IN THE LAND OF THOSE WHO STAND FOR NOTHING, HOW DO WE DEFINE RELIGION?

What is our most basic God-given right? Let’s consider the 1st Amendment.

Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

When the people of the United States approved the Constitution, they insisted upon a Bill of Rights. Once the Constitution was approved, and the new government had started functioning, newly elected government officials did not have much enthusiasm for such a difficult task, but James Madison was good to his word. He took up the cause. Therefore, we recognize freedom of religion, including the free exercise of religion, as our most sacred right.

Unfortunately, laws have to be “interpreted” by fallible men. What is religion? The Supreme Court has never defined religion (see here, here, here, and here). Instead, using a phrase that is not in the constitution, the Supreme Court created this concept of a wall of separation between state and church (see WHY WE CANNOT SEPARATE STATE FROM CHURCH — A FEW MORE THOUGHTS), effectively misquoting Thomas Jefferson.

So what is “religion”? The word is not well defined. Consider various dictionaries.

Once you start considering various encyclopedias, it becomes clear that the term “religion” means different things to different people and even depends upon context.

Can I provide a definition here? Probably not, but here is a list of definitions. I like this one.

Religion is the state of being grasped by an ultimate concern, a concern which qualifies all other concerns as preliminary and which itself contains the answer to the question of the meaning of life. — Paul Tillich (from here)

What should be our ultimate concern? When we teach our children, who decides? Can we just avoid the issue? Consider the problem Lander7 posed in a comment he posted on ColorStorm‘s blog.

You have 10 kids in a class and 8 of them sniff glue. The only thing I want to know is why the other 2 don’t and then train those thinking skills into the next 10 who take the class. I don’t want to waste time creating laws to keep glue out of classrooms. I don’t want to have commercials saying how bad glue is. I don’t want law enforcement going car to car searching for glue. I don’t want politicians running for office on a “No more glue” platform. (from here)

If our ultimate concern is pleasure, why not sniff glue?

If You Don’t Stand for Something, You’ll Fall for Anything

(from here)

If we believe life has more meaning than that, then perhaps we will take the trouble to learn critical thinking skills. The issue is motivation, but how can we motivate children without addressing the ultimate concern? How can we say life has meaning without teaching a “true” religion? For the sake of our children, should our government teach a one, true, religion? Which one? As it is, our government promotes the notion that all religions are equally valid, which effectively means that none of them are true. Effectively, our government-run teach our children to stand for nothing.

There is a song Frank Sinatra was famous for singing, My Way. Consider the last stanza.

For what is a man, what has he got?
If not himself, then he has naught
To say the things he truly feels and not the words of one who kneels
The record shows I took the blows and did it my way

Frankly, I think the Bible answers that question (Psalm 8), “what is man”, far better than My Way. Still, what My Way shows is that even a secular man wants to address what he defines as his ultimate concern his way. None of us want to be put into involuntary servitude, not even by our government. We want the freedom to pursue our own definition of happiness.

As I tried to show in the last post, POORLY TAUGHT — PART 3, because mankind is deeply flawed, we cannot trust people with great power. Hence, we cannot trust government to teach our children — to decide for them — what should be their ultimate concern. Like as not, 80 percent of them will end up sniffing glue (or what seems to be more popular now) abusing opioids. Hence, I support school choice and school vouchers in particular.

Want an example of abusive government power with respect to religious choice? Consider Colorado baker hopes Supreme Court ruling boosts floundering wedding shop (foxnews.com). The Supreme Court, after clearly stating that the State of Colorado had abused Jack Phillips’ right to a fair hearing, left the main issue, the free exercise of religion, unsettled. Therefore, so-called LGBTQ “rights” activists can still attempt to use our legal system to force others to adopt their values. They just have convince those who stand for nothing to fall for a stupid idea, that it is hateful not to support an oxymoron, same-sex “marriage”.

Consider these questions.

There are four big questions in life.
–Why am I here?
–What is right and wrong?
–What brings me meaning
–What happens to a human being when I die?
— List from Ravi Zacharias (an expert in Christian apologetics) who says there are Four Questions To Answer In Life.(=>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hfb5-7mtC-8)

The reason the world is filled with different religions is because in our pursuit of happiness each of us comes up with our own answers to those questions. When we use government to impose one set of answers, even so-called secular answers, have we discovered the truth, the correct answers? No. Instead, we have just corrupted the efforts of some to search for the truth. Instead of protecting our fellows, we have abuse their rights.

ANSWERING FOLLY: PUBLIC EDUCATION is a post I wrote several years ago about the “right to and education”. As a practical matter, the “right” to an education just provides government busybodies the “right” to interfere in the education of other people’s children. The “right” to an education just illustrates how the road to Hell can be paved with good intentions.

95 thoughts on “IN THE LAND OF THOSE WHO STAND FOR NOTHING, HOW DO WE DEFINE RELIGION?

  1. Thanks for the links. I can’t help but wonder about the sanity of parents to allow their child to have a sex change when recent medical findings on brain development are finding normal brains do not fully develop until their early twenties. SAD.

    Regards and good will blogging

    Like

      1. I decided to write my post after reading your links. Present title will be “Fairfax County Madness and Folly”
        I might change it to something else. I hate to use words like like stupid or asinine because i wrote a post preaching only to use wise or foolish, but these words don’t seem adequate for Fairfax County, or the USA.

        Putin appears to me to be the best qualified to run the USA Federal Dept of Education., in my opinion.

        If he helped Trump get elected, we should all send him a thank you letter.

        Regards and good will blogging.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. scatterwisdom

      I suggest you do some more research and write your post. That Snopes article has not been updated in a while. Snopes also has a distinct Liberal Democrat bias.

      Here are some links.

      https://www.christianpost.com/news/doctors-say-virginia-school-districts-proposed-sex-ed-changes-lack-medical-justification-224672/

      https://www.christianpost.com/news/parents-barred-from-questioning-gender-identity-changes-virginia-school-district-meeting-221265/

      http://www.frcblog.com/2018/05/fairfax-county-school-board-teach-kids-biological-sex-meaningless/

      What Liberal Democrats do is push their agenda incrementally. Then they call Conservatives extremists, liars, and hateful when we point out their agenda and where their nonsense is leading to.

      Here is the current curriculum.
      https://www.fcps.edu/academics/academic-overview/family-life-education-fle

      Here are some other articles.
      http://www.holytrinityparish.net/pcps-family-life-education/

      Holy Trinity Catholic Church is in my neighborhood.

      https://www.arlingtondiocese.org/press-releases/2018/protect-fairfax-county-children-from-ideological-falsehoods-in-family-life-curriculum/

      The Diocese of Arlington is in Northern Virginia.

      http://www.familyfoundation.org/blog/fairfax-fle-recommendations-are-an-insult

      The Family Foundation is a respected lobbying organization (at least with Conservatives).

      https://thenationalpulse.com/politics/progressives-seek-impose-gender-ideology-virginia-school-curricula/

      http://www.wnd.com/2018/05/school-board-stunner-there-is-no-biological-sex/

      http://www.fox5dc.com/news/local-news/fairfax-county-public-schools-considering-controversial-new-sex-education-policy

      http://www.fairfaxtimes.com/articles/opinions/the-semantics-of-sexuality/article_1d8dddd0-4649-11e8-bbe9-1b52a162f6b5.html

      https://fairfaxfreecitizen.com/2018/01/13/public-school-kids-get-assembly-sex-changes/

      Note this stuff started percolating up through the local northern news media. So search at least six months back. Check out the last link.

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  2. Tom,

    Thanks for your “Here” mention in your timely post.
    .
    Reading today’s news accounts about Scotus and the Baker decision, I believe opens the need for a Scotus definition of religion is needed now more than ever. I would go so far as to state the decision opened up a “Grand Canyon” of the controversy on the First Amendment in regards to the interpretation of the phrase, “or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; :”

    A few examples,

    Keep in mind our friend Amanda’s belief that the First Amendment “protects seculars from religion”

    How secular schooling is doing the opposite by prohibiting religious education by high taxation to make private schooling unaffordable to the majority who would send their kids if they could afford to.

    How secular education is not protecting, and instead imposing, homosexual sex education on school children.

    Check out these this link which I plan to post after my disgust and anger cools.

    http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/public-school-sex-eds-descent-into-madness/

    Regards and good will blogging.

    o

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    1. @scatterwisdom

      My wife had the wisdom to insist upon sending our children to private schools. I was not especially happy about it, but I was growing concerned about the public schools too.

      Fairfax County is next door to where I live. I expect to reblog your post. It will help to show that county’s foolishness is becoming known far and wide.

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      1. Women are wise, in my opinion. I wondered where Fairfax County was after I replied and was surprised it was in your State.

        Sad,I doubt it would be allowed in Illinois.

        Regards and good will blogging.

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        1. The area around Washington D.C. is not representative of Old Virginia. There are lots of northern transplants in the urban areas.

          Old Virginia is hardly what I would call an emblem of moral purity, but Old Virginia is part the Bible Belt. FCPS’ idea of sex education in the public schools is not something Old Virginia would support.

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    2. “How secular education is not protecting, and instead imposing, homosexual sex education on school children.”

      Without getting into the merits of the religious view, I think that we might all agree that the taboo against the practice of homosexuality is peculiarly religious in nature. There is a good deal of honest theological diversity and disagreement over this taboo, even among Christians and between Christian denominations. Government, and especially the courts, therefore are stuck on the twin horns of the 1st Amendment between establishing one religious point of view over another if government either promotes or discourages homosexuality, and on the other hand, preventing the free exercise of religion if it also promotes or discourages homosexuality. Is it possible to, however, to be religiously neutral, or even better, to take religion out of the issue either way, and decide the issue impartially? Maybe not, but that is the difficult, maybe even impossible, tightrope government attempts to walk.

      IMHO, the fact that government is constantly, imperfectly trying to walk this tight rope rather than swinging wildly toward one religious view or another is a sign that our institutions of government are actually succeeding, rather than failing. Unfortunately, if one side or another marginally loses in any given government action on any given day, then that side screams that the sky is falling even though it’s just raining and the sky is doing the best it can in imperfectly maintaining a balance between too much sunshine and too much rain. Someone’s going to be unhappy either way.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. What is interesting about the most recent SCOTUS decision on cake bakers is that both sides are upset. Perhaps maybe that means that SCOTUS got it just right? I think so, but I like to think that we should be less concerned over whether our particular identity group is victorious in crushing our enemies, and more concerned about tolerance, compassion, compromise and ultimately, love rather than hate.

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        1. You are making this way to complicated. It is about right and wrong, not being “moderate”. Statistical “moderation” is not even close to being the same thing as being right.

          If you are between a rock and hard place, is being crushed the “moderate” solution? Would it not make more sense to get out of the way?

          Religious freedom as defined by the 1st Amendment does not have to be not especially complicated, until busybodies get hold of it. We, each of us, not just “special people” like the clergy or organizations like churches, get to believe what we wish and practice those beliefs until we interfere with someone else’s rights. That includes choosing who we want to do business with. Government has no authority to choose our either our friends or our business associations.

          If I walk into place of business and I demand that the people who own that business do something they think wrong, does the Constitution give me the right to sic government lawyers on them if they refuse my request? Does the Constitution sanction private businesses that way? No. If my request actually is reasonable, I can “punish” a business that refuses my request by taking my business some place else.

          Think of it this way. I plan to have a traditional wedding, and I want a cake for it. There is a bakery down the street that makes cakes I like, and it operated by a guy with a odd name. When I ask for a wedding cake, he tells me he only make wedding cake for the people of the XXXXX faith. What do I do? I take my business to a competitor. I find out more about this guy’s faith, and I tell my friends what happened. I don’t waste hundreds of thousand of dollars in court or try to drive the guy out business and put him and family on the public dole.

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          1. Have you considered that the reason that you don’t think interpreting the two conflicting provisions of the 1st Amendment’s religious clauses isn’t “complicated” is because you may have overmuch certainty in your ability to interpret God’s will? I’m just a mere human who has a doctorate of juris prudence where I studied constitutional law so I readily admit that I lack the expertise and divine revelation to have your pride of absolute certainty in such things as what kind of sex is prohibited by God. Given that obvious handicap, and having read numerous SCOTUS cases, balancing the various rights in each unique fact situation, it seems pretty complicated to me. Even your own hypothetical seems complicated, and you as much as say so.

            If they even make it to the SCOTUS, the cases seem far from black and white. In its constitutional duty to prevent commercial businesses from discriminating against certain classes of citizens that that state chooses to protect, the state must also take into account the sincerely held religious beliefs of the “commericial” business owner. And in my understanding of the most recent cake decision, Justice Stevens essentially said as much. However, Stevens also said that that ability to discriminate in violation of state anti-discrimination laws is also not absolute.

            Imagine the situation where no business in your state will provide you with any basic goods and services, not because of anything you have done, but exclusively because you belong to a minority religion. Would that still be a black and white case where businesses should be free to discriminate?

            What if, instead of the neutral sale of a good or service, the nature of the product required a more active and religiously disdainful participation in the transaction that was unusual to what the business owner generally provided for customers of all other religious beliefs?

            It’s only uncomplicated if we ALL have a high degree of certainty in a given religious belief, not just some of us, or even the majority of us, and even then, in hindsight, we find out that the conventional, though sincerely held, beliefs of humans is often tragically wrong. Other than when no one disputes the moral truth of something, it only is black and white to me if I have a very high opinion of my ability to know with absolute certainty things that others vehemently dispute. That can happen too, I suppose. However, even if I have religious certainty of the truth of my opinion, how much should I be allowed to force or coerce others to change their behavior, particularly when their behavior or beliefs do not significantly effect me or my usual business practices? These seem like complex fact intensive constructional questions to me, but I’m not God now am I?

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          2. @tsalmon

            Your first paragraph just attacks me. It is not relevant.

            Your second paragraph ignores a critical question.

            If I walk into place of business and I demand that the people who own that business do something they think wrong, does the Constitution give me the right to sic government lawyers on them if they refuse my request? Does the Constitution sanction private businesses that way?

            The Constitution prevents the government (both Federal and State) from discriminating based upon race, sex, and creed. It says nothing about private individuals or businesses. It most certainly does not empower the government to create oxymoronic “rights” like same-sex “marriage” and force business people to participate in perverse fantasies. THAT IS BLACK AND WHITE.

            What you are demanding is a compromise with the devil, and that’s why I abhor what you are calling moderate. There is no virtue to be found in a compromise with the devil.

            Imagine the situation where no business in your state will provide you with any basic goods and services, not because of anything you have done, but exclusively because you belong to a minority religion. Would that still be a black and white case where businesses should be free to discriminate?

            You are comparing that to refusing to accept a special order, baking a cake for wedding? Seriously?

            Here is how absurd that is. Consider these two verses from the Book of Revelation.

            Revelation 13:16-17 New King James Version (NKJV)

            16 He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, 17 and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.

            There will come a time during the Great Tribulation when what you have described will happen. Those who believe in the God of the Bible and refuse to worship The Beast will have a choice. Accept the mark or suffer horrible persecution. One man, Satan’s man, will rule and use the power of government do to what you have described. Without the power of government, there is no practical way to enforce such restrictions against a minority religion.

            Why don’t you stop insisting our government has powers it does not have? You know what the Constitution says? When they are just behaving like corrupt fools, why pretend old men and women in black robes have special reading abilities? Except to make people do what they don’t want to do, there is almost no reason for the government to have the power to make business people do business with people they don’t want to do business with.

            Is there an exception? There is always an exception of some sort. About the only situation where it even comes close to making sense to force a businessman to violate his conscience is when people are on the road and need food, clothing, shelter and various travel related services. If you operate the only service station for miles on a lonely stretch of road in Nevada, it is tantamount to murder to refuse to sell gasoline to someone just because you don’t like the way they are dressed or some such stupid thing.

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          3. Got involved in the other line and just read this. You seem to be confused here.

            From a legal standpoint, this is too complex to deal with here without going into a lot of constitutional history. However, suffice it to say that the question of whether the Constition allows businesses to be regulated by the federal government was settled the middle of the last century. Whether “a state” such as Colorado can regulate business and afford new rights not in the US Constitution is another complex legal issue, but the basic concept has not been in question since the founding.

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          4. Save your expletives Tom. You seem to be confusing state powers with federal powers. My understanding is that the cake baking case in question dealt with Colorado’s enforcement of its own anti-discrimination laws. Neither the original framers nor the post-civil war framers would have questioned the power of states to regulate their own businesses. Separation of powers issues and how they evolved and drastically changed with the 14th Amendment is way too complex for me to try explain it here, but suffice it to say that the sovereign power of the Colorado to regulate its businesses I don’t think was an actual issue.

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          5. @tsalmon

            With respect to our rights, the post Civil War Amendments changed what the states can do. Anyway, this kind of stuff started with Civil Rights Act of 1964.

            Is it way to complex? Yep! That’s what is wrong with it.

            Have you ever heard this one?

            Oh! what a tangled web we weave
            When first we practise to deceive!
            –Sir Walter Scott

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          6. LOL. The rule of law it is what it is. Worst system in the world, except all the others.

            Actually, most of the regulation in this country goes on at the state level. When I was practicing law in Alabama a lifetime ago, I rarely ever went to federal court even though the specialty that I was building was in public law, which, as you might imagine from the baker case, has many US constitutional ramifications.

            Federalism, separation of powers, conflicts of law, variations of civil procedure rules, two separate court systems and 51 sovereign constitutions to deal with indeed makes it pretty complex. As a scientist, you know that complex systems evolve over time and take on a life of their own. Constant reform is indeed necessary, and much actually has been done over two centuries that you may not know about bevause it is not as sexy as complaining about the system. You may not like it (or completely understand it) but the 14th Amendment was a reform. However, in order to actually reform and even simplify, you must first understand the system. Otherwise Your just raging against the storm, don’t you think?

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          7. @tsalmon

            The system that is supposed to protect our rights is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma. What is the key? Whatever gives Liberal Democrat politicians more power? Well, in your world, it sure isn’t what is actually stated in the Constitution.

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        2. “Perhaps maybe that means that SCOTUS got it just right?”

          Not even close.
          I agree with Epstein here:
          http://www.scotusblog.com/2018/06/symposium-the-worst-form-of-judicial-minimalism-masterpiece-cakeshop-deserved-a-full-vindication-for-its-claims-of-religious-liberty-and-free-speech/

          “In contrast, the burden imposed on Phillips for the exercise of his rights of religion and speech includes the loss of his business license, heavy fines and mandatory participation in various re-education programs suitable only in totalitarian regimes.

          Craig and Mullins seek to raise the ante when they proclaim that “no one should have to face the shame, embarrassment, and humiliation of being told ‘we don’t serve your kind here’ that we faced.” But that hyperbolic statement fails to acknowledge the limited nature of Phillips’ refusal, and it wholly overlooks the shame, embarrassment and humiliation, and outright intimidation and abuse, that their vocal supporters are willing to inflict on Phillips for the exercise of his religious and expressive beliefs. While Craig and Mullins are blessed with multiple choices if CADA does not apply, Phillips has no place to run if it does.”

          Imagine a situation where a Christian went to a Muslim bakery and demanded an Easter cake with the message “Christ Saves”. Would your opinion be the same?

          Liked by 1 person

          1. My opinion, for what little that’s worth, would depend upon the peculiar facts of the case. Had the Muslim bakery provided similar cakes to other religious denominations in the past? What was the basis of the bakery’s objection? Artistic free expression or only the simple right to refuse “commercial” business goods and services to anyone who did not believe Mohamed is God’s prophet. Were the Christians a minority and therefore unable to find services anywhere reasonably close? Was their more of an invidious verses a religious intent in the cake decoration? It sounds like the buyers were doing this just to start a fight. Was it a state law rights protection question or strictly a federal constitutional question? Were the defendants afforded proper due process? I could go on.

            Any lawyer knows that the particular facts of the case matter. The practice of juris prudence in our system after all is the imperfect art of applying the current law to the specific facts in the adversarial crucible of court rooms. It’s a peaceful substitution for taking swords out and simply hacking at each other. And yes, because we are fallible humans in a finite fallen world, sometimes there is simply no perfectly right decision. The fact that lawyers on both sides vehemently disagree means little except that it is a tough case.

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          2. @tsalmon

            I am going to throw this back at you.

            Have you considered that the reason that you don’t think interpreting the two conflicting provisions of the 1st Amendment’s religious clauses isn’t “complicated” is because you may have overmuch certainty in your ability to interpret God’s will?

            It does not take much wisdom to let someone run their own business and suffer the consequences of their good and bad decisions. When business people discriminate inappropriately, they lose money for no good reason. On the other hand, what you want amounts to judges imposing their beliefs of upon the rest of us. What makes you think judges have the ability to interpret God’s Will any better than anyone else?

            Liked by 1 person

          3. I’m a little lost here Tom. So you now believe that the cake baker wrongly discriminated against the gay couple and that he should suffer a loss of business for that wrongful discrimination? That’s novel. If only that were true in all cases of wrongful discrimination. Do you think that in the Jim Crow South this was also true? Or instead, do you think that majorities discriminate against minorities because it’s good for business? Seems like you may have a rather naive view of consumerism if you think markets always magically protect minorities from wrongful discrimination.

            Is this really your best argument for why a state cannot regulate its own business from discriminating? Even the baker knew better than to think that long settled argument would actually fly. Instead, the baker asserted that SCOTUS (you know, those busybodies in black robes) should step in to “impose” their constitutional legal beliefs and save the baker from religious or free speech discrimination by the state. And the majority on the Court did save the baker by determining that a state commission member failed to show proper religious neutrality by improperly condemning the baker’s seriously held religious beliefs.

            The baker actually won. He just did not win the right to discriminate against gays, but instead the right not to have a state actor discriminate against him on religious grounds.

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          4. @tsalmon

            I’m a little lost here Tom. So you now believe that the cake baker wrongly discriminated against the gay couple and that he should suffer a loss of business for that wrongful discrimination?

            I think you are just pretending to be confused, but I will humor you. If business discriminates STUPIDLY, that business will suffer a loss. Even if a business discriminates rightly, a business may still suffer a loss. The courts are not just, and neither are customers. Only God is just and discriminates perfectly.

            If you expect justice out of a court, you are expecting too much. That’s why so very little actually belongs there. What belongs in a court is that which we must resolve, and we have no other way to resolve.

            The Jim Crow LAWs involved wrongful discrimination by GOVERNMENT, not private businesses.

            Is this really your best argument for why a state cannot regulate its own business from discriminating?

            The Constitution says what it plainly says. You have not even tried to correct me. You have just been making silly arguments.

            Every Liberal Democrat victory over long settled law becomes long settled law once Liberal Democrat win. Unfortunately, the Liberal Democrat house is not built with simple, harmless, playing cards; it is built with lies. When the case for same-sex “marriage” was being made, the kind of stuff that baker suffered was not even supposed to happen. It has, of course.

            When we lie, at first it usually seems to make things easier. Then things start to get much more difficult, and we are tempted to resolve the matter by piling on still more lies.

            Matthew 7:13-14 New King James Version (NKJV)
            The Narrow Way

            13 “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. 14 Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.

            Sometimes it is difficult to stick with the truth, but in the long run we don’t have to pile on more lies to make it work. The truth also is not something that will turn and bite us at the end of the way.

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          5. You stated, “the Liberal Democrat house is not built with simple, harmless, playing cards; it is built with lies”

            Is the Conservative Republican house built with truths?

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          6. Your answer is a bit cryptic. Are you now saying two things: 1) That the Conservative Republican house is built with truths? 2) That God runs and appoints Republicans but not Democrats?

            I was really looking for a direct understanding.

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          7. @Lander7

            The Declaration of Independence states what the people who founded this country thought about the purpose of government. They thought our rights God-given, not something government gives us. They thought government exists to protect our rights.

            When the founders considered the nature of human beings, they recognized men cannot be trusted with great power, so they devised a constitutional republic designed to protect individual rights. The framework for this government included checks and balances designed to prevent one man or body from gathering too much power to itself. The Constitution also limited the Federal Government to certain functions, leaving leaving whatever power it had not assigned to the States or the People.

            Conservative Republicans support our constitutional republic. Liberal Democrats support “change”.

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          8. The liberal Democrats in power are appointed by God. Your understanding is incorrect. If you are a person who believes the bible is true when men are wrong then repent of your words and side with the bible. If you are one who believes your understanding is greater than Gods then deny these passages and continue to debate what is true.

            The founders were only human and didn’t even know not to have slaves so you can stop following their flawed understandings today.

            Romans 13:1-6
            Submission to the Authorities
            13 Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. 3 For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, 4 for he is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer. 5 Therefore one must be in subjection, not only to avoid God’s wrath but also for the sake of conscience. 6 For because of this you also pay taxes, for the authorities are ministers of God, attending to this very thing.

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          9. @Lander7

            So I stop accepting accepting divine revelation and replace that with your Truth?
            😏

            I suppose I sound a bit arrogant sometimes. However, I don’t claim to have invented the ideas and beliefs I talk about. Moreover, I am not demanding the right to force anyone to believe what I believe or practice my beliefs. The reverse is true. I am doing nothing more than insisting that busybodies should stop abusing the power of government.

            What about the founders? Well, here is one of my favorite quotes.

            If I have seen farther than others, it is because I was standing on the shoulders of giants. — Isaac Newton

            Worshiping the greats of the past is foolish, but respectful admiration quite appropriate. When men and women do their best to rise to the challenges they are given, we should study their lives and do our best to imitate their virtues and pray for the sake of all that God forgives their flaws.

            So what about Romans 13:1-7 (You missed the last verse of that passage.)? That passage does not stand alone from the rest of the Bible. Every verse in the Bible must be considered with respect to the rest of the Bible. In addition, we must do our best to try to understand what truth the writer was trying to convey to his intended audience.

            In Paul’s time, the Roman Empire ruled because it had the power. However, there was something more important. The people of the empire accepted the rule of those in authority. That is what made them the governing authorities, and Paul’s audience knew that.

            What would have happened if the Christians of Paul’s time had rejected the governing authorities? Nothing good. The Christians would have replaced order with chaos. To combat the chaos, the governing authorities would have made a concerted effort to destroy the early Christian church.

            Keep in mind that no ruler can maintain authority if the People reject it. Without the People’s acceptance, rulers lack the power to rule. Look at our own history. Until King George III abused his power, the American colonies accepted British rule. Then as a body the People of the colonies declared their independence. Exercising their will, they replaced the governing authorities.

            You want an example from the Bible? Look up 1 Samuel 8. Why did the people of Israel have a king? The people of Israel rejected God. So He punished them by giving what they wanted.

            It seems we get the government we deserve. Unless we exercise self restraint and let God rule our hearts, in pride we try to lord over each other.

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          10. @Citizen Tom

            Just to be clear are you saying that God does not assign the Democrats to power in the US?

            I’m really looking for a clear understanding of what you believe. I don’t know if A) You think God did not put the Democrats in power or B) You believe he did put the democrats in power.

            I want a solid understanding of what you believe. I feel like you are trying to have it both ways at the moment. If I could get a solid A or B on this it would help me understand what you believe by faith.

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          11. @Lander7

            Theology is what the West first established universities to study. Who do think I am, Thomas Aquinas? University professors have been going back and forth on subjects like this for hundreds of years.

            Consider this passage.

            Romans 8:28-30 New King James Version (NKJV)

            28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. 29 For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. 30 Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.

            You and I are finite. God is infinite. We cannot understand God or what He can do.

            How can you and I be free-willed? Yet God is still sovereign over every last detail. I don’t know. I just know I am suppose to do my best to love and obey Him even though I cannot completely understand Him.

            When Hitler was in power, were the Nazis the governing authorities? Yes, but the People of Germany put the Nazis in charge, and they fought the Allies to keep the Nazis in charge.

            Hence Jesus spoke these words.

            Matthew 22:15-22 New King James Version (NKJV)
            The Pharisees: Is It Lawful to Pay Taxes to Caesar?

            15 Then the Pharisees went and plotted how they might entangle Him in His talk. 16 And they sent to Him their disciples with the Herodians, saying, “Teacher, we know that You are true, and teach the way of God in truth; nor do You care about anyone, for You do not regard the person of men. 17 Tell us, therefore, what do You think? Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?”

            18 But Jesus perceived their wickedness, and said, “Why do you test Me, you hypocrites? 19 Show Me the tax money.”

            So they brought Him a denarius.

            20 And He said to them, “Whose image and inscription is this?”

            21 They said to Him, “Caesar’s.”

            And He said to them, “Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” 22 When they had heard these words, they marveled, and left Him and went their way.

            Each of us made in the image of God. Because we have God’s image stamped upon our heart, we render our lives to God, not Caesar. That is, when the state demands we disobey our True Lord, we refuse.

            As I said before, no verse from the Bible stands alone.

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          12. I’m sure that verses don’t stand alone, we have no disagreement. We technically don’t even have an argument, I was asking a question: Do you believe that God assigns all the people in government, (including Democrats) or do you believe he only assigns Republicans.

            I don’t actually know what you believe so I was asking to get clarification. If this quetion is to personal I will stop asking. My intention was not to make you feel uncomfortable.

            I end this line of questioning and state what I believe you are saying.

            You believe that God assigns some people to office (Republicans) and that the devil has control over the othe people assigned in government (Democrats). You see the power shared to make these assignments.

            Your viewpoint is interesting in how you see God and his control over this world and the US.

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          13. @Lander7

            You believe that God assigns some people to office (Republicans) and that the devil has control over the othe people assigned in government (Democrats). You see the power shared to make these assignments.

            I don’t think what I said supports that conclusion. I did not even mention the devil.

            Does the devil have a role? Yes. There are passages in the Bible that discuss spiritual warfare. Still, as a people I think we have to take responsibility for the people who lead us, and I don’t think the Bible says we should not.

            Does all authority come from God? Ultimately? Yes. Consider the commandment to honor our father and mother. Where do our parents get their authority?

            Unless we show proper deference to authority, and the Bible explains that, the result is chaos. Try driving without obeying street signs. Are you going to stop obeying just because you don’t like the governor of a state?

            Anyway, I cannot make you understand me. So enough of this.

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          14. @Citizen Tom

            To be fair you are not being very specific so I was trying to fill in the blanks a bit with the hints you were providing.

            I only believe what is written in the Bible so when I see other religions I ask very direct questions to gain understanding. Since you only believe Republicans are appointed by God and I believe the verse that only God assigns those in office we have a religious difference of belief.

            I thought the natural default would be the devil assigns the Democrats in your understanding since you don’t believe God had control over that in your religion.

            If you just stated how you believe they are assigned without the off topic references I would understand quickly.

            I see you are getting frustrated so we can end this discussion but I think my confusion on your religion is due to a heavy off topic response to my questions. I’m just trying to understand your belief.

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          15. @Lander7

            I think you are upset because I have been quite specific, and you don’t know how to logically deal with it. Hence you are employing a logical fallacy. You are creating a straw man. You are trying put words I did not say into mouth.

            If you want to discuss what I actually did say, I am okay with that. If you want to offer up your own opinion up for discussion, we can discuss that. If you want to write political fantasies, get a job with the Liberal Democrat news media.

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          16. I don’t have any feelings about these topics other than curiosity but if you feel that my understanding of what you said is incorrect then let’s reduce the first set of responses to Yes or No so I can get some clarity.

            In my religion God assigns all leaders to government positions of authority as stated in the bible. You seem to agree with this in the case of Republicans.

            Do you believe that God assigns Democrats to office also? Yes or No first then the lengthy statements after it please so I have a clear understanding.

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          17. @Lander7

            I have wonder if you want a clear understanding. Still, the question is interesting.

            You say you want a Yes or No first? I tired of the silliness of that Yes or No trick a long time ago. There is an old joke that illustrates why.

            Are you still beating your wiife?

            You want to answer that with a Yes or no? Well, if you are still beating your wife I guess a simple Yes will suffice.
            😆

            In an earlier comment, I observed that all authority comes from God. I quoted Romans 8:28 that says God is sovereign over all things. In another comment, I observed that even Hitler was a governing authority. That is, even Hitler’s power was ultimately from God. Still, you need clarity about Liberal Democrats? Do you think Democrats are worse than Nazis?

            What do we actually control? As near as I can tell, we have some control over our attitude towards good and evil. We can make choices, but what actually happens as the result of our choices God determines. Hence, God determines which people actually lead us.

            How does God determine who leads us? If 1 Samuel 8 is any indication, then as a people we get the sort leadership we want (That is not the same as what we say we want. It is closer to what we deserve.). Unfortunately, we too often want people to lead us God does not approve. Nevertheless, to teach us better, God seems to “appoint” the leaders we deserve.

            If you want an example of how this works, then consider what the Bible tells us about King Saul.

            Liked by 1 person

          18. If Asked: “Yes or No” Are you still beating your wiife?”
            Answer: N/A

            It’s easy to answer a question simply even if it does not apply to you. Since there is no trap and no value in a trap you can answer anyway you want. I was stating that I don’t understand your specific view point and when I tried to convey what I thought it was you quickly stated I was wrong so I then asked for a yes or no before providing detailed info to provide clarity.

            You asked: “Do you think Democrats are worse than Nazis?:
            Answer: No.

            From your answer I am confident you are saying that God does appoint all Democrats to office. If this is correct I have the info I was looking for to your religious views.

            I myself have no idea how God determines anything since in my religion his thoughts are above mine but your thoughts on why he would do it are interesting and maybe worthy of a separate posting. I don’t think it should be added here because it’s to far of topic.

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          19. @Lander7

            The Bible does explain some things. I think that is the point of the book.

            The Bible is clear that some leaders are quite good and some are not so good. Nevertheless, because God is sovereign, God “appoints” them all.

            To get good people to lead us, what do we have to do? We have to vote as if we love our family, friends, and countrymen.

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          20. In my religion you simply have to pray to God since he appoints those in charge. His will be done. Voting is literally irrelevant to the process.

            This is not to say you shouldn’t (in my religion) but it is to say that the outcome is above the vote and should be supported. Such as when Obama was in and then Trump.

            Think about all the fighting when each was elected. Had they been fully supported because of trust in God this nation would be in a better place now. Instead we had a lot of people oppose Obama (against God) and now Trump (against God).

            Those who fear…. fear that God is not in control.

            Just a thought from my religion

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          21. @Lander7

            Voting is literally irrelevant to the process.

            God is sovereign. Exactly how He exercises his sovereignty I don’t know. I do know this much however.

            James 2:14-17 New King James Version (NKJV)

            14 What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,” but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit? 17 Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.

            There is more to this passage, but this part contains the gist of the point I wish to make.

            Faith should not make us passive. We demonstrate our faith in action. We do something about what we believe to be true.

            Voting, taking the time to vote well, is one of the works we can do in our Lord’s name. We can take the time to campaign for and vote for Godly leaders. Does that mean we have the right to claim God is on our side? We are supposed to do our best to be on God’s side. Since only God knows what is in a candidate’s heart, we cannot claim to know which candidate Jesus would vote for, but we can strive to see things from God’s point of view. We can do our best to support the political parties and candidates we think best for our families, friends and countrymen.

            For the average citizen, politics is difficult and often bruising work. It may not be the sort of thing Mother Teresa did, but we can be just as charitable with our own time and money as we wish to be.

            Should we pray for our leaders, even the ones we don’t like? Yes, and the Bible says as much.

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          22. The Bible says to obey the leaders and to feed the hungry. It also states that leaders are appointed.

            My only point here is that I see lots of opposition and no unity.

            I saw it with Obama and now I see it with Trump.

            James 1:27 Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.

            Do you promote one party and denounce the other knowing God places them all in power as he sees fit?

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          23. @Lander7

            I don’t know you well. So I can only guess, but it seems to me you have locked onto a few verses and missed the bigger picture the Bible presents. Since I don’t know, rather than pointlessly spouting off, I am going to try some questions.
            1. Is God concerned about how we govern ourselves? What are the first five books of the Bible called? Is there anything in the Bible about laws, government, and rulers?
            2. Is our first allegiance to God or government? What do we do when our government and God are in conflict? How do we forestall such conflicts in the first place?
            3. How do those in authority come to be in authority? Does the Bible suggest we have any responsibility?
            4. Are the rulers of tyrannical states appointed by God? Were the rulers of Nazi Germany, all those bloody Communist states, Biblical Canaan, Sodom and Gomorrah, and the world before Noah’s Flood appointed by God? If so, then why did God appoint these leaders? Who was responsible for the evil these rulers directed?
            5. If through our charitable efforts we can positively affect the way our government works, is that not also pure religion and undefiled before God. Can we not ease the afflictions of the fatherless and widows by striving to make our government more just and less burdensome to the poor? Can we not work to keep our government from becoming a source of temptation, a tool that pressures people to sin, thereby making it easier to keep ourselves and our neighbors unspotted from the world?

            Liked by 1 person

          24. Q–Is God concerned about how we govern ourselves?
            A–I do not know what God is concerned with or not
            concerned with. His thoughts are above my
            thoughts and I cannot know what he is thinking. We could
            ask was he concerned for Job? OR Was he concerned for
            Jesus? OR Is he always aware and let’s us know when he is
            concerned like in Exodus (as needed).
            1 Corinthians 2:11
            For who among men knows the thoughts of man except his own
            spirit within him? So too, no one knows the thoughts of God
            except the Spirit of God.

            Q–What are the first five books of the Bible called? Is
            there anything in the Bible about laws, government, and
            rulers?
            A–They are not called anything. Mankind later assigned
            names to book groupings(Example:Bible). There are laws and rulings within the books called the Torah. This is described in
            Deuteronomy 4 Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

            Q–Is our first allegiance to God or government?
            A–Mankind has no allegiance to anyone. We are given the
            ability to choose but those choices are made from moment to
            moment. As seen in John 18. Even with the ability to choose
            we are still subject to all who rule Ephesians 6:12.
            Joshua 24:15
            15 But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then
            choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve…..
            Proverbs 16:9
            9 In their hearts humans plan their course, but the LORD
            establishes their steps.

            Q–What do we do when our government and God are in
            conflict?
            Governments in conflict are irrelevant and have no bearing.
            In all situations and in all circumstance regardless of
            who or what is involved you obey God. And God is clear for
            all situations that you would find yourself in as to what
            you should do.
            Proverbs 30:5
            Every word of God proves true; he is a shield to those who
            take refuge in him.
            Romans 13:1–2
            13 Let every person be subject to the governing
            authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and
            those that exist have been instituted by God. 2 Therefore
            whoever resists the authorities resists what God has
            appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment.

            Q–How do we forestall such conflicts in the first place?
            A–This is your role:
            2 Timothy 2:24-26
            And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to
            everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil,
            correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps
            grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth,
            and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare
            of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will.

            Q–How do those in authority come to be in authority? Does
            the Bible suggest we have any responsibility?
            Romans 13…..For there is no authority except from God,
            and those that exist have been instituted by God…..

            Q–Are the rulers of tyrannical states appointed by God?
            This has been answered already.

            Q–Were the rulers of Nazi Germany, all those bloody Communist states, Biblical Canaan, Sodom and Gomorrah, and the world before Noah’s
            Flood appointed by God?
            A–Hitler rejected the authority in place and forced himself on
            his society and for that they were all destroyed and he was
            killed. If a people reject the authority in place they
            suffer. As for the flood and other older nations they fall
            under the exact same commands.

            Q–If so, then why did God appoint these leaders?
            A–Only God knows why he does what he does since he is an
            individual. He has at times stated why he does some things
            but there is no way to know another person’s mind so this
            question is nonsensical.

            Q–Who was responsible for the evil these rulers directed?
            A–The ruler is and all who follow him. We cannot pretend that we are not at fault. Why else would we be judged? Do we not know the hungry need to be fed? Do we not know that widows need to be clothed? Who would you blame if they are not… God? Did not God remove those who followed him from the city before it was destroyed? Did you here that they were rebellious against the state?(i didn’t)

            Q–If through our charitable efforts we can positively
            affect the way our government works, is that not also pure
            religion and undefiled before God. Can we not ease the
            afflictions of the fatherless and widows by striving to
            make our government more just less burdensome to the poor?
            A–You can make your government anything you want since you have the choice to do so but if you complain about who God put in place and attempt to remove them then you will face God for it. There is a difference between obeying the government and doing God’s will. God is not a fool, if you say in your heart that you hate, let’s say Obama, then he knows you are in conflict with him and if you then move to harden the heart of others against who he put in place you are in conflict with God even more. But if you follow the government he put in place but then do his will, such as feed the poor and cloth the widows but the government punishes you for it, then you will be blameless having acknowledged God and done his will.

            Q–Can we not work to keep our government from becoming a
            source of temptation, a tool that pressure people to sin,
            thereby making it easier to keep ourselves and our
            neighbors unspotted from the world?
            A–We cannot make others do anything that would be nonsensical but we can be examples and we can do good to influence change. I mostly see ,with people, blame and anger so I’m not sure what you mean by “Can we not work to keep” but here is what God says to do and it always works.
            Matthew 7:12
            12 “So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.

            If this is not enough for you then I would say listen to this:
            Romans 12:14-21
            14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. 16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly.[a] Never be wise in your own sight. 17 Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. 18 If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. 19 Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it[b] to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” 20 To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” 21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

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          25. @Lander7

            Curious. I don’t know what to make of this response. If you don’t want to vote, however, I don’t have a problem with it. If you don’t see the government as something you have responsibility for, you will not properly inform yourself anyway.

            Liked by 1 person

          26. I never stated for anyone not to vote but I can understand the confusion due to the nuance of the discussion.

            Let me change the way I say this a bit. I believe that God puts leaders in place per his will, so to be clear, he decides who will be in charge not man.

            From this perspective we can clearly vote for anyone we want as easily as we can pray for anyone we want to be in office. There is no conflict and either voting or praying are a positive action and convey a message to God and any other witness.

            The issue is after a leader is put in place. This is where I hear people complaining, sabotaging, disobeying, etc. It is at this point that I can clearly see that people are resisting God’s will since he stated that he puts them in power.

            Once the leader is in place there should be no more resistance only support per what God stated. There is a time to petition God (Prayer, voting) and then there is a time to obey and support.

            When I see the negative comments about Democrats or Republicans I see the evil division that is in fact “disobedience”, rather than cooperation and peace as stated in the Bible.

            I also clearly stated that we are judged by God so we do have responsibility with the government. The clear fact that it is currently not working in a peaceful way is our fault.

            The people do not believe God, nor do they trust him and so they continue to fight each other over leaders that God placed in power.

            I also see where the two parties argue over how to help those in need while at the same time not helping them. Clearly we see as believers how the needy are neglected. We know for a fact that we are tasked by God to help the needy and yet we use the leaders as a scapegoat to ignore our duties.

            Again we are responsible.

            Liked by 1 person

          27. @Lander7

            anon has some questions for you.

            Two comments.

            anon
            June 11, 2018 at 11:28 am

            and

            anon
            June 11, 2018 at 11:59 am

            We have some difference over how to interpret the Bible. Generally, I don’t spend much effort trying to persuade another Christian to adopt my views. 1 – 3 John addresses what a Christian needs to believe. Once someone believes what the Apostle John thought pertinent, I have to have a swell head to get very argumentative, and I suppose I do.

            My point is that we have a disagreement over a relatively peripheral issue. When the people of Germany made Adolf Hitler their leader, they elected him.

            Did God have a role in appointing Hitler? Yes, of course. He let the people of Germany elect Hitler. Just as God gave the people of Israel Saul to lead them, He appointed Adolf Hitler because Hitler was the sort of man they wanted to rule them.

            Once Hitler was in charge, what were the people of Germany supposed to do? Blindly obey Him? Of course not.

            What about Barack Obama? Obama was no Hitler, but did he do things that violated his oath of office, for example? I think so. When Obama was doing things that were wrong, was it wrong to oppose him?

            The Bible does not give us simple answers. That is why it speaks of wisdom. It takes wisdom to discern the difference between good and evil.

            Am I wiser than you? God knows, but we both need to consider Hebrews 5:12-6:8. We each need to do our best to increase our understanding of God’s Word.

            Liked by 1 person

          28. In response to anon:
            You stated: “My point is that we have a disagreement….. When the people of Germany made Adolf Hitler their leader, they elected him.”

            Response–: They did not elect him. He was not placed in power, FACT: Hitler lost the presidential election of 1932, Paul von Hindenburg was re-elected to a second seven-year term of office. He was placed in power per the process stated in the Bible.

            A party of people within the citizenship started complaining, sabotaging, disobeying, etc, much like we see here in the states. They rebelled against those God has chosen. They then moved to the last phase to force changes, kill opposition and dismantle the governing body.

            In February 1933, Hitler blamed a devastating Reichstag fire (killings) on the communists and convinced President Hindenburg to sign a decree suspending individual and civil liberties (force), a decree Hitler used to silence his political enemies with false arrests (force). Upon the death of Hindenburg in 1934 (killings), Hitler proceeded to purge the Brown Shirts (force), the head of which, Ernst Roem, had began voicing opposition to the Nazi Party’s terror tactics. Hitler had Roem executed without trial(killings), which encouraged the army and other reactionary forces within the country to urge Hitler to further consolidate his power by merging the presidency and the chancellorship (end of the government). This would make Hitler commander of the army as well (force). A plebiscite vote was held on August 19. Intimidation (fear of death) made him a full powered dictator. After this he continued the use of force and killing.

            You stated: “When Obama was doing things that were wrong, was it wrong to oppose him?”

            Response–: It’s not your place to oppose him, he was not appointed by you. If you oppose the person God puts in place you oppose God. It is your place to choose to obey or disobey. Does this mean you can’t do what is right? Forbid such a foolish thought. Always do what is right before God. Obey the King but do no evil. Example: Martin Luther King Jr. One man through faith in God did a nation change.

            1 Samuel 26:9-11
            9 But David said to Abishai, “Don’t destroy him! Who can lay a hand on the Lord’s anointed and be guiltless? 10 As surely as the Lord lives,” he said, “the Lord himself will strike him, or his time will come and he will die, or he will go into battle and perish. 11 But the Lord forbid that I should lay a hand on the Lord’s anointed….

            You stated: “The Bible does not give us simple answers.”

            My Response–: The bible gives perfect answers. One can choose to call them what they want.

            You stated: “Am I wiser than you?”

            My Response: Ants need not worry which are smarter but which obey and get more done.

            You wanted me to consider Hebrews 5:12-6:8 I also like Hebrews have you seen 5:11
            11 We have much to say about this, but it is hard to make it clear to you because you no longer try to understand

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          29. @anon

            You stated: “Lander, this would apply to our nation as well. You’ve made the argument now that our own nation is illegitimate (since the founders rose up against their leader) so…it should stand to reason ANY leader we pick would be illegitimate too until we join again under British authority. Right?”

            My response: No, what you are stating is incorrect and not historical. The colonies in America were founded by companies and countries. They were fought over for control by both local and foreign powers (including British authority). Consolidation of the colonies lead to a war between local allies and foreign powers. A new nation was formed that then was appointed a leader.

            A number of English colonies were established under a system of Proprietary Governors, who were appointed under mercantile charters to English joint stock companies to found and run settlements.

            Between 1584 and 1589, the English attempt to establish Roanoke Colony failed, and in 1590 the colony was found abandoned.
            In 1607, Jamestown, Virginia was founded by the London Company (also known as the Virginia Company).
            In Newfoundland, a chartered company known as the Society of Merchant Venturers established a permanent settlement at Cuper’s Cove, from 1610.
            St. George’s, Bermuda was founded by the Virginia Company, in 1612.

            I would also note that when the leaders put in place were disputed by those who lacked faith in Gods appointed servants, there was a civil war. As I stated with Hitler, the people suffered and there was a loss of life. This is what happens each time man tries to reject those put in place by God.

            Like

          30. And now let’s go to my previous statement that you supposedly through back at me. How much absolute certainty of knowledge of the will of God should a person have in order to be intolerant enough to actually refuse a person his commercially available goods and services? Jesus himself said a good deal about divorce but, as a Christian, I would consider it pretty presumptuous to think I KNOW Jesus would want me to refuse divorced persons my commercial goods and services. How much pride of certainty in our own knowledge of divine will on sex practices does it take to show such intolerance?

            And even assuming such absolute certainty is possible, do you think that all such transgressions are equally important enough to use the power of the state to coerce proper behavior, especially when the behavior is only sexual between consenting adults? Should it be legal to harm adulterers and divorced persons? Business refusal of its goods and services is certainly harmful, don’t you think?

            Finally, what if the harmful discrimation, the depravation of a right, is peculiarly based only upon a religious belief? If my religion believes homosexuality is prohibited and yours says it is not, isn’t the job of the state to imperfectly balance on that tightrope so as not to promote or deny either belief, at least in so far as no other substantial public interest is involved? How am I or my rights harmed if George and Steve are allowed to practice their firmly held religious beliefs and get married?

            This seems to run far afield of your assertion that the state is establishing and infringing on religion simply by providing an education, but it does not really. Every public good or service provided by government has first amendment religious consequences, even ones we agree that it is proper for government to provide. Perfect secular 1st Amendment neutrality is impossible, but we expect government to try none the less. Schools are situationally different, yes, but they are not really different in constitutional principle. The mere argument that perfect 1st Amendment neutrality is impossible is no more a decisive argument against having public schools than that perfection is Impossible in the military should mean that we should not have a military.

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          31. TSalmon, asserting that one is entitled to freedom of association as long as the government approves (assuming legal activity here) is a lot like asserting one is entitled to freedom of speech as long as the government approves the speech.
            Yes, sometimes discrimination can benefit the employer…ask any beautiful woman who is given free access and often free drinks at exclusive clubs. They go right to the head of the line while others pay.

            Like

          32. @anon

            Funny and very true in a broad sense. Perhaps Colorado will outlaw ladies night one day. Until then, however, it is not relevant to the issue of whether “Colorado” can ban discrimination based upon sexual preference.

            There are state powers verses federal powers concerns as well as the US Constitution’s 14th Amendment that you don’t seem to understand. Individual states have their own powers to grant rights and stop business discrimination. The 14th Amendment gets SCOTUS involved if the states don’t afford those rights properly within the ambit of the US Constitution, such as when the state grants a right but does not afford proper due process in arbitrating that right.

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          33. I am moving to Colorado soon.
            Plan on starting the Union of Goofy Looking Yahoos to deal with this discrimination against the non-pretty (I will be a token, no need to be ugly to be in the Union of Goofy Looking Yahoos, just sympathetic to their cause).

            Liked by 2 people

          34. Ha! I’m with you, except I’m moving to Utah and starting a movement to keep that state from discriminating against drunks by banning the Happy Hour and the Double Shot Drink. If we succeed, we can literally drown in our own absurdity.

            I appreciate the humor, but you are proving my point. As I wrote to Tom, don’t you think our passions in these cases should be tempered by (1) a little humility over how much actual certainty we can actually have in our position, particularly if it is a religious position based upon divine revelation; (2) a prioritizing of harms realizing that the affront to our own peculiar moral sensibilities may not be quite as earth shattering as the inability to purchase basic goods and services because of who we are or what we believe; and (3) a recognition that, in an imperfect fallen world, sometimes there simply is no perfectly right answer to difficult fact situations, and that sometimes the best we can do is incremental balance and compromise?

            Tom, God love him, wants to pretend every moral and religious question is the end of the world if he doesn’t absolutely conquer his ideological enemies. He puts being forced to simply treat gays decently and serve them basic goods and services in maximalist terms of defeating WWII fascism, and essentially says “allow no compromise and take no prisoners”.

            Apocalyptic cynicism seems to be swelling the emotions of both sides these days. We could all do with a little less hyperinflated divisiveness and a little more good natured and humble optimism, a little more compromise and manners. Laughing at ourselves is a good start. Thanks for reminding us of that.

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          35. @tsalmon

            Tom, God love him, wants to pretend every moral and religious question is the end of the world if he doesn’t absolutely conquer his ideological enemies.

            It is amazing how twisted you have this. I say leave the baker alone, and you inadvertently come up with an example from the Great Tribulation. Whose apocalyptic cynicism are you talking about?

            Tolerance means allowing others to do their own thing. Instead, Liberal Democrats think it means forcing others to approve of us. Just because the fact that what others might want hurts our feelings does not mean we don’t tolerate what others do. It is when what other do actually hurts us or interferes with what we want to do that we have a beef.

            Forcing a baker to bake a cake he does not want to bake effectively constitutes involuntary servitude. Forcing any business to do business with somebody it would prefer to refuse service constitutes involuntary servitude. Hence, it stands to reason that there is almost no reason for to force a business to do business with somebody it does not want to do business with. There is also nothing in the Constitution that gives either the Federal or State governments power to require involuntary servitude except as punishment for a crime. Our government used the Civil Rights movement to seize that power.

            You never let a serious crisis go to waste. And what I mean by that it’s an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before. — Rahm Emanuel

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          36. What Tom doesn’t seem to want to read here is that I am actually very sympathetic with the cake baker. There is a big situational difference between a gay couple walking into a car dealership and being refused service simply because they are married, and a case where a business owner is asked to actively “create” something in furtherance of what he religiously finds sincerely abhorrent. For example, as an attorney and a Catholic, should I be forced to provide divorce services? What if I only refuse such services to fellow Catholics but happily provide divorces to all other faiths? What if I’m the only attorney for two hundred miles?

            Facts matter. Actual religious certainty of belief matters. Prioritizing and balancing of harm matters. Incrementalism and compromise matters. Making better not the enemy of perfect matters.

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          37. Let me ask you this question: Is it ok for Kroger to deny sales of baked goods to gay people based on religious belief since they make cakes in the bakery department?

            Liked by 1 person

          38. “For example, as an attorney and a Catholic, should I be forced to provide divorce services? What if I only refuse such services to fellow Catholics but happily provide divorces to all other faiths? What if I’m the only attorney for two hundred miles?
            Facts matter. Actual religious certainty of belief matters. Prioritizing and balancing of harm matters. Incrementalism and compromise matters. Making better not the enemy of perfect matters.”

            What I’ve noticed is that “rights” seem to applied rather arbitrarily.
            So, to use your example…no, I don’t think you should be forced to provide divorces for anyone you don’t wish to provide divorces to.

            For the case in question, it was perfectly fine for neighboring bakeries to discriminate against religious views…if the baker disagreed with those views. From the original case: “In contrast, while this case was still ongoing, the Commission found that three secular bakeries did not discriminate based on creed when they refused a Christian customer’s request for custom cakes that criticized same-sex marriage on religious grounds. App. 293-327a. And it did so despite “creed” under CADA encompassing “all aspects of religious beliefs, observances, and practices … [including] the beliefs or teachings of a particular religion,” 3 C.C.R. 708- 1:10.2(H) (emphasis added), App. 96a. The Commission reasoned that—like Phillips—(1) the bakeries declined the request because they objected to the particular message of the cake and (2) the bakeries were willing to create other items for Christians. App. 297-331a. Unlike Phillips, the Commission exempted these secular bakeries from CADA’s scope.

            Here at the base we were in the odd position of having to approve a transgender fashion show (many months ago)….because it was transgender. Now if the group had been “sexy Latin dancers” instead of “sexy transvestite princesses” it would be fine to deny them equal access to the club. We live in weird times.

            Liked by 1 person

          39. “The Jim Crow LAWs involved wrongful discrimination by GOVERNMENT, not private businesses.”

            Jim Crow laws made it illegal for a black man to do commerce with certain private businesses.

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          40. @tsalmon

            That is the point. The Constitution prohibits government from wrongful discrimination based upon race, sex, and creed. It doesn’t prohibit private interests. Waste of time, and it just gives government officials power we don’t need to give them.

            The Jim Crows Laws were enforced in spite of the fact the Constitution prohibited them. Why? The South just wore the North down until the North gave up trying to enforce the the post Civil War Amendments. Besides, there was a lot of bigotry in the North too. So it was difficult to sustain enthusiasm for Negro rights.

            Consider. Woodrow Wilson is a much admired president by some, but why is a mystery. He sure was not good for blacks => https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2015/11/wilson-legacy-racism/417549/.

            When we give the wrong people power, and we don’t hold them accountable to the law, they do more harm than they might otherwise have done.

            The market place, for the most part, holds businesses accountable. Government, however, requires more concerted effort from us.

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          41. “I don’t know you well. So I can only guess, but it seems to me you have locked onto a few verses and missed the bigger picture the Bible presents. Since I don’t know, rather than pointlessly spouting off, I am going to try some questions.”

            I have another:
            You’ve already mentioned it, but it bares mentioning again.
            What about our founders?
            Were they going against God’s will when they broke with their government?

            The reasoning kind of smacks against that whole “tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants” paradigm.

            For that matter, kind of smacks against natural rights (which our founders believed to be self-evident) in general.

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          42. Okay, this thread is long and the quote monster has got me again.
            I have no idea where this answer will land but….

            “A–Hitler rejected the authority in place and forced himself on
            his society and for that they were all destroyed and he was
            killed. If a people reject the authority in place they
            suffer. As for the flood and other older nations they fall
            under the exact same commands.”

            Lander, this would apply to our nation as well. You’ve made the argument now that our own nation is illegitimate (since the founders rose up against their leader) so…it should stand to reason ANY leader we pick would be illegitimate too until we join again under British authority. Right?

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      2. See my reply to Citizen Tom about writing a post on this subject.

        As for balance, I will propose a solution to balance this subject to apply to every entity now entangled in the controversy which has progressed to a medical unbalance by politicians and school boards, in my opinion..

        Thanks for your comment.

        R

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Salmon-

        It seems to be a stretch to say that the taboo of homosexuality is a ‘religious issue.’

        I happen to think it is much simpler, but we tend to make simple things complicated. Take ‘religion’ out of the discussion; address it squarely as a ‘natural’ issue, and see where the chips fall.

        Nature is a great teacher if we pay attention. In October, the male whitetail deer does not seek another male to mate with. As a matter of fact, he will fight him for the girl. It is true, there are freaks of nature, but the norm is male and female.

        Dissent should not be thought as hatred, which is far too often the case. Kirk Cameron is accused of hating gay people because he has an opinion contrary to the masses. He is correct when he says the Creator is not too keen on homosexuality, but then again, He is not happy with liars either. There is enough blame to go around.

        I do not need scripture to tell me that same sex marriage is not normal, as my conscience is a strong guide, but it’s nice of scripture to point it out, for the sole purpose that men have no excuse.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Colorstorm,

          So your proposition is that it should be illegal or immoral or shameful for human beings to do anything different from what elks do in the wild? Isn’t it possible that homosexuality is a natural genetic human response to overcrowding? The bonobos, one our closest relatives, seem to be sex crazed bisexuals in the wild. If we humans are to be legally limited to only the law of the jungle, aren’t these apes our better model to be emulated? Human females can give birth every year or two. Must they? Human males have the natural equipment and inclination to have sex with numerous women several times a day. Should they? Religion itself isn’t particularly “natural” so under your logic should we ban religion?

          The religious opposition to homosexuality failed miserably to make these sorts of arguments. Is it any wonder that SCOTUS decided that taboos on homosexuality were exclusively religiously motivated?

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          1. @tsalmon

            Actually, fornication, homosexuality just being another option, is a public health concern. “Recreational” sex is an efficient way of spreading some nasty diseases.

            Fornication is also an issue when it comes to parents taking proper responsibility for their children. The poorest families are those with single mothers trying to raise their children on their own. Those children, without a proper father as a role model, also have issues as they mature.

            Homosexuality, because it just confuses matters, should not be receiving mass media adulation, which it is. However, I don’t know how to make such stupidity illegal. I am just speaking up because quite a few people, misguided at best, want to prohibit denouncing and refusing to participate in LGBT stupidity. What kind of society insists upon glorifying recreational sex that way?

            Do you want to behave like a bonobo? I doubt it, but then I cannot figure out why you think it is okay when your neighbors delight in behaving like bonobos. That is not the honorable, sane behavior of a moral person.

            Homosexuality indicates that something is out of wack. When young people often resolve their sexual identity confusion as they grow older, it is a silly thing to affirm homosexuality as something that is perfectly normal. Obviously, it is not.

            Do some people have lifelong sexual identify problems? Yes. Do such people need our prayers? Yes. Do they need our approval when they engage in same-sex sex? No. Yet that is the root of the argument. No matter how perverse, LGBT alphabet soup activists insist that that they have a right to such approval. That’s not tolerance. That’s stupid, sick, and sinful.

            Do Christians hate homosexuals? No. It is the behavior they disapprove. God hates sin because it hurt His children. We should hate sin because it hurts our brothers and sisters.

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          2. Tom,

            Do I want to behave like a bonobo? Well, it has some appeal but no, and that was kind my point you know. Sometimes you can be pretty obtuse good brother. Do you do this on purpose?

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          3. @tsalmon

            That is kind of your point? Is it, or isn’t it? And you are talking about being me being obtuse. I can’t hold a candle to you.

            My position on the subject under discussion is clear. Have you clearly stated your position. Nope. You have just said it is too complicated.

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          4. I’ve been married for 38 years, and I am to be your poster boy for glorifying promiscuous sex and yet you elected Trump as your model? I think you are confusing having recreational sex with a lack of moral integrity. Sex is not inherently immoral. It’s promiscuity that can be immoral. But that is another issue.

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          5. @tsalmon

            There you go again. Nobody said anything about your sexual morale. Instead of discussing the issue, you are attacking Trump and the people who voted for him. Dumb!

            I don’t claim perfection. Neither does ColorStorm. Almost nobody who voted for Trump thought him perfect. Nevertheless, we voted for him instead of H. Clinton. Why? Is the answer too obtuse for you?

            Give it a break. The Supreme Court made a stinking decision, and you know it.

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          6. It certainly is immoral, make it illegal though? Can you make lying illegal? Stealing?

            All vrimes are cut from the same cloth, most people get away with it though.

            As to your elks, sure there are freaks of nature; ever heard of an albino deer? They are a threat to the herd, and for good reason.

            Not too good camouflage doncha know. And I can still prove homosexuality entirely unnatural without appealing to ‘religion.’

            Liked by 1 person

          7. Tom,

            You are clearly very upset and emotional here. How other people have sex is clearly the most important issue in the world, but you know, it’s kinda not brother.

            Forgive me if I’ve got this wrong, but you seem to be more interested in declaring the moral supremacy of your identity group and the evil intent of anyone who disagrees with you than actually knowing the truth, or for that matter even what the heck you are talking about.

            The Christian baker WON in a very limited opinion. What exactly made it a bad opinion? Explain your legal disagreement in terms of the law and the facts. If you are ignorant of the law and the facts, (which you quite clearly are) then why all the belligerence? You’re mad because some things are too complicated, like a thousand years of juris prudence dating back to English common law? Sorry about that.

            “Do you want to behave like a bonobo? I doubt it, but then I cannot figure out why you think it is okay when your neighbors delight in behaving like bonobos. That is not the honorable, sane behavior of a moral person.”

            Yea, duh, and when on Earth did I ever say otherwise? That’s what I mean by being “obtuse”. My argument quite obviously instead was that if what is most “natural” is to be our only guide, then the promiscuity of the bonobo is the most “natural” thing in the world, at least for AN ANIMAL. On the other hand, humans are rational moral animals somehow mysteriously made in the image of God and are capable of overcoming their animal instincts in order to make decisions based on reason and integrity. And IMHO, (and I think your not-so-humble one as well) all morality is essentially religious in nature. Therefore, Colorstorm’s postulate that opposition to homosexuality can based only on what is natural rather than what some people think violates their particular religious morality simply does not withstand a glimmer of logical scrutiny.

            Even most of your objections are mostly moral (and therefore religious) and those that aren’t are fallacious. Promiscuity in both heterosexuals and homosexuals spreads STDs, not homosexual sex exclusively. Moral commitment in monogamous relationships OF EITHER KIND limits STD spreading. The fact that homosexual sex does not lead to procreation has little to do with either its state of natural pleasure or its morality. I can tell you that committed old married folks enjoy sex (which I guess by definition would be defined as “recreational sex”) even though we cannot procreate anymore, and I know that it is not unnatural (although perhaps not as easy as it used to be) and I also do not believe it is immoral. You may believe otherwise about the religious morality of old married folks having sex (fornicating) and that is your right, but I’d be surprised if that is a majority Christian interpretation.

            Regardless, I honestly don’t think that what kind of sex people are having is that high on God’s priority list of things to hate, and that therefore we should be intolerant of. Tearing families apart at our border for having the audacity to seek safety and economic security for their children must be up a little higher if one absolutely must anthropomorphize an infinite and loving God into hating anything. Which leads me to believe that the baker either ought to bake the stupid cake or the gay couple ought to find a baker who is less of an asshole, and then everyone else ought to get over themselves and their Trumped up outrage for a while. The SCOTUS has better stuff to worry about, which is basically the gist of their decision.

            It seems to take the most insignificant nonsensical idiocy to divide freedom loving Americans these days. Do you think it is because many of us are so full of our own pride in ourselves and our stupid tribe that we want to be divided?

            If you really think that the public education of children is the root of all evil then you obviously have been blessed to be sheltered from much real evil. We are so fricking lucky to be born white men in this country at this time in history and instead of checking our privilege with compassion, we are full of faux grievances? So we want to divide into enemy camps to destroy the country and its institutions that have bee.n the wonder of the world and a beacon of light in the dark history of man. The most amazing legal system in the world is too hard? Get over it.

            Both sides have gone insane lately. However, the side that claims to be Christians and yet are so full of of animosity and outrage ought to be the most ashamed, don’t you think? Oh well, what do I know?

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          8. @tsalmon

            We are having a debate. If you want to do psychoanalysis, then you need to learn how to fly a couch instead of airplane.

            What is at issue here? It isn’t twenty other subjects you would like to change the subject to, and it is not like it is a secret.

            Is the kind of sex people are having high on God’s priority list on things to hate? A couple of highly confused people took a baker who wanted nothing to do with their fantasies to court. Because the baker wanted nothing to do with their fantasies, that “couple” hated the baker and used a sick law to persecute him. Does such groundless persecution concern God?

            Instead of pointing out such nonsense does not belong in the courtroom, the Supreme Court said that such nonsense does belong in the courtroom. The only problem? The state of Colorado needs to do a better job of hiding its own biases. I guess that’s not the way the court thinks the story is supposed to be spun. The baker is supposed to be the hater, not hateful homosexuals or government officials.

            So what do you do? Instead of trying to explain the inexplicable, you try to excuse the arcane interpretations of the Constitution uses to justify such nonsensical court decisions.
            1. Christians must be bigots.
            2. Conservatives must be bigots.
            3. Anyone who just thinks homosexuals should keep their “lifestyle choices” out of everyone else’s face is a bigot.
            4. Homosexuality is just “natural” behavior.

            I am a human being. Human beings are fallen creatures. Homosexuality is part of our brokenness. Sin is part of the nature of the natural man. Our job is to be Godly, not natural.

            As Christians, Jesus calls upon us to imitate Him, not to accuse each other. When you and others demand respect for homosexual unions, which are sinful, you are demanding we imitate you. You are not God. We are not supposed to imitate you.

            The Law exists to protect our rights. Marriage exists primarily to provide a safe haven for the raising of children. Marriage exists to protect children, not fornicators. Homosexuality has nothing whatsoever to do with children, and it is an outrageous lie to pretend otherwise.

            Are heterosexual marriages perfectly stable? No, and that is a sad thing for children.

            Are homosexual “marriages” perfectly stable? Not even close. Look it up.

            Because we are fallen, we cannot achieve perfection in this life. When we are just trying to justify our sinful behavior, the mere idea of the perfect becomes hateful.

            It seems to take the most insignificant nonsensical idiocy to divide freedom loving Americans these days. Do you think it is because many of us are so full of our own pride in ourselves and our stupid tribe that we want to be divided?

            Are you familiar with the term identity politics? The Liberal Democratic Party invented identity politics for the purpose of dividing us and pitting us against each other. And yes, it is about pride.

            Limited government is about self restraint. To protect our own right to live in peace as we wish to live, we must respect the rights of others to do the same. When we start looking for excuses to impose our beliefs upon each other, the excuses are endless, and we can make them sound so reasonable.

            Just listen to any “successful” Liberal Democrat politician. Their schemes don’t work. They may appear to for awhile, but the flaws soon appear and started to mushroom. Yet some how “successful” Liberal Democrat politicians manage to use their own failures as excuse for demanding still more power.

            I can only suppose the natural man is extremely gullible. We all want something for nothing.

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          9. ”You are clearly very upset and emotional here. How other people have sex is clearly the most important issue in the world, but you know, it’s kinda not brother.

            Statements like this are exactly what lead me to believe you don’t understand the issue. Statements like the Trump one above (this seems a little like a nervous tick, it just keeps coming up and coming up) would indicate the same. The underlying issue is the change in our society and culture (for worse) that is the product of forced acceptance of destructive behaviors (as well as perverse incentives…such behaviors are not only demanded they are rewarded, examples available upon request).

            Which president would demand a Color Guard march in a Pride parade?
            Which president would demand the summary acceptance of a disqualifying personality disorder for military service strictly because the disorder is sexual in nature?
            Which president would demand acceptance of a gay pride event at the base?
            Which president would force a pharmacy to supply plan B?
            Nutshell: Which president would force a Christian to celebrate/fund/endorse something that violates their religious beliefs?

            We have right now, massive social consequences from the acceptance of perverse ideologies. And we are building a culture where judgement itself is anathema. https://www.city-journal.org/html/rush-judgment-12282.html
            Can’t judge bad behaviors (or we get the puritan finger wave, kind of like what you’re doing now), can’t offend (with the exception of white male Christians…please offend those people as a sign of your moral superiority).

            See my comment about our club. It seems reasonable for the military to promote a professional appearance on post. This I think we can agree with? This standard has changed on post, just as it has elsewhere, via the demanded acceptance from the intolerance crowd, coupled with politicians that support them.

            “Which leads me to believe that the baker either ought to bake the stupid cake or the gay couple ought to find a baker who is less of an asshole, and then everyone else ought to get over themselves and their Trumped up outrage for a while. The SCOTUS has better stuff to worry about, which is basically the gist of their decision.”

            There were four other bakeries in the area that were willing to serve the gay couple. They found a bakery that gave them a free rainbow pride wedding cake (per their request). There is no reason to conclude this baker was an asshole. On the contrary, the assholes seem to be the couple that took him to court.
            I’m reminded of a saying:
            If a town has one lawyer, he rides a bicycle. If it has two lawyers, they both drive Mercedes.

            Liked by 1 person

          10. @anon

            So you are saying that if I am not completely on your bandwagon of condemning gays, then I’m on the wrong (losing) side in your supposed culture war. Sorry, I just don’t wish to join the battle over something so insignificant?

            As I said before, I have some sympathy for the baker’s religious convictions, not that they are correct, but that he ought to have a right to have them. If you didn’t only take the maximalist view, then you might have noted my similar criticism for the gay couple – this was a stupid issue to stake such a high flag for gay rights upon.

            Keep things in perspective however. Before you launch all your nukes in this trumped up culture war, you might remember that the baker wasn’t being asked to have gay sex with the couple – just to do what his business normally commercially does.

            The culture is changing? Since when hasn’t it been? Which utopian “Leave it to Beaver” bus stop in time do you think you’d like to get off at – maybe the one where the cultural norm was to leave Ms Parks sitting in the back of the bus?

            Besides Trump shatters new cultural norms every minute or two (hundreds of examples available upon request). He’s coarsened and savaged every propriety, including the sexual ones you seem to be so all a twitter about. Trump is your porn star paying pompadoured prince and yet you’re squeamish about a gay pride parade? And while supposed culture warriors egg him on to “grab em by the pussy” they now want to storm the baracades because most of the civilized world disapproves when they try to bash gays these days.

            I’ve spent way too much time seeing the world with sailors to be a prude about such things, but I’m with you when you complain that society in general has become more shallow, superficial and vulgar. If you think a gay pride parade is the worst example, then you have never been to Mardi Gras (but then again, I love Mardi Gras).

            Some kids might grow up to think gay couples are normal? I think that they will get over it as fast as you can say “me too”. It’s a long sight better the their wanting to beat their gay class mates up.

            Anyway, in terms of the worst thing that can happen to America worrying about more openness and acceptance in sexual diversity seems to me the least likely thing to destroy our country or the world. Now if gays develope flamboyancies of mass destruction, that might be pretty scary.🌈

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          11. @tsalmon

            It is not of matter of either this or that. The issue is freedom of conscience, letting others believe and do as they wish. Consider the consequences of believing what President Coolidge said.

            I agree that the measure of success is not merchandise but character. But I do criticize those sentiments, held in too many respectable quarters, that our economic system is fundamentally wrong, that commerce is only selfishness, and that our citizens, holding the hope of all that America means, are living in industrial slavery. I appeal to Amherst men to reiterate and sustain the Amherst doctrine, that the man who builds a factory builds a temple, that the man who works there worships there, and to each is due, not scorn or blame, but reverence and praise. — Calvin Coolidge (from his second speech to the Amherst Alumni Association in 1916)

            What is the purpose of the life our Maker gave you? Do you exist to glorify a great man, your self, or our Maker?

            If you exist to glorify your Maker, and some believe we do, then you must exercise self restraint and let God rule over your heart. What does that mean here in the United States? What is such self restraint put into practice?

            Instead of trying force others to believe what “I” believe or practice “my” beliefs, “I” protect the right of others to believe what they wish, to exercise their own beliefs. For just as “I” am only of servant of our Lord, so are my brothers and sisters, every other man and woman.

            What is happening in this nation now? Thank to the election of Donald Trump, we are making some progress in the direction of restoring religious liberty. Liberal Democrats are crying foul, but why? Who do Liberal Democrats believe “I” exists to glorify?

            You want to make the argument about Donald Trump? Then you are missing the mark by a wide margin. Did you vote for someone perfect? Who was this god or goddess you voted for? Could you share their name with us? Of course, you cannot. All you can do is point a “system”, that mythical “optimum state” led by liars who insist we deserve the sun, the moon, and the stars.

            Do you adore this “system”? Why? Who are the promisers of glory who would run it? Are they not just a bunch of flawed human beings? What can they give us that they did not steal from us in the first place?

            Anyway, when you suggest others are bigots, I think you need to reconsider your definition of the word “tolerance”. Tolerance is not just a matter of the worst thing you believe can happen to America. It does not matter if you think what “I” believe is harmless. Tolerance is putting up with other people’s desire to run their own lives.

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          12. “So you are saying that if I am not completely on your bandwagon of condemning gays, then I’m on the wrong (losing) side in your supposed culture war. Sorry, I just don’t wish to join the battle over something so insignificant?”

            When did I demand that you condemn homosexuals?
            I wouldn’t force you to condemn homosexuals or celebrate or fund the condemnation of homosexuals.
            What I care about is forcing others to celebrate, promote, and fund those behaviors. You wouldn’t want me to force you to condemn them would you?
            See how that works?

            People are natural mimics. We do so even when we don’t know it. That’s why married people start to look similar…they start to mirror each others micro expressions and the muscles of the face shift accordingly.
            It’s worth noting that mental illness has a social component…so we see more when behaviors are even publicized….let alone endorsed, accepted, funded, incentivized.
            A couple of assignments ago we lived in a town with a high school that had the highest teen pregnancy rates in the nation (pregnancy is “catchy” too). There was also an epidemic of homosexuality in girls’ sports. So much so the daughter of a friend of mine had to quit the volleyball team…she was the only non-lesbian on the team and was under heavy pressure to experiment (especially during overnight trips…what’s worse, to be forced to sit at the back of a bus or forced to take part in an orgy? oh…let me think on that a while it’s such a small thing..).

            Masculinity is now a “mental health” issue (examples available upon request) but the above is just “empowering”. Any wonder are all these folks on anti-depressants?

            Think I’ve mentioned before, most things in life come down to what we’re wiling to accept. People are fat because it is acceptable….the bar has shifted. Yes, there are underlying contributors (corn, hormones, et al). But acceptance is number one. The bar has shifted for bastardy and now it is acceptable and we see 70 percent bastardy rates in some demographics (ike obesity, there are other contributors but acceptance is number one). The results of this are easy to see, they are right there in front of us.

            Pederasty is rampant in homosexual communities. The reason Milo was so forthcoming in that interview that got him into trouble…it didn’t even occur to him that he was mentioning something unusual. These behaviors are so accepted and ubiquitous in their communities.

            People do what others do. They look to others for what is acceptable behavior, and if the message is, “This is good”, that’s what they do. Especially if there are “feel good” benefits in the short term (people are very poor in general at judging longterm/cascading consequences for their actions).

            https://www.thecollegefix.com/post/43767/

            From a professors’ blog that linked to the above article: ”The “slutty sheep” reference above is in regards to the sexual promiscuity on our campuses. Every campus of any size (and all campuses do all they can to be as large as possible) has a “meat market” nearby where college kids go to drink and copulate with abandon.
            …their sexual promiscuity is practically the only part of their lives that their colleges refuse to police…
                 I know how bizarre my next anecdote sounds, but I feel the need to add my eyewitness testimony. A friend of mine’s daughter was born, and I watched her grow up for 18 years.  She grew up into a pretty young woman, smart (she scored higher than I did on those standardized tests), and barely dated in high school. Darn near the first thing she did when she went to a top tier university? Register on Tinder to find males to copulate with. I got to be there for the fallout/bailouts as these “relationships” consistently ended badly.
                  I’ve certainly heard many similar stories, as well as seen with my own eyes. We really, really, need to start asking questions about what happened in our culture that makes such behavior commonplace. Tinder exists for a reason, so I don’t think my anecdote should be discounted.

            If you are a grandparent or ever hope to be a grandparent, this should very much concern you.

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          13. Hum. We can presume to lecture each other on moral character and trade bizarre or absurd whataboutisms all day long, but honestly all one has to say is “Stormy Daniels”. Have you considered pulling that metaphorical plank of promiscuousness out of the vision of your Party before you malign and pontificate anyone else?

            Oh well, I’m off to Mass for something more uplifting and less condemning (we Catholics do guilt well so that may not happen).

            I don’t think you’re listening anyway. I keep trying to tell you that I appreciate the religious freedom argument. Everyone has a right to be wrong in their own religious beliefs, including gays and cake bakers. At law, however, balancing opposing religious freedom rights has little to do with chosing the certainty of one or other the other of the colliding religious beliefs (although the religious person ought to think long and hard about his own certainty of knowing God’s Will before he/she starts lobbing stones). The Court must treat the religious opinions with equal neutrality when determining whether a state either established or infringed upon the beliefs of either party, and instead consider a host of other legal questions that I have already discussed.

            In this case, the Court appears to have set aside the civil rights issue to some extent and settled the case on more procedural grounds, frustrating the ambitions of the benighted advocates on both sides. As a matter of regular juris prudence, I think that is exactly the way it is supposed to work.

            If you have a “legal argument”, that might be interesting, then I’ll discuss it, but I’m weary of this frivolous debate about what sex God enjoys. Have you considered that sometimes the wisest three words in the English language are “I don’t know”.

            Like

        2. “I don’t think you’re listening anyway.”

          I know exactly how you feel.
          I’m about here now with the Stormy Daniels
          head——> wall

          If the color guard was marching in a Stormy Daniels porn appreciation parade, or businesses were required to fund Stormy’s lifestyle, you’d have a point.
          But if they were, of course, we shouldn’t be hateful about it or throw that in a negative light.

          At any rate, hope you had an enjoyable Sunday.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Just to add (while I’m talking to myself). I’m not sure how or why what I am saying (using real life examples) is “absurd”. There is an interesting article entitled “The New way to be Mad”. I won’t link to it here, but it makes a very compelling case.

            Consider: Fifty years ago the suggestion that tens of thousands of people would someday want their genitals surgically altered so that they could change their sex would have been ludicrous. But it has happened.

            For a thousand years Chinese mothers broke the bones in their daughters’ feet and wrapped them in bandages, making the feet grow twisted and disfigured. To a modern Western eye, these feet look grotesquely deformed. But for centuries Chinese men found them erotic.

            But it is possible to imagine another story: that our cultural and historical conditions have not just revealed transsexuals but created them.

            -Grace and Peace, anon out

            Liked by 1 person

  3. You stated: “How can we say life has meaning without teaching a “true” religion?”

    James 1:27 Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.

    Think how much stronger and focused children would be if simply taught that verse as opposed to this link.

    https://realitydecoded.blog/2018/04/03/when-is-the-last-time-you-took-a-hard-look-at-modern-religion/

    Critical thinking is key to problem-solving and is the direct branch to making better decisions. It is a tool that once equipped provides an individual with the ability to avoid situations like the one presented in the glue sniffing example.

    Liked by 2 people

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