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President Obama's Ramadan slap at Muslims
President Barack Obama speaks as he hosts an Iftar dinner in the at the White House on July 14, 2014.
July 28th, 2014
09:38 AM ET

President Obama's Ramadan slap at Muslims

Opinion by Salam Al-Marayati, special to CNN

(CNN) - Presidents George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush all met with American Muslims, as they did with most other religious groups.

President Barack Obama, under advice from his aides that association with Muslims is politically damaging, has yet to invite American Muslim organizations and leaders into the Oval Office for substantive discussions on domestic and international policies.

Yes, Muslims from all over the country accepted a White House invitation to attend the Iftar dinner earlier this month with the President to break our fast, to break bread, and to build bridges of understanding.

In Ramadan, a month for spiritual replenishment in the Islamic calendar, an estimated 1.5 billion Muslims around the world perform an obligatory fast from predawn to sunset for the purpose of purifying one’s soul through prayer and self-sacrifice.

But instead of feeling spiritually uplifted and civically engaged by attending an Islamic celebration in the White House, the Muslim guests were shocked and dismayed when they heard the President say, “Israel has the right to defend itself.”

For Muslims, that talking point is code for whitewashing decades of atrocities committed against the people of Gaza: the kids killed on the Gaza Beach, the civilians bombed in the most densely populated cage in the world, and the attacking of civilians who resort to donkey carts for transportation.

Obama began his presidency conveying aspirations of bridging the divide between the United States and the Muslim world. He needs American Muslims to be a part of that mission. Instead he has continued the unfortunate legacy of excluding of anyone who supports Palestine.

Palestine is a dirty word in Washington and criticizing Israel's policies toward Palestinians is a political taboo.

We can talk about Darfur, Nigeria, Sudan, Pakistan, Iran and every Arab country. We can criticize all of them, along with Russia and China, and call for sanctions on human rights violators. But bringing up Israel's atrocities in the West Bank or Gaza is met with denial and disgust, generating millions of disaffected Americans in the process.

There is more tolerance in Israel for critiquing the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza than there is inside the Beltway.

America is our home, and Barack Obama is our president. It is our duty to express our disenchantment and to demand change when the leader of our country is wrong.

The President must acknowledge that we, the American people, are funding the siege of Gaza. The whole world knows that America is giving political cover for the military occupation of Palestinians.

It is time to tell America the truth of our complicity in robbing Palestinians of their human dignity.

Terrorism is evil, and we will continue to partner with the President in countering the rhetoric of ideological religious extremism and to end the scourge of terrorism, not for political gain but out of our sacred duty.

Now, the President needs to acknowledge that occupation is evil, and it is time he recognizes those engaged in nonviolent resistance against the occupation. They are those who live every day through checkpoints, blockades, home demolitions and expansion of Jewish settlements in the West Bank.

Call it an internment camp, a prison - Gaza has become unlivable.

The President must also face a reality: Not a single Muslim serves as a senior policy adviser in the White House or as an under secretary in the departments of Justice, Homeland Security, State or Defense.

There is no Middle East envoy of Muslim background. The President has yet to name a Muslim as ambassador to any of the 50 Muslim-majority countries.

The White House Ramadan dinner cannot be the quota for engagement or enfranchisement.

We cannot give Obama a pass because he has said the right things in regard to his respect for Islam, nor can we release him from accountability out of fear of Republicans.

Muslims represent 4 million to 6 million Americans and include practically every race and socioeconomic level in the United States. They vote and contribute, and they helped Obama win the presidency.

But Obama has gone so far in proving he’s not Muslim that he has excluded Muslims from vital national conversations. We’ll continue to engage his administration to correct this egregious breach of public trust.

We demand that he fulfill his promise for change and be the president we voted for. Otherwise, America will be less American.

Salam Al-Marayati is president of the Muslim Public Affairs Council. The views expressed in this column belong to Al-Marayati. 

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Foreign policy • Islam • Israel • Middle East • Muslim • Opinion • Politics • Prejudice

soundoff (574 Responses)
  1. unsername1

    what these religious nuts think, white house is some kind of universal place of worship? why do they think their religions must be celebrated by President in WH?

    July 28, 2014 at 8:30 pm |
    • kenmargo

      They have strong beliefs like a lot of religions. christians feel the same way.

      July 28, 2014 at 8:45 pm |
    • lunchbreaker

      Is "unsername" a typo?

      July 29, 2014 at 3:33 pm |
  2. Blessed are the Cheesemakers

    =>I understand you are just lashing out because you are beginning to understand God does present exactly in form and substance expressed in concept common to deterministic pantheism.
    I think pantheism is just as much of an invalid premise as your god…it just cuts out the immorality of the god of Abraham.

    =>You also are well aware that the concept you attempted to present in jest is false and the alarm bells going off in your soul must be frightening. Perhaps you have seen the God of Spinoza that fascinated Einstein? And I am no more worried that your god is real than I am that Vishnu is real.

    Nope, Einstein was wrong about many things in his life, there is no reason to think he was right here and he soundly rejected a personal god. So you claiming any connection to what Einstein was talking about is just more delusion or dishonesty and it does not matter which.

    =>Just in case I am wrong tell me what that form and substance is if in fact it is knowable.
    I love it when apologists claim their god is unknowable and then spend so much time arguing how they “know” it….you are a funny one fred.

    July 28, 2014 at 7:32 pm |
    • believerfred

      Blessed are the Cheesemakers
      "fred's argument,
      God is unknowable...because fred knows it.

      God as an explanation for the universe is = to Zues as an explanation for lightning.

      It is the exact same argument from ignorance.

      July 28, 2014 at 9:13 pm |
      • believerfred

        Blessed are the Cheesemakers
        No, that position is not biblical, it is not my position nor does it conform to current consensus as to pre Big Bang cosmology. If you want to begin at singularity the same applies.

        And what is your argument for the explanation of the universe?

        July 28, 2014 at 9:17 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          There is no pre big bang cosmology, there are only a lot of unknowns. It is possible the substance of the universe has always existed.

          I don't have an answer, nor do I need one....you do.

          July 28, 2014 at 11:22 pm |
        • believerfred

          Blessed are the Cheesemakers
          "God as an explanation for the universe is = to Zues as an explanation for lightning. It is the exact same argument from ignorance." "I don't have an answer, nor do I need one....you do."
          =>What you do not understand is that God is not the man made organic being contrived by man in the form and substance of man called Zeus. Amazing you cannot grasp the difference between something man makes and something made by God. Your inability to grasp such a simple distinction indicates you are hiding something or hiding from something. Refusal to learn is the definition of ignorance although not an argumentum ad ignorantiam even though you failed to shift the point of the discussion.
          =>Your 2nd grade teacher (who you still blame for believing the Bible literally) used God as in the beginning and you claim ("I don't know and I don't care) for your something. Claiming you do not care yet building a wall of defense suggests you have something to defend and well you should as you know something with form and substance of God trumps "I don't know and I don't care

          July 29, 2014 at 12:35 pm |
        • igaftr

          fred
          "What you do not understand is that God is not the man made organic being contrived by man in the form and substance of man called Zeus"

          You believe your god is different, but you do not show how.
          There is equal evidence for Zeus as there is for your god...that being absolutely nothing.
          You think that all god EXCEPT yours is man made, why isn't that you can't see that your god is EXACTLY the same as all the rest...an imagining of what people think is "god".
          Zeus, god, Odin, and the other thousands...all the same.
          You claim differently...prove it.

          July 29, 2014 at 12:44 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          =>What you do not understand is that God is not the man made organic being contrived by man in the form and substance of man called Zeus.

          Well you are the one saying your god is real...prove it. I think your god was a man made construct just like Zues. You say I am wrong. The onus is on you,

          =>Amazing you cannot grasp the difference between something man makes and something made by God. Your inability to grasp such a simple distinction indicates you are hiding something or hiding from something. Refusal to learn is the definition of ignorance although not an argumentum ad ignorantiam even though you failed to shift the point of the discussion.

          I think it is amazing you continue to make basless assertions and accuse me of ignorance when you are the one that cannot show any reasonable connection between your god you believe in and reality.

          =>Your 2nd grade teacher (who you still blame for believing the Bible literally)

          I don't know what you are talking about here fred...

          => Claiming you do not care yet building a wall of defense suggests you have something to defend and well you should as you know something with form and substance of God trumps "I don't know and I don't care"

          That is not what I said fred. If you are going to quote me you could at least do so accurately using 'copy, paste'.

          Like this...here is what I actually said ....."I don't have an answer, nor do I need one....you do."

          I don't need an answer because I have no need to claim answers that I, and no one else, has. I do care about the answer...but as I have pointed out the answer is "I don't know"...neither do you despite your mental mas.terb.ation.

          Let me use an example. Let say you are looking a jar of pennies. You have no idea how many pennies are in the jar. I ask you if there are an odd number of pennies or an even amount. You state unequivocally with 100% certainty that the truth of the pennies is that there is an even amount.

          If you do that you are being dishonest...even if you are right. You don't really "know". You haven't counted them to find out. Claiming certainty in such a situation is the same as lying....that is what you are doing with your "god" premise.

          July 29, 2014 at 1:21 pm |
        • tallulah131

          Every true believer of every one of the thousands of gods created by humanity had the same conviction that you do, fred. Every one of them "knew" that their god was real. You offer no more evidence than any of those other believers, therefore your claims are no more valid. I get that you need your god to feel special. But your need doesn't actually make you special. You and your god are not unique at all.

          July 29, 2014 at 1:33 pm |
        • believerfred

          igaftr
          Moses staff turned into a snake and the holy men of Pharaoh turned their staffs into snakes and they mocked Moses until Moses snake ate all the others (symbolic of power of God over the power of the deception of other gods). Given you listed a bunch of gods can you name me one that has over powered God or even suggested he or she could overpower God.

          July 29, 2014 at 2:00 pm |
        • TruthPrevails1

          "Moses staff turned into a snake and the holy men of Pharaoh turned their staffs into snakes and they mocked Moses until Moses snake ate all the others (symbolic of power of God over the power of the deception of other gods). "

          I find it hard to believe that anyone could possibly be stupid enough to believe this crap! Outside of your buybull, could you please point to another time where something this absurd has happened? Could you please tell us how far you made it in grade school before you dropped out??

          July 29, 2014 at 2:12 pm |
        • igaftr

          fred
          What kind of pointless question is that. You still have not shown any gods to exist, so as far as I can see, all gods only exist in imagination, so I can imagine a god that can beat up your god if that's what makes you happy, but it still does not offer any evidence of any god at all.

          The god I imagine is giving your god a swirly right now, so yes, I imagine there are many gods that can beat up your god...are we kids on a playground boasting about my dad can beat up your dad now?

          There is no answer to your question because is presumes gods exist, where you still have not shown any.

          I don't know why you bothered to tell part of the MAN MADE story of Moses, but did you see what Luke Skywalker did? your pulling up your story is the same as me refernecing that story fred...why don't you get that?

          July 29, 2014 at 2:15 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          "Moses staff turned into a snake and the holy men of Pharaoh turned their staffs into snakes and they mocked Moses until Moses snake ate all the others"

          Sounds like a fairy tale...why should anyone think this story ever happened?

          July 29, 2014 at 2:24 pm |
        • Alias

          If you believe that all the staffs turned into snakes, then you must believe that there are other gods.
          Isn't that a contradiction in your silly bible?

          July 29, 2014 at 2:31 pm |
        • believerfred

          TruthPrevails1
          Wait a minute, you're the one who believes sticks can turn into snakes given 15 billion or so years. Don't go dissin' Moses.

          July 29, 2014 at 6:18 pm |
        • believerfred

          Alias
          I said the deception of other gods as in black magic

          July 29, 2014 at 6:22 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          fred
          "you're the one who believes sticks can turn into snakes given 15 billion or so years"

          If that's your understanding of evolution, no wonder you don't believe it.

          July 29, 2014 at 6:28 pm |
        • believerfred

          In Santa We Trust
          Actually the odds of life evolving from a stick on earth is better than life evolving from cosmic dust

          July 29, 2014 at 6:51 pm |
        • igaftr

          fred
          "Actually the odds of life evolving from a stick on earth is better than life evolving from cosmic dust"

          OK fred...by all means , show the calculations you used to come up with that gem. There are a lot of variable, unknown factors involved, so it will take you a while.

          By NOT showing your calculations, you admit that your statement is pure BS...another LIE from fred.
          Gosh fred, you must be so proud of yourself.

          July 30, 2014 at 8:19 am |
  3. LaBella

    Fred,
    " the teaching of all gods are neutral."
    =>How can you teach all gods are equal without expressing a belief God is not God as presented?
    =>Teaching equality of God,god and gods cannot be truth

    You do it in the same neutral tone as one teaches the different gods of history. That's how.

    Teach your own children your religion. It doesn't belong in public schools. Period.

    July 28, 2014 at 7:14 pm |
    • LaBella

      Placed here because thread is unwieldy.

      July 28, 2014 at 7:22 pm |
    • believerfred

      If you suggest God can be known from an academic level that is not the truth
      If you imply all gods are equal that is unconstitutional as it is a religion in itself.
      A true believer that knows God could never teach such a class and non believers could not teach

      July 28, 2014 at 7:52 pm |
      • LaBella

        Not what I said at all, but I like how you misrepresent t everything I did say.
        If neutrality of the various deities cannot be maintained, they have no place in public education. Period.

        July 28, 2014 at 8:28 pm |
      • midwest rail

        "...but I like how you misrepresent t everything I did say."
        Standard operating procedure.

        July 28, 2014 at 8:31 pm |
        • LaBella

          It's getting tedious.

          July 28, 2014 at 8:47 pm |
      • believerfred

        Well, I have no idea how neutrality of the various deities is possible without presenting God in the format of comparative religions which in itself presents a belief that gods, god and God belong in the same bucket, your opinion is as valid as my opinion and if all deities are possible then your deity (Deity) statistically has a lower probability of being true.
        Your constitutionally approved deity (Deity) presentation sounds like a Richard Dawkins sound bite.

        July 28, 2014 at 8:48 pm |
        • LaBella

          Fred, I use the word deity to encompass all gods/God/Allah/YHVH.
          Your sly dig of throwing in the Dawkins reference in some passive agressive attempt to insult me is moot, as I'm not an atheist.

          Answer this, Fred: would you want a teacher in a public school to lead prayers to Allah?

          July 28, 2014 at 9:13 pm |
        • LaBella

          And as you cannot resist misrepresenting me, which is tantamount to lying, I said if all gods, including the Christian God, are taught in public school, they cannot have more or less importance placed on each other. That's what I mean by neutral.
          It would seem you are deliberately trying to be obtuse, when my meaning is abundantly clear.

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

          Edit:
          [...] I meant if all gods, including the Christian God, are taught in public school, they cannot have more or less importance placed on each other. That's what I mean by neutral. [...]

          July 28, 2014 at 9:44 pm |
        • believerfred

          LaBella
          No, I would not want prayer to Allah
          I understood what neutral implied and any attempt to teach God is equivalent to Zeus is neither true or neutral. You have marginalized all beliefs with secularism rising supreme. Communism is still working on marginalizing God without resorting to killing and both discovered that destroying the concept of God in the minds of children is the key.

          July 29, 2014 at 1:00 pm |
        • zhilla1980wasp

          fred: your jesus/god was a communist...... i guess closer to marxism which is the father of communism.

          July 29, 2014 at 1:06 pm |
        • LaBella

          Fred,

          I am marginalizing nothing. Communism? Wth? Where on earth did that come from? Now I'm a communist pinko because I feel religious instruction belongs elsewhere?
          Religious instruction does not belong in public school classrooms, which is precisely what you are espousing.
          If you don't want Islamic instruction taught in public schools, Christian instruction cannot be allowed, either.

          I don't know why you cannot grasp this.

          July 29, 2014 at 1:16 pm |
        • zhilla1980wasp

          because fred and his god are special. lmao

          that's why labella.

          July 29, 2014 at 1:24 pm |
        • believerfred

          LaBella
          There is a difference between teaching your belief and not endorsing God. You promote teaching godlessness the moment God and Zeus become equals.

          July 29, 2014 at 1:48 pm |
        • believerfred

          zhilla1980wasp
          because fred and his god are special. lmao

          =>God is more than special and worthy of praise not mocking and not marginalizing. When you have capacity to mock God you have a belief that you actually believe in a power greater than God. I am not the one who thinks he is special.

          July 29, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
        • igaftr

          fred
          Where is your evidence that YOUR god exists but Zeus doesn't?

          Until you show that, they ARE EXACTLY THE SAME.
          Teaching godlessness? nonsense...you want us to teach about some god you can't even show exists.

          Your CHURCH is where you can "learn" about your god, and nothing is stopping you...your BELIEF has no place being taught where there are people of various beliefs.
          School is for learning, increasing knowledge...belief is not knowledge.

          July 29, 2014 at 2:01 pm |
        • zhilla1980wasp

          "RA is more than special and worthy of praise not mocking and not marginalizing. When you have capacity to mock RA you have a belief that you actually believe in a power greater than RA."

          hint the eqyptians would have executed you for not believing RA was the one and only all powerful god.

          fred: the only difference between "religion" and "mythology" is one is believed now and one was believed in the past.

          July 29, 2014 at 2:12 pm |
        • LaBella

          "There is a difference between teaching your belief and not endorsing God. You promote teaching godlessness the moment God and Zeus become equals."

          Nonsense. I never said they were equal; you are once again misrepresenting what I said. Extremely close to lying. Why?
          I endorse teaching them neurally.
          If you can't understand the difference, that's your problem.

          This is the precise reason religious instruction does not belong in our public schools. Because zealot teachers who would grade inappropriately because their students, ALL students, may not believe as that teacher does. How do you grade faith and belief, Fred? Do you flunk the Muslim kid? The Sikh? The Jewish kid? They don't believe in the Christian God.
          Your position is untenable.

          July 29, 2014 at 2:19 pm |
        • believerfred

          igaftr
          "Where is your evidence that YOUR god exists but Zeus doesn't?"
          =>Please list the Presidents of the United States or the world who claim Zeus exists
          =>Please produce one life transformed by Zeus in the last 500 years

          July 29, 2014 at 2:45 pm |
        • igaftr

          fred.
          Nice deflection, but neither of your questions are valid.
          First, it does not matter how many people believed, and as far as presidents, their rank has nothing to do with their belief.
          the number of people that believe a given thing, is meaningless to the validity of the belief.

          And Zeus did not chnage anyones lives that I am aware of, and neither did your god. No one has ever shown any cause/effect relationship showing god did anything, changed anything, caused anything. Not once so if you claim otherwise, you simply cannot see there is no direct cause effect relationship.

          That means both your questions in answer to my question are completely moot.

          I will ask again. What evidence do you have that shows yuour god is any different to Zeus, or any other of the thousands of gods.

          No tap dancing, no deflection. A straight answer for once fred.

          July 29, 2014 at 2:59 pm |
        • believerfred

          LaBella
          Tell me how you can teach God and Zeus neutrally without bringing God down to the level of Zeus. Will you introduce Allah as myth?

          July 29, 2014 at 3:01 pm |
        • zhilla1980wasp

          fred: i would teach all belief in anything "super-natural" as myth.......well until physical evidence or a repeatible experiment can prove that it does belong in the realm of reality.

          July 29, 2014 at 3:10 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Lives are being changed by Zeus right now.
          There is an active Hellenic Neopaganist movement in Greece.
          The Labrys religious community has weekly public gatherings where they engage in the ancient Greek religious rituals. They preach that their adherents should practice household worship and the idea that family and community should be the starting points of religious practice.

          July 29, 2014 at 3:15 pm |
        • igaftr

          fred
          Zeus down to your gods level? For all you know, your god needs to be broght up to Zeus' level...or to the side, under, over,or criss cross...why not start with showing any gods exist, before we start assigning hierarchy shall we?

          So far evidence for your god....nothing
          so far your evidence for or against zeus...nothing.
          Nogomain created himself out of nothing...more powerful than your god.
          So far a dead heat fred

          July 29, 2014 at 3:16 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          God/Allah/Yahweh are all the same Supreme Creator Deity.
          Same God, different prophets.

          July 29, 2014 at 3:17 pm |
        • believerfred

          igaftr
          "Nice deflection, but neither of your questions are valid."
          =>The questions are valid and you should know that

          "First, it does not matter how many people believed"
          =>nonsense zero people is a statistically significant number so tell me one.

          "as far as presidents, their rank has nothing to do with their belief."
          =>nonsense 100% of all U.S. presidents believe in God and zero believe Zeus was anything other than myth. 43 presidents hold more weight than 43 seniors in a retirement home or 43 high school football players

          "the number of people that believe a given thing, is meaningless to the validity of the belief."
          =>nonsense, 99 people claim they saw a rabbit and 1 claimed it was a frog only an atheist would put up the argument that these observations mean it could have been a rabbit, a frog or the Tooth Fairy we just don't know since the only evidence is what people believe they saw. Show me the rabbit or show me the frog otherwise my opinion is just as valid as the 100 claims.

          "Zeus did not chnage anyones lives that I am aware of, and neither did your god."
          => correct you can recognize that Zeus changed zero lives. God changed my life yet you somehow claim to see it was anything but God. Seriously, and you think that makes sense? My actual experience is trumped by your ability to see beyond my actual experience.

          "No one has ever shown any cause/effect relationship showing god did anything, changed anything, caused anything."
          =>really, I read the words of Jesus from a Bible and exactly what Jesus said would happen happens. I read the Bible caused me to be born again .......tell me there was no cause ->effect relationship.

          "you simply cannot see there is no direct cause effect relationship."
          =>Let me repeat open Bible->transformation. I read it, saw it and live it yet you at a distance claim I cannot see the cause and effect.

          "What evidence do you have that shows yuour god is any different to Zeus"
          => If you own knowledge of Zeus and the actual visible power of God in the world you live in is not enough there will never be evidence that is acceptable to you because you are running on some godless agenda based on a non conventional world view.

          July 29, 2014 at 3:38 pm |
        • LaBella

          Answer my questions, Fred.
          How do you grade belief when your students don't share that belief?
          So you would flunk those students?
          EXACTLY why religious instruction should stay put of public schools.
          Your position is untenable.

          July 29, 2014 at 3:57 pm |
        • LaBella

          => If you own knowledge of Zeus and the actual visible power of God in the world you live in is not enough there will never be evidence that is acceptable to you because you are running on some godless agenda based on a non conventional world view.

          How do you teach that, Fred?
          It's not a matter of God vs. godless, and your inability to differentiate that is getting tiresome.
          No agenda. One can simply not teach belief and faith in public schools unless one is going to get ALL of the prevailing religions in practice today taught in the same measure.

          You're perilously close to the ISIS "convert or die" thought process.

          July 29, 2014 at 4:04 pm |
        • James XCIX

          fred –

          "100% of all U.S. presidents believe in God..."

          You don't know that, do you? How can you possibly know what someone really believes?

          "... you can recognize that Zeus changed zero lives."

          You don't know that either, do you? You're essentially describing an att-itude change. You don't think it's possible people's atti-tudes could have been changed once they became more informed about the pagan religions of their day?

          July 29, 2014 at 4:08 pm |
        • believerfred

          LaBella
          I agree keep your religious views out of the schools. God is not myth and God is not equal to Zeus and cannot be taught neutrally.
          Now, when you teach the history of the United States teach 43 out of 43 elected presidents in 44 terms believed in God and the founders of this great nation declared unanimously that we are endowed by our creator after which they only signed the Declaration of Independence below the written request for God blessing:
          "We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions"

          July 29, 2014 at 4:10 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Believerfred,

          If 99 people claimed to see an alien spacecraft and 1 claimed to see an airplane, i'd go with the airplane.

          While you and others claim to have been changed by your God, you have yet provide any objective reason to think that it is true.

          July 29, 2014 at 4:18 pm |
        • LaBella

          Fred, I don't know why you're bringing up past presidents or their beliefs because it isn't germane to the conversation you and I are having, but what President are you excluding from your list? I know WHT was Unitarian; so who are you positing is the one who wasn't Christian?

          Oh, and kids are taught that the FF were mostly Christian, btw. Don't know where you would get the idea that they aren't. (At least in my PS)

          July 29, 2014 at 4:30 pm |
        • believerfred

          LaBella
          Now teach this:
          The constitution of the United States demands that teachers stop promoting a belief or preference in secularism, scientism and naturalism. God as known to those who believe and attest to the very presence of God in their lives is known by 2.1 billion people and has been wrongly marginalized and categorized as mythology in the majority of public school systems. Secularism, scientism and naturalism are in fact competing philosophies that undermine belief in God.

          July 29, 2014 at 4:38 pm |
        • LaBella

          Fred, are you incapable of answering on topic?
          We're not a theocracy. The United States was founded as a secular country.
          Teach your children what you stated in your post all you'd like, out of a public schools, where it is UnConstitutional to favor one religion over another.
          The FF were wise. They knew what favoring one denomination/religion could do.

          July 29, 2014 at 4:48 pm |
        • igaftr

          "First, it does not matter how many people believed"
          =>nonsense zero people is a statistically significant number so tell me one.

          I have no idea what you meant to say, but if one person believes or 10 billion, does not change the validty of the belief.
          Your example with the frog and rabbit, can be verified one way or another...not any gods...you cannot verify, so the number does not matter

          It also makes no difference the social standing of the individual believer, so a president believer and a burger flipper believing, also does not effect the validity of the belief.

          God changed my life
          Prove it. Just because you attribute the change to "god" it most likely was you.
          By all means, if you have a direct cause effect relationship, show it. This would of course require you to prove your god exists.
          How do you know it was god, and not any of the infinite other possibilities...you see, you CANNOT know it was any god, so cannot logically attribute anything to this "god"

          =>really, I read the words of Jesus from a Bible

          No, you read the words that men say Jesus said, but you really don't know if Jesus said anything, most of what Jesus allegedly said was taught by the Buddha 400 years before.

          Let me repeat open Bible->transformation. I read it, saw it and live it yet you at a distance claim I cannot see the cause and effect
          No...you have attributed something to a god that you still cannot show exists, and your experience could have been any of an infinite number of other things.
          You cannot say it was your god, because you cannot exclude any other possibility.
          So you FALSELY place a cause and effect relationship, where you actually have none at all.

          => If you own knowledge of Zeus and the actual visible power of God in the world you live in is not enough

          Since they both show the same thing, which is nothing, you are back to Zeus and your god..still in a dead heat.

          Just because YOU falseley attribute things to your god, doesn't make them true.
          You claim you can look around and see your go everywhere...how do you know it isn't Zeus' work you see...and I mean KNOW fred, not believe.

          You have shown you do not have the slightest grasp of logic, nor reason, and you certainly do not have a clue about what qualifies as a cause /effect relationship.

          At the end of the day...Zeus and your god...still showing a dead heat fred.

          July 29, 2014 at 4:48 pm |
        • believerfred

          Labella
          There is much debate as to concept of God some of the past presidents believed in or which were Christian. There have been 43 different presidents and 44 presidencies Grover Cleveland is only counted once.

          July 29, 2014 at 4:51 pm |
        • LaBella

          Ah. Forgot about Grover Cleveland.

          July 29, 2014 at 5:04 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          "There have been 43 different presidents and 44 presidencies."

          So Bush 41 is really Bush 40?

          July 29, 2014 at 5:26 pm |
        • LaBella

          Santa,
          Cleveland was our 22nd and our 24th Presudent, the only one who was elected twice but didn't serve consecutive terms.

          July 29, 2014 at 5:55 pm |
        • believerfred

          igaftr
          I have no problem working with causation and it is you who has confused causality as relates to scientific predictions vs philosophy. In addition to transfer of matter and energy in a causal chain (sequence of phenomena) there is a transfer of structure along causal chains. It is this property of reflection inherent in matter that you are addressing once you bring God into a discussion of causality. This dialectical nature of causality was the basis of Spinoza's proof that God exists.
          You cannot demand evidence for God that is outside of the causal chain we are discussing. That is why it is nonsense although it seems to be the favorite soundbite of the atheist when trashing a believers personal experience.

          July 29, 2014 at 6:02 pm |
        • believerfred

          James XCIX
          "100% of all U.S. presidents believe in God..."You don't know that, do you?
          =>ok put out as if they believed in God

          => You don't think it's possible people's atti-tudes could have been changed......{by} pagan religions of their day?
          =>I am not aware of any accounts of transformation. We serve a living God as evidence by our personal existence and how we behave. There is no doubt in the believer as to the existence of the object of worship and effect of that worship Our entire society has awareness of this object of worship and the effect of worship. Negative and positive energy responds to our object of worship and worship itself altering the physical and non physical reality that is objectively observed and observable. The presence of God is self evident.

          July 29, 2014 at 4:08 pm |

          July 29, 2014 at 6:38 pm |
        • believerfred

          MidwestKen

          "If 99 people claimed to see an alien spacecraft and 1 claimed to see an airplane, i'd go with the airplane."
          =>ok Poker at my house tomorrow night bring lots of cash.

          "While you and others claim to have been changed by your God, you have yet provide any objective reason to think that it is true."
          =>millions of people a year experiencing the same effect and subject to the same cause is a correlation for which you have no evidence to support a contrary contrary conclusion. But, everyone is welcome to speculate

          July 29, 2014 at 7:00 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          believerfred,

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

          Poker? you’re on! Bring a bunch of MUFON buddies too.

          Same effect? Same cause? How can you possibly tell when it’s all subjective? Have you never heard of the myriad psychological quirks of the human mind, the power of suggestion, the placebo effect, delusion, even simple rationalization.

          July 29, 2014 at 10:14 pm |
        • James XCIX

          Fred –

          “I am not aware of any accounts of transformation.”

          So to you that means none could have happened? Which is more likely, ancient religions had some effect on the lives of their followers or ancient religions had no effect on their lives?

          “There is no doubt in the believer as to the existence of the object of worship and effect of that worship.”

          This is not unique to your religion, or even to present-day religions. Ancient religions had their priests and devoted believers, too.

          “Our entire society has awareness of this object of worship and the effect of worship.”

          This is obviously false. Simply look at the views of the participants of this forum for easy evidence.

          “The presence of God is self evident.”

          Also obviously false, since there are so many different religious beliefs.

          July 30, 2014 at 9:27 am |
        • igaftr

          fred
          You clearly do not understand a cause and effect relationship.

          As an example
          I'm driving and I get a flat tire. I pray for help. Someone comes along and helps me.

          You cannot say that prayer did anything at all. Just because you prayed, does not mean that the person showed up because of the prayer.That is not a cause/ effect relationship

          Just like the fact that there are no tigers around me, and I carry a lucky penny that repels tigers. Is the fact that there are no tigers around me because of my lucky coin?

          That is the flawed logic you are employing fred. You clearly do not comprehend a true cause and effect relationship.

          Just because you feel you experienced Jesus, does not mean that is actually what you experienced, by any stretch, as many other things can account for it ( and most likely is simply you saying it was Jesus...allowing yourself to delude you)

          DO you get it now?

          July 30, 2014 at 10:29 am |
      • zhilla1980wasp

        fred: neutral means to not pick one side or the other; to not place any importance on one thing over another.

        that is how labella is saying teach religion, as all gods exist or no gods. if you give wieght to one over the others you are doing humanity and the furture minds of this world a dis-service.

        however you and your ilk have been trying to impose your foolish god on all of humanity since the fracking jews spit him. your ilk have used violence, slavery, invasion, "missionaries", fear and even adapting other cultures symbols just to make your religion survive.

        July 29, 2014 at 3:15 pm |
        • believerfred

          Mankind has committed all form of atrocities in the name of religion and atheism which is a reflection of mankind not God who is God regardless of our nonsense and screwed up concepts.
          Any promotion of godlessness is a reckless experiment on humanity as the world has never known a prevalence of godlessness.

          July 29, 2014 at 4:45 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          I don't think anyone has ever committed crimes in the name of atheism? Atheists have committed crimes, yes ... but not in the name of not believing in any gods ... they are just people committing crimes for their own gain or their own pleasure.

          July 29, 2014 at 4:48 pm |
        • LaBella

          WASP, I get the feeling Fred is just playing with us, now. Nobody could be this deliberately disingenuous.

          July 29, 2014 at 4:52 pm |
        • believerfred

          Dog
          If Stalin and Mao were not atheist they could not have put communism before God or felt as zhilla does that faith is a cancer that needs to be removed

          July 29, 2014 at 4:54 pm |
    • believerfred

      LaBella
      Great we agree again "Teach your own children your religion. It doesn't belong in public schools. Period."

      July 28, 2014 at 8:50 pm |
      • Doc Vestibule

        When teaching a history or social studies course, a culture's religions can't just be skipped over.
        A society's myths are an integral part of their cultural context.
        One cannot understand the ancient Greeks, Romans, Celtics, Norse, Egyptians, Mayan, Aztec, Inuit et al without a knowledge of their respective patheons and the ways in which god worship shaped the daily lives of the people.

        July 29, 2014 at 8:37 am |
        • LaBella

          I tried to convey that, but I guess Fred didn't understand what I meant; you said it much more eloquently.

          July 29, 2014 at 11:28 am |
        • believerfred

          Doc
          "A society's myths"
          =>This presumption of myth is what I have observed in the text given to children.
          =>The presumption of myth has resulted in a suit against California Universities rejection of students academic achievements if Christian text books are used which do not label God as myth.

          July 29, 2014 at 1:06 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @Fred
          If a story involves the supernatural, it is mythology.
          The Bible is no more actual, factual history than is GIlgamesh, though both are important to know if you want to understand the cultures that were/are influenced by them.

          July 29, 2014 at 1:11 pm |
        • believerfred

          Doc
          "f a story involves the supernatural, it is mythology. The Bible is no more actual, factual history than is GIlgamesh"
          =>Do I understand you correct that you promote teaching children: The Bible is no more divine than the Epic of Gilgamesh, God does not exist and Jesus is no more God than Zeus was god ?
          =>The Declaration of Independence is nonsense because man was never endowed by his Creator?

          July 29, 2014 at 1:43 pm |
        • joey3467

          Do I understand you correct that you promote teaching children: The Bible is no more divine than the Epic of Gilgamesh, God does not exist and Jesus is no more God than Zeus was god ?

          Yes, until you or anyone else can prove otherwise. For all you know some evil god wrote the bible to get people not to worship Zeus and all the Christians will end up in Hades. Or my personal opinion that god uses it to weed out the stupid amongst us by sending anyone who takes it literally to Hell for being a moron.

          July 29, 2014 at 3:32 pm |
  4. unsername1

    build bridges of understanding with Islam? we already know enough about them.

    July 28, 2014 at 5:59 pm |
    • kenmargo

      Terrorists would blow up the bridge.

      July 28, 2014 at 6:28 pm |
  5. jonathanpi

    I have been waiting and watching, trying to determine how long CNN would go before an article was written about the Israelie conflict and published on the Belief Blog. Now that one has been, I find myself unsurprised at the approach that has been taken.

    Aside from that little speal, I find the article a sad attempt at an emotional appeal. Israel is long overdue to react to the constant harassment directed at it from its neighbors. Israel is justified in their actions and are trying to minimize the damage it is doing to innocents, unlike Hamas. War is dirty, innocents always die. Just like when we treat a cancer, healthy cells have to be cut out (or poisoned) along with the bad tissue. Blame those who are really responsible, rather than the surgeon attempting to resolve the issue.

    July 28, 2014 at 5:50 pm |
    • Alias

      When you treat people like they have no value, take away their land and their hope, you should expect them to fight back however they can.

      July 28, 2014 at 5:55 pm |
    • Alias

      Please review this part of the article, "that talking point is code for whitewashing decades of atrocities committed against the people of Gaza"
      This is accurate.
      The Gaza strip is a cage, and the people want their captors to give them basic human rights.

      July 28, 2014 at 6:01 pm |
    • kenmargo

      Let's be honest. The Egyptians don't want to be bothered with the Palestinians either. Their border is closed also.

      How about this. Why hasn't a tunnel been built to connect Gaza with the west bank? Gazans would no longer be "trapped". Reinforce the tunnel to limit bombing and inform the Palestinians if they attack the tunnel it will be sealed.

      July 28, 2014 at 6:35 pm |
    • jonathanpi

      @ Alias:

      I saw that section of the article. I'm not blinded by their tactics.

      July 28, 2014 at 6:52 pm |
    • neverbeenhappieratheist

      The issue here is one we cannot solve. The Palistinian people have the right to say this is their homeland and has been for thousands of years. The Israeli's say that about 2000 years ago their ancestor was promised those lands by God and then they went in and took the lands by force proving their God was the strongest. Then they got defeated by the Babylonians and then later the Romans and one of the practices of the Romans was to split up the people of the nations they would concquer so many jews were displaced all over Europe and the mediteranian and after the fall of Rome the remaining Palistinians and Israelis continued to fight for dominance of the region. Then during the 18th and 19th century there was a zionist resurgance even among Christians wanting to repatriate the jews because many prophecies in Revelation require them to be there in Jerusalem which led to some fighting in ww1 of the Palistinians vs zionist forces which went full blown during ww2 after the reasonable 1939 British "white paper" since Churchill was a zionist so through out the restrictions to repatriation it was trying to support which had recommened:

      •Ten years after the release of the paper, Palestine will be given conditional independence. It will function as a unitary state.
      •For five years, 10,000 Jewish immigrants can enter Palestine on an annual basis. Further immigration will be subjected to Arab acquiescence.
      •Palestinian land will be protected from Zionist acquisition and safety of the citizens will be ensured by both the parties.

      The zionists would not hear of it so during ww2 mass amounts of jews were repatriated increasing the population by 31% in just 4 short years.

      After that with the support of the British and American governments who had many zionists in important positions of power gave the newly formed Israel military power to defend itself since it was a foreign occupier with no way to protect itself from the displaced former residents. Now enough time has passed that much of the rest of the world has forgotten that the palistinian people are still an occupied country with Israel as the foreign occupier effectively living in an enormous green zone that keeps getting bigger and bigger the more the indiginous people struggle and fight for their land.

      It is sad but the only way past this is for both sides to put down their religions and stop debating which God gave what to whom and just start trying to talk about living together in peace.

      July 28, 2014 at 7:51 pm |
      • orgjw

        The righteous will inherit the earth and they reside forever upon it – Psalm 37:29

        July 28, 2014 at 9:30 pm |
        • LaBella

          Who decides who is righteous in this case?

          July 28, 2014 at 9:48 pm |
  6. observer

    believerfred,

    Here's a list of questions you REFUSE to answer:

    How did a law prevent God from being able to get into a school room? Isn't he SUPPOSED to be everywhere?

    How did a law prevent students from silently praying to themselves?

    What general public school classes specifically say that "God isn't real"?

    What classes SPECIFICALLY say that Christianity or ANY religion is wrong?

    So why are you SO AFRAID to answer?

    July 28, 2014 at 4:22 pm |
    • Alias

      I'll help!

      You are taking the stuff about keeping god out of the classroom in a totaly different context, and you question is meaningless.
      The law won't force the school to require everyone to be silent so those who choose to pray can do so without interruption.
      Schools teach the Big Bang and evolution from a scientific perspective. Many peopel thing that contradicts the bible.
      Logic, and classes that teach world history, and any critical thinking classes are a threat to religion.
      He won't answer because he cannot defend his position.

      July 28, 2014 at 5:52 pm |
      • observer

        Alias,

        My questions are not meaningless because, as seen, fred has no explanation for why this should stop someone from praying or stop God supposedly from influencing them.

        July 28, 2014 at 5:57 pm |
        • Alias

          I didn't say all of your questions were meaningless – just the one you took totally out of context.

          July 28, 2014 at 6:03 pm |
  7. MidwestKen

    "We demand that he fulfill his promise for change and be the president we voted for. Otherwise, America will be less American."

    Politicians NOT fulfilling their campaign promises IS American!

    July 28, 2014 at 4:16 pm |
    • igaftr

      Hey...he promised change, and I've been living on change since he got into office. Now we need someone with the slogan "folding money" and we'll be all set.

      July 28, 2014 at 4:20 pm |
    • kenmargo

      "Politicians NOT fulfilling their campaign promises IS American!"

      The pope couldn't keep his promises with these bunch of bigots in congress.

      July 28, 2014 at 4:23 pm |
      • MidwestKen

        So either Obama is incapable of doing what he promised or his is incompetent in judging what is possible to do, neither reflects we'll on him. Which is no diferent than any other politician.

        Ps, Why would the Pope be able to do anything here?

        July 28, 2014 at 4:32 pm |
        • igaftr

          It is a bit of both, but people fail to put the blame where it belongs. Congress is where the laws are made, and congress is at a point where they refuse to compromise. We pay them to negotiate, we pay them to find solutions and compromises. That is far from what we are getting. Congress has forgotten their purpose.

          July 28, 2014 at 4:40 pm |
        • kenmargo

          MidwestKen.. You sound like you're from a republican state like Kansas. If true, I see why you don't place the blame where it should be. ON CONGRESS. Republicans didn't:

          Extend unemployment benefits
          Pass a job bill
          Reform immigration laws
          Raise the minimum wage

          None of these things are partisan. Republicans are unemployed, need jobs, have immigrant relatives and earn minimum wages like all others. If I was Republican, there's no way I'd vote Republican.

          July 28, 2014 at 4:49 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Kenmargo,
          I was knocking all politicians. Why do have to go all partisan on my ass?

          If I recall correctly, there are TWO chambers in congress.

          July 28, 2014 at 5:17 pm |
        • kenmargo

          The senate passed an immigration bill last year. John Boehner refused to bring it to a vote in the house. Republicans used to fillibuster every bill in the senate until Harry Reid finally grew a pair and used the nuclear option to get things through. I believe it was Mitch McConell who said "He will never work with this president"

          This is a republican problem. NOT a Obama problem.

          July 28, 2014 at 5:28 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Kenmargo,
          I think both parties have blocked bills. I'm not saying that Repubs haven't been the culprit in most, but ther are two parties involved.

          In addition, if you think that immigration and minimum wage bills are not partisan issues then, then perhaps you are drinking too much patisan kool-aid.

          July 28, 2014 at 5:43 pm |
        • kenmargo

          Yes BOTH parties have blocked bills. In the past they would work out their differences. Repubs/tea party have a new mantra. MY WAY OR THE HIGHWAY, No negotiations. That's not how it's supposed to be.

          Gearge Bush also tried to get immigration reform. Bush got plenty of latin votes. The only latin votes Mutt Romney got were his maid and butler.

          How can ANYONE be against raising the minimum wage. The CBO stated that if you raise the minimum wage, It would lift 19 million people out of poverty. WHO CAN BE AGAINST THAT!!!!!!!! We've raised the minimum wage before and we're still here.

          July 28, 2014 at 6:08 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Kenmargo,
          (Sigh) that is the way politics have always worked. There is no "supposed to". Granted partisanship may be at a highpoint these days, but have read some of the crap that went on in the day.

          As to who, id offer two (not myself necessarily):
          1) those who don't think the government should be ditating wages in the first place.
          2) those who actualy read the CBO report and saw the 900K (not 19M) lifted out of poverty but also saw the 500K lost jobs.

          http://www.cbo.gov/publication/44995

          July 28, 2014 at 6:31 pm |
        • kenmargo

          Please stop with the gov't "dictating" nonsense. What do you have against poor people? Do you realize those people end up on welfare because they don't make enough. Guess who pays? YOU. Walmart is owned by billionaires. The owners can't give up a few bucks to help their workers? I'll check the CBO report to see what the figures are.

          July 28, 2014 at 6:41 pm |
        • kenmargo

          I have no problem admitting I miispoke.

          You were right! 900,000 would be raised out of poverty. 16.5 million would see thier pay go up.

          The following are six key points from the latest CBO report. For more information, last week the Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) released a summary of the economic case for raising the minimum wage.

          1. CBO finds that raising the minimum wage to $10.10 per hour would directly benefit 16.5 million workers. According to today’s CBO report, 16.5 million people making less than $10.10 per hour would get a raise if the minimum wage is increased. This figure does not include CBO’s estimate of as many as 8.0 million workers who currently earn just above $10.10 an hour but could also potentially see a raise due to the “ripple effect” of a shifting wage structure.

          2. CBO finds that raising the minimum wage would increase income for millions of middle-class families, on net, even after accounting for its estimates of job losses. Middle class families earning less than six times the poverty line (i.e., $150,000 for a family of four in 2016) would see an aggregate increase of $19 billion in additional wages, with more than 90 percent of that increase going to families earning less than three times the Federal poverty line (i.e., $75,000 for a family of four in 2016). On net CBO estimates that national income would rise.

          This finding is consistent with the fact that 62 percent of expert economists polled by the University of Chicago Booth School of Business agreed that the benefits of raising the minimum wage outweigh any potential costs, as compared to only 16 percent who disagreed.

          3. CBO finds that this wage increase would help the economy today. Specifically CBO finds that the extra purchasing power for workers will expand aggregate demand and strengthen the economy today. As CBO wrote, “Raising the minimum wage increases that demand, in CBO’s assessment, because the families that experience increases in income tend to raise their consumption more than the families that experience decreases in income tend to reduce their consumption. In the short term, that increase in demand raises the nation’s output and income slightly.”

          This finding is consistent with other research. For example, a study released by economists at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago found that raising the minimum wage to $9 per hour would raise growth by 0.3 percentage point in the short run.

          4. CBO found that only 12 percent of low-wage workers will be teenagers. Contrary to critics’ claims that teens are the primary beneficiaries of increases in the minimum wage, CBO, found only 12 percent of the workers likely to benefit from a minimum wage increase are teenagers.

          5. CBO also found that raising the minimum wage would lift 900,000 people out of poverty. Opponents claim raising the minimum wage won’t reduce poverty, but that is not the case, as many American who work full time are unable to make ends meet. This finding echoes the broad consensus of academic studies on the topic, which is nearly unanimous in finding that increases in the minimum wage reduce poverty.

          6. CBO’s estimates of the impact of raising the minimum wage on employment does not reflect the current consensus view of economists. The bulk of academic studies, have concluded that the effects on employment of minimum wage increases in the range now under consideration are likely to be small to nonexistent. CBO also agrees that the employment effect could be essentially zero, but their central estimates are not reflective of a consensus of the economics profession. Specifically:

          July 28, 2014 at 7:02 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          kenmargo,
          You misunderstand. I'm not arguing against the wage increases, I was simply pointing out that there are those who *would* argue against it, ergo patisanship.
          Now if you want to argue that you are on the "right" side, that is fine, but to do so would seem to be admitting that there is another side against which you are arguing, i.e. the other partisans.

          July 28, 2014 at 7:43 pm |
        • kenmargo

          Yes I'm arguing against republicans. This is an argument that shouldn't be happening. I read a report that if the minimum wage was adjusted for inflation it would be over $20.00 an hour. China doesn't have a minimum wage. People there get paid 50 cents (not the rapper) an hour (if that much). Slave wages. Would anyone want that over here? I know there are poor republicans. How they vote for these guys make want to pull my hair out!

          When you hear republicans say "We want to keep gov't out of your lives" Keep in mind the kids coming over the border. That is the perfect ex. of gov't being out of your life. The gov't doesn't provide security, programs or jobs for anybody.

          The repubs are the only people that could run on the platform of "Please vote for me. I promise to do nothing while in office!"

          July 28, 2014 at 8:10 pm |
  8. kenmargo

    What you're seeing today folks is the difficulty of being black in this country. Obama can't win no matter what he does. Of course Israel has some blame here, I feel sorry for the Palestinians too. BUT to ignore the problems Hamas causes is being a bit delusional.

    July 28, 2014 at 2:56 pm |
    • bostontola

      I agree. People seem to pick sides when often, both sides are bad. Look at Syria, many of the conflicts in Africa, etc.

      July 28, 2014 at 3:08 pm |
      • austin929

        7All the flocks of Kedar shall be gathered together unto thee, the rams of Nebaioth shall minister unto thee: they shall come up with acceptance on mine altar, and I will glorify the house of my glory.

        Isaiah Ch 6

        Kedar and Nebaioth are Ishmaels descendants.

        I see the whole conflict as a problem with both sides rejecting the law of the new testament. Israel is still living out prophetic ordainment to carry out war from the old testament books. Those prophets of old were ordained to lead Israel into war, but the death and resurrection of Christ has led us to the age of the Church, until Christ returns war is not ordained.

        anyone who goes to a gun fight, including cops, and they kill someone, they are GUILTY.

        July 28, 2014 at 3:26 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          now there's some cult-logic.

          July 28, 2014 at 3:42 pm |
        • Løki

          Blah blah blah... maybe if you changed your imbecile bible quotations to pirate phrasing.. at least maybe then you could be slightly amusing....

          July 28, 2014 at 3:47 pm |
        • austin929

          dyslexic dog, if you read the new testament you would find that Jesus talked his followers away from standing up to the Romans who persecuted them.

          the answer for the world was the Prince of Piece, and His perfect law.

          2 cor 6

          1 We then, as workers together with him, beseech you also that ye receive not the grace of God in vain.

          2 (For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.)

          3 Giving no offence in any thing, that the ministry be not blamed:

          4 But in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses,

          5 In stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labours, in watchings, in fastings;

          6 By pureness, by knowledge, by longsuffering, by kindness, by the Holy Ghost, by love unfeigned,

          7 By the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armour of righteousness on the right hand and on the left,

          8 By honour and dishonour, by evil report and good report: as deceivers, and yet true;

          9 As unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and, behold, we live; as chastened, and not killed;

          10 As sorrowful, yet alway rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.

          July 28, 2014 at 3:48 pm |
        • austin929

          Prince of Peace

          July 28, 2014 at 3:49 pm |
        • Reality

          Prince of Mostly Myth !!!!!

          July 28, 2014 at 4:30 pm |
        • igaftr

          austin
          "Prince of Peace"

          Seriously? Peace? Look at the history of christianity in the world. Peace is the last thing that comes to mind...are you seriously that blind? If there is any "prince" involved, it is Satan's involvement, in the form of christianity. The history of christianity makes much more sense if you look at it from the position that it is in fact Satan's work. Then all the killing in gods name, the wars in gods name, the constant violence and destruction.....peace....not even close.

          Meanwhile, in other news, there continues to be no evidence anywhere of any gods.

          July 28, 2014 at 4:37 pm |
        • realbuckyball

          "see the whole conflict as a problem with both sides rejecting the law of the new testament. Israel is still living out prophetic ordainment to carry out war from the old testament books. Those prophets of old were ordained to lead Israel into war, but the death and resurrection of Christ has led us to the age of the Church, until Christ returns war is not ordained."

          Pretty sad the ONLY way you can look at the world is through indoctrinated eyes from 2,500 year old books written by priests who wrote them to be sure they kept their jobs.

          July 28, 2014 at 9:40 pm |
        • Alias

          Jesus told his followers not to fight the Romans because they woudl have been killed by the Romans.
          Iron charriots?

          July 29, 2014 at 3:49 pm |
        • James XCIX

          austin – "Israel is still living out prophetic ordainment to carry out war from the old testament books."

          Do you really think that's why Israel is fighting with those around them? That they're saying "You know, we'd really like to stop fighting but there's that dang prophetic ordainment that says we have to fight them forever, so I guess we'll just have to keep fighting"?

          July 29, 2014 at 3:54 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      FOX News spewing out their lies 24/7 is really influencing the low-information sheep who watch it ... in great numbers unfortunately.

      July 28, 2014 at 3:40 pm |
      • austin929

        I am a christian and I agree with you! but the problem started in ww2 when it was popularized on the american television.

        my local "Christian" radio station is also comparable to hitlers state run church, and so are many local churchs.

        it is called "excessive devotion" or worship of "christians" toward popular politics and war and t.v.

        this does not change who the Lord Jesus Christ is, it simply affirms the pseudo anti christ deception and apostacy.

        the falling away of the church.

        Let no one in any way deceive you, for it will not come unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction,

        King James Bible
        Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;

        July 28, 2014 at 3:45 pm |
        • Løki

          “The Bible: proof that gullible people will believe any dumbass thing that you tell them” ~LET

          July 28, 2014 at 3:50 pm |
      • kenmargo

        It doesn't help that democrats seem to be allergic to fox. Democrats should demand to be on the network to counter the nonsense.

        July 28, 2014 at 3:57 pm |
        • Alias

          And the Reoublicans should get equal time on NPR and MSNBC, right?

          July 28, 2014 at 5:40 pm |
        • kenmargo

          I watch the Rachel Maddow Show. She has actually begged for some republicans to come on her show ON THE AIR. They don't even bother to answer. Unlike on fox news, She'll actually question the things they say.

          July 28, 2014 at 5:54 pm |
      • ddeevviinn

        Speaking of "lies" , why would you attribute a quote of mine " well, maybe one or two" to Sam Harris and then proceed to say that he was using it as " a joke to get a laugh from the audience", and that this can all be seen on you tube?

        July 28, 2014 at 5:59 pm |
  9. Løki

    Potential New LET's Law: If you think only YOUR religion is the only right religion and should be mandated/taught in every school across the land... then you are an extremist (Christian/Islamic) fundamentalist causing irreparable harm to the United States... don't be surprised if one day a Reaper finds you from 'the heavens' and extinguishes your ignorance...

    July 28, 2014 at 2:47 pm |
  10. observer

    believerfred

    "the fact remains the fall began when God was taken from the public schools"

    How can a person keep God out of a classroom? That's amazing. Kids can't even silently pray to themselves and God can't get in the door. Guess God isn't so POTENT after all.

    July 28, 2014 at 2:01 pm |
    • kenmargo

      If a shooter can get into the schools, I'm sure god can get in there too.

      July 28, 2014 at 3:09 pm |
    • Løki

      "the fall" only a fundamentalist dumbass says things like that...

      July 28, 2014 at 3:28 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      all that power to create the universe and he gets stymied by a school door. Oh poor god.

      July 28, 2014 at 3:43 pm |
      • kenmargo

        I think it's a catch-22. The shootings keep god out. But because god isn't there, there are shootings. What does this tell you?

        God is against common sense gun control laws.

        July 28, 2014 at 4:07 pm |
  11. SeaVik

    For those of you who wonder why some atheists, such as myself, think that teaching religion to children is a dangerous thing, this study confirms what I have been saying all along:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/21/children-religion-fact-fiction_n_5607009.html

    Teaching children religion results in adults who think they get to make up their own reality (example: climate change deniers).

    July 28, 2014 at 1:56 pm |
    • lunchbreaker

      Don't forget about the anti-vaccination crowd.

      July 28, 2014 at 2:16 pm |
      • kenmargo

        Don't forget:

        Anti gay.
        Anti birth control.
        Anti abortion

        July 28, 2014 at 2:49 pm |
        • Doris

          Congrats goes out to.......my state today!

          The U.S. Court of Appeals in Richmond for the 4th Circuit (which has jurisdiction in Virginia, the Carolinas, West Virginia and MD) struck down the same-se.x marriage ban in the state that birthed eight presidents today. This is also great news for people in the DC metro area given that gay marriage is already legal in Maryland and the District of Columbia.

          "Every new & successful example therefore of a perfect separation between ecclesiastical and civil matters, is of importance. And I have no doubt that every new example, will succeed, as every past one has done, in shewing that religion & Govt. will both exist in greater purity, the less they are mixed together.

          The Civil Govt, tho' bereft of everything like an associated hierarchy, possesses the requisite stability and performs its functions with complete success, Whilst the number, the industry, and the morality of the Priesthood, & the devotion of the people have been manifestly increased by the total separation of the Church from the State."

          –James Madison, architect of the U.S. Const.itution & eleven of its Amendments

          July 28, 2014 at 3:08 pm |
        • kenmargo

          Congrats from me too.

          July 28, 2014 at 3:11 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @Doris
          Oh no! Think of all the hetero marriages that are going to fall apart now that gays can get married!
          Next, Virginians will want to marry their pets, children and inanimate objects!
          The Rainbow Gestapo are going storm the gates of every church and hold the clergy at fashionably accessorized gun-point and force them the perform these godless marriage ceremonies.
          But it won't stop there. Oh no.
          They'll take over the schools and push the gay agenda in Kindergarten so they can meet their recruitment quota. They're gonna turn the children gay! Think of the Children, Doris!

          July 28, 2014 at 3:16 pm |
        • Løki

          Lewis Black – the gay bandidos

          July 28, 2014 at 3:30 pm |
        • Doris

          Doc: "and hold the [...] at fashionably accessorized gun-point ..."

          I guess if you bear arms with the bare arms of a bear, you may as well try to bling it up...

          July 28, 2014 at 3:37 pm |
  12. Alias

    Does anyone know what the most powerful lobby is in Washington?
    We have been funding Israel and keeping the UN from doing anyinthg to stop their crimes against humanity.
    This is why we are the target of terrorists.

    July 28, 2014 at 1:13 pm |
    • kenmargo

      "We have been funding Israel and keeping the UN from doing anyinthg to stop their crimes against humanity."

      We commit crimes against humanity everyday. It's called executions. Don't forget the war in Iraq, How we treat our veterans, how we treat the poor, etc. We don't have a moral leg to stand on!

      "This is why we are the target of terrorists."

      Everyone is the target of terrorists. Do you think sky angels shot down the plane over ukraine?

      July 28, 2014 at 3:06 pm |
      • Alias

        So by your post, you think everything the Isralies do in Gaza should be overlooked?

        July 28, 2014 at 4:01 pm |
        • kenmargo

          No I think what Hamas does shouldn't be overlooked.

          Maybe if we stopped with the "moral" nonsense, we could actually solve a problem.

          July 28, 2014 at 4:15 pm |
        • Alias

          Okay, 2 groups of people want the same land.
          What is your solution?

          July 28, 2014 at 5:42 pm |
        • kenmargo

          i've given you my opinion. You said I was naive. You have three options:

          Let Israelis and Palestinians work it out. (Never Happen)

          Winner take all. (Israel would kill them all)

          Force a solution on them.

          The U.N. created Israel by recognizing them. The US and the U.N. should force something down their (Israelis and Palestinians) throats that will p1ss both of them off. Put U.N. monitors where needed to secure peace. Help the Palestinians improve their economy and move on.

          July 28, 2014 at 6:17 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          ken
          There are U.N. stations there that have been shelled. Israelis say it's collateral damage but in an area of 100 square miles with twice the population density of LA it's hard not to hit civilians – most of the dead are not fighters. The Palestinian economy will never improve while this 8-year blockade prevents normal trade or reconstruction of shelled property, while government salaries are withheld, while they only get 4 hours of electricity a day, while they have limited drinking water. 40% of that 100 square miles is a no-go zone they can't escape the Israeli attacks. Netanyahu has said he doesn't want a two-state solution. Other members of the Knesset have said that the goal is to have all the land for Israelis.
          The US approach to Israel enables their approach – when Iraq invaded Kuwait or when Russia subverted Ukraine, the US took action; Israel is the biggest recipient of US aid and could easily be dissuaded if the political will were there.
          I'm not supporting all that Hamas do, but Gaza is in a desperate situation and I think most people would rebel in such hopeless conditions.

          July 28, 2014 at 6:43 pm |
        • kenmargo

          @Santa...........Like i said. Something has to be forced down their throats. The status quo isn't working. I feel for the palestinians (especially when i see the kids) This conflict is a propoganda tool for both sides.

          July 28, 2014 at 7:19 pm |
        • Alias

          Here's a solution Kenmargo will accept:
          We require every young person in Gaza and Israel to have babbies together. In 2 short generations they will all be the same people and will suddenly stop fighting.

          July 29, 2014 at 12:17 pm |
        • igaftr

          ken
          The UN did not simply recognize Isreal and poof there it was. There is a lot more history to it than that.

          The UN DOES put forth resolutions against Isreal, and the US shoots them all down. The US is standing in the way of the UN and will not allow any resolution against Isreal. They have vetoed many resolutions.

          The US makes the UN a joke.

          July 29, 2014 at 12:30 pm |
        • kenmargo

          @Alias.............Instead of making fun of my idea, What's your solution other than b1tchin about the US and UN? Since you don't like my idea to force something on both parties and you know they won't negotiate anything. The ONLY option left is to let Israel wipe them out. I'm not jewish or palestinian. I don't have a dog in the fight. So I really don't care one way or another. Time to move on.

          @igaftr...............That's why the US and the UN need to work together if something is going to be forced upon them. The soviets are a permanent member also. They've vetoed resolutions the US wanted to pass. So vetoes happens to everyone.

          July 29, 2014 at 3:27 pm |
        • Alias

          kenmargo

          Your solution was to "Force a solution on them."
          However, you failed to explain what you want us to force onto them, aka you offered no solution.
          In my humble opinion, that was deserving of mockery.

          Could you at least say we need to make them stop shooting at each other? The feasibility of that is questionable, but it seem like it may what you are trying to convey.

          July 29, 2014 at 3:43 pm |
        • kenmargo

          Oh now you want specific examples. You won't like them but here they are.

          Split Jerusalem
          Draw the borders close to what they were in '67
          Tell the palestinians to pick ONE leader
          Help the Palestinians establish an economy
          Harsher sanctions on Iran for supplying weapons to Hamas
          Connect gaza and the west bank with a tunnel
          Get UN monitors in there to secure areas

          Ok lets hear yours. You must be a republican. You b1tch and moan and don't offer any solutions.

          July 29, 2014 at 6:29 pm |
    • MidwestKen

      Alias,
      What is the US preventing the UN from doing? (Honestly curious)

      July 28, 2014 at 4:40 pm |
      • igaftr

        ken
        http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/UN/usvetoes.html
        That is all of the resolutions since 1972
        The US, as a founding member of the UN, can veto ANY resolution, and they regularly use it to stop the UN from doing anything at all.

        July 28, 2014 at 4:45 pm |
        • Alias

          Bingo.
          There have been dozens of resolutions at the UN for human rights violations, and we have vetoed them all.

          July 28, 2014 at 5:44 pm |
        • kenmargo

          @alias.............Some of those resolutions were very unfair to Israel. (I'm not jewish) They ignored the atrocities of Hamas.

          July 28, 2014 at 6:20 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Thanks for the info

          July 28, 2014 at 7:55 pm |
        • Alias

          Do you comprehend that the Isralies are the CAUSE of the suffering in Gaza?

          July 29, 2014 at 12:22 pm |
        • igaftr

          Alias
          I don't know if you were addressing me, but the Isrealis are not the sole cause, but I see their aggression as the major cause. They had their borders set. They have been expanding illegally ever since. They do have the right to defend themselves, but that is not what they are doing.

          They have closed off gaza, and now are shooting fish in a barrel. The palestinians are trapped. If that sort of thing happened in America, you can bet there would be all manner of resistance.
          For Hamas culpability, their refusal to negotiate, continued pointless attacks, simply gives the Isrealis all the excuse they need to rampage.

          The isrealis absoluteluy have all the power, and abuse it regularly, the US stomps any UN resolution making the US just as wrong as the Isrealis

          July 29, 2014 at 1:51 pm |
  13. tallulah131

    The job of the President is to do what is best for the nation, not to pander to religious groups.

    July 28, 2014 at 12:36 pm |
    • believerfred

      Well he has sure done a poor job. No president has ever promoted intentional law breaking as he has on promising free health, free education and an opportunity in America to illegals. Sorry for all those who believe in the rule of law

      July 28, 2014 at 12:46 pm |
      • believerfred

        How about simple economics. If the President wants to provide free health care, free education, free food we can do that for ten cents on the dollar by just buying and giving them what he promised in their own countries.

        July 28, 2014 at 12:49 pm |
      • midwest rail

        "...all those who believe in the rule of law"
        "...allowed to head the worlds superpower if not a believer"

        Care to resolve the obvious legal problem there ?

        July 28, 2014 at 1:07 pm |
      • Dyslexic doG

        if churches would start paying taxes, that sure would help this country.

        July 28, 2014 at 1:25 pm |
      • In Santa We Trust

        fred, Can you provide your source for "... (Obama) promoting intentional law breaking by promising free health, free education and an opportunity in America to illegals."

        July 28, 2014 at 2:10 pm |
      • neverbeenhappieratheist

        It is really sad how pathetic rhetoric can shape American politics. The right whine and moan about Obama this and Obama that but have no real substance to their argument. The DOW has reached record breaking highs under this president just a few short years after our last president took it to depression level lows all while starting two unfunded wars overseas, never getting the guy who attacked us on his watch but who said our jobs as Americans to support the war was to "keep shopping" by spending their equity in their homes just before the house of cards that is the houseing market came crashing down on their heads.

        If you actually looked at the record you would have to admit that President Obama has been one of the best presidents in our nations history, or you can just listen to the red faced foaming at the mouth racist tea party fakeriots who claim he's an illegal kenyan muslim facist emporer overlord, your choice.

        July 28, 2014 at 3:01 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          But Obama is pushing forward a pro-abortion mandate on all of our young women!
          He's going to start putting RU486 into school cafeteria lunches!
          He'll force elderly Americans to go in front of Death Panels of atheist doctors to prove they should keep living!

          July 28, 2014 at 3:04 pm |
      • Doc Vestibule

        No Fred, no such thing exists.
        The Affordable Health Care Act states that illegal immigrants remain ineligible for regular Medicaid coverage, just as they are ineligible for food stamps. They cannot obtain coverage through state-based health insurance exchanges (thus, they are also ineligible for tax credits to offset the cost of getting that coverage).
        Certain low-income illegal immigrants are eligible for emergency Medicaid coverage, including childbirth and surgery. And federal law requires hospitals not to turn away individuals for emergency treatment, even if they are uninsured (or undocu.mented), according to the National Immigration Law Center.
        But those policies predate the Affordable Care Act.

        July 28, 2014 at 3:09 pm |
      • Science Works

        Hey fred maybe your rants helped ? – from the Google.......

        Creationism – RationalWiki
        rationalwiki.org/wiki/Creationism
        5 days ago – Creationism refers to the belief that the universe and everything in it were specially created by God through magic, rather than naturalistic ...

        In a nutshell

        The creation must have happened, as it is in the Bible and therefore must be true. Believe in it, or you are an evilutionist and will go to hell.

        http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Creationism

        July 28, 2014 at 3:56 pm |
      • tallulah131

        It appears that every thought that fred has posted on this blog has been given to him by his pastor or a FOX media pundit. It's sad that in this nation built on freedom, fred has decided to surrender the freedom of thinking for himself. This nation is wasted on him and his kind.

        July 28, 2014 at 10:09 pm |
    • fortheloveofellipsis

      Unfortunately, tal, in this country you can't get the office WITHOUT pandering to religious groups, or at the very least pacifying them as much as is possible...

      July 28, 2014 at 12:48 pm |
      • believerfred

        It is not unfortunate it is the the will of God. The founders prayed and asked Gods blessing before moving forward. Since that date no President is allowed to head the worlds superpower if not a believer

        July 28, 2014 at 12:51 pm |
        • bostontola

          So there isn't free will. I suspected as much. God is pulling the strings to impose his will.

          July 28, 2014 at 12:54 pm |
        • fortheloveofellipsis

          Care to cite me the section of the US Consti.tution or US Code that backs up that idiocy, freddie?...

          July 28, 2014 at 12:55 pm |
        • Doris

          Now fred, you are exaggerating a bit. Quite a number of our key leaders have had quite a different view of what their god was at different times of their lives. I do assume that one that has a view of their god as the trinity is quite different from the god of the unitarian and even more so different than the god of the Deist.

          William Howard Taft, brought up as a Unitarian like Adams, is the only U.S. President to also have held the office of Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court:

          "I do not believe in the divinity of Christ, and there are many other of the postulates of the orthodox creed to which I cannot subscribe."

          July 28, 2014 at 1:03 pm |
        • believerfred

          bostonola
          No, that is not how free will works. When the signers of the declaration signed only after prayerful petition they were unanimous and aside from the natives we were at the early stages of a Christian nation. Beginning about the early 60's the shift towards secularism took hold. The biggest hit was the atheist that ripped prayer out of public schools. There is a correlation between kicking out of payer an the downfall of the american education system. The downfall continues across the board and the further we get from the heart of God the closer we approach godlessness. The atheist experiment in a world that has never been dominated by godlessness is unfolding. enjoy

          July 28, 2014 at 1:04 pm |
        • igaftr

          "Since that date no President is allowed to head the worlds superpower if not a believer"
          NOT ALLOWED? So we are returning to the theocracy of pre-1960 America fred?

          You are lying fred, plain and simple. By all means, show how an atheist is not allowed. ALL of the laws prohibitting atheists were struck down in 1961, by SCOTUS.

          July 28, 2014 at 1:08 pm |
        • believerfred

          fortheloveofellipsis
          Wake up, we have a president that promotes lawlessness. Laws only matter when the populace cares about them.
          As to who can be president an atheist still cannot be president unless he or she is a very good liar and does not mind parading about with a big Christian Bible of some sort in tow.

          July 28, 2014 at 1:09 pm |
        • igaftr

          fred
          "the early stages of a Christian nation. Beginning about the early 60's the shift towards secularism took hold. The biggest hit was the atheist that ripped prayer out of public schools"

          FLAT OUT LIE. This is not a theocracy, so those prayers in school were UNCONST!TUTIONAL, and should never been allowed in the first place..they had no business being there at all, and it was finally recognized that it was wrong.

          There is no correlation to getting rid of prayer in schools to any decline in education. By all means, show peer reviewed, non-religious studies on the subject.

          July 28, 2014 at 1:12 pm |
        • Doris

          Fred that comment about the 60's is ridiculous. One only needs look at the history of the SCOTUS 1st Amendment cases to see through your over-simplification. Certainly, for education, the two decisions around that time were landmark, but in no way did the effort to adhere more strictly to Madison's ideal (nor the challeges to go against his plan) begin there.

          July 28, 2014 at 1:14 pm |
        • Doris

          fred: "There is a correlation between kicking out of payer an the downfall of the american education system."

          Fred, please, what is your evidence of this?

          July 28, 2014 at 1:17 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          " no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States."
          Just a suggestion, right Fred?

          There are only a handful of states with religious requirements for office.
          Of those that do, Arkansas , Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas all rank amongst the lowest in educational attainment (Arkansas being 50th out of 50).
          While correlation doesn't necessarily connote causation, it is an interesting "coincidence" nonetheless....

          July 28, 2014 at 1:21 pm |
        • believerfred

          Doris
          I never said one had to be Catholic or follow a given denomination and neither did Jesus.
          Since you bring up Taft he called on citizens to recognize and thank God for the blessings bestowed upon the nation. "Unitarians believe that Jesus Christ founded a new religion and a new religious philosophy on the love of God for man, and of men for one another, and for God, and taught it by his life and practice, with such Heaven-given sincerity, sweetness, simplicity, and all-compelling force that it lived after him in the souls of men, and became the basis for a civilization struggling toward the highest ideals. "[Unitarians] feel the life of Jesus as a man to be more helpful to them, as a religious inspiration, than if he is to be regarded as God in human form. ... Unitarianism offers a broad Christian religious faith that can be reconciled with scientific freedom of thought and inquiry into the truth."

          July 28, 2014 at 1:25 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          Oh Fred. Saying that your jesus character said anything is asinine! No-one has any idea what your jesus character ever said. All in the bible attributed to jesus was hearsay written down decades after the events supposedly took place, and by people who weren't even there at the time. What a joke! It seems that you have studied the bible so you must know this. Why do you keep lying when you post things and say that jesus said them?

          July 28, 2014 at 1:27 pm |
        • believerfred

          Doc Vestibule
          " no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States."
          Just a suggestion, right Fred?"
          =>What is the law of the land, that which is written or that which is in effect?

          July 28, 2014 at 1:28 pm |
        • observer

          believerfred

          "we have a president that promotes lawlessness."

          Are you talking about Bush and torture?

          July 28, 2014 at 1:31 pm |
        • LaBella

          Now, observer, that wasn't torture. That was "enhanced interrogation."
          Eyeroll.

          July 28, 2014 at 1:35 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Bush was told to run for president by GOD HIMSELF!
          Irregardless, atheist hyprocritizers can't refudiate their misunderestimation of Bush's powerful Christian message.

          July 28, 2014 at 1:38 pm |
        • observer

          believerfred

          "The biggest hit was the atheist that ripped prayer out of public schools."

          How PATHETICALLY WEAK is your religion if the loss of a few seconds of prayer has DEVASTATED it so badly?

          July 28, 2014 at 1:39 pm |
        • believerfred

          igaftr
          Doris
          Perhaps doc's wording is more palatable to the anti theist where it is an interesting "coincidence" that a super arose out of unanimous prayer to God and the fall of that superpower began by casting out prayer of children.
          The law of the land is what is in effect as that is reality and that law even though unwritten is that no banner waiving atheist will be president of the United States.
          That said the reason is simple math. It takes less than a few percentage points to sway the elections these days.

          July 28, 2014 at 1:41 pm |
        • midwest rail

          "... began by casting out prayer of children."
          Intentionally disingenuous. No one cast out prayer.

          July 28, 2014 at 1:47 pm |
        • believerfred

          Doc Vestibule
          Never misunderestimate Bush as he was correct when he said ""Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we."

          July 28, 2014 at 1:48 pm |
        • Doris

          fred: "and the fall of that superpower began by casting out prayer of children."

          And your saying this in different ways here doesn't make it a fact.

          July 28, 2014 at 1:49 pm |
        • believerfred

          midwest rail
          "... began by casting out prayer of children."
          Intentionally disingenuous. No one cast out prayer."
          =>It was an atheist that took credit for removing prayer from public schools. There is and was nothing wrong with it as everyone learned respect. If you were an atheist brat you at least showed respect for those in prayer. Simple daily thanks and acknowledgement of humbleness and respect is a lesson lost by many today,.

          July 28, 2014 at 1:51 pm |
        • bostontola

          fred,
          Please explain how humans have free will and God's will can affect humans without encroaching on human free will.

          You need a remedial US history course. Separation of church and state goes back to the 1600's with Roger Williams. It was embraced later by Jefferson and others. It was not to make the state atheist, it was to protect one Christian sect from another.

          July 28, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          fred
          "What is the law of the land, that which is written or that which is in effect?"

          In theory only the written law can be used as the basis for a legal challenge – although with this SCOTUS they make it up as they go along.

          July 28, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
        • igaftr

          fred
          You are the most un-patriotic person I have heard in some time.
          This is not now nor has it ever been one. It was very close to theocracy, but were are correcting that issue. There are still remnants such as the lie on our money to still deal with.
          Would you be ok if satanic prayer were taught in schools? Islamic? Nordic? Greek?
          NONE of them belong in public schools, and to suggest they are is unpatriotic. You seriously do not understand what this nation is supposed to be.
          What'll happen in fifty years or a hundred years when christians are no longer in the majority fred...the christians will scream persecution whenever we rid ourselves of the christians beliefs in our public lives, but in reality, ridding ourselves of belief in OUR government is LONG overdue...to many places the christians violated the const!tution and many, many individuals rights. It is people like you that want to violate the const!tution in favor of YOIR beliefs....you forget that it is WE the people, not we the christian people. Passing laws restricting others beliefs while promoting your own in very, very unpatriotic...and so are you.

          July 28, 2014 at 1:55 pm |
        • midwest rail

          "...If you were an atheist brat "

          Again fred, no one removed prayer. What was constrained was organized, FORCED Christian prayer. The least you could do is be honest. Oh wait, what was I thinking ?

          July 28, 2014 at 1:55 pm |
        • believerfred

          Doris
          I don't think either of could prove one way or the other but the fact remains the fall began when God was taken from the public schools and public attitude of heart. You can argue it is simply the tale of the rise and fall of nations. I disagree. When we removed and attacked truth itself as being absolute from God there was no common anchor for the people. Without a common truth our society continues to degenerate into each man for himself where you think your truth is just as valid as my truth.

          July 28, 2014 at 1:57 pm |
        • observer

          believerfred,

          Speaking of respect, would you support prayer returning to classrooms and after giving Christians time to talk about their beliefs about God, giving equal time for atheists to talk about their beliefs about God?

          July 28, 2014 at 1:58 pm |
        • lunchbreaker

          Prayer was removed from public schools by Catholics, Jews and Mormons who did not want someone else teaching thier kids to pray. They felt prayer should be kept at home.

          Engel v. Vitale

          July 28, 2014 at 2:05 pm |
        • igaftr

          "Without a common truth our society continues to degenerate into each man for himself "

          What are you talking about? Specific examples of this alleged degeneration fred, and then show the direct cause and effect relationship proving that it was banning organized, forced prayer and bible study in schools that was the direct cause.

          Otherwise you spout an easily proven wrong opinion, but even claimed it to be fact...if it is fact, it should be easy for you...if it is not fact, I have once again caught you lying.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:05 pm |
        • SeaVik

          "...no President is allowed to head the worlds superpower if not a believer"

          If you believe that, you're more naive than I realized. There's a big difference between saying you believe so that you have a chance of getting elected, and actually believing. Given you would expect that to be elected president, one would be likely to be smarter than the average person (though not always the case), you would expect presidents to be more likely to be atheist. It is statistically extremely unlikely that all of our presidents have believed in a supernatural being.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:06 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          "where you think your truth is just as valid as my truth."

          If you can't demonstrate your "truth" is actually "true" (and you have admited you can't) it is just as valid..... and it is not "truth" it is "opinion".

          July 28, 2014 at 2:07 pm |
        • lunchbreaker

          "Without a common truth our society continues to degenerate into each man for himself where you think your truth is just as valid as my truth."

          One problem with your statement is that Christians disagreed with other Christians on what that truth is.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:08 pm |
        • LaBella

          Fred,
          Simple thanks, etc, can still be had; they're just not teacher-led.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:09 pm |
        • believerfred

          midwest rail
          "...If you were an atheist brat "
          =>we have atheist brats and Christian brats in school where they have not learned respect at home. Learning social skills is a long process and I am well aware of how we replaced God in the public schools. I shake my head when I review children's ethics indoctrination and see it as a poor substitute for a heart that desires to be Christlike.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:12 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          fred
          "... I am well aware of how we replaced God in the public schools."

          So it's not an omnipotent god after all.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:14 pm |
        • believerfred

          LaBella
          "Simple thanks, etc, can still be had; they're just not teacher-led."
          =>Yes, but when children see that teachers cannot mention Jesus it sends a message.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:15 pm |
        • observer

          believerfred,

          From your comments, it's obvious that Christian churches, Christian Sunday Schools, and Christian parents must have FAILED MISERABLY.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:16 pm |
        • observer

          believerfred

          "when children see that teachers cannot mention Jesus it sends a message."

          Sure it does. Just like when children see that teachers cannot mention that the Bible is full of nonsense.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:18 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          =>Yes, but when children see that teachers cannot mention Jesus it sends a message.

          If you want teachers to preach CHristianity to children that is what Christian schools are for. Public schools are to be nuetral as to the question of religion. Don't like it? Too bad.

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

          In Santa We Trust
          "... I am well aware of how we replaced God in the public schools."So it's not an omnipotent god after all.
          =>God is never in conflict with himself and gentleness is power restrained. If you want to see God you need to look at what Jesus demonstrated and that was love, mercy, kindness, forgiveness etc. God could have brought armies against Pilate and the corrupt Priests but instead turned what hey did in evil into what was the most loving expression of forgiveness. Humanity will again reach the peak of wickedness as it was in days of Noah.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:25 pm |
        • believerfred

          Blessed are the Cheesemaker
          "Public schools are to be nuetral as to the question of religion."
          =>Public schools are not neutral they teach secularism and scientism. They fail both God and science.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:26 pm |
        • LaBella

          Then a lesson in the 1st Amendment is in order.
          What if the teacher is Muslim? Jewish? Sikh? See the conundrum?
          Probably not.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:27 pm |
        • observer

          believerfred

          "God is never in conflict with himself and gentleness is power restrained'

          Like when God "GENTLY" DROWNED every pregnant woman, child, baby and fetus on the face of the earth.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:27 pm |
        • believerfred

          observer
          Yes, we failed. The Chosen had all the time before Christ to follow yet they could not follow the Law they carried. Christians have the Holy Spirit if they want at their full disposal yet we fail every bit as bad as those who sent Christ to the Cross. We all do it regardless of belief. Simple lesson we all need salvation and we cannot do it ourselves.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:30 pm |
        • observer

          believerfred,

          To your credit, you admit that Christians have failed. So there really isn't any point in blaming this all on atheists like you do, is there? Why not skip the hypocrisy?

          July 28, 2014 at 2:33 pm |
        • believerfred

          LaBella
          "Then a lesson in the 1st Amendment is in order.What if the teacher is Muslim? Jewish? Sikh? See the conundrum?"
          =>the result is what we now have. Secularism and scientism being taught as the relevant truth ............i.e. we are teaching religion in school

          July 28, 2014 at 2:35 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          =>Public schools are not neutral they teach secularism and scientism.

          No they teach Science...and rightfully so.

          Secularism is not taught...that is a canard.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:36 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @Fred
          For this discussion to go anywhere, I think we need some specific examples of the ways in which you feel the US has declined as a Superpower.
          If you can give some parameters, we can all do some proper research into demographics, statistics etc.
          The other thing that happened in US schools in teh 1960s was forced racial integration. Some would argue that integration has led to the downfall of the US educational system – and their assertion would have just as much validity as yours.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:38 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          the fact remains the fall began when God was taken from the public schools and public attitude of heart. You can argue it is simply the tale of the rise and fall of nations.

          your god was removed from the schools because your faith is unhealthy.

          Zeus is still readily taught.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:38 pm |
        • igaftr

          " They fail both God and science."

          Funny but no. you may BELIEVE that, but you believe in a god that no one can show exists....teaching children this myth in your church, go right ahead. Teach it where you are not preaching to the choir...you'd better be ready to prove your god...since you can't, It does not belong in public schools...Belief in god...that on the other hand should be studied...in an abnormal psychology class.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:39 pm |
        • Doris

          Fred, I just don't see a "fall" caused by removal of mandatory prayer/bible readings from public schools. I do see that since fifty years ago, we are much more diverse, much more diverse within a given living area, and so, to me, it is only natural that the challenges in keeping us from stepping on each other's toes with respect to religion or lack thereof necessitate stricter adherence to the principles of separation of church and state.

          We each have our own concepts of "truth". This is apparent even among Christians. If it were up to one kind to mandate the kind of prayer and Bible reading in a particular area, one might find that their children are being taught that seeing doctors for ailments is apostasy. Certainly, fred, you can see the problem in trying to regress toward something that would pose more conflict today than it already did fifty years ago.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:45 pm |
        • LaBella

          believerfred
          LaBella
          "Then a lesson in the 1st Amendment is in order.What if the teacher is Muslim? Jewish? Sikh? See the conundrum?"
          =>the result is what we now have. Secularism and scientism being taught as the relevant truth ............i.e. we are teaching religion in school
          We are a secular nation. That's what the Framers intended. That you don't want the intentions of the Framers taught is odd, because that is history is telling.
          Science isn't a religion. It's science. If you don't want science taught, there are private schools that may suit your children's needs.

          I'm glad you would have no problem with a Myslim forcing hizzer class to participate in a teacher led prayer praising Allah.
          Good to know.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:49 pm |
        • believerfred

          Blessed are the Cheesemaker
          "No they teach Science...and rightfully so.Secularism is not taught...that is a canard."
          =>BS, religion is taught as a myth, text books reflect all religions as equal and Science is is presented as real while creationism is old school and without merit. The Public Schools teach religion it just takes on a eastern slant void of God.
          =>Your personal belief in scientism is the result of a poor corrupt public school indoctrination.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:52 pm |
        • LaBella

          My sentence concerning the Framers was clumsy; I hope my intent was clear.
          Device problems.

          July 28, 2014 at 2:52 pm |
        • believerfred

          labella
          You are in error as scientism not science is being taught, secularism and or all gods are equal is being taught this is the same as rejecting God in the public education of children. That is the intent of the atheists that proudly took credit for kicking God out of school. If you want to eat an elephant you do it one piece at a time. Marginalize God and make all gods equal and it is obvious all gods are nothing but antique concepts and you have your godless world.
          Not sure why atheists want a godless world since mankind has never known one.

          July 28, 2014 at 3:03 pm |
        • observer

          believerfred

          "The Public Schools teach religion"

          Please name specific classes that you refer to that all students take and EXACTLY what they say when they specifically use the words "God" and "religion".

          July 28, 2014 at 3:03 pm |
        • believerfred

          Doc Vestibule
          You are correct and I can find no way to quantify data in order to make a meaningful conclusion as to why our schools continue to suffer while disrespect is viewed with respect.

          July 28, 2014 at 3:06 pm |
        • observer

          believerfred

          "That is the intent of the atheists that proudly took credit for kicking God out of school."

          Still waiting to hear how men keep a wimpy God out of school. How do they keep the supposedly OMNIPOTENT God out of school and how do they stop kids from silently praying to themselves?

          July 28, 2014 at 3:09 pm |
        • believerfred

          observer
          "the University of California system adopted a policy last year that basic science, history, and literature textbooks by major Christian book publishers wouldn’t qualify for core admissions requirements because of the inclusion of Christian perspectives. Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2008/07/69997/#jrkMt82bKe4RVacD.99

          July 28, 2014 at 3:12 pm |
        • observer

          believerfred,

          They similarly wouldn't want texts claiming that Zeus was a factor, nor Allah.

          Now, please ANSWER the question.

          July 28, 2014 at 3:15 pm |
        • believerfred

          observer
          You said: how do they stop kids from silently praying to themselves?
          =>this is where we are so you admit and know God has been marginalized and relegated to silence and the home closet. This is what is being taught.

          July 28, 2014 at 3:15 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          =>BS, religion is taught as a myth,
          They teach what the people of each religion believe, they do not teach that any religion is false…another canard fred. You dishonesty is on display.

          =>text books reflect all religions as equal
          They are all equal until one can be objectively demonstrated to be true…and you have admitted that you can’t do that.

          =>and Science is presented as real while creationism is old school and without merit.
          Science is real, it is a real tool that is used to vet claims and understand the natural world. Creationism is not taught..at all…because it does not have merit. They do not teach creationism is false, they only address what science can demonstrate about the natural world.

          =>The Public Schools teach religion, it just takes on a eastern slant void of God.
          Good, that is the way it should be. “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion” To do otherwise would be unconsti.tutional.

          =>Your personal belief in scientism is the result of a poor corrupt public school indoctrination.
          Well that is funny fred, because I was educated at Christian schools. Like I said the other day you are second to none when it comes to baseless assertions.

          July 28, 2014 at 3:16 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Student ministries that started before the school prayer ban, or just after, have expanded to reach tens of thousands of public school students. Since the mid-1960s, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes has established itself on more than 8,000 junior and high school campuses, many of them public. And Campus Crusade for Christ, founded in 1951 as a Christian ministry to college students in California and now known as Cru, has helped high school students start some 200 Christian clubs, almost all of them in public schools. Youth for Christ, an evangelical missionary organization in which broadcast-evangelist Billy Graham worked in the 1940s, began reaching out to high school and middle school students in the 1960s and '70s. It now has on- and off-campus clubs at 1,200 schools, most of them public.

          • At the elementary school level, religious instruction sometimes takes place right on campus in after-school programs. By far the most widespread and controversial, Good News Clubs hold Sunday school-like classes in some 3,200 public elementary schools. After-school Good News Clubs have grown from fewer than 17,000 participants in 2001 to more than 156,000 enrolled in 2012.

          • "See You at the Pole" began in Texas with 10 Christian students praying around their school flagpole in 1990. It has blossomed into a yearly ritual involving 1 million to 2 million public school students nationwide meeting on a designated September morning before class.

          • Informal Bible study groups have proliferated, judging from anecdotal reports, sometimes meeting on campus, sometimes at a coffee shop or someone's home.

          • Over the past 10 to 15 years, Muslim and Jewish student clubs as well as clubs espousing agnostic, humanist perspectives have appeared on public school campuses. Among the oldest, the Hindu Student Association of Bellaire High School in suburban Houston attracted 700 people of many faiths at its Holi celebration in April.

          • Students in interfaith groups like Youth LEAD in Sharon, Mass., may meet off-campus, but stage workshops and programs at school.

          • Students are also carving out time to pray, whether Muslims fulfilling a religious obligation or Christians delivering on prayer requests during lunchtime.

          • Some schools allow released-time programs: During class hours, students leave campus for Christian, Jewish, Mormon, or Islamic instruction – some even earn academic credit.

          • Schools are increasingly including Christianity, Buddhism, Sikhism, Islam, and, in some cases, the Bible in their curricula because of concern over Americans' religious illiteracy. (A 2007 study found that only 10 percent of American teens could name the five major religions.)

          http://www.csmonitor.com/The-Culture/Family/2013/0616/School-prayer-50-years-after-the-ban-God-and-faith-more-present-than-ever

          July 28, 2014 at 3:23 pm |
        • believerfred

          Doris
          You are right. The horse is out of the barn. The atheist took credit for putting Jesus in the closet and those children are now showing the fruits of godlessness. Certainly we cannot prove causation but we can see the effect.

          July 28, 2014 at 3:25 pm |
        • observer

          believerfred,

          Do you have a reading comprehension problem?

          I asked how they keep God from getting inside schools and students from silently praying.

          Why NO answer?

          July 28, 2014 at 3:25 pm |
        • igaftr

          "Certainly we cannot prove causation but we can see the effect."

          SO there you have it. Fred actually admitting he is leaping to unjustified conclusions about how his perceived effect came about, basically the same as lying.

          fred....what effects?...specifically.

          July 28, 2014 at 3:31 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          "because of the inclusion of Christian perspectives."

          Good. I don't want my tax money teaching any religious perspective as if it were true..... when it is nothing more than an opinion

          July 28, 2014 at 3:46 pm |
        • LaBella

          Shrug. Sorry your preferred God is treated as equal to all of the other ones out there as it relates to public school curriculum, Fred.
          There's a reason for that. And as someone who said they are law-abiding in his complaint about Obama, you should recognize what that reason is.

          July 28, 2014 at 3:54 pm |
        • believerfred

          Doc Vestibule
          I do not doubt that those who are willing to join an outside activity can do so. The message remains that religion is outside of the public square when it comes to school while scientism , secularism and equality of gods is approved thought.

          July 28, 2014 at 3:59 pm |
        • believerfred

          LaBella
          God is tossed in the same light as Zeus which is the sound bit of atheism. That is not a neutral position.

          July 28, 2014 at 4:03 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          "equality of gods is approved thought."

          So you want your god to be given preferential treatment by the gov't. Thank you for revealing you are a Theocrat fred.

          July 28, 2014 at 4:03 pm |
        • joey3467

          Fred, people who think like you scare the cr.ap out of me.

          July 28, 2014 at 4:08 pm |
        • believerfred

          Blessed are the Cheesemakers
          " I don't want my tax money teaching any religious perspective"
          =>it does teach a religious perspective. It teaches God and Zeus are just gods. It teaches the myths of the Greek gods. You tell me what your conclusion would be as to exactly what is being taught. The teaching is that the concept of God as held by Christians and Jews is not correct and God is not as we claim.

          July 28, 2014 at 4:12 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @Fred
          Though I am Canadian, I spent my junior high years in the American School system.
          I was thoroughly confused the first time I experienced the Pledge of Allegiance – not for the "under God" bit, but just the general principle of the thing. Regardless – because I'm not American, I didn't recite it.
          Out of respect for my hosts, I stood at attention and faced the flag – but I didn't recite the pledge.
          This offended one of my teachers so much that she held me after class and tearfully reprimanded me for my disrespect. When I wouldn't back down, she called my parents – who were quite supportive, much to her chagrin.

          Indoctrination through rote recitation and repeti/tion certainly has an impact – but is it not more honest to come to pledge allegiance to a country or a religion through honest understanding of it? When you force people into one specific ideology and deny them access to information regarding other ideologies, you rob them of free will.
          Religion belongs in a church – or perhaps in social studies class and/or comparative religion.
          Christianity is not being silenced in the public square – it is being forced to share it's previously unquestioned dominance of the public sphere with other faiths and world views – and that shouldn't be a bad thing.
          If anything, shouldn't it allow the religion to stand out even more based on its own merits?

          Furthermore, "scientism" isn't a thing. What should be taught in science classrooms other than the scientific method?
          Should organic chemistry be taught in Sunday school?

          July 28, 2014 at 4:15 pm |
        • igaftr

          fred
          What do you have that shows that Zeus and your god are different?
          Solid verifiable evidence only, not your baseless belief and opinion fred.

          As far as anyone can show, your god is the same as Zeus, and is the same as the other thousands of gods men have worshipped.

          One thing is certain, there is equal evidence of all of them, that being absolutely nothing.
          By all means...PROVE there is a difference fred, otherwise, why should anyone teach YOIR opinion in schools?

          And don't bother quoting your book. It has no authority until you can prove your god exists anyway.

          July 28, 2014 at 4:17 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          =>The teaching is that the concept of God as held by Christians and Jews is not correct and God is not as we claim.

          To do otherwise would teach that the concept of Zues is not as the followers of Zues claim. Why should your views supercede Zues followers?

          July 28, 2014 at 4:51 pm |
        • believerfred

          Doc Vestibule
          "When you force people into one specific ideology and deny them access to information regarding other ideologies, you rob them of free will."
          =>Given God in the beginning did not restrain Adam and Eve after a firm warning and has not done so to date I would agree with you. I would also speculate that the tree of knowledge of good and evil which God placed before man was perfected in lure such that free will could be exercised absent unfair inducement. I also speculate that capacity to reason is matched individually with the tree that is put before them and the voice of God.

          "If anything, shouldn't it allow the religion to stand out even more based on its own merits?"
          =>fine line as Jesus said woe to anyone that would cause one of these little ones to stumble. The ability to cause one to stumble must exist otherwise Jesus would not have mentioned it. The average child quickly grasps the reality of Science vs the reality of God. The parent or teacher at this point is responsible at some level to God.

          "What should be taught in science classrooms other than the scientific method?"
          =>teach the truth as it known. Science can only address matter and energy that lends itself to scientific methodology.

          July 28, 2014 at 5:09 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          fred
          "teach the truth as it known"

          So no religion then?

          July 28, 2014 at 5:16 pm |
        • believerfred

          Blessed are the Cheesemakers
          " Why should your views supercede Zues followers?"
          =>Zeus is of form and substance knowable to man, in the form of man and born of man. As such Zeus is a creation from within our time and space given organic composition. The concept of Zeus is limited to the image of man and out of the image of man. The concept of Zeus is that of Greek mythology and limited to Greek mythology which agrees with current objective observation.
          =>God is not of form and substance known or knowable to man, not limited by our time and space, the concept of God is in agreement with form and substance objectively observable, objectively observable reality reveals the presence of God throughout society in its laws, morals, temples, thoughts, literature, life and death preparations....virtually all of society as known, objectively observable power in the name to draw positive and negative energy from believers and non believers alike, object of worship / prayer / discourse.................................etc

          July 28, 2014 at 5:31 pm |
        • LaBella

          "God is tossed in the same light as Zeus which is the sound bit of atheism. That is not a neutral position."
          I'm not talking about atheism, and you well know it.
          And, actually, neutral is exactly what it is.
          I don't want some Westboro Baptist zealot teaching my kids about God in the public schools. And if you thought about it, neither should you.
          The 1st Amendment doesn't say "any religion except the one a I belong to." It says religion, period.

          July 28, 2014 at 5:38 pm |
        • believerfred

          In Santa We Trust
          "teach the truth as it known" So no religion then?
          =>I do not think this possible at our current stage. We should teach the truth about scientism, atheism, secularism and relative moralism

          July 28, 2014 at 5:47 pm |
        • believerfred

          LaBella
          Great we agree, teach the truth not lies. Zeus is not God and bears no likeness of God so don't teach a lie.

          July 28, 2014 at 5:53 pm |
        • midwest rail

          Attaboy fred ! Ignore the sections of posts that you don;t like, and twist the parts you can. The dishonesty of the "saved" on full display.

          July 28, 2014 at 5:56 pm |
        • observer

          believerfred

          "Zeus is not God and bears no likeness of God so don't teach a lie"

          Zeus and thousands of others, like God, all have being gods in common.

          July 28, 2014 at 6:01 pm |
        • LaBella

          Fred, great! We agree that prayers of any religion, including the Abrahamic religions, are UnConstitutional and have no place in public schools.

          July 28, 2014 at 6:02 pm |
        • believerfred

          midwest rail
          "Attaboy fred ! Ignore the sections of posts that you don;t like, and twist the parts you can."
          =>help, I missed something. Give me a clue on what I ignored.

          July 28, 2014 at 6:15 pm |
        • Bob

          fred, this is the will of god as presented in your Christian book of horrors AKA the bible. Pretty nasty stuff from your violent sky fairy. 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 28, 2014 at 6:27 pm |
        • believerfred

          LaBella
          Fred, great! We agree that prayers of any religion, including the Abrahamic religions, are UnConstitutional and have no place in public schools."
          => Yes, as things stand today it was ruled prayer that promotes one religion over another is deemed unconstitutional

          July 28, 2014 at 6:33 pm |
        • believerfred

          observer
          "Zeus and thousands of others, like God, all have being gods in common"
          =>No, God is not of form or substance known to man. Any anthropomorphic expressions must be in context and any manifestations of God were just that manifestations not actual form and substance. If you want to claim Jesus was God keep in mind Jesus was fully man and fully God. Jesus was the full radiance of the Glory of God is not form and substance of God.

          July 28, 2014 at 6:41 pm |
        • believerfred

          bob, I have replied to each and everyone of your points on 3 occasions. Sorry, God has not changed.

          July 28, 2014 at 6:44 pm |
        • LaBella

          => Yes, as things stand today it was ruled prayer that promotes one religion over another is deemed unconstitutional

          As it should be. This is why state led/teacher led prayer in public schools were prohibited starting in 1963. Because they were promoting one religion above all others.
          I'm glad you finally understand this, and why the teaching of all gods are neutral.

          July 28, 2014 at 6:46 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          "God is of form and substance knowable to man, in the form of man and born of man. As such God is a creation from within our time and space given organic composition. The concept of God is limited to the image of man and out of the image of man. The concept of God is that of Jewish mythology and limited to Jewish mythology which agrees with current objective observation."

          Just as valid...defining you god as different to Zues OR ANY OTHER GOD is not honest and is intellectually dishonest.

          Go pound sand fred...you and people like you is the reason I give money to organizations that fight Theocrats like yourself. And don't for a minute think it has anything to do with my atheism...I hated theocrats when I was a christian and there are many christians that agree with me.

          July 28, 2014 at 7:00 pm |
        • believerfred

          LaBella
          " the teaching of all gods are neutral."
          =>How can you teach all gods are equal without expressing a belief God is not God as presented?
          =>Teaching equality of God,god and gods cannot be truth

          July 28, 2014 at 7:02 pm |
        • believerfred

          Blessed are the Cheesemakers
          "God is of form and substance knowable to man,"
          =>I understand you are just lashing out because you are beginning to understand God does present exactly in form and substance expressed in concept common to deterministic pantheism.
          =>You also are well aware that the concept you attempted to present in jest is false and the alarm bells going off in your soul must be frightening. Perhaps you have seen the God of Spinoza that fascinated Einstein?
          =>Just in case I am wrong tell me what that form and substance is if in fact it is knowable.

          July 28, 2014 at 7:13 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          =>I understand you are just lashing out because you are beginning to understand God does present exactly in form and substance expressed in concept common to deterministic pantheism.
          I think pantheism is just as much of an invalid premise as your god…it just cuts out the immorality of the god of Abraham.

          =>You also are well aware that the concept you attempted to present in jest is false and the alarm bells going off in your soul must be frightening. Perhaps you have seen the God of Spinoza that fascinated Einstein? And I am no more worried that your god is real than I am that Vishnu is real. Just because you have deluded yourself to think otherwise doesn't mean your position makes any sense whatsoever.

          Nope, Einstein was wrong about many things in his life, there is no reason to think he was right here and he soundly rejected a personal god. So you claiming any connection to what Einstein was talking about is just more delusion or dishonesty and it does not matter which.

          =>Just in case I am wrong tell me what that form and substance is if in fact it is knowable.
          I love it when apologists claim their god is unknowable and then spend so much time arguing how they “know” it….you are a funny one fred.

          July 28, 2014 at 7:36 pm |
        • believerfred

          Blessed are the Cheesmaker
          Well, if they know the form and substance of God Isaiah and Moses would sure like to hear about it. A small glimpse managed to put a shine on Moses for weeks such that he wore a veil.

          July 28, 2014 at 8:20 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          fred's argument,

          God is unknowable...because fred knows it.

          God as an explanation for the universe is = to Zues as an explanation for lightning.

          It is the exact same argument from ignorance.

          July 28, 2014 at 8:59 pm |
        • tallulah131

          There is no evidence that Moses ever existed. Indeed, all evidence shows that the "exodus" from Egypt actually never happened. There was no significant population of jewish slaves, therefore no need for all that drama.

          I think I understand you, fred. You're entire existence is so wrapped up in your belief, you can't even allow yourself to consider reality, not even for a second. If your god isn't real, then you and your life becomes meaningless. That is why, when faced with truth and fact, you will continue to lie.

          July 28, 2014 at 10:18 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          fred, If they want a religious education they can go to Bob Jones. Why should they get to decide what UC will accept? The bible is most definitely not a history or science book. And what is the religious perspective on English? That the bible should also be considered literature?

          July 28, 2014 at 10:57 pm |
        • G to the T

          The main problem comes down to this – you are essentially saying that if you aren't Christian you aren't really an American. That is exactly what you are doing by espousing that Christian doctrine should be a part of public education. It's even worse than when Bush senior said that atheists shouldn't be considered citizens, at least he allowed for believers of different religions.

          July 28, 2014 at 11:34 pm |
        • neverbeenhappieratheist

          "text books reflect all religions as equal" so far not one has been able to prove its veracity beyond any other.

          July 29, 2014 at 8:17 am |
        • neverbeenhappieratheist

          fred and his ilk believe our founders had a very moral and righteous ideal, that of life, liberty and justice for all, as long as you're a Christian... and as soon as we start giving those rights to non-Christians they start up the rhetoric siren of taking their country back because they don't really believe in equality.

          July 29, 2014 at 8:25 am |
      • tallulah131

        It's sad and it's made our country something of a laughingstock among the more progressive nations.

        July 28, 2014 at 10:11 pm |
    • thesamyaza

      prove to me that supporting Israel is best for the nation, and not pandering to a religious group

      July 28, 2014 at 2:34 pm |
  14. bostontola

    Picking and choosing data, statistics, or passages from the sacred texts is a tried and true tactic of religions to shape their image and influence others. Since 1948 when Israel was formed, about 11 million Muslims have been killed in violence. Of those, almost 10 million were killed by other Muslims.

    This shines a bright light on another tried and true tactic, this time by incompetent political leaders. Political leaders that are incompetent divert attention from their failed policies by inflaming hate against easy targets with which the population has historical enmity. The author may be part of this, or may have fallen victim to this tactic, either way he is repeating it.

    I lose respect for people that don't take responsibility for their own works.

    July 28, 2014 at 11:40 am |
    • igaftr

      This is the Isreali citizens, setting up lawn chairs to cheer the murder of babies and other innocents. This is the heart of the problem.

      http://www.davidicke.com/headlines/cnn-confirms-israelis-cheer-as-civilians-are-murdered-in-gaza/

      July 28, 2014 at 1:04 pm |
      • bostontola

        And the 10 million Muslims killed by Muslims is the side show.

        July 28, 2014 at 1:44 pm |
      • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

        David Icke?

        Really...? This guy is a kook.

        July 28, 2014 at 5:06 pm |
        • igaftr

          kook or not doesn't change the story.

          July 29, 2014 at 8:04 am |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          It does because the source of the story cannot be trusted. If it is a valid story link a valid source.

          July 29, 2014 at 10:41 am |
        • igaftr

          CNN is not a trusted source?

          Google "CNN Isreali's cheer". You will find many, many links.It happened LIVE on CNN.

          July 29, 2014 at 10:58 am |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          Fair enoungh...

          But I did not say the story is false, my point was the link to Icke. I don't trust any information that comes from him...

          July 29, 2014 at 1:54 pm |
  15. Dyslexic doG

    “The problem with religion, because it's been sheltered from criticism, is that it allows people to believe en masse what only idiots or lunatics could believe in isolation.” – Sam Harris

    And islam does a better job than any other religion in sheltering itself from criticism ... by murder, violence and intimidation.

    July 28, 2014 at 11:36 am |
    • ddeevviinn

      " because its been sheltered from criticism"

      I cannot think of one example throughout history in which a christian was criticized for his or her beliefs. Well, maybe one or two. Fact is, Christians have believed en masse for centuries, all the while the recipients of much criticism.

      That phrase in and of itself renders anything that follows from Sam Harris, within that same context, meaningless.

      July 28, 2014 at 1:01 pm |
      • Dyslexic doG

        if you watched or listened to Sam Harris you would know that what you quoted was a joke to get a laugh from the audience. "Well, maybe one or two" being the punch line. If you watch that on you tube, you will hear all the audience laugh.

        Typical you to take things out of context. Go peddle your lies somewhere else.

        July 28, 2014 at 1:31 pm |
        • ddeevviinn

          What are you talking about???

          The " well maybe one or two" was not Sam's quote, it was MINE. And I can assure you it is not on You Tube.

          You may want to reconsider who it is that is having a problem with veracity.

          July 28, 2014 at 5:33 pm |
      • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

        devin,

        I think you misunderstand the point he is making. It is not that Christians or Christianity has never been criticized. It is that as a general rule criticizing religion is frowned upon.

        July 28, 2014 at 1:39 pm |
        • ddeevviinn

          No. The implication is that were religion to be criticized it would only find a home with the "idiots and lunatics in isolation" It simply isn't true, as I pointed out with Christianity.

          Break the statement down, it's pretty straight forward.

          July 28, 2014 at 5:42 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          Actually devin I think if people scrutinized religious claims the way they do other unverified claims... aliens, bigfoot, psychics...ect. It would be more of a fringe belief. It think that is the point Harris was making, and I think he is right. You yourself told me the other day that Christianity when broken down is illogical, and then stated that it therefore makes the most sense to you. You did that without attempting to justify that paradoxial position.

          July 28, 2014 at 7:17 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          *paradoxical

          July 28, 2014 at 7:19 pm |
        • ddeevviinn

          My point was not that Harris would deny that Christians have been criticized. I'm sure if confronted with the question he would respond in the affirmative. My contention is that words have meaning, and that the quote was a classic example of someone manipulating the implication of a statement in order to produce the desired effect. The belittling of religion in this case.

          "You did that without attempting to justify the paradoxical position"

          Completely unintentional. I assumed, perhaps wrongly, that our conversations over the past couple of years would have by now painted a pretty clear picture of what and why I believe what I do. The beliefs that I maintain and the evidences I find for my faith are the "justification" for this paradoxical position. Honestly, I just didn't think you wanted me to rehash the same old same old.

          Tell you what, I'm getting ready to head off to the airport,, but check back here ( this post) in a few days and I'll give you my "Top 10 list " of why I am a Christian, i,e. why I believe even in the midst of irrationality. It will be kind of like the anti-thesis of Russell's " Why I am not a Christian.

          Til next time.

          July 28, 2014 at 9:10 pm |
        • evolveddna

          Devlin. If I carried a wand and waved it to cure people with magic , most likely and with almost certainly I would be checked out. But use an old book that is claimed to have the "wisdom of a being not of this earth and claims are made it is valid. The only reason is that the myth is so entrenched in our culture that this form of crazy is tolerated.

          July 28, 2014 at 9:43 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          devin,

          "the quote was a classic example of someone manipulating the implication of a statement in order to produce the desired effect. The belittling of religion in this case."

          I agree Harris was being polemic, as I can, and you, and all of us. I just feel he was trying to get the point across that the unfounded religious claims in general are accepted prima facie. And if people, in general were confronted with these premises on their own rather than either being indoctinated into their particular faith or living in a society dominated by a particular faith they may not be as accepting of the claims. We live in a country dominated by Christian dogma, yet we find Muslim dogma absurd. And vice versa for Muslim countries and how they view CHristianity...ect. He is arguing that if religious claims had to be vetted like other ideas they would not be as popular, though of course I don't think they would disappear

          As to the paradox statement. I do have a decent undertanding of what you believe, the "why" I understand somewhat but I would be lying if I said it made sense to me. The statement was made in the context of me finding out you are a 'determinist'. You explained the 'what' but not so much the 'why it makes sense' to you. Honestly I have no idea why you think it makes sense. Determinism never made any sense to me, even in the many religion classes I have been a part of. One of the problems with religion I have, and specifically Christianity, is that the religious authorities (priests, pastors, ect) would be happy if people just believed without thinking too deeply about it.

          July 28, 2014 at 10:37 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          I will look forward to the top 10...hope you flight goes (went) well.

          July 28, 2014 at 11:16 pm |
        • ddeevviinn

          " Honestly, I have no idea why you think it makes sense."

          Actually, I think you do. It's just that when we disagree with someone's conclusions their "why" continues to not make sense.I think I've repeatedly presented my case for the "why" over the last year or two, but again when you are given an answer that does not suffice, the "why" is still in question. Same is true for your thoughts on atheism and in turn my lack of understanding of the "why".

          Just a little preamble before I begin my list. I hope we have established by now the fact that my reasons (evidences) for why I am a christian are not offered as PROOF. Proof is something that neither of us can claim. As a result, my thoughts are currently subjective, much in the same way your position of " I believe there are no Gods" is subjective. Let me explain why I use the term "currently". Let say, hypothetically, that you and I di e on the same day. Upon death we enter some new bizarre dimension in which it " all makes sense". We discover that all of human existence was played out on a holodeck and in fact nothing was real, even you and I. There never was any God/gods or any other element of the supernatural, it was all the product of some eternal computer program( Of course the question would remain " Who created the computer program? But again, we're hypothetical here). It would be at this point in time that your position of " there are no gods" would in fact become OBJECTIVE for you. But it's important to note that the TRUTH was ALWAYS objective, never SUBJECTIVE, it is only your knowledge base that changed. I believe this will be the case with my christian faith. In the present, I can only present subjective thoughts as to why I believe what I do, but it is with the understanding that in the future these thoughts will be realized as objective truth, what in reality they have always been.

          Without out further ado. ( Actually, I'm going to post this reply in two or three segments in the event the "T IT" filter knocks me out and I lose what I've written.

          August 2, 2014 at 7:53 am |
        • G to the T

          Minor point – "Truth" cannot be objective – as it is a mental construct. The object of a "truth" may be an objective fact however.

          August 2, 2014 at 9:04 am |
        • ddeevviinn

          In no particular order of importance, apart from # 1:

          1. THE GIFT OF FAITH AND THE WORK OF THE HOLY SPIRIT. This is the ultimate answer to the question of "why". God , in the Person of the Holy Spirit, has "turned on" my spiritually de ad lights, allowed me to recognize the condition of my sinful human heart, and by faith believe that He took on human flesh in the Person of Jesus Christ and that through His de ath, burial and resurrection ( the Atonement) I can be justified and made right with my creator. It is what the bible defines as " peace with God"

          The Charismatic movement of the 70's, and still today, has unfortunately at times relegated the work of the Holy Spirit to that of a carnival side show. There have been some truly bizarre claims and "examples" of what some christians portray as the doings of the Holy Spirit. In reality, what He does, and the reason "why" I believe is because as the apostle Paul states, " The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are the children of God."

          2. THE REALITY OF SIN. This is the deal closer for me. I simply cannot dismiss the reality of this concept. It is everywhere, it has permeated everything, it will not go away no matter how strong the effort to deny its existence. Explanations of " evolutionary survival of the fittest mechanisms" fall on my deaf ears. There is nothing, nothing, nothing, that explains and makes sense of the presence of sin as does the biblical narrative. I've heard all the alternative theories and arguments, I honestly find them to be desperately lacking.

          3. THE BIBLE. I've told you before, were I an atheist this would be my first line of attack. I would attempt to dismiss it and attribute it to the works of primitive men every chance I got. It is the hinge upon which everything opens or closes.

          There is simply no piece of literature with the substance, detail, and comprehensive display of the entire saga of the creation of the universe, the purpose of existence, the nature of human beings, and the nature and attributes of this ent ity we call God. This is not an isolated christian perspective, there are many non believers who will attest to the absolute uniqueness of the christian scriptures.

          The writer of Hebrews states, " The word of God is living and active and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and spirit, of joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart." There is not a day goes by where I do not see this concept played out in reality. As I read the bible, I find reality. Not the reality I like, not the reality I wish, but the reality I find to be true.

          4. JESUS. Perfection in the form of a human being. What else can I say? He is the only example. He is the standard to which none of us can compare. He is the embodiment of unconditional love with the perfect balance of grace, mercy, righteousness and justice. He was radical in His teaching that it is not simply the outward actions of the individual that are at issue, it is also the actions of the individuals mind." For as a man thinks, so he is". His exposure of the religious leaders hypocrisy due to the condition of their "heart" is a lesson that applies all to well to myself. And, I dare say, yourself.

          I've always liked the event of Jesus out on the boat. He was out fishing with His disciples and a storm came on the scene. The disciples were freaking out thinking they were going to die. Jesus, who had been sleeping below deck, comes up and "rebukes the wind and the sea". It is at this point that His disciples ask the very poignant question, " Who is this man that even the winds and sea obey Him?" And this is the 60 mil lion dollar question. I find in the bible that this man is the "Son of God who takes away the sins of the world." I have come to the conclusion that I agree, and it is another reason as to " Why I am a Christian."

          To be continued...

          August 2, 2014 at 9:21 am |
        • ddeevviinn

          5. NATURAL REVELATION. When the apostle Paul says " that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made.", I recognize this principle of "intrinsic knowledge". Each of us have within us the knowledge of a divine creator. It is present, and while it is deniable and can be as Paul says, " men who suppress the truth " it is never the less irrefutable.

          When I consider the fact that there are 30 s e x tillion stars in the +-

          August 3, 2014 at 9:46 pm |
        • ddeevviinn

          sorry about that.

          known universe, and when I consider the fantastic intricacies of my human flesh, and when I stand on the plains of Africa and take in the elephants, giraffes, lions, zebras, all silhouetted by Mt. Kilimanjaro in the background, I realize that a creator is not only plausible but mandatory. It is simply common sense and only becomes nonsensical when that inner knowledge has been masked.

          6. THE PRESENCE OF E VIL. This is a separate enti ty from the everyday ly ing, stealing, cheating, mu rder that is usually the result of some ulterior motive( ex.- a man k ills a store clerk because he wants the money in the cash register). What I'm talking about here is the irrational, dia bolical actions of a Charles Manson or Jeffrey Dahmer. These individuals engaged in behavior that has its roots in something far more sinister than human nature. When I read " our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places" it confirms the reality I see in this world. There have been two times in my life where I have experienced the presence of pure ev il, and while all experience is subjective and my stories anecdotal, these events have verified its reality.

          I find it ironic that one of the most convincing verifications of my faith is the existence of e vil. As with the concept of sin, I have found absolutely nothing that explains its origin and existence with the degree of feasibility with which the bible does.

          7. THE GOSPEL OF GRACE. What is the common theme running through religion? " In order to reach heaven, Nirvana or any other enhanced eternal state the individual must accomplish this, this and that." And here in lies the uniqueness of the Christian Gospel. There is nothing you can do,. Nothing. You don't have the means or the ability. No matter how many poor you feed, homeless you shelter, rosaries you say, it does nothing to enhance your position before God. There is only one dynamic at work which will provide you with eternal life, it is the free gift of faith that God Himself imparts to the human soul.

          8. LOVE AND JUSTICE. I know of no sacred text, ideology or philosophy that strikes the balance between these two themes in the manner in which the bible does. This concept of unconditional love is astounding. Not only are we to love our enemies unconditionally but we are to forgive them no matter how many times they have offended or wronged us. It is a concept that goes against the grain of human nature. We are all about revenge and getting even. And while this call to unconditional love requires the dismissal of personal pride, it results in a freedom that transcends the human need for retaliation.

          But justice is never sacrificed on the altar of love. Unconditional love never exempts justice. Providing someone with justice is as much an exercise of unconditional love as is forgiveness.

          August 3, 2014 at 11:40 pm |
        • evolveddna

          devilin.. I appreciate the narrative regarding the reasons you believe but I would like to know where this creator came from and how you may have such knowledge. .

          August 4, 2014 at 12:48 am |
        • kermit4jc

          The Creator came from nowhere..He is eternal

          August 4, 2014 at 1:46 am |
        • evolveddna

          Kermit..how do you know that !..and where was "nowhere" if this creator came from it?

          August 4, 2014 at 12:02 pm |
        • kermit4jc

          huh??

          August 4, 2014 at 3:00 pm |
        • evolveddna

          Kermit you said the creator came from " nowhere"..where is that place how can it exist? ...? and how do you know the creator came from "nowhere"..me thinks you are guessing ?

          August 4, 2014 at 6:19 pm |
        • kermit4jc

          when I say "he came from nowhere" I mean he never had a beginning....he is not created..He is eternal

          August 4, 2014 at 6:41 pm |
        • ddeevviinn

          9. THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD. If there is one attribute more than any other that defines the nature of the God of Christianity, it is this idea of sovereignty. He determines, acts, and decrees wholly independent of anyone or anything. There are facets of His thoughts and motives that are entirely unknowable. This is exactly the kind of God that I would expect to find if there was a God. This is the kind of God I want. This is the kind of God I need. He is the Complete and Total Potentate, perfect in love, justice and mercy. He is the Universal Conductor in this symphony called life. He is, as Cornelius Van Til ( perhaps my favorite apologist) would say, " THE ALL CONDITIONER."

          10. PEACE. This is simply irreplaceable. I have peace in knowing that I am right before God. I have peace in knowing that there is nothing that can separate me from His love. I have peace in knowing that I have eternal life.

          I do not have a death wish, but it is a certainty that in a relatively few short years I will be off the scene. But I say this in all honesty, it matters not. I believe I have been created to glorify God and enjoy him forever. As important and all encompassing as this present life on earth can at times seem to be, it is but a small blip on the eternal radar. There will soon come a point in time in which " the faith will be sight" and real life will begin. And this is true peace.

          Well there ya go. It's a short list of reasons why I'm a christian. Many volumes could be written expanding upon each item. It goes without saying that my list is subjective and that in many instances the reasoning would appear circular (be cause the bible says ...) to anyone who does not believe. But again, this is a list of why I believe even in the midst of the irrationality that is present in the christian faith. It is not meant as a defense or an argument to sway someone to my opinion. Just a simple statement of "why". Hope it helps clarify my thoughts.

          August 4, 2014 at 1:18 am |
        • ddeevviinn

          evolve

          My apologies. I posted my reply in the wrong spot. It's posted in the current replies on page 2.

          I'd retype here but I'm off to bed.

          Good night.

          August 4, 2014 at 1:40 am |
        • neverbeenhappieratheist

          "If there is one attribute more than any other that defines the nature of the God of Christianity, it is this idea of sovereignty."

          aka as the "My God made you so do what I say!" doctrine...

          August 4, 2014 at 2:50 am |
        • tallulah131

          Yeah, I'm not getting the logic. There's a WHOLE lot of rhetoric, but still not an ounce of proof. It just sounds like another case of a christian hearing a story they liked and deciding to believe it.

          I wouldn't buy a car without test driving it to make sure it had an engine. Why should standards be lower for belief in a god?

          August 4, 2014 at 4:10 am |
        • kermit4jc

          there isnt a lower standard...we get to experience Gods presence..see Him working in our lives and lives of others

          August 4, 2014 at 9:33 am |
        • ddeevviinn

          tal

          " not an ounce of proof"

          Obviously you missed the part where I clearly stated that " PROOF is something neither of us can claim."

          August 5, 2014 at 3:36 am |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          devin,

          I finally checked back. Thank you for your honest answer. Believe it or not I appreciate it. Being raised in Christianity and having attended CHristian school these are all answers I have heard in some form before. I think you articulate them well. Of course I do not find them compelling, if I did I would still be a believer. I could go through and give you my refutations point by point but I don't think that is what you would want and you probably know my stance anyway. In general I do think there are a lot of fallacious arguments. I do think at base level the reasoning is circular.

          All I can tell you is I truly try and live as a honest compassionate person, though like everyone else I often fall short of what I expect of myself. And honestly I just don't buy the CHristian world view. It is too full of holes for me to accept. If me living my life as is, would not be enough for a "god"...so be it. "To thine own self be true". I can't pretend something is true. I wouldn't respect a god that expects anything else from a human being.... even if in the end I am wrong.

          If there is something you do want me to address I would be happy to, I am not looking to dodge an issue.

          August 5, 2014 at 4:22 pm |
        • ddeevviinn

          " I am not looking to dodge an issue"

          I would hope by now we have come to the mutual understanding that neither of us is attempting to "dodge an issue" We pretty much disagree, at times vehemently, with each other's logic, use of evidence, reasoning abilities, and conclusions. But avoidance of issues, not so much.

          Actually, I think we've reached an impasse. Over time, I think we've come to a pretty good understanding as to each others view of human nature and our perspectives on the existence of God. You come to a point where you realize that there are no more nuances of a topic to be par sed.Lately, I've been thinking of this in the broader context of this forum. I'm in the autumn of my posting time on the Belief Blog.

          I fully respect and understand, perhaps more than you realize, your desire to be " true to yourself." I also understand, and on a certain level empathize,with the apparent " holes" you find in christianity and your inability to "pretend". In essence, you and I are much the same. It is only reason #1 that differentiates us.

          August 6, 2014 at 2:17 am |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          devin,

          Really it is more than just #1. It is my position that Christianity is flawed at its foundation. If I was convinced that 100% of the claims of Christianity were true, I still wouldn't be a Christian. The bottom line is I could not treat my worst enemy the way that god treats humanity. Sovereignty or not, doesn't matter.

          August 6, 2014 at 2:50 am |
        • ddeevviinn

          Cheese

          I understand.your position. It is not unique (not meant to be derogatory).

          What I am saying is that the reason you maintain that position is because this sovereign God we are talking about hasn't regenerated your sinful human heart. If He were to do so, all the disdain , all the rationalizations, all the accusations against God would become meaningless.

          How do I know this? There are many individuals, both past and present, with significantly greater intellects than either you or I ( well, at least me) whose militant atheism has vanished when God changed their " heart of stone and gave them a heart of flesh." I know more than a handful of these individuals personally. Like you, they were adamant in their unbelief, and could provide an endless list of why they were so. This side of regeneration, that list has become inconsequential.

          I hesitate to tell you this because it will probably come off as Cheesy ( pun intended) to you , not to mention naive and silly. I have and do pray for you. I pray that God will work in your heart and make himself known to you. I don't care what your past experience or familiarity with Christianity is, my prayer is that God will call you to Himself, enable you to understand and recognize your need of Him, and instill in you saving faith. I pray for this not because I want to convince you of my position, which is really not MY position, but because I believe the gospel of this sovereign God is as true for me as it is for you. Truth at all cost.

          August 6, 2014 at 3:46 am |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          "because this sovereign God we are talking about hasn't regenerated your sinful human heart."

          devin,

          That actually makes my point. It is not a "me" problem, it is a "him" problem. That is but one flaw of the CHristian view, but it is a major one. You can come up with as many excuses as you like (sovereignty, god's ultimate plan, mysterious ways..whatever) The point is at the core it is not my doing and even if it was, basing rewards and punishments on "belief" is ridiculous, unjust and unconscionable. Of course you take the position we are not to judge god...but that is exactly what believers such as yourself do every day...you have just judged that he is good.

          "whose militant atheism has vanished when God changed their " heart of stone and gave them a heart of flesh."

          So then does the fact that I know believers that are more knowledgable than you in CHristianity, were true Bible thu.mping followers of CHrist and now have let go of their faith because they see it as devoid of any logical, moral and ethical reasons to believe prove you are wrong on this point? My guess is you will say no...they are doing it (or did it) wrong...I hope that is not the case because I find that line of Christian reasoning really dishonest. That knife cuts both ways.

          Since I think you are sincere in you "prayer" for me I take that as an act of compassion. Sometimes when CHristians say that it is meant to be condescending. I know you are not a fan of Penn Gillette, but he actually turned me around on this issue. If someone truly believes as you do AND that person truly cares for other people this should be what they do..thanks for caring devin.

          August 6, 2014 at 11:25 am |
        • ddeevviinn

          We've beat this dead horse "sin" thing long enough, so I'll just wrap it up with this. I would contend that it is in fact a "you problem" ( and "me problem"). If, in explaining my position on sovereignty, I have given even the slightest impression that it negates human responsibility, I apologize. You, and you alone, are the captain of your human nature ship.

          " My guess is you will say no they are doing it (or did it wrong)"

          That would be a foolish statement for me to make when I don't think they had anything to do with it in the first place. The bible is very clear in that there will be many who embrace the claims of Christ with great exuberance and from all outward appearances seem to have genuine faith ( see Matthew 13 ). In reality, their faith was a ruse, something self initiated and separate form God's work of faith in a human soul. I simply disagree that this is a cop out or "dishonest Christian reasoning", it is Christian doctrine that is found throughout the biblical text.

          I do want to clarify that I was not advancing the notion that the conversion of intelligent atheists is a proof of Christianity. My point was that when regeneration occurs within even the most ardent of unbelievers, objections fade away. That's all.

          That prayer thing ? I can only tell you that it was intended without an ounce of condescension, superiority, or duplicity. While our fundamental disagreements preclude you from attaching any meaningful significance to the action, know that is done in sincerity and out of true concern.

          Well Cheese, it has been fun. I really do marvel at the way in which technology has allowed for complete strangers to exchange some of their thoughts on the deepest questions of existence. I appreciate you sharing some of your "mental life " with me over the past few years. I wish you all the best.

          Devin

          August 6, 2014 at 2:23 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          "I would contend that it is in fact a "you problem" ( and "me problem")."

          devin,

          Of course I know that is what you contend. I am saying it is a non sequitor. You often state your reasons for your positions are not fallacious when in fact they are. Of course you contend that because you assume your conclusion and then have to make your reasons fit the narrative. I will not accept your CHristian position on this because the logic is faulty.

          "In reality, their faith was a ruse, something self initiated and separate form God's work of faith in a human soul."

          It is a cop out and is is faulty reasoning. You get to use that line of reasoning to prop up your position but when I show the same type of situation for my position you roll out your book and show that it proclaims that there would be people who are apostates and never really were in the CHristian camp. That reasoning is intellectually dishonest and is the very definition of 'confirmation bias'.

          "My point was that when regeneration occurs within even the most ardent of unbelievers, objections fade away. That's all."

          And you have no way to differentiate between a regeneration and a non regeneration. Of course when people accept a religious faith position objections fade away. Rationalization is a powerful part of the human psyche. People fool themselves, smart people are really good at it.

          "I can only tell you that it was intended without an ounce of condescension"

          I know you did and I thought I made it pretty clear I felt you were sincere....no need to be defensive.

          I wish you the best as well. Please understand my issue is with the Christian world view...not with Christians. If christianity is true it should be able to handle all the criticism without resorting to claiming persecution just because someone opposses the view as being valid. It should have to stand or fall on its own merits. I have enjoyed it as well. I do hope you check back occasionally on the blog.

          August 7, 2014 at 12:22 am |
        • ddeevviinn

          Cheese

          Thought I'd check one last time to see if I needed to follow up with a reply to another poster and I saw your entry.

          I got the impression we were parting on somewhat of a sour note and I didn't want that to be the case.

          As you can imagine, I dismissed your first three points as , fallacious, intellectually dishonest, and entirely founded upon faulty logic. I use your own wording only to point out that it is the only logical conclusion we can both come to when we disagree on a fundamental level about such weighty matters. We perceive each other's position as wrong, so it naturally follows that we would also disavow the others logic and reasoning abilities. And as tempted as I am to dissect each of your points, and I am tempted, I will let them go.

          Actually, I just wanted to clear up a few possible misunderstandings:

          " no need to be defensive"

          That one caught me off guard. I really had no idea what you were referring to, but after reading my reply again I thought maybe it was the phrase " preclude you from attaching any meaningful significance to the action". If in fact this is what gave you the impression i was being defensive, I can promise you it was not meant the way in which you thought. I was actually just acknowledging my realization that you do not place validity on prayer as I do. Not a shred of defensiveness was intended.

          I'm not really sure where you were going with the "christianity should be able to handle the criticism without resorting to claiming persecution" or the " stand on its own merit" statements. To the best of my knowledge, I have never once claimed "persecution" and in fact, apart from the occasional use of sarcasm that I love to engage in, I have "turned the other cheek " to the ridicule and verbal insults that a number of posters have routinely hurled my way.( And no, that last statement was not claiming persecution, just stating facts). And as for 'standing on its own merits", I completely agree.

          If you were somehow tying these thoughts in with my reason for leaving this blog, I can assure you they are unrelated. It has just run its course for me. I feel like I've been able to share some thoughts and express my opinions, but as time goes on I find myself becoming disinterested in rehashing the same topics, just dressed in different costumes. ( I'm not really referring to OUR discussions, you are one of a handful of individuals with whom i was able to scratch below the surface. For that, I thank you.)

          Hope this filters out any misunderstanding.

          Have a good life my friend.

          August 7, 2014 at 2:13 am |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          devin,

          The idea that somehow anyone could be responsible for their unbelief if there unbelief was predetermined is a non-sequitor, and it is faulty logic. I still don't understand how any of that makes sense to you as you only recently revealed that aspect of your belief and never really addressed why it makes sense, only that you believe it. You said...

          "That would be a foolish statement for me to make when I don't think they had anything to do with it in the first place."

          That statement does not logically follow 'that unbelievers are responsible for their unbelief'.

          I am actually dissappointed you are planning on not posting anymore because I honestly find this very interesting and full of unexplored issues (at least between us).

          "My point was that when regeneration occurs within even the most ardent of unbelievers, objections fade away. That's all."

          My point is that either people switching sides can be used for both sides of the argument or neither can use it. Claiming you can use it 'because the book says it will happen' is fallacious.

          I apologize if I misread your statement as being defensive. I just wanted you to know I took your prayer as a sincere act of compassion, not as condescending or patronising.

          The reason I brought up the persecution thing is because you and I have had an honest back and forth of the merits of the ideas and usually on both our parts kept it on that level. I was really trying to tell you that I repect that about our discussions...but I did not relate that concept well.

          August 7, 2014 at 3:07 am |
  16. Vic

    It is an ideological conflict before it is a political one. There cannot be a political solution alone, rather, there can only be an ideological solution where the political machine then follows.

    July 28, 2014 at 10:53 am |
    • Doris

      That sounds hopeful, Vic, but I can't help but think it's too unrealistic.

      Like it or not, the politics are there. The powers great and small are involved. The U.S. almost didn't survive in the beginning because we were not a united political force. We were financially in debt at the start and paying a high premium for everything to everyone. Different religious factions were feuding with one another; each state had its own agenda – internal and outward toward other states and the rest of the world then. It wasn't until the unification took place that the rest of the world then took us seriously – and started trading with us more fairly (and in the Brit's case began dropping the plans to make another go at taking us back).

      This conflict is a difficult mess with a lot of innocent people caught up in it. People dying from bombs, yes, but also dying because of the current restrictions keeping them from getting to hospitals; people that have lived there their whole lives who now have been separated from their access to water. Some that live with those issues are Christians. But realistically how will Israel behave any differently when whoever they are under attack from there doesn't seem to be any consistent, unified force (political or otherwise) that can be bargained with? Does Hamas represent Palestine or does the PA represent Palestine?

      July 28, 2014 at 11:49 am |
    • Vic

      Previously, on the same issue:

      http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2014/05/26/pope-come-to-the-vatican-for-peace-talks/comment-page-1/#comment-3019521

      July 28, 2014 at 1:03 pm |
  17. Reality

    Again, putting a safe and peaceful end to all of this Muslim insanity:

    From the studies of Armstrong, Rushdie, Hirsi Ali, Richardson and Bayhaqi––

    The Five Steps To Deprogram 1400 Years of Islamic Myths:

    ( –The Steps take less than two minutes to finish- simply amazing, two minutes to bring peace and rationality to over one billion lost souls- Priceless!!!)

    Are you ready?

    Using "The 77 Branches of Islamic "faith" a collection compiled by Imam Bayhaqi as a starting point. In it, he explains the essential virtues that reflect true "faith" (iman) through related Qur’anic verses and Prophetic sayings." i.e. a nice summary of the Koran and Islamic beliefs.

    The First Five of the 77 Branches:

    "1. Belief in Allah"

    aka as God, Yahweh, Zeus, Jehovah, Mother Nature, etc. should be added to your self-cleansing neurons.

    "2. To believe that everything other than Allah was non-existent. Thereafter, Allah Most High created these things and subsequently they came into existence."

    Evolution and the Big Bang or the "Gi-b G-nab" (when the universe starts to recycle) are more plausible and the "akas" for Allah should be included if you continue to be a "crea-tionist".

    "3. To believe in the existence of angels."

    A major item for neuron cleansing. Angels/de-vils are the mythical creations of ancient civilizations, e.g. Hitt-ites, to explain/define natural events, contacts with their gods, big birds, sudden winds, protectors during the dark nights, etc. No "pretty/ug-ly wingy thingies" ever visited or talked to Mohammed, Jesus, Mary or Joseph or Joe Smith. Today we would classify angels as f–airies and "tin–ker be-lls". Modern de-vils are classified as the de-mons of the de-mented.

    "4. To believe that all the heavenly books that were sent to the different prophets are true. However, apart from the Quran, all other books are not valid anymore."

    Another major item to delete. There are no books written in the spirit state of Heaven (if there is one) just as there are no angels to write/publish/distribute them. The Koran, OT, NT etc. are simply books written by humans for humans.

    Prophets were invented by ancient scribes typically to keep the un-educated masses in line. Today we call them for-tune tellers.

    Prophecies are also invali-dated by the natural/God/Allah gifts of Free Will and Future.

    "5. To believe that all the prophets are true. However, we are commanded to follow the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings
    be upon him) alone."

    Mohammed spent thirty days "fasting" (the Ramadan legend) in a hot cave before his first contact with Allah aka God etc. via a "pretty wingy thingy". Common sense demands a neuron deletion of #5. #5 is also the major source of Islamic vi-olence i.e. turning Mohammed's "fast, hunger-driven" hallu-cinations into horrible reality for unbelievers.

    Walk these Five Steps and we guarantee a complete recovery from your Islamic ways!!!!

    Unfortunately, there are not many Muslim commentators/readers on this blog so the "two-minute" cure is not getting to those who need it. If you have a Muslim friend, send him a copy and help save the world.

    Analogous steps are available at your request for deprogramming the myths of Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism and Paganism..

    من الدراسات من أرمسترونغ، رشدي، هيرسي علي، ريتشاردسون والبيهقي ––

    في خمس خطوات لأبطل تأثير 1400 سنة من الأساطير الإسلامية:

    (-خطوات اتخاذ أقل من دقيقتين لإنهاء-ببساطة مدهشة، دقيقتين لإحلال السلام والعقلانية إلى أكثر من مليار فقدت النفوس لا تقدر بثمن!)

    هل أنت مستعد؟

    استخدام "الفروع الإسلامية 77 من" الإيمان "مجموعة الإمام البيهقي المترجمة كنقطة انطلاق. في ذلك، وهو ما يفسر الفضائل الأساسية التي تعكس صحيح" الإيمان "(إيمان) من خلال الآيات القرآنية ذات الصلة، وأحاديث نبوية." أي ملخص لطيفة من المعتقدات القرآن والإسلامية.

    الخمسة الأولى من الفروع 77:

    "1. الإيمان بالله"

    كما يعرف أيضا باسم الله، الرب، زيوس، الرب، الطبيعة الأم، وما إلى ذلك يجب أن تضاف إلى الخلايا العصبية التطهير الذاتي الخاص.

    "2. إلى الاعتقاد بأن كل شيء غيرها مما كان الله غير موجود. بعد ذلك، الله سبحانه وتعالى خلق هذه الأشياء، وبعد ذلك جاءوا إلى حيز الوجود."

    التطور والانفجار الكبير أو "غب Gnab" (عند بدء الكون لإعادة تدوير) هي أكثر ترجيحا وينبغي أن تدرج في "المندرجة" في سبيل الله إذا كنت لا تزال تشكل "الخلق".

    "3. إلى الاعتقاد في وجود الملائكة."

    A بندا رئيسيا لتطهير الخلايا العصبية. الملائكة / دي VILS هي الإبداعات الأسطورية من الحضارات القديمة، على سبيل المثال HITT خائبي، لشرح / تعريف الأحداث الطبيعية، والاتصالات مع آلهتهم، والطيور الكبيرة، والرياح المفاجئة، وحماة خلال الليالي المظلمة، وما إلى ذلك لا "جميلة / قبيحة ثينجيس افسح المجال ل" بزيارة أي وقت مضى أو تحدثت إلى محمد، يسوع، مريم أو يوسف أو جو سميث. اليوم سوف نصنف الملائكة كما الجنيات و "أجراس العبث". تصنف الشياطين الحديثة والشياطين من مجنون.

    "4. إلى الاعتقاد بأن جميع الكتب السماوية التي تم إرسالها إلى الأنبياء مختلفة صحيحا. ومع ذلك، وبصرف النظر عن القرآن، كل الكتب الأخرى ليست صالحة بعد الآن."

    ومن البنود الرئيسية في حذفها. لا يوجد كتب في ولاية روح السماء (إذا كان هناك واحد) فقط حيث لم تعد هناك ملائكة لكتابة / نشر / توزيعها. القرآن، OT، NT وما هي ببساطة الكتب التي كتبت من قبل البشر للبشر.

    اخترعت الأنبياء من قبل الكتبة القديمة عادة للحفاظ على الجماهير غير المتعلمة في الخط. اليوم ونحن ندعو لهم فرز الأصوات للتناغم.

    النبوءات كما invali مؤرخة من قبل الطبيعية / الله / الله الهدايا من الإرادة الحرة والمستقبل.

    "5. إلى الاعتقاد بأن جميع الأنبياء صحيحا. ومع ذلك، ونحن مأمورون اتباع النبي محمد (عليه الصلاة والسلام
    صلى الله عليه وسلم) وحده ".

    قضى محمد ثلاثين يوما "الصيام" (أسطورة رمضان) في كهف الساخن قبل أول اتصال له مع الله الملقب الخ الله عبر "ممتزوجات افسح المجال ل جميلة". الحس السليم يتطلب حذف الخلايا العصبية من # 5. # 5 هو أيضا المصدر الرئيسي للالاسلامي VI-olence أي تحول محمد "سريع، يحركها الجوع" hallu-cinations إلى واقع فظيع لغير المؤمنين.

    المشي هذه خمس خطوات، ونحن نضمن الانتعاش الكامل من الطرق الإسلامية الخاصة بك!!

    للأسف، لا توجد العديد من المعلقين مسلم / القراء على هذا بلوق لذلك "مدة دقيقتين" العلاج هو عدم الحصول على لأولئك الذين في حاجة إليها. إذا كان لديك صديق مسلم، ترسل له نسخة وتساعد في إنقاذ العالم.

    تتوفر خطوات مماثلة في طلبك للحصول على deprogramming الأساطير المسيحية واليهودية والبوذية والهندوسية والوثنية

    July 28, 2014 at 10:49 am |
  18. Dyslexic doG

    For a religion responsible for most of the murder and war and destruction in the world at the moment, Muslims sure do whine a lot about not being treated fairly.

    Claiming that it is "those" muslims causing the problems and not "us" muslims causing the problems is a bit disingenuous considering the deafening silence from the "us" muslims.

    When so called moderate muslims are protesting on the streets and yelling at the tops of their voices against the atrocities committed by the violent muslim militants tearing up the world at the moment, then they should be taken seriously.

    July 28, 2014 at 10:35 am |
  19. Lucifer's Evil Twin

    "under advice from his aides that association with Muslims is politically damaging"

    That would be because of the redneck teapartiers who still think that Pres. Obama is actually a muslim.

    July 28, 2014 at 10:27 am |
    • LaBella

      It had to be said.

      July 28, 2014 at 11:02 am |
    • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

      When meeting with supersti.tious people in general is "politically damaging" we will be a lot better off.

      July 28, 2014 at 11:11 am |
      • Dyslexic doG

        amen!

        July 28, 2014 at 11:19 am |
  20. Doc Vestibule

    "Muslims represent 4 million to 6 million Americans and include practically every race and socioeconomic level in the United States."

    Census statistics from 2008 show that Muslims represent 0.6% of the adult American population.
    Buddhists represent 0.5%.
    Why doesn't Obama have any buddhists in his cabinet? He should recognize the plight of the Tibetan monks and appoint a bald, robe wearing ambassador!
    The fact is that neither group represents a significant demographic.
    Furthermore, the US won't be ending its support for Israel. It is the most significant foothold the US has in the Middle East.

    July 28, 2014 at 10:01 am |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      Half the equation of the 'siege of Gaza' is Egypt, whose current regime is opposed to Hamas.

      And Jews represent 1.7% of Americans which is 5.1 million.

      The estimate of 4 – 6 million American Muslims is off by at least a factor of two, unless Pew don't know how to do their job.

      I wonder which represents the more important influence to the political process in terms of votes and campaign contributions – American Muslims, or Hollywood/Wall Street Jews?

      July 28, 2014 at 9:32 pm |
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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.