religious argument

I just had a long discussion with my parents about how basically and given Discworld book would be a better thing to read in school than Lord of The Flies.

Reason number one: all of the same lessons are taught.

In LoTF, the reader is supposed to learn about mob mentality, oppression, and general prejudice, yes? Thud! is a good example of all of this. You’ve got two different groups of people fighting because Reasons, and the main character coming to terms with his own subconscious racism. What a damn good thing to teach high schoolers!

Reason number two: none of them are nearly so depressing.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but I can not think of a single Terry Pratchett book that ends on a bad note. Not one. LoTF was painful for me to read, because all of the characters were making horrible, murderous decisions because… plot??? Boys will be boys?? The base instincts of humanity?? I am the author and everyone else sucks??? 

Reason number three: they are fun to read!

This kind of goes along with the last one, but the fact that Pratchett combines relatable characters and a good sense of humor with real world scenarios (going back to Thud! with the internalized racism) makes the books a joy to read! I have, out of the six books I’ve had to read for school, been indifferent or even hated four of them. I didn’t want to read any of them! I read two books a week for three frippin years! And I didn’t want to read the books they chose! I, just. 

In conclusion: LoTF sucks, Thud! would be a much better choice.

If there’s one main thing I want non-Jews, specifically of the white Christian variety, to understand, it’s that there are ways of thinking about things – culture, tradition, argument, religious rules, loving thy enemy (or not), religious rites, intermarriage – that are different across cultures.

It seems like a lot of the time, white Christians (this includes secular people who are culturally Christians) assume that everyone thinks about things the same way. They assume that cultures have different foods and traditions (sometimes, unfortunately, they don’t even assume this) but that everyone thinks about the world the same way. They don’t.

The ways you think are not universal. People from another culture – including subcultures within a general culture – think about things differently and have different paradigms. Try to understand that.

Year in Review:

In September the United Nations Free & Equal #Path2Equality crosswalk led global leaders across 1st avenue to the UN Headquarters building during #UNGA.

“I ask those who use religious or cultural arguments to deprive LGBT people of their human rights: what do you gain by making others less equal? Is your religion or culture so weak that the only way you can sustain it is by denying others their basic rights?” – United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon speaking at the High-level side event of the LGBT Core Group.

Photo: UN Spokesperson

I am pro-choice, not of the “Abortions are fun for the entire family! :)” kind, of the “I’m not a fan but literally every other alternative to free anonymous access to everyone is worse” variety.

My beliefs are based on: the consequences of criminal abortions, the fact that they occur even when no one is specifically banning them, the damaging effect unwanted children have on society, the lack of enthusiasm most pro-life people have for providing free contraceptives to everyone, and “this horse or no horse” not being a choice of horse.

I have a decent idea of how to deal with purely religious arguments against abortion as well as purely economical, and the suggestions to compensate by only allowing “legitimately needed” abortions.

What’s completely fucked is “Women should have to bear responsibility for the consequences of their own actions, shouldn’t’ve had unprotected sex then, stop being entitled to other people’s money!” argument. I don’t know how to respond to this.

Obviously the total cost of raising a criminal for society is higher than the cost of one abortion, but that’s nothing compared to Totemic Power of Denying People Help when you deem them undeserving of it. The rest is all costs to the pregnant woman and falls under “suffer the consequences, sweetie :)” I might accidentally meme this into “therefore, women on welfare who have children need to be denied welfare”, which is even more fucked but that’s what you arrive at if the only problem with unwanted children is the cost to society.
Is God Transgender?

I’m a rabbi, and so I’m particularly saddened whenever religious arguments are brought in to defend social prejudices — as they often are in the discussion about transgender rights. In fact, the Hebrew Bible, when read in its original language, offers a highly elastic view of gender. And I do mean highly elastic

Imagine being raised in a strict and religious, Hispanic household. You and Loki decide it’s finally time to meet your parents, so you arrange a dinner night with just your parents. Arriving at the front door with Loki, you’re greeted with welcome arms from the whole entire family, while Loki stands in the background being interrogated by your father, uncles, cousins, and older siblings.

During dinner time, you have a lovely conversation with everyone except your father who is constantly giving Loki death glares and snide remarks in which Loki returns the favor. Their rude comments and scowls soon turn into an argument, but before anything escalates, you curtly and angrily reprimand them in a combination of Spanish and English for acting like children.

Afterwards, your father and Loki apologize and reluctantly call it a truce with a handshake, although, their cold gazes and tense hand grips said otherwise.  Nonetheless, you forgive them and continue the evening by breaking pinatas, stealing candy, dancing, and enjoying each others company. 

15 Reasons why Pro-Life arguments are ignorant

1. The classic religious argument that stems from the bible ”it’s Gods body….its God’s baby….God made the choice for you to have a child…“, in the US we have a separation of Church and State. Also, is God paying for the child-care for families/women who cannot support a child? No. Are you? No, lol you’re complaining about being taxed too much.

2. The argument of “women aborting babies after 23 weeks is murder…” 92% women do not abort after 23 weeks, they abort within 12-15 weeks. Keeping that in mind: 2% of women in the US actually have an abortion each year between ages 15-44. 2%.

3. Making abortion illegal will NOT STOP abortion from happening lol.

4. (Moving onto Planned Parenthood) 3% of all the healthcare they provide is abortion.

5. Planned parenthood is the #1 women’s reproductive healthcare provider.

6. They aren’t ‘killing babies’.

7. A fetus isn’t a baby! (Surprise?)

8. You trying to make decisions for people when you don’t know their situation is ignorant and is sending this country into turmoil.

9. You’re not 'saving lives’ by forcing women to have unwanted pregnancies.

10. If you happen to be in the same group of people who are transphobic, homophobic, etc. so if this 'baby’ turns out to be any one of those things—you’ll tell them they’re going to hell and don’t deserve the same rights as you.

11. Pro-Choicers aren’t necessarily pro-abortion. Women aren’t just going and getting an abortion every other day. And even if they were, it’s none of your goddamn business.

12. Adoption is an option which is great if that’s what the mother wants, but so is abortion.

13. If you will never be pregnant you shouldn’t get a political say.

14. It is the woman’s body.

15. It is her choice.

What’s which aphobes/ace-phobia?

Like, what is there to even be afraid of or against?

I can wrap my head around the religious arguments against same-sex couples.  But abstaining from sex is one way to be “pure” and show your devotion to God, like a nun.

I can understand the fear of “gays will try to have sex with me or check me out in the locker room.”  I think it’s dumb, but I understand it.

But asexuals don’t want to check out anyone, and I can’t say I’ve ever heard of someone trying to “turn” somebody else into an asexual, either.

So???? Why????

Every religious argument ever

Christian: “God wrote the bible!”

Me: “But do you have any proof of that?”

Christian: “Yeah! It says so!!!”

Me: “No, what I mean is do you have any proof that it was really an all powerful sky being whom created your abhorrently average book instead of a bunch of middle eastern men only claiming there is a god who will burn and torture you for all of eternity if you don’t do as the book instructs to scare you into following their societal rules and expectations?”

Christian: “You’re out of your mind! I can’t believe this!!
You weren’t there!!!”

Me: “yes, I’M the one who’s out of my mind, coming from the one who believes a clearly unviable book that could have been written by ANYONE with no evidence whatsoever to back it up over an immense and intimidating amount of PHYSICAL scientific evidence that largely contradicts the entire platform of your entire religion.
And, by my knowledge, neither were you.”

Christian: “I’ll be praying for you!”

VIDEO: In 6 minutes, this guy DESTROYS the pro-choice abortion argument.

Matt Chandler is a Christian pastor, but in this video he’s not making a religious argument.  He’s making a purely logical and scientific one about the humanity of a developing fetus.  It’s darn near perfect. 

As a libertarian, my only quibbles with Matt are a couple of his points about government regulation at the end.  But his broader point is certainly true: life is life, and that’s where the government should be regulating.  It’s time for us a society to stand up and abolish the atrocity that is abortion. 

Here’s the problem with people who say same-sex marriage shouldn’t be legal because of the Bible:

America was founded on the separation of church and state. The state can’t control religion and religion can’t (or shouldn’t) control the state. The legalization of same-sex marriage means marriage through the state, not through the church. If a church wants to allow same-sex marriage because it’s not against their beliefs, awesome; if a church wants to continue their ban on same-sex marriage, fine, but the government can’t force them to do either one. What the church does is up to the church. Therefore your religious argument is entirely invalid and you’re just a homophobic dick.
10 Things Transphobes Say That Make Me *Facepalm*
Brynn Tannehill lists 10 "common sense" statements about trans people that may be common, but which make no sense.

Here is one science oriented example from the list:

3. Girls have XX chromosomes, boys have XY chromosomes. Period.

Unless you have Complete Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome (CAIS). Or an XO karyotype. Or XXY. Or XYY. Or 5-alpha-reductase deficiency. Or Swyer syndrome. Or genetic mosaicism. Or 17-β-Hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase III deficiency. Or Progestin-induced virilisation… etc…

You know, lots of community colleges these days have good intro to biology courses available.

And while we are at it, here is Brynn’s response to a more religiously inclined argument:

4. God made you this way, and the only way to make God happy is to just endure it.

So let me get this straight. God intentionally made me in a way that causes suffering? In order to make your God happy, I have to forgo treatment that alleviates this suffering?

Your God gets off on my suffering. Think about that for a moment.

Maybe you didn’t pick who you thought you did with this whole good and evil thing.

Read the other ten statements here!

Photo: Kieferpix

so you’re telling me god made adam… and then he made eve? he named the second human ever made a word that in english means “the day or period of time immediately before an event or occasion” ? eve came second? really? excuse you but no, the only time eve ever came second was during sex with adam.

and the bible says that adam was made from dust. so he doesn’t have a navel (and neither does she). and the bible says eve came from adam’s rib bone. which means eve is a clone of adam. so they share dna… so adam and eve are a twincestuous couple?

man, no wonder the old testament was explicitly stated by jesus to be obsolete and therefore 90% of religious heteronormative arguments are decimated. oops.

Given the latest picture I’d like to point out to anyone who doesn’t know.  Davy Crockett was a real person.  He was a hunter, storyteller and member of the United States Congress from 1825-1835 (with two years out of office).  Largely his mythos was invented by easterners though he was a strong opponent of the policies of Andrew Jackson (always something that puts you on the right side of good and evil).  Because there are very few people in American history that rate bigger as Evil than Jackson.

After he lost his seat in Congress he essentially said fuck you to his constituents and became an illegal immigrant to the Mexican state of Tejas.  (If you think the fuck you is an exaggeration here is the actual quote, “I told the people of my district that I would serve them as faithfully as I had done; but if not, they might go to hell, and I would go to Texas.”)  He would die at the Battle of the Alamo and there is a nearly religious argument among Texas historians over if he died in battle or was executed as a prisoner of war.  But whatever you think of that I think it’s worth remembering that the primary reason that the American immigrants to Texas were fighting against the Mexican central government was fear that Mexico would take away their slaves.

So whatever Once Upon a Time does with this fictional person… and I believe it’s likely him… there was a real Davy Crockett and there is a price to simplifying the narrative to the “frontiersman”.  Or whose frontier he was on.