published Tuesday, July 2nd, 2013

'Suggesting that words can't offend is silly' and more letters to the editor

A Free Press editorial asked, "... is there anything sillier than being offended by the sounds that come out of someone's mouth?" I'd suggest you ask any child ever cornered in a schoolyard and bombarded with the shrill sounds of the N-word or any young girl called the B-word so often she gradually comes to see herself as fit only for the streets.

Perhaps they could help you realize that being offended is not silly, that it matters very much what we say and hear and what our culture endorses. You could also try reading Lincoln's speeches -- or Hitler's -- to realize the power of words for good and evil.

A culture is reflected by its language. Language is the mirror image of what a culture cares about, what it needs to describe, what it desires and what it produces.

A culture is revealed by its language. More importantly, a culture is shaped by its language. What it talks about, how it talks and writes becomes the culture itself.

Embracing foul language is not a matter of growing up. It's a matter of giving up.

RONA GARY

Ringgold, Ga.

Free Press support of gay marriage troubling

Two weeks ago Free Press opinion page editor Drew Johnson said that history would judge advocates of an exclusive view of marriage with "contempt and disgust." Thursday's celebration of the Supreme Court decisions concerning the redefinition of marriage was slightly more generous but just as troubling.

Troubling because the Free Press celebrates views of equality and liberty which open the door to a host of questions which can no longer be answered with any clarity.

First of all, he leaves entirely open the basic question, what is marriage? If it's simply loving commitment, then in terms of human relationships, are there any limits as to number or gender? Second, if equality is made absolute, is it any longer possible to make legal distinctions, especially when certain distinctions would appear to benefit only those who qualify? Finally, if liberty is the only and final arbiter, what happens when liberty devolves into license? Are there any social standards or definitions besides murder and theft which a libertarian will endorse?

GARY LINDLEY

Lookout Mountain, Ga.

Splash of color is good for Chattanooga

Five stars to John Wise's North Market project. What is wrong with bringing in a splash of San Francisco, Dallas and Atlanta? The developer has no vision for the future.

There was no problem with color in Jefferson Heights. Why do all these people want to keep Chattanooga in the 19th Century?

JIM WOLFE

Guild, Tenn.

The Bible is what defines marriage

Don't you remember? It was Adam and Eve, not Adam and Adam or Eve and Eve.

And you might also remember -- it was Sodom and Gomorrah!

J.B. COLLINS

19
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daytonsdarwin said...

The Bible is what defines marriage "Don't you remember? It was Adam and Eve, not Adam and Adam or Eve and Eve.

And you might also remember -- it was Sodom and Gomorrah!"

The Bible also contains a talking serpent and donkey, burning bushes, demons in pigs, flying chariots, walking dead, witches, demons, with Jehovah approved slavery, murder, incest, rape, torture, perpetual arson, slaughter of innocent people, slavery, antiquated notions of natural events, and mentally disturbed individuals with delusions of grandeur with imaginary access to celestial magic tricks.

It's a mess of poorly written campfire stories, without the redeeming moral qualities of "Aesop's Fables" or "Lord of the Rings."

Believing that the BIble is inerrant, historically true, and a moral guide without fault is to be blind to the concepts of reality, logic, and ethics.

July 2, 2013 at 6:10 a.m.
Livn4life said...

DaytonDarwin, you continue to show your contemptive ignorance and arrogance regarding the Bible. But then, someone who worships his/her own abilities and human potential, believes he/she has the exclusive right to be judge and jury on all matters of the heart. That too is arrogance which will one day come to the end of its campfire stories and superior Aesop's fabilic statements. Then, having unbelieved in anything beyond this life, you will find out what you might have paid more attention to. By the way, please bear in mind in days to come, it it Your Perspective which will one day lead to yours and others being unable to write in to an opinion page even if you side with whomever is calling the shots. But feel free to keep on unbelieving. I'll take the Bible campfire stories any day and at least attempt to hold onto hope beyond this life and what if obviously coming because of how evolved and progressive we have become.

July 2, 2013 at 8:02 a.m.
daytonsdarwin said...

I've read the Bible. It doesn't take a Rhodes scholar to see the contradictions, myths, and nonsense when it's taken literally. I encourage people to read the Bible, all of it, not just what preachers tell you. It's a laugh riot.

Penn & Teller say it best. It's BS!

http://tinyurl.com/katzeot

Here's an episode on Creationism, another BS religious belief.

http://tinyurl.com/oa2wc7p

You're the bumpkin with false hope, imaginary friends, and ignorant beliefs.

"The best cure for Christianity is to read the Bible." Mark Twain

July 2, 2013 at 8:26 a.m.
daytonsdarwin said...

Here's some more whacky stuff from Bible Thumpers and True Believers. Who needs Jimmy Fallon for laughs when you have these Christian nutters?

GOP Candidate: Yoga Opens You to Satanic Possession http://tinyurl.com/m5apsas

Church Wins Row Over Flatulent Demons http://tinyurl.com/kk5qj5h

Survey: 27 Percent Of Americans Believe God Helps Decide Who Wins Sporting Events http://tinyurl.com/bgzr72q

Rick Perry: “Demons” did it http://tinyurl.com/ltb62oj

Wrongful death due to religion: Faith healing killed Misty Horner http://tinyurl.com/lvnjr4j

Don't forget Sunday morning TV. That when the faith-healers put on their magic tricks clown show. I'm still waiting for one of those "anointed by God but make the check out to me" hoo-hahs to heal an amputee.

So believe what you want. Have faith in fairy-tales as true. Wave a Twinkie over your own broken bones and prostate cancer if you want. Writhe on the floor, drink strychnine, handle rattlers, and speak gibberish, walk across the Tennessee River, and turn water into Jonestown Kool-Aid for yourself to drink, but don't teach that BS in public schools and keep that BS out of government.

"There's a sucker born every minute; most of them are born again."

July 2, 2013 at 9:26 a.m.
Rickaroo said...

"...someone who worships his/her own abilities and human potential, believes he/she has the exclusive right to be judge and jury on all matters of the heart." - L4L

Non-believers (atheists/agnostics) do not "worship" their own abilities and human potential. We simply realize that there is no Old Man in the sky watching our every move and monitoring our every thought and waiting anxiously to see if we utter the words, "Yes, Jesus is my savior." We truly have the freedom to look at life with unclouded eyes and see it as it is. It is not a boastful thing, it is simply a realization of the fact that we are responsible for our own actions and we are free to be ourselves. And that does not mean we are free to do whatever the hell we want. We have a conscience and empathy and we know that every action has consequences in THIS life. It is not really morality when you live your life in fear of being judged by a sky daddy who might decide to let you burn in hell for eternity if you displease him. Morality consists of being aware of our actions and weighing whether or not those actions will have a positive or negative effect for everyone involved. Truth is not necessarily an absolute. It is relevant to every situation and every moment. Doing or saying one thing might be positive in one situation but saying/doing that same thing in another might be negative. So, yes, we are in a sense our own "judge" in all things because we know that we are responsible for our own actions and we are aware of how those actions always have consequences.

If there is one thing in the Bible that is worth reading and believing it is this: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." And, for the record, those words did not originate from Jesus. That was a moral precept that existed in the various pagan religions long before JC supposedly appeared on the scene.

July 2, 2013 at 1:50 p.m.
RShultz210 said...

Rickaroo said: Non-believers (atheists/agnostics) do not "worship" their own abilities and human potential. We simply realize that there is no Old Man in the sky watching our every move and monitoring our every thought..." Rickaroo, I really do wish that this true and that atheists/agnostics did NOT do the things you have mentioned here but I have met far,far too many of them who do EXACTLY that. And then there are those like you who do NOT seem to be out to vilify every Believer they meet or talk to. I find a lot that I agree with in your views on morality, including the statement that morality should never be based on fear of punishment by God but on the belief that your actions do have consequences for everyone involved in those actions for our entire time on this world no matter whether one believes that Heaven lies beyond it or Nothing lies beyond it. I don't preach my beliefs to or try to force them on either Atheists or Agnostics, and I have friends who are Atheists who appreciate this and that's mainly why we're friends. They live by what we believers have come to call the Golden Rule, but most of them just consider it to be a universal truth, rather than something that Jesus commanded they do. I don't know if it's a coincidence or not, but most of the atheists with whom I am friends DO happen to accept the conclusion of the majority of well published and well known scholars that Jesus of Nazareth did indeed exist, but not that he was Divine. I think the trick to getting along(and maybe even becoming friends)is for neither group to demand the other believe as they do, or demean them if they do not.

July 2, 2013 at 3:32 p.m.
Rickaroo said...

RShultz...

What is known is that Jesus was a very common name and that many so-called prophets and seers of that name lived in and around Rome during the first century. According to secular historical records Nazareth did not even exist at the time that Jesus was supposedly born. Even if there was a real, flesh-and-blood Jesus Christ who supposedly preached what he preached, there was nothing especially unique about his preachments of brotherly love and compassion. Virtually everything that he supposedly said had already been said and written in the pagan religions that preceded Christianity.

And to believe that he was truly divine (half God, half man), born of a virgin, resurrected, and performed miracles that defy reality and the laws of physics is as ridiculous as believing any of the Old Testament fairy tales. The life and death of Christ was nothing more than an astrological allegory for the sun making its way through the sky throughout the course of the year passing through the various zodiacal signs (the twelve signs of the zodiac representing his twelve disciples), culminating in the winter solstice wherein the actual sun seemed to "die" and then be reborn again, symbolizing its rebirth. It was a common theme among the sun-worshiping pagan religions and there were various mythological men-gods whose lives were coincidentally similar to that of JC, but then later Christians breathed the added dimension of reality into something that should have remained in the realms of myth. Consequently most Christians today, in their collective ignorance and wishful thinking, believe in a literal Jesus Christ who rose from the dead and they pin all of their hopes for eternal life on that belief, thinking that he was concrete proof that we don't really die...with the caveat, of course, that we BELIEVE in him as our "savior." And therein lies the reason that believers and non-believers have such a hard time getting along. It is difficult to bear the arrogance and self-righteousness of those who believe that THEIR way is the ONLY way to believe. And whenever we atheists protest their evangelizing and holier-than-thou pronouncements, as we try to shed light on the cold hard truth and express the virtues of reason, we are more often than not the ones who come across as the "know-it-alls."

Personally I don't care what anyone believes or doesn't believe about Jesus or God or the after-life. I realize that life is fraught with uncertainty, despair, and unanswered questions, and most people want someone greater than themselves to believe in. I get that. But if only they could stop the BS about their away being the ONLY way to believe and their God being the ONE AND ONLY God to believe in, then there would not be nearly so much discord between us and we really could all get along, at least on a philosophical level.

July 2, 2013 at 6:06 p.m.
daytonsdarwin said...

In the last centuries BCE and the first centuries CE you couldn't throw a cat in the Middle East without hitting a messiah of some nature. Look into history of that time; just like politicians today claim to have the answers for all the difficult questions so too messiahs sprang up then (and now) because so many theistic groups always prophesied a Savior (Messiah) who would change things and make everyone better.

And the con-men still make those claims today whether you call them preachers, priests, prophets (profits is more likely) faith-healers, miracle-workers, stigmatics, Joel Osteen, Jimmy Swaggert, John Hagee, Mother Teresa, Popes, Imams, or Reverends. Whether they believe the BS or not is immaterial; it's still BS.

There's little difference between religious con-men and politicians. Never bend over to pick up the soap around any of them.

However, there is a Jesus who lives down the street and his mother (not Mary) makes great sopas de pollo. Nice guy, nice family, only he set his bushes on fire last summer during a barbecue. Jesus blamed his father, who had dumped the charcoal out and didn't flood the embers with water.

Jesus makes great sangria too. Could this be the savior returned? It's a Miracle!

Just that easy we have created a new religion. Send money and Jesus will send you a napkin stained in Holy Red Salsa.

July 2, 2013 at 6:53 p.m.
ToHoldNothing said...

Oh no, not questions. Heaven forbid we try to answer them instead of finding an excuse not to think in an allegedly divinely inspired text.

It's not as if marriage is in any great state now anyway, with stats showing that Christians are probably the highest group to get divorces to begin with, ironic considering all the spouting about how marriage needs to be protected. Maybe the no fault divorce is your real target, not monogamous gay couples that simply want a basic recognition by the government and states?

And marriage didn't need the bible to define it in any way in other cultures that supposedly agree with your bible. Though I recall Abraham having a concubine and marrying his half sister, so...

July 2, 2013 at 8:50 p.m.
Plato said...

I find nothing wrong with the J.B. COLLINS letter. He/she is articulating his/her religious beliefs and though I don't share them, he/she has a right to believe them. Of course we do not base our Constitution or legal system on religious law from any religion, but he/she is not making that point.

Further I think it is not inconsistent to oppose gay marriage on one's own religious or moral grounds, but recognize that all citizens should have the same rights including same sex marriage if they choose.

July 3, 2013 at 2:02 p.m.
ToHoldNothing said...

One personally disagreeing with homosexuality and yet believing gay marriage is okay is a tricky thing to justify. Most people would be more a live and let live than outright opposing homosexuality on some moral grounds in order to alleviate the hypocrisy

July 3, 2013 at 8:57 p.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

Ah Yes! Democratic Liberals in Washington, DC have foolishly played Chess with Jesus Christ...and they have woefully lost! Many supporters of the Obama administration have learned through horrible consequences. The so-called 'gay pride parade' in Washington, DC doesn't 'pride' itself with the fact of third world nations laughing them to scorn for having a higher HIV/AIDS rate than they do! Over 7% (Seven Point Four Percent, Actually) of the 40-49 year old residents have HIV/AIDS. OVER THREE PERCENT OF THE WHOLE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA RESIDENTS HAVE HIV/AIDS!***

THIS IS OVER THREE TIMES FOR WHAT QUALIFIES THROUGH THE WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION AS E-P-I-D-E-M-I-C!!! Has any scorner of Jesus Christ heard of the plagues of The Ten Commandments fame?

Those of You on here who have such ancient, sage, 'ascended master' wisdom that You think You can deny Christ Jesus and win at a game of Chess with Him...The Almighty Lord God of Hosts...You had better take a hint from the Liberal Democrats of Washington, DC!

Ken ORR

July 4, 2013 at 5:45 p.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

Oh, I just thought of a title for my above comment to the 'all so wise' 'all knowing' scorners. They supposed themselves to scorn The Word of God (Holy Bible). They who "Compare themselves with themselves", and, therefore "oppose themselves".

Well, here it is, the title:

'Jesus Christ Scorns the Scorners' Or, possibly, 'Husband has always been defined as male, and, Wife as female'

Or, Romans 1st Chapter: "...Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools..." 'The Holy Bible said that!

Ken ORR

July 4, 2013 at 6:05 p.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

Among young black women -- nationwide -- AIDS is the leading cause of death.

Homosexual means Homosexual...Women! Get Understanding! No Carte Blanche for Lesbians who call themselves scorning Jesus Christ!!!

Wake Up Please Everyone. Repent and 'Go Back To The Holy Bible'!

July 4, 2013 at 6:17 p.m.
daytonsdarwin said...

Just when you think that religious wackos like Lohr and Conservative couldn't get crazier, Orr show up to prove you wrong.

God's Favorite Liar is back and coming out of his Christian Closet, and donning his gay apparel with pride.

Jesus didn't play chess, though he once played "Find the Kosher Sausage" with Mary Magdalene.

July 4, 2013 at 6:40 p.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

Jesus Christ said, (Matthew 10:28)

"And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear Him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell."

July 4, 2013 at 7:02 p.m.
daytonsdarwin said...

Orr, still making up your "science" credentials" Still telling jokes about gay people dying? Still making up lies about molestations?

Welcome back though. I've missed your daily diatribes about your imaginary gods, demons, and closeted homosexuality.

July 4, 2013 at 7:53 p.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

What about Our Great Saviour Jesus Christ of Nazareth! He said through His Prophet in The Holy Bible, (Psalms 2:1)"...He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision. Then shall He speak unto them in His wrath, and vex them in His sore displeasure..."

Please allow me to show some of You how our Lord God of Hosts works:

Someone in the Obama administration signed some sort of decree asking for all of the homosexuals from around the world who feel threatened to come to the asylum of The USA. Well, Jesus Christ must have said, "He wants it, well he gets it". Now the thrice classified (3 times over what meets the criteria for Epidemic classification) World Health Organization E-P-I-D-E-M-I-C- Of HIV/AIDS is right in the Front Yard of the LIBERAL DEMOCRATS who went along with that request. My humble advice: Don't try to match wits with The Light of The World, The Lion of The Tribe of Judah! Our Lord Jesus Christ!!!

Ken ORR

July 4, 2013 at 10:04 p.m.
daytonsdarwin said...

"Don't try to match wits with The Light of The World, The Lion of The Tribe of Judah! Our Lord Jesus Christ!!!"

It's difficult to match wits with people who are don't exist. He's dead, long gone, never had super-strength, no super powers, just another myth. One of many self-proclaimed messiahs roaming the Middle East during the centuries before and after CE started.

Orr never has proof, never has evidence, just schizo like his make-believe Sky Daddy and super-secret buddy the Flying Squirrel a.k.a. Holy Spook.

All these characters were in myths long before Jesus hit the scene. All those pretend gods never existed either.

Delusional gods for delusional people.

Does your wife know you're back on the computer? Are you off your meds again?

Still waiting for your proof of your claimed "scientific credentials. You promised to provide them nearly a year ago. Just one of the many lies you've told.

July 4, 2013 at 11:30 p.m.
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