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Thursday, February 11, 2010

Unless We All Matter

In yesterday's article by Wesley J. Smith, the topic of bioethics is discussed. Smith goes on to cite a recent statement from bioethicist Alasdair Cochrane of the Centre for the Study of Human Rights in the United Kingdom. Cochrane starts off well enough but here is where he goes off the track a little to say the least....


"If all human beings possess dignity–this extraordinary moral worth–we need some explanation of what it is about the species Homo sapiens that makes them so deserving. When we start looking at particular characteristics that might ground dignity – language-use, moral action, sociality, sentience, self-consciousness, and so on – we soon see that none of these qualities are in fact possessed by each and every human. We are therefore left wondering why all human beings actually do possess dignity."


One would have hoped that arguments in favor of eugenics had gone away a long time ago but people seldom pay attention to history. While I don't know what's inside Mr Cochrane's heart, I would say that the seminal beginnings of discussions about how some life is more worthy than others start with the examination of such matters brought up by Cochrane. We as human beings are different from beasts and Christianity teaches the preciousness of human life. Christian organizations lobby for the sanctity of life both at the beginning and end of the spectrum. Smith concludes his article with the following....


"Cochrane admits that Christian religion and its concept of the soul could justify human exceptionalism. But like most among the intelligentsia, he finds no place for faith in the discussion because Christian views are "controversial." And it is true: When pagan Rome permitted unwanted babies to be exposed on hills, it was Christians who controversially gathered them up and lovingly raised them as their own. Today, Christians—just as controversially—continue to follow their Lord's admonition to love one's neighbor as one's self, for example, by standing in the breach to protect the unborn from abortion and being used in scientific experiments, and the aged, and cognitively disabled from euthanasia and denial of food and fluids."


Smith hits the nail on the head. It was as true in ancient Rome as it is today.

47 comments:

Ginx said...

And as we all know, Rome really succeeded once Christians took over... oh wait...

GCT said...

Yawn. Why would I think that a religion that teaches that we are all deserving of torture is somehow pro-human? What a bunch of double-speak.

GCT said...

Or, a religion that teaches that you can rape little boys, but as long as you believe the right thing, god will send you to heaven? Such a religion is completely morally bankrupt.

Ginx said...

Don't you see, GCT, human beings are all deserving of respect... unless they're poor people who clearly must all be drunkards who deserve to starve in the streets.

tinkbell13 said...

So, let me check my scorecard here. JD has proven ( I only use that word because he will never believe anything otherwise) that;
1. Christians cured the world of flesh eating.
2. Christians cured the world of baby killing
And, now...3. Christians fight all of the "eugenics" of the world.

Wow, that is quite great. Wonder why there are folks like us in the world. I liked JD better when he was trying to talk Dawkins to a "doctor" that likes to dispute Dawkins without having ever read the God Delusion.

tinkbell13 said...

JD- The onus is not on us to believe.... The onus is on you to prove.

So far, you have not been able to provide one simple argument that one of us cannot dispute. If you were able to provide an idea that I could not argue or properly contextualize, I would be happy to let you know. Otherwise, you have alot of work to do.

Tracy said...

I do not believe that any Christian has to prove anything. Faith, is not something one can prove. One can present various persuasive lines of thought or logical arguments if you will; but only the Holy Spirit can give someone the gift of faith.

As far as the rape little boys thing GCT, it's not really a fair comment. There were those beyond horrible sexual abuse things that happened in the Catholic church, and by no means have horrors not been committed by Protestant clergy at various times as well. People are not always good. There is never a defense for people choosing to prey on the weak. The Bible does say that those who are in leadership, such as clergy, have a greater responsibility to do good and warns against causing a little one to stumble (Matthew 18:6). But it's not a realistic look at any group to pick out horrible things some people in that group have done as representative of that group; because there are not any belief systems that have people in them that have not done horrible stuff. People do not have a natural inclination toward doing good. It's easy for the strong to prey on the weak.

Tracy said...

Hah! I said it wasn't a fair comment GCT, after all that discussion yesterday about life not being fair.

GCT said...

Tracy,
"I do not believe that any Christian has to prove anything."

Not to be blunt, but you are incorrect. The Xian does hold the burden of proof as it is the Xian making the positive assertion of god's existence (and further of god's attributes, what god wants, etc.) Think of a court of law. We decide that people are innocent until proven guilty for the very same reason. The state brings forth a positive assertion of guilt on the defendant. It is up to the state to make its case and provide the evidence to convince and convict (not counting positive defense strategies like insanity).

"Faith, is not something one can prove. One can present various persuasive lines of thought or logical arguments if you will; but only the Holy Spirit can give someone the gift of faith."

The problem is that one can not provide persuasive lines of thought or logical arguments unless the listener already has faith, which is illogical to begin with.

"As far as the rape little boys thing GCT, it's not really a fair comment."

I don't see why not, in the context of the discussion. I'm not saying that all Xians do this or aspire to do it, but I am saying that according to the doctrine of faith alone leading to salvation, that those who do rape little boys are more than qualified to go to heaven, so long as they have faith in the saving power of Jesus. It very readily shows the morally bankrupt nature of this line of thought.

tinkbell13 said...

"I do not believe that any Christian has to prove anything."

Exactly. And, none of you do. At least not empirically. No, the onus is fully on you because you claim to have the belief. And, this is another one of those stereotypical things that religion does to people. They do not feel as though the burden of proof resides with them. The church has enabled that crap.

Faith, is not something one can prove.

Best said by Richard Dawkins- "There's this thing called being so open-minded your brains drop out."

And, yes, the Catholic church has committed absolute atrocities to many innocent children. THAT COMMENT IS FAIR. Until people stop giving the Catholic church their money and support, those comments are absolutely founded. Until their followers start to show their opposition to the secrecy, lies and destruction of that clergy, those comments are absolutely sanctioned. So far, I have not seen too many people in the media showing that they will not accept it anymore. Perhaps, if everyone actually got together and organized a mass walk out, they may listen and actually start reporting these people.

tinkbell13 said...

I have a challenge for you Tracey. How about you sit down, face to face, and tell a survivor of Catholic church abuse that their experience does not reflect the majority of Catholic priests, that they have had the honor of being victimized by the few bad apples in the institution. Or, better yet, that Protestant priests do it too.

Perhaps, if you have ever had to work with someone who has experienced this (and I have), you would be struck by the level of victimization that these people experience. They have nothing, noone listened (especially from the 50's to the 80's), and the church covered it up by moving the priest around, or even putting the orphan into another orphanage further away where they were further abused. You have no idea what they have had to go through, and your level of insensitivity to those people anger, sadden, and infuriate me. Their lives are shattered.

This is sick and evil. And, comments like this keep this shit alive.

photogr said...

The Catholic Church. I recall as a child going to a Catholic church and school. Needless to say it was not a pleasant experience. I was glad my parents ran out of funds to keep me in the school. However, I did find better and kinder experiences in a different denomination shortly after that.

JD Curtis said...

a religion that teaches that you can rape little boys, but as long as you believe the right thing, god will send you to heaven? Such a religion is completely morally bankrupt

Either show where it is written where child rape is condoned within orthodox Christianity or retract your statement.

Why would I think that a religion that teaches that we are all deserving of torture is somehow pro-human?

Let's see if we can see a pattern here. First child rape and now torture. I'll give you one chance to substantiate that either is considered normal within the confines of orthodox Christianity.

Don't you see...human beings are all deserving of respect... unless they're poor people who clearly must all be drunkards who deserve to starve in the streets

Please point me toward the freethinking/secular humanist/atheist equivilent of the Salvation Army and the results of their efforts.

How about you sit down, face to face, and tell a survivor of Catholic church abuse that their experience does not reflect the majority of Catholic priests, that they have had the honor of being victimized by the few bad apples in the institution. Or, better yet, that Protestant priests do it too

This is not fair at all. No one ever claimed that Christianity was a panacea that covered all and made it so one ever commits a crime or sins again. In order to keep this in it's context Tink, is a child..

A. 10 times
B. 50 times, or
C. 100 times more likely to be sexually abused by a schoolteacher than a priest?

Tracy said...

My comments in no way were meant to minimize the effects of sexual victimization. I too, have worked for years with survivors of sexual abuse, and have seen the devastation it brings.

But the truth is that perpetrators have been priests, pastors, policemen, teachers, store clerks, etc. I recognize that they way the Catholic church did not out the perpetrators was terrible and I in no way condone those actions. I am not Catholic because I have issues with several things about that church. But I know lots of wonderful Catholic people and know of numerous good Catholic priests who help people....so I don't want to throw out an entire institution because of corruption in a part.

tinkbell13 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
tinkbell13 said...

Websites like this do not exist for no reason.

http://www.priest-abuse.com/

Might be interesting if someone of you would lend your support. Doubt it, JD wants to take about probabilities concerning childhood sexual abuse. How about you tell us what it is? The other point here, JD, is the way that it was handled.

Here is some of the finer moments in Canadian histories;

http://www.religioustolerance.org/clergy_sex3.htm

tinkbell13 said...

And, Tracey, I accept your comments, but I stand but what I said.

JD- My comments are fair because the abuse of innocents has been happening forever, and it continues. You just do not like what I said. I dare you to do it. I dare you to go on the website and tell them that "No one ever claimed that Christianity was a panacea that covered all and made it so one ever commits a crime or sins again." Try it, and see what happens. Guess what, survivors are living and breathing people who have had to live life deeply scarred. Put this in context- ONE IS TOO MANY!!!! Keep on radiating that Christian love.

Until members of the clergy immobilize and force the institution to take action, they are all responsible. I would retract if the laypeople in the Church even appeared to be concerned, but they do not. They do not appeal to the media, they do not organize walkouts to at least communicate their disgust with the secrecy.

JD Curtis said...

JD wants to take about probabilities concerning childhood sexual abuse

Actually I wanted to Talk about bioethics as the above article would suggest. It's not too late if anyone is interested though.

ONE IS TOO MANY!!!!

And I agree. The answer by the way is C. “The physical sexual abuse of students in schools is likely more than 100 times the abuse by priests.”

Shakeshaft, C. Ph.D., U.S. Department of Education report. 2002."

Penn state professor Philip Jenkins in Pedophiles and Priests estimates that "between .2 and 1.7 percent of priests are pedophiles. The figure among the Protestant clergy ranges between 2 and 3 percent." Among schoolteachers that figure goes up to about 5 percent.

None of ths helps the victims after the fact, but I await your burst of outrage at "In New York City alone, at least one child is sexually abused by a school employee every day. One study concluded that more than 60 percent of employees accused of sexual abuse in the New York City schools were transferred to desk jobs at district offices located inside the schools. Most of these teachers are tenured and 40 percent of those transferred are repeat offenders. They call it “passing the garbage” in the schools. One reason why this exists is due to efforts by the United Federation of Teachers to protect teachers at the expense of children. Another is the fact that teachers accused of sexual misconduct cannot be fired under New York State law" So this type of thing isnt limited to the Catholic Church.

I would no more log onto such a site and explain that they were a statistical anomoly than I would a site that supports the victims of Japanese fisherman. It would make no sense.

photogr said...

Tink:

You might be onto something here. When I read of child molestation by clergy, I do not hear the congegration stand up and protest or do they. I know I would have demanded to have the clergy that commited the crime ( if the allegations are true) be dashed from the church in shame.

These people were put in a sacred trust to shepperd the people under his wings and what they did was definitely sin never to be forgiven by man or God I suppose.

I would also think if Catholic clergy did not have to swear an oath of celebacy, we wold not be hearing of such atrocities in the Catholic church. Then to have the cardinals and the bishops try to cover it up makes them just as guilty and an accessory to a crime. They seem to easily excommunicate parisoners for divorcing and remarrying so why the double standards? God forgive me for knocking the Catholic leadership but some body has to.

photogr said...

I would also have to say this goes for any one in a position of trust in a school setting or other settings. Keep your flipping hands off our children.

The Maryland Crustacean said...

J.D. I must admit you have a dilemma on your hands.

No matter what you publish about Christianity, the Greek chorus chimes in with strawmen, red herrings and other assorted pot shots designed to take you off topic, and as such you would do well to igrnore them.

On the other hand, their assertions are so outrageous that they should not go unanswered.

I don't know what to to tell you.

JD Curtis said...

I would also think if Catholic clergy did not have to swear an oath of celebacy, we wold not be hearing of such atrocities in the Catholic church

You would THINK that was the case PHOTOGR but the statistics indicate otherwise. Check out my entry timestamped 7:17. Protestant clergy are accused more. Celibate priests much less. I have heard that certain professions like farmer and MD have more incidents of abuse than others but I don't have the link with the stats to support that statement. Maybe someone else does?

tinkbell13 said...

JD- I never said, not once, that children are not abused anywhere else. But, once again, you do not read. All you want to do is minimize and deflect, which is really insulting, demeaning, and cruel. At least Tracey has the humility to reread her comments and actually see what I am saying makes sense.

When a kid is victimized in the school system, the person who did it is subject to prosecution. There is a licensing body that is accountable for protecting the public. When a kid is abused in the Boy Scouts, it is in the media, and they get arrested. In all other sections of society, where people are in positions of power, there are consequences. The Catholic Church has a long standing history of not dealing with this. They hide the person accused and further victimize the victims. And, Tracey is right. They speak out against people like Madonna, but they hide child molesters. And, the people keep giving them money. Until Catholics get organized and demand something, I think that they are all to blame. That is the wealthiest institution in the world- Billions in assets. They have enough to end world hunger and poverty. Enough said.

You can argue your stupid probabilities all you like, you cannot change this no matter how much you lie and confabulate to yourself.

GCT said...

JD,
"Either show where it is written where child rape is condoned within orthodox Christianity or retract your statement."

Nice strawman. What I said was that god doesn't care if you rape children so long as you believe the right things. My support? It's your own statements that one is saved by faith alone. Thanks for playing.

"Let's see if we can see a pattern here. First child rape and now torture. I'll give you one chance to substantiate that either is considered normal within the confines of orthodox Christianity."

You said yourself that we all deserve hell. Thanks again for playing.

"Please point me toward the freethinking/secular humanist/atheist equivilent of the Salvation Army and the results of their efforts."

There are lots, actually. Doctors without Borders is one. In fact you can learn about them in this link that you won't bother to look at. And, that doesn't even include the outstanding success of the charity set up by the RDF recently for Haiti relief and how well it did. But, hey, persist in your smug ignorance.

MDC,
"No matter what you publish about Christianity, the Greek chorus chimes in with strawmen, red herrings and other assorted pot shots designed to take you off topic, and as such you would do well to igrnore them."

Please back up your assertions. On the contrary, as I regularly point out, JD is the one that usually resorts to those tactics, all the while accusing others of the same thing, but not being able to back it up. Perhaps you'll have more luck?

"On the other hand, their assertions are so outrageous that they should not go unanswered."

What is outrageous about my assertions, especially considering that they are based on JD's own statements?

The Maryland Crustacean said...

J.D: I think my point continues to be corroborated as your masterful answers continue to fall on deaf ears and evoke additional potshots.

GCT said...

So, can we take it from your non-response MDC that you are incapable of backing it up? If JD's responses are so masterful, then it should be easy to point out our logical flaws. You claim they are there. So, point them out. Let's see you back up your claims, or are you simply trying to divert and take potshots?

JD Curtis said...

When a kid is victimized in the school system, the person who did it is subject to prosecution. There is a licensing body that is accountable for protecting the public

"One of the nation’s foremost authorities on the subject of the sexual abuse of minors in public schools is Hofstra University professor Charol Shakeshaft. In 1994, Shakeshaft and Audrey Cohan did a study of 225 cases of educator sexual abuse in New York City. Their findings are astounding.

All of the accused admitted sexual abuse of a student, but none of the abusers was reported to the authorities, and only 1 percent lost their license to teach. Only 35 percent suffered negative consequences of any kind, and 39 percent chose to leave their school district, most with positive recommendations. Some were even given an early retirement package.

Moving molesting teachers from school district to school district is a common phenomenon. And in only 1 percent of the cases do superintendents notify the new school district... teachers accused of sexual misconduct cannot be fired under New York State law"

If you were to ask me if I think that it's more devestating if abuse happens because a priest is the perpetrator rather than a schoolteacher, than the answer is yes. They should beheld to a higher standard along with other members of clergy.

What I said was that god doesn't care if you rape children so long as you believe the right things. My support? It's your own statements that one is saved by faith alone

GCT, do not attribute to me words I have not written or actions I have not performed. I quoted 1Corinthians 3:10-15.

"By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as an expert builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should be careful how he builds. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. If any man builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, his work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each man’s work. If what he has built survives, he will receive his reward. If it is burned up, he will suffer loss; he himself will be saved, but only as one escaping through the flames."

I stated how the person referred to "as one escaping through the flames" would refer to somebody who "was saved but their reward in Heaven will be less" " because they didnt do too much to further the Kingdom."


I at NO point stated that it's OK to go out and commit sin and that it's all good. You only have to believe in the right things...ever. GCT, we are at an impasse. Either....

A. Retract your statement
B. Show me where I stated that it's OK to go out and commit all manner of sin up to and including child rape and it's OK as long as you believe the right things, or
C. Go away.

The choice is yours.

tinkbell13 said...

Again, lies and confabulations...... So, here is a question for you JD? Where would you rather put your child? ln the hands of Catholics or the public school system. Let me guess- they are probably in the public school system.

Yes, JD.... You are so right, once again. Never mind what priests do, what teachers do is so much worse. So correct. Why deny it?

tinkbell13 said...

I do not know about the US, but in Canada, we are really stringent on teachers. One little accusation, and you are removed immediately, it is all over the media. In my highschool, one of my teachers got busted. It went all over the country, and he went to jail. Another teacher (who I really liked) got busted for coke. Fired, license taken away, all over the media. So, you tell me.

But, the Catholics have had their way for many years. They are above the law. And, you are a moron to argue otherwise. Just more of your delusions.

tinkbell13 said...

This is a website in Canada, where female sex offenders are listed. Teachers are there, where they were arrested, and pictures of them are included, and when they lost their license.

http://www.canadiancrc.com/Female_Sex_Offenders-Female_Sexual_Predators_awareness.aspx

tinkbell13 said...

And, yes, in Canada, when a doctor is accused, the College of Physicians and Surgeons investigates. The doctor can continue to practice, but has to be chaperoned with their patients. Everything has to be witnessed, and if they find you guilty, you are arrested, all over the media, lose your license.How do I know? I spent a summer watching a doctor who had been accused.

Just because your country is fucked up and does not deal with teachers, does not mean all countries do. But, one thing is for sure, no country can deal with the Catholics, because they are above the law.

GCT said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
The Maryland Crustacean said...

No, GCT, I am perfectly capable of backing up my response but I choose to not waste my time repeating what has been clearly said but what you systematically ignore, choosing instead to go down rabbit trails.

GCT said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
GCT said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
The Maryland Crustacean said...

I suppose I don't need to worry about being rude or dismissive because, after all, I believe all the right things, correct?

That is just one example of how you are distorting Christianity, setting it up as a strawman to easily knock down. Now I assume you are a relatively intelligent person so you would have to know that Christianity teaches no such thing. And even if I gave you the benefit of the doubt, that you had somehow genuinely misunderstood Christianity, J.D., Feeno and others took the time to explain it to you, but apparently to no avail.

In this post and the previous one, they made their points much more articulately than I could and were unable to set you straight, so why should I waste my time?

If on the other hand you are genuinely interested in Christianity, we will be happy to to try to explain it again.

GCT said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
JD Curtis said...

GCT,

Since you did not,

A. Retract your statement
B. Show where I said that child rape was acceptable in any way, then
C. Just go away is the only option left

Do not comment here anymore. There are plenty of other blogs out there that might appreciate your unique pearls of wisdom but I obviously don't.

tinkbell13 said...

Still did not answer my question...
Would you trust your child too the public school system (which you probably already do) or allow Catholic priests to watch them for a couple of hours. Cause, I sure as hell would not choose the latter.

JD Curtis said...

A parent would be wise to perform some due diligence as to where their kid is going to go to school. That being said, I would send my kid to the best Catholic or Protestant school that I could based on..

A. The quality of education
B. discipline, and
C. A lower incidence of abuse

tinkbell13 said...

Good luck with that;

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE54J4GV20090520

JD Curtis said...

I checked out the article you cited Tink. Your question was "Would you trust your child too the public school system (which you probably already do) or allow Catholic priests to watch them for a couple of hours?"

If you'll re read the article you cited, the st majority of kids were adjudicated, orphans or indigent. That's a different story that what school I'm going to put my kid in.

tinkbell13 said...

And there it is.... The true love of Jesus ringing through JD.

If you'll re read the article you cited, the st majority of kids were adjudicated, orphans or indigent. That's a different story that what school I'm going to put my kid in.

The Catholics, well its just the poor kids. My kids have better than that. Way to radiate that compassion of Jesus to all of us heathens.

JD Curtis said...

No idiot. You asked me where I would put my kids and I told you. Would I put them in an orphanage? No.

tinkbell13 said...

No, you insensitive retard.... A housefly has more depth than you. Your comment is cruel, and you lack the basic insight to even see that.

JD Curtis said...

Would you trust your child too the public school system (which you probably already do) or allow Catholic priests to watch them for a couple of hours

"watch them for a couple of hours" sounds like a school to me. Unless of course, you can cite a definition of the word "orphan" that involves the child only being orphanED for "a couple of hours".

tinkbell13 said...

http://www.seattlepi.com/local/415669_teacher20.html