I eventually closed this thread after 54 comments, deciding that the circular inanity was becoming tiresome and its protagonist was never going to be reasoned with.
In retrospect, I kinda wish I hadn’t done that. Nobody was being that obnoxious, and the stupid really was funny. I’d vacillated on whether to get involved myself, but eventually there was just so much fantastic material provided by the one resident Christian nut, I couldn’t stay out of it completely.
Here are some of the highlights, with my commentary. If anyone wants to restart the discussion here, I promise not to cut it off this time unless things become unacceptably abusive.
People who have same sex attraction are not a problem, it’s their disordered actions that are. Homosexual sex is not natural because it doesn’t exist for any reason. Otherwise you could just have sex with a hole in the ground.
First off, it’s entirely natural. It just is.
Secondly, “it doesn’t exist for any reason” is apparently now enough to deem something morally impermissible. Given that “to create a new human being” is the only reason David seems interested in, this renders almost the entirety of human endeavour not only pointless, but downright evil.
Of course, if you don’t want to write off all art, music, and literature as forbidden activities, you could note that they serve the purpose of enriching the soul, broadening the mind, diverting the spirit, and bringing joy and delight and wonder and fulfilment to our interactions with our fellow humans.
But then, if you do that, gay relationships would seem to serve the purpose for some people too.
David’s approach is utterly illiberal and oppressive. He has no complaint against this activity except a whine of “Do you have to?” and thinks this justifies homophobic discrimination.
To hell with that. Yes, you could just have sex with a hole in the ground. You really could.
Let me say this emphatically to everyone reading right now: If you want to have sex with a hole in the ground, never let go of your dream.
For what it’s worth, most Christians do not say that something can’t be true because it’s not in the Bible, so that’s a straw man arguement.
No, it’s not.
Almost one in three Americans believe that the Bible is the “actual word of God, to be taken literally”. That’s a significant chunk of the population. It’s not what every Christian believes, but I never said that it was.
The poem, as apparently David didn’t figure out, was about the different circumstances under which atheists might encounter religious belief, and the different levels of antipathy with which to respond. There are different theists described, in different situations, some largely harmless and some meriting serious resistance. It never claimed to be an a depiction of every single person who calls themselves a Christian.
So, David needs to brush up on his logical fallacies. A straw man argument isn’t named that because most people aren’t made of straw. It’s because nobody is made even slightly of straw.
[E]ven a married couple using either the pill or barrier contraception is engaging in sinful activity… [G]ay people are called to be celibate. Some “straight” people are, too.
“Called” is a cosy way of saying God will burn you if you don’t repress the urges he gave you and deny yourself the chance of finding love because of his arbitrary rules.
And for the record, I believe evolution, but not Darwinism.
I am genuinely curious what version of evolution David thinks he believes in.
Does he think it’s credible and scientific that the Biblical account of creation is a myth, and life on Earth developed slowly over billions of years… but it had to be guided by the Christian god, and any attempt to deny this is dogmatic anti-religious fundamentalism?
He never actually explains. He repeatedly claims that creationism and evolution can be compatible, so he’s clearly not using words the way I’m used to them being used. He suggests the existence of “more correct evolution hypotheses”, but gives nothing to explain why these are now rejected in favour of the current theory by a virtually unanimous consensus of experts, or how he’s reached the conclusion that all these experts are wrong. Or what the entire scientific community would have to gain by pushing Darwinism as some sort of grand deceit.
Darwin had to change the rules of science in order to fashion his theory. He changed the rules of scientific proof.
No, he didn’t. I’m not even sure I know what this means, but the theory of evolution including processes of Darwinian natural selection is accepted by the same criteria of scientific evidence as any other solidly established model of reality.
It’s our duty when teaching others to give both sides of the argument. You folks want to exclude half of the subject.
Here’s a list of creation myths. Please to be explaining why yours is the one religious opinion that should be considered on equal footing with the entire modern scientific study of biology, unlike all of the others.
Why does the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster not deserve equal time to be put forward in science classes?
Deists = people who believe in a God. I can show you more that the founding fathers were Christian in both upbringing and independent thought.
Actually, “theists” are people who believe in a god/God. Deism is more specific, and generally implies that, while some supreme being is believed to have been necessary for the creation of the cosmos, said being remains entirely uninvolved in human affairs, and has essentially abandoned the whole business immediately after setting things in motion.
This is most likely the belief held by most of the Founding Fathers of the United States. However they may have been brought up, there is no mention of Jesus, Christianity, God, or the Bible anywhere in the Constitution. They could easily have written numerous endorsements of Christianity into the text, if the people establishing the country had had any intention for it to be a “Christian nation” whatsoever.
In fact, they went out of their way to do the exact opposite. As you can tell from Thomas Jefferson’s precise words on this matter, or the many times he made his feelings about religion and its role in government abundantly clear.
I don’t know why I’m spending so much time on 18th century American politics, though. Moving on.
By the way, there is no evidence for gay people…
I’ll just leave this here.
Priests and clergy give up their sexuality to God in order to serve him better.
Yeah, how’s that working out for them?
But let’s look at homosexual sex from an evolutionary point of view. Sex is meant to further along a species. So, while homosexual sex may happen, it is species ending if it is the majority.
I know that if a species spends all it’s time practicing recreational sex which doesn’t produce offspring, the species will die.
First, saying that gay sex is evil because it’s not evolutionarily helpful is like saying that star jumps are an immoral affront to the law of gravity.
Second, I know spending all our time recreationally screwing each other’s brains out sounds like fun, but nobody has suggested we try that. You’re letting your imagination run away with you again, David, and the places it’s going are pretty gay.
David decries the catastrophic flaw that homosexuality is not “procreative”, but he can’t seem to decide what reason best justifies this. Sometimes it’s because God says so. Sometimes it’s because it could wipe out the species if everyone decided to do it all the time (which they’re not). Sometimes it’s… something to do with Nancy Pelosi? Wait, I think I’m flashing back to an earlier discussion.
Anyway, you know what’s just as unlikely to be procreative as gay sex? Abstinence.
I’ve never had any children, and yet my body has produced just as many sperm cells – potential humans all – as if I’d been getting picked up in gay bars every Saturday night for the past five years.
So what’s the problem with homosexuality? How does it take anything away from your own hetero concerns that you seem so keen to shove our faces in? Are the gays somehow using up all the sex, and you’re worried there won’t be enough left for when you want to get down to some hot, steamy baby-makin’?
As for your belief, or lack of belief, why should God jump through hoops for you? He already suffered and died for you. If that’s not enough, I don’t know what is.
Hey, David. I got a deal for you. You eat this spider and I’ll give you a million bucks.
C’mon, think of what you could do with a million bucks! It might be an unbearably horrible sensation while you’re doing it, but think of the reward you’ll definitely get afterward!
What’s that? You want to see the money before you’ll do it? Geeze, how ungrateful is that? I’ve already gone to the trouble of making a huge cash withdrawal and packing a suitcase full of my own hard-earned money. It’s in my car, you can have it once you’ve eaten this spider. How many hoops do I have to jump through for you, man?
I should try a different tack as well, since sarcasm didn’t seem to work too well on him the first few times it was tried.
The reason God ought to “jump through hoops” for me, David, is that he’s demanding that I surrender every aspect of my life to him. At least, that’s what his supporters claim. It’s not unreasonable for some kind of evidence that the deal’s legit before I start shunning gays, stoning children to death, and give up my regular Friday night ass-coveting session.
God didn’t want robots, or zombies, who would do everything he wanted. God realized that love without free will is slavery. He freely gave man free will.
God didn’t want his creations to be happy. He wanted them to fall prey to every mistake they could possibly be led into by the primitive urges he’d given them. Because it’s just more fun that way.
And you say this guy isn’t a sadist?
And this last one’s a real doozy.
God now uses the evil in the world to help those who try to love him. Catastrophe tends to bring people together to work to dig out of said catastrophe. Look at what happened in America after 9/11. We actually worked together for a time. That’s not to say God willed 9/11. But He took the evil action and made it into a postive.
I know I said not to be abusive here, but… can I make an exception when it’s so patently merited?
What David’s saying is that God could have prevented the suffering that ensued after this devastating attack, but he didn’t. It happened anyway, in spite of the wishes of our omnipotent loving creator. But although he could have stopped it, it was mankind’s fault for choosing to exercise our free will in such a damaging way.
So God gets let off the hook for tearing thousands of families apart. But he also gets the credit for all the work done in the aftermath, by countless incalculably brave people, who formed communities and support groups and tried to pull things together following such a tragedy. We’re expected to be grateful to him, for the nuggets of solace and comfort we find in each other’s company, after he allows us to suffer unbearably.
This is rationalisation of a blind ideology at its most evil.
So that’s the state of play, folks. If it ends up kicking off again, be nice to each other. Your points may seem more credible if not prefaced by straight-forward insults. And while he wasn’t above responding in kind, it wasn’t David who launched the first volley of “You’re an idiot” last time. Be nice.
And have fun!