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Author Topic:   Religious Special Pleading
Tangle
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Posts: 6182
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
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(1)
Message 1 of 354 (829174)
03-04-2018 3:16 AM


I find myself getting less and less tolerant of the special pleading of those holding religious beliefs. I'm a secularist that believes that our society is weakened by concessions made to superstion.

We allow Jews and Muslims to mutilate boys, which for any other reason would be an imprisonable offence.
(I'm watching the Icelandic attempt to ban circumcision with interest. https://www.theguardian.com/...cision-first-european-country).

We ban female genital mutilation but don't enforce the ban.

We allow a part of our country - Northern Ireland - to deny women rights that the rest of our country hold (abortion).

We shy away from interfering with religious practices such as Shariah which are plainly against the values of our society as a whole.

Today I hear that a London coroner is being challenged in the High Court for refusing to prioritise Jewish burials over any other burial.

quote:
A Jewish burial service has called for a senior London coroner to be removed after accusing her of causing “anguish and trauma” by bureaucratic delays in a dispute over religious rules for the dead.

The service has made an official complaint against Mary Hassell, senior coroner for inner north London, saying “many of her imposed rules, bureaucracy, inflexibility and unnecessary delays offend traditional and/or religious practices”.

The move came after Hassell said “no death will be prioritised in any way over any other because of the religion of the deceased or family”. She has also suggested members of her staff have been “bullied or intimidated” by Jewish community representatives.


https://www.theguardian.com/...don-coroner-over-burial-delay

Religions exist within an overall rule of law which seeks to be fair to all. Religions that prefer their own rules to society's and indeed believe them to be above the secular law are damaging to society as a whole. We've seen this in Christian belief systems around the world where the institutions valued their own 'law' to secular law by covering up child abuse almost universally.

I think we're making progress - recent law changes allowing gay marriage are an example - but it seems painfully slow.

Edited by Tangle, : No reason given.

Edited by Tangle, : No reason given.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


Replies to this message:
 Message 3 by Phat, posted 03-04-2018 4:03 AM Tangle has responded
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 Message 6 by ringo, posted 03-04-2018 1:43 PM Tangle has responded

  
AdminPhat
Administrator
Posts: 1878
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-03-2004


Message 2 of 354 (829176)
03-04-2018 3:53 AM


Thread Copied from Proposed New Topics Forum
Thread copied here from the Religious Special Pleading thread in the Proposed New Topics forum.
    
Phat
Member
Posts: 11310
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 1.1


Message 3 of 354 (829177)
03-04-2018 4:03 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Tangle
03-04-2018 3:16 AM


Cut and Print
Circumcision is not limited to religious practice. Most males in the United States were circumcised by the hospital after birth.

Chance as a real force is a myth. It has no basis in reality and no place in scientific inquiry. For science and philosophy to continue to advance in knowledge, chance must be demythologized once and for all. –RC Sproul
"A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes." –Mark Twain "
~"If that's not sufficient for you go soak your head."~Faith
Paul was probably SO soaked in prayer nobody else has ever equaled him.~Faith :)

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by Tangle, posted 03-04-2018 3:16 AM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
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Tangle
Member
Posts: 6182
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.0


Message 4 of 354 (829179)
03-04-2018 4:24 AM
Reply to: Message 3 by Phat
03-04-2018 4:03 AM


Re: Cut and Print
Phat writes:

Circumcision is not limited to religious practice. Most males in the United States were circumcised by the hospital after birth.

Circumcision is almost exclusively related to religious practice in the 21st century. The reasons for supposedly non-religious circumcision are werd, wild and wacky. The major one being masturbation, which itself originates in religious ideas.

quote:
At the same time circumcisions were advocated on men, clitoridectomies (removal of the clitoris) were also performed for the same reason (to treat female masturbators). The US "Orificial Surgery Society" for female "circumcision" operated until 1925, and clitoridectomies and infibulations would continue to be advocated by some through the 1930s. As late as 1936, L. E. Holt, an author of pediatric textbooks, advocated male and female circumcision as a treatment for masturbation.[58]

One of the leading advocates of circumcision was John Harvey Kellogg. He advocated the consumption of Kellogg's corn flakes to prevent masturbation, and he believed that circumcision would be an effective way to eliminate masturbation in males.


https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_male_circumcision

Edited by Tangle, : No reason given.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


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Replies to this message:
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nwr
Member
Posts: 5583
From: Geneva, Illinois
Joined: 08-08-2005


(1)
Message 5 of 354 (829216)
03-04-2018 1:36 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Tangle
03-04-2018 3:16 AM


You call it "special pleading."

Yes, there is some special pleading involved. But this is mostly about pragmatics, as in:

  • Don't change things in ways that will alienate a large block of the public, because that will only lead to serious social disruption.

... but it seems painfully slow.

This isn't about changing laws. It is about changing the culture. And changing the culture is always painfully slow.

Fundamentalism - the anti-American, anti-Christian branch of American Christianity

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ringo
Member
Posts: 15404
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 1.8


Message 6 of 354 (829217)
03-04-2018 1:43 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Tangle
03-04-2018 3:16 AM


I think you have it backwards. As often as not, religion takes it's practices from the culture. See Christmas as an example.

When you start banning religious practices, you open the door to banning cultural practices in general. Note how "Christmas" trees are frowned on by the political correctness fanatics even though they have nothing to do with Christianity.


An honest discussion is more of a peer review than a pep rally. My toughest critics here are the people who agree with me. -- ringo

This message is a reply to:
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Faith
Member
Posts: 29837
From: Nevada, USA
Joined: 10-06-2001
Member Rating: 1.2


Message 7 of 354 (829218)
03-04-2018 1:48 PM
Reply to: Message 4 by Tangle
03-04-2018 4:24 AM


Re: Cut and Print
You quoted me but I didn't say that. It was Phat. However, I agree with him.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 4 by Tangle, posted 03-04-2018 4:24 AM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
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Tangle
Member
Posts: 6182
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.0


Message 8 of 354 (829223)
03-04-2018 2:34 PM
Reply to: Message 7 by Faith
03-04-2018 1:48 PM


Re: Cut and Print
Apologies...

Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 7 by Faith, posted 03-04-2018 1:48 PM Faith has not yet responded

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 6182
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.0


Message 9 of 354 (829229)
03-04-2018 2:50 PM
Reply to: Message 6 by ringo
03-04-2018 1:43 PM


Ringo writes:

When you start banning religious practices, you open the door to banning cultural practices in general.

Slippery slope arguments are always wrong in Western democracies. Banning harmful practices does not 'open the door' to banning harmless ones.

Note how "Christmas" trees are frowned on by the political correctness fanatics even though they have nothing to do with Christianity.

With the exception of totalitariast regimes nobody is ever going to ban Christmas trees are they? Once a year a few nutters with make a slow news day, that's all.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 6 by ringo, posted 03-04-2018 1:43 PM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 10 by ringo, posted 03-04-2018 2:56 PM Tangle has responded

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 15404
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 1.8


Message 10 of 354 (829233)
03-04-2018 2:56 PM
Reply to: Message 9 by Tangle
03-04-2018 2:50 PM


Tangle writes:

Banning harmful practices does not 'open the door' to banning harmless ones.


Who decides what's "harmful" and what's "harmless"?

Tangle writes:

With the exception of totalitariast regimes nobody is ever going to ban Christmas trees are they?


I suspect that you would if you thought they were "harmful".

But you're missing the point. The point is that the "harmful" practices are not necessarily religious in nature.


An honest discussion is more of a peer review than a pep rally. My toughest critics here are the people who agree with me. -- ringo

This message is a reply to:
 Message 9 by Tangle, posted 03-04-2018 2:50 PM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 11 by Tangle, posted 03-04-2018 3:05 PM ringo has responded

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 6182
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.0


Message 11 of 354 (829237)
03-04-2018 3:05 PM
Reply to: Message 10 by ringo
03-04-2018 2:56 PM


Ringo writes:

Who decides what's "harmful" and what's "harmless"?

Our secular institutions. That's their job.

I suspect that you would if you thought they were "harmful".

I would only think they were harmul if they actually caused harm

But you're missing the point. The point is that the "harmful" practices are not necessarily religious in nature.

That's rather obvious. I'm not fond of any harmful practice, but here we're talking about harmful religious practices.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 10 by ringo, posted 03-04-2018 2:56 PM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 12 by NoNukes, posted 03-05-2018 12:35 AM Tangle has responded
 Message 20 by ringo, posted 03-06-2018 11:07 AM Tangle has responded

  
NoNukes
Inactive Member


Message 12 of 354 (829272)
03-05-2018 12:35 AM
Reply to: Message 11 by Tangle
03-04-2018 3:05 PM


Our secular institutions. That's their job.

What do your secular institutions say about circumcision? I remember looking into this a couple of years ago for an argument here, and I was unable to uncover much pro/con on the practice healthwise with there being some disputable minor advantages to being circumcised for some folk. I don't see much of a reason for the state to be involved. We would not want the state involved in gender changing surgery decisions. Is this simply a case of personal animus?

With regard to the religious implications, the New Testament is pretty clear that it is not a required religious practice for non-Jews, but at least at the time I was a kid, it was very widely practiced.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

"Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

We got a thousand points of light for the homeless man. We've got a kinder, gentler, machine gun hand. Neil Young, Rockin' in the Free World.

Worrying about the "browning of America" is not racism. -- Faith

I hate you all, you hate me -- Faith


This message is a reply to:
 Message 11 by Tangle, posted 03-04-2018 3:05 PM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 13 by Tangle, posted 03-05-2018 4:34 AM NoNukes has responded

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 6182
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.0


Message 13 of 354 (829275)
03-05-2018 4:34 AM
Reply to: Message 12 by NoNukes
03-05-2018 12:35 AM


NoNukes writes:

What do your secular institutions say about circumcision?


It totally bans female circumcision and it very belatedly bans people traveling to countries that practice it to get it done. It has been very lax in enforcing the latter.

Male circumcision is ignored (except in Iceland). But why? If the practice had not existed and was attempted to be brought in today, it would not be possible.

We allow a harmful practice purely for supersticious religious reasons.

I remember looking into this a couple of years ago for an argument here, and I was unable to uncover much pro/con on the practice healthwise with there being some disputable minor advantages to being circumcised for some folk. I don't see much of a reason for the state to be involved. We would not want the state involved in gender changing surgery decisions.

The only reason for this practice is religious. All the rationalisation therafter can be ignored. The issue then becomes whether it's a necessary medical procedure, no, and whether it's harmful - yes.

Is this simply a case of personal animus?

Yes, I personally dislike most silly religious beliefs, but putting that aside, is the practice harmful to individuals and society? I think so, we allow a primitive, divisive and personally harmful practice to continue. Why?

With regard to the religious implications, the New Testament is pretty clear that it is not a required religious practice for non-Jews, but at least at the time I was a kid, it was very widely practiced.

And now only continues in religious communities. Why, if it had benefits apart from reducing the 'harmful' effects of masturbation by making the penis less sensitive, has it been discontinued?


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 12 by NoNukes, posted 03-05-2018 12:35 AM NoNukes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 14 by NoNukes, posted 03-05-2018 11:55 AM Tangle has responded
 Message 27 by ICANT, posted 03-06-2018 2:26 PM Tangle has responded

  
NoNukes
Inactive Member


Message 14 of 354 (829285)
03-05-2018 11:55 AM
Reply to: Message 13 by Tangle
03-05-2018 4:34 AM


We allow a harmful practice purely for supersticious religious reasons.

My question is directed at whether or not the practice of male circumcision is harmful. You say it is. But is that any kind of official position. I haven't been able to find any such thing, and I did try.

Is this simply a case of personal animus?

Yes, I personally dislike most silly religious beliefs, but putting that aside, is the practice harmful to individuals and society? I think so..

Can you do any better than that?


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

"Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

We got a thousand points of light for the homeless man. We've got a kinder, gentler, machine gun hand. Neil Young, Rockin' in the Free World.

Worrying about the "browning of America" is not racism. -- Faith

I hate you all, you hate me -- Faith


This message is a reply to:
 Message 13 by Tangle, posted 03-05-2018 4:34 AM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
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Coyote
Member (Idle past 29 days)
Posts: 6117
Joined: 01-12-2008


(1)
Message 15 of 354 (829287)
03-05-2018 12:38 PM
Reply to: Message 14 by NoNukes
03-05-2018 11:55 AM


male circumcision...

For starters, lets call it by its proper name: male genital mutilation.


Religious belief does not constitute scientific evidence, nor does it convey scientific knowledge.

Belief gets in the way of learning--Robert A. Heinlein

In the name of diversity, college student demands to be kept in ignorance of the culture that made diversity a value--StultisTheFool

It's not what we don't know that hurts, it's what we know that ain't so--Will Rogers

If I am entitled to something, someone else is obliged to pay--Jerry Pournelle

If a religion's teachings are true, then it should have nothing to fear from science...--dwise1

"Multiculturalism" demands that the US be tolerant of everything except its own past, culture, traditions, and identity.

Liberals claim to want to give a hearing to other views, but then are shocked and offended to discover that there are other points of view--William F. Buckley Jr.


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