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June 02, 2017

Comments

As one of those who commented far more extensively than I ought to have, I am interested in the nature of the comments. There are essentially two threads, with rebuttals to each. The first thread damns Laurel as a liberal. Being liberal, nothing whatsoever that she says is true. This person has three answers: to agree, to vilify, and when truly put in a corner, to remain silent. He is the face of 21st century fascism.

The second is a born again type. He plays fast and loose with language, using words in ways that no dictionary of etymology would recognize. He admits to having supported the killing of babies before he was born again, for example. And having been reborn, he sees no merit in reading anything that would question his faith.

I've downloaded all of the comments, and they run to more than 20 pages. I save them because the themes from the usual suspects are seldom original and it is easy to pick out an appropriate rebuttal, refine, and polish it and then post it.

The two threads (fascist and evangelical) represent commentators who have lost their individuality to their message. They are the message; they have been subsumed by the message. Toying with them is a way to understand how the extremist mind works.

Rebuttal to them is mostly reasoned and thoughtful. They seek to be vilified in the way they choose to vilify, preach to, or demean and have trouble with mature criticism.

Rebuttal did not imply that we entirely supported everything Laurel wrote; each had some point where what we thought we might differ, but the differences were presented in a starkly contrasting manner to the sad anti-intellectualism of these usual suspects. These are people who would destroy the Bill of Rights in order to preserve the Bill of Rights.

These are people for whom what they believe, is true. This inversion of the process of determining truth is what leads to tyranny.

A simple count of the deaths under the Atheists Stalin, Hitler and Robespierre tops 25 million, which dwarfs the available figures for all of history's accounts of Holy wars and inquisitions.

Atheism and formal religion compete with each other for sheer barbarism. Neither has a great record for enlightenment.

Meanwhile non - religious believers such as Gandhi, Lincoln, and Dr. King (as well as their attributed roll model, Christ) tend to inspire universal brotherhood / sisterhood... As we are all part of the same creation.

Jesus spoke directly to the necessity and duty to take in the refugees.

But how many churches follow that teaching?

As another great leader wrote

"We are in no position to call God our Father unless we can call all men [and women] our brothers [and sisters]. "
— Sawan Singh

If you can do this, perhaps you don't need a God. If you realize that you have a place in this creation, and a duty to treat others with the greatest possible kindness, what religion do you need?

But if you fear doing so will put you at a disadvantage, then believing a benevolent God is there encouraging you is a very healthy thing.

Going it alone is fine for those who like that freedom, as long as they do not abuse others in the process.

That means freedom to worship as one wishes... Whether the worship of God or kindness.

For those who prefer good, reliable company along the way, but tend to be loners, there is always the Divine.

As for the Bible, the same God who teaches universal brotherhood there also commands His followers to invade and murder, even to murder infants. People have found their justifications for both in that book.

And in the Communist Manifesto.

It is justification for our own flaws.

Or it is inspiration to rise above them.

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