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July 8th, 2014
01:01 PM ET

Eye for an eye: The Bible's role in revenge attacks

Opinion by Joel Baden, special to CNN

(CNN) - This past Sunday, six Israelis were arrested for the murder of a 16-year-old Palestinian boy. Israeli officials admitted the likelihood—already acknowledged by many—that this killing was carried out in revenge for the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teenagers.

Both sides have stepped up their aggression in the past few days, with rocket launches from Gaza into Israel and Israeli airstrikes against Gaza.

It’s a familiar cycle: attack for attack, murder for murder. Such patterns are familiar from conflicts across the world, but they have a special resonance in the Holy Land.

After all, it was from Israel, nearly 3,000 years ago, that this famous concept spread.

The Book of Exodus in the Hebrew Bible says, “The penalty shall be life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, bruise for bruise.”

The Book of Deuteronomy uses even stronger language: “Show no pity: life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.”

And the Book of Leviticus says again, “Anyone who maims another shall suffer the same injury in return: fracture for fracture, eye for eye, tooth for tooth. The injury he inflicted on another shall be inflicted on him.”

Few biblical laws are repeated three times; this is one of those few. It is known as the lex talionis, or “law of retaliation,” and it would seem to be central to the biblical worldview.

Flare-up in Israeli-Palestinian violence: Why now?

This law is often brought as evidence that the Bible cannot be a reliable guide for modern morality: Who today would truly advocate for this kind of retributive justice?

It seems barbaric that the penalty for arson, for example, would be burning the arsonist to death—this sounds like something out of the Middle Ages, not out of the 21st century.

Though famously biblical, lex talionis isn’t a biblical creation at all.

It was already present in the famous Code of Hammurabi, from the 18th century BCE: “If an upper-class man should blind the eye of another upper-class man, they shall blind his eye,” and so on through breaking bones, knocking out teeth, etc.

Earlier Mesopotamian law codes, two generations before Hammurabi, take what we would consider a more civilized approach to the matter:

“If a man bites the nose of another man and thus cuts it off” —don’t ask— “he shall weigh and deliver sixty shekels of silver; an eye, sixty shekels; a tooth, thirty shekels …”

It turns out that the oldest codes in the Near Eastern legal tradition, Sumerian laws from the 21st century BCE, also have payment in place of retaliation.

The concept of “eye for an eye” isn’t really representative of some primitive state of humanity—it’s actually a development from an earlier system of monetary compensation.

Yet it was not a permanent shift; some of the earliest interpreters of the Bible read the lex talionis as advocating for monetary compensation: the value of an eye for an eye.

This remains a very common interpretation even today—quite likely as an attempt to make the biblical custom seem less harsh in comparison to contemporary cultural and legal norms.

Has the Middle East crisis reached a tipping point?

In the Talmud, the fundamental Jewish legal text, there is an extended discussion about the phrase “eye for an eye,” with multiple rabbis arguing, and the text concluding, that the phrase means nothing other than financial compensation.

Eventually, in Judaism the literal reading of lex talionis came to be associated with heresy.

There is another important aspect of “eye for an eye” that is often overlooked: in the Bible, the law prescribes that the punishment be leveled against the offending individual by the state.

It is not permitted for the victim himself to turn around and inflict the same injury on the aggressor. On this the Bible and modern law agree.

But another biblical legal tradition provides the exception to this rule, and it too has enjoyed a long life down to the present: the idea that in the case of premeditated murder, someone from the family of the victim is appointed the “blood-avenger.”

The notion of putting a murderer to death is common enough even today (see: death penalty). But not so the idea that it is the obligation of the victim’s family, rather than of a central government.

This biblical passage enshrines in law the retaliatory instinct of anyone whose close relative has been injured. And it is this instinct that we see playing itself out in the Middle East today.

The problem, both between the two nations and for the rest of the world, is defining which side is playing which role. Both Israel and Gaza believe themselves to be the blood-avenger, and the other to be the murderer.

Yet even in the case of blood vengeance, biblical law at least keeps the system under the watchful eye of the elders, who arbitrate the claims of the respective parties, just as in the more direct cases of lex talionis.

Nowhere in the world is the Bible more alive and its traditions more present than in Israel and Palestine, the lands from which the holy book emerged.

Was teen's death a revenge killing?

As the conflict between the two parties worsens, yet again, comparisons with the kinds of retaliation and blood vengeance found in the Bible grow more and more apt.

And so, therefore, does the need for a third party to play the part of arbitrator: to settle the price of monetary compensation, to declare the terms of retaliation, and to put a stop to the cycle of blood vengeance.

That's a role the Bible calls for someone to fill - and we're all still waiting.

Joel S. Baden is the author of “The Historical David: The Real Life of an Invented Hero,” and professor of Hebrew Bible at Yale Divinity School. The views expressed in this column belong to Baden.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Bible • Ethics • Foreign policy • Israel • Jerusalem • Judaism • Opinion • Palestinians • Religious violence • Violence

soundoff (3,582 Responses)
  1. Blessed are the Cheesemakers

    Where the eagle glides ascending
    There's an ancient river bending
    Down the timeless gorge of changes
    Where sleeplessness awaits
    I searched out my companions,
    Who were lost in crystal canyons
    When the aimless blade of science
    Slashed the pearly gates.

    It was then I knew I'd had enough,
    Burned my credit card for fuel
    Headed out to where the pavement turns to sand
    With a one-way ticket to the land of truth
    And my suitcase in my hand
    How I lost my friends I still don't understand.

    They had the best selection,
    They were poisoned with protection
    There was nothing that they needed,
    Nothing left to find
    They were lost in rock formations
    Or became park bench mutations
    On the sidewalks and in the stations
    They were waiting, waiting.

    July 20, 2014 at 2:34 pm |
    • LaBella

      What is Neil Young's Thrasher, Alex?

      July 20, 2014 at 2:47 pm |
      • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

        If I wasn't already married....

        July 20, 2014 at 3:38 pm |
        • LaBella

          Lol...alas, it isn't meant to be, BATC.

          July 20, 2014 at 5:02 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          A guy can dream...

          July 20, 2014 at 5:10 pm |
  2. LaBella

    So you think your right to wave a gun around trumps the rights of others who probably called the cops in the first place because you were waving a gun around in the first place, cowboy?

    July 20, 2014 at 2:13 pm |
    • LaBella

      Placed incorrectly. Apologies.

      July 20, 2014 at 2:14 pm |
      • Alias

        Yes LaBella
        If you are an 'avid hunter' with an excuse, you get to take the property you want and point guns at anyone who crosses the line that you imagine seperates YOURS from OURS.
        If the police try to enforce the law and protect the legal rights of others they are bad christians.
        Since the bible does not expressly forbid this, it is the duty of all real christians.

        Amen

        July 20, 2014 at 5:09 pm |
        • LaBella

          Hunting rabbits wequires that.

          July 20, 2014 at 5:24 pm |
  3. aallen333

    It is clear that the author of this article does not have a clear understanding of the biblical versus cited or the bible itself. Most likely the author heard that such verses existed and did a word search, found words believed to support a presupposed premise and ran with it (this is poor journalism at its worst). If he did an in-depth study of the context of these verses, he would have realized they have nothing to do with retaliation but are part of a legal system intended to serve as laws used to administer justice toward those who commit criminal offenses such as murder and theft. Every civilized culture has them and our own civil code is based on these same biblical philosophies. If we are to follow the authors premise, any government that espouses punishment for criminal offenses (such as the de-th penalty for murder) are responsible for the tick for tack we now see in the middle east.

    July 20, 2014 at 12:07 pm |
    • LaBella

      It is clear that you didn't read the whole article, down to the paragraph that states:

      Joel S. Baden is the author of “The Historical David: The Real Life of an Invented Hero,” and professor of Hebrew Bible at Yale Divinity School. The views expressed in this column belong to Baden.

      July 20, 2014 at 12:22 pm |
      • tallulah131

        The beauty of christianity is that every single christian thinks that their personal interpretation of the bible is the only correct one. It's this sort of thinking that leads to over 30,000 versions of the same religion.

        July 21, 2014 at 2:49 am |
    • igaftr

      "own civil code is based on these same biblical philosophies"

      Patently false. Though some of our laws co-incide with the bible, the bible is not the base.
      Humanity had rules, and these were written into your bible. They were also written into laws. The bible is not the source.

      July 20, 2014 at 12:40 pm |
      • TruthPrevails1

        SHHHHHHHHH, they think their god wrote the rules on to the hearts of man...don't ruin their delusions

        July 20, 2014 at 12:58 pm |
  4. bostontola

    The fallacious arguments refuting scientific dating, evolution, etc. that are so easily entertained demonstrate confirmation bias. That's why you shouldn't trust subjective truth.

    Here's another good for you to use:
    The bible says Pi =3. That can be explained by realizing that Einstein showed that space is curved, so thousands of years ago, the ratio of the diameter and circu.mfrence of a circle WAS 3. As the universe expanded, that ratio has changed. It started as a perfect 3, but when Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit, that perfect ratio was spoiled and the universe started to expand. Good stuff, right?

    July 20, 2014 at 10:34 am |
    • kevinite

      23 ¶And he made a molten sea, ten cubits from the one brim to the other: it was round all about, and his height was five cubits: and a line of thirty cubits did compass it round about.
      (1 Kings 7:23 KJV)

      So that is what this whole thing is about? About giving a generalized description (3.0) as opposed to giving the exact down the line measurement (3.1459)? For one thing, the description didn't say it was a perfect circle only that it was round all about, and second, giving a generalized description doesn't necessarily mean that when that sea was actually built that it was exactly a ten to thirty ratio.

      Not every singe aspect of the the construction of the Temple was given in the English translations of the Bible, so what makes one think that in a description of a built sea meant it has to be the precise measurment for pi in order for the Bible as a whole to be considered to have been divinely inspired?

      July 20, 2014 at 12:39 pm |
      • MidwestKen

        kevinite,
        In my opinion bostontola's text is an example of the, frankly bizarre, lengths to which some will go to rationalize their beliefs. Sure, the Bible passage may be approximations, or whatever, but to attempt to explain it with an actual change in the ratio of PI is laughable.

        July 20, 2014 at 12:50 pm |
        • kevinite

          @ Midwetken,

          The thing is that it is a two way street. That some atheists or Nonabrahamic deists may go to such great lengths to justify their beliefs as well.

          July 20, 2014 at 12:57 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          kevinite,
          I have yet to see an atheist claim changes to known math / geometric principles.

          July 20, 2014 at 1:02 pm |
        • kevinite

          But you have seen atheists try to use that scripture to justify their beliefs that the Bible is in no way divinely inspired.

          July 20, 2014 at 1:13 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          kevinite,
          I'm not saying that every argument by atheists is solid and irrefutable, but using an opponents own doctrine to show the contradictions within their argument seems like a valid approach to me.

          July 20, 2014 at 1:19 pm |
        • kevinite

          The problem is that it doesn't encompass every Biblical believers views.

          July 20, 2014 at 1:26 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          kevinite,
          I'm not aware of any doctrine ever that encompassed "every Biblical believers views."? That seems a ridiculous and impossible criteria, especially when compared with something like the value of PI, which I doubt any atheist since the ratio was discovered would debate.

          July 20, 2014 at 1:39 pm |
        • kevinite

          That still doesn't change the point that certain atheists and certain Nonabrahamic deists will still use that point in the first place in their arguments whether or not they believe that is what all Biblical believers believe in anyway. The argument is still used without acknowledging that it is not the views of all biblical believers. And Bostonola gave no such acknowledgement.

          July 20, 2014 at 1:45 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          "The problem is that it doesn't encompass every Biblical believers views."

          Exactly, it is arbitrary...... scripture can be argued to fit any position and those religious arguments cannot be falsified so they are all equally valid. But the problem rests with the religious beliefs that can't be verified, not in pointing out the inconsistencies.

          July 20, 2014 at 1:51 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Ah, perhaps I misunderstood your point. If you are saying that not all believer's believe that the value of PI changed, then I'd agree. I don't think bostontola was claiming that all believer's went to this lengths, but as I stated, it does show the extent to which some are wiling to go.

          July 20, 2014 at 1:52 pm |
        • kevinite

          Verified in what Cheesy? That certain people believe in what certain people believe? If you want me to verify my belief then here it is...I believe. If you want me to verify that there is such a God I can't, otherwise it wouldn't be belief it would be fact. The same also goes to those who claim with the utmost assuredness that there is no such God who does not want to be made known in the first place but would rather have us develop our faith in said God, also has to provide the irrefutable proof that there is no such God; that is unless you are merely claiming that you believe there is no such God.

          July 20, 2014 at 7:08 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          I realize you "believe" kevin. That wasn't the point. You stated that

          "The problem is that it doesn't encompass every Biblical believers views."

          I want you or any person to verify their religious belief is actually true. You can't...they can't. When we as human beings can verify knowledge we are able to come to converge to a consensus regarding the individual claims. With religion nothing can be verified so people and religious beliefs diverge. My point is that is an issue for believers...not the people pointing out the contradictions.

          July 20, 2014 at 8:04 pm |
        • kevinite

          Actually my point chessy is that it is just as much necessary for the people who show the contradictions (whether they be actually contradictions or not) to cough up the evidence. And unless the atheist is just merely proclaiming their points that they are merely based on their belief then I'm expecting that you cough up the irrefutable evidence that there is no such God who does not want to be made known in the first place but would rather have us develop our faith instead..

          July 21, 2014 at 2:11 am |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          No kevin, that is an attempt to shift the burdan of proof. The bible is the claim. It is the believers who need to demonstate the validity of their belief. But as I have said, you believers can't even agree among yourselves. You have to tie yourselves in knots to explain away the contradictions and you don't even agree how best to do that. According to your argument it would be a complete waste of time to "prove" the contradictions because you said yourself...not all believers believe that...and it doesn't matter what "that" is.

          July 21, 2014 at 11:39 am |
        • kevinite

          No cheesy,

          The burden of proof has always been that when one who makes the assured claim to be a fact that that claim has to be supported by the irrefutable proof. There is no shifting of the burden of proof here.

          My assertion is an assertion of belief as opposed to an assertion of fact, so the burden of proof is to confirm that I believe. Unless you are claiming that there is no God or that there is no Biblical God is based on your belief then you do have the burden of proof and simply pointing out a lack of irrefutable proof on the other other camp doesn't cut it.

          July 21, 2014 at 11:54 am |
        • In Santa We Trust

          kevinite, So if I were to claim a belief in leprechauns that's enough for you to accept that leprechauns exist? and that my belief in what the leprechauns want from humans is how we should all act? and that we should enforce that by laws?

          July 21, 2014 at 12:02 pm |
        • kevinite

          No Santy,

          I would accept that it is your belief that leprechauns exist just like I would accept that if you were claiming that you simply believe that there is no God or that there is no Biblical God I would accept that is your belief as well. My point is that when it comes to making any conclusions about any deity, or even whether there is any deity at all, it is all a matter of belief.

          July 21, 2014 at 12:10 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          kevin,

          The issue is whether the bible is contradictory (it is). Is there a god...? I don't know. But the bible is so factually inaccurate and contradictory that it can be rejected out of hand. That believers have been able to rationalize and make excuses for the issues of the bible is no more convincing or interesting than Mormons or Muslims have been able to do the same. As the saying goes, when you understand why you reject their religious books, you will understand why we reject yours.

          July 21, 2014 at 1:43 pm |
        • kevinite

          Actually cheesy, The point isn't about whether the Bible is contradictory or not , it is about whether the God of the Bible is real. The only reason why those like yourself try to push the points about the contradictories in the Bible (of which you failed to provide any examples of) is to say that because there are contradictories in the Bible that therefore there is no Biblical God even though that doesn't cover the point that there are those who believe in the Bible being divinely inspired even though they were written by men as well as being translated by men and therefore is not perfect. That the God of the Bible let that happen in the first place due to the free will given to humanity and that God still has a plan to continually give us the guidance needed despite the contradictories and shortcomings in an imperfect Bible if we also take those leaps of faith and find out for ourselves whether that continual guidance is actually from God just like having faith finding out for ourselves on a personal level whether the Bible itself was divinely inspired.

          July 21, 2014 at 2:27 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          There is no reason to think the god of the bible is any more real than any other god that has ever been proposed by man. There is no reason to think the bible is any more "divinely inspired" than any other collection of writings.

          July 21, 2014 at 2:35 pm |
        • kevinite

          If that is your belief then fine. My point is that it is all a matter of belief including concluding that there is no God or no Biblical God; that it is all a matter of belief.

          July 21, 2014 at 2:39 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          It is not just a matter of belief. All beliefs are not equal as you seem to imply.

          July 21, 2014 at 2:45 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          kevinite,
          "I would accept that it is your belief that leprechauns exist ..."

          You were talking about burden of proof. Would you accept that leprechauns exist because I believe it or would you subject the claim to scrutiny and expect supporting evidence?

          July 21, 2014 at 2:45 pm |
        • kevinite

          Apparently Santy both you and chessy still don't get it. I never stated that all beliefs are equal. It's only that I cannot prove my own beliefs to be any more true than anyone else's, just like you can't prove that your beliefs are any more truthful than mine own belief that there is a God who does not want to be made known in the first place but would rather have us develop our own faith in that God instead, and just like I cannot prove irrefutably in your belief that there is no such God.

          When it comes to finding truth I do believe that there are some truths out there that cannot be made known through any means except through first-hand experience, like knowing what salt tastes like. Such truths I believe also include finding the truth about God; that it cannot truly be done without first-hand experience such as through personal study, prayer that would include asking God sincerely whether God is there and that the teachings given from God are in fact true, along with testing those teachings and following those teachings yourself in seeing for yourself whether they are actually beneficial or not.

          July 21, 2014 at 5:48 pm |
        • kevinite

          It all boils down to that since I can't prove my beliefs are any better than yours and that you cannot prove that your beliefs are any better than mine, that it simply in arguments sake comes out to be a draw. That we just accept what other simply believe what other s believe. You could invite someone to find out for themselves about other truths if they are interested but you ultimately cannot prove that their own beliefs to be false.

          July 21, 2014 at 5:55 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          I think this quote sums up my position regarding your point.

          "If I were to try to be an Agnostic, and say, “I just don’t know if there is a god,” I would feel just as silly as saying “I just don’t know if there is a Tooth Fairy.” It’s not so much that we Atheists have ‘faith’ in the lack of gods, but we do have faith that theists accept fallacies as proof, most likely out of fear. This may be the same reason Agnostics will not profess true Atheism (the fear of being wrong). In the literal sense of trusting in evidence, I’m okay with being a faithful Atheist, but my faith is nowhere near the amount of unjustifiable faith required to believe in magical spirits helping us with daily activities."

          July 21, 2014 at 7:26 pm |
        • kevinite

          Whatever floats your cheesy boat deary.

          July 22, 2014 at 3:47 pm |
      • igaftr

        Just one of the many, may places the bible is wrong.
        There is just as much evidence ( that being none at all) that any "god" was invloved with the bible, as there is that Satan inspired it, or completely wrote it himself.

        What continues to be true, there is no evidence anywhere of any "gods".

        July 20, 2014 at 12:53 pm |
        • kevinite

          Just like the whole point that a lack of evidence isn't necessarily evidence in of itself; especially when it comes to the belief that there is a God who does not want to be made known in the first place but would rather have us development our own faith in said God instead.

          July 20, 2014 at 1:01 pm |
        • igaftr

          so now you have illogivally jumped to a god existing, but now you claim to know what it wants.

          Why can't you see that there is NO basis at all.
          Men like to make up gods, as evidence by the thousands and thousands of gods men have worshipped.

          Completely baseless to make a conclusion that a) there is a god, and b) it is exactly the god you imagine, and c) that you know what this god wants.

          July 20, 2014 at 1:05 pm |
        • kevinite

          When it comes sown to it all science can do is explain to the best of its abilities about the universe. It is not automatically all encompassing. It just explains what it has found thus far. It doesn't promote nor refute the notion of some divine influence of some sort, so to be logical about it one would not come to any conclusion one way or the other. To come to a conclusion based on the available information regarding the existence of God, one way or the other, involves forming our own opinion or belief.

          July 20, 2014 at 1:23 pm |
        • igaftr

          That is correct...no conclusion can be drawn whether or not any "gods" exist.

          The bible on the opther hand is very, very flawed in many ways. It CAN be shown to be the work of men, it CAN be shown to be flawed, so claiming it was "inspired by god" is completely baseless, and the errors ARE evidence that man imagined it, and wrote it, with only other men to draw on.

          With no evidence whatsoever to draw on, belief in "gods" is irrational and illogical...claiming to know what these "gods" want is delusional at the very least.

          July 20, 2014 at 1:57 pm |
        • Sungrazer

          I think there is at least room to quibble with the idea that conclusions can or can't be drawn concerning the existence of any gods. In one of his books, Victor J. Stenger sets out to do just that:

          "My analysis will be based on the contention that God should be detectable by scientific means simply by virtue of the fact that he is supposed to play such a central role in the operation of the universe and the lives of humans."

          Now, this is the capital G Judeo-Christian-Islamic god. His particular analysis and conclusion do not apply to any other gods. But he is arguing that based on how God is described/portrayed/etc., we SHOULD see evidence of his existence, and if we don't, then ultimately absence of evidence DOES become evidence of absence.

          He allows for the possibility of a hidden god but says "Generally speaking, when we have no evidence or other reason for believing in some enti.ty, then we can be pretty sure that enti.ty does not exist." He gives Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster as examples.

          July 20, 2014 at 4:45 pm |
        • igaftr

          sungrazer.

          My statement was about some generic god.
          the bible is far too flawed for it to be taken seriously, too many contradictions so it is almost a certainty that the judeo christian god is the product of mens imaginations, based on ignorance, previous cultures stories, and in the NT, a generous helping of the Buddha. Each individual believer, has in their imagination, a concept of god, and the likelyhood that any given one is correct is one in infinity.

          July 20, 2014 at 4:52 pm |
        • kevinite

          Igafter,

          How does any of the evidence in the Bible, whether that be flawed or not, actually prove that there is no God of the Bible, since the God of the Bible is one who does not want to be made known in the first place but would rather have us develop faith in said God instead?

          You failed to give such irrefutable examples, especially any examples that would prove that in no way God would ever permit those mistakes to have taken place in the Bible,or in any possible way that your ways or your way of thinking can only mean that it is the only way how an all knowing being would be thinking.

          July 21, 2014 at 2:29 am |
        • kevinite

          Igaftr,

          With no evidence to prove that there is no such deity who does not want to be made known in the first place, it is illogical to conclude that there is no such God either and firmly holding to such a conclusion can also very well be considered delusional as well.

          July 21, 2014 at 2:35 am |
        • TruthPrevails1

          kevin: What is illogical is to invoke a deity without evidence. I simply do not see evidence for it and so the honest move in that situation is to admit to not having the answer. The second you invoke a deity of any form, you have provided an answer without evidence to support it. You can't prove your god any more than we can disprove it, however you make the claim that it potentially exists, so the burden of proof lies on you....otherwise why accept it??

          July 21, 2014 at 8:07 am |
        • igaftr

          kevin
          What part of my statement indicated certainty?
          There is simply a great deal of evidence the judeo christian god was completely the product of men.
          I choose my words carefully, and at no time did I say anything that was certainty.

          July 21, 2014 at 8:14 am |
        • Science Works

          Hey Kevin

          Had offices wallpapered/painted last week and one of the painters USED to be an ordained baptist minister and in one of our conversations he stated that he was 99.9999999999999999999999999999999 sure there was no god(s) or devil hiding under your bed.

          July 21, 2014 at 8:32 am |
        • kevinite

          Well truthy,

          The problem with your conclusion is that I didn't actually proclaim my beliefs to be established fact in the first place. I proclaimed what I believed instead. To actually make a flat out proclamation that there is no God or at least no Biblical God it is logical that you have the actual evidence to support you flat out claim, and simply referring a lack of evidence on the other camp, which happens to be a camp who believes in a God ho does not want to be made known in the first place so one doesn't expect irrefutable proof, isn't actually evidence in of itself.

          The logical thing to do is frankly proclaiming that your conclusion that there is no such God is only based on your belief just like for me in proclaiming my conclusion that there is such a God is based on only my belief.

          July 21, 2014 at 11:10 am |
        • kevinite

          igaftr,

          You may have carefully chosen your words, but you have not submitted your proof.

          July 21, 2014 at 11:12 am |
      • bostontola

        kevinite,
        The post was about fallacious arguments being easily accepted as true, demonstrating confirmation bias. Examples of these fallacious arguments are right on this page (see Robert's below with topher's response). These examples of confirmation bias illustrate why you should not trust subjective truth about ent.ities external to yourself. The example was just a humorous fabrication that parallels many of the fallacious arguments against dating and evolution. Most Christians don't believe those fallacious arguments, but too many do.

        July 20, 2014 at 1:43 pm |
        • kevinite

          The problem is that you didn't actually acknowledge that in your original comment which does give the implication that you you were implying that the not only this is the argument that most Christians but also pointing out that most christians believe that pi is 3.0

          July 20, 2014 at 2:12 pm |
        • bostontola

          kevinite,
          I made no such implication, please read it again. I didn't even mention Christians at all. You read that in, I didn't imply anything. That reference to Pi is in the OT, if anything, Jews might feel an implication, but I doubt many would. The vast majority of Jews accept establish science and don't read the bible as a literal source.

          July 20, 2014 at 3:44 pm |
        • kevinite

          So bostonola, you claimed that you never implied that Christians believe in the Pi being 3.0 thing even though you just stated that too many Christians do believe that, and you originally stated that flat out the Bible says that Pi = 3 when all it was really doing was just giving the description of the sea built for the Temple built during the reign of Solomon. Because you were saying that the Bible says that Pi = 3 then that would imply that either one that Bible believers, both Jewish and Christian, believe then that Pi = 3 or that their belief in the Bible is misplaced because of it when there is no clear indication that the Bible actually teaches that in the first place.

          July 21, 2014 at 2:52 am |
        • bostontola

          kevinite,
          There is no mention of Christians or any other religion in the OP. You just crossed the line with a dishonest response, you should be ashamed.

          You read that implication. I only mentioned Christians in response to your projection.

          You are very defensive. So defensive that you made a false accusation. Now, you can't face up to it and covered that with a dishonest post. You should look in the mirror and strengthen that character.

          July 21, 2014 at 7:44 am |
        • kevinite

          If you wanted to be technical bostonola, I didn't say anything about Christians in my original reply to your OP. The reason why I was mentioning "Christians" later on was because you mentioned "Christians" later on in a later response to my reply. For one who is claiming that I was so defensive and proclaiming a false hood you have been very defensive in your responses to me from the beginning. You also did not refute my original my point in that you insinuated the whole thing about the Bible saying that Pi = 3 in your original post that it was also directed at all believers in the Bible ; that you were not just referring to those who specifically gave the counterargument about about at one point in time Pi did = 3..

          July 21, 2014 at 11:27 am |
        • kevinite

          What it all boils down to bostonola is that you said that the Bible says that Pi = 3.

          July 21, 2014 at 11:36 am |
      • austin929

        bostontola

        The fallacious arguments refuting scientific dating, evolution, etc. that are so easily entertained demonstrate confirmation bias. That's why you shouldn't trust subjective truth.

        Bostontola, mans interpretation is subjective. so , all of your scientific data since it was not here from 20,000 BC, or 1,000,000 B.C. , all your data is subjective, because it is not omnipresent. Humans best effort is subjective.

        yet if someone , if one person has experienced a supernatural miracle, even on susp.icious person who acturally did , then wether they know it or not, that is objective reality if it did happen, even if no one understands.

        July 20, 2014 at 7:14 pm |
        • bostontola

          austin,
          This comes up frequently, same question/assertion from Robert today. My response is the same:

          Robert,
          This question has been asked and answered many times on this blog. ALL humans are susceptible to confirmation bias, scientists are not excluded. That is why the scientific method was created. It forces results to be objectively measured, independently reviewed and criticized, repeated by other scientists, etc. before the result is accepted. Even with all that, it is not error free, but it dramatically lower in error rate that subjective truth generation.

          The point of the post was to show why people shouldn't trust subjective truth, it is very vulnerable to confirmation bias. The scientific is highly resistant (not immune) to confirmation bias.

          July 20, 2014 at 4:06 pm |

          July 20, 2014 at 7:53 pm |
  5. Vic

    ♰♰♰ Jesus Christ Is Lord ♰♰♰

    Forty five years ago today, Neil Armstrong & Buzz Aldrin set foot on the moon for the first time in human history.

    Neil Armstrong spoke two iconic statements. One made history, and the other one is only known to a few.

    The world knew Neil Armstrong as the Navy fighter pilot and astronaut who became the first human to set foot on the moon and said the historic "That's one small step for [a] man, one giant leap for mankind."

    The world barely knows that Neil Armstrong, who later became an aerospace engineer and a university professor following his trip to the moon, was taken on a tour of the old city of Jerusalem in the Holy Land in 2007. Down the steps to the Temple Mount there, he rigorously inquired about whether Jesus Christ had stepped on those. When told yes, Armstrong, the devout Christian, made the following iconic statement:

    "I have to tell you, I am more excited stepping on these stones than when I was stepping on the moon."

    Happy 45th Anniversary for the Moon Landing Everybody.

    Early on:
    http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2014/07/08/eye-for-an-eye-the-bibles-role-in-revenge-attacks/comment-page-4/#comment-3044579

    July 20, 2014 at 12:44 am |
    • Woody

      There's an urban legend that Mr. Armstrong uttered the enigmatic phrase "good luck Mr. Gorsky" just before climbing back up the ladder of the LM at the end of the EVA. It's not found in any official transcripts from the mission (almost every word the astronauts said was recorded), and Armstrong himself said in late 1995 that he first heard the anecdote delivered as a joke by comedian Buddy Hackett in California. It's an amusing story, true or not. Type "good luck Mr. Gorsky" in your favorite search engine for details.

      July 20, 2014 at 6:22 am |
      • kudlak

        I can remember watching that first moon landing live on TV, and I don't recall this myself, but there are people who swear that they saw a coke bottle on the lunar surface during that broadcast. All this demonstrates is that the process that creates legends can begin immediately after an event, contrary to the Christian apologetic that usually declares that the gap between Jesus' death and the writing of the gospels (at least 20 years) was far too short for such embellishment, right?

        July 20, 2014 at 2:29 pm |
        • truthfollower01

          New Testament critic and historian Bart Ehrman indicates that the credal statement in 1 Corinthians 15:3-7 can be traced to 1 year after the cross. I have included the verses below.

          1 Corinthians 15:-7

          3 For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas, and then to the Twelve. 6 After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers and sisters at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep. 7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles,

          If you would like more info on this I would suggest watching "The Resurrection Argument That Changed a Generation of Scholars – Gary Habermas at UCSB" on YouTube.

          July 20, 2014 at 5:41 pm |
        • kudlak

          truthfollower01
          Yup!
          Like I said, the legendary stuff can develop very quickly. Just consider some of the stories about Davy Crockett that were circulating even before he died!

          July 20, 2014 at 7:38 pm |
    • Science Works

      Hey Vic – go back billions of years.

      Published on Jun 30, 2014

      The origins and evolution of the ribosome, 3-4 billion years ago, remain imprinted in the biochemistry of extant life and in the structure of the ribosome. This movie takes you back in to time to primordial ribosomes.

      The paper:
      http://www.pnas.org/content/early/201...

      {http://www.youtube.com/watch?annotation_id=annotation_3811560245&feature=iv&src_vid=ei6qGLBTsKM&v=Z2XOhgRJVb4}

      July 20, 2014 at 9:52 am |
    • Bob

      Vic, regarding your fictional character that you call Jesus Christ that you keep trying to kiss the ass of so frequently, the whole Jesus-sacrifice story, the foundation of your crazy superstition, is a steaming pile of bull-do. How is it again that your omnipotent being couldn't do his saving bit without the whole silly Jesus hoopla? And how was Jesus' death "sacrifice", when an omnipotent being could just pop up a replacement son any time with less than a snap of his fingers?

      Pretty pathetic "god" that you've made for yourself there.

      Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement.
      Be free of Christianity and other superstitions.
      http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

      July 20, 2014 at 11:11 am |
    • tallulah131

      It's truly sad that Mr. Armstrong, one of only 12 men who accomplished what is probably the most remarkable act in human history, was more excited about chasing a myth. How disappointing.

      Oh well. I always thought that Pete Conrad was smartest, coolest astronaut, anyway.

      July 21, 2014 at 2:46 am |
  6. truthfollower01

    I have a question for Darwinists. If a rap-ist's brain evolved to have firings that lead him to commit ra-pe and to think this way, is he responsible for his actions?

    July 19, 2014 at 9:53 pm |
    • midwest rail

      Loaded question, and you know it. Believing in the various sciences that all support evolution as factual does not make one a "Darwinist". Stop being dishonest.

      July 20, 2014 at 2:51 am |
      • truthfollower01

        To clarify, Darwinian evolution being natural selection acting on random mutations.

        July 20, 2014 at 11:17 am |
        • Science Works

          http://darwin-online.org.uk/Darwin_Online_Beagle_Voyage.htm

          July 20, 2014 at 11:26 am |
        • bostontola

          truth,
          I'm glad you can see that evolution is not random. While mutations have random components, natural selection is not random.

          July 20, 2014 at 11:57 am |
        • truthfollower01

          Natural selection is basically another way of saying the strongest and most well suited for the environment live on while the weak and less suited for the environment don't make it. Natural selection needs the random mutations to account for the diversity of life it claims.

          July 20, 2014 at 2:19 pm |
        • bostontola

          truth,
          You got that right, well done.

          July 20, 2014 at 3:47 pm |
        • truthfollower01

          You said it wasn't random. Random mutation is a key mechanism, wouldn't you say?

          July 20, 2014 at 5:26 pm |
        • bostontola

          truth,
          Mutations are mostly random, selection is mostly non-random. The evolved form is set by selection. If we want faster horses, we select for speed out of the random distribution of horses genes, and we get faster horses. There is still some residual randomness in that process, but it mostly determined and predictable. Natural selection is more complex because multiple characteristics in multiple life forms are balancing while being selected for survival and procreation. Tsk, tsk, just when I thought you understood evolution.

          July 20, 2014 at 6:31 pm |
      • dandintac

        I'll take a crack at this one.

        The question is: "If a rap-ist’s brain evolved to have firings that lead him to commit ra-pe and to think this way, is he responsible for his actions?"

        First of all, just because we evolved does not negate personal responsibility. Not sure where you get that one necessarily follows the other.

        Second of all, Evolution by Natural Selection is purely a theory that explains the development and diversity of life on Earth. Evolution is not the only force that influences human behavior. Furthermore, Evolution does not necessarily hold that human behavior is 100% deterministic.

        Third, evolution sometimes results in mistakes and problems, which is what you would expect from an unguided, non-intelligent, natural process. If a perfect, all-knowing, all-powerful, all-good God created everything, then the aberrations such as psychopaths would not make any sense at all.

        Fourth, one can argue Determinism and Free Will. It's an interesting argument, but even if human behavio is 100% deterministic, which does not appear to be the case, then that would still not negate the need for society to protect itself against these individuals.

        Fifth, if our behavior is indeed entirely deterministic, and free will does not exist, then one can also argue that our behavior in punishing and incarcerating the criminals is determined by our environment as well, therefore the entire argument is moot.

        July 20, 2014 at 4:25 pm |
    • colin31714

      Well, not according to your Bible; “Have you allowed all the women to live?” he asked them. “They were the ones who followed Balaam’s advice and enticed the Israelites to be unfaithful to the LORD in the Peor incident, so that a plague struck the LORD’s people. Now kill all the boys. And Kill every woman who has slept with a man, but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man." Moses in Numbers 31:16-18.

      July 20, 2014 at 7:11 am |
      • truthfollower01

        Why the red herring? If you are a Darwinian evolution supporter, how do you answer with regard to my initial post?

        July 20, 2014 at 2:21 pm |
        • midwest rail

          Look who's complaining about herring. Your O.P. was akin to me asking you if you've stopped beating your wife.

          July 20, 2014 at 3:04 pm |
    • igaftr

      What is a "Darwinist"?

      You should realize by now that evolution is fact, that it is only the mechanisms of evolution that are still debated. right?

      On Christianity, why is the victim of ra.p.e forced to marry her attacker, the stain of impuroty rests on HER, but the ra.p.e itself is OK?

      July 20, 2014 at 9:06 am |
    • MidwestKen

      truthfollower1,
      Honestly, I don't think we know for certain. This is a metaphysical question of "responsibility", but I suspect that yes, they would still be responsible because, if nothing else, they are presumably intelligent enough to determine that what they are doing is illegal, if not against the general social contract of behavior in society today.

      July 20, 2014 at 10:19 am |
    • bostontola

      truth,
      We have accommodated this in our justice system. If a person is found insane, they are not responsible, but they are separated from the society they threaten. They are put in mental hospitals under security. Sadly, the brain and mental state are hard to read accurately. Some will be incarcerated with criminals that don't belong there, some that belong in prison will escape that fate. We aren't perfect.

      July 20, 2014 at 11:53 am |
      • truthfollower01

        I'm not talking about someone declared mentally insane. I'm talking about your typical rap-ist who's brain evolved to have firings that lead him to think and act the way he does. The dame could be postulated for child molesters, murderes, etc. Are these people responsible for the actions that their brains evolved to trigger them to commit?

        July 20, 2014 at 2:14 pm |
        • LaBella

          Sociopath. Look it up.

          July 20, 2014 at 2:39 pm |
        • truthfollower01

          Labella,

          Are any of these people responsible for their actions on the Darwinian evolution view?

          July 20, 2014 at 3:03 pm |
        • LaBella

          You are selectively applying it. Therefore your questions are disingenuous.
          It applies to all humans, or to none.

          July 20, 2014 at 3:11 pm |
        • Sungrazer

          Perhaps you're aware that Sam Harris has made the case that humans do not have free will, that it is an illusion. In his book "Free Will" he opens with a story of some horrific acts committed by a pair of career criminals. He uses it to make a point about our moral intuitions but later on he notes that we still need a criminal justice system: "Certain criminals must be incarcerated to prevent them from harming other people. The moral justification for this is entirely straightforward: Everyone else will be better off this way."

          I guess I would ask: what is meant by "responsible"? Then I might wonder if it mattered. The men in your example or in the example above need to be HELD responsible; I think that is what matters.

          July 20, 2014 at 3:13 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          Are any of these people HELD responsible for their actions on the Christian view? All they have to do is say they are really, really sorry to Jesus and all responsibility is gone....pathetic.

          July 20, 2014 at 3:43 pm |
        • igaftr

          belief follower
          "Are any of these people responsible for their actions on the Darwinian evolution view?"

          There is no "darwinian evolution" view on this.
          You are mixing branches of science.
          You may as well ask a mollusk how he feels about the situation in Isreal.

          Try asking a question that has meaning.

          July 20, 2014 at 3:47 pm |
        • bostontola

          truth,
          I believe all humans have both primitive instincts and higher reasoning. We are usually able to control our base instincts with the higher reasoning. When a person is not capable (for biological reasons ) of controlling their base instincts, I would call that a form of insanity. They would not be responsible. If they have the biological capability of controlling those instincts, don't control them, to the harm of another person, I say that person is responsible.

          July 20, 2014 at 3:59 pm |
        • dandintac

          TF1, Evolution does not necessarily mean that we have no free will, or cannot be held accountable for our actions. I still don't see where you are seeing that connection. Also, again, evolution is not the only force that influences our behavior. It is not a theory of all-things-biological-and-behavioral.

          July 20, 2014 at 4:40 pm |
  7. Dalahäst

    Interesting site that displays the different views, beliefs and ideas about God, science, religion, faith, belief, etc.

    http://www.closertotruth.com/

    July 19, 2014 at 9:12 pm |
    • igaftr

      Do they show any evidence for any gods, or simply say what people believe and imagine?

      July 20, 2014 at 9:32 am |
      • Dalahäst

        They are some of the world's most brilliant minds discussing various topics. Some do give rational explanations and opinions for what they believe, yes. Some are atheists, agnostics or non-believers and they give rational explanations and opinions for why they don't.

        July 20, 2014 at 9:38 am |
        • kudlak

          I firmly believe that there are rational explanations for why people believe that God is real. I still think that they're mistaken, but I don't think that they're all crazy for believing. There's a whole society designed to indoctrinate people into seeing the world as though God was essential to understanding it, and it reinforces this belief amongst members. Belief in God then is more of an infectious idea based on false perceptions, and we've had a few of those in our history, right?

          July 20, 2014 at 2:08 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          No, belief in God for me is not based on some infectious idea based on false perceptions. I think what you believe about me is often based on your own false perceptions. Maybe that is why we don't always see eye to eye on things.

          July 20, 2014 at 2:22 pm |
        • kudlak

          Dalahäst
          Of course you would say that because you still believe!

          Ask yourself whether you would have ever come up with your belief in God in a society that didn't support that belief? Had you been raised in India, amongst Hindus, wouldn't it follow that you'd most likely be seeing those god's hand in reality instead of YHWH's?

          July 20, 2014 at 2:44 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          Not necessarily. My belief in God isn't the same belief that the status quo or our society holds. I grew up in a secular society – wouldn't it follow that I'd most likely be an atheist like you?

          And also, do you really think I haven't asked that question of myself before? That is a question that pastors and other believers ask me, too!

          July 20, 2014 at 2:48 pm |
        • kudlak

          Dalahäst
          It's enough that the status quo and society in general believes that God exists. That belief is all but impossible to escape in our general society, something that even the Amish can't avoid contact with, correct?

          I would like to know where this "secular society" of which you speak is. I've lived in various parts of North America and never found an entire society that was secular. Religious belief is everywhere, as far as I can tell. I don't see anywhere where you can live without contact with believers and their ideas.

          So, what is the answer to this question? Is your Christianity merely an accident of geography? Wouldn't you likely be just as strongly defending some other faith and god(s) if you happened to be born elsewhere? The one thing about atheism is that it does manifest in every society. No matter where or when, there most likely have always been people who concluded that the gods believed by everyone else were probably not actually real. That leads me to see my atheism as more of a human trait than some passing fashion, like many religious leaders like to state.

          July 20, 2014 at 3:16 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          My education, sports, friendships, activities, games, social venues, music growing up made part of my "secular society". They weren't religious in nature. My school, from preschool to college, was secular in nature. Yes, there was contact with believers. So what? People from all belief systems have offered good things to me. I'm glad for my friends that believe different from me. I lived as an atheist who got along with Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Jews, Pagans – all kinds of people.

          My answer to this question is different from your answer.

          And that is just ok. I'm glad your atheism works for you. It doesn't work for me. And that is ok, too.

          July 20, 2014 at 3:25 pm |
        • kudlak

          Dalahäst
          I'm interested about this "secular society" that you grew up in. Where and when was it?

          As a Christian, do you still get along with all kinds of people?

          TTFN

          July 20, 2014 at 7:43 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          What I mean by "secular society" is that I had no interest in religion, God – and especially Christianity. I generally did things that did not involve those things. Generally my agnosticism and atheism were no big deal in the circles I ran with.

          I generally do get along with all kinds of people. But it is not always easy to do so. Obviously on here I often do not get along with others, so I have some things to work on.

          July 20, 2014 at 10:37 pm |
        • kudlak

          Dalahäst
          Your personal interests have nothing really to do with the society, which is the sum total of everyone and all their interests, you live in. You could still be immersed in a religious society and soaking some of it in while not actively being interested in any of it. For example, I live in a town that is big into rodeo and dressing up cowboy. I'm not interested in either, but I've still picked up enough to carry on an intelligent conversation about both.

          You obviously turned to Christianity at some point in your life. If it hadn't made some kind of prior impression, why would you gravitate towards it later on?

          If you still get along with all kinds of people that's another area where your new Christianity doesn't seem to have improved your life, eh?

          I don't consider the others here as people that I have any kind of "relationship" with. One assumes with online personalities that you're never really talking to the genuine person anyway, so why worry about "getting along" with any of us?

          July 21, 2014 at 7:46 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          No. I disagree with all your speculations. But thanks for offering them!

          July 21, 2014 at 7:50 pm |
  8. Robert Brown

    Furthermore, if there are special circ.umstances that invalidate the method, then this raises questions about the method in general. It's been an eye opener to me to see all the processes that lead to segregation of different minerals in the magma. We have gold appearing pure at times, silver pure at times, etc., and no one says this is due to radiometric decay. The geological processes at work have a tremendous ability to separate different kinds of elements and minerals. And yet we expect that uranium-lead ratios are determined by radiometeric decay alone (or at least sometimes)!

    There are so many complicated phenomena to consider like this that it calls the whole radiometric dating scheme into question.

    We haven't even considered the fact that uranium is highly water soluble and lead is not, which could make the dates too old, too. Another factor to consider.

    We now have so many things that can make radiometric dating go wrong, and isochrons don't remedy the situation at all, that I think the weight of evidence of radiometric dating is nullified.

    I really feel "bullish" about the creationist model now. Evolution has always been in trouble. I now have a good explanation for where the flood water came from and where it went, based on water trapped inside the crust (however the planet formed or was created). And now radiometric dating has had its foundation removed from under it. I suspect that a number of geologists now realize the implications of what they know about the lead and uranium content of subducted oceanic plate versus crustal material and the mechanics of magma solidification. What it means is that radiometric dates have no necessary relation to true ages! (For this I'm mainly concerned with the geologic column of Cambrian and above.) At least, there are so many variables to consider that the relationship between radiometric ages and true ages is too complicated to disentangle at present, isochrons or no isochrons.

    We have seen many ways in which radiometric dates can be affected by what is going on in the magma. I think this is really the weak spot of radiometric dating. It takes a long time to get to the bottom of things, and I think we have finally hit it.

    July 19, 2014 at 9:06 pm |
    • noahsdadtopher

      Good stuff, dude.

      July 19, 2014 at 9:28 pm |
      • Robert Brown

        Thanks Topher. Here is a good debate on the subject if you are interested, http://www.debate.org/debates/Radiometric-Dating-is-Accurate/3/

        July 19, 2014 at 9:51 pm |
      • neverbeenhappieratheist

        Are you redefining "good" as weak and inaccurate?

        July 20, 2014 at 9:30 am |
      • bostontola

        Good stuff dude?

        One person states a flawed argument, the other endorses it, in your worlds that const.itutes confirmation.

        Luckily for all of us, real scientists have a higher bar than that.

        Robert's argument has a giant hole in it; There are many, independent dating methods for our solar system. This magma separation hypothesis completely fails when every method determines the same age. Samarium-neodymium dating method, Potassium-argon dating method, Potassium-argon dating method, Rubidium-strontium dating method, all determine the same age. There's more. Scientists date meteorites and their age is right in line with the age of the solar system. Scientists age moon rocks (no magma processes there), right in line with the same age. The properties of the Sun all line up with a Star that size being the same age.

        I do love Robert's post though, it is a perfect example of confirmation bias. Precisely why you can't trust subjective truth.

        July 20, 2014 at 10:00 am |
        • Robert Brown

          Are scientist immune from confirmation bias?

          ..., the rate of sodium put into oceans a year is more than is removed. The current 3.5% salinity is too low if the earth is 4.6 Ga years old (http://www.icr.org...). Also, the avg height reduction for all continents due to erosion is 2.4 in/thousand years, which means North America would be eroded flat to sea level in 10 million years (Journal of Geophysical Research, 69:3395-3401). How can the earth be 4.6 Ga?

          July 20, 2014 at 2:10 pm |
        • igaftr

          Rb
          Gosh...you've found the ICR...make up false premises, then use those false premises to refute actual science.

          THAT is all they are doing. You make yourself look very foolish by using these guys, because they do not have any information....they have straw men robert, nothing but smoke and sand.

          July 20, 2014 at 2:28 pm |
        • bostontola

          Robert,
          This question has been asked and answered many times on this blog. ALL humans are susceptible to confirmation bias, scientists are not excluded. That is why the scientific method was created. It forces results to be objectively measured, independently reviewed and criticized, repeated by other scientists, etc. before the result is accepted. Even with all that, it is not error free, but it dramatically lower in error rate that subjective truth generation.

          The point of the post was to show why people shouldn't trust subjective truth, it is very vulnerable to confirmation bias. The scientific is highly resistant (not immune) to confirmation bias.

          July 20, 2014 at 4:06 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Source for the OP, http://www.cs.unc.edu/~plaisted/ce/dating2.html

      July 19, 2014 at 9:59 pm |
    • midwest rail

      So, Robert – you're willing to accept the science that indicates large volumes of water below the earth's crust, but discount the preponderance of

      July 20, 2014 at 8:12 am |
    • midwest rail

      ...of scientific evidence that does not support your position ?

      July 20, 2014 at 8:14 am |
    • igaftr

      Robert
      I don't know where you got this garbage from but you are clearly reaching...over-reaching in most of your post, flat out wrong in others...it is truly sad that you are this confused.

      The solubility of uranium and water, but not lead is a red herring, since neither chemically interact with water.

      Even though there is water below the earths surface, to accomplish the flood, you would still need 5 times the water on the planet.

      evolution has never "been in trouble" that is ridiculous...it is fact, only the mechanisms of evolution are still debatable.

      Where ever you got this garbage from doesn't matter...it is ridiculous, completely baseless nonsense.

      Radiometric dating is solid science...throwing red herrings at it as you have does not change the fact that it is solid science, MANY different methods are used to date things, and all of them are solid and reliable to a point...that is why more than one are used.

      Your whole post is complete garbage, and I feel sorry for you that uyour book has blinded you so badly.

      July 20, 2014 at 9:18 am |
      • Robert Brown

        So the question remains. Why is there substantial C-14 in coal beds and diamonds that should be C-14 dead, and how can we know rock samples are not contaminated from excess Ar?

        July 20, 2014 at 1:54 pm |
        • igaftr

          Why do you think anything should be c-14 dead? Where are you getting this garbage?

          July 20, 2014 at 2:07 pm |
        • Science Works

          Robert is this where you get your info ?

          Diamonds and Strata Have Too Much Carbon 14
          http://www.icr.org/carbon-14/
          Insti-tute for Creation Research
          ICR equips believers with evidence of the Bible's accuracy and authority ... If the rate carbon 14 decays has been consistent, any carbon 14 older than 100,000 ...

          U-Pb dating works Robert .

          July 20, 2014 at 2:11 pm |
        • igaftr

          Are you attempting to refute carbon dating by looking at substances that are FAR, FAR older than carbon dating is used for?
          And then t5rying to say ALL radiometric dating is not valid because of it?

          That has to be one of the biggest red herrings I have ever seen.

          July 20, 2014 at 2:13 pm |
        • Robert Brown

          Igfatr,

          That is from the debate referred Topher to above. Why do you call it garbage?

          July 20, 2014 at 2:19 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Robert Brown,
          I'm not sure what you specific example is but here is a possible reasoning:

          Cosmic rays form beta radiation all the time; this is the radiation that turns N-14 to C-14 in the first place. K-40 decay also forms plenty of beta radiation. Stearns, Carroll, and Clark point out that ". . . this isotope [K-40] accounts for a large part of the normal background radiation that can be detected on the earth's surface" (p. 84). This radiation cannot be totally eliminated from the laboratory, so one could probably get a "radiocarbon" date of fifty thousand years from a pure carbon-free piece of tin.
          (http://ncse.com/cej/3/2/answers-to-creationist-attacks-carbon-14-dating)

          July 20, 2014 at 2:20 pm |
        • Robert Brown

          No science works, I purposely avoided that website because you real scientists don't like it.

          July 20, 2014 at 2:22 pm |
        • Science Works

          Well Robert Kermit sort of said the same thing ....

          July 20, 2014 at 5:25 pm |
    • neverbeenhappieratheist

      Your entire post can be summed up as "Current dating methods accepted by 99.9% of the scientific community have a margin of error and are not exact when used alone." Good thing they never use just one dating method but use several which decreases the margin of error. Does it ever eliminate it completely? No, but that just means Robert Brown here sounds more like Lloyd Christmas from Dumb & Dumber...

      Lloyd Christmas: What do you think the chances are of a guy like you and a girl like me... ending up together?
      Mary Swanson: Well, Lloyd, that's difficult to say. I mean, we don't really...
      Lloyd Christmas: Hit me with it! Just give it to me straight! I came a long way just to see you, Mary. The least you can do is level with me. What are my chances?
      Mary Swanson: Not good.
      Lloyd Christmas: You mean, not good like one out of a hundred?
      Mary Swanson: I'd say more like one out of a million.
      [pause]
      Lloyd Christmas: So you're telling me there's a chance... YEAH!

      July 20, 2014 at 9:28 am |
    • MidwestKen

      While I haven't read the whole article, it seems to be a good overview of radiometric dating. The following is except from the preface of "Radiometric Dating, A Christian Perspective" – Dr. Roger C. Wiens

      Radiometric dating–the process of determining the age of rocks from the decay of their radioactive elements–has been in widespread use for over half a century. There are over forty such techniques, each using a different radioactive element or a different way of measuring them. It has become increasingly clear that these radiometric dating techniques agree with each other and as a whole, present a coherent picture in which the Earth was created a very long time ago. Further evidence comes from the complete agreement between radiometric dates and other dating methods such as counting tree rings or glacier ice core layers. Many Christians have been led to distrust radiometric dating and are completely unaware of the great number of laboratory measurements that have shown these methods to be consistent. Many are also unaware that Bible-believing Christians are among those actively involved in radiometric dating.

      http://www.asa3.org/ASA/resources/wiens.html

      July 20, 2014 at 11:41 am |
      • MidwestKen

        < – should be "an excerpt"

        July 20, 2014 at 12:00 pm |
      • Robert Brown

        Some are still skeptical.

        ...the rate of the earth's magnetic field decay has been measured at 5% per century (ESSA Technical Report, IER 46-IES1). Putting the starting strength where it wouldn't melt the earth it could only be decaying for 10000 years. How can the earth be 4.6 Ga?

        July 20, 2014 at 2:15 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Robert Brown,
          the earth's magnetic field fluctuates and even reverses at various intervals. Its supposed "decay" is only the recent measure of that fluctuation.
          In fact, such reversals actually support an old earth because of the magnetic banding that is recorded in the ocean floor and other areas of new rock formation.

          July 20, 2014 at 2:24 pm |
        • igaftr

          RB
          The earth's magnetic feild does not decay in the sense of the word that it is dissipating and not replenished. That is a completely false view.

          AN atom of iron has a magnetic field. That field will always be. It does not decay.

          Multiply that by millions of tons of iron...our earths core...it is not a solid magnet, but a fluid one, moving changing, and constantly effected by the bombardment of various energies from the sun. It builds, decays, fluctuates..but does not actually gain or lose STRENGTH because that strength is based on the amount of iron in the magnet.

          When you see the ocean tide coming in, do you run to the nearest mountain because, at the rate the tide is coming in, soon all will be under water.....that is what you are saying about the earths magnetic field.

          July 20, 2014 at 2:37 pm |
  9. Reality

    Is it possible that the obvious lack of topics the last week or so means that CNN has finally figured out that religion is no longer relevant and the moderators have been transferred to other departments?

    July 19, 2014 at 4:23 pm |
    • noahsdadtopher

      Considering how many web pages "hits" this generates? No.

      July 19, 2014 at 6:32 pm |
      • Reality

        Not many hits if you are counting by the day and said viewing depends on how many of those hits clicked on the few ads.

        July 20, 2014 at 6:31 am |
  10. bostontola

    Here's a new topic: ISIS threatens to kill Christians that won't convert.

    http://www.cnn.com/2014/07/18/world/meast/iraq-isis-christians-threatened/index.html?hpt=hp_t2

    July 19, 2014 at 12:10 pm |
    • thesamyaza

      whats a matter? are you made that you cant do it anymore?

      July 19, 2014 at 1:20 pm |
    • noahsdadtopher

      It's awful and should be stopped, but it's nothing new. Christians are still killed every day around the world for their beliefs. Check out persecution.com (Voice of the Martyrs).

      July 19, 2014 at 2:46 pm |
      • thesamyaza

        and yet Charlemagne is till a saint.

        July 19, 2014 at 3:00 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          According to who?

          July 19, 2014 at 3:03 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Massacre_of_Verden

          and yet the Catholics call him blessed. i call him a fucking monster

          July 19, 2014 at 3:57 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          Catholic saints are different from what the Bible calls saints.

          July 19, 2014 at 6:33 pm |
    • Dalahäst

      Another possible update/topic:

      Ryan Bell at 6 his month mark of his atheist experiment/publicity stunt(?)

      http://www.patheos.com/blogs/yearwithoutgod/2014/07/09/i-want-to-know-everything/

      July 19, 2014 at 9:07 pm |
      • TruthPrevails1

        Read his blog. This is not a publicity stunt, Ryan is a non-believer at this point. My husband follows his blog closely and it is far more reasoned conversation that you'll find here at the best of times. You'd probably enjoy it, Ryan is well spoken and most of the people commenting are also.

        July 20, 2014 at 6:02 am |
        • Dalahäst

          I don't follow it that closely, but I have read some of it. In this article he talks about getting things figured out in 6 months – as if his 1 year of living without God might end with him changing how he believes in God. Sometimes it sounds like he still believes in God, but is just living as if he can't trust or call on Him.

          The guy seems very reasonable. He seems to offer understanding to people who identify with all sides of the arguments for and against God.

          July 20, 2014 at 9:25 am |
        • igaftr

          There are arguments "for god"?
          Funny, I've never heard one that had any basis (other than the imagination)

          July 20, 2014 at 11:08 am |
        • Dalahäst

          Yes. There are some very rational, reasonable, well-thought out, educated and compelling arguments for God. Even I could have admitted that when I was an atheist. As a believer now I can say the same thing for arguments for atheism. I may not agree with them. But they are not totally idiotic.

          July 20, 2014 at 12:59 pm |
        • TruthPrevails1

          Dala: People invent reasons to justify the god they believe. I get that you may disagree with me but from my perspective, Christians (almost anyone believing in a god) start with the premise of a god and make everything else meld to it. In primitive days, when man heard thunder and had no clue as to why it was happening, they would attribute it to Thor. Mankind are amazing story tellers, some more engrossing than others....that's a good part of the reason Christianity took hold...the stories captivated the primitive, uneducated mind and gave some hope in a confusing world (it still does this).

          July 20, 2014 at 1:14 pm |
        • igaftr

          "There are some very rational, reasonable, well-thought out, educated and compelling arguments for God"

          No. There aren't.

          Any of those things that rationalize "god", you can subst!tute any number of other possible explainations, so no, no arguments that exclusively rationaize any "god".

          This is one thing that you seem to have the most trouble grasping...why you claim evidence of god, but can be many, many, more possibilities.

          Leaping to "god" when there are so many other possibilities shows your bias.

          July 20, 2014 at 1:31 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          TP1

          Just because some people invent reasonts to justify belief in God, doesn't mean all do. Not all Christians start with the premise of a god and make everything else meld into it.

          igaftr

          Yes there are.

          In your opinion there isn't. And that is your choice. But I don't see it that way. And I know many educated, intelligent, rational, reasonable and well-adjusted people that don't either.

          Maybe you are the one leaping to something. I see evidence of that from you in that you seem to be eager to jump to a conclusion about me. You have your own biases and perhaps should work on yours before you start speculating about others. I have never said there are not any other possibilities. I just share what I believe.

          July 20, 2014 at 2:19 pm |
        • igaftr

          dala

          By all means, show me one "rational" argument for any god, and I will show you that, no matter how you try, I can come up with an alternate possibility.
          In every single case.

          Lets see.....blah blah blah...therefore god.
          It could be the invisible pink unicorn.
          the matrix
          Aliens from outside our existance ( not gods, but with powers similar to what people think are gods here.
          ( and I can go on all day with other possibilities.)
          Be my guest dala. I defy you to provide ONE argument that exclusively can point to ONE god, that I cannot offer another possibility.
          I'll be waiting, but that wait will be an eternity.

          July 20, 2014 at 2:50 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          I used to dislike religion because there were a lot of closed-minded and preachy individuals involved with it. But then I discovered that even people who were not religious could be closed-minded and preachy. I even see some atheists act just as closed-minded and preachy as those religious people I tried to avoid. Now I'm finding it wise to avoid both the religious and non-religious closed-minded and preachy individuals. Luckily on both sides there are open-minded and reasonable people I can engage with today. Anyway, later Iggy.

          July 20, 2014 at 3:18 pm |
        • igaftr

          dala
          Calling me close minded when I can see myriad possibilities...who is making conclusions about whom now?

          You calim you "know" god...that is close minded, my mind is open, so I ask how you "know" and you have never once given a valid expalination.

          It is YOUR mind that is closed to ALL of the possibilities. You have reached a conclusion where no conclusion can be made, and you are so arrogant to claim <Y mind is closed...how utterly ironic.

          Each of those arguments for god...each and every one may point to "maybe something", but that is as far as any can come. Yet you have proclaimed it to be god...seriously?

          July 20, 2014 at 3:38 pm |
  11. noahsdadtopher

    So ... no new blog in 10 days now ...

    July 19, 2014 at 11:27 am |
    • tallulah131

      And a lot going on in the world. It was earlier suggested that the Belief Blog staff was on vacation.

      July 19, 2014 at 11:47 am |
      • noahsdadtopher

        Then they should have had someone doing their job while they were gone. You know, like the rest of us have to do.

        July 19, 2014 at 11:49 am |
        • Science Works

          Another deal about the crazy repent deal .

          And since the rest of us heathens aren’t cooperating, they’re going to force it on the rest of us through government means, such Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad throwing the finger to the First Amendment to declare a special Christian repentance day for the whole state or, of course, by trying to make us live by their beliefs by restricting abortion or gay rights. And now, with Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, there’s a new means to try to force you to pay fealty to their beliefs, by giving employers the ability to manipulate your workplace conditions or compensation package to punish you for doing things their faith forbids.

          http://www.salon.com/2014/07/19/the_growing_trend_thats_got_the_religious_right_thoroughly_rattled_partner/

          July 19, 2014 at 12:09 pm |
        • ausphor

          Topher
          So lets talk about your double standard and how you justify same.
          You have no problem with handing out religious tracts and DVD's to other peoples children without the parents consent at Halloween no less.
          On the other hand in regards to your own offspring, "Unless they are born again Christians who hold the bible to be 100% God's inerrant infallible word, I (Topher) don't want them anywhere near teaching my children."
          It would be interesting the kind of subjects you (if you had the power) would allow to be taught to all children in public schools. I imagine evolution, sciences that disprove creationism, comparative religions, s&x education including safe s&x and contraception, etc, would not be on the curriculum.

          July 19, 2014 at 12:33 pm |
        • tallulah131

          Science: These sound like very desperate people to me. I guess if your religion is the only thing that makes you feel special, it's scary when the rest of the world moves away from it. And I wonder how many in Iowa were put off by their Governor's actions? I wonder how many votes he'll lose come election time?

          July 19, 2014 at 1:05 pm |
        • LaBella

          Gretchen Carlson is an idiot.

          July 19, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          ausphor

          Sorry it's taken me so long to respond ... was doing some yardwork ...

          "So lets talk about your double standard and how you justify same."

          I reject that it's a double standard. But sure ...

          "You have no problem with handing out religious tracts and DVD's to other peoples children without the parents consent at Halloween no less."

          The parents allowed their children to knock on my door for free stuff. What more permission do I need?

          "On the other hand in regards to your own offspring, "Unless they are born again Christians who hold the bible to be 100% God's inerrant infallible word, I (Topher) don't want them anywhere near teaching my children.""

          In regard to teaching the Bible, yes.

          "It would be interesting the kind of subjects you (if you had the power) would allow to be taught to all children in public schools. I imagine ..."

          "evolution,"

          No. It's not science and thus doesn't belong in a classroom.

          "sciences that disprove creationism,"

          Nice try, but nothing has disproven creationism.

          "comparative religions,"

          I'm fine with that. But you're then asking someone to teach a lot of stuff they likely don't understand themselves. I don't think it's very wise.

          "s&x education"

          Shouldn't be the schools' job. That's my job to teach my children.

          July 19, 2014 at 2:28 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          Science Works

          "Another deal about the crazy repent deal ."

          What crazy repent deal?

          "And since the rest of us heathens aren’t cooperating, they’re going to force it on the rest of us through government means,"

          No.

          "such Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad throwing the finger to the First Amendment to declare a special Christian repentance day for the whole state..."

          No idea what this governor is trying to do or his testimony, but Christians don't need a day to repent. And second if it's just for Christians, what are you worried about?

          "or, of course, by trying to make us live by their beliefs by restricting abortion or gay rights."

          Well, we get to vote, too.

          "And now, with Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, there’s a new means to try to force you to pay fealty to their beliefs, by giving employers the ability to manipulate your workplace conditions or compensation package to punish you for doing things their faith forbids."

          Business owners are allowed freedom of religion as well. The only things Hobby Lobby is against are the forms that cause abortions.

          July 19, 2014 at 2:38 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Topher,
          "Nice try, but nothing has disproven creationism."

          I can't remember everyone's predilections, but if you mean Young Earth Creationism based on a literal interpretation of the Bible then you are incorrect.

          July 19, 2014 at 2:47 pm |
        • LaBella

          Or what they believe causes abortions, even if it isn't true; the SC acknowledged that.
          Their right to practice their religion wasn't infringed upon at all.
          The SC ruled wrongly.
          It will eventually be overturned just as Dred Scott and the Jim Crow rulings were.

          Money talks.

          July 19, 2014 at 2:49 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          MidwestKen

          "I can't remember everyone's predilections, but if you mean Young Earth Creationism based on a literal interpretation of the Bible then you are incorrect."

          That's exactly what I mean.

          July 19, 2014 at 2:50 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Topher,
          Then you are incorrect.

          July 19, 2014 at 2:52 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          LaBella

          "Or what they believe causes abortions, even if it isn't true; the SC acknowledged that."

          Fair enough. But even the government and those methods' website acknowledge that those measures prevent a fertilized egg from implanting. Christians believe life starts at conception, not implantation. So those contraceptives would be abortifacients.

          "Their right to practice their religion wasn't infringed upon at all."

          If you mean Hobby Lobby, clearly it was.

          "The SC ruled wrongly."

          That's your opinion. And you're enti.tled to it.

          "Money talks."

          True. But also sad in the context of the Supreme Court.

          July 19, 2014 at 3:02 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          MidwestKen

          "Then you are incorrect."

          How so?

          July 19, 2014 at 3:03 pm |
        • LaBella

          Topher,
          "Fair enough. But even the government and those methods' website acknowledge that those measures prevent a fertilized egg from implanting. Christians believe life starts at conception, not implantation. So those contraceptives would be abortifacients."
          The whole implantation thing is a fairly recent development that is designed soley to give credence to the theory that these contraceptives cause abortions, and to give HL an out because they are now compelled by law to do up until the time the law was enacted, they did WILLINGLY.
          And, no, Topher, Christians don't believe that, some Christians do. The ones who want to impose their will over everyone in our secular country.
          Please don't forget that this isn't a theocracy, and the Government that can force births can also force abortions.
          Be careful what you wish for.

          If you mean Hobby Lobby, clearly it was.
          No.

          That's your opinion. And you're enti.tled to it.
          Yes. I'm a fan of the Constitution. The SC clearly isn't.

          True. But also sad in the context of the Supreme Court.
          Yes. And it will be their undoing. Their propensity to put corporations over people is appalling.

          July 19, 2014 at 3:28 pm |
        • Science Works

          Another view from the senate floor.

          Sen. Warren's Floor Speech on Hobby Lobby Decision

          Published on Jul 16, 2014

          Senator Warren delivered a floor speech on the Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby decision and urged passage of the Protect Women's Health from Corporate Interference Act, on July 15, 2014.

          {https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RyK02em7Nic}

          July 19, 2014 at 3:29 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Topher,
          "How so?"

          The age of the Earth is much older than ~10k years old (a common estimate used by many YECists) based on every known measure of its age, such as radiometric dating, dendrochronology, fission tracks, paleo-magnetic banding, etc.

          A literal interpretation of the Bible contains many things that contradict what the evidence tells us of the history of the Earth, for example, the "creation week" did not happen in the time frame mentioned nor the order of occurrence, a world wide flood did not occur as described, especially within the time since man has existed, Joshua's sun stoppage, etc.

          July 19, 2014 at 3:32 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          topher
          "The parents allowed their children to knock on my door for free stuff. What more permission do I need?"

          When they say "trick or treat" they expect a treat from you or you get a trick from them; they're not expecting a trick from you.

          July 19, 2014 at 4:57 pm |
        • Science Works

          He used his office/steps of the capitol topher ?

          from another tread – the dueling popes.

          colin31714

          Dan Burke – time for a new article, isn't it? I mean, we believers and atheist need to have a new article to make exactly the same arguments and counter arguments to each other under, don't we?
          July 15, 2014 at 2:29 pm | Reply

          bostontola

          lol.
          July 15, 2014 at 2:41 pm | Reply
          Dyslexic doG

          lolol
          July 15, 2014 at 5:30 pm | Reply
          Science Works

          New story – a Governor tells a whole state to repent – now that is crazy !!!

          http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2014/07/15/governor-tells-iowans-to-repent-in-official-proclamation-for-christian-revival-at-capitol/
          July 15, 2014 at 5:54 pm | Reply
          colin31714

          Wow, just wow. And then they get offended when people say they are batsh.it crazy
          July 15, 2014 at 5:56 pm | Reply
          Science Works

          And he doubled down on the batsh-it crazy and used the capital to announce it. Talk about flipping the finger at the
          consti-tution eh ?
          July 15, 2014 at 6:09 pm |

          July 19, 2014 at 6:12 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          LaBella

          "The whole implantation thing is a fairly recent development that is designed soley to give credence to the theory that these contraceptives cause abortions, and to give HL an out because they are now compelled by law to do up until the time the law was enacted, they did WILLINGLY."

          Recent? Maybe, but it's not new like as in just because of this law. It's been around at least as long as I've been a Christian. Remember, those forms of birth control are pretty new as well. Like I said, even the FDA agrees these things prevent implantation. And so do the companies' websites.

          "And, no, Topher, Christians don't believe that, some Christians do. The ones who want to impose their will over everyone in our secular country."

          You mean like how you want to impose your will over us? That's not much of an argument. And sure, SOME Christians. The ones who says the Bible is the Word of God.

          " Please don't forget that this isn't a theocracy, ..."

          I don't think anyone wants it to be a theocracy.

          July 19, 2014 at 6:41 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          MidwestKen

          "The age of the Earth is much older than ~10k years old (a common estimate used by many YECists) ..."

          I'd say more like 6,000, but I won't argue with 10,000.

          "ased on every known measure of its age, such as radiometric dating, dendrochronology, fission tracks, paleo-magnetic banding, etc."

          Radiometric dating is extremely suspect and proven to be untrustworthy. In fact, 90 percent of dating mechanisms point to a young earth.

          " literal interpretation of the Bible contains many things that contradict what the evidence tells us of the history of the Earth, for example, the "creation week" did not happen in the time frame mentioned nor the order of occurrence,"

          I know you believe that's true, but you understand that not of that has been proven to be false. None. In fact, it can't be due to historical science.

          " world wide flood did not occur as described, especially within the time since man has existed, Joshua's sun stoppage, etc."

          Actually, this is another matter of presuppositions and how you and I interpret data differently. If you believe God, the data fits perfectly with a worldwide flood.

          July 19, 2014 at 6:46 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          In Santa We Trust

          "When they say "trick or treat" they expect a treat from you or you get a trick from them; they're not expecting a trick from you."

          What better treat than to learn how to have assurance of eternity in Heaven?

          July 19, 2014 at 7:01 pm |
        • LaBella

          Topher,
          My will? No. Absurd.

          Religion has no authority in our country's laws. Or, at least, it shouldn't.
          And oh, yes, the implantation idea is arecent thing. Like the late 70's early 80's kind of recent. Do some research.
          I realize you are young, but I'm not, and I remember the procession of this whole debate.

          And it does not excuse HL for their duplicitous actions once it became settled law; they covered it up until it became settled law. They're very obvious.

          Here is what you don't understand: the woman contemplating an abortion, for whatever reason, doesn't infringe on your religious freedom in any way.
          The ones who find it morally repugnant/against their religion will not obtain one. Understand?
          If you want to follow God's laws, you are welcome to do so. You may not, however, force someone else to follow them. And you may not legislate your version of morality, because to do so in God's name is blatantly UnConstitutional.

          I'm a fan of the Consti>b>tution.

          July 19, 2014 at 7:19 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          topher,
          There's no evidence of heaven and even presuming there were, there is no assurance of entry – all religions and their many sub-sects make different claims as to qualification.

          July 19, 2014 at 7:25 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Topher,
          “Radiometric dating is extremely suspect and proven to be untrustworthy. In fact, 90 percent of dating mechanisms point to a young earth.”

          You’ve made this claim before and you are still incorrect. Present your evidence of these claims or drop them, if you are honest. And remember radiometric dating has to be used correctly, so unless you have peer reviewed paper showing that all types of radiometric dating is “untrustworthy” in their appropriate cases don’t bother. (e.g. radiocarbon dating on diamonds is not an appropriate test, even the supposed detection of C14 is invalid because the test in not valid, due to possible contamination, background traces, and margin of error. )

          “I know you believe that's true, but you understand that not of that has been proven to be false. None. In fact, it can't be due to historical science.”

          You’ve been drinking AIG kool-aid again. Science is science. This psuedo-scientifc distinction between operational and historical science is incorrect.

          “Actually, this is another matter of presuppositions and how you and I interpret data differently. If you believe God, the data fits perfectly with a worldwide flood.”

          No, the data does not. Among all sorts of physics issues with a world wide flood, it cannot explain the order found in the fossil record. To butcher some else’s observation, ‘why are there no rabbits in the pre-cambrian?’

          July 19, 2014 at 7:41 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          LaBella

          My will? No. Absurd."

          It's NOT your will?

          "Religion has no authority in our country's laws. Or, at least, it shouldn't."

          It shouldn't establish a religion, I agree. But of course you realize this country was established on Christian principles.

          "And oh, yes, the implantation idea is arecent thing. Like the late 70's early 80's kind of recent. Do some research.
          I realize you are young, but I'm not, and I remember the procession of this whole debate. "

          Yes, and I'm pretty sure the ones Hobby Lobby have a problem with are about that new as well. Remember, they don't have a problem with condoms and such.

          "And it does not excuse HL for their duplicitous actions once it became settled law; they covered it up until it became settled law. They're very obvious. "

          What did Hobby Lobby cover up?

          "Here is what you don't understand: the woman contemplating an abortion, for whatever reason, doesn't infringe on your religious freedom in any way."

          It does if she expects me to pay for it.

          "The ones who find it morally repugnant/against their religion will not obtain one. Understand?"

          Probably. But it's not only Christians who find it morally repugnant.

          "If you want to follow God's laws, you are welcome to do so. You may not, however, force someone else to follow them."

          I agree. But that's not what's going on here. And besides, "forcing" you to be a Christian won't help you.

          "And you may not legislate your version of morality, because to do so in God's name is blatantly UnConsti.tutional. "

          It's not "my version" of morality, it's God's. Every law we create is legislating morality. If there isn't a higher standard (God) that says what is moral, morality is just your opinion versus mine. And so I'm sure you'll disagree with me on this, but because it should be more than just an opinion, I'd say God's side is a better place to stand on these issues.

          July 19, 2014 at 8:24 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          In Santa We Trust

          "There's no evidence of heaven and even presuming there were, there is no assurance of entry – all religions and their many sub-sects make different claims as to qualification."

          True. Only Christianity offers assurance.

          July 19, 2014 at 8:37 pm |
        • Science Works

          Please share with the little one topher.

          {https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ei6qGLBTsKM}

          July 19, 2014 at 8:41 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          MidwestKen

          "And remember radiometric dating has to be used correctly, so unless you have peer reviewed paper showing that all types of radiometric dating is “untrustworthy” in their appropriate cases don’t bother."

          Just because an article is peer reviewed that doesn't make it correct. That only means those people have the same worldview.

          "(e.g. radiocarbon dating on diamonds is not an appropriate test, even the supposed detection of C14 is invalid because the test in not valid, due to possible contamination, background traces, and margin of error. )"

          Right. You don't get the results you like, so you throw it out. Which is why we only hear about those 10 percent that agree with millions of years.

          "Science is science. This psuedo-scientifc distinction between operational and historical science is incorrect."

          I agree science is science. But how the world was created can never be proven. It's not testable or repeatable ... thus not meeting the scientific standard. Thus the distinction between historical and observational.

          "No, the data does not. Among all sorts of physics issues with a world wide flood, it cannot explain the order found in the fossil record."

          The order in the fossil record? Who's been drinking the Kool-Aid? If a worldwide flood were true, what should we expect to find? Millions of dead things buried in rock layers laid down by water. And what do we actually see? Millions of dead things buried in rock layers laid down by water.

          "To butcher some else’s observation, ‘why are there no rabbits in the pre-cambrian?’"

          That's your evidence? First of all, the amount of fossils we have in comparison to what has lived is staggering in it's lack. And then add what percentage of mammals we have (infinitesimal). So you're rejecting God based on the fact there aren't any rabbit fossils? Wow.

          July 19, 2014 at 8:48 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Topher,
          “Right. You don't get the results you like, so you throw it out. Which is why we only hear about those 10 percent that agree with millions of years.”

          No, if you understand how the process works then you can avoid accept readings that are incorrect. I wouldn’t accept the images from a microscope if I’m studying the rings of Saturn nor the color of litmus paper for the temperature of my tea.
          In addition, please present your basis for “10 percent” or admit that you are making up numbers.

          “But how the world was created can never be proven. It's not testable or repeatable ... thus not meeting the scientific standard. Thus the distinction between historical and observational”

          DNA at the scene of a crime is DNA. The background microwave radiation is CMBR. The ratio of parent to daughter elements in a sample is the ratio. This is real scientific verifiable data, not operational, not historical, just data.

          “The order in the fossil record? Who's been drinking the Kool-Aid?”

          Yes, there is an order because the variety of life developed over millions of years and left evidence of itself in the layers of rock in a certain order.

          “ If a worldwide flood were true, what should we expect to find? Millions of dead things buried in rock layers laid down by water. And what do we actually see? Millions of dead things buried in rock layers laid down by water.”

          How simplistic can you get? You really don’t know how geology or evolution work, do you? Why are there no birds before land animals in the geologic records, as opposed to how the Bible tells the story?

          “So you're rejecting God based on the fact there aren't any rabbit fossils? Wow.”

          I didn’t say anything about a supposed God, that is but one reason to reject the Creation and Flood stories in the Bible. Here are some more: Why are there no flowers before land animals, as the Bible says. Why are there no reptiles before fish? Why no fish before bacteria? etc. etc. etc.
          If the a flood laid down the fossils at one time all of these things would have been apparent in the fossil record. Yes, there is an order to geologic layers and it is there for a reason.
          After all this time on here and you still don’t understand that simple concept? Wow.

          July 19, 2014 at 9:26 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          MidwestKen

          "In addition, please present your basis for “10 percent” or admit that you are making up numbers."

          It's called Google. All the kids are using it.

          "DNA at the scene of a crime is DNA."

          Agreed. And any investigator will tell you that a crimescene goes cold after 48 hours. We still don't know if Lee Harvey Oswald worked alone, yet we are supposed to know what happened billions of years ago.

          "The background microwave radiation is CMBR. The ratio of parent to daughter elements in a sample is the ratio. This is real scientific verifiable data, not operational, not historical, just data."

          No, those are observable.

          "Yes, there is an order because the variety of life developed over millions of years and left evidence of itself in the layers of rock in a certain order."

          You do see your presupposition here, right?

          "How simplistic can you get?"

          Pretty simple. I don't need big words to sound smart. I just need the facts.

          "You really don’t know how geology or evolution work, do you?"

          I have a pretty good understanding of how evolution supposedly works. But I don't believe in it. First because it goes against Scripture. Second because even science rejects it.

          "Why are there no birds before land animals in the geologic records, as opposed to how the Bible tells the story?"

          "How the Bible tells the story" and the geologic record has nothing to do with each other. There's a very good reason that 90-some percent of fossils are aquatic invertebrates.

          "Here are some more: Why are there no flowers before land animals, as the Bible says. Why are there no reptiles before fish? Why no fish before bacteria? etc. etc. etc."

          Why does that matter?

          If the a flood laid down the fossils at one time all of these things would have been apparent in the fossil record. Yes, there is an order to geologic layers and it is there for a reason."

          They are. You and I have the same data (the layers) ... but how we each interpret it depends on our presuppositions.

          July 19, 2014 at 9:45 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Topher,
          “It's called Google. All the kids are using it.”

          “Google” is not a reference or a citation. I’ll assume by your non-answer that you made up that number.

          “And any investigator will tell you that a crimescene goes cold after 48 hours. “

          The folks at the Innocence Project might disagree.

          “Pretty simple. “

          Fair enough. I’ll try to keep things simple for you.

          “I have a pretty good understanding of how evolution supposedly works. But I don't believe in it. First because it goes against Scripture. Second because even science rejects it.”

          Apparently you don’t not understand evolution, otherwise you wouldn’t claim that it goes against science. And what does “Scripture” have to do with science?

          “‘How the Bible tells the story’ and the geologic record has nothing to do with each other.”

          Finally, we can agree on something.

          “Why does that matter?”

          I’ll try to keep this simple. If the facts contradict the hypothesis then the hypothesis is wrong and the facts contradict the global flood hypothesis.

          “They are. You and I have the same data (the layers) ... but how we each interpret it depends on our presuppositions.”

          But apparently we are not even dealing with the same facts. Do you agree that there is a progression of fossils in the geologic record? If so, then how is that explained in a world wide flood. If not, then, again, show me a bird fossil before any appearance of land animals.

          July 19, 2014 at 10:32 pm |
        • tallulah131

          It is pointless arguing with topher. He heard a story he likes and will spend the rest of his life lying to himself and to everyone around him in order to maintain his belief in that story. I feel sorry for him, because reality is just so much better than mythology.

          July 20, 2014 at 12:31 am |
        • TruthPrevails1

          "You have no problem with handing out religious tracts and DVD's to other peoples children without the parents consent at Halloween no less."

          Really topher? Wow, I'd have taken it back to you. It is not up to you to push your personal beliefs on other peoples children. I bet few kids return the following year...geez, they want candy and they should get it...it's part of the fun in being a kid and you ruin it for them...that's simply sad.

          July 20, 2014 at 1:25 pm |
        • LaBella

          It's NOT your will?
          No.

          It shouldn't establish a religion, I agree. But of course you realize this country was established on Christian principles.

          It shouldn't show preference for a religion. That is what the FF intended. Because you prefer your religion, you naturally conflate that with what the FF intended.

          Yes, and I'm pretty sure the ones Hobby Lobby have a problem with are about that new as well. Remember, they don't have a problem with condoms and such.

          Their timing is specious. They had no problem with Plan B!s coverage before it became mandated law. And no matter how you try to reconcile it, HL isn't a religious organization.

          What did Hobby Lobby cover up?

          They coveredPlan B in their insurance coverage up until it became settled law.

          It does if she expects me to pay for it.

          You're not. It's part of their benefits package. SCOTUS dropped the ball, and will see their perfidy when other religions jump on the bandwagon. And they will.

          Probably. But it's not only Christians who find it morally repugnant.

          Let me rephrase. Those who find it morally repugnant won't obtain one. The laws cannot dictate what each individuals must find morally repugnant as it pertains to abortion. Understand?

          I agree. But that's not what's going on here. And besides, "forcing" you to be a Christian won't help you.

          Forcing laws based on Christian faith is UnConstitutional. Period.

          It's not "my version" of morality, it's God's. Every law we create is legislating morality. If there isn't a higher standard (God) that says what is moral, morality is just your opinion versus mine. And so I'm sure you'll disagree with me on this, but because it should be more than just an opinion, I'd say God's side is a better place to stand on these issues.

          I meant the Christian version of morality, which seems to vary, since the goalposts are moved regularly.
          Theocracy isn't, and I pray, never going to be our form of government.
          And I thank God for that.

          July 20, 2014 at 1:57 pm |
    • bostontola

      topher,
      Start your own topic in a comment.

      July 19, 2014 at 11:59 am |
    • Science Works

      Hey topher – 4 billion years ago.

      Evolution of life's operating system revealed in detail

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140715142407.htm

      July 19, 2014 at 8:26 pm |
  12. Prayer is a waste of time.

    Prayer takes people away from actually working on real solutions to their problems.
    Prayer prevents you from getting badly needed exercise. Prayer makes you fat.
    Prayer wears out your clothes prematurely.
    Prayer contributes to global warming through excess CO2 emissions.
    Prayer messes up your knees and your neck and your back.
    Prayer reveals how stupid you are to the world.
    Prayer makes you think doilies are exciting.
    Prayer makes you secretively flatulent and embarrassed about it.
    Prayer makes your kids avoid spending time with you.
    Prayer makes you frothy like Rick Santorum. Just google him and frothy to find out.
    Prayer makes you hoard cats.
    Prayer dulls your senses.
    Prayer makes you post really stupid stuff.
    Prayer has been shown to have no discernible effect towards what was prayed for.
    Prayer wastes time and is completely useless.

    July 19, 2014 at 10:57 am |
    • Robert Brown

      Even if we assume there is no God, I think prayer is still beneficial. If something is troubling you, just the action of vocalizing it can relieve stress and anxiety.

      July 19, 2014 at 11:18 am |
      • Dalahäst

        But one of the negative aspects of prayer is hoarding cats. Nobody can deny that.

        July 19, 2014 at 11:25 am |
      • bostontola

        I agree. There are many scientific studies showing that meditation/prayer has health and brain benefits. Nothing supernatural, just fully natural benefits. They have measured various chemicals associated with stress responses and brain wave patterns. It's real.

        July 19, 2014 at 11:42 am |
        • Reality

          Maybe not.

          "Since the 1950s hundreds of studies on meditation have been conducted, though many of the early studies were flawed and thus yielded unreliable results.[175][176] More recent reviews have pointed out many of these flaws with the hope of guiding current research into a more fruitful path.[177] More reports assessed that further research needs to be directed towards the theoretical grounding and definition of meditation.[175][178}

          Awasthi, B (Dec 2012). "Issues and perspectives in meditation research: In search for a definition". Front. Psychology.: 3:613.

          July 19, 2014 at 1:10 pm |
        • idiotusmaximus

          . They have measured various chemicals associated with stress responses and brain wave patterns. It’s real....

          You wanna hand me the toilet paper....please.

          July 19, 2014 at 2:15 pm |
        • LaBella

          Oh, who cares, Reality? If meditation brings someone comfort, who cares?
          How is that affecting you? It's not. Good grief.

          July 19, 2014 at 1:39 pm |
        • Reality

          LaBella,

          Just add meditation and prayer to the list of time-wasters. Other time- wasters, watching the World cup, golf, baseball, football and basketball games, viewing three or more hours of TV dramas et. al. Better that we play these sports and better that we read and write and do useful hobbies to keep our minds usefully occupied.

          And from my scrapbook:

          Free Will and Future are inherent to all the thinking beings in the Universe. This being the case, it is not possible to alter life with prayers or meditation. Statistically, your request might come true but it is simply the result of the variability/randomness of Nature..

          So put down your rosaries and prayer beads and stop worshiping/revering cows or bowing to Mecca five times a day. Instead work hard at your job, take care of aging parents, volunteer at a soup kitchen, donate to charities and the poor and continue to follow any good rules of living as gracious and good human beings.

          July 19, 2014 at 4:20 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          Religiously spamming this message board with the same, off-topic posts daily – that's not a time waster. Not at all.

          References available upon request.

          July 19, 2014 at 4:28 pm |
        • Reality

          Spending 10 to 20 minutes a day to help eliminate the irrationality of religion is time well spent. And obviously I am not alone in this endeavor. Onward Soldiers of Atheism !!!!

          July 19, 2014 at 11:31 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          You are not that rational.

          July 20, 2014 at 9:28 am |
        • LaBella

          Reality, put down your device and go outside.
          If someone praying doesn't affect you, and it doesn't, you are wasting time even researching it.
          So, in that, you're hypocritical.

          July 20, 2014 at 2:03 pm |
        • Reality

          Rational thinking and conclusions require extensive reviews of the subject in question. Dalahast have you completed perusing the list of historic Jesus references? And Labella have you perused the same references?. Get back to the Atheists Forever Marching Onward commentators when you are done.

          July 20, 2014 at 6:24 pm |
        • Bob

          Reality, keep up your posting. Great work you are doing in helping rid the world of the foul supersti.tion known as Christianity. That horrid religion teaches some awful stuff, as shown in these direct quotes from the Christian book of nasty AKA the bible, from both foul testaments:

          Numbers 31:17-18
          17 Now kiII all the boys. And kiII every woman who has slept with a man,
          18 but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man.

          Deuteronomy 13:6 – “If your brother, your mother’s son or your son or daughter, or the wife you cherish, or your friend who is as your own soul entice you secretly, saying, let us go and serve other gods … you shall surely kill him; your hand shall be first against him to put him to death”

          1 Timothy 2:11
          "Let a woman learn quietly with all submissiveness. I do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man; rather, she is to remain quiet. For Adam was formed first, then Eve; and Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor."

          Revelation 2:23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.

          Leviticus 25
          44 “‘Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves.
          45 You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property.
          46 You can bequeath them to your children as inherited property and can make them slaves for life, but you must not rule over your fellow Israelites ruthlessly.

          Note that the bible is also very clear that you should sacrifice and burn an animal today because the smell makes sicko Christian sky fairy happy. No, you don't get to use the parts for food. You burn them, a complete waste of the poor animal.

          Yes, the bible really says that, everyone. Yes, it's in Leviticus, look it up. Yes, Jesus purportedly said that the OT commands still apply. No exceptions. But even if you think the OT was god's mistaken first go around, you have to ask why a perfect, loving enti-ty would ever put such horrid instructions in there. If you think rationally at all, that is.

          And then, if you disagree with my interpretation, ask yourself how it is that your "god" couldn't come up with a better way to communicate than a book that is so readily subject to so many interpretations and to being taken "out of context", and has so many mistakes in it. Pretty pathetic god that you've made for yourself.

          So get out your sacrificial knife or your nasty sky creature will torture you eternally. Or just take a closer look at your foolish supersti-tions, understand that they are just silly, and toss them into the dustbin with all the rest of the gods that man has created.

          Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement.
          Be free of Christianity and other superstitions.
          http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

          July 20, 2014 at 10:32 pm |
  13. austin929

    @ kenmargo

    "Let me get this straight austin...........He had mental issues, yet had a hundred grand in the house and was able to barricade the door."

    Ken Doug was in a wreck in 1995 and he had a long recovery. He had a job and was able to build up the equity after buying that house in 1998. He was in the mortgage journal as going through a second option on the house.

    "Despite these mental issues, he had 14 guns! HIs problem was with the NRA, not the police."

    Doug was a hunter. in 1996 and earlier i remember loading shells at his house, I was best friends with his step son and we went bird hunting many times. Doug had many hunting buddies.......but understand that doug never had ticket for ANYTHING. he was 65 and he was had a perfect record.

    LaBella

    "Austin, with all due respect, he wrote letters to the sheriff's office and police saying he would kill them if they tried to evict him; they also said he was pointing a shotgun at them when they broke through the barricade.
    They didn't know it was unloaded. It presented imminent danger."
    I get you don't respect authority, but you also don't get to make up your own laws because you don't like the prevailing ones.

    Where was the senator? Why didn't he make sure his step-dad was taken care of, that his home was up to date on the mortgage payments? As far as the law was concerned, he was a squatter...

    I am sorry for this man, and my condolences to your best friend; I wish someone had stepped up to the plate before this whole episode escalated as far as it did."

    @ Bella, doug had paid on the house since 1998, how many years of equity is that? it was a nice house in a nice neighborhood. Doug lost his job last year. He was struggling at 65 with a brain injury.

    Bella, where did you hear he threatened to kill the cops? I had not heard that, i heard he told the cops he wasnt leaving his property because he owned it.

    TruthPrevails1

    "Austin: That's a tragic loss and I'm sorry. Let me ask though, do you believe that stricter regulations need to be put in place for gun owners? I find that 14 guns and being mentally unstable tend to be potential for disaster to begin with."

    T.P. ya he had 14 guns but he was just an avid hunter and fisherman. He was no party guy . he had classic side by side shot guns, he loaded his shells, he had hunting weapons that he frequently used. he took me hunting in beaver city nebraska and there were pheasants sitting in trees back then.. He had a whole array of hunting buddies. He didn't have assault weaponry.

    I have no problem with gun laws or not. and i really don't have a problem with someone guarding their property either . I don have a problem with people who shoot other people, including cops who think they not guilty of second degree murder when they break down someones door and have to shoot them.

    If someone is not guilty of murder, and you kill that person, that makes you guilty of murder. The death penalty si only for someone who has had a trial and killed.

    The united states is not innocent.
    The government is not special.

    @ Alias

    Man has a law that is not righteous. You are never free of God's law Alias.
    Alias, you can go crawl back to the king of Briton and put a whig on.

    July 18, 2014 at 11:17 pm |
    • tallulah131

      The police have the right to protect themselves, and more and more these days they are becoming targets for people who don't respect the law. The number of police officers killed for just doing their job is very much on the rise – bad news for those of us who are law abiding citizens.

      If someone points a gun at a police officer while that officer is attempting to do his/her job, that officer is certainly entitled to shoot first. This isn't anarchy, this is a nation of laws, and if we want to live in a civilized country we must abide by those laws whether we like them or not. There are processes to change laws that don't involve guns. This is not the "Wild West" no matter how much some people wish it was.

      I'm sorry about your friend, but people fall between the cracks when their loved ones don't take the time to take care of them when they can't take care of themselves. This is not the fault of the law or the police. This is the fault of the people who claimed to care for this man, who ignored warning signs and did nothing.

      July 19, 2014 at 11:41 am |
      • thesamyaza

        if a cop points a gun at me do i have the right to shoot first?

        July 19, 2014 at 1:17 pm |
        • LaBella

          If you want to commit suicide by cop, sure.

          July 19, 2014 at 1:34 pm |
        • tallulah131

          If you wish to end up dead or incarcerated, feel free to shoot a cop who is doing his job. If you are innocent, your best bet is to cooperate and not make the situation worse, but if you don't care about law, or the safety of the people around you, please do as you will. You will be dealt with accordingly, and another person who holds themselves above the law of the land and the safety of the community will be off the street.

          July 19, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          as we see a further expanse of the police state it worms the cockles of my heart me to see people still hold to the infallibility of cops. i just don't understand the Lawful alinement, you are all batshit so when the police brake into your home on a drug raid shoot you and your family killing them and you survive unable to walk i hope you except their apology that it was the wrong house, and no one faces any kind of punishment for this grievous error.

          i personally am a criminal, how dare i ask for getter accountability from are boys in blue, how dare i say they be held to a hire standard then citizens, how dare i video tape them braking the law. just because its the job of the police to oppress, lie, beat,, Coerce, and kill, does not make it right. its like saying a slave has a right to trade people because it his job.

          not the police was original establish to maintain order among slaves.

          July 19, 2014 at 2:49 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          http://rt.com/usa/swat-billings-burns-fasching-312/

          July 19, 2014 at 2:55 pm |
        • tallulah131

          I'm wondering if you meant to say that you are not a criminal, since what you said was that you were.

          We live in a nation of laws. If you don't like those laws, there are peaceful means of changing them. Innocents very rarely get harmed in police action, but they get harmed a lot by the actions of criminals. The county were I grew up recently voted against taxes to support the police. As a result, a woman was assaulted by her ex-husband because no one was there to come to her aid when she called 911. You may wish to live like that. I much prefer civilization.

          Actions have real consequences. If you pull a gun on the police, expect to be shot or arrested (or both). If you do so while they are legally doing their job, they will be absolutely justified in any court of law.

          July 19, 2014 at 4:19 pm |
        • tallulah131

          So do you think if you pulled a gun on the police during a botched raid that you could have saved the day? Accidents happen and mistakes are made because even the police are human. I would much rather be hurt by a police officer trying to get criminals off the street than by a criminal trying to harm me, or by a yahoo with a gun who thinks he's Rambo.

          July 19, 2014 at 4:22 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1356673/Police-ignored-pleas-help-woman-shot-face-ex-husband–threatened-kill-her.html

          July 19, 2014 at 4:23 pm |
        • tallulah131

          http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/12/officer-gas-station-fire_n_5485528.html

          http://www.okcfox.com/story/26036949/caught-on-cam-cleveland-cop-saves-two-year-old-from-drowning

          http://www.cbsnews.com/news/police-off-duty-cop-saved-lives-in-mall/

          We can post stories all day. If you want to be a criminal, then enjoy the consequences.

          July 19, 2014 at 4:44 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          nearly every one in the united states is a criminal of some sorts. and if not their working on it.

          July 19, 2014 at 5:06 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          thesamyaza,
          There may be a lot of gun violence and incarceration compared to other developed nations but the vast majority are not criminals or wannabe criminals.

          July 19, 2014 at 5:11 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          sorry for the misconception the word their is implied at "THEM" their working on making every one in the united stats a criminal by passing more laws, essentially criminalizing more.

          July 19, 2014 at 5:14 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          If you think you are going to solve any problems by fighting the cops you are sorely mistaken. Of course cops are not infallable...but you don't fight them directly. You have to fight in the courts. If you take the law into your own hands by fighting the police you are only going to lose.

          July 19, 2014 at 6:49 pm |
      • LaBella

        Since you're an admitted criminal, you'll get what you give.

        July 19, 2014 at 3:33 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          yes because self defense, civil involvement in one community, and doubting the polices infallibility is a crime is a crime

          July 19, 2014 at 3:40 pm |
        • tallulah131

          You should re-read your post. Your exact words: "i personally am a criminal,"

          July 19, 2014 at 4:23 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          yes i put vanilla ice cream on chary pie in Nevada, i practice sodomy in Florida, i film the police braking the law in Chicago. i supported Hamas and their fight of Resistance against occupation and i drove my car wearing a housecoat. i am a criminal. because the law is unjust.

          July 19, 2014 at 4:30 pm |
        • tallulah131

          Basically, you are just ridiculous.

          July 19, 2014 at 4:41 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          who as not broken some law, i would like to meet them so i can personally call them a LIER

          July 19, 2014 at 5:16 pm |
        • LaBella

          Yeah, the Karma Police are a bitch.

          July 19, 2014 at 6:36 pm |
      • thesamyaza

        all i am saying is cops should be held accountable for their crimes, no one has the right to kill any one.

        the murderer of my friend martin cotton is still free to this day, even though judges have proved they murdered him, and the tax payers now have to pay 4.5 million to the family while the murderer is free to kill again and he has, just because he wears a badge, is this fair,...

        the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) is the most deadly gang in California, they get away with murder with impunity.
        and as a member of the neighborhood watch they are the ones i get calls of complaints against most. if i was not such good friends with the sheriff I'd become a vigilante, well more then i am now.

        July 19, 2014 at 5:03 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          It wasn't a total whitewash – Laird was tried.
          Sometimes we hear reports and wonder how can trained officers make such a mess of a situation, but I guess we all make mistakes in our jobs and often these incidents are high-stress and easily escalate out of control.

          July 19, 2014 at 5:19 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          trained officer? their no such thing in Eureka, seriously i witness a cop trip over hes own two feet chasing an assailant breaking is nose, then claimed the guy broke his nose. still laird should have went to prison and not been able to commit another murder and an attempt of murder the attempted murder (strange to because the only other cop more violent then him blew the whistle on the attempt)

          July 19, 2014 at 5:26 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          still if you beat some one to death and just say oops; you do not get to go back into society the next day, unless your a cop.

          July 19, 2014 at 5:28 pm |
      • thesamyaza

        we can not have a just society until those sworn to uphold our justice face a higher standard when committing an injustice.

        July 19, 2014 at 5:30 pm |
        • LaBella

          I agree, but acting in a reckless manner, such as pointing a firearm at a policeman and not expecting some sort of repercussion, is foolhardy.

          July 19, 2014 at 6:40 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          i was mealy making a statement that the cop is no more entitled to shoot first then you are.

          July 19, 2014 at 7:31 pm |
        • LaBella

          If you point a firearm at a policeman, yes, they are.

          July 19, 2014 at 7:40 pm |
        • LaBella

          And if they order you to drop your weapon, and you disobey, they will shoot you.
          So, don't act stupidly, and you won't get shot.

          July 19, 2014 at 7:42 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          and i will say it again what if he pulls a gun on me, I'm i just to obey his coercion and let him shoot me?

          if a cop walked up to you and pulled a gun on you and threatens to shoot you do you obey him?

          does a police officer right to coerce citizens into obedience supersede the right to defend ones person?

          why do we give special rights to the FOP, rights that entitled them to Violence, Extortion, Concision, Theft, conspiracy, ect.
          no member of FOP has ever been voted on by the people, the are not Representative, we have given them no authority and yet they have it. we should disband the FOP gang and half the money(government contracts) we give to these for profit corporation should go into the sheriffs and organization that is actually accountable to the people under the judicial branch of government. the other half can go to education which decreases crime. you can in fact recall a sheriff you cannot recall a chief of police

          July 19, 2014 at 10:47 pm |
        • Alias

          If you give the cop a reason to draw his weapon, and fail to obey him, then it is YOUR FAULT if you get shot.
          Your paranoia does not excuse criminal actions. Avid hunters do not have the right to point guns at people, especially not the polilce who are trying to do their job.
          What gives your friends the right to quit paying their bills and illegally claim a house they don't own?
          You are one sick twisted little self centered idiot who needs professional help before your hurt innocent people.

          July 20, 2014 at 12:01 am |
        • thesamyaza

          What gives your friends the right to quit paying their bills and illegally claim a house they don't own?
          You are one sick twisted little self centered idiot who needs professional help before your hurt innocent people.

          "If you give the cop a reason to draw his weapon, and fail to obey him, then it is YOUR FAULT if you get shot.
          Your paranoia does not excuse criminal actions. Avid hunters do not have the right to point guns at people, especially not the polilce who are trying to do their job."

          and the police have no right to point their guns at people as well a hunters.

          What gives your friends the right to quit paying their bills and illegally claim a house they don't own?

          the right of the human animal to live, humans need shelter in order to live thus shelter is a human right

          and the people who occupy an abandoned house, is not a criminal why is it that we as a civilized people have more empty homes then homeless.

          You are one sick twisted little self centered idiot who needs professional help before your hurt innocent people.

          I'm self centered because i speak up for those who are abused by FOP, i'm self centered because, i'm willing to pay more taxes to benefit those in my community. I'm self centered because i get between cops abusing people so they can reach a quota, I'm self centered for spending my free time trying to help a junkie get his life together, i'm self center because i work to strengthen my community, i'm self centered because i chose to live in mediocrity instead of over using every resource i have available to increase my bottom line for the benefit of my neighbors, i'm self center because instead of giving my employes 8.50 i give them the wage of 15 an hour plus benefits.... i don't think i know the definition of self centered,
          is it?
          well meaning and kindly. serving a charitable rather than a profit-making purpose.

          or do you not understand the word

          maybe i should just let the human race kill it self, but no i go out of my way to try and make you better animals to your own filthy species. it bad enough your all parasites your parasites who cannot work together.

          tell you what the next time i see a cop beating up a mentally ill homeless man for sleeping, i wont pull out my camera, instead ill be another self centered human and walk away and not risk my neck out for a stranger.

          dude it pretty well known on this blog i'm a Altruist misanthrope. Altruist misanthropes are generous people by nature, because we do not want to be like the rest of you.

          wait then i am self centered aren't I, sorry i'm kind of a narcissist i love the fact that those in my neighborhood would rather call me then the cops.

          wooow existential break down...

          still it does not change the fact that the FOP are a criminal gang.

          July 20, 2014 at 12:59 am |
        • LaBella

          So you think your right to wave a gun around trumps the rights of others who probably called the cops in the first place because you were waving a gun around in the first place, cowboy?

          Why should you be surprised when you get shot after you pull a gun on a cop and then, when he tells you to drop it or he'll shoot, you get shot?

          July 20, 2014 at 2:19 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          its a false dichotomy to believe if your involved with FOP you have already done something wrong.

          July 20, 2014 at 5:38 pm |
    • LaBella

      Test

      July 19, 2014 at 1:13 pm |
    • LaBella

      @ Bella, doug had paid on the house since 1998, how many years of equity is that? it was a nice house in a nice neighborhood. Doug lost his job last year. He was struggling at 65 with a brain injury.
      Mortgages don't work that way, Austin. You don't pay your mortgage, you don't get to live off the equity that may have been built up during the previous 16 years of actually paying.
      You also stated that he had 100,000 dollars in his house; obviously he wasn't struggling. If he indeed had a brain injury, (and I have no reason to disbelieve you) his FAMILY, including your best friend and the senator, should not have dropped the ball and let this sad case escalate as far as it did.
      So, again, where were they?
      Make no mistake, I feel bad for this gentleman. But I do not feel all that sympathetic for your friend or the senator.
      And blaming the police for their own failings is disingenuous.

      Bella, where did you hear he threatened to kill the cops? I had not heard that, i heard he told the cops he wasnt leaving his property because he owned
      I read about it in the newspaper accounts. And he no longer owned the property, as he failed to keep up with the payments.
      As far as the law is concerned, he was a squatter.
      When you don't make car payments, your car gets repo'ed. If you don't make mortgage payments or property tax payments, your house gets repo'ed. (Simplistic analogy, but I hope you understand my gist,)
      If you point a gun at police, you will get shot.
      This is common sense. If the man lacked it because he was brain damaged, he should have been properly looked after by his friends, family, and church.

      This whole thing was avoidable. Period.

      July 19, 2014 at 1:32 pm |
      • Alias

        thesamyaza
        We should also mention that the attempt at justification based on "god's law" in 100% invalid.
        I don't get to put MY god's laws ahead of the yours, do I?

        July 20, 2014 at 12:07 am |
        • thesamyaza

          of course not

          i feel to see the relevance in your post though.

          July 20, 2014 at 12:22 am |
  14. bostontola

    I think I may be gaining some understanding of the differences of how I perceive the world and some believers. This post by Theo is very revealing:

    "Rationality does not mean that you stick strictly to objective means to verify truth. That's being closed. How can you objectively verify an emotion such as love? You can put all the chemicals involved in our bodies when we feel love and put them into a bowl, but you can't say that the bowl loves you... There is something to reality that encompasses more than just that which is objectively determined."

    I see the objective world as quite different than the subjective world. I regard objective facts as different than subjective truths. I recognize subjective truths that can't currently be verified objectively. I love chocolate, you have to take my word for it.

    If I feel strongly about a theory, you might even say I love it, and objective evidence says it is false, I get disappointed and eventually I drop it. This is because I recognize that my instincts, feelings, and subjective judgment is far from perfect. I yield my judgment to objective facts verified by test and criticism.

    Not all things are currently tested or even testable. In those cases I trust my subjective judgment balanced by reason. But when objective test conflicts, I trust that over my subjective judgment.

    When objective fact is not distinguished from subjective judgment, this is not done. Some trust their subjective judgment over objective fact even though we are vulnerable to many biases like confirmation bias, selection bias, etc. The scientific method has a high level of protection from those biases, not immunity, but high levels of protection.

    I would ask believers to understand that I get subjective truth, just as much as you do. The difference is, I don't trust it above objective fact.

    A person like me is not guaranteed to be an atheist. A believer can make all the distinctions I do. It is not possible for a literal believer in the bible to do so, but most believers are not. I am an atheist because I believe there is no God, not because I know that. The difference between me and a Deist is minuscule.

    I don't believe in a God for a simple reason, the universe (all dimensions, multiverses, etc.) has some complexity/information content. Adding a God, at least doubles that complexity/information content. It seems redundant.

    July 18, 2014 at 7:03 pm |
    • austin929

      and you can objectively say that God has been added?

      Bostontola, you seem to be an authority of fact now.

      July 18, 2014 at 11:19 pm |
      • bostontola

        There was no sequence intended. The calculus was purely hypothetical and was not represented as fact at all. You read that in.

        July 18, 2014 at 11:44 pm |
  15. Reality

    Again, Theo has not read the recommended historical Jesus references. Dalahast says he has and I am sure can locate the following commentary:

    "Robert Kysar writes the following on the authorship of the Gospel of John (The Anchor Bible Dictionary, v. 3, pp. 919-920):

    The supposition that the author was one and the same with the beloved disciple is often advanced as a means of insuring that the evangelist did witness Jesus' ministry. Two other passages are advanced as evidence of the same – 19:35 and 21:24. But both falter under close scrutiny. 19:35 does not claim that the author was the one who witnessed the scene but only that the scene is related on the sound basis of eyewitness. 21:24 is part of the appendix of the gospel and should not be assumed to have come from the same hand as that responsible for the body of the gospel. Neither of these passages, therefore, persuades many Johannine scholars that the author claims eyewitness status. "

    Of course Dalahast also knows where to find the following information. Or does he? Said information is very pertinent to the current crisis in Palestine.

    "The notion that the Bible is not literally true "is more or less settled and understood among most Conservative rabbis," observed David Wolpe, a rabbi at Sinai Temple in Los Angeles and a contributor to "Etz Hayim." But some congregants, he said, "may not like the stark airing of it." Last Passover, in a sermon to 2,200 congregants at his synagogue, Rabbi Wolpe frankly said that "virtually every modern archaeologist" agrees "that the way the Bible describes the Exodus is not the way that it happened, if it happened at all." The rabbi offered what he called a "LITANY OF DISILLUSION”' about the narrative, including contradictions, improbabilities, chronological lapses and the absence of corroborating evidence. In fact, he said, archaeologists digging in the Sinai have "found no trace of the tribes of Israel - not one shard of pottery."

    July 18, 2014 at 2:36 pm |
    • Theo Phileo

      I've been studying theology for decades, and I've read more books on the "true Jesus" than I'd care to admit. I'm an avid reader, and although I didn't look up your specific sources, let me assure you that I am acutely aware of the issues they raise. Their positions against John being the author of John do not have merit.

      Let's first turn to 1 John 1:1-4. Here, John says the he heard, has seen with his own eyes, looked and touched with his own hands that concerning the Word of Life. That is, Christ. Since John 1:1, 14 says that the "Word" is "Christ." In John's humbleness, he refers to himself as "the disciple whom Jesus loved" in 19:26, 13:23, 20:2, 21:7, 20.

      Furthermore, Irenaeus (130-200AD) who was a disciple of Polycarp (70-160), who was a disciple of the Apostle John, and he testified on Polycarp's authority that John wrote the gospel during his residence at Ephesus in Asia Minor when he was advanced in age.

      It really takes a bending over backwards to say that someone other than John wrote the book, especially when all the data says that he most certainly did write it.

      While the synoptics identify John by name about 20 times, he is not directly mentioned by name in the gospel of John. Instead, the author prefers to identify himself as the disciple "whom Jesus loved." Through a process of elimination based primarily on analyzing the material in chapters 20-21, this disciple "whom Jesus loved" narrows down to the Apostle John (21:24, 21:2).

      After all, since the gospel's author is exacting in mentioning the names of other characters in the book, if the author had been someone other than John the apostle, he would not have ommitted his name.

      July 18, 2014 at 2:51 pm |
      • Doris

        Theo: "It really takes a bending over backwards to say that someone other than John wrote the book, especially when all the data says that he most certainly did write it."

        That's ridiculous, Theo. There has been much disagreement for quite some time over the authorship of John. There are even some scholars that think John may have authored a portion of John or not at all. So you might want to bring out that data....

        July 18, 2014 at 9:58 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          Not only that I see people on TV making all kinds of wacky claims (alien abduction, bigfoot, Elvis). I don't believe those people without cooberating evidence....why shoud John be any different?

          July 19, 2014 at 1:31 am |
    • Theo Phileo

      No pottery shards evidencing the Exodus actually makes sense given this passage...

      Deut. 29:5 – I have led you forty years in the wilderness; your clothes have not worn out on you, and your sandal has not worn out on your foot.

      Remember, the Exodus was miraculous, not just the exodus itself, but the preservation of Israel was miraculous, including their provisions.

      July 18, 2014 at 3:08 pm |
      • djangoboy

        No, it does NOT make sense! In Exodus 12:37–38, the Israelites numbered "about six hundred thousand men on foot, besides women and children," plus many non-Israelites and livestock. That probably amounts to close to two million people stomping around the Sinai for forty years. Leaving no evidence behind whatsoever? What, did God act as some sort of cosmic janitor and clean up after two million Israelites? Didn't he have better things to do?

        A little wikipedia: Marching ten abreast, and without accounting for livestock, they would have formed a line 150 miles long. No evidence has been found that indicates Egypt ever suffered such a demographic and economic catastrophe or that the Sinai desert ever hosted (or could have hosted) these millions of people and their herds.

        Oh, right, I forgot – it was a miracle! Well, doesn't that just answer everything! It defies rational explanation, so it has to be a miracle! Praise the Lord!

        Pardon me while I go check my grilled cheese sandwich for images of the Virgin Mary.

        July 18, 2014 at 3:24 pm |
        • joey3467

          Yes, obviously the most rational thing to do when faced with zero evidence to support something happening is to conclude that it did happen and as a result of magic there was no evidence left behind.

          July 18, 2014 at 3:34 pm |
        • djangoboy

          Obviously.

          July 18, 2014 at 3:35 pm |
        • joey3467

          Just making sure, I was starting to think that I might be crazy.

          July 18, 2014 at 3:40 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          Meh... How exactly can you use objective means to verify a miracle?

          July 18, 2014 at 3:44 pm |
        • djangoboy

          Silly me. I was being rational.

          July 18, 2014 at 3:46 pm |
        • joey3467

          Calling it a miracle is just an easy way for you to ignore the fact that you have zero evidence to support your position.

          July 18, 2014 at 3:48 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          djangoboy,
          Rationality does not mean that you stick strictly to objective means to verify truth. That's being closed. How can you objectively verify an emotion such as love? You can put all the chemicals involved in our bodies when we feel love and put them into a bowl, but you can't say that the bowl loves you... There is something to reality that encompasses more than just that which is objectively determined.

          July 18, 2014 at 3:51 pm |
        • djangoboy

          I give up. Enjoy your time at the beach.

          July 18, 2014 at 3:51 pm |
        • Science Works

          Theo you might want to review this .

          http://mediarelations.cornell.edu/2014/07/09/study-cracks-how-the-brain-processes-emotions/

          July 18, 2014 at 3:56 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          Calling it a miracle is just an easy way for you to ignore the fact that you have zero evidence to support your position.
          ----------------
          No, it's not an easy out. I don't know of any way that you can prove a miracle. Since the miraculous is not by nature a repeatable event, and by definition, it is a normally impossible event, then it's no wonder that it seems unbelievable.

          About the only proof I can offer of miracles are the specific prophecies in the Bible, knowing their writing dates, and then the fulfillment of those prophecies and noting the time between the events. (The prophecy of the manner in which the city ot Tyre was to be destroyed, and the prediction that the rubble of the mainland city would be thrown into the sea, as one of many examples)

          July 18, 2014 at 3:57 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          Science Works,
          Interesting article on how the body manifests the emotion into physical responses, but what question remains is how an outside stimuli can create that feeling of emotion in an individual. That is, how I can look at a sandy beach and be moved to emotion, but look at the mountains and get nothing... It is subjective in the sense that some things move some people, and have no effect on another. Could be upbringing and familiarity, but certainly not in every case, otherwise there wouldn't be "love at first sight."

          July 18, 2014 at 4:02 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          I give up. Enjoy your time at the beach
          ----------------
          Don't feel bad, I tend to have that effect on some people. Sometimes I smell my keyboard to make sure I'm not sending electronic farts or something...

          July 18, 2014 at 4:09 pm |
        • Science Works

          Oh Theo – so you want to start scene 2 ?

          July 18, 2014 at 4:30 pm |
        • Reality

          Even the RCC now requires "proof" of one or two miracles before someone is canonized. Too bad they didn't require proof of the NT myths.

          And once again from my Word scrapbook of essential theology/religious history. (note: Mark Twain made substantial profits from his scrapbook business. These days we use Microsoft's Word to do the same thing)

          From that famous passage: In 1 Corinthians 15: 14, Paul reasoned, "If Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith."

          Even now Catholic/Christian professors (e.g.Notre Dame, Catholic U, Georgetown) of theology are questioning the bodily resurrection of the simple, preacher man aka Jesus.

          To wit;

          The Most Infamous of the Miracle Myths:

          From a major Catholic university's theology professor’s grad school white-board notes:

          "Heaven is a Spirit state or spiritual reality of union with God in love, without earthly – earth bound distractions.
          Jesus and Mary's bodies are therefore not in Heaven.

          Most believe that it to mean that the personal spiritual self that survives death is in continuity with the self we were while living on earth as an embodied person.

          Again, the physical Resurrection (meaning a resuscitated corpse returning to life), Ascension (of Jesus' crucified corpse), and Assumption (Mary's corpse) into heaven did not take place.

          The Ascension symbolizes the end of Jesus' earthly ministry and the beginning of the Church.

          Only Luke records it. (Luke mentions it in his gospel and Acts, i.e. a single attestation and therefore historically untenable). The Ascension ties Jesus' mission to Pentecost and missionary activity of Jesus' followers.

          The Assumption has multiple layers of symbolism, some are related to Mary's special role as "Christ bearer" (theotokos). It does not seem fitting that Mary, the body of Jesus' Virgin-Mother (another biblically based symbol found in Luke 1) would be derived by worms upon her death. Mary's assumption also shows God's positive regard, not only for Christ's male body, but also for female bodies." "

          "In three controversial Wednesday Audiences, Pope John Paul II pointed out that the essential characteristic of heaven, hell or purgatory is that they are states of being of a spirit (angel/demon) or human soul, rather than places, as commonly perceived and represented in human language. This language of place is, according to the Pope, inadequate to describe the realities involved, since it is tied to the temporal order in which this world and we exist. In this he is applying the philosophical categories used by the Church in her theology and saying what St. Thomas Aquinas said long before him."
          http://eternal-word.com/library/PAPALDOC/JP2HEAVN.HTM

          The Vatican quickly embellished this story with a lot CYAP.

          With respect to rising from the dead, we also have this account:

          An added note: As per R.B. Stewart in his introduction to the recent book, The Resurrection of Jesus, Crossan and Wright in Dialogue,

          p.4

          "Reimarus (1774-1778) posits that Jesus became sidetracked by embracing a political position, sought to force God's hand and that he died alone deserted by his disciples. What began as a call for repentance ended up as a misguided attempt to usher in the earthly political kingdom of God. After Jesus' failure and death, his disciples stole his body and declared his resurrection in order to maintain their financial security and ensure themselves some standing."

          p.168. by Ted Peters:

          Even so, asking historical questions is our responsibility. Did Jesus really rise from the tomb? Is it necessary to have been raised from the tomb and to appear to his disciples in order to explain the rise of early church and the transcription of the bible? Crossan answers no, Wright answers, yes. "

          So where are the bones"? As per Professor Crossan's analyses in his many books, the body of Jesus would have ended up in the mass graves of the crucified, eaten by wild dogs, covered with lime in a shallow grave, or under a pile of stones.

          July 18, 2014 at 5:06 pm |
        • Sungrazer

          Theo,

          You have brought up Tyre before. I pointed out that "Ezekiel prophesied that Tyre would be destroyed and never be built again. Yet in Acts, Paul landed at Tyre." You claimed that Tyre would never be rebuilt "to its original splendor". This is a complete invention. As prophecies go, this is one of the worst you could have used as an example. The verse is abundantly clear:

          "thou shalt be built no more: for I the LORD have spoken it"

          July 18, 2014 at 5:15 pm |
        • SeaVik

          "I don't know of any way that you can prove a miracle."

          If they happened, they would be easy to prove. If someone was walking on water, we could observe that and check to make sure there weren't any props involved. The only reason we can't prove miracles is that they don't happen.

          July 18, 2014 at 6:51 pm |
        • midwest rail

          " Don't feel bad, I tend to have that effect on some people."
          Indeed you do, Theo, just not for the reasons you imagine.

          July 18, 2014 at 9:33 pm |
        • idiotusmaximus

          That probably amounts to close to two million people stomping around the Sinai for forty years. Leaving no evidence behind whatsoever...................

          Just more irrational insanity from that crap excuse for a bible that the stupids believe and debate over....woo woo how many angels can you fit on the point of a needle.......50 trillion with room to spare....cause the people that wonder about this are morons.

          July 19, 2014 at 2:05 pm |
      • tallulah131

        There were no pottery shards because there was never a substantial population of jewish slaves in Egypt. Archeology thoroughly debunks the Exodus story.

        July 19, 2014 at 11:45 am |
        • idiotusmaximus

          . Archeology thoroughly debunks the Exodus story.......

          ARCHEOLOGY??????

          WHAT HAS SCIENCE GOT TO DO WITH FICTION?

          July 19, 2014 at 2:07 pm |
      • thesamyaza

        not only were Hebrews not slaves in Egypt,t it is offensive to say that Egyptians owned slaves. it is a violation of the gods two own a man Ra took it as grave offense, you had to not only pay them were but give them accesses to healthcare and education.

        Egyptian slaves were better paid then American workers, and archeology supports this.

        not this does not include service to the gods, priest were still slaves as were woman, it also does not mean workers were free, just well compensated for their labor.

        there is no evidence of the existence of Moses, the Hebrews were a small nomadic tribe from the Gaza region that pushed the patriotic god to the point of driving out the others. they were Canaan just as the Palestinians, Hittites,Zemarite and so forth. each with their own god,goddess, who were children of the El and Asherah, this included Yahweh who was a product of Asherah and Baal (Asherah sun and the son of El) if we use biblical reflection El is Adam and Asherah Eve, but if we use Babylonian reflection were the tradition actually stems it makes more sense Asherah is Tiamat and El is Abzû, making Marduk, Yahweh.

        regardless the so called Abram age was polytheistic as was Abraham.

        July 19, 2014 at 2:34 pm |
  16. Theo Phileo

    It's raining here so I've paused prepping for my trip for a bit...

    With all the back and forth these last two days, let me make a blanket statement to everyone, you have my humblest apologies for angering anyone. There are a lot of disagreements on here, but I hope that people know that my intentions are never to stir dissention, even if dissention is what may occur given the nature of the topics we discuss here, and the fact that many hold strong opinions about them. They are all very heady issues, and sometimes we all forget that we are dealing with real people behind those monitors.

    I think that it is fair to say that there have been either misunderstandings or misinterpretations on both sides of the topic whether intentional or otherwise, and in the midst of everything I seem to have forgotten the basic tennants to which I devote myself.

    "Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so."

    We can talk about evidence for this or proof for that, and that's fine and good that we should do so, but when we speak of things that no observational science can either verify or disprove, then that which is subjective now becomes the primary tool of discovery. Subjectivity may not have the persuasive strength as certain objective proofs have to move men to knowing truth, it is nonetheless still there for the discovery.

    July 18, 2014 at 2:10 pm |
    • Science Works

      And Theo if someone steps on your heel while you are on your trip, just turn with smile on your face and say that is all right I walk on them too .

      CERN Says LHC Really Found Higgs Boson, Will Restart In 2015
      Date:
      June 23, 2014
      Source:
      Newsy / Powered by NewsLook.com
      Summary:
      As the LHC's upgrades near completion, a new study on the particle CERN discovered in 2012 shows it behaves just like the theoretical Higgs boson. Video provided by Newsy
      http://www.sciencedaily.com/videos/1f95b02d0eb3449f19f0c35ff056e2ff.htm

      July 18, 2014 at 2:21 pm |
    • Theo Phileo

      And Theo if someone steps on your heel while you are on your trip, just turn with smile on your face and say that is all right I walk on them too .
      -------------
      Are you kidding? I'll be at the beach again! I'm going to be on such a salt-water high that someone could punch me in the face and I'd probably give them a wet kiss on the lips.

      July 18, 2014 at 2:28 pm |
      • Science Works

        Lots of plastic out there to Theo – bring money to play in the plastic cities (mini golf)

        July 18, 2014 at 2:35 pm |
      • Science Works

        Hey theo found something for you to read before or even while you are at the beach – you might learn something maybe –

        Saturday, Jul 19, 2014 04:00 PM CST
        Why our brains love the ocean: Science explains what draws humans to the sea
        Since time immemorial, humans have been captivated by water. And the reasons go beyond evolution

        Our innate relationship to water goes far deeper than economics, food, or proximity, however. Our ancient ancestors came out of the water and evolved from swimming to crawling to walking. Human fetuses still have “gill-slit” structures in their early stages of development, and we spend our first nine months of life immersed in the “watery” environment of our mother’s womb.

        http://www.salon.com/2014/07/19/why_our_brains_love_the_ocean_science_explains_what_draws_humans_to_the_sea/

        July 20, 2014 at 7:47 am |
    • Doris

      Theo – try this one out for a few minutes – I've always found it uplifting in the face of inclement weather:

      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YZUE4_PtOk0&w=640&h=360]

      July 18, 2014 at 2:53 pm |
      • Doris

        lol – not the words I might add which are something about losing a friend, but just the music...

        July 18, 2014 at 3:04 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          Yeah, I thought of this one actually...
          [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=esEdC0c3YI4&w=640&h=360]

          July 18, 2014 at 3:11 pm |
        • LaBella

          That song is my go-to Kareoke song, Theo, lol.

          July 18, 2014 at 3:45 pm |
  17. TruthPrevails1

    Some evidence that shows religion is not good for children:
    "Children who went to church or were enrolled in a parochial school, or both, judged the protagonist in religious stories to be a real person, whereas secular children with no such exposure to religion judged the protagonist in religious stories to be fictional. Children's upbringing was also related to their judgment about the protagonist in fantastical stories that included ordinarily impossible events whether brought about by magic (Study 1) or without reference to magic (Study 2). Secular children were more likely than religious children to judge the protagonist in such fantastical stories to be fictional. The results suggest that exposure to religious ideas has a powerful impact on children's differentiation between reality and fiction, not just for religious stories but also for fantastical stories."
    http://www.thenewcivilrightsmovement.com/study_shows_children_raised_with_religion_find_it_challenging_to_judge_fact_from_fiction

    July 18, 2014 at 1:57 pm |
    • Science Works

      There are some on this thread maybe.

      July 20, 2014 at 2:28 pm |
  18. noahsdadtopher

    Good afternoon, everyone! Hope most of you are able to enjoy this wonderful, fall-like weather.

    July 18, 2014 at 1:37 pm |
    • TruthPrevails1

      How's the baby?

      July 18, 2014 at 1:42 pm |
      • noahsdadtopher

        Very well, thank you!

        July 18, 2014 at 1:44 pm |
        • LaBella

          That's great, Topher. How is your pup getting along with your son? Any problems?

          July 18, 2014 at 1:57 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          Only problem is that she wants to lick him a little too much. He thinks she's hilarious, though.

          July 18, 2014 at 2:01 pm |
        • LaBella

          Oh, baby giggles are so fun! Gets me going every time. One of the best sounds ever!

          July 18, 2014 at 2:08 pm |
    • joey3467

      I would be, but it has been raining for about the past 36 hours where I am.

      July 18, 2014 at 1:43 pm |
      • noahsdadtopher

        That's too bad. Though rainy days can be good, too. Great for naps or for reading.

        July 18, 2014 at 1:45 pm |
    • LaBella

      Isn't this weather silly? I haven't been able to avail myself to my pool one time this year...although this is perfect weather for biking/walking/camping.

      July 18, 2014 at 1:52 pm |
      • joey3467

        Yeah, I am supposed to go to the Spring River this weekend, the water is freezing, which is great when it is 100 degrees outside, but I I have a feeling it is pretty miserable when it is 70 degrees.

        July 18, 2014 at 1:55 pm |
        • LaBella

          Lake Muchigan's water temp is cooooold...
          Stay warm, my friend. And thirsty, lol.

          July 18, 2014 at 2:05 pm |
        • joey3467

          I plan on spending more time fishing than I otherwise would have. This of course will increase the amount of beer I consume.

          July 18, 2014 at 2:45 pm |
      • noahsdadtopher

        I hear ya. I took the week off to enjoy the temps, though. Got a TON of outside chores done.

        July 18, 2014 at 1:57 pm |
  19. lunchbreaker

    Theo logic:

    A prominent scientist believes somehting Theo considers wierd, therefore God.

    July 18, 2014 at 12:07 pm |
    • bostontola

      Some believers deductive thought process:

      Fill in the blank________, therefore God.

      July 18, 2014 at 12:18 pm |
    • Science Works

      http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2014/07/18/researchers-children-exposed-to-religion-have-difficulty-distinguishing-fact-from-fiction/

      July 18, 2014 at 12:49 pm |
      • noahsdadtopher

        Judging from some responses on this message board, the same can be said of children raised in the secular worldview. More than a handful of times theories have been claimed as facts.

        July 18, 2014 at 1:47 pm |
        • Science Works

          Hey topher – instead of your saddle – maybe it was drums ?

          Ultimate Dinosaurs – "Dancing Dinos"

          (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gkcf46T0pto}

          Science Museum of Minnesota

          July 18, 2014 at 1:55 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          Saddle?

          July 18, 2014 at 1:59 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          So ... what's your problem with the video?

          July 18, 2014 at 2:07 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          Examples?

          July 19, 2014 at 5:03 pm |
        • Science Works

          Hey topher none with the video.

          But – science fiction at it's best !

          [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A_a6RjR_AHY&w=640&h=390]

          July 19, 2014 at 5:18 pm |
  20. Doris

    Evidently the term panspermia goes back to the 5th century.

    "Panspermia began to assume a more scientific form through the proposals of Jöns Jacob Berzelius (1834), Hermann E. Richter (1865),[11] Kelvin (1871), Hermann von Helmholtz (1879) and finally reaching the level of a detailed hypothesis through the efforts of the Swedish chemist Svante Arrhenius (1903)." [Wikipedia]

    Ever since I started hearing this term, I keep thinking of Baruch Spinoza (1632-77).

    "Spinoza argued that God exists and is abstract and impersonal. Spinoza's system imparted order and unity to the tradition of radical thought, offering powerful weapons for prevailing against "received authority." As a youth he first subscribed to Descartes's dualistic belief that body and mind are two separate substances, but later changed his view and asserted that they were not separate, being a single ent.ity. He contended that everything that exists in Nature (i.e., everything in the Universe) is one Reality (substance) and there is only one set of rules governing the whole of the reality which surrounds us and of which we are part. Spinoza viewed God and Nature as two names for the same reality, namely a single, fundamental substance (meaning "that which stands beneath" rather than "matter") that is the basis of the universe and of which all lesser "ent.ities" are actually modes or modifications, that all things are determined by Nature to exist and cause effects, and that the complex chain of cause and effect is understood only in part. His identification of God with nature was more fully explained in his posthumously published Ethics." [Wikipedia]

    If the Lionly Lamb was still around, I'm sure he'd like to discuss panspermia.

    July 18, 2014 at 11:39 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.