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What Has Happened To Our Country?

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Guest 2smart4u
I have found that my journey toward freethought has been the most liberating experience of my life. I was amazed at the amount of guilt and anxiety I was carrying around when I was a believer. It felt like the greatest burden was lifted and I was now free to make choices based on my own sense of morality and I found my decisions to be much more pratical and sound minded. I also became a much more kind and charitable person. It became easier to understand and forgive others because I had finally been able to forgive myself. That anger and self righteousness that is so ever present in some right ring believers is just that sense of false arrogance and pride that they need to stay on top of themselves as they constantly fall below their own expectations. The Christian philosophy is an impossible feat for humanity and believers are constantly having to be at odds with themselves about their own shortcomings. It makes them harsh and judgmental because they are trying so hard not to have their own weaknesses exposed.

I do respect some Christians (and know some) who try and live their life according to their creed. The problem I see most often is most of them are very good at being hypocritical. The bible tells them not to see the speck in their brother's eye but that is what so many of them do. They are more interested in the behavior of others than they are at improving themselves. I do not recall the remarks made by Bush senior because I was at that time, a believer, so I probably paid it no mind. Just goes to show you how people pay no attention to issues that don't effect them directly.

I learned alot about my humanity from my years in musical theatre. The song from South Pacific still rings strong in my ears "you've got to be taught to hate and fear, you've got to be taught from year to year, it's got to be drummed in your dear little ear...you've got to be taught before it's too late. Before you are six or seven or eight-to hate all the people your relatives hate..." Sad but true. When I see how young children are indoctrinated before they are even old enough to have thoughts of their own. I remember in the church watching children 4 and 5 years old walking up to the front of the church to be "saved" and their parents telling me it was their choice. No 5 year old makes a choice like that without being pressured by someone. My ex husband (who was still with the church at the time of our separation) had our 9 year old daughter endure an underwater baptism against her will because he wanted to look good for the church.

Like I said, I think people have to realize it okay to question, to disagree and as Jiminy Cricket always chirped "let your conscience be your guide" It's okay to trust your instincts, question authority and seek your own answers. Well meaning people who have passed on what they know to you may not realize that they have been misinformed as well.

Sounds like your "journey toward freethought" involved Kool-Aid along the way. Good luck with that.

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Guest 2smart4u
f**k off! GWB is a war criminal. Nothing more. Nothing less.

10:39 PM ?? You have school tomorrow, turn the computer off and get to bed.

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Guest Lincoln Logger
Like you, I came from a relatively conservative background, Roman Catholic, son of a farmer and a farmer's wife. Three older sisters. Church every Sunday, sang in the choir with Dad (great memories, especially midnight masses on Christmas and Easter). Chicken dinner had been clucking in the pen a couple hours earlier.

As a young man, I can remember literally blocking thoughts because the church forbade them as heresy - so I wouldn't think them. As a college student, I had a girlfriend who played Chava in "Fiddler." It's a great story, a genuine heartbreaker for dozens of reasons. "How can I hope to make you understand . . ." "God knows when we will see each other again." And then of course, "If I bend that far, I will break!" I found out the truth doesn't break us, it makes us stronger.

Two of my early mentors were my college roommates, along with most of the other guys on the 8th floor at South Quad, U of Michigan fall 1972 - spring 1973. Both my roommates were Jewish. (My best friend on the hall was a Sikh who wore a turban first term.) In my little farming community, we had heard about such people, but I'm not sure I really beleived in them. They were great guys, and living with them forced me to ask: "Why is my religion better than theirs." When I had no good answer, that was the beginning of the end of my days as a theist.

Does that mean that I'm more open than most people who cling to their beliefs in the face of overwhelming evidence? More objective than average? Maybe. I know it doesn't mean what many people here insist on thinking it means - I never had a rebellious period, I just followed the evidence where it led me, once I allowed myself the freedom to do that. Most of the reactions to people like you and me are just projections into a mirror.

On the one hand, I want to respect theistic belief, but on the other hand all I can respect is the right to believe it. I can't respect its content because there's no merit to it, in my opinion. I don't mean any disrespect by that, we are more than the sum of our beliefs; it's just where the facts lead me.

I suppose all we can do is keep writing and talking, with each other and to others who don't (yet) share our views. I do think that if non-theism reaches a critical mass it will become more prevalent. For now, I would like no American president ever to say again, with complete impunity, that an atheist isn't a good American, as both Bushes did. To me, that's abominable, and what's even more abominable is knowing that the American people didn't care, not one bit.

You made my mind up. I am definitely sending my child to a Catholic college. I was to give my child the things you had as a child growing up. To paraphrase you "Church every Sunday, sang in the choir with Dad (great memories, especially midnight masses on Christmas and Easter". So it makes people wonder why you wouldn’t want that for your own children. Seeing as how they grew up I would have suspected that the things you experienced as a child would have done them some good. Instead the experienced purple hair and secret tapes. Looking at the Darwin Award for you for being parent of the year. Whatever spooked you must have been a good one. And I respectfully don’t care a darn about your days as a theist. Respectfully speaking of course. The only thing clucking these days is you on this blog.

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Guest Guest
As a lawyer you must have to do some unpleasant things to win your cases, how do you resolve this issue with being a Humanist?

Why do you assume any of that? On what basis?

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Guest Paul
You made my mind up. I am definitely sending my child to a Catholic college. I was to give my child the things you had as a child growing up. To paraphrase you "Church every Sunday, sang in the choir with Dad (great memories, especially midnight masses on Christmas and Easter". So it makes people wonder why you wouldn’t want that for your own children. Seeing as how they grew up I would have suspected that the things you experienced as a child would have done them some good. Instead the experienced purple hair and secret tapes. Looking at the Darwin Award for you for being parent of the year. Whatever spooked you must have been a good one. And I respectfully don’t care a darn about your days as a theist. Respectfully speaking of course. The only thing clucking these days is you on this blog.

But you're not really wondering. You have your mind made up. You're not the least bit interested why those wonderful memories I have of going to church and singing in the choir with the fine man who was my Dad aren't sufficient reason for me to continue to be a part of a church whose theology I don't believe. You're not really interested in the path I took, or the experiences I shared with Matthew and Katie. OK, so they didn't get incense and midnight mass. Instead, they got the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the American Natural History Museum and Ethical Culture and the Unity Church on 29th Street where we went for a few years and an occasional trip to Nobu and Bouley; and that Hindu minister whose interminable sermon put me to sleep one Sunday morning. It wasn't the same as I had. So what? They had two champions for their welfare, and they both knew it. And out of that came a daughter who is headed for a PhD in the cognitive neurosciences, has scads of friends and her head screwed on as straight as anyone I know; and a son who has already established himself throughout several prominent and highly respected communities. They'll both create something that is uniquely their own. They both have a keen sense of who they are. We have family discussions that are head and shoulders above anything I had. And all that happened because Debra and I were honest with them. You seem to be upset that we did what we thought was best. Apparently it doesn't fit your pattern.

And why should I bother to respond? Because I can't live in splendid isolation. No one can. What our neighbors think and how our neighbors raise their kids matters. I can't dictate to you how to raise your kids, any more than you could dictate how I raised mine. But I can raise a fuss about the narrow-mindedness I've seen over and over again.

You're mad as hell that I've got you thinking about the possibility that you don't have to go along with the usual ways of doing things if they're not right. For some reason, that seems to bother you. The simple fact is, if you didn't care, you wouldn't have posted about it. And neither would I.

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"the millions of people who listen to him are just brainwashed". Quite a statement, and you know this how? *

* I hadn't formed an opinion on your intelligence until now. I'm not impressed.

You're about as much of an authority on intelligence as Bernard Madoff is on ethics.

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Sounds like your "journey toward freethought" involved Kool-Aid along the way. Good luck with that.

What is this obsession with KoolAid? You always sound like you've had too much Wild Turkey. I don't get it.

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Guest Paul
What is this obsession with KoolAid? You always sound like you've had too much Wild Turkey. I don't get it.

I think Kool-Aid is a favorite Limbaugh expression. His parrots think he's clever.

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Guest Guest
You made my mind up. I am definitely sending my child to a Catholic college. I was to give my child the things you had as a child growing up. To paraphrase you "Church every Sunday, sang in the choir with Dad (great memories, especially midnight masses on Christmas and Easter". So it makes people wonder why you wouldn’t want that for your own children. Seeing as how they grew up I would have suspected that the things you experienced as a child would have done them some good. Instead the experienced purple hair and secret tapes. Looking at the Darwin Award for you for being parent of the year. Whatever spooked you must have been a good one. And I respectfully don’t care a darn about your days as a theist. Respectfully speaking of course. The only thing clucking these days is you on this blog.

Sounds like he found something better, so he gave them that.

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Guest 2smart4u
I think Kool-Aid is a favorite Limbaugh expression. His parrots think he's clever.

Talking to yourself, this is getting weird.

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Talking to yourself, this is getting weird.

What it's getting, is old. When are you going to drop this imbecilic crusade, 2smart? You're not informing, impressing, or amusing anyone. You're just making yourself look profoundly stupid.

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Guest *Autonomous*
Talking to yourself, this is getting weird.

12:25: Patriot responds in the "Is Lisa Pezzolla retarded or just stupid?" thread.

12:30: 2Dim makes the above response.

12:33: Patriot responds in the "Miracle on the Hudson" thread.

As if the identical punctuation errors, identical syntax, identical views, identical insults, and especially identical spelling mistakes weren't enough. :huh:<_<

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I think Kool-Aid is a favorite Limbaugh expression. His parrots think he's clever.

I haven't listened to Rush lately so I haven't heard that one. I do live in Rio Linda though. (his favorite place in Sacramento to hurl insults at the people who live there)

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Guest 2smart4u
I haven't listened to Rush lately so I haven't heard that one. I do live in Rio Linda though. (his favorite place in Sacramento to hurl insults at the people who live there)

This is beginning to get old, Paul.

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