Friday, January 20, 2012

Nadine Dorries’ quest for sexual abstinence

This is a guest post by Mr Gillan Scott of the ‘God and Politics in the UK’ blog:

Today sees the Second Reading of Nadine Dorries’ Sex Education (Required Content) Bill which, should it become law, would require schoolgirls to discuss abstinence in the classroom. The summary of the Bill taken from the UK Parliament website is as follows:
A Bill to require schools to provide certain additional sex education to girls aged between 13 and 16; to provide that such education must include information and advice on the benefits of abstinence from sexual activity; and for connected purposes.
In her blog entry following the first reading on 4th May 2011 (which passed 67-61), she explains the reasons for presenting the Bill:
“I am not seeking to diminish sex education as taught at present, but to include the empowering option that young girls can just say no. In school, children are taught to base the decision whether or not to have sex on their feelings and wishes. I don’t believe young girls under the age of 16 have consistent feelings and that they can change from day to day. My bill was about making boys wait being an empowering and cool thing for girls to do and that it should be taught as a viable, if not preferable option for girls aged 16 and under – especially as sex at that age is unlawful.”
And so Ms Dorries, whether deliberately or not, has caused another political storm. Not entirely surprisingly, the National Secular Society and British Humanist Association are opposing. In fact, they will be demonstrating outside Parliament with other aligned groups to protest against it. One of their counter arguments is that this type of education should not be solely compulsory for girls. They have is a valid point. I’m not exactly sure what Ms Dorries was thinking when she left boys out of the Bill. However, I doubt this is the main reason why the protest will be going ahead. Rather, the thrust of their animosity would appear to be the thought of any moral values being applied to sex education under law.

Irrespective of any religious beliefs someone may have about teenage sex, I find it very hard to see how anyone can argue against giving girls (or boys) the chance to consider the benefits of holding back from sexual activity at a young age. Any sexual engagement for young people obviously carries the risks of pregnancy, subsequent abortion and the contraction of sexually transmitted infections. The number of STIs reported by sexual health clinics in the UK is increasing rapidly year on year with 482,900 recorded in 2009. Two thirds of these cases were from females aged 15-24. Studies have shown that young adults are more likely to have unsafe sex and that they often lack the skills and confidence to negotiate safer methods. There have been conflicting studies about whether early sexual activity causes long term mental health issues, but surely there is less chance of this in any form if a young person is abstaining from rather than having sex. The UK has the second highest teenage pregnancy rate in the world behind the US, and the highest teenage abortion rate in Western Europe. This strongly suggests that the current sex and relationship education (SRE) in schools is not particularly effective.

Something has fundamentally shifted in our society’s moral values (and not for the better) over the last few decades. For centuries, abstinence was seen as the norm outside of marriage, but now in some circles any promotion of abstinence in any form is seen as totally outdated and something even to be fought against. When did we decide that ideology was more important than the wellbeing of our children?

Even if Nadine Dorries’ Bill is flawed, her desire to see young people receive sound advice as part of their sex education is not, and she ought to be commended for this.

173 Comments:

Blogger G. Tingey said...

Excuse me, but Nadine Dorries is a stupid and ignorant woman.

"Abstinence-only" sex education DOES NOT WORK.
Proven, time and time again.
Abstinence PLUS education about contraception PLUS education about risks (STD's / unwanted pergnancies) DOES WORK.

She should be told to go back to the nursery-school corner.

Why do you think the US "Bible Belt" is also the STD belt and the illegitamacy belt, huh?

20 January 2012 at 08:44  
Blogger Windsor Tripehound said...

Abstinence PLUS education about contraception PLUS education about risks (STD's / unwanted pergnancies) DOES WORK.

Isn't this precisely what she's proposing, or have I missed something?

20 January 2012 at 08:57  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

It does seem to be what she is proposing. In a narrow way. Whilst patronising the people she is trying to help. One problem here is the mixed messages people get about sex. On the one hand, conservatives promote abstinence. On the other they promote the non-regulation of a "free market " that bombards us with sex-based marketing, websites that promote extra marital affairs etc. If a politician takes a stand on morality you later find out he was shagging a fellow minister all the while. We are in a pickle.

20 January 2012 at 09:13  
Blogger MrTinkles said...

An excellent discussion of the subject. I also find the counter arguments very, very strange.
Fortunately this was summed up beautifully by the comment from G Tingey.
First, they claim abstinence only sex ed does not work. Putting aside that the bill is NOT abstinence only (One wonders whether this is just stupidity or deliberate misrepresentation) pleae quote some of the "proven, proven time and time again"?
To by undying shame (Inam quite serious about that...I wish I had had the nerve to get out or to speak up more strongly) I was involved in sex education for 25 years.
When I started, sex ed was little more than a brief Biology lesson; by the time I left, it was the sort of stuff that regularly makes the Daily Mail blow a gasket. It increased enormously in content (it amazes me when some idiot claims that the reason for our high teenage pregnancy and STD rate is that we don't have enough sex education...have these people ever been inside a school?) and in detail. During the same period, teenage pregnancy, Std infection, abortion rates continued to climb.
As they did, the strategy was always "more, more".
By G Tingey's standards, that surely proves that the sex ed. we DO have (with no mention of abstinence) certainly isn't working!
I'm not sure if it would help - but I doubt a discussion of a moral perspective would make things worse.
And that point makes me wonder...is that what's wrong with these people? Is what causes G Tingey and the rest to launch into an ad hominem attack on Ms Norries the thought that there could just possibly be a moral component to sex???

20 January 2012 at 09:15  
Blogger Jon said...

I don't see the harm in suggesting to kids that they wait until they feel ready before they have sex. It's can be a major milestone for anyone, although I don't see why it should be targeted at girls only.

I probably wouldn't call it abstinence. You can compel teachers to teach it, but calling it that means you won't be able to compel a teenager in the land to listen.

In Nadine's spirit though and wandering thoroughly off topic, could we also pass a law which forced MPs to be educated in a few things? Perhaps, if they failed the end of term test, they would be automatically sacked and a by election triggered?

My suggested curriculum would be:

- economics
- history
- maths
- small business management (and if they failed to fill in their end of year inland revenue returns properly (including expenses!), the MP would also lose all of their worldly possessions - this ought to spur on the simplification of the tax code!)

I also think that we should pass a law which reduced the salaries and pension pot of everyone in the Bank of England by the difference between RPI and the inflation target, whether above or below target.

20 January 2012 at 10:06  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Teaching people to say no in an assertive way is a good thing. I don't see any problem teaching people that abstinence is a valid choice for them to make either. Telling teenagers that they should say no is probably doomed to failure for lots of them simply because rebellion is part of growing up. Sexual education, including abstinence as a choice, can be taught without reference to morals and probably should be taught that way.

20 January 2012 at 11:16  
Blogger tangentreality said...

Why should the focus be exclusively on girls? It's not just girls who have responsibility for the resultant child - but then, this ties into the prejudicial assumption that all a male will do is deposit his teaspoonful of semen and then disappear into the sunset.

Boys, as well as girls, should be taught about the responsibilities of parenthood, and why waiting is actually better.

20 January 2012 at 12:02  
Blogger Sam Vega said...

I work with teenagers, and think that DanJ0 makes a sound point here. My impression is that the majority of teenagers see sexual activity per se as essentially amoral. They will take a strongly moralistic viewpoint on issues where sex involves issues of compulsion, deception, and breach of trust, etc., but otherwise they view consensual sex as nobody's business but the participants. It is part of their sense of autonomy and power to see it this way.

Bringing morality into it will be a waste of time for those teenagers who already abstain for religious or cultural reasons, or because psychological predispositions outweigh cultural norms and group pressure. But it will also be a waste of time for the majority. Some exceptional teachers will be able to get them to see sex in moral terms. But for most teachers, a legal requirement to do so would be a waste of effort.

20 January 2012 at 12:53  
Blogger Oswin said...

Quite so Your Grace.


Moonpie @ 08:44 : more ill-thought blether from the Tingey orifice ... sighs.

What part of: ''I am not seeking to diminish sex education as taught at present...''did you fail to understand?

You then go on to state YOUR case, which is identical to that of Nadine Dorries! Did you actually bother to read the article?

20 January 2012 at 13:00  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Seems and sensible Bill and, so far, apart from one rather inane poster (you know who you are), people on here are in broad agreement.

Seperate morality from sexuality and we arrive where we are - teenage pregnancies, abortions, STI's and a breach in the natural part this personal and intimate aspect of human relationships should play in our lives.

What I fail to understand is the basis for any opposition by the National Secular Society and British Humanist Association. Are they saying that the law relating to sexual activity should be entirely repealed? At what age would they consider a child has been raped even if they have given "consent"? One can't simply give children knowledge about what to do, without some compass about its appropriateness and their responsibilities as well as their rights.

It's the same nonsense with "education" about drugs. Whatever happened to just say "NO". It may not work for all young people but at least as adults we are putting down some boundaries for teenagers to push against. As it is, we seem to be abdicating our responsibilities towards them.

20 January 2012 at 13:42  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

Rebellion seems to have become much more a part of growing up in recent decades and as a society we have educated children, boys in particular that it is expected of them. The only role models we give them are drug taking booze drinking misfits. Its not only sex ed we need but education in what it really means to be a man as opposed to a bully or a show off.

20 January 2012 at 13:48  
Blogger Flossie said...

I don't agree that you can't teach morality to teenagers. Most children and young people have an innate modesty, but are being taught via the media that chastity and self-control is uncool.

This can be reversed, as history has shown. It takes time, yes, and certainly will not happen overnight, but the Dorries bill is a good start.

We need more politicians with guts, like Nadine. She knows that what she has to say will make her unpopular with the sneering metropolitan elite who are unable to keep their trousers zipped, but says it anyway.

20 January 2012 at 14:07  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Flossie, Ms Dorries has a less than ideal 'private' live if one uses Christian sexual morality as a basis for that. As a result, your final comment there is rather ill-judged, I'd say.

20 January 2012 at 14:55  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

No-one is perfect. We are all sinners and we have good ideas some of the time. Ideas should be viewed on their merits.

20 January 2012 at 15:16  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

His Grace said "I find it very hard to see how anyone can argue against giving girls (or boys) the chance to consider the benefits of holding back from sexual activity at a young age. Any sexual engagement for young people obviously carries the risks of pregnancy, subsequent abortion and the contraction of sexually transmitted infections."

Very true. The mystery of iniquity is evident here even if it is not yet exposed and is rampant in our society and throughout the world.

20 January 2012 at 15:37  
Blogger Mr Integrity said...

Your Grace;
Why are we informed about these issues so late, making it difficult to illicit support?
Having read that Nadine Dorries is apposed to Squeker Bercow and had clashes with Cameron, she's my sort of Girl. All the best with the Bill.

20 January 2012 at 15:50  
Blogger Gillan Scott said...

The bill has been removed from the Commons order paper. This has sent the British Humanists into a frenzy of excitement, but no reason has been given yet for the withdrawal, which only Nadine Dorries is able to do. Ms Dorries MP adds another twist to her parliamentary story...

20 January 2012 at 16:01  
Blogger Marie1797 said...

Why couldn't Nadine Dorries say no to her best friend's husband? I support this bill but I don't think she is the right person to put it forward. She does not seem to be that popular after she blotted her copybook. And she did make a hash of last years abortion amendment in which she ended up being insulted as she was not on top form.

20 January 2012 at 16:14  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

I've just read the Guardian article. Wow they really know how to spin. It's no wonder people in this country are so indoctrinated.

20 January 2012 at 16:18  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

What 'works' is a consistent message delivered from multiple authorties in society. What doesn't work is one authority (say, schools) subverting another authority (say, parents) by communicating de facto permission. If you want an effective abstinence program, you don't implement it in a school curriculum. You implement it in culture.

Schools in the US are constructed to subvert parental authority on this matter. Children can get contraceptives from the school without parental approval. Children can get counseling and treatment and referrals for abortion without parental knowledge. The children interpret this as permission from an adult authority to go forth and have sex. They come to that conclusion because that is exactly the conclusion they are intended to reach. It is deliberate and insidious. Sex is a wonderful lever to by which children may be pulled away from the moral instruction of their parents.

The Sex Educators tell children what children want to hear. They by implication tell children that their parents are wrong. They let children reach the appropriate conclusion "Your parents are wrong about a lot of things. Listen to us instead." But when STDs show up, or the pregnancy test turns positive, or the abortion results in permanent sterility, then the school is nowhere to be found. Then the parents - who had been previously cut out of this matter in the name of childhood autonomy on matters sexual - are suddenly expected to pick up the pieces.

The solution is to deal with the subject with your kids before the school gets any access. It works. My daughters love to troll the Sex Ed teacher. I suspect that's why the Sex Ed people want to push the curriculum into even lower ages. Parents have different ideas about what is age-appropriate information.

Amazing, isn't it? A child can't sign a contract to buy a refrigerator, but he has been given the autonomy to decide who to have sex with. Which possesses the greater marginal risk? Utterly amazing.

carl

20 January 2012 at 16:24  
Blogger AnonymousInBelfast said...

I went through the sex education system not all that long ago. From the end of primary school right the way through to the end of sixth form, I had sex education that consisted of frank discussions of just about everything. It was also directed overwhelmingly from the kind of liberal stance that the Guardian loves. Two of the teachers I encountered actively disparaged abstinence and encouraged us to ignore sexual morality (except of course a form of sexual morality in which "exploration" is unaccountably regarded as essential to ones wellbeing). This was the only discussion of abstinence we ever had - all other teachers ignored it.

It didn't work. Well - I mean, it worked in the sense that they taught us the risks of STDs, how to use condoms, the social impact of sexuality etc. etc. ad nauseam. But we still had rising teenage pregnancies, and rising STD rates.

Kids are kids. People are usually at their most irresponsible when they are teenagers (unless they grow up to write for the Guardian I suppose). My classmates and I couldn't remember to bring our books to every lesson. Why in God's name did our teachers imagine we would be capable of taking responsibility for our sexual health?

That's not an argument for *not* teaching teenagers about sexual health. But it is an argument that we shouldn't be encouraging them to undertake behaviour which will very often prove harmful to their wellbeing and educational development. Nobody advocates experimenting with soft drugs (well, actually one of my teachers did, but I suspect not as a result of the curriculum); why do we have a system that at best is ambiguous about whether teenagers should be sexuall active?

20 January 2012 at 17:14  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

It was probably someone religious who suggested that Ms Dorries withdraw it at the last minute. :)

20 January 2012 at 17:24  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Your Grace. The ability to say no and mean it is probably the most important weapon in any woman’s arsenal. If they can learn it at 13 and get it word perfect, absolutely first class.

Imagining himself as Education minister, the Inspector would include in the lesson graphic images of the RESULT of careless sex. We all know, or at least we should, that single parenthood is the biggest cause of poverty today in the UK. Young people love true life videos, so we’ll have lots of single mothers living in flats explaining how they manage on their pittance of benefit, while her contemporaries are out enjoying themselves. Oh yes, piles of shitty nappies too, and baby puke. Scratch and sniff cards to be supplied.

Middle of the lesson would cover sexual diseases. Graphic pictures of growths, discharges, and sexual organs oozing pus, that kind of thing. If at least one child doesn’t faint, it’s not graphic enough.

Finally, a bit on sexual perversion. Including grown men who like young boys, and hairy lesbians who trawl about looking for a vulnerable ‘princess’. Plus ‘unpleasant’ bedroom activity.

Should put them all off sex for a few years until they’re properly ready, boys included…

Toodle pip.

20 January 2012 at 17:32  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Danj0- lol

Inspector - hairy lesbians? Lol

Security word: sense. Amazing.

20 January 2012 at 17:44  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Didn’t realise what Nadine had been up to until Marie mentioned it. Inspector not one for tittle tattle you know. Rather disappointing, was hoping our girl would blossom into a moral champion of the right. All down the pan now. The Inspector had heard that politics can be a lonely business for a woman without the love of a man behind her. A bit much to take her best friends though, what !

Really madam, your troubled former friend needed all your help and support to combat her alcoholism, not your treachery. Shame on you ! {INSPECTOR WAGS FINGER}

20 January 2012 at 17:48  
Blogger Mr Integrity said...

Hey Dodo The Soho Dude You have been found out. Go to Google Steet view at 24 Frith Street, City of Westminster. You have been seen lurking there on a daily basis.

20 January 2012 at 17:51  
Blogger G. Tingey said...

I would agree that the "Sex" education we have is not working.
Unfortunately that also applies to the resty of the (English) so-called education system!

But Dorries proposals are not the way to go.
It needs to be much more brutal, quite frankly, with some really graphic illustrations of what happens if you get it wrong .....

20 January 2012 at 17:52  
Blogger Mr Integrity said...

Inspector; Some people love to sling the mud. It's usually because they live in it. People go wrong and in Westminster the pressures must be great. She says she is a Christian so I hope she has repented, however, which of us is going to throw the first stone.

20 January 2012 at 17:58  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Mr I: "Hey Dodo The Soho Dude You have been found out. Go to Google Steet view at 24 Frith Street, City of Westminster. You have been seen lurking there on a daily basis."

Oh that's fantastic. Lol. With the flag and everything. And just around the corner from G.A.Y too. Haha.

20 January 2012 at 17:59  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Your ground nest blown, old bird...

20 January 2012 at 18:10  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Point taken Mr Integrity. Inspector more disappointed than anything else; you see, he had high hopes for Nadine.

20 January 2012 at 18:14  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Mr I: "She says she is a Christian so I hope she has repented, however, which of us is going to throw the first stone."

I suggest the same people who throw stones at non-Christian gay couples throw stones at her too. Bigger ones, obviously, given the shared beliefs there.

20 January 2012 at 18:17  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Mr Integrity
Lol!
What I'd like to know is why someone would embarked on a street view of Soho! What on earth led you to this?

Inspector
Must be a long lost relative. That or someone is misusing a photo and stealing copyright!

DanJ0
I did frequent Soho at one time - the 100 Club and Ronnie Scotts. Those were happy days, indeed. There was also a Blues/Rock Club in Wardour Street where Fleetwood Mac played regularly. And, believe it or not, there were times when I'd enjoy a quiet drink and laugh in the company of homosexual men.

Shock Horror!! When did Soho actually become a 'Pink Area'? However, in the 1970's these guys were far less 'militant' and much more discreet and not so crude and offensive as todays brigade.

20 January 2012 at 18:26  
Blogger Mr Integrity said...

Inspector; I agree, disappointing. However St Peter denied Christ three times but went on to be one of the greatest Disciples. We have imperfections but can still go on in Christ to do great things. Integrity is about always trying to do right and knowing when wrong has been done and putting it write if one can. We need Nadine Dorries and all that she stands for.

20 January 2012 at 18:34  
Blogger Mr Integrity said...

Dodo; I worked in Soho square in 1965 and it was a very interesting place to go in those days. We have just received a request to supply our products to the building I worked in back in the day, so I was on a Google reminiscence walk. Couldn’t find the Barclays Bank I used to use in Frith street. St Anne’s court off Dean Street was the big place then for the women of the street. I was too innocent to know what it was all about!

20 January 2012 at 18:45  
Blogger Mr Integrity said...

DanJo; No stones were thrown at the woman taken in adultery because the crowd realised their own sin. However, the woman herself was told by Jesus to go and SIN NO MORE. Those that continue in sin WILL be condemned.

20 January 2012 at 19:11  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Mr Integrity
Yeah, yeah, I believe you!

I worked for Rank Films in Wardour Street in 1970 and agree Soho was a vibrant and exciting place. As for the 'women of the street',whilst I was an innocent lad too, I have to say I was in no doubt what they were about!

20 January 2012 at 19:15  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Mr Integrity. Nadine is still with us, of course, but unfortunately her conduct is bound to be rubbed in her face when she embarks on future initiatives, similar to DanJ0’s mean spirited post of 18:17.

By the way, DanJ0, you might have missed Dodo’s excellent comment . Assuming you did, here it is again. these guys were far less 'militant' and much more discreet and not so crude and offensive as todays brigade. I think most people prefer our gay types to be like that now. You might make a few more friends on this site...

20 January 2012 at 19:17  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Mr Integrity: "DanJo; No stones were thrown at the woman taken in adultery because the crowd realised their own sin."

Well, there you go then. I'm sure JC can deal with gay recidivists himself.

20 January 2012 at 20:02  
Blogger Roger Pearse said...

Well said, Cranmer.

The systematic debauching of the young is one of the most sickening features of our society. What kind of sick ruling class treats all of our wives-to-be and the mothers-to-be of our children with such savage contempt?

20 January 2012 at 20:48  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

DanJ0 old fruit, you advocate teaching sex education without morals, do answer Mr Pearse, when you can...

20 January 2012 at 21:11  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Inspector, you've been hung out to dry and scorned mercilessly, and you're upset about it. I recognise that. But you're only making it worse by bleating and being a berk. A dignified retreat to lick your wounds would be better I think.

20 January 2012 at 21:21  
Blogger Roy said...

Many years ago a "pro-life" group that had put up a few candidates for a general election was allocated time for a party political broadcast on television. They planned to show extracts from a film about abortion but the authorities banned it because they ruled that it would be too upsetting.

Many liberals are in favour of the use of explicit films in sex education. They claim that such films just provide information and do not encourage premature sexual activity. Liberals are also in favour of teaching about abortion. Therefore why not include a film that shows what happens to the foetus in an abortion? That would also provide information and whether you think the abortion laws are too liberal or too strict who could possibly argue against providing information?

20 January 2012 at 21:23  
Blogger Marie1797 said...

Inspector @ 17:32 Channel 4 did this with "A 21st Century Girls Guide To Sex" series. They dealt with every gory detail from STDs, perversions, and even had a camera taped on to real man's erect penis and showed the film of it ejaculating inside a woman. But no mention of abstinence! I'm afraid 14/15 year olds these days know all about sex. Naturally there should be a balance in their education and a chapter on abstaining too.

20 January 2012 at 21:25  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Marie. There needs to be a sea change on the subject. Society is quite clearly failing young people.

DanJ0. You continue to disappoint. The Inspector is sure that an aggrieved Mr Pearse would appreciate the official gay line. What’s the matter, afraid that Scotland Yard will put your name in their book ?

20 January 2012 at 21:42  
Blogger len said...

'A Quest for sexual abstinence' is regretfully a small voice which will be drowned out by the constant bombardment of blatant sexuality churned out by the Media.
Anyone who advocates restraint is liable to be scorned as moral guidelines are blurred and everyone does 'what is right' in their own eyes.
Of course what is' right' for one is deeply offensive to another.
But since we are in the process of throwing away the only moral guidance system we have then we must expect moral chaos to ensue.
It will be the majority who will suffer as those with vested interests push for ever greater license.

20 January 2012 at 22:09  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Inspector
Our 'friend' DanJ0 clearly has no response to the weight of evidence against liberality in sexuality and especially the corruption of our young people.

He simply resorts to a desperate personal attack on thee and me based on some imagined embarrassment we face in an attempt to shift the focus.

Keep up the Crusade my man.

20 January 2012 at 22:11  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Dodo. Do believe our man is ‘licking his wounds’. heh heh.

Is the Inspector imagining it or does the 1967 de-criminalisation of homosexual behaviour EXCLUDE it’s advocating ?

20 January 2012 at 22:19  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

20 January 2012 at 22:44  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Inspector

Doubtful in these days of 'diversity' that homosexuals are forbidden from promoting their chosen lifestyle. Heavens, they're teaching our children! This minority group are a protected species.

Section 28 of the Local Government Act 1988 stated that a local authority "shall not intentionally promote homosexuality or publish material with the intention of promoting homosexuality" or "promote the teaching ... or the acceptability of homosexuality as a pretended family relationship". It afforded some protection of the young but was repealed in 2000 after campaigning by homosexual groups with the support of Labour and the Liberals.

The Sexual Offences Act in 1967 was a dark development and set off a process of moral decline. Section 28 was an attempt to hold back the tide. It was brought forward by Conservative MP Jill Knight, who in 1999 said of the clause and her reasons for it:

“I was contacted by parents who strongly objected to their children at school being encouraged into homosexuality and being taught that a normal family with mummy and daddy was outdated."

Rmember the Gay Liberation Front - that motley crew who disbanded in the mid-1970's? Their disturbed mantra:

The sexual liberation for all people; heterosexuality was a remnant of cultural inhibition and change required the dismantling of current social institutions and rebuilding without defined sexual roles; the idea of the biological family and clan had to be transformed to make it akin to a loose affiliation of members without biological obligations.

Now who's nasty and subversive views do these remind you of?

20 January 2012 at 22:51  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Dodo. Good work. So it’s not a hard hearted Inspector who finds homosexual influence disgusting. Because of their homosexual mind thought, they can’t believe their policies are repellent to normal people. Not sure what DanJo is doing on this thread anyway. He has before whined about his taxes going to pay for the education of children. Maybe he wants sex education to include seeing gays as ever so nice people, who have no sexual interest in the children whatsoever....

20 January 2012 at 23:11  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

I suppose it would be pointless to mention that the story of the woman taken in adultery is a textual variant with no provenance that justifies it having been a part of the Autographs. That all the modern versions mark it as suspect. That it probably should be removed from the Gospel of John.

Yes, I thought it would be pointless.

carl

20 January 2012 at 23:11  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

The Sexual Offences Act did not intend to promote homosexuality. Labour introduced it based on the Wolfenden Report. It followed the prosecutions of a number of prominent public men.

“ ... unless a deliberate attempt be made by society through the agency of the law to equate the sphere of crime with that of sin, there must remain a realm of private that is in brief, not the law's business”
(Wolfenden Report, 1957).

What this overlooked was that 'sin' was sin because its consequences harmed individuals and harmed society.

An interesting anecdote - to save embarrassing the ladies on the Committee, the terms 'Huntley & Palmers' were used. Huntleys for homosexuals, and Palmers for prostitutes. Enought to turn you off the biscuits! How times have changed.

Interestingly, the view at the time was that the criminal law should not further penalise homosexual men for their disposition as they were already the object of ridicule and derision. Roy Jenkins, Home Secretary, summed it up:

" ... those who suffer from this disability carry a great weight of shame all their lives"

Technically homosexual acts remained a crime until 2003. The age of consent, originally 21, was reduced to 18 and then to 16 in 2000.

Lord Arran, the 1968 Bill's sponsor, made the following qualification to this "historic" milestone:

"I ask those homosexuals to show their thanks by comporting themselves quietly and with dignity ... any form of ostentatious behaviour now or in the future or any form of public flaunting would be utterly distasteful ... [And] make the sponsors of this bill regret that they had done what they had done"

Well, you got it so wrong Lord Arran, as did your partner in stupidity Lord Wolfendon.

20 January 2012 at 23:21  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

carl

Is this terrible of me?

"Jesus came upon a small crowd who had surrounded a young woman they believed to be an adulteress. They were preparing to stone her to death.

To calm the situation, Jesus said: "Whoever is without sin among you, let them cast the first stone."

Suddenly, an old lady at the back of the crowd picked up a huge rock and lobbed it at the young woman, scoring a direct hit on her head. The unfortunate young lady collapsed dead on the spot.

Jesus looked over towards the old lady and said: "Do you know, Mother, sometimes you really hack me off."

Confession tomorrow me thinks!

20 January 2012 at 23:28  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Dodo. " ... those who suffer from this disability carry a great weight of shame all their lives"

Somewhat lost on the modern crowd who revel in it....

20 January 2012 at 23:35  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Inspector
One can have some understanding with the politicians of the time, even if they were somewhat naive.

We seem to have lost all sense of guilt and shame these days. Our God given consciences have been blunted by the onslaught of amoral, self absorbed ideas put forward initially by groups such as the Gay Liberation Front.

In the context of a society that accepted Christian values, showing compassion towards homosexuals was commendable. Let them live their lives quietly and hope that one day they might overcome their inclination.

Well, so much for that theory. We opened Pandora's Box and now must face the consequences!

20 January 2012 at 23:50  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Dodo. "We seem to have lost all sense of guilt and shame these days.”.

One can't help but blaming the homosexual community for part of that....

21 January 2012 at 00:08  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Inspector
Not necessarily. Isn't it more to do with a confusion about how to justify Christian morality without an exclusive reliance on religion and scripture?

The telling comment from Wolfendon, remember?

“ ... unless a deliberate attempt be made by society through the agency of the law to equate the sphere of crime with that of sin, there must remain a realm of private that is in brief, not the law's business
(Wolfenden Report, 1957).

Liberal individualism is the root cause, in my view. Link this to the gross failure of the Christian Churchs to provide clear leadership and advance sound arguments for adhering to Biblical standards and we not only decriminalise, we condone, accept and 'normalise'.

21 January 2012 at 00:35  
Blogger Marie1797 said...

I am disappointed to read the article about pro abortion advertising going ahead. Surely there are many other millions of goods and services to advertise and create revenue from rather than this very personal service that most women who have had would rather not be reminded of, or those who find themselves in need of independent proper advice and counselling do not need to see either. I think it is very sick.

21 January 2012 at 02:28  
Blogger Bob Churchill said...

There's a serious lack of imagination and understanding in the claim that the likes of the British Humanist Association object to "the thought of any moral values being applied to sex education under law." Their entire campaign is an ethical stance based on moral principles. Humanists regard our welfare and betterment, our happiness and health, as the goals of moral thought, and they know that evidence - what actually works and doesn't work - is crucial to morality. If you don't pay attention to the evidence then you are being morally negligent.

The fact is that evidence shows time and time again that over-emphasis on abstinence increases the chances of teen pregnancy, STIs, etc. Time and time again the best thing is seen to be to teach children together and to give them comprehensive information - not to single out one approach (in this case abstinence) over another.

21 January 2012 at 05:09  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

The irony of two members of the international church of institutionalized child abuse pontificating in this fashion is certainly not lost on me.

21 January 2012 at 07:29  
Blogger Flossie said...

Nobody is singling out one approach, Bob Churchill - certainly not Nadine, as he makes clear.

What is missing is respect. Nobody respects or admires a whore. If girls behave like whores they not only lose their self-respect but the respect of boys. This does not bode well for their futures, as the number of broken marriages show.

Girls must be taught to respect their bodies. They must be taught to delay sexual activity until their bodies and brains are mature enough. There is plenty of science to back up the damage that early sexualisation does, and they are not being shown the whole picture.

Girls often regret becoming sexually active at an early age.

Challenge Team UK is a group of young people who will go into schools and give youngsters proper information about the benefits of saving sex. It makes absolute sense, and is a win/win.

http://www.challengeteamuk.org/index.php

21 January 2012 at 07:49  
Blogger Flossie said...

Larks' Tongues, I hope you are not referring to the Catholic Church. I think you will find that in the US the child sex abuse crisis was predominantly a homosexual abuse crisis, as nearly 90 per cent of the 'children' involved were actually adolescents.

Read the John Jay report.

Yes, it is still a disgrace, but don't you think this puts rather a different slant on it? The Catholic Church is trying to put a stop to this kind of thing by refusing to ordain those of 'deep seated homosexual persuasion'.

21 January 2012 at 07:53  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

The Catholic church continues to protect child abusers, and has protected them for decades, probably centuries.

21 January 2012 at 08:03  
Blogger Flossie said...

I should add to my comment above that the victims were adolescent BOYS (for the purposes of the Catholic Church, this means under-18s).

21 January 2012 at 08:14  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

I'm not sure what the relevance is. You can't be saying it's ok to abuse " adolescent" boys, your definition of which is dubious, you can't be saying it's ok to protect child abusers. What are you saying? My point is that the Catholic church has fallen and continues to fall short of the "moral standards" that they insist all should follow, and it is somewhat hard to take it seriously. As usual it fails to take any responsibility, blaming secularism, the permissive sixties, anything to dodge the issue, while continuing to do what can to protect abusers. Receiving moral lectures from adherents of such a morally stained outfit is odious and offensive.

21 January 2012 at 09:22  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

The point, just to hammer it home, is that whatever you think of homosexuality, consenting behavior between adults is distinctly less morally dubious than institutionalised child rape. Geddit? Blaming "homosexuality" is akin to blaming heterosexuality for rape committed by men against women. Absurd.

21 January 2012 at 09:33  
Blogger Flossie said...

You know perfectly well, Larks' Tongues, that that is not what I am saying at all.

While this is going wildly off-topic and away from Nadine Dorries, it is surely obvious that one has to correctly identify a problem before one can put it right.

The number of actual paedophiles was very tiny indeed. You cannot judge yesterday's culture by today's. Everybody at the time of these abuses thought paedophiles could be 'cured' by removing the temptation. Blaming the whole institution would be as stupid as blaming the educational establishment for a tiny number of paedophile teachers.

Far from dodging the issue, the Catholic Church has recognised that ordaining men with homosexual tendencies was the main problem, as set out in 'Criteria for the Discernment of Vocations with regard to Persons with Homosexual Tendencies':

'...the Church, while profoundly respecting the persons in question, cannot admit to the seminary or to holy orders those who practise homosexuality, present deep-seated homosexual tendencies or support the so-called "gay culture".'

You can read the whole thing here:

http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/ccatheduc/documents/rc_con_ccatheduc_doc_20051104_istruzione_en.html

21 January 2012 at 09:42  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

As usual, I'm quite liking the Newsthump satire on all this. It starts off a little slow but builds up very nicely at the end. :)

21 January 2012 at 10:17  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Flossie. You are confusing two seperate issues. And I think you know it.

21 January 2012 at 10:23  
Blogger Ivan said...

The real irony is of course that the Catholic Church gets no love from the homosexuals for trying to reform the altar-boy rapists through therapy instead of turning them over to the police. She has been burned once at the hands of homosexuals, it is not going to happen again.

21 January 2012 at 10:50  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Ivan. It seems you too are unable to distinguish between homosexuals and child abusers.

21 January 2012 at 11:51  
Blogger Mr Integrity said...

Carl @ 23; 11 I noted your comment regarding 'the woman taken in adultry' with interest and so did some reading. You are correct there is dispute but from what I can see, most scholars agree that whilst it was not in the earliest reliable manuscripts, they agree that it does reliably fit in with the overall cannon of scripture. I could hardly find anyone who felt like you that it should not be there.

21 January 2012 at 12:08  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Tongue
The fact is that, in the main, the sexual abuse of children was perpetrated by homosexuals.

The Church now rightly considers this condition a disorder requiring treatment and the removal of those men from situations where they may have the opportunity to offend. It has also recognised the compulsive nature of the disorder and will not admit men to the priesthood who show such inclinations. It has clear policies too on involving the civil authorities where allegations are raised or where suspicions exist.

Yes the Church failed in its duty towards children and to God. A very small minority of Catholic priests abused children - less than 0.01%. The Church did not understand the nature of this abuse and made grevious errors of judgement. In all walks of live there will be people with criminal predispositions.

The Church can of course advocate proper conduct even though it had and will still have sinners in its midst. What kind of logic is it to suggest otherwise? Are priests and the hierarchy expected to be living, walking saints free from all human failings?

21 January 2012 at 12:14  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

The Inspector wishes to address the issue of the so called ‘cover up’ of the child abuse within the RCC. Outsiders must realise that forgiveness and atonement are key principles in the church. No doubt, the priests concerned would have asked for forgiveness when rumbled, setting that policy in action. It is with hindsight that we can see that the very nature of the abuser is that he will lie and cheat to satisfy his craving. Regrettably, he has forfeited much of his right to forgiveness. As stated by many in earlier posts, it is unlikely that the church will be overly sympathetic with future abusers...

21 January 2012 at 12:30  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Inspector said ...
"Regrettably, he (child abuser) has forfeited much of his right to forgiveness."

We can be sure Our Lord will judge those who sin against children and especially those in the Church. However, let us not forget forgiveness and mercy is never forfeited - not on the part of God - if there is true repentance for the harm committed and a firm purpose to amend one's ways.

Jesus waits on the sinner and is always ready to forgive. All we have to do is ask. This involves accepting what we did was wrong, asking God for forgiveness, seeking to put right the harm that has been done and avoiding all situations giving rise to future temptation.

For Catholics there is the wonderful sacrament of reconciliation where Christ meets and welcomes us and administers His forgiveness.

21 January 2012 at 13:05  
Blogger Ivan said...

The usual suspects will laugh - they will never acknowledge it, but there is now no safer place for young people to be than in the Catholic Church. The late Pope was slow to recognise the extent of the problem primarily because as an Eastern European he viewed it through the prism of his experience with Communists and Nazis. Homosexual blackmail was a standard tactic of all enemies of the Church.

21 January 2012 at 13:08  
Blogger David B said...

Sex education containing the an element concerning the merits of sexual abstinence would set an interesting precedent.

Can we look forward to religious education classes containing an element concerning the merits of religious abstinence?

Religion? Just say no!

David B

21 January 2012 at 16:10  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Religion? Just say no!

Until you are standing next to a young woman who just lost her first child to fetal wastage two days before he was to be born. A woman who had to give birth to a corpse. Then you might want to be able to say something besides "Bad luck. Those genes can be tricky. Well, it was just a random thing anyways."

Eat, drink, and be merry. Tomorrow we die, and there is no one to remember either us or what we did.

Her name is Gina, btw.

carl

21 January 2012 at 16:29  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

David B. Just been researching the human body, or at least one aspect of it. The circulatory system. Absolutely fascinating ! And you chaps reckon it all came about by chance, without a God given law of evolutionary development.

As the Americans would say. “Get out of here”

!

21 January 2012 at 17:29  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Inspector

DNA is the thing. Explain that, if you can!

And now Higgs-Bosun.

21 January 2012 at 17:44  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

David B said ...

"Can we look forward to religious education classes containing an element concerning the merits of religious abstinence?"

What an excellent idea. It only seems responsibile to inform children of the consequences of rejecting God's invitation. Don't you think?

21 January 2012 at 17:47  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Dodo. At his last old boys re-union, the Inspector met up with one chap who is an Astrophysicist at Durham. When asked about the existence of God, his reply was “we don’t need Him”.

Rather a good answer to have in a field that has more atheists in it than the medical profession, where an expression of belief could well cost you some derisive comments from your peers...

21 January 2012 at 17:58  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

In fact lot's of teacher even from my days at school a long time ago ridiculed the idea of religion and told plenty of kids to say no (to religion). Children have never been free from adults telling them what to think. However, the trend in society as we have become more secular is clearly much more violent and getting worse. When I was a kid mugging an old lady would have been national news and create a sense of shock that this could even happen in our nation..

21 January 2012 at 18:07  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Inspector

Albert Einstein is someone to reckon with.

"I'm not an atheist and I don't think I can call myself a pantheist. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. It does not understand the languages in which they are written. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the arrangements of the books, but doesn't know what it is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of even the most intelligent human being toward God."

Albert Einstein understood the universe with its amazing design demanded the existence of a creator God. He rejected Theism and belief in a personal God because he couldn't understand evil and suffering. He didn't consider the purpose of the universe or the Christian explanation of why evil exists in this world.

21 January 2012 at 18:28  
Blogger David B said...

@Inspector.

The circulatory system is indeed fascinating, but it displays a less than complete understanding of evolutionary theory to claim that it is just chance.

The idea that effective chance occurence tends to get preserved is the addition.

I have yet to be persuaded that a god of any sort of is required to make evolution happen - givemn self replicating molecules with variation it is simply inevitable.

@Dodo. Informing children of what has been claimed to be the consequence of disbelief in a wide variety of religions would not be a bad idea, I think.

Then they could look at the evidence for any one of them, and consider it better or worse than any other.

Or whether the evidence stands up at all.

David B

21 January 2012 at 18:48  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

But what an astute observation from this clever man Dodo. In marked contrast to the arrogance fashionable today in the scientific community. The Inspector understands he was a lapsed Jew.
It would be understandable then for him to dismiss any Christian notion regarding what’s it all here for. And of course, in his time, so much evil around.

21 January 2012 at 18:51  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

David B. To sum up the evolutionary law. ‘Mistakes’ occur in the reproducing of cells. If the mistake is a good idea, it’s taken on board because the organism will thrive. Bad idea, it’s not going to survive as the organism will eventually perish. Er one question here, what MAKES the mistakes happen in the first place, and again, only sparingly. Must be a law. And if it’s a law, there is some authority maintaining it.

Incidentally, the aforementioned ‘clever man’ was Einstein, not you. Sorry to disappoint, but you probably realised that. {AHEM}

21 January 2012 at 19:03  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

David B

Why not let children consider different religions? I've no problem with that.

Evidence? How narrow minded you are. I'm reminded of humourous story:

TEACHER: Tommy do you see the tree outside?
TOMMY: Yes.
TEACHER: Tommy, do you see the grass outside?
TOMMY: Yes.
TEACHER: Go outside and look up and see if you can see the sky.
TOMMY: Okay. (He returned a few minutes later) Yes, I saw the sky.
TEACHER: Did you see God?
TOMMY: No.
TEACHER: That's my point. We can't see God because he isn't there. He doesn't exist.

A little girl spoke up and wanted to ask the boy some questions. The teacher agreed and the little girl questioned the boy.

LITTLE GIRL: Tommy, do you see the tree outside?
TOMMY: Yes.
LITTLE GIRL: Tommy do you see the grass outside?
TOMMY: Yessssss.
LITTLE GIRL: Did you see the sky?
TOMMY: Yessssss.
LITTLE GIRL: Tommy, do you see the teacher?
TOMMY: Yes
LITTLE GIRL: Do you see the teacher's mind?
TOMMY: No.
LITTLE GIRL: Then according to what we were taught today in school, she must not have one!

A Creator God, if He exists, must, by definition, exist beyond the limits of the universe in order to have created it. The laws of physics tell us that we cannot make measurements beyond the limits of this universe. Therefore, scientists can conclusively determine that we cannot ever detect God using any of our instruments.

However, God is not restricted to our limitations and could choose to reveal part of Himself to us. God could reveal His nature by communicating with humans and sending an incarnated version of Himself. This is exactly what Christianity claims - that God gave messages through the prophets and sent an incarnation of Himself (His Son), who took on the form of a human in order to interact with humans directly.

21 January 2012 at 19:45  
Blogger uk Fred said...

NO-one so far seems to have considered two points: firstly the church, in all its denominations, has singularly failed to make public any teaching on sex whatsoever, and this failure has left a moral vacuum into which humanists and other atheists have set up camp to lead the young astray, and secondly there is a utilitarian argument in favour of abstinence, especially in the young and mid teens, in that there is an inverse correlation between the level of self-esteem in especially a girl and the number of his/her sexual partners. The only serious and easily available Christian teaching on sex in its moral context is in the Peasant Princess series of sermons by Mark Driscoll of Mars Hill Church in Seattle.

To those who wanted to muddy the waters with the story of the woman taken in adultery, I would ask but one question. If she was taken in the act of adultery, where was the man with whom she was committing adultery. He too must have been taken, or was he a friend who was let go free. This seems to have been a set up designed to get a woman out of the way by legally killing her and letting the man go free and as such was inherently unjust.

And finally, for those who want to have something a little more graphic about abortion, graphic it is not, but it is certainly moving. Watch and distribute the video on the website invisible infants called "My Little Room" Distrtibute it around your church, especially to the youth group leaders, youth pastors and the like. Some will claim it is upsetting, but it is meant to be.

21 January 2012 at 19:57  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

UK Fred, You are right. Christian leaders have lost all courage and do not stand up to be counted. We are in a war just now. We are on the receiving end and the benefits that have accrue through the teaching of the Price of Peace are being tossed away to our great detriment as a nation. We should be standing to face it rather than cowering. Instead we have clerics virtually promoting homosexuality. WE might expect a godless nation to do so but when it happens within Christendom we have to wonder if the times of tribulation is close. This ties in with the brutality that Christians in other parts of the world are being exposed to and is one of the signs Jesus mentioned.

21 January 2012 at 20:20  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

Sorry, it should read Prince of Peace.

21 January 2012 at 20:21  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

21 January 2012 at 21:33  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

uk Fred said ...
" ... the church, in all its denominations, has singularly failed to make public any teaching on sex whatsoever ..."

Now that just isn't accurate.

The Catholic Church is constantly berated over its clear and uncompromising teachings on sex. These teachings are very well known. It has stood against the various manifestations of the modern sexual revolution.

Humanea Vitae in 1968 was a brave encyclical from Pope Paul VI issued in a climate of expectation there would be changes in teaching. The Church has maintained an unequivocal position on premarital sex, contraception, masterbation, homosexuaity, divorce and abortion.

21 January 2012 at 21:38  
Blogger Mr Integrity said...

Inspector; For a minute there I thought you had said that Dodo was a clever man. Definately full of knowledge, but clever?
Einstein? A clever man would have seen God in creation and responded to it.

21 January 2012 at 22:33  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Indeed Mr Integrity. If mankind was given irrefutable proof of the existence of God, let’s say Tingey walking around with a permanent halo, the clever men would say “Of course, it all fits into place. Always suspected a divine being, don’t you know {AHEM}”

21 January 2012 at 22:53  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Mr Integrity

The Inspector is on record as saying: " ... what an astute observation from this clever man Dodo".

By the way, Einstein did see God in creation. He just didn't accept the Christian understanding of suffering and evil having been raised a Jew. Judaism does not accept 'evil' as an external force in the universe. It was this Einstein struggled to understand and led him to reject the idea of a personal God.

21 January 2012 at 23:36  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Dodo. The Inspector will be paying particular attention to commas in the future. Of that you can be sure...

21 January 2012 at 23:44  
Blogger Mr Integrity said...

So Dodo; If the Inspector said it, it must be true. What was this statement then 'Incidentally, the aforementioned ‘clever man’ was Einstein, not you'?

21 January 2012 at 23:47  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Inspector, I'm deeply wounded.

Integrity, I've no idea what you're referring to. Must have missed something.

21 January 2012 at 23:57  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Dodo. You are playing the hound, sir.

Mr Integrity. Twas a comment for David B

22 January 2012 at 00:06  
Blogger Flossie said...

This is in today's Mailonline:

Prescott in bawdy war of words with female MP in row over teenage sex bill

Tory MP Nadine Dorries was embroiled in a bawdy war of words with John Prescott yesterday over her campaign for teenagers to have compulsory ‘sex abstinence’ lessons.

Ms Dorries spoke out after being accused of abandoning her call for a new law to ensure schoolchildren aged 13 to 16 understand the importance of abstaining from sex.
The mix-up occurred last Friday when she told parliamentary officials to save taxpayers’ money by not printing copies of her proposed legislation, because there would be insufficient time to debate it.

Responding to suggestions that she had withdrawn her plans, former Deputy Prime Minister Mr Prescott appeared to poke fun at Ms Dorries in a vulgar manner by tweeting: ‘Did she pull it out at the last minute?’

Liverpool-born Ms Dorries tweeted back in kind, using Scouse slang to put the record straight, saying: ‘My Bill has not “jumped off at Edge Hill.” ’

The last station before Liverpool’s main Lime Street station, Edge Hill is also local slang for not ‘going all the way’.
Under her proposals, teenage girls and boys would have extra sex education lessons, including advice on the benefits of abstinence.

Ms Dorries said the Guardian newspaper had wrongly reported that her Bill had been scrapped on Friday.

‘I knew there was more chance of a meteor hitting the Houses of Parliament than my Bill being discussed because of other business ahead of it, and so it proved.

‘So I asked Commons officials not to bother printing the Bill as that costs £800. But I’m still determined to see this become law.’
It is not the first time the Tory MP has been the victim of sexual innuendo.

Last year, David Cameron had to apologise after describing her in the Commons as being ‘extremely frustrated’ after she complained about Lib Dem influence in the Coalition.

22 January 2012 at 09:27  
Blogger David B said...

@ Inspector, who said

'To sum up the evolutionary law. ‘Mistakes’ occur in the reproducing of cells. If the mistake is a good idea, it’s taken on board because the organism will thrive. Bad idea, it’s not going to survive as the organism will eventually perish.'

That organisms perish is a fact of life, but if the 'mistake' is heritable, and if the 'mistake' tends to enable the organism to survive and reproduce better than its fellows, then the expression of the genes will survive and prosper,

' Er one question here, what MAKES the mistakes happen in the first place, and again, only sparingly.'

Happenstance.

' Must be a law. And if it’s a law, there is some authority maintaining it.'

Do you seriously think that there is an authority which maintains, say, Ohm's Law? To ascribe attributes of civil laws to scientific laws seems like a category error to me.

Seriously, if you want to criticise evolution, it would help if you first understood it. Dennett's 'Darwin's Dangerous Idea' would give an overview.

David B

22 January 2012 at 10:02  
Blogger G. Tingey said...

ERM "Getting off at Edge Hill maens last-minute withdrawal, with sperm going somewhere else.
If you looked at the tunnel entrances at Edge Hill, you'd understsnd!

22 January 2012 at 10:03  
Blogger len said...

Breaking news ......the House of Parliament is sinking into the primordial slime.... perhaps this blog is going the same way?.

22 January 2012 at 10:16  
Blogger David B said...

@Dodo, who said, leaving the bit of Chick Tract type rhetoric aside

'However, God is not restricted to our limitations and could choose to reveal part of Himself to us. God could reveal His nature by communicating with humans and sending an incarnated version of Himself. This is exactly what Christianity claims - that God gave messages through the prophets and sent an incarnation of Himself (His Son), who took on the form of a human in order to interact with humans directly'

It is quite difficult to pin down what Christianity claims - some say the Bible is inerrant, others treat it as wholly or in part allegorical etc.

However, taking for the moment that Christianity does claim what you say, which I suppose it generally does, how are we to differentiate this claim from those that the final prophet was Mohammed, or Joseph Smith, leave alone the teaches of the many claimed avatars of various Gods (Gods in human form) of Hinduism, and all the other similar claims.

One might consider that were there a Creator God who wished to communicate with a small part of his creation, then he might have been wiser to not attempt it through a work containing scientifically false claims, atrocities supposedly committed in his name, false prophesies, internal contradictions, the stupidity and inhumanity of Leviticus, the insanity of Revelation...

David B

22 January 2012 at 10:30  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

David B. The Inspector does indeed believe there is a divine authority maintaining Ohms law. He also believes similar makes all particles of light travel at 186,000 miles a second and not variate.

He’s hardly criticising evolutionary theory, merely admiring it....

22 January 2012 at 15:24  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

David B
Your dismissal of Christianity aside and the 'problems' with the Bible, have you accepted my premise?

"A Creator God, if He exists, must, by definition, exists beyond the limits of the universe in order to have created it. The laws of physics tell us that we cannot make measurements beyond the limits of this universe. Therefore, scientists can conclusively determine that we cannot ever detect God using any of our instruments."

The Judaic and Christian Bible and the 'flaws' you accuse it of are of a different nature to the existance or non-existance of God.

Science cannot measure whether God exists. Agreed?

We are then left with the question that if God, if He exists, has a purpose for His creation and whether He has revealed Himself to mankind.

A genius such as Einstein concluded:

"I'm not an atheist and I don't think I can call myself a pantheist. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. It does not understand the languages in which they are written. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the arrangements of the books, but doesn't know what it is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of even the most intelligent human being toward God."

You can find your path to God via faith or reason; alternatively through faith and reason.

22 January 2012 at 15:44  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Dodo. If God sent an incarnation of himself into the universe then he did not exist beyond the limits of the universe, nor was he immune to scientific measurement. Shame there weren't many scientists about then. Perhaps it was deliberate?

22 January 2012 at 15:56  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Tongue, no - He chose to become man and enter His creation as part of it. If a scientist had 'measured' Him he would have been measuring a physical being as His Divinity, being part of the Godhead, would have been unmeasurable.

22 January 2012 at 16:28  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Codswallop.

22 January 2012 at 16:55  
Blogger David B said...

I agree with LTiA.

I'd note that Einstein was not aware of the mdoern developments in cosmology.

I wounder if you could give the source of the Einstein quote. I'm aware of another, which I can seek out, in which he very exlicitly denies the existence of any sort of personal God - that is to say a God as the term is generally understood.

David B

22 January 2012 at 17:10  
Blogger len said...

God has' proved Himself' to mankind.
He healed the sick ,raised the dead , fulfilled every prophesy regarding Himself.......and how did we repay Him?.

22 January 2012 at 18:10  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

David B

It is genune, I can assure you.
G. S. Viereck, "Glimpses of the Great" (Macauley, New York, 1930), quoted by D. Brian, Einstein: A Life , p. 186.

Yes, he denied belief in a personal deity because, as I've said, he couldn't fathom evil and suffering.

Here's some more from Einstein:

"In view of such harmony in the cosmos which I, with my limited human mind, am able to recognize, there are yet people who say there is no God. But what really makes me angry is that they quote me for the support of such views."

Modern cosmologists? Like Strephen Hawkins?

His theories about the nature of the universe are astonishing and beyond scientific proof. They require that membranes from M-theory, if they exist at all, must be way well below subatomic particle sizes. In order to confirm such objects, one would need an accelerator of 6,000,000,000,000,000 miles in circumference. It would seem likely, therefore, that confirmation of M-theory is impossible.

Do such theories that predict everything and anything and are not testable through observational data really fall within the realm of science?

Stephen Hawking says that the laws of physics guarantee that the universe can be created from nothing. The question he never answers is why do those laws of physics exist? Although it is possible for things such as particles to pop into existence from "nothing," it has never been shown that non-quantum-sized objects can perform such feats. Even if it were possible, why would it be expected that laws of physics that allow such events to occur would actually exist? Wouldn't a true nothing consist of no laws of physics and no possibility of anything popping into existence?

So, Stephen Hawking wants us to believe that a nebulous set of theories, which cannot be confirmed through observational data, absolutely establishes that an infinite number of diverse universes exist, having been created from laws of physics that just happen to allow this!

Is it not more likely that a super-intelligent, powerful Being invented the laws of physics that produced the universe?

22 January 2012 at 18:32  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Dodo - how do you measure the likelihood of that? It seems supremely unlikely to me. You want to have your cake and eat it.

22 January 2012 at 19:31  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Tongue said ...
"You want to have your cake and eat it."

How's that then?

I'm simply pointing out that science cannot be used as 'proof' that God does or does not exist.

Given the wonder of the Universe and the 'laws' science is uncovering, it seems to me more likely than not, as Einstein concluded, that a Creator Deity exists. However, belief in a particular God and in a personal God, as revealed in sacred texts, requires reason and/or faith and is beyond the scope of science.

22 January 2012 at 19:53  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

You want us to believe there is a loving God who permits evil. You want us to believe there is a God who stands outside the universe but pops in once in a while. You want us to believe in a perfect being that "tampers with space and time" to make it look as if the universe is much older than it is, apparently just in order to fool scientists. You appear to believe in the great deceiver.

22 January 2012 at 20:03  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Worship the great deceiver that is.

22 January 2012 at 20:27  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

Larks Tongue, We believe in a God who didn't stand outside of the Universe but atoned for your sins and mine.

22 January 2012 at 20:35  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

Larks Tongue, In what way would the Universe appear appear older than it is? It's the old convenient argument - blame someone for something that didn't happen but don't reveal the hoax. You can fool a lot of people that way but you end up fooling yourself.

22 January 2012 at 20:40  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Iongue

NO!

I don't believe in a God who stands outside the universe and pops in once in a while! I believe in a God who takes a personal interest in each one of the people He has created and who has revealed Himself to us through His Incarnation and personal sacrifice.

God permits evil and suffering because the universe is not perfect. It precedes a perfection that is to come. Man's time here is about excercisng free will and accepting God. Pain and suffering is the price we pay for having chosen freedom to live according to our ways and not God's.

22 January 2012 at 20:44  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Shacklefree. I'm afraid your meaning eludes me entirely.

Dodo. I welcome your account of how mans exercising free will causes earthquakes and Lassa fever, for example.

22 January 2012 at 21:39  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Let's look at "natural evil" that causes suffering and pain. Where do the following comefrom?

•Collisions in the universe
•Earthquakes
•Volcanic eruptions
•Landslides
•Floods
•Hurricanes
•Tornadoes
•Lightening strikes
•Fires
•Painful death from an incurable terminal disease
•Infectious disease
•Animal pain

The physical processes that cause this natural "evil" are the very same ones required for the proper functioning of the universe and for the existence of sentient life.

There are four fundamental forces of physics that operate in our universe:

Strong nuclear force (keeps protons within atomic nuclei from flying away)
Weak nuclear force (responsible for phenomena within the atomic nucleus, such as radioactive decay)
Gravity (attraction between masses)
Electromagnetic force (which governs interactions of charged particles)

How would the universe operate without these "laws"? The universe must operate through reliable physical laws, since it would be impossible for sentient creatures to make sense of a universe in which the physical laws were randomly applied. And, Christians believe God wants us to understand His universe. Such a creation must allow for:

The existence of sentient creatures.
These sentient creatures must have the ability to make moral choices.
The universe must operate by physical laws that are reliable, so that the sentient creatures will be able to interact reliably with their surroundings and each other.
The universe must declare the power and glory of God

God could just wave His hand and prevent all individual examples of natural evil that might impact on humans or animals. God is omnipotent and omniscient. Every time something bad was about to happen, God could personally intervene and stop it. If God were to break the laws of physics routinely, science would not exist, since it would be impossible to determine how the laws of physics operated. In essence, there would be no reliable laws of physics to measure, since God's interference would make measurement unreliable.
We have examined every example (that we have found) of "natural evil" proposed by atheists and found no instance in which this evil could be prevented without causing a greater evil - preventing the stated purpose for the existence of the universe.

The laws of physics require the existence of all natural evils. God could have chosen different laws of physics. It is unclear how the laws of physics could be substantially different from what they are and yet still produce a universe in which sentient creatures would be allowed to make moral choices.

The "natural evil" you describe actually represents the design of an intelligent Creator. Arguments claiming that God could eliminate most or all natural evil are simplistic and show a lack of basic understanding of how the physics of the universe operates. Natural "evil" is required for the existence of sentient creatures or to provide evidence for God's existence. The universe we live in is perfectly designed as a place to choose between good and evil. However, such choices would not be possible in a physically-perfect universe in which natural evil did not exist.

This is why the God created a two universe design - the first a temporal, material universe dominated by choice, and the second, non-temporal, non-material universe designed to optimize interpersonal relationships between believers and God.

If you understand the principles of what I'm saying, then the existance of infectious diseases, bacteria and viruses become understandable as part of evolution. So do natural disasters as part of the development of the planet.

It seems to me it is you who wants it both ways! When man was ejected from Eden he became subject to the natural order of things until this world passes away.

22 January 2012 at 22:39  
Blogger len said...

Dodo, Wicki working again?

22 January 2012 at 22:59  
Blogger David B said...

Dodo, you would do well to read and consider the whole of the wiki entry on Einstein's religious views.

Please don't cherry oick them for small items that can, with a bit of imagination, be made to vaguely fit into your theology. Taken as a whole, they don't.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albert_Einstein%27s_religious_views

David B

22 January 2012 at 23:51  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

David B

I do know Einstein's opinions and none of them fit with my theology - quite the opposite with him being a deist and an agnostic. The point is he wasn't an atheist.

"God is a mystery. But a comprehensible mystery. I have nothing but awe when I observe the laws of nature. There are not laws without a lawgiver, but how does this lawgiver look? Certainly not like a man magnified."

Sure he despised Catholicism as he had no real understanding of it or Christian theology generally. If fact, for a genius, he had rather childish opinions on it.

By the way, I see that the quote I gave earlier that you questioned is in the Wiki article too.

Something not covered in the article is an interview by the Saturday Evening Post in 1929, Einstein was asked what he thought of Christianity:

"To what extent are you influenced by Christianity?"
"As a child I received instruction both in the Bible and in the Talmud. I am a Jew, but I am enthralled by the luminous figure of the Nazarene."
"Have you read Emil Ludwig’s book on Jesus?"
"Emil Ludwig’s Jesus is shallow. Jesus is too colossal for the pen of phrasemongers, however artful. No man can dispose of Christianity with a bon mot!"
"You accept the historical existence of Jesus?"
"Unquestionably! No one can read the Gospels without feeling the actual presence of Jesus. His personality pulsates in every word. No myth is filled with such life."


Being human Einstein, like us all, was influenced by the times he lived in.

23 January 2012 at 00:27  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Dodo. Oh dear. More twisted logic as you try to hold to two mutually contradictory world views. More on this later.

23 January 2012 at 07:10  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Dodo:

"The existence of sentient creatures.
These sentient creatures must have the ability to make moral choices.
The universe must operate by physical laws that are reliable, so that the sentient creatures will be able to interact reliably with their surroundings and each other.
The universe must declare the power and glory of God!"

This is perhaps the most bizarre definition of the universe that I've come across..

"If God were to break the laws of physics routinely, science would not exist, since it would be impossible to determine how the laws of physics operated. In essence, there would be no reliable laws of physics to measure, since God's interference would make measurement unreliable. "

But you DO believe in a God that intervenes in the universe - you've already said so. What you seem to be saying is that the above applies only when God intervenes "a lot" rather than "just a bit". That's pretty feeble.


"We have examined every example (that we have found) of "natural evil" proposed by atheists and found no instance in which this evil could be prevented without causing a greater evil - preventing the stated purpose for the existence of the universe. "


Who is this mysterious "we"? you know if you're going to copy and paste you ought to say where you're doing it from, old chap. That really isn't cricket at all.

I knew someone who died of breast cancer. Before she died, the cancer fractured her spine. I can't begin to imagine the agony she must have been in - but according to you it prevented a greater evil. What greater evil did it prevent? I'm all ears. Similarly it's hard to see how many of the natural evils you mention prevent greater evils. Why not enlighten us all with a few actual examples of these "greater evils"?


"The "natural evil" you describe actually represents the design of an intelligent Creator. Arguments claiming that God could eliminate most or all natural evil are simplistic and show a lack of basic understanding of how the physics of the universe operates. "

No one is arguing about how the universe operates, Dodo. The argument is whether the existence of the God of Christianity is compatible with the universe as we see it. You've managed to mix two arguments together in that sentence.

"Natural "evil" is required for the existence of sentient creatures or to provide evidence for God's existence."

Evil is evidence of God's existence?

"The universe we live in is perfectly designed as a place to choose between good and evil. However, such choices would not be possible in a physically-perfect universe in which natural evil did not exist. "

So you've forgotten about moral evil then? God could arguably eliminate natural evil, and retain moral evil, free will, and choice. I fail to see how the existence of, say Lassa fever is a neccessity.

"If you understand the principles of what I'm saying, then the existance of infectious diseases, bacteria and viruses become understandable as part of evolution. So do natural disasters as part of the development of the planet. "

No one is arguing that diseases aren't understandable as part of evolution. Again you are mixing arguments up.

"It seems to me it is you who wants it both ways! When man was ejected from Eden he became subject to the natural order of things until this world passes away."

There you having things both ways almost in one sentence. Suddenly we've dived from science revealing God's amazing design (despite some very obvious design flaws) and evolution, into the literal garden of eden! you're quite happy to talk about science on the one hand, but what about where it contradicts the bible?

23 January 2012 at 10:01  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Tongues

So angry with the universe!

I've tried to outline a complex position in a few short paragraphs. Essentially I'm saying "moral evil", that which committed by man, is different to "natural evil", the suffering that results from natural processes connected with the laws of physics, evolution and the development of the universe and our own planet.

The Bible is clear that man was rejected from a situation where all his needs would be met and where the physical world would be a source of joy. He was rejected because he chose to disobey God and in so doing took upon himself responsibility for both the physical order to be disrupteed and the moral order. Both have resulted in pain and suffering.

God can intervene in the moral and physical order and has done so. Who knows why he chooses some situations and not others?

23 January 2012 at 14:34  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

I always find it surprising that those who reject God most vehemently are filled with hate for him. How can you hate something that doesn't exist and how can you hate it so much?

23 January 2012 at 15:36  
Blogger David B said...

@Shacklefree

God might not exist, but religion does, and some of us, like me, while acknowledging that it might not be without its mitigating features, it is not a net good in the world. Nor, in my opinion, is religion in general true, and I value truth.

I suppose that the Salvation Army is one of the best respected religious organisations in Britain, but the accounts I've read of someone being brought up within that cultic milieu, and the family problems that arose when he escaped were somewhat heart rending.

I could wax lyrical about evils associated with religions of various sorts, but that will do for now, except that to note that websites that are support agencies for people leaving all sorts of religions are full of harrowing stories.

Religious privilege is so strong, though, that I gather that just about any religious irganisation can get the tax breaks associated with charitable status, while the Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain is not given charitable status.

It's just wrong.

David B

23 January 2012 at 15:49  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

I'm not angry with the universe. That would be stupid. Glib, illogical twaddle just annoys me. Especially religiously motivated glib illogical twaddle.

No examples of the greater evils that are avoided by allowing deadly diseases then? You're so sure about it that you can't think of one example?

Shacklefree - its so obviously true that you can't hate something that doesn't exist that you might have paused to wonder about whether I actually do or not.

23 January 2012 at 16:24  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Tongue
Are you being wilfully obtuse?

The greater evil is that man wouldn't be required to exercise free will in an uncertain moral and physical universe or have the opportunity of recognising God's awesome power in the unfolding of the social and natural universe through the laws He has established. Neither would there be a need to seek Him, turn to or depend on Him.

It's not a question of "allowing" diseases or moral evil, more recognising that these are a part of social and phusical evolution that man as an intelligent being comes to understand. God could remove the immorality and disease but then would freewill and the laws He set in play would be made redundant.

23 January 2012 at 17:58  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Dodo. That's cods. How would man's free will be altered by, say, the absence of cancer?

23 January 2012 at 20:49  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Tongues
What mechanism causes cancer?

23 January 2012 at 21:18  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Answer my question before you ask one.

23 January 2012 at 21:20  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Tongues

I have answered your question you just don't want to accept the answer.

What mechanism causes cancer? Does it come from nature?

23 January 2012 at 21:56  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

You haven't answered the question.

24 January 2012 at 06:16  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Dodo you have given several different accounts of the purpose of the universe and the nature of evil. You say the universe is perfectly designed as a place where men can decide between good and evil but then you say evil only entered the world because man made a boo-boo and that originally it was perfect as it was. As I said, you want it both ways.

24 January 2012 at 07:47  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

I feel sorry for the innocent non-human animals in all this 'design'. They feel pleasure and pain, mammals anyway, and the universe in this paradigm means that they suffer by 'design'. What a compassionate designer that must be!

24 January 2012 at 13:04  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Even for the human animals it's a bit rubbish.

24 January 2012 at 13:39  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Tongues

That's not what I've said at all. The universe is as it is - based on physical laws that man is capable of discerning. Inherent in it is growth, movement and change. As a part of this development trauma takes place at a plantary level, such as platonic shifts, or at a human level, in terms of bacteria, viruses and mutuations.

I'm not a 'creationist' and don't believe the universe was simply constructed over 7 days.

Man can and does perceive and understand the world within which he lives and, to me, it speaks of a creator because there are laws. It also results in him working to overcome the consequences and of its development that results in physical pain and suffering. Isn't that what the scientific endeavour is driven by?

According to Genesis, originally man was in a paradise and sheilded from such natural harm. We had only to accept God was in control. We were given free will and decided to ignore God and so death entered the world and we were exiled from paradise.

Where's the contradiction in this?

DanJ0

You're really missing the point.
The argument that if God existed that He would not design a world that contains "natural evil" doesn't stand up.

Killer hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, tsunamis, disease and illness do not represent the workings of an indifferent, indiscriminately cruel God. What atheists you're failing to see is that all the "bad" things of this world are required for life to exist at all.

As for animals, the nature of the animal kingdom is troubling to people. We human are at the top of the food chain and enjoy eating other animals. Do you have a problem with that?

In the wild, carnivores attack and kill herbivores, inflicting at pain in the process. Ecological systems are delicately balanced so that both herbivores and carnivores can live and reproduce in balance. Without carnivores, herbivores would reproduce until they ate all their food sources, causing massive starvation. Having populations suffer periods of catastrophic starvation doesn't seem to be a better way to run an ecosystem. Starvation is much more painful and cruel than being eaten by a carnivore.

24 January 2012 at 18:16  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Dodo: "Do you have a problem with that?"

Yes. For a compassionate designer, it's an inherently evil design. One might conclude from this that the designer is not actually compassionate. Or, of course, that it wasn't designed at all.

24 January 2012 at 18:43  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

The contradictions are chasing each other off His Grace's site and back again. You say the universe was originally designed perfect and evil entered the world only after "the fall " AND that the universe is deliberately designed to contain evil, which is evidence of Gods greatness.

And bringing "the fall" into it at all is falling back on biblical literalism.

AND furthermore the fall is flatly contradicted by the evidence in Gods creation. Death proceeded the existence of humans by millions of years.

24 January 2012 at 19:40  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Tongues
I give up! One last try and then that's it.

The Garden of Eden was not influenced by the shifts and changes of the universe we now experience. Get it? Was it sheltered in some way from the universe created by intelligent design? I don't know.

After exercising free will, Adam and Eve were evicted from Eden and the exposed to the forces of the current universe. Clearly there was a place outside of Eden. Death entered their world and they had to toil and struggle for survival. Pain entered their world too. Do read Genesis.

I don't have any problem accepting this or accepting that Adam and Eve were real people. And why should the fact of death before Adam and Eve contradict this?

DanJ0
You clearly haven't read what I posted earlier. So, either do so and respond with a sensible point or stop spouting off.

24 January 2012 at 20:34  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Dodo the ace goal post shifter. Note that now "the world" has become theirworld and the contradiction neatly sidestepped. I'm not fooled.

24 January 2012 at 21:23  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Tongue

I did say:
"After exercising free will, Adam and Eve were evicted from Eden and the exposed to the forces of the current universe."

So replace "their" with "the" world. What difference does it make? They left Paradise and entered the world. What was outside of Eden?

24 January 2012 at 22:30  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Dodo: "You clearly haven't read what I posted earlier. So, either do so and respond with a sensible point or stop spouting off."

I think you're wibbling all over the place on this.

"What atheists you're failing to see is that all the "bad" things of this world are required for life to exist at all."

Why? This is an omnipotent, omniscient being. The whole of creation was designed and is being sustained moment by moment by it according to you guys. It's a crap, vicious design by the look of it. What did all these trillions of animals do to deserve all the pain and suffering which is an inevitable consequence of the 'design' you imagine exists?

25 January 2012 at 06:12  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Well Dodo I've taken your advice and read Genesis. I can't see anything there about the Garden of Eden being in some kind of separate bubble cut off from the rest of the universe. I reckon you're making it up as you go along.

But that's really beside the point: according to you (and other theistic philosophers) there is a "loving God" who has deliberately designed the world so that it contains pain and suffering which allows people to make moral choices, show courage and strength etc. This is actually a vision of God, the torturer. And as such I reject it.

25 January 2012 at 08:59  
Blogger Oswin said...

L.T.A @ 08:59:

Ah but, yes but, but what but, if God is 'God' according to His own terms alone; whatever they may be?

Would you reject a 'Creator' because you disagreed with His policies?

If it helps; think in terms of a possible episode of Star Trek. I'd be interested in your answer. Ta.

25 January 2012 at 13:23  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Oswin - will happily give you answer if there's a little more clarity regarding the actual question.

25 January 2012 at 18:02  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Tongues

In other words: It's not fair Daddy.

25 January 2012 at 21:37  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Tongues

You clearly have not read Genesis!
Here's some passages to think about.

"And the Lord God took man, and put him into the paradise of pleasure, to dress it, and to keep it. And he commanded him, saying: Of every tree of paradise you shall eat: But of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, you shall not eat. For in what day soever you shall eat of it, you shall die the death."

Then the Fall ....

"To the woman also he said: I will multiply your sorrows, and your conceptions: in sorrow shall you bring forth children, and you shall be under your husband's power, and he shall have dominion over you.

And to Adam he said: Because you have hearkened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded you, that you should not eat, cursed is the earth in your work: with labour and toil shall you eat thereof all the days of your life. Thorns and thistles shall it bring forth to you, and you shall eat the herbs of the earth. In the sweat of your face shall you eat bread till you return to the earth out of which you were taken: for dust you are, and into dust you shall return."


"And the Lord God sent him out of the paradise of pleasure, to till the earth from which he was taken. And he cast out Adam: and placed before the paradise of pleasure Cherubims, and a flaming sword, turning every way, to keep the way of the tree of life."

25 January 2012 at 21:46  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Dodo 1: that's just an infantile response, again dodging the issue.
Dodo 2: your point is?

25 January 2012 at 21:59  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Tongues
On the contrary, it is the line you and DanJ0 appear to be taking. You reject the idea of God because you think He acts badly without trying to understand His ways. As I said It's not fair Daddy.

The point is God did eject Adam and Eve from Paradise, which was in some way sheilded from the 'outside world'. A point you couldn't find in Genesis. It is also clear that pain, suffering, death, toil and labour followed the decision of Adam.

25 January 2012 at 22:17  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

It is a serious point which you are trivializing and characteristically failing to address.

I don't see the point about Eden being shielded in any of that

25 January 2012 at 22:53  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Tongues

Adam was cast out of Eden, the paradise of pleasure, and God warned him what lay ahead - pain and suffering.

I'm not trivializing your point at all. You don't accept God exists because you don't like the universe He has created. You see it as cruel. A good God would make it all kind and cosy.

As I've said, that's not what Christians see the world as being about. Our time here is a pilgrimage. A place where we have to make a free choice for God. A place where we are tested.

It's a universe subject to moral and physical laws. The former we can choose to comply with or ignore. The latter we have to understand and accept.

26 January 2012 at 00:11  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

You sum up my views in a very silly way. No one has said they hate the universe. It is an incredible place. The point I am trying to make, and which you seem to agree with, is that it includes bad as well as good. Some of the bad is so bad - diseases, natural disasters, that they appear to be at odds with the CHRISTIAN conception of a loving God. Your argument is that God allows evil in order to allow moral choices etc. At least for those who don't die as a result of the evil without getting that chance. Children who die very young, for example.

You do appear to be stretching what you read in Genesis. It certainly isn't explicitly stated and it's hard to see where it is even implied that Eden was seperate from the rest of the universe.

26 January 2012 at 07:04  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Dodo: "You reject the idea of God because you think He acts badly without trying to understand His ways. As I said It's not fair Daddy."

I reject the idea of your god for a number of reasons: 1. there doesn't appear to be any compelling evidence for a god which is particularly interested in humans, 2. the concept looks obviously manmade to me, 3. the god presented in the bible does not exhibit the sort of morality that I would expect, 4. the multi-faceted nature of god, including the sacrificed incarnation, seems absurd to me, 5. there doesn't seem to be any evidence at all for the Holy Spirit given the collective behaviour of Christians, 6. the lack of consistency between Christians and the schisms that exist between groups suggests a lack of spiritual direction, [...] I could go on and on, I think. What Larks is arguing about is the age-old problem of evil; a problem much greater minds than yours have struggled with. You can google various answers in your normal Google Savant way but the answers aren't particularly compelling for many people. At best, we're left in the position of Job who was reminded that he wasn't there when the foundations of the world were laid. That's not enough for many of us.

26 January 2012 at 07:39  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

DanJ0
Such arrogance! Well you just carry on as you are then. No one is denying you the right to reject God or His Son.

Tongues
I agree it is hard to fathom it all out. Why should an innocent child suffer and die? Why should natural disasters occur causing untold misery and death? Why are some people so evidently evil? Why doesn't a loving God stop all this?

However, Christians do believe God is loving and that this life is not the be all and end all of existance - that our real purpose and destination is a place of eternal joy.

Personally, I'm confident that one day it will all make sense. My religious teacher used to say life is like looking at the back of a tapestry with cotton ends and colours not having an obvious pattern. Turn the canvass over and it does and the picture becomes clear and obvious.

Some choose to call faith a delusion. I can't prove the existance of the Christian God, yet I know He exists. It makes rational sense to me too and I can see no contraction between religion, faith and science.

26 January 2012 at 16:17  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Just an observation chaps. Genesis is an analogy of what happened, probably close to the truth, with ‘the tree of knowledge’ being evolutionary brain development and the state of self awareness. Current scientific thinking is that there was indeed an Eve, but also several Adams none of whom lived at the same time as Eve (…If you can get your head round that, do let on how it’s done…).

As for this being an imperfect world with infant mortality and natural disasters, as Dodo implies, that’s the package we were given to work with. Make what we can of it is God’s advice. I think that’s fair enough, though you don’t. But consider this, you can’t have good without knowing bad. In the same way that culture and civilisation can be deemed as good, it’s destruction and indeed what appears to be the rape of this planet’s resources must therefore be bad. Perhaps that’s the answer to the ultimate question – WHY ? To know good from bad.

26 January 2012 at 18:46  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Dodo: "Such arrogance! Well you just carry on as you are then. No one is denying you the right to reject God [...]"

I bet Muslims would say the same about you, and you would snort and say "Arrogance? Hardly. I can just see it the way it is."

26 January 2012 at 19:11  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

DanJo said ...

"I could go on and on ...

Yes, no doubt you could.

26 January 2012 at 19:27  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

Inspector
Just so you know, a certain homosexual atheist is questioning your sexual continence on your the thread: "Chris Bryant on the ‘silliness’ of the Roman Catholic Church".

26 January 2012 at 19:46  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Dodo, do let me know if I need to look there again. I didn't tick the box, you see. Thanks. Btw, you'd make someone a lovely secretary if you ever decide to park your trolley up for good.

26 January 2012 at 20:57  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Dodo, well there's nothing wrong with hope I guess. We'll have to agree to differ: it makes no sense to me. It did once, but no longer.

Inspector - I don't have a problem with theological ideas / Bible stories as metaphors, in fact I think they make much sense from that perspective. I do have problems when they get introduced into discussions as if they were literal facts though.

26 January 2012 at 21:50  
Blogger Dodo the Renatus Dude said...

DanJo
I know where I'd like to park my trolley for good!

Tongues
Most of us have been there; times when none of it makes sense. I also expect I'll experience doubt again. Unlike some, my faith varies and is at times weaker than at other times. It is something that has to be nurtured, like ny relationship.

By the way, I don't take all of the Bible literally. It's a complex book full of allegory and symbolism, written by men constrained by their human condition notwithstanding it being inspired. It is neither a science manual nor a historical narrative. It's a series of theological writings that are communicating a message.

I've enjoyed discussing this with you, so thank you. You'll have gathered too I'm still working these things out for myself.

26 January 2012 at 22:27  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Thanks Dodo. I've enjoyed it too.

26 January 2012 at 22:44  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Noted Larks. The Inspector could have phrased it better...

26 January 2012 at 23:30  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

.

27 January 2012 at 14:04  
Blogger Larks Tongues in Aspic said...

Danj0 - profound!

27 January 2012 at 14:09  
Blogger len said...

Dodo, I think I have discovered your problem.Well one of them at least!.

Fact.The Bible is either the Word of God...or it isn`t.

You have obviously decided that you can 'cherry pick' what you like and leave the rest.And even add bits on(if you feel like it)and call them your traditions.I suppose you could call almost anything your traditions(if you did them long enough?)

If your 'rock' is 'the Church' well I suppose it can change with every generation and every changing interpretation of its purpose and function.

But if your foundation is Christ the 'rock' from scripture, the true foundation then it will not change because....................' .'Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.(Hebrews 13:8)
The Lord is my ROCK, and my fortress, and my deliverer. My God, is the ROCK of refuge. Psalm 18:2, 94:22.

God was their ROCK, and the high God their redeemer. Psalm 78:35.

Unto Thee will I cry, O LORD, MY ROCK; Psalm 28:1.

Bow down Thy thine ear to me; deliver me speedily: be Thou my strong ROCK, FOR A HOUSE of defense to SAVE me. for Thou art my ROCK and my FORTRESS; therefore for Thy name's sake lead me, and guide me. Psalm 31:2,3).

I will say unto God my ROCK, why hast Thou forgotten me? Psalm 41:l0.

Lead me to the ROCK that is higher than I Psalms 61:2

He Only is my ROCK and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be moved. In GOD is my salvation and my glory: THE ROCK of my strength, and my refuge, is in God. Trust in him at all times, ye people, Pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us. Selah Psalm 62:6-8

To shew that the Lord is upright: He is my ROCK, and there is no unrighteousness in Him. Psalm92:15.

but the Lord is my defense; and MY GOD IS THE ROCK of my refuge. Psalm 94:22.

O Come, let us sing unto THE LORD; let us make a joyful noise to THE ROCK of our salvation. Psalm 95:1.

The stone which the builders refused is become the head of the corner. This is the Lord's doing; it is marvellous in our eyes. Psalm 118:22, 23.

Therefore thus saith the Lord God: Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste. Isaiah 28:16.

Because I will publish the name of the LORD: ascribe ye greatness unto OUR GOD! He is THE ROCK, His work is perfect: for all his ways are judgement: Deuteronomy 32:3,4.

Then he forsook God which made him, and lightly esteemed THE ROCK of his salvation. Deuteronomy 32:15, 18).

So what is YOUR foundation Stone?.

29 January 2012 at 13:15  
Blogger Dodo the "Poly-Nominal" Dude said...

len

You're problem is ...............................................................

Pandom scriptural quotes are rather pointless!

You really cannot understand that the Church has to teach the message of the Gospel as it is relevant to the times in which we live. The Word of God never changes. How it is applied does.

One example is 'in vitro fertilisation' and all the associated practices. Tell me where in the Bible this is addressed? Yet it presents moral issues the answers to which need to drawn from from the Bible. Another is weapons of mass destruction.

Are you beginning to get it?

29 January 2012 at 23:57  

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