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Guest Dabeagle

All it takes...

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There are times I love being a Californian. :)

As is normal, the christians immediately state that the whole section of the treaty that included this phrase were 'made up' by a former chaplain to George Washington and was not in the arabaic version of the treaty. However, both George Washington and James Madison approved the treaty including with that phrasing. It doesn't matter if other versions did not include it, nor if subsequen revisions to the treaty included it, this phrase was aprpoved unanimously by the US Congress as part of that document.

Unfortunately we are dealing with irrational people who use their religious beliefs to justify using force on others in this society. No pithy phrase is giong to change their mind.

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Er, I would point out that millions of modern Jews would take profound issue with saying the Torah is outmoded and irrelevant to their everyday life in the present day, and millions of Christians would likewise take issue about the Old Testament.

Rick, with all respect to your views and others', we dare not paint all Christians, Jews, Muslims, or others with so broad a brush. Yes, the extremists have a narrow and (IMHO) dangerous interpretation of scripture, inviting, among other things, a theocracy espousing only their particular brand of opinions, and indeed, that should be worrisome to everyone, including people within their very own religion who would be branded heretical, unlawful, or immoral. But it's not a good idea to paint everyone of a particular religion as wrong, hateful, fear-mongering, etc.

I think you didn't quite intend to go that far, and if I've misunderstood, I'm sorry. But there are Christians, Jews, and Muslims who are not extremists and who are devout in their beliefs -- and who don't consider homosexuality to be a sin. When I did serious reading on it, trying to find what the original languages and cultures (Hebrew/Jewish and Biblical Greeks and Romans, mainly) really said and thought, the translations and interpretations back then and the history, it was an eye opener. These religions are every bit as diverse as any other human group, and just as likely to have disputes and debates running over what is right and wrong as any other group who honestly care. It's the few too narrow and closed-minded to consider openly other points of view, other evidence, who are the dangerous extreme.

I say that as someone who has his own questions and doubts, but who still prays and on some level believes in something better, as different as I think it likely is from *any* human understanding. I have questions I want answered, certainly. I've had my ups and downs with organized religion. So I can understand that some people decide they don't believe. I can understand that some follow other faiths, such as Buddhism, Hindus, etc., and those have their merits.

I'm just urging that we don't get so carried away with ourselves that we call our friends and allies the enemy or irreconcilable.

Whatever is or isn't out there in the heavens or in space or right here on Earth in the physical, tangible, practical sense, we are a single species on a very tiny little oasis of a planet in a vast empty cold unlivable dark nothingness. If we can't all learn to get along, we're really in trouble, and it might be only dumb chance if we or some other species after us survives.

But I hope we can. There are people out there who care and are of good will, despite the damage a few not so well disposed can do.

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:nods: Thanks, Rick. I agree, the fanatical elements do a lot of harm, and to their own people as well. -- Phelps? Ugh. Perhaps he and his followers are only instructive to others to show how wrong and disturbed Phelps is.

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Guys... I think Bryce's long monologue to a fellow gay college student in this week's Chapter 10 of Pertinax Carrus' Bryce: The Second Semester puts the whole thing into perspective... especially regarding the relevance of what Christans call The Old Testament.

While Bryce is speaking from the point of view of a devoted Catholic gay teen, his points are very well expressed and universally true. BTW congratulations on this Chapter to PC... it is one of his best.

Mike

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