Party "A" and Party "B"

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by EricBess, Sep 11, 2008.

  1. BigBlue Magic Jones

    This is the semantics thing EB is talking about Oversoul...

    Evolution doesn't have a "goal" other than adaptation.

    But, without procreation, evolution fails... And... not unjustly, so does creation... regardless of how it came to be, if species were unwilling, unable, or poor at procreation, that species existence ends...

    Species Evolution depends on procreation, and also on adaptation - through mutations big and small... Sometimes it's invisible, for example Sherpas require less oxygen to breathe than other humans. In a regular oxygen environment they are fine, in a deprived oxygen environment, say on Mt Everest, they excel because they don't require the same amount of oxygen the rest of us do. This is evolution, since they live at a higher elevation with lower levels of oxygen, their offspring who were best suited for the environment survived and procreated, making a perhaps recessive gene become predominent among them.

    But, it's not exclusive to them I would bet. It's just that others don't test it by climbing Everest. And since they don't live in environments where it's an advantage, it's not necessarily passed on. If the successful ones fail to procreate, they will not pass on the successful trait... Procreation isn't a "goal", it's a requirement.

    Just because a gene is recessive, does not mean it's in the minority... Take blood type for example. Type O is recessive, but most humans are type O.
  2. EricBess Active Member

    And again Oversoul, you have rebutted my comments with a stand that leaves no room for any opinion but your own. If you don't agree with me, then say so, but please stop telling me that I am wrong.

    Evolution is effectively (and I don't have an exact definition, so if I'm wrong about this, I'm sure you will let me know) the theory that life and genetics change over time and, in general, the genetic trends that are productive for the life form, given sociatal and other pressures, will tend to get stronger as other, less productive genetic shifts die off.

    I really don't know the life cycle of the sun well enough to comment on whether or not it reproduces.

    And my point about wealth does apply to the animal kingdom. I was referring to the fact that pleasure is a higher-level "need". Do you have any evidence that suggests that homosexuality exists in nature when food is scarse? While I don't have specific evidence, I would postulate that homosexuality in animals is typically (if not only) seen when there are cases of overpopulation of that species. In other words, when that species is effectively "living in luxury".
  3. Spiderman CPA Man in Tights, Dopey Administrative Assistant

    Just so Oversoul doesn't feel alone, I agree with him.

    While I agree that strictly speaking, a homosexual union does not produce offspring, I'm not sure why that is important to a "natural" discussion. Not every heterosexual union produces offspring. Homosexuals are created via heterosexual unions (which I have stated before) and thus appear to be natural. Does it really matter if a union creates offspring or not? It seems the point is whether homsexuals are "natural" and it appears they are.
  4. EricBess Active Member

    Spidey - Oversoul has also acknowledged that there may also be a genetic disposition for serial killers and (some) alchoholics. Do you also agree with him that they are "natural"?

    My point isn't to compare so much as to just acknowledge that just because there is a genetic disposition for something doesn't necessarily mean we should legalize it and bring it into the mainstream. I realize that we will need to agree to disagree for now on whether it damages society or the concept of family.

    And for the record, if I'm understanding Oversoul correctly, I agree with him on some points as well, but not on the conclusions. And I still think that just because there is a genetic predisposition that could be arguably contributed to "nature" doesn't necessarily make it a natural act or any less abhorent. There is so much that we don't understand about genetics. As far as we know, genetics may be directly influenced by parental and societal lifestyles.
  5. Spiderman CPA Man in Tights, Dopey Administrative Assistant

    I do agree with him and believe that's "natural". <shrug> With 6+ billion people on the planet, not everyone's going to be "the same".

    However, the difference is that serial killers, by definition, affect other people. Alcoholics have the potential to affect other people, or they may not. Homosexuals *don't* affect other people.
  6. EricBess Active Member

    And that's where we disagree. It seems to me that they want to redefine tollerance to mean acceptance and mainstreaming of their behavior, not just of them as people. I agree that their behavior doesn't affect me, but I also feel that changing the definition of marriage does affect me and my children.

    BTW - my point about serial killers and alchoholics is just that something being "natural" doesn't mean it is automatically acceptable (or condoned of God for those religious among us). I do agree with what you have said about it and fully support what you have said as far as it really doesn't affect others.
  7. Spiderman CPA Man in Tights, Dopey Administrative Assistant

    I guess we'll have to disagree then. Defining what's acceptable behavior in society changes all the time - for instance, children (or people) with mental disorders causing them to behave "differently" were in the past treated differently than they are now (generally). Accepting homosexuality seems to be following that trend.
  8. Oversoul The Tentacled One

    But the presence of an observer after the fact is irrelevant. Saying "from an evolutionary standpoint, the goal of ____ is ____" is attributing the "goal" to evolution. For example, one might say, "the goal of turning toward the sun is maximization of the number of photons bombarding photosystem II protein complexes." It is true that by turning to face the sun, plants do maximize the number of photons hitting their photosystem II protein complexes, but no one actually believes that the plants do it because they want to do it. Plants do no think. Evolution didn't think about it either. It is an effect of evolution, but not a goal.

    The sun and rocks are a part of nature under common understanding of the word. Any definition that relies on procreation would seem to exclude them, so the point is that I'm apprehensive of such a definition. This doesn't apply strictly to nonliving things, either. Organisms do things that don't result in procreation all the time.

    Right. One point though: I brought up bisexuals because EB used the fact that homosexual behavior doesn't produce offspring as evidence that the behavior was unnatural. This seems similar to the misconception I've already encountered many times that natural selection should have weeded homosexuality out of the gene pool because homosexuals would be evolutionary dead ends. Bisexuals contradict this premise because they can and do reproduce as well as exhibit homosexual behavior.

    I don't know that those things are separable. It seems that it's people's moral views that usually color opinions on whether the government should or should not do something.

    If they were the type of people that are both capable and willing to do real work, they wouldn't be in congress now, would they? :rolleyes:

    Sorry, I forgot about your right to be told you're right even when you're not. :rolleyes:

    This is an interesting question. I don't know one way or the other. If I were to guess, I would guess that you're right. When resources are scarce, animals that survive won't be wasting time or energy on sexual behavior that isn't reproductive. Or it could be the other way around, actually. Reproducing takes up a lot of energy. When resources are scarce, the animals that do best are often the ones that conserve energy and simply wait the famine out. Even ones that waste energy on homosexual behavior would be doing better than ones that actually waste all the energy needed to make offspring that they can't feed. Then again, I doubt that this would come into play, because most animals have genetic "starvation response" pathways that cause them to conserve energy, including a reduced or shut down sex drive (females will stop ovulating when this happens--ovulating wastes a lot of energy). But it is an interesting question. I don't know if it's been studied.

    If you are right, it's still a big leap from "homosexuality is a population's response to abundant resources" to "homosexuality is part of the moral decadence that will be the downfall of our society."

    And on this point, we're completely agreed. I'm not espousing a "homosexuality is natural, therefore homosexual behavior should be legal" type of argument (if such an argument actually has been put forward somewhere, I'd find it stupid). I'm contradicting any "homosexuality is unnatural, therefore..." argument, because the premise is wrong.

    Just because something is part of nature doesn't make it natural? Um, I'd say that it definitely does. Nature is, by definition, natural. I'm not sure what you mean by that last sentence either. I doubt that you're suggesting that a person's genes could change in response to parenting.

    To be fair, that's what this whole issue is about. EB believes that this change to "Party A/B" is evidence that heterosexuals and their marriage are being affected by homosexuals. Regardless of whether such a thing is happening, I really don't think this case can count as evidence for anything because these people shot themselves in the foot.

    And again to be fair, I suppose one could argue that Rosa Parks did the same thing...

    What does "mainstreaming" mean? And what does accepting their behavior entail?
  9. BigBlue Magic Jones

    EB.... you are traversing a slippery slope... What other Differences should we not allow the government to acknowlege? Race? Sex? Religion? Language? Education? Wealth?

    The government should not legislate morality. And certainly not the morality of one religion (or multiple religions) over others. This is the seperation of church and state right here, in a nutshell... Can you not see that things change over time? You are starting to preach moral decay and the end of civilization from allowing two people to enter into a non-traditional marriage. To steal a quote, "Can't we all just get along?"

    What about homosexuality is so scary to Christians? You do realize there are possibly homosexuals in your own congregation, perhaps not openly so, but the possiblity exists. It's this sort of intolerance which drives me away from organized religion. While I'm agnostic, I do believe in morals, ethics, and values.
  10. DarthFerret Evil Sith Weasel

    I really do hate to keep harping on this as it really does not lend anything to the conversation. But it really bothers me. Where does it say anywhere that there is a seperation of church and state? The only thing I have ever seen is that "Congress shall make no law establishing...." etc.... Which really just boils down to Freedom OF Religion (NOT freedom FROM religion). I happen to think that the two should remain largely seperate from each other, but the fact remains that "seperation of church and state" is not mentioned in any piece of legislation, bill, or any other official government document.
  11. BigBlue Magic Jones

  12. Oversoul The Tentacled One

    Actually, it says "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..."

    You know, I already addressed the topic of separation of church and state in this very thread. I also addressed it in a different thread and that time it was addressed specifically to you.

    See this post:

    This one too:

    And this one:

    Or better yet, see the relevant section of "The Words We Live By: Your Annotated Guide to the Constitution" by Linda R. Monk, which should be available at your local library (and if it isn't, tell the librarian that I said it should be).

    If you'd like to present some argument that I'm wrong, Monk is wrong, and the courts have consistently been wrong, fine. Or if you think I'm wrong about what the courts have said, show me some evidence. But don't keep repeating the same line about "I don't see the phrase 'separation of church and state' in the Constitution." Yeah, we know. The phrase isn't there.
  13. EricBess Active Member

    Hm...So which traditions do we keep and which go out the window, BB?

    Oversoul - I acknowledge that I have a religious background and I realize that homosexuality being "unnatural" to me is based on this background. It is counter to the nature of God. You can respond to that if you want, but I don't expect you to because I think we already have to agree to disagree on that point without starting a whole different subject.

    I've observed things change over time and it has been my experience that when the vocal minority get an inch, they tend to take a mile. You don't want me to say "mark my words", so I won't, but if I am right, then mine isn't the slippery slope.

    Greed and selfishness are going to continue to cause problems for society. The current economic crisis is an example of the former and the homosexuality an example of the later. I expect criticism of that last assertion, but I believe it goes back to the fact that we have become gluttonous enough as society, leading to a pleasure-seeking generation. Homosexuality isn't the largest problem facing us, but the deterioration of family that it will cause might be. BTW - I also feel that Clinton and his intern did far more damage to the nation than anything either Bush has done.

    Seriously, BB, I'm not sure what you mean with your question about differenced that Government shouldn't be allowed to acknowledge. To be honest, I'm not sure there is anything in the constitution that protects lifestyle. But regardless, the majority of the population is not homosexual. There exists a conflict and we are catering to the minority, but the issue becomes that not everyone sees it as a conflict.

    I do have a question, though - there seems to be an attitude of "either you are homosexual, or you are not". I'm curious as to how everyone else views on this. For example, if someone has a predisposition to become an alchoholic, but never drinks, he won't become an alchoholic. Likewise, if someone drinks to excess, they can become an alchoholic even if they are not genetically predisposed. Talk of homosexuality being "natural" in these terms leads me to wonder if you believe someone could "become" homosexual or if you just believe that either you are or you aren't.

    If someone can become homosexual, then why wouldn't I be justified in trying to protect my children, just as I teach my children that drinking and smoking aren't good for them, either? If schools start teaching that homosexual relationships are just as normal as hetrosexual ones, does that mean I was right to be concerned? Hypothetically speaking, of course.
  14. BigBlue Magic Jones

    An alcoholic is an alcoholic, whether they are a practicing one or not... They may stop drinking, but they will never stop being an alcoholic. Now, if they never drank a drop, then they are not an alcoholic...

    As far as homosexuality goes, all I can say is I am not. I've never been interested in men. I have always been attracted to the fairer sex. You take us back to the discussion of "Homosexual" vs "Homosexual Behavior". There are people who experiment with it - those who perhaps aren't as sure of themselves - or perhaps have a lack of self confidence, or whatever... they may find it isn't to their liking and never try it again. Certainly the perception is that women are more likely to try this than men. Whether this is true or not is a completely different story...

    I have always been of the opinion that homosexuality is predisposed. I've known and had several homosexual roommates over my lifetime. Each of them was the "first" in their family. This indicates to me it was not "learned" behavior. I will also say at least one or two young men seemed like they could have been rebelling against their family - but I never asked for the truth, it was just a feeling I had. Do the feminist traits in gay men come first - or are they later when they realize who they are? Again, I don't know.

    Denying the existence of something is not protecting yourself from it. I think it is important to educate your children. If, after all your efforts (or despite them if you view it that way), one of your children were to be homosexual (whether by birth or by choice)... How would you take that? I have 3 boys. I can tell you I would find it tough, because no one wants their child to suffer. Being "homosexual" is not easy. Every former homosexual roommate and friend I know struggled with their family. They struggled with acceptance in a heterosexual world. As open-minded as I hope I am, I think I would have difficulty with this scenario initially if one of my boys were homosexual. But, I have to support and love my children, regardless of who they are. I'm their father.

    As far as what isn't "good" for your children... Alcohol & Tobacco are the least of our worries. It's fine to teach temperence and abstinence. It is equally important to teach them to respect themselves. If they respect themselves, and accept themselves for who they are, they will go far in life. And they when they truly respect themselves, they won't do things which are self-destructive.

    Oh, and I completely agree with you on Sloth, Gluttony, and Lust being the three deadliest sins which seem "acceptable" by society. When will people wake up? We need to stop overindulging to improve our lives, our environment, and our communities.
  15. DarthFerret Evil Sith Weasel

    I did see the post before, and did read them, yet I disagree with the assesments that many people come up with concerning that topic. I also think it is almost impossible to know what the founding fathers "really meant" when they wrote those words (and the other parts of the Bill of Rights as well). If you look at it purely from a historic aspect (not saying you necessarily should), one of the main reasons the founders of this nation had the Decleration of Independence, and the Constitution, was because they were under foreign rule. That foreign rule, at the time, was partly religious based. They did not feel that this was right and thus the US of A was born. If they really meant "seperation of church and state" as most people try to use it now, why does our money say "In God we Trust"? Why does the Declaration say that we are "endowed by our Creator" (yes creator is capitalized in the Declaration)? Anyway, just wanted to point that out as the reason I disagree. Not wanting to restart that debate back up again.

    Another side note, and this comes from a comment that EricBess made. If we are all for giving homosexuals equal rights and equal treatment because of thier lifestyle choice, then why can't we give a smoker (cigarette, pipe, or cigar of course) equal rights too? Before you answer with the standard answer about second hand smoke being harmful to others, I will address it. The newest scientific studies have revealed that second hand smoke is NOT more harmful then first-hand (see I can make up words too! :D) smoke. They also revealed that the amount of second hand smoke needed to cause permanent injury or risk of injury to an individual is so high that it is most unlikely that anyone would ever be at risk. If it is because my smoking offends people, that argument has so many holes I am not even gonna dignify it with a statement. Therefore, what I am getting at is the double standard of the left wing minorities that want to tell a person that since you are homosexual, you still can be treated like a normal person with extra benefits, but if you light up a cigarette then you should be stripped of all human freedoms and cast down into the pit of some place like hell (since they also want to keep religion out of things, do it all the way, no devil, no hell).

    It is actually kinda funny. My local Ryans restaurant here took out thier smoking section, not because of city ordinance (there is none here yet, but prolly won't be long), but because thier corporate gave each restaurant General Manager the choice. Thier business has dropped off considerably. Part of that I would like to think that I am responsible for as I have been a fairly loud voice in the community against such a manuver, and I have called on a boycott of that restaurant. Maybe I have had no impact, but gonna stroke my ego just a tad. I have noticed that they are losing a large customer base now. I am sure that all of the other restaurants around them having smoking is also a factor, because there is a choice.

    So, do we protect our kids from smoking and homosexuality, or do we allow both to go on unhampered by any restrictions? You Decide '08

    Hope for the Future (what hope?)

    Change! (what change?)

    <snicker> (who's laughing right now?)
  16. Oversoul The Tentacled One

    Yeah, I think that colloquially, "nature of God" or something along those lines isn't really part of the discussion when it comes to the usage and meaning of "nature" and "natural." But I must acknowledge that it sounds a lot like something that might be used in a theological context, rather than a colloquial one. And theology really seems beyond the scope of this discussion.

    So like, when blacks were blocked from voting in the southern states and, and they got past that and now only blacks can vote in those states? Okay seriously though, I'm not seeing it. What do you even think is going to happen? Do you think that opposite-sex marriage will be banned?

    Nope, no criticism of that assertion. I doubt that you could produce real evidence for it, but I also imagine that if you were right, you still wouldn't be able to produce evidence, because it's the sort of claim that doesn't lend itself much to evidence either way.

    I believe that even if Clinton had performed of sex acts on a legion of interns in public, on national television on top of an American flag, it would still not be as bad as killing people.

    The majority of the population isn't black, either. I don't consider, say, the Thirteenth Amendment, catering to the minority.

    Quite the opposite. I think the data for decades has supported a spectrum of sorts. People who are close to one end or the other tend to self-identify as completely heterosexual or completely homosexual. People who are close to the middle will be more likely to self-identify as bisexual. Really, a spectrum is just a way of looking at this, of course. It's not a real, tangible thing. But it seems to make sense.

    So if someone has a predisposition to engage in sexual acts with those of the opposite sex, but never actually does so, is that person not actually heterosexual? Maybe you'd say that s/he isn't, but that's not the way sexual orientation is usually thought of. Alcoholism is different. It involves chemical dependency. There's no chemical dependency to sex. Apples and oranges, I guess.

    Well, I'm fairly confident that it's going to be more complicated than this, but I'm not sure how. Is sexual orientation latent and fixed during childhood, or do environmental factors influence it to a considerable extent? No one knows for sure. And the answer could be somewhere in between or there could be variance between individuals. What I do know is that some people, during adolescence, discover that they are homosexual and are horrified because they've been brought up in a religion where it's a big taboo. They often pray to have the affliction removed or try to force themselves to be heterosexual and it just doesn't work. I don't know what all of the factors are that cause this to happen, nor do I know if the factors are always the same. I suspect that they are not. What I do know is that they didn't indulge in homosexual intercourse and become dependent on it. So it's not like an addiction. Neither is heterosexuality, for that matter.

    Well, yeah. I don't see how "if someone can become a homosexual" has anything to do with it. I'm a bit hesitant about saying it, but I do think you should have the right to indoctrinate you children.

    Normal is a strange word to use there. And I don't even see it as a meaningful one. What's normal? No one has 2.3 kids. No one has slightly more than one ovary and slightly less than one testicle. But you have a right to be concerned about anything you want to be concerned about. Go for it.

    If you're saying that people SHOULD do this, then I agree. If you're saying that people should HAVE TO do this, then I disagree.

    The phrase "wall of separation between church and state" originated from Thomas Jefferson. I don't think it's such a big mystery. The Establishment Clause meant what said. Now, from history, it is pretty clear that it was only intended, at least by some of the founders, to apply to the federal government. Thomas Jefferson himself, for example, was a Democratic-Republican (founder of the party and they were basically the successors to the Anti-Federalists). But that has since changed.

    Money didn't say "In God we Trust" back then. That's an artifact of the Civil War. Personally, I'm opposed to it. But this has gone to court before. See Aronow v. United States. The justification given by the Supreme Court at that time wasn't that the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment doesn't exist. It was that "In God we Trust" was supposedly just a patriotic statement and didn't actually have anything to do with religion, necessarily. I find that to be a load of crap. But supposing that it's right, the motto in no way contradicts separation of church and state.

    As for the Declaration of Independence...

    Firstly, it's not a legal document and never has been. Secondly, the guy who wrote the thing was a deist. I doubt that his "Creator" was the same as yours.

    Yes. I'm with you on this one.

    Extra benefits?


  17. EricBess Active Member

    What do I think it going to happen? Okay, I'll tell you.

    I spoke with a gentleman the other day who supported prop 8, dispite having a 19-year-old grandson who claimed to be homosexual. His grandson had 2 older brothers and a father who were all 3 very much into sports. He, on the other hand, liked to cook.

    Now, I'm speculating a bit, but I think that he grew up hearing just how "gay" cooking was and how if he wanted to be a "real man", he would play football.

    It's entirely possible that he would have become homosexual regardless, but I suspect that X years ago, he wouldn't have been told how gay he was all his life and he would have ended up marrying a woman and living happily ever after. There really is no way to know.

    California law requires teaching sexual education in schools. Kids listen to "authority figures" more than they listen to parents. Many kids are going to be exposed to homosexuality in schools and told that there is nothing wrong with it.

    Kids going through puberty are often gender confused. I personally remember being worried that maybe I was homosexual and I suspect that's not all that uncommon. My son had a hardened nipple caused by some gladular thing, which I'm told is very common and goes away in a couple of years. But that sort of thing isn't talked about so kids like that start wondering if maybe they are turning into a woman or something and most kids are too embarrased to talk to anyone about it.

    Whether we like it or not, gender matters and kids have enough confusion without having to hear that it's all just a matter of choice.
  18. BigBlue Magic Jones

    DF - did you read the wiki article at all? it was the founding fathers who came up with Seperation. They didn't explicitly write it in the consititution, perhaps they should have to quell your (and others) misunderstandings. It was later picked up by the Supreme Court. Many religions also rightly acknowledge that church should be seperate from state and state should be seperate from church.

    Oversoul - yes, it's should, not have to... again, the governement should not legislate morality...

    EB - I'm just curious if you know for a fact that family ever accused the son of being "gay" because he cooked rather than played football. Or if they constantly reminded him cooking was for homosexuals and/or women (a very preposterous idea indeed). Or is this purely conjecture? So, if someone is "gay", are you saying you'd rather they kept it in the closet their entire life, and lived a depressing lie? Because it's simply unacceptable? We'll have to disagree on this and move on if this is the case.
  19. EricBess Active Member

    BB - I already said I was speculating. I didn't grow up in that family. But it's not baseless. Kids call other things "gay" all the time, as in "that's so gay", particularly things that they don't understand or that are different.

    But I don't understand your question, "if someone is 'gay' are you saying you'd rather they kept it in the closet their entire life..." or how you would extrapolate that from what I said. Or perhaps you just proved my point.

    I'm saying that I don't believe the kid ever was gay. I'm saying that the kid liked to cook and that if he's told his whole life that this makes him gay, particularly if he doesn't have any support from his father, then perhaps it becomes a self-fullfilling prophesy. I think if he enjoyed cooking, he should be encouraged to cook and supported by his father telling him how there are many great chefs.
  20. BigBlue Magic Jones

    Kids use the word "Gay" to mean different... they do it all the time, they did it when I was a kid... I was called "gay" for being different... I'm not gay.... Maybe some other kids get called it more often, maybe some other kids take what's said to them more to heart... but being called gay doesn't make you gay as far as I know. It doesn't build self esteem, but it doesn't make you homosexual. I think I've read that almost every person contemplates whether they are homosexual at some point in their life. I know I did. It was mostly due to feeling different, because for some reason this society makes you think "normal" is some goal you should seek out. Everyone is different, and that's ok.

    My question to you was: "Would you rather someone who is homosexual, keep it to themselves and live a depressing lie, rather than acknowledge who they are and live openly homosexual?"

    My new question is: "If you truly believe this boy was not gay, whose fault is it that he is? Societies fault for its acceptance of homosexuality or the people who 'drove' him to it by telling him he was?"

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