getting married too young, lack of equality in the relationship, and abuse.

    I don't see Weiler championing jobs programs and free education and raising the age for marriage and preventing spousal abuse if he's really concerned about marriages being ruined.

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    • icon
      JoeCool (profile), 25 May 2016 @ 4:45pm

      Re:

      Back in April, Weiler said that pornography was ruining marriages and thus creating a burden for the state by having women and children without fathers on welfare.


      That's GOOD - I'm sure most women and all children want their fathers to be working. That was what you meant, right? They are without fathers on welfare? ;)

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      • icon
        Anonymous Anonymous Coward (profile), 25 May 2016 @ 7:09pm

        Re: Re:

        Well to be fair, both parents could be working and still eligible for welfare.

        Sad, sad state of affairs, and tells us nothing about whether porn causes anything. Porn providers would like to think that it causes something.

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  • icon
    Ryunosuke (profile), 25 May 2016 @ 2:30pm

    Come to Utah: The Iran of the USA!

    ...

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 25 May 2016 @ 5:04pm

      Re:

      I keep hearing the (mostly right wing) talk about how Sharia law is bad and how it is being implemented everywhere by the PC police ... but it seems to be exactly the same thing that many religious groups in this country are actively attempting to implement.

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      • icon
        That One Guy (profile), 25 May 2016 @ 5:14pm

        Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

        Totally different. You see when they try to impose their religious beliefs and restrictions on those around them it's unwarranted and repressive, because the source of the morals they're trying to impose on everyone else is just some random book, and it's not like that has any real authority backing it up, it's just a bunch of paper after all.

        When we do it though we're doing it according to the Holy Scriptures of our All-Knowing, All-Powerful, and most important to this discussion All-Moral God, and as such we're absolutely in the right telling those reprobates to stop being so immoral and get their act together, and if that takes passing laws to make it illegal to do otherwise then that's just the price of upholding righteousness and combating sin wherever it may be found.

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 25 May 2016 @ 6:23pm

          Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

          When libs do it you can't buy a 32 oz soda. You must shower and piss with the opposite sex. Look, you think evolution is true and yet complain when the powerful oppress the weak. This is just evolution in action. Why complain about it? Become the alpha male or accept your measly place in the universe. Right?

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          • icon
            That One Guy (profile), 25 May 2016 @ 7:39pm

            Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

            One...

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          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 25 May 2016 @ 8:31pm

            Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

            Look, you think evolution is true...

            I bet he even believes in the theory of the round earth.

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 4:06am

              Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

              Yes, actually the description of the earth in Genesis shows it is round long before you believed it was.

              But tell me, why do you cry for fairness, justice, morals and right and wrong in a world that is just a cosmic accident? Where the strong survive? Where it is eat or be eaten? These things don't exist in your world view yet you want them. You want the benefits of God without God.

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              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 4:39am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                Bullshit, theres talk of a circle, not a sphere. Try again.

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 4:50am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                  It always amazes me how non-believers pretend to know the bible. I guess lying is ok in their world view.

                  https://answersingenesis.org/answers/books/taking-back-astronomy/the-universe-confirms-the-bibl e/

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                  • identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 5:39am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                    I like reading illogical rants in the morning, it supplements my coffee habit.

                    Please keep up the good work. Do you have a newsletter I can subscribe to?

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                    • identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 5:44am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                      I love reading rebuttals that you know, don't actually have a rebuttal. If you had even one smoking gun in any branch of science that proved evolution or disproved the bible you would come up with it. But nobody has that, after all the years of searching for it. There is one field that evolution should be clearly evident in and that is genetics. But the only mechanism that can be found in genetics is the mechanism to lose information or produce defects. Nowhere is there a mechanism to gain information. Information like how to grow a leg when normally have fins.

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                      • identicon
                        Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 6:53am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                        That was not a rebuttal, nice try but it fell short of its goal.

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                        • identicon
                          Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 6:59am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                          Obviously it wasn't because there isn't one. Your faith in science has let you down.

                          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                          • icon
                            techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 8:52am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                            Faith is what you clowns have, believing stuff without evidence. Science has plenty of evidence so you just fail again. No surprise there.

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                            • identicon
                              Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 9:52am

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                              Science has theories and evidence but not "facts" that prove evolution. Unfortunately the school system teaches evolution as fact rather than as the still unproven theories that they are.

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                      • icon
                        techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 8:51am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                        But nobody has that, after all the years of searching for it

                        Actually, evolution is pretty much the most repeatedly proven scientific (!) theory ever. And no, noone who cares about the truth gives a damn about theist clowns like you covering their ears going "Na na na na na, I can't hear you".

                        Most funny of course is that even if you clowns could muster the intelligence to disprove evolution, this would not do ONE BIT to prove your god exists. Tough shit.

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                        • identicon
                          Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 9:54am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                          If you are correct why get so upset about it? But you know science hasn't proven any of that stuff yet so you get upset because you can't point to anything solid. It makes people mad when they can't back up their views.

                          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                          • icon
                            techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 8:49pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                            Upset? Try again. A guy who links to answersingenesis certainly won't make anyone here lose any sleep. You just don't get to proselytize on a board where I am a regular.

                            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                      • icon
                        Uriel-238 (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 10:58am

                        How evolution works.

                        Actually fish did grow legs where before they had fins. Across generations, the advantage of fins that could be used as struts to push against the sand allowed them to traverse more of the beach (for purposes of foraging or mating). The ones who could use more of the beach had an advantage over those who didn't, and would populate more.

                        Across many many generations, advantages that could utilize land prevailed until later species still no longer returned to the sea.

                        And yes, we have extensive species histories as to this process and more than a few science shows that explain it.

                        As for genetics, we actually have established predictability, and the astounding similarity that humans have to our other hominid cousins. We've even located where one of our genes fused together, which is why we have twenty-three to their twenty-four.

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                  • identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 7:10am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                    It always amazes me how believers try to be historical revisionists. No one ever read the bible and came to the conclusion that the earth was a sphere. This is entirely a case of people learning the earth is a sphere and then going back later and trying to find rationalizations in their favorite holy book.

                    After all, pretty much the entirety of the Flat-Earther movement is based explicitly on literal interpretations of the bible that those people are using as their justification for believing the earth is flat.

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                    • icon
                      Uriel-238 (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 11:53am

                      The sperical earth model is Helenist circa 600 BCE

                      Early evidence of it was the circular shape of the Earth's shadow on the moon during a lunar eclipse.

                      The Earth being a flat disc surrounded by water was a model before that, and was commonly regarded in the early middle ages, though dismissed by scholars within and outside of the Church.

                      The Church like any other hierarchical organization never lined notions that might challenge its authority, hence the whole messy Galileo affair. Heliocentrism was a religious controversy into the 20th century.

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                  • icon
                    techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 8:42am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                    I guess lying is ok in their world view.

                    Said the guy linking to answersingenesis, LOL! You can't make this up.

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                  • icon
                    SteveMB (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 8:52am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                    Answers In Genesis? Really?

                    The only question remaining is: Idiot or Troll?

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                    • icon
                      techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 9:07am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                      Christian. Nuff said.

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                      • icon
                        Uriel-238 (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 3:23pm

                        Christians come in 40,000 flavors.

                        As with atheists or feminists or conservatives, Christiandom is a very wide net with very diverse opinions. You can't fairly judge them all based on encounters with a few.

                        Anonymous Coward is born again, which is to say he went through an identity crisis and found coping methods in his current belief system, so of course he is invested in retaining his current position.

                        Faith is a position of deferment, a surrender of his own agency for that of a higher authority, in this case, a specific church and a specific interpretation of Judeo-Christian scripture. There is no accomodation for further reason or consideration on that basis.

                        But not all Christians are like that. By far.

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                  • icon
                    Uriel-238 (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 5:05pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                    Do you know the bible?

                    Does your god endorse the CIA extrajudicial detention and interrogation program? the CIA drone strike programs in Afghanistan and Pakistan? The NSA surveillance state? The FBI police state?

                    I suspect you know your bible less and apologies more. Every faith functions on interpretations of scripture, selections of which ones are more important than others, decisions of what is allegory, and what is literal.

                    They have to, lest you think firebombing a city or annihilation of the entire world might be just.

                    Who do you let make those decisions for you?

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              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 7:06am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                You seem to think that people who accept evolution as all being guilty of the "is-ought" fallacy. Almost no one is trying to some how base their morals on evolution. We base our morals on the world we want to live in. Even if there's no objective purpose or ultimate justice, people still don't want to see others hurt.

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 7:09am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                  You have contradicted yourself. You base your morals on the world you want to live and but don't want to see people hurt. So how do you justify slavery during the early years of the US? How do you justify it today since it is said there are more slaves today than any other period in history?

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                  • identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 7:15am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                    I guess I have to repeat myself. We're not basing our morals on how the world IS, we're basing them on how we WANT the world to be.

                    I don't get what you're asking about how I justify slavery. I don't justify it because it isn't just.

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                    • identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 7:28am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                      If you base your morals on how you want the world to be then your morals can be anything, even including slavery. You say it isn't just yet you have not yardstick to measure just. In the world of evolution there is no such thing as just. An african male lion will kill or drive off his competition and then kill the cubs so he can have his own. Why would it be any different with people if we are but a cosmic accident?

                      If society wants slaves, they can have them. If they don't, they can outlaw them. But there is no right or wrong to it. The founding fathers would be wrong when they said we had inalienable rights. Inalienable rights would come from outside ourselves. In your world, there is no outside.

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                      • identicon
                        Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 8:17am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                        You're right, it might be much easier to convince the rest of the world to be just if I could just make up some objective truth that just so happened to coincide with my own morals to give my own sense of right and wrong a greater sense of authority as you have.

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                        • identicon
                          Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 8:21am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                          I have not greater authority, that belongs to God.

                          At least now you are starting to understand your own world view and see that your morals are baseless. The part you still don't understand is the reason you even know there is right and wrong is because God has revealed it to us. If there was no God, you would not have this belief that there is some kind of right and wrong because there wouldn't be such a thing.

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                          • identicon
                            Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 8:30am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                            It's not just that I understand that my own morals are baseless, it's that I understand that all morals are baseless.

                            It's you who are having trouble seeing things from other people's perspective. Can you not see how silly your statements would appear to some one who doesn't accept your premise that there is a god or, even if they accepted that there is one, that it's anything like you say it is?

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                            • identicon
                              Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 8:41am

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                              I absolutely see that but you are wrong to say you know your morals are baseless. If you truly understood your wold view you would not talk about concepts of just, fair or right and wrong. You and others here attempt to make fun of me for having faith in God yet you have just as much faith in science, hoping it will explain away God someday. But interestingly enough, you won't admit your faith.

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                                SteveMB (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 8:55am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                                Anybody want to start a pool on when the Dr. Bronner's Soap people are going to sue for copyright infringement?

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                                techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 9:05am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                                But interestingly enough, you won't admit your faith.

                                Faith is what you clowns have, believing stuff without evidence. Science has plenty of evidence so you just fail again. No surprise there.

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                                Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 9:26am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                                You and others here attempt to make fun of me for having faith in God yet you have just as much faith in science, hoping it will explain away God someday. But interestingly enough, you won't admit your faith.

                                You say "faith in science" - I don't think that means what you think it means. Science doesn't require faith. That's because when presented with objective evidence, science WILL change, based on the evidence.

                                Don't believe me? They used to say don't eat eggs - they're bad for you (cholesterol and all that). Diets have changed, and lo and behold, the stand about eating eggs has changed as well.

                                Tell me, if I could prove to you that god doesn't exist, would you change your faith as a result?

                                Before you say "no, I wouldn't change my faith" and make a (bigger) ass out of yourself, understand that is the difference between faith in an imaginary man and science - one will change based on empirical evidence and the other cannot because it'll piss off god.

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                                  Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 9:58am

                                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                                  I fully understand the meaning of faith but I am not sure you do. You believe science will one day prove evolution but it hasn't yet. That is faith.

                                  I would absolutely change my views if presented with real facts, not theories, that disproved the bible. But nobody has come up with that yet.

                                  If you want to see what scientific evidence really points toward, read the book Evolution's Achilles Heals. Or remain willfully ignorant. Seems if you are really interested in evidence you would read this book to see the other side rather than take one sides word for it.

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                                    Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 10:30am

                                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                                    I would absolutely change my views if presented with real facts, not theories, that disproved the bible. But nobody has come up with that yet.

                                    That in and of itself shows how weak your faith is...but then again, I can't really take that statement at face value, since there's plenty of of inaccuracies in the bible (that have been examined by several theologians), that should convince you to question its accuracy altogether.
                                    When you don't even believe your own, why should I have faith that you'll believe anything? (hint: I don't)

                                    And just a protip on Evolution's Achilles Heels - a PhD in an unrelated subject doesn't make you an expert on the origins of the universe.

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                                      Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 10:51am

                                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                                      Wait, true fact that disprove my faith thus causing me to change my mind proves my faith is weak? No, if I changed my mind depending on the direction of the wind my faith would be weak. But you have provided no evidence that the bible is false thus I have not changed my mind.

                                      As for the book, each chapter was written by a PHD in that area. Read it for yourself.

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                                        Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 10:56am

                                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                                        Having a PhD in that area doesn't mean they aren't wrong. Or if it does, then clearly evolution is correct because there are far more people with PhD in those areas who accept evolution as the most likely explanation. So if you're saying we should accept argument from authority, then we should clearly prefer the stance by the group with more authorities.

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                                        Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 11:10am

                                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                                        Wait, true fact that disprove my faith thus causing me to change my mind proves my faith is weak?

                                        Yes...just ask the bible:

                                        Romans 14:23 But whoever has doubts is condemned if he eats, because the eating is not from faith. For whatever does not proceed from faith is sin.

                                        Mark 16:16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.

                                        Show me somewhere in there (anywhere, actually) where there's a disclaimer about "true facts" (hint: there isn't one)

                                        And trying to disprove evolution doesn't actually prove the existence of god does it? I mean, you can poke holes in evolution all you want, but does that make god any more plausible? You seem to think they are mutually exclusive. But I have not seen any proof that god exists. You got some that you want to share, or are you just guessing?

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                                    Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 10:53am

                                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                                    Why would we read a book about evolution written by some people who doesn't understand evolution. On that site they have a link to a study guide and the study guide has some links to defined terms and their very first one about "natural selection" makes the erroneous statement that genetic information is never increased.

                                    Genetic information is increased all the time. If you are infected with a retro-virus, the virus inserts it's DNA into yours. It actually gets spliced into your code in a way that if it was a cell that turns into a gamete would be passed onto your offspring. This is in fact so common that humans have millions of strings of deactivated genes in our genome that got there from retro-virus infection of our ancestors.

                                    And you might try to say that "that's not new information" because it's just the encoding for a virus, not for something useful and it's deactivated anyway. But that's where mutation comes in.

                                    Suppose a virus injected AGCTCGA into your genome and this does nothing. But then your gametes are hit with some environmental radiation and that T flips to an A, so now your offspring has AGCACGA, which 98% of time is usually a useless mutation that does nothing, 1.8% of the time is harmful, but like 0.2% of the time is a new and beneficial trait.

                                    And retro-viruses aren't even the only way in which we get wholly new code in our genome. Sometimes organisms get whole extra copies of entire chromosomes by accident. One such example of this is downs syndrome, which is generally bad, but that's because of which chromosome it is. Getting an extra copy of a chromosome isn't always bad for every chromosome for every organism. And once you have that extra chromosome, you've got room for that one to mutate independently of the first one and after long enough those 2 are serving entirely different purposes.

                                    It's you who needs to learn about evolution. Try learning about it from some one who knows how it works some time. I've just tried to humor you and already in the first piece of information about it found an inaccuracy. You also forget how many christians there are that ACCEPT evolution. It's catholic dogma that evolution is true as decreed by the pope. You can't learn about something if the only examples you read about are strawman versions of a theory.
                                    And you can't just say "but your sources are biased too" because it's not even a matter of being biased. The source you linked says "Evolutionists believe this thing and look how it's wrong" but that book is wrong about what evolutionists think not just about why they think that.

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                                    Dark Helmet (profile), 27 May 2016 @ 9:25am

                                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                                    "I would absolutely change my views if presented with real facts, not theories, that disproved the bible. But nobody has come up with that yet."

                                    Uh, yes they most certainly have. There are no facts that have disproven the existence of God, but disproving the biblical stories upon which the premise of Christ is built is trivially easy. Take the story of Exodus, for instance. That story has been disproven through Israeli archaeology.

                                    Fun thing about Christ is that he tied the legitimacy of his claims to the Old Testament. If the Exodus story is a lie, Christ's claims are as well. And that should be the end of it.

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                            techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 8:57am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                            The part you still don't understand is the reason you even know there is right and wrong is because God has revealed it to us

                            By kicking the two people out of the garden who learned about it? Nice and friendly god you have there. Also, how would they have known it was wrong to eat from the tree if by definition only the fruit would make them aware that what they did was wrong?

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                              Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 10:57am

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                              They knew because God told them not to do it. But you knew that.

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                                Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 11:11am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                                And to be fair, he also put the tree there in the first place.

                                Kind of a dickhead thing to do, don't you think?

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                                Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 11:25am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                                But then if they didn't know right from wrong, they didn't know it was wrong to disobey god when he tells you not to do something.

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                                techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 8:54pm

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                                I know they COULD HAVE NOT KNOW IT WAS WRONG TO DISOBEY GOD.
                                But you knew that.

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                        Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 8:20am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                        Speaking of slavery, you're exactly right about that and that's exactly what has happened in the world. The bible itself is perfectly okay with slavery, after all it has explicit rules in it for how to treat your slaves. And those rules are not "set them free". In those countries where slavery has been abolished it has been because people decided to get rid of it because they didn't want it anymore not because any "objective" holy book said it was wrong.

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                          Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 8:25am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                          You are wrong about setting slaves free. The slaves of the bible were indentured servants working off a debt; they were not the type of slaves the US had. Also, they were to be set free after 7 years regardless of the debt being paid.

                          We are more or less indentured servants today. We go into debt for cars, houses, boats, etc and we work to pay them off even though we don't directly work for our debt holders. But guess what happens when you don't pay a debt? You may even have your wages garnished or assets seized and handed over to the debt holder. Is that immoral? Or is it immoral not to pay your debts?

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                            Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 8:38am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                            "The slaves of the bible were indentured servants working off a debt; they were not the type of slaves the US had. Also, they were to be set free after 7 years regardless of the debt being paid."

                            I don't see how we're going to be able to come to any agreement about anything when you have such a revisionist sense of history. The slave owners of the south in the US too considered themselves benevolent caretakers.

                            And that's quite ridiculous to argue that voluntarily taken debt is anything like slavery. I bet you're one of those crazies that consider taxation theft and want to abolish the IRS.

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                              Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 8:45am

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                              No revision needed, read it for yourself. It is freely available all over the internet.

                              I didn't say it was slavery, only similar in that your wages can be garnished and then you are in effect working for the debt holder.

                              Technically, anything taken by force is theft. But no, I am fine with taxes up to a point.

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                                Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 8:50am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                                I'm sure there's plenty of pages all over the internet that use the bible as their primary source that agree with what you're saying.

                                But while we're using the bible as our primary source. If it was really just indentured servitude that all those biblical slavery laws were talking about, then why was the punishment for beating your slave to death just a fine and not execution as it was for the crime of murder?

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                            techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 8:46am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                            The slaves of the bible were indentured servants working off a debt

                            Said the lying jackass who accused others of lying. Imagine that. And no, you can twist this all the way you want. Owning people as PROPERTY and being able to get away with beating them to death (as long as they don't die in two days) is not, was not and won't ever be intentured servitude.

                            But thanks for showing your true colors (not that we didn't expect this).

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                            That One Guy (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 12:52pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                            Blatantly false(have you not read the book or are you just 'lying for jesus'?).

                            Hebrew servants were to be set free after seven years, and even then there was a trick that would allow them to be enslaved for life(Exodus 21:2-6)[1]. Non-hebrew slaves were just that, slaves, considered property that could be beaten to death so long as it took them a few days to die(Exodus 21:20-21)[2], and able to be sold and passed down as any other form of property(Leviticus 25:44-46)[3].

                            You might be able to get away with this kind of slavery apologetics with some people, but some of us have actually read the book and know what it actually says, not what you want it to say.

                            Quick refresher on the verses in question:
                            [1]
                            21:2 If thou buy an Hebrew servant, six years he shall serve: and in the seventh he shall go out free for nothing.
                            21:3 If he came in by himself, he shall go out by himself: if he were married, then his wife shall go out with him.
                            21:4 If his master have given him a wife, and she have born him sons or daughters; the wife and her children shall be her master's, and he shall go out by himself.
                            21:5 And if the servant shall plainly say, I love my master, my wife, and my children; I will not go out free:
                            21:6 Then his master shall bring him unto the judges; he shall also bring him to the door, or unto the door post; and his master shall bore his ear through with an aul; and he shall serve him for ever.

                            [2]
                            21:20 And if a man smite his servant, or his maid, with a rod, and he die under his hand; he shall be surely punished.
                            21:21 Notwithstanding, if he continue a day or two, he shall not be punished: for he is his money.

                            [3]
                            25:44 Both thy bondmen, and thy bondmaids, which thou shalt have, shall be of the heathen that are round about you; of them shall ye buy bondmen and bondmaids.
                            25:45 Moreover of the children of the strangers that do sojourn among you, of them shall ye buy, and of their families that are with you, which they begat in your land: and they shall be your possession.
                            25:46 And ye shall take them as an inheritance for your children after you, to inherit them for a possession; they shall be your bondmen for ever: but over your brethren the children of Israel, ye shall not rule one over another with rigour.

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                    techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 8:43am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                    So how do you justify slavery during the early years of the US?

                    Well, the slaveholders in the US based it on.... the bible. Bummer, eh?

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                      Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 8:47am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                      Sure, people can base evil on anything they like The real question is, were those people truly Christian doing God's will? Many evolutionists justified their mass murders on Darwinism (Lenin, Stalin, etc). I guess you could say they were true to their faith.

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                        Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 8:54am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                        And Hitler claimed to be a Christian doing god's work. Mass murderers will attempt to justify themselves with anything.

                        Evolution as a scientific theory of what has and will happen on this planet does not purport to offer any claims about what is moral. It's only a description of what was, is, and what will be. And almost no one you'll ever meet claims to derive their morals from it. It'd be like trying to derive your morals from the laws of thermodynamics. But we've already been through this.

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                          Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 10:04am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                          Hitler had a copy of Darwin's book and that is why he tried to create the master race. The bible does not teach a master race.

                          So you are saying you can derive your morals from anything you wish then? You can justify any actions as being moral because nobody can really argue they aren't. That is exactly what I am trying to show you. Evolutionist's talk about justice, fairness, morals as if they were a real thing. They are just dreams of a cosmic accident in your world view.

                          In fact, why shouldn't people use religion to exercise dominion over others? Would that not go right along with Darwin's theory? Sure you can get upset about it. Even try to exercise your own dominion if you can. In the end non of it matters, it is just each trying to propagate their own bloodline. Or maybe not?

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                            Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 11:01am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                            You're the only one here trying to argue for evolution as a source of morals. To an atheist one's morals and one's acceptance of evolution as an explanation for the history and ongoing changes of life are two entirely independent topics.

                            All I was saying with that was that a mass murderer is going to say and do whatever he wants and it is neither the fault or implication of religion or science.

                            "Would that not go right along with Darwin's theory?"
                            It would have nothing to do with darwin's theory. His theory is only a description of "how things tend to go" not a prescription for "how things ought to go".

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                            Uriel-238 (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 12:12pm

                            Hitler's master race.

                            Darwinism doesn't indicate a master race either, rather his finches show diversity according to their means of foraging. His master race notion was a derivation of thule occult dogma, and the notion that selective breeding (eugenics) could be applied to human beings the way it is to cattle.

                            Social Darwinism was the notion that we could treat our fellows brutally so that they'd evolve to become stronger through natural selection, but that was ignoring one of humanity's greatest strengths, our ability to organize and cooperate. Really, it was an excuse for industrialists to treat their labor like shit. Kinda like Randian revivalist objectivism today.

                            There are plenty of species who function better than we do as solitary specimens. Human strength is in our ability to organize and collaborate to solve collective problems (e.g. barn raising). But that requires acknowledging that everyone is a part of that collective, and deserves respect, acknowledgement and reciprocity.

                            You can derive your morals from wherever, but it really depends on the outcome you wish, the society you want to make. I want a society with advanced tech and hundreds of kinds of beer and cheese for everyone where all the hard work is done by robots. Even if that dooms the human species to a plump and sleepy physique.

                            It's one of the things I don't understand from those who justify extrajudicial torture: even if it does make us safer, we now live in a society that doesn't recognize do process, and who tortures (doesn't minimize harm). That's not a society I would condone.

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                        techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 9:00am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                        The real question is, were those people truly Christian doing God's will?

                        No, the real question is how far you are willing to twist yourself into a pretzel to deny that your oh so moral god specifially endorses slavery (and rape, genocide and...) and that people following this somehow weren't true christians.

                        That just won't fly.

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                      • identicon
                        Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 9:33am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                        Psalms 137:8-9 - O Daughter of Babylon, doomed to destruction, happy is he who repays you for what you have done to us he who seizes your infants and dashes them against the rocks.

                        So given you can base evil on anything you like (your words), the real question is, what was god justifying this on? (unless you want to debate as to whether or not bashing babies against is/isn't evil)

                        His fragile ego?

                        Did he just feel like being a dick that day?

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                          Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 10:48am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                          Just doing a quick search I found the link below explaining this. You cannot just read a verse and take it out of context. You must examine other verses related to it, the times and people who wrote it, who it was written about, etc.

                          http://biblehub.com/commentaries/psalms/137-9.htm

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                            Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 11:14am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                            You must examine other verses related to it, the times and people who wrote it, who it was written about, etc.

                            Yup...primitives who were trying to figure out where the rain came from.

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                            techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 8:56pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                            Way to go with your bullshit bingo. In what context could it possible be ok to ever kill innocent infants?

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                techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 8:41am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                You want the benefits of God without God.

                Benefits like his endorsement of slavery, rape, genocide...? Thanks, but no thanks.

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 9:51am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                  Interesting. You twist the bible's words and say it isn't good enough for you. Yet you subscribe to a world view that not only says these things are perfectly acceptable, they are necessary to ensure the survival of your genetic line.

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                    Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 11:04am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                    We never said these things are acceptable, we only said there's no objective definition of acceptable. We find them wholly unacceptable.

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                      Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 12:26pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                      How do you find them unacceptable as you have nothing to measure against. Sure, you can arbitrarily say it is unacceptable but it is just your opinion, not fact. The fact is, there is no absolute truth without God and therefore no absolute right and wrong. Today slavery isn't ok, yesterday it was. Your world view allows for all kinds of horrors.

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                      • identicon
                        Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 12:43pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                        My world view doesn't allow for horrors any more than yours. Sure in my world view my morals have no objective backing, but I can still do what I can to try to stop others from being harmed.
                        Even if your morals had objective backing (and I don't believe that they do) it wouldn't help me to stop others from harming people. People who wish to do harm will likely do so whether there's an objective morality or not.
                        And my morals being subjective doesn't stop me from finding like-minded people and banding together to help put those who would violate those morals in jail.
                        "Today slavery isn't ok, yesterday it was." And your 'objective' morals had nothing to do with that change and everything to do with people who wanted slavery to end working to end it in the country and trying to convince other people to do so as well.

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                      • identicon
                        Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 12:49pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                        The fact is, there is no absolute truth without God and therefore no absolute right and wrong.

                        The fact is, there is no absolute truth with god.

                        Consider this - you have an infallible being, who can't even ensure that the book about him doesn't contain errors. Not for nothing, but isn't that a lot of leeway you're giving to someone who should hire better biographers?

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                      • icon
                        That One Guy (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 1:11pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                        Today slavery isn't ok, yesterday it was. Your world view allows for all kinds of horrors.

                        Not so, because if you have a reason for why something isn't acceptable that's not likely to change from day to day. Murder for example isn't considered wrong because some dude in the sky said it was, it's considered wrong because it causes serious harm and people don't want to die, hence it's in their best interest to create a society where killing is considered wrong.

                        On the other hand if you get your 'morals' from said dude in the sky then you have to accept that if tomorrow they declare 'Rape, murder, kicking old ladies... all that stuff I said was wrong yesterday is perfectly moral from today onward' then all of that is now moral and right.

                        (And if your counter-argument is anything along the lines of 'My god wouldn't do that', the list of 'sins' that were to result in execution listed in your book are too numerous to list, and if it can be ordered once it can be ordered again, unless I suppose you care to argue that your god was wrong the first time and only learned otherwise later on.)

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                        techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 9:18pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                        How do you find them unacceptable as you have nothing to measure against

                        Let's see, measuring against your god who specifially endorses slavery, rape, the murder of innocent infants, genocide... anything we've come up with compares quite good.

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                  • identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 11:06am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                    But since you think there is some objective truth, prove to us that your objective truth is correct over say the objective truth that other christians that accept evolution believe, or the objective truth that muslims believe, or the objective truth that hindus believe. When you can fully understand why you don't accept all those objective truths you will understand why we don't accept yours for the same reasons.

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                    • identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 12:29pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                      I fully understand why I don't accept those other beliefs. I have faith that my understanding of the bible is correct. When I learn where I am wrong, I modify my belief. But science has only provided theories, no facts for evolution so I do not accept it.

                      Sure you are free to not accept my beliefs. I am merely pointing out that you don't fully understand the evolutionist's world view that anything and everything goes. You don't have to like it, but you really don't have a leg to stand on to condemn it.

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                      • identicon
                        Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 12:41pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                        So then...to recap, you fully understand why you don't accept those other beliefs. So then you've read everything they have to offer?

                        Please elaborate on the magnitude of your understanding of the world's religions - how many have you studied as much as your bible?

                        Because in order to understand why you're right and they're wrong, you would need to evaluate both sides of the argument, no? Or did the bible tell you you're right and they're wrong?

                        Please elaborate! We're all trying to be less willfully ignorant and understand why PhD's who say the bible is right are more qualified to do so than the multitudes more who say evolution is right.

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                        • identicon
                          Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 1:18pm

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                          No, I don't need to examine other religions. I have been saved by grace and studying other religions would be a waste of time. Understanding comes from the indwelling of the Holy Spirit after salvation.

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                          • identicon
                            Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 1:30pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                            I see. I'll be honest - I'm not surprised at this response.

                            But I don't understand...way up here you wrote:

                            I would absolutely change my views if presented with real facts, not theories, that disproved the bible. But nobody has come up with that yet.

                            But you won't entertain any other views because you have been saved by grace and studying other religions would be a waste of time.

                            In short, you're not nearly as open minded as you think you are. But again, that isn't surprising. And that's why your faith isn't science - as I said previously, science can change based on new facts. You, by your own admission, don't feel the need to consider anything other than what your glowing pigeon tells you.

                            Just walk away. You're out of your league here.

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                            • identicon
                              Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 5:23pm

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                              Not out of my league at all. My original point was to show the hypocrisy of the evolutionists. They cry for justice and fairness yet neither truly exist. Well, not without God anyway. At least one guy now finally gets it and sees that the theory of evolution excuses all kinds of heinous acts. Acts, except by accident of birth, you would be in on had you been born in the place and time where they were taking place.

                              I wish more evolutionists would be honest about their world view and just admit morals shift with the wind. But most evolutionists don't really understand this and before today you didn't either. So my mission was accomplished.

                              You don't have to believe in God. You don't have to like me. Heck, maybe Christians are just using Darwin's theory to control others so they can propagate their genetics? I mean, if evolution is true, there would be nothing wrong with that since there is nothing to measure wrong against.

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                                That One Guy (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 6:01pm

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                                Yeah, you keep trying to claim that if you don't have religion you can't have morals, missing the fact that by claiming divine command as your source of morality you lack any moral ground to argue from. Obedience to authority does not morality make, but it most certainly does open you up to some pretty nasty things depending on your 'authority' of choice.

                                As I noted in another comment by getting your morals from a 'god' your beliefs would require you to accept that if your deity of choice said tomorrow that murder, rape and kicking old ladies was now moral and good that this would be true. That those actions would indeed be moral because your source of 'morality' said they were.

                                Contrast this to a system where what is good and bad is not determined by what one person says, but by the reasons behind it. Where murder is seen and treated as wrong not because someone says it is but because people realize that death sucks, and if you don't want to be murdered it's in your best interest not to live in a society that allows murder. If you don't want to be a slave it's in your best interest not to live in a society that allows it and so on.

                                I wish more evolutionists would be honest about their world view and just admit morals shift with the wind.

                                Coming from someone who has tried to excuse both slavery and the brutal murder of infants so far, and who would be forced to accept that something like murder can absolutely be moral so long as your god of choice says it is, that's just a little rich.

                                As for morals 'shifting like the wind', that's your shtick, not that of 'evolutionists'(a term that makes as much sense as calling someone who believes in relativity an 'Einsteinien', especially given there are plenty of religious individuals who also accept evolution). Morals based upon things like 'Life is generally good, death is generally bad' and 'Suffering is to be avoided when possible' are pretty solid, and not likely to change as the core ideas behind them aren't likely to change any time soon in any society that values life and well-being.

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                              Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 5:23pm

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                              Not out of my league at all. My original point was to show the hypocrisy of the evolutionists. They cry for justice and fairness yet neither truly exist. Well, not without God anyway. At least one guy now finally gets it and sees that the theory of evolution excuses all kinds of heinous acts. Acts, except by accident of birth, you would be in on had you been born in the place and time where they were taking place.

                              I wish more evolutionists would be honest about their world view and just admit morals shift with the wind. But most evolutionists don't really understand this and before today you didn't either. So my mission was accomplished.

                              You don't have to believe in God. You don't have to like me. Heck, maybe Christians are just using Darwin's theory to control others so they can propagate their genetics? I mean, if evolution is true, there would be nothing wrong with that since there is nothing to measure wrong against.

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                                Uriel-238 (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 5:49pm

                                I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                Do you know how scary it is hearing that you only have morals based on the notion of God or of divine accountability?

                                You do understand that that isn't normal, yes? For most of us, we're not living in constant fear of divine reprisal lest we sin. For most of us, we carry on our lives and regard others, even strangers, as fellow citizens only because they are part of a common society. When we do wrong, it is typically not out of menace but insecurity or desperation.

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                                  Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 6:09pm

                                  Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                  What is even more scary is you make up your morals as you go. You can trace my morals to the 10 commandments where killing, lying, stealing and cheating are forbidden. You on the other hand have no forbiddance. In fact, these things are all seen as fine as long as you propagate your genetic line.

                                  I am not living in constant fear of divine reprisal. Quite the opposite, I am living in the knowledge that I have already faced judgement and been forgiven. My salvation is assured.

                                  Yes, I understand this isn't normal because society as a whole has rejected God. The bible says broad is the path to destruction and narrow is the path to salvation. Unfortunately most people choose the broad path.

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                                    That One Guy (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 6:23pm

                                    Re: Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                    So you seem to assume that everyone but you is a sociopath. That's... interesting. Dead wrong, and an assumption that brings into question how you would act should you ever lose your faith, but certainly interesting.

                                    Those who base their 'morals' on divine command are the ones who's 'morals' can shift on a whim(literally), those of us that base our morals on more solid ground aren't 'making it up as we go', we start with basic principles and work from there, it's really not that difficult so long as you're not looking at things through a sociopathic, short-term-only lens.

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                                      Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 6:27pm

                                      Re: Re: Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                      I don't assume that at all. I just used your own logic against you. You said I was scary for using the bible for my morals and I merely pointed out you were scary for having no basis at all.

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                                        That One Guy (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 6:42pm

                                        Re: Re: Re: Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                        Ah, but unlike you I do have a basis for my morality, and it's not one that can change overnight should one third-party change their mind. I'm not the one that would have to accept murder as moral just because someone else claimed it was in order to be logically consistent.

                                        I've mentioned the edges in several comments, but in more simple terms some of the core ideas are:

                                        1. Life is generally preferable to death.
                                        2. Health is preferable to sickness.
                                        3. I don't care to suffer, and my sense of empathy and compassion means I don't like to see other people suffer or cause them to do so.
                                        4. If I wouldn't want it to happen to me I should neither do it to someone else, or promote it doing so.

                                        Very simple concept that I'm guessing pretty much everyone can agree on, and I base my morality on taking them and applying them to the world and people around me.

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                                          Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 6:48pm

                                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                          Number 1 through 3 is great for you, but if you can advance those 3 by causing those things on others, then it is perfectly natural for you to do it in the world of Darwin. As for number 4, you wouldn't want these to happen to you so you might take steps so that they don't by cloaking your evil deeds.

                                          It is easy for you to say these things since you live in a time and place where these morals are common. Had you been born in another time and place you might believe completely differently. That is the problem with taking your morals from society.

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                                            That One Guy (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 7:27pm

                                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                            Number 1 through 3 is great for you, but if you can advance those 3 by causing those things on others, then it is perfectly natural for you to do it in the world of Darwin.

                                            So long as you ignore the 'empathy' and 'compassion' bits maybe, and assuming I was a particularly stupid sociopath who hadn't caught on that humans are social animals and someone excluded for acting contrary to the well-being of those around them isn't going to be very well off.

                                            Again you assume sociopathic motivations of everyone other than you. Are you really so blinded by your beliefs that the only possible value you can see in others is due to your religion? Is the idea that life and well-being of others is important not because of what they can do for you but because suffering is bad and other people matter just a foreign concept to you? You've already admitted that you don't put much worth on being good as it's not important in the slightest without belief, and your comment certainly don't give the impression that you consider others to be of much value either outside of what little value your book assigns them.

                                            If that is really how you see the world I hope you never lose your faith, not for your sake but for the sake of everyone around you, as I imagine you would turn into an absolute monster if you did, as unlike me you don't seem to value others beyond what they can do for you, continually claiming that without a god anything is acceptable so long as you can get away with it.

                                            Had you been born in another time and place you might believe completely differently. That is the problem with taking your morals from society.

                                            You're right, I might have believed that killing unbelievers or unruly children was a good thing, enslaving anyone not in my tribe was perfectly fine, or that the brutal murder of infants was a just action. Someone with a book like yours really shouldn't be tossing the 'If you lived in a different time and place you might think differently' stone.

                                            Is that really the best you can do? 'If you lived elsewhere/when you might hold different beliefs'? Yes, quite possibly, but I could just as easily say the same as you, does that mean your beliefs can be brushed aside as well?

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                                            techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 9:20pm

                                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                            That is the problem with taking your morals from society.

                                            Set the guy taking his morals from a god who specifially endorses slavery, rape, the murder of innocent infants, genocide...

                                            And then you claim to be no sociopath. Interesting.

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                                            techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 9:29pm

                                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                            Had you been born in another time and place you might believe completely differently.

                                            Had you been born in Afghanistan or Jemen, you certainly would believe completely differently.

                                            You fail again.

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                                        techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 9:10pm

                                        Re: Re: Re: Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                        I just used your own logic against you.

                                        And failed miserably. Which was to be expected of course, but since your being way out of your league here all you have to fall back on is lies, mischaracterisations and dishonesty.

                                        Funny how your morals derived from god don't stop you from violating his commands ;)

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                                        Uriel-238 (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 10:51pm

                                        I was the one who said scary and what I said was scary was your presumption that divine command is necessary for us to have morals at all.

                                        The Decalogue is not a very good source of morality. It's a popular one, but it does make some very specific demands of faith and thought, around which people are often incapable. It also conspicuously doesn't preclude rape, child abuse, usury / graft, or letting your neighbors starve to death or freeze from the elements.

                                        The ethic of reciprocity on its own does more than that, but it doesn't have the Yahweh-only provision that Hang-tenners are hot to work in there somewhere.

                                        Also Judaeo-Christian authority and its aversion to human sexuality has a direct hand in the sexual hangups of pretty much the entire western world (and much of the east).

                                        I'd rather the people around me had morality on no basis, or morality on their own bases than had no morality at all unless it was dictated to them by another authority. That latter category are the kind that will engage in torture and genocide for god and king. The former sort might actually object.

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                                    techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 9:06pm

                                    Re: Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                    You can trace my morals to the 10 commandments where killing, lying, stealing and cheating are forbidden.

                                    Except when god commands it in the rest of his holy book. Yeah, makes pefect sense. Or are you now trying to pull "the law changed with Jesus" which will chuck out the 10 commandments as well as your ludicrous origin story.

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                                  That One Guy (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 6:12pm

                                  Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                  Reminds me of a quote:

                                  The question I get asked by religious people all the time is, without God, what’s to stop me from raping all I want? And my answer is: I do rape all I want. And the amount I want is zero. And I do murder all I want, and the amount I want is zero. The fact that these people think that if they didn’t have this person watching over them that they would go on killing, raping rampages is the most self-damning thing I can imagine. – Penn Jillette

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                                    Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 6:17pm

                                    Re: Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                    A meaningless self-righteous quote. There are lots of "good" people in the world who reject God. But "good" isn't good enough. Actually, it is even simpler than that. Accept Jesus as your savior. All their goodness will accomplish nothing if they reject Christ.

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                                      That One Guy (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 6:35pm

                                      Re: Re: Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                      So how good a person is doesn't matter so long as they don't accept your master as theirs, good to know.

                                      Not a 'works and deeds' brand christian then I take it, which brings up the question as to why you're trying to claim that those that don't share your beliefs have no reason to be good/moral, as though you have the high ground there. I mean if it doesn't matter what you do so long as you convert and ask forgiveness before death, if being a good person is meaningless if you aren't also a convert, then what reason do you have to be a decent person? You've already been 'saved' after all, what does it matter if you're good to those around you or a total jerk, worst case you can just ask for forgiveness of your master later and be forgiven.

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                                        Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 6:43pm

                                        Re: Re: Re: Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                        No it doesn't matter for its much simpler than earning your way to salvation. The bible plainly states that salvation is through grace, not works lest anyone brag. The whole point of grace is salvation is freely given. It is also yours to reject. We are called to do good works once saved though. Besides, who doesn't want to please someone they love? Do you not try to make your significant other happy?

                                        As for last minute repentance, it can happen. Look at the thief on the cross with Jesus. He repented and was saved minutes or hours before death. But do you really think a person who lives like hell and thinks they will repent on their deathbed will even mean it if they repent? Or if they will even bother? You can't fool God, you can confess with your mouth if your heart believes different. I certainly don't begrudge the last minute pardon, but I imagine it is extremely rare.

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                                          That One Guy (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 7:01pm

                                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                          'Plainly states'... yeah, not really. There are numerous lines throughout the book that deal with what it takes to 'be saved'/make it into heaven, ranging from 'Do good' to 'Believe the right thing' and many others, all with various denominations following the various 'paths to salvation' and insisting that theirs is the 'correct' interpretation.

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                                          techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 9:26pm

                                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                          As for last minute repentance, it can happen.

                                          Right, you can go through life and rape, torture and kill people (without god stopping you despite being omnipotent and stuff) and then on your death bed repent, and you'll go to heaven.

                                          How very moral of your god, right?

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                                      Anonymous Anonymous Coward (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 7:35pm

                                      Re: Re: Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                      And here it is. Proselytizing in it's truest sense. Believe what I believe or get stuffed. All along the argument has really been, you don't love Jesus, and if you don't love Jesus to hell with you. How's that for cognitive reasoning?

                                      This is a troll, stop feeding him.

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                                      techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 9:22pm

                                      Re: Re: Re: I don't think "evolutionists" think the way you think they do.

                                      Accept Jesus as your savior.

                                      Or got to hell for all eternity. How very moral of you. LOL!

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                      • identicon
                        Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 12:49pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                        You may understand it and that your understanding is correct, but how do you know the bible itself is correct. After all, one can have a correct understanding about the theories flat earthers have, but that doesn't mean the theory itself is correct.

                        And you don't understand how evolution is independent from morals.

                        It's like you're saying:

                        "Sure you are free to not accept my beliefs. I am merely pointing out that you don't fully understand the geo-centrists world view that anything and everything goes. You don't have to like it, but you really don't have a leg to stand on to condemn it."

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                        • identicon
                          Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 1:26pm

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                          I know the bible is correct because God condemned me and drew me to him. Before I was Born Again, I didn't know what that even meant. After it happened to me, I understand now. My faith is based on my being called.

                          I understand how morals and evolution are interdependent. If evolution is true, morals are made up. It is that simple. What I find, like the many here, people who believe in evolution with cry for justice and fairness and talk about right and wrong as if there is some absolute to any of those. If we are a cosmic accident, those are whatever individuals or societies say they are. That includes genocides, slavery and the whole gambit of horrors.

                          If you were born during a time any of these were going on in a country that was doing them, you would most likely think they were fine and even participate. If you truly understood the bible, you would see these things were never ok.

                          If you want to understand the bible, find a bible believing church and join a bible study. You will find we are not evil, firebreathing creatures that we are made out to be.

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                          • identicon
                            Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 1:39pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                            I know the bible is correct because God condemned me and drew me to him.

                            Kind of like the man who beats his wife, but loves her just the same?

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                              Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 2:18pm

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                              Totally the same.

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                          • identicon
                            Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 2:07pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                            Ah so your objective morals do you no good either since you won't be able to convince anyone who has also been "condemned me and drawn to him".
                            So when evil runs rampant all you can do is say "but I believe you're wrong even if you don't believe you're wrong", which is all I can say either.

                            "If you were born during a time any of these were going on in a country that was doing them, you would most likely think they were fine and even participate."
                            This is simply not true. There's a good chance I would be too terrified to speak up in such a society, but I was raised in a culture of religion and I have rejected that and have adopted morals that object to various stances that the religious people of this country often adhere to. If people who didn't adhere to your objective morality never spoke up about perceived injustice, we wouldn't have had this amazing push for the rights of gay people to get married. After all, the culture in this country was very anti-gay.

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                            Uriel-238 (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 4:39pm

                            Morals and evolution

                            Actually morals are based on evolution, but not in the way imagined by those who regard evolution as the enemy of (their) religious faith.

                            Reciprocity is a fundamental of cooperative groups. It's an instinct we share with most mammals to regard our own, at least to not regard them as hostile. Cooperation is a powerful force multiplier, and allows small pack animals to prey on even large fauna that are capable of fighting back.

                            One of the problems with divine command remains that there are too many authorities claiming theirs is the one true god (And all others are false). When so many churches claim extra ecclesiam nulla salus, who is to say which one is correct? How many other denominations of Christianity does your church declare are false and damned to eternal Hellfire?

                            From an external point of view, it's also conspicuous that an awful lot of churches are far more interested in the continued subjugation of women (e.g. denial of contraception and abortion access, not to mention tiny details like speaking in church) and the persecution of gays. Contrast to the wars against poverty and hunger, both of which have become only auxiliary to missionary projects. (If someone is starving, they'll convert to whatever you demand for a modicum of food.)

                            Regardless of what morals think I am or am not capable of holding without belief in a deity, I want a society in which there is no position I would resent being in. And that means I want a social equality beyond that which is advocated by those who speak for the majority of Christendom. (Who do not necessarily represent accurately what Christians actually believe. 95% of Catholic women in the US use contraceptives much to the chagrin of the USCCB. Women and the Church do not get along much.)

                            It turns out that the Religious Right here in the US like the pro-hatred guy who wants to build walls and ban Muslims. (Not that you had much in the way of better choices.) I don't know how that reflects on the position of the Church you devoted your faith.

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                            • identicon
                              Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 5:30pm

                              Re: Morals and evolution

                              Cooperation is a powerful force multiplier, and allows small pack animals to prey on even large fauna that are capable of fighting back.

                              Bingo! You get it. Evolution excuses individuals or groups perpetrating heinous acts on other individuals or groups! You finally get it. Sure those groups can fight back, even recruit other people groups to join in. You know, like maybe in a world war? All perfectly fine in the world of evolution. Glad you get it. From now on, when you are sitting around complaining about things not being fair, you will remember this and realize that you are absolutely right, it isn't fair in the world of Darwin

                              But there will be a time and place where justice prevails.

                              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                              • icon
                                Uriel-238 (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 6:06pm

                                Re: Re: Morals and evolution

                                Evolution excuses individuals or groups perpetrating heinous acts on other individuals or groups!

                                You made a leap of logic that I did not.

                                You'll have to explain it in step by step detail.

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                                • identicon
                                  Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 6:14pm

                                  Re: Re: Re: Morals and evolution

                                  I had hoped you finally made the connection. My guess is you did but can't admit it.

                                  You can turn to any nature show and have the narrator explain how animals ensure the survival of their genetic line. The biggest killer of black bears are other black bears. Males will kill other male's cubs. The african lion, when it reaches maturity, will attempt to drive off or kill an alpha male to take it's pride. If successful, it will then kill any cubs to bring the females into heat so he can have his own cubs.

                                  Why wouldn't this apply to people? We aren't special. If someone can advance their life, their goals, their genetics, then lying, cheating, stealing and even murder is on the table. Maybe society bands together to try to stop this behavior. Or maybe society bands together and attempts to take over the world. All perfectly acceptable and natural in your world whether you care to admit it or not.

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                                  • icon
                                    Uriel-238 (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 8:58pm

                                    The natural order

                                    If you are saying if there is no divine accountability then some people will have committed atrocity without justice, and that is awful. I agree with you.

                                    Josef Mengle, the angel of death who conducted human experiments, died old and free, having escaped justice his entire life.

                                    It happens. But it being awful doesn't mean that there's some invisible thing to make it all better. It means that happened and we get to feel awful about it. Same with torture and drone strikes and police brutality. All of that stuff sucks.

                                    But no one is going to Hell for any of it. You can pretend and believe all you want, but there is no indication anywhere of Hell or divine justice or anything but what is here.

                                    That desire for change is what causes us to strive for a better world. It's not a divine thing. Eons of evolution have created an ape with a hypertrophied cerebellum for the specific purpose of organizing to create a better world where children rarely die in car crashes or of polio or from remote-control warfare.

                                    A human being that is godless doesn't necessarily we take terrible things sitting down. It means she considers material solutions for prevent those terrible things.

                                    A godless person doesn't go without greater purpose, but finds it in the society she lives in, rather than the musings of some ancient scholars.

                                    I understand how it can be terribly frightening for ordinary people to consider that life might be meaningless, that the universe doesn't even notice our us or even the blue speck we live on. Some people have to make believe in the supernatural because that is the only way they can cope with such solitude.

                                    But for those of us who cannot trust that some invisible parent is there to kiss our booboos and make everything all better, the world we build is here. Our purpose in life is here. The heaven we hope for is here.

                                    No freebies.

                                    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                                    • identicon
                                      AJ, 27 May 2016 @ 8:33am

                                      Re: The natural order

                                      I'm not taking sides on this, but i did want to submit an observation. Organized religion, historically speaking, has been a good way to get yourself killed. I also notice 3 things that almost, and I say almost, all organized religions have/have had in common.

                                      1. If you don't believe as I do, something bad will happen to you when you die.

                                      2. You must give a percentage of what you make/earn in life to the church.

                                      3. You must spread your beliefs, forcibly if necessary.

                                      Look at the breakdown, and these are round numbers;

                                      7 Billion people on the planet. Only 3.3 Billion of them are estimated to be Christian, or associated with a derivative of Christianity. Does that mean over half the people on the planet are going to hell? How about Muslims? If you ask them, Christians are the one's going to hell. Who's right?

                                      Muslims killing Christians, Christians killing Muslims.. just seems like every time there is a major difference between religions, a lot of people end up dead. Seems counter-intuitive to the whole purpose of religion...




                                      http://www.adherents.com/Religions_By_Adherents.html

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                      • identicon
                        Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 12:58pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                        I could believe that the earth only came in to existence 3 days ago created by the flying spaghetti monster, that still wouldn't inform my morals.

                        And you're right, there is no objective morals without god. And since I don't think there is a god, or at least not the god you would describe, I don't think there are objective morals. And there is no problem with this. You're right that I don't have an objective moral basis to convince people not to do bad things or to convince people what things are bad. I can only try to convince them in other ways. I can only band together with like minded people who also wish people who not harm one another. And really nothing would change if there were an objective moral truth. Obviously you think there is one would not help you convince me not to do something you thought was bad since I don't believe your morals are objective. It wouldn't help you convince a muslim who believes different things about their god. And it sure doesn't stop plenty of christians who also supposedly believe in an objective moral truth from doing bad things.

                        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                      • icon
                        techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 9:02pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                        I am merely pointing out that you don't fully understand the evolutionist's world view that anything and everything goes.

                        You merely showing you complete ignorance and dishonesty. Again.

                        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                  • icon
                    techflaws (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 8:58pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

                    Interesting is only that you actually seem to think to get away with claiming that the bible does not say what it says. You've been told before: this "taken out of context" bullshit you christians desperately try to get away from all the ugly parts in the bible just won't fly.

                    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          JoeCool (profile), 25 May 2016 @ 6:32pm

          Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

          No, the difference is when we try to do it, we're only trying to pass laws based on a book we like. When they try to do it, they replace the law with their book and replace the judges and juries with a priest. See the difference?

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Anonymous Anonymous Coward (profile), 25 May 2016 @ 7:35pm

          Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

          I love to get into discussions with the 17 year old 'elders' the Church of Later Day Saints sent out for "training". When I point out to them that the bible would be considered hearsay in a court of law in the United States and is therefore inadmissible as argument, it rather shuts them up, and they have little else to say, though they do try, quoting more inadmissible things from the bible.

          The inadmissibility comes from the 100 years between when the 'books' were 'written' (more accurately spoken) and the compilation of the bible. The method of recording information back then (scribes who made corrections when THEY though it necessary and/or proper when they were in the process of recording word of mouth testimony, which 100 years later was only "I heard he said"), the exclusion of several books (Mary Magdalene in particular though I have hear of others censored by the 'church' at that time), and then the fact that there are several versions of said bible out there with no conclusive evidence as to which might be...well correct would be improper as there were no recordings of the actual events depicted in that good book with multiple versions of the same events, it would be very hard to say which would be 'correct' without a lot of faith which everybody else has a perfect right to discount.

          Even with all of the above, I respect each individuals right to worship in any manner they wish. I am continually amused at the Abrahamic religions wrangling with each other when they worship the same god.

          I draw the line when others try to foist religion of any kind upon me...though I don't mind a bit of discussion...sometimes. The more adamant they are, the less I listen. When I break off conversation, I do it with a statement of respect for their beliefs, if only they would keep it to themselves.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            That One Guy (profile), 25 May 2016 @ 8:13pm

            Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

            Even with all of the above, I respect each individuals right to worship in any manner they wish. I am continually amused at the Abrahamic religions wrangling with each other when they worship the same god.

            I draw the line when others try to foist religion of any kind upon me...though I don't mind a bit of discussion...sometimes. The more adamant they are, the less I listen. When I break off conversation, I do it with a statement of respect for their beliefs, if only they would keep it to themselves.


            For the most part that's how I try to do it, 'I don't care what your religion is, believe whatever you want and as long as you keep it to yourself I don't really care.'

            If someone wants to try to convert others to believe the same then I see that as opening up their claims to discussion and examination, and now they need to present evidence backing up their claims if they want to be taken seriously, and if they go even further and try to force others to convert or otherwise follow their religious dictates and rules then the gloves really come off and they'd better expect some hefty pushback, as I see freedom from religion as just as if not more important than the freedom of religion. If you expect others to respect your right to believe as you wish you'd better be willing to extend that right to others in turn.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              Anonymous Anonymous Coward (profile), 25 May 2016 @ 8:33pm

              Re: Re: Re: Read and spin, then do it again, and not a thing will change

              Yes, that is why it is so much fun to deal with these young 'elders'. They are out there specifically to proselytize, and are found on street corners and on public transportation (where they can corner you. for a while at least). Fair game.

              It is a different story when some jerk in a bar iterates "well Jesus said" and quotes the bible. Even though I was taught long ago that forbidden discussion in bars (this was taught to me as a new worker in a bar) included sex, religion and politics as those topics almost always turned into a fight. So the challenge is to get that jerk to understand both that he has no idea what Jesus might actually have said (oh, were you there?) and to keep any fight from happening. (This perspective may never be expressed by an employee. As a patron matters are different, though knowing these rules can certainly help to reduce unwanted reactions). No fights yet.

              My brand of religion is still exclusive to me, so far as I know, and I wish to keep it that way. Those that caused the Big Bang know what I'm talking about.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    jjmsan, 25 May 2016 @ 2:39pm

    Fairly specific

    "I'm talking about three men gang-raping a woman and pulling her hair and spitting on her face."

    That is distressingly specific. Do you suppose he has a link?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Avatar28 (profile), 25 May 2016 @ 4:01pm

      Re: Fairly specific

      I'm assuming that he's talking gang bang porn and, news flash, nobody is being raped. The girls on the receiving end are very much into and very consenting. That's like, the exact OPPOSITE of rape.

      So, if you want to find what he's talking about, go to your favorite porn site and search for gang bang and I think you'll find it.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Uriel-238 (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 6:14pm

      Re: Fairly specific

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Groaker (profile), 25 May 2016 @ 2:39pm

    I can only assume that Weiler prohibits his staff from carrying portable porn vending machines. The real question is does he carry one himself?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 May 2016 @ 2:55pm

    Anyone else going to miss all that Mormon porn?

    My two wives
    Marrying my underage cousin
    Big Salamanders on spring break

    Lets see if we can get Trump to also put a fence around the great state of Utah

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    PlagueSD (profile), 25 May 2016 @ 3:23pm

    I say we deport all Mormons to New Mexico...It's Mexico anyway, right? Throw up a wall around Texas and New Mexico and be done with two problems at the same time.


    /sarcasm

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 May 2016 @ 5:11pm

    "I'm not talking about seeing a naked woman. I'm talking about three men gang-raping a woman and pulling her hair and spitting on her face.


    That is...oddly specific.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Justme, 25 May 2016 @ 6:54pm

    Hmmm.

    "A cigarette vending machine has no other purpose than, you know, vending smokes."

    As a resident of Utah i have to point out that cigarette vending machines have more then one purpose, They are a great place to go if you want to avoid the missionaries and hopefully state Senator Todd Weiler, so bonus package.

    And probably as good place as any to post pornographic photo of people in garments. :)

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 May 2016 @ 8:38pm

    The average age of first exposure to hard-core killing...

    from television, movies, an so on I imagine is much lower than that. Funny how that doesn't seem to bother him. Murder is no big deal, it's sex you have to worry about, huh?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 1:00am

      Re: The average age of first exposure to hard-core killing...

      But of course, I mean a kid seeing a character gunned down and/or lying in a pool of their own blood and guts is nothing, but that same kid seeing an exposed breast?! That kid is going to be scarred for life from a sight like that! /poe

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Narcissus (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 6:33am

      Re: The average age of first exposure to hard-core killing...

      I you start thinking about it Western culture has a weird relationship with Sex and Violence.

      Anecdote time:
      I was just now shopping for books and one of the reviews about a book about the 100 years war read (from memory):
      I was told it was teen literature but I don't think it is because there were sex scenes.

      This book undoubtedly contained plenty of battlefield scenes including axes in faces, arrows through abdomen and swords through limbs and this guy doesn't think it's suitable for his teen son because of the sex.

      To be honest on a guttural level I get it. I'm as much steeped in popular culture as the next guy and every book gets better after adding some graphic violence. On a human level it still is weird though.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    techflaws (profile), 25 May 2016 @ 10:09pm

    or in the UK for save-the-children reasons

    or in the UK for feigned save-the-children reasons but actually for establishing a surveillance system to better control the population.

    FTFY.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 3:37am

      Re:

      or in the UK for feigned save-the-children reasons but actually for establishing a surveillance system to better control the population.

      Or in the UK for feigned save-the-children reasons and for the next level of intelligence up ostensibly for establishing a surveillance system to better control the population, but actually to make sure that certain images involving a pig never reach the public....

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 7:45am

    So, citizens can just cross the state line to buy their cell phones. That is why California's proposed law to restrict encryption on cell phones will never work, if passed. Citizens can simply to go Nevada to buy a cell phone. A cell phone in Nevada is not subject to California or Nevada laws. And since MetroPCS does not require prepaid users to show an ID, Utah and California users can buy a phone in Nevada, and get past this.

    Wendover, Nevada, is only 125 miles from Salt Lake, so if this goes through, expect a lot of Salt Lake residents to drive the 125 miles to Wendover to buy prepaid cell phones there, where the sellers are not subject to Utah laws.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    LanceJZ (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 8:43am

    Projection the senator does.

    This dude is so projecting, anyone should be able to see that. I would like to see his browser history.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    celticson, 26 May 2016 @ 10:00am

    Prudish Utah

    Utah government needs to mind their own business and stop their intrusive religion upon the citizens. We don't need a mommy.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 26 May 2016 @ 4:18pm

    Re: It always amazes me how non-believers pretend to know the bible.

    You don't have to read a word of it to be able defeat any argument in the support of religious doctrine. All you have to do is study coercion techniques used by torturers and state actors, make an inventory and then go back to the religion and see how many you find.

    The fact is that all of their holy rituals ends up being the same psychological techniques used by the most abusive regimes in history. At that point holiness ceases to be relevant and the only distinguishing factor between those of a given faith, and anyone else, is the willingness of both sides to be bigots.

    It breaks down like this:

    Agnostics don't know. Atheists are sure your wrong. Christians don't know, but you can't be in their cool kids club unless you say they do. Jews don't know, but unless you say they do you can't fuck one of them. Muslims don't know, but if you don't swear they do they will kill you. Hindu's are too confused to give a fuck what you think. Buddhists don't know, and they are just fine with that. Physicists DO know, but since you treated those guys like shit in school they won't take your calls. And that my friend, is why YOU don't know.

    Personally I prefer zoroastrianism, which is Christianity before Christ fucked it up.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 26 May 2016 @ 4:30pm

      Re: Re: It always amazes me how non-believers pretend to know the bible.

      Atheists are sure your wrong.

      Depends on the atheist and depends on the claim made. You can say 'I don't believe you' without saying 'I believe you're wrong', so a more accurate statement would probably be something along the lines of 'By definition no atheist believes the claim of the existence of a deity of any sort, and some of them will go a step farther and claim that no such thing exists.'

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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