Saturday, October 3, 2015

No, Thank You Very Much




Latest idea that is not very well thought through... a conservative blogger is making the case that the answer to the question of "Do you REALLY want to have civic rules based on what a particular religion thinks should be rules?" should be Yes. Stan at Winging It (and as always, I'm not picking on Stan, I'm talking about the idea he is expressing) said...

And, frankly. I'd much rather have a religion instituted and documented by God with values instituted and documented by God to serve as the basis for laws in this (or any) country than the completely arbitrary, unsubstantiated, baseless values of the alternative of non-religious systems. 

The problem with this thinking, of course, is the completely self-unaware hubris, arrogance, self-righteousness and lack of grace in it. He appears to THINK that, "IF we institute a nation based on rules that I AND PEOPLE LIKE ME believe to be what God wants, then that's better than relying upon other people's opinions about gods..." But then, if that is the rational rule, then the extremist Mormon, extremist Muslim, the extremist religion-based racist and the extremist fundamentalist Christians are all on equally valid footing for making the case that THEIR HUNCHES about what God wants is what ought to be Law, not because of them, but because of "god," which god they fail to see is NOT a god, but only a not very clever version of themselves.

So, the answer to his question is, "NO, I do not want a state to implement the rules YOU THINK God wants where people should just go along with you because you say you speak for God." And just as true is that I don't want a state to implement rules just because I might think God wants it.

We make our case based on reason and logic and what makes sense, what promotes good and diminishes harm, oppression or what strikes against human liberty. If you happen to ALSO think that God wants this rule or that, that's fine with me, but don't try to make that the standard by which people should bow to your will, because YOU speak for God.

It's not that I don't trust God or want what God wants. It's that I/we don't trust YOU (or me) telling us that you speak for God and therefore, we must listen to you. That is one of the geniuses on the part of many Baptists, anabaptists and many others who fought for human liberty and human rights all those years ago and, apparently, still today.

3 comments:

Marshall Art said...

"But then, if that is the rational rule, then the extremist Mormon, extremist Muslim, the extremist religion-based racist and the extremist fundamentalist Christians are all on equally valid footing for making the case that THEIR HUNCHES about what God wants is what ought to be Law..."

This is an idiotic conclusion, for it demands that other equally valid simply because they say it is. This is certainly not Stan's position. Generally speaking, Stan's position assumes the Christian God and His clearly revealed Word in Scripture are unambiguous to honest people, and no less than truth.

It also assumes that what someone like Stan might believe God wants is irrational or hard to defend as "reasonable, logical, sensible" or "what promotes good and diminishes harm, oppression"...etc.

It also assumes that proposals for legislation NOT based on a religious doctrine are somehow automatically superior in some way, without actually demonstrating why that would be so.

It also assumes that honorable people cannot consider Bible-based proposals and weigh out whether or not that actually accurately reflect that clearly revealed Will of God.

What YOU truly don't want is God's Word denying that which you favor. Perhaps you could demonstrate a proposal that is truly Bible-based that might be put forth and at the same time be harmful to society and the culture. I doubt you can.

Dan Trabue said...

Yes, Marshall, other fundamentalists would say that they are equally speaking for "god," so on what basis does only one group of fundamentalists (the one you happen to agree with) get to choose the rules?

That's the beauty of the Baptist dream of religious liberty. It doesn't MATTER what Religious group 1, 2 or 3 think, we all don't pass laws based upon what's most rational to most people, not who has the most followers.

The problem with your way is, IF you establish:

It is the case that Religious Groups can and should decide public law based upon "This is what I think God wants" AND they do so without regards to making a case for the law beyond their hunches about God's hunches...

THEN that might not be so bad for you when your preferred religious believers are in charge/majority, but when you become a minority and the baby-sacrificing, child-raping Baalites are now the majority, you won't appreciate them being able to enforce their laws based on what they think their god wants them to do, simply because they are the majority. Rather, you will want to say, "but wait! ASIDE from what you think your god wants, can you make a rational case for baby sacrificing and child-raping?" and of course, they can't.

Do you see the rational and great moral dilemma with your view?

Dan

Marshall Art said...

"Do you see the rational and great moral dilemma with your view?"

Only if I regard it in the same distorted manner that your misrepresent it. As I said above, it assumes that the proposal doesn't have merit apart from it having come from Scripture. You deceitfully insist that anyone is suggesting any proposal merely because they think it is what God wants. I seriously doubt Stan suggested such a thing. I certainly don't recall anything in his post that suggests it.

And yet again, it also implies that there is automatically no similar problem, as you interpret it, with non-religious proposals BECAUSE they are non-religious. It's idiotic. Either a proposal is beneficial to the community or it isn't. Look at the proposal, not whether or not it is based on Scripture.