All Forums > General Discussion > Non-Sports > Ground Zero Cross - A Victory For Common Sense
4/11/2013 8:05 PM (edited)
Did you not see that some of the most advanced, successful and peaceful nations in the world rank among the most atheist?  Nothing about religion works towards advancing us as a nation.  Do you know how much money our nation spends in donations to churches?  In 2009, the New York Times estimated church donations to $115 billion.  Money that is tax-exempt for these corporations (that's what they are - churches are a business and should be treated as such).  The IRS loses about $7.5 billion coming from the massive property assets churches account for that are tax exempt,  and if you take the $115 billion figure from 2009, that's another roughly $46 billion in tax revenue.  Throw in their other exemptions (capital gains, individual deductions for donations, etc) and it's estimated that the IRS loses over $70 billion per year.  How could we spend that money?

Moreover than the money side of things, religion is against change... exemplified by the shocker of the year when another homophobic old white guy was elected as pope and it was somehow big news because he touched a woman's feet.  And we won't talk about how that same establishment sweeps child molestation incidents under the rug... not sure how that sort of thing moves us forward.

The world is getting smarter, but we're still raising kids to thank God for helping them on tests or to say prayers instead of taking action (no, they are certainly not the same thing).  We're teaching them to learn from a book that supposedly should guide them but is full of talking snakes, murder, rape, slavery and ridiculous notions such as a woman having to marry a man that rapes her or being put to death for wearing two different types of material or planting two different types of crops in a field (not to mention this book contradicts itself countless times throughout).  People thank God for watching over them when there's a 20 car pileup on the highway, therein implying that God was not watching over the people riding in the cars involved in the wreck.  Athletes thank God for helping them win some trivial game, so he obviously made the other team lose - why?

You are welcome to follow whatever religion you choose, that is what the USA allows and I have no problem with that on a personal level.  But it's no way to run a country.  Also, your religion is nothing but a matter of geography, same as most sports team affiliations.  If you grow up in Bloomington, Indiana, you're probably an IU fan.  Grow up a few hours away in Lafayette, you're probably a Purdue fan and hate IU.  Grow up in Champaign, you're an Illini fan that hates IU.  Grow up in South Bend and you're a Notre Dame fan that couldn't even stand to watch Michigan in the title game.  It's the same with religion - you grow up in the US, you're probably a Christian.  You grow up Iran, you're probably Muslim.  You grow up in Japan, you're probably Buddhist.  It's all geographical for the majority of the world.

"Since it is obviously inconceivable that all religions can be right, the most reasonable conclusion is that they are all wrong."  - Christopher Hitchens 

4/11/2013 8:24 PM
Cesspool of immorality = progress
4/11/2013 10:01 PM
<<"Since it is obviously inconceivable that all religions can be right, the most reasonable conclusion is that they are all wrong."  - Christopher Hitchens >>

Faulty logic. If I ask a question to my class and get 16 different answers is the most reasonable conclusion that they are all wrong? Of course not. Furthermore, Hitchens is suggesting that each religion is totally different from the other, which of course is not true. His argument is so flawed as to be laughable. RIP Christopher.
4/12/2013 9:00 AM
The world is getting smarter, but we're still raising kids to thank God for helping them on tests or to say prayers instead of taking action (no, they are certainly not the same thing).  We're teaching them to learn from a book that supposedly should guide them but is full of talking snakes, murder, rape, slavery and ridiculous notions such as a woman having to marry a man that rapes her or being put to death for wearing two different types of material or planting two different types of crops in a field (not to mention this book contradicts itself countless times throughout). 

Most of these things you say here about the book you're attacking are the common misconceptions of people who simply don't understand it, and have been debunked by biblical experts for some time now. You might want to do some research and get educated on a book before you trash it.
People thank God for watching over them when there's a 20 car pileup on the highway, therein implying that God was not watching over the people riding in the cars involved in the wreck.

Except you don't know that those things are mutually exclusive. Perhaps people are simply being thankful for what they have without implying anything.
4/12/2013 9:14 AM
Posted by bistiza on 4/12/2013 9:00:00 AM (view original):
The world is getting smarter, but we're still raising kids to thank God for helping them on tests or to say prayers instead of taking action (no, they are certainly not the same thing).  We're teaching them to learn from a book that supposedly should guide them but is full of talking snakes, murder, rape, slavery and ridiculous notions such as a woman having to marry a man that rapes her or being put to death for wearing two different types of material or planting two different types of crops in a field (not to mention this book contradicts itself countless times throughout). 

Most of these things you say here about the book you're attacking are the common misconceptions of people who simply don't understand it, and have been debunked by biblical experts for some time now. You might want to do some research and get educated on a book before you trash it.
People thank God for watching over them when there's a 20 car pileup on the highway, therein implying that God was not watching over the people riding in the cars involved in the wreck.

Except you don't know that those things are mutually exclusive. Perhaps people are simply being thankful for what they have without implying anything.
The implication is inherent, whether it is intended or not, it's there - I'm not saying it's a bad person that is being thankful they weren't in a wreck, but to thank God for keeping them out of the wreck implies that God placed the other people in the wreck.

And I'm not going to get in a ******* match about who knows more about the bible, but I assure you I don't need to "do some research" on it - that's a common defense you try to use when you don't want to address something, you try to talk down to the person and just tell them to go learn more without addressing anything regarding the meat of the topic - you don't actually have to know anything, you just tell the other person they don't, so it's the easy/lazy way out.  Truth is I know plenty about the bible, I've read it and papers dissecting it, analyzing it, I've discussed it and other religious texts, books both for and against religions, so I'm confident in my ability to speak about it.  Don't want to believe that, fine, I honestly couldn't care less, but the beauty of that book is the text is right there for all to read, and just because you interpret it one way and bible experts say "they wrote this but they meant that" doesn't mean everyone is going to interpret it the same.
4/12/2013 12:12 PM
but to thank God for keeping them out of the wreck implies that God placed the other people in the wreck.
Except it doesn't.

You can thank God for things without implying that God is somehow "causing" others not to have those same things.

It's simply being grateful for what you have and expressing that to the being you believe has provided it.

There is no inherent implication of anything having to do with anyone else. It can be simply someone being thankful.
that's a common defense you try to use when you don't want to address something, you try to talk down to the person and just tell them to go learn more without addressing anything regarding the meat of the topic
I'm not going to sit here and systematically dissect your statements.

Many people have said the things you said here years ago, and biblical experts have already debunked most of those notions as being simple misunderstandings. You'd know this if you'd done some simple research.




?
4/12/2013 1:11 PM
Posted by bistiza on 4/12/2013 12:12:00 PM (view original):
but to thank God for keeping them out of the wreck implies that God placed the other people in the wreck.
Except it doesn't.

You can thank God for things without implying that God is somehow "causing" others not to have those same things.

It's simply being grateful for what you have and expressing that to the being you believe has provided it.

There is no inherent implication of anything having to do with anyone else. It can be simply someone being thankful.
that's a common defense you try to use when you don't want to address something, you try to talk down to the person and just tell them to go learn more without addressing anything regarding the meat of the topic
I'm not going to sit here and systematically dissect your statements.

Many people have said the things you said here years ago, and biblical experts have already debunked most of those notions as being simple misunderstandings. You'd know this if you'd done some simple research.




?
You seem to be struggling to grasp even the simplest of Christian concepts - you're focusing only on the person's intent in their being thankful rather than the greater implications of what they are thankful for - i.e. there was a wreck, which God supposedly caused because it was apparently in "God's plan" for person A, B, and C to get in a wreck while person D does not.

If you can't grasp that then there's no point in discussing anything further because you'd obviously be way out of your depth, especially since it sounds like you already are.  You keep citing "bliblical experts" with no actual backing... funny thing is that, when I make a factual claim, I back it up with data.  You just make up silly generalizations that you think help your position, but when you have nothing credible to back it up, you look foolish to anyone who knows what they're talking about.
4/12/2013 1:43 PM
You seem to be struggling to grasp even the simplest of Christian concepts

What's happening here is that YOU don't know what you're talking about, but you THINK you do. This feeling of being "right" is so strong in you that when I tell you what is actually going on, you actually think I'm the one who doesn't get it.

This would be humorous if it weren't so sad.
you're focusing only on the person's intent in their being thankful rather than the greater implications of what they are thankful for

I'm not "focusing on" anything.

I'm merely pointing out that a person can be thankful without ever implying anything.

You're reading an implication into what they are saying, but that implication isn't necessary. You just don't seem to get that, though.
i.e. there was a wreck, which God supposedly caused

Except that's not what the person is saying at all.

If you are walking down the street and a car you don't notice is about to hit you and I shove you out of the way and save you from being hit by the car, you might decide to thank me for doing that.

You thanking me in no way means you thought I somehow "caused" the car to come at you and nearly hit you. It just means you were thankful I saved you from being hit.

In the same way, thanking God for keeping you from a tragedy doesn't mean you think God "caused" the tragedy - you're just thankful he saved you from it.

because it was apparently in "God's plan" for person A, B, and C to get in a wreck while person D does not.

You do know things don't always operate only in absolutes, right? Because you're looking at this as an absolute, and you can't understand that it's not one.

You have no idea why God allows things to happen, and neither do I, but there is also a difference between allowing something to happen and causing something to happen. I'm guessing you can't grasp that distinction either.
If you can't grasp that then there's no point in discussing anything further because you'd obviously be way out of your depth, especially since it sounds like you already are. 

You can't even understand that God doesn't have to operate in absolutes or the basic difference between permission and causation, yet you think you can tell me I'm "way out of your depth"?
You just make up silly generalizations that you think help your position, but when you have nothing credible to back it up, you look foolish to anyone who knows what they're talking about.
I'm just trying to explain to you that the things you spouted weren't true. You'd have been aware of that with a simple search or two, which would have prevented you from looking foolish for posting ideas that have been debunked for years.

You claim to back up your claims with data, and yet when I challenged what you said, you didn't bring up a single piece of data. All you did was show that you think only in absolutes and can't understand the difference between permission and causation.

If you can't grasp those simple concepts, there is no point in discussing this with you.
4/12/2013 1:56 PM
What's happening here is that YOU don't know what you're talking about, but you THINK you do. This feeling of being "right" is so strong in you that when I tell you what is actually going on, you actually think I'm the one who doesn't get it.

So prove it - you have supplied zero proof.  I'm not going to believe you just because you say so.  I made a claim earlier stating that I thought religion was ruining our country and costing us billions of dollars.  Know what I did next?  I supplied five different studies that backed my claim and figures collected by the New York Times on IRS revenue.  
Except that's not what the person is saying at all.
Except they are. God is all powerful, correct?  Kind of the whole basis of your religion, might want to grasp, at the very least, that concept, otherwise your belief system kind of crumples on itself.  And, by Christian beliefs, we're all following "God's plan" correct? So, logic dictates that God caused the wreck. I don't see how this is so difficult for you. Maybe you need it written in crayons, I don't know.
You claim to back up your claims with data, and yet when I challenged what you said, you didn't bring up a single piece of data.
You didn't provide anything factual that I need to dispute - you're just making silly claims in favor of your stance with nothing to back them - you talk about experts... what are their names?  Where are their findings?  Have you even read the rebuttals?  You have such a closed mind but high opinion of yourself, it's hilarious.  Put it this way - if a child comes up to me and tells me there's a pink unicorn standing behind me, do I really need to get a study on pink unicorns or can I just think the kid is being silly and disregard it. In case you didn't follow that analogy - you're the kid, God is the pink unicorn.
4/12/2013 1:59 PM
MONGOLOID MELEE!!!!
4/12/2013 2:13 PM
RETAHD RHUBARB!
4/12/2013 2:32 PM
So prove it - you have supplied zero proof.

You are the one who came into the thread and made ridiculous statements - the onus to provide proof is on you.
God is all powerful, correct?  Kind of the whole basis of your religion, might want to grasp, at the very least, that concept, otherwise your belief system kind of crumples on itself.
You have no idea what my religion is or what I personally believe. I'm just pointing out how you make wild assumptions that aren't true.
And, by Christian beliefs, we're all following "God's plan" correct? So, logic dictates that God caused the wreck.

You clearly don't understand Christian beliefs, or even Jewish beliefs (which on this concept - as on many others - are essentially the same).

I'll try to explain this to you, and I hope you can set aside your absolute thinking to try to grasp it:

The Judeo-Christian teaching is that people have free will - they can make choices - and these choices obviously affect the world around them in a variety of ways. According to these beliefs, the individual as well as cumulative effect of bad choices made by people ("sins") are what causes bad things to happen in the world. So the belief is not that God "causes" bad things (like a car wreck) to happen but that he permits them to happen because to do otherwise would mean eliminating the bad choices. To do that would mean to eliminate free will altogether.

I'm not aware of any Judeo-Christian tradition that teaches that everyone is following "God's plan". In fact, as I pointed out, most of them teach that everyone is NOT following God's ideal plan because they have made bad choices in their lives ("sinned").

So trying to explain how God is responsible for bad things like a car wreck by using your logic simply doesn't follow the teachings about the Judeo-Christian God.  Now if you're talking about some other god, that may be a different story, but I didn't get that impression from things you've said.
You didn't provide anything factual that I need to dispute
I said most of the statements you made were wrong.

If you feel you don't need to dispute that, fine, we'll just agree you were wrong and be done with it.
4/12/2013 2:44 PM (edited)
So prove it - you have provided zero proof
You are the one who came into the thread and made ridiculous statements - the onus to provide proof is on you.
Ok - so you have zero proof and are just trying to keep putting it off. What would you like me to prove? That God caused the hypothetical wreck? Okay - since that is obviously a stupid thing to try and prove but you're still basing your entire argument around it (not surprising), how about natural disasters? God created the world, supposedly, right? So are the natural disasters (like his personal favorite, floods), his cause? I'm sorry I can't prove your arguments for you - you might have to do a little bit of work. I can't prove someone did something when I don't believe that person exists. Do you believe in God? If yes, then the onus is on you to prove his existence, not for me to disprove it - or even if you don't believe in God, you're taking a stance defending that belief. And, just so you know, proof is more than just talking about how some experts wrote about it and I just have to search for it. You don't seem to understand that, so I wanted to clarify.

It's okay... most religious people don't like looking for proof either, you're not alone. You want to just keep making blanket generalizations with no factual basis, and then acting like it's fact, and then beating your chest and talking about how you're right. You want others to provide proof without providing it yourself (look at the first page, I've given proof to my claims on religion being bad for the nation, I'll quote it if you'd like).
4/12/2013 2:43 PM
DIMWIT DECATHLON!!!
4/12/2013 3:00 PM
Wait...is someone claiming biz has no proof in an argument?  Odd.

"You want to just keep making blanket generalizations with no factual basis, and then acting like it's fact, and then beating your chest and talking about how you're right. You want others to provide proof without providing it yourself."

HAHAHA
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