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Mark Levin hangs up on "intolerant" atheist caller

#21SSj4WingzeroPosted 3/21/2014 8:30:16 AM
Yeah, I'm going to go turn this away from Climate Change and talk more about the issue at hand.

There needs to be something established first.

1. Just because someone says the scripture justifies something, doesn't mean it actually does. "God helps people who help themselves" is one example of an oft-quoted line from the Bible that actually isn't in the bible.

2. Just because someone justifies a certain perspective with scripture doesn't mean that another person of the same faith cannot come to the opposite conclusion whilst reading the scriptures.

If we can at least agree on these facts which really should be common sense, then we'll have some constructive dialogue. I'm of the same religious background as Paul Ryan, but I don't really share his views on economics, for example...
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#22ThuggernautzPosted 3/21/2014 8:34:27 AM
The data doesn't lie.

http://climate.nasa.gov/scientific-consensus
#23JonWood007(Topic Creator)Posted 3/21/2014 9:00:28 AM
Religious folks may currently be hampering us in some matters like stem cell research, but you need to look beyond the present day and look at ways people of great religiosity have influenced the country in very positive ways.


That may have been true, but you also have the scopes monkey trial and the like as well.

I admit, even today, there are some religious movements moving for the public good. I think the catholic church has some good ideas on social justice at times, for example. But ultimately? In America? In the 21st century? Religion is doing way more bad than good, considering how it has been tied to anti intellectualism and the conservative movement.

I'm mainly aiming at Mark Levin's vision of faith in America here. Which is the idea that we are a country founded on God....that his vision of what America should be is based on his ideas of natural law, and how his idea for small government factors into the law. As I said, he seems to have the OW style of debate in which he automatically defines himself as correct and everyone else wrong, end of debate.

You're wrong. He doesn't believe in man-made global warming because it's leftist propaganda that lacks enough evidence to give it validity. See: http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=YtevF4B4RtQ


http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/2013/08/13/rush-limbaugh-if-you-believe-in-god-then-intellectually-you-cannot-believe-in-manmade-global-warming/

He also reiterated this idea in one of his books, I forget which one though (I think it was "The Way Things Ought to Be" but I'm not sure.

1. Just because someone says the scripture justifies something, doesn't mean it actually does. "God helps people who help themselves" is one example of an oft-quoted line from the Bible that actually isn't in the bible.

2. Just because someone justifies a certain perspective with scripture doesn't mean that another person of the same faith cannot come to the opposite conclusion whilst reading the scriptures.

If we can at least agree on these facts which really should be common sense, then we'll have some constructive dialogue. I'm of the same religious background as Paul Ryan, but I don't really share his views on economics, for example...


Mark Levin did not necessarily mean a Christian perspective though. He just said "faith in God"...not faith in a religious God. He was trying to tie his ideas into natural law.

http://www.marklevinshow.com/common/page.php?pt=podcasts&id=191&is_corp=0

March 17th episode, look it up yourself, it's not far in the program (definitely the first hour of his 3 hour program).
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#24SSj4WingzeroPosted 3/21/2014 9:59:50 AM
Yeah, uh, that's because you focus on a small subset of religious believers who are notoriously vocal in certain settings. How about you actually go into the communities and see what churches are doing instead of using politicians and media personalities (people who are usually lying scumbags regardless of affiliation) as your example of how religion is doing a tremendous amount of harm in our society? For starters, conservative states donate more money to charity. In essence, you've basically fallen for Mark Levin's trap - he would have you believe that there is one side that God is on, and another side that God has abandoned. The reality is far more complex - there are secular Republicans (one might call Hitchens with his neoconservative views an example, although he's British) and there are evangelical left-wingers - they just don't receive any attention because they're too busy feeding homeless people in Chicago and NYC.

And again, just because Mark Levin's brand of faith isn't something that you're happy with, that's hardly a compelling argument for why religion as a whole has been harmful. Many religious folk do not agree with his sentiments, and he makes up a small portion of them. But of course, if you think religion should be abolished from the public sphere, then you'll have to remove the guys who are doing the good work as well, and I'm pretty sure that's not something you'd want. You might think you'd want that, but you don't, because these people are amongst the biggest advocators for the poor.

You also have to remember that Levin is preaching to the subset of people who already agrees with him. Guys on talk radio aren't interested in portraying the truth, they're interested in viewership and sponsors, and you get those by simply telling people what they want to hear. They're basically professional trolls, and this caller took the bait.

Right now, you are seeing a falling away from many evangelical denominations such as the Southern Baptists, and a lot more believers, especially younger believers, are gravitating towards mainline Protestant denominations. These denominations are not only less political but also more based on actually DOING stuff. In due time, you will see (at least, it is my hope) the church turn into a force for social justice once again, much like it has been for the bulk of American history. When that day comes, hopefully you won't be so anti-religion that you complain about a movement that's trying to actually do good things.
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#25JonWood007(Topic Creator)Posted 3/21/2014 10:43:15 AM(edited)
Yeah, uh, that's because you focus on a small subset of religious believers who are notoriously vocal in certain settings. How about you actually go into the communities and see what churches are doing instead of using politicians and media personalities (people who are usually lying scumbags regardless of affiliation) as your example of how religion is doing a tremendous amount of harm in our society? For starters, conservative states donate more money to charity. In essence, you've basically fallen for Mark Levin's trap - he would have you believe that there is one side that God is on, and another side that God has abandoned. The reality is far more complex - there are secular Republicans (one might call Hitchens with his neoconservative views an example, although he's British) and there are evangelical left-wingers - they just don't receive any attention because they're too busy feeding homeless people in Chicago and NYC.


Read my posts. I never said all religious people were the same. I was calling out mark levin's particular mindset, since it is so dominant in politics nowadays.

Also, most red states are crapholes, socially speaking. They have higher poverty rates, are denying people expanded healthcare coverage based on principle, and have higher STD rates and crap because of their messed up stance on sex ed. I actually heard someone recently referring to the lack of sex ed as child abuse.

You can cherrypick charity all you want, but as far as social issues go, and social policies, the most actively religious states in politics have the most messed up policies in the country, on average.

Once again, I'm not against religious freedom, or charity, or whatever. If churches do good, that's fine. I'm talking about actual policy...actual visions for how our country should work. Please read what I'm actually arguing against. Im not against churches making positive change in their communities. I'm against them actually RUNNING THINGS. I'm against basing our policy decisions as a country, on some sense of divine authority. I want POLICIES that represent the FACTS, not FAITH.
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#26epictetus1216Posted 3/21/2014 10:44:45 AM
The-Apostle posted...
epictetus1216 posted...
The caller was right. It's "couldn't care less."


No, it's "I could care less." /Levin

>_>

<_<

*Runs*


Well, y'know what, I couldn't care less if you could. lol.
#27SSj4WingzeroPosted 3/21/2014 11:12:00 AM
Yeah, uh, way to change your tune there, buddy. Why don't I go and quote you a bit to demonstrate that you're now running away from your sweeping generalization of anti-religiosity?

But ultimately? In America? In the 21st century? Religion is doing way more bad than good, considering how it has been tied to anti intellectualism and the conservative movement.


It disturbs me because having been a christian, and now being an atheist, and having been a religious conservative, and a mild religious liberal, and then a secular liberal, I can tell you, based on my own evolution...I think faith in government is disturbing. I think religion influencing policy is disturbing.


If you meant to talk about something else, that's fine, but your post was very clearly trying to illustrate that religion does way more harm than good and you've been arguing the entire time that it should be kept out of the public sphere for this reason. When faced with FACTS (see, I can capitalize random words too) demonstrating that Christianity in the public sphere has done plenty of good in the past and is directly responsible for some of America's greatest achievements in social justice and workers' rights, you now run away and claim you're solely talking about Mark Levin's brand of religion, which is of course going back on your first post in the topic where you said that less religious influence was better (largely because it doesn't appear as if you have ever opened a history book), and now you're accusing me of not reading your posts in a futile effort to run away from the fact that in this topic you have plenty of times demonized religious people in America using sweeping generalizations that fly in the face of the logic and facts you claim you want more of.

And if you really do find the fact that people who campaigned against slavery did it due to their faith to be a major problem that disturbs you, then there's something seriously wrong with you. Hopefully you do some soul searching, read a history book, or at least learn not to be so unswervingly hostile towards something that has done tremendous amounts of good.
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#28JonWood007(Topic Creator)Posted 3/21/2014 11:57:27 AM

It disturbs me because having been a christian, and now being an atheist, and having been a religious conservative, and a mild religious liberal, and then a secular liberal, I can tell you, based on my own evolution...I think faith in government is disturbing. I think religion influencing policy is disturbing. I think our obsession with stopping gays from getting married and banning abortion is a problem. I also think conservative obsession with these issues is distracting people from the real issues. We need to solve poverty. We need to deal with the looming threat of global warming, and running out of unrenewable sources of energy. Because guess what, Jesus isn't coming back, he's not gonna make a utopia. If we're going to fix these problems, we need to do it ourselves!


Sorry if I am going on a massive rant here, I'm fired up after listening to several hours of talk radio. But honestly, no, I do not want us to be a country, institutionally based on faith in God. I want us to be based on logic and reason, and a sense of human betterment. We have problems in our society...and they're not going to be fixed with our current ideas...they're not gonna be fixed with mark levin's ideas. They can only be fixed if we apply critical thinking and free thought to our problems, and a rejection of "traditional values" in favor of a sense of human betterment.

This is not to say I'm intolerant. Once again, I believe in freedom of religion...but I do not believe America to be a religious nation per se.


This is from my original post.

I mention I do not want our INSTITUTIONS and our POLICIES to be based on faith, but I also said I am for freedom of religion, and the freedom to practice your religion. If your idea of practicing religion is acting in a charitable manner, then okay. But I do not want our institutions...our policies...to be based on any form of theism.

So don't fall into the typical Christian herp derping against my posts in which they take my posts out of context and then say I doubled back on myself. I know what I said, and I meant what I say.

And if you really do find the fact that people who campaigned against slavery did it due to their faith to be a major problem that disturbs you, then there's something seriously wrong with you. Hopefully you do some soul searching, read a history book, or at least learn not to be so unswervingly hostile towards something that has done tremendous amounts of good.


As others mention, religious attitudes also played a MASSIVE part in JUSTIFYING slavery too. Like saying Ham was black and because he was cursed all black people are cursed. Or all the parts of the Bible that actually JUSTIFY slavery.

I'm not saying that religion cannot at times be used for good, but when your perspective is not in touch with reality, as I believe about religion, it cannot CONSISTENTLY do good. If your method for seeing the world is flawed, then your views are often flawed.

Regardless, I recognize faith will always play a part in opinions...however, the manner of trying to implement such ideas should rely on secular arguments...even if the idea is religious. Ideas should be able to pass the lemon test. Laws should have a secular purpose. They should neither advance nor inhibit religion. They should not represent an unnecessary entanglement between religion and government.

I think that arguments against slavery could pass the lemon test. Even if religiously inspired, the idea is defensible in terms of secular argument. Gay marriage isn't. Global warming denial isn't. Issues like abortion and a moral obligation to have small government derived from a sense of natural law are severely weakened.
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#29SSj4WingzeroPosted 3/21/2014 12:43:57 PM
Good, you've admitted that you're contradicting yourself. In the first half of your post you say you don't want policies based on faith, but then in the latter half you admit that policies constructed around faith are acceptable so long as they benefit everyone and aren't out to infringe on other people's rights to worship or not and also have secular justification. That's good, it's about time you finally admitted that you weren't out on a futile crusade to eliminate religion's influence in the public sphere - I was wondering for a second whether you would be against abolitionism in the 19th century because most abolitionists were Protestants.

There are some other bits that make no sense. You say that religion cannot consistently do good? Is there any damned thing on the entire Earth that can consistently do good? If so, find it, and show it to me, because you'd have made a groundbreaking discovery. Even your precious logic and reason are fallible because they are employed by fallible human beings and thus they cannot consistently do good, so you need to drop this argument that religion should be exorcised because it can sometimes do bad things. Again, like I said earlier, we might as well ban computers since once in a while people hack into other people's accounts with them, thus computers cannot consistently be used for a noble purpose, thus they should not be allowed in public life. You do see how ridiculous this sounds, right?

Again, we're in agreement once you actually clarify what you mean, but your initial post where you say "religion influencing policy is disturbing" is actually NOT what you meant, because you're OK with religion influencing policy so long as the policy has a secular purpose that actually benefits people. Policymakers will ALWAYS allow their worldview to influence what they do, and arguing against this is silly because it has served the public good in the past. What you're arguing against isn't the presence of religion in politics, it's the use of religion in politics to support ideas that aren't in your best interest. This is an important distinction to make, simply because in the former case you'd be arguing in favor of Maoist-style censorship, and in the latter case you'd just be arguing against certain policies you don't like.
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#30theSMITHSPosted 3/21/2014 12:55:04 PM
I still can't stand Levin.
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