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Author Topic: Christian Sterotypes  (Read 3387 times)

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Offline FalcotTopic starter

Christian Sterotypes
« on: January 28, 2011, 11:04:05 PM »
This is to address a general opinion that doesn't particularly affect me since I am largely secular and practice and adore many aspects of many religions. but is a fundamental stepping stone in my war against ignorance This frustration applies to all religious denominations really but I am mentioning mainly the Christian aspect because of a lot of recent political and sexual controversies raised in recent threads.

Despite what the bible outlines (the bible does not condemn homosexuality only the sexual act) there is a general criterion with Judeo-Christians understanding of sex. Sex therefore according to the Judeo-Christian must be:
1. In love, between two people i.e. in a consummated marriage (which is being really conservative by the meaning), and
2. Open to procreation.

Now reason 1 is not gender biased unless you go by the archaic definition of marriage, but reason 2 is gender biased and not because homosexuality is wrong or socially corruptible but because that’s what sex is for; procreation. This criteria isn't just anti-homosexuality but also anti birth control etc (until a recent speech made by Benedict XVI in Africa) and as much as I am against anti-homosexuality I choose to say “OK, there is some merit to what is being argued”

Now where people begin to really grind me gears (keeping my comments PG13) is where people use other contextual references or say the bible 'condemns...' in that situation people are paraphrasing. The Christian standing against homosexuality is not personalized or soulless there is actual reason, that any evolutionary or modern thinker can understand (in the context I have laid out)

That being understood I hate these right wing evangelist preachers that idly condemn homosexuals and those of other religions and they are ignorant people who fail to understand (or choose to deliberately follow their own opinion on) dogma


but the point I've been wanting to make from the beginning is that: just as fundamentalist Muslims do not represent the majority and opinion of Islam, and that Americans are not predominantly rednecks and that we Canadians do not live in Igloos. These fundamentalist anti-homosexuals do not represent Christians in their entirety and most Christians do not hold personal or social grudges or plots against the homo's!

In conclusion those people who stereotype Christians as all being ignorant and intolerant, are just as bad as the people you are referring to from the news and TV. If there was a genuine Christian consensus against homosexuals then you wouldn't see the constant media attention homo-haters tend to receive since it would be (but shouldn’t) be the social norm.

In short… Don’t stereotype those of the same religion as the haters you see on TV



Hope to see your opinion!

Offline Jude

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2011, 01:06:23 AM »
42% of Protestants in America think homosexuality is morally acceptable and  62% of Catholics in America believe homosexuality is morally acceptable.  Protestants are 56% of America and Catholics are 22%, comprising a total 78% of America.  Thus roughly 28% of Christians in America are Catholic and 72% are Protestant.  Using these numbers we can calculate what percentage of Christians in America believe homosexuality is morally acceptable.

28% * 62% + 72%*42% = 17.36% + 30.24% = 47.6%

Thus the majority of Christians in America do not believe that homosexuality is morally acceptable (a slim majority I'll admit).  This kind of blows away your entire argument.  You're trying to downplay the numbers to make your point.  It's definitely quite true that not all Christians are opposed to homosexuality, but there's a reason that Christians are associated with this, and it's not unreasonable that they are.

sources:
http://www.gallup.com/poll/135764/Americans-Acceptance-Gay-Relations-Crosses-Threshold.aspx
http://www.gallup.com/poll/124793/This-Christmas-78-Americans-Identify-Christian.aspx

Offline Caehlim

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2011, 10:05:33 AM »
The Christian standing against homosexuality is not personalized or soulless there is actual reason, that any evolutionary or modern thinker can understand (in the context I have laid out)

The theory of evolution is descriptive, not prescriptive.


Offline Anithinum

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2011, 02:21:15 PM »
In theory, and I'm saying this from a completely neutral standpoint, I think that instead of focusing on what Christians are being stereotyped as, people need to look at the bigger picture.

a.) Homosexuality or not, according to the bible, all of us are going to hell...
b.) Even though back in the day the statements might have been able to be classed under; "Open to procreation", but as the world is evolving, we have to either adjust to that evolution or stand against it. Right now, the population of the planet is going out of control, the percentage of orphans or babies that never get adopted is ridiculous, where I can very openly say....in the 21st century, homosexuality may be a way to save thousands of children from growing up without a family....if religions (notice I'm not cornering one religion here) can't see that as a miracle, then that makes me question...if I adjust to their belief systems; who is the real sinner? The person falling in love with same sex and requesting the same thing we all do when we fall in love, or the person stopping that person from the one thing that may very well make the world better for countless children?

From what I've heard, every religion, apart from Buddhism strangely, is to some extent against homosexuality...homo-sexual marriage, Christianity is only being framed to a great extent because the majority of the world's population is Christian. Yes stereotype's suck, they're not true for the 100%, but they do tell a massive part of the truth, and if you look back on it...because Christianity is so international, the main religion who has a reputation against homosexual-marriage IS, like it or not, Christianity.

Offline Silk

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2011, 03:27:41 PM »

From what I've heard, every religion, apart from Buddhism strangely, is to some extent against homosexuality...homo-sexual marriage, Christianity is only being framed to a great extent because the majority of the world's population is Christian. Yes stereotype's suck, they're not true for the 100%, but they do tell a massive part of the truth, and if you look back on it...because Christianity is so international, the main religion who has a reputation against homosexual-marriage IS, like it or not, Christianity.

Also not forgetting that the members of this forum are predominately European and American, what are the religions of flavor in those particular regions? Christianity is like 45% of european religion, and 77% of American religion, because of that, its quite natural for people to think christianity when people talk about religion. Because its just the larger and more familliar religion for those in question, After all its the "Church of England" Not the "Mosque of England"

Online itsbeenfun2000

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2011, 06:22:09 PM »
42% of Protestants in America think homosexuality is morally acceptable and  62% of Catholics in America believe homosexuality is morally acceptable.  Protestants are 56% of America and Catholics are 22%, comprising a total 78% of America.  Thus roughly 28% of Christians in America are Catholic and 72% are Protestant.  Using these numbers we can calculate what percentage of Christians in America believe homosexuality is morally acceptable.

28% * 62% + 72%*42% = 17.36% + 30.24% = 47.6%

Thus the majority of Christians in America do not believe that homosexuality is morally acceptable (a slim majority I'll admit).  This kind of blows away your entire argument.  You're trying to downplay the numbers to make your point.  It's definitely quite true that not all Christians are opposed to homosexuality, but there's a reason that Christians are associated with this, and it's not unreasonable that they are.

sources:
http://www.gallup.com/poll/135764/Americans-Acceptance-Gay-Relations-Crosses-Threshold.aspx
http://www.gallup.com/poll/124793/This-Christmas-78-Americans-Identify-Christian.aspx

Jude this is bad statistics. That is only true if the size of the populations are equal.

Online Oniya

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2011, 07:28:39 PM »
Okay.  Setting the population of America = 100%.
56% of Americans are Protestants.  42% of American Protestants think homosexuality is morally acceptable.  56%*42% = 23.52% of Americans are Protestants who think homosexuality is morally acceptable.
22% of Americans are Catholic.  62% of American Catholics think homosexuality is morally acceptable.  22%*62%=13.64% of Americans are Catholics who think homosexuality is morally acceptable.

23.52%+13.64% = 37.16% of Americans are Protestants or Catholics who think homosexuality is morally acceptable.
22% of Americans are neither Catholic nor Protestant.

That leaves 40.84% of Americans who are Protestants or Catholics who think homosexuality is not morally acceptable.  This is a higher proportion than 37.16%, meaning that a majority of Americans who are Protestants or Catholics fall into that category.


Offline Sandman02

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2011, 08:49:57 PM »
  Ho-hum. I've heard people argue points on both sides of the argument, but the most important part of the debate is what a person seeks to do as an end result of the argument. This is where I do have an issue with people on the right, for although it is certainly OK (and healthy) to disagree with others, it is not OK to seek to legislate your values and impose your view of morality on others. For the point of gay marriage, for example, it is unjust to deny the right to a civil union to a certain part of the population. Certain churches can refuse to conduct gay marriages, and that's their right as a private institution, but as for civil unions that are carried out by the state, those need to be available regardless of sexual orientation. Marriage is a way of defining a permanent union between two people in the legal system, and carries with it certain benefits. So for god's sake, let gay couples have their tax breaks if they want them!

  The only basis for restricting homosexuality in society is one where homosexual is established as a definite, causal link to dangerous behavior, and I have not met anyone brazen enough to make the claim. As for the arguments stemming from evolution and the whole "be fruitful and multiply" mentality, I would ask those people to check why those are compelling arguments. Should it not be a person's choice as to whether they wish to procreate or not, especially in a world that is rapidly heading into overpopulation with every passing year?
 

Offline Jude

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #8 on: January 30, 2011, 04:04:34 AM »
Jude this is bad statistics. That is only true if the size of the populations are equal.
If there are errors in my mathematics could you point them out in greater degree?  I don't understand from your complaint where I assumed that the populations were equal (and which populations you were saying I made that claim about to begin with).

My results actually agree with Oniya's, it's simply that she's comparing Americans who are Christian that are for and those that are against in terms of a percentage of the whole, and I specifically redid my mathematics so that the percentage of Catholics & Protestants was adjusted to be that in terms of all Christians, not the nation.  And I can prove this:
Quote from: Oniya
That leaves 40.84% of Americans who are Protestants or Catholics who think homosexuality is not morally acceptable.  This is a higher proportion than 37.16%, meaning that a majority of Americans who are Protestants or Catholics fall into that category.
37.16 + 40.84 = 78% of Americans are Christian.

37.16% of Americans are Christians who approve of homosexuality / 78% Americans that are Christians = 47.6%, the exact percentage that my calculations predicted of American Christians who approve of homosexuality.
« Last Edit: January 30, 2011, 04:09:47 AM by Jude »

Offline Anithinum

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #9 on: January 30, 2011, 05:43:10 AM »
  Ho-hum. I've heard people argue points on both sides of the argument, but the most important part of the debate is what a person seeks to do as an end result of the argument. This is where I do have an issue with people on the right, for although it is certainly OK (and healthy) to disagree with others, it is not OK to seek to legislate your values and impose your view of morality on others. For the point of gay marriage, for example, it is unjust to deny the right to a civil union to a certain part of the population. Certain churches can refuse to conduct gay marriages, and that's their right as a private institution, but as for civil unions that are carried out by the state, those need to be available regardless of sexual orientation. Marriage is a way of defining a permanent union between two people in the legal system, and carries with it certain benefits. So for god's sake, let gay couples have their tax breaks if they want them!

  The only basis for restricting homosexuality in society is one where homosexual is established as a definite, causal link to dangerous behavior, and I have not met anyone brazen enough to make the claim. As for the arguments stemming from evolution and the whole "be fruitful and multiply" mentality, I would ask those people to check why those are compelling arguments. Should it not be a person's choice as to whether they wish to procreate or not, especially in a world that is rapidly heading into overpopulation with every passing year?
 

couldn't agree more.

Offline Silk

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #10 on: January 30, 2011, 10:17:53 AM »
Certain churches can refuse to conduct gay marriages, and that's their right as a private institution, but as for civil unions that are carried out by the state, those need to be available regardless of sexual orientation. Marriage is a way of defining a permanent union between two people in the legal system, and carries with it certain benefits. So for god's sake, let gay couples have their tax breaks if they want them!


Which then leads to the issue of those "private institutions" near on demanding that their private veiws be enforced pubically via law enforced mandates, or in another term, have their cake and eat it.

Offline Noelle

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #11 on: January 30, 2011, 01:21:41 PM »
It is certainly OK (and healthy) to disagree with others, it is not OK to seek to legislate your values and impose your view of morality on others.

Mehhhhhhhhhhhh, this isn't quite true. If it were, we would have no law at all. Just because you think it's morally reprehensible to violently throttle people who walk slowly in the mall and take up all the space, doesn't mean I agree with you. And believe me, I'd love to introduce those slow-walking space-hogs to my fist, but the rule of law in the US has imposed that I can't do this without serious consequence. It's the whole reason people debate back and forth on things like abortion and gun laws -- pro-lifers think pro-choices are imposing their disgusting lack of morality on others by allowing murder. Pro-choicers think pro-lifers are imposing their religious and self-righteous laws to control a woman's body. People against gay marriage think those godless liberal heathens are imposing their godless liberal heathen law (this is probably an exaggeration, but you get what I mean), etc. And so it goes.

The issue isn't who is imposing on who -- we're always going to be imposing on someone. The tricky part is imposing what will uphold and even further the health (mentally/physically/etc) and safety of our society overall and not just for the benefit of one major group. That's why, for example, in the civil rights movement, despite blacks being the minority, it was decided that treating others like human beings and granting them basic dignity and respect was more important than the delicate sensibilities of the majority -- white people -- who were benefiting from their oppression. That's where you can also apply granting gays the right for a legal union, which you basically did anyway in your post. Yay!

At any rate, in terms of linking gays with "dangerous" behavior -- I'm almost certain you've already met people making that claim. They make it every day -- that children need to be raised by a man and woman (implying that being gay is unhealthy/unfit/will cause a child to grow up weird), that being gay stems from sexual abuse, that gays are child molesters and pedophiles. People who treat it like a 'choice' often treat it like it's a rebellious behavior the same way teens who drink and smoke and drive too fast are rebelling against their parents. Silliness at its finest.

Offline MasterMischief

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #12 on: February 15, 2011, 02:53:43 PM »
From what I've heard, every religion, apart from Buddhism strangely, is to some extent against homosexuality...homo-sexual marriage...

I am certainly no expert on Daoism/Taoism, but I am not aware of any anti-homosexuality within its tenets.  I am pretty sure Wicca has nothing against homosexuality.  And I know many Native American cultures allowed men to live as women including marrying (although they could not be first wives because the first wife had the responsibility to give children).

Online Oniya

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #13 on: February 15, 2011, 03:15:20 PM »
I am pretty sure Wicca has nothing against homosexuality.

I have to say that Paganism is all over the board on this.  There are Pagan groups specifically geared towards homosexuals, some that elevate one gender or the other (regardless of sexuality), some that are all about the male/female duality, and some that don't really get into it one way or the other.  I will also say that regardless of one's sexuality, there is most likely a Pagan group that is cool with it.

Of course, it is also said that if you put ten Pagans in one room, you'll get thirteen different explanations of Paganism.

Offline Brandon

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #14 on: February 15, 2011, 03:30:44 PM »
I am certainly no expert on Daoism/Taoism, but I am not aware of any anti-homosexuality within its tenets.  I am pretty sure Wicca has nothing against homosexuality.  And I know many Native American cultures allowed men to live as women including marrying (although they could not be first wives because the first wife had the responsibility to give children).

This is all correct and there are other sects of Christian and Protestant faith that have similar views. Also Hinduism (which is the 3rd largest faith in the world?) is also unsure of where to stand on whether or not homosexuality or the act of homosexual sex is right or wrong. Being unsure is the third basic camp. There are not just two ways of looking at the issue

I think this needs to be said, a long time ago Jude and Hairyheretic, and others but it was mainly Jude and Hairy, asked me to start making a distinction between Anti-theists and Athiests. I have been doing that for a long time but its always bugged me that the same care isnt paid toward the different faiths of the world. I think its about time I ask the same thing of the community who comes here to discuss these things.

Anyway, now I have to make a direct challenge to Jude with this question. Statistically speaking, when does a sterotype stop being a stereotype? I ask because of the utter arbitrary nature the statistic vs the stereotype seems to have.

Offline Jude

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #15 on: February 15, 2011, 05:56:00 PM »
I don't know.

What really baffles me about the various denominations of Christianity today is that historically when an important point of disagreement between followers of the same religious sect arose, that point became the basis of a schism that resulted in the birth of separate movement.  Lutheranism was born out of Catholicism in that way, which gave way to other denominations, and so on and so forth.  However, it wasn't just the sub-sects that changed as a result -- the original denomination eventually liberalized as well (in due time) to stay socially relevant.  The reformation and the counter-reformation were engines of religious and societal progress that helped set the stage for the enlightenment and moved Europe forward.  I think modern Christianity could easily benefit from more schisms.

I'd love to be able to point out a large sect of Christianity that is influential and has liberalized official dogmatic viewpoints during discussions like these.  It isn't that I doubt the existence of such congregations, it's just that they don't have the public presence and influence to make themselves a force in modern society the same way that Catholics and Mormons do.  What's even harder to comprehend is why the authoritative figures of Catholic Church refuse to deem homosexual relationships acceptable when the majority of practitioners of Catholicism have already.  Why do the majority of people supporting these authority figures with their tithes continue to do so while people like the Pope proclaim their opinions theologically incorrect as part of official church dogma?

I can't answer your question with the degree of specificity that you'd like, but I can tell you when people will stop thinking of Christians as anti-gay:  when a large group of Christians comes out united against theological opposition to the natural orientation of homosexuals, and actually does something about that difference of opinion other than talk.  I hear, "I disagree, but I'm going to remain part of the church" so often.  Usually it's given under the justification of "and I plan to reform things from within," however I can't really take that seriously unless the person saying it is a Cardinal in the line of Papal succession (or an analogous position for Mormons, for example).  To me it's basically saying, "their disapproval of homosexuality isn't important enough to leave over."

I could be wrong about that, but if it is so very important, why not follow the tried and true historically proven method of forming your own denomination?  Do that and the stereotype will, in time, come to apply only to the groups which gay-accepting Christians have left, and not Christians as a whole.

Not to say the stereotype is 100% fair, but to say it's completely unfounded is outright false.  Stereotypes should never form a universal basis of judgment, they merely serve as a tool with which to draw inferences from about a person before you know them.  Statistics are best-guesses at situations in abstraction, not on a case-by-case level.  If someone was to deem all Christians to be anti-gay even when presented with knowledge to the contrary, that's an example of bigotry, I'd say.
« Last Edit: February 15, 2011, 06:00:58 PM by Jude »

Offline Braioch

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #16 on: February 16, 2011, 07:39:41 AM »
I can't answer your question with the degree of specificity that you'd like, but I can tell you when people will stop thinking of Christians as anti-gay:  when a large group of Christians comes out united against theological opposition to the natural orientation of homosexuals, and actually does something about that difference of opinion other than talk.  I hear, "I disagree, but I'm going to remain part of the church" so often.  Usually it's given under the justification of "and I plan to reform things from within," however I can't really take that seriously unless the person saying it is a Cardinal in the line of Papal succession (or an analogous position for Mormons, for example).  To me it's basically saying, "their disapproval of homosexuality isn't important enough to leave over."

Quote
Do that and the stereotype will, in time, come to apply only to the groups which gay-accepting Christians have left, and not Christians as a whole.

I have to agree with that point. Were that to happen I'd be far more willing to let go of my prejudice for the religion. Christianity hasn't exactly proved itself to have stellar followers in my mind as they are the majority of people you'll run into, and many are furthering this stereotype. You give me a time when I can run into someone whom I find out is Christian and not go "shit, let's play Russian Roulette and see if I'm hell bound, vile or just a fag." When I no longer have to emotionally hesitate the moment I hear their religion, then I suppose a great amount of progress.

Also the irony of Christian Stereotypes and how hard they are on the group is not lost on me. No, stereotypes are not fun, they suck big time. But nevertheless they form and maintain for a reason, and I would love to see that change as a matter of fact. I'm all for that, it's a bit awkward to meet someone whom is Christian and take 10 times longer to warm up to them because I subconsciously pull back from them emotionally.

/twocents

Offline Brandon

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #17 on: February 16, 2011, 05:25:26 PM »
I don't know.

What really baffles me about the various denominations of Christianity today is that historically when an important point of disagreement between followers of the same religious sect arose, that point became the basis of a schism that resulted in the birth of separate movement.  Lutheranism was born out of Catholicism in that way, which gave way to other denominations, and so on and so forth.  However, it wasn't just the sub-sects that changed as a result -- the original denomination eventually liberalized as well (in due time) to stay socially relevant.  The reformation and the counter-reformation were engines of religious and societal progress that helped set the stage for the enlightenment and moved Europe forward.  I think modern Christianity could easily benefit from more schisms.

I'd love to be able to point out a large sect of Christianity that is influential and has liberalized official dogmatic viewpoints during discussions like these.  It isn't that I doubt the existence of such congregations, it's just that they don't have the public presence and influence to make themselves a force in modern society the same way that Catholics and Mormons do.  What's even harder to comprehend is why the authoritative figures of Catholic Church refuse to deem homosexual relationships acceptable when the majority of practitioners of Catholicism have already.  Why do the majority of people supporting these authority figures with their tithes continue to do so while people like the Pope proclaim their opinions theologically incorrect as part of official church dogma?

I can't answer your question with the degree of specificity that you'd like, but I can tell you when people will stop thinking of Christians as anti-gay:  when a large group of Christians comes out united against theological opposition to the natural orientation of homosexuals, and actually does something about that difference of opinion other than talk.  I hear, "I disagree, but I'm going to remain part of the church" so often.  Usually it's given under the justification of "and I plan to reform things from within," however I can't really take that seriously unless the person saying it is a Cardinal in the line of Papal succession (or an analogous position for Mormons, for example).  To me it's basically saying, "their disapproval of homosexuality isn't important enough to leave over."

I could be wrong about that, but if it is so very important, why not follow the tried and true historically proven method of forming your own denomination?  Do that and the stereotype will, in time, come to apply only to the groups which gay-accepting Christians have left, and not Christians as a whole.

Not to say the stereotype is 100% fair, but to say it's completely unfounded is outright false.  Stereotypes should never form a universal basis of judgment, they merely serve as a tool with which to draw inferences from about a person before you know them.  Statistics are best-guesses at situations in abstraction, not on a case-by-case level.  If someone was to deem all Christians to be anti-gay even when presented with knowledge to the contrary, that's an example of bigotry, I'd say.

There is a large difference between differences in ideological focus and irreconcilable differences. For me, the differences have not yet reached irreconcilable and I doubt they ever will. The turning point for me would likely be the vatican, pope, or diocese actively promoting violence against any group that has done nothing to us (and before anyone jumps on the crusades/inquisition band wagon Ill point out that no such event has happened in my lifetime).

If everyone leaves a group everytime an ideaolgical difference comes up there wont be any groups for long. Think about it, should I have just left Elliquiy when I felt that cliques were impeding my ability to socialize with other members or when I felt theocism had gotten so out of control I felt discriminated against? I hope you would agree with me that the answer is no. It doesnt matter if its Elliquiy, my friends, or the Catholic church. The best weapon we have to promote change for the better is words, spoken as a member of the group.

I have to agree with that point. Were that to happen I'd be far more willing to let go of my prejudice for the religion. Christianity hasn't exactly proved itself to have stellar followers in my mind as they are the majority of people you'll run into, and many are furthering this stereotype. You give me a time when I can run into someone whom I find out is Christian and not go "shit, let's play Russian Roulette and see if I'm hell bound, vile or just a fag." When I no longer have to emotionally hesitate the moment I hear their religion, then I suppose a great amount of progress.

Also the irony of Christian Stereotypes and how hard they are on the group is not lost on me. No, stereotypes are not fun, they suck big time. But nevertheless they form and maintain for a reason, and I would love to see that change as a matter of fact. I'm all for that, it's a bit awkward to meet someone whom is Christian and take 10 times longer to warm up to them because I subconsciously pull back from them emotionally.

/twocents

Im about to summarize something Oniya said awhile back. Your view of a group of people is colored by the people you meet. If a persons exposure to christians is only from a family that is the very fire & brimestone kind of belief then that is the stereotype they walk away with and hold for a long time. Its part of human nature, likely going back to our more tribalistic mentality of sorting tribes into easy to understand summaries.

However while I would call it human nature, I can also say that it can be overcome with hard work and consistant exposure to people who dont ring true to the stereotype. It took me years to mentally condition myself to look at each person as an individual rather then a member of a racial, religious, political, or social group and even though I do have the occasional slip I believe it is possible to do away with the mentality altogether

Offline Braioch

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #18 on: February 16, 2011, 07:22:07 PM »
I'm about to summarize something Oniya said awhile back. Your view of a group of people is colored by the people you meet. If a persons exposure to Christians is only from a family that is the very fire & brimstone kind of belief then that is the stereotype they walk away with and hold for a long time. Its part of human nature, likely going back to our more tribalistic mentality of sorting tribes into easy to understand summaries.

However while I would call it human nature, I can also say that it can be overcome with hard work and consistent exposure to people who don't ring true to the stereotype. It took me years to mentally condition myself to look at each person as an individual rather then a member of a racial, religious, political, or social group and even though I do have the occasional slip I believe it is possible to do away with the mentality altogether

Actually the majority of people I have met that are Christian are not in fact of the fire and brimstone category. Many of those that I have met are much more subtle and in many ways for that reason, worse than the fire and brimstone. I've met far too many Christians who I thought were cool and said they were, only to spout off what they really thought when they thought no one would really care and I found out about it. I have found far too many to be judgmental and then unwilling to be honest about it because a good chunk of people wouldn't like them for it.

I do not judge the Christians that I meet, my first instinct is not that I'm going to be accosted, or that they must be a raving psychopathic asshole. No, my first reaction is immediate caution and a greater emotional distance than I would if I were to have not known or met someone else. So don't say that I lump them together immediately without any prior judgment. I give everyone a chance, even if I pull back from those people, I still give them a chance and if I didn't do that I wouldn't have some of the friends I do today.

Offline Noelle

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #19 on: February 16, 2011, 09:25:30 PM »
There is a large difference between differences in ideological focus and irreconcilable differences. For me, the differences have not yet reached irreconcilable and I doubt they ever will. The turning point for me would likely be the vatican, pope, or diocese actively promoting violence against any group that has done nothing to us (and before anyone jumps on the crusades/inquisition band wagon Ill point out that no such event has happened in my lifetime).

What constitutes a point of irreconcilability? Is turning a blind eye to the fact that your doctrine fuels things like bullying against gays simply an "ideological focus" (or the lack, thereof), or is it a sign of a troublesome trend that's been ongoing for some time now? How many centuries would you like an anti-gay sentiment to be rooted in the church before it's unsupportable? How long would you like the AIDS epidemic to go on, and how many people would you like to see suffer and die because the Pope is spreading lies about contraception to a group of people who listen to him before it goes from being a point of divergence on focus in ideology and becomes a legitimate problem? Not all devastation comes out and pops you in the nose, in fact, quite often, it doesn't. A lot of it is literally centuries in the making and most have grown too complacent to give enough of a damn to take any kind of substantial stand against it. Slacktivism in the form of "talking about it" and signing online petitions and making cute avatars and other things that make you feel good about it and never going beyond that is as useful as the color pink is for curing breast cancer. That is to say, it's not -- at least not on its own.

We can't all care about everything at once, there's too much in this world that needs curing or aiding or helping or worrying, but if it were any other movement -- any other movement or philosophy or religion at all that was only provoking the suffering of millions due to the spread of HIV/AIDS and whose ideas were being used to vindicate bullying and violence against gays (or any group, for that matter), it's pretty difficult to argue that anyone associate with said group would be horrified and would do what they could to distance themselves from any association with that group. And if suffering from a distance doesn't directly provoke you to any actual action (and let's be honest, it's easy to become only temporarily distracted by suffering that seems so distant from us), then just say so.

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If everyone leaves a group everytime an ideaolgical difference comes up there wont be any groups for long. Think about it, should I have just left Elliquiy when I felt that cliques were impeding my ability to socialize with other members or when I felt theocism had gotten so out of control I felt discriminated against? I hope you would agree with me that the answer is no. It doesnt matter if its Elliquiy, my friends, or the Catholic church. The best weapon we have to promote change for the better is words, spoken as a member of the group.

Should you have? That's not really a fair question, is it? If I were in your position and I felt so horribly discriminated against while amongst peers I voluntarily associate with, of course I would leave, why wouldn't I? My time is better spent elsewhere if it's really so disabling and if I'm feeling that offended and outcast from a group that clearly has a different view. You make the mistake of assuming that leaving one group means that others don't exist. Groups are going to form everywhere, it's even already predicted for you in tribalistic human nature, which means there is a group you could feel better suited to if another one was that horrible to you. But that is, after all, just what I would do, and is the danger of using your own choices as an assumption of what others would choose.

And really, I have to disagree with your last statement; the best weapon you have to promote change is to take initiative and show you're willing to actually do something to provoke change, even if it is difficult (as true, long-lasting, powerful change often is). Example: Let's say you're standing on a stage facing a group of people who are against people who kick puppies. You're looking out at those people and you're swearing up and down that they don't kick puppies and that things will get better, but what you can't see is that the audience is looking behind where you're standing, to where members of your group are...kicking puppies. And if you glance over your shoulder and see that and still swear you're not a puppy-kicker, what speaks louder? Your words or what people you freely associate with are doing in spite of those words? What are those words doing to change the minds of the puppy-kickers -- do they even care?

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Im about to summarize something Oniya said awhile back. Your view of a group of people is colored by the people you meet. If a persons exposure to christians is only from a family that is the very fire & brimestone kind of belief then that is the stereotype they walk away with and hold for a long time. Its part of human nature, likely going back to our more tribalistic mentality of sorting tribes into easy to understand summaries.

However while I would call it human nature, I can also say that it can be overcome with hard work and consistant exposure to people who dont ring true to the stereotype. It took me years to mentally condition myself to look at each person as an individual rather then a member of a racial, religious, political, or social group and even though I do have the occasional slip I believe it is possible to do away with the mentality altogether

So how many people do I have to meet that aren't the typical puppy-kicker fire-and-brimstone Christian before they become more than just an exception to the rule? It's human nature to categorize because it's easy and helps us not only predict, but appropriately adjust our own behavior in response; it's not just a matter of a caveman-like "THIS PERSON IS CHRISTIAN, CHRISTIAN BAAAAD". If I meet someone new who seems like they're very conservative, I'm probably not going to bring up certain topics I think will upset them or start unnecessary controversy as a matter of courtesy. Your speech patterns and behavior naturally shift with anyone you meet, whether or not you're consciously thinking DON'T JUDGE THIS PERSON THEY ARE AN INDIVIDUAL and I'm pretty sure that no amount of purposeful conditioning will breed that out of you or any other human being.

Hell, you can even look at it as basic Pavlovian conditioning, if you'd like. If I meet 100 Christians and 98 of them don't believe in contraception, think homosexuality is the equivalent of pedophilia, and that all non-believers are going to suffer unspeakable pain in an eternity of damnation, then there's a pretty good chance I'm going to associate most Christians with Things I Don't Like. Ring a bell, and the dog salivates as it associates that sound with food -- Ring the Christian bell, and I'm probably going to get a bad taste in my mouth from all the negative experiences I've ever had with them.

As Braioch mentioned, and in an addendum to my aforementioned 'matter of courtesy' piece, that judgment does not necessitate that said judged person is automatically going to be treated like shit, merely with caution in respect to what has happened in past encounters. Sometimes you don't even notice that caution. Maybe it's not fair to that person if they're genuinely not like the others, but that only makes them an exception to the more general rule. Ten dogs bite you and you're going to be cautious about approaching the eleventh.

Offline Jude

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #20 on: February 16, 2011, 10:13:01 PM »
Every disagreement is not reason enough to leave, but to me you're basically saying "the anti-gay position of the Catholic Church is not reason enough for me to find another group that is more progressive towards homosexuals."  Your continuing membership in a faction that officially denounces homosexual behavior as unacceptable is pretty much saying "that issue isn't important enough to me to cause me to leave."

I have to respectfully say that thinking you can reform the Catholic Church as a layperson is horribly mistaken.  The Church's Hierarchy is designed (and has been throughout history) so that the members of the church have no input on the theological practices of the Church.  It isn't a Democratic institution:  the Vatican is an old-school theological dictatorship with the "Divine Right of Kings" embodied in the Pope.  It's middle-ages thinking and not particularly amenable to reform.

Offline Brandon

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #21 on: February 16, 2011, 10:52:57 PM »
What constitutes a point of irreconcilability? Is turning a blind eye to the fact that your doctrine fuels things like bullying against gays simply an "ideological focus" (or the lack, thereof), or is it a sign of a troublesome trend that's been ongoing for some time now? How many centuries would you like an anti-gay sentiment to be rooted in the church before it's unsupportable? How long would you like the AIDS epidemic to go on, and how many people would you like to see suffer and die because the Pope is spreading lies about contraception to a group of people who listen to him before it goes from being a point of divergence on focus in ideology and becomes a legitimate problem? Not all devastation comes out and pops you in the nose, in fact, quite often, it doesn't. A lot of it is literally centuries in the making and most have grown too complacent to give enough of a damn to take any kind of substantial stand against it. Slacktivism in the form of "talking about it" and signing online petitions and making cute avatars and other things that make you feel good about it and never going beyond that is as useful as the color pink is for curing breast cancer. That is to say, it's not -- at least not on its own.

irreconcilability is subjective. What I find irreconcilable will not be the same for everyone else.

The purpose of your other questions seems to either be goad me into an emotionally driven state so you can later report me to the staff or to try and embarrass me in some way. I've fallen for those traps before and I wont be doing it again.

Should you have? That's not really a fair question, is it? If I were in your position and I felt so horribly discriminated against while amongst peers I voluntarily associate with, of course I would leave, why wouldn't I? My time is better spent elsewhere if it's really so disabling and if I'm feeling that offended and outcast from a group that clearly has a different view. You make the mistake of assuming that leaving one group means that others don't exist. Groups are going to form everywhere, it's even already predicted for you in tribalistic human nature, which means there is a group you could feel better suited to if another one was that horrible to you. But that is, after all, just what I would do, and is the danger of using your own choices as an assumption of what others would choose.

The answer to the question is completely subjective, there is no right or wrong answer so yes I think it is fair. By showing a parallel that others here can relate to it helps them look at it from my point of view rather then in a way they might not understand.

On that note, I never said that there were not other places to go or even that another place couldnt be created. What I commented on was if everyone was constantly leaving groups that they did not agree with the finite nature of said groups would form a problem as groups would be in constant flux, unable to really form a group for a length of time before everyone would move on to the next one

And really, I have to disagree with your last statement; the best weapon you have to promote change is to take initiative and show you're willing to actually do something to provoke change, even if it is difficult (as true, long-lasting, powerful change often is). Example: Let's say you're standing on a stage facing a group of people who are against people who kick puppies. You're looking out at those people and you're swearing up and down that they don't kick puppies and that things will get better, but what you can't see is that the audience is looking behind where you're standing, to where members of your group are...kicking puppies. And if you glance over your shoulder and see that and still swear you're not a puppy-kicker, what speaks louder? Your words or what people you freely associate with are doing in spite of those words? What are those words doing to change the minds of the puppy-kickers -- do they even care?

Fair enough, we can agree to disagree

So how many people do I have to meet that aren't the typical puppy-kicker fire-and-brimstone Christian before they become more than just an exception to the rule? It's human nature to categorize because it's easy and helps us not only predict, but appropriately adjust our own behavior in response; it's not just a matter of a caveman-like "THIS PERSON IS CHRISTIAN, CHRISTIAN BAAAAD". If I meet someone new who seems like they're very conservative, I'm probably not going to bring up certain topics I think will upset them or start unnecessary controversy as a matter of courtesy. Your speech patterns and behavior naturally shift with anyone you meet, whether or not you're consciously thinking DON'T JUDGE THIS PERSON THEY ARE AN INDIVIDUAL and I'm pretty sure that no amount of purposeful conditioning will breed that out of you or any other human being.

Its subjective. Again if a person never meets a more open minded christian like myself they tend to associate all people of said group with whatever stereotype they've formed in their mind. The moment they discover that people of said group arent all alike the seeds of doubt around the stereotype form but how many people that subject has to meet before the stereotype is broken is completely subjective

Every disagreement is not reason enough to leave, but to me you're basically saying "the anti-gay position of the Catholic Church is not reason enough for me to find another group that is more progressive towards homosexuals."  Your continuing membership in a faction that officially denounces homosexual behavior as unacceptable is pretty much saying "that issue isn't important enough to me to cause me to leave."

I have to respectfully say that thinking you can reform the Catholic Church as a layperson is horribly mistaken.  The Church's Hierarchy is designed (and has been throughout history) so that the members of the church have no input on the theological practices of the Church.  It isn't a Democratic institution:  the Vatican is an old-school theological dictatorship with the "Divine Right of Kings" embodied in the Pope.  It's middle-ages thinking and not particularly amenable to reform.

Again we will have to agree to disagree, I have already made visible changes in my state by talking to priests and the Bishop on a regular basis about my views on homosexuality and its role in nature. I might agree that geographically speaking Im limited in what I can do but the evidence Ive seen says the exact opposite of what history has shown.

Offline Braioch

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #22 on: February 16, 2011, 11:07:50 PM »
The purpose of your other questions seems to either be goad me into an emotionally driven state so you can later report me to the staff or to try and embarrass me in some way. I've fallen for those traps before and I wont be doing it again.

That's a bit of an unfair accusation dude, seeing as how this entire thread could be a basis for someone falling into an emotional state. As you have said repeatedly, that's subjective and accusing her because you think that's what she's trying to do isn't fair.

Which if I were to stretch a bit kinda falls under the point that's been underlined here. You've fallen for those traps before so now you stereotype anything that comes even remotely close to pulling an emotional reaction out of you, you treat it as an attack. I sincerely doubt that that is what she was trying to do because if you actually read what she was saying there, there is a strong argument there. Again subjective, but then again if you wanted to use that as an excuse, then nothing is really worth debating because just about everything is subjective.

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On that note, I never said that there were not other places to go or even that another place couldn't be created. What I commented on was if everyone was constantly leaving groups that they did not agree with the finite nature of said groups would form a problem as groups would be in constant flux, unable to really form a group for a length of time before everyone would move on to the next one

Again I have to wonder as Jude has, if you were truly bothered by something the group was doing, why would you stay in it? If they were doing something I disagreed with, and they wouldn't change, you wouldn't find me sticking with it. It's actually a lot like what Noelle said, if you're a part of a group that has a bad image based off of it's image, then you too are going to be labeled along with them, no matter how much you yourself do not stand for it.

Stereotypes exist for a reason as has been previously stated, it makes the world and people more easily compartmentalized in a mind. And they are generally formed either because of teaching, or because of experience. Most of the Christians I have met have left a bad taste in my mouth, not all, but most. And not only because of my homosexuality, but because of other views I have on the world. Not only that, but just how so many of them have acted. So yes, each new Christian I meet will instantly light up warning lights in my head, but you won't see me running or being rude.

As has been said, when I see a larger movement for changing the world in the Christian world that outgrows that of the ones who are ignorant and hurtful, then I'll be willing to let my stereotype slip away. But as it is, I have seen little changes in the Christian standpoint, except they change a bit here and there every couple hundred of years.

-shrug-


Offline Noelle

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #23 on: February 16, 2011, 11:35:37 PM »
irreconcilability is subjective. What I find irreconcilable will not be the same for everyone else.

That's why I asked.

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The purpose of your other questions seems to either be goad me into an emotionally driven state so you can later report me to the staff or to try and embarrass me in some way. I've fallen for those traps before and I wont be doing it again.

Sorry, what? Maybe you could keep your personal issues out of this? I don't know what I've done to you here except engage you in debate, so if you don't want to talk to other people about the things you post, then don't post. There's no need to fling accusations where they haven't been provoked in any way. Please and thank you.

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The answer to the question is completely subjective, there is no right or wrong answer so yes I think it is fair. By showing a parallel that others here can relate to it helps them look at it from my point of view rather then in a way they might not understand.

Your tone implied otherwise, that you felt your solution was quite obvious. "I would hope" implies that any other answer would be absurd.

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On that note, I never said that there were not other places to go or even that another place couldnt be created. What I commented on was if everyone was constantly leaving groups that they did not agree with the finite nature of said groups would form a problem as groups would be in constant flux, unable to really form a group for a length of time before everyone would move on to the next one

Indeed, and I countered that there are always groups out there that will have more in common with you, which would imply that you would stay with that group and there would be other like-minded individuals that would do the same. It kind of already happens. People are free to come and go from social groups as they like, nothing is holding them back, and yet the fabric of society is still whole, thus making your theory kind of irrelevant. You can leave your religion any time you want -- anyone can, and would you look at that? Christianity has maintained its prominent status for centuries, anti-gay, anti-contraceptive views and all. Imagine if people who disagreed left and helped build a new group in that time...

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Its subjective. Again if a person never meets a more open minded christian like myself they tend to associate all people of said group with whatever stereotype they've formed in their mind. The moment they discover that people of said group arent all alike the seeds of doubt around the stereotype form but how many people that subject has to meet before the stereotype is broken is completely subjective

It's not subjective. You know how stereotypes start? A general observation about a group. Stereotypes don't usually start because only one or two people are doing something, they start because a visible majority of the people are doing it. It would be foolish to think that most people are going to reconsider their view of an entire group if there are only one or two sterling examples available to offset the more noticeable figures of idiocy.

When the larger figurehead of the Catholics (The Vatican/Pope) whistles and turns their head when it comes to their dogma being used to justify violence against gays, that is active -- they're actively ignoring a chance to speak out against bigotry and reach out to the victims. They're actively promoting ignorance by sending in a figure of authority they respect to tell them not to use condoms and practice safe sex, which in turn kills millions of people through the continued spread of HIV/AIDS, but because they aren't going out and culling the AIDS-infected population with their own hands, somehow that's reconcilable? These aren't questions that are made to embarrass you, Brandon, unless you embarrass yourself. If I'm going to try to understand your point of view (and I am), these are questions that inevitably come up when I read your opinions and try to piece together your logic. You can't control the questions other people are allowed to ask of your point of view. That's not how dialogue occurs.

I feel I should also mention before this spirals back into historic conversations on the subject, yes, I am aware of Christianity's positive contributions to the world, I don't think it's a major force of evil, I wouldn't want it to disappear off the face of the earth, blah blah, etc.

Offline Brandon

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #24 on: February 16, 2011, 11:47:49 PM »
That's a bit of an unfair accusation dude, seeing as how this entire thread could be a basis for someone falling into an emotional state. As you have said repeatedly, that's subjective and accusing her because you think that's what she's trying to do isn't fair.

Which if I were to stretch a bit kinda falls under the point that's been underlined here. You've fallen for those traps before so now you stereotype anything that comes even remotely close to pulling an emotional reaction out of you, you treat it as an attack. I sincerely doubt that that is what she was trying to do because if you actually read what she was saying there, there is a strong argument there. Again subjective, but then again if you wanted to use that as an excuse, then nothing is really worth debating because just about everything is subjective.

I said "seems to be". I made sure to put that qualifier in there as I always do. Noelle has every right to assure me that that wasnt how she meant it

Everything would have been fine if she just asked "What is considered Irreconcilable?" but adding those questions while knowing my background and reputation for fierce defense of my faith seems like nothing more then an attempt to goad me.

Again I have to wonder as Jude has, if you were truly bothered by something the group was doing, why would you stay in it? If they were doing something I disagreed with, and they wouldn't change, you wouldn't find me sticking with it. It's actually a lot like what Noelle said, if you're a part of a group that has a bad image based off of it's image, then you too are going to be labeled along with them, no matter how much you yourself do not stand for it.

Stereotypes exist for a reason as has been previously stated, it makes the world and people more easily compartmentalized in a mind. And they are generally formed either because of teaching, or because of experience. Most of the Christians I have met have left a bad taste in my mouth, not all, but most. And not only because of my homosexuality, but because of other views I have on the world. Not only that, but just how so many of them have acted. So yes, each new Christian I meet will instantly light up warning lights in my head, but you won't see me running or being rude.

As has been said, when I see a larger movement for changing the world in the Christian world that outgrows that of the ones who are ignorant and hurtful, then I'll be willing to let my stereotype slip away. But as it is, I have seen little changes in the Christian standpoint, except they change a bit here and there every couple hundred of years.

-shrug-

Its obvious that we have different ways of thinking, influenced by our different pasts and lifestyles. You dont have to like or agree with me but that doesnt make me wrong either.

You mentioned not seeing change and this is probably the part where we differ, where you dont see change in the church I do. This makes me think youre looking at the church from the perspective of its leaders and not its people which is the exact opposite of how I look at it. For me a King is not the kingdom, a president is not a country, a guild is not the guild leader. It is the people that make up that group and keep its ideals alive, not the leaders

Offline Braioch

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #25 on: February 17, 2011, 12:04:11 AM »
I said "seems to be". I made sure to put that qualifier in there as I always do. Noelle has every right to assure me that that wasnt how she meant it

Everything would have been fine if she just asked "What is considered Irreconcilable?" but adding those questions while knowing my background and reputation for fierce defense of my faith seems like nothing more then an attempt to goad me.

Yet she didn't mean it that way, my point was you jumped to a conclusion. Which is exactly what you're protesting against here.

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Its obvious that we have different ways of thinking, influenced by our different pasts and lifestyles. You dont have to like or agree with me but that doesnt make me wrong either.

You mentioned not seeing change and this is probably the part where we differ, where you dont see change in the church I do. This makes me think youre looking at the church from the perspective of its leaders and not its people which is the exact opposite of how I look at it. For me a King is not the kingdom, a president is not a country, a guild is not the guild leader. It is the people that make up that group and keep its ideals alive, not the leaders

My views are not solely based on the leaders. I know full well that a leader doesn't represent the group completely, I mean look at our previous president. I sure as hell did not agree with that man on so many of his stands. My views are based on my experiences with other people. This isn't just based off the loud mouthed idiots you find on TV or internet videos, mine come from the 21 years worth of experience I have had with day to day Christians.

My stereotypes are born from the majority of them treating me poorly outright or in more subtle ways because of there differing views. I do not dislike them for their views, believe as you want, it's called free will after all. But when you treat me poorly for the differences, I'm going to dislike you and when others who come from the same standpoint do the same, a pattern emerges.

So no, even in the majority of people do I see much in the way of change. Only little changes here and there, and even then it doesn't always last.

For the record I hold no ill will to your standpoint or to you, don't make the mistake of taking things personally.

Offline Sure

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #26 on: February 17, 2011, 12:11:37 AM »
I find it... interesting that several people on here seem to be justifying their stereotypes by basically asserting 'But it's true!'. Regardless of the dogma, judging a Christian as anything, automatically because they are Christian, is stereotyping and wrong if you believe in individualism. Religious discrimination is just as bad as racial discrimination, to the point where discriminating against someone because of their religion is one of only three things the Supreme Court has ruled is never allowed to be used in making decisions (race being another, gender is not one nor is sexual orientation).

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You know how stereotypes start? A general observation about a group. Stereotypes don't usually start because only one or two people are doing something, they start because a visible majority of the people are doing it. It would be foolish to think that most people are going to reconsider their view of an entire group if there are only one or two sterling examples available to offset the more noticeable figures of idiocy.

This melts and breaks down completely the moment you look at it.

Pray, does this apply to racial stereotypes? What about gender ones? Since the 'usual' method is apparently that a visible majority of people actually act that way, a visible majority of women must be irrational and emotional. A visible majority of men must be violent and sex-obsessed. A visible majority of African Americans must love them some Chicken and Watermelon. A visible majority of Asians must be study obsessed people with no social life. A visible majority of Muslims must be terrorists. A visible majority of Jews must be greedy. I'm going to stop listing stereotypes here because I could go on but it would be pointless to do so, you get the point.

And even if you meet one or two or even a group that go against that rule, you shouldn't reconsider those stereotypes, because there are more noticeable figures that prove these things true, according to this.

Just a note. To claim this is 'active' is flatly wrong. Ignoring something is, by it's definition, not taking action. Therefore, not active.
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When the larger figurehead of the Catholics (The Vatican/Pope) whistles and turns their head when it comes to their dogma being used to justify violence against gays, that is active -- they're actively ignoring a chance to speak out against bigotry and reach out to the victims.

This, however, is active:
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They're actively promoting ignorance by sending in a figure of authority they respect to tell them not to use condoms and practice safe sex, which in turn kills millions of people through the continued spread of HIV/AIDS

Offline Braioch

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #27 on: February 17, 2011, 12:27:59 AM »
I find it... interesting that several people on here seem to be justifying their stereotypes by basically asserting 'But it's true!'. Regardless of the dogma, judging a Christian as anything, automatically because they are Christian, is stereotyping and wrong if you believe in individualism. Religious discrimination is just as bad as racial discrimination, to the point where discriminating against someone because of their religion is one of only three things the Supreme Court has ruled is never allowed to be used in making decisions (race being another, gender is not one nor is sexual orientation).

This is the bit that I have to protest at. I am not justifying my stereotypes of Christians, I'm explaining why they exist. As I said, (as did Noelle) they form for a reason and many a times my Stereotyping of people has been wrong but a majority of the time I was right. That doesn't mean the Stereotype is real and I don't even say that all Christians are trouble. I just know that a majority of the ones I have had interactions with have left me with a desire of having done otherwise.

I do NOT categorize them all into one lumped group, I acknowledge that many of them have issues with me and may very well cause me some grief, or butthurt at the very least. As I said I will not be prejudice against someone for their beliefs the minute I find out, I will however be prejudice the moment I figure out that they really are someone who has fit the majority I've met.

Offline Sure

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #28 on: February 17, 2011, 12:49:10 AM »
... Here, have some quotes.

The fact you apparently want to overcome your own prejudice (though, to be frank, your comments imply you're waiting for Christians to prove worthy of the effort of overcoming the prejudice) or that you acknowledge it in no way eliminates the fact of the stereotype itself.

Here you are, lumping them into groups, making generalizations, and rationalizing why you stereotype them:

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My views are based on my experiences with other people. This isn't just based off the loud mouthed idiots you find on TV or internet videos, mine come from the 21 years worth of experience I have had with day to day Christians.

My stereotypes are born from the majority of them treating me poorly outright or in more subtle ways because of there differing views.

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Stereotypes exist for a reason as has been previously stated, it makes the world and people more easily compartmentalized in a mind. And they are generally formed either because of teaching, or because of experience. Most of the Christians I have met have left a bad taste in my mouth, not all, but most. And not only because of my homosexuality, but because of other views I have on the world. Not only that, but just how so many of them have acted. So yes, each new Christian I meet will instantly light up warning lights in my head, but you won't see me running or being rude.

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Actually the majority of people I have met that are Christian are not in fact of the fire and brimstone category. Many of those that I have met are much more subtle and in many ways for that reason, worse than the fire and brimstone. I've met far too many Christians who I thought were cool and said they were, only to spout off what they really thought when they thought no one would really care and I found out about it. I have found far too many to be judgmental and then unwilling to be honest about it because a good chunk of people wouldn't like them for it.

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my first reaction is immediate caution and a greater emotional distance than I would if I were to have not known or met someone else. So don't say that I lump them together immediately without any prior judgment. I give everyone a chance, even if I pull back from those people, I still give them a chance and if I didn't do that I wouldn't have some of the friends I do today.

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Christianity hasn't exactly proved itself to have stellar followers in my mind as they are the majority of people you'll run into, and many are furthering this stereotype. You give me a time when I can run into someone whom I find out is Christian and not go "shit, let's play Russian Roulette and see if I'm hell bound, vile or just a fag." When I no longer have to emotionally hesitate the moment I hear their religion, then I suppose a great amount of progress.

Offline Braioch

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #29 on: February 17, 2011, 01:04:46 AM »
Again I find that I have to say, that yes, they are stereotypes, based off of experience. But again I shall plainly state that they do not in fact cause me to prejudice the other person, merely cause me to be cautious. I never once denied that they were stereotypes, but I have never tried to justify them either. They are there, they came about for a reason, and I gave the reason.

Offline Brandon

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #30 on: February 17, 2011, 04:40:58 AM »
Sorry, what? Maybe you could keep your personal issues out of this? I don't know what I've done to you here except engage you in debate, so if you don't want to talk to other people about the things you post, then don't post. There's no need to fling accusations where they haven't been provoked in any way. Please and thank you.

What I said wasnt brought on by my personal issues, it was about your personal behaivor. This is not the first time where you have posted material that is not factually substaintiated or misunderstood without anylasis. I have even done some of those anylasis for people explaining in detail why its been misunderstood, Ive also pointed many people at them but either they have not been read or the information goes in one ear and out the other. You've been in some of those conversations.

Your tone implied otherwise, that you felt your solution was quite obvious. "I would hope" implies that any other answer would be absurd.

No, what I meant was the answer of sticking it out and trying to make things better is the obvious answer to me. I do hope people would agree with me but by no means do I say theyre wrong if they dont. Its just a different way of looking at the situation

Indeed, and I countered that there are always groups out there that will have more in common with you, which would imply that you would stay with that group and there would be other like-minded individuals that would do the same. It kind of already happens. People are free to come and go from social groups as they like, nothing is holding them back, and yet the fabric of society is still whole, thus making your theory kind of irrelevant. You can leave your religion any time you want -- anyone can, and would you look at that? Christianity has maintained its prominent status for centuries, anti-gay, anti-contraceptive views and all. Imagine if people who disagreed left and helped build a new group in that time...

Again, not what I meant. Jude implyed that as soon as disagreements came up people should be leaving those groups to find or form new ones. I noted that if everyone did that the groups would be in such a radical state of flux that none would exist for very long.

It's not subjective. You know how stereotypes start? A general observation about a group. Stereotypes don't usually start because only one or two people are doing something, they start because a visible majority of the people are doing it. It would be foolish to think that most people are going to reconsider their view of an entire group if there are only one or two sterling examples available to offset the more noticeable figures of idiocy.

You said: So how many people do I have to meet that aren't the typical puppy-kicker fire-and-brimstone Christian before they become more than just an exception to the rule?

I said it is subjective and that hasnt changed. How many "exceptions to the rule" that you meet before your views on a group change is strictly up to you. I cant make a determination for you on that

If you believe that the state of mind where we stereotype people can not be overcome then I must simply disagree with you.

When the larger figurehead of the Catholics (The Vatican/Pope) whistles and turns their head when it comes to their dogma being used to justify violence against gays, that is active -- they're actively ignoring a chance to speak out against bigotry and reach out to the victims. They're actively promoting ignorance by sending in a figure of authority they respect to tell them not to use condoms and practice safe sex, which in turn kills millions of people through the continued spread of HIV/AIDS, but because they aren't going out and culling the AIDS-infected population with their own hands, somehow that's reconcilable? These aren't questions that are made to embarrass you, Brandon, unless you embarrass yourself. If I'm going to try to understand your point of view (and I am), these are questions that inevitably come up when I read your opinions and try to piece together your logic. You can't control the questions other people are allowed to ask of your point of view. That's not how dialogue occurs.

Here you go again, unfounded and factually unsubstantiated accusations of the church I happen to be a part of.

Ya know what? Lets put this issue to bed right now. For the last time.

The reason why condoms are not being used in Africa is because of a psuedo-macho belief that condoms harm a mans masculinity. The average african male will not use them at all because of their own cultural beliefs. Dont even get me started on some of their other cultural beliefs like "raping a virgin will cure your HIV/AIDS"

Now to get on with Cardinal Alphonse Lopez Trujillo's comment. According to the CDC a condom can not under any circumstances completely (meaning 100%) protect you against pregnancy or contracting the HIV/AIDS virus. The numbers rage at about 98% effectiveness but that is still not 100% (if it were any other number I wouldnt care about the numbers but I believe that teaching people that a condom can garatee protection when it cant is dangerous). 

Spermazoan have a size of about 5 micrometers by 3 micrometers and with a tail that measures around 50 micrometers. The HIV/AIDS virus has a diameter of 1/10,000th of a milimeter (if you dont care to do the math that means the HIV/AIDS virus is significantly smaller then a single spermazoan). Both the spermazoan and the HIV/AIDS virus has a small enough size to slip through the microscopic holes in condoms but they dont always do so

The comment that most people harp on about is this, said by Cardinal Alphonse Lopez Trujillo sometime before 2003: "Condoms do not protect against the HIV virus".

What people dont understand is the Cardinal was talking about the 10% of people that would not be protected by the use of condoms (that 10% being according to a study done by the WHO earlier that year). To him and many of the Cardinals that handle matters of health concern the chance of 10% of a population being infected was to many, I would dare say that even 1% would be to many for them. It was unthinkable for them to condone something that was not safe for everyone all the time. To them condoms promoted promiscuity which in turn increased the problem (there is misunderstood context in what the problem is as well).

To complicate matters Cardinal Trujillo made his statements about condoms in Italian, meaning there was a mistake in the translation. Often when he, the other cardinals, and the pope refered to the "tiny holes" in a condom they would specifically talk about the microscopic holes left in the material that allow spermazoan to rarely pass through. However translations always came out as Tiny holes, making people think that the church's leaders were specifically talking about small holes that you could slide a needle or even pen through. That is not the case and it never has been

In the proper context "the problem" was not the chance for condoms to break nor was it the chance for spermazoan or the virus to pass through. In fact it didnt even deal with condoms except in the loosest terms, instead it was societal. The problem was, to them, infedelity and promiscuity that condoms promoted but also it was a question of souls.

Cardinal Trujillo also talked about the sterilization of spirits or souls when condoms and other birth control was used. When I heard that I did some soul searching of my own. I believe in a soul (defined as every mental aspect that makes an individual an individual) and I had to really ask myself when does a soul attach itself to the body? Is it at birth? When we first develop memories? or could it be before the egg cell is even fertilized as Cardinal Trujillo suggested? To this day I havnt found an answer that satisfies me

There it is, I hope this is the last time I will have to teach birth control to Elliquiy :P

I feel I should also mention before this spirals back into historic conversations on the subject, yes, I am aware of Christianity's positive contributions to the world, I don't think it's a major force of evil, I wouldn't want it to disappear off the face of the earth, blah blah, etc.

I dont understand why you felt you needed to say that but ok, whatever

Yet she didn't mean it that way, my point was you jumped to a conclusion. Which is exactly what you're protesting against here.

My conclusion as you put it was formed from her personal behavoir in the past as an individual, not because of a blanket labeling of a group of people. It had nothing to do with stereotyping and everything to do with the individual

My views are not solely based on the leaders. I know full well that a leader doesn't represent the group completely, I mean look at our previous president. I sure as hell did not agree with that man on so many of his stands. My views are based on my experiences with other people. This isn't just based off the loud mouthed idiots you find on TV or internet videos, mine come from the 21 years worth of experience I have had with day to day Christians.

My stereotypes are born from the majority of them treating me poorly outright or in more subtle ways because of there differing views. I do not dislike them for their views, believe as you want, it's called free will after all. But when you treat me poorly for the differences, I'm going to dislike you and when others who come from the same standpoint do the same, a pattern emerges.

So no, even in the majority of people do I see much in the way of change. Only little changes here and there, and even then it doesn't always last.

For the record I hold no ill will to your standpoint or to you, don't make the mistake of taking things personally.

Then why do you demand that the Pope or vatican be the ones the must change for us to prove ourselves worthy of redemption in your eyes? If you agree with me that a group is the people and not the leader then it shouldnt matter one way or another what they say/do. You already have the stereotype broken. If you believe it must be a mix of teh people and the leader then thats much harder to quantify but also more important to do so IMO

Offline Noelle

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #31 on: February 17, 2011, 07:23:35 AM »
What I said wasnt brought on by my personal issues, it was about your personal behaivor. This is not the first time where you have posted material that is not factually substaintiated or misunderstood without anylasis. I have even done some of those anylasis for people explaining in detail why its been misunderstood, Ive also pointed many people at them but either they have not been read or the information goes in one ear and out the other. You've been in some of those conversations.

It's personal to insinuate that I'm only posting to "provoke" or "embarrass" you, but taking a page out of your book, "agree to disagree". I don't feel my behavior was personal, given I'm asking you for explanation on the topic at hand. I also feel you've been in many conversations where it goes in one ear and out the other, but dragging it out into other threads is inappropriate, and if you'd like to disagree with me there, perhaps we can take it up with the mods. Until then, if you've got issues with the way I post to you other than that you disagree with what I have to say, feel free to PM me and I would be happy to hash it out there.

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Again, not what I meant. Jude implyed that as soon as disagreements came up people should be leaving those groups to find or form new ones. I noted that if everyone did that the groups would be in such a radical state of flux that none would exist for very long.

Implied and then corrected himself to say that not every disagreement is worth leaving, which I agree with and thus would likely avoid your worst-case scenario.

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You said: So how many people do I have to meet that aren't the typical puppy-kicker fire-and-brimstone Christian before they become more than just an exception to the rule?

I said it is subjective and that hasnt changed. How many "exceptions to the rule" that you meet before your views on a group change is strictly up to you. I cant make a determination for you on that

And I said that it's not completely subjective because in general, it's going to take a MAJORITY of people changing their behavior to mend the stereotype they've built for themselves. It's pretty ridiculous to me to insinuate that it's so subjective that one or two (or even a handful of) people changing their behavior is automatically going to shatter every single stereotype built up about Christians, and Catholics especially. There's a long history of hurt there and pussyfooting around it without actually trying to think of a tangible solution doesn't get anything done.

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Here you go again, unfounded and factually unsubstantiated accusations of the church I happen to be a part of.

Ya know what? Lets put this issue to bed right now. For the last time.

Alright, let's do it. Let's see...

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The reason why condoms are not being used in Africa is because of a psuedo-macho belief that condoms harm a mans masculinity. The average african male will not use them at all because of their own cultural beliefs. Dont even get me started on some of their other cultural beliefs like "raping a virgin will cure your HIV/AIDS"

You mean one of the reasons. And that's if they even have access to contraception and know what it is and how to use it. Which, I might add, many people don't, given their sex education is poor at best and nonexistent at worst. I have a friend in Peace Corps in Cameroon right now and has been holding monthly citywide health fairs to show people how to put a condom on, and we're talking people who are well past their teens and twenties.

Next.

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Now to get on with Cardinal Alphonse Lopez Trujillo's comment. According to the CDC a condom can not under any circumstances completely (meaning 100%) protect you against pregnancy or contracting the HIV/AIDS virus. The numbers rage at about 98% effectiveness but that is still not 100% (if it were any other number I wouldnt care about the numbers but I believe that teaching people that a condom can garatee protection when it cant is dangerous). 

Spermazoan have a size of about 5 micrometers by 3 micrometers and with a tail that measures around 50 micrometers. The HIV/AIDS virus has a diameter of 1/10,000th of a milimeter (if you dont care to do the math that means the HIV/AIDS virus is significantly smaller then a single spermazoan). Both the spermazoan and the HIV/AIDS virus has a small enough size to slip through the microscopic holes in condoms but they dont always do so

Yes, I am well aware of the failure rates of various methods of birth control, but let's just talk about the logic you're defending here. Even though condoms cannot completely protect against HIV/AIDS, how does that negate its usefulness for people who continue to have sex regardless of this fact? Indeed, this is bolded because it's important -- or would you perhaps like to argue with me over the effectiveness of abstinence-only education? I shouldn't think we need to, considering the evidence against it is pretty damning and even hurts the Pope's message about it even more -- that those who are given abstinence-only education are even more likely to engage in unprotected sex. So not only is he promoting an idea that doesn't work, he's promoting an idea that potentially puts people in even more danger. Not really sure how you can try and justify that because I'm not making these things up, as you like to unfairly accuse me of.

Let's summate it a bit: With typical use failure rates involved, if you can prevent something like 86 out of 100 people from spreading HIV/AIDS to their partner, why in the world would you say "Oh, but 14 people will get it anyway, guess everyone has to suffer!" Logic, please?

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The comment that most people harp on about is this, said by Cardinal Alphonse Lopez Trujillo sometime before 2003: "Condoms do not protect against the HIV virus".

What people dont understand is the Cardinal was talking about the 10% of people that would not be protected by the use of condoms (that 10% being according to a study done by the WHO earlier that year). To him and many of the Cardinals that handle matters of health concern the chance of 10% of a population being infected was to many, I would dare say that even 1% would be to many for them. It was unthinkable for them to condone something that was not safe for everyone all the time. To them condoms promoted promiscuity which in turn increased the problem (there is misunderstood context in what the problem is as well).

How do you know he meant that? Please provide quotes of his correction of intent so I can be sure it's not simply you speaking on his behalf through your own filter.

And your logic fails again. regardless. Choosing not to save 90 people because 10 others might contract AIDS/HIV is horrific. How can you even defend that as being pro-life? How is that doing God's work? Could you maybe explain to me the rationale of why letting 100 people contract AIDS/HIV and most likely die is better than the failure rate of about 10 or so? That's pretty terrible logic no matter which way you slice it, and speaking of statements that are unfounded, let's talk about the old "promiscuity" adage, shall we?

This goes back to abstinence only education time and time again and is a tired talking point by the conservative right (who ironically usually end up being slut-shamers and not terribly sex-positive to begin with) . If you offer people birth control, sure, maybe a few more will choose to have sex because of its availability, but it has not been proven in any demonstratable way outside of conservative horror stories to scare their women into keeping their legs shut to be any kind of phenomenon outside of a negligible number of people. But allow me to do the homework for you, since apparently "time and time again", I just seem to make this stuff up.

The Church has been telling people for YEARS not to have sex til marriage, and it's ineffective, plain and simple, and yet, they're not willing to try and protect even 90% of the people who do it anyway, choosing instead to let 100% live a life of disease and eventual premature death. Again, please do try and explain this logic to me, how making everyone suffer because of 10% is benevolent.

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To complicate matters Cardinal Trujillo made his statements about condoms in Italian, meaning there was a mistake in the translation. Often when he, the other cardinals, and the pope refered to the "tiny holes" in a condom they would specifically talk about the microscopic holes left in the material that allow spermazoan to rarely pass through. However translations always came out as Tiny holes, making people think that the church's leaders were specifically talking about small holes that you could slide a needle or even pen through. That is not the case and it never has been

He's still wrong.

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In the proper context "the problem" was not the chance for condoms to break nor was it the chance for spermazoan or the virus to pass through. In fact it didnt even deal with condoms except in the loosest terms, instead it was societal. The problem was, to them, infedelity and promiscuity that condoms promoted but also it was a question of souls.

According to who? What proper context? Are you friends with him or do you have more substantial evidence of his intent?

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There it is, I hope this is the last time I will have to teach birth control to Elliquiy :P

Condescending tone is unnecessary given I have a good understanding of how birth control works and have already pointed out flaws in your own explanation that are plainly false. Good talk.

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Then why do you demand that the Pope or vatican be the ones the must change for us to prove ourselves worthy of redemption in your eyes? If you agree with me that a group is the people and not the leader then it shouldnt matter one way or another what they say/do. You already have the stereotype broken. If you believe it must be a mix of teh people and the leader then thats much harder to quantify but also more important to do so IMO

Because the leader speaks to a group and if the group is complacent and okay with that leader representing them while remaining and reaping the benefits of being in the group, then they're supporting his behavior. You want to change things, you claim you "distance yourself" from what you disagree with, that you aren't like the rest, but you just spent the last few paragraphs defending their behavior and justifying blatantly bad information. It's not an issue with other people not understanding you necessarily, it can very well be an issue of the message you're sending, whether or not you mean it.

By the way, some extra credit reading:
Condoms and promiscuity
Pope manipulates science on condoms (This article actually talks about how Catholics who work to prevent the spread of AIDS/HIV should be ANGRY with him, given he's reversing their work, and yet, they remain in the same group lead by him. Great logic.)
Also: Pope says condoms okay for male prostitutes ...But apparently not for people who could actually benefit the most from them. And as long as those male prostitutes are only fucking women. Because that's such a large population.

Edited for some additional references and rewording to clarify myself.
« Last Edit: February 17, 2011, 05:11:43 PM by Noelle »

Offline Brandon

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #32 on: February 17, 2011, 05:54:57 PM »
It's personal to insinuate that I'm only posting to "provoke" or "embarrass" you, but taking a page out of your book, "agree to disagree". I also feel you've been in many conversations where it goes in one ear and out the other, but dragging it out into other threads is inappropriate, and if you'd like to disagree with me there, perhaps we can take it up with the mods.

No, rather the bother the staff with anything regarding people I instead use the ignore feature. However I save that for people who continually attack or try to provoke me without any signs of remorse. You arent there quite yet

Implied and then corrected himself to say that not every disagreement is worth leaving, which I agree with.

I agree with that too, that doesnt change the context of the moment.

And I said that it's not completely subjective because in general, it's going to take a MAJORITY of people changing their behavior to mend the stereotype they've built for themselves. It's pretty ridiculous to me to insinuate that it's so subjective that one or two (or even a handful of) people changing their behavior is automatically going to shatter every single stereotype built up about Christians, and Catholics especially. There's a long history of hurt there.

The answer hasnt changed and you have only helped prove my point. How many people you have to meet that do not fall within a stereotype before that stereotype is broken is completely up to the individual. Thus subjective

Yes, I am well aware of the failure rates of various methods of birth control, but even though condoms cannot completely protect against HIV/AIDS, how does that negate its usefulness for people who continue to have sex regardless of this fact? Or would you perhaps like to argue with me over the effectiveness of abstinence-only education, because the evidence is pretty damning. When millions of people are suffering, ANYTHING you can do to ease that is something worth doing no matter how hard you try and justify it otherwise. With typical use, if you can prevent something like 86 out of 100 people from spreading HIV/AIDS to their partner, why in the world would you say "Oh, but 14 people will get it anyway, guess everyone has to suffer!"

You missed the most important point I brought up in that entire section of text and went right to attacking the church again. How can I change your view when you dismiss important information thats given to you?

How do you know he meant that? Please provide quotes of his correction of intent.

This is required reading: http://www.wf-f.org/LopezTrujilloonAIDS.html

Much of it is rhetoric and if I understand his state of mind/body for the time he was suffering from mental trauma as well as his diabetes when this interview was done.

And your logic fails again. Choosing not to save 90 people because 10 others are going to die is horrific. How can you even defend that as being pro-life? How is that doing God's work?

Thats an opinion, not a fact and it also neglects the most important piece of information I gave you in that whole block of text. Read it again, if you cant find what Im talking about then I have my doubts as to whether or not it will ever stick in your mind.

It's unthinkable for them to promote something that will save 90 people, but letting 100 contract AIDS/HIV and die is okay. That's pretty terrible logic no matter which way you slice it, and speaking of statements that are unfounded, let's talk about the old "promiscuity" adage, shall we?

Again opinion, not fact. Cardinal Trujillo certainly disagreed with you and even went so far as to say condoms should be labled as "These are not safe" or "These are not completely safe". I do not disagree with him in that regard

This goes back to abstinence only education time and time again and is a tired talking point by the conservative right. If you offer people birth control, sure, maybe a few more will choose to have sex, but it's a negligible number, and compared to telling them to not have sex at all, has a greater benefit for the overall population. The Church has been telling people for YEARS not to have sex til marriage, and it's ineffective, plain and simple, and yet, they're not willing to try and protect even 90% of the people who do it anyway, instead damning 100% to a life of disease. Again, please do try and explain this logic to me, how making everyone suffer because of 10% is benevolent.

Again, missing the most important point I made. I cant comment till you find what Im talking about

He's still wrong.

For the time no he was not. Remember the comments were made in 2003. I remember back during a tour in Iraq when I got to go on R&R we got the condom talk and the microscopic holes idea was still being spouted then (it was also being taught that way in 1996 during my high school health class and in late 2007 when I was dating a nurse). I dont know when exactly the education changed but I do know when people talk about the church saying that "condoms increase the problem" they always quote Cardinal Trujillo

According to who? And again, the condom-promiscuity thing is largely unfounded, so unless you've got evidence that says condoms make people sleep around, please stop being hypocritical and accusing me of a lack of evidence.

According to me. As a younger man I was promiscuous because birth control gave me some measure of protection. 1. I had protection against STDs 2. I didnt have to worry about economic problems because if I used them right I wouldnt get a girl pregnant.

Today things are a bit different for me, I have a great pair of girlfriends that I love and am mostly manogimous. Occasionally I get that itch to find another for a 1 night stand. Knowing that I have a means to protect myself does make me want to have sex with more women but in my relationship its clear that if I do there will be no sex until I come back with a clean test. Thats how our relationship works. From my point of view condoms do give some measure of protection which promotes promiscuity in myself

Im not prepared to say they promote promiscuity in all guys, but I do think they promote sex. I mean lets be honest here unless were trying to have kids (or cant) we all use protection in our relationships. Why? because it helps remove some of the risk of unprotected sex.

Condescending tone is unnecessary given I have a good understanding of how birth control works and have already pointed out flaws in your explanation. Good talk.

*vows to never try the lighten the mood in P&R again*

Because the leader speaks to a group and if the group is complacent and okay with that leader representing them while remaining and reaping the benefits of being in the group, then they're supporting his behavior.

So if I understand you correctly, you were totally fine with every leader you have ever had in your entire life? Every US President, every Sherriff, every judge, every Senator, and even the head cheerleader? I wanted to make sure I pointed out the absurdity in that statement first

Beyond that there are some facts you are neglecting. 1. The members of the catholic church do not get to choose the Pope. Before Pope Benedict was given his position I didnt know he existed, I did not vote him into his position nor did we hold a big contest where the winner got to be Pope. 2. As was pointed out and seems to have been forgotten there is a big difference between idealogical differences and irreconcilable differences.

By the way, what exactly are the benefits I reap as being part of the church?

By the way, some reading:
Condoms and promiscuity
Pope manipulates science on condoms (This article actually talks about how Catholics who work to prevent the spread of AIDS/HIV should be ANGRY with him, given he's reversing their work, and yet, they remain in the same group lead by him. Great logic.)
Also: Pope says condoms okay for male prostitutes ...But apparently not for people who could actually benefit the most from them.

There is a couple things that jump out at me on the first article.

"Firstly, there is the symbolic nature of saying such a thing just before a tour of a continent so ravaged by HIV. Secondly, and this is where I take particular issue with his words, is the suggestion that condom distribution "risks aggravating" the HIV epidemic. This is categorically not true and risks inflaming an already fragile situation. There is considerable resistance from certain sections of African society - typically men - to using condoms. They see it as emasculating and unnecessary. Years of work have gone into trying to reduce the stigma attached to condom use in Africa, and while Catholics in the West, such as Katharine, are liberated and able freely to choose to adhere or ignore the Vatican's stance on condoms, this luxury is not afforded to those in Africa, particularly women. "

Again misunderstanding of what they mean by "the problem"

"HIV transmission routes are complex, particularly in a continent as vast as Africa. The lorry drivers who shift freight up and down the Trans-Africa highways significantly compound the problem. If they visit brothels or use prostitutes in the cities when away from home they are at high risk of HIV infection. On their return home they infect their unsuspecting wives. In a place where treatment is scarce and a diagnosis of HIV signals a death sentence, the stigma is such that many would rather not know their status. Those women who are breastfeeding or who fall pregnant then risk infecting their children. Whole families can be wiped out. Fidelity doesn't protect these women or their children. "

Am I the only one that looks at this and goes huh? If these men had not been sleeping with other people how would their wives have gotten infected? How would they? It goes against rule 1 of abstinence, you cant get an STD if you dont have sex

The second article again misunderstands what he meant by the problem.

As for the third article I do not see anywhere where he says that it is not ok for others to use them but you still make it a point of putting those words in his mouth. Also for the third? time people confuse what he meant by the problem.

Offline Braioch

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #33 on: February 17, 2011, 06:38:29 PM »
I maybe stepping out of this argument for reasons that you two are displaying right now. You might want to chill on the subtle bits of sniping before you guys get your behinds.

It's not going to help either of your points.

As for me, I'm done with flagellating this deceased equine gentleman and lady, I bid you adieu.

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Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #34 on: February 17, 2011, 06:42:47 PM »
Couldn't have said it better m'self.

Offline Panthean

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #35 on: March 15, 2011, 08:19:27 AM »
Aloha, I haven't actually been on E for about a half a year, but an email alert brought me back and blah blah blah, I saw this.

It seems that there's a lot of argument over homosexuality, promiscuity, and other various sexual immorality on this thread; well, it makes since that those are the topics covered, given the site. I've read through most of this stuff, but I want to point out a few things.

42% of Protestants in America think homosexuality is morally acceptable and  62% of Catholics in America believe homosexuality is morally acceptable.  Protestants are 56% of America and Catholics are 22%, comprising a total 78% of America.  Thus roughly 28% of Christians in America are Catholic and 72% are Protestant.  Using these numbers we can calculate what percentage of Christians in America believe homosexuality is morally acceptable.

28% * 62% + 72%*42% = 17.36% + 30.24% = 47.6%

Thus the majority of Christians in America do not believe that homosexuality is morally acceptable (a slim majority I'll admit).  This kind of blows away your entire argument.  You're trying to downplay the numbers to make your point.  It's definitely quite true that not all Christians are opposed to homosexuality, but there's a reason that Christians are associated with this, and it's not unreasonable that they are.

sources:
http://www.gallup.com/poll/135764/Americans-Acceptance-Gay-Relations-Crosses-Threshold.aspx
http://www.gallup.com/poll/124793/This-Christmas-78-Americans-Identify-Christian.aspx

Jude brings up some statistics and it seems like he's trying to make the point that most Christians are in fact opposed to homosexuality. While statistics are hard to argue with, do look at what the statistics are. It's a long way from simply being opposed to homosexuality, and being hateful and condemning of the GLBT community. Personally, while I don't necessarily condone homosexual activity, I don't much stand against it. If God really did intend for people to become this way, then who am I to oppose Him? There is no way I can know what other's truly feel in their hearts and in their very souls; the only thing I know for sure is what I feel, and the only thing I can be certain of is that I am not a homosexual. In any case, even if you are a fundamental Christian, and you DO believe that homosexuals are all going to go to Hell, it does not give you any right to openly condemn the GLBT community; if you really do feel that way, then who are you to judge? Judgement, as all of us Christians believe, is in God's hands; it is not our place, and all that is asked of us is to love God, and to love thy neighbor. If you love God, then you wouldn't sin against Him; and if you love your neighbor, then you wouldn't sin against them. If you really do believe that homosexuals are going to Hell, then it is not your place to stand in front of government buildings condemning homosexuality; if you really do believe this, and you are also not a hypocrite, then what you should really be doing extensive and in-depth outreach to the GLBT community. The main problem with some of these "evangelists" seems to be that they AREN'T evangelizing, they're doing their own will in God's name instead of doing His will.

Another topic brought up repeatedly is other forms of sexual immorality and indecency. Personally, I believe that this particular form of sexual promiscuity, that is, erotic literary roleplaying, is wrong; that's why I quit. Each person must decide what causes him or her to fall into sin though, not what others say or do; it is only God's place to judge some-one as sinful. If you look into the Old Testament, you will find quite a bit of things that are considered taboo today, such as polygamy, slavery, etc. The reason for such dramatic change is that the times have changed. In ancient days, when God said to "go forth and be fruitful and multiply," there was a specific reason for that; the reason is simple: the human race was in its beginnings, if they had not done so, we wouldn't be here. If you know anything about epigenetics, which I encourage you all to research in your own time, then you may know that as the human population rises and falls, there will be a varying ratio of men to women. In ancient times, when the population was much lower, there were more woman. The reason is biologically simple: woman can only bear one pregnancy at a time. For this very reason, polygamy was acceptable.

A huge reason for abstaining from sex until marriage is based in the simple idea that if you've never screwed around with anyone except your wife, then you're a lot less likely to go running around and chasing other woman (and vice versa). This is predominantly a social factor, and biologically, there's almost nothing going on. Humans, biologically, are not so well suited for monogamy, but I like to believe that abstaining from sex until marriage will make it all the more better, and at least make that love more special.

Back to the main topic, the Christian stereotype. Everyone forms stereotypes, whether or not they intend to do so. I have stereotypes that I try to keep from clouding my judgement, but I know I'm not perfect. The point being, even if you do find that you have a negative stereotype, it's okay, you have this condition that is widely known as being human; if you know you have a stereotype, your just one step closer to eliminating it. The negative connotation that is becoming associated with Christians seems to be that they are forcing their beliefs on others, and that they're condemning everyone who isn't like them. There are some Christians who do this, but they are not the majority; they're loud, obnoxious, and rude, so they get put on the news, and they get all the attention. Most of these Christians, as I pointed out earlier, are ignoring a fundamental law that Christ himself gave to us, to love one another as we are loved by God. As far as our beliefs being, as I have heard so many times, "forced down your children's throats," consider this: the public school system teaches the sciences; it teaches it in such a way that it is assumed to be the absolute truth, when, in fact, science is constantly changing and is unarguably flawed. History is taught in the same fashion, and if you look into history enough in your own time, you'll find that a lot of the things you learned in school are already written off due to some more recent discovery, and the same happens with most of the sciences. BUT, a large majority of the children in this country are taught in such a way anyways, so who is forcing who's beliefs down who's throats? It is important to approach everything with an opened, but critical mind: even the things you are absolutely sure you know.

Ultimately, we Christians do want to build a stereotype of ourselves, but not a negative one, we want a positive stereotype. The majority of us realize that as followers of Christ, we are also ambassadors of Christ. This means that we must constantly represent the grace and love of the Lord to all of those we meet. People who shout and condemn others are completely misrepresenting the Kingdom, and as I have already read in this thread a few times: it's just like the fundamental Muslims, they are the few, and the great majority of those who really do believe in Christ and follow his teachings are not like that.

Offline Bayushi

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #36 on: March 16, 2011, 01:08:46 PM »
We're all wrong in some ways on the subject, and right in others.

The problem with the entire issue regarding the issues of Contraception and homosexuality is that there seems to be very little of a middle ground.

With most of the groups participating in the discussion being so diametrically opposed to one another, progress on these issues is not likely to happen, and people will suffer (and die) as a result. To me, much of what is going on is simply a massive ego trip.

The gay community's worst enemy in their efforts to be legally recognized is the gay community. Which is why, as a lesbian, I have separated myself from this community, wanting no part in their reverse bigotry towards those with differing views, and often towards people who are simply heterosexual. I do not claim that all members of the community are like this, but the militant few cause the lion's share of the problems.

The same can be said for the religious communities that protest any attempt to give homosexuals equal rights under the law. I myself was once Catholic, and later on Lutheran (family church). Since I've become an adult, I've started seeing more and more in the religious community that I did not want any part of. So, I left. I'm not an atheist, but an agnostic, having chosen that I don't need a stuffy old fart in a robe to be able to believe in a higher power.

The problem we're having is that we're using stereotypes at all. I base my opinions of people how they act as individuals, not by their religious affiliation. One of my best friends in High School and awhile past was Mormon; yet I cannot stand to be around many of the Mormons I've met in my life. I did not hold her faith against her, as I wouldn't anyone else.

Brandon is a rare openly Christian individual I've encountered online who wasn't an outright asshole about the subject of homosexuality. Most of the aforementioned people are the type that are ready to label gay people they meet as "fags" immediately, then dismiss them outright. That is, if they don't go on a trolling spree.  I don't judge Brandon by his religion, nor do I judge him by the actions of others who share that religion.

I don't blame all Muslims for the actions of September 11th 2001, just the Muslims who planned and/or committed the atrocities themselves. I have the life experience of knowing various Muslims to know better than that.

As adults, we should all have learned by now to judge people by their actions, not the actions of others who share interests (including religion). Do you believe all Mexicans to be members of their drug cartels, or illegal immigrants? Do you believe all Pakistani immigrants to be terrorists like Major Nidal Hassan (the Fort Hood shooter)? Do you believe anyone wearing a turban is an Islamic terrorist (Outside of the fact that those wearing turbans are usually Sikhs, not Muslims)? Do you believe that every American that owns a gun is as guilty as Jared Loughner in the shooting deaths of 14 people and almost killing Congresswoman Giffords?

Do you now realize how childish this sounds?
« Last Edit: March 16, 2011, 01:10:01 PM by Akiko »

Offline Revolverman

Re: Christian Sterotypes
« Reply #37 on: March 16, 2011, 05:46:21 PM »
Extremely well said Akiko