There is a metaphor that remains popular. That is the vision of the United States as a “melting pot.” I don’t remember exactly when I first heard of this idea. I just know I was in school, and hearing it got my back up. As I saw it, the melting pot is a metaphor for losing ones individuality, for giving up ones values for the security of belonging to an amorphous mass, the majority.
Why bring this up now? The subject came of in one of comments to DON’T YOU THINK THEY KNEW THAT?. scatterwisdom disliked Pamela Geller’s and her organization’s ‘Draw the Prophet’ Muhammad contest. Nevertheless, he considered it wise for our government to turn away Muslim immigrants.
I look at this incident as a foolish decision made to provoke violence in the USA. In your example of a wolf and lamb, the lamb wandered astray instead of intentionally walking up to the hungry wolf and daring the wolf to eat him. Muslims are devout followers of a religious belief to kill anyone who disagrees with their religious beliefs. That is contrary to our Constitutional beliefs in free speech. and laws not to kill.
We know that and if we want to provoke them to kill us, they will do just that. In my opinion, since we know Muslims do not believe in our laws and morals, it would be wise for our government to not grant citizenship to any Muslims because of their contrary religious beliefs .
Regards and goodwill blogging.
I agree with ‘s belief that we should keep people with beliefs hostile to our nation’s values out of the country. However, Keith DeHavelle argued forcefully for assimilation (here). Therefore, in the following comments and had an interesting little discussion.
Ironically, the term assimilation suggests the rest of us are suppose to absorb new immigrants into our nation’s “body.” So I don’t like that metaphor either. As I see it, the United States is suppose to be about God-given rights. Here are each allowed the right to find our own way to God, and we have an obligation to turn away or confine anyone who will not allow others to exercise their rights life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
Unfortunately, as a nation, we have no idea what to do about our immigration laws, and we have the definition of the term “rights” so confused that when we talk about “rights” we are all talking about different things. So what do we do? What do we do about the Muslims, the Hispanics, the Asians, and so forth? Where is the place where the descendants of those who came from western Europe will still be allowed to take pride in the accomplishments of those who went before us?
The two sides to immigration would have to include the legal vs the illegal. Many ‘legal’ friends are incensed at the idea that after they went through hoops and trials and endless $$$, illegals would be granted a wave of the wand legality status.
On the other hand, returning some of these illegals is tantamount to murder in their home country.
Focus on borders and stem the ’cause’ rather than loop a continuous effort at attempting to band-aide the symptoms. Prevention vs management after the fact. For now it is an uncontrolled virus that needs to be eradicated at it’s source. Once accomplished, the immigration system can then be modified, upgraded, and overhauled.
We also need to punish employers who knowingly hire illegals.
If we don’t want people to do something, we have to design a system that uses multiple points of attack to stop them. We don’t want people to speed?
1. Cars must include a speedometer.
2. Instruction and testing before receiving a license to drive.
3. Posted speed limits.
4. Policemen with radar guns, patrol cars, and air support…
5. Fines, jail time, point system, licence revocation…
Our politicians know this sort of thing. Anyone who get elected has a fair understanding of human behavior. But we have elected people who support illegal immigration. That means the problem ultimately resides with us. Until we fix ourselves, we cannot fix our government.
In 2012, ICE arrested over 240 employers. Most of the arrests come about as a result of I-9 audits of employers. But it is obviously barely denting the flow – it is ‘estimated’ there are somewhere around 8 million illegals working. It is therefore fair to say that what we are currently doing – ain’t working!
Thanks for your suggestion to what should we do to answer the problem of terrorism. You said the answer is .
“The more serious answer is to monitor and intervene with charges against those who plan to cause and promote violence. that we monitor .”
I still have some questions though.
Who should we monitor?
Will monitoring suspected terrorists have to increased in time as more and more potential terrorists are allowed to immigrate?
How many monitors should we assign and who is going to pay their salaries?
Do you believe that monitoring alone will reduce the risk of terrorists be carried out in the USA?.
If not, what should we do to reduce the risk of terrorists coming into the USA?
I look forward again to your reply of what should we do ……to reduce the risks of potential terrorists, and who they are that you will recommend we should monitor.
Regards and goodwill blogging..
SW, I think tolerance of differences is a first step in a long process but don’t presume that means tolerating the intolerable or that there is some quick fix. Yes, Islam is a particular threat far greater (as I preciously showed with the British study) than any other religious belief because the entire religion is antithetical to such enlightenment values that are the foundation of Western liberal secular democracies.
But then there is that thorny issue of religious freedom and so the significant problem is how to allow this freedom without undermining it. I have argued that any religious person acting on religious sensibilities to reduce or harm the shared rights of fellow citizens should be held legally responsible and libel. Many Christians assume incorrectly that in comparison Christianity is benign in this regard when the truth is that it is far, far from it, Granted, other religions are far less brutal and violent in dogma to liberal secular values in the public domain but all are parasitic to it. So the idea of maintaining the secular value of religious freedom and Islam is, as you point out, a very serious and difficult problem.
What ideas do you have to allow both freedom of religion to be Muslim while at the same time protecting and securing the secular base of legal equality and individual rights in law?
I think both can be maintained only by getting all religious privilege out of the public domain and keeping it strictly secular.
Hah! Read tildeb’s comment here:
in the context of the Frankfurt School and Marcuse that I’d mentioned just moments ago.
Yes, for the Left, tolerance does not mean tolerance at all. Nor does art mean art, as the linked article illustrates. The Left has … “progressive” definitions for these and other words.
===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle
Tilbet, You asked
What ideas do you have to allow both freedom of religion to be Muslim while at the same time protecting and securing the secular base of legal equality and individual rights in law?
I think both can be maintained only by getting all religious privilege out of the public domain and keeping it strictly secular.
Because you asked, I will tell you what I would do.
Freeze all immigration until the immigration problem is fixed by Congress.
It is that simple. We have a problem.
What is the problem? Uncontrolled immigration.
Where? In the USA,
Who should fix the problem? Congress, the body that is responsible for immigration
When should they fix? Now.
. Why? Because Americans are at risk from terrorist violence, drugs, and the cost burden to Americans.
How should they fix it? This is what Congress is being paid to figure out.
After we fix this problem Tilbet, I will tell you what to do about religion and law equality problems in the USA. We have to set priorities. Our first priority is not to allow terrorists the ability to come and go anywhere they want in the USA to kill us. Why is this our first priority? Because when you are dead, nothing else matters.
Is my advice you asked for wise or foolish? You decide..
Regards and goodwill blogging.
It seems to me that bringing up secularism or religion is not what the subject of this post is about in my opinion.
The debate is whether it is wise or foolish to do nothing about protecting the hens walking about the hen house when we know wolves want to eat them. Is it wise or foolish to keep bringing in more wolves and hoping you can change their behavior so as not to eat the hens.
The reality is that we know who wants to kill us. (even though it is a small percentage according to one blogger) How about we ask the Boston bomb victims what they think about small percentages.
Wise or foolish is the question, not secularism or religion. Part of wisdom is common sense. Congress is responsible for security and immigration.and in my opinion have their senseless heads in the sand..
Regards and good will blogging
I was pointing out the irony of the OP blaming that which CT himself upholds, namely religious beliefs antithetical to the US Constitution.
As far as Muslims and other minorities are concerned, I have always been an opponent of this vein of religious allegiance superior to that owed to the secular. Religious believers who grant their first allegiance to some divine Overlord and pretend political and legal rights are granted or bestowed or given by this Overlord to us little minions are acting against the central intent of the Constitution beautifully summed up by Lincoln: government of the people, by the people, for the people. God plays no role. In fact, without recognizing the sovereignty of each individual in law first and foremost, these kinds of believers – be they Christian or Muslim – have been, are, and shall continue to be the greatest danger to this “unfinished work” because they thwart the very heart of this revolutionary authority: the consent of the governed and not the mewling and pitiful bleating of sheep seeking permission from their divine shepherd. It’s pathetic behaviour from supposedly ‘responsible’ grown-ups.
Like any other recognizable minority, individual citizens have rights and freedoms protected by the secular state. Anyone -Christian or Muslim – advocating that we eliminate these rights and freedoms in some other name are acting contrary to the tacit consent they lend lend to the support of the common law. One cannot advocate for appeasement to some other authority than him- or herself and justify that by claiming the individual right to do so based on exactly this authority!
I am a strong advocate against the incursion of religious belief in the public domain for just this reason. I don’t care what the religious belief is; when it crosses the firm boundary between the secular and the religious, an incursion has taken place and the central value of individual autonomy has been attacked. I don’t care of someone thinks his or her god demands this treachery, this traitorous activity. By attacking the basis of individual authority in the name of some god, it’s an attack against all of us… including an attack against the right and freedom to worship or not as each of us chooses. Why so many in the various religious communities utterly fail to grasp the scope of their error is astounding to me. These folk are undermining their own legal authority to their religious beliefs! I don’t think this is very clever and it’s certainly not an exercise of civic responsibility. It is an exercise of boundless stupidity and gross negligence.
The target of my criticism is the very bad ideas that lead people to acting against their own autonomy and, by extension, respect for mine. As Harris say, Islam is the mother load of bad ideas because it sanctions violence against anyone who disagrees with recognizing the Koran as the perfect word of god. The Koran itself is antithetical to enlightenment values and requires a reformation to align itself in submission to secular values as the Christian denominations were so subdued and cast out of governance and common law first by revolutionary means and then by legal policy and enforcement… an enforcement always under attack by the misguided pious who think they do their god’s work by attacking their own secular roots. It’s not up to government to determine a religious test for citizenship and suggesting as much is just another example of how poorly so many people understand their own Constitution.
I wrote about Sam Harris years ago.
Perhaps you are right and then again perhaps your are wrong about secularism and religion and maybe it will all sort out in the future. However,
Just tell me what should we do to reduce the risk of more Muslim terrorists trying to kill us in the USA. right now?
Regards and goodwill blogging.
The very first thing to do is stop supporting the liberal narrative that muslims who justify violence in the name of Islam are some fringe element, some tiny group of extremists, a few ‘radicalized’ bad apples. This is not true. The ranks of muslims living in the West contain a sizable minority that are willing to act according to directives from the Koran and in direct conflict with Western secular liberal values such as individual autonomy protected by law and the free speech that accompanies it.
To give you some idea of the scope of the problem, a study out of England revealed that of British born, university educated muslim men and women between the ages of 18 to 35, over one third agreed that it was acceptable to kill in defense of the faith. That percentage translates into more than a million people! That’s not fringe. That’s a pool of willing recruits waiting to happen. The same survey revealed the closest competitor was evangelical christianity at just over 1%. This demonstartes the radical teaching differences between faiths.
How do we in the West address this problem without circumventing our legal respect for individual autonomy and the right to religious freedom?
I don’t think we can – directly. But there is much we can do to mitigate its allure and Americans in particular don’t like the solution because the very first step is to stop privileging religious belief in the public domain and make it a private matter not exportable to the public square. When expressing intolerant religious belief in the public domain is seen as a social faux pas, it is a powerful teaching tool to the young not to do it. Probably the most effective way to mitigate these religious precepts that are contrary to and in conflict with individual autonomy shared by all is public education where every classroom is culturally, ethnically, religious, and even linguistically diverse. Children who spend time with the ‘Other’ in their formative years develop a bedrock not just of daily tolerance of differences but a celebration of it and come to see these differences for the great social strengths they really are. I know this sounds pie-in-the-sky but it really works. And there are fewer better examples than the Canadian one where the whole country is built on exactly these differences.
Diversity is strength. as long as all share common foundation. And the evidence for this is overwhelming. Just to look to the real world for examples. A diverse economy is protected from local swings and shifts. A diverse biosphere is protected from local infestations. Diverse blood lines improve the heartiness of species and is protected from singular conditions. Talk to farmers about the problems of monoculture, arborists about forests dominated by a single species, doctors about genetically magnified conditions, and so on. Would you listen to music that had only one instrument or voice, watch or play only one kind of sport with only one type of player. You get the idea. Diversity is a necessary condition to overall health and welfare no matter where we look.
The American model of a melting pot when compared and contrasted with models of diversity tends to fare poorly. What we see happen is the development of social silos, of guarded enclaves, of legal privilege. of gangs and ghettos and extreme economic stratification. These do not produce or enhance a common social foundation but its opposite where violence and the use of force becomes commonplace, where differences and diversity are treated socially as a threat to the status quo. The carrot of one day achieving extreme wealth and privilege is held in such high regard that most Americans think any other model – models that work to produce what most Americans say they value the highest – peace, freedom, prosperity, education, medicine, and so on – is an enemy of the state. In the US we see the incremental breakdown of social order and people actively working against their own best interests and living with a fear of the Other as if this model was an unassailable moral good.
Muslims fall into this category of the ‘Other’.
In Canada, by far the most popular major in the country by is a muslim. His religious beliefs are private and his concern. But as major of Calgary, he has to be a secularist and this is how it must be if we are to respect diversity. Can you imagine a similar city in the US, say Houston, electing a muslim? We have gay premiers – and a married female gay premier of Ontario – who have to leave these private matters out of their governing in the public domain. Can you imagine a similar state in the US, say Texas, electing a gay married woman to its governorship? Canada regularly elects members of all visible minorities because the people understand that the public domain is secular and accessible to all regardless of private and personal differences. And it all starts with children learning how to get along with others regardless of their differences – be they religious, ethnic, physical, gender, linguistic, cultural… it doesn’t matter when this project has to be completed and presented on this date, or this concert band has to perform as a unit, or this team has to play as a team.
Muslims in Canada have probably the loudest imams in the world issuing fatwas against other muslims condemning any violence done in the name of Islam, creating direct connections with local police and federal agencies reporting on Wahabi activity and the various speakers who come to mosque. Canadian muslims who are motivated to act contrary to peace, order, and good governance almost always do so in isolation outside the country because there is a very great deal of muslim contempt for those willing to act contrary to our common Canadian secular values. Too many muslims who have gone through public education have very strong and sustaining bonds with the ‘Other’ in all its forms to go along with any group’s vilification like we see coming out of the States. It’s a process called multiculturalism – rather than a melting pot it is a mosaic celebrated every year in every city with all kinds of events open to the public – but it’s unique kind of multiculturalism woven into the very fabric of the country and an absolutely essential feature of this vast and diverse country whose history has gone through its bloody years breaking down silos and has emerged as a model of peace, order, and good government where one’s neighbours and coworkers are not feared because of their differences yet composed from the diversity of the world. And they’re great people (which is probably why Canada has never lost a war).
Muslims – like most people – are great people. But their religious beliefs need to be challenged directly each and every time they are brought into the public domain and revealed to be the very great danger they really are. And the same is true for Christians.
Okay Tildeb, for the sake of this conversation, lets say I agree with everything you suggest. I believe though that the reality is that it going to take a little time to convince more of the 300 million Americans now residing in the USA to agree with us.
In the meantime, what should our government leaders do to reduce the risk of allowing more Muslim terrorists coming into the USA or indoctrinating more home grown terrorists to their cause, to kill us.
I am eagerly looking forward to your suggestion and do not personally care if our government leaders are gay, religious, atheists, or whatever misguided or not sexual or godly preferences they have.
All I want to know is what should we do now to prevent more terrorists (wolves) from coming here and trying to kill any more of the 300 million sheep (us) because time is working to favor the influx or more terrorists rather than us (prey) .
Do you agree time is working against us if we don’t do something NOW?
Regards and good will blogging.
The flippant response is for all of us to draw and publish cartoons of Mohamed. The more serious answer is to monitor and intervene with charges against those who plan to cause and promote violence.
But that’s merely treating one particular kind of symptom. The root cause is this dangerous notion that acting on religious belief contrary to strict secularism in the public domain is moral and right and proper. It’s not. It is a form of treason. And that should be reinforced in federal and state law. We – all of us who value freedom of religion – need to wake up and treat public expressions of religious belief with the distrust, disdain, and criticism it so richly deserves. It has no business in the public square, no business with public policy, governance, education, medicine, defense, no business interfering with access to reproductive treatments and therapies and procedures, no right to receive public tax exemptions and unpaid services, no privileged voice whatsoever but the right to be mercilessly mocked and ridiculed and made a pariah in the public domain. Let’s just see who the natural allies of militant and extreme Islam is, shall we?
Despite your recognition of jihadism as a major problem, you are among the “natural allies of militant and extreme Islam,” as you insist on shrouding Islam in a fog of “all religions are the same” and you equate a public expression of Christian belief to the slaughter of innocents by jihadists.
When people talk of “Christian terrorists,” they have little to support their arguments in the last half-century or so. Abortion clinic bombers acted alone, and were not following Christian leadership mandates to go and kill doctors performing abortions. In many cases, the bombers intentionally tried to avoid loss of life. But you never had Christian leadership come out and proclaim their praise for the bombers; they found the attacks abhorrent. This is a key difference from jihadists, but not the only one.
Another key difference is a matter of scale. These “Christian terrorists” in the past half-century were responsible for 22 deaths as of the last time I tracked those reports, and none recently. Jihadists kill more than this before lunch on an average day. (Timothy McVeigh was a secularist; he was “re-invented” as a Christian by the leftist media after 9/11, and the Oklahoma City bombing evidently had some al Qaida support according to counter-terrorism czar Richard Clarke. McVeigh was not a jihadist, but they were apparently happy to help him.)
By equating all religions, you use the demonstrably non-violent Christian faith as human shields to protect the jihadists.
I found it interesting that your goal, stated up-thread, was not to prevent acts of terrorism, but to prevent Christians from having “influence.” You seem to be using an acknowledgment of the jihadist issue to advance this agenda. It is more clever than your usual approaches, but flies in the face of the US legacy of religious freedom.
At one point, you were ahistorically invoking Lincoln’s speeches as support for secularism, carefully quoting around his own public proclamations of faith. It could be argued that Lincoln was not very devout personally, but that is not the issue here: He believed that public proclamations of faith and recognition of what he called divine Providence were important to say, and good for the country. I think he was correct in this, but correct or not, he absolutely provides no support for your causes.
I am not only secular, I am a life-long non-theist. I use non-theist instead of atheist to avoid being confused for poisonous militant anti-Christians such as you. But I am also keenly aware of the history of this country, and know the real stories behind such Leftist touchstones as the Letter to the Danbury Baptists and the Treaty of Tripoli. I know why Washington and Adams strove to avoid offending the jihadists until Jefferson was ready to fight them, and I know where that half-ton of cheese went, and where Jefferson went after it arrived.
Christianity was very significant to this country’s founders, and still is for most people. It does a great deal of good, and efforts by people like you who attack it do a great deal of harm.
===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle
Back to your usual obfuscating tricks, I see.
Do you support freedom of religion?
Yes indeed. (See? A simple, direct answer to a question. It’s not that hard, tildeb.)
You have expounded at length demonstrating that you do not, as denying Christians any “influence,” prohibiting public expressions of Christian faith, and forcing Christians to act against their beliefs under pain of jail are all part of what you call “freedom of religion.” No framer of the Constitution would recognize your arguments, nor the country you envision.
===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle
Your lack of comprehension skills are showing again, Keith. What you think I wrote and what I wrote are not even close.
My point is that if you accept that people have the right to freedom of religion, then you must protect this right. I draw a very clear distinction between the right to believe whatever one wishes and the right to act on them. Freedom of religion can be obtained by theists exercising the former but legally restraining the latter. And the reason for this is to guarantee a neutral public domain… an idea you erroneously equate with public expression and then attribute your substitution to me. This a typical tactic you use repeatedly and it’s as tiresome as it is intentionally dishonest. I even outlined many of the institutions that are part of the public domain and must be held separate from religious privilege but, of course, you cannot possibly understand my actual meaning if it interferes with painting my position as you choose it to be.
If we are to converse through this medium, you need to smarten up and stop misrepresenting me. I don’t care if you call me names. I don;t care if you think poorly of me. But I do care if you continue to misrepresent me. Stop doing that, Keith. I presume with my usual sunny disposition that you are capable. Please don’t prove my hopes misplaced.
You claim I am misrepresenting you in the post you are replying to. Let a candid world consider the following facts. Here is my entire relevant paragraph:
This contains a limited number of assertions of your position:
• That you wish to deny Christians influence
You had written:
There is no such law, but your lack of understanding here is well known; you continue to suggest that “separation of church and state” is in the Constitution.
You had previously referred to Citizen Tom with the term “woo”; you are theoretically referring to all religions, which include Christianity of course, but you’ve demonstrated a special fire in your heart against Christianity, and with jihadists the issue is the implementation of Shariah through jihad, not public expression.
• That you wish to prohibit public expressions of Christian faith
Here are the mechanisms you would enlist in this prohibition, since the law is not on your side:
It is clear enough that you wish to prohibit such public expressions of religious belief, and could you enact a law for it you would do so.
• That you wish to force Christians to act against their beliefs under pain of jail
You actually touched on this in your previous diatribe:
You consider “interfering with access” to abortion as being unwilling to pay for it, and you would force people to pay for it against their religious beliefs on pain of jail. Were this not true, there’d be nothing here for you to complain of, since the Hobby Lobby case was about forcing them to pay for it. Access was available to the abortifacients through any number of other avenues.
You have claimed a “legal right” to force individuals to sell goods and services sold “in the public domain” to be sold to anyone, for any purpose. If they have religious objections, you would rule these invalid and force them to cater events they object to. Similarly, you have repeated that refusing to pay for your services for you because of relgious objections is denying
I addressed your hypocrisy in a previous comment:
I am always intrigued that the Left pretends to absolutely stand for tolerance of opinion, and will happily destroy the careers of anyone who disagrees. But I have read Marcuse, and the doctrines of the Frankfurt School; I know the Left’s actual stance with regard to freedoms it considers to be “reactionary.”
Here, you speak of a “right” to force someone to produce goods or services for you, and in fact you named your claim on their goods and services a “legal right” that would be “reduced” if they were allowed to decide who they wished to provide them to. Where did such a right come from, do you think? Does it apply to religious opinions? Political opinions? The right to keep and bear arms?
I will give Marcuse credit for the notion of humans becoming extensions of the commodities they buy. He died just before the rise of cellphones, but that description certainly applies. But his idea that any art, or any other form of expression, must be destroyed or suppressed if it did not support his totalitarian ideals … we are seeing that coming into play increasingly on college campuses, in media coverage, and in the attacks on businesses like Chick-Fil-A.
It is thus not surprising to me that the only group of people who make a career out of attacking and destroying the careers of gays are hard-left Democrats, who endeavor to make life miserable for any gay who happens to be conservative. The attackers have never been very successful, as conservatives are far more tolerant and “outing” a gay employee does not cause them much heartburn. But it certainly burns the Left that a gay, a woman, a black is conservative and thus “off the plantation.” Somehow, among the “rights” that the Left has claimed is the right to attack such people and deny them a livelihood.
===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle
According to Walid Shoebat, a former Muslim and Muslim Brotherhood member, there is no “moderate” or “peaceful” Muslim. Muslims literally understand the Quran. A so-called “moderate Muslim” or “peaceful Muslim” is a Western lie. According to Shoebat, Muslims who appear to be “moderate” or “peaceful” are actually fulfilling the Quran. The Quran, according to Shoebat, charges the Muslim to use deception when he is (or they are) a minority in a foreign nation, that is to say, to “get along” with his (or their) infidel neighbors. When Muslims become the majority in that foreign nation, they use jihad to usher in a caliphate.
Since the Koran or the Quran (I have no idea why scholars supposedly prefer the latter expression.) calls for the persecution of unbelievers, I do find it somewhat difficult to accept the notion that most Muslims are moderate. Nevertheless, human beings tend to be rather odd creatures. Most of us, even Muslims, don’t make a practice of murderous behavior — unless we find it socially acceptable to relegate some group to an inferior status. That trait, accepting the social norm, is what has made the institution of slavery a recurring sin. Even Christians have been guilty of it
What is unfortunate about the Koran is that unlike Bible it excuses the persecution of other human beings simply because they believe in something different. Some want to believe that is also true of the Bible, but the Hebrews did not slaughter the Canaanites just because they were idol worshipers. The Canaanites were evil. For example, the Canaanites worshiped one of their gods by sacrificing their own children to that god.
RFK’s words, in my opinion, can transcend time. In many ways he’s speak to you Tom and to me. He’s also speaking to Tildeb and their disdain for their fellow American who chooses to live their life by the doctrine and dogmas of religion.
A world absent of religion/moral absolutes/natural law and governed by secular zealots is just dangerous as any religious zealot. In a more secular world, comes moral relativism. Which constantly quantifies its position on what is considered moral. A world where eugenics and murder are justified, and those who stand against such atrocities are deemed ignorant of the progressing times.
If we all look at the other with a tad bit more empathy, I think we could do better for our society.
Wow, are you ever wrong.
I do not disdain any responsible citizen because of their religious beliefs. We share full citizenship including all the rights and freedoms that come with it. What I disdain are irresponsible citizens who threaten my rights and freedoms (and safety). Why you think this is a bad idea I would be glad to hear.
I sincerely don’t care about a person’s religious beliefs – or belief in any kind of woo – unless he or she tries to import that belief into my life for effect. And then we’ve got a very real problem. My ‘final solution’ is to maintain the law that separates woo-meisters from influencing the public domain. Again, why you think this is a bad idea I would be glad to hear.
Your passing references to totalitarianism and eugenics as if they were somehow the logical and reasonable associative property of secularism is a transparent attempt to smear the 25% of Americans today who uphold the Constitution and respect separation of church and state. If that’s not misplaced disdain, I don’t know what is. To pretend that the right conclusion – the empathetic response – is to STFU criticizing irresponsible citizens is accommodationism and apologetics of the worst kind, the kind that undermines everyone’s fundamental and SECULAR rights and freedoms… you know, the kind of SECULAR right and the SECULAR freedom to believe whatever religious nonsense you want to believe without legal interference or censure. Calling this separation ‘zealotry’ reveals the depth of your confusion. But to then tacitly support those who would use these rights and freedoms to undermine your own and call it empathy is the typical mewling and fawning used by those who practice the ultimate disdain of your fellow citizens by appeasing the anti-secularists. This is a battle for rights and freedoms you cannot win by XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX. You actually have to stand up and confront irresponsibility… beginning with your own. Smarten up.
tildeb – If you want to discuss ideas, we can discuss ideas. If you want to be insulting, since none of us are perfect, you can easily find a suitable target in a mirror. — Citizen Tom
Your response here is blind. phadde2 did not tell anyone to shut up. He said it is wrong to tell anyone to do that.
Note however, with your efforts at ridicule, you are trying to silence others, and you have said as much.
CT, you’re right; phadde2 did not tell anyone to shut up.
But (again) you miss the point; he did tell people to beware secular zealots, meaning what? Well, he meant to beware the accompanying zealotry he associates with secularism, namely, totalitarianism and eugenics as evidence for it. This is a lie. He then tells us that we need more empathy… as compared to, what? Well, secular criticism. It’s apparently mean and nasty… compared to, say, working hard to discriminate against the equal rights of gays and women. You see what he’s really saying here? His comment t amounts to telling secularists to back off, to stop criticizing religious privilege and discriminatory support, because doing so is zealotry that will bring on totalitarianism and a return to eugenics. That, CT, is politely summed up with STFU.
I ma not trying to silence anyone; I’m trying to get people to think about what they’re saying, expose bad reasoning, and ridicule those who prefer trusting faith-based beliefs contrary to and incompatible with reality. And the reality in this case is that your rights and freedoms, phadde2’s rights and freedoms and my rights and freedoms are the same, which are purely and unequivocally secular without any reference to any god and requiring none.
I am a big fan of enlightenment values and primary among them is the notion of individual autonomy in law. I will fight for that – and I have. That means my individual autonomy from your religious overlord. That means phadde2’s individual autonomy from a muslim’s islamic overlord. That means your individual autonomy from the Tom Cruise’s religious overlord. That individual autonomy is fully secular and shared by all. Gods play no part. That is what I support and will criticize anyone for suggesting that certain religious ideas are worth legal privileging over and above these shared rights. To couch this as ‘zealotry’ leading to totalitarianism and eugenics demonstrates either a tremendous ignorance of what secularism is or an intentional smear against the characters of those who defend these shared secular rights and freedoms BASED ON INDIVIDUAL AUTONOMY from enemies foreign and domestic. Either way, the caricaturing of secularism in this way belittles the Constitution of the United States to be some kind of fascist/communist threat and undermines THE BASIS of our shared rights.
Is that commentary ‘silencing’ anyone? Hopefully, it will get more people to think a little more clearly before opening their mouths and saying something so incredibly stupid and offensive. Is that a bad thing? Is it too nasty to defend our shared rights against the opinions of accommodationists and religious apologists who would dismember the legal notion of individual autonomy in order to impose their brand of religious oversight on all?
Get over it.
What was phadde2 guilty of? He stated his dislike of and disagreement with beliefs you hold sacred, and I use that word sacred with calculated intent. What your atheism is based upon is what you want to believe, what you hold close to your heart because you want to believe it. Your atheism is your religion, but what is sad about it is that it has more to do with desire than reason. Why do you want to believe God does not exist?
Given your characterization anyone who believes in God, your complaints against phadde2 don’t hold water. If you want the right to speak freely, then you are going to hear what you don’t want said. What should worry about is whether or not what you don’t want to hear is true. Given your angry response, I would say you are worried.
Back to this old trope, that atheism is just another kind of religion?
I hold enlightenment values not because I believe in them but because they have been demonstrated to be values that allow the greatest number the greatest freedom as well as government that works to produce peace, order, and good governance even with diverse populations. And the basis of this form of government is the legal recognition and protection for individual autonomy. I have yet to come across a better form. If I did, I might very well conclude that it deserves my confidence and support. You are not just incapable of doing the same when it comes to your religion but will actively deny even the possibility that you might be wrong.
What frustrates me is your inability to see beyond your own convictions. You don’t even understand the basis of your government, the basis of the Constitution. You have a religious narrative that you are going to uphold regardless of anything else… not history, not the truth, not even the document itself. You live in your own bubble world and pretend to be what you are not: a patriot. And this is very sad.
Is Atheism just another kind of religion? I think so. I can’t imagine how anyone thinks believing God does not exist makes sense, but people uses to worship idols. As a practical matter, those pagans were Atheists. They worshiped gods of their own creation. That’s all an Atheist can do.
I use to be an agnostic, but I eventually decided that not believing required more faith than believing Jesus died on a cross for our sins. I decided to believe the Bible because it makes logical sense. When I was a boy, I said otherwise. When I became a man, I put away childish things.
2. My understanding of our form of government comes from reading what the people who formed it said and wrote about what they did.
Right on cue, you provide the associated trope, that atheism means “believing God does not exist.”
For the umpteenth time, you – not atheists – are making non belief into a belief to suit your assertions. That twisting is a clue that you are practicing really poor thinking skills. An atheist is someone who does NOT BELIEVE in gods or a god. That’s it. Non belief is not another kind of belief any more than your non belief in Mictecacihuatl is another religious belief you hold. The trope is so stupid and so easily demonstrated to be false that it is remarkable that otherwise relatively intelligent and literate people capable of reading and comprehending the written word continue to peddle it.
It’s a lie.
This tiresome trope is recycled and reused again and again and again by faitheists – and not just religious people – who require atheists to be placed only in their mind at some extreme and unreasonable and intolerant end of a belief standard in order to make room for themselves in the created middle ground of tolerance, reasonableness, and hand-holding kumba ya sing-alongs for their prevaricating position. The only problem, of course, is that the trope isn’t true. One either believes in gods or a god or one does not. Not believing is not a belief. The ‘not’ is a rather important aspect of the definition… and should not be conveniently swept aside in order for the false definition you continue to use to be inserted in its place.
Since belief in God is a matter of reason and has also been proven by discoveries in modern science, atheism is indeed a belief – a very intellectually stunting belief, as a matter of fact.
Atheism is essentially the belief that both science and reason are subject to the bias of personal opinion.
That explains why atheists are so hell bent on their beliefs in hoaxes like global warming, ObamaCare, and Hillary Clinton.
When you want to use your own definitions and your own facts, it is rather difficult to have an intellent discusion with you.
Here is something about the word origin.
You want to call this definition of atheism a lie? Frankly, I don’t care that much, but I am not going to humor you and help you corrupt the word.
As a practical matter, your arguments show a distinct revulsion for a belief in God. You would deny anyone the right to express their belief in God in the public square. Therefore, it seems to me that you talk out of both sides of your mouth. That must be very awkward.
In your comment you actually catch the atheist in the act of applying personal bias to the definition of words so that the atheist won’t have to deal with the truth.
Truly, atheists would not be atheists if they were able to deal with the truth.
Our Western Heritage is the greatest accomplishment of mankind because an entire civilization grew up from it that was dedicated to the truth common to all men, not the personal bias of tyrant in charge.
My own definition and my own facts? Give your head a shake, CT.
From Oxford English Dictionary: atheism, Disbelief or lack of belief in the existence of God or gods.
Are you accusing me of writing the Oxford English Dictionary? Are you accusing the Oxford English Dictionary of corrupting the word? Come on. Quit being such a tool of the witless.
You compound your error by saying “You would deny anyone the right to express their belief in God in the public square” and take that to mean no one can talk about religion. This is not true so I will clarify yet again.
First, let’s revisit JFK shall we?
“I believe in an America where the separation of church and state is absolute—where no Catholic prelate would tell the President (should he be Catholic) how to act, and no Protestant minister would tell his parishioners for whom to vote—where no church or church school is granted any public funds or political preference—and where no man is denied public office merely because his religion differs from the President who might appoint him or the people who might elect him.”
This was the assurance he gave to an uncertain public about how much or little his Catholicism would influence his governance. His answer you can read. I agree with him.
This public domain is where public law and public government affecting every citizen is done in their name and by their tacit consent. This is where religion and religious belief should have no presence whatsoever because introducing it here cannot help but adversely affect a part of the public without their consent. The secular government of the United States has no Constitutional legal basis to privilege any religion or religiously-based idea or policy. None. To do so – like administration after administration have done through tax exemption, at a trivial cost of over 100 billion dollars this year in the US – is contrary to the separation of church and state and amounts to a public subsidy. That’s not talking out both sides of my mouth, CT; that’s what you continue to exhibit. I remain consistent and for what I think are very good reasons.
I checked your definition => http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/atheism
But you should have clicked on a link on that page. It says to “See definition in Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary.” =>http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/atheism
Here is what you will find.
What you call Atheism, everyone else calls Agnosticism.
Revisit JFK? I think you got RFK and JFK mixed up. And phadde2 brought up RFK, but — shrug — it doesn’t matter.
When JFK spoke those words, he was just trying to reassure folks he would not force his religion upon them. The phrase separation of church and state, however, does not exist in the Constitution. See https://citizentom.com/2011/12/13/why-we-cannot-separate-state-from-church-a-few-more-thoughts/
There is a certain dishonesty in what you are doing. Because of your religious beliefs, you insist upon “secularizing” the public square, forcing other people to shut their mouths about their beliefs. In fact, you want to use the government to indoctrinate children so they will believe what you believe. Your comments here => https://citizentom.com/2015/01/11/why-do-children-need-a-religious-education/#comment-56509 and here => https://citizentom.com/2015/01/11/why-do-children-need-a-religious-education/#comment-56519
As a practical matter, when you use the expression religious freedom, the people who wrote the Constitution would not agree with your definition of religious freedom anymore than I agree with your definition of an Atheist.
Also note JFK’s words that Tildeb quoted. He indicates that the Church leadership will not dictate how he governs. However, JFK says nothing of his ability to govern based on the morals that may have come from his faith.
In many ways Lincoln battled with skepticism; however, in the Second Inaugural he expresses the nature of sin with the entire nation supporting slavery. I’ll concede the points about slavery in the bible, but read the words of Lincoln:
“If we shall suppose that American Slavery is one of those offences which, in the providence of God, must needs come, but which, having continued through His appointed time, He now wills to remove, and that He gives to both North and South, this terrible war, as the woe due to those by whom the offence came, shall we discern therein any departure from those divine attributes which the believers in a Living God always ascribe to Him? Fondly do we hope — fervently do we pray — that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. Yet, if God wills that it continue, until all the wealth piled by the bond-man’s two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash, shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said f[our] three thousand years ago, so still it must be said “the judgments of the Lord, are true and righteous altogether”
Now, for the sake of argument, if Lincoln has come to the conclusion to abhor slavery due to his faith in God, and the people elected him, knowing his position, can he not act on his beliefs? Seven states immediately objected to his election. Do JFK’s words render Lincoln’s obsolete? I personally do not think so.
What I find curious about atheists, agnostics, and most other non-Christians is that they appeal to Christian arguments and moral standards to defend their freedom to live by and practice their own beliefs. Yet when Christians complain in defense of their rights, often using much the same arguments, we get howls for the separation of church and state.
Does the previous assertion seem unsupportable? Well, that’s because so many have forgotten that freedom of conscience is a Christian concept. When Jesus walked up the soil of Israel, He did not force anyone to become one of His disciples. His apostles died for believing in Him, as martyrs, not as violent men killing all who refused to believe. With the example of their own faith they PERSUADED others.
tildeb spoke of the Enlightenment, proudly claiming it for his own cause, but there were two enlightenment philosophies, not just one (see => https://citizentom.com/2007/04/10/christianity-and-western-civilization/). In France, the worship of the Goddess of Reason led to the Reign of Terror. In England and America, the application of Christian love led to the formation of a stable parlimentary government in England and a vibrant republic in America.
Whether we agree or disagree that Jesus is God, there are practical advantages in practicing what He taught. With respect to government, the adoption Jesus’ teachings led the people of America to believe in God-given rights, that we each have inherent rights and that government exists to defend those rights.
Unfortunately for Atheists, reason alone does not seem to provide enough motivation to cause us to believe that others have inherent rights. We can easily believe in our own inherent rights, but we rave against conceding the inherent rights of those who think differently. To believe that other men have inherent rights we have to love them, and reason alone does not provide sufficient cause for men to love their neighbors. Even those who call themselves Christians find it difficult to love their neighbors, but that’s why Jesus calls upon us to follow His example and pray in His name. We need the help of God’s grace.
Telling me to “smarten up” is condescending, inferring that I’m ignorant is actually proving my point.
I have zero disdain for you, or secularist in general. I don’t mind if government is secular, however, if a State or local government decided to legislate law in accordance to that society, its closer to Madison plan of government described in Federalist 51 than the modern alternative, which doesn’t mean I agree with it or necessarily disagree with you. You’re assuming my beliefs just as much as you claim that I am. I’ve read many of your comments on this blog, and others, from what I can see from your comments you belittle any who have faith. You’re anger at my charge that you show empathy, and attempt to discuss differences rather than ad hominems again further proves my point.
Discussing ideas, constitutional text, federalist essays, and Special state convention ratification debates. I having examined all of the above in accordance to the Constitution, during LES American Law classes, I can tell you from the readings, the text where you cry this clause of separation of church and state is lacking. You can attempt, as well as others, to use the 1st amendment for this imaginary clause, however, studying the amendment in the reference of its time and culture, it’s only a “freedom of Religion” that State government cannot have a Hierarchal church legislating law like the Church of England. However, the idea that it creates a constitutional law that prevents a society from legislating laws that happen to coincide with its religious majority of the people is absurd. The only possibility that this clause would exist is from Living Document theory, this isn’t even a Hamiltonian expansion of the constitution.
The Courts created it by Judicial Review, which is also not in the Constitutional text, using a letter by Thomas Jefferson to the Dansbury baptist. However, Thomas Jefferson also said this in reference to the idea of Judicial Review:
“To consider the judges as the ultimate arbiters of all constitutional questions [is] a very dangerous doctrine indeed, and one which would place us under the despotism of an oligarchy.”
Ironic, How SECULARIST, including the Courts, pick and choose which Jeffersonian doctrine to adhere to as they charge Christians doing the same with the Bible… …
However, in Madisonian tradition, I am fully okay with the idea to legislate the will of the majority and also protect the rights of the minority; however, as we’re having this discussion its easier said than done.
I have empathy for you, my friend, and your beliefs, lack thereof, for whatever reasons, however, we must also not have the tyranny of the minority. I’ve read the entire Federalist Papers and studied the debates of the Constitution. I’ve read the accounts of the N. Carolina ratification where the people of N. Carolina ratified the Constitution that no Atheist could hold office. Atheism was nixed by the people of N. Carolina and its connection to the Religious Test. Future Supreme Court Justice James Iredell at the convention explained that swearing an Oath is a “solemn appeal to the Supreme Being, for the truth of what is said, by a person who believes in the existence a Supreme Being and in a future state of rewards.”
Regardless, the above is factual, I have ‘smarten up’. You can disagree with someone, and that person not be ignorant. However, you feel that those who have faith need to ‘smarten up’ so ultimately your disdain is open for all to see.
Also, I think Tom will appreciate the thought, Tildeb consider for all practical purposes, I was opposed to Tom’s stance by quoting RFK; however, with your diatribe against me, and my connection to my own faith, instead of being potential allies on this thread, you forced Tom and my stances to be closer aligned than they were originally by obstinately attacking faith in general. If you disagreed with empathy, we’d probably be discussing with Tom how we should seek to find common ground with people of other beliefs. Perhaps, not, I would imagine other faiths may bother you as well, but I wouldn’t know from the last comment.
“When you teach a man to hate and fear his brother, when you teach that he is a lesser man because of his color or his beliefs or the policies he pursues, when you teach that those who differ from you threaten your freedom or your job or your family, then you also learn to confront others not as fellow citizens but as enemies – to be met not with cooperation but with conquest, to be subjugated and mastered.
We learn, at the last, to look at our brothers as aliens, men with whom we share a city, but not a community, men bound to us in common dwelling, but not in common effort. We learn to share only a common fear – only a common desire to retreat from each other – only a common impulse to meet disagreement with force.”
When RFK spoke those words, he spoke at a different time and to a different problem. When RFK spoke, he spoke of nonviolent protesters, not of terrorists welding machine guns, bombing people, cutting off heads, and flying planes loaded with passengers into office buildings.
Just because someone calls himself a Muslim or a Christian, I don’t know if that man or woman can be trusted. I just know that too many Muslims support terrorism against non-Muslims, and very few Christians support terrorism against non-Christians. Therefore, because I care about the safety of my family, friends, neighbors and countrymen, I think it ill-advised to allow immigration from predominantly Muslim nations.
Does that mean I automatically regard Muslims as my enemy? No, I understand that the individual differences between people are quite substantial. I understand most Muslims are not cold-blooded killers, but killers there are. If we invite what is going on in the Middle East into this country, we have nothing to gain and much to lose.
If we invite what is going on in the Middle East into this country, we have nothing to gain and much to lose.
Too late. It’s already here. Right here, right now, even on this blog!
The problem, however, isn’t Muslims. The problem is religion, in this case Islam where people actually believe the Koran is the perfect word of God and some are even willing to follow some of the commandments. Crazy, am I right?
The same problem exists with Christians who actually believe the Bible is the perfect word of God and some are even willing to follow some of the commandments. Such crazy is infectious, too… in the name of ‘teaching children how to be good ‘_____’ (fill in the blank with some religious identifier… it doesn’t matter which one) ) about ‘learn’ about God (that is ti say, religious indoctrination).
The main difference (and it’s a rather important one) is that Christianity has already had its kick at the can with political power and it took a lot of blood to rectify this terribly stupid mistake. Of course, there are people today in the US and other Western countries who still think it’s a really good idea to get legal respect for religion back into dominance over the legal respect of individuals. I know… Crazytown revisited!
No doubt you’re wondering as I do what is the matter with these people’s cognitive skills? Where did their critical thinking go? Why don’t they know their history and, more importantly, recognize the very real and present danger to real people in real life when religious people begin advocating for ‘religious beliefs’ (they come in so many delicious flavours) to have a place at the legal table?
Crazy is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. Promoting religious belief in the public domain over individual legal rights – usually in the name of some imaginary improvement in public morality – is, by definition, crazy.
Actually, the problem is not religion. The problem is a particular ideology. When the Founders spoke of God-given rights, they spoke in accordance with their religious beliefs. The political/religious system that Mohammed created condemns freedom as Americans traditionally understand it.
What ended the religious wars in Europe? People read the Bible. Go back and read the history, and try to do without prejudice. The strife that followed the reformation that Martin Luther started ended when people started reading the Bible and realized Jesus would not have approved. It is our egos that demands that others live in conformance with our beliefs, not God.
What do you believe? I am not certain. You are so full of condemnation, so loud with what you are against, I don’t know what you are for. However, one thing appears likely. You would impose what you believe upon others. If that is what you believe, and that makes you as dangerous as any Muslim fanatic.
I think that outlawing an entire Religion from being able to immigrate into our great nation is not in accordance to Liberty. By opening our gates to the good people in the world, we we will always be at risk for those who wish to do evil.
However, in regards to Immigration, I wonder if there is something in the oath that could pin religious sect in a corner. WASP Americans for years, and the prejudice still remains somewhat to this day in our nation have seen Catholics as agents of the Pope, being raised Catholic, never affected my allegiance to the United States of America. However, in a religious class, I do remember something mentioned in the Koran that muslims could lie to non believers… I don’t know.
However, remember, if the terrorist cause us to betray our sense of Liberty, they’ve won.
Section 337(a) in the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), which provides that all applicants shall take an oath that incorporates the substance of the following:
Support the Constitution;
Renounce and abjure absolutely and entirely all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty of whom or which the applicant was before a subject or citizen;
Support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic;
Bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and
A. Bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; or
B. Perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by the law; or
C. Perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law.
When people believe it is okay to lie to unbelievers, what good is an oath?
The Constitution gives Congress the power to regulate immigration. Period.
Our system only works when enough people are willing to abide by the rules. Our rights are God-given, but the rules — the Constitution — are merely a device of our own making. Thus, it makes no sense to import immigrants ignorant of language and history in large numbers, and it is nuts to import immigrants from nations that are hostile to us.
Get it through your head. What we believe makes a difference in our behavior. That’s why culture is important. When we don’t protect our culture, we betray what we believe.
Notice it does not say “renounce any religious belief that is contrary to the laws of our nation.”
Until the Muslim faith changes it core beliefs to delete any approval to kill ifor any reason other than defend lives, (not souls or spirits), a Muslim cannot be a Muslim. Other religions leaders have agreed to amend their teachings in the past, but not Muslims.. I seem to remember reading an explanation that they can add but not change their core beliefs. If that is true, if they can only add, but not change, we cannot change Muslims beliefs that are contrary to our laws. It would be like asking a Christian to say the Jesus was not the Son of God.
In my opinion, all we are doing is adding risk factors to allow Muslims to continue to immigrate. Every business manager understands the concepts of risk management and would never do anything that would risk killing his customers.
What happens every time someone is killed, the result is the victim’s friends and relatives incurs a lifetime of hatred. We live close to one hundred years no a days. .
I personally do not care what religion a person believes in as long as they obey our laws when they are in the USA. If you consider every law in the world since the beginning of time killing another human will provoke the greatest length of hatred to another human.
In my opinion, we need to incorporate wisdom rather than passion about liberty when we make decisions. Allowing Muslims to immigrate into the US is foolish. Let Muslims live in whatever country where they believes in Islam. USA laws do not agree with killing and never will until everyone in the USA is a Muslim.
Regards and good will blogging.
How ironic the ‘god-given rights’ crowd seem to have encountered a wee bit of trouble figuring out which ‘god-given rights’ trump other ‘god-given rights’.
Who could have possibly seen that coming?
God-given rights are complementary and do not conflict with one another.
Which one’s are giving you trouble or are you just offering up another one of your hallucinations?
I do believe you are suggesting that all those who claim to believe are alike. Given the obvious differences, that’s not wise. It also does not work in your favor. Based upon your comments, how would I distinguish you from a “good” Communist atheist, a follower of Lenin or Stalin?
Reblogged this on Rudy u Martinka and commented:
In my opinion, the temperature in the melting pot is presently too hot to handle and is boiling over and flowing out more problems than was originally intended by whoever came up with the phrase, melting pot..
I my estimation the Muslim populus is our enemy. Regardless of their thought contrary to my own. I say this because there is not one Muslim who respects our Constitutional way of life, or; as an alternate view, who could not be persuaded by fellow Muslims, to re-establish themselves under Sharia Law.
To the Muslim there is no other way to serve god but through Sharia. Therefore any Muslim is susectable to forced loyalty outside of a Constitutional way of life.
The more Muslims arrive within the U. S. borders the more they possess a voting block of which will ultimately result in a take over of our nation; aside from violence and murder as a means of pursusion of the American people to succumb to their life style and relious zealous.
a true patriot of these united States i oppose Muslim belief and manner of conducting business as usual. I believe that all faithful followers of a Constitutional Republic should feel the same. There is no middle ground.
You’re making uninformed assumptions about people you can’t possibly know are correct assumptions
There is no shortage of information about Islamists. The holy books of Islam have been translated into English. We know the history of Muslim expansion. We can see how predominantly Muslim nations treat those who believe in anything besides their own version of Islam. What assumptions are you talking about?
If you are referring to me then it is yourself who makes assumptions. I have known a great many Muslim people. I have known them through correspondence and have known them face-to-face. Our conversations have been vast and many. many were converts from no religious persuasion – to – Christian converts.
Many converts of whom I’ve know have converted for no other reason than being accepted by Islam and the Muslim people. All under the disguise of “being embraced.” Many of these converts have been black American citizens.
When one becomes a Muslim they take an oath (of which “Oaths” have been discussed herein by other contributors to this blog post and on other grounds). Your allegiance becomes first to Allah, Mohammed, the Qur’an and Islam.
When one becomes a Muslim there is no Bill of Rights. Let’s not confuse ourselves with that issue. The Qur’an teaches “give infidels one opportunity to convert to Islam; if they refuse, “Kill Them.” make no mistake when talking about “rights”; there are none in Islam. There is “NO Due Process” in that regard.
I would think this raises a precarious position for atheists in general. Particularly placing them (atheists0 in the position of dying for a religious when all their lives (generally speaking) they have opposed the very thought of both a god and religious affiliation. Something to think about…….
@altruistico, who wrote:
It seems to me, based on research into relevant surveys, that your statement is overbroad. This is a good starting place: It assesses the degree of Muslim assimilation in the US with many relevant issues inquired of and reported.
Of particular interest is page 7 (of 8) which notes that nearly two-thirds of American Muslims think that Israel’s existence is no problem and is “a way to guarantee the rights of Palestinians.” More than four-fifths reject terrorism and say that it is “never justified as a defense of Islam.”
But there are interesting insights on each page.
===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle
If a Muslim is a US citizen, I am not for sending him or her back to their home country. If someone from a Muslim nation is trying to escape religious or political persecution, I welcome them here. Nevertheless, we have traditionally allowed people to immigrate here to benefit our family, friends, and neighbors, not to collect welfare or scheme against us. Unfortunately, we have some crazy politicians who will do anything to collect votes. That includes importing voters from nations where the people are hostile to us.
That poll you linked to makes my point. You should know better than to expect Muslims to testify against themselves to unbelievers. What is hilarious, however, is how much these people disliked George W. Bush and like Barack H. Obama. Given Obama’s Middle East policies, that says enough.
Unfortunately, we cannot depend upon our government to help us make loyal Americans (whatever that means) out of new immigrants. That’s because too many of our politicians look for voters loyal to them, not for citizens loyal to their family, friends, neighbors and country. Hence, we now have a welfare system that corrupts our own poor, a welfare system that makes it too easy for both illegal and legal immigrants to put off learning English and what once made a America a treasure worth protecting.
You know as well as I do that what people believe makes a difference. Therefore, you should also know that it makes no sense to bring people to the United States if their religious beliefs dictate the imposition of Sharia law. If someone believes in Sharia law, how does their coming here benefit our family, friends, neighbors or our country?
Why then do the 80% of whom you refer “not rise against the radical Islamist”? Are they not persuaded to do otherwise? Islam and the Muslim people believe fully in the Qur’an and it’s teachings. Even the simplest of Muslims hold extremist values.
My spelling and grammar errors tend to increase too when I get emotional. I know it was not easy to say what you said.
That and being quite tired when I wrote my thoughts down.
I do not think, Tom, it was hard for me to say what I said (or at least alluded to in my thought). My values, as an American citizen, are pretty much set in stone. Christian; faithful to One God who is the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob; and, a Patriot – one who is faithful and loyal to my country as a nation.
If I become predisposed that Islam is anything but my enemy; then I am susceptible to foreign indoctrination contrary to my principles and values as a Christian and Patriot. Foreign indoctrination in, and of itself, becomes my enemy. Thus those who would compel me into foreign religious principles and indoctrination and extract my belief in a Constitutional Republic; have no place – but to be my enemy.
I understand where you are coming from. It is unfortunate, but most of us have been indoctrinated to treat all religious beliefs as acceptable. In practice, however, that is not possible.
There was a time, and not so long ago, that some people sacrificed other people in the name of their religious beliefs. We don’t tolerate that anymore, but murder still happens in the name of religion, and calling the people responsible terrorists and members of fringe groups significantly understates the problem.
Nearly a quarter century ago I was in the Los Angeles public schools teaching math, in Spanish, to Central American immigrants.
When a student became unruly I would send him outside with a toothbrush to clean the gum off the walk way.
“If you don’t want to get educated,” I’d say, “then allow me to prepare you for your future job in landscape restoration!”
If the student was especially unruly, I’d have him use the toothbrush on the floor inside the classroom where I could keep an eye on him.
Of course, today, I wouldn’t last five minutes making such demands of our vast population of “dreamers.”
So you are the one responsible for all the Hispanics doing landscape work.
That’s funny, I did the same with my three sons when they misbehaved. I thought it was a lot more productive than grounding in which I would be grounded as well…