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Author Topic:   The Barbarity of Christianity (as compared to Islam)
Tal
Member (Idle past 3966 days)
Posts: 1140
From: Fort Bragg, NC
Joined: 12-29-2004


Message 256 of 299 (384412)
02-11-2007 1:02 PM
Reply to: Message 240 by Chiroptera
02-10-2007 4:56 PM


Re: We're just better, dammit!
Ben Stine put it best:
Greetings From Rancho Mirage
BY: Ben Stein, Open Letter
02/02/2007

Dear Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, National Guard, Reservists, in Iraq, in the Middle East theater, in Afghanistan, in the area near Afghanistan, in any base anywhere in the world, and your families:

Let me tell you about why you guys own about 90 percent of the backbone in the whole world right now and should be happy with yourselves and proud of whom you are.

It was a dazzlingly hot day here in Rancho Mirage today. I did small errands like going to the bank to pay my mortgage, finding a new bed at a price I can afford, practicing driving with my new 5 wood, paying bills for about two hours. I spoke for a long time to a woman who is going through a nasty child custody fight. I got e-mails from a woman who was fired today from her job for not paying attention. I read about multi-billion-dollar mergers in Europe, Asia, and the Mideast. I noticed how overweight I am, for the millionth time. In other words, I did a lot of nothing.

Like every other American who is not in the armed forces family, I basically just rearranged the deck chairs on the Titanic in my trivial, self-important, meaningless way.

Above all, I talked to a friend of more than forty-three years who told me he thought his life had no meaning because all he did was count his money. And, friends in the armed forces, this is the story of all of America today. We are doing nothing but treading water while you guys carry on the life or death struggle against worldwide militant Islamic terrorism. Our lives are about nothing: paying bills, going to humdrum jobs, waiting until we can go to sleep and then do it all again. Our most vivid issues are trivia compared with what you do every day, every minute, every second.

Oprah Winfrey talks a lot about "meaning" in life. For her, "meaning" is dieting and then having her photo on the cover of her magazine every single month (surely a new world record for egomania). This is not "meaning."

- Meaning is doing for others.
- Meaning is risking your life for hers.
- Meaning is putting your bodies and families' peace of mind on the line to defeat some of the most evil, sick killers the world has ever known.

- Meaning is leaving the comfort of home to fight to make sure that there still will be a home for your family and for your nation and for free men and women everywhere.

Look, soldiers and Marines and sailors and airmen and Coast Guardsmen, there are six billion people in this world. The whole fate of this world turns on what you people, 1.4 million, more or less, do every day. The fate of mankind depends on what about 2/100 of one percent of the people in this world do every day and you are those people. And joining you is every policeman, fireman, and Emergency Medical Technician in the country, also holding back the tide of chaos.

Do you know how important you are? Do you know how indispensable you are? Do you know how humbly grateful any of us who has a head on his shoulders is to you? Do you know that if you never do another thing in your lives, you will always still be heroes? That we could live without Hollywood or Wall Street or the NFL, but we cannot live for a week without you?

We are on our knees to you and we bless and pray for you every moment.
And Oprah Winfrey, if she were a size two, would not have one millionth of your importance, and all of the Wall Street billionaires will never mean what the least of you do, and if Barry Bonds hits hundreds of home runs it would not mean as much as you going on one patrol or driving one truck to the Baghdad airport.

You are everything to us, as we go through our little days, and you are in the prayers of the nation and of every decent man and woman on the planet. That's who you are and what you mean. I hope you know that.

Love,
Ben Stein


News Media: Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory 1 negative report at a time.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 240 by Chiroptera, posted 02-10-2007 4:56 PM Chiroptera has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 257 by docpotato, posted 02-11-2007 1:41 PM Tal has not yet responded
 Message 258 by subbie, posted 02-11-2007 2:32 PM Tal has not yet responded
 Message 259 by Chiroptera, posted 02-11-2007 2:35 PM Tal has not yet responded
 Message 264 by Nighttrain, posted 02-11-2007 10:48 PM Tal has responded

  
docpotato
Member (Idle past 3336 days)
Posts: 334
From: Portland, OR
Joined: 07-18-2003


Message 257 of 299 (384421)
02-11-2007 1:41 PM
Reply to: Message 256 by Tal
02-11-2007 1:02 PM


Re: We're just better, dammit!
Off topic. Withdrawn.

Edited by docpotato, : Thought better of it.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 256 by Tal, posted 02-11-2007 1:02 PM Tal has not yet responded

  
subbie
Member (Idle past 33 days)
Posts: 3509
Joined: 02-26-2006


Message 258 of 299 (384432)
02-11-2007 2:32 PM
Reply to: Message 256 by Tal
02-11-2007 1:02 PM


Re: We're just better, dammit!
Neat letter.

I like Ben Stein.

Thanks for sharing.

Nothing to do with the topic of the OP.


Those who would sacrifice an essential liberty for a temporary security will lose both, and deserve neither. -- Benjamin Franklin

We see monsters where science shows us windmills. -- Phat


This message is a reply to:
 Message 256 by Tal, posted 02-11-2007 1:02 PM Tal has not yet responded

Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6804
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 6.6


Message 259 of 299 (384433)
02-11-2007 2:35 PM
Reply to: Message 256 by Tal
02-11-2007 1:02 PM


Nice letter.
I'm sure all of us God fearing loyal Americans have a tear in our eye and a lump in a our throats. But it doesn't really address the specific issue here, does it?

Tal previously wrote:
The key point is, we don't target civlians, and we don't go on raids where we know we are going to kill X number of innocent people. It just happens. That is morally unequivocal to someone who drives a car into a crowd of people shopping for dinner, or someone who puts children into cars that are testing our TTPs (tactics, techniques, and procedures). [Bolding has been added. I'll assume that by "morally unequivocal" what was meant was "morally inequivalent".]

The specific issue which we are discussing (in order to be able to decide who is or is not "barbaric") is as follows:

Group A which intentionally targets civilians in acts of violence in order to further its goals, and

group B which engages in acts of violence which they know before hand will result in the deaths of innocent civilians, though the killing of civilians is not the intended result, in order to further its goals.

Now there are two questions:

(1) Is there a moral distinction between group A and group B?

(2) If so, is this moral distinction enough to warrant the application of the word "barbaric" to one group and not to the other?

So far, gene90 has been the only one to actually discuss the issue and give reasons for his opinions. If I am reading his posts correctly, he answers "yes" to (1) and "no" to (2) (indicating that the ultimate goal is also important before we can assign labels like "barbaric").

I really don't see what your letter has to do with the issue, unless you are admitting, like gene90, that simply not deliberately targeting civilians is not sufficient to differentiate barbarians from civilized peoples.

Edited by Chiroptera, : clarity


This world can take my money and time/ But it sure can't take my soul. -- Joe Ely

This message is a reply to:
 Message 256 by Tal, posted 02-11-2007 1:02 PM Tal has not yet responded

gene90
Member (Idle past 2112 days)
Posts: 1610
Joined: 12-25-2000


Message 260 of 299 (384458)
02-11-2007 5:15 PM
Reply to: Message 250 by Chiroptera
02-10-2007 9:28 PM


Re: Who's barbaric?
quote:

But this also suits my purpose. The drunk driver's intent did not absolve her of the responsibility for the deaths that resulted from her behavior. In either case, her behavior is considered criminal.

I have to grant that death by incompetence can be considered a crime, though this is rarely applied to warfare because of the inherent expectation that noncombatants will die.

quote:

I imagine it's because if one really believe that it's intent that matters, and it's not important that the blown up school bus full of children is the result of suicide bomber deliberately climbing aboard the bus or the result of an accidentally mistargeted missile, then one is forced to admit that there are cases where it is justified to blow up kids. I bet most people don't really want to go there.

We've killed a lot of kids in America over the years with things like airbags, antibiotics, peanut butter sandwiches (allergies and carcinogenic aflatoxins) and the occasional vaccine. Is that the equivalent of murder?

We "don't want to go there" because it's a very emotional issue. Real people die every day because of decisions we make, I don't mean to make light of that. What I want to argue is that the only rational way to make sense of this is with a cost-benefit analysis. When we don't do that we end up in the situation the Peruvian government found itself in in 1991: after they ended chlorination thousands died from cholera.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 250 by Chiroptera, posted 02-10-2007 9:28 PM Chiroptera has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 261 by Chiroptera, posted 02-11-2007 5:39 PM gene90 has responded

Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6804
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 6.6


Message 261 of 299 (384465)
02-11-2007 5:39 PM
Reply to: Message 260 by gene90
02-11-2007 5:15 PM


Re: Who's barbaric?
quote:
What I want to argue is that the only rational way to make sense of this is with a cost-benefit analysis.

I guess if it were on topic we could discuss whether "a cost-benefit analysis" really justifies killing people.

Hell, if it were on topic we could also discuss whether simply asserting without evidence "If we don't invade Iraq, Al Qaeda will blow up America with nuclear bombs!" really constitutes "a cost-benefit analysis".

Good thing these wouldn't be on topic here. Tal might be provoked into posting more letters that make me weepy.


This world can take my money and time/ But it sure can't take my soul. -- Joe Ely

This message is a reply to:
 Message 260 by gene90, posted 02-11-2007 5:15 PM gene90 has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 262 by gene90, posted 02-11-2007 5:57 PM Chiroptera has not yet responded

gene90
Member (Idle past 2112 days)
Posts: 1610
Joined: 12-25-2000


Message 262 of 299 (384466)
02-11-2007 5:57 PM
Reply to: Message 261 by Chiroptera
02-11-2007 5:39 PM


Re: Who's barbaric?
I've been through about five edits, and didn't think any added to the debate, so I don't have anything else to add on this line of thought.

I was thinking, though, yesterday, about the definition of "barbaric", as meaning non-Greek or non-Roman language, culture, or tactics. In military terms that might be taken non-symmetrical means of warfare. Instead of coming out of the fight the phalanx directly, barbarians would hide behind rocks and launch arrows, etc.

In this context, I think the insurgents are using non-Western (and therefore barbarian) tactics.

(Yeah, I didn't want to completely waste this post.)

Edited by gene90, : No reason given.

Edited by gene90, : No reason given.

Edited by gene90, : No reason given.

Edited by gene90, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 261 by Chiroptera, posted 02-11-2007 5:39 PM Chiroptera has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 263 by Tal, posted 02-11-2007 7:53 PM gene90 has not yet responded

Tal
Member (Idle past 3966 days)
Posts: 1140
From: Fort Bragg, NC
Joined: 12-29-2004


Message 263 of 299 (384501)
02-11-2007 7:53 PM
Reply to: Message 262 by gene90
02-11-2007 5:57 PM


Re: Who's barbaric?
To play devils advocate, I really can't think of a non-barbaric way to kill the enemy in war. We talk to them with 5.56, and if that doesn't work we shout at them with 7.62. And if all else fails we call in close air support and an Apache or some F-16 comes in and blows them up. The fact that someone dies this way could always be said to be barbaric. However, killing someone who is trying to kill me by using one of these methods is justifiable (and our job as a military). Using one of these methods to kill people who can't defend themselves is not.


News Media: Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory 1 negative report at a time.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 262 by gene90, posted 02-11-2007 5:57 PM gene90 has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 266 by Buzsaw, posted 02-11-2007 11:03 PM Tal has not yet responded

  
Nighttrain
Member (Idle past 2282 days)
Posts: 1512
From: brisbane,australia
Joined: 06-08-2004


Message 264 of 299 (384535)
02-11-2007 10:48 PM
Reply to: Message 256 by Tal
02-11-2007 1:02 PM


Re: We're just better, dammit!
- Meaning is doing for others.
- Meaning is risking your life for (ot)hers.
- Meaning is putting your bodies and families' peace of mind on the line to defeat some of the most evil, sick killers the world has ever known.

- Meaning is leaving the comfort of home to fight to make sure that there still will be a home for your family and for your nation and for free men and women everywhere

Gimme another dose of Yankee Doodle, as Hawkeye Pierce would probably say.

Thing is, those noble words could just as well be used as a rallying call by the patriots--oops--terrorists of Iraq/Afghanistan.

Coming home to a wife/husband and family slaughtered by either side won`t earn you an ally, no matter how many times you apologise. Or how just your cause.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 256 by Tal, posted 02-11-2007 1:02 PM Tal has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 269 by Tal, posted 02-12-2007 1:16 PM Nighttrain has responded

  
Buzsaw
Inactive Member


Message 265 of 299 (384536)
02-11-2007 10:58 PM
Reply to: Message 255 by Chiroptera
02-11-2007 10:21 AM


Re: What spirit?
1. I can't help you. It's plain and simple that if you reject the clear fundamental doctrines of the book and the prophet, you're not representative of true Christianity.

2. Check out the violence record of Christian fundies the last few Centuries. Compare them with the Muslim fundies for the same period and go figure. If you can't understand this, it's a waste of my time trying further to show you.

3. It appears that you simply want to skate around the plain and simple facts here rather than to admit you lost your argument.


BUZSAW B 4 U 2 C Y BUZ SAW ---- Jesus said, "When these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads, for your redemption draws near." Luke 21:28

This message is a reply to:
 Message 255 by Chiroptera, posted 02-11-2007 10:21 AM Chiroptera has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 268 by Chiroptera, posted 02-12-2007 8:03 AM Buzsaw has responded

Buzsaw
Inactive Member


Message 266 of 299 (384537)
02-11-2007 11:03 PM
Reply to: Message 263 by Tal
02-11-2007 7:53 PM


Re: Who's barbaric?
What does it have to do with topic?

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 Message 263 by Tal, posted 02-11-2007 7:53 PM Tal has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
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Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6804
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 6.6


Message 267 of 299 (384567)
02-12-2007 7:47 AM
Reply to: Message 266 by Buzsaw
02-11-2007 11:03 PM


Re: Who's barbaric?
It started roughly here. Sorry that we've been off-topic.


This world can take my money and time/ But it sure can't take my soul. -- Joe Ely

This message is a reply to:
 Message 266 by Buzsaw, posted 02-11-2007 11:03 PM Buzsaw has not yet responded

Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6804
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 6.6


Message 268 of 299 (384570)
02-12-2007 8:03 AM
Reply to: Message 265 by Buzsaw
02-11-2007 10:58 PM


Re: What spirit?
1. Sure. And in real life, looking at real life Christianity and real life Muslims, there are no fundamental doctrines, or they simply are not clear. That much is obvious. I can't you, either, if you are simply going to cherry-pick your verses to give "true doctrine".

2. Only the past few centuries? This is pretty self-serving. Go back the past few millenia. Christian societies have been violent and comparable Islamic societies have not. It's a waste of my time, too, if all you are going to do is cherry-pick your examples of "true Christians".

3. What facts am I skating around? I am merely looking at the actual historical record as well as actual individual people that I have known. This is the problem with "true Christian" -- you are so determined to prove how superior you are to everyone else that you can't even be honest with yourselves.

-

quote:
it's a waste of my time trying further to show you.

Then why the hell do you start topics like this? Everytime this has come up, the conversation has proceeded exactly the same way. Your arguments have been shown to be self-serving and lame every single time, consisting of cherry-picking your examples and pretending that your own particular interpretation (of not only your sacred scripture, but other peoples' as well!) is the authentic one. If you can't use actual facts or logic to demonstrate your point, then quit wasting your time.


This world can take my money and time/ But it sure can't take my soul. -- Joe Ely

This message is a reply to:
 Message 265 by Buzsaw, posted 02-11-2007 10:58 PM Buzsaw has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 270 by Tal, posted 02-12-2007 1:35 PM Chiroptera has responded
 Message 278 by Buzsaw, posted 02-13-2007 11:44 AM Chiroptera has responded

Tal
Member (Idle past 3966 days)
Posts: 1140
From: Fort Bragg, NC
Joined: 12-29-2004


Message 269 of 299 (384621)
02-12-2007 1:16 PM
Reply to: Message 264 by Nighttrain
02-11-2007 10:48 PM


Re: We're just better, dammit!
Those patriots-oops-terrorists are the ones killing the families.

Turning and running (thus giving the patriots-oops-terrorists a huge victory over the lone super-power of the world) will only show these guys that what they do (killing wife/husband/family) will work to get their way. And they'll continue, only next time it will be in your market.


News Media: Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory 1 negative report at a time.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 264 by Nighttrain, posted 02-11-2007 10:48 PM Nighttrain has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 271 by subbie, posted 02-12-2007 3:05 PM Tal has not yet responded
 Message 275 by Nighttrain, posted 02-12-2007 8:06 PM Tal has not yet responded

  
Tal
Member (Idle past 3966 days)
Posts: 1140
From: Fort Bragg, NC
Joined: 12-29-2004


Message 270 of 299 (384624)
02-12-2007 1:35 PM
Reply to: Message 268 by Chiroptera
02-12-2007 8:03 AM


Re: What spirit?
Christian societies have been violent and comparable Islamic societies have not.

Hello Chiroptera, would you please show me these Islamic societies. Islam was started by Muhammad by military conquest. His successors, the first 4 Caliphs who were chosen because they were the best qualified and not members of his family (this is where the Sunni sect comes from), spread Islam by military conquest for the next 30 years or so. Then Muhammad's son-in-law, Ali (this is where the Shia come from, they think Muhammad's power should have passed only to his family, so they regard Ali as the first Caliph) took over and imposed a tax on all non-muslims, which further bolstered the ranks.

At any rate, which Islamic society do you believe has been peaceful?


News Media: Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory 1 negative report at a time.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 268 by Chiroptera, posted 02-12-2007 8:03 AM Chiroptera has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 277 by Chiroptera, posted 02-13-2007 10:32 AM Tal has not yet responded

  
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