What Is Expected And Reasonable?

Reason has more than one side. That which is reasonable and fair has to have other considerations than simply an “imposition” which is what “reasonable” is when it is one sided. A very poor constructed sentence, but it depicts exactly the mistake many are making today when they claim that “modern changes in societal rules and even laws” cannot be challenged by those who have benefited for centuries by the old ways even if it has been proven for centuries that the old ways have worked well and may not require changes.

Christians, and all kinds of conservatives, or other derogatory names one wants to use for this group not only have the right, but the duty to, and in fact, are doing society a favor, when they contest, protest and manifest against the rapid changes in society today because some of these changes have no track record of benefiting humanity. It seems that scholars and scientists will always appeal to history, evidence and a track record of fact to ascertain that whatever issue they are attempting to establish is feasible and that its implementation will be of a benefit to all. Except when it comes to issues where religion and/or tradition is involved. Then, who needs evidence, who needs history, who needs facts? It is almost as if they have made up their minds: “If it is religiously or traditionally prescribed, then it is wrong; let us change it”, even when in fact, there is history, a time span as old as history itself, that the old ways have worked so far.

No, this is not to say that we should not change and modernize society and make if fairer and comfortable to all! This is simply to say that it is fair for Christians and all kinds of conservatives to struggle with the idea of change for “change’s sake” in that which they perceive to be a threat to what they have known as the best for humanity in general. Not always stating that something is wrong is purely a religious exercise. Although I acknowledge that more frequent than not it is a religious exercise, some are sincerely concerned whether the recent changes in society, such as marriages, rules about “respecting other cultures to the point of surrendering to them” may not be solely basing their concerns on religion. People can protest for other reasons and it is fair and good that they do so when changes are in the process of proving itself as useful to society as it is for a group within that society, who, because of factors beyond our understanding, decided to impose their view of society upon all others.

I am a firm believer that one cannot legislate religious beliefs, no matter how well intended they are. Equally, I am a firm believe that one, or a group, cannot legislate their religious unbelief on others. In both counts protest is fair and acceptable. A great scholar is all over social media spreading the notion that Christians are attempting to legislate their beliefs upon society. Well, the facts belie such a scholar, who is not and cannot be a scholar in predicting the future consequences of changing society on society itself! Non-Christians are indeed imposing their beliefs, rather, their unbelief upon Christians with the aggravating circumstance that they practice such imposition against the will of the people of the community they choose to impose their unbelief. I am fully aware that we have to check if an acceptable degree of legal fairness is being afforded to all citizens and not only those who would prefer that tradition would remain as it has been for ages. However it is not by winning in courts that the imposition occurs; the imposition occurs when business, people who exercise their individual conscience, religious or not, have to comply with the peripherals of their victory and now have to act totally contrary to what they have held as truth functioning and comfortable to their own life styles all these years. So, by imposing, forcing, people to comply with their wins, those who win by the act of a single often non-elected office of the court, with his own biases and prejudices, reverse the issue of unfairness and begin themselves to act unfairly. Again, the facts have proven that Christians and other conservatives are adapting to the world that now surround them, but they should not have to live as a blind man by the road side taking whatever others dish out to them; they can rightfully establish limits. Certain services and profession when exercised to a person or group imply endorsement of that group or person. If you do not understand that you have never been in business, and your position is fully understandable. The refusal, however, of a businessman to provide services that automatically imply his endorsement and participation in that which he does not agree should be expected and understood and such understanding would be reasonable!

By now most presume to know that about which I am talking. No, for your surprise it is not only the issue of gays; it is also the celebration of America, American values, supposedly Christian symbols (that are not really Christian), and those that are indeed genuine Christian symbols, the liberation of drugs, and now some ridiculous rulings, which are too ridiculous to mention. People of faith and out of faith who want to preserve a certain heritage without waiving, who love to wear shirts that extol the quality of their military relatives, American Flags, etc. who feel threatened by lawsuits and other artifices of the “indignation industry”, and yes, those who do not agree with abortions and the gay issue, should not now, all of a sudden, be forced to comply or else. What is reasonable? If we want a fair society, then lets offer fairness rather than demanding it and in the process progress in an environment without hostility and division, and such environment is not a fertile ground for corrupt politicians, but not having corrupt politicians coming out of every sewerage is a fringe benefit of this new world of fairness!   That is expected and reasonable!

Would Martin Luther be Pro-Choice?

One of the arguments for pro-choice is the ability to prevent the birth of children that would be drastically malformed. While reading a certain book, I can across this recommendation from Martin Luther,

Eight years ago, there was one in Dessau whom I, Martinus Luther, saw and grappled with. He was twelve years old, had the use of his eyes and all his senses, so that one might think he was a normal child. But he did nothing but gorge himself as much as four peasants or threshers. He ate, defecated, and drooled and, if anyone tackled him, he screamed. If things didn’t go well, he wept. So I said to the Prince of Anhalt: “If I were the Prince, I should take the child to the Moldau River which flows near Dessau and drown him.” But the Prince of Anhalt and the Prince of Saxony, who happened to be present, refused to follow my advice. Thereupon I said; “Well, then the Christians shall order the Lord’s Prayer to be said in church and pray that the dear Lord take the Devil away.” This was done daily in Dessau and the changeling died in the following year.

We know better than to assume that a malformed child is inhabited by the devil — most of us do, anyway — but what do we make of the moral character of this man Luther?

The Mainstream Media didn’t report this about the President? Sickening #prolife

On October 3, researchers at the Washington University School of Medicine published a study with profound implications for policy making in the United States. According to Dr. Jeffery Peipert, the study’s lead author, abortion rates can be expected to decline significantly—perhaps up to 75 percent—when contraceptives are made available to women free of charge. Declaring himself “very surprised” at the results, Peipert requested expedient publication of the study, noting its relevance to the upcoming election.

via Barack Obama, Pro-Life Hero | Sexuality/Gender | Religion Dispatches.

First, you have to understand that abortions would not cease if Roe v. Wade were somehow overturned. It would simply allow the States to outlaw abortion on a State-by-State level. Second, Romney’s surrogates plainly said he would not overturn Roe v. Wade. And of course, you have Mitt Romney in 2002 saying he was pro-choice, more pro-choice than the pro-choicest candidate of them all.

And now… a study (science and all, and if you don’t believe science works in stuff like this, ask Nate Silver) predicts that abortion will decrease by up to 75% under what the Right has termed Obamacare (by the way, this is simply bad marketing). Granted, this includes insurance companies providing contraceptives – which until the President was behind the mandate, was okay with Protestants (btw, he got the idea from Romneycare). So, I guess the decision needs to be made.

Do you really fight to reduce abortion or do you not?

Romney to insure country remains pro-choice

In the frenetic push to win all-important Ohio, Mitt Romney’s campaign is saying a lot of things to a lot of people. And on Monday, a top Romney surrogate told a group of Jewish voters in the Buckeye State that the landmark Supreme Court decision granting women the right to an abortion is in no danger of being overturned should Romney become president.

Thanks to Talking Points Memo for that.

Why is this important? Because Romney has said otherwise. But this the him plausible deniability. The Romney camp can just say that it is a surrogate. This man will say anything to win.

Romney and Contraception

Why am I posting this? Because I find it funny that too many Christians, my sisters and brothers, have rushed to defend Romney as the standard barer of religious freedom. Yet, his words last night puts him on the side of the President in forcing employers to provide contraceptive coverage:

I’d just note that I don’t believe that bureaucrats in Washington should tell someone whether they can use contraceptives or not, and I don’t believe employers should tell someone whether they could have contraceptive care or not.  Every woman in America should have access to contraceptives.  And the President’s statement of my policy is completely and totally wrong.

This is nothing new, actually, because Romney has had several different positions on this issue,

After suggesting Wednesday that he did not support a controversial measure allowing U.S. employers to opt out of a rule requiring them to provide employees with contraceptive health coverage, GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney quickly clarified his position,affirming in a radio interview that “of course I support the Blunt Amendment.” (here)

Let us also note that Romney’s health care bill in Mass. supported mandates, even on religious organizations, for providing contraceptions.

Remember, Romney was steadfastedly pro-choice,

Why in the world do Christians as Christians trust this guy to be pro-religious freedom and pro-life?
romney-on-abortion

Will that Conservative Evangelical Counter-Cult Expert Still Vote for Romney?

Author and Professor Douglas Groothius wrote,

In Romney’s favor, he has been a very decent man, who has given much of his income to charity. He is an accomplished businessman who (unlike Obama) knows how to solve problems.

He seemingly skipped over his rather bumpy ride on many issues. This one stood out, even about Groothius’ allowance of Romney’s support of abortion and his gloss over his take on Mormonism. That statement right there… “decent man”… “accomplished businessman…” “knows how to solve problems…” Now, why one has to be a business man to solve problems, I don’t know… as businessmen are the ones who got us into many of the issues at hand… Remember, as much as the American Revolution was against the Crown, it was also against the Crown’s corporations.

But, back to the accomplished businessman bit. We all know that Romney worked at Bain Capital, a private equity firm that buys businesses, shifts overhead and profits, fires workers, reduces costs and drives them into the ground to make a profit – heck to the yes there is a frackin’ problem with that. Bain is even a pioneer in outsourcing. One of the companies that Bain invested in is called Stericycle. Beyond all the human health hazards that Stericycle shoved their workers in to, there is that one other issues, that one other bloody issue – they made money from aborted fetuses (Is Stericyle the corporation’s Planned Parenthood?)

Despite the firm’s regulatory run-ins, the deal worked out well for Bain. In 2001, the Bain-Madison Dearborn partnership that had invested in the company sold 40 percent of its holdings in Stericycle for about $88 million—marking a hefty profit on its original investment of $75 million. The Bain-related group sold the rest of its holdings by 2004. By that point it had earned $49.5 million . It was not until six years later that anti-abortion activists would target Stericycle for collecting medical waste at abortion clinics. This campaign  has compared Stericycle to German firms that provided assistance to the Nazis during the Holocaust. A Stericycle official told Huffington Post that its abortion clinics business constitutes a “small” portion of its total operations. (from Mother Jones who focuses more on the fact that this proves that Romney has lied about his Bain record rather than the business of Stericyle)

Is this the person that Groothius is praying to be the next President of the United States? This person here? The one who has lied from day one about any of this records? This person that made millions off aborted fetuses? That is the person whom you are praying for to become the next President of the United States? That car elevator in his new house? Paid for by aborted fetuses. That suit he wears while he is speaking about his pro-life stance? Paid for by aborted fetuses. God help us all regardless of who wins in November. I for one will not be using my prayer allowance to pray for this one or that one for President.

May God forgive us for such principled stands.

The ”after-birth abortion”

This is bizarre.

KILLING newborns is morally the same as abortion and should be permissible if  the mother wishes it, Australian philosophers have argued in an article that has  unleashed a firestorm of  criticism and forced the British Medical  Journal to defend its publication.

Alberto Giubilini, from Monash University, and Francesca Minerva, from the  University of Melbourne, say a foetus and a newborn are equivalent in their lack  of a sense of their own life and aspiration. They contend this justifies what  they call ”after-birth abortion” as long as  it is painless, because the baby  is not harmed by missing out on a life it cannot conceptualise.

About  a third of infants with Down syndrome are not diagnosed prenatally,  Drs Giubilini and Minerva say, and mothers of children with serious  abnormalities should have the chance to end the child’s life after, as well as  before, birth.

Steve Clarke, the chief executive  of the advocacy group Down Syndrome NSW,  said the paper was ”very theoretical”. ”I don’t think it does have any relevance or insight for the real world. It  is so beyond our social mores and values that it is beyond the pale and I  wouldn’t want to dignify it with any further comment,” he said.

Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/life/philosophers-claim-over-moral-right-to-kill-newborns-sparks-outrage-20120301-1u61l.html#ixzz1nv3zVJmh

 

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Baking cakes to support abortion clinics

In opposition to pro-life protesters who are conducting a 40 Days for Life vigil outside the Preterm Abortion Clinic  in inner-city Sydney, website Mamamia, which is owned by journalist Mia Freedman, is arranging to deliver home baked cakes to the clinic to support the women who work there and the women using the clinic’s services.

Preterm Foundation, Sydney

This is a not a post about the right to life – or even the right to  choose. It’s about finding a unique way to show love and support for women who are already going through a difficult time.

Just like the women in the UK, Mamamia’s Publisher Mia Freedman, Managing Editor Lana Hirschowitz and I are going to bake cakes (Chocolate? Vanilla? We’re open to suggestions) and take them down to the clinic in Sydney where the vigils are taking place.

Do you want to get involved? You can. You don’t have to be a master baker. (I’m definitely not.) Packet cakes are fine. Ditto packets of lollies, biscuits, boxes of chocolates or bunches of bananas. Or flowers.

It’s the thought that counts – the smallest act of kindness can make a difference.

http://www.mamamia.com.au/health-wellbeing/they-want-to-ban-abortion-we-want-to-bake-cake/comment-page-2/#comment-672969

They make it sound like they’re baking cakes for a school fête.

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Just how old is the Evangelical view on abortion and contraception?

The Catholics had it first. Evangelicals railed against the Catholics. Politics. 1988. Stuff like that and bam…

By the mid-1980s, the evangelical right was so successful with this strategy that the popular evangelical community would no longer tolerate any alternative position. Hence, the outrage over a book titled Brave New People published by InterVarsity Press in 1984. In addition to discussing a number of new biotechnologies, including genetic engineering and in vitro fertilization, the author, an evangelical professor living in New Zealand, also devoted a chapter to abortion. His position was similar to that of most evangelicals 15 years prior. Although he did not believe the fetus was a full-fledged person from conception, he did believe that because it was a potential person, it should be treated with respect. Abortion was only permissible to protect the health and well-being of the mother, to preclude a severely deformed child, and in a few other hard cases, such as rape and incest.

slacktivist » The ‘biblical view’ that’s younger than the Happy Meal.

You really, rally must read the entire article.

For more from Dudley, read here and then a response here.

The United Methodist Church on Abortion

The beginning of life and the ending of life are the God-given boundaries of human existence. While individuals have always had some degree of control over when they would die, they now have the awesome power to determine when and even whether new individuals will be born.

Our belief in the sanctity of unborn human life makes us reluctant to approve abortion. But we are equally bound to respect the sacredness of the life and well-being of the mother, for whom devastating damage may result from an unacceptable pregnancy. In continuity with past Christian teaching, we recognize tragic conflicts of life with life that may justify abortion, and in such cases we support the legal option of abortion under proper medical procedures. We cannot affirm abortion as an acceptable means of birth control, and we unconditionally reject it as a means of gender selection.

We oppose the use of late-term abortion known as dilation and extraction (partial-birth abortion) and call for the end of this practice except when the physical life of the mother is in danger and no other medical procedure is available, or in the case of severe fetal anomalies incompatible with life. We call all Christians to a searching and prayerful inquiry into the sorts of conditions that may warrant abortion. We commit our Church to continue to provide nurturing ministries to those who terminate a pregnancy, to those in the midst of a crisis pregnancy, and to those who give birth. We particularly encourage the Church, the government, and social service agencies to support and facilitate the option of adoption. (See ¶ 161.K.)

Governmental laws and regulations do not provide all the guidance required by the informed Christian conscience. Therefore, a decision concerning abortion should be made only after thoughtful and prayerful consideration by the parties involved, with medical, pastoral, and other appropriate counsel.

From The Book of Discipline of The United Methodist Church - 2004. Copyright 2004 by The United Methodist Publishing House. Used by permission.

You can read more here.

 

The White House responds to the Sebelius Rule Uproar

Some of the clarifications being offered:

  • Churches are exempt from the new rules: Churches and other houses of worship will be exempt from the requirement to offer insurance that covers contraception.
  • No individual health care provider will be forced to prescribe contraception: The President and this Administration have previously and continue to express strong support for existing conscience protections.  For example, no Catholic doctor is forced to write a prescription for contraception.
  •  No individual will be forced to buy or use contraception: This rule only applies to what insurance companies cover.  Under this policy, women who want contraception will have access to it through their insurance without paying a co-pay or deductible.   But no one will be forced to buy or use contraception.
  • Drugs that cause abortion are not covered by this policy:  Drugs like RU486 are not covered by this policy, and nothing about this policy changes the President’s firm commitment to maintaining strict limitations on Federal funding for abortions. No Federal tax dollars are used for elective abortions.
  • Over half of Americans already live in the 28 States that require insurance companies cover contraception: Several of these States like North Carolina, New York, and California have identical religious employer exemptions.  Some States like Colorado, Georgia and Wisconsin have no exemption at all.
  • Contraception is used by most women: According to a study by the Guttmacher Institute, most women, including 98 percent of Catholic women, have used contraception.
  • Contraception coverage reduces costs: While the monthly cost of contraception for women ranges from $30 to $50, insurers and experts agree that savings more than offset the cost.  The National Business Group on Health estimated that it would cost employers 15 to 17 percent more not to provide contraceptive coverage than to provide such coverage, after accounting for both the direct medical costs of potentially unintended and unhealthy pregnancy and indirect costs such as employee absence and reduced productivity.

Health Reform, Preventive Services, and Religious Institutions | The White House.