Patterico's Pontifications

7/14/2014

Questions About Making What Was Once Believed Wrong, Right

Filed under: General — Dana @ 8:29 am

[guest post by Dana]

On Friday, I posted about Cleveland’s latest news. One item of particular interest was the selection of Cleveland to host the 2016 Republican National Convention. The driving force behind the successful bid was Sen. Rob Portman.

I noted in the post that Portman’s:

…views on it (same sex marriage) evolved after finding out his son was gay.

In response, commenter happyfeet provocatively asked:

wouldn’t yours? mine would.

I responded:

I guess if it were to change, then that would seem to be the time it would.

But here’s the thing, a change of mind would depend on what motivated the belief that it was wrong in the first place. Regretfully, I did not pursue this in the comments and instead gave an off-the-cuff response. I did, however, make a mental note that this brief exchange begged further consideration of what informs our beliefs in moral rights and wrongs, especially in light of politics.

Included in my response to happyfeet was the explanation that I chose the term “evolved” as I recalled President Obama’s evolution on SSM came at a politically opportune moment. This could also be suggested of Portman’s evolution.

What provokes questions about this evolution is that both Portman and Obama have claimed that their non-supportive views of SSM were informed by their belief in God and the tenets of their faith.

From Portman:

At the time, my position on marriage for same-sex couples was rooted in my faith tradition that marriage is a sacred bond between a man and a woman.

From President Obama:

“What I believe is that marriage is between a man and a woman … What I believe, in my faith, is that a man and a woman, when they get married, are performing something before God, and it’s not simply the two persons who are meeting.”

In essence, their prior stands were shaped by a belief in God and foundational principles stemming from Him. And certainly, to those of us who profess faith, that source supersedes the politics of mere man. To put it another way, faith informed their politics, not the other way around. In light of this and that both have changed their stands, does this speak to God’s changing nature and ceasing immutability? Or does it speak to a shrewd calculation made in an ever-shifting political landscape? Or, maybe it’s something else, altogether?

Commenter Mark responded to happyfeet’s original question with this analogy:

So if he found out his son had a common-law wife and another wife in a neighboring community, and they all knew about one another and were perfectly fine about it, should the father’s views therefore evolve on the issue of polygamy?

Commenter Millhouse questions further:

If your views were correct before you found this out, how could this possibly make them wrong? And if they were wrong before, then why didn’t you change them earlier? What possible difference can it make whose ox is gored? Besides, anyone with any brain should have realised years ago that they’re almost bound to have close relatives who are gay; hardly anyone doesn’t. If it wasn’t your son it might be your granddaughter, or your favourite neice, or a cousin. And if it’s nobody in your immediate family, then it’s someone in your neighbour’s family, or your best friend’s. So what difference does finding out who it is make? What’s right remains right, and what’s wrong remains wrong, and you have to decide that based on solid principles, not on whom it affects.

If one believes something to be morally wrong and has stood on a solid principle of faith supporting that belief derived from God, what must take place to allow what was once believed wrong to now be right?

P.S. happyfeet, Mark and Millhouse – thanks for your interesting comments. I really hope none of you mind me using them in this post.

–Dana

379 Responses to “Questions About Making What Was Once Believed Wrong, Right”

  1. I suspect that considerations involving logic and consistency have nothing to do with parents abruptly changing an opinion based upon what their children are or are doing or are caught doing. This is the “my baby” syndrome, and sprouts spontaneously in all manner of people, education or experience to the contrary. My own favorite example is a woman whose opinions on free speech collapsed when her daughter married someone of a different hue and her grandchildren arrived – she wanted it to be illegal to make any remark of any kind that might “upset” or “hurt” her grandchildren and had no interest of any kind in anything else on earth.

    Alix (1627e4)

  2. If one believes something to be morally wrong and has stood on a solid principle of faith supporting that belief derived from God, what must take place to allow what was once believed wrong to now be right?

    One’s understanding of God, for one. To believe that at any given time you completely understand an omnipotent, infinite being and that such understanding cannot be informed upon by new information, is folly. The Bible is full of stories of people who thought they understood things but then had life and/or culture changing revelations.

    WTP (4090b3)

  3. Great post, Dana. This is actually related to Patterico’s post about definitions and limits and party affiliation. It always amazes me to see people congratulating politicians on “evolving” their position on an issue, without considering (i) if that “evolution” was craven opportunism, or (ii) what the *next* evolution will be? Folks who love them some SSM routinely ridicule other forms of association, for example. What’s next? What are the definitions? That’s the tough conversation. I fear we live in a world where “political fashion” dictates our opinions…without even thinking about outcomes down the road.

    Again, appreciate your post.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  4. And the cynic says “They don’t really believe in God, it’s just expected for them to do so to be a Republican.”

    JWB (c1c08f)

  5. Modern morality is believing that what you want to do is what is right. There is no other standard.

    We also see this in the administration’s idea of the rule of law – what I want is what is law. If the definition of marriage is changed, then why not the definition of law?

    Amphipolis (d3e04f)

  6. It’s always instructive to re-read “Nineteen Eighty Four.”

    We have always been at war with Eastasia.

    Fashions change. All we need is a little journalistic amnesia and then…

    Oh, wait.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  7. In essence, their prior stands were shaped by a belief in God and foundational principles stemming from Him.

    Dana, to personalize my own sense of the issue, I approach it based on what apparently guided the famous ancient Greek philosopher Plato, referring to his views later in life. He originally deemed homosexuality to be a perfectly fine type of behavior and — this is what’s fascinating to me — said in so many words that people who were opposed to it were country bumpkins—or a response that reminds me of Obama’s infamous dismissal of “small town Americans” clinging to their guns and Bible. But Plato — and keep in mind this was way before the era of Christ and in setting that had nothing to do with a culture based on the Bible — eventually came around to strongly repudiating homosexuality.

    I think the gut emotions behind Plato’s reactions — before and after — are what influence no less than do-gooder liberals themselves, who profess to being so tolerant and copacetic about homosexuality, but who then turn around and, when irked by people they’re opposing, accuse their foes of being gay. I noticed some pro-Obama commentators using that line when it came to an article about the story below, and claiming in postings (under the same story but at another news site) that if Texas governor Rick Perry had approached the cashier he should zip it because he’s as gay as they come.

    President Obama angered hungry customers at a Texas BBQ restaurant when he cut the line last week. But it was what the president said when he reached the front of the line that is getting the most ink in the liberal press. According to the Austin Chronicle, Obama stopped by Franklin Barbecue in Austin, Texas, on Thursday. Obama was jeered when he boldly cut the line.

    Daniel Webb, a comedian and sometime drag queen, was working the cash register that day. As Obama approached, Webb “slapped the counter dramatically” and hollered, “Equal rights for gay people!”

    “Are you gay?” asked Obama.

    “Only when I have sex,” Webb responded.

    The exchange elicited a hearty laugh and a fist bump from Obama who wasn’t a proponent of gay marriage until after he was re-elected to office in 2012.

    Mark (8cacab)

  8. Border, citizen, discrimination, justice, freedom, even life itself – these are traditional concepts that have evolved. Now we are free to make them mean whatever we want.

    Amphipolis (d3e04f)

  9. Greetings:

    My evolution still seems stuck on the assessment that a serious sexual dysfunction is not a sound basis for changing society’s primary social relationship. And I say that well aware of the fact that the American Psychological (or was it Psychiatric) Association voted back in 1973 (perhaps by a 97% consensual sex consensus) to remove homosexuality (and the resulting not to be mentioned homosex) from its diagnostic manual probably because diagnostic manuals tend to prevent evolution.

    Thirty some odd years after the arrival of HIV/AIDS, male homosexuals are still some 75% of new AIDS cases in the USofA. So, before we all put on our “human rights” stupid, let’s address the big question first, which no one really seems to want to do. Crippling society will not cure your crippled kid.

    11B40 (844d04)

  10. People who delineate right and wrong based on convenience are charlatans and hypocrites. My moral beliefs have never been affected one iota by what some member of my family has or has not done. In fact my moral beliefs are not affected by even my own actions. I have always believed that remarriage after divorce is wrong and my own remarriage after a divorce didn’t/hasn’t/won’t change my mind. Wrong is wrong. If I punch you in nose just for fun its still wrong and I know its still wrong. People like Portman make me sick.

    Mark Johnson (cf4f16)

  11. I suspect that, in Obama’s case, his shift in contradictory positions originates from a collision with his preference for Islam and his indoctrination by Black Liberation theologists. Such false equivalency is not uncommon among followers of the left and has more to do with political convenience than any consistent philosophical foundation.

    PPs43 (6fdef4)

  12. This way of thinking is very very prevalent.

    It sort of like a travesty of the golden rule.

    Sammy Finkelman (c33275)

  13. I can see people discarding irrational prejudice or bad attitudes. But this?

    You expect me to believe that there is a class of people, akin to a race, self-defined purely on the basis of their desire

    You expect me to believe that a single-sex couple is identical to a diverse-sex couple

    And you refuse to go logically where such assumptions must lead

    We can all agree to be insane, but then we would all be insane.

    Amphipolis (d3e04f)

  14. We should always doubt politicians’ sincerity. They’re windmills blown by the winds of the electorate. I think Obama lied in 2008 — he was for same sex marriage but it was not politically convenient to say it then. I think Portman never really gave a rat’s ass either way. He is a Bushie and lack of real convictions, just lip service to them, is the hallmark of that bunch. When he thought it would get him more votes, he was against same sex marriage. Now he’s calculating that in a state that voted for Obama in 2012 it’s more politic to be for it.

    Most people, though, are not politicians. Intelligent, educated people see both sides of the question and sometimes they change their minds even when it’s a 180 degrees from what they believed before. They don’t even need to be struck blind and have some Voice say, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?” Hmm?

    nk (dbc370)

  15. I suspect that, in Obama’s case, his shift in contradictory positions originates from a collision with his preference for Islam and his indoctrination by Black Liberation theologists.

    I also suspect it has a lot to do with reports — with heard-on-the-grapevine talk — of his own homosexuality or bisexuality.

    Mark (8cacab)

  16. ==So if he found out his son had a common-law wife and another wife in a neighboring community, and they all knew about one another and were perfectly fine about it, should the father’s views therefore evolve on the issue of polygamy?==

    Mark’s proffer of his “analogy” about evolving views on polygamy in this context might seem to be more relevant if the example he used was more clearly a case of classic polygamy and not just plain ‘ol run of the mill illegal bigamy.

    The difference between polygamy and bigamy is that; polygamy is a marriage which includes more than two partners with the assumption that they all live together or in very close proximity, while bigamy is the act of having a marriage with one partner while still lawfully married to another.

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  17. If your child is convicted of selling crack cocaine, will your views on the prohibition of drugs “evolve?” If your son shoots someone in a club for hitting on his girlfriend, will your opinion on murder “evolve?”

    Sadly, there are plenty of examples of both in today’s society, like the convicted cop killer who’s family is blaming the cop for having the temerity to do his job.

    Edoc118 (c37322)

  18. if the example he used was more clearly a case of classic polygamy

    Elissa, you’re getting stuck on the details and missing the bigger point. Or consider the analogies that Edoc118 has posted. Or it that’s too much of a stretch, then how about if the son was into the lifestyle of wife-swapping, which involves mutually consenting adults. Should the father proclaim, “well, son, that’s an interesting aspect of your life I wasn’t formerly aware of (And note: males are as naturally non-monogamous as homosexuals presumably are homosexual), so I’m gonna go with the flow. You get two big thumbs up from me!”

    Mark (8cacab)

  19. 17. Very good questions.

    Sammy Finkelman (c33275)

  20. Please don’t preach to people about “getting stuck on details” and missing the “larger point”, Mark. If you have a relevant point to make then make it. Don’t ask people to “stretch” or to use their imaginations or to rely on some other commenter’s example because yours was ill-thought through.

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  21. 16. The difference between polygamy and bigamy is that; polygamy is a marriage which includes more than two partners with the assumption that they all live together or in very close proximity, while bigamy is the act of having a marriage with one partner while still lawfully married to another.

    elissa (1d9a3d) — 7/14/2014 @ 10:07 am

    I don’t often rise to Mark’s defense but in this case his analogy is apt. “Plain ‘ol run of the mill illegal bigamy” is precisely how Muslim polygamy looks in places where it’s open practice is illegal. Such as Britain. It’s how the authorities let it fly under the radar. Hubby applies for benefits with his legal wife at one address, marries another in a strictly religious ceremony and sets her up at another, then applies for benefits again.

    Also, how polygamy is practiced depends on the culture. Mormons may have all lied together or in close proximity, but Muslim sailors/traders might have one wife in Arabia, another in India, and a third in Indonesia. It’s part of how Islam spread from Arabia o S.E. Asia.

    People are nothing if not adaptable.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  22. because yours was ill-thought through.

    Elissa, you’re tap dancing.

    Mark (8cacab)

  23. Except his wasn’t, elissa. There’s plenty of reasons to beat up on Mark, if he’s the one I’m thinking of, but this one isn’t. Sorry to borrow your soap box you borrowed from Mark to bite you for biting Mark for getting on the soap box you borrowed. Here’s your soap box back.

    John Hitchcock (71c968)

  24. 20. Don’t ask people to “stretch” or to use their imaginations or to rely on some other commenter’s example because yours was ill-thought through.

    elissa (1d9a3d) — 7/14/2014 @ 10:58 am

    I don’t want to get between you and Mark, but I just wanted to point out that a lot of cultures practice multiple marriages (polygamy and polyandry) and that the practice does not remotely rely on living together or in close proximity.

    What can I say? I guess I took too many anthropology electives in college.

    Now, you two have at it.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  25. What I find kind of objectionable here is the discussion of what other people “should” or “should not” do in highly personal situations–and what other people think is the “larger point” it could lead to. (This is not in any way a criticism of Dana’s post which is quite thought-provoking.) Faced with a similar situation members of Bob Portman’s family and members of Dick Cheney’s family responded in different ways to their gay childrens’ marriages. Who are we to say who is sincere or insincere, or being “political”? Who are we to say who was right or wrong in either their public response to their children, or in their private response inside their family dynamic? Their children. Their families. Their unique circumstances.

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  26. Mark likes to share his sexual fantasies in the guise of “examples”. There’s no right way to address them.

    nk (dbc370)

  27. There’s plenty of reasons to beat up on Mark,

    Since I don’t do much back-and-fro posting here, and since your name isn’t too familiar to me, I’d be curious what exactly those “plenty of reasons” are. Just askin’ and wondering.

    Mark (8cacab)

  28. You see, elissa, there’s this little verse in the book of Leviticus that spells things out very clearly. If you’re a Providence fearing, Bible believer (as I am), that settles it. That’s who we are to say which is right and which is wrong. Just so we’re clear.

    John Hitchcock (71c968)

  29. Mark, I’m an old timer from back in Eric Blair’s heyday. I’m an infrequent commenter nowadays. But I have seen the cute Dana throw her Jimmy Choos at people just because she didn’t want to make them a sammich.

    John Hitchcock (71c968)

  30. Oh, nk, you’re so touchingly droll.

    Mark (8cacab)

  31. What happened is pragmatism. A parent with a gay son will change their position if they want to be cared for in old age.

    Denver Todd (8570f0)

  32. I’m going to stick up for elissa. Mark’s analogy was bigamy. Steve57 describes practices in other countries. I could care less about what occurs there. Since we are not a nation of Muslim traders with people having wives in different ports, I have no idea why that analogy would be apt, although I have no idea what current Navy practice is acceptable. Mormon examples of sister wives or other euphemisms such as the spinoff sect that was raided several years back in Texas again involved a group all living in one place.

    I did have an older in-law get taken advantage of by a bigamist almost 20 years ago. It does happen and it has nothing to do with polygamy.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  33. Unlike Mark , I am always happy to take and actually consider criticisms and questions about my posts here. Perhaps I was not adequately focused on and thinking about the Muslim definition of polygamy when we started discussing the Republican Party’s choice of Cleveland and Bob Portman’s role in it (the Bob Portman who has a gay son.)

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  34. I’m an old timer from back in Eric Blair’s heyday.

    John, I have just a vague recollection of Eric or other forumers at Patterico.com, and some of them getting into heated debates with one another in the past. Since I admit to posting here mainly to resolve or clarify issues for myself, and in order to deal with people I hash things over with personally (ie, at the office, at family gatherings, etc), a lot of that stuff flies right over my head.

    Mark (8cacab)

  35. Hey Daley, I could tell some stories. You know that movie Crazy Stupid Love with the hot to trot Emma Stone? Well, … Oh, wait, that’s not what this thread is about. Carry on.

    John Hitchcock (71c968)

  36. It does happen and it has nothing to do with polygamy.

    But if Bob Portman’s son revealed that choice of lifestyle to his father, should Bob therefore proclaim “my views on the matter are evolving.”

    Mark (8cacab)

  37. hobby lobby was all about saying that people should be free to practice their faiths without interference from the government

    yet the same evangelicals what applaud the hobby lobby decision are balls deep into the idea that the government should prevent gay christians what believe in gay marriage from practicing their faith

    this is hypocrisy, done and done

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  38. Feets, you might want to skip over the parts where Providence says it’s an abomination, it’s unnatural, it’s a choice, it’s a sin, but Providence doesn’t. And He doesn’t just wink and nod, either.

    John Hitchcock (71c968)

  39. Happyfeet, keep in mind that you’ve slammed polygamists in the past, describing them as (if my memory is correct) “trailer trash.” Trailer trash to one person is the beauty and wonders of SSM to another, and visa versa.

    Mark (8cacab)

  40. Steve57 describes practices in other countries. How about this for example.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Etoro_tribe

    They [the Etoro] are well known among anthropologists because of ritual homosexual acts practised between the young boys and men of the tribe. The Etoro believe that young boys must ingest the semen of their elders daily from the age of 7 until they turn 17 to achieve adult male status and to properly mature and grow strong.

    Eww.

    papertiger (c2d6da)

  41. I think we can agree that sometimes a change of circumstance, a life example never faced before, can make one reconsider various ideas and sometimes change their mind.

    As said, Saul of Tarsus once had no doubt that Jesus was some charlatan, and his followers were to be stamped out,
    the circumstance of being struck blind and hearing Jesus’ voice gave him the opportunity and reason to reconsider.
    I imagine being in a Roman prison cell gave him opportunity and reason to reconsider as well, but that time he decided there was inadequate reason to change his convictions, even at the cost of his life.
    Sen. Portman may have changed his mind after forced reflection, or due to emotional distress at living at odds with his son, or for political expediency, or likely some combination of the three.
    The thing that some would object to is the implication that he has now come to “see the light” where he was previously wrong.
    It is possible that he had thought about it inadequately before, and that he has still thought inadequately about it.
    “Everyone did what was right in their own eyes”. It has happened before.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  42. Nope. Hobby Lobby was “the government can’t make you pay for other people’s abortifacients”. Nothing to do with gays — the government can make you pay for their antibiotics and antiretrovirals (and it’s the Christian thing to do, anyway).

    nk (dbc370)

  43. That was to happyfeet.

    nk (dbc370)

  44. So queerness isn’t a condition people are born with, rather it is a behavior that is chosen or imposed by societal pressure.

    Suddenly I feel the urge to punch the producer of Will & Grace for promoting homosexuality as normal aspect of our culture.

    I lied. There’s nothing sudden about that urge.

    papertiger (c2d6da)

  45. The Etoro believe that young boys

    Don’t ever assume the slippery slope can’t be quite steep and surprisingly slick.

    telegraph.co.uk, July 11, 2014: An Australian judge will be investigated for his “appalling” comments on incest, in which he reportedly said sex between siblings was gaining social acceptance just like homosexuality, authorities said on Friday. New South Wales state Attorney General Brad Hazzard said he was “extremely concerned” about District Court judge Garry Neilson’s alleged comments in a case where a man was accused of repeatedly raping his younger sister, which were reported in the Sydney Morning Herald.

    “In my view the community would be rightly appalled at his reported comments,” Hazzard said in a statement. “Incest is completely reprehensible, unacceptable, disgusting and criminal.”

    Neilson was quoted as saying communities might no longer see sex between siblings as “unnatural” or “taboo”, likening a change in mindsets to how homosexuality was now socially accepted despite being criminalised in the past.

    Mark (8cacab)

  46. Mark if you ever get chapped (from all the worry and handwringing of course) I can recommend a very nice product from the Bath and Body Works Signature line.

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  47. Cute, elissa. Stay classy, girl.

    John Hitchcock (71c968)

  48. I may be thinking about it wrong, but it seems pretty simple.

    Bigamy is a crime in most western countries. When it occurs in this context often neither the first nor second spouse is aware of the other. In countries that have bigamy laws, consent from a prior spouse makes no difference to the legality of the second marriage. Polygamy is a marriage which includes more than two partners.

    Mark’s example was multiple marriages involving one married individual or bigamy, not polygamy.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  49. It’s illegal to advertise smoking with a Joe Camel because it might influence someone’s kid to take up the habit.

    But perfectly fine to have a gay wedding on a float at the Tournament of Roses parade in Pasadena.

    papertiger (c2d6da)

  50. “Hey Daley, I could tell some stories. You know that movie Crazy Stupid Love with the hot to trot Emma Stone?”

    John Hitchcock – Good to see you. I don’t know the movie, but I love stories. :)

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  51. yet the same evangelicals what applaud the hobby lobby decision are balls deep into the idea that the government should prevent gay christians what believe in gay marriage from practicing their faith
    this is hypocrisy, done and done

    happyfeet (8ce051) — 7/14/2014 @ 11:38 am

    I have yet to meet an Evangelical who thinks it is a good idea for the federal government to decide what Christianity is or isn’t. I think the government deciding who is and is not a Christian is the kind of thing that the Constitution was talking about in not establishing a religion.
    “Evangelical Christians”, AFAIK, for the most part do not want to be forced to agree to believe in something they don’t agree with. If people of the SS want to have some sort of legally recognized union, so be it if that what the country’s political process determines. Some just don’t want to be told they have to themselves accept that as normal behavior.
    Others, who may not be Christians of any type, like the idea that language means something, and that “marriage” has been defined as a special relationship between a man and a woman, and if you want to institute a new legally defined relationship, fine, just call it something else.
    Which I guess one does if the new terminology is “SSM” and “traditional marriage”.
    Though I imagine that is actually unsatisfactory to some supporters of SSM, as their whole point is to have it all considered “just” “marriage”.
    But you can not achieve that aim, unless you try to control what people think and believe.
    And that is the problem.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  52. (from all the worry and handwringing of course

    Elissa, so now a window into your own mind gives you a good example of what underlies the type of response from liberal A, B or C towards conservative D, E or F. That along with reactions like “not knowing jacksh#t” about Chicago being America’s Murder Capital.

    Mark (8cacab)

  53. nk (dbc370) — 7/14/2014 @ 11:49 am

    Well, that was a very precise and cogent point.
    Agreeing to help someone with an illness to stay healthy
    vs.
    assisting someone in performing a (medical) abortion.

    If lawyers only spent their time always trying to clarify things…

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  54. hobby lobby was all about saying that people should be free to practice their faiths without interference from the government

    yet the same evangelicals what applaud the hobby lobby decision are balls deep into the idea that the government should prevent gay christians what believe in gay marriage from practicing their faith

    this is hypocrisy, done and done

    Nonsense. Nothing stopped gay people from having ceremonies and declaring themselves spouses. No state agency sent a SWAT team into a Metropolitan Community Church to stop two dudes from saying “I do.” Such ceremonies just didn’t carry the weight of law because it was (and still is) the government that determines legally what “marriage” is and what “family” is.

    Whether they admit it or not, what gactivists want is to overturn ALL of that — they want a society in which individuals are free to form families of any type and any size for legal purposes. I can say that with confidence because when you ask them pointedly how the current trends will fail to eventually lead to that, they refuse to answer or try to change the subject. Almost every maddog time.

    L.N. Smithee (4e7e54)

  55. Isn’t Detroit or New Orleans before Katrina, America’s murder capital?

    The whole country of Honduras – not the worst city alone – is also very very high. Honduras greatly deteriorated after that trouble in 2009. Guatamala and El Salvador are not in the same boat.

    Sammy Finkelman (c33275)

  56. When I was in my 20′s I was of the “abortion is murder” persuasion. While my views of it had weakened somewhat by the time I was in my 30′s, I still thought that abortion was a great sin.

    Then one day I was called upon to counsel a young woman newly in a 12-step program. She was pregnant (I had no part in that), and she did not know what to do. She also thought that abortion was a great sin. The problem was though, that she had a couple of criticality-one problems (HIV+ and a crack addiction). Even carrying the child to term was a big problem, let alone raising it. Dead, she would do the fetus no good, smoking crack she would do the fetus no good, and without the best medical care, which she would probably not get, HIV+ wasn’t good either.

    So I told her that God would probably understand if she decided not to keep the baby. She also talked to others, including women (which I strongly suggested), and she ended up having an abortion. She was 2 years sober and working last I saw her, some time ago.

    This affected my thinking on the subject.

    Kevin M (131754)

  57. Thank you very much daleyrocks @32 and @48. Yes, Mark was clearly describing bigamy. But, never mind, no importa, small bump, mere semantics …..”larger point” being bulldozed through!!!! It is not worth trying to have a sane discussion on some topics here, anymore.

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  58. It would tend to make one believe that Sen. Portman has rejected at least one of the tenets of his religion, if not many more, in the guise of political expediency.
    As to the President, he’s always lied about his relationship to religion, and if he ever took the mask off, the LG-BLT community would run for their lives as Sharia descended upon them in the form of a brick wall.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  59. What was that larger point, elissa? Did that larger point have to do with flowered fragrance expensive Jergens you were trying to sell to Mark? Is that the sane discussion you were referring to?

    John Hitchcock (71c968)

  60. MD in Philly (f9371b) — 7/14/2014 @ 12:04 pm

    I think I’ll marry my sportscar, and declare my two motorcycles as juvenile dependents.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  61. Kevin M.
    I understand your point, and agree that it is wrong to tell someone else what to do when they have to face the consequences of a decision and you don’t.
    While your argument has merit, it is also possible that having an abortion, especially if she thought abortion was wrong, would have been a guilt trip that would have kept her in her addiction.
    I think it is fair to say that I would have been wrong to tell her to keep the baby, though, unless I was prepared to help her get assistance from a crisis pregnancy group and medical help during her pregnancy.
    We actually know a family who recently adopted a new born from a similar situation, without any guarantee whether the child will eventually be HIV neg or pos.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  62. I appreciate the powerful linkage support against his goofy “Murder Capital” obsession too, daleyrocks.

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  63. askeptic (efcf22) — 7/14/2014 @ 12:24 pm

    And if anyone objects, you can call them a “wheelist”, that they are prejudiced against vehicles with less than 4 wheels.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  64. John, I’ve said not one word in response to you or to challenge you or against you and I wouldn’t and I won’t. I have no issue with you. Peace.

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  65. @ elissa,

    It is not worth trying to have a sane discussion on some topics here, anymore.

    I’m sorry to hear you feel this way. You are always an interesting read in the comments section. I hope you reconsider discussing this subject.

    Dana (4dbf62)

  66. It’s illegal to advertise beer or liquor in comic books because that might encourage children to drink,

    But perfectly ok to have Archie from Archie comics have a gay sex hookup with a character created for just that purpose

    papertiger (c2d6da)

  67. Kevin M,

    Thanks for sharing that. I’m sure your decision on how to advise her was not easily arrived at.

    My new daughter-in-law comes from an amazing family: her biological parents were emergency foster parents (the kind that could be called upon 24/7 to take meth babies). They had oodles of foster children and ended up adopting 4 or 5 of them, as well as beginning the adoption process on a 3 year old little guy they had had since a few weeks old. Unfortunately, the birth mother had been clean for a few months, so the judge ordered them to return him to her (because giving their ‘son’ back so deeply broke their hearts, they no longer foster…)Anyway, because of the drug usage during their pregnancies, these kids have a myriad of issues, including learning disabilities that render it necessary to be in Spec Ed classes. They are loved and they are wanted. It happens. And I marvel at how big some people’s hearts are.

    Dana (4dbf62)

  68. “It’s illegal to advertise beer or liquor in comic books because that might encourage children to drink,

    But perfectly ok to have Archie from Archie comics have a gay sex hookup with a character created for just that purpose”

    papertiger – Where else do you expect preteens to learn to use dental dams? I mean, what could go wrong?

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  69. Sorry, elissa, but this is a public forum. You don’t get the opportunity to spout juvenile taunts and then claim the high ground in the same hour on the same thread. I’m sure you and I agree on a fair amount of things, but as daley will agree, I’m an equal opportunity attack dog.

    John Hitchcock (71c968)

  70. papertiger–how are the gay pick-up lines in modern Archie comics? Improved? Back in the day we used to giggle uncontrollably at the silly dialogue between the sexes in Archie’s high school.

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  71. Sorry Elissa. My experience with Archie comics ended in the late 70′s. I was just picking from headlines and Archie Comics is in the news today.

    papertiger (c2d6da)

  72. Who really cares – the one who tells the truth, or the one who is always agreeable?

    If a man thinks he is a chicken the loving thing to do is not to evolve your view of fowl and put him in a coop. Or finance his species reconstruction surgery.

    Amphipolis (d3e04f)

  73. You don’t get the opportunity to spout juvenile taunts and then claim the high ground in the same hour on the same thread.

    balderdash and gee willikers Mr. Hitchcock i do this all the time

    are you saying elissa can’t do it though cause she’s a girl?

    omg that’s so massageyness

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  74. Feets, I like a good massage just as much as the next man. Especially if a woman is giving it and then gets me a beer and a sammich.

    John Hitchcock (71c968)

  75. feets, elissa’s not bug-nutz 99% of the time.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  76. ok then

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  77. When I was in my 20′s I was of the “abortion is murder” persuasion. While my views of it had weakened somewhat by the time I was in my 30′s, I still thought that abortion was a great sin.

    Then one day I was called upon to counsel a young woman newly in a 12-step program. She was pregnant (I had no part in that), and she did not know what to do. She also thought that abortion was a great sin. The problem was though, that she had a couple of criticality-one problems (HIV+ and a crack addiction). Even carrying the child to term was a big problem, let alone raising it. Dead, she would do the fetus no good, smoking crack she would do the fetus no good, and without the best medical care, which she would probably not get, HIV+ wasn’t good either.

    So I told her that God would probably understand if she decided not to keep the baby. She also talked to others, including women (which I strongly suggested), and she ended up having an abortion. She was 2 years sober and working last I saw her, some time ago.

    This affected my thinking on the subject.

    Kevin M (131754) — 7/14/2014 @ 12:12 pm

    How did it “affect your thinking”? Did the fact that she was sober and working mitigate the fact that rather than give her unborn child up to someone equipped to provide a stable home, she had it (as Dr. Laura Schlessinger would say) sucked into a sink?

    L.N. Smithee (4e7e54)

  78. Here’s something.
    Coming next month to “Archie”: Betty’s forced to scrape together eight bucks for birth control when her boss cuts off coverage after the Hobby Lobby ruling – according to Allahpundit.
    http://hotair.com/archives/2014/07/14/archie-to-be-shot-dead-while-saving-gay-best-friend-who-called-for-gun-control/

    Last time I read “Archie” Betty was a virgin

    papertiger (c2d6da)

  79. MD,

    I should also point out this was in the early 90′s when HIV+ was rather more worrisome than it is now.

    Kevin M (131754)

  80. 59. Thank you very much daleyrocks @32 and @48. Yes, Mark was clearly describing bigamy. But, never mind, no importa, small bump, mere semantics …..”larger point” being bulldozed through!!!! It is not worth trying to have a sane discussion on some topics here, anymore.

    elissa (1d9a3d) — 7/14/2014 @ 12:18 pm

    Money quote:

    It is not worth trying to have a sane discussion on some topics here, anymore.

    Indeed. Because the elephant in the room is that polygamy is bigamy in countries that don’t recognize multiple marriages.

    You’re all arguing a distinction without a difference. A Muslim could legally be married to four women in Saudi Arabia. He could legally immigrate to the US with one wife. If he brought more of his legal wives, he’d be guilty of bigamy in the US. A non-crime in Saudi Arabia.

    You’re all pretending that polygamy and bigamy are two different things. Not in countries that outlaw multiple marriages, they’re not. Polygamy simply falls under the umbrella of bigamy. And what Mark was clearly describing is how Muslims like the Saudi man I described above do in fact continue to practice polygamy in countries that outlaw multiple marriages under their bigamy laws.

    You have no point.

    If this is a hard concept to grasp, if you’re going to deny the obvious, then it is worthless to try and have a sane discussion.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  81. Smithee,

    Perhaps I should have made that clearer as you are connecting two sentences in a way I did not intend. I have no idea what the outcome would have been otherwise (I am not God).

    I just know that what happened was an outcome that severely beat the odds. Even back in the early 90′s when there were no good AIDs treatments, most crack-addicted HIV+ people did not die from the AIDS.

    And it was not my decision, I was only one of maybe a dozen she asked for advice. I was talking about how it affected my thinking, not hers. It was a lesson in humility and the errors of righteousness.

    Kevin M (131754)

  82. @ Kevin M,

    I should also point out this was in the early 90′s when HIV+ was rather more worrisome than it is now.

    Does that fact make a difference in how you would counsel such a young woman facing the same circumstances in 2014?

    Dana (4dbf62)

  83. Your call John. Sometimes humor has its place on a public forum, too, I think. I’m no angel and I don’t pretend to always “take the high ground” but I do enjoy thoughtful discussion between smart and clever people who have interesting and new things to say on these threads. I suspect you are not aware of all the repetition, juvenile taunts and personal insinuations about people that have been written by the person you seem to be defending today.

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  84. The crack addicted floosie asking advice about abortion – it’s sort of too late for any meaningful advice at that point.

    It would be like happening upon a pedestrian freshly run over by a train, and having them ask your opinion about napping on train tracks.

    papertiger (c2d6da)

  85. “You’re all pretending that polygamy and bigamy are two different things. Not in countries that outlaw multiple marriages”

    Steve57 – I really don’t give a fig about other countries since we are talking about the U.S. and morality in this country.

    In my mind I am not talking about a distinction without a difference. Bigamy and multiple marriages are the same. They both involve one person getting married to somebody else while already married. Polygamy is a marriage with more than two partners. That’s my definition and I’m sticking to it unless somebody can persuade me there’s a better standard.

    You are free to disagree.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  86. WADR, Kevin, you still have not expressed the sense in which your “thinking on the subject” was “affected.” You began saying that your “abortion is murder” viewpoint had softened over the years, but not how you personally felt about the fact that this woman chose to end her unborn child’s life.

    Regarding the “outcome that severely beat the odds” — it seems to me you are suggesting that the “outcome” of the foolish mother cleaning up her act surviving was the desired result, not the survival of both her and her unborn child. That baby’s early life may not have been ideal, but his or her potential was unwritten, not pre-determined.

    I’m curious as to whether you are contributing to this conversation on a computer, a cell phone, or a tablet. Why? Because one of the best-kept secrets of our modern life is that many of the largest technological breakthroughs of the Twentieth and Twenty-first Centuries were accomplished by an unwanted child that was put up for adoption rather than sucked into a sink (no doubt in part because abortion was illegal at the time).

    He died a few years ago, but I’m sure you’ve heard of him. His name was Steve Jobs.

    Does that affect your thinking?

    L.N. Smithee (4e7e54)

  87. Kevin M, there’s a difference between righteousness and self-righteousness. I know. I practice both, only one of which is a sin.

    Elissa, to stoop to juvenile taunting is one thing. I do that myself. But then to proclaim the high ground in the next breath is… passive-aggressive. That, I don’t do. As I said, I’m an equal opportunity attack dog. I gladly get in the mud on many an occasion, but I don’t then claim to be above the fray.

    As for feets, I lost all respect for him years ago, so it doesn’t matter to me whether I use logical, reasoned retorts with him or nonsensical garbage. But, again, I will not claim to be above the fray when I’m covered in the muck myself.

    John Hitchcock (71c968)

  88. the important thing is that gay marriage is legal in an increasing number of states and this way Team R is free to moveon.org.com.gov.edu.co.uk

    maybe they can work on changing the law to where we treat the central american urchins same as mexican ones

    or they could work on deauthorizing the piggy piggy ex/im bank

    or, you know, not

    Republicans are highly resistant to the concept of limited government these days

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  89. I believe all forms of marriage are permissible.

    After I discovered one of my friends was a pedophile and another a rapist and others polyamourists, my attitudes towards their sexualities evolved. I have also attended conventions at which xenophilia, rishathra, or bestiality (use your preferred term) were discussed. Human sexuality/sexual appetite/genders are omnivorous. Let all be legal and acceptable.

    Many women (and not only women) have rape fantasies. A few men want to be rapists. Why can’t we get these two groups together, allowing a ‘rape marriage’ for these obviously compatible sexualities/genders?

    As to pedophilia, I am strongly opposed to sex with anyone whose parent or guardian can’t consent for them. The same “who can give consent” standard should be used for bestiality.

    And like that British judge, it’s apparent that only ignorance and bigotry condemned incestuous genders. Love makes a family. Mary Kay LeTourneau loves children.

    And the purpose of government is to compel obedience to the new normal morality. Let the reeducation (or diversity training as it called in the US) begin.

    ErisGuy (76f8a7)

  90. “You see, elissa, there’s this little verse in the book of Leviticus that spells things out very clearly. If you’re a Providence fearing, Bible believer (as I am), that settles it. That’s who we are to say which is right and which is wrong. Just so we’re clear.”

    - John Hitchcock

    That doesn’t “settle it.” I’m a Bible believer too, and I’m telling you, “No, that doesn’t ‘settle it.’” Don’t say “we.” No one appointed you as God’s Press Secretary, and there are many many Christians – “Providence fearing, Bible believ[ing]” Christians” – who think differently than you do.

    I (speaking for myself, which is the extent of my right) find tension between statements in the New Testament preaching love as the highest virtue and statements in the Old Testament condemning homosexuality per se. In the past, I struggled with the tension. But over the years, the struggle has dissipated.

    I’m not called to be an enforcer of God’s law (if the Law can be said to bind, where it has been fulfilled in Christ). By Christ, who has satisfied the dictates of the Law, I am called to love. I see love in many heterosexual relationships, none in others. I see love in many homosexual relationships, none in others. Which relationships do I support, in light of what Christ has required of me? The heterosexual ones, the homosexual ones, or the loving ones? The idea that opposition to gay rights is an accurate litmus test for Christian faith is offensive to me and many other Christians that I know.

    Leviticus (1aca67)

  91. Portman could say, “my views were superficial and i hadn’t really thought about it much before my son came out, which made me confront the basis for my beliefs, which I hadn’t done before, and so I changed my answer on the question.” That makes sense from the standpoint of how people reach conclusions, but no politician would say that in fear of looking stupid or offending a voter with the admission that he hadn’t thought about an issue the voter considers important. So they come up with these tangled rationales that sound good but make no logical sense.

    Bud Norton (29550d)

  92. Actually, scratch the first part of my comment: say whatever you want, John Hitchcock. Just understand that purporting to personify True Christianity borders on blasphemy.

    Leviticus (1aca67)

  93. Who said that not one jot or tiddle of the law would pass away? Who said that he didn’t come to abolish the law? And who said that homosexuality was an abomination (OT), a sin (NT), a choice (NT), unnatural (NT), and a direct path to Hell (NT)? Oh, that’s right. Providence (whom you purport to worship) did. Claiming homosexuality is perfectly acceptable in the Christian faith doesn’t merely border on blasphemy, it is blasphemy personified.

    John Hitchcock (71c968)

  94. homosexuality is not not not not not an abomination Mr. Hitchcock someone what did that chapter of the Bible must’ve confuzzled it with something else like lutefisk or artpop or the ramen noodles with pudding thing

    we should just edit that part out going forward

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  95. “You’re all pretending that polygamy and bigamy are two different things. Not in countries that outlaw multiple marriages”

    Steve57 – I really don’t give a fig about other countries since we are talking about the U.S. and morality in this country.

    Uhh, daley, this country, the U.S., is one of those countries that outlaws multiple marriages.

    In my mind I am not talking about a distinction without a difference. Bigamy and multiple marriages are the same. They both involve one person getting married to somebody else while already married. Polygamy is a marriage with more than two partners. That’s my definition and I’m sticking to it unless somebody can persuade me there’s a better standard.

    You are free to disagree.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9) — 7/14/2014 @ 1:39 pm

    I’m scratching my head here, because that’s been my point all along. That’s the distinction without a difference I was talking about. You’re making my point.

    Yet confusion reigns.

    Thank you very much daleyrocks @32 and @48. Yes, Mark was clearly describing bigamy.

    Mark was clearly talking about bigamy and polygamy. Both being one and the same thing, as you point out.

    I am of course free to disagree, but I’ll leave it up to you to figure out how we do.
    I said that distinguishing between the two is trying to make a distinction without a difference because polygamy is bigamy.

    You said you are not talking about a distinction without a difference since bigamy and multiple marriages are the same.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  96. “I have no idea what the outcome would have been otherwise (I am not God).”

    I, for one, am damned glad you cleared that up, Kevin!

    Colonel Haiku (207b84)

  97. Feminist author slams gay marriage: “a man needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle”

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  98. that is an exceedingly glib thing to say Mr. daley

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  99. “Mark was clearly talking about bigamy and polygamy. Both being one and the same thing, as you point out.”

    Steve57 – SSM opponents make an argument that it is a slippery slope to polygamy. Mark has argued that on this blog.

    I do not take that argument to mean do not stop me from marrying one person on the East Coast and another separately on the West Coast.

    I take that to mean I cannot choose between two people I love equally, it is unfair of the government to make me choose between them, I should be able to follow my heart, where is my marriage equality if I cannot marry the two men/women I love and all live together in happiness ever after.

    Different point, different argument.

    No BS multi-culti relativism.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  100. “I’m scratching my head here, because that’s been my point all along. That’s the distinction without a difference I was talking about. You’re making my point.”

    Steve57 – Then why are you telling me I have no point?

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  101. I’m not called to be an enforcer of God’s law (if the Law can be said to bind, where it has been fulfilled in Christ). By Christ, who has satisfied the dictates of the Law, I am called to love. I see love in many heterosexual relationships, none in others. I see love in many homosexual relationships, none in others. Which relationships do I support, in light of what Christ has required of me? The heterosexual ones, the homosexual ones, or the loving ones? The idea that opposition to gay rights is an accurate litmus test for Christian faith is offensive to me and many other Christians that I know.

    Leviticus (1aca67) — 7/14/2014 @ 1:57 pm

    On one hand, you say you aren’t called to “enforce” God’s law, but moments later, you ask the question “Which relationships do I support, in light of what Christ has required of me?”

    HUH? When did Christ “require” anyone to “support” relationships? What does “supporting” someone else’s relationship even mean? And regarding “opposition to gay rights,” that is not something that is required of Christians. Opposition to the unrepentant practice of sin, however, is, regardless of whether the nature of it is sexual immorality, dishonesty, violence, blasphemy, etc. If you find it offensive that I say one is not a serious Christian if one does not believe Scripture teaches about homosexuality, now you know how I feel about the kind of “Christian” who would — if they could — black out certain verses as if modern morality had rendered them obsolete.

    L.N. Smithee (4e7e54)

  102. I (speaking for myself, which is the extent of my right) find tension between statements in the New Testament preaching love as the highest virtue and statements in the Old Testament condemning homosexuality per se. In the past, I struggled with the tension. But over the years, the struggle has dissipated.

    I’m not called to be an enforcer of God’s law (if the Law can be said to bind, where it has been fulfilled in Christ). By Christ, who has satisfied the dictates of the Law, I am called to love. I see love in many heterosexual relationships, none in others. I see love in many homosexual relationships, none in others. Which relationships do I support, in light of what Christ has required of me? The heterosexual ones, the homosexual ones, or the loving ones? The idea that opposition to gay rights is an accurate litmus test for Christian faith is offensive to me and many other Christians that I know.

    Do you feel that gays have a right to be married in a church, i.e., should a Catholic Church be required to perform a SSM, or face a lawsuit or threat of losing it’s tax exempt status?

    Hadoop (f7d5ba)

  103. “that is an exceedingly glib thing to say Mr. daley”

    Mr. Feets – Those feminists are typically very angry type people what are marxist lesbians and hate penises. Don’t blame me.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  104. If you were trying to argue that bigamy and polygamy were two different things, you’d have no point.

    R.e. that slippery slope argument.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/15/us/a-utah-law-prohibiting-polygamy-is-weakened.html?_r=0

    …Judge Clark Waddoups of United States District Court in Utah ruled late Friday that part of the state’s law prohibiting “cohabitation” — the language used in the law to restrict polygamous relationships — violates the First Amendment guarantee of free exercise of religion, as well as constitutional due process. He left standing the state’s ability to prohibit multiple marriages “in the literal sense” of having two or more valid marriage licenses.

    … The challenge to the law was brought by Kody Brown, who, along with his four wives and 17 children, stars in “Sister Wives,” the reality television show. The family argued that the state’s prohibition on cohabitation violated its rights to privacy and religious freedom. The Browns are members of the Apostolic United Brethren Church, a fundamentalist offshoot of the Mormon Church, which gave up polygamy around 1890 as Utah was seeking statehood.

    The judge cited the decision in Lawrence v. Texas, the 2003 Supreme Court case that struck down laws prohibiting sodomy. He quoted the majority opinion by Justice Anthony M. Kennedy that stated the Constitution protects people from “unwarranted government intrusions into a dwelling or other private places” and “an autonomy of self that includes freedom of thought, belief, expression and certain intimate conduct.”

    It’s not entirely without merit.

    A lot of states have “anti-Mormon” clauses in their bigamy laws. Not only can you only be legally married to one person at a time, you and your spouse an not cohabitate with a third (or more) nor can you present yourself to others as if your marriage included any additional spouses.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  105. Here’s the Texas statute, anti-Mormon clauses and all.

    http://law.onecle.com/texas/penal/25.01.00.html

    Texas Penal Code – Section 25.01. Bigamy

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  106. feminists are mostly the unattractive womens with neurotic and off-putting personalities what are just trying to make the best of the bad hand they’ve been dealt

    just for these ones society has recently developed a combination therapy of “binge-viewing” and “lifetime” and “haagen-dazs”

    the early data is very encouraging

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  107. Actually, the New Testament says do not say Godspeed to anyone who has declared an intent to disobey Providence’s Law. To do so is tantamount to disobeying the same Law. So, rejoicing in the homosexual “marriage” of another is itself a violation of Providence’s Law, as declared in the New Testament.

    John Hitchcock (71c968)

  108. Does that fact make a difference in how you would counsel such a young woman facing the same circumstances in 2014?

    I would still counsel her that it is her decision, not mine and that she was going to have to live with it, not me. Even then, I did not suggest that she have an abortion, only that she needed to consider her priorities, and that saving her own life might be high on that list.

    Nowadays the risk would be less, but probably not a lot less. I’ll let you know if the thing comes up again. All I am REALLY saying, as the subject of this thread is concerned, is that I was forced to examine my beliefs and found some humility replacing some certainty.

    Kevin M (131754)

  109. The crack addicted floosie asking advice about abortion – it’s sort of too late for any meaningful advice at that point.

    And yet, two years later the floosie was still clean and working and supporting herself, and for all I know still is.

    Kevin M (131754)

  110. Steve57: What I wrote on my blog in 2010 regarding the case of a married Columbia University professor who was arrested for carrying on a sexual relationship with his 24-year-old daughter:

    On [the SCOTUS docket is] support of same-sex marriage within two parties, but [David Boies and Ted Olson's] position as advocates of such unions sets the table for future challenges to the idea that marriage ought to be limited to just two individuals, be they straight, gay, or bisexual. In short: If their California victory currently being appealed should be confirmed by the U.S. Supreme Court, all future challenges to America’s longstanding marital norms won’t be based on the question “Why expand marriage rights?” but “Why should marriage rights NOT be extended?”

    Eight months later, here’s what the Los Angeles Times wrote in an editorial spurred by Turley’s defense of Kody Brown:

    So is polygamy about to receive the same legal status that same-sex marriage now has in several states? Not in the near term. For one thing, the U.S. Supreme Court has not recognized same-sex marriage, a prerequisite, some think, for acceptance of polygamous marriage. Meanwhile, the federal court in Utah, in parallel with Lawrence, may rule simply that the Browns and other polygamous families are immune to prosecution but can’t have their multiple “spiritual marriages” blessed by the law.

    But, like Lawrence, a ruling sympathetic to unconventional sexual behavior could plant the seeds of a future campaign for full marriage equality. In that case, governments would have to prove that it’s rational to limit marriage to two individuals, homosexual or heterosexual. That might seem obvious, but so, at one time, did the argument that marriage should be confined to opposite-sex couples.

    My victory lap.

    L.N. Smithee (4e7e54)

  111. I, for one, am damned glad you cleared that up, Kevin!

    Yeah, well, there are others around here where I still wonder.

    Kevin M (131754)

  112. When Portman ran for re-election, he passed himself off as having traditional marraige views. His “evolution” took place only after his re-election.

    I have voted for Portman twice. Marriage wasn’t really an issue either time for me.

    But this guy — who naturally exudes far greater “trust me” vibes than the average politician — can turn on a dime. Remember that in 2016, if you happen to see ads with him wearing flannel shirts and walking with his wife.

    NCC (1d4e97)

  113. Do you feel that gays have a right to be married in a church, i.e., should a Catholic Church be required to perform a SSM, or face a lawsuit or threat of losing it’s tax exempt status?

    Answer 1: The moment a church official uses the words “By the power invested in me by the state of ______” there’s a problem, as that investment may have strings.

    Answer 2: The Catholic Church will not perform some heterosexual marriages, either. Unions of two non-Catholics, unions where one of the parties is a divorced Catholic. Marriages of a Catholic to a non-Christian require special permission. Arguably, it is not direct discrimination against gays.

    Answer 3: Should it be so ruled, the Catholic Church would stop acting as a state agent (see 1), and there is utterly no way the state can force them to perform particular RELIGIOUS rites.

    Kevin M (131754)

  114. #91: I assume this is satire.

    One quibble: “rishathra” refers to sex between different HOMINID species (e.g. Homo sapiens and Homo floresiensis or the Neanderthals. It presumes no viable offspring can result, so sex between, say, humans and Vulcans would not qualify.

    Kevin M (131754)

  115. All I am REALLY saying, as the subject of this thread is concerned, is that I was forced to examine my beliefs and found some humility replacing some certainty.
    Kevin M (131754) — 7/14/2014 @ 3:44 pm

    What was the errant “certainty” of which you speak? That elective abortion is wrong?

    L.N. Smithee (4e7e54)

  116. ==“Mark was clearly talking about bigamy and polygamy. Both being one and the same thing,……”

    First it scares me just a wee bit, Steve, that you are so in sync with our Mr. Mark today that you know what he meant when he used the word polygamy rather than the word bigamy even though he described situational bigamy. You may want to think on this. :)
    Despite your insistence that the words are are synonymous and always interchangeable they are not. Yes, as you point out, there is probably some ambiguous crossover in some cultures and some religions. But in this country there are linguistic and legal differences in how and when those words are properly used and that’s why two distinct words exist for these types of marriage arrangements in dictionaries!

    I find it odd that when it was pointed out neither you or he thought (or sought) to clarify the situation by simply either “fixing” the example, or else updating the phrase to read both “poligamy and bigamy”, if those are the slippery slope arguments you believe have merit and that you want people to consider individually and jointly as part of the discussion.

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  117. Forget same sex marriage. How many have we had so far? I’ll bet not even close to 100,000. On the other hand, 27 million Americans watched the soccer match final. 27 million! Soccer! There’s the real gayification of America, folks.

    nk (dbc370)

  118. I didn’t watch no soccer but I did see the opening and closing ceremonies featuring pitbulge and j lo and shakira and that other chick and the dancing soccer balls and the ents

    the closing was way better than the opening

    the opening was gaudy and cheap looking

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  119. Bigamy is the crime of being married, or cohabiting in a conjugal relationship having all the indicia of marriage, with a person while legally married to another person. So far, of the opposite sex. Polygamy is a general term for multiple spouses practiced by many cultures through many time periods. It’s sometimes called polyandry when several men share one wife, as in Tibet. Neither should be confused with Hugh Hefner sharing his mansion with a dozen centerfold models. That’s called being in seventh Heaven.

    nk (dbc370)

  120. http://fellowshipoftheminds.com/2013/03/07/yale-u-hosts-workshop-teaching-sensitivity-to-bestiality-incest/

    Students attending the workshop anonymously asked and answered questions about sex using their cell phones, and viewed the responses in real time in the form of bar charts.

    Survey responses revealed that 9% of attendees had been paid for sex, 3% had engaged in bestiality, and 52% had participated in “consensual pain” during sex, according to an article published in the Yale Daily News on Monday.

    This shows you why surveys of anything with a very low percentage true are useless.

    About 3% will probably say, (or accidentally) indicate yes to any question. They could have asked them if they had ever lived on Mars and gotten 1% to 3% to say yes.

    Columbia Prof who committed incest update as of a year ago:

    http://fellowshipoftheminds.com/2013/04/05/columbia-u-prof-accused-of-incest-compares-it-to-same-sex-marriage/

    Sammy Finkelman (c33275)

  121. if i had a gay kid i would feel more better when i died if i knew my kid was happily gay married and i knew he had someone who would love him forever and ever because my kid would be a very special person and for sure he would marry a really remarkable guy with many good qualities, and they would be active members of the community, giving of themselves and their time for the betterment of society, and in their spare time they would make fabulous pull-apart breads for old people and they would even have a sourdough starter ball in their fridge and they would walk for the cure every year for like seven different diseases and take vacations together every year where they learned a lot about different cultures and they would always be prepared for in case of emergencies so in case of a natural disaster like an erf cake or a hurple cane they could devote themselves to helping others – just like how the mormons and waffle house do it

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  122. I think you forgot about them adopting stray puppies and kitties, feets. Or maybe you just ran out of breath.

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  123. all creatures great and small yes indeed

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  124. This from a Politico article last week titled: “Evangelicals Are Changing Their Minds on Gay Marriage – And the Bible isn’t getting in their way”

    “Over the past decade, evangelical support for gay marriage has more than doubled, according to polling by the nonpartisan Public Religion Research Institute. About a quarter of evangelicals now support same-sex unions, the institute has found, with an equal number occupying what researchers at Baylor University last year called the ‘messy middle’ of those who oppose gay marriage on moral grounds but no longer support efforts to outlaw it. The shift is especially visible among young evangelicals under age 35, a near majority of whom now support same-sex marriage. And gay student organizations have recently formed at Christian colleges across the country, including flagship evangelical campuses such as Wheaton College in Illinois and Baylor in Texas.” The report adds, “Even some of the most prominent evangelicals—megachurch pastors, seminary professors and bestselling authors—have publicly announced their support for gay marriage in recent months. Other leaders who remain opposed to gay unions have lowered their profiles on the issue.”

    Dana (4dbf62)

  125. If we outlaw gay marriage, only outlaws will have gay marriage. That’s how language is corrupted and used in a doublespeak propaganda way. Nobody is trying to outlaw or ban gay marriage. You cannot outlaw or ban something which does not exist. They are resisting efforts to change the definition of marriage, and amend the marriage laws, to include gay marriage.

    nk (dbc370)

  126. 93. Portman could say, “my views were superficial and i hadn’t really thought about it much before my son came out, which made me confront the basis for my beliefs, which I hadn’t done before, and so I changed my answer on the question.” That makes sense from the standpoint of how people reach conclusions, but no politician would say that in fear of looking stupid or offending a voter with the admission that he hadn’t thought about an issue the voter considers important. So they come up with these tangled rationales that sound good but make no logical sense.

    Bud Norton (29550d) — 7/14/2014 @ 1:59 pm

    I agree with eery word you said except for two; “sound good.” I can’t convince myself this sounds good:

    At the time, my position on marriage for same-sex couples was rooted in my faith tradition that marriage is a sacred bond between a man and a woman.

    So Portman wants everyone to give him a pass because his narrow self-interests trump everything else?

    First, he can’t support gay marriage because it conflicts with what he and his religion hold sacred.

    But then he finds out his son is gay. So what does Portman do?

    He flushes his religion “faith tradition”* (wtf?!?!), what he formerly held sacred, and his public policy position down the toilet.

    Now here’s a profile in “courage of one’s convictions,” eh?

    That makes him a major player in the GOP? That just makes him a weasel of the first order. He’s an unfit father, if that’s he example he set for how to tell the difference between “right” and “wrong.” Decide by the degree of difficultly; whatever is the most difficult or politically and personally costly at the moment must be “wrong.”

    But more to the point, we aren’t discussing people’s personal lies (although I couldn’t’ resist noting how “seriously” Portman clearly takes his deeply held religious principles**). We are discussing how politicians’ views on issues of public policy “evolve.” And clearly it involves wetting one’s finger and sticking it up to determine the direction of the prevailing breeze.

    This is going to prove a disaster or us all. This thread, “Questions About Making What Was Once Believed Wrong, Right,” is exploring the question in the context of SSM. The left has framed the case against marriage (and, yes, I mean just that) in entirely emotional terms. There was an entirely rational case to be for marriage upon functional, historical, cultural, and legal bases. There was never a need to resort to religion.

    Bu these morons were too intellectually limited to make that case. So they torpedoed marriage by resorting to their “faith traditions.” Being pols and believing they’ve already lost (because they were stupid), what other option did they have but to “evolve” in order to remain politically viable?

    And as pols like Portman (and Obama) illustrate, they don’t even believe in those “faith traditions.”

    *A good name for a female country singer, perhaps the entire band, but nothing to base public policy upon and also a poor substitute for an actual religion.
    **No wonder leftists think of religion as kind of a hobby that shouldn’t get in he way of real “rights” like contraceptives. Because that’s exactly how opportunistic GOP pols treat their religion when push comes to shove.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  127. say, humans and Vulcans would not qualify

    Spock, disagree he would! His father a Vulcan is, his mother, a human is!

    Yoda (95893f)

  128. “All who rely on observing the law are under a curse, for it is written: ‘Cursed is everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law.’ Clearly no one is justified before God by the law, because the righteous will live by faith.” – Galatians 3:10-11

    “The law was was put in charge to lead us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith. Now that faith has come, we are no longer under the supervision of the law.” – Galatians 3:24-25

    “If a law had been given that could impart life, then righteousness would certainly have come by the law. But the Scripture declares that the whole world is a prisoner of sin, so that what was promised, being given through faith in Jesus Christ, might be given to those who believe.” – Galatians 3:21-21

    Leviticus (7adc16)

  129. And what do we say at this point? That one verse of our holy book is better than another (as Smithee seems to be accusing me of arguing)? No. We try to find consistency. And I find consistency here: the Law was given to demonstrate our utter inability to extricate ourselves from sin. We are sinners, all of us alike and indistinguishably so. Sinner might as well be a synonym for “human being.” And once we realized that, we were presented with Christ’s gift: salvation by faith in someone greater than ourselves. Out task now is to express that faith through love.

    Leviticus (7adc16)

  130. the bible verses what help people justify their innate prejudices are the more popular ones Mr. Levi

    if the bible was a high school these verses would be the busty cheerleaders that put out

    the other verses like the law ones are just regular old verses

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  131. the Law was given to demonstrate our utter inability to extricate ourselves from sin.

    Leviticus (7adc16) — 7/14/2014 @ 6:12 pm

    Yes the law is intended to make the sinner realize that they are in fact a sinner. To say that therefore we don’t have to tell anyone that what they are doing is a sin, because they are saved by grace through faith, is the opposite of the idea Paul was trying to convey. The law points us to salvation because we realize our sinful state. Paul certainly wasn’t telling anyone to forget about sin. As he wrote in Romans,

    The law was brought in so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more, so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

    What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.

    Some context is needed for the book of Galatians. Some Jewish believers in Christ were telling the Galatians that all the laws given to the Jews, including circumcision for example, were needed for salvation, in addition to belief in Jesus. Rebutting that erroneous claim was primarily the purpose of Galatians, i.e. we are saved by faith alone. He was NOT saying the laws don’t still apply.

    In addition many of the laws never applied to Gentiles at all, e.g. circumcision. This can create confusion because the Old Testament has laws that apply only to Jews and laws that apply to everyone.

    As Jesus said,

    Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. Therefore anyone who sets aside one of the least of these commands and teaches others accordingly will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven.

    Gerald A (9e3e6a)

  132. ==“Mark was clearly talking about bigamy and polygamy. Both being one and the same thing,……”

    First it scares me just a wee bit, Steve, that you are so in sync with our Mr. Mark today that you know what he meant when he used the word polygamy rather than the word bigamy even though he described situational bigamy. You may want to think on this. :)

    I have no idea what he intended to say. But he did describe exactly how people practice polygamy where bigamy laws criminalize plural marriages. Typically that involves polygyny, where one man would have an official wife, and then one or more informal wives.

    That’s why I didn’t say “Mark was clearly thinking about bigamy and polygamy.” I don’t know what he was thinking; we’re not that in sync. I do know what he described, whether he knew it or not.

    Despite your insistence that the words are are synonymous and always interchangeable they are not. Yes, as you point out, there is probably some ambiguous crossover in some cultures and some religions. But in this country there are linguistic and legal differences in how and when those words are properly used and that’s why two distinct words exist for these types of marriage arrangements in dictionaries!

    No, there’s no ambiguous crossover. We just need to clear one detail up. Bigamy is not a type of marriage arrangement. It is a prohibition against types of marriage arrangements. Yes, bigamy literally means “two marriages” but that is not how the word is used. In reality bigamy only exists as a legal concept in countries that enforce monogamy.

    Rather than describing a type of marriage it defines a rie

    So not only are the terms not synonymous, as a practical matter they are mutually exclusive. Polygamy means “multiple” or “many marriages.” By definition they are always outlawed under bigamy laws. If you can’t legally have two marriages at once, then you can’t legally have more than two.

    That’s why I gave this example @82:

    A Muslim could legally be married to four women in Saudi Arabia. He could legally immigrate to the US with one wife. If he brought more of his legal wives, he’d be guilty of bigamy in the US. A non-crime in Saudi Arabia.

    To review, where bigamy exists polygamy does not. Where polygamy legally exists, there is no such thing as bigamy. You simply an not be a bigamist in Saudi Arabia.

    I find it odd that when it was pointed out neither you or he thought (or sought) to clarify the situation by simply either “fixing” the example, or else updating the phrase to read both “poligamy and bigamy”, if those are the slippery slope arguments you believe have merit and that you want people to consider individually and jointly as part of the discussion.

    elissa (1d9a3d) — 7/14/2014 @ 4:09 pm

    There was nothing to “fix.” I did need to clarify, though, which surprised me.

    2.I’m going to stick up for elissa. Mark’s analogy was bigamy. Steve57 describes practices in other countries.

    How anyone could arrive at this conclusion I don’t know, since my first comment on the subject @21 was this:

    “Plain ‘ol run of the mill illegal bigamy” is precisely how Muslim polygamy looks in places where it’s open practice is illegal.

    Did I need to explain that the US is one of those places where the open practice of polygamy is illegal? I thought that would be obvious; guess not. I described practices as they apply to many countries, including this one. I didn’t think it was all that complicated.

    Mormon examples of sister wives or other euphemisms such as the spinoff sect that was raided several years back in Texas again involved a group all living in one place.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9) — 7/14/2014 @ 11:33 am

    Proximity has nothing to do with it. When Muslims practice polygamy, whether legally abroad or illegally here or in other Western countries, they have to set up each wife in her own house and treat the all equally.

    Mormons may all live together. Muslims are supposed to live separately.

    And those separate homes can be near each other or far apart.

    It is still all polygamy; that’s why I said @21:

    Also, how polygamy is practiced depends on the culture. Mormons may have all lied together or in close proximity, but Muslim sailors/traders might have one wife in Arabia, another in India, and a third in Indonesia.

    If you guys think polygamy means doing things the Mormon way, then you have a blinkered and incomplete concept of polygamy. Apparently if it doesn’t meet your preconceived idea of polygamy, it can’t be polygamy.

    It just ain’t so.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  133. *…Rather than describing a type of marriage it defines a crime

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  134. I’m so glad you’ve thought this through and cleared it up to your satisfaction, Steve57. I know that getting things off one’s chest is often therapeutic and way better for health than bottling up.

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  135. Mark – For you delectation:

    http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2014/07/14/despite-recent-shootings-chicago-nowhere-near-u-s-murder-capital/

    daleyrocks, certain people in Chicago, including the person who interviewed Rahm Emmanuel a few days ago — and who apparently like running with the label of “murder capital” — must be sort of the antithesis to the Chicago Chamber of Commerce.

    Mark (163b5d)

  136. Leviticus (1aca67) — 7/14/2014 @ 1:57 pm
    One could say, “What does the OT have to do with it???” (Not to say the OT is not important, not at all, but pointing out that one does not have to introduce any OT/NT dichotomy [if there is one] in the discussion)
    I Cor 5:1-2
    It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that is not tolerated even among pagans, for a man has his father’s wife. And you are arrogant! Ought you not rather to mourn? Let him who has done this be removed from among you.
    vs. 6
    Your boasting is not good.
    vs. 9-11
    I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people- not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler- not even to eat with such a one.
    6:9-11
    Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived, neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.
    And such were some of you.
    But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.

    Dana (4dbf62) — 7/14/2014 @ 4:49 pm
    Yes, I was surprised when I read about a student protest at Wheaton that was against a speaker who spoke of how she once was a staunch atheist, lesbian activist, but became a Christian and left that all behind.
    Some were fussing that there was no need for her to leave any of it behind, and to say so was demeaning.
    “Evangelical Christian” once meant something, that one believed the Evangel, the Gospel, the Good News, that people who once were alienated from God because of their sin could be forgiven and have a New Birth, a new life, in fellowship with God instead of estranged (eternally) from Him.
    Apparently it no longer means that.
    This is an old idea, that people can do what they please and say that God forgives them. That is different from saying that God can forgive sin. The price, “according to the NT” (pretty undeniably) of forgiven sin is the bloody beaten dead body of Jesus on the cross, after having said, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”
    To treat that flippantly, to think that since Christ died one can go ahead and sin up a storm, is absurd and shows a lack of insight that makes one question whether such a person has any inkling of a relationship with God. And that is not my opinion, it is what Scripture says itself.
    But I am not surprised in the least. Years ago the pollsters said that over 50% of the American public considered themselves Christians and that over 50% believed there was no objective truth.
    Now, 110% of the American public can consider themselves Christian if they want, but it is logically impossible, if words have meaning, for people to believe there is no objective truth yet say they believe in a personal God who claims to be The truth.

    But in one way it is all beside the point.
    There is a God, or there is not. God is either of a certain nature, or god is not. Either a human can have a relationship with God, or not. Either this is of consequence, or it is not.
    And what people say or believe in one way makes no difference.
    What makes a difference is what IS.
    As I said before, I think the story line is that we were made to enjoy a relationship with God our loving Creator,
    we turned our back on Him and have suffered the consequence,
    and when we die we will continue to suffer the consequence of separation from Him,
    unless we reestablish our relationship with Him,
    which is impossible for us to do on our own initiative or merit,
    but He out of His love for us made it possible to be reestablished in a relationship with Him through his own suffering.
    The question is not whether I want to call myself a “Christian”, or be called a “Christian”,
    or even to be forgiven of my sin (lots of people would like to be forgiven of their sin and be allowed to keep on sinning, having one’s cake and eating it to)
    the question is whether one believes whether one was made to have a relationship with God and wants that to be restored.

    Of course, if none of that is true, do what you want; eat, drink, and be merry (for tomorrow we die)!

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  137. the followup question is for how long will polygamy be illegal, as Scalia’s dissent in Lawrence has been eerily prescient

    narciso (24b824)

  138. I have no idea what he intended to say.

    Oh, ferchrissakes. I come back several hours later and this thread is still debating the difference between polygamy and bigamy?! Since multi-partner marriage are illegal (so far) in the US, it’s a given that a guy who wants to be hitched to more than one partner is, in effect, a bigamist. So the Mormon guys who have several wives in Utah were or are bigamists. But if such relationships ever become legally recognized the way that is increasingly occurring with SSM, then the bigamists become the polygamists.

    The more crucial point is that it’s as much a part of human nature (of male sexuality in particular) to have more than one partner at the same time, if not to be promiscuous, as much as it’s human nature (which is happily pointed out and emphasized by many liberals) for homosexuals to be attracted to the same sex.

    Mark (163b5d)

  139. Yes, I was surprised when I read about a student protest at Wheaton that was against a speaker who spoke of how she once was a staunch atheist, lesbian activist, but became a Christian and left that all behind.

    Scientists or researchers often equate certain external or internal traits with homosexuality, such as a person being left handed instead of right, or a gay female having interests typical of a straight male and the reverse being true for gay males. But researchers have yet to delve into the science behind the very high percentage of homosexuals who are of the socio-political left, and of whether that’s a matter of nurture or nature, and of whether one triggers the other.

    Mark (163b5d)

  140. No matter what humans think about SSM, or how they evolve on the issue, down deep it is still a referendum on sodomy, which is forbidden in the Bible. So how do you explain away that tension? One way is to act like the snake in the garden by saying “does it really say that?” Sooner or later we will need to ban the Bible or forbid preaching that condemns the behavior.

    Denver Todd (8570f0)

  141. Leviticus wrote:

    And what do we say at this point? That one verse of our holy book is better than another (as Smithee seems to be accusing me of arguing)? No.

    I’m mystified at those words being put into my cyber-mouth as if they bear any resemblance to my comments on this thread.

    L.N. Smithee (4e7e54)

  142. down deep it is still a referendum on sodomy, which is forbidden in the Bible.

    For people in an increasingly secular age, I think pointing out to them the nature of the famous ancient Greek philosopher Plato and his own evolving views on homosexuality — in which he originally pretty much accepted (if not praised) it and then eventually came around to strongly denouncing it — will be more interesting or relevant. Simply put, a disdain for homosexuality supersedes the Bible, Christianity, or the PTL or 700 Club.

    Mark (163b5d)

  143. 90. …Republicans are highly resistant to the concept of limited government these days

    happyfeet (8ce051) — 7/14/2014 @ 1:52 pm

    Not at all. The GOP would be perfectly fine having government get out of the way and let the people decide things.

    Like in the Prop 8 case, when in a display of direct democracy the people of Kali decided to keep the definition of marriage as it’s been since this country became a country; only between a man and a woman, and put that in the state constitution.

    The GOP would have been cool with that.

    But the fascisti what’s hate limited government said “h3lls no, we fanbois of unlimited government is going to impose our views on the people not the other way around.”

    So the fascisti put their heads together and invented a new, bogus, completely BS meaning for “equal protection” just so they could advance the fascist cause of unlimited government using gay marriage as an excuse, and show the people who’s boss in this Obamanation.

    And after they let the people know who was in charge they danced around high-fiving each other saying, “Yeah! We showed them what we think of their stupid limited government” and…

    Oh, wait. You were one of them at that dance party, weren’t you, mr. feets?

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  144. All Christians sin before they are Christians, and all Christians sin after they are Christians. Even if homosexuality is sinful (and I am not convinced that it is), it joins a long list of the other sins of Christians and non-Christians alike. So what’s the criteria, here? Ban marriages between sinners (or between any of Paul’s enumerated sinners) or admit that you are singling out one “sin” as worse than others and try to justify argument as what it is. The bond of marriage is a good thing – how do people profess this and deny it in the same breath? If it produces loyalty, support, stability, productivity, love, then how is it better to deny it to gay people than to encourage it among them?

    Alternatively, we can each focus on a thing we think is sin and speak against it. You guys can choose homosexuality as your crusade – I’ll shake my head and choose something else.

    Leviticus (7adc16)

  145. Let me be “out of my mind” for a moment-

    When one speaks of the Bible, both the Old and New Testaments, you do realize, don’t you, that you are talking about a super-natural reality?
    That is, unless one believes that the Bible is a book of stories, ideas and philosophies, but not really tangible.
    How is this for a definition of a “Christian”, or perhaps if necessary, one type of “Christian”, if one wishes to define terms themselves:
    one who believes Jesus died and rose again.
    For those who did not think that happened, perhaps you think a Christian is one who thinks the world would be a better place if everyone lived by the Sermon on the Mount.
    “Apostolic Christianity” (as I am going to use it) is Christian faith as described by the Apostles, the ones who risked, and often gave, their lives to pass it on. Apostolic Christianity depends upon the supernatural. In our daily experience, it is natural for things to die, and to stay dead.
    Apostolic Christianity does not deny the natural, but it also believes that what we see as natural is not necessarily all there is to existence. “Evil” is not part of the natural realm. “Evil” is not made up of certain elements, specific subatomic particles, some wavelengths of light. It cannot be observed by some kind of scope or measured by some kind of meter. The same with “good”.
    We say that someone is “mentally deranged” when their mental processes do not accurately “test reality”.
    What is “evil”? Perhaps when one is morally deranged, spiritually deranged.

    In Lewis’ “Out of the Silent Planet”, the idea of evil is referred to as being “bent”, altered from the way things were meant to be.

    Perhaps the reason there is confusion about what is “normal” or “not normal” about sexuality is that people are thinking in terms of only the natural, what we can see and touch. If humans were created in God’s image, and that means something on some metaphysical or supernatural level, to limit oneself to figuring things out limited to the natural realm is like a two dimensional creature trying to understand depth, it is just not possible without accepting an additional frame of reference.

    It is said one never will get the right answers unless one asks the right questions. In general, we humans like to ask the question, “What can I get away with?” Then we answer that with, “We can get away with, whatever we can get away with…” and we push the limit until we hit a wall. Unfortunately, many do not realize they’ve already hit the wall until after this life is over.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  146. “If you [Leviticus] find it offensive that I say one is not a serious Christian if one does not believe Scripture teaches about homosexuality, now you know how I feel about the kind of “Christian” who would — if they could — black out certain verses as if modern morality had rendered them obsolete.”

    - L.N. Smithee

    Did I mistakenly assume that you were implying that I was one of these so called Christians that offended you so?

    Leviticus (7adc16)

  147. “Also, how polygamy is was practiced depends on the culture. Mormons may have all lied together or in close proximity”

    FIFY Steve

    Colonel Haiku (cd6dde)

  148. Mark for some reason it is clearly important to you to perpetuate the falsehood and crow that Chicago is the Murder Capital and imply that it is unsafe for people to leave their homes or something. Do you have any conscious idea why this has become another obsession of yours and why you continue to post about it even after it has been explained to you multiple times by multiple people (with accompanying supporting links) that you are wrong and that the sensationalist sources you are using are suspect? Yet you keep plowing ahead with glee. Seriously, is it a condition like short term memory loss, or, I wonder, do you do it just to childishly and personally tweak me, or daley, or nk, or Carlitos or somebody else? Look, you don’t need to ever visit our city if it scares you or you find it repugnant for some reason. Our city like every big city has some ugly concentrated gang and turf wars along with other warts which residents are well aware of without having someone from California no less pointing them out –but geez man, get a little perspective! Get a hold of yourself. Have a little integrity in your posts and a little basic respect for the metro area people call home and where they are working and raising their families.

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  149. elissa (1d9a3d) — 7/14/2014 @ 8:07 pm

    I’m so glad you’ve thought this through and cleared it up to your satisfaction, Steve57. I know that getting things off one’s chest is often therapeutic and way better for health than bottling up.

    You said you found “it odd that when it was pointed out neither you or he thought (or sought) to clarify the situation.”

    I clarified.

    Have I not cleared things up to your satisfaction?

    Such as the part where I clarified that while polygamy is a type of marriage arrangement, bigamy is not?

    big·a·my

    [ bíggəmee ]

    1. crime of being simultaneously twice married: the crime of marrying somebody while being legally married to somebody else

    here seemed to be considerable confusion on that point.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  150. using direct democracy to gang-rape minorities is repugnant i think

    gay people are either equal to evangelical christians or they’re not

    and all the judges keep saying that they are because of the constitution, which is a good thing i think

    i firmly believe in my heart that evangelical christians have as much right to marry as gay people and I will stand against any attempt to strip them of this cherished right

    i will stand with my feet planted firmly in the ground of justice and I will say gently but firmly

    hey you stupid homos those people have every bit as much right to marry as you do

    so STAND DOWN, and I’ll nod in that slow way that says yeah you know what’s best for you don’t you

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  151. No matter what humans think about SSM, or how they evolve on the issue, down deep it is still a referendum on sodomy, which is forbidden in the Bible. So how do you explain away that tension? One way is to act like the snake in the garden by saying “does it really say that?” Sooner or later we will need to ban the Bible or forbid preaching that condemns the behavior.

    Denver Todd (8570f0) — 7/14/2014 @ 8:32 pm

    In short: We’re on the way to becoming Canada, where a street preacher was found to be in violation of provincial “hate speech” statutes despite the fact the offending language was not intended to inspire violence against homosexuals. From the Whatcott opinion of the Supreme Court of Canada:

    Truthful statements can be presented in a manner that would meet the definition of hate speech, and not all truthful statements must be free from restriction.

    Excellent analysis can be found here on OrthodoxNet.com.

    It’s funny to me how so many Americans are up in arms about the criminalization of pro-gay rights propaganda in Russia when just across our northern border, a putatively free country is largely doing the same thing, except it’s criminalization of anti-gay rights propaganda. I guess to many people, that’s the sunny side of repression of speech.

    L.N. Smithee (4e7e54)

  152. hate speech rocks

    it’s so expressive and colorful yet also honest and unambiguous

    i’m a big fan

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  153. Like the days of Sodom and Gomorrah. If you ever feel chapped, elissa.

    I confess to not being aware of just how lurid the story of Sodom and the character of Lot was (ie, the male townspeople demanding they be allowed into Lot’s house in order to rape his 2 male visitors) until not all the long ago.

    What is unsettling to me, now more than ever before, is how the Bible truly is a transcription of human nature going back eons. So the amount of dysfunction described as existing in the city of Sodom and then witnessing how quickly our own modern society is changing (or eroding), gives me a greater wariness. Or a sense of an ancient book being not just so much a telling of right from wrong, but a history lesson on the alarming foibles of human nature.

    Mark (163b5d)

  154. “2.I’m going to stick up for elissa. Mark’s analogy was bigamy. Steve57 describes practices in other countries.

    How anyone could arrive at this conclusion I don’t know, since my first comment on the subject @21 was this:

    “Plain ‘ol run of the mill illegal bigamy” is precisely how Muslim polygamy looks in places where it’s open practice is illegal.”

    Steve57 – I still fail to see why you are so fixated on the marriage customs of other countries when this thread is about the U.S. I’ll say it again, what happens in other countries is irrelevant. Please explain how polygamy could exist in the U.S. within our current framework of divorce and inheritance laws. Bigamy or two separate families is illegal. If you could combine the separate families into one legal family entity would it work better with our laws?

    Focus on whatever you need to focus on that flips your minnow.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  155. i firmly believe in my heart that evangelical christians eagles have as much right to marry fly as gay people worms and I will stand against any attempt to strip them of this cherished right

    i will stand with my feet planted firmly in the ground of justice and I will say gently but firmly

    hey you stupid homos worms those people birds have every bit as much right to marry fly as you do

    Sorry, happyfeet, but it’s this kind of sophomoric stridency that you display and other militant SSMers display that brings out the reactionary in me.

    nk (dbc370)

  156. jes keep readin’, daley–it gets better (or worse) (or more strange) .

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  157. Mark for some reason it is clearly important to you to perpetuate the falsehood and crow that Chicago is the Murder Capital

    Sheesh, Elissa, in this thread you keep doing a contortionist routine over comments I’ve made or haven’t made. I couldn’t care less about singling out Chicago, or Los Angeles, or Honolulu, or New York City, or Seattle, or Kansas City, or Peoria or Topeka for socio-economic dysfunction when just about all urban areas throughout the US have their fair share of cruddy neighborhoods that are (1) full of crime and — this is very crucial — (2) full of liberal/Democrat residents.

    Mark (163b5d)

  158. that’s ok Mr. nk nobody wants to sit next to a worm on a long flight

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  159. But I’ll pick you over Mark for my side in anything anytime.

    nk (dbc370)

  160. question

    do strident internet comments really qualify someone as a militant?

    it seems like that’s defining militancy really a lot down

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  161. so your comment to dalerocks @137 that I read was just my imagination, Mark?

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  162. Mark (163b5d) — 7/14/2014 @ 9:01 pm

    I confess to not being aware of just how lurid the story of Sodom and the character of Lot was (ie, the male townspeople demanding they be allowed into Lot’s house in order to rape his 2 male visitors) until not all the long ago.

    The sin of Sodom had nothing to do with what became called sodomy – it had to do with acting like the people of Murietta, California, and League City, Texas, that is, not not opening their homes to strangers, but insisting that their neighbors not do it either!

    Sammy Finkelman (c33275)

  163. Yeah, that one of yours does, I think.

    nk (dbc370)

  164. damn i’m good

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  165. I’ve always thought that it was a Baucis and Philemon variant, too, Sammy.

    nk (dbc370)

  166. “jes keep readin’, daley–it gets better (or worse) (or more strange) .”

    elissa – I been away and was reading bottom up. Steve57 certainly has my permission to disagree with me. I am sensing a major circle jerk.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  167. “I couldn’t care less about singling out Chicago”

    ROFLCOPTER!!!!!!

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  168. Leviticus
    The criteria is simple, and explained clearly
    When one is a sinner by nature, and not a Christian, sinning is what comes naturally, one persists in it having no reason to do anything else (unless there are consequences one does not like, like being put in jail for stealing).
    If one is a Christian as described by the Apostles, a Christian has a new nature that does not want to sin, and while episodes of sin occur, they are no longer accepted as being part of one’s nature, but as contrary to one’s nature, and hence to be resisted (and often desired to be resisted).

    I John 1:6
    If we say we have fellowship with Him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.

    It makes no difference what the behavior is, as listed above, greed, sexual immorality of various forms, drunkenness. What makes for a Christian as opposed to a non-Christian is do you want to walk in a way consistent with one who is at odds with God, or as one who has experienced the privilege of being in a restored relationship with God?
    When one is not a Christian, one cannot but help sin, as it is in our nature,
    when one “becomes a Christian”, it is said that the power that raised Christ from the dead is at work in us so that we no longer are “slaves to sin”, so don’t act like we still are.

    In a representative democracy/republic, the laws generally would reflect the ideals of the society. In one way it is not the laws that define right and wrong as much as the society decides what is right and wrong and then makes laws accordingly. What has happened to some degree is that society is no longer deciding what is right and wrong, but an oligarchy of officials without accountability to the society are making them up and imposing them.
    The issue at hand, as I see it, and to some degree reflected in the link from Dana, but muddled, is that some want to put into law the idea that homosexual activity is right, and if you disagree, you are in the wrong, and that SSM is intrinsically equal, in whatever way you want to consider it, and even if you don’t agree, you have to act like you agree or there will be legal consequences.
    It is an issue of logical necessities. Some people want to claim that “whatever one wants to do” is ok, and that no one has a right to put any limitations not only on what one does but on what is “acceptable”. It is a desire that is irrational as saying 2+2=5. The only way everyone can be made to “accept” anything at one’s demand is for nothing to have any meaning at all.

    There are two issues which are being intertwined, to what degree knowingly or unknowingly I don’t know, the law and morality. Prior to the demand for SSM, people were free to believe what they wanted about homosexuality, and homosexuals were free to do what they wanted as much as a heterosexual couple as far as behavior in the public square was concerned. Now, the demand is that those who think there is a problem with homosexual activity or that SSM is not the same as hetero-marriage are being told not only are we wrong, but we will face legal consequences.
    Now in one way, so what, Christians around the world are routinely persecuted, no reason why it shouldn’t happen here to,
    except for the fact that for this to be the case, the country is no longer the country that it once was. For all of it’s faults, freedom of conscience was a foundation.
    To do away with freedom of conscience, we have become the epitome of despotism that people were escaping.

    The other issue which is related to religious expression:
    I happen to think that people who are sexually active without marriage are living outside of God’s plan and that they are suffering and will suffer because of it, whether they think so or not. I understand that in some circles such a belief is considered so ridiculous as to not even be taken seriously. Fine. As a physician, if I see that someone is physically ill it is upon me to inform the person and to offer treatment. As an “Apostolic Christian”, if I see someone who is morally and spiritually ill, it is upon me to inform and offer help to the degree the person is interested.
    There are people with ss attraction who do not like it, even some who think it is wrong but do it anyway. I would say that as an “Apostolic Christian” I would best love that person not by encouraging them to indulge their passions, but to encourage them to seek being transformed into the image of Christ and see what happens. To some that makes me cruel, some would like to make that illegal. (It is illegal in some states with regards to minors, at least for a person of any kind of “professional” who works with behavioral/emotional issues).

    I never went out and looked for gays to tell them they were wrong. The only gays I ever looked for were ones who were physically sick with HIV who needed a doctor.
    It was the gay activists who try to make laws to tell me what to believe. (I once had a very vocal ACT-UP person as a patient, FWIW [Not in Philly, and I imagine there were enough around in Philly that it still would not be violating any confidentiality to say so].

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  169. 147. …Ban marriages between sinners (or between any of Paul’s enumerated sinners) or admit that you are singling out one “sin” as worse than others and try to justify argument as what it is. The bond of marriage is a good thing – how do people profess this and deny it in the same breath? If it produces loyalty, support, stability, productivity, love, then how is it better to deny it to gay people than to encourage it among them?

    Alternatively, we can each focus on a thing we think is sin and speak against it. You guys can choose homosexuality as your crusade – I’ll shake my head and choose something else.

    Leviticus (7adc16) — 7/14/2014 @ 8:43 pm

    Leviticus, the definition of marriage throughout the developed world as only between a man and a woman has nothing to do with biblical morality. Do you think Thailand, Laos, Japan, etc., don’t have gay marriage because they’re hellbent on going all Old Testament on gay sinners?

    Is it merely tradition, you say? Why didn’t Cuba, the NORKs, the Bolsheviks, or the CHICOMs introduce gay marriage when they were deliberately smashing everything post-revolution that smacked of tradition?

    Or better yet, why didn’t they abolish marriage altogether?

    … it produces loyalty, support, stability, productivity, love

    Oh, yeah, commie totalitarians really want people to be loyal to and find support from something other than the state.

    I’ll give you a hint. Marriage serves a purpose that even godless commies had to recognize, and it’s not on that bill of goods you’ve been sold and listed @147.

    If that list had anything to do with the purpose of marriage, the godless commies would have banned it as bourgeoisie frivolity. And non-Christian countries wouldn’t think redefining marriage to include its polar opposite wasn’t one of the most suicidally stupid things they ever heard of.

    Yet the godless commies didn’t abolish marriage. And Buddhist/Shinto countries think we’re idiots (and they’re right). Why do you think that is? Their love of Scripture?

    Are you capable of thinking for yourself, or do the people who invented the idea that “the only reason people oppose SS is because they’re Xian bigots” do your thinking for you?

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  170. I have only scanned comments in this thread, but I like the ones I see from Leviticus.

    Although raised Episcopalian, I don’t consider myself an expert on Christianity or its teaching, particularly.

    But I like his take.

    In college, I tried Bible study with a group that took the position that Jews will go to hell if they do not accept Christ as the one true savior. They said this was not condemning Jews, because Jews could always choose to accept Christ as the one true savior. I couldn’t get past the idea that my Jewish friends would have to renounce their faith or go to hell. It didn’t feel like a religion I wanted any part of.

    I talked with Baldilocks about all this in person years ago, and she said her belief was that Jews get a different deal, essentially. They have a different covenant. I liked that.

    I don’t know if she was theologically pure with that notion or not. I am familiar with the Gospel verse that Christians take as requiring acceptance of Christ to get into heaven — and I put that question to her directly. She was familiar with it too, of course, and she continued to insist that Christians get a different deal from Jews.

    All I can say is, I like it.

    I don’t talk about religion much on the blog, and I guess my feelings are complicated. I’m not particularly religious, but then, I don’t disbelieve in God, either. I will pray for things that seem worthy of prayer even if I am not always completely convinced of its efficacy. I don’t know what is pure Scripture but I spent enough years reciting the Nicene creed and other passages from the Book of Common Prayer that I’m not completely ignorant of it either.

    I just know that I like charitable interpretations of the Bible. They feel more right to me.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  171. 153. using direct democracy fascism to gang-rape minorities the constitution is repugnant i think

    happyfeet (8ce051) — 7/14/2014 @ 8:56 pm

    FTFY, mr. feets

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  172. Also, Leviticus has been around an awful long time here, Steve57. He’s not everybody’s favorite, which I regret, because I really like him. I ask people to be respectful and charitable to him, as they should be to everyone who leaves comments in good faith and tries to interact in a respectful manner.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  173. 157. Steve57 – I still fail to see why you are so fixated on the marriage customs of other countries when this thread is about the U.S. …

    daleyrocks (bf33e9) — 7/14/2014 @ 9:04 pm

    Ahh, I see the problem.

    Newsflash, daley.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/15/us/a-utah-law-prohibiting-polygamy-is-weakened.html?_r=0

    I am talking about marriage customs in the US.

    And this particular custom has far deeper roots in the history and traditions of the US than gay marriage ever did.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  174. Mr. 57 Team R’s experimental role as the nation’s moral conscience has been one of the sillier experiments this once great country of ours has been forced to bear witness to i think

    nobody really believes that the Republican Party is imbued with any moral authority, not even evangelicals

    but what this experiment has revealed is that commingling the languages of the pulpit and the podium is not super popular with americans

    it alienates them in almost perfect proportion to the degree in which it strengthens the neo-fascist ascendancy

    which, this is a problem of no small consequence

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  175. nobody really believes that the Republican Party is imbued with any moral authority, not even evangelicals

    ok maybe the Texas evangelicals are deluded in this way

    but they’re special

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  176. so your comment to dalerocks @137 that I read was just my imagination, Mark?

    Elissa, you take your hometown way, way too seriously, because the comment you’re referring to (assuming you feel resentful about it) was mainly just a quip about the way (per your description of him) the ultra-liberal interviewer was trying to get a response from your city’s ultra-liberal mayor.

    The sin of Sodom had nothing to do with what became called sodomy – it had to do with acting like the people of Murietta, California, and League City, Texas, that is, not not opening their homes to strangers, but insisting that their neighbors not do it either!

    Sammy, I understand that the story of Nidal Hasan and the Fort Hood incident was one pertaining mainly to the problem of rudeness at the workplace.

    Mark (163b5d)

  177. Pat, I was just trying to challenge hi because I think he’s capable of more.

    I honestly don’t understand the mental block r.e. religion. If the only reason marriage has always been between a man and a woman, then why is marriage still only between a man and a woman in non-Cristian countries, or even in countries where religion is banned outright?

    Sorry if I crossed a line. I do believe Leviticus is quite capable of thinking for himself.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  178. Did I mistakenly assume that you were implying that I was one of these so called Christians that offended you so?
    Leviticus (7adc16) — 7/14/2014 @ 8:47 pm

    What I actually wrote was this:

    If you find it offensive that I say one is not a serious Christian if one does not believe [what] Scripture teaches about homosexuality, now you know how I feel about the kind of “Christian” who would — if they could — black out certain verses as if modern morality had rendered them obsolete.

    This is how you summarized my comment:

    That one verse of our holy book is better than another (as Smithee seems to be accusing me of arguing)? No.

    That wasn’t my point. My point was that you are plainly saying that you are the type of Christian that says things like this:

    Even if homosexuality is sinful (and I am not convinced that it is), it joins a long list of the other sins of Christians and non-Christians alike. So what’s the criteria, here? Ban marriages between sinners (or between any of Paul’s enumerated sinners) or admit that you are singling out one “sin” as worse than others and try to justify argument as what it is.

    The way I read that quote, you are (1) Pretending that Christians were somehow ambiguous about what the Almighty’s stance on homosexuality had been for thousands of years; (2) Creating a specious straw man argument that marriage between sinners ought to be banned for consistency’s sake; (3) Throwing shade at the Apostle Paul as if the man that Jesus spectacularly personally converted was confused about what being a Christian is about; (4) Acting as if people like John Hitchcock and I are misusing scripture to justify our personal prejudices.

    You went on to write this:

    The bond of marriage is a good thing – how do people profess this and deny it in the same breath? If it produces loyalty, support, stability, productivity, love, then how is it better to deny it to gay people than to encourage it among them?

    There are several scriptures that make reference to the joys of marriage. In the sixth chapter of his first epistle to the Corinthians, Paul makes mention of homosexuality as being one among many sins that will bar one from the kingdom of heaven. In the seventh, he counsels about how the newly dedicated to Christ ought to approach their marital status. Missing are any of the flowing remarks that it fosters loyalty, stability, etc. that you listed. Marriage was not as important to the first Christians as changing their personal behavior to be more aligned with Christ’s earthly example — one that eschewed the mores of the decadent Roman Empire.

    Rather than Hitchcock and I trying to justify our stance against sodomy with carefully selected passages, it seems to me that you are taking extra-Biblical feel-good fluff from within the last few decades, grafting it onto the pages of the Bible, and suggesting that in the interest of fostering love among all types of people, we should pretend that the sin they are practicing (in the name of love) doesn’t matter at all to God. I don’t know how one comes to the conclusion that it doesn’t.

    Also: My link was to a surprisingly contentious 2006 CNN interview of the late gactivist pastor Gary DeBusk, who created a website “outing” people who signed the petition to place a measure on the Florida ballot defining marriage as between one man and one woman. He pretended that publishing the names of people wasn’t to label his opponents as homophobic — it was, he said, for the purpose of “encouraging dialogue.”

    Like hell. It’s spiteful, malicious efforts such as this that cost Brendan Eich his career.

    L.N. Smithee (4e7e54)

  179. marriage has always been between a man and a woman

    but this isn’t even true anymore

    gay marriage exists in many different countries and in huge swathes of our own one

    the paradigm has shifted

    and the pattern is clear

    increasingly, going forward

    the places where you WON’T find gay marriage will also the most autocratic and backasswards places on the planet – places what are chock-full of muslims or ex-commies or active commies and such

    or like Haley Barbour’s Mississippi

    ick

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  180. 177. Mr. 57 Team R’s experimental role as the nation’s moral conscience has been one of the sillier experiments this once great country of ours has been forced to bear witness to i think

    happyfeet (8ce051) — 7/14/2014 @ 10:14 pm

    When are you going to petition the Xian fundie CHICOMs to quit imposing that evangelical Xtofascist theocracy on the poor Tibetans?

    The CHICOMs don’t allow gay marriage; that must mean they’re Bible thumpers.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  181. the Tibetans have already been destroyed

    they gone

    coward America is quiet about because, well, it’s a cowardly whorestate

    but Tibetans are fossils

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  182. about *it* i mean

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  183. oh. I think you wrote your 183 before you saw my 182 Mr. 57

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  184. the places where you WON’T find gay marriage will also the most autocratic and backasswards places on the planet – places what are chock-full of muslims or ex-commies or active commies and such

    Backwardness is in your point of view. Fascism was invented in the “cultured” countries. Worth repeating:

    “In the land where the proletariat governs courageously (muzhestvenno; also translated as manfully) and successfully, homosexuality, with its corrupting effect on the young, is considered a social crime punishable under the law. By contrast, in the ‘cultivated land’ of the great philosophers, scholars and musicians, it is practiced freely and with impunity. There is already a sarcastic saying: ‘Destroy homosexuality and fascism will disappear.’” — Maxim Gorky

    nk (dbc370)

  185. Ah, Now I understand, Mark. You don’t read the links people provide to you to help you improve your understanding of situations that you are mischaracterizing here. Do you? You can’t be bothered. You pass right over those links and continue to draw or imagine your own faulty conclusions. Want to know how I know this? Your entire interpretation of the faux Murder Capital “interviewer” is 100% off kilter. Your description is not what I said or remotely how he is described in the article that exposes him.

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  186. I don’t agree with Gorky. Fascism is very difficult to extirpate because it disguises itself so well.

    nk (dbc370)

  187. homosexuality doesn’t corrupt the young

    it’s public schools what do that

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  188. 182. …gay marriage exists in many different countries and in huge swathes of our own one

    …the places where you WON’T find gay marriage will also the most autocratic and backasswards places on the planet – places what are chock-full of muslims or ex-commies or active commies and such

    happyfeet (8ce051) — 7/14/2014 @ 10:35 pm

    Or, places where people figure their societies still have a reason o live.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  189. Pat-
    As I commented the other day, IMO this discussion is very much in the realm of your discussions about the meaning of laws. Words either mean something or they don’t. Maybe what they meant at one time gets changed with popular use. At what point a word becomes worthless and a new word needs to be brought is a question.
    I think I am respectful of Leviticus. I respect him enough to engage him in dialogue rather than blow him off.
    And one can think whatever they want, the text of the New Testament is pretty clear in a lot of things, actually. If one wants to call a set of beliefs being a “Christian” when they are demonstrably different than what the first Christians, the Apostles, said they believed, the two things are not the same, no matter what one chooses to call it. American football is a fine sport in the eyes of many, so is rugby; that does not mean one can play a game of football, call it rugby, and have people understand what one is talking about.

    I didn’t think Steve was being rude to Leviticus. He was reasoning from a different starting point. Steve’s point was that it seemed Leviticus was of the mind set that the only reason to not be in favor of including SS relationships within the definition of marriage was to be of a bigoted and uncharitable version of Christianity (and Judaism). Steve was pointing out that many societies reject the notion of calling a ss relationship marriage that don’t regard the Bible at all.

    FWIW, many would not see it as “Rejecting one’s faith” to believe in Jesus. There are many people who consider themselves “Messianic Jews” or “Completed Jews”, who would say that they have not renounced Judaism, but have believed that Jesus was the promised Jewish messiah.
    I think the New Testament teaching is consistent with that. Christianity was not a Gentile thing, it was first a Jewish thing.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  190. a bigoted and uncharitable version of Christianity

    there’s huge numbers of Christians, even evangelical ones, what are okey-dokey with gay marriage

    and these numbers are growing

    it’s a paradigm shift, you see

    it’s very rare that you get to watch one while it happens

    but that’s western culture for you

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  191. 182. the places where you WON’T find gay marriage will also the most autocratic and backasswards places on the planet – places what are chock-full of muslims or ex-commies or active commies and such

    or like Haley Barbour’s Mississippi

    ick
    happyfeet (8ce051) — 7/14/2014 @ 10:35 pm

    Japan ain’t autocratic or backasswards or chock-full of muslims (except at Ueno Park in Tokyo, near the zoo, where you’ll find the largest collection of Iranians outside of the middle east) or ex-commies or active commies

    Giant robots, mr. feets!

    http://www.autoevolution.com/news/japan-promises-giant-moving-gundam-robot-for-2019-83797.html

    Autocratic, bassakwards places full of commies and/or muslims can’t do giant robots.

    But they don’t do gay marriage in Japan. Because for the same reason they’re not chock-full of muslims or commies of any kind.

    No death wish. Anymore.

    Japan’s been around for about three thousand years, and they figured out toward the end of WWII they want to be around a while longer.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  192. that seems kind of facile

    Japan isn’t even reproducing itself

    they’re aging and dying and the japanese people don’t like having actual reality-based sex with other japanese people

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  193. they’re the ones leading the drive for sex robots

    not giant robots

    which, I guess a pikachu can be agnostic on this question of how the japanese should allocate their investments

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  194. Ah, Now I understand, Mark.

    Elissa, in trying to figure out the contortionist routines you’re going through to make some point or the other, you’ve worn me out. John Hitchcock in a post from earlier today did mention the phrase “passive-aggressive.” Or was I imagining that?

    Mark (163b5d)

  195. Japan isn’t even reproducing itself

    Which certainly won’t be helped, happyfeet, if they start embracing the joy and wonders of SSM as much as you apparently do.

    Mark (163b5d)

  196. i’m livid about this border crisis how about you

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  197. You guys can choose homosexuality as your crusade – I’ll shake my head and choose something else. –Leviticus

    What is both fascinating and amusing to me is how quite a few liberals rally around the concept of same-sex marriage while expressing a surprising amount of queasiness about the specter of multi-partner marriages, or generally a situation where one man is married to (or, short of that, is in an active, shared relationship with) more than one woman.

    Why is that?

    After all — as in the case with gay couples who are demanding they be legally recognized — in multi-partnerships, the adults are no less consenting and they’re also no less exhibiting natural human impulses.

    Mark (163b5d)

  198. Nobody has mentioned Dick Cheney and his lesbian daughter?
    That one (Cheney and his daughter) surprised me at first, but then I remembered how Cheney sees country, family and God.
    Cheney would hunt any foreigner who would dare kill an american unto their death. He holds that same protective instinct towards his own daughter and good for him.

    God tells us how things work best via stories that flesh things out over time. The God that burned Sodom now reaches out to everyone via the life of Jesus Christ.
    Jesus tells us through stories that he is the gatekeeper of Heaven. He also reminds us that he is knocking on our door and we only need to invite him in…

    God’s love is much more vast than I can comprehend and conversely his wrath is said to also be beyond my understanding.
    Much is made over “walking with God” but if you look at God’s relationship with David, you see a murdering adulterer seek redemption. There are consequences, but redemption is granted.
    So it isn’t up to me, or up to our laws… those things don’t change hearts

    Tomorrow I am going to try to live my life with strength decency and grace, not worrying about what gays and lesbians are up to. God can handle that one.

    SteveG (794291)

  199. Spock, disagree he would! His father a Vulcan is, his mother, a human is!

    Yes, but it was not risthathra as (for some quite magical reason) an offspring was possible. Apparently Vulcans and humans are the same species.

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  200. There are what, 202, now 203 comments here and perhaps 5 people have admitted they changed their minds even slightly about something and the rest are taking them to task or debating some adequately discussed issue like gay marriage or abortion?

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  201. gay marriage is very debatable Mr. M

    and it could go either way you never know

    you never know

    lol

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  202. God’s love is much more vast than I can comprehend and conversely his wrath is said to also be beyond my understanding.
    Much is made over “walking with God” but if you look at God’s relationship with David, you see a murdering adulterer seek redemption. There are consequences, but redemption is granted.
    So it isn’t up to me, or up to our laws… those things don’t change hearts

    Tomorrow I am going to try to live my life with strength decency and grace, not worrying about what gays and lesbians are up to. God can handle that one.
    SteveG (794291) — 7/15/2014 @ 12:21 am

    And a double-twist false dichotomy on the dismount! Nicely done.

    Dick Cheney? And King David? I wish I knew what point you are trying to make.

    L.N. Smithee (4e7e54)

  203. What is both fascinating and amusing to me is how quite a few liberals rally around the concept of same-sex marriage while expressing a surprising amount of queasiness about the specter of multi-partner marriages, or generally a situation where one man is married to (or, short of that, is in an active, shared relationship with) more than one woman.

    Why is that?

    After all — as in the case with gay couples who are demanding they be legally recognized — in multi-partnerships, the adults are no less consenting and they’re also no less exhibiting natural human impulses.
    Mark (163b5d) — 7/14/2014 @ 11:57 pm

    Thanks for getting it.

    L.N. Smithee (4e7e54)

  204. Not my hill.

    gary gulrud (46ca75)

  205. I soooo wanted to stay out of this but…There’s much debate here in regard to what the Bible says, who in it says it, what they mean, etc. and as to its definition of what is right an what is wrong (Bible tends to conflate moral an legal wrongs) but such is not relevant to the specific legal issue here. In order to establish a basis for constructing things, in this case the legal definition of marriage. A few simple questions:

    1) Should homosexuality be explicitly outlawed? Yes or no.
    2) If “No” above, should homosexuals be able to join in a legal union similar to marriage but with a slightly different name?
    3) If yes to above, people will most likely begin to refer to such as a “marriage” as that is much less burdensome than whatever the legal definition becomes. Would that be a problem for you?

    WTP (5ea774)

  206. Japan is our future, pikachu, a generation of useless stimulus projects, have not restored their status pre the property bubble in the 80s.

    narciso (24b824)

  207. WTP, the Bible does not ever conflate anything. It is inerrant. What is morally wrong was at one time always legally wrong. It is the immorality within human nature that made the immoral legal.

    The sin of Sodom had nothing to do with what became called sodomy – it had to do with acting like the people of Murietta, California, and League City, Texas, that is, not not opening their homes to strangers, but insisting that their neighbors not do it either!
    Sammy Finkelman (c33275) — 7/14/2014 @ 9:14 pm

    Who says that? Those who have decided to reject Providence’s unalterable and absolute declaration that homosexuality is an abomination, a choice, a sin, unnatural, and a one-way ticket to Hellfire and Damnation. And those who rejoice and praise such behavior are as guilty of that behavior as those who commit it, according to Providence. There is no squishy way to translate Providence’s Holy Word and remain in line with Providence.

    John Hitchcock (8dc500)

  208. Kevin M The crack addict wasn’t interested in your advice, rather she was looking for your acquiescence while she proceeded to inflict the results of her self indulgence upon the child.

    Just like in nature. Predators prefer to make a meal of the babies first. It’s easier.

    papertiger (c2d6da)

  209. Providence has a very clear warning to the “squishy Bible” desires of today, and to the “evolving” positions.

    Revelation 3:14-20

    14 “To the angel of the church in Laodicea write:

    These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God’s creation. 15 I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! 16 So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth. 17 You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked. 18 I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see.

    19 Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent

    John Hitchcock (8dc500)

  210. Elissa, in trying to figure out the contortionist routines you’re going through to make some point or the other, you’ve worn me out. John Hitchcock in a post from earlier today did mention the phrase “passive-aggressive.” Or was I imagining that?
    Mark (163b5d) — 7/14/2014 @ 11:41 pm

    Oh, you weren’t imagining things. And she has definitely been all over that passive-aggressive thing, like sauerkraut on a bratwurst. Very unladylike of her.

    John Hitchcock (8dc500)

  211. Coinciding with this blog entry, the following article is currently linked at the drudgereport.com. It can be seen as backing up or repudiating either side of the debate pertaining to GLBT, although the 3% figure has been the general reference point for quite awhile and easily runs counter to GLBT activists who claim (or like to believe) that they’re a more substantial part of the population than they actually are (or such activist reflecting the reactions of misery loves company).

    washingtonpost.com, July 15, 2014: Less than 3 percent of the U.S. population identify themselves as gay, lesbian or bisexual, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Tuesday in the first large-scale government survey measuring Americans’ sexual orientation.

    The National Health Interview Survey, which is the government’s premier tool for annually assessing Americans’ health and behaviors, found that 1.6 percent of adults self-identify as gay or lesbian, and 0.7 percent consider themselves bisexual. The overwhelming majority of adults, 96.6 percent, labeled themselves as straight in the 2013 survey. An additional 1.1 percent declined to answer, responded “I don’t know the answer” or said they were “something else.”

    The figures offered a slightly smaller assessment of the size of the gay, lesbian and bisexual population than other surveys, which have pegged the overall proportion at closer to 3.5 or 4 percent. In particular, the estimate for bisexuals was lower than in some other surveys.

    Echoing other studies, it found that, compared with straight people, gays were more likely to smoke and to have consumed five or more drinks in one day at least once in the past year. Straight women were more likely to consider themselves in excellent or very good health than women who identified as lesbian. But gays were more likely to have received a flu shot than straight people, and gay men were less likely to be overweight than straight men.

    In some cases, the more notable disparities were experienced by bisexuals. People who identify as being attracted to both sexes are more likely to have experienced psychological distress in the past 30 days than straight people, the survey showed.

    Mark (163b5d)

  212. Oh, you weren’t imagining things.

    It’s interesting when I get in a tussle with her or people similar to her because in general I do like them or agree with most of what they say. But it just goes to show how plenty of people love conflict and drama, as indicated by the popularity of dumb reality TV shows.

    Mark (163b5d)

  213. Who says that?

    There are some Biblical scholars (of left-leaning persuasion, no doubt) who, believe it or not, actually claim the story of Sodom and the character of Lot is not about the grotesqueness of unhinged, deviant behavior run amok but about a lack of hospitality. That contention is so ludicrous on its face — if not somewhat hilarious since it so misses the extremeness of Lot confronting the male townspeople of Sodom — that I’m always reminded of the line: “And other than THAT, Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play?”

    Mark (163b5d)

  214. Is that Providence, Rhode Island or Providence, Utah? Having a taboo against saying God says a lot about your brand of “Christianity”. It’s about as fringe as it gets.

    nk (dbc370)

  215. Mark, STFU. You’re a brain-dead bigot with perverted fantasies. You are not qualified to even touch a Bible let alone interpret the Old Testament.

    nk (dbc370)

  216. Is that aggressive-aggressive enough for you two clowns?

    nk (dbc370)

  217. nk, quite seriously, when you respond in such a strangely personalized way to fairly basic, 2+2=4 comments — certainly about the story of Sodom — then it’s not a case of sarcasm to say “seek help.”

    Mark (163b5d)

  218. nk, you are among a special sort of company in your admonition that a person not be qualified “to even touch a Bible”. My ex-wife, who had a great many sexual relationships outside our marriage (there’s part of that story for you, daley) said pretty much the same to me. As if I’d take the spiritual advice of an adulterous wench — or you, for that matter.

    John Hitchcock (ef872a)

  219. Mark, my judgment of you comes from the hundreds of comments you’ve left since you showed up here not any particular one in this post. You are stupid, ignorant, and bigoted and probably still a virgin.

    John, I was not giving you advice. I was giving you my opinion of your “faith”.

    nk (dbc370)

  220. 173:

    I’m also an Episcopalian and I was taught the Old Testament outlines the path to heaven for Jews. That’s their “different deal.” The New Testament is the path for Christians.

    Mitch (8c79bc)

  221. As for charitable interpretations of the Bible, we Episcopalians are known for that! I’m not sure we’re right but it makes us feel good about ourselves.

    Mitch (8c79bc)

  222. WTP (5ea774) — 7/15/2014 @ 6:16 am
    1) Should homosexuality be explicitly outlawed? Yes or no.

    No, and I have not directly known anyone who should say so.
    I do think standards of public behavior are reasonable to have in law, same as heterosexual couples

    2) If “No” above, should homosexuals be able to join in a legal union similar to marriage but with a slightly different name?
    If that is what the public wants, fine, and I think that is a relatively popular idea that would pass with public approval (instead of judicial fiat) in many areas, but the gay-rights crowd has rejected it. I think this is because equal treatment under the law is not really the issue, but trying to get an official affirmation of “being normal” is the goal.
    But even that I think is unnecessary to answer what were given as the original reasons for it, such as visitation rights in hospitals, etc.

    3) If yes to above, people will most likely begin to refer to such as a “marriage” as that is much less burdensome than whatever the legal definition becomes. Would that be a problem for you?
    No. The issue is not what people want to call themselves, or allow others to call whoever they want whatever they want. The problem is trying to put into law what I am supposed to think and force me to go along, like baking wedding cakes.
    Besides, even if encoded into law everywhere that SS marriage is the same as marriage, many will refer to it as SSM rather than marriage anyway. (At least until a generation has been raised in public school where to say “SSM”, making a distinction from “just plain old-fashioned marriage”, will get you into trouble.)

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  223. Good God the tangents. It’s like arguing with socialists. Biblical scholarship is not the point here. The postmortem disposition of peoples’ souls is for God to ultimately decide. Until that time, we here on earth have to live by a set of rules that allows sinners the free will to sin but not in such a way as to impede other sinners’ pursuit of happiness. That’s why I was asking three specific questions which you have chosen not to answer. Please again, can you answer the following:

    1) Should homosexuality be explicitly outlawed by man (added)? Yes or no.
    2) If “No” above, should homosexuals be able to join in a legal union similar to marriage but with a slightly different name?
    3) If yes to above, people will most likely begin to refer to such as a “marriage” as that is much less burdensome than whatever the legal definition becomes. Would that be a problem for you?

    WTP (60406d)

  224. One does not have to change their foundational beliefs to love their child. Some equate disagreement with hate. They say that if you disagree with me, you hate me. I believe that opinion is wrong and designed to shut down any difference of opinion.

    One can be a Christian and believe that homosexuality is one of many sins that separate a person from God and still show love to the sinner. Showing love does not have to mean agreement. Just look at MD who took care of homosexuals with AIDS, yet believes that homosexuality is a sin.

    Portman’s statements make me wonder if he had any foundational beliefs in the first place.

    Pat, I was raised a Jew (my mom is Jewish and I never knew my father), became a Christian December 18, 1974 and believe that I’m still a Jew. I no longer go to synagogue, but go to a church. The bible says that Christianity was first brought to the Jews, then to the Gentiles. Jesus was a Jew. Christianity is not a movement to destroy Jews, but a Jewish movement to recognize that Jesus the Christ is the Messiah.

    Tanny O'Haley (87b2aa)

  225. Well, whoever came up with the idea of two paths, one for Jews and one for Christians (what about everybody else???), I don’t find it explained that way by Jesus or Peter or Paul or the other NT writers. And I’m not talking about humans interpreting things differently that are unclear, but by reading the words and applying standard rules of grammar and commonly accepted meanings of words. The argument, made by people who considered themselves Jews (as opposed to gentiles) was that no one could be justified before God by works of the Law, but needed to rely on God’s mercy.

    I have read elsewhere that such an idea may have been a response to guilt from wrong and unjust treatment of Jews previously by people claiming to be Christian.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  226. MD and I passed each other here, but speaking to those points:

    No, and I have not directly known anyone who should say so. Well, that’s fine. However such people do exist and if that is their objection to SSM, it should be addressed directly, not under the auspices of opposing SSM. To do the latter without explicitly saying so is disingenuous. But I take it MD and I agree here.

    If that is what the public wants, fine, and I think that is a relatively popular idea that would pass with public approval (instead of judicial fiat)… Agree. However it is becoming rather moot as the public seems quite in favor of the idea. I greatly dislike how this has been done via the judiciary, however.

    And for your response to #3 I agree. Understand.

    WTP (aca208)

  227. 1) Should homosexuality be explicitly outlawed by man (added)? Yes or no.
    If society considers that would promote the greatest good for the greatest number, yes. There is nothing sacred about homosexuality. It is entirely within society’s prerogative to decide whether it is beneficial or harmful.

    2) If “No” above, should homosexuals be able to join in a legal union similar to marriage but with a slightly different name? Same answer.

    3) If yes to above, people will most likely begin to refer to such as a “marriage” as that is much less burdensome than whatever the legal definition becomes. Would that be a problem for you? No more than calling Obama “President”.

    nk (dbc370)

  228. WTP (60406d) — 7/15/2014 @ 8:37 am
    I think we cross-posted, as I responded directly,
    and yes, almost always there are tangents here. Patterico’s virtual front porch has lots of room for multiple strands of discussion at the same time, and like physical front porches, one sometimes need to decide which ones to be involved in and which ones to ignore.

    Tanny O’Haley (87b2aa) — 7/15/2014 @ 8:42 am
    Thanks for your personal contribution to the discussion.

    An aside, perhaps a tangent. In the book “Loving God” by Charles Colson, he has a chapter titled “A Christian Mobster?” (or some such), about some Mafia figure who became friends with some Christian (Billy Graham???) and who thought being a Christian like his friend would be a good thing. After all, there are Christian businessmen, Christian doctors, why not a Christian mob boss?
    But it didn’t work. Because to be forgiven of sin means one needs to acknowledge that the sin is wrong and needs to be forgiven, and if it is wrong, one would naturally come to stop it as possible once coming to that conclusion.
    So, an alcoholic that beats his wife and then says he “becomes a Christian” should be expected to be motivated and make every effort at his disposal to no longer be a slave to alcohol and the resulting violence it leads him to. (As I said previously, the NT is pretty clear that once one becomes a follower of Jesus one is no longer limited by one’s own failing efforts, but has a supernatural power of God to say no to sin where before one couldn’t. Of course, it is a learning process and episodes of failure sometimes happen, but if there is no discernible change in a positive direction one is directly told to reexamine oneself and try to see what is going on, because following Jesus is supposed to be more than being stuck in the same old rut and now being able to say “I’m forgiven”.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  229. MD #228:

    I agree, and my point wasn’t that Episcopalians or anyone who believes that is correct. Episcopalians were among the first to embrace tolerance as the goal of religion, so they tend to find ways to validate every behavior and belief.

    I think Taney O’Haley’s statement that “Christianity is not a movement to destroy Jews, but a Jewish movement to recognize that Jesus the Christ is the Messiah” is more correct.

    Mitch (8c79bc)

  230. If that is what the public wants, fine, and I think that is a relatively popular idea that would pass with public approval (instead of judicial fiat)… Agree. However it is becoming rather moot as the public seems quite in favor of the idea. I greatly dislike how this has been done via the judiciary, however.

    WTP (aca208) — 7/15/2014 @ 8:43 am

    I think the idea that the public is in favor of SSM is a bit over sold. I think the public is “in favor” of same sex marriage as in “leave them alone and let them do what they want”, not “Yes, SSM is the same as marriage and force that baker to back them a wedding cake whether he wants to or not”.

    If one asks the question, “Should children with gender identity issues be treated with kindness and respect?”, I bet 90%+ will say, “Of course!”
    If you ask the same people, “Should boys who think they are girls be allowed to use the girl’s bathroom and locker room and be on girl’s sports teams, and vice-versa for girls who think they are boys?”, I bet 90% will say, “Are you nuts???”
    But that is the law in MA, CA, and by precedent in CO.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  231. Episcopalians were among the first to embrace tolerance as the goal of religion, so they tend to find ways to validate every behavior and belief.

    The first two behaviors being divorcing the first Queen for not producing a son and beheading her successor for the same reason; and demonstrating tolerance by also beheading those who objected? ;)

    nk (dbc370)

  232. Mitch,
    Perhaps it is because the British like to be so proper and polite, and, and,…British. ;-)

    Of course, many Jews, like Saul of Tarsus, would see it as trying to destroy “them”, or at least their way of life as they were accustomed to it, and I understand why one would see it that way.
    But I would say that Jesus “destroys” the way of life each person is accustomed to when they come to Him, but in a society that has come to believe that everyone is Christian because that is what we are unless you say you are something else, (like I did for many years) that concept is a bit foreign.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  233. nk, we do need to realize that what the King did and what the rank and file did to make up for him can be different?

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  234. I did smile when I said that, MD.

    nk (dbc370)

  235. I thought so, nk.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  236. For the record, I don’t think anyone on this thread has been disrespectful or uncharitable to me. I’ve had arguments about the procreative purpose of marriage with Steve57 before, and am not interested in having them again, but we had those discussions in good faith and I’m sure we would have the discussion in good faith again if I were interested in having it at all.

    John Hitchcock: you think I’m calling evil good, and I think you’re calling good evil. So woe to both of us, I guess.

    MD: that we came to be so sure that the “sodomy” railed against in the Old and New Testaments meant “homosexuality” has no root in divine law. I believe the Bible is divinely inspired – but how many versions are there? How many translations? It’s a text. Like all texts, we are tasked with interpreting it as fallible human beings. Good faith will guide the interpretation of all seekers. But not all versions will use the same word for the same thing. We have to be comfortable with the task of interpreting Scripture, because all text requires interpretation.

    Alternatively, we could ask John Hitchcock which version he uses, and submit all interpretive questions to him for summary clarification.

    Leviticus (7adc16)

  237. Religious wars. God help us. This isn’t mine and it’s not word for word quote. “Orthodoxy, heterodoxy, my doxy is prettier than your doxy”.

    nk (dbc370)

  238. no it’s about values, without which we are nothing,

    narciso (24b824)

  239. Leviticus,

    I tend to sympathize with the feelings you and Patterico expressed (that we aren’t sure what the Bible means), probably because of my Episcopalian upbringing. But is there any version or interpretation of Leviticus 18:22 that doesn’t treat homosexual behavior as a sin?

    Mitch (8c79bc)

  240. I’m coming late to the party, and haven’t real all 240 comments, but this stuck out to me, from Milhouse, in the much prettier Dana’s original:

    Besides, anyone with any brain should have realised years ago that they’re almost bound to have close relatives who are gay; hardly anyone doesn’t.

    Really? The percentage of the population that is homosexual is maybe 4%. That means that if you have 25 “close relatives,” the odds are that only one would be homosexual, and even that is iffy. If I count my daughters, my sisters and first cousins and their children as close relatives, I come up with 14 people, and in this age of not-so-large families, I’d guess that most people have fewer than 25 close relatives. The numbers say that Mr Milhouse’s statement that “hardly anyone doesn’t” have “close relatives” who are homosexual is incorrect.

    The fact is that human beings are about 96% probable to be heterosexual, and that means that the odds that any given close relative will be heterosexual is 25 to 1. You only get to the stage where “hardly anyone doesn’t” have “close relatives” who are homosexual by increasing the sample size, meaning: expanding the definition of close relatives.

    The stastician Dana (8d8119)

  241. Boy, did I foul up my handle on my last post!

    The Dana who can's spell statistician (8d8119)

  242. Dana, I believe you’ve encountered a version of the birthday paradox.

    In this case, assuming your percentage of gay people is correct, the odds of each individual being heterosexual are 96%. Therefore the odds that all ten of your ten closest relatives will be heterosexual should be 100*(.96*.96*.96*.96*.96*.96*.96*.96*.96*.96)==66.48%. But you only need to grow the pool of ‘close relatives’ to 17 people for it to be more likely than not that at least one of them is gay.

    aphrael (1011ff)

  243. nk #234,

    LOL. Here’s how I’d put it: King Henry and his Church of England followers didn’t let anyone keep them from pursuing their desires. Tolerance for me but not for thee!

    Mitch (8c79bc)

  244. For a group of 25 close relatives, it’s only 36% likely that zero of them are gay.

    aphrael (1011ff)

  245. I believe the Bible is divinely inspired – but how many versions are there? How many translations? It’s a text. Like all texts, we are tasked with interpreting it as fallible human beings. Good faith will guide the interpretation of all seekers.

    Leviticus,

    It seems to me that a belief like that will lead a person to use the bible to validate every behavior and belief. Unlike the Koran which is purported to be the very words spoken to Muhammad, the bible is mostly history and good advice on living. There is less than 2% difference between all original language versions of the bible. The earliest found versions of the bible are very close to Jesus’ time, unlike the works of Plato where the earliest version we have is over a thousand years after the time of Plato.

    We have different translations mostly because language changes. Most English speaking people don’t use “thee” in their speech. The history of the bible has been verified by archeology over and over again. You can quibble over minor things, but overall the bible is clear. The thing I liked about biblical Greek when I studied it in bible college was its clarity. When studying the New Testament in its original or translated text you must always read it in the time it was written. As I said, words change meaning.the word gentleman used to be a title, like duke or regent, now it means a person with good manners. Gay originally did not mean homosexual. That’s why history is very important. How was a word used in other texts of the time?

    This is also true of our constitution. It frustrates me when people say the 14th amendment means equal results for all cases. If that was the case why did we need amendments to give blacks and women the vote? To say that the the 14th amendment means SSM and heterosexual marriage are the same is to twist the meaning of the 14th amendment. To say that the bible approves of homosexuality and SSM is to twist the meaning of the bible.

    I wish I had more time and space to give this subject the explication it deserves, but whole books have been written about the veracity of the bible and I just don’t have the time.

    Tanny O'Haley (87b2aa)

  246. Getting back to the topic:

    …But here’s the thing, a change of mind would depend on what motivated the belief that it was wrong in the first place.

    …To put it another way, faith informed their politics, not the other way around.

    In regard to the first statement, if a pol wants to convince me that he or she honestly changed their mind about a public policy position rather than opportunistically so, I’d need to hear a rational explanation before I’d be convinced.

    Fortunately for them I appear to be in the minority. Based upon Portman and Obama’s explanation for “evolving,” they can’t articulate a rational basis for hanging their minds. But then, neither can proponents of gay marriage articulate one for wanting SSM in the first place.

    Nor is here a rational explanation for dismantling the one institution in society (any society) that primarily exists because of children. Nor is there an answer to the question, “if marriage is no longer to be about children, what is?” Because of course there will be nothing. About the closest thing to a popular explanation for the manic drive toward SSM is this”

    I’m not sure we’re right but it makes us feel good about ourselves.

    Which is of course not rational. But then neither is the assumption underlying the drive toward SS; idea that we no longer have to be concerned about having children ourselves sine we an keep the gravy train rolling by importing uneducated, unskilled laborers who increasingly don’t assimilate. Largely because immigration advocates consider any demand that they do racist.

    I’ not just talking about the US. Europe has an even worse problem because their uneducated, unskilled imported economic saviors are mostly Muslims who are openly contemptuous of the societies whose social security regimes they’re supposed to rescue with their tax revenue.

    It isn’t merely the upside down logic behind thinking people who consume more in entitlement spending than they provide in revenue can keep social security solvent that I question. Which is why I consider the thinking (such as it is) behind SSM part and parcel of society wide version of The Voluntary Human Extinction Movement.

    A that point, if you consider how hostile the true believers in SS are to Western civilization in general, and to the US in particular, a certain logic does emerge.

    R.e. the second statement, clearly it was the other way around.

    Steve57 (e3957b)

  247. Wrote this once but apparently it got lost?…

    If society considers that would promote the greatest good for the greatest number, yes

    Utilitarianism presumes that society knows what/where/how the greatest good will flow from its predetermined analysis. So long as a behavior is not bothering anyone, why should it matter? “Good” as defined by society can be rather specious. Take for example current attacks on the first amendment because of how some speech offends some people.

    MD, agree on last paragraph. Disagree on the perception of the numbers. Curious question, are you “MD” because you are a medical doctor and if so (or even not) are you familiar with chimerism?

    WTP (fd3093)

  248. Newsflash. Professional-managerial bourgeois allow their post-adolescent son to jerk them around, because they had no principles to begin with other than an interest in commodious living.

    Art Deco (ee8de5)

  249. Steve57,

    I’m sorry, but I can’t find your comment wherein you state your belief in why marriage (male/female) stands the test of time and in other non-God believing cultures. I find several comments hinting at the ‘whys’ but did you state it complete somewhere. Can you give me the #, pls.

    Dana (4dbf62)

  250. WTP- yes, I am a physician (not currently practicing). I have very scant knowledge of chimerism. I would be happy to look at a reference to see if with my background I could help make sense of it for you.
    If there is a bioethical question involved, all the more so. (I do believe I heard it mentioned in a bioethics lecture by a molecular biologist a while ago, but it was not a main point of the discussion, and I did not track with it.)

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  251. A fine point, FWIW,
    In the calculations about the likelihood of having a gay close relative, the assumption is being made that the possibility of homosexuality is equal for all individuals/families.
    Whatever the contributions of nature and nurture are, it may be true that this is not merely a random statistical issue, but there may be reasons why there are groupings in one family and an absence in another.
    Of course, since investigating this would require honest self-disclosure, it my be difficult to ascertain this.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  252. MD, well I’m curious as it relates to the subject here. While much of the various cisabnormative or wtf it’s called that is all the rage lately may very well be driven by attention seeking, narcissism, victimalogy, etc. there are many people who have serious, real irregularities in their sexual make up. Most concrete examples being hermaphrodites and such. Been thinking lately about chimerism and if it could possibly explain some of what we see in sexuality. Perhaps part of the brain being male and other parts being female due to a mixture/absorption of male and female zygotes or what ever the stage could be. Perhaps a female brain with a physically male sex organs. I am grossly over simplifying here, but I’m curious what the possibilities are and if there’s been much research? What little I’ve researched (and I admit it hasn’t been much) has not seemed to be strongly based on medical science and biased from the get-go either pro or con. Yet none of this seems to bubble up into the larger discussions on sexuality that generate more heat than light.

    WTP (5ea774)

  253. MD in Philly, that is a very good point, and it’s worth noting. My calculation was assuming a random distribution.

    aphrael (98d2d0)

  254. There is a very high likelihood, for instance, that the entirety of the Duggar clan is hetero.

    John Hitchcock (ef872a)

  255. Dana, I didn’t lay out a complete theory, but check no. 172.

    Steve57 (e3957b)

  256. Polygamy is a marriage with more than two partners.

    This is not true. In polygamous societies (such as that of the Bible, most of the ancient world, contemporary Moslems, and early Mormons), each marriage is between one man and one woman. A man’s wives are not married to each other.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  257. Steve57,

    Would you please expand on 172?

    Dana (4dbf62)

  258. “This is not true.”

    Milhouse – Good. You stick with what works for you and I’ll stick with what works for me. Since we are not talking about the Bible, the ancient world, or the Muslim world, but the context is the slippery slope argument made by opponents of SSM, what could that be?

    I ask myself? We have monogamy, bigamy and polygamy as descriptions of relationships. The latter two are illegal in the U.S. In other places in the world, say the Muslim world, where women are often treated as chattel, we see multiple marriages, serial marriages, polygamy or whatever you want to call it.

    It’s a dessert topping and floor wax!
    Is that what opponents of same sex marriage described as the slippery slope? I don’t believe so. I believe it is the more than two or multiple partner version of marriage, but knock yourself out. Since it is a look forward argument, I have no interest in history lessons or practices in other countries. I am interested in practices which could be shoehorned into our legal system of divorce and inheritance, which the Muslim system could not.

    Why have three words to describe relationships unless there is a distinction – Monogamy, bigamy, polygamy.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  259. Dana, I don’t know if I an get to it tonight. For a couple of reasons, not the least of which is my laptop is going downhill very fast and it’s frustrating to try and type anything on it. I keep putting off buying a new one because I didn’t really need the expense right now, but I need to break down and buy one. Some of the keys on this thing don’t even work every time.

    Essentially writing anything is very time consuming, and I have a couple of competing priorities that may not allow it.

    Steve57 (e3957b)

  260. I think anybody who believes we will have Islamic style marriage and divorce arrangements in this country as a result of SSM is bug nucking futz and fail to see why people keep pointing that direction as an example of the slippery slope to polygamy argument anti-SSMers are making.

    That’s not an argument I propound. I suggest if they are confused that they ask one our resident gay sex and SSM obsessives who has advanced the argument exactly what form of marriages he fears will result on the slippery slope, although Mark does not typically like to answer questions.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  261. Mark, my judgment of you comes from the hundreds of comments you’ve left since you showed up here not any particular one in this post. You are stupid, ignorant, and bigoted and probably still a virgin.

    nk, coming from you I’d say that’s a compliment.

    You’ve previously displayed foolish, nonsensical reactions towards the issue of Franklin D Roosevelt even after Patterico several weeks ago did a lengthy, well-explained review of why FDR was, in fact, a flop and charlatan (and who I’ve previously detailed as being a flat-out bigot). More recently, you’ve been a sap and fool about the black guy who was arrested by UCLA cops, whose no-justice-no-peace, sue-sue-sue response in your mind actually deserved the benefit of the doubt if only because, well, no, the guy in question perhaps isn’t a garden-variety liberal.

    You’ve also been indignant when the reality of cheap compassion for compassion’s sake has been pointed out, so adding all these things together, along with your response to some of the fairly 2+2=4 comments above, make it way too obvious you have no shortage of dumb liberal biases working through that brain of yours.

    Liberal impulses tend to make people ass backwards, and you’re no exception to the rule.

    Mark (6c28fd)

  262. Formalized polygamy. Informal …?

    A woman walks into the welfare office in Pascagoula, trailed by 15 kids.
    ‘WOW,’ the social worker exclaims, ‘are they all yours?”
    ‘Yep, they are all mine,’ the flustered momma sighs, having heard that question a thousand times before.
    She says, ‘Sit down Bubba.’ All the children rush to find seats.
    ‘Well,’ says the social worker, ‘then you must be here to sign up. I’ll need all your children’s names.’
    ‘Well, to keep it simple, the boys are all named Bubba and the girls are all named Bubbea.’
    In disbelief, the case worker says, ‘Are you serious? They’re ALL named Bubba?’
    Their momma replied, ‘Well, yes-it makes it easier. When it’s time to get them out of bed and ready for school, I yell, ‘Bubba!’ An’ when it’s time for dinner, I just yell ‘Bubba!’ An they all comes a runnin. An’ if I need to stop the kid who’s running into the street, I just yell Bubba’ and all of them stop. It’s the smartest idea I ever had, namin’ them all Bubba.’
    The social worker thinks this over for a bit, then wrinkles her forehead and says tentatively, ‘But what if you just want ONE kid to come, and not the whole bunch?’
    ‘Then I call them by their last names.’

    nk (dbc370)

  263. I don’t know that calling you “stupid, ignorant, and bigoted” is a compliment, Mark, you can take it as one if you wish, but it is definitely an understatement.

    nk (dbc370)

  264. although Mark does not typically like to answer questions.

    daleyrocks, the paragraph you’ve inserted (presumably) my name into is so hard to understand, I don’t know what to say.

    Mark (6c28fd)

  265. Mark, you can take it as one if you wish

    nk, liberal emotions seem to trigger in the beholder a tendency to overuse and over-apply the words “racist, ignorant, bigoted, stupid.” So much so that they’ve lost their original meaning. Moreover, the left-leaning biases in that brain of yours can easily cause you to both project and, again, be ass-backwards about cases of true racism, true ignorance, true bigotry, true stupidity.

    Mark (6c28fd)

  266. well this is the pattern we see in Western Europe, the governments embrace SSM, yet they leave latitude for the Islamists to be left alone,

    narciso (24b824)

  267. @Steve

    But then, neither can proponents of gay marriage articulate one for wanting SSM in the first place.

    When people are treated fairly human well being is greater than when people are treated unfairly. Denying 2 consenting adults something because of their private sexual activities and desires is unfair. I prefer to maximize human well being when I can. This is why I want SSM.

    Nor is here a rational explanation for dismantling the one institution in society (any society) that primarily exists because of children.

    Nobody is dismantling marriage. We are adding to it. The claim that somehow this redefinition of marriage will result in less marriage, more children out of wedlock, the dismantling of society is without merit. It runs counter to the “small government / personal responsibility” mantra that we all hold to. It makes no sense that everyone knows how to act in their own best interest when it comes to healthcare or taxes, but that we MUST have marriage defined by the government in a certain way otherwise mass chaos and the downfall of the USA is forthcoming. Moreover, the claim needs to be demonstrated – which it has not been.

    Later in the post you put up several strawmen arguments from anonymous sources you argue against. Great job! But I reject it out of hand. These include:
    The assertion that “True SSM supporters” think immigration is an adequate replacement for procreation. That “true SSM supporters are hostile to western civilizations”. I don’t think any of that nonsense that you argue with yourself about, and frankly neither do most “SSM supporters” I know. I support SSM. Am I not a “true believer”?

    Gil (27c98f)

  268. Unlike the Koran which is purported to be the very words spoken to Muhammad, the bible is mostly history and good advice on living. There is less than 2% difference between all original language versions of the bible. The earliest found versions of the bible are very close to Jesus’ time, unlike the works of Plato where the earliest version we have is over a thousand years after the time of Plato.

    Mostly history? Like the parts about Adam and Eve? Jonah and the whale? The earliest copies we have show up a few hundred years before Jesus and are thousands of years away from when all these events supposedly happened. This is what passes as history for you? Why because people believed it and it is written inside that it is true? Because people told you so? People make mistakes. Try googling Sathya Sai Baba who has hundreds of thousands or more followers that belive he is/was a god and that’s in this century!

    The history of the bible has been verified by archeology over and over again.

    Really? Oh jeez. 2000 years from now I can picture someone finding a spiderman novel and claiming it is verified because we can observe the city of new York and see all the same landmarks written about in this spiderman novel.

    Gil (27c98f)

  269. Portman could say, “my views were superficial and i hadn’t really thought about it much before my son came out, which made me confront the basis for my beliefs, which I hadn’t done before, and so I changed my answer on the question.”

    That makes sense in its own limited context, but it immediately invites the question why, if he hadn’t thought about it seriously before, did he take a public position on it? Why did he not think about it seriously when he thought it was only a matter of someone else’s kid, not his own? And, as I pointed out in the previous thread, it should always have been obvious to him that someone close to him was likely to be gay; almost everyone has someone gay whom they care about, they just don’t always know who it is. As a senator, before taking a public stand one way or the other it was his duty to give it some serious thought, and reach some sort of conclusion, for, against, or undecided. And having reached that conclusion, it’s not morally valid for him to change it just because he now knows the identity of at least one of his gay relatives; that relvelation is not a morally significant event.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  270. In short: We’re on the way to becoming Canada, where a street preacher was found to be in violation of provincial “hate speech” statutes despite the fact the offending language was not intended to inspire violence against homosexuals.

    How are we on the way to that? On the contrary, that incident just shows us how lucky we are to have a strong first amendment. Yes, we must be vigilant in defending it, but I see no current sign that it’s in any danger.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  271. yet they leave latitude for the Islamists to be left alone

    If Sharia Law or Islamo-fascism ends up biting a whole host of liberals throughout the Western World in the butt, I’m not sure if I should shudder or snicker.

    Mark (6c28fd)

  272. In college, I tried Bible study with a group that took the position that Jews will go to hell if they do not accept Christ as the one true savior. They said this was not condemning Jews, because Jews could always choose to accept Christ as the one true savior. I couldn’t get past the idea that my Jewish friends would have to renounce their faith or go to hell. It didn’t feel like a religion I wanted any part of.

    Sorry, Patterico, but this makes no sense. It’s like saying that you want no part of a group that says those passengers on a sinking ship who refuse to board the lifeboats will drown, or those who refuse to be vaccinated in an epidemic will catch whatever it is, or those who refuse to look both ways before crossing the road will get hit, or those who refuse to give up smoking are likely to get cancer.

    If Jesus is the only practical way to salvation, as the NT says pretty explicitly, then it’s hardly hateful to tell us nonbelievers so; on the contrary, it would be hateful not to tell us so, and to let us wallow in our ignorance and end up in Hell, just for the sake of avoiding some unpleasantness.

    Now I reject the premise; I don’t believe Jesus was anyone special, or that accepting him into ones heart gets one any closer to salvation. In fact quite the contrary. But that’s because I reject the entire NT, I don’t believe it to have been Divinely inspired, so naturally I don’t accept its claims. I reject the whole idea that man is born fallen, and needs to be Saved.

    But if one accepts that idea, then it’s not illogical that God might have given man a way out, an offer of salvation, and that it’s vital to let people know about this offer and encourage them to take advantage. If you believe a baby was born with a fatal disease, and there is only one effective treatment, then it needs that treatment, and it would be foolish to say that since it’s innocent it can’t possibly be dying.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  273. I talked with Baldilocks about all this in person years ago, and she said her belief was that Jews get a different deal, essentially. They have a different covenant. I liked that.

    I don’t know if she was theologically pure with that notion or not. I am familiar with the Gospel verse that Christians take as requiring acceptance of Christ to get into heaven — and I put that question to her directly. She was familiar with it too, of course, and she continued to insist that Christians get a different deal from Jews.

    All I can say is, I like it.

    I believe that’s the current position of the Catholic church, or at least of the recent popes. But then, Catholics have never been bound by the strict meaning of scripture. I’m at a bit of a loss to understand how a Protestant can accept that argument.

    From my own point of view, I don’t care whether you think I’m saved. What you believe about the state of my soul doesn’t affect me at all. So I have no problem with those who believe I’m Hell-bound. I’m confident that they’re wrong, but I don’t hold their ignorance against them, and I appreciate that from their own point of view they’re trying to help me.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  274. FWIW, many would not see it as “Rejecting one’s faith” to believe in Jesus. There are many people who consider themselves “Messianic Jews” or “Completed Jews”, who would say that they have not renounced Judaism, but have believed that Jesus was the promised Jewish messiah.

    They might say that, just as a same-sex couple might say they are married, but saying it won’t make it so. One cannot accept the truth of Christianity without rejecting the truth of Judaism, any more than one can accept the truth of Judaism without rejecting the truth of Christianity. The two systems make claims that are fundamentally incompatible.

    Even within Christianity there are so many incompatible theologies. One can’t accept Calvinism without rejecting Lutheranism, or vice versa. One certainly can’t accept Protestantism without rejecting Catholicism or vice versa. How much more so with theologies as different as ours.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  275. The sin of Sodom had nothing to do with what became called sodomy – it had to do with acting like the people of Murietta, California, and League City, Texas, that is, not not opening their homes to strangers, but insisting that their neighbors not do it either!

    Who says that? Those who have decided to reject Providence’s unalterable and absolute declaration that homosexuality is an abomination,

    Um, no. Who says it are the people to whom God told this story in the first place, and who passed it down through the generations with the way God explained it to Moses, long before any Christian had ever heard it or put a homophobic spin on it.

    The Bible has no sympathy for sex between men, but whenever it refers to Sodom and its sin it always means inhospitality, never sexual immorality. The Sodomites and those of the other four cities of the Plain were immoral, but no more so than any of their neighbours. They weren’t destroyed for that. Their attempt to rape the angels happened after they’d already been sentenced to destruction, so it can’t have played any part in that decision. And even that sin was about rape and inhospitality, not the incidental sin of immorality that would also have been involved. Harping on that, as so many Christian homophobes do, is like telling of someone who crossed the street to mug an old lady, and condemning him for the jaywalking.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  276. PS: Saying that sex between men is a sin is not homophobic. Harping on it and elevating it above all other sins is.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  277. PPS: And hating those who engage in it, or even those who would like to engage in it, is certainly homophobic and bigoted, and has no basis in the Bible.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  278. Oops, only the word “like” was supposed to be in italics.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  279. There are some Biblical scholars (of left-leaning persuasion, no doubt) who, believe it or not, actually claim the story of Sodom and the character of Lot is not about the grotesqueness of unhinged, deviant behavior run amok but about a lack of hospitality.

    Not “some”, and not at all left-leaning, but every scholar who is in the unbroken chain of scholarship from Sinai to today. It’s the only interpretation you will find in the Talmud, which is the only authoritative account of the exegeses and interpretations handed down from Moses, known as the “oral law”. Making it about sexual immorality is indeed ignoring the forest while concentrating on one tree.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  280. One does not have to change their foundational beliefs to love their child. Some equate disagreement with hate. They say that if you disagree with me, you hate me. I believe that opinion is wrong and designed to shut down any difference of opinion.

    This.

    Pat, I was raised a Jew (my mom is Jewish and I never knew my father), became a Christian December 18, 1974 and believe that I’m still a Jew.

    If your mother was a Jew then you are one too, and nothing you do, say, or believe can change that, but you have rejected the Jewish faith, and adopted one that is incompatible with it. That doesn’t make you a non-Jew, any more than becoming a communist or an Islamist makes a US citizen into an alien, but it means you now believe things that are “un-Jewish”, so to speak. (That doesn’t make them untrue, though I of course believe them to be so.)

    The bible says that Christianity was first brought to the Jews, then to the Gentiles. Jesus was a Jew. Christianity is not a movement to destroy Jews, but a Jewish movement to recognize that Jesus the Christ is the Messiah.

    That is certainly the Christian view of things. It isn’t the Jewish view. Which is precisely why the Jews of his time rejected his claims.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  281. Well, whoever came up with the idea of two paths, one for Jews and one for Christians (what about everybody else???),

    There is nobody else; the idea is that God first made a covenant with the Jews, and later made a second offer to the whole world. Jews have the option of sticking with Plan A, or switching to Plan B, while everyone else was never offered Plan A but may adopt Plan B, and there isn’t any Plan C. That’s the idea, as I understand it, for what it’s worth. (One thing it misses is that Plan A is available to anyone who wants to become a Jew.)

    Then there’s the variation on this theme adopted by the recent popes, which is that Christianity offers one path to Heaven, the only one we know about for sure, but God is infinite and may have other paths as well.

    Judaism, meanwhile, says that people are born saved, because the original sin only affects the body, not the soul, and it’s up to each person to save themselves by living right and obeying the Law. And that sin does not mean automatic damnation, because God is merciful and accepts repentance, and is always willing to start someone off with a blank slate no matter how many times He’s done so before. Also that there is no Hell, but only a Purgatory where sin is wiped out by suffering, so that everyone can eventually enter Heaven. Which makes the whole discussion moot.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  282. I believe the Bible is divinely inspired – but how many versions are there?

    Of the original? Only one. Translations may vary, but the original text doesn’t. Like the US constitution, sometimes it’s capable of being understood in different ways, but not always. And even where several understandings of a passage are possible, there are many more that are not.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  283. You only get to the stage where “hardly anyone doesn’t” have “close relatives” who are homosexual by increasing the sample size, meaning: expanding the definition of close relatives.

    Or by having larger families. But if there isn’t anyone gay in your immediate family, there’s bound to be one in one of your neighbours’ families, or in one of your close friends’.

    (There are also a lot of homosexual people who don’t think of themselves as gay, let alone tell anyone else about it. Back in the ’90s, among those doing AIDS outreach, there was a whole category titled Men Who Have Sex With Men, meaning those who do this but don’t think of themselves as “gay”, don’t read teh gay press or participate in the gay community, and therefore are not reached by ad campaigns geared to that community. Even if they see an ad, they’ll ignore it because they think it doesn’t mean them. But these people are never going to want to marry someone of the same sex, so they’re not really relevant to the current discussion.)

    Milhouse (b95258)

  284. but whenever it refers to Sodom and its sin it always means inhospitality, never sexual immorality

    That’s as ridiculous (if not as slightly humorous) a contention as claiming, for example, that a crime story involving a woman being raped by 10 guys, then beaten and flung out a third-floor window is mainly a lesson on the irresponsibility of forgetting to wear condoms. Or a lesson on women who don’t spend enough time making themselves look clean and pretty.

    barbwire.com, March 2014: The disinformation floating around about Sodom is almost comical. One BarbWire reader contended in a note to me that nobody even thought Sodom’s sin was homosexuality until 1946. I sent him links to writers decrying Sodom’s sodomy as far back as the year 400, and replied, “it’s far more accurate to say nobody doubted Sodom’s sin was homosexuality until 1946.”

    Let’s start with an example of the pro-inhospitality view. In its article, “Inhospitality or Homosexuality What Was The Sin of Sodom?,” the website GayChristian101 begins by asserting:

    “Inhospitality or lack of hospitality is always the reason for the destruction of Sodom, if we accept what the Bible says in context. If we go by what the Bible actually says, there were no homosexuals in Sodom. Homosexuality is never the scriptural reason why God destroyed Sodom.”

    A bold statement, considering that the words “hospitality” and “inhospitality” never appear in Genesis 19, nor in any of the verses cited by the website to support the “inhospitality” argument. The concept of inhospitality, which arguably does appear in Genesis 19, is clearly overshadowed by homosexual rape. How can anybody say “there were no homosexuals in Sodom” when the subject of Genesis 19 is attempted homosexual rape? Has some psychologist declared that man-raping is a brand new sexual orientation?

    GayChristian101 claims that Lot “cites hospitality as the primary reason the men of Sodom should not rape his visitors.” The website underscores the point by inserting the word “hospitality” into the second half of Genesis 19:8:

    “for therefore [for hospitality] came they
    under the shadow of my roof” -Gen 19:8.

    Are we seriously to believe that violating hospitality protocol was foremost in Lot’s mind? Lot’s reference to hospitality was merely incidental. In Gen. 19:7, Lot said “No, friends. Do not do this wicked thing.” It’s important to observe that the men had already committed inhospitality by surrounding Lot’s house, but Lot still thought he could stop them before they committed the supreme wicked act. Then in the first half of 19:8, he suggests an alternative to the “wicked thing.” Does he tell them to go home and weave Welcome Wagon baskets? No, the wicked thing was sexual: Lot offers the men intent on raping his guests his own daughters as sexual substitutes.

    After dwelling for a while on the importance of hospitality in Scripture, and ignoring that Scripture has quite a bit more to say about the immorality of homosexual behavior, GayChristian101 moves to its second relevant point: that Ezekiel 16 is “crystal clear about the sin of Sodom.” According to GayChristian101, “The prophet Ezekiel, writing under inspiration of God, precisely describes the sin of Sodom, listing six huge transgressions committed by the people of Sodom. Don’t you find it interesting that homosexuality is not among these sins but inhospitality definitely is?”

    But GayChristian101 gets it exactly wrong. Sodomy is there, inhospitality is not.

    Here is how GayChristian101 quotes Ezekiel 16:48-50:

    As I live, saith the LORD GOD, Sodom thy sister hath not done, she nor her daughters, as thou hast done, thou and thy daughters. Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom,
    1. pride,
    2. fulness of bread, and
    3. abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters,
    4. [Inhospitality] neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy. And they were
    5. haughty, and
    6. committed abomination before me: therefore I took them away as I saw good.” -Ezekiel 16:48-50

    Again, GayChristian101 finds it necessary to insert the word “inhospitality” where it isn’t found in the text, but this time, the concept is absent. It’s quite a stretch to contend that neglecting to care for the “poor and needy” means inhospitality at all, much less that it “definitely” does and proves conclusively that Sodom’s sin is inhospitality. Furthermore, GayChristian101 simply ignores the word “abomination,” which unquestionably appears in the text.

    So what does “abomination” mean in Ezekiel? The word “abomination” is used to describe a number of sins in the Old Testament, including eating forbidden foods, using false weights and measures, idolatry, justifying wicked men and condemning just ones, sorcery, offering children in sacrifice, and sexual sins including adultery, bestiality, cross-dressing and incest. Inhospitality doesn’t make the list. Leviticus 18:22 and Leviticus 20:13, of course, explicitly condemn homosexual sodomy as an “abomination” under all circumstances, inherently evil, with no provision for committed same-sex relationships. The only possible meaning of “abomination,” in the context of the Sodom story in Genesis 19, is homosexual sodomy.

    A look at the text of Genesis 19 reinforces the argument that Sodom’s sin was sexual. The following is taken from an exchange with a BarbWire reader, so it’s a bit less formal in tone:

    “…so we need to look at Genesis 19, the Sodom story. Two angels bump into Lot at the gates of Sodom, and Lot, who doesn’t know they are angels, but thinks they are men, insists they spend the night at his home, where he prepares a feast for them. Sounds pretty hospitable to me. Then the men of Sodom surround the house and demand that Lot produce the two visitors, “that we may know them.” That’s “know” in the Biblical sense. So Lot steps outside and says “Please, my brothers, do not do so wickedly!” Hmmm. They wanted to do something “wicked.” Then Lot goes way beyond the call of duty in his hospitality: to protect his visitors, and to protect the men of Sodom from committing some particularly heinous sin, he offers the men his two virgin daughters to do with what they will. So we know they wanted to do something sexual that’s worse than heterosexually raping a virgin girl. What do you think that sin could be? The men of Sodom’s response is rich: They say “[Lot] keeps acting like a judge” (don’t you dare judge us, Lot!) and assault him. Lot is rescued by the angels, who reveal their supernatural identity and tell him God has sent them to judge (destroy) the city. Coming full circle, Jude 7 confirms the Sodomites were judged because they had “given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh.” As we know it wasn’t heterosexual sex, what kind of flesh do you think the men of Sodom were pursuing?”

    Jude 6-7 is definitive that Sodom’s sin was sexual, in particular aberrosexual. Here is the passage in full:

    “And the angels who did not keep their proper domain, but left their own habitation, He has reserved in everlasting chains under darkness for the judgment of the great day; as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities around them in a similar manner to these, having given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh, are set forth as an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.”

    Another BarbWire reader contends “strange flesh” means the men of Sodom were judged because they wanted sex with angels rather than human beings. But the men of Sodom had no idea the angels were angels when they surrounded Lot’s house in the first place. They were looking to rape men.

    One last point: Genesis 19:13 make it clear that God had already decided to judge (destroy) Sodom before the men of Sodom ever surrounded Lot’s house, so any “inhospitality” shown by the men of Sodom that night could not have been the reason for Sodom’s destruction. Destroying the city was the reason God sent the angels to Sodom in the first place. God decided to judge Sodom for the city’s lengthy history of grave sin, not because of one evening’s incident. Could inhospitality be the cardinal violation in that grave sin? Unlikely. Lot himself shows that Sodom was to some degree hospitable, in spite of its extreme wickedness. Lot was not a native of Sodom, but the city graciously allowed him to settle there.

    As Jude 7 clearly demonstrates, Sodom is another example of a city judged for its sexual immorality, and the illustration of Sodom’s sin God provides in Genesis 19 is homosexual rape. Ezekiel 16 makes it clear Sodom was guilty of sodomy, but is far from clear about inhospitality. Homosexual sodomy is Sodom’s sin. There’s really no Scriptural way around it.

    Mark (6c28fd)

  285. The CDC says 1.6% of the people surveyed self-identify as gay or lesbian, 0.7% as bi-sexual, and 1.1% as “other”.

    And then there are the unknown percentage who went “I haven’t even told my mother or my wife that I’m gay, why on earth would I tell it to some CDC person?”

    Milhouse (b95258)

  286. [Long rant copied-and-pasted by Mark]

    This is why nk is right that you shouldn’t be allowed to handle a Bible. There are a lot of fallacies in that piece, but the biggest is this: Lot was not a Sodomite. He was a recent immigrant to Sodom, and by granting hospitality to these strangers he showed that he had not become as acculturated to Sodom as he had pretended. The mob gathered around his house in outrage that he had violated their laws and customs by sheltering travelers. This is precisely why he was rescued and they were destroyed.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  287. So very clear-cut declarations in the New Testament showing it is the homosexuality that destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah and yet people still adamantly demand their ignorance, clinging to the insane idea that Providence destroyed the cities because they had bad manners.

    John Hitchcock (2ed584)

  288. And then there are the unknown percentage who went “I haven’t even told my mother or my wife that I’m gay, why on earth would I tell it to some CDC person?”

    I agree. If this is from health provider intake forms, like I believe it is … the question the admitting nurse asked me the one time I remember was among the demographic information and it was phrased “Do you wish to tell us your sexual orientation?”

    nk (dbc370)

  289. 271. Nobody is dismantling marriage. We are adding to it. The claim that somehow this redefinition of marriage will result in less marriage, more children out of wedlock, the dismantling of society is without merit.

    Really? Nobody.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/381148/state-dept-lgbt-speaker-we-dont-want-gay-marriage-we-want-no-marriage-ian-tuttle

    Since it is no longer attending to America’s foreign policy, the State Department has a great deal of time on its hands — part of which it filled, last week, with its now-annual Gays and Lesbians in Foreign Affairs Agencies Pride Day. Among the event’s speakers was noted LGBT activist Masha Gessen, who rose to prominence as a fierce critic of Russia’s treatment of LGBT issues, particularly under Vladimir Putin.

    However, Gessen has more in mind than simply “expanding” marriage rights in the United States to include homosexual couples. At a panel discussion for the Sydney Writers Festival in 2012, Gessen noted:

    I agree that we should have the right to marry, but I also think equally that it is a no-brainer that the institution of marriage should not exist. . . . Fighting for gay marriage generally involves lying about what we’re going to do with marriage when we get there, because we lie that the institution of marriage is not going to change, and that is a lie. The institution of marriage is going to change, and it should change, and again, I don’t think it should exist.

    Name a place where legalized gay marriage has “added” to marriage. And stick to the criteria you always set for me. A published, peer reviewed study. Not that never published, never reviewed crap Andrew Sullivan was peddling a few years back.

    I don’t think any of that nonsense that you argue with yourself about, and frankly neither do most “SSM supporters” I know. I support SSM. Am I not a “true believer”?
    Gil (27c98f) — 7/15/2014 @ 10:51 pm

    Yes, you don’t think. That’s why the true believers like Ms. Gessen can lie to you so effectively.

    No. You are not a true believer.

    http://townhall.com/columnists/thomassowell/2003/05/20/useful_idiots

    Steve57 (dce389)

  290. See Eugene V’s reporting on the survey on exactly how many are LGBT

    EPWJ (7dbeab)

  291. So very clear-cut declarations in the New Testament showing it is the homosexuality that destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah and yet people still adamantly demand their ignorance, clinging to the insane idea that Providence destroyed the cities because they had bad manners.

    The authors of the NT who wrote that were not in the chain of transmission of the authentic interpretation of the Bible, and had no idea what they were talking about. Every OT reference to Sodom and its sin is about inhospitality. And for good reason, since that is how God explained it to Moses when He first dictated Genesis to him, and that is how Moses explained it to the people when he transmitted it, and that is how it was transmitted through all the generations from then to now.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  292. 285.Well, whoever came up with the idea of two paths, one for Jews and one for Christians (what about everybody else???),
    There is nobody else; .
    Milhouse (b95258) — 7/16/2014 @ 1:47 am

    Milhouse,
    I always appreciate your contribution to the discussion, in disagreement but logical and fair-minded(IMO).
    But I don’t exactly understand your comment.
    My perspective would be that if one is not a Jew, then one is a gentile, a non-Jew.
    Among the gentiles, they may believe various things, some of whom believe the Christian faith of the NT. Those that believe the Christian faith are Christians. Those who believe something else such as atheism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, etc. and are also gentiles and not Jews, but they are not Christians.

    A question, if I may. What is the Jewish understanding of the passage in Genesis “I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between her offspring and your offspring, he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heal.”? (As given in the ESV- English Standard Version, of Genesis 3:15)
    If I may, 2 other questions
    Does the Hebrew “OT” and/or it’s translation into other languages have the same or similar chapter and verse divisions (which are simply to assist reference, as I understand).
    I’ve known a few people who attend Conservative synagogues, many more who attend Reformed, at least one who attended a Reconstructionist, and probably the most people who don’t seem very interested in the religious practice of Judaism and may go rarely, perhaps on the most important days, akin to how some people in “Christendom” make it a point to show up at church on Easter if never any other time. I don’t think I have personally known someone who would be described/describe themselves as Orthodox. May I ask if there is a specific “branch” or tradition within Judaism that you would say you identify with, or is it a nonsensical question as you view things?

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  293. This is why nk is right that you shouldn’t be allowed to handle a Bible

    Milhouse, as with nk, I notice you too lean left on certain occasions. Liberal impulses tend to make humans rationalize or misread both people and situations. That’s why folks like you should try to avoid dealing with not just the Bible but, say, the science (and politics) of CO2 and global warming or, better yet, even the nature of comic books.

    nydailynews.com, July 14, 2014: Archie Andrews will die taking a bullet for his gay best friend. The famous freckle-faced comic book icon is meeting his demise in Wednesday’s installment of “Life with Archie” when he intervenes in an assassination attempt on Kevin Keller, Archie Comics’ first openly gay character.

    “The way in which Archie dies is everything that you would expect of Archie,” said Jon Goldwater, Archie Comics publisher and co-CEO. “He dies heroically. He dies selflessly. He dies in the manner that epitomizes not only the best of Riverdale but the best of all of us. It’s what Archie has come to represent over the past almost 75 years.”

    Keller’s character first joined Veronica Lodge, Betty Cooper, Jughead Jones and Reggie Mantle in the Archie Comics spin-off “Veronica” in 2010. He later appeared in his own solo title. In “Life with Archie,” Keller is a married military veteran and newly elected senator who’s pushing for more gun control in Riverdale after his husband was involved in a shooting.

    ^ The plotline would have been more effective if Keller had died during a major heat spell in Riverdale caused by AGW.

    Mark (d0695a)

  294. Mark’s stock answer for everybody and anybody who challenges him on any topic: “I’ve noticed you lean left.” And then he changes the subject.

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  295. WTP (5ea774) — 7/15/2014 @ 2:34 pm

    Certainly reasonable questions it seems to me, but I have never looked at it that way, nor have I heard anyone else mention that pursuit. (As a practicing physician it was enough work to be on top of things I encountered in my patients).
    I had one patient with Müllerian agenesis, which is an abnormality in the structure of the female genital tract (no uterus/cervix, variable development of the vagina) but other wise female by chromosomes and endocrine function. I never had a patient, not personally knew any doc that had, anybody with a chromosome abnormality of the XX/XY or of one of the syndromes where there is an endocrine abnormality than interferes with normal sexual development.
    My view, as clarification of the perspective I write from, is that same sex attraction and other forms of difficulty in gender identity and sexual desire (including “unusually promiscuous” heterosexual behavior) result from problems in emotional/personality development and the spiritual nature of a human (though how the mind-body-spirit interact and overlap is more mystery than clear knowledge). Humans were made in the image of God, and the fact that humans are of (normatively) two types that are complimentary is part of the expression of the “image of God”, and sexual identity and desire are subject to the devastating consequences of the fall as much as, if not more so, other aspects of our behavior and existence. Sometimes (often) the problem in emotional/personality development seems linked to specific life events, some obvious and some subtle, but often not necessarily predictable. People can take differing paths in coping with life’s circumstances, such as one growing up in poverty may be especially compassionate to the poor if they become economically successful, while others pursue wealth and financial security at all cost and have a “I got out of it, they can too” mentality.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  296. Todd Beamer was an abomination

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  297. elissa – Stop with the compassion for compassion’s sake squishiness!

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  298. 296. MD in Philly (f9371b) — 7/16/2014 @ 7:56 am

    Does the Hebrew “OT” and/or it’s translation into other languages have the same or similar chapter and verse divisions (which are simply to assist reference, as I understand).

    They’ve been used Hebrew printing since it began. A few chapter divisions are changed when it is badly wrong, (a major Hebrew division is one verse in) and sometimes there is a difference at the start of a Psalm. The Psalms are all divided that way, into 150 psalms, in the original, but I don’t think any of the other divisions in the translations reflect anything in the Hebrew or Aramaic, except divsions between books, and even there, Samuel and Kings and Chronicles are not really each two separate books, and even Ezra and Nehemiah may not be, although you may have to go back to ancient times to find a case where Ezra and Nehemiah were referred to together as the book of Ezra. The 12 minor prophets are often lumped together, but quite distinct.

    The order of the books also, after the Pentateuch and the First Prophets, is also different with the Christians, who for instance, put Daniel among the Prophets, and do not put Chronicles at the very end.

    May I ask if there is a specific “branch” or tradition within Judaism that you would say you identify with, or is it a nonsensical question as you view things

    This is both very real and nonsensical, as nobody keeps track of who “belongs” to what, except in the case of Rabbis and converts or people accepted as Jewish by some, as then you have to decide who is Rabbi and who is a Jew. Synagogues are quite clearly Orthodox or not.

    Sammy Finkelman (c33275)

  299. Mark (6c28fd) — 7/16/2014 @ 2:08 am

    Jude 6-7 is definitive that Sodom’s sin was sexual, in particular aberrosexual.

    Of course, that’s the Christian thinking, which is completely contrary to Jewish tradition.

    Sammy Finkelman (c33275)

  300. Milhouse (b95258) — 7/16/2014 @ 2:02 am

    But if there isn’t anyone gay in your immediate family, there’s bound to be one in one of your neighbours’ families, or in one of your close friends’.

    I don’t know if that’s really the case.

    Of course, if the average person knows 150 people well enough to tell, there might be something close to a 50% chance of knowing somebody like that.

    Sammy Finkelman (c33275)

  301. 263. nk (dbc370) — 7/15/2014 @ 6:18 pm

    The CDC says 1.6% of the people surveyed self-identify as gay or lesbian, 0.7% as bi-sexual, and 1.1% as “other”.

    Probably useless survey.

    The percentage of people who lie on surveys, and even give perverse answers, could maybe reach 5%.

    My calculation is that the percentage of people who fit into these categories can’t be higher than 0.3% to 0.6%

    Actually, I’d say about about 0.22%

    Sammy Finkelman (c33275)

  302. Milhouse (b95258) — 7/16/2014 @ 6:10 am

    that is how Moses explained it to the people when he transmitted it, and that is how it was transmitted through all the generations from then to now.

    And that is how it is in Pirkei Avos (often translateds as “Chapters of the Fathers”) where it is alluded to in Mishnah 5:10.

    It is also in a semi-famous story that involved the Vilna Gaon and a proposal to stop beggers.

    To ALL: I wouldn’t say that the nature of the sin of Sodom is a major difference between Judaism and Christianity, but the idea that the sin of Sodom has something to do with “sodomy” is something held only by Christians.

    Sammy Finkelman (c33275)

  303. And then he changes the subject.

    Elissa, you’re rationalizing, and you know it.

    which is completely contrary to Jewish tradition.

    As determined by how this issue or any issue is filtered through one’s ideological biases.

    Probably useless survey.

    It’s interesting because the far lower estimates or statistics for people in the GLBT category (much lower than that of the 10% figure often spun by gay activists), with the number of 3% being cited by various surveys (far beyond the CDC alone) going back many years, can be used (or exploited) by both liberals and conservatives to back their opinion. On one hand, the left can point to the lower number as proof their pro-GLBT agenda isn’t corrupting the masses, while, on the other hand, the right can point to the lower number as proof that homosexuals are getting far more attention than they deserve.

    The surprisingly polymorphous nature of even quite a few self-described gays, in which they willingly and voluntarily initiate both hetero and homosexual relationships throughout their life, makes the lower estimate more plausible than the one influenced by the ethos of “misery loves company.”

    Mark (d0695a)

  304. ==which is completely contrary to Jewish tradition.== (written by Sammy who is a Jew and presumably knows something about his own faith and heritage)

    ==As determined by how this issue or any issue is filtered through one’s ideological biases.== (written by Mark, enough said)

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  305. “which is completely contrary to Jewish tradition.”

    Mark (d0695a) — 7/16/2014 @ 9:24 am

    As determined by how this issue or any issue is filtered through one’s ideological biases.

    I know you don’t want to say that (mainstream?) Christianity has a different position than Judaism on what was the sin of Sodom, but it does.

    You will never find “sodomy” considered as a sin of Sodom in any Jewish source.

    For instance

    http://www.darchenoam.org/the-vilna-gaon-on-parshat-vayeira

    and Sodom sinned through how they related to guests.

    Ideological bias may affect the fine points, bit not something so basic.

    Sammy Finkelman (c33275)

  306. (written by Mark, enough said)

    So you’re saying you don’t believe you, or me, or anyone else is affected by one’s own bias, either learned or innate?

    Mark (d0695a)

  307. Ideological bias may affect the fine points, bit not something so basic.

    Sammy, since you like to copy and paste, I welcome your finding a compelling analysis of why the story of Sodom was about the sin (or “sin”) of (horror of horrors!) inhospitability.

    A guy is challenging a crowd of male townspeople haranguing him at his front door, threatening to enter his dwelling to have sex with his two male guests, and out of desperation he offers his 2 young daughters as sacrificial lambs. Yep, what I get out of that story is, uh, damn, those people sure were rude back then, so lacking in hospitality! The nerve of them!

    Mark (d0695a)

  308. Mark, what I’m saying is that when you start applying your own standards of personal bias to other people’s religions and heritage and insult them as you did with Sammy just now, and earlier with Milhouse, you are on very very shaky ethical and logical grounds.

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  309. Mark lecturing others on copy-pasting. That’s f*ckin rich.

    Leviticus (122126)

  310. on very very shaky ethical and logical grounds.

    So now it’s a matter of ethics and logic? Oh, brother, and come on now, Elissa. I’ve already seen you in other threads, if not this one, respond on occasion like a typical liberal who, when resentful of a countervailing opinion, starts yelling “racist!,” “bigot!,” “moron!”

    At the very least, if Sammy or Milhouse start accusing me of being too rightwing, I’ll be perfectly fine with that.

    Mark (d0695a)

  311. Actually, I’d say about about 0.22%

    And 47.984% of all estimates contain a false level of precision.

    Chuck Bartowski (11fb31)

  312. There is a verse in I believe Ezekiel that discusses the sin of Sodom as being consumed with the desire for wealth and lack of concern for the poor, which can be looked at as not being hospitable. I am not going to take the time to look for it, and I imagine Sammy and Milhouse can find it if not already know it.
    I think it is helpful to find as much common ground as possible, hence referring to an OT Scripture which Christians would recognize as authoritative to make your point would be helpful.
    Of course, if your point is to say what Jewish thought is, then referring to Jewish authorities is all you need.

    I think there is a principle of logic and communication that can be called into play here.
    One thing can be right, and another thing can also be right, if there is no expressed specificity to one or the other.
    I can say today is beautiful in Philly today, there is low humidity.
    I could also say that today is beautiful in Philly today because it is sunny, instead of cloudy and raining like yesterday.
    The statements are not contradictory and one does not preclude the other, unless I was to say something like, “Today is beautiful in Philly because there is low humidity, and for no other reason”.
    FWIW, I think one has to give credence to the view that it had to do with being greedy and inhospitable, because that is explicitly what it says elsewhere.
    But I don’t read that as saying it is wrong by viewing the incident as described as being seen as a commentary on sexual morality.
    I believe it was said, there is nothing elsewhere in the OT to suggest that homosexual behavior is ok, so when people who wanted to commit homosexual rape are punished, it seems to me that it would be assumed that would be part of the reason, it was not necessary to be explicit about it.
    Obviously, that is an assumption from silence as much as to say it had nothing to do with it,
    but I think there is reasoning for it.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  313. That’s f*ckin rich.

    That’s f*ckin foolish, Leviticus, because (1) Sammy does like to copy/paste (and I never said I don’t do the same thing), and (2) I really would like to see him insert a good assessment of why Sodom is a moral lesson on the perils (the horrors! the tragedy!) of inhospitability.

    Mark (d0695a)

  314. Chuck Bartowski (11fb31) — 7/16/2014 @ 10:25 am

    Absolutely true, Chuck.
    I estimate 48.772% of the readers here understand your point,
    and the rest are scratching their head,
    as it has to do more with science and engineering.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  315. My calculation is that the percentage of people who fit into these categories can’t be higher than 0.3% to 0.6%

    Actually, I’d say about about 0.22%

    Sammy Finkelman (c33275) — 7/16/2014 @ 9:05 am

    This comment cracked me up

    JD (bc0658)

  316. “This comment cracked me up”

    JD – Needs to be taken out more decimal points for me to believe in its accuracy.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  317. “assessment of why Sodom is a moral lesson on the perils (the horrors! the tragedy!) of inhospitability.”

    There’s such a thing as taking “hospitality” too far. That’s an exit, not an entrance!

    Colonel Haiku (c27e3f)

  318. JD (bc0658) — 7/16/2014 @ 10:37 am
    daleyrocks (bf33e9) — 7/16/2014 @ 10:44 am

    I don’t know if we’re starting to get cruel and mean,
    or whether someone will need to give a math/science lesson to explain our inside comments.

    FWIW, I’ve seen articles about global warming in supposed technical journals that commit the same mistakes. Of course, if one’s conclusions are within the margin of error, then one really doesn’t have much to say,
    and sometimes we don’t want to let that get in our way…

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  319. I love and want to support my children but, if you’re a Christian, isn’t the Bible story of Abraham and Issac relevant here? I think the lesson of that story is that Christians aren’t supposed to put their children ahead of God.

    Mitch (8c79bc)

  320. Sorry. I meant Isaac, not Issac.

    Mitch (8c79bc)

  321. Name a place where legalized gay marriage has “added” to marriage. And stick to the criteria you always set for me. A published, peer reviewed study. Not that never published, never reviewed crap Andrew Sullivan was peddling a few years back.

    Simple. Traditional marriage is between man and woman. SSM adds Men to Men, and Women to Women.

    Gil (febf10)

  322. Yes, you don’t think. That’s why the true believers like Ms. Gessen can lie to you so effectively

    I stand corrected, i shouldnt have said nobody. Theres people who take many things past what is reasonable. For example there are some feminists way out on the fringe. Does that mean the movement for equal women’s rights should have been shut down because of far out loons?

    You claimed no proponent could articulate a reason for wanting SSM. I gave you one. Care to argue that point?

    Gil (febf10)

  323. Oh dear Allah. Sanctimonious bibble babble from Gil, who knows better what you think than you do, never gets old.

    JD (bc0658)

  324. Hospitality related video

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0wCCBMlHnRM

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  325. @JD

    Steve57 in comment 249:

    But then, neither can proponents of gay marriage articulate one for wanting SSM in the first place.

    I am not the one attributing statements to others in this thread.
    Steve in comment 249:

    About the closest thing to a popular explanation for the manic drive toward SSM is this

    “I’m not sure we’re right but it makes us feel good about ourselves.”

    Which is of course not rational. But then neither is the assumption underlying the drive toward SS; idea that we no longer have to be concerned about having children ourselves sine we an keep the gravy train rolling by importing uneducated, unskilled laborers who increasingly don’t assimilate. Largely because immigration advocates consider any demand that they do racist.

    And there we have quotes and asumptions about what nameless proponents of SSM are using as reasoning. Not to mention the nameless “immigration advocates” and what they think.

    Gil (febf10)

  326. Baloney. Especially your nonsense about the immigration advocates since his opinion is born out by reality.

    JD (bc0658)

  327. 325. Simple. Traditional marriage is between man and woman. SSM adds Men to Men, and Women to Women.
    Gil (febf10) — 7/16/2014 @ 3:32 pm

    And where has his resulted in a ne increase in marriages? Norway? Holland? Name a place where wha you were lied to about what would happen (by the people who inented and pushed the concept of gay marriage in order to destroy marriage) has happened?

    Don’t just repeat the lie which was necessary to fool people like you into supporting it. Cite evidence.

    Steve57 (dce389)

  328. You claimed no proponent could articulate a reason for wanting SSM. I gave you one. Care to argue that point?
    Gil (febf10) — 7/16/2014 @ 3:43 pm

    No, I don’t care to argue it. I intend to use it as an example of what I’m talking about. The fact that you’re repeating irrational talking points, which we’ve all heard before and have never panned out in real life, believing you’re articulating a reason is precisely what is wrong with the manic drive for gay marriage. You can’t tell he difference between BS and reality.

    Why should I continue to argue something I’ve demonstrated is completely untrue? You are just immune to evidence. You’d have to be to believe the things you do.

    Moxness (1993), a Norwegian sociologist, has argued that same-sex marriages have become legalized not so much because homosexuality has become more accepted, but because marriage has become an increasingly empty institution and no longer is seen as a mandatory entrance to adult life, sexual life, and parenthood.

    http://www.baylorisr.org/wp-content/uploads/04Doc124Gunnar-3.pdf

    Go ahead, tell e Kari Moxnes is some sort of “fringe” radical feminist. That will just be further evidence you don’t have a clue as to what you’re talking about.

    The 199 article,”Empty Marriage,” the Max Plank Institute study is referring to was published in one of Norway’s leading national newspapers, Dagbladet. Left-wing feminist sociologists have that kind of mainstream influence in Scandinavia. The researchers aren’t citing her in their study because she’s “irrelevant” or “fringe,” but because she’s central and relevant to their study on the demographics of gay marriage in Scandinavia.

    And the fact you’ve never heard of her shows just how effective SSM proponents’ tactics have been.

    She is a leading influence in changing Scandinavian marriage laws. And success in Scandinavia (followed by success elsewhere in Europe) is influencing events here. In that article she was celebrating the fact that she and others like her had succeeded in rendering marriage meaningless to the point where gay marriage had become acceptable. And that gay marriage would “empty” marriage of even more meaning even more rapidly, further contributing to its decline.

    Bu she’d be perfectly happy to let useful idiots think she’s some sort of kook fringe element instead of a central figure behind gay marriage, if that’s what it’s going to take for you to finish the job she and others like her started, Gil.Just like other driving forces behind SSM are, like Gessen, perfectly happy to lie to you about how they want to “add” to marriage when in reality they want to “subtract” from marriage so it’s irrelevant. As it increasingly is in Norway, Iceland, Sweden, Denmark, Holland, etc, where most children aren’t born to married couples.

    The fact that you aren’t aware of this just shows how thoroughly you’ve been conned.

    Steve57 (dce389)

  329. Ezekiel 16:49-50

    49 Look, this was the iniquity of your sister Sodom: She and her daughter had pride, fullness of food, and abundance of idleness; neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy. 50 And they were haughty and committed abomination before Me; therefore I took them away as I saw fit.

    Doesn’t look like Sodom was destroyed for not being hospital. Neither does it look like the primary reason was homosexuality. Looking at other texts it looks like homosexuality was just one of the reasons.

    Tanny O'Haley (87b2aa)

  330. 260. Steve57,

    Would you please expand on 172?
    Dana (4dbf62) — 7/15/2014 @ 4:35 pm

    I’ll give it a shot even though I haven’t replaced y laptop. So excuse the typos.

    Fortunately the fact my keyboard hardly works will serve to keep things brief.

    Essentially it’s pretty simple. The one common thread behind marriage in all cultures is the imperative to hold men responsible for their children.

    This is actually the stated reason Lord Blackstone gave as the main purpose of marriage (children being the chief object of marriage) in his commentaries on the laws of England.

    Ultimately it always needs to be spelled out in black letter law.

    This is one of my favorite times of year in Japan; Obon season.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bon_Festival

    Obon (お盆?) or just Bon (盆?) is a Japanese Buddhist custom to honor the spirits of one’s ancestors. This Buddhist-Confucian custom has evolved into a family reunion holiday during which people return to ancestral family places and visit and clean their ancestors’ graves, and when the spirits of ancestors are supposed to revisit the household altars. It has been celebrated in Japan for more than 500 years and traditionally includes a dance, known as Bon-Odori….

    What’s not to like? Long Summer evenings, grilled meat, mushrooms, and vegetables on skewers like miniature shish-ka-bob (kushiyaki), octopus balls (takoyaki), and a cold, sweating Kirin (Ichiban Shibori!) as you watch the fireworks.

    But there’s a serious side to Obon. Not only do the living return to their furusato (home village) but so do the spirits of the ancestors. To check up on things. The object of the exercise is to remind the living of the debt they owe their ancestors. And the only way they can repay that debt is to continue the family by having future generations.

    Yes, I know, a lot of Japanese are letting the ancestors down these days but that’s besides the point. Or, maybe, it is the point. You an have all the “faith traditions” (gawd, I hate that term, Rob Portman) you want. And isn’t going to be enough for some men to see to their obligations.

    Hence the legally enforceable contract of marriage.

    Steve57 (dce389)

  331. 285.Well, whoever came up with the idea of two paths, one for Jews and one for Christians (what about everybody else???),

    There is nobody else; .
    Milhouse (b95258) — 7/16/2014 @ 1:47 am

    Milhouse,
    I always appreciate your contribution to the discussion, in disagreement but logical and fair-minded(IMO).

    Thank you

    But I don’t exactly understand your comment.
    My perspective would be that if one is not a Jew, then one is a gentile, a non-Jew.
    Among the gentiles, they may believe various things, some of whom believe the Christian faith of the NT. Those that believe the Christian faith are Christians. Those who believe something else such as atheism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, etc. and are also gentiles and not Jews, but they are not Christians.

    The theory you described, of two paths, divides the world into Jews and everyone else. Given the Christian premise that man is born damned, and needs to be saved, this theory says that God originally gave the Jews the Law as a path to salvation, and someone who is born a Jew can be saved by following it. But (so Christianity claims) it’s practically impossible to follow the Law, so God gave everyone, Jew or gentile, a second path: Jesus. Jews thus have two options: obey the Law or accept Jesus and let him save you. Gentiles have the second option. There is no third category of people. Gentiles who are not Christian are, according to this theory, not saved, because they refuse the easy way and haven’t got the option of the hard way, not that they’re even attempting it. Again, this is a theory that only makes sense if you accept the basic premise of Christianity, which is that people are born needing salvation. Jews reject that premise. Jews believe that a newborn soul is untainted, and it’s only our own sins that can keep us out of Heaven, but they can be wiped out by sincere repentance while still alive, or by suffering in Purgatory after death.

    A question, if I may. What is the Jewish understanding of the passage in Genesis “I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between her offspring and your offspring, he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heal.”? (As given in the ESV- English Standard Version, of Genesis 3:15)

    Snakes bite people, and people kill snakes.

    If I may, 2 other questions
    Does the Hebrew “OT” and/or it’s translation into other languages have the same or similar chapter and verse divisions (which are simply to assist reference, as I understand).

    The division into verses is ancient, and originated with the Jews, but the division into chapters was invented by a Christian bishop. With the advent of printing, the first printers of Hebrew bibles adopted this innovation, and it proved so useful that Jews adopted it with almost no protest, and most Jews today have no idea where it comes from.

    I’ve known a few people who attend Conservative synagogues, many more who attend Reformed, at least one who attended a Reconstructionist, and probably the most people who don’t seem very interested in the religious practice of Judaism and may go rarely, perhaps on the most important days, akin to how some people in “Christendom” make it a point to show up at church on Easter if never any other time. I don’t think I have personally known someone who would be described/describe themselves as Orthodox. May I ask if there is a specific “branch” or tradition within Judaism that you would say you identify with, or is it a nonsensical question as you view things?

    “Orthodox” is the name given by the 19th century reformers to those who insisted on sticking with the old Judaism. It was meant as an insult, but quickly became a neutral descriptor used by everyone (cf the name “Quaker”). So my Judaism is provably the same one that we’ve been following for the past 2000 years, and we believe it’s the same one that we’ve been following for the past 3324 years. If you were to pick up one of the authors of the Talmud, or a contemporary of Jesus, and bring him to an Orthodox community today, he’d immediately recognise what he saw as the same laws, beliefs, and way of life that he knew.

    All the various reformed movements reject the core belief of Judaism — that the five books of the Torah are literally God’s words, that He dictated to Moses word for word. They all accept the documentary hypothesis, that the Bible is redacted from different documents, all of which were written by men, and are therefore not infallible. Most of them deny that the events described in the Torah ever happened, that Avraham and Sarah, or Moses and Aharon, or even David and Shlomo, were real people. Conservatives believe that the law, although man-made, is binding. Reform believe that the law is entirely optional. And Reconstructionists are atheists, who believe that Jewish laws and traditions are simply a matter of culture. The existence of an afterlife is controversial among Conservatives, and entirely rejected by Reform and Reconstructionists.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  332. A few chapter divisions are changed when it is badly wrong, (a major Hebrew division is one verse in)

    Actually most of those have not been changed, no matter how obviously wrong the division was. For instance, this week’s portion begins with Numbers chapter 30 verse 2! There is no sensible reason for chapter 30 to start where it does, one verse before the end of Pinchas, but that’s how the original bishop did it, and that’s how the early printers did it, so that’s how it’s done to this day. It’s simply too much trouble to change it and invalidate 500 years of references. There are two or three places where a chapter division was changed by the early Jewish printers, but the reason is unclear. I have actually seen it suggested that these were cases where there were different versions within Christian manuscripts, and the first Hebrew printers happened to go with one version, while Christian printers happened to go with the other.

    sometimes there is a difference at the start of a Psalm. The Psalms are all divided that way, into 150 psalms, in the original,

    The Talmud says that there were originally only 149 psalms, but at some point, long before the Talmud’s own time, the first psalm was split into two, making 150. But there is a major difference in the Pslams between the Jewish and Christian numbering of the verses: Christian Bibles don’t give the introductory line a number, and start the second verse with number 1, so any time a Christian gives a chapter and verse reference in the Psalms you have to add one to the verse to find it in a Jewish Bible, and vice versa.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  333. believe it was said, there is nothing elsewhere in the OT to suggest that homosexual behavior is ok, so when people who wanted to commit homosexual rape are punished, it seems to me that it would be assumed that would be part of the reason, it was not necessary to be explicit about it.

    Except that they weren’t punished for this incident. They’d already been sentenced to destruction before this happened. Although they were sexually immoral, this was not the sin for which they were destroyed. They were no worse in this respect than the other inhabitants of Cenaan, who were not destroyed. Leviticus 18:28 says that the land eventually vomited the Cenaanites out for their sexual misconduct, which included but was not limited to homo-sex. But the sin for which the Cities of the Plain were destroyed, while the rest of Cenaan was left alone, was the way they treated strangers and those in need.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  334. There is a verse in I believe Ezekiel that discusses the sin of Sodom as being consumed with the desire for wealth and lack of concern for the poor,

    Ezekiel 16:49

    Milhouse (b95258)

  335. I love and want to support my children but, if you’re a Christian, isn’t the Bible story of Abraham and Issac relevant here? I think the lesson of that story is that Christians aren’t supposed to put their children ahead of God.

    And where exactly did God tell you to reject your children if they don’t go on the right way?

    Milhouse (b95258)

  336. The 199 article,”Empty Marriage,” the Max Plank Institute study is referring to was published in one of Norway’s leading national newspapers, Dagbladet. Left-wing feminist sociologists have that kind of mainstream influence in Scandinavia.

    As I understand it, Dagbladet is a trashy tabloid. Widely circulated, but not respected.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  337. Ezekiel 16:49-50

    49 Look, this was the iniquity of your sister Sodom: She and her daughter had pride, fullness of food, and abundance of idleness; neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy. 50 And they were haughty and committed abomination before Me; therefore I took them away as I saw fit.

    Doesn’t look like Sodom was destroyed for not being hospital. Neither does it look like the primary reason was homosexuality. Looking at other texts it looks like homosexuality was just one of the reasons.

    There’s no mention of homosexuality. It’s right there: the sin for which they were destroyed was hoarding what they had, refusing to share it with others. That was their abomination. There’s no hint of anything else. The fact that they were sexually immmoral too, in all sorts of ways, didn’t factor into it. Had they been nice people their sexual misconduct would eventually have caught up with them, as it did with the rest of the country, but not for another four centuries.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  338. No, I don’t care to argue it. I intend to use it as an example of what I’m talking about. The fact that you’re repeating irrational talking points, which we’ve all heard before and have never panned out in real life, believing you’re articulating a reason is precisely what is wrong with the manic drive for gay marriage. You can’t tell he difference between BS and reality.

    Of course you don’t. It is much easier for you to label it as BS and ignore it. There is nothing irrational about wanting to increase human well being. It is telling that your answer to a point of view is to tell me I don’t know the difference between BS and reality.

    Go ahead, tell e Kari Moxnes is some sort of “fringe” radical feminist. That will just be further evidence you don’t have a clue as to what you’re talking about.

    You dont see a difference between Moxness describing the situation (marriage is seen as an empty institution) and Gessen wanting to do away with the institution is funny. These are not the same. Moxness is not advocating the doing away with marriage, just arguing that it is not needed. Which it isn’t. Just because something has been around for a long time doesn’t mean anything. People can be responsible without regulations. Isnt this a basic idea we conservatives hold to?

    As it increasingly is in Norway, Iceland, Sweden, Denmark, Holland, etc, where most children aren’t born to married couples.

    And so what? Has their society fallen apart? Sure birthrates are down in some of those countries but that can be for a variety of reasons not one as silly as “the government redefined marriage so I don’t see the value in it anymore”. Since when do people need the government to do something in their own best interest?

    But go ahead – continue to live in a fantasy world where just because you can quote mine and find people who argue the points the way you want means you have “demonstrated” something, all the while calling others idiots. Its a good way to feel like you’re point of view is the correct one.

    Gil (27c98f)

  339. Milhouse-
    Thank you for your responses. Yes, my Reconstructionist friend stated that they “interpreted being Jewish as whatever they wanted”, or some such.
    There is no third category of people. Gentiles who are not Christian are, according to this theory, not saved, because they refuse the easy way and haven’t got the option of the hard way, not that they’re even attempting it. Again, this is a theory that only makes sense if you accept the basic premise of Christianity,

    I think we are agreeing for the most part, but you must be using a somewhat different point of reference. I guess you are speaking from within the Jewish tradition, that there are Jews, and that there are non-Jews. All people suffer from original sin only in the sense that they will experience physical death. All people are purged from their own sin as necessary in purgatory after death. Jews have the opportunity to minimize, or perhaps avoid, purgatory, by obeying the Law, and others reject that.
    Is that a fair reiteration of what you said?
    I would say that yes, there are two types of people, Jews and gentiles=non-Jews.
    In my view of gentiles, they are not monolithic (though they are in the sense they are non-Jews).

    As far as Sodom goes, I assume you do not consider my exercise in logic compelling, and you assume that God saying “A”, means that God also means “not B”. I would suggest that God saying “A” does not necessarily also mean “not B” unless God says “A and only A”.

    Snakes bite people, and people kill snakes
    Seems to me kind of “plain”, “boring”, and “anti-climactic” in the context of what has just happened.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  340. Milhouse: I love and want to support my children but, if you’re a Christian, isn’t the Bible story of Abraham and Issac relevant here? I think the lesson of that story is that Christians aren’t supposed to put their children ahead of God.

    And where exactly did God tell you to reject your children if they don’t go on the right way?

    Not really an enthusiastic bible quoter, but this springs to mind and has oft been repeated in such discussions.

    And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife[e] or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life Matthew 19:29

    WTP (fd3093)

  341. I think we are agreeing for the most part, but you must be using a somewhat different point of reference. I guess you are speaking from within the Jewish tradition, that there are Jews, and that there are non-Jews.

    No, I was writing from the Christian point of view. I was attempting to explain the “two path” theory you brought up, which is a Christian theory, not a Jewish one. The Jewish point of view is that there is no “second path” to salvation, but also that none is needed.

    All people suffer from original sin only in the sense that they will experience physical death. All people are purged from their own sin as necessary in purgatory after death. Jews have the opportunity to minimize, or perhaps avoid, purgatory, by obeying the Law, and others reject that.
    Is that a fair reiteration of what you said?

    Not really, though I can see how you got it. You appear to be mixing up my presentation of the Jewish view with my presentation of the “two path” Christian theory as I understand it. “Jews have the opportunity to minimize, or perhaps avoid, purgatory, by obeying the Law,” isn’t an accurate reflection of either one, it’s a mashup between the two.

    Let me try to address the difference between Jews and gentiles from both perspectives. The “two path” Christian point of view is that Jews, like everyone else, are born fallen, but that long before Jesus came we were given a path to salvation, a very difficult path offering only a faint hope of success, but better than nothing; and that that path is still open for those Jews foolhardy enough to try it. But Jesus, according to this theory, opened up a second path, much easier, and open to all.

    Meanwhile the Jewish point of view is that nobody needs saving from anything except their own sin. But most people in the world have no particular mission, God just put them in the world to populate it, so their only duty is to be decent people. They were given seven basic laws, and if they keep those they’re OK. None of these laws need to be a burden on the average person; they’re fairly easy to obey. But then God made a special deal with the Jews: 606 extra laws, fairly difficult to keep, and the prospect of Purgatory if we break them and die without repenting, but in return a positive mission in this world, and the prospect of an entirely different experience of Heaven in the next world. By keeping the law we bring God into the world bit by bit, making it a slightly holier place each time, with the goal of eventually transforming it into a different kind of world, God’s Kingdom.

    Think of it as military v civilians in war time. A civilian’s job is just to live his life without harming anyone; a soldier’s job is to do whatever needs to be done to win the war. A soldier lives under the UCMJ, a much harsher regime than civilian law. A soldier who does what would be perfectly acceptable for a civilian ends up in the brig. But a soldier who does everything that’s expected of him can anticipate being decorated and honoured for his service.

    We Jews believe we are born into God’s army, but anyone is welcome to join us if they really want to. Conversion is available to anyone, but think of the recruitment office scene in Starship Troopers (the book, not the movie), where the officer does all he can to dissuade the young applicants, not because he doesn’t want them, but because he doesn’t want anyone who’s going to wash out. If they’ve got the commitment to stay in despite the difficulties, then they’re the kind of people the Service wants; if they’re going to leave as soon as it gets tough, then both they and the Service will be better off if they don’t start. There’s nothing wrong with remaining a civilian.

    PS: Interestingly, the English word “pagan” comes from the Latin for “civilian”, and means someone who is not a soldier in Christ’s army. So literally speaking, Jews are pagans. And from the Jewish point of view, using the same Latin etymology, all gentiles are pagans.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  342. As far as Sodom goes, I assume you do not consider my exercise in logic compelling, and you assume that God saying “A”, means that God also means “not B”. I would suggest that God saying “A” does not necessarily also mean “not B” unless God says “A and only A”.

    “A” doesn’t have to mean “not B”, but there has to be some basis for asserting “B”. In this case, the attempted rape can’t have played any part in the decision to destroy them, because it happened after that decision was made. And there’s nothing anywhere in the Bible to indicate that the Sodomites were more sexually loose than their neighbours who were not destroyed at that time.

    Snakes bite people, and people kill snakes

    Seems to me kind of “plain”, “boring”, and “anti-climactic” in the context of what has just happened.

    What has just happened? The ancestor of all snakes brought sin into the world. Man was punished with having to work for a living, and eventually dying. Snakes were punished by losing their legs and their speech. And from that time on, men and snakes have been enemies. What more did you expect?

    Milhouse (b95258)

  343. And where exactly did God tell you to reject your children if they don’t go on the right way?

    Not really an enthusiastic bible quoter, but this springs to mind and has oft been repeated in such discussions.

    And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife[e] or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life Matthew 19:29

    Ah, well in that case you’ll have to ask someone who considers Matthew to be God’s word :-)

    Milhouse (b95258)

  344. A soldier who does what would be perfectly acceptable for a civilian ends up in the brig.

    Sorry for mixing up my terminology. A soldier, of course, ends up in the stockade. The brig is for sailors.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  345. Milhouse, I’d like to second MD in Philly’s earlier comment to you–that by explaining aspects of your religion’s history, and taking your scholarship both of it and also of other religions, you’ve brought a lot to this thread. Obviously, Christian denominations have some differences in interpretation of words and approaches among ourselves, just as you’ve pointed out that differences exist between the various “types” of Jews. I just wish that some of the people here had shown the same magnanimity towards you that you have for the most part shown.

    I’m fortunate that there are quite a few Jewish people in my acquaintance and close circle of friends. But none of them are Orthodox, to whom I can ask this question. It’s off topic, but if it is not too personal would you care to say a few words about Genesis–the Creation–and evolution? Thanks.

    elissa (ad35b3)

  346. 342.

    No, I don’t care to argue it. I intend to use it as an example of what I’m talking about. The fact that you’re repeating irrational talking points, which we’ve all heard before and have never panned out in real life, believing you’re articulating a reason is precisely what is wrong with the manic drive for gay marriage. You can’t tell he difference between BS and reality.

    Of course you don’t. It is much easier for you to label it as BS and ignore it…

    Gil, Gil, Gil, I’m not ignoring it. I just find it easier to let you discredit your own arguments yourself.

    Why should I go to the trouble when you’ll do all he work and prove it’s BS for me?

    You dont see a difference between Moxness describing the situation (marriage is seen as an empty institution) and Gessen wanting to do away with the institution is funny. These are not the same.

    So, among all he other things you don’t know about, you don’ know about Kari Moxnes and her goals. I practically held your hand and pointed you toward the direction you should go, and you were just too lay to read beyond the tiny snippet I spoon fed you. he fact that you see a difference , at least the difference you claim to see, and think it’s “funny” I don’t see this supposed difference just shows you still don’ have a clue about Kari Moxnes. Why do you keep embarrassing yourself in his way, Gil, by prominently displaying your ignorance?

    Moxness is not advocating the doing away with marriage, just arguing that it is not needed. Which it isn’t. Just because something has been around for a long time doesn’t mean anything. People can be responsible without regulations. Isnt this a basic idea we conservatives hold to?

    No, if you’re a Burkean conservative you reject ideology and follow the evidence. And the evidence and the experience of the entirety of humanity is that there are people who will not be responsible without some regulation. Conservatives don’t reject that kind of overwhelming evidence out of hand to cling to a belief that runs counter to it. Only liberals hold to beliefs (what you laughably all ideas) in the face of such overwhelming contrary evidence. After showing yourself to be a leftist ideologue, you then proceed to epically fail to make a reasonable facsimile of a conservative argument. You can’t even fake it.

    “That government is best which governs least” is a conservative principle, but it doesn’t mean no government at all.

    So, among all the other things you don’t know about, you don’ know about the difference between libertarians/anarchists and conservatives. Why do you keep embarrassing yourself in his way, Gil, by prominently displaying your ignorance?

    But the money quote:

    These are not the same. Moxness is not advocating the doing away with marriage, just arguing that it is not needed. Which it isn’t.

    In which Gil betrays that even he knows the argument that gay marriage “adds” to marriage is complete BS.

    Thus vindicating me; there was never any need for me to argue against his BS “reason” for supporting gay marriageagain. It was always BS, I’ve proven it BS any times, and when the mask slips we see even Gil knows it’s BS.

    No, I don’t care to argue it. I intend to use it as an example of what I’m talking about. The fact that you’re repeating irrational talking points, which we’ve all heard before and have never panned out in real life, believing you’re articulating a reason is precisely what is wrong with the manic drive for gay marriage. You can’t tell he difference between BS and reality.

    Gay marriage destroys the institution of marriage, it doesn’t add to it. You cannot “increase human well being” by destroying the institution that supposedly provides it. None of the leading proponents of gay marriage thought for a second marriage increases human well being. Rather, they concluded it is oppressive, and set out to destroy it. Gay marriage has had the desired destructive effect they sought wherever it’s been implemented. And after acknowledging that’s the case, as he cannot give any evidence where he opposite has happened as he insists it would, Gil resorts to his prepared fall back position:

    And so what? Has their society fallen apart?

    A question for another day. The important point is that Gil is full of $hit and he knows it.

    After Gil gets done destroying marriage, he wants to have a debate over whether following his advice also destroys societies at the same time. Just great.

    No thanks, Gil. You’ve just demonstrated nobody should listen to useful idiots in the first place.

    Steve57 (dce389)

  347. It’s off topic, but if it is not too personal would you care to say a few words about Genesis–the Creation–and evolution? Thanks.

    This is quite controversial, even among Orthodox Jews. There are many perfectly Orthodox Jews who accept the standard scientific narrative, and struggle for ways to interpret the Biblical account to fit it. They suggest things like God-directed evolution, the seven days representing longer periods, etc.

    My own opinion, however, is that the standard story is only needed if one insists that there is no God. Once one admits God into the picture, and acknowledges that He ultimately made the world, one may as well go all the way and take Genesis as literally as its language allows. Interpreting things as allegory should only be done for internal reasons, when the text itself indicates that something is going on beneath its surface. If God could create the universe over the course of billions of years, then He could just as easily have done it in seven days, or seven seconds. If He says it took seven days, why not believe Him?

    My view is that science, by its nature, is not about the past, and can never make a definitive statement about the past. If an expert watchmaker examines a watch, determines that it gains exactly one second per year, and proclaims “it reads 3:02:10 now, so exactly 130 years ago it read 3:00:00″, he is not really making a statement about 130 years ago. In all likelihood it didn’t even exist 130 years ago, and if it did he has no idea what it read then, and will readily admit so if you ask him. His statement is about the present. Its present state is such that if we were to project it back 130 years it would have read 3:00:00. Or suppose we were to pass the Mona Lisa through a matter replicator, which creates an molecule-by-molecule copy of it. This new picture would be genuinely 500 years old, althoug it didn’t exist last week.

    In the same way, if Adam and Eve were 20 years old when they were created, a doctor giving them a physical could make valid statements about their childhood medical history, none of which actually happened. If they carried antibodies for chicken pox, she could conclude that they had had it as children, and that would be a perfectly valid medical conclusion, although historically it wasn’t true. They would have had the history of childhood chicken pox, even if they didn’t have the memories of it. And if Adam chopped down a tree, he could expect to find rings indicating that it was 50 or 100 years old, and it would be perfectly valid to call it a 50-year-old or a 100-year-old tree, even though it was only created last week.

    If we remember that science always describes the present, not the past, while history describes the past and not the present, they can happily coexist.

    As for why God would create a world that looks like it’s billions of years old, the Talmud (Berachot 10a) makes a play on the words of 1 Samuel 2:2, and reinterprets them as “there is no artist like our God”. God is the perfect artist, and the universe is His masterpiece, so one should not be surprised that it looks authentic. If the tree ring record, radiocarbon record, ice core record, etc., stopped abruptly 5773 years ago it would look as fake as a plastic “fossil” that’s stamped “made in Hong Kong”. God does such authentic-looking work that it can’t be distinguished from the real thing.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  348. Why should I go to the trouble when you’ll do all he work and prove it’s BS for me?
    Thus vindicating me; there was never any need for me to argue against his BS “reason” for supporting gay marriageagain. It was always BS, I’ve proven it BS any times, and when the mask slips we see even Gil knows it’s BS.

    Even if you can prove I am wrong (which you haven’t), it does not mean you are right. Its an impressive amount of tunnel vision, misunderstanding, and selective reading you’ve done in your attempt though – credit where credit is due!

    Gay marriage destroys the institution of marriage, it doesn’t add to it. You cannot “increase human well being” by destroying the institution that supposedly provides it. None of the leading proponents of gay marriage thought for a second marriage increases human well being. Rather, they concluded it is oppressive, and set out to destroy it. Gay marriage has had the desired destructive effect they sought wherever it’s been implemented. And after acknowledging that’s the case, as he cannot give any evidence where he opposite has happened as he insists it would, Gil resorts to his prepared fall back position:

    I see your misunderstanding here. By add, I mean that it opens up more options. Instead of just Male-Female marriages you have 2 additional kinds. You think this is a destruction of the institution, I do not.

    So far what I understood from your position (please clarify if I am misunderstanding) is that marriage increases human well being and that SSM will destroy marriage thereby decreasing human well being so SSM does not work to increase well being.
    Some problems I have with your point of view:

    1 – You presuppose that SSM destroys the institution of marriage and will result in the spiraling downfall of society.
    2 – You claim SSM has had a desired destructive effect but do not point examples of what destruction has been leveled
    3 – You claim that SSM supporters want to destroy marriage. Ok fine maybe you have found a fringe that is trying an ass backwards way of doing it (Gessen). When I point out this is not the standard you characterize the rest of the SSM supporters are just useful idiots. This line of reasoning can be wrongly applied to any situation for an absurd example “some black people want to oppress white people and they are using civil rights as the way in, the rest of the civil rights supporters are just useful idiots.”

    To clarify my position:
    My reason for wanting SSM is not to “add to the institution of marriage” it is to increase human well being by treating people fairly. In my view to deny something to someone based upon his/her private desires and sexual activities is unfair.
    Studies showing the number of marriages down, or even the number of births down do not show a link. There are many reasons for marriages and childbirth to be down. For example I have many friends who prefer the single lifestyle. Still others do not want to enter into a potentially difficult financial situation that can break down – till death do us part is a long time. Ive had a few friends with children together long term that didn’t get married for personal reasons and brought there kids up in a loving home just fine.

    No, if you’re a Burkean conservative you reject ideology and follow the evidence. And the evidence and the experience of the entirety of humanity is that there are people who will not be responsible without some regulation. Conservatives don’t reject that kind of overwhelming evidence out of hand to cling to a belief that runs counter to it. Only liberals hold to beliefs (what you laughably all ideas) in the face of such overwhelming contrary evidence.

    Again cant you simply substitute any government rule in and use this last paragraph to support it? For example because there are people who will not be responsible without some regulation we need Obamacare. Of course I suspect you will reject that with some fancy rationalization, but for some reason it works for marriage. Special pleading anyone?

    Gil (27c98f)

  349. As for why God would create a world that looks like it’s billions of years old,

    Sorry to go further off topic
    But why would God give us a mind that reasons knowing that an honest application of it would result in disbelief and then punish us for transgressing laws? For example eating bread on Passover or eating on Yom Kippur gets you “Karet” or spiritual excision.
    Another question that always bothered me – why would God command us not to covet?. This is a thought crime. We cant control our thoughts – they just pop in there. For example “don’t think of bunnies”. If you didn’t think of bunnies when you read that you are truly a “master of your domain” and I mean that in the Sienfeldicular sense of the phrase.

    Gil (27c98f)

  350. But why would God give us a mind that reasons knowing that an honest application of it would result in disbelief

    But it won’t. An honest application of a reasoning mind, starting from a premise that God exists, is likely to find evidence for that proposition and to strengthen ones faith. It’s only when one is looking for excuses to dump religion that one finds them.

    “Coveting” is not simply idly wishing you had something. It’s obsessing over that desire, to the point of making plans for how to get hold of it. I should point out that there’s nothing wrong with admiring another person’s possession, and wishing you had one just like it. Coveting it means wanting that item, not a similar one, i.e. wishing not just that you had it but that the other person didn’t. It’s wrong because it means bearing ill will to the other person, resenting his good fortune and wanting him not to have what he has, and also because it’s a kind of rebellion against God, Who arranged that the other person would have it and you wouldn’t.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  351. Here’s a similar convenient change of heart that reminds me of Portman’s transformation on SSM, but this one involves a liberal and climate change.

    Mitch (8c79bc)

  352. Thanks millhouse,
    my presentation of the “two path” Christian theory as I understand it.

    I guess that is a contributing factor to my lack of understanding of your explanation. I do not believe the “two path” is consistent with the bulk of the NT clear teaching. Paul argues that Abraham was saved by faith, in God, His mercy, His righteousness, just as anybody else, past or present. Most clearly articulated in the book of Hebrews is that much of the ceremonial aspect of the Law, especially animal sacrifice, was a foreshadowing of the death of Jesus, “the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world”. I think it can argued that the whole of the NT says that Jesus and the Apostles believed and taught that there is only one way to “salvation”, to be accepted into God’s presence when we die, and that is to rely on God’s mercy, for we are unable to live a perfect life which would be required to have “standing” to be in His presence. Unlike human law, where a governor can grant a pardon to someone simply by choice, the moral law of the universe is what it is, and to violate it would be for God to try to not be who he is, hence God could only “grant a pardon” by a substitutionary punishment, death, for those who deserved the punishment.

    I think the reasoning hangs together quite well, but certainly, if one rejects some or many of the premises, then no matter how much it fights together, it’s nothing more than a bunch of nonsense.

    The NT also uses the soldier analogy as a description of a Christian’s life on this earth. The terminology of “accepting Jesus” is quite common among many threads of Christian expression, but I think it can be a misleading “sound bite”. Some act as if “accepting Jesus” is like signing your name on a piece of paper that says, “Free Pass”, and nothing more.
    One way I would put it is whether or not one receives “Jesus’ offer”, “My life for yours”. If one understands the greatness of God’s mercy as revealed in Jesus, then the rest of one’s life is to be lived in gratitude with Jesus the center of one’s life, hence, “a good soldier of Jesus Christ”. (Of course, in light of the Crusades and other events of history, the terminology is a bit problematic these days).

    An aside, as a comment that is not meant to be more than an interesting speculation.
    Apparently some snakes, I think larger ones like some pythons and Anacondas, have some bony structures that are claimed by some to be the remnants of legs, showing evolution from a walking reptile, or perhaps having a common ancestor that developed legs. On its face, this finding is consistent with a direct interpretation of at least the Fall, if not the preceding creation account.

    In college one bio professor asked the question during a lecture, “Why would God put only finches on the Galapagos islands filling the niches of other birds, instead of the usual birds?”
    My answer at the time, prior to being a Christian and just based on the illogic of it, was, “So He could laugh at people asking questions like that…” I don’t really think that precisely, but I do still feel that way about the “logic” involved.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  353. Milhouse #339,

    Are you saying a parent rejects his gay child by not agreeing with the idea of SSM? I don’t think parents reject their children simply because they don’t agree with everything their children do or think.

    Disowning a child over something like this would be a rejection, but that’s not I’m thinking about. My point is a parent can stick to his values by not accepting SSM, and still love and accept his gay child without accepting the child’s values.

    Mitch (8c79bc)

  354. Milhouse #339,

    Are you saying a parent rejects his gay child by not agreeing with the idea of SSM?

    Of course not. I don’t understand how you could derive that conclusion from that comment, or from anything I’ve written.

    Disowning a child over something like this would be a rejection, but that’s not I’m thinking about. My point is a parent can stick to his values by not accepting SSM, and still love and accept his gay child without accepting the child’s values.

    Naturally. When did I suggest otherwise? You were the one who wrote:

    I love and want to support my children but, if you’re a Christian, isn’t the Bible story of Abraham and Isaac relevant here? I think the lesson of that story is that Christians aren’t supposed to put their children ahead of God.

    In other words, you suggested that a Christian must reject his gay children. My response was to ask where God ever asked such a thing of you. Sure, if He asked you to sacrifice your child, you ought to obey Him; but He doesn’t ask that. He wants you to love your children, as He loves them, even if they’re not behaving as they should. So your question in #323 doesn’t arise. You can love and support them, just as you want to. But that love and support can’t affect your sense of what is right and wrong.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  355. portman, really fired off a squirrel, Cheney did too, but he has more leeway.

    http://www.americanthinker.com/2014/07/jewseeking_missiles_the_secure_border_and_other_nonsense.html

    narciso (24b824)

  356. Disowning a child over something like this would be a rejection, but that’s not I’m thinking about. My point is a parent can stick to his values by not accepting SSM, and still love and accept his gay child without accepting the child’s values.

    Depends on aspects of the child, how aggressive that youth is re the issue, and the degree to which he seeks out and expects applause from others. Estrangement may be all you can manage in many circumstances, presuming you have a viewpoint on the aesthetic and moral aspects of the question. (And it’s a reasonable wager there is not that much there there with Mr. Portman and his wife).

    Art Deco (ee8de5)

  357. Here is the juvenile Portman’s account of himself. It manages to be exhibtionistic and curiously unrevealing at the same time. Some of the elder Portmans’ modes of dealing with their children emerge between the lines, though.

    http://yaledailynews.com/blog/2013/03/25/portman-coming-out/

    Evidently landed a job at Google even though he has no background in economics, business, or information technology.

    Young Portman is particularly fixated on the number of people in prison. His father is an attorney who’s spent more than 15 years in political office. Exactly what influence did he have on his son’s worldview?

    Art Deco (ee8de5)

  358. Milhouse #359,

    I wasn’t saying that a Christian must reject his gay children. I was saying that a Christian’s first duty is to God and God’s laws. To me, that’s the moral of Abraham and Isaac.

    Mitch (d76bc1)

  359. “Sure, if He asked you to sacrifice your child, you ought to obey Him; but He doesn’t ask that.”

    Isn’t that what He asked Abraham to do — as a test to see if Abraham had faith in God that surpassed his love for Isaac?

    Mitch (b0b5ac)

  360. And yet in the end Isaac was not sacrificed.
    And yet to Moses was given the law not to pass children through the fire.

    If Isaac was not slain;
    If children are not to be sacrificed;
    How then can children be abandoned now?

    Maybe instead of looking at Abraham and Isaac you should consider the Prodigal Son, who was not cast out but chose to leave after demanding his inheritance, committed all sorts of sins, and yet was welcomed back with even greater joy than shown to those children who never left.

    Not that I am a Christian, I’m just not big on casting people out and all that.

    Sam (e8f1ad)

  361. I don’t take the old Testament literally, especially Genesis, so FWIW. I consider the sacrifice of Isaac to be a cautionary tale — “Look out, you’re sacrificing your own child to the thing you worship, think if it’s worth it”. It’s an “it is what it is” not a “thou shalt”. In Abraham’s case things turned out well, his God was good to him, but they might not have with Bacchus or Morpheus.

    nk (dbc370)

  362. and so it seems meh
    that the world keeps on turning
    well so effing what

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  363. put my money in yo meter baby
    so it won’t run down
    but you caught me in the squeeze play
    on the cheesy side of town

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PByPhf2ULvM&sns=em

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  364. wait til teh sh*t hits the fan…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L-RPvrws88U&sns=em

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  365. He wants you to love your children, as He loves them, even if they’re not behaving as they should.

    There is a producer in Hollywood known for being both gay and a Republican who was in charge of a major TV show a few years ago. His mother apparently leans right and in an interview of him (I believe it was in the LA Times) he said there was one occasion when, in response to her dealing with his homosexuality, she said she’d love him even if she learned he had murdered someone.

    I cringe at the dynamics of compassion for compassion’s sake

    Mark (1667b9)

  366. In college one bio professor asked the question during a lecture, “Why would God put only finches on the Galapagos islands filling the niches of other birds, instead of the usual birds?”
    My answer at the time, prior to being a Christian and just based on the illogic of it, was, “So He could laugh at people asking questions like that…” I don’t really think that precisely, but I do still feel that way about the “logic” involved.

    MD in Philly (f9371b) — 7/19/2014 @ 10:35 am

    That professor’s question makes a bunch of assumptions that aren’t necessarily true. There’s no reason to assume finches are the only birds that have ever lived there, or even that they were there from the start, under a Biblical belief system.

    Gerald A (9e3e6a)

  367. Don’t forget the blue footed boobies.

    elissa (e423be)

  368. I prefer the big breasted coeds.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  369. Jusst be aware that although you might be witnessing the results of evolution,—- they might be implants daleyrocks.

    elissa (e423be)

  370. Further in-depth hands on research might be required. :)

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  371. Nonsense. Nothing stopped gay people from having ceremonies and declaring themselves spouses. No state agency sent a SWAT team into a Metropolitan Community Church to stop two dudes from saying “I do.” Such ceremonies just didn’t carry the weight of law because it was (and still is) the government that determines legally what “marriage” is and what “family” is.

    Comopare what happened to the Mormon polygamists.

    Michael Ejercito (becea5)

  372. He wants you to love your children, as He loves them, even if they’re not behaving as they should.

    There is a producer in Hollywood known for being both gay and a Republican who was in charge of a major TV show a few years ago. His mother apparently leans right and in an interview of him (I believe it was in the LA Times) he said there was one occasion when, in response to her dealing with his homosexuality, she said she’d love him even if she learned he had murdered someone.

    I cringe at the dynamics of compassion for compassion’s sake

    Mark (1667b9) — 7/20/2014 @ 4:37 pm

    Love of a child does not mean you have to agree with their actions. Love is not the same thing as compassion. I loved my son when he was destroying his life with drugs. I did not agree with nor condone his drug use. If one of my children committed murder (since you brought up murder), I would still love them, but would expect they would receive punishment for their actions.

    If one of my children became a homosexual, I wouldn’t stop loving them and at the same time I would not condone their homosexuality. True love for a Christian who truly believes would be to hope their child would turn away from sin and follow God. That doesn’t mean a Christian is perfect, it should mean they’re working on it. While we are all sinful, if we accept it Jesus the Christ paid the ultimate price for our sins.

    Tanny O'Haley (87b2aa)

  373. 377. Thread winner.

    gary gulrud (46ca75)

  374. More clickbait for Mark:

    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2014/07/20/the_truth_about_violence_in_chicago_123380.html

    Thought experiment – What has been one of the major failed misguided policy initiatives of Obama’s second term? How might that help explain continued national media focus on gun violence in Chicago?

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)


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