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Author Topic:   War on Christmas
anastasia
Member (Idle past 6011 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 42 of 245 (372421)
12-27-2006 11:27 AM
Reply to: Message 40 by ReverendDG
12-27-2006 12:19 AM


I have heard plenty about the war on Christmas, but I would say it comes down to the motives of the greeter. There is no way to be sure that a person or a corporation uses a certain greeting out of hatred. It may very well be out of respect.
Personally I am happy to be greeted in any way that is synomous to the culture. If a person celebrates Hannukuh and wishes to include me in their joy or extend sincere wishes that my Hannukah be as joyful as theirs, it makes no difference to me whether I actually do celebrate Hannukah or not. Why should I feel insulted by a person who wishes me the happiness which they feel when contemplating and preparing for what is dearly valued by them?
In this sense I do find people who complain about greetings to be silly. Some peeple will use anything at all as grounds for a complaint or a law suit. It is often impossible to please them. I heard about a rabbi recently who complained about the absence of a menorah in his town's holiday decor. The township removed all of the decorations completely, and he complained about the lack of spirit shown by the community.
If this keeps up, I don't see why folks will stop at complaining about Christmas.
Why not for that matter complain about hearing 'adieu' or 'adios'? Is it wrong for people to wish someone to go with God, if they don't even believe in God? Or is it flattering that the person is wishing you the highest blessing known to their culture?
Go figure.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 40 by ReverendDG, posted 12-27-2006 12:19 AM ReverendDG has not replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 47 by New Cat's Eye, posted 12-27-2006 11:52 AM anastasia has not replied
 Message 48 by nator, posted 12-27-2006 11:54 AM anastasia has replied

  
anastasia
Member (Idle past 6011 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 50 of 245 (372438)
12-27-2006 1:09 PM
Reply to: Message 48 by nator
12-27-2006 11:54 AM


I don't make a habit out of defending Bush. But there is a point to be made; if God does exist then we as a nation ARE under God, whether we believe in Him or not. I do think that atheist are citizens, since there are no requirements that you must believe in God to enter our ports, or must subsequently abandon your own faith on arriving. Citizenship involves obeying Laws. Patriotism is a bit different. It involves espousing of an ideal. If a nation sets forth an ideal which must at some point be defended, only those who truly hold that ideal in their hearts can defend it without force.
I have argued this point from another standpoint, that of Catholicism. Folks hate being threatened with excommunication. In reality there is no threat. We are all free to disagree with any law of the church, or any doctrine. But then we are not entirely in the church, are we? We have excommunicated ourselves, and the 'threat' is just a cautionary statement to those who are unaware of the implications of their decision.
If you are a citizen, you are. Only an individual knows to what extent their patriotism goes.
schraf writes:
You, being a Christian, probably don't even notice. But I do.
Not sure what you mean here. I am definitely aware of the references to God which you have mentioned above, and I have definitely spent some amount of my life dwelling on them. And I certainly have noticed the lack of correlation between the expressed 'christian' sentiments and the personal faith of our founding fathers.
Let's just boil it down to this; I am Catholic, I live in a neighborhood almost entirely comprised of Orthodox Russians, Hassidic Jews, and Hindus. I have no desire to escape it or fear of being 'awash' with a predominate culture. Bigotry is only a state of mind, and I sense it comes from all sides. Perhaps Bush was right to say that atheists are not patriotic?
Edited by anastasia, : No reason given.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 48 by nator, posted 12-27-2006 11:54 AM nator has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 51 by jar, posted 12-27-2006 1:18 PM anastasia has replied
 Message 52 by alacrity fitzhugh, posted 12-27-2006 1:32 PM anastasia has replied
 Message 57 by nator, posted 12-27-2006 3:56 PM anastasia has replied

  
anastasia
Member (Idle past 6011 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 54 of 245 (372450)
12-27-2006 2:18 PM
Reply to: Message 51 by jar
12-27-2006 1:18 PM


Re: Just a request
jar writes:
If you are going to cite me as an authority or source, please try to, at the very least, reflect what I would say. I would NEVER, I hope, make such an assertion as you have attributed to me.
Ceratinly I will not cite you in future if I am capable of such misrepresentation.
I am trying to interpret your disambiguation of Law and Morality. Perhaps my understanding of what you meant is flawed. my apologies.
My point is that having citizenship does not automatically mean having patriotism, or following the law of the land does not force a person to admire the morality of a law.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 51 by jar, posted 12-27-2006 1:18 PM jar has not replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 67 by RAZD, posted 12-30-2006 4:48 PM anastasia has replied

  
anastasia
Member (Idle past 6011 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 55 of 245 (372455)
12-27-2006 3:06 PM
Reply to: Message 52 by alacrity fitzhugh
12-27-2006 1:32 PM


If there is a god/s, we are under him/her/it/them. Is that better?
It has nothing to do with putting my foot anywhere, or with G. Bush.
alacrity fitzhugh writes:
Where in the Constitution is your god mention (hint no god is mentioned). where do you get of telling people whether they believe in something they still have to follow this imaginary things rules. You in just this short little sentence showed your intolerance of others, very unAmerican!
Hint; I never mentioned a constitution or any imaginary things rules, whatever they are. In this short little paragraph you have showed your lack of comprehension and ability to add things into the conversation in a moment of passion.
It is this type of attitude that perpetuated the genocide of my ancestors. You again espouse intolerance to others that do not have your same type of superstition or have no superstition at all.
OK, I said;
"If a nation sets forth an ideal which must at some point be defended, only those who truly hold that ideal in their hearts can defend it without force."
I am forced to think you are simply not understanding me. I will put it in new words for you; If a nation promotes a religion, and they ask you to fight in the name of that religion, would you do it?
Would it be more patriotic to go war, or to refuse? It would probably be more noble to refuse, but I think patriotism implies loving the ideals of your country. Perhaps loving the potential of one's country is enough to qualify.
I have no idea how this relates to genocide. Perhaps you would connect the dots?
If your trying to equivocate a religious person being ex-communicated with an American being stripped of his citizenship for not believing in your god, that would show your lack of knowledge of the laws of the vary country you preface to love and honor.
Since I expressly mentioned that our country has no rules of citizenship contigent on worship of any God, much less 'my' God, then it would be highly unlikely that I equivocated or even mentioned a stripping of citizenship. I said, again, that whether or not a person is a citizen, only they personally can determine if they are patrioticly inclined. It is totally possible to hate every aspect of this country and maintain citizenship, but probably not patriotism. Unless of course you feel patriotic about the purple mountains and fruited plains.
I live in the south, not some liberal northern city. Come on down, if you really want to find out what bigotry is really like.
I've been. I do not know what makes you think liberal northerners can't be bigoted. They just change their focus.
I have two honorable discharges for serving my country, do you even have one to show us your patriotic or talking out the side of your mouth.
First off, having a military record is not possible for everyone. I would like you to bear that in mind before you insult someone.
To answer your question, I never made any claim to patriotism nor any competition about who is more patriotic.
If an athesit is bothered by the overly 'christian' aspects of this country, then maybe they will be left feeling a little less than patriotic about it all. Its personal.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 52 by alacrity fitzhugh, posted 12-27-2006 1:32 PM alacrity fitzhugh has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 59 by alacrity fitzhugh, posted 12-27-2006 4:48 PM anastasia has replied

  
anastasia
Member (Idle past 6011 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 60 of 245 (372472)
12-27-2006 4:58 PM
Reply to: Message 57 by nator
12-27-2006 3:56 PM


schrafinator writes:
The point is, anastasia, that maybe you might give a break to us non-Christians who have to put up with nearly inescapable Christianity here in the US, including in our government, where it does not belong.
It can get to feeling rather oppressive sometimes, especially around the holidays.
Oh stop. Seriously now, christians complain because there's not enough christmas, atheists complain becuase there's too much. Christians think morality is decreasing, atheists think christians are forcing their laws on them.
As to your oppression, well, I wish I could help. No one should feel oppressed around the holidays. Since I am not in a position at this time to be able to give you a break myself, I will remember your intention the next time I am in church.
...jk

This message is a reply to:
 Message 57 by nator, posted 12-27-2006 3:56 PM nator has not replied

  
anastasia
Member (Idle past 6011 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 62 of 245 (372474)
12-27-2006 5:11 PM
Reply to: Message 59 by alacrity fitzhugh
12-27-2006 4:48 PM


Sir, with all respect, I think you are getting hot and bothered over two letters.
Please look more carefully at Message 50.
"I DO think that atheists are citizens."
And yes I did state it.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 59 by alacrity fitzhugh, posted 12-27-2006 4:48 PM alacrity fitzhugh has not replied

  
anastasia
Member (Idle past 6011 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 71 of 245 (373070)
12-30-2006 5:17 PM
Reply to: Message 67 by RAZD
12-30-2006 4:48 PM


Re: patriotism to which values?
Dear RAZD,
I don't know if it would be fair to call person A OR person B better. Both of the examples describe people who have a belief and follow it as honestly as possible.
I would say that person A is more patriotic and possibly a better citizen. That is because I define patriotism as supporting the ideals of the country, and if you support the ideals you will most likely follow the laws.
There is still something to be said for person B. There are times when it takes an individual's views to make the country better. For example, Martin Luther King Jr. It is IMO an admirable thing also to adhere to a moral standard that you feel is important in spite of ANY constitution or declaration.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 67 by RAZD, posted 12-30-2006 4:48 PM RAZD has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 72 by nator, posted 12-30-2006 6:03 PM anastasia has replied
 Message 73 by RAZD, posted 12-30-2006 6:32 PM anastasia has replied

  
anastasia
Member (Idle past 6011 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 74 of 245 (373184)
12-31-2006 12:35 PM
Reply to: Message 73 by RAZD
12-30-2006 6:32 PM


Re: patriotism to which values?
RAZD writes:
Thus the values of the public as a whole are the basis of govenrment, and in America, those values are freedom, equality, justice, liberty, pursuit of happiness, etc: the ones this country were founded on.
If a person is lucky enough to live in a country which upholds these values and if he is able to take the oath of office in good conscience, I can't conceive of any reason why he would subvert a nation to a relgious view.
If a person is elected or ascends to a position where the laws he will be upholding deny the above values, he may be wise to refuse the office or yes, monstrosity of all monstrosities, take some steps to revising the institution.
This country has always been about seperating church and state. There are a few elected officials who feel they must put personal views aside when it comes to things like abortion or cloning. If they choose to do otherwise our democratic system allows for the public to decide who will remain in office, and that no one person has the final say-so.
As it goes, a belief system which follows graded absolutism proposes that we serve first, God, second, fellow man, and third, country. If we chose to take God out of the equation, then I would have to say that ANY constitution which does not embrace respect of fellow man is open to revision, and any personal views, religious or non, which DO embrace respect of fellow man, should be...not forced...but certainly upheld regardless of law. This is what MLK did. His views may not have been contradictory to the constitution, but he did point out the discrepencies in the values of this country and the personal values of the founding fathers.
Included in that is the freedom (dragging this discussion kicking and screaming back to the topic) to discuss the falseness of the christian "mythos" having any real relationship to december (to say nothing of the 25th) and to point out that it is christians waging a "war" on other cultural beliefs and traditions and trying to make these other cultural beliefs and traditions become subverted by christianity.
I don't think there are very many people who actually think Jesus was born on December 25. Even as a little girl I asked my mom 'how do we know'? Who cares? Things evolve. If people want to get all steamy about a 'war' that was over for the most part 1600 years ago, fine. Our laws currently allow for the practice of Saturnalia, Yule, Solstice, or none at all. I have been to Yule celebrations and I see no reason why they can not be celebrated as complimentary to each other.
Edited by anastasia, : No reason given.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 73 by RAZD, posted 12-30-2006 6:32 PM RAZD has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 80 by RAZD, posted 12-31-2006 5:04 PM anastasia has replied

  
anastasia
Member (Idle past 6011 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 75 of 245 (373187)
12-31-2006 12:46 PM
Reply to: Message 72 by nator
12-30-2006 6:03 PM


Re: patriotism to which values?
schrafinator writes:
I think that RAZD's point was that when President George H.W. Bush declared that he didn't think that Athiests should be considered citizens nor patriots, he was putting his religious views ahead of the United States Constitution and Bill of Rights.
Our laws allow for freedom to practice any religion without regulation. It does not say 'freedom from religion' but 'freedom of religion'. By law, Bush can BELIEVE and SPEAK whatever he wishes, but he can not enact any policy to enforce his belief. Did he?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 72 by nator, posted 12-30-2006 6:03 PM nator has not replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 76 by ringo, posted 12-31-2006 1:13 PM anastasia has replied

  
anastasia
Member (Idle past 6011 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 79 of 245 (373209)
12-31-2006 4:12 PM
Reply to: Message 76 by ringo
12-31-2006 1:13 PM


Re: patriotism to which values?
Ringo writes:
Interestingly, many languages (French, for example) don't make a distinction between "of" and "from" at all. It's the same word.
Happens in English as well.
Free of oppression.
Free from oppression.
Similar, but in this case free 'from' oppression implies a past state of oppression.
But if we say;
'freedom of speech', or
'freedom from speech', the difference is too noticeable to interchange the words at random.
And if, as some theists claim, atheism is a religion, requiring "faith", then freedom to "practise" atheism would be freedom from religion.
If I am reading this right then yes, but if you take all mention of God away in every public situation, it is not allowing the same freedom to deists? Does that make sense? Like, atheism is winning as a world view because while we have the freedom to worship as we please, we can't talk about it openly anymore in politics?
Isn't that what the so-called "war on Christmas" is all about - the desire to be free from other people's religions?
Probably, but then it is just a matter of perspective. The atheist will be free of hearing about christmas, but the christian will not be free to mention it. It's a lose lose, IMO.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 76 by ringo, posted 12-31-2006 1:13 PM ringo has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 81 by ringo, posted 12-31-2006 5:17 PM anastasia has replied

  
anastasia
Member (Idle past 6011 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 84 of 245 (373225)
12-31-2006 6:02 PM
Reply to: Message 81 by ringo
12-31-2006 5:17 PM


Re: patriotism to which values?
Ringo writes:
I don't know of any fundamental right not to hear what you don't want to hear.
Well, golly gee, I think you just put everyone out of business. Let Bushie say what he wants, let everyone else say Happy Holidays! and get over it!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 81 by ringo, posted 12-31-2006 5:17 PM ringo has not replied

  
anastasia
Member (Idle past 6011 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 85 of 245 (373228)
12-31-2006 6:41 PM
Reply to: Message 80 by RAZD
12-31-2006 5:04 PM


Re: patriotism to which values?
RAZD writes:
Neither of these are person {B}
Well, I am sorry. You never said person B. had to be American.
You have not refuted the point that person {B} is willing if not happy to commit treason (subvert the constitution) to advance his religious beliefs.
Perhaps I don't care to. Maybe commiting treason is not the biggest crime in the world. If this answer is not a propo, then please
rephrase to be more specific.
Why do christians always use this phrase? It seems like they are unable to pour a glass of milk without having god IN the equation.
I don't keep track of other christians, sorry. I used the phrase because it made my point.
Good for you, but don't try to tell me that december 25th has anything to do with christianity.
It does now and you would perhaps remember that some christians don't celebrate Christmas at all, and that some celebrate it on January 7. If it will make you happy I will use that date henceforth.
Who cares? I would think anyone interested in the truth would care. Do a google and see what you find -- year and month.
It is common knowledge that Christmas wasn't in December. It is interesting and all that good stuff to do the research, but still, who cares? I am sure Yule supplanted some previous celebration, and so on and so on. Things change. If some pagan converts began to incorporate their new beliefs into their old traditions ages ago, well then take it up with them. I think we, in this day and age, can share a date on the calender, especially since most of the earlier celebrations were about the solstice, and science has now proven that to occur on the 20 or 21 of the month on our current calendar.
The evidence is that december 25th was intentionally chosen by the leading christian church (catholic) in order to subvert a pagan celebration. One that involves yule trees, yule logs, mistletoe, family feasts, etcetera.
As far as I know the only time the catholic church forced anything was when Constantine made the Roman pagans give up their celebrations of Saturnalia, which did not involve Yule trees, etc.
For the past countless many years no one has been forcing anything. The poor Romans didn't even get to keep any of their traditions the way the poor Germans got to keep their trees. I daresay they could have kept their gods to go along with them if they had wanted.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 80 by RAZD, posted 12-31-2006 5:04 PM RAZD has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 88 by RAZD, posted 12-31-2006 10:42 PM anastasia has replied

  
anastasia
Member (Idle past 6011 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 89 of 245 (373296)
12-31-2006 11:28 PM
Reply to: Message 88 by RAZD
12-31-2006 10:42 PM


Re: patriotism to which values?
RAZD writes:
You have implied or stated that you felt that (all) christians were better citizens or patriots.
No sir. I said that if a particular atheist feels at odds with what he/she feels is the overly deistic nature of this country, that same person MAY not feel patriotic to the same degree as a deist does. They can still be an awesome citizen. I am Catholic. The views of our founding fathers regarding Catholicism don't inspire me with much fondness. I consider myself patriotic in the sense that I love the land, and I consider myself a decent law-abiding citizen. Since this is the case with me, I can't assume that other christians MUST feel more patriotic.
What I am showing you is that when they choose their religion over the values of the constitution and declaration of independence for the running of this country that they are NOT being good citizens or patriots.
This country happens to have pretty decent values. But again, if we talk about some other country where people are treated like crap, who cares about being patriotic? Isn't being a good person more of a priority? And how exactly does Christianity conflict with the ideals of liberty, justice, and equality?
The current calendar that has been adjusted how many times in the last hundred years? Please. The year also used to start with the spring equinox.
I think you are just furthering my point. Christmas is not scurrying to keep up with the calendar changes. It's been the same date since about the year 400.
Yes, because it has become traditional for women to earn less than men for doing the same job, so why should we care about changing that? It's nice to do all that research into the differences in pay scales, but still, they both make money after all eh? Who cares eh?
No, no, no. This is not going to become a one-size fits all argument. I said 'Who cares what day Christmas is celebrated on'? I think it is nice and cute and appropriate to celebrate it on the shortest day of the year (or close to, now) and short of knowing an exact date, a date with some symbolism attached is just fine.
So stop celebrating in december, and tell O'Riley to stuff it with his fake "war" on christmas while you are at it.
I do not know O'Riley personally. For all I know there could be a war on Christmas. I don't care how it started, but if someone doesn't want it here now, they are the perpetrators of THIS day and age.
Do you have any idea how many "heretics" were executed by christians
Yes. And I know how many Christians were executed by Christians just for not being 'heretics'.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 88 by RAZD, posted 12-31-2006 10:42 PM RAZD has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 90 by RAZD, posted 01-01-2007 3:45 AM anastasia has replied

  
anastasia
Member (Idle past 6011 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 91 of 245 (373372)
01-01-2007 10:19 AM
Reply to: Message 90 by RAZD
01-01-2007 3:45 AM


Re: patriotism to which values?
RAZD writes:
This is the second time I've seen you misuse deist. What you mean is theist. Look them up. Many founding fathers were deists.
Last I checked both deists and theists believe in God. A theist believes God interacts, a deist doesn't, but technically they are the same word. An atheist believes in no God. Perhaps you would like me to make a distinction as to how deists don't let God interfere in their government, so maybe the atheist won't mind deists. But deists including the founding fathers have been known to mention God publically.
Certainly an atheist will not feel patriotic to the theistic values expoused by christian leaders that try to set themselves above the other citizens, but that is no reason to be less patriotic to the American values of equality, liberty, freedom and justice.
Still curious how the 'American values' are any different from Christian values. Please tell me what some of these other 'christian' values may be.
You don't seem to care about much.
I care about many things.
So you don't feel past injustices should be rectified, therefore you don't think womens wages should be the same as mens because that is the traditional result.
Creating a stink about the 'injustice' of those who stole Yule is just not IMO as important as say the injustice of stealing land from the Native Americans. Things change, they can't all be rectified.
Or do you just not care when you are a beneficiary?
A beneficiary of what? Being allowed to celebrate Christmas on a day which does not coincide with any other holiday? Haven't different religions always celebrated some simultaneous holidays anyway? Or does that just not count because they were all pagan?
Edited by anastasia, : No reason given.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 90 by RAZD, posted 01-01-2007 3:45 AM RAZD has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 92 by RAZD, posted 01-01-2007 12:06 PM anastasia has replied
 Message 98 by dwise1, posted 01-01-2007 5:39 PM anastasia has replied

  
anastasia
Member (Idle past 6011 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 93 of 245 (373407)
01-01-2007 12:30 PM
Reply to: Message 92 by RAZD
01-01-2007 12:06 PM


Re: patriotism to which values?
RAZD writes:
You can't use deist to mean theist.
Technically they are the Greek and Latin equivalants of the same word
I've said my piece to the point of getting repetitious. Either you understand and accept my view or you don't, but I don't think further discussion will produce much difference.
Agreed.
And their culture, language, traditions, beliefs and celebrations. People force to take their culture, language, traditions, beliefs and celebrations underground, hidden beneath a patina of christian facade to survive.
You don't think christians have been subject to going underground with their beliefs?
So if we just procrastinate and waste enough time we don't need to worry about changing womens wages to match mens for the same job, is that the solution?
Do you want to match holiday celebrations? Then we agree.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 92 by RAZD, posted 01-01-2007 12:06 PM RAZD has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 96 by RAZD, posted 01-01-2007 1:34 PM anastasia has replied

  
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