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Sunday, April 09, 2006
How do you solve a problem like sharia?
Apparently, when it comes to thorny issues like that and the "Prophet Muhammad caricatures issue," Ottawa's Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade sees the solution in a special "Muslim Communities Working Group Operational Unit" (according to a leaked admin order provided to Daniel Pipes).
This is a permanent version of the ad-hoc "Muslim Communities Working Group" created last year, and its mandate is to "serve as a clearing house and focal point within the Department for issues concerning relations with the Muslim world; build the Department's policy capacity on this subject; and take the lead in providing timely, strategic advice on relations with the Muslim world, and the lead in creating a policy framework for our overall approach to this subject. As such, the FMCG should be consulted at headquarters and by posts on the broad range of issues affecting Canada's relations with Muslim communities, including public diplomacy efforts, and will take the lead in coordinating the Department's response to many of them."
It seems tiresome to continue to rely on this rhetorical parallel, but clearly it bears repeating, so here goes:
How do you think the press would react if Stephen Harper's government created a "Christian Communities Working Group" ?
Posted by Kevin Libin on April 9, 2006 | Permalink
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Canada's Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT) has today created a "Muslim Communities Working Group Operational Unit" (FMCG). This is explained in an administrative notice from David Mulroney, assistant deputy minister for [Read More]
Tracked on 2006-06-14 12:09:46 AM
these arab countries kill christians why do we have to allow their customs
Posted by: mayl | 2006-04-09 10:24:22 PM
mayl; Why indeed? I have asked myself the same question and I think we are not the only people that would like to know why any nation with children would allow a dangerous group of people like these people into our land. Don't people care if their children are enslaved by a fanatical, foreign tribe that kills people who worship God?
Posted by: jema54j | 2006-04-09 10:34:52 PM
It shows how stupid we have become along with the lack of a real ability to defend ourselves. We certainly do not see Muslims seeking to understand other religions and/or cultures. Perhaps they should also establish a study group on cannibal customs. I would also like to know the price tag of this for us taxpayers.
Posted by: Alain | 2006-04-09 11:06:30 PM
The press would react differently because there is no large wing of the party attempting to pass Sharia law. There is a large wing of party members who would like to see parts of Christianity enforced by law, so the different reactions are understandable.
Posted by: Jim | 2006-04-10 2:01:07 AM
So Sharia law and Christian beliefs would be of equal value to Canadian society? Gay Muslims could be stoned to death, and apostate Muslims could be executed. Any writings deemed offensive to Muslims could have dire consequences to the writers, while Christians would just have to put up with the consequences of freedom of the press.
I imagine someone will write 'Halfwise, you know that Sharia is not the same as codifying Islamist extremism, so stop being an alarmist.' But we have little evidence of support that the Canadian press stands with moderate Muslims against Islamist extremists (see the recent cartoon controversy for ample evidence). It is hard to be a moderate when religious fanaticism takes root in a segment of society that views itself as being victimized. The moderate gets accused of selling out to the oppressor, every time.
We should be examining ways to unify our country around our core values rather than diffuse our society by introducing incompatible legal systems.
Posted by: Halfwise | 2006-04-10 6:10:29 AM
"Gun Owners Community Working Group"?
Posted by: Mad Mike | 2006-04-10 6:22:28 AM
Halfwise, I was thinking the same thing about Jim's comment. Yup there is no difference between Christian beliefs and Sharia law - both are equal in the weird world of moral relativists. If anything, Judeo-Christian Bible values are seen as more dangerous to the multi-culturalist.
Maybe the Muslim Community Working Group could be asked to read the Bible in order to understand the civilization they have joined.
Posted by: ex-liberal | 2006-04-10 6:31:01 AM
Dim's comment is pure BS. There isn't any 'large wing' of a party attempting to ENFORCE a 'part' of Christianity by law.
Halfwise and ex-liberal are arguing with Dim's assertion as if it passed the horse-laugh test, which it doesn't. Sloppy reasoning on their part.
On the other hand I really think non-Muslims need to understand Muslims and Islam better.
I think Kufrs need to understand that Islamic Tradition holds that Muslims are not permitted to live in Dar el-Harb(the House of War) except for Jihad.
That there are no moderate Muslims and that if there were, then the prophet Muhammed himself wouldn't consider them Muslims. There wasn't anything moderate about Mohammed or the Religion of Submission he compelled everyone to follow at the edge of a sword.
Everbody joins. Nobody quits. You lose your head if you refuse to join or try to quit.
No room for moderation there, either.
Posted by: Speller | 2006-04-10 6:51:00 AM
"Everbody joins. Nobody quits. You lose your head if you refuse to join or try to quit.
No room for moderation there, either."
Oops, there are more than two choices. I forgot about what's behind door number three.
Slavery. Dhimmitude. But only for Christians and Jews, other religions and atheists only get the first two choices.
So there is some moderation after all. Heh.
Posted by: Speller | 2006-04-10 6:56:23 AM
of course you are right - there is no "large wing of a party trying to enforce a part of Christianity by law"
I don't want my grandkids to be dhimmis
Posted by: ex-liberal | 2006-04-10 7:43:37 AM
The press are probably going to think this "Group" is a great thing. A wonderful move towards accommodation.
It is total nonesense. I suppose there is also an expectation that the efforts of such a group will be finanaced out of taxpayers money.
It is a continued thrust of minority groups in Canada to make sure that the present situation is either maintained or improved for them. i.e. about 30% of the minority groups in Canada basically have control now of the federal governmental/legal structure in this country. For the same reason Canada still belongs to La Francophonie - where it seems that it is all about minorities developing strategies that can be used for the benefit of minorities. Playing the "victim" card has been/is working very well under the Liberal philosophy - so why would they not continue on the same track. Time/Money/Legal expertise are the basic ingedients. The powerful minority groups have ample of both - but to make doubly sure - they will seek and probably gain federal government funding as well under the guise of Multi-Culturalism, Liberal style. It is high time that we pursue multi-culturalism, non-liberal style and get back some sense of balance.
With the outsourcing of education - i.e. the tremendous growth of government subsidized separate and charter schools over the past 15-20 years, the tipping point is virtually upon us. Twenty years ago, Calgary had a handful of separate/charter schools. Today there are some 85 separate/charter schools, most all organized around a particular Religious/Language/Culture group or academic eliteness. Of course it is less expensive for provincials governments to outsource education - but is it in the interest of developing a better Canada?
We have become a highly divided society along many lines and are becoming moreso. It is now government by lobby group with the added component of "Block Political Voting".
Sooooo - time to become a member of a powerful lobby group and at least stake out a little bit of turf. Yet, there seems to be the lack of organized will for a major push-back from the majority population. It is believed to be seen as not nice, not hospitable, not welcoming, or worse to push-back. So, here we are.
Posted by: calgary clipper | 2006-04-10 8:28:17 AM
Well, there is an obvious difference. I am not aware of any Christian terrorist movement going to extraordinary lengths to attack Western targets and inflict terror by killing mass numbers of Westerners. Protesting outside abortion clinics and invoking rhetoric and get-out-the-vote measures concerning abortion are legitimate and accepted democratic processes. Accordingly, one cannot imagfine a Christian communities working group because there is no strategic concern about defusing, or provoking, local support for foreign-based Muslim radicals.
Posted by: murray | 2006-04-10 9:18:34 AM
Neville Chamberlain playing footsie with the Borg: "Peace in our time" versus "resistance is futile".
Posted by: John Chittick | 2006-04-10 9:31:01 AM
Is there an Atheist argument AGAINST abortion?
I think the desired "steady state" for a big government society is for atheism to become the generally accepted/agreed "creed" BUT with great "diversity" celebrating almost any arcane "religious" philosophy, and ALSO "allowing" such dumb ideas as Christianity for those who wish to be marginalized.
So, in view of the relative rarity of Muslim's in Canada (and America) it would seem that the big government folks HAVE TO pander to a Muslim idiology (until the Muslims overwealm the fools).
But one of the writers above suggested that a large segment of conservatives wish to impose Christian ideas upon society. I guess that I am one of them, because I want abortion to be recognized as murder. So, I'm wondering, is it possible that my desires about this particular issue have a good solid Atheist backing as well, so that I can go back into the shadows and let the bold brilliant big government folks take over and "fix" everything to my liking?
You might have noticed that the Muslim nations vote and the Catholic Vatican Observer-advocacy entity "votes" in lock step on many issues (regarding abortion especially) in the United Nations.
Posted by: Conrad-USA | 2006-04-10 11:13:38 AM
Citizenship and Immigration Canada also has a special policy for Muslims: that only they are alowed "proxy" marriages, which are over the phone, for the purposes of immigration sponsorships. This was the policy in '05, I presume it is still in effect.
Posted by: Bushman | 2006-04-10 11:31:28 AM
I am an atheist who certainly does not like abortion, at an emotional level. Further, I am generally repulsed by the radical pro-choice types and the arguments they make. Suggesting the foetus is not human strikes me a silly. On the other hand, society makes decisions that result in the ending of human life all the time, such as by not banning swimming pools, for example, or by dropping bombs in a war. The empirical evidence I have reviewed has caused me to change my mind and makes me lean toward permitting abortion as the more sound social policy. (1) There is good evidence it reduces violence and crime (about 18 years later)--mothers who choose abortion seem to choose wisely in this respect. (2) I am not aware of any good empirical evidence that respect for (post-natal) human life is diminished. (3) No one other than the mother can claim to have meaningful interaction with a foetus and abortion is not forced on the mother. If the available evidence were to indicate otehrwise, I would likely be strongly against abortion.
Posted by: murray | 2006-04-10 2:25:14 PM
Its clear from your post that you have not been repulsed by abortion- on any level, particularly emotional.
As an atheist, you have only your opinions and feelings to base your 'morality' on, so equating the danger of a swimming pool to abortion is par for the course.
There is no empirical evidence to prove a benefit to society to allowing the murder of helpless humans, based on the 'feelings' of those with more power.
As repugnant as Peter Singer is, he is at least honest enough to admit the humanity of the child, and point out that the real question society has before it is -which humans are worth keeping alive.
For Christians, innocents (and mostly everybody else). We tend to leave life and death up to God.
Posted by: lwestin | 2006-04-10 4:06:27 PM
The "atheist" argument against abortion is simple: if you think that the murder of a human being is wrong, and you think that a fetus is a human being, it logically follows that abortion is wrong.
The issue for the atheist would be, at what point does a fetus become a human being. The radical anti-abortion argument that human life begins at conception is, to an atheist (and many others), superstitious nonsense; likewise, the radical pro-abortion argument that it's not a human even 5 minutes before delivery is both scientifically and morally perverse. The key then becomes establishing a baseline consensus on the point at which human life begins.
(Note that I'm assuming here, somewhat -- I'm not personally an atheist. If any actual atheists would like to correct me, by all means do so.)
Posted by: Jim in Toronto | 2006-04-10 4:23:06 PM
Even rabid pro-abortionists (and promoters of legal infanticide) like the prominent Peter Singer admit that denying the 'humanity' of a foetus is 'silly'.
He points out that the real question society is answering with every legal decision is- which humans are worth keeping alive. Singer believes there are quite a few of us (humans) NOT worth it.
Much of society and practically all media decline to discuss this issue in honest terms.
Posted by: lwestin | 2006-04-10 4:33:13 PM
lwestin, I didn't deny that a fetus was human; I pointed out that the point at which it becomes human is subject to debate. That you can find a person who agrees with you on either side of the pro/anti divide doesn't change this fact. People debate it, neither side has proven it, therefore it's subject to debate. End of story.
Posted by: Jim in Toronto | 2006-04-10 4:39:06 PM
Iwestin - I concur in your thoughts, but I wanted to not criticize murray or anyone who would respond to my question.
There are many people who write comments on this web site who identify themselves as Atheist. I read their comments and it is obvious to me, or it is my opinion that they are very smart people.
I would actually really like to know, from people who consider themselves atheists if there is an atheist Anti-Abortion argument. I have not given this stuff that much thought. I'm actually (hate to keep using that term but a lot of this is NEW to me) unfamiliar with communicating with people (who I like) who describe themselves as atheist. I've almost become automatic in my thinking that atheism and Communism are interchangeable terms, only the latter has more adverse social-societal dimensions to it.
"Meeting" people here, on-line, who seem totally conservative and freedom oriented and normal, who then explain that they are atheist, is almost shocking to me.
My question is not rhetorical, and it is not intended to trick somebody into a big fist fight. I'm actually wondering if there is in fact an argument, which would be considered atheistic, which is AGAINST abortion.
Posted by: Conrad-USA | 2006-04-10 4:41:31 PM
Conrad, I can understand your shock. "Meeting" people who claim to be freedom-oriented and then proselytize on behalf of a religion and institution that has been the enemy of democracy and individual freedom throughout history, that has historically endorsed absolutism in both the temporal and spiritual spheres, that is the standard bearer for authoritarianism... that never ceases to amaze me.
Posted by: Jim in Toronto | 2006-04-10 4:46:50 PM
You can always find 'people' to debate any side of anything. It doesn't necessarily mean that there is no definitive answer. No reputable scientist denies that a human is human from the first moment -i.e. conception. (And really, can ANYONE believe that it starts out as something ELSE first?) Its a matter of honesty in debate, no longer with a scientific dimension.
Posted by: lwestin | 2006-04-10 4:47:32 PM
lwestin, no reputable scientist claims that a fertilized ovum is a human being in any meaningful sense. You're the last person who should be making any claims about honesty in debate.
Posted by: Jim in Toronto | 2006-04-10 4:50:40 PM
Ah, Jim. Now you've got the point. Just who decides what is meaningful? Someone who depends on their own intellect and self-styled morality, or someone like God - the Creator?
Posted by: lwestin | 2006-04-10 4:53:41 PM
Well lwestin, when you can provide an actual citation of God's opinion on the matter, rather than some person in Rome who depends on their own intellect and self-styled morality to claim to speak on God's behalf, then you'll be worth listening to on the subject.
Posted by: Jim in Toronto | 2006-04-10 4:59:17 PM
I decide what is meaningful for me, and nobody can stop me. Everybody else does the same thing. Some proxy responsibility to some non-self entity. I consider that to be avoidance, but I don't think omniscience is feasable, so I don't ridicule others for what they think. At least not until they threaten to try to stop me from making my own decisions about meaningfullness, qua me: then I invoke self defense.
Posted by: Vitruvius | 2006-04-10 5:03:26 PM
I'm not inclined to argue with Vitruvius.
Posted by: Jim in Toronto | 2006-04-10 5:06:06 PM
Millions of people are satisfied that 2000+ years of Bible, apostolic tradition, and the inspiration of the Holy Spirit provide a closer and truer relationship with God than not believing does. Of course, Christians are perfectly happy to acknowledge that you have free will (a gift from God). Its up to you man, but are you really smart enough to figure it all out yourself?
BTW- if you want to read stuff written by really smart guys, you could do worse than John Paul ll and Benedict Xl.
Posted by: lwestin | 2006-04-10 5:06:28 PM
(except for the ridiculing part)
Posted by: Jim in Toronto | 2006-04-10 5:06:56 PM
Millions of people vote Liberal in every election, too. I don't think the millions-of-people argument is particularly compelling, particulary on a forum whose raison d'etre is pissing and moaning about why millions of people won't accept the supposedly self-evident truth that any government is preferable to the Liberals.
And I am smart enough to figure out that religion is a human construct, one which involves accepting the word of one human that the writings of another human happen to coincide with what God thinks. God doesn't personally enter the equation at any stage, though God is certainly used to justify human agency in this process. I happen to prefer personal responsibility, thanks.
As for the popes, smart people have written lots of things that are philosophically odious (see: Pierre Elliot Trudeau).
Posted by: Jim in Toronto | 2006-04-10 5:18:08 PM
A death is a death is a death. A 6-year old child at the bottom of the neighbour's pool is as dead as an aborted foetus. My observation is that people are more affected by the dead 6-year old. We know with statistical certainty that continued legalization of backyard pools with kill hundreds if not thousands of children per year. We choose to kill them. Why? Because people enjoy pools and it's a trade-off we feel okay with and the victims and their kin do not know in advance that they will be the ones affected. But you are deluding yourself if you think this is not a decision to kill children. Life's full of tough choices--an a-theist is someone who should take responsibility for tough choices and does not attempt to disguise them with sophistry.
As to when a cell becomes a "human"--"human" is a word, a placeholder in a syllogism. Ontological arguments always degenerate into semantics. It does not advance the issue one bit to argue about when a cell becomes a "human." At some point technology will be able to generate a person from virtually any cell--would this making blowing my nose and disposing of the tissue murder? The bottom line issue is, in what circumstances do we feel the termination is justifiable and what empirical evidence is there to guide the choice.
As to my emotions, I would not consider an abortion if my wife became pregnant, even though we certainly don't want another child. The issue is whether I would feel good about jailing people who did.
Finally, I cannot agree that a-theists can only act based on feeling. Decision-making is based on instinct, emotion and reason, in light of experience. A reasonable, emotionally sound a-theist have a deep instinctive commitment to self-actualize and procreate (literally or figuratively), which requires active engagement in a robust community. Such a person is therefore deeply committed to community service and ethical principles. Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. is a fine example. He was anti-communist and understood that a robust community needs great individuals and must therefore respect individuality and freedoms. I would suggest a-theists do good things because they are good things, not for fear of reprisal from some external monitor. An a-theist is suspicious about people who claim others will not act good without such fear of reprisal from a omniscient deity of some sort. Hmmmm.
Are there unethical a-theists. Sure. I would expect in about the same statistical distribution as in any other group of society. I was at the opera once and returned a ten-dollar bill that had fallen out of a person's pocket who had walked around the corner. The three theistic people with me each commented that they would have pocketed it.
Posted by: murray | 2006-04-10 5:30:21 PM
If it doesn't matter when a cell becomes a human, then what is the difference between throwing away your hypothetical kleenex and killing a person?
Posted by: Jim in Toronto | 2006-04-10 5:39:46 PM
Is there an Atheist argument AGAINST Abortion?
Posted by: Conrad-USA | 2006-04-10 5:41:16 PM
Very well said, Murray. You sound like an honourable man.
Posted by: Vitruvius | 2006-04-10 5:42:07 PM
Did you miss my post?
Posted by: Jim in Toronto | 2006-04-10 5:50:05 PM
All right, fine. I would have thought it obvious, but here we go. An Atheist argument against abortion:
It is not a good idea for humans to not pro-create at a rate lower than some level, the value of which is under debate. It's called survival of the species. To the degree that thoughtlessly easy abortion, in the name of avoiding responsibility, is a threat to such survival, it is un-natural (at least, according to biology as we know it).
The thing is, though, that to the degree that abortion is a problem, I suspect it's an effect, not a cause. Stopping the abortion effect will not per se solve the cause of the problem.
(I happen to have a great Libertarian argument in favour of traditional nuclear families too.)
Posted by: Vitruvius | 2006-04-10 5:56:29 PM
I'd be interested in hearing that one.
Posted by: Jim in Toronto | 2006-04-10 5:59:25 PM
(1) The traditional nuclear family is better for the children of the species. (2) The children become the adults of the species. (3) It is to the advantage of every free individual for the adults of the species to be as good as they can be. QED
Posted by: Vitruvius | 2006-04-10 6:03:21 PM
I have not said there are no atheists who try to be good. I happen to believe that its easier to be good when you turn to the source of GOOD for guidance.
Many many many more deaths occur through abortion than through backyard swimming pools. That is why I don't consider it equivalent. Abortion is a much bigger problem. The fact that the media does not allow a discussion of the true motivations behind the support of abortion is part of the problem. I do not believe that this is primarily a 'women's' rights issue. I believe it is more a result of our 'culture of death' that puts very little value on human life itself, or the human structures that help create and sustain it- i.e. family.
I think (although I realize my thoughts aren't necessarily appreciated) that John Paul ll had it right when he taught that Christian Humanism is much better for humanity than Secular Humanism. Its the difference between the 'Culture of Life' and the 'Culture of Death'.
Posted by: lwestin | 2006-04-10 6:07:27 PM
But why is the traditional nuclear family better for the children of the species?
(Not that I personally disagree, just playing devil's advocate for a moment.)
Posted by: Jim in Toronto | 2006-04-10 6:10:25 PM
What's the cutoff number, then? If we're going to accept your logic that abortion is bad but backyard swimming pools are okay because of a numbers game, then what's the tipping point?
Posted by: Jim in Toronto | 2006-04-10 6:18:04 PM
The traditional nuclear familiy is better for the children because that's how our old-brain has evolved to be supported. If children don't have adequate exposure to a small set (two is pretty good) of people of both genders, as parent/child nurturers (you can't contract this stuff out), then their old-brain will not receive appropriately concerned balanced genderous input, resulting in increased probability of eventual failures of reasoning in the adult new-brain, due to inadequate experiential undergirding.
Posted by: Vitruvius | 2006-04-10 6:23:30 PM
That's a decent argument. I'm not sure I buy it on an objective basis, but subjectively it works for me.
Posted by: Jim in Toronto | 2006-04-10 6:31:02 PM
Well, Jim, seeing as how you've found, over the last few weeks, so many of my arguments to be so reasonable, would you consider retracting your various statements to the effect that the Western Standard's Shotgun blog commenters are notoriously one-sided, and entertain the thought of not yelling at people you don't agree with, rather, presenting reasonable arguments yourself?
After all, I've been doing that here, regularly, since April 14, 2004 (hey, that's two years, in four days!)
Posted by: Vitruvius | 2006-04-10 6:43:11 PM
Oh my goodness. Today is the two years + one week anniversary of the Shotgun. The first article was by Kevin Steel, the second by Jay Currie, and the third by Kate McMillan.
Once again, thanks to Ezra and all the staff at the Western Standard for providing us this opportunity.
Posted by: Vitruvius | 2006-04-10 6:52:28 PM
I agree we should look to exemplars for guidance as to what to consider good. Emerson wrote Representative Men in this vein. Part of the many, many benefits of being part of a robust community is being able to stand on the shoulders of our ancestors, who must have gotten something right in contributing to a sustainable society. Although I am atheist, I have great admiration for Jewish culture, for example, which has endured dspite every disadvantage imaginable. There is much to learn there.
The problem with concepts such as "good" or "just" is that to a large degree they beg the question. My definition of "justice," therefore, is like my approach to art--I know what I don't like. A plant can grow toward the sun without a prior knowledge of "sun" and attempting to send directions to cells as to how to shift the position of the plant. A more computationally tractable solution is to simply have individual cells grow faster in the dark--the emergent effect is "growing toward the sun." Common law works the same way--we all have a pretty good eye for what is unfair in a particular, concrete situation--law just grows away from that and revises doctrine to fit experience. Same with scientific method--experimental design seeks o betray errors in a theory and the theory is revised to grow away from the error. Thus, people of entirely "-isms" can agree on 90+% of what is considered good without agreeing on what "good" means.
I also agree the media has an ideological discourse sahping media discussion of abortion. This is to be expected--Guido Calebresi wrote some good analysis on how we disguise difficult value choices (such as how to allocate scarce medical resources). Journalists, on the whole it seems, favour abortion and seek to frame the debate to protect their turf.
I remain open to be convinced whether a so-called culture of death is caused by abortion policy and whether it has harmful effects apart from the death of foetuses, or unborn babies (if that is the discourse you prefer). That would be convincing to an atheist.
Posted by: murray | 2006-04-10 7:04:43 PM
I haven't stated an opinion on the right or wrong of swimming pools. In the five years I've lived in Cayman, there has not been one death from swimming pools - although there was one death from a drinking -water barrel...in spite of there being per-capita many more pools than in Canada.
There have also not been any abortions on the island. (Not to say they haven't been referred elsewhere.)Cayman society is still proudly Christian, and struggling with its relatively new found popularity as a temporary residence for foreign workers. Many non-Caymanians express dismay at the 'archaic' value system still freely expressed locally. Its not 'modern' like Europe, or North America. It remains to be seen how long Cayman society will resist further corruption by secular humanism. Not that things are perfect here. Many dangers exist here as elsewhere for families trying to grow up in a wholesome environment. Its just not as all-pervasive as in say- Canada.
Posted by: lwestin | 2006-04-10 7:06:35 PM
Jim - thanks for your input, I didn't miss your argument, but you had explained that you were not an atheist, and since it seemed that I had run across a few different threads of argument on this web site in which several people indicated that they were atheists, I thought that I might learn from some actual atheists, whether there was an atheist Anti-Abortion argument.
Vitruvius offered the "obvious" argument that humans should have babies in order to ensure survival of the species. I'm trying to be very focused here upon Abortion specifically, rather than a more generalized concept of NOT "having babies."
My underlying concept is that Abortion is murder, not "killing" but rather, murder, i.e. deliberately taking the live of an innocent human being (not a criminal, not an enemy combatant, not accidentally having someone drown in your swimming pool, etc.).
Jim introduced the notion that some people claim to be unclear as to whether or not or when a pregnant woman can be confidently said to be carrying another actual human being within her body, but I'd prefer not to deal with mere deceit and rather focus on the question of whether there is an Atheist argument AGAINST Abortion (i.e. among those who recognize that once a human sperm cell fertilizes a human egg cell that the embryo requires no additional inputs except nourishment and time to be and remain a living entity that eventually even Bill Clinton could not dispute was in fact a human being).
Posted by: Conrad-USA | 2006-04-10 7:12:40 PM
I don't say that the 'culture of death' is a result of abortion policy, but rather the other way around. The fact that society now considers abortion acceptable and sometimes good is a symptom of a 'culture of death'.
I agree that there is much to learn from and respect in other cultures (in general). An interest in and love for humanity as a whole is something that Christians try to live. Much has been written on exactly that subject by both the former and present popes.
Posted by: lwestin | 2006-04-10 7:17:12 PM
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