Why Not A Starfleet Ships Chaplain As A Main Character?

Discussion in 'Future of Trek' started by Knight Templar, Oct 7, 2012.

  1. Darkwing

    Darkwing Commodore Commodore

    Jul 10, 2003
    This dry land thing is too wierd!
    It's a paraphrase of Heinlein - and you can take 'killing' literally or figuratively. The fact that that didn't occur to you shows linear thinking. That La Quinta commercial where the salesman 'gets a leg up' on the other salesman was a figurative killing. Obama beating Romney, likewise - but too many partisans in that case still hate the other side of that dispute.

    Newdow is rabid on the subject. His exwife has custody, and she and kid were fine with the pledge, but HE didn't like the idea of it, so he sued to try to prevent ANYONE from being able to do it. He wasn't willing to compromise. We already allow chuildren to abstain from saying the pledge, so long as they are quiet during the pledge. Telling those who do choose to say it that they may stop speaking for a moment if they are uncomfortable with those two words is a reasonable compromise. No, he is not reasonable, IMO.

    NO. But if you zealously slam folks for opposing you, you validate their opposition, including it's less acceptable features, such as hate.
    1. Anthropogenic is unproven opinion, and based on denying evidence of natural sources grossly exceeding human production.
    2. Catastrophic is unproven hyperbole used to scare people.
    3. Those behind this agenda are inflexible, proven to have lied and covered up lies, and demanding strict compliance with their agenda. That makes me suspicious of their whole cause. When a major proponent claims that anyone not agreeing completely with him is a traitor to the planet and should be executed, they are not reasonable. When another major proponent ASSUMES missing data follows his expected curve, and then tries to control who's allowed to conduct peer review, he's no longer doing science and forfeits all claims to being a scientist. When this is the foundation of the argument, then I do not agree that it is proven fact.
    How come they're in the news often doing just that?

    The Thomas Jefferson who used the separation phrase only in a letter where he told religious citizens that NO wall of separation was erected in the constitution. They intended to prevent a theocracy, not a religious nation. That letter is the only source of that phrase which later courts have misused.
    You demonstrate an inflexible, hardline thinking about Trek, Roddenberry, science, religion, and the military. It makes you appear to have based your whole worldview on TNG.

    Because that allows us to only see Roddenberry's "better" humans and pretend we have evolved past all that. His earlier version, where we were trying to be better, but weren't there yet, was far more compelling to me than Alien Of The Week.

    Lack of compromise again. Science today is trying to tell us what to believe and NOT entertaining argument. That makes it less authoritative and more authoritarian. That, and people feeling science to be too cold and sterile is what feeds those creationist fundies and wiccans and other reactionaries.

    A lot of scientifically trained people have found reasons to turn away from evolution and embrace ID. They're well-educated, and choose to accept this belief. Who are you to decide that they aren't qualified? Unless they're running for election to office, you aren't. Nor am I, or any of us here.

    I am talking about science deniers working in a field that requires science (and any Starfleet position does.) I am not passing judgement on them as human (or alien) beings. It just is not the right place for them.
    Faith without evidence makes for better drama, IMO. A serene priest, unruffled by the lack of belief in his co-workers can be a good character (Book), and make for good scripts. A strongly-opinioned minister, upset by and trying to preach to everyone (Jerry Falwell), can be good drama as well.

    In today's military, I see this all the time. Lots of snipes are not religious, or they're hardcore believers, and we have some interesting (and heated, occasionally) discussions in berthings and smokepits.
    I quite agree. Actually, after the crisis passes, I'd think there'd be more faith, but less zealotry and fundamentalism as civilization rebuilds and life eases. Until it gets easy enough that the self-proclaimed prophets see corruption and decadence and start preaching hellfire and brimstone again...

    Today's fundie movement directly belies that. It's a reaction to hardnosed science supporters.
    Especially the Mormons!
  2. Longinus

    Longinus Commodore Commodore

    Sep 2, 2008
    Darkwing, you are simply wrong about how scientific world view operates. This is evident from your comments on ID, the climate chance and the scientists 'telling people what to believe.'

    I assume you are an American? I understand that it might be hard to get a good view of the current scientific consensus on matters from US media, so this may colour your position. both ID folks and climate chance deniers are strange fringe groups that are not taken seriously by the scientific community. Both groups are very vocal in the US though.

    Intelligent design is religion using some trappings of science, but it is not science. They have a specific thing they want to be to be the truth, and try their damnest to produce any sort of evidence to support their claims (with little results, obviously.) But that is not how science works. You look at the evidence and then draw conclusions from that. You cannot start with the conclusion.

    Scientists can be wrong; they often are. New findings may challenge existing theories. Science is about the search for knowledge; there is no 'scientific agenda' other than finding the truth.
  3. Xhiandra

    Xhiandra Commander Red Shirt

    Apr 29, 2012
    It's really hard not to see fundamentalism when fundie oxymora abound. "Militant atheist", now.
    The indoctrination machine sure is working well; you have no place to accuse Longinus of a lack of wisdom, as you clearly display none.

    Look, if you oppose secularism (or bemoan a lack of theocracy), you are a fundamentalist. It's not an insult, it's a descriptive.
    I know the US far-right (you guys don't have a left, just a right and a far-right) propaganda tends to equate secularism with an attack on theism, but nothing could be further from the truth.
    The truth is, separation of church and state benefits almost everyone:
    - Atheists, who don't have to live under the oppression of a religion they do not adhere to.
    - Minority religions (e.g. christians in Pakistan would benefit greatly), who do not have to live under the oppression of a religion they do not adhere to.
    - Moderates of the majority religion, who do not have to live under a stricter interpretation of their religion and watch their friends be oppressed because they're of the wrong/no religion.
    Secularism/separation of church and state is merely the opposition to theocracy; not to religion... and all those examples you mention are examples of theocratic measures.

    In a secular state (and I am lucky enough to live in an almost-completely secular state), homophobes are free to dislike homosexual practices for religious reasons, even refuse to associate with LBGT people (we wouldn't want to associate with them anyway), but not to discriminate against them.

    Any fear that the evil evil secular people will invade your home and prevent you to pray is quite frankly ludicrous.
  4. Darkwing

    Darkwing Commodore Commodore

    Jul 10, 2003
    This dry land thing is too wierd!
    There's what is supposed to be, and what is. Too many 'scientists' today do push an agenda, and allow it to color the work they do. Read the news and watch for the slant.

    You haven't understood my position at all. I'm simply willing to admit that ID folks are not all uneducated hillbillies, while you assume only morons can think that way. I don't agree with them, but some really smart, educated people have adopted it - sf author James P. Hogan really surprised me when he went over to it. And is Tom Cruise unintelligent for belonging to scientology? I like his movies, even if his religion does nothing for me.

    The other thing is, we have changes happening, and talking heads are aggressively asserting that it's all our fault, that it's gonna be real bad, and that if you don't immediately jump on the bandwagon with their narrative and adopt their solutions, you can't be a skeptic, you can't be unsure, and you can't be a scientist who doesn't see the data supporting the contention. You can only be a "denier", a hick, and a fool. Sorry, but that attitude puts me off and makes me wonder what they're hiding. Further, when a lot of scientists say "I agree about this and this, but not that", and it all adds up to a lot of people supporting different pieces of the whole picture, it's deceptive to claim "all of the scientists support the whole thesis". That's advertising business weaselliness, and makes the package more suspicious. If they can't be honest, then it's not really science, IMO.

    I never said ID was science, merely that one need not be a blithering idiot to buy it. I do, however, see the catastrophic anthropogenic warming folks acting exactly the same way as the ID folks. Michael Mann, anyone? Those leaked emails?

    Sorry, but the real world is messier than that. Preaching about pollution did nothing to abate it, so let's pretend the sky is falling, and it's all our fault, and maybe it'll scare folks enough to actually do something. HIV research gets money, other diseases do not. Let's reclassify a whole slew of diseases as signs of HIV in the 3rd world, so Old & New World donors will allow us to help some of those folks who don't really have aids, but need help we otherwise wouldn't be allowed to give. But then we use that to scare folks about how bad aids is in the 3rd world. And sometimes, it's just about getting grants. What do the donors want to hear? It's also sometimes about getting a study to support a viewpoint. For example, many people criticized a British study of the health costs of smoking. They had hoped to show it cost society more to treat smokers, but the data showed that smokers died earlier, and more quickly. Non-smokers lingered with longer, more-expensive illnesses. They published, because it was what the data showed, yet many felt that it should have not been published, because it didn't support the political narrative they wanted.

    You really think that militant atheist is an oxymoron? I assure you, they exist. I've met them. Same for many other philosophies. When someone has such a narrow world-view, they do lack wisdom. If you share Longinus' strict interpretations, then I hope you too can expand your thinking. The unexamined belief is not worthwhile. A person who inherits a belief in any particular religion, who never questions it and wrestles with their faith to finally decide what they believe simply follows their programming. Someone who rejects that programming and just substitutes the opposite (or some other creed taught them by some leader figure) to shock Mommy and Daddy is no better off. Only someone who critically eyes their faith or philosophy is really thinking for themself.

    It's usually used as a pejorative, and often should be.

    We're not, despite the agit-prop you see in your country. Fox is slightly left of center, the rest of the media is farther left, and even the republicans have been sliding left for years. Just because you're used to a world-view that is further left, you assume that we are far-right. It's all relative. But you also misunderstand me. I'm agnostic. I gave up on religion probably before you were born. It's not for me. I am, however, more tolerant of other people wanting to believe and express their religion than many others. I feel that the courts should not be permitted to deprive the majority of public expression of their faith.
    Instead of banning nativity scenes and 10 commandment displays, or crosses on public land (many having stood there for decades, occasionally centuries) they should, based on the founder's intent, only be able to require equal access for jews, atheists, buddhists, etc. I know, to a militant atheist, that's fundamentalist, but they are not correct to assert that public display of faith is an attack on their freedom not to participate in religion. When activists demand historical symbols of faith be removed, they deny our past, but do not make us more free. Religion in America is not a tyrannical yoke. But judicial activism to eliminate it feeds fear in the hearts of the religious, making them adhere all the more tightly to their faith and to more extreme doctrines. The pushback is potentially frightening.

    To a point, yes. Our courts are taking a good idea much farther than the founders intended. But nothing is ever 100% good, and the gets better no matter how much further you push it. We're crossing that line more often now. Separation of church and state was supposed to be about preventing any one denomination or faith from running the government. No-one should be able to prevent someone from voting or running for office on the basis of faith or lack thereof, but prohibiting christmas displays and banning mention of god (by whatever name) was never the intent. I prefer that originally intended balance, and oppose attempts at secular or religious overreach. The pendulum swings, and if we allow one side to keep pushing it further to their side, it'll swing that much farther the other way when the tide turns. I like the pendulum to have a very small arc around the middle.

    Lack of experience and knowledge of history, then. 'In God we trust" on our money is mild, compared to a nation where the head of state is the head of the religion, and members of other sects or faiths are not able to hold office. It certainly is not theocratic. If atheists had to use a lesser scrip than true believers, it would be theocratic.

    Which is fine, but a lot of folks are fairly vitriolic on the issue, which precludes understanding and hardens attitudes against them. I see this in your's and Longinus' assumptions that a chaplain is a bad idea.

    In a surveillance state like we are becoming, I'm not so sure about that.
  5. Longinus

    Longinus Commodore Commodore

    Sep 2, 2008
    They're not necessarily stupid. Being a well educated creationist (and ID is creationism) requires some really etraordinary mental gymnastics. Some people use their intelligence to come up explanations why the evidence do not actually mean what it seems to mean.

    Atheists who dare publicly say that there is no God or question the prelevance of religion in government institutions are labelled militant. Religious people can push their views all they like and it is considered to be perfectly normal. Religious need to start attacking abortion clinics to be considered militant.

    And my position is not unexamined. It is quite throughly examined, thank you.


    I must have misread...

    No, you really said that.

    I really do not know what to say. Your detachment from reality is just too owerwhelming at this point. Where is the centre then? I assume somewhere around Emperor Palpatine.

    By the standards of today's Republican party Reagan could never get through primaries. He would be considered to be far too much on the left.

    I really recommend that you try to realign yourself with the reality.
  6. Xhiandra

    Xhiandra Commander Red Shirt

    Apr 29, 2012
    Maybe I missed it, but neither Longinus nor I called them uneducated, hillbillies or stupid.
    An intelligent, knowledgeable individual can fall for brainwashing.

    As for Tom Cruise, I'd sooner accuse him of lacking integrity than intelligence.
    Scientology uses celebs as walking, talking ads and pampers them; he needs not even believe in their precepts to have an interest in joining.
    That is, if I cared about celebs' private lives.

    It be.
    It's a shock term only in use in the US (and, sadly, the very US-influenced internet) to label atheists abhorrent.
    All "militant" atheists do is refuse to be second-class citizens.

    Firstly, I have no belief (at least no religious one).
    Secondly, I resent the implication that I never examined the religious question, or that my lack of belief in deities is me trying to shock mommy and daddy.
    For someone who claims open-mindedness, you don't demonstrate much.

    I've no idea what "agit-prop" is. Sounds like a pharmaceutical name. New form of Ibuprofen?
    Anyway, you don't know what my country is (though you should have a good idea of the continent), I never volunteered that info.
    I assure you, our political parties run the gamut: we've got left-wingers, right-wingers, far-left and far-right mainstream parties and your repubs would sit right at home with our far-right and democrats with the democratic right.

    I don't recall volunteering my age, but if that's true, then please remember to drink enough water in the summer.
    And don't be afraid, those children on their skateboards are quite harmless.

    And hopefully, one day, you guys will get there. It'll take time, probably a few centuries, but I trust you guys to get there eventually.
    Let's just hope it doesn't take you as long as it took us and that your crusades soon come to an end as the world pays a heavy toll for your country's adolescent flirt with theocracy and imperialism.
    See, we only had swords, you guys sadly possess stronger toys.

    Mild as it may be, it's symptomatic.
    And one would be intrigued to see the result of the converse: what if your money loudly proclaimed "there is no god"?
    Do you not think furore would ensue? I guarantee you, it would.

    Secularism is the center of that pendulum or yours, not one of its extremes!
    In the example of the money; no inscription either way is the perfect middlepoint.

    I must've missed all those non-christian US presidents.
    Or even non-protestant.

    In fact, I seem to recall quite a few hateful objections to your current president on the wrong assumption that he was a muslim!

    I also must've dreamt the double standard of labelling any outspoken atheist (and presumably Asatru, buddhist, Mythos cultist, satanist, jew, scientologist, muslim, etc) militant while allowing freedom of proselytism for the christians.

    Expressing contrary opinion to yours about an hypothetical scenario on discussion board is being vitriolic?
  7. Darkwing

    Darkwing Commodore Commodore

    Jul 10, 2003
    This dry land thing is too wierd!
    Which, again, does not preclude them working in science fields.
    Um, no. Atheists who live their life like anyone else are not militant. Those who ask people not to pray near them are pushy. Militant atheists make a scene about it. Religious folks who quietly live their lives are labeled pushy if they refer to their religion, and those who make a point of asking others to not offend their religion are considered militant. Your view of religious people is quite askew to reality.
    You actually believe that, or was it said with malice aforethought? You're quite out of touch.

    Longinus certainly called them uneducated, and claimed they were not able to fill Starfleet positions due to their lack.
    You actually put more effort into scientology than I felt necessary.
    It be.
    It's a shock term only in use in the US (and, sadly, the very US-influenced internet) to label atheists abhorrent.
    All "militant" atheists do is refuse to be second-class citizens.[/QUOTE]
    Wrong. Not all atheists are militant. But some are indeed militant. That applies to any ism. Your denial won't change reality.
    That's your failure to listen, combined with seeing what you WANT to see and taking general talk as personal. Part of growing up and becoming an adult is forging one's own identity. That usually starts by rejecting what your parents teach. Sometimes this is followed by returning to the fold, sometimes by going even farther afield, and, in the best case, by actually thinking seriously about it and developing a set of beliefs. So open your mind, read without prejudice, and think about it. Maybe you'll see that open-mindedness does NOT consist of spewing politically correct pablum and insulting anyone not on your side of the spectrum.
    Look it up.
    Don't much care where you live. If I haven't been there yet, then I hope to visit it one day. But before you go on about the political parties, try the Pournelle Political Axis.
    Coffee has all the water I need, and skateboards don't bother me.

  8. Longinus

    Longinus Commodore Commodore

    Sep 2, 2008
    I said creationsist are either uneducated OR denying science. Both options were covered. There is not third one.

    And examine actual policies of Reagan. Especially economically he is left on Republican party of today. It seems that Republicans rather suicide the economy than raise taxes. Reagan raised taxes many times when it was needed. And while never particularly pro-choice, as a governot he signed a law helping women to get abortion. Tea party would have none of that. In any case, the claim that the Republican party has moved left seems to be factually incorrect.

    And really saying that Fox News leans left is like saying Klingons are a peace loving race. It is utterly bizarre claim; in fact easily the bizarrest claim you've made in this whole thread. I'd really like to know your standards for centrist media... If it seems to you that all media leans left, maybe it is just because your perception of reality is completely skewed?

    Also how would a secular nation infringe people's rights to their religion? They can build temples (but not with government money), they can pray all they like and they can express their views freely. Pretty much all the examples ever on secularists or atheists limiting religious freedom are actually just examples of limiting the ability to force religious views on others or get them enshired and venerated by government institutions. It is funny how the sharia law is such a boogyman to the religious right, even though they are doing the exact same thing, truing to force their religious views on others by laws. That shit just have to stop.

    Furthermore, your constant claims that other people's positions must be unexamined because they do not see wisdom of your words is rather unfortunate. You do not know me or Xhiandra, nor have you any idea how we are arrived to our current positions. I do not know how you're arrived to yours, and I am not starting to guess. Though with that Fox News one it must be quite a story.
  9. Xhiandra

    Xhiandra Commander Red Shirt

    Apr 29, 2012
    Darkwing, I was trying to outline your assumptions with light-hearted humour.
    If you can't laugh, well, that's just sad.

    Let me be less subtle:
    You don't know my age, yet presume to be older (and implicitely wiser).

    You don't know my country, yet presume it is filled with agit-prop (btw, I do not need to look it up to guess what it stands for); and agit-prop about US politics, no less!
    Do you really believe the rest of the world is constantly focused on you guys? Have you never left american soil?

    You don't know how I arrive(d) to any conclusion, yet presume they emerge from teenage rebellion (though if I read you right, you apparently believe all convictions emerge from teenage rebellion); they do not.

    You accuse me of reading what isn't there, then, in the next breath, repeat the very implication you just denied, and with a heavier hand.

    You presume to teach wisdom, but rely heavily on emotional appeals such as the one below.

    On the matter of US politics, I will concede that I didn't know of JFK's catholicism. I thought Obama was the first non-WASP; and that the P still stood.
    But the point remains: no non-christian (and very few non-protestants) have the political capita to make it in your country.
    Of course, the obstacles aren't institutionalised; but that's not the point, the point is that they couldn't make it, even though they're allowed to try.
    You're trying to paint the exceedingly dominant majority as suffering the joug of militant atheism; it's quite frankly FoxNewsish.
    By the way, if FoxNews is a left-leaning organisation, then I suppose the media that actually try to be unbiased (BBC, The Times, Le Monde,...) are full-on anarcho-communists!

    So, anyone that answers the thread's question negatively is a militant atheist?
    But anyone answering it positively isn't a militant theist. Obviously not.
    No double standard here.

    He cited canon? Yes. So did plenty of other people. Many many threads on these boards end up heavily citing canon. Why is it anathema in this particular case?
  10. nightwind1

    nightwind1 Commodore Commodore

    Dec 28, 2010
    Des Moines, IA
  11. Darkwing

    Darkwing Commodore Commodore

    Jul 10, 2003
    This dry land thing is too wierd!
    There is room for multiple theories in science. Adhering to a non-scientific belief in that respect need not prevent them from doing good work in any field other than astrophysics.

    1. Reagan made pragmatic deals with the democrats that they welshed on.
    2. Raising taxes is not necessary to rescue the economy, and isn't going to raise enough to matter without spending cuts. Obama ius willing top go over the fiscal cliff because the media will sell the false idea that it's the republicans' fault.
    3. I never said they moved left. They just aren't as far right as portrayed.

    Ever watch them? Or do you just accept what the other media and talking heads claim? There's the news portion, and then there's the infotainment section - Fox at least has a right and left guest on those segments. They've had leftist shows, as well. Can't say what they have on right now, haven't had cable in a while, and only bother watching once in a while, because I prefer to read.

    Secular means religion isn't welcome. We're going that way, and it's been mostly suits to prevent people using the word christmas, have nativity scenes, roadside crosses, and the like. A suit recently demanded that all the crosses in a cemetary be replaced with secular markers. That's infringing on people's rights. Your claims that the 'religious right' is acting just like the "islamofascists" is hyperbole. Some on the fringe WANT to be able to do so, but there's just as many on the opposite extreme wanting to eliminate the right, as well.

    You do not read with comprehension. I explained my philosophy of religion and morals, and gave background. You both took that as a direct, personal statement. Your mistake. I respect anyone's RIGHT to believe whatever, but unless they've done their growing up, don't take seriously their belief. Anyone, baptist or communist, who espouses the beliefs their parents instilled, hasn't come to those beliefs by their own effort, and should not expect their depth of belief to be respected, which is a wholly different thing than repsecting their actual belief. And that journey is part of growing up.

    It wasn't clear if it was supposed to be funny.

    I intended to show that the assumption I was religious just because I defended the right to those beliefs was false, and to give some idea of how long ago I came to my views. You added the other nuance yourself.

    The entire developed world is awash in propaganda, and more of it today is aimed at shaping opinions for political purposes than used to be tolerated in the once-supposedly objective media.

    Did I ever say that?
    I've been to much of this planet, and would be surprised if you've been to as many places.

    Read above.

    Wisdom is emotional.

    For a while there, religion didn't matter. It came to matter again when the left tried to marginalize it, and many felt threatened, and became polarized in their defense of it. Left alone, they'd've slowly faded.

    No. The US was founded by christians, as a christian nation, but the founders didn't want a theocracy - they expected most people to be christian of one stripe or another, but didn't want any particular sect to dominate. Over time, other faiths and atheism became acceptable, until christianity became somewhat less than the majority, and many religious elements came to mean little. Some people have tried to purge religion from public life, which has led to an unfortunate resurgence in the virulence of some believers. If "merry christmas" is threatening to those folks, they're insecure. If I'm wished "merry christmas", I smile and say the same. If I'm told "Jeeesus is the reason for the season", I smile and wish them a merry solstice and a happy Sir Isaac Newton's Birthday. If I'm told I'm going to hell because I'm not praying with them, I ask them if they even know the name their savior actually wore when he walked this planet. I tolerate their right to believe, as long as they tolerate me.

    No, but ain't nobody trying to be objective anymore.

    You misunderstand. The vehemence is the reason. "I don't see it fitting because..." is one thing. "Absolutely NOT!" is another.
    Are you impressed when some cites Paul? As opposed to giving an independent rationale for their opposition? And since Roddenberry's views changed between TOS and TNG, I don't feel obligated to accept the less-tolerant later views as the only acceptable position.
  12. Darkwing

    Darkwing Commodore Commodore

    Jul 10, 2003
    This dry land thing is too wierd!
    Nice attempt at a straw man.
  13. Iamnotspock

    Iamnotspock Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Jun 11, 2008
    Bristol, England
    "Horrifying... Dr. Barron, your report describes how rational these people are. Millennia ago, they abandoned their belief in the supernatural. Now you are asking me to sabotage that achievement, to send them back into the dark ages of superstition and ignorance and fear? No!"
    - Jean-Luc Picard
  14. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

    Aug 20, 2009
    (From Reunion) ... the Enterprise crew currently includes representatives from thirteen planets. They each have their individual beliefs and values and I respect them all.

    Iamnotspock, how would you reconcile these two Picard quotes. In the latter, we see the Picard who is respectful, tolerant and believes in multiculturalism. This Picard is very much the cosmopolitan being who commands the starship Enterprise.

    In the former quote, there is a separate Picard, one who is narrow minded, intolerant and is disdainful with ideas that he himself doesn't personally embrace. He insults the Mintakan's former spiritual beliefs, using derisive terms like "dark ages" and "ignorance."

    Where did this separate Picard come from? He obviously isn't the Picard who exists elsewhere in the series.

  15. Longinus

    Longinus Commodore Commodore

    Sep 2, 2008
    Yes there is. In areas where there is uncertainity or new unexpected evidence. With evolution neither is the case. Creationism is pretty much as valid theory as Flat Earth theory.

    It demonstrates the mentality that if the evidence conflicts with the personal beliefs, the evidence will be dismissed. Such person is not fit to work in any field that requires scientific analysis of information.

    Right. And this pragmatism is something wich is not tolerated in the Republican party of today. There is only room for fanaticism and ideaological purity. Anyone who dares to actually work with the 'enemy' is labelled 'RINO' and ostracised.

    Hmm. I think that's why Obama is willing to make spending cuts too...


    Seems to me that you did.

    No it doesn't. Can you tell apart public and private?

    On public land. Private people and organisations can bo what they like.

    You mean this?
    Most of this stuff you mention is just not true. Maybe you should stop watching Fox News?

    Either you think that is okay to push laws that force other people to conform to you religious views or you don't. Both religious right and the fanatic islamists seems to be in the same camp on this.

    There are a lot of news organisations which try to be objective. Of course human beings cannot be 100% objective all the time, but at least some try. And if organisation as whole aims to be objective, it can do it quite well. BBC is quite decent in that regard. There are many others.
  16. Longinus

    Longinus Commodore Commodore

    Sep 2, 2008
    You can respect someone and still think their beliefs are complete bollocks.

    Furthermore, all the Starfleet personnel are probably from pretty highly advanced cultures, I doubt that their beliefs contain much blatant superstition.

    He is a rationalist and what he says is true. How is 'ignorance' not an accurate description for believing things that just are not true? Should Picard respect the Mintakans' blatantly mistaken belief that he is a god?

    I think that all Federation members have shared respect of scientific reality and knowledge. That things can be known, that they can be studied, and increasing knowledge makes us better people. They're not people who would be insulted if someone told them that their beliefs are not true. They would ask the person to explain why they think that and then they'd have a civilised discussion on the matter.

    Respecting beliefs do not require accepting false things as true. Respecting someone's beliefs do not require you to refrain from saying that you think their beliefs are not true.
  17. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

    Aug 20, 2009
    Actually no, respect has long ended when you begin to believe that someone else's beliefs are "bollocks," simply because they don't coincide with your own personal/group beliefs.

    A while back, I was a bridesmaid for a friend of mine, part of the ceremony included the couple conduct seven circles of the Fire deity, who was a witness to their wedding vows

    Even though I am Christian, I do not consider the deity Agni to be "bollocks." Agni simply isn't within my Christian spiritual beliefs. I would never dream of disrespecting her beliefs with derogatory terms, solely because they don't corresponded with mine.

    Picard was not exhibiting "respect." Expecting all others to embrace your particular positions and your beliefs, borders on the ridiculous. Doesn't matter if it's religion, politics or who'll win the next super bowl.

    Longinus, your belief that there is no God, no gods, no spirituality of any kind is your belief, that's fine. Going beyond that personal/group belief, and labeling others negatively who don't share it is arrogant.

    No, the things that you hold to be "not true." Not quite the same as actually being "not true." Longinus, you wouldn't have you current long list of various personal beliefs if you didn't think that they were "true." That doesn't automatically make others with a different long list ignorant.

    And by "the Mintakans" you mean a single individual within their society?

    At the end of Who Watches The Watchers, Picard told a small group Mintakans who he was and what was going on. He was vague in places and lacking in detail, but he was also honest with them.

    His end statement of "you must progress in your own way" showed the understanding and respect that was absent earlier.

    But there the ACLU has taken it upon themselves to determine where the religious symbols can be (personal gravestones) and where they can't (i.e. national memorials). The ACLU feels perfectly free to employ the court system to force their views upon others who don't share it.

    Can you really see one of the many Christian churches attempted the same thing?

  18. Timelord Victorious

    Timelord Victorious Vice Admiral Admiral

    Feb 27, 2006
    Germany, Earth, the Solar System
    Not wanting to get too involved into this discussion, but announcing the virtue of a religion to adapt... isn't that in essence saying, that the teachings of a religion are not set in stone?
    And if that's the case, why have the religion at all?
    If those teachings can be changed on a whim or be discarded just because there is new undeniable evidence to the contrary what is their actual worth?
    What you are left with is the god of the gap to fill in the blanks that we have not yet discovered, and since we learn more every day, those gaps are getting smaller and smaller.
    It will inevitably reach the point where god (any god) has to hide behind the threshold of unobservability, which is in what we call the big bang today.
    But a god that can only exist behind that threshold has no influence on anything in the observable universe and can be treated as non existant and has no say in how we live our lives or how we treat others.
  19. Longinus

    Longinus Commodore Commodore

    Sep 2, 2008
    'Bollocks' was merely a humorous colloquialism to indicate 'not true.' Yes, I agree that it would be disrespectful to call someone's beliefs 'bollocks' to their face.

    Do you believe that Agni exists? If you don't then you think that your Hindu friends hold a belief that is not true. And it is not disrespectful for you to do so. It is not even disrespectful for you to say that in a relevant context.

    Do you accept that a reality exists and human beings can have knowledge of it? Because if we accept that, then it follows that there are true and false beliefs about reality.

    We humans can study reality and learn from it. And not all beliefs are equal. Believing that Earth is flat is ignorant. We have good evidence that pretty strongly suggest that it is in fact a sphere (I know, not a perfect sphere.) Similarly Picard had good reasons to assume that the Mintakans' beliefs were indeed in error.

    So how many people have to hold a belief before it becomes a religion warranting special protection and respect?

    He informed them of the true state of the things, yes. That was respectful.

    They uphold the law and the distinction there is perfectly clear. A state separated from church cannot endorse specific religion. Individual citicens can do as they please.

    Now personally I do not much care in one way or another about old crosses, symbolic mentions of God or bible quotes, but what ACLU is doing is quite logical.

    And about war memorial monuments specifically, think it like this. Not all those who died were christians. They might have been buddhists, muslims, atheists, whatever. And they did not die fighting for christianity, they died fighting for their country. Putting a specifically christian symbol on such a memorial is disrespectuful for those non-christian war heroes and their families.

    Advocating for equal treatment of all citicens? Sure, many churches are for that.

    It is however unfortunate that even more churches are for pushing laws that force their religious views on others, such as various same-sex marriage bans.
  20. Darkwing

    Darkwing Commodore Commodore

    Jul 10, 2003
    This dry land thing is too wierd!
    Well, evolution is not fully developed - we can demonstrate it happens, but are still not able to demonstrate the mechanism - kinda like electricity at one time. And hopefully by the 2rd century we'll have that. But I also remember how James P. Hogan, in his Gentle Giants of Ganymede series was heavy-handed and preachy on the topic of evolution, and how well-thought-out his books have been. Yet he has gone over to ID in recent years. So smart folks can do good work, yet still hold these beliefs.

    Such a hard-nosed attitude. Strange that that doesn't disqualify many climatologists.

    According to your sources. I don't see this fanatacism except in HuffPo and similar cliques.

    Mostly, he refuses to discuss them, and has retracted some he was willing to make earlier. And cuts set to happen in 10 years mean nothing. Later congresses will override those. It's intensely frustrating that we added a few republicans to the house and a few democrats to the senate, then sent back pretty much the same teams as before that couldn't work with each other, because no-one is willing to really consider anything serious.
    I don't understand it. Packing each house with one party or trying to swap which party is the majority in each house would have been comprehensible. Electing a different president while keeping the same congress, or keeping the president and changing out congress as much as possible would have made more sense than what we got: More of the same, just a little fringe modification.

    Regardless, Obama, Reid, and Pelosi should be challenged for asserting it's all the republicans' fault. They are all equally culpable.
    You're right, I did. Should have reread previous posts before replying.

    What I see is private citizens being told that public doesn't mean "don't use public money", but "don't let it be seen in public". That's not tolerant.

    1. As mentioned before, I don't have tv. I see tv news only when I'm somewhere with tv, like a hotel or a friend's or a public place. Haven't paid for cable for years, since shortly after returning to the US.
    2. ACLU is not the only organization challenging organizations. I did read an article on that challenge recently. So ACLU denying it does not invalidate the statement.
    3. Your blithe dismissal of Fox tells me you probably haven't watched it at all. When I have seen them, they didn't seem as bad as MSNBC, and no worse than CNN - which ain't sayin' much, I know, but my experience tells me that, as tv news goes, they're NOT what the political pundits claim.

    Again with the rigid views.

    When did this happen? I recall hearing recently that BBC sat on Savile story, for example. Honest and objective?