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 Post Posted: Sun Dec 12, 2004 2:25 am 
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http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,141218,00.html

THis kind of activity gives me the creeps, and I'm even a Republican.

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 Post Posted: Sun Dec 12, 2004 6:36 am 
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Never mind you being republican, I am Christian and Falwell scares even me!

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 Post Posted: Sun Dec 12, 2004 9:57 am 
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He must have some sort of a fanbase, otherwise he wouldn't be famous. Now that's the creepy part.

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 Post Posted: Sun Dec 12, 2004 11:02 am 
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The problem Republicans are going to have is when far-right radicals like Falwell come into conflict with pro-gay, pro-choice moderates like Giulianai. Factional conflicts within a party can be even more brutal than conflicts with opposition parties.

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 Post Posted: Sun Dec 12, 2004 12:38 pm 
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Nobody should be too suprised that he was going to start up the Moral Majority after what happened in the 2004 election. I just wonder why he dosn't work with groups like the Christian Coaltion.

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 Post Posted: Sun Dec 12, 2004 12:40 pm 
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Good to see you back Ironers. As much as I disagreed with you on.. like.. virtually everything, without you around there was no one to argue with. And wheres the fun in that!

IM not surprised by Falwell's return either. Terrified of it.... but not surprised

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 Post Posted: Sun Dec 12, 2004 12:48 pm 
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Dionysus wrote:
Good to see you back Ironers. As much as I disagreed with you on.. like.. virtually everything, without you around there was no one to argue with. And wheres the fun in that!

IM not surprised by Falwell's return either. Terrified of it.... but not surprised


Thanks. Work got busier so my internet travels were severly curtailed.

And now I have become additiced to World of Warcrack.

And I don't see why anyone should be scared of Falwell's return to politics. He and the people he represents just have as much right to change politics in the USA as anyone else dose (gotta love free democracy). But I also don't think its going to do much anyway since there are groups like the Christian Coaltion already out there doing much the same thing.

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 Post Posted: Sun Dec 12, 2004 1:01 pm 
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Moral majority....in other words, he's going to try to change our country from a democracy into a 'tyranny of the majority.' Or for those of you who are cynical, into even more of a tyranny of the majority than it is now.

It always frightens me when some conservative who claims to stand for 'moral rightness' declares intentions to use the democratic process to bully people into following their whims.

Some social liberal should start another organization with the word 'moral' in it's name to symbolically send the message 'You don't decide what's moral and what's not.'

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 Post Posted: Sun Dec 12, 2004 1:21 pm 
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Ironers wrote:
[And I don't see why anyone should be scared of Falwell's return to politics. He and the people he represents just have as much right to change politics in the USA as anyone else dose (gotta love free democracy). But I also don't think its going to do much anyway since there are groups like the Christian Coaltion already out there doing much the same thing.


Of course they have the RIGHT to try and change it. However because I vehemntly disagree with the whole Moral Majority crap, Im terrified of the possibility of him suceeding and leading us down that road into Darkness.

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 Post Posted: Sun Dec 12, 2004 3:03 pm 
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I am beginning to think that the strict separation of church and state that exists in the USA does more to antagonize religious groups than it does to actually maintain that separation. So what if people want to put creches or pedestals with the 10 Commandments in courthouses? Or keep the words "under god" in the pledge of allegiance? So what if some government money goes to religious charities? These things aren't a big deal in other countries. Here, social services work closely with religious charities here to distribute food and cure drug addicts. Nobody accuses the government of discriminating against them. There was a Bible Club in my (partially government subsidized) elementary school, and I went there with my Hindu and Buddhist friends just because we liked to listen to stories, even if they were about Jesus. We also did school assemblies about Diwali and Ramadan and Chinese New Year. Parents didn't get mad. The British sing "God Save The Queen", and people don't get upset about it. It's not like they're a particularly religious country either, the irreligious just know not to take that bit seriously.

These little things aren't such a big deal. Maybe if the US compromised on them a little, it would alleviate the siege mentality and take some steam out of movements like Falwell's. Not all conservatives are raving sexist homophobic nuts like him, and as a group, they might not oppose the things that really matter (like gay marriage) quite so rabidly if there weren't all these other little things ticking them off. The opposition would still be strong, but perhaps not so insurmountable.

On the other hand, compromising on the little things would require changing about 90 years of constitutional law, so I understand the reluctance to do that...

But still. Just a thought.

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 Post Posted: Sun Dec 12, 2004 4:20 pm 
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Kea, you can't compromise with evil. Behind the relatively innocent suckers who think that this is about their particular `harmless' custom or charity are the movers and shakers of the movement (the ones who pay for and motivate it); who know full well that this is about stealing tax dollars for religious purposes and setting up a de-facto exclusionary state religion. Conceding anything to the former is just an open invitation to the latter; because all of the issues are carefully chosen by the latter specifically to provide that opening.

Lest you wonder at the wording; why do you think Dubya's Office for Faith Based Initiatives closed down? Because the guy who ran it discovered that he was a sucker, and quit while saying so. There was never the slightest intention of giving money to religious charities; because too many of those charities were run by the `wrong' religions (the Mormons, the Catholics, the Muslims, etc). All of the money was supposed to go to the correct protestant sects, for their own purely religious purposes; and the guy who ran the office decided that he couldn't go along with that.

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 Post Posted: Sun Dec 12, 2004 4:42 pm 
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You can compromise with evil, but it won't end well for you.

I think the basic idea is that "you give an inch, and they'll take a mile". When a group tries to further their cause in the government, they generally have to sort-of pull themselves up by their bootstraps, so to speak. If you let them have the Ten Commandments in a courthouse, they'll use that decision to win the next case so they can have them read every morning, and then they'll use that to justify teaching them in law school, and so on and so forth until they've either been stopped (unlikely) or they succeed in making Christianity mandatory in this country (then, the WORLD!).
It's a true slippery-slope issue. Better to draw the line at "zero" than an undefined (and easily pushed back) "some".

Falwell and the other evangelical, conservative Christians scare me more than a barrel full of scary things.

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 Post Posted: Sun Dec 12, 2004 11:13 pm 
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You know, "you can't compromise with evil" sounds an awful lot like the argument Bush used against the Axis of Evil. If we can negotiate with Iran, surely we can negotiate with our own wingnuts on the right.

I'm also not a fan of the slippery slope argument. The right uses that one too. ("If you allow gay marriage, then sooner or later you'll have legalized polygamy, bestiality and pedophilia!") There's a grain of truth in it, but rarely does the slope slide all the way down. I don't doubt that if you give an inch, the nutty leaders of the religious right will try to take a mile. But you don't have to let them, and I doubt they'll succeed. There's enough conservatives who oppose government intrusions of privacy and amending the constitution for social issues.

All I'm saying is, look how other countries handle this issue. The English actually have a state religion, and it's been a long time since that led to any substantive persecution of minority faiths. Here in Hong Kong we have government money going to all manner of religious schools and charities, more or less on an impartial basis, and it's a complete non-issue. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I've never heard of the Canadians or Australians getting their underpants tied in a knot over Christmas decorations in public places.

Granted, other democracies don't tend to have such strong right-wing religious movements, but maybe it wouldn't be quite so strong in the United States if they couldn't point to this long list of ways in which they're being "discriminated" against. The "AAargh! The athiest liberals are taking over the country!" argument wouldn't be as effective if you could simply point and ask "Um, how?" And the two or three things they could point to drew a considerably smaller fanbase.

I will concede, though, that the US may have reached the point where compromise is politically impossible. In which case, my argument would still be valid, it just wouldn't be all that practical.

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 Post Posted: Mon Dec 13, 2004 4:46 pm 
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Weremensh wrote:
Kea, you can't compromise with evil. Behind the relatively innocent suckers who think that this is about their particular `harmless' custom or charity are the movers and shakers of the movement (the ones who pay for and motivate it); who know full well that this is about stealing tax dollars for religious purposes and setting up a de-facto exclusionary state religion. Conceding anything to the former is just an open invitation to the latter; because all of the issues are carefully chosen by the latter specifically to provide that opening.


While I dont like Jerry Falwell at all, I find it interesting how you call him and other religious right leaders, evil. But I dont think that is worth responding to.

Now I find it amazing how so many people are so afraid of religion being invovled in politics. We have discussed this in my Elections class, how the West/East Coast media and scholars have no understanding of most of the country, and when religion can't be ignored, everyone is all of a sudden scared. Religion has been part of politics since the beginning, it played a major role in 1800, the Civil war, the Progressive era, and has been present in several elections in our nation's history. Religion has been part of politics since the America's beginning, and our country is doing fine. Ths is how it always has been and how it will always be, people just need to learn to deal with it.

I want religion to be in politics only as far as it affects people's moral decisions and affects who they are. I dont want it to be visibly present or used to win elections like it was this year. But I dont see our country going down the path towards destruction. We could be in the Fourth reawakening now, it could have an affect on poltics, but it is certainly not evil.

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 Post Posted: Mon Dec 13, 2004 9:22 pm 
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The_Confused_One wrote:

Now I find it amazing how so many people are so afraid of religion being invovled in politics. We have discussed this in my Elections class, how the West/East Coast media and scholars have no understanding of most of the country, and when religion can't be ignored, everyone is all of a sudden scared. Religion has been part of politics since the beginning, it played a major role in 1800, the Civil war, the Progressive era, and has been present in several elections in our nation's history. Religion has been part of politics since the America's beginning, and our country is doing fine. Ths is how it always has been and how it will always be, people just need to learn to deal with it.
Well, that is easier to accept if it's your religion thats on top, telling everyone what to do. I'm sure you'd be pretty annoyed if the Blue states converted en mass to Buddism and instituted vegeterianism across the land! (I know I would be.)
Thing is, Confused One, if Falwell was agressively promoting inclusion and love (which, to my agnostic mind was the essence of what Jesus taught) then people wouldn't be nearly so alarmed. But he isn't.

Religion in politics, like you say, it's aways been that way, and thats fine. But a religious point of view that hates and despises because of a narrow reading of selected bible verses, no thanks.

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