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Jim Callum's Avatar Joined over 3 years ago
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Go to: Westboro Baptist Church to attend Reason Rally with special message for atheists

Jim Callum's Avatar Jump to comment 62 by Jim Callum

“The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God” Ps14:1

Which is a pretty mean trap if it encourages people to quote that at an atheist as Matthew 5:22 says:

"...and whoever shall say "You Fool" shall be guilty enough to go into the hell of fire"

The Bible being self contradictory with itself and the faithfull cherry picking which bits to read - who'd have thought?

Tue, 13 Mar 2012 08:52:31 UTC | #926642

Go to: Dress-wearing 73 year-old unmarried celibate man vehemently supports thing he has no experience of

Jim Callum's Avatar Jump to comment 42 by Jim Callum

Thought I’d dissect the Telegraph article a bit as some of this reprehensible individual’s comments have made my blood boil:

“When (Civil Partnership) these arrangements were introduced, supporters were at pains to point out that they didn’t want marriage, accepting that marriage had only ever meant the legal union of a man and a woman”

I’m pretty sure this isn’t the case. I was involved in some industry discussion about Civil Partnerships when they came in as several of our (financial) products were impacted as everything that applied to married couples now applied to Civil Partners. The overriding impression I got was that people thought this was a first step towards full marriage for homosexual couples, and that we fully expected that to come into force within the following 10 years. Basically that full marriage straight away would be too much for bigots like this so this was a half way measure to make it easier to bring in.

“Since all the legal rights of marriage are already available to homosexual couples, it is clear that this proposal is not about rights, but rather is an attempt to redefine marriage for the whole of society at the behest of a small minority of activists”

But it is about rights – a human right must be universal – and it is about redefining marriage to make it a universally applicable human right regardless of sexual orientation. I also strongly believe that Civil Partnerships should be available to heterosexual couples who are opposed to the institution of marriage but wish to have the same rights as a married couple.

“Redefining marriage will have huge implications for what is taught in our schools, and for wider society. It will redefine society since the institution of marriage is one of the fundamental building blocks of society. The repercussions of enacting same-sex marriage into law will be immense”

They will be, and very much for the better. My Uncle is gay and has been in a relationship with his partner for around 20 years. Since then his brother has had three children and they have never known a world where this kind of relationship is not completely accepted. They would not bat an eyelid if my Uncle and his partner got married because adult friends and relatives of their parents get married all the time and they don’t see this relationship as different to any of the others.

“Will that teacher’s right to hold and teach this view (that same sex marriage is wrong) be respected or will it be removed?”

Yes because teaching bigotry to impressionable minds is wrong and opposing bigotry is not intolerance.

“Will both teacher and pupils simply become the next victims of the tyranny of tolerance, heretics, whose dissent from state-imposed orthodoxy must be crushed at all costs?”

It’s interesting to hear a Catholic Bishop argue for the ability to dissent from Orthodoxy – but the Inquisition just isn’t what it used to be. It seems life for a Bishop just isn’t as much fun when you can’t impose your bigotry on everyone else.

“As an institution, marriage long predates the existence of any state or government”

And the Church so don’t pretend otherwise by leaving that out and implying you get to define what it is.

“This is a point of view that would have been endorsed and accepted only a few years ago, yet today advancing a traditional understanding of marriage risks one being labelled an intolerant bigot”

Because you’re an intolerant bigot. Advancing a view that slavery was okay was accepted a few hundred years ago. Advancing a view that racism was okay was accepted a few decades ago. Your church torturing someone to death for explaining the Earth moved round the sun was okay half a millennium ago. To put it mildly just because something was acceptable at some point in the past does not mean it still should be. Again the Bishop seems to be harking back to the good old days when his church could tell you what your opinion was or burn you to death for disagreeing.

“Other dangers exist. If marriage can be redefined so that it no longer means a man and a woman but two men or two women, why stop there? Why not allow three men or a woman and two men to constitute a marriage, if they pledge their fidelity to one another? If marriage is simply about adults who love each other, on what basis can three adults who love each other be prevented from marrying?”

Now this is just silly. Marriage is understood to be the partnership of two individuals. Simply asking that this be a Universal human right available to all does not change how many can be involved in that marriage.

“Imagine for a moment that the Government had decided to legalise slavery but assured us that “no one will be forced to keep a slave”.

What’s incredible is the leap of logic needed to make this argument work in his favour. A human right must be Universal or its not a human right. One human right is the right not to be held in slavery, I am hoping that the Bishop doesn’t think that that right shoud not extend to homosexual couples.

“This universal truth is so self-evident that it shouldn’t need to be repeated. If the Government attempts to demolish a universally recognised human right, they will have forfeited the trust which society has placed in them and their intolerance will shame the United Kingdom in the eyes of the world.”

For a spokesman of an organisation that knowingly covers up child rape on a daily basis he should know a little about shame. But this fact has not stopped him pretending that his opinion matters or that he actually speaks for his congregation (which the recent IPSOS MORI poll shows he does not). The only thing that would shame us here is if we let a tiny minority of dishonest bigots such as this man dictate that a basic human right should not be available to all because they can’t grow out of their ridiculous fantasises.

Mon, 05 Mar 2012 09:46:21 UTC | #924544

Go to: For Rick Santorum, a Pregnancy That Is the Result of Rape Is a ‘Broken Gift’

Jim Callum's Avatar Jump to comment 8 by Jim Callum

Now I don't claim to be any kind of expert on US politics but isn't there a discrepancy here between what Santorum says he would do an what he advocates? In this theoretical situation, he states that he would "counsel" his daughter to do the right thing - ie not have an abortion. I have no issue with his right to advise his daughter as he sees fit.

However is his actual position not that he would deny her the choice - isn't that the goal of a pro lifer - rather than simply advise her on what course of action to take.

If his response had been that he would force his daughter to have the baby rather than advise her to do so would this have been as palletable to the audience?

Tue, 24 Jan 2012 11:11:53 UTC | #911070

Go to: Priests brawl in Bethlehem's Church of the Nativity

Jim Callum's Avatar Jump to comment 74 by Jim Callum


(£87.50 for first correct cultural identification...)

Surely Oscar Wilde's "The Importance of Being Earnest"

Tue, 03 Jan 2012 14:03:11 UTC | #904923

Go to: Halal and kosher hit by Dutch ban

Jim Callum's Avatar Jump to comment 2 by Jim Callum

We've been through the "ban halal / koscher meat" debate before on this site. My issue with it is that there are so many ways that animals are mistreated on their way to our tables that singling one out but not getting upset about the many others seems a bit odd. If you eat meat (and I do) you to an extent have to accept that you don't care enough about these issues to change your habits.

However, I find an exemption from any generally applicable rule based on religious grounds unnaceptable so on this basis I can support such a ruling. But perhaps a less invasive approach (were such a measure ever to come in in the UK) would be to simply clearly label all meat as to whether it had been produced by halal / koscher means.

Whilst I have no evidence to back this up I suspect such labelling would lead to a significant decrease in sales of the meat produced by these methods. Possibly enough to change the marjetplace anyway.

Mon, 07 Nov 2011 12:09:00 UTC | #888126

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