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 Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 10:17 am 
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Is there really serious controversy over male circumcision? I hear genital mutilation and think of female "circumcision" or clitorectomies.

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 Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 10:58 am 
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Are there any places where male circumcism is illegal?

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 Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 11:41 am 
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There is opposition to it being the general practice on non-Jewish males in some parts of the US, but I was talking about female clitoris removal.

But as to that, yes it should be outlawed, not least because it's forcing the infant male into said "covenant" without their consent. If they want to make a "covenant" with the Lord for land when they are adults by chopping flesh off their tonkers like the muslims, that's their business, but don't make decisions on the topic FOR the kid.

As an aside, you really need to take Yahweh to court for breach of covenant, but that is neither here nor there.

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 Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 12:26 pm 
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Duke Leto wrote:
But as to that, yes it should be outlawed, not least because it's forcing the infant male into said "covenant" without their consent. If they want to make a "covenant" with the Lord for land when they are adults by chopping flesh off their tonkers like the muslims, that's their business, but don't make decisions on the topic FOR the kid.


I am entirely glad that my parents had me covenanted when I was an infant. There's no way I would have such a, uh, delicate surgery today, even if I wanted it.

(They also had me baptized. I think doing both rituals is an excellent compromise, because then the child is covered either way. As far as I know neither religion has problems with you doing the other one as an infant.)

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 Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 12:38 pm 
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That is as may be for you, Malice. But not all adult males are going to agree with that judgement call made by their parents on their behalf.

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 Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 1:04 pm 
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Duke Leto wrote:
There is opposition to it being the general practice on non-Jewish males in some parts of the US, but I was talking about female clitoris removal.

But as to that, yes it should be outlawed, not least because it's forcing the infant male into said "covenant" without their consent. If they want to make a "covenant" with the Lord for land when they are adults by chopping flesh off their tonkers like the muslims, that's their business, but don't make decisions on the topic FOR the kid.

As an aside, you really need to take Yahweh to court for breach of covenant, but that is neither here nor there.

And this is why cultures should remain separate and sovereign. One culture's human right is another culture's sacrilege. I'm not arguing that one side or the other is right (though I will have my own children circumcised); this just displays for us why one culture should not be allowed to legislate morality to another. I assert that in the presence of a world federation or government with any sort of teeth at all, this kind of legislation will inevitably become law.

It boils down to this question: why should people thousands of miles away from each other with negligible influence on each others' lives have legal authority over each other, even diluted via elections?

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 Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 2:09 pm 
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How about if one of them is pouring pollutants into the atmosphere that both use? That is the only reason anyone has a right to influence anyone else's behavior, is if that behavior is a threat to their life, liberty or property.

And I don't buy into this "separate cultures" garbage. You have no authority to make decisions as to what your children are going to believe. I won't try and force YOU not to, but I will try and convince your neighbors that I am right and change your culture to suit my values of universal humanism.

And if Yahweh were to go back to his old habits and start demanding that you put your son to the fire in his honor; and let's not poop about this, your ancestors did believe that he wanted them to do that until Jeremiah and Nebuchednezzer stopped them, or more properly until Nebuchednezzer stopped them an Jeremiah and the Deuteronomist went back edited the word of Yahweh to reflect the new cultural norm; and I find about it and you try and act on that cultural tradition, there's no way in hell respect for your culture is going to stop me from rescuing the kid from human sacrifice.

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 Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 2:17 pm 
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I would assume that with a world goverment (as long as it is democratic, repects rule of law ect.) outlawing specific cultural customs without some actual human rights issues, would be rather small. The more local you are, the more you can get people united behind the same boogeyman.

Id' consider it more likeable that a couple of european countries (in a fit of anti-islamism or similiar) decide to outlaw male circumcism, then that the EU does. A lot of local party-allies will not take part for one reason or an other and destroy the united front, or demand specific exceptions or something.

The whole gets even less believeable if you'd extend the EU to cover a couple of islamic countries and Israel as well.

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 Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 2:40 pm 
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Well that's the thing isn't it, if Crazed's cultural inviolability stands then we Yankees had no right to step in and tell the Dixieccrats to end segregation, or slavery, since that was their culture we'd have been meddling with. By the same token the old Jewish prophets had no right to tell Ahab to stop worshipping Melqart as well as Yahweh or to tell Ahaziah and the other Kings of Judah that infant sacrifice was wrong, since it was their culture to honor Yahweh with infant sacrifice.

Hell, time to call in Godwin's Law, arcosh. If no one has the right to tell people in another culture how to behave than the skinheads in your backyard are justified in wanting to reopen Dachau and devote crazed and his family to their own peculiar Molech, since murdering Jews is an important part of their cultural heritage.

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 Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 5:06 pm 
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Kea wrote:
Religious wars were the exception rather than the rule though. I don't know anything about the Yellow Turbans rebellion, but Wiki says it was motivated in large part by rural famine and political corruption, and the Boxer Rebellion was mainly anti-Imperialist with a side of supernatural belief. There's no real equivalent of the Thirty Year's War, or heretic burnings.
The religious wars in Europe had secular sides too. Catholic Austria and Spain saw the rise of Protestantism as an opportunity to build themselves up at the expense of newly Protestant states, while the decision of many monarchs to go Protestant was influenced by the desire for greater control over their own politics and the power to confiscate church holdings.

Likewise, a lot of witch burnings were motivated by politics, because the burners would often get part or all of the witch's property.

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 Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 8:31 pm 
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Duke Leto wrote:
Well that's the thing isn't it, if Crazed's cultural inviolability stands then we Yankees had no right to step in and tell the Dixieccrats to end segregation, or slavery, since that was their culture we'd have been meddling with. By the same token the old Jewish prophets had no right to tell Ahab to stop worshipping Melqart as well as Yahweh or to tell Ahaziah and the other Kings of Judah that infant sacrifice was wrong, since it was their culture to honor Yahweh with infant sacrifice.

Hell, time to call in Godwin's Law, arcosh. If no one has the right to tell people in another culture how to behave than the skinheads in your backyard are justified in wanting to reopen Dachau and devote crazed and his family to their own peculiar Molech, since murdering Jews is an important part of their cultural heritage.

You know what, you just indirectly compared male circumcision and cultural sovereignty to the Nazis. I don't care if you called it first, Godwin's Law. You had to go up to the "Nazi, baby-killing, and slavery" level to find something that actually justifies giving the "more enlightened" portion of humanity sovereignty over the "less enlightened" portion. You have triggered Godwin's Law; you lose.

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I would assume that with a world goverment (as long as it is democratic, repects rule of law ect.) outlawing specific cultural customs without some actual human rights issues, would be rather small. The more local you are, the more you can get people united behind the same boogeyman.

That really depends what kind of political system such a thing would have. I'm open to arguments that some federation systems will leave the locals with enough sovereignty to prevent the feds passing frivolous morality legislation based in cultural imperialism, but I honestly think any such governmental system would also leave the federal government completely and utterly ineffective for dealing with much of anything.

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 Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 9:32 pm 
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Crazed, sovereignty is one thing. Having an inherent right to "practice traditional culture" because its your traditional culture is something else. And the kind of Westphalian sovereignty you seem to be harping on about hasn't got a damn thing to with democracy and self government, it just means that whoever is in charge in a given sovereign nation is allowed to force the people there to do whatever they (whoever is in charge) want.

But i repeat myself, if the kind of "popular sovereignty" you are talking about is to be the law of the world then slavery of minorities cannot be interfered with anywhere the local popular majority approves of it. You are right that male circumcision isn't qualitatively comparable to slavery, but female circumcision has nothing to do with any ancient covenants and everything to do with eliminating female sexual pleasure. And you, sitting on your damn judgemental high horse are saying that nobody outside of countries where it is the norm have any right to discourage it. And I am dragging out slavery and segregartion because the old American South used EXACTLY your argument to insist Northerners had no right to interfere with slavery, and then dragged the same argument out again to argue against the civil rights.

Sovereignty without a universal standard of human rights is meaningless. If infant male circumcision is a human rights violation, its a fairly trivial one that I frankly don't want to devote any time to dealing with. Slavery and female genital mutilation ARE serious human rights violations, and taking your principle at face value means they have to be countenanced.

Oh and you invoked the N word first in your subscripted screed about how it isn't fair to hold Israel to your own standards.

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 Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 9:45 pm 
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Duke Leto wrote:
Crazed, sovereignty is one thing. Having an inherent right to "practice traditional culture" because its your traditional culture is something else. And the kind of Westphalian sovereignty you seem to be harping on about hasn't got a damn thing to with democracy and self government, it just means that whoever is in charge in a given sovereign nation is allowed to force the people there to do whatever they (whoever is in charge) want.

But i repeat myself, if the kind of "popular sovereignty" you are talking about is to be the law of the world then slavery of minorities cannot be interfered with anywhere the local popular majority approves of it. You are right that male circumcision isn't qualitatively comparable to slavery, but female circumcision has nothing to do with any ancient covenants and everything to do with eliminating female sexual pleasure. And you, sitting on your damn judgemental high horse are saying that nobody outside of countries where it is the norm have any right to discourage it. And I am dragging out slavery and segregartion because the old American South used EXACTLY your argument to insist Northerners had no right to interfere with slavery, and then dragged the same argument out again to argue against the civil rights.

Sovereignty without a universal standard of human rights is meaningless. If infant male circumcision is a human rights violation, its a fairly trivial one that I frankly don't want to devote any time to dealing with. Slavery and female genital mutilation ARE serious human rights violations, and taking your principle at face value means they have to be countenanced.

Oh and you invoked the N word first in your subscripted screed about how it isn't fair to hold Israel to your own standards.


Where did Crazed argue for female "circumcision"? As far as I know, Judaism only promotes circumcision for males.

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 Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 10:03 pm 
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Duke Leto wrote:
You are right that male circumcision isn't qualitatively comparable to slavery, but female circumcision has nothing to do with any ancient covenants and everything to do with eliminating female sexual pleasure. And you, sitting on your damn judgemental high horse are saying that nobody outside of countries where it is the norm have any right to discourage it.
Um... No.

No, I don't think he is.

He's probably saying that nobody outside the countries where it is the norm have a right to, say, invade and conquer those countries to make them stop. I can see why he'd say that. Among other things, that does create a great practical risk of replacing one tyranny with another. And it creates the practical problem that people who resent being ruled by foreigners will start thinking of whatever custom they got invaded over as somehow essential, rather than being something that they can stop doing and still be themselves.

Bad plan.

But he never said that outsiders don't have a right to discourage insiders. I can tell you I don't like your business without threatening to stab you to death if you don't stop.
_______

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And I am dragging out slavery and segregartion because the old American South used EXACTLY your argument to insist Northerners had no right to interfere with slavery, and then dragged the same argument out again to argue against the civil rights.
In that case, there was a major flaw in the argument because the old American South was trying to deny the power of action of a government it had quite specifically ceded certain powers to.

Thus, the claim "how dare you interfere in our customs" rang false, because the same people interfering in their customs were the ones they would have run screaming to for help if, say, they had been invaded. The South was claiming not just the right to perpetuate injustice, but the right to have a claim on the support of outsiders without having any obligation to those outsiders in return. Even when it had already signed over those obligations in the first place.
_______

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Oh and you invoked the N word first in your subscripted screed about how it isn't fair to hold Israel to your own standards.
You keep talking about Godwin's Law. I do not think it means what you think it means.

"Godwin's Law" refers to the "Oh, well, this is like the Nazis!" argument. It's a specialized form of the slippery slope argument:
"You'd tolerate X? Well, if you'd tolerate X, you'd tolerate X-prime, and X-double-prime, and..."

Or, in this case "Oh, you think that a society has a right to do something other societies think is mildly nasty? Well, in that case you must think that a society has a right to do something other societies think is moderately nasty. In which case you must think that a society has a right to do something really nasty. In which case you must think that a society has a right to commit acts of cruelty and evil that would shock the conscience of Atilla the Hun. In which case you're defending the Nazis!"

It's not a very good argument, IMO.

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 Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 10:24 pm 
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Veeb, I brought up female circumcision and Crazed interposed his belief in male circumcision as an objection.

And you know SJ, I'd agree with you if I believed that Crazed was saying no one has a right to invade and conquer a country because of cultural differences, but that isn't the argument I've been getting from him.

He's saying that no world government should ever be organized, even peacefully and democratically, because it would wind up trampling on the rights of minorities. He's said that the USofA should never have been formed because its supposed cultural uniformity is a "bloody travesty". Those are the assertions I've been arguing against, because they are insane. Thus the comparison to American secessionists is germane since he is arguing what amounts to state's rights anti-federalism, and that has and continues to be the public clothing of racists in the US. (I appreciate that Crazed appears not to be a US citizen and may not be familiar with just what a bunch of morons the the local sovereignty crowd here tends to be.)

But thank you for clarifying the central points. If Crazed wants to rebut that generalization of his position, I'd be happy to quote him back at himself. Let me emphasize again that I'm a bit pissed off about being accused of wanting to go out and invade places when I have vehemently opposed such action elsewhere in the thread.

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