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White House offers an olive branch to Catholic voters?
February 7th, 2012
07:06 PM ET

White House offers an olive branch to Catholic voters?

By Brianna Keilar and Becky Brittain, CNN

White House (CNN) – The White House appears to be softening its stance on the controversial rule forcing some religious organizations to provide birth control as part of their health insurance plans.

“The president's interest at a policy level is in making sure that this coverage is extended to all women because it's important,” said White House Press Secretary Jay Carney. “(On) the other side is finding the right balance…concerns about religious beliefs and convictions. So we will, in this transition period …seek to find ways to implement that policy that allay some of those concerns.”

More than two weeks ago, the Department of Health and Human Service issued a mandate instructing all employers that provide health insurance to their employees include the option for paid birth control, the morning after pill and intrauterine devices. The rule, scheduled to go into effect next summer, excluded churches from participation. The mandate did not exclude religiously affiliated employers like universities and hospitals creating a firestorm.

FULL STORY
- Dan Merica

Filed under: Barack Obama • Catholic Church • Politics

soundoff (232 Responses)
  1. Nii Croffie

    Which part of if u eat of the fruit of the Tree of Judgement of Good and Evil you shall surely die will you not understand today? Your Conscience still works though your Judgement makes up the excuses. They did not have a child's Conscience. They knew and understood the full implication.

    February 9, 2012 at 12:44 am |
    • Hey there

      What country are you from? Your English is very difficult to understand.

      February 9, 2012 at 1:39 am |
    • Nii Croffie

      I am a Ghanaian from Ghana West Africa. Kofi Annan, Kwame Nkrumah and the Black Stars who demolished the US men's soccer team in both the 2006 & 2010 editions of the World Cup are my compatriots. I achieved a perfect score in English on the SAT, IELTS and TOEFL. I use SMS shorthand.

      February 9, 2012 at 2:15 am |
  2. just wondering

    john quest
    You lose , even though you are mistaken on most of the references you still admit to one instance of God and you said none.
    Genesis18 :1 word used is translated LORD , a Hebrew form of reference to God
    Exodus3:4'when the LORD... God called to him from within the bush ...' Not an angel God
    Exodus33 reference you have already acknowledged as God
    Joshua 5 :really needed a Bible student to know this one as Christ in angelic form. Again you need to know the original Hebrew for LORD
    Isaiah 1;9 1000 pardons wrong book, Jeremiah 1:9 LORD again is used, "The LORD reached out his hand and touched... "physical presence
    Isaiah 6:1 is not a parable, it is a historically dated testimony "In the year that King Uzziah died I (Isaiah) saw the LORD seated on a throne" That is Isaiah describing his meeting with God check your Hebrew easily verified
    1John 1 and following read the whole book He , John touched the LORD, Jesus is LORD, Jesus is GOD. You missed the following part , but then you wanted to. You were predisposed to finding fault and do not want to be shown your error.There are many more instances of men and women encountering the living God in the Holy Bible. You tried to discredit the Truth once, find the rest your self.You are not a student of Truth anyway.

    February 8, 2012 at 9:11 pm |
    • EvolvedDNA

      Just wondering Harry Potter was talking to folks in his books so is he real as well?

      February 8, 2012 at 10:58 pm |
  3. RMS

    IF BIRTH CONTROL & CONTRACEPTIVES ARE LEGAL THE GOVERNMENT CANNOT RESTRICT THEIR USE..THAT WOULD BE A RESTRICTION OF OUR FREEDOM. SOLUTION-CONGRES SHOULD MAKE THE SALE OF THE ITEMS ILLEGAL.

    February 8, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
    • Big El 42

      What are you screaming about? nobody is restricting the use of contraceptives

      February 8, 2012 at 5:07 pm |
    • Hasa Diga Eebowai

      Big el, if someone can't afford it that is a restriction.

      February 8, 2012 at 5:16 pm |
    • Reality

      The Catholic hierachy do not believe in artificial birth control so why do they employ those who do? Did not the Supreme Court recently decide that religious organizations have the right to decide who they hire and fire? Bottom line: To reduce health insurance costs and to not be subject to Obama care regulations about supplying contraceptives, Catholic groups should simply not hire those in need of contraceptives and fire those who demand such coverage.

      There are different opinions as to what a religion really is or what a non-profit is. To be fair therefore, there should be no tax-exemptions for any group and that includes the Democratic and Republican Parties. Faith and community initiative grant monies should also be cancelled and there should also be no tax deductions for contributions made to charities and non-profits.

      http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2012/01/supreme-court-backs-church-in-landmark-religious-liberty-case/

      "The government must stay out of hiring and firing decisions by a religious organization, even if a minister sues for employment discrimination, the Supreme Court ruled on Wednesday.

      Religious freedom groups praised the decision, and especially the fact that it came from a unanimous court."

      February 8, 2012 at 5:41 pm |
  4. Jonathan

    @facepalm. "Do you pay taxes?"

    Sure I do. I choose to support the government of the country that I live in. I get many benefits that are not found anywhere else in the world. I very well could refuse to pay my taxes, but I don't. As long as the benefits I receive from the government do not infringe upon my right, I will continue to support it by paying taxes.

    @BRC

    It very well might affect me directly, whether or not it is a slight increase in my premiums. Anytime anyone's first amendment rights are being violated, we need to stand up and fight back, regardless if we agree with their beliefs or not. If we allow even a single attack to go unaided, what happens the next time and the next time, or when it is your turn to be silenced and no one is left to defend you?

    February 8, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
    • LOL

      fred "between Good and Evil. They had a Conscience so they knew good and evil. They just didn't have to judge. Eve saw the fruit and thought it was good to eat and makes one wise."

      Duh, because she didn't know any better that was the point. yet they themselves 'sinned' before they knew the difference between Good and Evil...Or as you are trying to twist it – judgment on good and evil God must be immoral, if it punishes innocent people for sins they do not understand and could not resist.

      February 8, 2012 at 7:03 pm |
    • LOL

      fred "between Good and Evil. They had a Conscience so they knew good and evil. They just didn't have to judge. Eve saw the fruit and thought it was good to eat and makes one wise."

      Duh, because she didn't know any better that was the point. yet they themselves 'sinned' before they knew the difference between Good and Evil...Or as you are trying to twist it – judgment of good and evil God must be immoral, if it punishes innocent people for sins they do not understand and could not resist.

      February 8, 2012 at 7:06 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      Excuses are just manifest legalism. Being decieved does not mean you are stupid. Ask the people who send millions of dollars to West Africa each year for spouses and money. Their mind is just like Adam and Eve just that someone more cunning met them and they underestimated him. How cud a lizard???

      February 9, 2012 at 1:38 am |
    • Nii Croffie

      now I'm wondering by your answer whether u r not stupid yourself. lol. How can u not comprehend what that short sentence meant. Ok for dummies it means God did not make human beings stupid. You are an example of people who have made themself stupid all by themselves. Idiot. LOL n smh

      February 9, 2012 at 8:38 am |
  5. J.W

    God is love.

    February 8, 2012 at 3:43 pm |
    • Really?

      "God is love."

      There is no proof of that and if your god is love then why did it wipe everyone but a few off the planet, that's not love.

      February 8, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
    • sam

      See, that got a response, so it's a good tagline, but it's only a start. It needs to be more substantial. Like, "God is love...you heathen crot.chwaffles'. Maybe not that harsh if you don't want to start name calling, but you see my point.

      February 8, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
    • just sayin

      Jesus is the proof of Gods love. Unnatural evil was the reason given behind the flood. Unnatural evil might be described as atheism.

      February 8, 2012 at 4:07 pm |
    • Really

      "Unnatural evil was the reason given behind the flood."

      It still doesn't justify killing innocent women and children now does it. Just look at the abortion debate idiot.

      February 8, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      Idiot! which part of unnatural evil did you not understand? NATURAL EVIL=INNOCENT WOMEN AND CHILDREN. UNNATURAL EVIL= EVIL WOMEN AND EVIL CHILDREN.

      February 8, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
    • Really?

      "UNNATURAL EVIL= EVIL WOMEN AND EVIL CHILDREN."

      There is NO proof of that idiot. The god in your bible is a monster and a tyrant.

      February 8, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
    • LOL

      "Unnatural evil was the reason given behind the flood."

      Yeah your god screwed up, not much of a god now is it. LOL!

      February 8, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
    • bringoutyourdead

      The demons attached to the souls of the above were the source of unnatural evil then and now.

      February 8, 2012 at 5:31 pm |
    • Huh?

      "The demons attached to the souls of the above were the source of unnatural evil then and now."

      LOL! No, it was people who didn't believe in your God and because they wouldn't love it, it got angry and killed them all, that is NOT a loving god, but a monster.

      February 8, 2012 at 5:38 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      The most important commandment in the Bible is to love your neighbor as yourself. This proves that you love God. If they loved each other as themselves God wud not have destroyed them for it wud prove they loved Him. He is not a "love me" me God but a "love one another" God.

      February 8, 2012 at 5:49 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      But Really how wud u know what it was like?

      February 8, 2012 at 5:53 pm |
    • LOL

      Your god is not love. The immoral doctrine of original sin, where children are punished for the sins of their parents is hardly the scheme of a moral god. Adam and Eve were punished with death, pain, suffering and caused the evil of all mankind... yet they themselves 'sinned' before they knew the difference between Good and Evil. God must be immoral, if it punishes innocent people for sins they do not understand and could not resist.

      February 8, 2012 at 6:00 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      The Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil is a mistranslation. It will translate much better as Tree of Judgement between Good and Evil. They had a Conscience so they knew good and evil. They just didn't have to judge. Eve saw the fruit and thought it was good to eat and makes one wise.

      February 8, 2012 at 6:10 pm |
    • LOL

      This keeps posting in the wrong place – trying again...

      fred "between Good and Evil. They had a Conscience so they knew good and evil. They just didn't have to judge. Eve saw the fruit and thought it was good to eat and makes one wise."

      Duh, because she didn't know any better that was the point. yet they themselves 'sinned' before they knew the difference between Good and Evil...Or as you are trying to twist it – judgment of good and evil God must be immoral, if it punishes innocent people for sins they do not understand and could not resist.

      February 8, 2012 at 7:08 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      God didn't make children. They had a fully developed Conscience like u have. They understood that they wud die if they eat the fruit of Judgement just as u do now. It was excuses dat made God see their sin. Ur excuses are legalism. Legalism is Judgement at work. Humans were stupid is not Biblical

      February 9, 2012 at 1:18 am |
    • LOL

      "Humans were stupid is not Biblical"

      Then your god knowing made a stupid human. LMAO! Then your god punishes them for it creating them stupid. LOL!

      February 9, 2012 at 8:15 am |
    • Nii Croffie

      For dummies like yourself "Humans were made stupid is not biblical" means "GOD DID NOT MAKE HUMANS STUPID THEY HAD THE BRAINS TO DECIDE JUST AS THEY DO NOW". Imao lol smh.

      February 9, 2012 at 8:50 am |
    • Nii Croffie

      As to why u made that silly comment, the Bible says,"The fool(you) has said in his heart that there is no God". lol. haahaahaahahaa....

      February 9, 2012 at 8:55 am |
    • Nii Croffie

      But all jokes aside just love your neighbor as yourself. You don't have to be a X'tian to do this. Read the Bible n practise its teachings. It will mature you emotionally.

      February 9, 2012 at 9:08 am |
    • an atheist

      "You dont have to be xtian to do this" nail on the head. If your mind is not full of fear you can be a good human being without mythology.

      February 9, 2012 at 11:56 am |
  6. hippypoet

    Got a baby god put there that you prayed wasn't?
    Just remember children, where god fails (and thats everywhere everyday) there is science!

    We got your back!

    science, been doing what god can't since 13.7 billion years ago... and counting!

    special thanks to math...for without we'd have no clue how long science has been out-doing the fairy god father.

    February 8, 2012 at 3:05 pm |
    • just wondering

      Since God gave science to mankind why do you elevate science?

      February 8, 2012 at 3:10 pm |
    • JohnQuest

      just wondering, Please note, that in all the history of Man, not one, not one persons has ever even claimed to have met a God. No one in the Bible, Torah, or the Qur'an, no one, that has to mean something (not Adam, Eve, Moses, Abraham, Noah, not one person) what does that tell you?

      February 8, 2012 at 3:15 pm |
    • hippypoet

      for every claim/@ssertion that has been attributed to god or gods grand power, science has disproved it all, save what can only be taken on faith-and that goes for the existence of god as well!

      i could say that science was given to us by dwarves and that would have equal substance to your claim of god...but i like facts over fairy tales.

      February 8, 2012 at 3:15 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      Pray tell us which Bible or Torah have u been reading. I hope u did not get a China made one 'cos they can write anything into it. That said read the Bible. Don't just say things. It is not very bright!

      February 8, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
    • JohnQuest

      Nii Croffie, where in the Bible does Anyone claim to have met God? Not even Jesus makes that claim.

      February 8, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      HASA U R JOKING. What data r u talking about. Do u know how long man had been observing the skies. Please Galileo Galilei only confirmed the theory. It was not a hypothesis. Now about religion. Choose what works for u. Love ur neighbor as urself.

      February 8, 2012 at 3:42 pm |
    • just wondering

      Johnny Quest Please explain then
      Abraham Genesis 18:1 and following
      Moses Exodus 3:4and following
      Exodus33: 21-23
      Joshua Joshua 5:13-15
      Isaiah Isaiah 1:9
      Isaiah 6:1
      These are just a few examples of people meeting the living God in the Old Testament there are many more. The New Testament is full of references to and of those who met God including 1 John 1:1 and following.

      February 8, 2012 at 3:50 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      Also I did not say I see PAST my 5 rational senses. I said I see BEYOND. As a scientist if u r u shud know every word is important in a definition.

      February 8, 2012 at 4:01 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      JohnQuest I don't think I have time for u. I read the Bible. Go and read it too. If u r a Muslim then the Taurah and Injil are not the Bible. If not just read. Scholarly works are not the Bible.

      February 8, 2012 at 4:07 pm |
    • James

      Science can't explain everthing, just ask a scientist. And since God can not be proven or unproven, it can't be tested by Scientific method. But if you didn't graduate college, you wouldn't know that. Idiot

      February 8, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
    • James

      Also, God does not answer prayers the way you like all the time. It's not a Wendy's drive-up menu.

      February 8, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
    • hippypoet

      @James – oh dear... its sad that you had to go to college to find these things out...and you call others idiot. This is why i say that common sense is not common. You sir are a true moron for stating the obvious and thinking that its novel. You can claim all you want, i can too, but that doesn't make it so. I can take anything you say about god and swap god for unicorn and it still makes as much sense. If you fail to see why then perhaps you need to go to a better college.

      February 8, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      Swap the word God for unicorn all you like but as it is said a rose will still be a rose no matter how u call it. Not the name but the definition makes the being a deity. Common sense my foot.

      February 8, 2012 at 4:47 pm |
    • JohnQuest

      Genesis 18:1 Abraham meet three MEN (not God)
      Exodus 3:4 Moses was talking to a Bush (the Angles appeared not God)

      Exodus33: 21-23 only refers to God’s back (which is weird)
      Joshua 5:13-15 Commander of the Lord’s Army (not the Lord)
      Isaiah 1:9 (does not mention meeting God at all)

      Isaiah 6:1 (is a Parable)
      1 John 1:1 (does not mention meeting God at all)

      Anything Else?

      February 8, 2012 at 4:50 pm |
    • Hasa Diga Eebowai

      James, of course you can't prove a negative. But that does not mean you should take anything a true without a scrap of evidence. Krishna, Yewah, Zeus, Apollo, Thor... All have the same amount of evidence proving their existence, so does the idea that the universe was created by a unemotional binary computer that lives in the 10th dimension.

      February 8, 2012 at 5:09 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      JohnQuest u do not have a problem at all. just read the whole passage where those verses are located. Reading them will enlighten you. Don't be afraid that is a good word. God won't bite you. The three men Abraham saw turned out to be YHWH and 2 angels 4 instance. I don't believe u r dyslexic, r u ?

      February 8, 2012 at 5:11 pm |
    • Hasa Diga Eebowai

      Hey hippy.. perhaps a better argument is swap god for a physics equation. That is where you begin to unravel theist brainwashing. A law of physics does not care about you, and that is the whole point. Humans are still very egocentric. I think sagan said something to the extent that it is not emotional satisfying to pray to the law of gravity lol.

      February 8, 2012 at 5:12 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      Hasa indeed U r very egocentric. Now send down ur physics equation complete with the physical quan ti ties expressible in the seven basic physical quan ti ties. It shall be verified mind u.

      February 8, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
    • Hmmm

      "Now send down ur physics equation complete with the physical quan ti ties expressible in the seven basic physical quan ti ties. It shall be verified mind u."

      How about you put down your verifiable evidence that your god exists.

      February 8, 2012 at 5:29 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      What I find perturbing is the continued curbing of science to serve aimless religious purposes like atheism. If u r an atheist it is about the philosophy of Skepticism, an ancient Greek philosophy and the Greeks know why they kept it ancient. Science is about exploration not declaration of truth.

      February 8, 2012 at 5:31 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      Skeptics our evidence is simple, the Bible which has Christians, Moslems and Jews as well as quasi-Christian/Muslim and Jewish cults following it. The problem here is that legal arguements cannot be used to prove or disprove it. Science wise it is evidence enough. Investigation is up to u.

      February 8, 2012 at 5:39 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      God is not an absolute monarch who rules by divine right. The Commandments of the Law are His Characteristics to identify Him when He is among us.

      February 8, 2012 at 6:16 pm |
    • just wondering

      john quest
      Replied to your mistaken interpretation of Biblical references. It appears as its own post, same page further up.

      February 8, 2012 at 9:14 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      Just wondering
      I do not interprete the Bible. It is not a question of interpretation he asked. He asked whether anyone claimed seeing God. He then tried to wriggle his way out. I gave him the references by passages to read. Thats what he's doing I hope. It is just a matter of contextual reading.

      February 9, 2012 at 12:53 am |
    • Nii Croffie

      YHWH appeared to Adam and Eve, Abraham, Jacob, Moses, Isaiah, Ezekiel and as Jesus of Nazareth in the Bible.

      February 9, 2012 at 12:58 am |
    • Nii Croffie

      They had a fully developed Conscience like you have. just as u can understand do not eat the fruit of The Tree of judgement between Good and Evil or you shall surely die they understood perfectly. You only make the excuses because of Judgement. Legalism is Judgement at work.

      February 9, 2012 at 1:08 am |
    • Nii Croffie

      Excuses! Excuses! *smh* Judgement is manifest in legalism. Being decieved does not mean u were stupid. Ask the people who send millions of dollars to West Africa for oil, more money, gold, brides and husbands. Adam and Eve and you were just alike in thinking ability. Info storage was the problem.

      February 9, 2012 at 1:31 am |
    • Nii Croffie

      Now I'm wondering by your reply whether you are not stupid yourself. How cud you not comprehend that simple sentence. Ok for dummies it means,'GOD DID NOT MAKE HUMAN BEINGS STUPID THEY HAD THE BRAINS TO DECIDE JUST AS THEY DO NOW'. Hope u r ok now? LMAO n smh.

      February 9, 2012 at 8:43 am |
  7. Prayer is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer takes people away from actually working on real solutions to their problems.
    Prayer wears out your clothes prematurely.
    Prayer contributes to global warming through excess CO2 emissions.
    Prayer fucks up your knees and your neck and your back.
    Prayer can cause heart attacks, especially among the elderly.
    Prayer reveals how stupid you are to the world.
    Prayer exposes your backside to pervert priests.
    Prayer prevents you from getting badly needed exercise.
    Prayer makes you post really stupid shit.
    Prayer makes you hoard cats.
    Prayer makes you smell like shitty kitty litter and leads you on to harder drugs.
    Prayer wastes time.

    February 8, 2012 at 3:05 pm |
    • James

      How dumb is that.

      February 8, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  8. Nii Croffie

    Comparing the sizes of the believer population and the sizes of the atheist population, I pray that the atheist women cease and desist from abortions. Abortion is killing off our future atheists and the rest don't evangelize. Endangered religion. The Jews are wiser follow their example.

    February 8, 2012 at 2:00 pm |
    • Answer

      The proposal for more abortions happening amongst the religious crowd is the best solution for this world.

      February 8, 2012 at 2:44 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      Unfortunately they also seem to have more babies. Moslems will overran you. The Indo-Bhuddhist religions are close behind even though Chinese atheists have been forcing it down their troathes.

      February 8, 2012 at 2:59 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      Only morons will think atheism will be saved by abortion.

      February 8, 2012 at 3:02 pm |
  9. Nii Croffie

    There are things scientists have not been able to explain yet like why religion may not be obviously true but works. I've punched someone while meditatively passing my hand through his stomach in my mind. The effects were devastating. Don't make noise when u don't know. Ask questions.

    February 8, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
    • Fallacy Spotting 101

      Post by Nii Croffie is an instance of the Argument from Ignorance fallacy.

      Nii Croffie is really fucking stupid.

      February 8, 2012 at 3:03 pm |
    • .....

      "Post by Nii Croffie is an instance of the Argument from Ignorance fallacy.

      Nii Croffie is really fucking stupid."

      is an instance of the ad hominem fallacy

      February 8, 2012 at 3:07 pm |
  10. gerald

    Obama cannot be trusted in the slightest. He just made the mistake of making this plain with these new rules. If he had it to do over again he would have waited until after the election to roll them out. Now the cat is out of the bag and he is backtracking to prevent his mistake from getting him a second term. Don't be fooled. He will undo anything he does before now and August.

    February 8, 2012 at 1:39 pm |
    • JohnQuest

      I might be missing something, but I can not see what's wrong with this plan. Employers Should provide health insurance that the Employees want, and Catholics want this service.

      February 8, 2012 at 1:44 pm |
  11. Prayer is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer takes people away from actually working on real solutions to their problems.
    Prayer wears out your clothes prematurely.
    Prayer contributes to global warming through excess CO2 emissions.
    Prayer fucks up your knees and your neck and your back.
    Prayer can cause heart attacks, especially among the elderly.
    Prayer reveals how stupid and pathetic you are to the world.
    Prayer exposes your backside to pervert priests.
    Prayer prevents you from getting badly needed exercise.
    Prayer makes you post really stupid shit.
    Prayer makes you hoard cats.
    Prayer makes you smell like kitty litter and leads you on to harder drugs.
    Prayer wastes time.

    February 8, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
  12. Nii Croffie

    Now that is funny but if you know the concept of infinity you will realise that an eternal being like God live in finite time. The human never if ever reaches 200 years. If u had no means of telling time how wud u know it has been so long. Stop complaining eternity starts when u die maybe 2Day.

    February 8, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      HASA DIGA EEBOWAI Science speculates that millions of years ago the Universe was formed but catalysts can speed up processes that wud otherwise HAVE taken longer. Today if u die u might hear the trumpet of judgement next. so how much time do u have? Just now.

      February 8, 2012 at 1:36 pm |
    • Prayer is not healthy for children and other living things

      Prayer takes people away from actually working on real solutions to their problems.
      Prayer contributes to global warming through excess CO2 emissions.
      Prayer fucks up your knees and your neck and your back.
      Prayer can cause heart attacks, especially among the elderly.
      Prayer reveals how stupid and pathetic you are to the world.
      Prayer exposes your backside to pervert priests.
      Prayer prevents you from getting badly needed exercise.
      Prayer makes you post really stupid shit.
      Prayer makes you hoard cats.
      Prayer makes you smell like kitty litter and leads you on to harder drugs.
      Prayer wastes time.

      February 8, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
    • Hasa Diga Eebowai

      First, the universe is BILLIONS of years old. Second, the catalyst your speak of is currently being discovered and studied (dark matter). Last, Pascal's wager is just silly and for those of a weak mind.

      February 8, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      HASA if u r so sure about what we don't know but yet find the parts that we know as something to pick and choose from then how different are u from the Copernicus affair Pope who excommunicated him for presenting a theory now proven. Science doesn't allow us to pick and choose. That is religion.

      February 8, 2012 at 2:33 pm |
    • Answer

      Only morons find comfort in a sky daddy.

      February 8, 2012 at 2:43 pm |
    • just wondering

      Do morons find comfort in using the term sky daddy on an anonymous blog?

      February 8, 2012 at 3:11 pm |
    • Hasa Diga Eebowai

      Nii, wow just wow. So essentially you say religion is nothing more than picking what you feel is right without a scrap of objective evidence... that's a great premise to establish one's personal philosophies (sarcasm). I think every despot that has ever lived would agree with you though. BTW Copernicus barely had any data to establish his "hypothesis", what I speak of are current theories and there is a BIG difference. Please read up on the scientific method and how a scientific theory is much different the the common use of the word theory.

      February 8, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      Copernicus did not write a hypothesis. Data was not absent. Men have had observatories for centuries if not millenia. Galileo confirned the theory but did not establish the theory.

      February 8, 2012 at 6:03 pm |
  13. wyominguy

    Comments so far are not topical....In my view the Administration has shown that it will stick to its Liberal policies and in some respects one has to respect that. I personally do NOT agree, yet even in an election cycle Obama seems to have made decisions he believes are right. Take for example the pipeline project; another Very Poor decision but one that we should have expected. It time for the Republican Party to GET TO WORK and convince voters of the Great Need we have to elect a New President...one who's values reflect a more Conservative view.

    February 8, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
    • JohnQuest

      What is it about this decision that you do not agree with and why? It seems very reasonable to me. The Pipeline does not appear to benefit the US citizenry, but it will make Exxon, Shell, BP another billion a quarter. If you do not agree please explain why you think the pipeline is good for America.

      February 8, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
    • I'm The Best!

      @ john
      It would have created many (probably temporary) jobs (but jobs nonetheless). It would have also greatly lowered out dependence on middle eastern oil. He should have passed it.

      I also think this entire healthcare bill was a mistake, but if you're going to do it, do it right and make all businesses at least offer the same things. If the people running the business don't like it then they should get out of that business.

      February 8, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
    • JohnQuest

      I'm The Best!,

      The oil going through the pipeline would HAVE to be sold on the open market, it will not be enough to effect the pricing of a barrel. (We would not be able to use it without buying it on the open market) Sorry, I guess Foxnews left that out.

      I think the healthcare bill could have been a lot better, but it is still better than the status quo.

      February 8, 2012 at 2:23 pm |
    • I'm The Best!

      @john
      I don't watch faux news. They're extremely biased and usually pretty du.mb when it comes to just about everything. I usually get my news from cnn. I'm not saying it would have lowered gas prices, but it would've helped the economy. My point is it would've done more good than harm. Not everything obama does should be worshiped.

      February 8, 2012 at 2:44 pm |
    • JohnQuest

      I'm The Best!, I am not a fan of the President, but his reasons for not supporting the pipeline are valid (even though it does serve to rangle his political foes).

      February 8, 2012 at 2:51 pm |
    • I'm The Best!

      There will always be valid points on both sides. What we needed then though, was the environment to take a little hit so the economy could have taken a larger boost. I know why obama did it, but I guess as an independent I feel as though the republicans have better ideas on how to fix the economy most the time.
      Even though they are useless, and usually very du.mb in just about every other aspect of the government

      February 8, 2012 at 3:12 pm |
    • JohnQuest

      I'm The Best!, I too am an Independent, The Republicans want to go back to President Reagan's trickle down Chicago School economics. I remember the 80s, Reagan's policies did so much damage it took us the better part of 15 years to fix. The Reagan Presidency as it is talked about now, is a fantasy, (unless you were very well off at the start of his term).

      I don't want to go back to a policy that we already know does not work for most of us.

      February 8, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
    • I'm The Best!

      I'm not saying its all good, I just think its better than the democrats idea. I'd rather initially be paid less than be told I'm being paid more but getting the same amount because the rest is going to a guy who's family has been on welfare for 2 generations. I'm sure there's a good middle ground, the problem is neither party is trying to get there.

      February 8, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
    • JohnQuest

      I'm The Best! we are in total agreement, the individual abusive of the system are appealing. I don't know of a better system though, we do Need to have a safety net (when the economy takes a dive people should not have to starve to death) but I'll be darn if I can think of a better way.

      February 8, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
    • I'm The Best!

      I'm fine with a net, that's what unemployment is there for. What I don't like is many other programs that are put in place for people who WON'T help themselves. A lot of liberals think everyone should have the same options, which isn't true, some options you need to earn.

      February 8, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
    • James

      Respect is reserved for respectable people. Not dictators. It's like saying I respect the murderer for really following through on his kill, you have to respect that.

      February 8, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
    • Atheism is hostile to all living things including atheists themselves

      "Comments so far are not topical"

      @wyominguy

      Atheists couldn't really help themselves but to make every single topic a religion debate just tofurther their agenda. That's why they're hostile in this blog, to anywhere else and to anybody inluding themselves.

      February 9, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
  14. Atheism is hostile to all living things including atheists themselves

    4 out of 5 atheists commit abortion.

    February 8, 2012 at 1:09 pm |
    • Prayer is not healthy for children and other living things

      Prayer takes people away from actually working on real solutions to their problems.
      Prayer fucks up your knees and your neck and your back.
      Prayer can cause heart attacks, especially among the elderly.
      Prayer reveals how stupid and pathetic you are to the world.
      Prayer exposes your backside to pervert priests.
      Prayer prevents you from getting badly needed exercise.
      Prayer makes you post really stupid shit.
      Prayer makes you hoard cats.
      Prayer makes you smell like kitty litter and leads you on to harder drugs.
      Prayer wastes time.

      February 8, 2012 at 1:35 pm |
    • JohnQuest

      Check your facts:

      Who's having abortions (religion)?
      Women identifying themselves as Protestants obtain 37.4% of all abortions in the U.S.; Catholic women account for 31.3%, Jewish women account for 1.3%, and women with no religious affiliation obtain 23.7% of all abortions. 18% of all abortions are performed on women who identify themselves as "Born-again/Evangelical".

      February 8, 2012 at 1:47 pm |
    • Atheism is hostile to all living things including atheists themselves

      @John Quest

      You've got some hard facts here, allow me to commend you for being resourceful.

      And no matter how we put those data to the test, it would surely stand firm as facts. But...let me tell that the results will also surely support mine in my post that 4 out of 5 irreligious are having abortion. While the other hand, only 1 out of 4 religious

      Want me to prove it? or find it by your own.

      February 9, 2012 at 12:51 pm |
  15. Prayer changes things

    Prayer has brought us to today
    And prayer will see us through

    February 8, 2012 at 12:31 pm |
    • Nope

      ~~~~~~The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs.~~~~~~~~~~~

      February 8, 2012 at 12:32 pm |
    • Hasa Diga Eebowai

      Natural selection has brought us to where we are today.

      February 8, 2012 at 12:33 pm |
    • Prayer is not healthy for children and other living things

      Prayer takes people away from actually working on real solutions to their problems.
      Prayer wears out your clothes prematurely.
      Prayer fucks up your knees and your neck and your back.
      Prayer can cause heart attacks, especially among the elderly.
      Prayer reveals how stupid and pathetic you are to the world.
      Prayer exposes your backside to pervert priests.
      Prayer prevents you from getting badly needed exercise.
      Prayer makes you post really stupid shit.
      Prayer makes you hoard cats.
      Prayer makes you smell like kitty litter and leads you on to harder drugs.
      Prayer wastes time.

      February 8, 2012 at 1:36 pm |
  16. Reality

    Why the Christian Right no longer matters in presidential elections:

    Once again, all the conservative votes in the country "ain't" going to help a "pro-life" presidential candidate, i.e Mitt Romney, Newton Leroy Gingrich, Ron Paul or Rick Santorum, in 2012 as the "Immoral Majority" rules the country and will be doing so for awhile. The "Immoral Majority" you ask?

    The fastest growing USA voting bloc: In 2008, the 70+ million "Roe vs. Wade mothers and fathers" of aborted womb-babies" whose ranks grow by two million per year i.e. 78+ million "IM" voters in 2012.

    2008 Presidential popular vote results:

    69,456,897 for pro-abortion/choice BO, 59,934,814 for "pro-life" JM.

    And all because many women fail to take the Pill once a day or men fail to use a condom even though in most cases these men have them in their pockets. (maybe they should be called the "Stupid Majority"?)

    And the irony of it all:

    The failures of the widely used birth "control" methods i.e. the Pill and male condom have led to the large rate of abortions ( one million/yr) and S-TDs (19 million/yr) in the USA. Men and women must either recognize their responsibilities by using the Pill or condoms properly and/or use other safer birth control methods in order to reduce the epidemics of abortion and S-TDs.

    February 8, 2012 at 12:28 pm |
  17. Prayer changes things

    How prayer has advanced mankind throughout the history of science and medicine. In the beginning all knowledge of every subject rested exclusively with God. God began sharing His vast knowledge with Adam, on a regular basis. Not all knowledge at once because it would be more than any one man could bear, but as needed. When Adam sinned , he became distant from God and beyond the vast reservoir of knowledge that God held. Adam now faced the problems that sin brought with it into the world, Problems of hunger, disease ,natural disaster and so forth. As men began to increase in population both sin and the need for solutions also increased. Men began to call on God for advice (prayer) God heard the sincere prayers of His creation and began to answer. Man requested knowledge and God supplied, not necessarily to him, who asked but to mankind in general. Some questions and prayers are still being asked and answered. For example, a righteous man or men asked for a cure for leprosy. God granted knowledge to various individuals and today leprosy is extremely rare and with proper caring for one another could be erased from the earth. This same pattern of recognizing a need, asking God and finding solutions continues even today. What hinders this flow of knowledge? SIn , disbelief and deception.
    Prayer is the vital link to God that will negate the ill effects. When we can all work together with God towards solutions, we will have real progress.

    February 8, 2012 at 12:18 pm |
    • Nope

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs.~~~~~~~~

      February 8, 2012 at 12:28 pm |
    • Hasa Diga Eebowai

      Prayer may change someones mind (so does meditation and psychotropic chemicals) but it does nothing to change reality we live in. If your mind is not weak or full of fear trying to speak with an interdimensional being is useless.. Already been proven that prayer does nothing: STEP study.

      February 8, 2012 at 12:29 pm |
    • Reality

      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. Statistically, your request might come true but it is simply the result of the variability/randomness of Nature..

      So put down your Moroni horns, 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 the proper rules of your religion or any good rules of living as gracious and good human beings

      February 8, 2012 at 12:30 pm |
    • Hasa Diga Eebowai

      Reality, just for fun (since we seem to be on the same page) are you really sure there is such a thing as "free will". Currently we can not rule out that the entire universe is deterministic, even our thoughts.

      February 8, 2012 at 12:32 pm |
    • just wondering

      None of the replies have any relevance to the statement made, they should be their own independent comments.

      February 8, 2012 at 12:34 pm |
    • Bizarre

      "a righteous man or men asked for a cure for leprosy."

      Yeh, and...

      1 Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying,
      2 "This shall be the law of the leper in the day of his cleansing. Now he shall be brought to the priest,
      3 and the priest shall go out to the outside of the camp. Thus the priest shall look, and if the infection of leprosy has been healed in the leper,
      4 then the priest shall give orders to take two live clean birds and cedar wood and a scarlet string and hyssop for the one who is to be cleansed.
      5 "The priest shall also give orders to slay the one bird in an earthenware vessel over running water.
      6 "As for the live bird, he shall take it together with the cedar wood and the scarlet string and the hyssop, and shall dip them and the live bird in the blood of the bird that was slain over the running water.
      7 "He shall then sprinkle seven times the one who is to be cleansed from the leprosy and shall pronounce him clean, and shall let the live bird go free over the open field.
      8 "The one to be cleansed shall then wash his clothes and shave off all his hair and bathe in water and be clean. Now afterward, he may enter the camp, but he shall stay outside his tent for seven days.
      9 "It will be on the seventh day that he shall shave off all his hair: he shall shave his head and his beard and his eyebrows, even all his hair. He shall then wash his clothes and bathe his body in water and be clean." - Leviticus 14:1-9 NAS95

      Problem sorted.

      February 8, 2012 at 12:39 pm |
    • Prayer changes things

      men also prayed for salvation for thousands of years before Messiah came, what is your point.

      February 8, 2012 at 12:55 pm |
    • Hasa Diga Eebowai

      What is your points?? So there is a wait time of a few thousand years for prayers to be answered? And that was when the abrahamic religion population was much smaller then it is today; the wait time must be in the 100k years now. That is if god hasnt outsourced to india too lol.

      February 8, 2012 at 1:05 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      ANYWAY emotional maturity enables a man to see beyond his 5 rational senses. If u love your neighbor as yourself then u will understand what I see.

      February 8, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
    • Hasa Diga Eebowai

      Nii, you don't see past your senses (mystical nonsense) you just learn to process them better. lysergic acid, psilocybin, mescaline, dmt all allow one to modify how their sense are processed but this is simply just chemical changes in the brain... no magic needed

      February 8, 2012 at 3:31 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      I assure u that I do see beyond my five rational senses. I am not a mystic. I do feel that unless u have u cannot make much noise about it. I will prefer u to test rather than sing what you know. That is science. We are not just rational beings. We are intuitive and instinctive as well.

      February 8, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      I said BEYOND not PAST my 5 rational senses. if u r a scientist u will know that every word is important.

      February 8, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
    • Reality

      As per the famous contemporary theologian, Edward Schillebeeckx, God is not omniscient. Please read, pause and contemplate the following by Schillebeeckx:

      Church: The Human Story of God,
      Crossroad, 1993, p.91 (softcover)

      "Christians (et al) must give up a perverse, unhealthy and inhuman doctrine of predestination without in so doing making God the great scapegoat of history."

      "Nothing is determined in advance: in nature there is chance and determinism; in the world of human activity there is possibility of free choices.

      Therefore the historical future is not known even to God, otherwise we and our history would be merely a puppet show in which God holds the strings.

      For God, too, history is an adventure, an open history for and of men and women."

      February 8, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
    • Huh?

      "If u love your neighbor as yourself then u will understand what I see."

      Doesn't mean it's a god. Human beings will survive better when we love ourselves better, doesn't mean we need a false god to do it.

      February 8, 2012 at 5:41 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      Talk is cheap. Love ur neighbor as urself. U will see what I see. I never said it was God. Try it. Don't be afraid. Love.

      February 8, 2012 at 5:56 pm |
  18. Atheist must be protected

    They are endangered and in near extinction.

    February 8, 2012 at 12:07 pm |
  19. Prayer is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer takes people away from actually working on real solutions to their problems.
    Prayer fucks up your knees and your neck and your back.
    Prayer can cause heart attacks, especially among the elderly.
    Prayer reveals how stupid you are to the world.
    Prayer exposes your backside to pervert priests.
    Prayer makes you post really stupid shit.
    Prayer makes you hoard cats.
    Prayer makes you smell like kitty litter and leads you on to harder drugs.
    Prayer wastes time.

    February 8, 2012 at 11:59 am |
  20. Prayer changes things

    Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    February 8, 2012 at 11:58 am |
    • Prayer is not healthy for children and other living things

      Prayer takes people away from actually working on real solutions to their problems.
      Prayer wears out your clothes prematurely.
      Prayer contributes to global warming through excess CO2 emissions.
      Prayer fucks up your knees and your neck and your back.
      Prayer reveals how stupid you are to the world.
      Prayer exposes your backside to pervert priests.
      Prayer prevents you from getting badly needed exercise.
      Prayer makes you post really stupid shit.
      Prayer makes you hoard cats.
      Prayer makes you smell like kitty litter and leads you on to harder drugs.
      Prayer wastes time.

      February 8, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • Joe T.

      Sorry, I prefer to solve it on my own than hope someone else is going to solve it for me.

      Prayer is a crutch for those who can't think or act on their own. Plus I wouldn't want to waste God's time. After all, he's gotta help Tim Tebow win football games.

      February 8, 2012 at 2:45 pm |
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About this blog

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.