I don’t care, just GIVE ME A CHOICE »« [Lounge #370]

Around FtB

Since I’m utterly useless these days, you’ll have to get your jollies by browsing elsewhere on the network.

  • Ed Brayton really doesn’t like SE Cupp. Neither do I. He fails to mention one awful moment in that clip: she cites Ayn Rand. Positively.

  • Zinnia Jones suggests that we shouldn’t use religious arguments even in favor of causes we support.

  • Brianne Bilyeu thinks we can acquire a Minnesooota accent just by living here. That settles it, I’ve got to mööve, fer sure.

  • Would you believe that the loons on AVoiceForMen are arguing that middle-class white men are the new “nigger”? “NO WAY,” says Ian Cromwell.

  • Dana Hunter sees birds.

  • Stephanie Zvan announces another Mock The Movie night on Thursday. I have to miss this one, I’m working late and then traveling late. Mock on!

  • Justin Griffith has a love story. Also a tragedy: so many young people are getting maimed in our wars.

Comments

  1. says

    (xposted from Ed Brayton’s blog)

    SE Cupp is the libertarian/right-wing-conservative/authoritarian kind of “atheist”: no gods…except ME.

    I wrote a song about her once, but I find singing it revolting – to the point where my throat constricts and I sound like I’m gagging. Because I’m gagging.

  2. F says

    Brianne Bilyeu thinks we can acquire a Minnesooota accent just by living here. That settles it, I’ve got to mööve, fer sure.

    How else would one acquire an accent?

    Well, I know one other way: Reading blogs from a strangely high concentration of Minnessoda bloggers. I swear I picked it up, even though it doesn’t normally transfer via text.

  3. Brownian says

    God bless that brave warrior

    What exactly does this mean? Is it a prayer? As a soldier, he’s likely killed people. Does that not violate one of God’s commandments? Are you asking God to forgive him? What does “God bless” mean?

    When Christians speak like this, do they actually say anything at all?

  4. peterooke says

    Hi Brownian, have just been redirected here… Anyway, I don’t speak for all Christians but when I asked God to bless that brave warrior I meant it quite literally. I fervently hope that God’s love will grace his life!

  5. peterooke says

    I can’t tell if you are:

    1. genuinely baffled

    2. simply attempting to disparage religion by applying a reductionist/literalist magnifying glass to this type of language

  6. Brownian says

    I can’t tell if you are:

    1. genuinely baffled

    2. simply attempting to disparage religion by applying a reductionist/literalist magnifying glass to this type of language

    Well, that’s hardly my problem, now is it?

    So, I ask you again: when you say “God bless” what is it exactly that you are saying?

    You’ve restated it as “I fervently hope that God’s love will grace his life!”. Again, what is it exactly that you are saying?

    There’s got to be some meaning behind these phrases. Are they just mumbled nothings or what?

  7. ah58 says

    Well, I would ask what that is and how it’s distinguishable from something that could happen naturally without any godly intervention.

  8. says

    There’s got to be some meaning behind these phrases. Are they just mumbled nothings or what?

    I dunno. When someone screams ‘O God!’ during orgasm, we generally assume the ‘no particular meaning’ thing.

    So mebbe that’s all it is? We can read it as ‘I loves me some war porn!’

    Given this interpretation–which has occurred to me previously, in the context of folk alluding to their prayers so publicly–it really does disturb me a mite, honestly. But no more than the kind of stuff lots of Bush’s cabinet were in the habit of saying, mind…

    Oh, and as long as I’m speculating wildly about our Rooke’s internal state, it intrigues me a mite that he pops up when PZ mentions he’s busy…

    Has he been around, otherwise? ‘Cos I’ve this odd notion it’s something about some weird, half-baked religious/hierarchical sheep/shepherd thing. And he figures, possibly barely consciously: ooo! Untended flock! Yippee!

    … which is a mite creepy, I guess. Though really more just sad.

    (/… On the bright side, I guess, he shouldn’t have to do any self-mortification this month. If he’s feeling masochistic, I imagine the horde will oblige.)

  9. Brownian says

    Well your ignorance *is* your problem, I’m the one trying to help you understand after all!

    So, are you gonna keep fucking around or are you gonna get serious here?

  10. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    simply attempting to disparage religion by applying a reductionist/literalist magnifying glass to this type of language

    Since you deity is imaginary, existing only in your mind, what does it mean for the larger world? Nothing but white noise is our point.

    Well your ignorance *is* your problem, I’m the one trying to help you understand after all!

    We aren’t ignorant of religion, as a large chunk of us grew up in religious families. We just saw the lack of evidence for the babble and your imaginary deity, and came to the conclusion to ignore the fiction, and ignore those who pretend that the fiction is real too. Since it’s my firt post here, I’ll forgo anything futher. *gets out tools to sharpen titanium fang*

  11. opposablethumbs says

    My bet is he’s gonna keep fucking around – he’s got nothing else, after all. Deepities here we come.

    Popcorn!

  12. peterooke says

    Oh okay Brownian, when I use that phrase it is often merely a vocalisation of a prayer of mine (that God should look favourably upon said individual) and indicates to others that I have said person in my thoughts. Better?

  13. says

    PZ, is this going to affect the trading of zebra fish around the country or do you get yours locally? “Return to sender: the bid to stop air transport of lab animals poses an imminent threat to biomedical research.”

    FedEx and UPS, the world’s two largest cargo carriers, have written to [PETA] to affirm existing policies restricting the transport of most lab animals. …there could yet be an immediate and highly problematic effect. UPS has also said that it plans to change its policy soon to restrict the transport of amphibians, insects, crustaceans, molluscs and fish — all of which it allows at present. This could disrupt everything from the availability of the important frog model, Xenopus — three of whose major US-based suppliers rely on UPS next-day delivery — to the provision of the fruitfly Drosophila to international clients by the Bloomington Drosophila Stock Center at Indiana University. [and more]

  14. Amphiox says

    Oh okay Brownian, when I use that phrase it is often merely a vocalisation of a prayer of mine (that God should look favourably upon said individual) and indicates to others that I have said person in my thoughts. Better?

    Do you mean that it is a no-meaning, white-noise, sweet-nothing type vocalization, the equivalent of a “there-there”*pat*on*back*, or is there some additional content to it.

    If so, then what precisely, in observable real-world terms do you meaning by “blessing”, and what precisely, in observable real-world terms do you mean by “grace”?

  15. Brownian says

    Oh okay Brownian, when I use that phrase it is often merely a vocalisation of a prayer of mine (that God should look favourably upon said individual) and indicates to others that I have said person in my thoughts.

    Ah, okay. So it is a prayer, and one that violates Christian theology. First of all, ‘God Bless’ sure as shit isn’t a prayer of ‘yours’, secondly, ‘indicates to others’ directly contravenes Christ’s imperative in Matthew 6:5-6, and the fact that it’s simply a meaningless little phrase that you had to struggle to even define suggests it violates Christ’s imperative in Matthew 6:7-8.

    So, it’s explicitly anti-Christian as well as meaningless. But, that’s not all:

    Better?

    If you were honest, you would have said “I wrote that here because it makes me feel so smugly naughty to leave trite, pious little droppings on an atheist site.”

  16. says

    Why haven’t I re-banned Pete Rooke? His reappearance here suggests that I really should — he’s such an idiot. Play with him while you still can.

  17. Rodney Nelson says

    peterooke #16

    that God should look favourably upon said individual

    Since both of his hands and legs are gone, it appears your god did not look favorably on the man.

  18. says

    … and then there’s also the ‘I hereby declare myself shaman; allow me display to you my presumed power over death with this meaningless but meant-to-be-soothing noise, and thus surreptitiously attempt to establish authority thereby; vouch to me now this ancient role, and come unto me if you might feel like tithing’ interpretation…

    … but, naw. Scratch that. Brownian’s ‘smugly naughty/trite, pious little droppings’ take is still probably better.

  19. peterooke says

    Yes, I was feeling a tiny bit smug when I added ‘Better?’.

    Thanks for the references Brownian in all seriousness though – the intent I have when I use that phrase is simply to express a solidarity with and compassion for someone. Nothing more, nothing less.

  20. peterooke says

    Hi PZ, don’t let me keep you from all your work :-)

    Seriously though, not looking for meaningless conflict – returned in good faith.

  21. Brownian says

    Thanks for the references Brownian in all seriousness though – the intent I have when I use that phrase is simply to express a solidarity with and compassion for someone. Nothing more, nothing less.

    So, now it’s not a prayer.

  22. Brownian says

    No you’re right, it’s not. It does reflect that fact that I will pray for them though.

    Some guy both Christians and non-Christians agree to ignore is said to have said,
    And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words.

  23. Amphiox says

    Perhaps you should have thought of praying for them before he got his limbs blown off.

    Ok, not fair – you’re not omniscient.

    But your god supposedly is. If he saw fit to allow this man’s limbs to be blow off before, on what do you presume that your intercession now will make one whit of difference? Or are you simply saying this to make your own self feel better?

  24. Brownian says

    Very droll, I don’t pray to let God in on a secret. I pray to develop a relationship.

    Hey, don’t snark at me. I didn’t make the rules in your dumb fucking religion.

    Jesus apparently told you not to do something, and here you fucking are doing it.

  25. Brownian says

    “Hey Jesus: you said ‘And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words’, but you’re wrong; I don’t pray to let you in on a secret, I pray to develop a relationship with you, dumbass.”

  26. Brownian says

    You seem to be quite familiar with Christianity, is that out of tradition?

    What do you mean by “out of tradition?”

  27. Amphiox says

    It’s a pretty one way relationship if he never answers.

    Emotionally distant. Uncommunicative. Demanding, with impossible standards, and no reciprocation. Massive power imbalance.

    Yikes.

    You need to get help, Pete, and fast.

  28. Brownian says

    Why is it that evangelicals think that Christianity and the content of the Bible is some big fucking secret that only they know? I understand that most of them are thoroughly unfamiliar with the Bible, but do they not know that the religion has generally been around for two millennium and spread to every continent in which people live?

  29. peterooke says

    How have you come about this knowledge? Have you rejected a religious path as laid out by your family?

  30. Ogvorbis: broken and cynical says

    How have you come about this knowledge? Have you rejected a religious path as laid out by your family?

    Oh, bless your heart. Your passive aggressive innuendos are noted.

  31. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Have you rejected a religious path as laid out by your family?

    Irrelevant question. The family is in no position, nor should they be to lay out a path of lies and deceit, nor are you. In any case, the religion is utterly false, based on the twin lies of an imaginary deity and a holy book not being mythlogy/fiction.

  32. peterooke says

    “Oh, bless your heart. Your passive aggressive innuendos are noted.”

    I wasn’t being passive aggressive. Just curious.

  33. Brownian says

    How have you come about this knowledge?

    A better question: why haven’t you come by this knowledge? Why is an atheist teaching you about your own faith?

  34. Brownian says

    In fairness, I’ll answer this:

    Have you rejected a religious path as laid out by your family?

    I was raised and taught to believe the One True Christianity. Later in life I realised that even that one was wrong.

  35. peterooke says

    No, I’m well acquainted with it but was confused as to why you were? Intellectual curiosity will suffice though!

  36. Nick Gotts (formerly KG) says

    peterooke,

    Surely you haven’t forgotten that most of the regulars here were raised as Christians of one sort or another? Your ludicrous superstitions and perverted morality are not rejected out of ignorance, but precisely because they are understood.

  37. peterooke says

    Just read you reply after posting, thanks. What happened to lead you to believe that it was all wrong?

  38. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Why is an atheist teaching you about your own faith?

    Gee, he doesn’t grasp the concept that atheists have actually read the babble and found it nothing but mythology/fiction, with no other redeeming value. And noticed all xians, instead of following what the babble says in toto, pick and choose what they consider important.

  39. ericatkinson says

    If being an idiot is required for being banned, then PZ should ban him self. And all of his flying monkeys.

  40. Brownian says

    No, I’m well acquainted with it

    No, you aren’t.

    And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full.

    That’s the shit. The important shit. The shit laid down by the man you purport to worship. And you completely ignore it.

  41. Amphiox says

    Right. An ostentatious unnecessary deliberate display of personal piety in a forum frequented by atheists, in direct contradiction of the explicit word of Christ himself, as written in the gospels, is not passive aggressive.

    No sirreee.

    And in other news, the war against Eastasia continues to go well.

  42. Brownian says

    Who’s asking?

    Oh dear. I’ve confused you by talking about religion, something about which you know very little. I’ll go more slowly.

    I believe that the religion of the Inca is all wrong, and partially this is because I accept the evidence that the sun is a hot ball of plasma (thanks, Amphiox), rather than the god Inti.

    Do you believe this as well?

  43. Josh, Official SpokesGay says

    That doesn’t matter, Hannibal. You know that everyone can see your clumsy evasions, right? That it’s transparent?

  44. A. R says

    Have you rejected a religious path as laid out by your family?

    What right has a family, let alone anyone, to “lay out a path” of any sort, religious or otherwise, for an autonomous person? Of course, religions tend to think they have the right to do whatever they should please, so your sentiment come as no suprise to me.

    [A. R assembles banhammer target painting laser, aims at Pete Rooke]

  45. Loqi says

    …found it nothing but mythology/fiction, with no other redeeming value.

    Whoa whoa whoa, hold it right there, Nerd.

    Saying it has no “other” redeeming value suggests it has value as mythology/fiction. I’d contend it doesn’t. In addition to the poor writing and boring characters, it teaches some morals that have less than no value. Now if Terry Pratchett had written the New Testament, then we’d have some real fiction!

  46. Brownian says

    Now if Terry Pratchett had written the New Testament, then we’d have some real fiction!

    ‘Real fiction’ as in ‘even more fictional’?

  47. peterooke says

    Yes,

    ‘I believe that the religion of the Inca is all wrong’.

    This is not because of any set beliefs about physical reality.

    It is because of my relationship with God.

  48. anteprepro says

    Very droll, I don’t pray to let God in on a secret. I pray to develop a relationship.

    “Hi there God. I know I haven’t called in a while. I just assumed, with you being omniscient and all, that you would know what I was up to anyway. Anyway, how’s the kid who is also you? Still perfect in every way? Great. I heard that you are everywhere in church today and yet I’m still talking to you like you are a sky ghost with super-hearing. I know, it’s weird, but how would you know that I love you back if I didn’t? Oh, right. Omniscience.

    This is kinda awkward, God. You know everything about me and all I know about you is that you are a super-powered superspy who made the world and is now letting it go to shit to teach us all a lesson. And for all my relationship with you is worth, you still haven’t let me know why. You haven’t really given me any insight into your motives in all of our talk. That’s not really healthy, ya know? Yeah, of course you do. You’re God. Our discussions always end with that, don’t they?

    What exactly are we to one another, God? Hell, I’m confident that you exist despite the fact that you seem to only be my own voice in my own head. And that’s on a good day. I mean, I give thanks to you and all and you just sit there, over everywhere, with no response. It’s like you don’t even care, God. For all my appreciation of you, you barely even acknowledge me. I know you’re great and all, I really do respect you. But this is just not a very good relationship.

    I’m starting to think that you won’t even answer the requests I inexplicably make in prayers that supposedly just about getting to know you better. I mean, sure, it sounds selfish to ask it of you, but you’re supposed to be fucking omnipotent, so I was hoping that you could do the Functionally Zero effort necessary for you to fulfill my puny mortal desires. But whatever. I still love you, God. In a way that totally wouldn’t provoke you into commanding other people to kill me. Hopefully you will watch over me and bestow blessings upon me as I stitch together Bible covers out of human flesh.”

  49. CJO says

    So, not the deity Inti, the son of Viracocha?

    No, no. Khepri at dawn, Ra at midday, and Atum at evening, silly. Or Ra-Horakhty, or Amun-Re, Aten in a pinch, hell, even ram-headed Khnum, lord of the west, anything but that wanker Inti.

  50. peterooke says

    anteprepro, I get the impression that you would like to believe but have become disillusioned and a bit cross. Is this right?

  51. Josh, Official SpokesGay says

    It is because of my relationship with God.

    Which is less genuine than the “relationships” sad saps have with their RealDolls. Seriously. The dolls actually exist.

  52. Amphiox says

    Re @61;

    Now, now Loqi. There is some evidence that the original J text would in fact have been a great piece of literature. An epic coming of age saga of a child god screwing up in youthful innocence with tragicomic consequences, but who grows up to redeem himself and save his people upon maturing into the fullness of his might. In the vein of Henry IV and V.

    And the P text originally contained some sublime examples of truly cosmic poetry.

    But then the Redactor, as a political compromise, mashed the two together, destroying the drama of J and ruining the poetry of P, wrecking them both, the in process of creating the thing that would later become the Torah and the Old Testament.

    (And incidentally creating out of whole cloth an entirely new and terrifying conception of a god as a cosmic ubertyrant wont to throw temper tantrums like a spoiled child)

  53. peterooke says

    “Is that why you believe Christianity is all wrong?”

    No, my relationship with God is the only reason for me to hold that Christianity is indeed true.

  54. Brownian says

    “Is that why you believe Christianity is all wrong?”

    No, my relationship with God is the only reason for me to hold that Christianity is indeed true.

    But you do not hold that it’s true. In this very thread you’ve denied Jesus’ own words multiple times.

  55. Brownian says

    …and specifically for your own, self-serving purposes.

    Do the thoughts you have that you refer to as being from your relationship with God tell you to do this?

  56. Amphiox says

    re 66;

    Hey. The world’s most famous mummy may well have died, his widow might have been raped and murdered, a Hittite prince assassinated, and the two greatest superpowers of the age almost went to war, because of the Aten vs Amun-Ra thing. It was no joking matter!

  57. peterooke says

    No, I affirm them:

    Don’t be beholden to ritual or performance at the sacrifice of your personal relationship with God.

  58. A. R says

    Still waiting for that analogy…

    [A. R aims the target painting laser just below the Troglodytarum organum. (In case you don't know your troll anatomy, this is the organ sitting atop the troll brain where all of the stupid and irony is stored, and the overload products of severe cognitive dissonance are dissipated into the surrounding slime coating.)]

  59. Brownian says

    No, I affirm them

    More meaningless drivel. You cannot affirm directions by contradicting them. You can claim to eschew ritual, but thoughtless ritual is exactly what you do when you utter your meaningless chant /ɡɑdblɛs/, which you don’t know whether is a prayer, or an affirmation of ‘solidarity with and compassion for’.

    It’s clear that by ‘affirm’ and ‘relationship with God’ you mean ‘I do whatever I want and then justify it post-hoc’.

    So I ask you again, why have you decided Christianity is wrong, and instead favour this made-up religion which exists only in your own mind independent of Jesus’ own words?

  60. Brownian says

    peterooke, you do know that it’s painfully obvious to everyone here that you’ve never even thought about what /ɡɑdblɛs/ means until I started to press you to define it.

    Why is this atheist teaching you what you profess to believe?

  61. Amphiox says

    And there we have peterooke @76 claiming to “affirm” Jesus’ words by making up, out of whole cloth, an entirely different instruction, and pretending that this is what Jesus actually meant, while simultaneously ignoring the words that Jesus ACTUALLY said.

    I believe this is an explicit example of taking the name of the LORD thy god in vain.

    You know, I haven’t encountered a single example of a Christian apologist arguing on this blog who has not, within twenty posts, violated at least one of the Ten Commandments and at least two of Christ’s explicit instructions from the New Testament.

  62. Brownian says

    peterooke, I have to go spend time with my family now.

    In the custom and ritual of your people, I leave you with a hearty, if meaningless /ɡɑdblɛs/.

  63. says

    @josh

    Which is less genuine than the “relationships” sad saps have with their RealDolls. Seriously. The dolls actually exist.

    the bbc did a whole special about those dudes who own real dolls and their emotional problems, I watched it on youtube years ago. then the bbc did a special about dudes who fuck their cars.

  64. Ogvorbis: broken and cynical says

    No, my relationship with God is the only reason for me to hold that Christianity is indeed true.

    So the New Testament of the Holy Bible has nothing to do with your assertion that Christianity is indeed true? Fascinating.

    In this very thread you’ve denied Jesus’ own words multiple times.

    But he just stated that it is only personal belief and nothing else so it doesn’t matter whether he has read the bible or not.

    Don’t be beholden to ritual or performance at the sacrifice of your personal relationship with God.

    So public prayer, on a blog, does not count as performance? Or ritual? If your god exists (and you have offered no evidence to support that assertion. Ever.), then he/she/it/they should be able to hear your prayer in your head. So the only reason to put it on a blog is as a bit of public performance to show that atheists don’t or can’t care.

  65. Josh, Official SpokesGay says

    then the bbc did a special about dudes who fuck their cars.

    ErmaGerd. 50 Shades of Chrome.

  66. Brownian says

    I fucked up a bunch of cars, usually by rough driving, and occasionally by smashing them into things.

  67. otrame says

    so many young people are getting maimed in our wars.

    And the ones with physical injuries are the easiest to try to help (I am in no way belittling the problems of those who were physically maimed, it’s just that their injuries are visible).

    I say this as the mother of a 2 tour vet who wakes up crying about once a week, and is suffering from depression, and alcoholism, but is having trouble getting treatment because the army booted him for “pattern of misconduct” which consisted of routinely showing up late for work, pissing off a first sergeant, and a single DUI*.

    I sat at my computer the night the war started and cried for an hour, because I knew was what going to happen–that it was going to go on and on and thousands of kids would be killed and maimed and damaged in other ways, not to mention all that the Iraqis that would suffer. And mind you, at the time I had no idea that the war would directly involve any of my kids. I knew also that the war mongers would “support our troops” as long as it didn’t cost them a dime, and that they would have no problem tossing those kids to the wolves once they got what they wanted.

    I hate them. Not just for my son. For all the sons and daughters. Because I guarantee that every single person who went to that war was injured. Every single one of them.

    *The army ordered him to go to AA sessions run by a Christian who told them that if they didm’t accept Jesus, there was no way they would ever get sober. He said the pressure on him to join the Jesus club took up much more time than any attempt teach him ways that might help him stop drinking.

  68. Menyambal --- Sambal's Little Helper says

    “faith in the new testament”?

    That it exists? That it isn’t self-contradictory? That the gist of it that you vaguely recall must be precisely and accurately factual, and that the events you conflated took place exactly as you think they did? That you are now the fount of all wisdom?

  69. A. R says

    Ogvorbis, my relationship with God informs my faith in the new testament.

    I smell circular reasoning…

  70. Menyambal --- Sambal's Little Helper says

    Say, Pete, could you use your relationship with God to clear up a little something about the New Testament for me? You can either ask the big guy directly, or work things out on your own, as your faith moves you.

    What, exactly was written on the placard atop the cross during the crucifixion? If you can reproduce the original text, as well as tell us God’s preferred translation, we can check our own translating skills and see where we went wrong.

    I realize that the Roman document wasn’t directly inspired by God, except in that the whole world was inspired by God, but it is the only written words from the most important event of all time.

    A brisk reply would be appreciated. I realize that in the context of the New Testament, “be right back” translates into two thousand years, so let me be clear that a God-inspired reply should take you less than thirty seconds.

    Thanks.

  71. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Ogvorbis, my relationship with God informs my faith in the new testament.

    In other words, he lies and bullshits to justify his presuppositons, including ignoring plain language in the babble that contradicts his Sophistimaticated Theology™ (also known as mental wanking of fallacious presuppositions to any rational person).

  72. Menyambal --- Sambal's Little Helper says

    Errrnt! Time’s up, Pete.

    If God didn’t already lead you to my question and provide you with an answer to it, either he doesn’t exist or you don’t have a relationship with him.

    Toodles.

  73. strange gods before me ॐ says

    Anyway. Zinnia Jones. I am disappointed.

    I saw PZ’s summary, “Zinnia Jones suggests that we shouldn’t use religious arguments even in favor of causes we support”, and I was interested, because I generally agree with statements like that. But it’s wrong in this case; Jones isn’t addressing a religious argument per se; she’s addressing a legal argument, about legal discrimination.

    The letter by Mark Kuether which she criticizes does not say what Jones claims it says — nothing Kuether says can seriously be construed as “let[ting] a pro-gay church define what marriage is for everyone.” What Kuether is actually talking about is letting pro-gay religious organizations define what marriage is for themselves, for pro-gay religious organizations.

    Jones asserts that “civil marriage and religious marriage are completely separate practices”. She is absolutely wrong about this.

    This is not a matter of how we should frame arguments, or ideally approach our ideals — this is a matter of fact concerning the actual laws governing marriage in the state of Minnesota.

    In the state of Minnesota (where Kuether is addressing his letter, on the subject of Minnesota’s proposed anti-gay amendment to the state constitution) these are the relevant civil laws that govern religious marriage:

    Lawful marriage may be contracted only [...] when the marriage is contracted in the presence of two witnesses and solemnized by one authorized, or whom one or both of the parties in good faith believe to be authorized, so to do.

    517.04 PERSONS AUTHORIZED TO PERFORM MARRIAGES. Marriages may be solemnized throughout the state by an individual who has attained the age of 21 years and is a judge of a court of record, a retired judge of a court of record, a court administrator, a retired court administrator with the approval of the chief judge of the judicial district, a former court commissioner who is employed by the court system or is acting pursuant to an order of the chief judge of the commissioner’s judicial district, the residential school administrators of the Minnesota State Academy for the Deaf and the Minnesota State Academy for the Blind, a licensed or ordained minister of any religious denomination, or by any mode recognized in section 517.18.

    517.05 CREDENTIALS OF MINISTER. Ministers of any religious denomination, before they are authorized to solemnize a marriage, shall file a copy of their credentials of license or ordination or, if their religious denomination does not issue credentials, authority from the minister’s spiritual assembly, with the local registrar of a county in this state, who shall record the same and give a certificate of filing thereof. The place where the credentials are recorded shall be endorsed upon and recorded with each certificate of marriage granted by a minister.

    517.18 MARRIAGE SOLEMNIZATION. Subdivision 1. Friends or Quakers. All marriages solemnized among the people called Friends or Quakers, in the form heretofore practiced and in use in their meetings, shall be valid and not affected by any of the foregoing provisions. The clerk of the meeting in which such marriage is solemnized, within one month after any such marriage, shall deliver a certificate of the same to the local registrar of the county where the marriage took place, under penalty of not more than $100. Such certificate shall be filed and recorded by the court administrator under a like penalty. If such marriage does not take place in such meeting, such certificate shall be signed by the parties and at least six witnesses present, and shall be filed and recorded as above provided under a like penalty.

    Subd. 2. Baha’i. Marriages may be solemnized among members of the Baha’i faith by the chair of an incorporated local Spiritual Assembly of the Baha’is, according to the form and usage of such society.

    Subd. 3. Hindus; Muslims. Marriages may be solemnized among Hindus or Muslims by the person chosen by a local Hindu or Muslim association, according to the form and usage of their respective religions.

    Subd. 4. American Indians. Marriages may be solemnized among American Indians according to the form and usage of their religion by an Indian Mide’ or holy person chosen by the parties to the marriage.

    Similar laws are on the books in many states.

    What this means is that the state of Minnesota grants legal authority to the ministers of some religious denominations, who then act as officiants for the state, performing a power of the state, to perform the marriages which those denominations approve of — while at the same time it withholds that legal authority to act as officiants for the state and perform marriages which other denominations approve of.

    That is religious discrimination.

    There are no faulty premises in Kuether’s argument; Kuether deals with reality as it exists today. All the faulty premises are in Jones’s argument. She would apparently rather let the perfect be the enemy of the good. Her misrepresentation of Kuether’s actual argument, and her obliviousness or denial of the plain facts of Minnesota law, are not only wrong but irresponsible.

  74. chrisv says

    From your book….

    I Corinthians 13:11
    “When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.”

    P.S. No Santa either.

  75. says

    Pete Rooke, you are godbotting. This is a bannable offense. You will now confine yourself to Thunderdome (look on the sidebar for the link). Post in any other thread, and I will ban you.

    Don’t acknowledge it here. Post nothing more in any thread, other than Thunderdome.

  76. chigau (違わない) says

    I know this is late, but:
    PZ #99
    Yes!
    That’s the way to do it.
    Everything clear and precise.
    Add links and you have a template.