Wednesday, January 24, 2007

I can't let this slide

It's been a while since I went on en ethical diatribe, and I think we're overdue. Lately I've mostly been ignoring all the crap going on in the world, because it's all the same old shit and there's nothing much new to say about it. We all know Bush is an arrogant idiot, that the war in Iraq never should have been started, that global warming is inevitable and we're all fucked anyway, so I've been pretty much focused on my own life and insignificant trials and tribulations. But I just can't let this one slide without commenting.

The British government has decided that adoption agencies must consider same-sex couples when placing children with new parents. Good for them.

The Catholic Church in England, who handle a whopping 30% of all UK adoptions, have threatened to CLOSE DOWN all their adoption agencies if the government doesn't either a) rescind the order or b) grant them an exemption.

Does everyone see what's going on here? The Catholic Church is effectively saying "allow us to continue discriminating or we will FUCK OVER thousands of needy CHILDREN!!!" What the hell kind of a sick ultimatum is that??? Here is major global religious organization using orphaned children to further its political agenda. They claim to be "pro life," but they are clearly more concerned with their politics than with the well-being of the thousands of children who will never find loving homes if they shut down their agencies. I appreciate the good work the Church has done over the years by placing unwanted, abandoned, and orphaned kids in (usually) loving homes, but to then turn around and use those same children as political pawns?! I'm absolutely nauseated by the precedent this establishes. I hopt to GOD that the government has the good sense to see through this.

To make matters worse, the Anglican Church is getting on board with all this.
I'm so glad that the Catholic and Anglican churches have finally found some common ground, but I'm sorry they've doen so by behaving in a mutually EVIL manner.

These organizations, supposed moral leaders of our community, are quite plainly demanding the right to be allowed to discriminate on whatever grounds they deem appropriate. Religious organizations cannot and must not be allowed to discriminate in a democratic nation. It fundamentally betrays the notion that all are to be treated equally under the law. The minute you allow one religion to discriminate against a particular group, you open the floodgates; you must then allow any religion to discriminate on whatever basis it likes, at which point you are left with something that can in no way be considered a civilized society.

The only reason the Catholic and Anglican churches are even being allowed to make these demands is because the group against whom they wish to discriminate are homosexuals. If it were black people, or any non-whites, would this discussion even take place? Would they have a political leg to stand on? Of course not!

The Catholic and Anglican churches must not be permitted to hold the government hostage in this manner, both for the sake of the last group against whom it is still permissible to discriminate, and for the principles of democracy in a free and law-abiding society.

26 comments:

Timorous Beastie said...

The bastards have always been the same, all over the globe - repent and we'll give you some money/soup/care. Religion has no place in any civilised society.

llewtrah said...

And there's worse ....

There's recently been a heated discussion on Snopes.com because 70% (ish) of hospitals in Aus are run by the Catholic church. Women who have been raped and who seek help at those hospitals will not be referred to clinics that offer the morning after pill or abortions. Instead they'll be offered "support."

Rape victims include underage girls, older women and women who aren't sexually active and therefore not using contraception.
So, how do they avoid being pregnant with a rapist's child? Will they be forced to have the child and then put it up for adoption (presumably to good, upstanding, churchgoing hetero couples)

Yep - whether its their handling of adoption in the UK or the handling of rape cases in Aus, they're really f*cking us over.

MinCat said...

why do they do it? why why why? the hypocrisy!! my dad says his religion is cricket, im beginning to see the merits of it!

Stephen M said...

As Chaucer's Bitch's father, I'm rather pleased to have raised a child to be a world citizen and develop a objective and rational conscience. Go for it daughter dear, you and your generation can beat the bastards, but it won't be easy, they have everyone's fear of death to manipulate people/govt with.

Ezri said...

Yet another reason why I have converted from Catholicism to Pastafarianism. I'd much rather believe that his Noodleyness is slightly more disposed to those dressed like pirates (easy for most everyone to do) than that The Big Guy's only sending me to heaven if I can successfully discriminate against a group of folks who 1) haven't done anything to harm me 2) are completely law-abiding citizens and 3) still fall under the "love thy brother as thyself" clause unless we've missed the boat on that one.

As a side note, in a recent work discussion we've come to the logical conclusion that

a) either the prophecized messiah of the house of David bit is wrong, or the Virgin birth is (which is more important, that's anyone's call but these folks really shouldn't be throwing stones at anyone else's house....)

b) Hell is still a logical fallacy for those of us that buy the whole free will thing, so, what exactly is their reasoning for this one?

c) having a good laugh together seems to work much better at bringing people together than trying to tell people what they should and should not do....

just my two cents- have at 'em, CB - I'll back ya all the way -

Chaucer's Bitch said...

TB: exactly.

Llewtra: AAAAAAAHHH!!! religious organisations shouldn't be allowed to dictate the quality of people's health care!!! Aaaaaahhh!!!! I know the NHS leaves a lot to be desired, but at least when the govt. runs the hospitals you don't get shit like that happening. And I used to like Australia, too. Balls.

Mincat: rowing is mine. The water is my temple, my boat, the altar. I sacrifice myself upon it.

Look everyone, it's my daddy! Everyone wave 'hello!'

Stephen M: Helloooo, papa!!! Thank you for that lovely compliment. I shall endeavor to do your example justice. :-)

Ezri: you should get together with my dad. He's a Pastafarian, too.

llewtrah said...

Hello CB's daddy! (waves like a loon at the computer screen)

First Nations said...

hi cb's dad! hiiii! woo hoo!

timorous already said it. religion has no place in a civilized society.
i am reining myself in, here.

touched by His Noodly appendage,
fn

Valerie said...

HI CB's Dad!

Pastafarians Unite!

Totally agree with you, CB...

ZB said...

Does everyone see what's going on here? The Catholic Church is effectively saying "allow us to continue discriminating or we will FUCK OVER thousands of needy CHILDREN!!!"

So? And? Perhaps people will take the hint and stop having them. Children are not a divine miracle. A cat has kittens, humans have babies. See the parallel? The sooner we fit our population to the available resources, like the rest of the animal kingdom, the better it'll be for this sick old world. If it takes a religious organisation to do it, good. #

Also responding to the comment 'religion has no place in a civilized society' - there wouldn't be or be any notion of 'a civilised society' without religion. Where do you think liberal humanism came from? The back of a cereal box?

frobisher said...

Well ZB if the Catholic church would let it's members use condoms perhaps people would stop having children! But no, they would rather stick to their dogma and let thousands of people in the third world die of Aids.

Anglicans agreeing with Catholics? it's amazing how hate can bring people together!

Haven't the kids got more to worry about from Catholic priests rather than gay couples?

Chaucer's Bitch said...

ZB, i would be almost as pissed off if the church threatened to drown a thousand kittens if the govt didn't grant them an exemption to the anti-discrimination law. fundamentally what they are doing is giving an ultimatum to the govt, saying "let us discriminate or we will do something really nasty." that's the bottom line, and it's morally reprehensible. That the nastiness is being visited on innocet children merely compounds the original complaint.

Are you suggesting that AIDS is a better way to control global overpopulation than contraception?????? Holy fuck, man. I thought I knew you.

ZB said...

Are you suggesting that AIDS is a better way to control global overpopulation than contraception?????? Holy fuck, man. I thought I knew you.

Okay, just read me back the bit where I said that about Aids and Global population? Or the use of contraception? Word for word please...

No, didn't think I mentioned them. Don't twist my words please.

I said:

"So? And? Perhaps people will take the hint and stop having them. Children are not a divine miracle. A cat has kittens, humans have babies. See the parallel? The sooner we fit our population to the available resources, like the rest of the animal kingdom, the better it'll be for this sick old world. If it takes a religious organisation to do it, good."

It was a comment on adoption. Not AIDs or the third world. It's fairly simple. If you can't raise it, don't fucking have it. End of discussion. Fairly simple, no? The logical follow on from that is surely 'Therefore, if you're worried about getting pregnant or fathering a child AND YOU'RE NOT USING CONTRACEPTION THEN DON'T FUCK!' Fairly simple, no? Yes, I thought so as well.

You need to learn to argue dispassionately. Especially where religion is involved. The Catholic doctrine of maintaining control over your desires and animal wants isn't a bad one. The ban on contraception is as much a commentary on that as it is a stupid piece of theological pretzel logic. Control and respect of and for ourselves and our world is surely the true message we should preach here. Just because we want it doesn't mean that we should have it. That kind of ethos has put the world in the state that its in now. I want an ipod - who cares about the cost to the planet. I want an SUV - who cares about the polar ice caps melting. I want an orgasm - who cares that it might produce a baby or give me an STI. It's my urge and I have the right to fulfill its promptings. If that's the way you feel, then you also have the right to take the consequences of your actions.

If life is a miracle it is something that takes place over the nine months of gestation, not the two second spasm of nerve endings and muscular contractions of climax.

If you can't raise it, don't have it. I'd happily argue for a matching of population to resources and our responsibility to maintain the planet for the endurance of all of Gods creatures - not just man. If that means that limits are placed on the amount of children we have, fine. Draw a lottery.

The reality is this. The planet is already over populated. It's going to get more over populated. This can't go on. It will kill us as a species and kill this planet as a place of life for all life. That's the reality. We're all reasonably intelligent on this page. We know this. We also know that something mut be done about it.

But we all want the right to have a child if we feel like it. That's one of our inalienable human rights, isn't it?

Something has to give. And I get the feeling it won't be our right to have a kid.

Bye bye world. It was nice knowing you.

Chaucer's Bitch said...

"It was a comment on adoption. Not AIDs or the third world.... The logical follow on from that is surely 'Therefore, if you're worried about getting pregnant or fathering a child AND YOU'RE NOT USING CONTRACEPTION THEN DON'T FUCK!'"

Fair enough. But I was already factoring into the equation the Church's ban on contraception. So if you can use contraception, and you can't have an abortion, AND they shut down the adoption clinics, what does that leave???

"The Catholic doctrine of maintaining control over your desires and animal wants isn't a bad one."

Yes it is. It's terrible. It's terrible because they've been trying it for 2000 years and it hasn't worked yet. The fact is that telling people to ignore a fundamental, genetically programmed desire they are experiencing in the here and now for fear of a potential consequence they might suffer 9 months down the road is naive and supremely unrealistic. It's a nice notion, this "have control over yourself and don't give in to your base, animal lust," but in all of history it's NEVER WORKED. Women for generations upon generations have been seeking ways to prevent pregnancy -- herbs, simples, medallions, icons, and superstitions galore -- but chastity was never considered a viable option.

I agree completely that the planet cannot sustain the people already on it, nevermind the billions more on the way. We must do something about the population problem. If you're such a big fan of the Catholic teaching on celibacy, I assume you're an equally big fan of the Catholic teaching on condoms???

Chaucer's Bitch said...

"You need to learn to argue dispassionately."


I argue dispassionately in my academic writing. Here, I argue with all the fervor of my soul and the fullest of my rhetorical abilities.

GreatSheElephant said...

According to the Economist, the figure is 3%. not 30%. Still doesn't make the Catholics right though

Chris said...

Hi,

First time I've posted a comment to a blog, although I've read and enjoyed this one for a while. I'm writing this in defence of the Catholics - not a position I'm used to, but there's a first time for everything!

I would like first of all to repeat a point in the original post, that is that these guys have been doing good work and finding homes for orphans for generations. I would also like to point out that if they decide to withdraw from the orphanage game then I am sure it won't be done lightly, and the consequences will weigh heavy on the people who make the decisions. We can all joke about peadophile priests and so on, but most Catholics I have met are good people who are motivated to do what they think is right, and from what I've seen, that attitude extends to the top of the organisation (Except for those Opus Dei guys in the Da Vinci code - they're all nuts!)

The problem is that they believe that homosexuality is fundamentally immoral, and that they would be doing a moral disservice to the children by putting them in a home with homosexual parents. Now, you and I might think that that is completely ridiculous. But everyone is entitled to their own set of moral convictions. If they were seeking to impose their morals on others, if they were attempting to force the government to ban adoption by gay couples across the board, then I would be the first to oppose them. But they are not. They are opposing us imposing our moral code upon them.

If I can draw a comparison with another hot potato, there was a story before Christmas about new laws that will see doctors put on trial for assault if they refuse to allow patients who have made 'living wills' to die. Here is a link: http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/news/article-23374924-details/Doctors+face+prison+for+denying+right+to+die/article.do
Let's say I was a doctor and I had a moral objection to euthanasia. I felt it was wrong, and it violates my hippocratic oath. I can't stop the law, so after a lifetime of helping people I choose to stop practising medicine and become a bricklayer instead. Am I discriminating against terminally ill people? Am I FUCKING OVER thousands of needy SICK PEOPLE!? Am I making a sick ultimatum? Am I behaving in an EVIL manner?

Or have I been put in an impossible position, where I can't continue to do my job because legislation will force me to act in a way which I find to be wrong, harmful to my patients and morally reprehensible? If I stop practising medicine my patients will still be cared for. The NHS will just be a little more stretched. Likewise, if the Catholic church pulls out of the adoption game, we won't see piles of dead children in the streets. The other orphanages will just be more crowded.

Anyway, I think I've made my point clear. As I say, I'm not used to defending Catholics, but I couldn't resist this time. For purposes of balance, I'm off now to beat up a nun and desecrate a church.

Chris

Chaucer's Bitch said...

GSE: thanks for the correction. i was wondering how the government adoption agencies thought they were going to pick up the slack so effortlessly.

Chris. Oh my. Welcome, and I'm glad you decided to de-lurk, but after I've responded to this you may well decide you hate me and never read or comment again. Hoo-boy, here we go...

"if they decide to withdraw from the orphanage game then I am sure it won't be done lightly, and the consequences will weigh heavy on the people who make the decisions."

oh the poor, guilt-ridden darlings. is that some sort of defense? That's like saying "this will hurt me more than it hurts you" before spanking your kid.

"We can all joke about peadophile priests and so on"

No we can't. It's not funny, and I never joke about it. Peadophile priests are not a comedy gig; they're real, they're not rare, and I'm personally acquainted with SEVERAL of their victims, as well as one near-victim who happens to be my own brother.

"most Catholics I have met are good people who are motivated to do what they think is right,"

i'm glad you've had that experience. most catholics I know are self-righteous, high horse-humping hypocrites who are more concerned with winning than with actually doing good. they are overwhelmingly incapable of viewing a situation with any form of pragmatism, and insist on sacrificing all logic and rationalle in the interests of pursuing their myopic, dogma-laden political agenda. most of them have never given a second thought to whether that agenda is actually a good idea or not. And i say this as someone who spent her entire education in Catholic schools and has 2 aunts who are Catholic nuns, so I know whereof I speak on this one.

By the way, you do know that The Da Vinci Code was fiction, right? Just checking.

"But everyone is entitled to their own set of moral convictions."

This is the one where I've really been struggling for the past few years. I used to believe that, absolutely, but I'm slowly coming around to the notion that not all moralities are created equal. Some things are just wrong. Plain and simple, flat out, not up for debate Wrong, and cannot be justified by or hidden behind the veil of religion and culture. Female genital mutilation is one such thing. It's wrong. End of. Discrimination is another. No organisation that claims to be dedicated to the cause of social justice and human rights can do so while actively teaching and practicing discrimination against any group of people. It's internally inconsistent and therefore hypocritical.

That said, the Church is perfectly within its rights to pack up its marbles and go home if it doesn't want to play by the governments rules. My beef is with the dual facts that
a, it tried to use the threat of harm to innocents to hijack a democratic government into making policy based on religious dogma, and
b, the new rules by which it refuses to play are rules passed to enforce fairness and equality for all sectors of society; rules to which there can be no logical ojection.

as for your tangent, my full response to that is another post for another time, but i will say that any doctor who refuses to respect a patient's right to die and keeps him/her alive artificially against his/her will should be stood up against the wall with the paedo priests and given a fag and one bullet.

"For purposes of balance, I'm off now to beat up a nun"

Fine, but stay the hell away from my aunts.

Chris said...

Chris. Oh my. Welcome, and I'm glad you decided to de-lurk, but after I've responded to this you may well decide you hate me and never read or comment again. Hoo-boy, here we go...

Far from it! I admire the courage of your convictions, even if I do think you're wrong :P


oh the poor, guilt-ridden darlings. is that some sort of defense? That's like saying "this will hurt me more than it hurts you" before spanking your kid.

Sorry, I didn't make my point clear. I would imagine anyone involved in running adoption schemes has the priorities of the children in the forefront of their minds. If they chose to make a stand against adoption by same-sex couples, they are doing so because they believe that they are best serving the interests of the children by doing so. They are not opposed to homosexuality because they are hateful people. They are opposed to it because they think it is wrong, and that the folks who engage in it are condemning themselves to hell/purgatory or whatever. Love the sinner, hate the sin, and all that. They seek to save the children from this firey fate.


"We can all joke about peadophile
priests and so on"

No we can't. It's not funny, and I
never joke about it. Peadophile
priests are not a comedy gig; they're real, they're not rare, and I'm
personally acquainted with SEVERAL of their victims, as well as one
near-victim who happens to be my own
brother.


You are quite right, and I apologise for my poor choice of words. I meant to say that whenever Catholicism is discussed the lazy 'paedophile priest' cliche crops up, as I believe it did earlier in these comments. Of course I don't think it is funny or something to joke about, and I'm sorry if I implied I did.

I don't know whether they are rare or not, but I do believe that they are in the vast, vast minority.


"most Catholics I have met are good
people who are motivated to do what
they think is right,"

i'm glad you've had that experience.
most catholics I know are
self-righteous, high horse-humping
hypocrites who are more concerned with winning than with actually doing good. they are overwhelmingly incapable of
viewing a situation with any form of
pragmatism, and insist on sacrificing all logic and rationalle in the
interests of pursuing their myopic,
dogma-laden political agenda. most of them have never given a second thought to whether that agenda is actually a
good idea or not. And i say this as
someone who spent her entire education in Catholic schools and has 2 aunts
who are Catholic nuns, so I know
whereof I speak on this one.


I'm familiar with the type of people you describe. You can find them in any organisation, and they do seem to be over-represented in the religious clubs. I like to think that even they have their hearts in the right place, and they do what they do because they think it is right. But then, I'm a 'glass-half-full' kinda guy!


By the way, you do know that The Da
Vinci Code was fiction, right? Just
checking.

Um, yes. I was attempting to be funny. I won't do that again without including one of these guys -> :)


"But everyone is entitled to their own set of moral convictions."

This is the one where I've really been struggling for the past few years. I used to believe that, absolutely, but I'm slowly coming around to the notion that not all moralities are created equal. Some things are just wrong. Plain and simple, flat out, not up for debate Wrong, and cannot be justified by or hidden behind the veil of religion and culture. Female genital mutilation is one such thing. It's wrong. End of. Discrimination is another. No organisation that claims to be dedicated to the cause of social justice and human rights can do so while actively teaching and practicing discrimination against any group of people. It's internally inconsistent and therefore hypocritical.


If these things are 'not up for debate', then who is the benign dictator that is going to tell us what is right and wrong? Is it you? The Catholics would call this benign dictator God. I would agree with you that female genital mutation is very wrong. But this is my point; where this happens this is a clear case of someone imposing their morality and values upon others. If a mature woman chooses to undergo this process of her own free will, is it still wrong? End of? As for discrimination, it is necessary in many areas. What little I know about rowing I've read from your blog. Do the women row in separate races from the men? Is it discriminatory to stop me and three of my mates from competing in the Women's Coxless Fours?

That's a silly example. Here's a more pertinent one. As far as I am aware, people on the sex offenders register have severe difficulties in adopting children. Is that discrimination? Yes it is, but in this case, the duty we have to the child is more important.

These adoption agency folks are discriminating for the same reason - they feel that a homosexual is not a fit parent and they would be failing the child by placing him/her in such a home. You and I may find such a view abhorent. But should these people be forced to do things that they believe are harmful to a child? Is that fair to them? If the public don't like their discriminatory policies we can legislate against them. That is our right. In that case, they can withdraw their voluntary services so they are not forced to compromise their ethics. That is theirs.

I note as an aside that your professed belief in an absolute morality seems like a somewhat religious stance to me. Certainly, it is a belief that is not, nor ever could be, scientifically proven :)


That said, the Church is perfectly
within its rights to pack up its
marbles and go home if it doesn't want to play by the governments rules. My beef is with the dual facts that
a, it tried to use the threat of harm to innocents to hijack a democratic government into making policy based on religious dogma, and
b, the new rules by which it refuses to play are rules passed to enforce fairness and equality for all sectors of society; rules to which there can be no logical ojection.

Well, I guess we are just looking at this from different perspectives. You see it as a threat, blackmail, whatever. I see it as a group of people taking a stand against what they disagree with. As I have said, I believe these people are trying to act in the best interest of those innocents.

As for enforcing fairness and equality, well, it's not going too well. Life isn't fair and we are not all equal. For one thing, my neighbour is driving a much nicer car than me. Do you think everything ever can be fair and equal? Do you think forcing it on people will work? I would prefer a situation where we all have the freedom and opportunity to live the way we want to live. I believe a good way to start would be by not imposing our morality on others.

Also, you should perhaps be careful about making statements like 'rules to which there can be no logical objection'. I could easily come up with a logical objection to same-sex couples adopting. Maybe a child benefits from being brought up by role models of both sexes? I don't know or believe this to be true, but I'm sure the research has been / is being done by people much smarter than I. Neither one of us has all the answers. That's why neither one of us should be that benign dictator I was talking about earlier :)



as for your tangent, my full response to that is another post for another
time, but i will say that any doctor
who refuses to respect a patient's
right to die and keeps him/her alive
artificially against his/her will
should be stood up against the wall
with the paedo priests and given a fag
and one bullet.

I think you are twisting my words somewhat. The doctor in my example was not keeping anyone alive against his will, he was removing himself from the equation. Lets say there are plenty of other doctors in the hospital who have no ethical problem with a mercy killing.

It seems a shame that the doctor in my example gets murdered by the state for the crime of following his conscience. It should have been clear from my example that his actions were not motivated by a hatred for the patient, or a desire to see him suffer, but rather that he values life above all else. First Do No Harm, and all that.

I've always been a big believer in following ones own sense of right and wrong, rather than The Law. I hope your future doesn't come to pass, because that kind of attitude will get me put up against a wall and shot!


Phew! Heavy stuff, eh? Hope you take my comments in the spirit they are intended. I find it much more interesting to talk to people who disagree with me than those who just nod along - hope you feel the same way! Have a good evening,

Chris

Chaucer's Bitch said...

"...Love the sinner, hate the sin, and all that..."

yeah, and i'm (way too) familiar with the Church's stance and the whole "homosexuals are called to a life of chastitiy" crap. I guess what it boils down to is this: I, the vast majority of the scientific community, and a fair chunk of rest of the western world, acknowledge that homosexuality is an in-born thing. It's not a choice, it's the way you are. (As a gay friend of mine once put it, "How can they think this is a choice?? Who in their right minds would choose this!?!? I wish to god I could be straight; my life would be so much fucking eaiser!") Perhaps if the Church ever comes around and realizes that god made gay people the same as he made straight people they'll begin to see the light. Until that time... *sigh*

"who is the benign dictator that is going to tell us what is right and wrong? Is it you?"

Sure, why not. I think Benevolent Dictator of the Universe would be my dream job. I may not be perfect, but I'm fairly sure that on the whole shit would be a fuck lot better than it is now.

"The Catholics would call this benign dictator God."

I can live with that. Would look nice on my stationery. :)

"I note as an aside that your professed belief in an absolute morality seems like a somewhat religious stance to me. Certainly, it is a belief that is not, nor ever could be, scientifically proven :)"

It's not a professed belief for me yet. It's still a concept that I'm very much struggling with internally. As I said, I had always believed that every culture had a right to believe that they like, that no culture's values are superior to any other's, and that the only way to make moral judgements is within the standard of a given culture, but not between them. That I've been questioning this lately is very troubling to me, but I have a hard time understanding how some acts can be "justified" by claiming "but that's my culutre!" Like the Middle Eastern past time of stoning women to death in the streets for showing a bit of ankle out the bottom of their burkas. (That actually happened - i'm not exaggerating.) How can any reasonable person look on that and say "well, it's their culture." Surely some things are just Wrong. aren't they? The Pirate (a devout Christian) and I spent a lot of time talking about this over the weekend. I think it's going to be a life-long struggle for me.

My flatmate, a mathematician and very possibly the smartest person I have ever met in my life, and who is a devout atheist and secularist, professes a conviction that there is indeed a universal morality that has nothing to do with a god or religion. He maintains it is possible to prove the existence of such mathematically and without invoking any sort of divine muckety-muck. I'm looking forward to the day he does it.

"As for enforcing fairness and equality, well, it's not going too well. Life isn't fair..."

Tell me about it. have you read my latest post? What I meant was fairness under the Law. Life will never be fair, we all know that. But I do believe that we all have a right to be treated equally under the law. I'm pretty sure you'll agree with me on that one. Yay, common ground!

"It should have been clear from my example that his actions were not motivated by a hatred for the patient, or a desire to see him suffer, but rather that he values life above all else. First Do No Harm, and all that."

Clearly I need to do a post on euthanasia, becuase I could never understand this one. People who are agains human euthanasia claim it is becuase they don't wish to see people suffer. But that's the whole point of euthanasia, to end suffering! I wonder how many people who are against assisted suicide have ever had a dog or cat put down because it was dying and suffering terribly? Nearly everyone agrees that it is kinder to end the suffering of an animal than to allow it to continue on in pain when it will only die an agonizing death anyway. Why should humans be treated worse?! Why would you make your grandmother endure something you wouldn't put your dog through??? Surely there are many instances every day where it Does More Harm to prolong life, suffering, and pain than to end it? Can you please explain that to me?

"I find it much more interesting to talk to people who disagree with me than those who just nod along - hope you feel the same way!"

Absolutely! My best friend in high school was a guy that I argued with for about 7 hours a day, every day for 4 years. We had a great time (and in the end he finally joined the Democratic Party and credits me with his conversion. Whoo-hoo!)

Have a good evening yourself.

ZB said...

"I used to believe that, absolutely, but I'm slowly coming around to the notion that not all moralities are created equal. Some things are just wrong. Plain and simple, flat out, not up for debate Wrong, and cannot be justified by or hidden behind the veil of religion and culture."


That torpedo's your argument right there sweetpea. Either we're all equal on this playing field and the debate is open or if you raise your values above someone elses you've just made yourself into one of the institutions you're diatribing about.

Personally, I don't believe in cultural relativity. I'm a liberal humanist. I believe in people and I'm liberal about it but I believe rationally and emotionally that things have values and weights, that some people do know more than others and their wisdom should be taken on board (new born baby doing your brain surgery or the world wide respected number one...thought so. But that's common sense...No, cultural relativism argues that they're both equal. Liberal humanism goes with the man who has spent time behind the saw) and that the greater good exists conceptually and is important.

The Da Vinci Code is fiction?

Really? So it was a movie not a documentary?

Congrats on 30,000 hits. Start charging...

ZB said...

I assume you're an equally big fan of the Catholic teaching on condoms???

I did say that the church's teachings on the divinity of human life were an example of theological pretzel logic. I'd always advocate wearing condoms. Firstly, as a man it stops someone reappearing on your doorstep pointing to a bump and saying 'It's yours.' And secondly, it stops your bits from turning green and smelling of rot.

Chaucer's Bitch said...

"That torpedo's your argument right there sweetpea. Either we're all equal on this playing field and the debate is open or if you raise your values above someone elses you've just made yourself into one of the institutions you're diatribing about."

Precisely. That's why I'm so conflicted. I can't find any way to condemn other people's values without turning into my own worst enemy. (That's a bit strong, but you know what I mean.)

Perhaps i should study the liberal humanist philosophy. can you recommend a (short) text?

Chaucer's Bitch said...

"I'd always advocate wearing condoms."

I know, but I had to ask, because if I said "I know for a fact you use condoms" in order to make my point, it would have sounded a bit, erm, sketchy.

But the point was this: how can you, a contientous, free-thinking, virile man in his prime support the Church's position on chastity to prevent pregnancy and the spread of disease, when you yourself would rather wrap a rubber to achieve same than give up sex. Surely it's unfair of you to expect millions of people around the world to "control [their] desires and animal wants" when you yourself are unwilling to abide by that doctrine?

Chaucer's Bitch said...

(ps. sorry if i'm being antagonistic, but this is fun. and since i don't know shit about historiographical approaches to imperialism, it's much easier to argue with you over here than at your place. :)

ZB said...

But the point was this: how can you, a contientous, free-thinking, virile man in his prime support the Church's position on chastity to prevent pregnancy and the spread of disease, when you yourself would rather wrap a rubber to achieve same than give up sex...

I have. My dick is a sex free and rubber free zone.

The end.

And historiographical approaches to Imperialism are the only way. In fact, historiographical approaches to anything are the only way. Anything with the word 'culture' in its approach means an approach tainted by whatever the political/cultural/PC football is at that time. Anything with its agenda in place before the data kicks in results in bad conclusions before you've even started.