Did Planned Parenthood commit fraud against Aurora, or are officials in on it?

Backdrop....

From the Chicago Tribune, July 27, 2007:

Neighbors who drive by the bustling construction site in Aurora think they are seeing the completion of the "Gemini Health Center," just as the sign says....

But in a few weeks the sign will be changed to reflect the true owners of the building: Planned Parenthood....

"Frankly, I'm surprised we were able to keep it a secret for so long," said Steve Trombley, president and chief executive officer of Planned Parenthood/Chicago Area.... "We didn't want anything to interfere with the opening...."

That the clinic was kept hush-hush for so long was no accident. Planned Parenthood adopted the strategy after a 2004 boycott by contractors stalled work for two months on a clinic in Austin, Texas....

From the Aurora Beacon News, July 29, 2007:

Aurora's Planning and Development Committee approved the final plan for the medical complex on Nov. 16, 2006.... The owner was listed as Gemini Office Development LLC, a subsidiary of Planned Parenthood....

It's one thing to play cards close to the vest; it's another to intentionally conceal information in legal documents and in legal city hearings.

On City of Aurora permit applications, Gemini never stated it was part of PP. On each of its construction applications dated March 23, 2006, July 27, 2006, November 22, 2006, and December 4, 2006, it listed "Gemini Office Development" as owner and "Gemini Office Development" as tenant.

Then on its March 22, 2007, application for signage, Gemini stated the tenant was "UNKNOWN AT THIS TIME," which was clearly untrue:

(Click to enlarge)

Additionally, in a November 16, 2006, City of Aurora Planning & Development Committee meeting, the Gemini representative purposefully concealed the tenant when asked directly. He even allowed Alderman Lynda Elmore, a member of the committee and in whose ward PP was being built, to speculate that townhouse occupants across the street "should be very happy."

Speaking of that meeting and all those city officials, is it possible not one of them, nor the mayor nor any aldermen, knew the truth? None were in cahoots with PP?

(Click to enlarge)

(Click to enlarge)

At a minimum, the City of Aurora should launch an official and legal investigation, questioning the applicant and tenant under oath about statements on applications and in meetings.

If the City does not, is something more going on, a cover-up? Did some officials know that the public documents filed and statements made by the applicant were false? Did some officials know the tenant was to be an abortion provider, but then conspired with Gemini to keep it quiet to avoid politically unfavorable publicity?

If Aurora sweeps this under the proverbial rug, is it not sending a signal that applicants for licensure may lie with impunity? Is it saying it doesn't matter that this applicant was untruthful when it is obvious to the rest of the world it knew full well who would be the tenant?

Would the lesson then be that the current municipal government overlooks blatant misrepresentations of the truth? If citizens may lie to occupancy permit officials, may they also lie to police officers? Or at city council meetings? Where will Aurora draw the line between permissible and impermissible lies?

Or is it that lying is permitted for political purposes? That is, lying is okay in politics so long as it protects incumbents and keeps voters in the dark about potentially embarrassing decisions?

[HT: CitizenLink.com]

_______________

Chicago Tribune story:

Chicago Tribune - Chicago, Ill.
Author: Bonnie Miller Rubin
Date: Jul 27, 2007
Section: News
Document Types: News
Text Word Count: 1221

Neighbors who drive by the bustling construction site in Aurora think they are seeing the completion of the "Gemini Health Center," just as the sign says. So do the painters, carpenters, electricians and other tradesmen who have been working on the project for the last eight months.

But in a few weeks the sign will be changed to reflect the true owners of the building: Planned Parenthood. At 22,000 square feet, this is among its larger facilities in the nation, providing a wide range of women's health services -- including abortions.

Growth in the counties Aurora straddles -- DuPage, Will, Kendall and Kane -- has created an intense need for more comprehensive and affordable women's health care. And while the majority of patients come to Planned Parenthood for birth control, testing for gynecological cancers or screening for sexually transmitted diseases, it is the abortions that have made this a stealth venture almost 35 years after Roe vs. Wade, which legalized abortion nationwide.

"Frankly, I'm surprised we were able to keep it a secret for so long," said Steve Trombley, president and chief executive officer of Planned Parenthood/Chicago Area, carefully avoiding a freshly painted wall as he offered a tour of the facility. "We didn't want anything to interfere with the opening ... and, at this point, I don't anticipate anything will stop that from happening."

The $7.5 million facility at 240 N. Oakhurst Drive, in DuPage County, adjacent to a Dominick's, is scheduled to open Sept. 18. In the planning stages since 2002, it is Planned Parenthood's first full-service site in the Chicago area in 20 years and the only one to perform abortions outside of a Near North Side Chicago location. Private donors contributed $5 million toward its construction.

It would be the only clinic performing abortions in Aurora; another clinic closed last year after its doctor retired.

As of Thursday, not a single protester had appeared on the scene. But even at this late date, anti-abortion activists vow to create some hurdles to abortion in Aurora.

"It is not going to be possible to stop construction," conceded Ann Scheidler, executive director of the Pro-Life Action League. "It's probably more a matter of damage control at this point."

Scheidler said the league is bringing to town the executive director of the anti-abortion group STOPP, which seeks to shutter Planned Parenthood, to a strategy meeting scheduled for Aug. 16.

Avoiding builder boycotts

That the clinic was kept hush-hush for so long was no accident. Planned Parenthood adopted the strategy after a 2004 boycott by contractors stalled work for two months on a clinic in Austin, Texas. The boycott, organized by a concrete contractor, pressured subcontractors with being blacklisted from future employment. The contractor ended up quitting the job, and Planned Parenthood acted as its own general contractor to finish the facility.

Still, the tactic was heralded as a new economic tool in the arsenal of abortion foes.

As in Austin, word of the Aurora clinic was leaked to anti-abortion forces by a contractor, Scheidler said.

"He knew there was a recovery room. It was obviously a surgery center of some sort. I guess the bullet-proof glass and all the security, the security cameras, made him concerned," she said.

Aurora Councilman Chris Beykirch, who represents that part of the city, said he learned that Planned Parenthood was building the clinic only last week. The property was zoned for a medical/office building, however, so the city could not have blocked construction -- not that it should have tried, he said. He said he was disappointed that the agency felt it was necessary to be secretive.

The project appears to be full-steam ahead. A staff of 24 -- answering "help wanted" ads for an unnamed clinic -- is being hired. The sleek cabinetry and faux wood floors are in place. The airy examining and recovery rooms are almost complete. It has a large conference room where the employees can meet with civic groups.

"We want to introduce ourselves to the community ... rather than be defined by our adversaries," Trombley said.

Kendall County is the nation's second-fastest-growing county, increasing by 62 percent from April 2000 to July 2006, according to U.S. Census Bureau data released last month. "This is a medically underserved area," Trombley said.

The full-service Chicago clinic is 35 miles away, a significant hurdle for Aurora's low-income and uninsured population.

"This is a conservative community -- but teens are very sexually active," said Wendy Fegenhols, who recently retired from the DuPage County Health Department and serves on the Illinois Caucus for Adolescent Health. "Anyone who is in contact with the school population recognizes the need."

While teen pregnancy rates have declined during the last decade, sexually transmitted infections -- specifically, chlamydia and HIV -- have steadily increased in DuPage, Kane, Will and Kendall Counties, according to state health officials.

Indeed, Planned Parenthood has opened three suburban "express" sites -- in Naperville, Schaumburg and Orland Park -- which mostly offer birth control and testing for sexually transmitted infections. The closest site to the new facility, in Naperville, logged more than 13,700 visits last year.

Foes plan protests

Planned Parenthood may have won the battle by building the Aurora clinic in secrecy, but the war is far from over, anti-abortion forces vowed. The Pro-Life Action League held a strategy session on the clinic Thursday and decided to begin picketing the site Aug. 22. The group intends to target not only the clinic, said Scheidler, but customers of nearby businesses as well.

"We will be out protesting with our ugly graphic pictures that everyone hates. People don't want to go shopping or go to the dentist with those pictures out there," Scheidler said.

Such tactics are precisely what have residents of the nearby Oakhurst subdivision concerned, said Homeowners Association President Jonathan Lack. The community of 2,200 homes -- more than half are single-family residences -- could best be described as "conservative and Republican."

He predicted that among residents, "very few people are going to be in the 'I don't care' camp. ...

"It is a lightening-rod issue for a lot of people on both sides of it," Lack said. "Having protesters on both sides does not really fit with the neighborhood aesthetic."

brubin@tribune.com
jkimberly@tribune.com


Comments:

Jill, do you know if this Planned Parenthood will be performing abortions?

Posted by: Heather at August 28, 2007 10:56 AM


Yes, it will, Heather.

Posted by: Jill Stanek at August 28, 2007 11:26 AM


Tonight's Aurora City Council meeting should be very interesting.

Posted by: John Jansen at August 28, 2007 1:42 PM


I'll expect a full report...I WANT TO BE THERE TONITE!!!!!

Posted by: mk at August 28, 2007 3:52 PM


Jill -

Don't you understand that the poor, meek, and humble Planned Parenthood couldn't be truthful to the public? What would they do if there were protesters while they were building? They may have been forced to explain to the surrounding business who they are and what they do. Now, is that what you really want for the great and wonderful non-profit organizational giant? You know they don't have any money at all to handle those horrible protestors that hold up signs of aborted babies in front of their business. They have no support at all, you know!

ugggg.....

Where's Bethany's puking emoticon when I need it. I think my sarcasm just made me sick!

Posted by: valerie at August 28, 2007 4:25 PM


More Pictures of the Aurora Abortuary Protest (See Post# 23)...

http://forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?p=2645856

Mike

Posted by: Mike at August 28, 2007 4:58 PM


Not that the article in the Beacon News was biased or anything!

It sounds like a PR piece written by PP!

Posted by: Christina at August 28, 2007 6:34 PM


Cahoots? I haven't heard that since I left Illinois. You know Jill you look exactly like an old friend of mine if she bleached her hair blond. Lori is still a brunette but your facial features are remarkably simular. Are you a Norwegian by any chance? Have any familly from Rockford?

Posted by: Sally at August 28, 2007 7:43 PM


Okay,

JUST FOR FUN:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=chvsqMgPKhk

I wonder if this guy was sentient? How's that for bodily autonomy?!?!?!?! LOL

Posted by: mk at August 28, 2007 9:03 PM


"Did some officials know the tenant was to be an abortion provider, but then conspired with Gemini to keep it quiet to avoid politically unfavorable publicity?"

I say -Yes. I think this is too big of a project for the planning board of Aurora not to know what service this "medical center" was providing. sneaky basterds.

Posted by: jasper at August 28, 2007 9:08 PM


GUESS WHAT GUESS WHAT!!!

I had an audition today. WITHIN A HALF HOUR of leaving...they called and said they wanted me to come back for callbacks. ROCK.

Posted by: Erin at August 28, 2007 9:18 PM


"WITHIN A HALF HOUR of leaving...they called and said they wanted me to come back for callbacks."

That a good sign Erin, good for you!

Posted by: jasper at August 28, 2007 9:22 PM


MK,

for some reason my virus blocker is blocking that youtube video....not sure why...

Posted by: jasper at August 28, 2007 9:23 PM


Jasper,

Go to youtube and plug Kevin James into the search engine...Then find the one with the midget...Oh My God...How did he do that?

Posted by: mk at August 28, 2007 9:29 PM


Jasper,

It's called Kevin James Magic...about the third one down...

Posted by: mk at August 28, 2007 9:30 PM


Erin,

YEAH *!*:::::*!*YIPEE
!* ! !*!

Where's Bethany's emoticons when you need them>!?!?!

What's the part for? When will you know? How will you sleep? Why don't you answer me? How long must I wait?

Posted by: mk at August 28, 2007 9:39 PM


Lol, it's a jazz show called "Love, Johnny", and I am basically willing to take whatever part they give me. Sleep...wow. I don't know. Job...school...study...rehersal...I sense a few cases of sleep madness for this semester.

Posted by: Erin at August 28, 2007 9:43 PM


Well congratulations Love...I'll be waiting for all the details...break a leg...

Posted by: mk at August 28, 2007 9:49 PM


wow MK, that was a neat magic trick! I'm always amazed about they do this stuff...

Posted by: jasper at August 28, 2007 9:57 PM


Pickin' up Doug and Enigma here...

If you're pretending that the fact of the unborn being inside the body of a person makes no difference, here, then you are simply incorrect.

Um, excuse me Doug, correct me if I'm wrong (we both know you will) but isn't the above statement just an example of your valuation...and yet you say that I am incorrect..

Now how is that possible...How can I be incorrect? Oh you must mean because my valuation is different than yours and yours is right....got it.

Posted by: mk at August 28, 2007 10:43 PM


Doug,

if Bubba is just walking down the street, almost everybody says he has right to life, etc., but if he's the attacker it's a different story.


But the unborn baby is NOT an attacker. All he/she did was be in the wrong place at the wrong time, because his/her parents put him/her there...and this to you is a plausible reason to kill him/her...unbelievable!

Posted by: mk at August 28, 2007 10:47 PM


"and what you want in this argument is for right-to-life to be attributed to the unborn."

MK: Well, duh.

Okay, desire and valutation, just as has been said.


And what will happen to your argument if the right to life IS attributed to the unborn?

Posted by: mk at August 28, 2007 10:49 PM


In no way is this just "my valuation." Society is saying it's okay because the unborn are inside the body of a person. Of course some people, you included, disagree with this, but what I said is true - it makes a huge difference that the unborn are inside the body of a person, as opposed to not being there, i.e. born. With birth comes attribution of right to life, etc.

Of course it's your valuation. You and society might agree, but by your own definition, you and society have a different valuation than mine. Therefore the idea that the body of the baby is inside the body of a woman and therefore gives the women the right to kill it, is YOUR valuation, and NOT mine.

Just using your arguments here...

Posted by: mk at August 28, 2007 11:00 PM


Enigma,

On that same vein, just tell me why the fetus’s right to life gives its rights that other human beings (again, going with your terminology) do not have.

What right does the fetus want that ALL human beings do not have...the only right it wants is the right to live...

Posted by: mk at August 28, 2007 11:02 PM


What if the tables were turned and the fetus could live outside the mothers womb but had to kill the mother to do so...would you say that the fetus had the right to end the mothers life so it could live? If it didn't want the mother? If it wanted bodily autonomy?

Posted by: mk at August 28, 2007 11:04 PM


Enigma,

“What if there was anoperation that could separate them, but it wouldn't be allowed until 2009. All they had to do was wait a couple of years, and then they could be separated. But one twin didn't want to wait. The one twin (as Doug has just pointed out) is unwanted by the other twin...”
*
As I tried to point out earlier, neither twin has the right to complete bodily autonomy because of how they were born.
*
“Now what? Does she have a right to kill her sister because she doesn't want to be inconvenienced?”
*
Neither twin would have the right to unilaterally kill the other. Neither could be said to be imposing upon the other’s body either.


Why?

Posted by: mk at August 28, 2007 11:05 PM


Enigma,

Neither twin would have the right to unilaterally kill the other. Neither could be said to be imposing upon the other’s body either.

You're kidding right? They can't even take a pee in private, let alone get married and have any kind of normal sex...besides, the fact that one twin is not wanted by the other, is enough of a reason according to you and Doug. Nothing else is needed.

One twin isn't wanted and is infringing on the bodily autonomy of the other...identical situations.


Posted by: mk at August 28, 2007 11:08 PM


Apparently I'm in the wrong thread again. I'll correct that momentarily.

Posted by: Enigma at August 28, 2007 11:29 PM


MK,

“We believe there is no difference between a baby and fetus. They are the same thing.”

Medically untrue. The two terms denote different developmental stages.

“I believe that an unborn child/fetus/human being/embryo/baby/person are all the same thing.”

That is your opinion. Until you can conclusively prove that it is true, I reserve the right to hold my opinion.
Posted by: Enigma at August 28, 2007 10:58 PM

“And to kill one or all is murder. Period. Talk valuation all you want, you'll still have to show me why you think it is okay to kill a person because you are being inconvenienced.”

And you’ll have to show me why you think its okay for one individual (to use your terminology) to impose on another against that other individual’s wishes.

“Just tell me why it is okay to kill another human being/person/baby/fetus/embryo/unborn child that you created by your own choice, simply because your life will be a little messed up for a few months.”

On that same vein, just tell me why the fetus’s right to life gives its rights that other human beings (again, going with your terminology) do not have.
Posted by: Enigma at August 28, 2007 10:58 PM

MK,

“What if there was anoperation that could separate them, but it wouldn't be allowed until 2009. All they had to do was wait a couple of years, and then they could be separated. But one twin didn't want to wait. The one twin (as Doug has just pointed out) is unwanted by the other twin...”

As I tried to point out earlier, neither twin has the right to complete bodily autonomy because of how they were born.

“Now what? Does she have a right to kill her sister because she doesn't want to be inconvenienced?”

Neither twin would have the right to unilaterally kill the other. Neither could be said to be imposing upon the other’s body either.
Posted by: Enigma at August 28, 2007 10:59 PM

Bethany,

“Enigma, are you trying to tell me that bodily autonomy is conditional?”

No, I am not. I simply stated that, in your example, neither twin can be considered to have complete bodily autonomy because of how the twins were born. They were born linked. One egg split incompletely in the womb and as a result two bodies are fused. Before these two individuals are separated (if, indeed, they can be), neither can be said to own a completely independent body. Rather than stating that bodily autonomy is conditional, I am recognizing reality.

“And are you telling me that a woman who is a Siamese twin isn't really a woman?”

Not at all. I am simply recognizing conditions as they exist. Neither twin can be said to be imposing on the other. So why should one be granted the right to kill the other?

“however, they are individuals, not a unit. There are two thinking brains, there are two individual personalities, etc.”

I never meant to imply that they were not individuals. They most certainly are. However, the reality is that they share a body. (Okay, not the best way to word it, since technically, its two bodies who are fused together, but I think you get my meaning).

“But suppose one wanted to be free, Enigma?”

Neither would have that right because neither can be said to be imposing on the other.

“Why does a woman deserve bodily autonomy more just because she hasn't been fused to someone all her life? How is this fair for the woman who is a siamese twin, yet has always wanted to be her own person, when she knows that other women are allowed to control what goes on in their bodies all the time through abortion.”

For starters, life isn’t fair. And this isn't unfair to Siamese twins anyway because your analogy is not entirely feasible. Since the twins were born in that state, neither is imposing on the other. (Sorry, I seem to be repeating that a lot). Neither twin has ever had complete bodily autonomy and never will unless through surgery. There is nothing to restore. In abortion, the woman has previously had bodily autonomy. The fetus can legitimately be said to be imposing upon her. She has every right to request a procedure that will restore her bodily autonomy whereas the Siamese twin would not have this right because there is nothing to restore.
Posted by: Enigma at August 28, 2007 11:11 PM

Doug--Thanks for the support. I appreciate it.
Posted by: Enigma at August 28, 2007 11:12 PM

“Okay...I looked at both of the links. I appreciate your willingness to share them with me. But I have to be honest with you, Enigma. I saw nothing convincing...I genuinely thought you were going to give me something much harder to ignore.”

Sigh. This is what happens when I don’t have cites on hand and have to go searching hurriedly. I have some more.
http://www.archaeologyinfo.com/australopithecusafarensis.htm
http://www.mnh.si.edu/anthro/humanorigins/ha/afar.html


“That skeleton could be 10 years old as far as I can tell...even a couple of years old. Do little people not exist? Will this little man's skeleton be used as proof for evolution when he dies?”
It isn’t simply because it’s a little skeleton. Scientists have techniques that allow them to date fossils and (I believe) to attempt to estimate the age at which the specimen in question died. It’s also a matter of finding the same type of evidence over and over again.

“As for Lucy's skeleton...it's not even pieced together...none of the bones are even touching each other. How can you even tell that their interpretation of where the bones are placed is accurate?”

Of course the bones wouldn’t be touching. Without cartilage, there’s nothing to hold them together. Scientists make judgements about where the bones should be placed based on a.) the skeletal structure of other lifeforms (for the most past, they’re astonishingly similar) b.) any telltall signs in the bones themselves (such as bite marks or rub marks that correspond) and c.) what makes sense. Are they 100% accurate 100% of the time? Probably not. But that does not mean that anything they discover and do research on is false.

“The evolutionist claim that Lucy is the ancestor of human beings was definitively rejected by scientific developments. The above inconclusive anatomical comparisons, as well as new fossil discoveries, made it impossible for Lucy to be placed in the imaginary human family tree, and Lucy fell from grace. The claims to the effect that Lucy was the ancestor of man were literally invalidated.”

Did you read the article about how Lucy’s skeleton is going on tour? No where in that article did it even mention that she might not be a human ancestor. Despite the researchers that you cite, it’s pretty well accepted in the scientific community that she is what I believe her to be. You seem to believe that any dissent in the scientific community means that the conclusion is question is wrong. This is incorrect. Debate within the scientific community is commonplace. It doesn't mean that nothing in science is true. (I read it in the newspaper so I don’t have a link.)
Posted by: Enigma at August 28, 2007 11:26 PM

Posted by: Enigma at August 28, 2007 11:33 PM



Bethany,

Thank you. I have been waiting for this opportunity ever since I took Bio.

“Enigma, also, have you ever tried to explain to yourself the eye? How can something so perfectly designed have happened without a creator?”

Simply put, our eyes are not perfect. If you understand the design, they are actually quite cumbersome. Darwin got it wrong because the technology did not exist at his time to show him how ill-designed our eyes really were. Squid and octopus eyes actually have a design far superior to that of our eyes.

To summarize, in human eyes the receptors for light (the rods and cones) are located at the back of the eye and the nerves (which combine to form the optic nerve and send visually gathered information to the brain) jut out of the front of the receptors instead of the back. This design does not make sense. It means that the nerves, instead of coming neatly out of the back where they would not obscure our vision, snake across the receptor cells until they finally come together at a point and form the optic nerve. This leads to a whole in our vision. Hardly something that a supreme being would want to leave in his “greatest” creation.

Squid and octopus eyes, on the other hand, are designed so that the nerves coming from the receptor cells do not obscure vision.

“...another thing that puzzles me about the whole evolution theory. Why don't we see any half humans/half apes today? Or any half species of any kind? Wouldn't it make sense that there would be some still evolving today, who had not yet completed their transition?”

Not necessarily. For starters, how do know that there aren’t animals out there who are still evolving today? Evolution is not a process that simply stops. It keeps going in subtle steps and increments. These subtle steps and increments which I have mentioned deal only with evolution as it occurs within a single species.

The theory of the punctuated equilibrium can deal with a majority of your questions. According to this theory, large-scale evolutionary change does not occur through the vehicle of natural selection. The idea behind this theory (which is supported by fossil evidence) is that life continued in a fairly stable equilibrium until something suddenly punctures it and new life forms emerge. This likely happened because there were sudden changes in the environment that previous life forms could not survive. That could explain the lack of intermediary forms to which you refer.

“Why have there been findings of red blood cells in a Tyrannosaurus Rex, in your opinion? Aren't they supposed to be over 65 million years old? How could this be possible?”

Because it is completely a matter of how the cells in question are preserved. This holds true for an object. If something is preserved in the appropriate conditions, it will maintain its integrity. How else do you explain the ancient bible that was pulled out of a bog somewhere in the UK? That thing was in pretty shape because it was well-preserved.

Bethany, I would be very interested in seeing your response to this counter.

Posted by: Engima at August 28, 2007 11:36 PM


"What right does the fetus want that ALL human beings do not have...the only right it wants is the right to live..."

You are arguing that the fetus should be able to use other's bodies even if those others do not consent. That is not a right that born people (again, to use your terminology) have.

Posted by: Enigma at August 28, 2007 11:39 PM


It should also be noted that

Gemni
Office
Development

also spells out (in initials) exactly what PP has falsely asserted themselves as in murdering babies.

Posted by: frank at August 29, 2007 4:40 AM


It should also be noted that

Gemni
Office
Development

also spells out (in initials) exactly what PP has falsely asserted themselves as in murdering babies; G.O.D.

I find it hard to believe that the folks at PP let that happen by chance.

Posted by: frank at August 29, 2007 4:42 AM


I went to the meeting... Here are my "minutes" in the form of a letter I sent my family and friends.

http://tinyurl.com/27dpn8

I had to place it on a technical site I own, so if someone can find a better "home" for it that would be good, I would like to eventually remove it from this area.

Joe

Posted by: Joe at August 29, 2007 5:57 AM


Joe,

I didn't realize that all this time you belonged to Rosie...

Thank you so much for that report. I desperately wanted to be there last nite, and you made me feel as though I were...

Any idea when we'll know the outcome? Was anyone (Jill?) there till the end, and what were the final words of the council? Thank God for you and the hundreds of others that showed up to be a voice and witness for the unborn.

You rock!

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 6:27 AM



Enigma,

“What if there was an operation that could separate them, but it wouldn't be allowed until 2009. All they had to do was wait a couple of years, and then they could be separated. But one twin didn't want to wait. The one twin (as Doug has just pointed out) is unwanted by the other twin...”
*
As I tried to point out earlier, neither twin has the right to complete bodily autonomy because of how they were born.
*
“Now what? Does she have a right to kill her sister because she doesn't want to be inconvenienced?”
*
Neither twin would have the right to unilaterally kill the other. Neither could be said to be imposing upon the other’s body either.

*


You still haven't told me WHY?

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 6:30 AM



Simply put, our eyes are not perfect. If you understand the design, they are actually quite cumbersome. Darwin got it wrong because the technology did not exist at his time to show him how ill-designed our eyes really were. Squid and octopus eyes actually have a design far superior to that of our eyes......
Bethany, I would be very interested in seeing your response to this counter.

Enigma, let's just forget the eye for a moment. You believe that you are the product of randomness...that would include your brain and your thinking, correct?
Then how could truth or perfect even exist at all? How can you be sure Darwin was ever wrong or right about anything? How could your randomly evolved brain actually know for sure whether it is making correct assumptions about what you believe? How do you know that anything you or anyone else thinks is "right" or "true"? How can there be a search for truth with such a basis?

Explain to me how you can know truth...explain how truth can exist, if everything in nature is random. Explain to me how your perceptions of the evidence that you see are more valid than mine...if we both evolved randomly and our brains are imperfect, then either both of us are incorrect, or both of our beliefs are just as valid.

About the eye, you are simply making assumptions, based on your presuppositions, and using your randomly evolved brain, basing your argument on an ever changing theories by randomly evolved people, who also, if they believe in evolution, also should believe that there is no way they can know for sure that they are correct about anything. But what is a foundation? Does a foundation for truth actually exist? Can you actually be right? Can you actually be wrong? Or do you constantly seek information that makes sense to you at the time, and ignore the rest that does not make sense to you, because it doesn't really matter anyway?

Posted by: Bethany at August 29, 2007 7:24 AM



You still haven't told me WHY?

EXACTLY, MK...on what do they base these absolute theories, when they claim there are no absolute beliefs?

"It's all about valuation"...how's that for an absolute? LOL

Posted by: Bethany at August 29, 2007 7:26 AM


Are you sure it's an either-or scenario? It could easily be (and I strongly suspect it is) a both-and scenario (Planned Parenthood bribes some officials to overlook the fraud that it's committing).

The City of Aurora should investigate into kickbacks for officials from PP, and file an immediate lawsuit (i'll even be so bold as to suggest a figure--how about $280 billion)!!!

Posted by: Srini Varadarajan at August 29, 2007 8:06 AM


What's the problem?

If there's no need for Planned Parenthood in your community the clinic will close. Both its federal and private funds are alloted on a "per-patient" basis, and if no one goes there the money dries up.
In the meantime, NO ONE is forcing you to go there, so why do you care?

Posted by: Laura at August 29, 2007 8:15 AM


Doug,

It's time to refute this idea that people who hold Christian beliefs are all fruitcakes, believing in fairytales and basing their morals on pipe dreams...

These quotes are taken from Thomas E Woods, PhD.
mostly from the book "How The Catholic Church Built Western Civilization..."

"It’s the same argument we’ve heard so many times before, except now with increasing frequency and intensity: The world’s troubles are caused by religion. If only people would at last abandon these silly superstitions and get with the times."

IMO, you and your ilk are the close minded ones. You seem to think that the Church is only capable of believing in disprovable theories and hogwash...and you often use "science" to back up your claims...Ironically, that very science that you use, wouldn't exist if it weren't for the grand open-mindedness of the Catholic Church. You focus on Gallileo and ignore Aquinas. You harp on Religious wars and ignore the worst culprits of modern time, Stalin, Lenin, Marx and Hitler...All atheists and all haters of the Church and religion in any form...By your logic, I could argue that it is atheists and secular humanists that are responsible for most of the atrocities perpetrated in the 20th century...

So just what are these "great contributions" of the Church.

Well, you wouldn' even have been able to go to school and learn your secular humanism if not for the church...

From HTCCBWC:

"Not mentioned by Knight and Lomas is that it was in "Dark Age" Europe that the university system, a gift of Western civilization to the world, was developed by the Catholic Church. Historians have marveled at the extent to which intellectual debate in those universities was free and unfettered. The exaltation of human reason and its capabilities, a commitment to rigorous and rational debate, a promotion of intellectual inquiry and scholarly exchange-all sponsored by the Church-provided the framework for the Scientific Revolution, which was unique to Western civilization."

"For the last fifty years, virtually all historians of science-including A.C. Crombie, David Lindberg, Edward Grant, Stanley Jaki, Thomas Goldstein and J.L. Heilbron-have concluded that the scientific Revolution was indebted to the Church. The Catholic contribution to science went well beyond ideas-including theological ideas-to accomplish practicing scientists, many of whom were priests.

For example, Father Nicholas Steno, a Lutheran convert who became a Catholic priest, is often identified as the father of geology. The father of Egyptology was Father Anthanasius Kircher. The first person to measure the rate of acceleration of a freely falling body was yet another priest, Father Giambattista Riccioli. Father Roger Boscovich is often credited as the father of modern atomic theory. Jesuits so dominated the study of earthquakes that seismology became dnow as "the Jesuit science".

"...Even though some thirty-five craters on the moon are named for Jesuit scientist and mathematicians, the Church's contributions to astronomy are all but unknown to the average educated American. Yet as J.L. Heilbron of the University of California at Berkeley points out, "The Roman Catholic Church gave more financial aid and social support to the study of astronomy for over six centuries, from the recovery of ancient learning during the late Middle Ages into the Enlightenment, than any other and probably ALL other institutions." Still, the Church's true role in the development of modern science remains one of the best-kept secrets of modern history.

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 8:51 AM


Doug,

Not to mention Champagne!

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 9:01 AM


As for Galileo, It is not that he was not believed or that his ideas were rejected. Quite the contrary, they were well received. Copernicus had already put many of them forth. The problem was, that at the time, they were just theory. Galileo insisted that scripture must be wrong and had to be changed to fit his theory. Church officials said he was crossing "a line" and that until his theories could be prove or at least more evidence was forthcoming then they would have to remain just that. Theories. Galileo was unhappy. The church renounced him. They DID NOT renounce his science, they renounced his obstinacy, and refusal to wait for proof. As to changing scripture...it wasn't a matter of "changing" it, just recognizing that it had been interpreted incorrectly. But without proof, the church wanted to wait.

Here is what Aquinas has to say about being open minded...

"First, the truth of Scripture must be held inviolable. Secondly, when there are different ways of explaining a Scriptural text, no particular explanation should be held so rigidly that, if convincing arguments show it to be false, anyone dare to insist that it still is the definitive sense of the text. Otherwise unbelievers will scorn Sacred Scripture, and the tway to faith will be closed to them."

As you can see, not only was the church responsible for much of the science of astronomy (Copernicus was a Catholic and possibly a priest), it was and is and always will be open to new scientific ideas.

To claim that we are superstitous and backward is only to show your own ignorance on the subject! The Catholic church is more open minded and academic centered than you will ever be.

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 9:19 AM


Of course it's always possible that the church was "just pretending" and Geology, Astronomy, Universities, Mathematics, Music, Art, Agriculture, History, The printing press, etc. were all just figments of those close minded Catholics imaginations!

Heck, if it weren't for Catholics, you'd still believe the sun circled the moon, the earth was flat, be using papyrus instead of the printed word, be referring to Germany as the wilderness, and never have had the pleasure of looking at a Cathedral...

Over and over (and I promise I'll post more...or is that a threat?) the Catholic Church is the one responsible for our modern world. Pretty good for a bunch of country bumpkins that still believe in, dare I say it, a Supreme Being!

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 9:25 AM


Bethany,

I'm also wondering if Enigma believes in the big bang theory or something like it. Most Evolutionists do. Big Bang of course contradicts the first law of thermodynamics
In any process, the total energy of the universe remains constant.
If this holds true, something/someone had to exists before the bang.

Also enigma said fossil records exist that prove evolution....quite the contrary. They still can't find a missing link.....Evolution is a slow process but there was a big explosion and rabid evolution in the cambrian period..huh..which is it slow or rapid. I'm still waiting for a cow to give birth to a dog and then that's the signal that evolution is true.

Interesting enough they just found the oldest diamonds in australia that would once again push the age of the earth back so they can fit their theory. I would get so confused if what I believe constantly changes. Good thing what I know to be true hasn't changed since God wrote it.

Posted by: jessie at August 29, 2007 9:33 AM


Joe: "I went to the meeting... Here are my "minutes" in the form of a letter I sent my family and friends."

Joe, Thanks so much for sharing your minutes and your story, I'm so glad for the pro-life presense at that meeting... The city counsilers would be silly to let this death-mill go forward.

thank-god we have people like yourself standing up for life...

Posted by: jasper at August 29, 2007 9:47 AM


Laura: "What's the problem?

If there's no need for Planned Parenthood in your community the clinic will close. Both its federal and private funds are alloted on a "per-patient" basis, and if no one goes there the money dries up.
In the meantime, NO ONE is forcing you to go there, so why do you care?"


Laura, the devil is speaking through you. reject him.

Posted by: jasper at August 29, 2007 9:50 AM


Jessie, thank you for your comment and I completely agree...especially with this part:

I would get so confused if what I believe constantly changes.

How anyone can truly have ANY Beliefs at all, if they believe all beliefs are arbitrary, is beyond me.


Posted by: Bethany at August 29, 2007 9:53 AM


evolution?

http://www.godtube.com/view_video.php?viewkey=4f1456031fcc05a3afaf&page=1&viewtype=&category=md

Just a little humor...

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 9:54 AM


The Catholic Churches teachings on Evolution:

1950 with Pope Pius XII's encyclical Humani Generis, took up a neutral position with regard to evolution:

"The Church does not forbid that...research and discussions, on the part of men experienced in both fields, take place with regard to the doctrine of evolution, in as far as it inquires into the origin of the human body as coming from pre-existent and living matter." (Pius XII, encyclical Humani Generis)

Pope Pius XII's teaching can be summarized as follows:

* The question of the origin of man's body from pre-existing and living matter is a legitimate matter of inquiry for natural science. Catholics are free to form their own opinions, but they should do so cautiously; they should not confuse fact with conjecture, and they should respect the Church's right to define matters touching on Revelation.
* Catholics must believe, however, that the human soul was created immediately by God. Since the soul is a spiritual substance it is not brought into being through transformation of matter, but directly by God, whence the special uniqueness of each person.
* All men have descended from an individual, Adam, who has transmitted original sin to all mankind. Catholics may not, therefore, believe in "polygenism," the scientific hypothesis that mankind descended from a group of original humans (that there were many Adams and Eves).


************************************************

Pope John Paul II
"...new findings lead us toward the recognition of evolution as more than an hypothesis. (...)" (John Paul II, 1996 [1])
"...new findings lead us toward the recognition of evolution as more than an hypothesis. (...)" (John Paul II, 1996 [1])

In an October 22, 1996, address to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, Pope John Paul II updated the Church's position to accept evolution of the human body:

"In his encyclical Humani Generis (1950), my predecessor Pius XII has already affirmed that there is no conflict between evolution and the doctrine of the faith regarding man and his vocation, provided that we do not lose sight of certain fixed points....Today, more than a half-century after the appearance of that encyclical, some new findings lead us toward the recognition of evolution as more than an hypothesis. In fact it is remarkable that this theory has had progressively greater influence on the spirit of researchers, following a series of discoveries in different scholarly disciplines. The convergence in the results of these independent studies -- which was neither planned nor sought -- constitutes in itself a significant argument in favor of the theory." (John Paul II, Message to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences on Evolution)

In the same address, Pope John Paul II rejected any theory of evolution that provides a materialistic explanation for the human soul:

"Theories of evolution which, because of the philosophies which inspire them, regard the spirit either as emerging from the forces of living matter, or as a simple epiphenomenon of that matter, are incompatible with the truth about man."

************************************************

Pope Benedict XVI

Because of recent statements by Cardinal Schönborn, confusion has arisen over the Church's stance on the compatibility between evolution and Catholic dogma.

The Church has deferred to scientists on matters such as the age of the earth and the authenticity of the fossil record. Papal pronouncements, along with commentaries by cardinals, have accepted the findings of scientists on the gradual appearance of life. In fact, the International Theological Commission in a July 2004 statement endorsed by Cardinal Ratzinger, then president of the Commission and head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, now Pope Benedict XVI, includes this paragraph:

"According to the widely accepted scientific account, the universe erupted 15 billion years ago in an explosion called the 'Big Bang' and has been expanding and cooling ever since. Later there gradually emerged the conditions necessary for the formation of atoms, still later the condensation of galaxies and stars, and about 10 billion years later the formation of planets. In our own solar system and on earth (formed about 4.5 billion years ago), the conditions have been favorable to the emergence of life. While there is little consensus among scientists about how the origin of this first microscopic life is to be explained, there is general agreement among them that the first organism dwelt on this planet about 3.5 - 4 billion years ago. Since it has been demonstrated that all living organisms on earth are genetically related, it is virtually certain that all living organisms have descended from this first organism. Converging evidence from many studies in the physical and biological sciences furnishes mounting support for some theory of evolution to account for the development and diversification of life on earth, while controversy continues over the pace and mechanisms of evolution." (paragraph 63, from "Communion and Stewardship: Human Persons Created in the Image of God," plenary sessions held in Rome 2000-2002, published July 2004)

"A growing body of scientific critics of neo-Darwinism point to evidence of design (e.g., biological structures that exhibit specified complexity) that, in their view, cannot be explained in terms of a purely contingent process and that neo-Darwinians have ignored or misinterpreted. The nub of this currently lively disagreement involves scientific observation and generalization concerning whether the available data support inferences of design or chance, and cannot be settled by theology. But it is important to note that, according to the Catholic understanding of divine causality, true contingency in the created order is not incompatible with a purposeful divine providence. Divine causality and created causality radically differ in kind and not only in degree. Thus, even the outcome of a truly contingent natural process can nonetheless fall within God’s providential plan for creation." (paragraph 69)

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 10:04 AM


mk-

that is great!!

Posted by: jessie at August 29, 2007 10:04 AM


Doug and Enigma,

Imagine! The Catholic Church leaving evolution up to the scientists...Shocking! It must be because we are so backward, we're incapable of forming our own opinions!

If you guys really want to get with the times, you ought to join the Church. She usually arrives places 15 minutes before everyone else.

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 10:09 AM


Doug and Enigma,

Here is what Aquinas has to say about being open minded...
*
"First, the truth of Scripture must be held inviolable. Secondly, when there are different ways of explaining a Scriptural text, no particular explanation should be held so rigidly that, if convincing arguments show it to be false, anyone dare to insist that it still is the definitive sense of the text. Otherwise unbelievers will scorn Sacred Scripture, and the way to faith will be closed to them."

Good Heavens, we sound positively reasonable...for lunatics!

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 10:14 AM


*chokes on candy* Wait a minute, wait a minute. The Catholic church didn't brutally repress science? Hace you heard of this thing called the Spanish Inquisition? Or the case of Galileo? Or was the Spanish Inquisition actually a good thing too?

As for changing belief systems- we have the capacity to think and learn. What we learn changes as we find new things to validate those beliefs. Someone prove to me, with material evidence, that God exists. I'll beg forgiveness. But you can't do that. The fossil record can show me things about evolution and aging. The telescope and physics can tell me things about the universe. As our technology improves, we learn that some things are right, and some are wrong. When you're a little kid, you think that Santa is real. Then it's proven to you otherwise. Thousands of years ago, people believed that there were hundreds of gods. A couple hundred years ago, bloodletting was a good medical practice. So what's changing? What actually works, or our beliefs?

Posted by: Erin at August 29, 2007 10:16 AM


Erin, congratulations on your "Call Back" Nice birthday present, huh?

Posted by: Heather at August 29, 2007 10:20 AM


Bethany,

In a sense. But what is true for you is not true for me. I would like to argue that one should not try to impose one’s truth upon another, but I know why that argument doesn’t work in matters of abortion.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 10:30 AM


Bethany,

“What do you think perfect means? How can a randomly evolved brain even comprehend what is or what is not perfection?”

Perfection is a preconceived notion that is impossible for humans to achieve. To be human is to be imperfect.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 10:31 AM


Bethany,

“Can you name the exceptions?”

Most of my answers reveal my inherent liberal bias (here I am not indicating political party, but rather that we live in a liberal society). I believe that it is an absolute truth that every human being has certain rights and freedoms, regardless of gender, class, or nation of origin. I believe that murder and genocide are wrong. I believe that rape and abuse of any kind are absolutely wrong. Those are the ones that come to mind at the moment.

“Why don't you open yourself to the possibility of intelligent design?”

Because I have found it impossible to believe in any kind of higher power. I used to believe. I used to be open to that possibly before I concluded, based on personal experience and what I know exists in the world, that such a being could not exist.

“Enigma, I honestly don't think you do truly believe everything you say, and here's why. […] Therefore, what you believed in either was false, or you never believed it at all.”

I would argue that my previous beliefs were false.

“I think ,like you, they have presuppositions which make them inclined to look at evidence in different ways than we do. I see a skeleton of a monkey, and see a monkey's skeleton. You look at one and say it must be one of our ancestors because it has an abnormality. I see a human skull and see a drarfed human...you look at a skull that is deformed, and believe people by faith, that it is one of our ancestors.”

Faith has nothing to do with it. I believe based on the opinions of those who have studied extensively and who have subjected every theory that goes past them to tests which I probably couldn’t even comprehend.

“What makes your beliefs any more validated than mine?”

Normally I try to be open about these things, but I’m sorry, religion is one area where I find that impossible.

“Don't you think that they would have known better by now, after all this time if they had been wrong (as you asked about scientists)”

Actually no. I argue that it is impossible for there ever to be definite proof that either confirms or denies God’s existence.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 10:32 AM


No kidding, Heather. It was about time something went right that day!

Posted by: Erin at August 29, 2007 10:36 AM


Perfection is a preconceived notion that is impossible for humans to achieve. To be human is to be imperfect.

Except for the preconceived notion part, I agree with you! To be human IS to be imperfect. That is exactly what I believe.

Most of my answers reveal my inherent liberal bias (here I am not indicating political party, but rather that we live in a liberal society). I believe that it is an absolute truth that every human being has certain rights and freedoms, regardless of gender, class, or nation of origin. I believe that murder and genocide are wrong. I believe that rape and abuse of any kind are absolutely wrong. Those are the ones that come to mind at the moment.

Okay...so what do you base those beliefs on? Could they change if enough people changed their beliefs about it?

Posted by: Bethany at August 29, 2007 10:44 AM


Actually no. I argue that it is impossible for there ever to be definite proof that either confirms or denies God�s existence.

Well, likewise it is impossible for there ever to be proof that confirms beyond the shadow of a doubt that evolution ever happened. Do you know why? Because we cannot travel in time, go into the beginning of the world, take tests, make sure of what the world looked like back then, then travel back to this time, and do more tests to see evolution happening. No matter how convincing you believe your beliefs about evolution are, they are still based on FAITH.

Posted by: Bethany at August 29, 2007 10:45 AM


“What makes your beliefs any more validated than mine?”
Normally I try to be open about these things, but I’m sorry, religion is one area where I find that impossible.

You didn't say what makes your beliefs more validated than mine.

Posted by: Bethany at August 29, 2007 10:47 AM


I have been on for too long. I'll try to be back on later and answer those points which I missed.

Have a good day.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 10:49 AM


“I think ,like you, they have presuppositions which make them inclined to look at evidence in different ways than we do. I see a skeleton of a monkey, and see a monkey's skeleton. You look at one and say it must be one of our ancestors because it has an abnormality. I see a human skull and see a drarfed human...you look at a skull that is deformed, and believe people by faith, that it is one of our ancestors.”

Faith has nothing to do with it. I believe based on the opinions of those who have studied extensively and who have subjected every theory that goes past them to tests which I probably couldn’t even comprehend.

So in other words, you trust blindly the opinions of people who have spent time researching, instead of doing the research yourself. Never once thinking that what they find could be erroneous, because they couldn't be wrong, they're scientists! It makes you feel more comfortable. after all, if they spend their lives devoted to it, it must be true, right?

That's how your message came across to me...help me to understand if I'm getting it wrong.

You don't think trusting scientists simply because your beliefs are aligned with theirs doesn't take a matter of faith? Define faith.

Posted by: Bethany at August 29, 2007 10:50 AM


Okay I really need to go too, Enigma...talk to you soon.

Just one more thing before I go:

Faith:
# A convinced belief; a condition of mind fully satisfied; next to actual knowledge. We have faith the sun will rise to-morrow morning, but the knowledge can not be actual until after sunrise.
www.angelfire.com/in2/oahspe3/glossary.html

# Belief that does not rest on logical proof or material evidence. This is not expected in Spiritualism where proof is offered.
nsacphenomena.com/terms_a_to_l.htm

# confident belief in the truth of a person, idea, or thing. This belief is not based on logical proof. With Faith, one has hope, Trust, Love, and certainty that God is.
www.goddirect.org/glossary/f.htm

Posted by: Bethany at August 29, 2007 10:51 AM


Erin -

"The Catholic church didn't brutally repress science? Hace you heard of this thing called the Spanish Inquisition? Or the case of Galileo? Or was the Spanish Inquisition actually a good thing too? "

You're kidding right? See, we Catholic's learn from our mistakes. We have said repeatedly that many aspects of the Spanish Inquisition was wrong. We teach in our schools the errors made in some of the Crusades. The Catholic Church is not perfect. We admit that up front. We are human and make mistakes, which means the Church makes mistakes. We confess them, in open, in public, so that history does not repeat itself. Look at the Islamic radicals - are they not repeating the Spanish Inquisition right now? They are saying believe how I believe or suffer the concequences. If Islam had not rejected Christianity as much as it does and studied us, they would have learned from OUR mistakes. I'm not saying the the Crusades and the Inquisition mistakes were only from Christians, because when history is completly studied from all sides, the Christians had some help. But what I'm saying is that no organization is perfect and all organizations have made mistakes. Some organizations, Catholics as an example, admit and learn from mistakes. To constantly harp on them after all this is just juvinile.

"A couple hundred years ago, bloodletting was a good medical practice. "

I was watching a show on Nostradomous (sp?) on the history channel. They showed how he realized this practice did not do anything. It was a good show, if you didn't catch it, I'm sure it will repeat. The history Channel loves to rerun everything over 100 times....

Also, congrats on your audition!

Posted by: valerie at August 29, 2007 11:00 AM


Are you sure it's an either-or case?

There is no doubt that Planned Parenthood commits fraud, and did so against Aurora; it is highly likely that some Aurora officials were bribed by them to overlook the deception (making it a both-and).

The City of Aurora should immediately file a lawsuit against PP (I'll be so bold as to suggest a figure--$280 billion)!

Posted by: Srini Varadarajan at August 29, 2007 11:05 AM


Erin,

I suggest you read all of my posts before responding. There is even a separate one on Galileo...you are misinformed when it comes to the church. Tho I don't expect you to believe it.

The Church has been a forerunner in science since the beginning!

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 11:28 AM


Nostradamus was a CATHOLIC!!!!

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 11:36 AM


MK- yes, I saw an article much like the one you posted when I was looking up the case. It was on a Catholic website. I have a feeling that the powers-that-be are trying to cover their behinds because they all know that it made them look very foolish.

Posted by: Erin at August 29, 2007 1:01 PM


For heavens sake Erin...look at all the other facts that I posted.

We are responsible for universities, hospitals, earthquake studies, architecture, agriculture...

You just don't want to believe it!

This is from Wikipedia...a NON CATHOLIC source if ever there was one...

Foscarini sent a copy of his book to Bellarmine, who replied in a letter on April 12, 1615, addressed to both Foscarini and Galileo. In this he stated that the heliocentric ideas were "a very dangerous thing, not only by irritating all the philosophers and scholastic theologians, but also by injuring our holy faith and rendering the Holy Scriptures false." Moreover, while the matter was not inherently a matter of faith, it became one "on the part of the ones who have spoken", namely "the holy Fathers and all the Latin and Greek commentators." He conceded that if there were positive proof, "then it would be necessary to proceed with great caution in explaining the passages of Scripture which seemed contrary, and we would rather have to say that we did not understand them than to say that something was false which has been demonstrated." He did not, however, consider this to be a serious possibility. His final argument was that the motion of the Sun could not be a mere appearance, as the shore appears to recede when one sails away from it, because everyone perceives the latter as a mere appearance, while no one so perceives the former.

In sum, he found no problem with heliocentrism so long as it was treated purely as hypothesis and not as a fact unless there was conclusive proof. This put Galileo in an extremely difficult position, as he had many powerful arguments but no "conclusive" proof for the truth of his position. In fact, his theories had gaps and errors, as is (we now know) the usual condition of all radically new scientific work.

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

The problem was NOT that the church refused to entertain Galileo's ideas...the problem was that Galileo refused to admit that they were only ideas. He was asking the church to rewrite scripture to fit HIS hypothesis. He wanted it accepted as Truth, and not as a theory...

Which part of this don't you believe?!?

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 1:34 PM


And for the record, secular scholars had just as much of a problem with him as the church...for the same reasons. All kinds of scientists were coming up with all kinds of theories due to the invention of the telescope. Galileo didn't even come up with the idea of a heliocentric world...Copernicus did!

One of the first suggestions of heresy that Galileo had to deal with came in 1613 from a professor of philosophy, Cosimo Boscaglia, who was neither a theologian nor a priest.

And in 1992, Pope John Paul II said that now we can truly say with conviction that Galileo was right! But how many years did it take to tweak and prove his theories? As with any new theory that rocks the boat, time must pass before the truth can be known!

n 1992, it was much lauded in the news that the Catholic Church had apparently "vindicated" Galileo.

Thanks to his intuition as a brilliant physicist and by relying on different arguments, Galileo, who practically invented the experimental method, understood why only the sun could function as the centre of the world, as it was then known, that is to say, as a planetary system. The error of the theologians of the time, when they maintained the centrality of the earth, was to think that our understanding of the physical world's structure was, in some way, imposed by the literal sense of Sacred Scripture....
*
– Pope John Paul II, L'Osservatore Romano N. 44 (1264) - 4th November,1992

and that's what the church was asking Galileo to do...wait. Wait until his stuff could be proven, because him waiting would do less harm than putting forth his theories as fact and then having to recant them later if they proved false.

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 1:42 PM


valerie: See, we Catholic's learn from our mistakes. We have said repeatedly that many aspects of the Spanish Inquisition was wrong.
The only apology of the sort I can find is John Paul II saying: "We ask forgiveness for the divisions among Christians, for the use of violence that some Christians used in the service of the truth, and for the behavior of diffidence and hostility sometimes used toward followers of other religions."

So the Inquisition was an instance of bad things being done for good reasons?

The Catholic Church is not perfect. We admit that up front.
And yet the Pope can make declarations which are not subject to criticism or debate, according to Catholic dogma.
mk: Galileo insisted that scripture must be wrong and had to be changed to fit his theory.
Galileo insisted that Scripture be changed? Where? Can you back this up, or did you just invent it from thin air?
jessie: Also enigma said fossil records exist that prove evolution....quite the contrary. They still can't find a missing link.....
A missing link between what? I have some cursory knowledge of the fossil record, and I'd be glad to point anything out you'd like.
Evolution is a slow process but there was a big explosion and rabid evolution in the cambrian period..huh..which is it slow or rapid.
The Cambrian explosion took place over a period of roughly fifty million years. Fifty million years is most of the way from the present to the age of the dinosaurs. It's slow in terms of human-perceptible time; fast in terms of geological time.
I'm still waiting for a cow to give birth to a dog and then that's the signal that evolution is true.
That's exactly the sort of thing that the theory of common descent predicts won't happen. If you get a cow to give birth to a dog, then you've just overturned most of modern biology. (The same thing goes for chimaeras; if you find a herd of Pegasus roaming the countryside, evolutionary biology is in serious trouble.)
Interesting enough they just found the oldest diamonds in australia that would once again push the age of the earth back so they can fit their theory. I would get so confused if what I believe constantly changes.
The age of the earth was considered to be around 4.5 billion years before the diamonds were found. The age of the earth is still considered to be around 4.5 billion years. How and when was the age of the earth revised?
Good thing what I know to be true hasn't changed since God wrote it.
Except that it's been translated numerous times, the translations don't agree with each other, some people leave out parts you like and include parts you don't, and as the text is filled with metaphor and allusion, you frequently end up following the guy who interpreted the metaphor for you.

Posted by: grendelkhan at August 29, 2007 3:32 PM



Bethany

“It is not fictitious. It is absolutely correct. How can you not know this?
You don't think that before a baby comes to viability that is not the biological child(offspring) of it's mother and father? What is it then?”

I never argued that it wasn’t the offspring of its mother and father. I simply argued that child was the incorrect term for this level of development.
“Define fetus, according to your definition.”

That’s the one I use as well.

“Definition of offspring?”

But if you notice, while in the womb there is a specific correct term that one should apply.

“There is NO difference! If it is human, biologically alive, and genetically complete, it is by definition a HUMAN BEING. This is like 2 + 2 equals 4. It can't get much simpler than this.

Then I’m confused. A person whose organs are going to be harvested is human, biologically alive, and genetically complete. Why don’t we have any compunctions against cutting this person open and stealing the viable organs?

“Says who? In your world, is this an absolute truth, or is it an arbitrary truth, depending on how one values the fetus?”

To me, it is irrefutable truth. To you, it may be something different.

“It is obvious that the baby needs to stay inside it's mother to survive. That doesn't change the biological structure or the humanity of the baby.”

No, but it does mean that that other body has the right to say whether or not a fetus can use it. Women are more than incubators. They have thoughts and feelings.

“How so? Where is your scientific proof of this?”

I don’t need any. It’s called organ donation. If human life is not determined by the brain and by the presence of those genetic codes, why is organ donation legal? Those bodies are still human. Heck, the bodies themselves are still alive.

“I already gave you dozens of references by scientists, embryologists, and biologists...you chose to ignore it.”

Oh, those, no I read those. Sorry for the confusion. I was just hoping you had something irrefutable. A minority opinion does not the absolute truth make.

“Are you saying you disagree? What do you mean by it isn't your idea?”

I’m simply arguing that a complete genetic code does not equal a living human being. My quote was meant to indicate that this is not my idea, but is the idea of society. Hence organ donation.

“Yes, you did, Enigma. And no, it cannot have human DNA and not be a human being.”

Okay, so I misspoke. It can have human DNA and not be an individual living human being. It can have human DNA and have potential human life, actually human life, or no human life.

“Why is it that you pick and choose which scientific proofs you will believe? What makes one true above the other? Just because you like one better? Really, please do explain to me what gives one priority over the other.”

I could ask you the same question.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 4:40 PM


MK

“You harp on Religious wars and ignore the worst culprits of modern time, Stalin, Lenin, Marx and Hitler...All atheists and all haters of the Church and religion in any form...By your logic, I could argue that it is atheists and secular humanists that are responsible for most of the atrocities perpetrated in the 20th century...”

The problem with that argument is that Stalin, Marx, Lenin and Hitler did not act in the name of any particular religious faith or lack thereof. They didn’t say “gee, since I don’t believe this and these people do, I’m going to kill them.” They did not commit atrocities in the name of secularism. This argument that you’ve posted here, that there lack of belief is responsible for their actions, is akin to arguing that Andrea Yates killed her children because she was a Christian.

On the other hand, during conflicts such as the Crusades, the Spanish Inquisition, ect. the movitvation for rape, plunder, and killing was religious.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 4:42 PM


MK

“If you guys really want to get with the times, you ought to join the Church. She usually arrives places 15 minutes before everyone else.”

Please tell me that you’re joking. I prefer to base my beliefs on more than myth and superstition.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 4:44 PM


Erin

“As for changing belief systems- we have the capacity to think and learn. What we learn changes as we find new things to validate those beliefs.”

Well said.

“When you're a little kid, you think that Santa is real. Then it's proven to you otherwise. Thousands of years ago, people believed that there were hundreds of gods. A couple hundred years ago, bloodletting was a good medical practice. So what's changing? What actually works, or our beliefs?”

I agree.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 4:44 PM


Bethany

“You didn't say what makes your beliefs more validated than mine.”

I choose not to believe in a God because of what I’ve been through and because of conditions that I see in the world. The things that I have dealt with have convinced me that there is no God. This I will not discuss. Not here, not now, and not with people I only know through the net. My convictions on this matter are supported by what I see in the world. This I have no problem debating.

Posted by: Engima at August 29, 2007 4:45 PM


Santa was real. He was mom and dad.

Posted by: Heather at August 29, 2007 4:46 PM


Bethany,

“So in other words, you trust blindly the opinions of people who have spent time researching, instead of doing the research yourself. Never once thinking that what they find could be erroneous, because they couldn't be wrong, they're scientists! It makes you feel more comfortable. after all, if they spend their lives devoted to it, it must be true, right?”

So are you trying to tell me that when you go into the emergency room with pain in your side and the doctor, after examining you, says that you need immediate surgery or you’ll almost certainly die that your first course of action would be to say “well, I haven’t researched it myself, so let me get back to you?”

No one does research on everything and then decides independently what do to. There simply isn’t enough time and issues become so specialized that lay researchers soon find themselves out of their depth. Does this mean that research is a bad thing? Of course not. Does it mean that sometimes people end up accepting conclusions on issues with which they have little experience and have done no research on offered by experts in the field? Undoubtedly. Is that a bad thing?
Absolutely not.

“You don't think trusting scientists simply because your beliefs are aligned with theirs doesn't take a matter of faith?”

You do the same thing. And no, I do not believe it takes faith to believe in research that has been replicated over and over again.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 4:47 PM


Bethany

“Well, likewise it is impossible for there ever to be proof that confirms beyond the shadow of a doubt that evolution ever happened.”

One can still believe without absolute proof. I would argue that you do the same (except about God.)

“No matter how convincing you believe your beliefs about evolution are, they are still based on FAITH.”

That depends on which definition of faith you subscribe to. Personally, I don’t believe that I believe anything on faith.

“Define faith.”

To me, faith means that one only has belief.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 4:48 PM


Jessie

“Also enigma said fossil records exist that prove evolution....quite the contrary. They still can't find a missing link.....”

Ah, the god of the gaps argument. This is a loosing proposition, even for believers. The gaps constantly get smaller as we discover more and more. Does the domain of your God really get smaller as well?

“Evolution is a slow process but there was a big explosion and rabid evolution in the cambrian period..huh..which is it slow or rapid.”

You clearly missed my earlier post where I addressed this issue. I’ll recap. Evolution primarily uses two main vehicles. The first of these is natural selection. This is when traits that are beneficial to the survival of animal are favored against other competing traits that are detrimental to the survival of an animal. This is a gradual process. The second of these two vehicles is what is referred to as the “theory of the punctuated equilibrium.” This theory holds that there is a sudden explosion of life and life forms at a specific point in time, most likely in response to some environmental change that made it impossible for previous life forms to survive. This theory holds that life (and the number of life forms) basically existed at an equilibrium until something punctured this equilibrium and new life forms emerged.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 4:52 PM


Bethany

“Okay...so what do you base those beliefs on? Could they change if enough people changed their beliefs about it?”

I base my beliefs on many things. I base them on what I seen, what I lived, and what I have learned. I base them on how I was raised, on the values I was brought up with. Some of my beliefs (aka science) could change if, at some point down the road, the theories and studies that I have accepted are disproven. Some of my beliefs (what is moral, what is immoral, what constitutes a good life) will never change.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 4:54 PM


Grendelhken, well said.

Posted by: Engima at August 29, 2007 4:55 PM


Bethany

“You believe that you are the product of randomness...that would include your brain and your thinking, correct? Then how could truth or perfect even exist at all? How can you be sure Darwin was ever wrong or right about anything?”

You see to be implying that randomness could not create truth or perfection. This is not the case.

“How could your randomly evolved brain actually know for sure whether it is making correct assumptions about what you believe? How do you know that anything you or anyone else thinks is "right" or "true"?”

Here, you seem to imply that once must know something with absolute certainty before holding a belief or acting on one’s assumptions. This is not true. Here’s a perfect example. I am typing on my computer right now. I’m basing these actions on an unfounded belief. By using my computer, I am indicating the belief that neither my computer itself nor the electrical system to which it is plugged in are going to malfunction and electrocute me on the spot. Can I prove this belief? Of course not. Does that mean that I shouldn’t use my computer? By no means.

“How can there be a search for truth with such a basis?”

How can there be a truth without some deliberately creating it? Easily. We create our own truths. Truly objective truths are few and far between. The values that we base our lives on the truths that we hold to be self-evident are a product of how we raised and where we live.

“Explain to me how you can know truth...explain how truth can exist, if everything in nature is random.”

I can know the truth because I know the truth that I have created. I also know the truths that I believe needed no creator.

“if we both evolved randomly and our brains are imperfect, then either both of us are incorrect, or both of our beliefs are just as valid.”

I have to admit, you’re lost me with this line of logic.

“About the eye, you are simply making assumptions, based on your presuppositions”

Actually, everything that I said has been proven.

“But what is a foundation? Does a foundation for truth actually exist? Can you actually be right? Can you actually be wrong?”

I believe that there is genuine truth in the world although much of what we commonly hold to be is self-created. Am I right? Maybe. Am I wrong? I could be. But both those questions hold for you as well. What makes your God real? What makes your bible true? The fact that you believe in them?

“Or do you constantly seek information that makes sense to you at the time, and ignore the rest that does not make sense to you, because it doesn't really matter anyway?”

I do this no more than anyone else. You say it as though ignoring inadequately supported claims is always a fault. This is hardly the case.
And you have proven nothing to me with your arguments about God and truth and faith. I’m sorry, I’ve heard them before and I know what I believe. Nothing that anyone has ever said to me about faith has convinced me that it is a good thing to believe.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 5:00 PM


Enigma-

Bethany is not refuting science. God created a universe of laws consistent with His unchanging nature. God wants us to use science and medicine. Many scientists even atheists and agnostics have a hard time with the evolution big bang theory because of the evidence of mathematical sequenced DNA. A reference for you and short read would be Robert Jastro's "God and the Astronomer" He is an agnostic that worked for NASA. The book is well done.

Creationists scientists use the same science and methods to study astronomy, physics, biology (except macro evolution), geology, chemistry and all the like. You may wish to seek out works by Ken Ham at backtogenesis.org

We all have faith in something. Evolutionists have a harder time I think because they have no recourse for hope. I once thought exactly like you and then Christ entered my life. The world is in such a state because sin came into the world. God has given us salvation in Christ and the world's woes will be rectified. Rumors of wars and wars...see II Timothy.

I will pray for you enigma because Christ died for you and the Father loves you and if you ask, the Holy Spirit will dwell with you.

Posted by: jessie at August 29, 2007 5:01 PM


Heather,

"Santa was real. He was mom and dad."

So you mean that there really is a fat man in a red suit who lives on the North Pole and uses flying reindeer to get around?

Simply because your parents (and mine, actually) may have left gifts that they claimed were from Santa does not mean that Santa actually exists. I could give my best friend a gift that I claim the Easter Bunny gave me to give to her. Does that mean that the Easter Bunny is real?

Posted by: Engima at August 29, 2007 5:03 PM


How can there be a truth without some deliberately creating it? Easily. We create our own truths. Truly objective truths are few and far between. The values that we base our lives on the truths that we hold to be self-evident are a product of how we raised and where we live.

Engima-I would argue Romans 1 where God says he has written his law on our hearts. True, our conscience is weighed by sin, but God still put right and wrong their none the less. If it wasn't, how do you explain the rules of Confusionsim (sp?) which are very close to God's law given in Duet. and Leviticus. How could a society so far way from the judeo christian values come out with something so close...must be a master Author. God's law does get skewed by human nature/sin and the hardening of the heart, but its there none the less.

Evolutionists must constantly change the stance of when we evolved, how long it took, how old the universe is etc. An atheist Scientist concluded that if the universe was even 100 billion years old the odds of the variety of evolution on the earth is a mathematical impossibility.

Again, I used to be right in your shoes until I started doing a lot of studying. The more I learn, the more amazed I am at the mind of God. He is truly amazing.

Posted by: jessie at August 29, 2007 5:07 PM


I'll pray for you too, Enigma. God love you!

Posted by: Bobby Bambino at August 29, 2007 5:08 PM


Bethany,

"What is a false conclusion, Enigma?"

I was indicating that you cannot apply the conditions and conclusions from one area to another area without the risk of drawing false conclusions. A false conclusion here means that one has confused two unrelated issues.

"WHY does that matter?" (Previous Comment: Not in the same way. A woman has existed long before the fetus came into being and has rights that the fetus has no right to unilaterally revoke.)

Because the fetus can impose on the woman's body. It can strip rights from her. A Siamese twin can do neither of these to the other twin. Thus, the two situations are not analogous.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 5:11 PM


Bobby Bambino,

"I'll pray for you too, Enigma."

Please don't. For one, it's wasted effort and I abhor wasted effort.

It's also condescending. It implies that you have a level of grace which I lack and that I should aspire to. That is offensive.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 5:13 PM


Enigma..in anticipation to a question because I have to run to class.

I read a statistic that 90% of the worlds heartaches are cause by man doing something to man and the rest is natural catastrophe. God gave us free will to love him and follow him or to turn away from him. Many people turn away from him and do nasty nasty things to other people. This makes God incredibly sad. As a victim of every sort of abuse, I can tell you that life can hurt. However, through the redeeming blood of our Savior, you can find peace. God hates sin. Could he end it all now? Sure. Does he? no, do we know exactly why,no, but Jesus said he wouldn't return until the Kingdom of God was preached to the whole world. I wonder who the last person will be to be told before he returns.

On that note Enigma, the next time you look at the face of a child, try to see that child as God sees him ....as a person made in the image of our Creator with eternal purpose and worth.
or you can choose to see them as a product of randomness with no value related to the primate.

Posted by: jessie at August 29, 2007 5:14 PM


Jessie,

"Engima-I would argue Romans 1 where God says he has written his law on our hearts. True, our conscience is weighed by sin, but God still put right and wrong their none the less."

Quoting scripture is not a good arguement unless your arguing with someone who believe in the truth of the bible. Since I do not, this is not a line of argument that will take you anywhere.

"If it wasn't, how do you explain the rules of Confusionsim (sp?) which are very close to God's law given in Duet. and Leviticus. How could a society so far way from the judeo christian values come out with something so close...must be a master Author."

This is like arguing that just because people live on different continents that there can be no similarities between how they live without there having been some contact between them.

"God's law does get skewed by human nature/sin and the hardening of the heart, but its there none the less."

Your opinion. Not mine. Its also very condescending. Do you ever use the "elephant argument?" (If you're not familiar with it, it compares different religions to blind people feeling different parts of an elephant.)

"Again, I used to be right in your shoes until I started doing a lot of studying."

Please don't assume that you know where I come from. I can guarantee you that you do not.

"The more I learn, the more amazed I am at the mind of God. He is truly amazing."

The more I learn, the more thankful I am that I abandoned fantasy and illusion long ago.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 5:19 PM


Jessie,

Please stop attacking what I believe. You are fully entitled to believe whatever fairy tale you want to make up but you have no right to start trying to change my mind. (And in case you missed the post, I debate because it's fun. Not because I want to change people.)

"Evolutionists have a harder time I think because they have no recourse for hope."

Speak for yourself. Hope has been my only salvation.

"I once thought exactly like you and then Christ entered my life."

I guarantee you that you have not. Whatever you think you know about me you don't. You have no idea where I'm coming from. You have no idea why I believe what I believe. And you certainly have no right to try to change it.

"The world is in such a state because sin came into the world. God has given us salvation in Christ and the world's woes will be rectified. Rumors of wars and wars...see II Timothy."

Tell it to someone who believes. Quoting the bible will get you nowhere with me.

"I will pray for you enigma because Christ died for you and the Father loves you and if you ask, the Holy Spirit will dwell with you."

That's very condescending. And don't pray for me. There's no point. There's no one to pray to.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 5:25 PM


There is someone to pray to. Stop insulting us!

Posted by: Heather at August 29, 2007 5:26 PM


Enigma, you're sounding nastier and nastier every time you post. I mean, the first couple of days you were here, you were outstanding. What happened? Insult after insult comes out of your mouth towards us. It appears that your true colors are showing. Maybe you're just having a bad day...if so, I understand. I was frustrated like you wouldn't believe this morning.

By the way, why do you suppose what Jessie said was condescending? And do you not consider it condescending (and not to mention inconsistent with your supposed beliefs about everyone creating their own truths) to talk about one's belief system as being pure fantasy, in an insulting way?

Jessie, you made some excellent points and you did a lot better than I could have at expressing it also. Please stay a while! We can sure use your kindly spoken words. :)

Posted by: Bethany at August 29, 2007 5:29 PM


Jessie,

"I read a statistic that 90% of the worlds heartaches are cause by man doing something to man and the rest is natural catastrophe."

I need a source.

"God gave us free will to love him and follow him or to turn away from him. Many people turn away from him and do nasty nasty things to other people."

And other people turn away from God because he isn't there. Then they go on to lead happy, fulfilling lives free of this damaging illusion.

"This makes God incredibly sad."

Hubris.

"As a victim of every sort of abuse, I can tell you that life can hurt.'

There is no way that you need to quote this to me. I'm actually offended that you choose to imply that I think life is a meaningless fairy tale.

"However, through the redeeming blood of our Savior, you can find peace."

Peace exists wherever one can find it.

"On that note Enigma, the next time you look at the face of a child, try to see that child as God sees him ....as a person made in the image of our Creator with eternal purpose and worth."

Or I can choose to see them as they really are.

"you can choose to see them as a product of randomness"

Who said that things that are random can have value?

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 5:31 PM


Enigma, if you think I am posting to convince you of creationism, you have completely missed the point.
The entire point of all this was to prove to you that both of our beliefs should be considered equally valid according to your supposed belief system. You yourself stated that you believe that we all create our own truths. That there is no absolute truth, only our preconceived notions. IF THIS IS TRUE....If you really believe this, you can't possibly consider yourself absolutely right about anything, and both of our beliefs should be equally embraced by you, you should be very supportive of everyone's belief systems, but it is very clear to me that you are not.

Posted by: Bethany at August 29, 2007 5:36 PM


Bethany,

"Enigma, you're sounding nastier and nastier every time you post. I mean, the first couple of days you were here, you were outstanding. What happened? Insult after insult comes out of your mouth towards us. It appears that your true colors are showing. Maybe you're just having a bad day...if so, I understand. I was frustrated like you wouldn't believe this morning."

I get annoyed when people are condescending and when people assume that they know things that they don't about my life. Jessie in particular touched a nerve.

"By the way, why do you suppose what Jessie said was condescending? And do you not consider it condescending (and not to mention inconsistent with your supposed beliefs about everyone creating their own truths) to talk about one's belief system as being pure fantasy, in an insulting way?"

For starters, I have not done that save recent conversation. Secondly, this is why, when the issue of religion first started to come up, I said that I didn't want to get into it because my views on religion were less than complimentary. I only get insulting when I get backed into a corner. When I feel attacked, I lash out.

And it is condescending for someone to say that they will pray for you. They are implying that you lack something which they possess. They are implying that you need to aspire to be more like them.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 5:36 PM


No, they really don't mean it that way, Enigma. People don't pray for you to hurt you, they pray because they care about you and love you. Honestly. I know it's hard to believe when everyone's all debating and tempers are flaring, but it's really true. Has someone religious hurt you in the past? I could probably understand better if you lash out against religious people because of an incident in the past or something like that.

Posted by: Bethany at August 29, 2007 5:41 PM


Bethany, I don't believe that you're posting to change my mind, but I do believe that others (Jessie and Bobby) are.

Maybe they don't mean to pray for me to hurt me, but they do. How could they love me or even care about me? They have no idea who I am.

No one who is religious has done anything in the past. The truth is that my belief in religion is what did. I turned away in order to save myself.

And I do apologize for the last few posts. I slightly lost it when people started the whole "I'll pray for you thing."

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 5:46 PM


That touches a nerve as nothing else ever does.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 5:47 PM


I have a few questions about this idea that a unique set of DNA is what defines a human being, and I'd be happy if someone would answer them for me.

If a unique human being is determined by a unique set of DNA, are identical twins only one person? As an identical set of twins is one bunch of cells, now split into halves, does this mean that chopping the embryo in half manufactures a second soul? Does this mean that conception isn't the only means of ensoulment?

Additionally, does this mean that tetragametic chimaeras (formed by the merging-together of fraternal twins, not common but not unknown) have two souls? If they have only one, what happened to the other one, since there must have been two when they were both conceived?

Does a HeLa cell culture contains Henrietta Lacks's soul, or did it get a new one after being cultured from her body? Did it get a new one after she died? Is there just one soul for the various bits of the culture floating around in labs around the world, or does each bit get its own?

Posted by: grendelkhan at August 29, 2007 5:50 PM


Enigma, I pray for people I DON'T know all the time.

Posted by: Heather at August 29, 2007 5:53 PM


Heather,

Yeah, I should be used to it by now. I'm sure I have several family members praying daily for my soul.

The truth of the matter is that religion is a touchy subject with me. I am working on that because I really shouldn't lash out when people start in with how they'll pray for me and how I just need to let the light of the savior fill my soul and I will understand.

I don't believe because if I did I would never be able to forgive my creator. I dress it up, but that's the reason. And that's why I exploded.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 6:05 PM


ok, i got ya.

Posted by: Heather at August 29, 2007 6:09 PM


It's something that I need to work on. Not believing in a God is fine but not when one disbelieves for that reason.

I have a lot of anger and resentment that stems from a particular episode in my life which all got directed towards religion and God. I've been working on it, but it's clearly still a problem.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 6:14 PM


Enigma: The problem with that argument is that Stalin, Marx, Lenin and Hitler did not act in the name of any particular religious faith or lack thereof. They didn't say "gee, since I don't believe this and these people do, I'm going to kill them." They did not commit atrocities in the name of secularism.
Lenin and Stalin did purge the Orthodox churches in Russia rather viciously. Then again, Stalin revived the church during World War II in order to tap it for patriotism. Enver Hoxha brutally suppressed religion, and enforced state atheism.

Atheism is no guarantee of humanism. If you look at whether a movement is religious or not, you end up lumping the Spanish Inquisition together with Martin Luther King's religious humanism and splitting it from Hoxha's war on religion. But it's much more informative to consider whether or not the movement is authoritarian or not.

It was authoritarianism--the ability of the big man in charge to demand anything "because I say so" or "because Jesus says so, and he's talking through me", and to be obeyed--which was the culprit in both cases. An argument might be made that as religion considers authority (along with tradition and revelation) good sources of knowledge, it's more susceptible to authoritarianism than a non-religious tradition is, but that's different from pointing to religion itself as the culprit.

Evolution primarily uses two main vehicles. [Natural selection and punctuated equilibrium]
I don't know if I'd put it quite like that; change over time is cause by natural selection acting on variation generated by random mutation--as someone smarter than me said, it's "the non-random survival of randomly-varying replicators". Punctuated equilibrium and phyletic gradualism are descriptions of when this change takes place--in fits and starts, or smoothly; the latter was originally assumed, but the fossil record filled in over the last hundred and fifty years has pointed pretty definitively toward the former.

Also, please be careful when using the word "proven"; you're talking about a standard of evidence, like the sort we condemn people to imprisonment or even death on the basis of. However, it's always possible that you could have missed something--a wizard might have done it while you weren't looking. Religious folks talk about absolute certainty, the kind that you don't get from empirical evidence--and that's a kind of proof that no amount of evidence is going to make. I make a point of not saying that anything's been proven because of this.

Posted by: grendelkhan at August 29, 2007 6:21 PM


Also, Enigma, I should add that I'm not trying to cut you down here; I haven't had your experience and I honestly don't know what it's like to walk away from an extremely devout lifestyle. I imagine it can't be easy.

Posted by: grendelkhan at August 29, 2007 7:15 PM


Enigma,

“If you guys really want to get with the times, you ought to join the Church. She usually arrives places 15 minutes before everyone else.”
*
Please tell me that you’re joking. I prefer to base my beliefs on more than myth and superstition

Did you even read my posts...or is your faith in lies so great that the truth might cause heart failure? I just posted 6 or 7 posts showing how the Catholic Church led the western world in science, history, architecture, mathematics, geology, earthquake study, art, geology and the advent of the university...and you still call that myth and superstition? I think you are the one that believes in myth and superstition, because when the facts are staring you in the face you still refuse to believe them.

You keep requiring proof. I just gave you a ton of it. And you refuse to accept it...who has the problem?

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 7:49 PM


grendlekhan,

I just did...see the wikipedia article...

mk: Galileo insisted that scripture must be wrong and had to be changed to fit his theory.

Galileo insisted that Scripture be changed? Where? Can you back this up, or did you just invent it from thin air?

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 7:52 PM


One of the first suggestions of heresy that Galileo had to deal with came in 1613 from a professor of philosophy, Cosimo Boscaglia, who was neither a theologian nor a priest. In conversation with Galileo's patron, Cosimo II de' Medici, Boscaglia gave the opinion that the telescopic discoveries were valid, but the motion of the Earth was obviously contrary to Scripture. Galileo was defended on the spot by a Benedictine abbot, Benedetto Castelli, who was also a professor of mathematics and a former student of Galileo's. This exchange, reported to Galileo by Castelli, led Galileo to write a letter to Castelli, expounding his views on what he considered the most appropriate way of treating scriptural passages which made assertions about natural phenomena. Sometime later (in 1615) he expanded this into his much longer Letter to the Grand Duchess Christina. Castelli remained Galileo's friend, visiting him at Arcetri near the end of Galileo's life, after months of effort to get permission from the Inquisition to do so.

Foscarini sent a copy of his book to Bellarmine, who replied in a letter on April 12, 1615, addressed to both Foscarini and Galileo. In this he stated that the heliocentric ideas were "a very dangerous thing, not only by irritating all the philosophers and scholastic theologians, but also by injuring our holy faith and rendering the Holy Scriptures false." Moreover, while the matter was not inherently a matter of faith, it became one "on the part of the ones who have spoken", namely "the holy Fathers and all the Latin and Greek commentators." He conceded that if there were positive proof, "then it would be necessary to proceed with great caution in explaining the passages of Scripture which seemed contrary, and we would rather have to say that we did not understand them than to say that something was false which has been demonstrated." He did not, however, consider this to be a serious possibility. His final argument was that the motion of the Sun could not be a mere appearance, as the shore appears to recede when one sails away from it, because everyone perceives the latter as a mere appearance, while no one so perceives the former.

In sum, he found no problem with heliocentrism so long as it was treated purely as hypothesis and not as a fact unless there was conclusive proof. This put Galileo in an extremely difficult position, as he had many powerful arguments but no "conclusive" proof for the truth of his position. In fact, his theories had gaps and errors, as is (we now know) the usual condition of all radically new scientific work.

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

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 7:58 PM


MK,

I did indeed read it. It doesn't answer Galileo and it certainly doesn't answer why the Islamic World was so much more advanced during the "Dark Ages."

Wikipedia isn't proof. It's sometimes a good resource to get the general feel of a topic, but unreliable. I know people who routinely sabotage Wikipedia. It's relatively easy to do.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 8:00 PM


Enigma,

ect. the movitvation for rape, plunder, and killing was religious.

You'll have to give me some proof that Catholics were going around raping women in the name of God.

That's like saying police officers are racist because it's part of the job description.

Individual people did bad things during the crusades. At no time was our doctrine changed to say "kill everyone, rape everyone, plunder everyone!"

Stalin was a communist. He wanted everyone to be communist. Communism is equal to religion in that it was his belief system and he DID try to force everyone to succumb to it...And he HATED Catholics.

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 8:04 PM


MK,

Here's a link on Galileo.

http://www.ronaldbrucemeyer.com/archive/galileo2.htm

Nowhere does it mention his demanding that the Scriptures be changed.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 8:07 PM


Enigma,

It's also condescending. It implies that you have a level of grace which I lack and that I should aspire to. That is offensive.

If you don't believe in God and you don't believe in Grace, how in the world could someone praying for you be offensive?

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 8:10 PM


"It was authoritarianism--the ability of the big man in charge to demand anything "because I say so" or "because Jesus says so, and he's talking through me", and to be obeyed--which was the culprit in both cases. An argument might be made that as religion considers authority (along with tradition and revelation) good sources of knowledge, it's more susceptible to authoritarianism than a non-religious tradition is, but that's different from pointing to religion itself as the culprit."

Perhaps not, but by that same vein, then one cannot say that secularism is the problem either.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 8:10 PM


MK,

"If you don't believe in God and you don't believe in Grace, how in the world could someone praying for you be offensive?"

Because of all that it implies. It implies that this person knows the truth of the matter and that I just need to open my heart so that I can see the world the way that they do. It implies that they know better than I do what is best for me.

Posted by: Enigma at August 29, 2007 8:13 PM


grendelkhan,

Your understanding of soul seems to be that the body encompasses the soul, when in actuality the soul encompasses the body...As new physical oddities occur, new ways of understanding them (pertaining to the soul) will have to be examined and determined.

As for identical twins...there is no such thing as truly identical twins...their fingerprints will be different, their face shapes just a little off, and a DNA test could determine which one was which. How silly to even suggest that they might be the same person.

But this does sum up the point we are trying to make, which is that a human being is more than a body. And at any stage, sentient, brain dead,fully awake, or pre born, ALL human beings should be treated with equal dignity and respect.

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 8:20 PM


Enigma,

And don't pray for me. There's no point. There's no one to pray to.

But that is your belief, your valuation, and I am confused as to why this one particular time we are supposed to bend to your desires. We desire to pray for you. You desire that we don't. Which one of us gets our way?

You expressed that this is a VERY touchy subject for you. Out of empathy and common decency, should we capitulate to your wishes.

If that is the case (and I have no problem doing so) then why don't the same rules apply to the abortion issue. We are VERY touchy about this issue. Gets us all jazzed up and emotional. Sometimes we even lash out. So to save us emotional turmoil, we are asking your side to end abortion.

I'm not trying to be sarcastic, just trying to prove a point. The same point Bethany is trying to make.

Our veiw is as valid as your view. Our belief's are no more fairy tales to us than yours are to you. The difference? You claim to believe that every one has the right to their valuations...But when we tell your our valuations you claim they are invalid. Myth, superstition and fairy tales are just some of the terms you use. And since you have agreed with every word that Doug has said, I assume you would agree that we are just "pretending" to believe in a God.

Talk about condescending. And hypocritical. And arrogant. And everything you accuse us of...

what say you?

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 8:27 PM


Enigma,
And tell me again why three dictionary definitions of baby being a synonym for fetus is not enough for you? What proof would you require? If we can't agree on dictionary terms, then what would you like us to reference?

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 8:28 PM


Enigma,

Okay, but isn't that just their valuation, and aren't you all about valuations?

I could say the same thing about the abortion issue. Heck, I have said the same thing about the abortion issue...

Because of all that it (abortion) implies. It implies that you know the truth of the matter (when a human being becomes a person) and that I just need to open my mind so that I can see the world the way that you do. It implies thatyou know better than I do what is best for everyone.

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 8:36 PM


Enigma,

It also doesn't say what he was charged with...

Note:
I, Galileo Galilei, son of the late Vincenzio Galilei of Florence, aged 70 years, tried personally by this court, and kneeling before You, the most Eminent and Reverend Lord Cardinals, Inquisitors-General throughout the Christian Republic against heretical depravity, having before my eyes the Most Holy Gospels, and laying on them my own hands; I swear that I have always believed, I believe now, and with God's help I will in future believe all which the Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church doth hold, preach, and teach...

I abjure with sincere heart and unfeigned faith, I curse and detest the said errors and heresies, and generally all and every error and sect contrary to the Holy Catholic Church. And I swear that for the future I will neither say nor assert in speaking or writing such things as may bring upon me similar suspicion; and if I know any heretic, or one suspected of heresy, I will denounce him to this Holy Office, or to the Inquisitor and Ordinary of the place in which I may be...


It only refers to his heresy, which confirms what I said...that the problem was with what he was asking the church to do based on his findings. But they (at the time) were ONLY theories. If a scientist today came forward and asked you to rewrite Darwins works, based on new evidence that evolution might be wrong, you would tell him that you need more evidence. If he went ahead and republished Darwins works, but changing certain words to fit his "ideas" you'd call it plagarism...

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 8:45 PM


Enigma,

certainly doesn't answer why the Islamic World was so much more advanced during the "Dark Ages."

I don't recall you bringing up Islam in the dark ages. But if you believe they were much more advanced (in what subjects), then you would need to show proof of that.

Posted by: mk at August 29, 2007 8:47 PM


mk: As for identical twins...there is no such thing as truly identical twins...their fingerprints will be different, their face shapes just a little off, and a DNA test could determine which one was which.
No, a DNA test could not determine which one was which. They're identical twins, which means that at some early point in the process, one embryo split into two parts. Bits of your twin are as genetically identical to bits of you as bits of your foot are to bits of your hand.

Where did you think identical twins came from? Why did you think they were "identical"?

How silly to even suggest that they might be the same person.
Yes, it is silly, which is why I was wondering what you were up to. It seems that you didn't know what identical twins were; now that you know, please answer the question.

And, if you have time, please address the other corner cases I've laid out.

But they (at the time) were ONLY theories.
Dan Simmons said it best, in my opinion: Do you think that theories grow up to be facts? Theories explain facts. Universal gravitation is a theory; atomic theory is (it's in the darn name!) a theory; plate tectonics is a theory; general relativity is a theory. Theories do not turn into anything else over time; they may be supported by additional evidence, they may be overturned, and they may be modified to fit new evidence, but they remain theories nonetheless.

In addition, from what I can tell, Galileo argued only for a liberal interpretation of scripture; I don't see where he argued for it to be changed. As you've said that "Galileo insisted that scripture must be wrong and had to be changed to fit his theory", I'm still waiting on you to point out where he ever demanded that.

On not praying for Enigma, you're just being asked to not mention it. I don't think Enigma will know or care if you pray, and it's rude to keep waving it around. If you feel no need to be polite, then just say so, but don't put on your oppressed hat and start dancing about claiming that Enigma is harshing your mellow--it's dishonest.

Posted by: grendelkhan at August 29, 2007 9:17 PM


Grendelkahn,

I wasn't attacking Enigma. We've have been having a debate on "valuations" for weeks now and you have entered in the middle. I'm sure Enigma knew what I was getting at AND I made it clear that I had no problem granting her wishes. I said this was only for the sake of the 'valuations" argument.

I like Enigma, think she argues respectfully, has good thought out responses, and never calls names.

I think and hope that she understood where I was coming from. If I offended her, it was accidental.

But it was sweet of you to jump to her defense. I was moved by her posts on her defensiveness to religion and if we become better friends I like to know what happened. I respect her wishes, I was just pointing out that it didn't jive with her "valuation" veiwpoint.

Of course we can pray for her and she'd never know, but she asked us not to pray for her. Not to keep it to ourselves, but not to pray for her. Perfect example of wanting to "force" her valuations on us...

Peace.

Posted by: mk at August 30, 2007 6:32 AM


It's something that I need to work on. Not believing in a God is fine but not when one disbelieves for that reason.
I have a lot of anger and resentment that stems from a particular episode in my life which all got directed towards religion and God. I've been working on it, but it's clearly still a problem.

Enigma, I truly admire your honesty here. I am so terribly sorry that something so tragic has happened in your past. I don't know what it was, but it must have been something very awful, for you to have this much hurt from it. If you ever, ever want to share this privately (I know you probably wouldn't want to post it publicly), I know that MaryKay or I would be more than happy to discuss it with you by email...and don't worry, we don't debate with you or anything like that, on the emails. We just do that here, on the blog, since this is a place for debate. We'd be more than happy to give you an understanding ear and support and understanding. I hate to see anyone suffering in silence. Anyway, the offer is out there if you are ever interested.

Logically, I always have known that anger stems from hurt... but it is always difficult for me to really understand that emotionally, when I feel like my faith is being attacked by someone.. So when you insulted our faith, it really hurt me and my responses stemmed from my feelings of anger and frustration - and I'm sorry for that.

I want you to know that, although it might seem strange, MaryKay, Valerie, and many others on this blog, including myself, have found that we truly care and love many of the pro-choice members of this blog. Many times, it started out hostile, and we ended up being friends. I know it might seem impossible that anyone who doesn't know you, or who hasn't known you for very long, could love or care about you, but I can assure you it is possible. We know that behind your words, you are a human being, and we know you have feelings. And when we listen to your words, we are getting a picture of who you are ...and this is the person that we are growing to care about. So I truly do believe that these people are not saying they are going to pray for you, because they want to feel superior to you, or anything like that. Although I can completely understand why you might feel that way, I truly believe they do it out of love. They just wanted you to know that they are thinking about you.

I hope that whatever the issue is that has caused you pain, you will be able to find peace about, and comfort. ((hugs))

Posted by: Bethany at August 30, 2007 7:54 AM


"if Bubba is just walking down the street, almost everybody says he has right to life, etc., but if he's the attacker it's a different story."


MK: But the unborn baby is NOT an attacker. All he/she did was be in the wrong place at the wrong time, because his/her parents put him/her there...and this to you is a plausible reason to kill him/her...unbelievable!


Nobody said the unborn are "guilty." What is operative is wanted or unwanted. Above, I'm just relating that right to life is in no way absolute.

Doug

Posted by: Anonymous at August 30, 2007 8:00 AM


"and what you want in this argument is for right-to-life to be attributed to the unborn."

MK: Well, duh.

"Okay, desire and valutation, just as has been said."

And what will happen to your argument if the right to life IS attributed to the unborn?

My argument would remain the same. It is not impossible that society's valuation could change, as you hypothesize. There are laws and valuations by society that I don't agree with now.

Doug

Posted by: Anonymous at August 30, 2007 8:03 AM


"In no way is this just "my valuation." Society is saying it's okay because the unborn are inside the body of a person. Of course some people, you included, disagree with this, but what I said is true - it makes a huge difference that the unborn are inside the body of a person, as opposed to not being there, i.e. born. With birth comes attribution of right to life, etc."

MK: Of course it's your valuation. You and society might agree, but by your own definition, you and society have a different valuation than mine. Therefore the idea that the body of the baby is inside the body of a woman and therefore gives the women the right to kill it, is YOUR valuation, and NOT mine.

Just using your arguments here...

And a pretty fine job you did, MK. Yes - you think differently.

Doug

Posted by: Anonymous at August 30, 2007 8:06 AM


Enigma: "Neither twin would have the right to unilaterally kill the other. Neither could be said to be imposing upon the other?s body either."

MK: You're kidding right? They can't even take a pee in private, let alone get married and have any kind of normal sex...besides, the fact that one twin is not wanted by the other, is enough of a reason according to you and Doug. Nothing else is needed.

One twin isn't wanted and is infringing on the bodily autonomy of the other...identical situations.

No - that one twin doesn't want the other is not enough reason, IMO, for the other to be killed. The "other" is not inside the body of the one, for starters. And it's not simply one twin's or the other's body. It's both theirs. There is not "the bodily autonomy of the other." You're just making stuff up where you say, "according to you and Doug."

Posted by: Anonymous at August 30, 2007 8:11 AM


MK: It's time to refute this idea that people who hold Christian beliefs are all fruitcakes, believing in fairytales and basing their morals on pipe dreams...

Oh please - I don't say "are all fruitcakes." And you can say "fairytales," etc., whereas I have said "unprovable." Is there actual, demonstrable proof that "faith" is beyond "pipe dreams," etc.?

........

These quotes are taken from Thomas E Woods, PhD. mostly from the book "How The Catholic Church Built Western Civilization..."

"It?s the same argument we?ve heard so many times before, except now with increasing frequency and intensity: The world?s troubles are caused by religion. If only people would at last abandon these silly superstitions and get with the times."

IMO, you and your ilk are the close minded ones. You seem to think that the Church is only capable of believing in disprovable theories and hogwash...and you often use "science" to back up your claims...Ironically, that very science that you use, wouldn't exist if it weren't for the grand open-mindedness of the Catholic Church. You focus on Gallileo and ignore Aquinas. You harp on Religious wars and ignore the worst culprits of modern time, Stalin, Lenin, Marx and Hitler...All atheists and all haters of the Church and religion in any form...By your logic, I could argue that it is atheists and secular humanists that are responsible for most of the atrocities perpetrated in the 20th century...

Nope - I don't ignore Stalin, etc. - there once again you're just making stuff up.

I also don't ignore Aquinas - the deal there is that he invokes unprovable assumptions in the first place, etc.

I haven't said that religion is "bad," per se. There has been both enormous good and bad from it. If the Church has aided humanity's search for scientific truth at times, then great, for it has surely hindered it at others.

Doug

Posted by: Anonymous at August 30, 2007 8:21 AM


Doug, (I'm assuming that the above anon is you),

So let me get this straight...if nature were different, and a woman that was pregnant carried the baby on the outside of the womb (like a marsupial) but was still attached by an umbilical cord, then you would say that she would not have the right to abort because the baby isn't inside of her, only attached to her? Really? That's your view?

Do you not see how ridiculous your attempts to cling to your faulty reasonings are?

First you say that a woman has bodily autonomy and no one has the right to "use" her body, even if it's to permit =them to live.

Then we give you the "Siamese Twins' example and you say that's different because the twin is on the outside of the other twins body...

But you also often use the example of the kidney donation thingy and say we don't have the right to force someone to donate their kidney because they have the right to bodily autonomy...correct me if I'm wrong, but did you mean if a full grown person needed an kidney but was inside the body of the projected donor?

You're arguments are confusing at best, and illogical at worst...what am I missing?

Posted by: mk at August 30, 2007 8:25 AM


Jessie: I'm also wondering if Enigma believes in the big bang theory or something like it. Most Evolutionists do. Big Bang of course contradicts the first law of thermodynamics. In any process, the total energy of the universe remains constant.
If this holds true, something/someone had to exists before the bang.

No, the Big Bang doesn't contradict that first law. The BB is saying that a cyclic contraction then expansion could occur. You appear to be viewing time as a separate, one-dimensional thing, also, and that is not the way the universe really works. That's a "Newtonian" view that works well enough for our daily lives on this planet, but we really live in spacetime, not just three spatial dimensions with one time dimension. Spacetime itself would contract with the BB. Difficult concepts for most of us to think about.

Doug

Posted by: Anonymous at August 30, 2007 8:26 AM


Grendelkhan,

Although identical twins have the same genotype, or DNA, they have different phenotypes, meaning that the same DNA is expressed in different ways.
*
Traits determined by phenotype, such as fingerprints and physical appearance, are the result of "the interaction of the individual¿s genes and the developmental environment in the uterus." Thus, a DNA test can't determine the difference between identical twins, while a simple fingerprint can.

While I stand corrected on the DNA testing, I remain firm in my assertion that identical twins are NOT identical. I knew that there was some genetic difference and I mistakenly believed that it was DNA. I was wrong, but close.

Either way, these are obviously two different persons, with two different souls which is what I believe you were asking.

Posted by: mk at August 30, 2007 8:33 AM


Doug,

(Check your name box...you keep showing up as anon)
And you can say "fairytales," etc., whereas I have said "unprovable." Is there actual, demonstrable proof that "faith" is beyond "pipe dreams," etc.?

Please tell me you're not going to make me go and get all the posts where you've called our faith "pretending", fairy tales, myths and supserstitions...I will, but I don't want to...

You have made it perfectly clear that your "valuations" are based on what you believe to be fact and therefore much more mature, well thought out and reasonable, and that our valuations, (while we are allowed to have them, thank you so much for your permission) are unreasonable, based on myth and not worth taking into consideration.

Are you actually denying that that is what you believe? That we have the right to have them, but you think they are silly?

Posted by: mk at August 30, 2007 8:37 AM


MK: So let me get this straight...if nature were different, and a woman that was pregnant carried the baby on the outside of the womb (like a marsupial) but was still attached by an umbilical cord, then you would say that she would not have the right to abort because the baby isn't inside of her, only attached to her? Really? That's your view?

Nope, that's backwards logic on your part. If we are going with the idea that the unborn being inside the body of a person makes a difference, that does not mean that being "outside" would necessarily mean "anything." In practice and in this case I'd say the woman should have the right to cut the umbilical cord. If the baby would still be alive and could be cared for by somebody else that wanted it, I don't have a problem with that. Same as now - if a late-term pregnancy is to be ended and there's no undue danger to the woman, then delivery can be induced and others can care for the baby, if they so desire.

........

Do you not see how ridiculous your attempts to cling to your faulty reasonings are?

Good grief, you made an illogical conclusion, then you say that I'm the one with "faulty reasonings".....

........


First you say that a woman has bodily autonomy and no one has the right to "use" her body, even if it's to permit =them to live.

I agree with that - and think it would apply for your marsupial-like situation too.

.......

Then we give you the "Siamese Twins' example and you say that's different because the twin is on the outside of the other twins body...

That's where you're screwing up. No, the twin is not outside the other's body. The share the same body.

........


But you also often use the example of the kidney donation thingy and say we don't have the right to force someone to donate their kidney because they have the right to bodily autonomy...correct me if I'm wrong, but did you mean if a full grown person needed an kidney but was inside the body of the projected donor?

I don't think I have mentioned the kidney, but do agree with others about it - the issue of autonomy does come into play.

I'm not sure why you're asking about "a full grown person needed an kidney but was inside the body of the projected donor." What led you to ask that?

You're arguments are confusing at best, and illogical at worst...what am I missing?

The illogic is yours, MK, and you seem to try fairly hard to misstate my arguments.

Doug

Posted by: Anonymous at August 30, 2007 8:44 AM


(Check your name box...you keep showing up as anon)

Sorry, MK - using different computers makes the server not "recognize" me - taken care of now.

.......

"And you can say "fairytales," etc., whereas I have said "unprovable." Is there actual, demonstrable proof that "faith" is beyond "pipe dreams," etc.?"

Please tell me you're not going to make me go and get all the posts where you've called our faith "pretending", fairy tales, myths and supserstitions...I will, but I don't want to...

Bethany said she felt insulted so I have tried to avoid derogatory terms. I imagine that I have said that religion cannot be proven to be anything more than myth, fantasy, superstition, yes. And the same for "pipe dreams" although that's both somewhat mildly derogatory and meaning "unlikely" too. Bottom line - faith is a subjective thing, and one's brand of religion won't necessarily be shared by another.

........


You have made it perfectly clear that your "valuations" are based on what you believe to be fact and therefore much more mature, well thought out and reasonable, and that our valuations, (while we are allowed to have them, thank you so much for your permission) are unreasonable, based on myth and not worth taking into consideration.

Oh brother, that is not true, MK. I've repeatedly said that we all make unprovable assumptions and have differing desires in this argument, and that's as true for me as it is for you. I do think it pays to focus on what is true for all of us, as opposed to what some of us hold as unprovable "faith." When a thing is my opinion, I say that that's the deal. IMO it's better to let the pregnant woman make her own best choice, rather that forbid it. We all have our preferences, but when it comes to taking away the freedom that women have in the matter, then I think there really should be something provable as far as reasoning and motivation - something we all or pretty much all can agree upon.

........


Are you actually denying that that is what you believe? That we have the right to have them, but you think they are silly?

What I see as silly is saying that one's opinion should be forced over that of another without a demonstrable need for it to be so. If the pregnant woman's will is to be subverted to yours and other Pro-Lifers' then a persuasive and generally-applies-to-us all need for it should be apparent.

I don't think you are "silly" for having religious beliefs. On their own, I do not say they are "silly," either. You are welcome to them and I know that lots of people get lots of good out of religion. I would agree with Enigma that not everybody shares those beliefs, however, and thus they don't apply to those other people.

Doug

Posted by: Doug at August 30, 2007 9:00 AM


The kidney-donation and Siamese-Twins examples outlined above implicitly assume that you believe that a fetus is morally equivalent to an full-grown human. If you don't believe that, then the examples don't apply. It's a gap that can't be debated across.

mk: While I stand corrected on the DNA testing, I remain firm in my assertion that identical twins are NOT identical.
Of course identical twins are separate people; any fool can see that. My question was how you reconcile that with your belief that the formation of a unique set of DNA is the point when humanity is conferred, the point of ensoulment, I suppose.

So is the formation of a unique set of DNA not the only point where humanity is conferred? If a cell or two falls off of a blastocyst but fails to also implant, did someone just die?

My question isn't whether or not identical twins are different people; my question is how you use your definition of humanity (the formation of a unique set of DNA) to figure that.

Also, please consider my question about chimaeras.

I knew that there was some genetic difference and I mistakenly believed that it was DNA. I was wrong, but close.
No, that wasn't close. There's no genetic difference between twins. The result of identical twin formation is the same as the result of cloning, though in the latter case both aren't of the same age.

Posted by: grendelkhan at August 30, 2007 9:04 AM


Speaking of identical and conjoined twins, is a pair of conjoined twins one person or two if they have two heads and one body? What if they have one head or upper body and two sets of legs and whatnot?

Posted by: grendelkhan at August 30, 2007 9:27 AM


doug-

I'll have to go with the scientists at nasa on this one, like jastro and say the big bang does contradict the 1st law. If it didn't, we should be able to recreate the universe in a tube...

Jessie

Posted by: jessie at August 30, 2007 9:30 AM


Egnima- funny how your beliefs don't anger me, but mine anger yours. I find that the more I confess Christ, the more I am attacked, but He said that would happened so it doesn't bother me. I pray for those that are lost and profess Christ because I care more about you then what you think about me.

For these of you on this sight that are Christians, I think you will understand the sorrow we feel for the lost especially those that are close to us.

Enigma, I respect your beliefs and posted what I believe. Again, we have free will to choose our path. If it angers you that I believe in absolute truth and that it stems from a Creator and do and will not concede that the multiple salvations exist etc, then I apologize for upsetting you, but I will not apologize for my beliefs. You shouldn't care if I pray for you or not. My friend Matt, who was an atheist for almost 30 years, never got angry when I mentioned my faith etc If I said, I'll pray...he just said..ok and we would have similiar conversations as we've had except Matt never got angry. I find that those who struggle with faith comments and profession of Christ are those that know there is a God and deny Him.

Posted by: jessie at August 30, 2007 9:37 AM


Jessie,

For starters, I do apologize. While I still object to what you said, I went about objecting the wrong way. You do not deserve that.

“Enigma- funny how your beliefs don't anger me, but mine anger yours.”

Actually your beliefs don’t bother me. My friends and I enjoy discussing religion. What bothers me is when people start in with the “I’ll pray for you” and the “you just need to open your heart and find the light.” Everyone is perfectly entitled to their beliefs but no one is entitled to impose one’s beliefs upon another.

I’ve had to hide what I believe often enough (most of family doesn’t know) that it’s extremely frustrating when the reasons I choose to hide are confirmed the instant when I decide to open up at all. Why should I have to hide how I feel when others do not?

“I pray for those that are lost and profess Christ because I care more about you then what you think about me.”

Okay, here I need to comment. I respect that with your faith you may feel a need to pray for others. But what’s the point of telling those others? I mean, okay, if it’s a friend or a close relative who just had something bad happen to them, I can understand. You’re basically telling them that you’re with them and that you’ll help in any way you can. But what’s the point of telling someone that doesn’t believe that you’re going pray for them? All you’re indicating is that you feel that lack something for which they should aspire. You’re telling them that they don’t know what’s best for them. You’ve telling them that you know better than they do. That is offensive and condescending.

“I apologize for upsetting you, but I will not apologize for my beliefs.”

I never asked you to. All I ask for is for you to respect my right to have mine.

“You shouldn't care if I pray for you or not.”

In truth, I don’t. If I don’t know about, there’s nothing to object to. What I object to is having perfect strangers tell me that they’re going to pray for and pray for the light of God to fill my soul.

“I find that those who struggle with faith comments and profession of Christ are those that know there is a God and deny Him.”

Once again, the only time I truly object is when I feel that someone is attempting to impose their beliefs upon me. Otherwise, faith comments don’t bother me.

Once again, I apologize. I shouldn’t have gone after you like that.

Posted by: Enigma at August 30, 2007 12:54 PM


Bethany,

Thanks for the thoughts and for the offer to discuss things on email if I wish. Its been a problem for a long time and its something that I still struggle with. It is getting better (though I’m not sure if that’s a comment on my rate of improvement or an indication of how bad things were.)

“So when you insulted our faith, it really hurt me and my responses stemmed from my feelings of anger and frustration - and I'm sorry for that.”

As did mine. Maybe I wasn’t insulted quite as obviously (sorry about that) but the implication was still there.

I try not to insult other people's faiths. This is why I wanted to avoid debating about religion because my views on the subject are a little extreme. I believe that people are entitled to their beliefs and that others should try to respect them even if they don't agree with them (okay, there are exceptions to that...such as when a husband feels that its his God-given right to hit his wife...that's the first example that came to mind...I am NOT trying to indicate that I think there is anything about a belief in God that would lead to this...it's just a random example). I get defensive when I feel that others are disrespecting my beliefs and asserting the superiority of their own.

“So I truly do believe that these people are not saying they are going to pray for you, because they want to feel superior to you, or anything like that.”

They may not mean it, but that’s how it comes across. In truth, I could care less about whether on not people pray for me. What I object to is being told (see previous post).

“I hope that whatever the issue is that has caused you pain, you will be able to find peace about, and comfort.”

Yeah, that’s my hope too.

Posted by: Enigma at August 30, 2007 1:05 PM


Jessie: I'll have to go with the scientists at nasa on this one, like jastro and say the big bang does contradict the 1st law. If it didn't, we should be able to recreate the universe in a tube...

That makes no sense to me - the "recreate the universe in a tube." Where in the world did that come from?

Jastrow is but one person, and does not represent "scientists at NASA." I also think somebody has misquoted Jastrow to you.

He wrote God and the Astronomers, and in it he lays out how the evidence for the Big Bang was discovered and how the competing theories gradually receded. He ends up concluding that just because the Big Bang happened, it doesn't mean that a God and evolution cannot both be present. He really doesn't say, "no Big Bang.."

The guy is quite an astronomer and physicist, but his writing is often for the layperson, so much so that he oversimplifies some things. Again, viewing a "before the Big Bang" is still approaching time as just one separate dimension, and reality is that it's not, that we exist in spacetime even though we can only directly perceive three spatial dimensions. A singularity like what would be present for the Big Bang has all of spacetime contracted, but there's no violation of the 1st law of Thermodynamics - the total energy could still be constant.

Doug

Posted by: Doug at August 30, 2007 1:11 PM