How Does a Christian Justify His Actions? He Ignores Jesus


(Dr. Patrick Trischitta) #1

(S. Joshua Swamidass) #2

It seems like a lot of atheists don’t like Christians, but find Jesus worth knowing better:

Perkins doesn’t mention Jesus because the Bible, for him, isn’t about seeing Jesus as a role model.

He sees the Bible as a tool to trick gullible people into following his conservative agenda. The rulebook is simple: Pretend you’re following Christ, constantly speak about the importance of faith, and treat your ideological enemies — the ones who actually practice what Jesus preached — as persecutors out to silence you. It’s easier to put that plan in action when you have to convince people who were taught since birth to accept whatever self-appointed figures of moral authority told them.

I can agree. Jesus is greater than every Christian I’ve met, including me.

[annoying necessary disclaimer: I’m not making any political statement here.]


(S. Joshua Swamidass) #3

You know, I’m not sure if it is really correct to call the Family Research Council group a hate group though…


(Dr. Patrick Trischitta) #4

Yes it is a hate group if you come from a family that has any members of the family that are gay, muslim, atheist, had an abortion, uses birth control and many other things.


(S. Joshua Swamidass) #5

Disagreements on fundamentally important questions to our identity and families are very hard to talk about. I agree with you there.


(Robert Byers) #6

Its more likely hateful to accuse folks as motivated by hate when motivations are clearly based on excellent historic principals.
it means someone has the better case and the other falsely accuses.
false accusation has caused unhappiness in the world more then withholding accusation.
Hate is just a last ditch word to discredit folks.
if everyone did it there would be more trouble.
however the good guys are slow to do it.
even though its a option hate motivates accusers of hate. it could be just careless thinking.
i’m not accusing!


(Dr. Patrick Trischitta) #7

If you want to talk about Evangelical Christian hate in American history and today let’s talk about any of these: Slavery, racism, interracial marriage, woman’s health and reproductive issues, anti-Muslim, antisemitism, anti-gay, anti-immigrant, anti-science, infringement of religion into public education, church and state separation issues.


(Dan Eastwood) #8

Robert, you have previously stated that you do not think anti-Semitism exists. You have no standing to discuss hate.


(Retired Minister) #9

The hate-card has become a popular rhetorical tactic—and an all too easy one. “I disagree with you about X” is not nearly as inciting to action as “You disagree with me about X so you are obviously motivated by hate.”

It is similar to the way the word “homophobe” has become a popular card to be played, one which has established a dictionary meaning quite different from what the word’s two morphemes would imply. If someone says, “I don’t believe homosexual acts are moral”, opponents claim to know their motivations and mindset and declare “You are a homophobe.”

Emotive rhetoric does get results.

I disagree with some of the ideas I hear coming from the Family Research Council. Yet, to call them hateful is just as overly simplistic and easy as those who like to say “All atheists are motivated by a bitter hatred of God!” It is the same tactic—playing the hate-card—used on far too many sides of far too many controversies.


(Retired Minister) #10

I strong discourage the use of tobacco products because of its impact on people’s health. I even more strongly disdain the dishonest tactics which many tobacco companies used to get consumers addicted to their products while lying about what their own scientists knew about the dangers of tobacco use.

With that in mind, does that make me a “smoker-hater”, especially if there are smokers in my extended family? Or if there are smokers in your extended family? Are anti-smoking campaigners “haters”?

I ask that question because of what Patrick posted:

Patrick, is it possible to oppose some thing or behavior without “hating” individuals?


(Dr. Patrick Trischitta) #11

I agree with you. Calling a person or an organization “a hater” or “a hate group” is rhetorical. I personally don’t believe that Tony Perkins is a hateful man. He seems like he and I just have different views on the issues of the day. I think that the hate monger label is done for rhetorical impact, just like Christopher Hitchens would use profanity when talking about religion. It is sometimes an effective tool. I think these “shock” tactics are good at first to even the playing field. Then reasoning and polite conversation can be more effective.


(Retired Minister) #12

That has not been my experience. Indeed, if a speaker leads with such a shallow rhetorical argument, I’m far more inclined to write him off and not listen to him/her any further—because it suggests to me that they are not focused on the evidence.

A pastor recently urged me to check out one of his favorite “culture war” speakers. I quickly discovered that the self-published author has made a comfortable living on simplistic rhetorical cheap-shots at his opponents. And, sure enough, when I dug into the alleged “substance” of his positions, I found shallow scholarship and amateurish tactics. Yes, it is possible for someone to lead with cheap rhetoric and then have something solid to say----but in my experience that hasn’t been the typical norm. For me, cheap rhetorical tends to make me pessimistic that the person has something valuable to teach me.

Yeah, I wouldn’t be successful as a politician.


(Dr. Patrick Trischitta) #13

Yes, the culture wars are lead by very shallow scholarship but not amateurish tactics. The tactics do work with the general public. In the world of twitter, scholarship is pretty much gone. I have discussed this with @Eddie


#14

Can anyone think of any anti-muslim, anti-christian, etc., hate groups?


(Neil Rickert) #15

Liberals are an anti-Christian hate group. The conservatives keep telling us that every day, so it must be true :stuck_out_tongue:


#16

And they completely ignore that, even among liberals, there are a lot of Christians.


(Dr. Patrick Trischitta) #17

Southern Baptists?


(S. Joshua Swamidass) #18

Read Hunter’s book, To Change the World. It will make a great deal of sense about this.

Also, whatever ones politics, I’m not sure the ends justifies the means in calling FRC hateful. This polutes the public square, shutting down conversation, and making it difficult to recognize real cancers.


#19

Looks interesting. I’m gonna try to find a time to read it. Gotta ask, though, what exactly is the book about?


(S. Joshua Swamidass) #20

The tragedy and irony of the Christian right, left, and pacifists. They all hope to change to world through politics and fail because they misunderstood how change actually happens.