Randy, could you at least try to look at this issue in a broader context, and not just the Shiavo case?The issue is the power of the courts in this country. Law after law is overturned in state after state. I suspect that (based on the gems of wisdom out of Augusta) some of it is just bad law, but at least some of them are overturned because the courts don't like them.The Florida Legislature (the people) passed Terri's law. The Supreme Court of Florida determined that law was unconstitutional. The Executive branch tried to intervene (weakly in my opinion) via Child and Familiy Services. The courts blocked an investigation. The protestors in Florida were trying to get the legislature to act - I agree - the legislature failed to act - I agree - but there had been prior attempts rejected by the courts. I think that legislatures are running scared. We cannot have an effective representative government if two branches feel subserviant to the third. What happens when some court rules that the parents of a severely autistic child, can end that life because the child wouldn't want to live that way? I know this is a thoeretical question, but is it not possible that it could happen using the "quality of Life" argument?Al
quote: I think that legislatures are running scared.
Of what? The only threat to a legislator is not getting re-elected. Passing laws that are so clearly unconstitutional and then claiming judicial activism is just a cop out.The Florida legislature had 15 years to act on this case, and did not. What has the legislature "running scared" as you put it, appears to be that the majority of thier constituency does not agree with your position. Nothing else explains thier actions.
The so-called law struck down in Florida was not a law of general application but a special law trying to change the result of a family dispute that was already resolved under the law in the Florida courts. We don't let legislatures pass laws deciding individual disputes. That is what courts are for. Legislatures are supposed to pass laws that set the rules for everyone in a certain situation. The Florida legislature consistently refused to do that. I can't think of anything more scary than living in a country where politicians get to decide family disputes. Don't like you father's will? Go to the legislature and get them to pass a bill that gives you more.
I guess no one wants to tackle the "what if" question, or attempt to draw a line in the sand. Woodcanoe thinks it O.K. for him to decide who should live and who should die. George and Randy "defer" to judges. Few on this forum see a problem with the deliberate starvation of brain-damaged individuals.God help us all. Al
Thank you Al again. We will just have to agree to disagree, because my view is that government should divorce itself from any aspect of religion period. It's not it's function in our society. It's main duty is to protect your and my rights defined in the Consititution. And yes, that includes your right to practice your faith, and for me to practice mine, the way we see fit. As far as the Court banning relgion. Well, I would be opposed to it, but if they did, one can only imagine how many people would be filling up the tar buckets, and gathering the feathers, and grabbing their muskets and ball. IMHO, a civil and just society is obtained thru civil discourse, and not thru force. Al, I don't know where you get this "bias" from. When you or your family go to church on Sunday, are their people blocking your way to it's entrace? Are kids who go to religious schools stopped from attending? Are people stopping you from taking a break from work, going into your car, or into a room by yourself, and praying?I will never understand this "assualt" on religion in this country. In a free society, you can practice whereever and whenever you want to, and the government is forbidden from endorsing any religion. And look at the results. How many countries in this world can match the record of this country, and yes, there have been some rough times indeed, on relgious liberty?One of my favorite web sites is the Acton Institute on Relgion and Liberty. Give it a look
Legislated rights set forth by the US Constitution?
The Declaration of Independence states that all men were created equal and endowed by "their Creator" with certain unalienable rights....
Your Creator is the source of your rights, not the legislation.
Example. Can any student of the US Constitution show me where it was legal for slavery to exist in this country? I have not studied the slavery issue in depth, just have an overview knowledge, but I have read that "experts" assured people that the Negro was not a human being, as we are, that this Negro required us to keep him like an animal is kept in a barn and that is the humane way to treat them rather than allow them to forage in the wild on their own (we were actually doing them a favor). These testimonies tell me that it was not lawful, by GOD's law or by man's law to enslave other human beings, thus they made up a story that the Negro was not human. Women seem to have been left out of the "rights" issue for many decades as well.
I said that to say this...
Darwinism is being forced down our throats and religion is scoffed at as being tolerable imagination left up to individuals. If that trend continues, you will not have a recognized Creator to stand by your unalienable rights. Your rights will be contingent upon legislation, and by the way, Darwin said that we are just animals, so all of us can be legally enslaved under current law if an expert wanted to pursue the logic, and the US Constitution has no prohibition against keeping animals.
Sorry, clumsily written, but trying to inform.
Just to expand the point a bit.
When slavery was legal in the US, abortion was illegal. Today there is a reversal where slavery is illegal and abortion is legal. What caused the change? Change in the status of the victim as to whether it was human or nonhuman. It has less to do, in my opinion, as to women's rights or what the public wants as it does having a power to grant the status or strip away the status of whether someone is or is not a human being. Enter Teri Schiavo.
Is some of the controversy whether she had become a vegetable rather than a human being?
It sounds weird, but I think this argument has merit.
quote: As far as the Court banning relgion. Well, I would be opposed to it, but if they did, one can only imagine how many people would be filling up the tar buckets, and gathering the feathers, and grabbing their muskets and ball.
However, many people have no problem with a court issuing an order to dehydrate and starve an innocent brain-damaged woman to death. If a court can take away a right to life, what will prevent another court from banning a "certain" religion (one for example that refuses to allow gay marriage) that they deem out of the "mainstream?"Jean, we have over two hundred years of tradition in this country that allowed "religion" to be displayed publicly. We had Christmas concerts in schools, Easter parades, other public displays. Increasingly groups like the ACLU have sued (intimidated is a better word) any public display of (mostly) Christian symbols, from tiny crosses on state or county coats of arms, to banning the lyrics from Christmas music. This year some Easter bunnies were renamed. Incrementally, courts are upholding this lunacy. I'm all for freedom of religion, all religions, displayed proudly and openly. I have never advocated that government incorporate my belief system. Why do we accept the position(s) of the secular humanists without question, but age old teachings and traditions of religion(s) are discredited? Why is it is somehow imposing religion for religious people to protest the actions of government? How would you suggest that I divorce my religious beliefs from my concern about where we are headed in this country?Al
quote: However, many people have no problem with a court issuing an order to dehydrate and starve an innocent brain-damaged woman to death. If a court can take away a right to life, what will prevent another court from banning a "certain" religion (one for example that refuses to allow gay marriage) that they deem out of the "mainstream?"
The court did nothing but uphold the law of the State of Florida. You are in favor of judicial activism of the worst kind. You want Judges to ignore the law and follow your moral code, regardless of the laws passed by the legislature.What will stop courts from banning religion is the free exercise provision of the Constitution, you know that. Your hypotheticals are silly.
quote: We had Christmas concerts in schools
We still do. The entire public school system is designed around the Christian Calendar. To complain because the level of prostelization that is allowed has decreased is disingenous. When the schools start meeting on Christmas Day or Easter you'll have something to complain about.
quote: My understanding of a diest is that they believe a creator did the work and abandoned it to let it fly on its own.
It appears that dictionary.com agrees with you:
quote:deÂ·ism n. The belief, based solely on reason, in a God who created the universe and then abandoned it, assuming no control over life, exerting no influence on natural phenomena, and giving no supernatural revelation.
And to continue:
quote:If that is true, then why would they ever bow their head or knee to communicate with an absentee landlord?
Good question. Since the founders frequently mention their personal practice of prayer, then, based solely on reason, it would seem reasonable that they were not deists, doesnâ€™t it?Iâ€™m sure someone will slam me for this, but I always thought the Constitution prohibits the creation of law establishing a state religion, but promotes the freedom to exercise religious beliefs in day to day decisions, including those made by policy/law makers:
quote: Amendment ICongress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.
It seems to me that the secularists are actually the ones not following the Constitution when they push for the banning of Christmas displays and such.
quote: It seems to me that the secularists are actually the ones not following the Constitution when they push for the banning of Christmas displays and such.
You can put up as many Christmas Displays as you like....on your own property. How about at a Church, what a novel idea! There are lots more Churches than government buildings and schools were I live.Allowing such displays on Public property is a slippery slope, as I don't really think you want a Satanic display to be required right next to your Kresh under the free exercise provision do you?
Al, I'm a firm believer in individual liberty, and the government role in this society is to protect that liberty. (In my opinion, doing a terrible job at it)You seem to think the Schavio case is another nail in the coffin for our society. I disagree. This was a tragic event, but why this became a public circus is beyond me. This type of event happens every day. Not to long after this sad episode ended, a little boy in Texas had the plug pulled because his family couldn't pay for it. Where's the outrage there. You seem to forget that there are nearly 300 million people in this country, all pursueing different goals, achievements, lifestyles etc. This form of goverment is an ongoing experiment in self-goverance. Not everyone will follow your moral code, per se. I may do stuff that would upset you, and vice versa. Do you really want to legislate morality. Is that your goal? Do you go to bed at night worry about someone smoking pot in Washington State, or someone having the plug pulled in Nevada? But then again, we could have the alternative. You want to change society, find likeminded people, and organize and promote civility, morals, protest things you don't like, get favorable public opinion,and your cause will grow. If you expect Tom Delay or Newt Gingrich or President Bush to do this for you, well, start digging the trenches, because you will face oppoisition big time.Did you ever consider that if same-sex marriage is allowed, that you can put on your Christmas plays without hearing from the ACLU? Or that people wouldn't fight school vouchers? Ever give that a thought?Ever give the thought of making abortions legal, but denying public financing of them? Isn't it possible that abortion would still take place, but less of them? Just some passing thoughts.
Wondering if a Deist can't believe that God set the universe in motion...a universe replete with angels and syncronystic laws that ultimately work for the good (either learned the hard way or the easy way). ??? Thus, not a Creator God that sits in a celestial easy chair decifering whose 'Queen for Day' appeals to Him win the applause meter test, and the ultimate answer to prayer...and whose, sadly, did not.Then, prayers, wafting their way to the supernatual realms, may shift the balance of the Universal Direction, in favor of the appealing heart..sometimes dramatically, sometimes inperceptibly. Who knows.
Jean, I've borrowed the following quote from another thread. It is from the Catholic League regarding Pope Benedict XVI:
quote: â€œYesterday, in his homily before the men who would elect him pope, Ratzinger said, â€˜We are moving toward a dictatorship of relativism which does not recognize anything as for certain and which has as its highest goal oneâ€™s own ego and oneâ€™s own desires.â€™ This is straight out of John Paul IIâ€™s encyclical, Veritatis Splendor, one of the most powerful statements on morality ever written. In short, the new pope, like his predecessor, understands the grave danger that awaits a society wherein each individual makes up his own morality. It may not sell in the U.S., but it is nonetheless true thata society that refuses to acknowledge that morality is a social attributeâ€”not an individual oneâ€”is bound to culturally implode.
This quote pretty much sums up what I have been trying to state. Moral relativism ultimately leads to no morality at all. We seem to be reducing moral judgments to the lowest common denominator, rather than setting the bar as high as possible. You wrote:
quote: You seem to forget that there are nearly 300 million people in this country, all pursueing different goals, achievements, lifestyles etc. This form of goverment is an ongoing experiment in self-goverance.
That sounds a lot like moral relativism, everyone doing their own thing, each setting his own standard of behavior. I maintain that this ultimately tears society apart. I see a danger in removing ourselves too far from our Judeo/Christian roots. That is a far cry from saying that I want a theocracy. Religion helps us shape societal rules not replace our system of government. Secularists want government devoid of any religious thought. They want morality determined by the individual, without any input from the religious community. They are using the courts to do so. It started with Roe but we have yet to see where it will end. Some scoff at what they consider theoretical arguments, but virtually no one expected the Supreme Court to find a constitutional right to abortion. What surprise is in our future?Al
Oh come on Al, this is the 2st century, (chomp chomp chomp on a piece of gum), I mean..that's YOUR reality, it isn't MY reality...(chomp chomp chomp)Sorry Al, just had to poke some fun at the wing nuts.
300 million people all doing their own thing is called anarchy. It really is necessary for this country to experience what we have so far, and more to come, before our empire crumbles into the dust of history. Freedom has never been free, and wars were never wonwithout the physical sacrifices made by the citizens at home, while supporting the troops doing the fighting. We have such a video game mentality, I wonder how many people have even seen a rotting corpse that wasn't perfumed and neatly dressed in a funeral parlor. Very Very naive portion of that 300 million.
Al, I understand your point, and it's a very valid point. I only wish to state in a free society, individual gets to mold and shape their moral compass, and thru liberty and freedom, they will make their own moral judgements based on the choices that are presented to them.Al, I think both of us want the same thing. I think we choose different paths. We probably agree more than disagree. I think Roe V. Wade should be thrown out, but I also think Social Security, Medicare, and whole Cabinet, and regulatory departments should be thrown out as well. I find it amusing again, that people want to go to government to shape moral views for a society,(not you Al, I understand where you are coming from)but yet it's the government that forces people to pay for programs and services that are, in my opinion, very immoral.Al, I think that civil society, that is individuals making their own decisions based on the choices available, is far more moral and superior to a political society making those same decisions. Sometimes, people will make the incorrect choice. (of course political society always makes the right choice for everyone don't they) How else do you expect for people to learn, if they dont' make mistakes. I also find it hypocritical of the Catholic Church to lay it's judgement on individuals making their own moral decisions when they looked the other way when some of it's priests were using children as their private sex partners. Clean up your own house, before you tell me what to do. Al, this is a great forum, and I thank you for opening my eyes to your way of thinking. I don't agree, and vice versa. It's rather obvious, but I respect someone who truly believe what he says, and have a great deal of admiration for someone who sticks up for their way to thinking. I wish you well!!!!!
Jean C: You ain't just whistling Dixie about the Catholic Church's sex scandals !As for the rest of you....America has been there and done that, concerning the patriarchal, hard-core Christian route; big whoop.Those of you who are 100% Bible-believing Christians...clean up your own acts, and leave the rest of us degenerates to the Holy Spirit...thanks very much anyway. I have to laugh at a bunch of old male fogies creeping around in robes, thinking they are on some holier than thou patriarchal head-trip. I laugh harder at people who actually believe that's what we need to save the world ! But hey...whatever works for ya.
quote:Originally posted by Al Greenlaw:
That sounds a lot like moral relativism, everyone doing their own thing, each setting his own standard of behavior. I maintain that this ultimately tears society apart.
Yeah. This country has gone downhill since all those Catholic immigrants invaded.
quote: ...in a free society, individual gets to mold and shape their moral compass, and thru liberty and freedom, they will make their own moral judgements based on the choices that are presented to them.
I agree in individual freedom and personal responsibility, but doesn't society need to have rules or codes of conduct? If the answer is yes, how are those rules formed? Total freedom is anarchy.
quote: We probably agree more than disagree. I think Roe V. Wade should be thrown out, but I also think Social Security, Medicare, and whole Cabinet, and regulatory departments should be thrown out as well. I find it amusing again, that people want to go to government to shape moral views for a society,(not you Al, I understand where you are coming from)but yet it's the government that forces people to pay for programs and services that are, in my opinion, very immoral.
We do agree on many issues. I would like to scrap many (if not all) of the federal programs. The more government grows the less freedom we all have. I'm old enough to remember when "communities" looked out for the neediest among us. Now we have one form fits all welfare creating generations of people dependent on the government.
quote:I also find it hypocritical of the Catholic Church to lay it's judgement on individuals making their own moral decisions when they looked the other way when some of it's priests were using children as their private sex partners. Clean up your own house, before you tell me what to do.
Let me deal with the scandal first. The church failed miserably and, for the life of me, I can't figure out why. However,The Church does not lay it's judgement on individuals. People are still free to accept the teachings of the Church or go elsewhere. There is a difference between the Church (teachings if you will) and those individuals who betrayed the Church. Looking the other way, then covering up the problem was not only wrong, but was incredibly stupid.Al
I lifted this from the Shiavo thread because it is an example of what I have been trying to state. This judge did not automatically reject religious tradition in deciding this case. He explored the state law and, because the woman was an orthodox Jew, also looked at what Jewish tradition and law stated as well. Would the outcome in Shiavo been different if Judge Greer had applied the same principle? Jewish World Review
quote: Judge Martin Ritholtz rendered his opinion in a case involving Lee Kahan, 86, an Orthodox Jewish woman.
One question was whether Kahan's "deeply held values as an observant Jew" were being breached by the actions of her daughter, so Ritholtz devoted a portion of his 17-page decision to a discussion of how Orthodox Jewish law regards feeding tubes.
"Judaism views nutrition and hydration by feeding tubes or intravenous lines not as medical treatment but as supportive care, no different from washing, turning or grooming a dying patient," the judge wrote. "The first Halachic [Jewish law] principle of medical intervention is that whenever it is possible to increase the longevity of a patient, it should be done.
Al[ 04-21-2005: Message edited by: Al Greenlaw ]
Al,The outcome for Terri may indeed have been different had Judge Greer upheld Terri's Roman Catholic beliefs, which view nutrition and hydration by feeding tubes the same as Orthodox Jewish Laws! Terri would perhaps still be alive today.Looks like the Italy's Supreme Court got this one right~
Italian Court Rules Woman's Feeding Tube Must Stay"...The Italian court confirmed an earlier ruling that called feeding Eluana Englaro, in a vegetative state following a 1992 car crash, a "necessary act." It said a decision to remove the tube required "valuations of life and death that are rooted in concepts of an ethical or religious nature, which are extrajudicial," and said that the issue was also outside the powers of Englaro's father..."
Hi again Al. Sorry for the slow response. Life can be busy and hectic at times.Yes, I agree that there should be rules of conduct in a free society. You don't take what's mine, and vice versa. You don't harm me, and vice versa. I know it's not that simplistic, and more discussion, and thought is needed here. In fact, that's the main rule of government in this society. Frankly, it's involved in to many aspects of everyone's daily life, and I think people are much more irresponsible and not respective of or tolerant of one another. I think I will reread DeTocqville's "Democracy in America" again. Al, I hope that I'm not coming across as someone who wants to remove religion from this country. I frankly couldn't think of a bigger waster of my time or anyone else's time. Groups like the Salvation Army, Habitat for Humanity, Good Shepard Food Bank, and even Catholic Charities Appeals(I wish the hell that they would stop taking government money) do have a beneficial effect on all of us.Al, it's part of our culture that we have an interest in taking care of people who can't take care of themselves. I just believe that voluntary charity, either secular or religious charity, is a far more effect means of combating the problem. We probably agree. I also believe that an armed society is a peaceful society. Some people might be outraged at that statement, but that's my belief. But always you bring up excellent points, and I'm glad to have this discussion. As far as the Catholic Church, I still scractch my head on that one too. Growing up, the priests in my congregation were some of the most friendly, outgoing people I met. I still remember one priest who would always say the BS word. We would ask him doesn't God think that it's bad to say that. He would say, in his relationship with God, it was OK!! A bit of subject, but I thought a little lighter note wouldn't be to bad.
Al, if you have the time, give this a look at. You may agree or disagree. I'll let you decide.www.isil.org/resources/introduction.swf
It seems to me that the Constitution was about defining and limiting the power of Government. What is the compelling interest of the state to meddle in the most private affairs ? Conceived in liberty means not injuring another or their property. Injured sensibilities shouldn't count. (Public nudity and fornication, not withstanding
local control and community standards final determiner.)
Just butting in.
no offence, but in actuality, Judeo-Christian is a contradiction in terms, best illustrated in Mark 7. It's all about "tradition of the Elders" vs the Word of God.
Anyone interested in the symbols of the US - the Great Seal of The United States - should check out www.greatseal.com for "a message from the founders" as it advertises. What you will find is what the ARTISTS came up with for images when commissioned for the work. They are the ones responsible for the imagery, not the founders themselves nor the Presidents in later years. The oldest art forms most studied by students of art are the acrchictecture and paintings of religeous sites and especially those who are called "the masters". Getting commissions by bishops etc. was a way that an artist could afford to live and keep up his craft.It brought art to the masses - inother words all the people, because it was highly prominant and in view to all those attending church. The more churches, the more exxposure to the symbols etc. and more of a name for the artists.
Take religoen out of art and you have little left.
quote: I agree in individual freedom and personal responsibility, but doesn't society need to have rules or codes of conduct? If the answer is yes, how are those rules formed? Total freedom is anarchy.
A fascinating thing about Jefferson, who did not believe in the divinity of Christ and did not believe the Bible is the revealed word of God, was his admiration for the moral code set forth in the "philosophy" of Jesus, a moral code he adopted in his own life. The significance of this is that Jefferson's example shows it is possible to live by a moral code without profession of faith in a revealed religion.
Fascinating and significant? Disingenuous, at best.We have a word which describes using someone else's words in your work and claiming them as your own without giving the Author full credit.It's called "plagiarism".One may live by their own interpretation of Jesus' "philosophy", but if there is no accountability to and acknowledgement and acceptance of His Diety, it is just another futile, humanistic attempt at "moral" living sans the absolute of God. Left to our own accord, mankind would never have come up with The Ten Commandments.
quote:Left to our own accord, mankind would never have come up with The Ten Commandments.
Sorry, LMD, But I believe that mankind could and did come up with them.
How do you figure that, ksherwoodf?