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Old 07-01-2017, 03:16 PM   #126
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

I'm happy to vote for people of various theological persuasions including Christians, Muslims, satanists and atheists (I'm an atheist) as long as they believe in civil rights for all and building a community that works for everyone rather than a system based on extracting profit for the few.

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Old 07-01-2017, 03:20 PM   #127
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

Here's the thing though. Whether you think religion is the greatest thing ever, stupid, or somewhere in between, let me make a case to you. The freedom to practice whatever (stupid) religion you want is far more important than what religion you choose to pursue or not.
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Old 07-01-2017, 04:32 PM   #128
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

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Do we really want Senators to be judging people's fitness for office on the basis of the specific theological interpretation of the afterlife they accept?
Yes. Because the flipside of believing that there's only one path to salvation (and that that's through Christ) is acceptance of a variety of moral dictates. I mean, I hate to resort to this, but what if, according to Person X's faith, it's necessary to participate in disgusting atrocities to achieve salvation, such as the ritualistic mass slaughter of animals? Wouldn't it be reasonable to oppose such Person X's candidacy for office on the grounds that he or she might, for example, try to use the position to legalize animal sacrifice or protect groups that engage in it?

I mean, you can make moral arguments that animal sacrifice is NBD because the meat industry blah blah blah. But I don't think religious pluralism requires us to feign ignorance about the likely policy outcomes that correlate with certain religious beliefs.

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What would I say to a young evangelical who doesn't like the racism and sexism she sees in the GOP, but also cares about her faith? Too bad, you're not welcome here?
"Vote Trump!"
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Old 07-01-2017, 05:55 PM   #129
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

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Yes. Because the flipside of believing that there's only one path to salvation (and that that's through Christ) is acceptance of a variety of moral dictates.
I've disagreed with this claim numerous times ITT, noting that no political or moral dictate is implied by exclusivism that isn't already implied by Christianity more generally. If you think differently, please tell me what this implication is.

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I mean, I hate to resort to this, but what if, according to Person X's faith, it's necessary to participate in disgusting atrocities to achieve salvation, such as the ritualistic mass slaughter of animals? Wouldn't it be reasonable to oppose such Person X's candidacy for office on the grounds that he or she might, for example, try to use the position to legalize animal sacrifice or protect groups that engage in it?

I mean, you can make moral arguments that animal sacrifice is NBD because the meat industry blah blah blah. But I don't think religious pluralism requires us to feign ignorance about the likely policy outcomes that correlate with certain religious beliefs.
Ritual animal slaughter already is legal in the US, so I wouldn't be that bothered. Anyway, even if it wasn't, I wouldn't expect them to try to impose Sharia or kosher law on everyone, but rather argue for allowing their own co-religionists to be allowed to practice their religion as they see fit. That seems like how democratic government is supposed to work. Also, fwiw, I think laws barring some religious Jews and Muslims from public office on the putative grounds that they believe in ritual animal slaughter to be more likely based in bigotry than a concern about animal cruelty.

I'm not saying we should ignore people's religious beliefs. If someone says, my religious belief is that God hates homosexuals and they should not be allowed in polite society, then I would say, vote no if that person is anywhere near making policy. People's religious beliefs can overlap with government policy areas and we shouldn't quarantine them off from scrutiny when they do. But when we do, we should focus on the policies themselves. Here, there is no policy implication from Christian exclusivism, so it is not relevant.

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"Vote Trump!"
Well, I'm a Democrat, so I disagree. Seems pretty dumb to turn away people who want to join my party and vote for our candidates because you don't like their religion. Even the Southern Baptists are 26% Democratic.

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Old 07-01-2017, 06:29 PM   #130
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

The "All U.S. adults" entry makes me think Trump shouldn't be POTUS.
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Old 07-01-2017, 06:44 PM   #131
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

Liberals should welcome people who practice Christianity. That Jesus guy actually makes a lot of sense at certain points.

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Originally Posted by Matthew 25
Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35 for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; 36 I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’

37 “Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? 38 When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? 39 Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ 40 And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’

41 “Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels: 42 for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink; 43 I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.’

44 “Then they also will answer Him,[b] saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?’ 45 Then He will answer them, saying, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’ 46 And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
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Old 07-01-2017, 06:49 PM   #132
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

As liberals + leftists, it is our responsibility to stand up for the freedom for people to practice any religion they want:

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Old 07-01-2017, 07:07 PM   #133
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

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Liberals should welcome people who practice Christianity. That Jesus guy actually makes a lot of sense at certain points.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liberation_theology
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Old 07-02-2017, 03:15 AM   #134
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I think there's an obvious difference in the content of an atheist's beliefs. Condemnation and damnation to eternal punishment isn't part of atheist thought. That said, some atheists might be poor choices for office, e.g. Sam Harris-style anti-Islam.
So you think that anyone who believes that some people are going to "heaven" and some people are going to "hell" when they die, is unfit for office, and that it should be acceptable to discriminate against them for that reason?

More generally, you think that having a particular (and not uncommon) set of beliefs about the afterlife, should disqualify someone from public office?

Imo this whole discussion stems from some people not being able to understand the word "condemn" in context and thinking it's some horribly discriminatory hate speech type of thing. It's not.
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Old 07-02-2017, 04:11 AM   #135
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

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Liberals should welcome people who practice Christianity. That Jesus guy actually makes a lot of sense at certain points.
And don't you think he would probably be appalled that there are nitwits who think that other people burn in hell because they don't believe that Mary was a virgin?
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Old 07-02-2017, 01:18 PM   #136
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

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Here, there is no policy implication from Christian exclusivism, so it is not relevant.
This is precisely the thing I'm disagreeing with. We're arguing in circles.

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Seems pretty dumb to turn away people who want to join my party and vote for our candidates because you don't like their religion.
Ah, I see. You've now added the premise that this person you made up wants to join the Democratic party and vote for their candidates. In that case, yes, he or she should do so. I wouldn't urge someone away from voting D based on any sort of ideological or religious purity test.
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Old 07-02-2017, 01:23 PM   #137
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

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So you think that anyone who believes that some people are going to "heaven" and some people are going to "hell" when they die, is unfit for office, and that it should be acceptable to discriminate against them for that reason?
Not necessarily, no. Someone who believes that, say, murderers and rapists will be condemned has beliefs perfectly consistent with holding office in a secular government. Someone who believes that all Muslims are going to hell just for being Muslim is a bit different.
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Old 07-02-2017, 02:40 PM   #138
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You're going to have to show your work on that one, and say a lot more than "a bit different" when you're the one saying that a huge % of the population should be disqualified from office for their spiritual beliefs about the afterlife, which do not necessarily reflect beliefs on how to treat people in this world.

1) Why exactly should someone who believes that some people go to "hell" when they die, be disqualified from office?

2) How is this different from an atheist who believes that people are condemned to have their minds, bodies, and souls destroyed forever when they die, who you presumably do not have an issue with?
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Old 07-02-2017, 07:09 PM   #139
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

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You're going to have to show your work on that one, and say a lot more than "a bit different" when you're the one saying that a huge % of the population should be disqualified from office for their spiritual beliefs about the afterlife, which do not necessarily reflect beliefs on how to treat people in this world.

1) Why exactly should someone who believes that some people go to "hell" when they die, be disqualified from office?
Interestingly I think that most of the liberals on this forum would have to, perhaps reluctantly, admit that the beliefs that homosexuality is a disease, and that abortion is murder, are both more reasonable than that there is a hell and that you go there if and only if you have significant doubts that Jesus is the son of God.
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Old 07-02-2017, 07:25 PM   #140
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

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This is precisely the thing I'm disagreeing with. We're arguing in circles.
We're not arguing in circles. I say there is no policy implication following from Christian exclusivism. You say there is. Okay. Tell me what it is.
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Old 07-02-2017, 09:54 PM   #141
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

I forget if "no u" is now frowned upon?
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Old 07-02-2017, 10:25 PM   #142
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

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I forget if "no u" is now frowned upon?
I do, if you care about that. I'm claiming a negative, so I'm not sure how to demonstrate my claim except by showing that your claimed implications are incorrect.
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Old 07-03-2017, 01:56 AM   #143
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

Doesn't Islam itself believe that the only way to the afterlife is through Allah and Muhammed, or at the most liberal through an Abrahamic religion? How many religions are there which disqualify someone from public service?
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Old 07-03-2017, 01:16 PM   #144
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

To be clear, I'm not saying that being an exclusivist (as defined ITT) of any faith should automatically disqualify someone for public office; I'm saying that exclusivism is a fair topic of inquiry and that Vought's responses aren't particularly comforting. Examples of unconstitutional (imho) policies a Christian exclusivist might be more inclined to support include a ban on Muslim immigration or, more OMB-specific, a disproportionate allocation of government funds to grant applications by Christian charities, which I alluded to upthread by my reference to Trinity Lutheran v. Comer.
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Old 07-06-2017, 05:03 PM   #145
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

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To be clear, I'm not saying that being an exclusivist (as defined ITT) of any faith should automatically disqualify someone for public office; I'm saying that exclusivism is a fair topic of inquiry and that Vought's responses aren't particularly comforting.
Based on this I think we are largely in agreement policy-wise. My disagreement with you is that I don't think you are following through the implications of this. If being a religious exclusivist should not automatically disqualify someone for public office, then you shouldn't cite it as the reason you don't support someone for public office. If Sanders' actual reason for voting no was that he soul-read Vought as a religious bigot, fine, vote no. But then he should say, "I don't have a problem with you being a religious exclusivist, but I soul-read you as a bigot, so I'm voting no."

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Examples of unconstitutional (imho) policies a Christian exclusivist might be more inclined to support include a ban on Muslim immigration or, more OMB-specific, a disproportionate allocation of government funds to grant applications by Christian charities, which I alluded to upthread by my reference to Trinity Lutheran v. Comer.
These of course are not policy implications of exclusivist Christianity. You are here just noting that many Christian exclusivists believe these things. I don't need to repeat my argument that it is discriminatory and using a religious test to use a statistical correlation (below 100%) between exclusivist Christians and some other objectionable belief or attitude as the only reason to deny someone public office.
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Old 07-07-2017, 12:29 AM   #146
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

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These of course are not policy implications of exclusivist Christianity. You are here just noting that many Christian exclusivists believe these things. I don't need to repeat my argument that it is discriminatory and using a religious test to use a statistical correlation (below 100%) between exclusivist Christians and some other objectionable belief or attitude as the only reason to deny someone public office.
If almost all x's are y's and almost no z's are y's you would need to subject x's to a lot more scrutiny than z's before coming to the conclusion that an x is as unlikely to be a y as a z.
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Old 07-08-2017, 09:19 AM   #147
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

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https://www.usnews.com/news/national...nformation-rec

Should liberals agree with Sanders? After all similar arguments could be made to reject a Muslim nominee who thinks Christians who don't convert are going to hell.
The key quote is this, I believe :

"Muslims do not simply have a deficient theology. They do not know God because they have rejected Jesus Christ his Son, and they stand condemned," Vought wrote."

Sanders is correct to question if the same criteria be applied to Jews. Ie. If 'Muslims' be replaced with 'Jews' we have a clearly antisemitic view, inconsistent with the responsibilities of public duty. What we have is an islamophobic view, legitimised by a western culture where Muslims are the whipping boys of the US led project to dominate middle eastern politics. The ideological justification for the subjugation of Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen, Palestine is the demonisation of an entire religion. We can't analyse truthfully this spat without paying attention to what is happening in the bigger world. There is no equality of religion, Christians simply aren't oppressed in the same way.
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Old 07-11-2017, 09:30 PM   #148
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Re: Bernie Sanders vs the Religious Christian

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If almost all x's are y's and almost no z's are y's you would need to subject x's to a lot more scrutiny than z's before coming to the conclusion that an x is as unlikely to be a y as a z.
I don't think nominees to deputy director of OMB are a random sample of x's, so even accepting almost all x's are y's, I don't think we get enough to assume they are a y. I also think people are naturally biased to think of religious groups that hold weird and unlikely beliefs that they are almost all y's and so the prior that they are y generally shouldn't be too much higher than the probability of the total population that it is y without scientific objective evidence.

Also, as I've stated, I don't mind extra scrutiny of nominees on the basis of religious beliefs. The principle of political offices being open to all is important enough to justify the extra time and effort required to do this scrutiny. If we don't have the resources to do this scrutiny, then we should err on the side of religious freedom as that is more important than policy bias or incompetence.

I think one disagreement between us is that you envision this as picking the best nominee, and so using almost all x's are y's as a useful heuristic, whereas I am viewing it as a veto point on a decision made by someone else. I don't think Sanders has any obligation to pick an exclusivist Christian for public office if he becomes President. In this case though, he is more like a filter, distinguishing between the acceptable and the unacceptable of a bad (from his viewpoint) bunch of nominees.

Last edited by Original Position; 07-11-2017 at 09:39 PM. Reason: accuracy
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