What you call “Intersex” generally don’t EXIST long enough AS “intersex” for their gonads to start producing either Testosterone OR Estrogen, which normally don’t start doing so until just before puberty. It’s testosterone that causes boys’ voices to change and causes them to start to develop body and facial hair. It’s estrogen that causes girls to start developing breasts, their pelvises to start to broaden and they begin to menstruate. Children are several years old before any of those things happen. Parents almost always decide FOR their children–in consultation with their obstetrician–to have their “intersex” condition surgically corrected LONG before the onset of puberty.
1 I’m saying they don’t know what they’re getting into, like many other scams that are illegal. I don’t know what you mean by “voluntariness is not consensus,” or how that’s being attributed to my position. I did say that consent is not victimless in the case of porn.
2 Essentially accurate. 3 I probably can’t prove it to you to your satisfaction, but I would argue that in many ways, porn is worse (the availability certainly is). Again, I would encourage you to research in depth yourself.
4 I don’t see a conflict between allowing someone to think what they will, and not allowing them to do what they will.
5 The issue as I see it is that it’s one thing for a person to choose to go to hell in the handbasket of their own choosing; it’s quite another thing to choose actions that cause others to stumble. 6 I don’t know that you can separate the land of the free from the law of God; the Founders didn’t seem to believe so. 7 I’m not trying to force anyone to church. I’m trying to force them to keep their perverted fingers (and other body parts) off of impressionable young women and from commoditizing (okay, it’s a made up word; but it means causing to be a commodity) them.
Two competing ideals
I think we can reduce our dissent now to a discrepancy in ideals:
Freedom vs. Protection
We just disagree in the extent of protection we think people would need. You think, people sometimes need protection even if they act voluntarily because they can’t recognize the full situation and its consequences. Whereas my underlying principles include the assumption, that people are always capable of a proper assessment of the situation and therefore should be seen as self-responsible.
We also could say our disagreement is based on a discrepancy in conception of man:
independent vs. in need of protection
self-reliant vs. impressionable
I have to admit that I can not argue that my ideal (freedom) is objectively better than yours (protection), but I think you can’t do this from your perspective too.
But you also would forbid autonomous porn-production by oneself (and watching porn). Or wouldn’t you? So the core problem remains: If someone would force me to follow rules derived from a doctrine I do not totally believe in, I would feel other-dictated. Since everyone has the freedom to join an orthodox church, I think nobody should be forced by government to follow particular religion based rules.
I don’t understand the difference. In any case you need a (ca.) 50% majority if you want to issue law and order.
I argued from a libertarian perspective yet, but as I said above, I indeed could imagine living in a state designed by your suggestions. It would not correspond to my libertarian ideals but for me it would be no problem to live without porn (that’s what I did up to now). I even could imagine living without sex in general. I never tried it, because I think it is far overestimated. And if I had to choose between your religious-empire and the current world I indeed would prefer your state. But the problem is: Most people do not think the way than I do. Do you just want to talk about said issues, OR do you actually want to change your society according to your ideals? And how would you convince 50% of US-Americans of discussed issues?
1 Although one might make the argument as to where the line should be drawn legally, the fact of the matter is that young adults are vulnerable to being taken advantage of. There’s no way for someone fresh out of childhood to be ready for every dirty trick that’s being thrown at them. Obviously, there’s no way to protect them from everything either, nor do I argue that they should be. But I do see this one as serious enough, and could be policed (although it would be a lot easier if the anti-porn laws in the U.S. had been enforced all along as they should be, and if some silly court hadn’t aquitted Larry Flynt). 2 Insofar as I don’t have the evidence at my fingertips and am not sure where to look for it online, I can’t. But legal adults get hornswaggled all the time. And young girls particularly in regard to things sexual (“If you love me, you’ll do it.”). I’ll also mention that there was a study (again and alas, I don’t have the source to link to) which found that sexually active fifteen-year-old girls had twelve times the likelihood of committing suicide.
3 If autonomous porn production- and transmission- were the only law, you’d see a lot of pornographers putting girls on the internet under the (dis)guise of “autonomous” porn. For that reason and for I claim is the fact that porn is unwholesome in any form, I would have no problem banning any form of porn distribution. I would be impractical to prohibit couples and individuals from recording and keeping their own erotic video or image files/libraries. But as far as I’m concerned, no distribution in any way, shape or form. 4 And yet:
Thou shalt not murder.
Thou shalt not steal.
And I’ll argue that until it started abandoning its Judeo-Christian principles (in the public and private sectors), the United States was decidedly the best country in the world. Now that we’ve slipped into secular decadence, not so sure.
5 Not strictly true (electoral college, supermajorities, getting bills out of committees, etc.), but admittedly, it’s a side issue. 6 Sex itself is not prohibited by Judeo-Christian beliefs; God Himself created it. It’s the perversion of it which causes problems, and is well documented in the Bible. I realize you don’t take the Bible as the last word, but there it is. 7 I don’t expect to convince them. I expect the decadence to continue, and the western world to collapse into a pale shadow of itself until God sorts things out. Ultimately, I’m not responsible to God for fixing the mess; I’m responsible for how I respond to it. I pray I do so wisely and well.
I believe that the Bible contains truth, but I do not believe everything written in the Bible. My belief was stronger till I was about 20.
O.K., as I said above, if it were possible to prove severe damage caused by porn I would agree (comparable with damage caused by heroine).
In general I am cautious but I need something tangible. I think your criterions to protect and consequently restrict people by law are lower than mine.
That’s why I said we can reduce our dissent to a discrepancy in ideals: Freedom vs. Protection
Are you familiar with the term “confounding variable”?
In science you would say, even if A and B are correlated, this doesn’t necessarily mean that A is the cause of B. Maybe B is the cause of A or there is a factor C that causes A and B.
The downhill-movement toward decadence was not only accompanied by secularisation but by many other changes too. I would say upcoming media, industrialization,… could be plausible causes too.
I want to convince people. But I want to convince people of the ideals of freedom, self-responsibility and self-reliance. I want to convince people of the fact that capitalism and making money (in an honest manner) are good things. And I want to convince people that a society has the right to protect its boarders from refugees are other influences that are threatening the own culture.
I want to convince people that western countries are not responsible for all the shit happening in the third world and so on. And I want to convince people that an Own-Nation-First attitude is totally justified. On both levels: national and individual I insist that people and nations should be see as self-responsible.
I want to live in a Judeo/Christian society but I do not want that people have to follow religious rules, if they do not totally believe in this religion.
1 I don’t understand everything in the Bible myself (especially certain things in the Old Testament), although I’ve discovered that the more I read it, the more uncanny sense it makes.
2 This goes back to me encouraging you and others to research this yourself (yourselves). I would add that it isn’t so easy to quantify psychological/emotional harm; but it is none the less real and has effect on individuals and society.
3 But the decadence itself consists of so many elements not present in Judeo-Christian belief. I don’t believe that industrialization is a cause; and the media is merely a tool; and like any tool, it can be used for good or evil.
4 So do I, although I believe that convicting is more important than convincing, and I believe the Holy Spirit is in charge of that one. 5 Within limits, I agree; but if standing with my nation comes into conflict with standing with God, I believe I must tell my nation to go bark at the moon (Dietrich Bonhoeffer had to face that choice). Part of the trick there is to know when God is telling us to grin and bear what one’s nation is doing, and when He’s telling us to defy. 6 Then what basis is there for moral law? Or any law?
Natural law. Common Law was the basis of our Constitution, and Common Law is, to a very large extent, simply judges applying Natural Law to situations as they arose; finding out the implications.
It is reactive law, so designed to protect & punish trespass of a person’s negative rights; Right to liberty, Right to property, Right to life.
Christianity, for its part is a stakeholder in Natural Law, and helped to promote its recognition, but it isn’t alone in that. It isn’t even the first belief system to give natural law recognition. That would be the Athenian Greeks.
As St. Thomas Aquinas pointed out, Natural Law arises emergently from the intelligibility of our world (the same intelligibility that indicates the existence of a Creator); hence why even non-Christian societies could come to know it, without first directly knowing God.
"Aquinas wrote most extensively about natural law. He stated, “the light of reason is placed by nature [and thus by God] in every man to guide him in his acts.” Therefore, human beings, alone among God’s creatures, use reason to lead their lives. This is natural law.
The master principle of natural law, wrote Aquinas, was that “good is to be done and pursued and evil avoided.” Aquinas stated that reason reveals particular natural laws that are good for humans such as self-preservation, marriage and family, and the desire to know God. Reason, he taught, also enables humans to understand things that are evil such as adultery, suicide, and lying.
While natural law applied to all humans and was unchanging, human law could vary with time, place, and circumstance. Aquinas defined this last type of law as “an ordinance of reason for the common good” made and enforced by a ruler or government. He warned, however, that people were not bound to obey laws made by humans that conflicted with natural law."
I believe you – and I believe that there is indeed much sense in the Bible. But I don’t believe everything written in the Bible (don’t try to convince me).
Media definitely is used for evil too. I do not see decadence as problematic as you do, but media definitely supports the movement toward decadence. And the consequences of industrialization: prosperity and new technologies, could be a cause too.
In general, if you say: “Decadence is ONLY caused be a lack of religion”, I would say this is a bit one-sided. And it doesn’t sound very serious.
No – I think it is reversed: convincing is more important than convicting. Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.
Our job is primarily to convince people.
In searched a bit and indeed I found some porn-critical articles. But I haven’t much time now. At least I’m a bit more porn critical than before our conversation.
The problem is: If you want to enforce an anti pornography law, you have to have scientific quantitative data. On which fundament else should this law built up?
As I said: Religion as a basis would be problematic, because people would feel other-dictated, if they had to follow rules, derived from a doctrine they do not totally believe in.
In my behalf you could forbid porn, but: My mission is to support and strengthen conservative societies and you can not convince people of conservativism if you preach hard-core restrictions without a tangible basis.
If you force people to follow rules, derived from a religion they do not totally believe in, people would say: This is fascism; It is like in a dictatorship – we are unfree and other-dictated; therefore we vote for Liberals.
You have also to keep an eye on this perspective. I don’t know what your goal is, but I want to see 5 Republican presidents in succession. But being too restrictive would scare off people – directly into the arms of Liberals. Do you want this?
Ah yah, and quantitiave data - as outlined above. Liberty and objective data.
1 I won’t try to convince you; I’ll only encourage you to keep reading it yourself.
2 The very word “decadence” in the English language is related to the word “decay,” with all that implies. I submit that it is indeed a serious problem (and probably won’t be solved by man). And again, what you’re citing as causes, I see only as tools. The cause of decadence is the human heart. 3 Not a lack of religion; a lack of respect for and obedience of God. And if God is indeed the Creator of everything as I believe, then it is indeed quite serious.
4 I’m not talking about conviction in any kind of legal sense, but spiritually speaking; moral conviction of the heart. And a person has to be open to it for it to happen. If they’re not, they’re probably not open to convincing, either; and I believe the former precedes the latter.
5 I’m glad you’re looking into it.
6 Again, I’ve heard a lot of this on the radio, so I can’t point to specific studies; but unless I misremember terribly, they do exist. It’s just a matter of locating them. Also, why must it be based on scientific quantitive data (not that I’m against it per se)? Again, the U.S. was founded upon Judeo-Christian principles, and we knew a prosperity like the world has never seen anywhere else. Now, we’re tossing God by the wayside and worshipping at the alter of “science” (often pseudoscience, actually), and we’re making a hash of our country. 7 They’re going to be “other-dictated” no matter what, if only by their fellow man. What if they don’t want to be other-dictated by “science” (or pseudoscience) or other cultural norms? I believe both have gone into the Canadian laws that forbid a preacher to say from the pulpit what the Bible actually says about homosexuality. 8 I don’t believe you can ultimately support conservative societies by compromising on a conservative issue; those who want porn to be available are either libertarian, or liberal (I cite Larry Flynt and the now-late Hugh Hefner as prime examples of the latter). 9 If you force people to follow any rules they don’t agree with, they’ll cry “Nazi!” and vote for someone else. You’re never going to have perfect accord, and I for one see no advantage in compromising on this issue for the sake of pacifying the "restless natives." 10 I don’t care nearly as much about Republican vs. Democrat as I do conservative vs. liberal. One of the problems of the modern GOP is that they’re trying to change their platform to appeal to the largest demographic. A point I’ve made in the past is that you need to have a rigid, solid, and consistent platform for your party. In other words, you need a solid structure, and invite people to come in. If instead you try to spread a “big tent” over the largest demographic for the votes, it won’t stand up any storm and be revealed as being as insubstantial as it is. If people won’t come into the solid house, the “big tent” won’t solve anything in the end; indeed, I suspect it’ll make things worse because people will expect the party leaders to just spread the tent over their preferences, rather than think about why they might need a solid structure (and I think this is happening).
11 And what makes liberty an objective moral basis? And how can any quantitive data in and of itself be an objective basis for morality?
Yes, I understood this. When I say “you need any kind of objective data” I do not refer to the circumstance that you do not have data at hand, but I rather remark that you would need it in general, if you would like to legitimate legal restrictions.
What else should be the basis? Even within Christianity not everyone would support your position. For example once I talked to a Catholic priest who admitted to watch porn himself. To whom should be given the power to determine about religion based laws? Who is the final authority (on earth)? And who decides who the final authority should be?
Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that blood transfusions are sin. Would you agree to forbid blood transfusions just because fundamentalists would propose it? If even more radical would– whyever – come to the conclusion that eating blood sausage or chicken soup are sins and lead to eternity in hell, would you agree forbiddances without more ado?
There are only to possibilities: Objective data or Arbitrariness. So if not objective data, what else should be the basis for legal regulations?
I see this is a delicate subject to you. In this case you have to differentiate between science and pseudoscience. Science (unlike pseudoscience) would mean to observe The Given; To observe and objectively find out the truth.
Following real science (not pseudoscience) wouldn’t mean to be “other-dictated” by science but rather to be dictated by the naturally given. You understand the difference?
In this case this is indeed being-other-dictated-by-cultural-norms, so I would reject this similarly.
I am not familiar with the Canadian legal system, but if any law would forbid anyone to say anything: I would never support this.
If you want to forbid something you need objective observations that the thing that should be forbidden is indeed dangerous. And the tradition to make such observations is called science. I know that there is pseudoscience too but, I do not talk about pseudoscience here but about science: the objective observation of the given.
If you would just derive voluntary norms from religion, like cultural norms, it would be fine. I already suggested this, but you insist on a legal regulation.
What I would like to do is to found a conservative-arguments-database which should be the guideline for political decisions and positions (but conservative in a libertarian manner). I agree that today’s politicians have no solid basis.
I can answer this and I will – but not today…
How would you define morality?
1 How can quantative data objectively determine morality? You alluded to it later in your post; morality has to be defined, and quantative data cannot in and of itself define it. It can be used to point to it, but you have to have a moral basis to start with. As to lack of agreement on religious perspectives of morality, there’s lack of agreement period; including on what constitutes an objective basis. I firmly believe that God is it; you cannot have moral law without a moral lawgiver. That, by the way, is my definition; morality is what God says it is; He’s infinitely more qualified than anyone else to make the determination.
2 Which seems to imply that morality is natural, which I disagree with; sin is the nature of the world; morality is the supernature of God. Also, observation doesn’t always net the truth, because you can find a host of disagreements in the conclusions drawn from evidence.
3 In addition to the problem of drawing moral conclusions from quantative data, there’s also the problem of agreement on what is even given; there’s a ton of disagreement there in modern times.
4 As I said, I’m almost certain the research is there; I just don’t know where, and I have limited internet time for searching. 5 For reasons given, I don’t think this is possible.
6 What comes from the moral law giver (God); anything less is subjective, and a subjective basis isn’t stable or durable.
Yes, my formulation was not clear. What – if not religion or god – should be the basis for moral? I thought 10 years about this question, and I found very clear answers. So in my opinion…
The basis of every moral is:
The striving for the highest possible quality of life for yourself or for other conscious beings in the long term.
I said prior quantitative data should be the basis of moral (and laws) but I meant that quantitative data (or other forms of objective data) should be used to point to that behaviour that corresponds to this kind of moral.
For example to find out if porn is moral or not you have to use quantitative data. You could for instance observe 100 men who watch porn and 100 who don’t, compare them and then quantify if the former experience more often a broken-family-scenario than the latter. If yes, porn indeed would be immoral.
Think about this one more time
The basis of every moral is the endeavour to increase quality of life
of yourself or of other conscious beings in the long term.