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Help: I Need Some Moral Reasons Why We Should Not Legislate Religious Morality
self ^ | 2-7-2003 | self

Posted on 02/07/2003 7:21:09 PM PST by Notwithstanding

I got shafted and need to argue this side in a debate. HELP!


TOPICS: Announcements; Extended News; Front Page News; Government; Philosophy
KEYWORDS: debate; philosophy; religion
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1 posted on 02/07/2003 7:21:09 PM PST by Notwithstanding
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Comment #2 Removed by Moderator

To: Notwithstanding
Well, you could bring in libertarian issues, or you could approach from the adult perspective (personal reponsibility). Mostly it depends on how you want to attack the issue.....
3 posted on 02/07/2003 7:22:38 PM PST by Maigrey (Part of the Gonzo News Service)
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To: AKA Elena; american colleen; Antoninus; Aquinasfan; Aristophanes; ArrogantBustard; Askel5; ...
please help me
4 posted on 02/07/2003 7:24:00 PM PST by Notwithstanding (Satan is real. So are his minions.)
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To: Notwithstanding
I'll help you with this one.
5 posted on 02/07/2003 7:24:02 PM PST by ConservativeMan55
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To: Notwithstanding
Because a free society implies a diverse system of religious and philosophical beliefs. The only essential common core to allow such a society of diverse individuals to co-exist is protection against aggression.

None may assault, murder, rob, defraud. But all other mutually voluntary associations are permitted.

6 posted on 02/07/2003 7:24:14 PM PST by jlogajan
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To: Notwithstanding
Whose Religious Morality should we legislate?
7 posted on 02/07/2003 7:24:57 PM PST by Libertarianize the GOP (Ideas have consequences)
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To: Notwithstanding
First, you have to realize that you cannot argue for any type of morality without it being a feature of some kind of religious morality. You could argue that religious practices should not be required via law; but it would be absurd for anyone to argue that the state shouldn't legislate against murder because a prohibition against murder exists in almost every religion in almost all places and times.
8 posted on 02/07/2003 7:25:42 PM PST by aruanan
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To: Libertarianize the GOP
Seemingly it is that of the Majority.
9 posted on 02/07/2003 7:26:00 PM PST by Notwithstanding (Satan is real. So are his minions.)
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To: Notwithstanding
You mean like laws against murder?
10 posted on 02/07/2003 7:28:31 PM PST by Paleo Conservative
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To: aruanan
it would be absurd for anyone to argue that the state shouldn't legislate against murder because a prohibition against murder exists in almost every religion in almost all places and times.

It isn't "the state." Freedom loving individuals don't want to be murdered. They jointly agree to a system of self-protection. It has nothing to do with "religion." It is self-survival.

11 posted on 02/07/2003 7:28:35 PM PST by jlogajan
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To: Aunt Polgara
Didn't Fr. Fagothey have something to say about this?
12 posted on 02/07/2003 7:29:04 PM PST by nickcarraway
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To: Notwithstanding
1) The Taliban

2) The Church of England

3)The Roman Catholic Church

4) Morality via religion comes from a change within not by reluglations and laws


13 posted on 02/07/2003 7:30:18 PM PST by Rocketman
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To: Notwithstanding

14 posted on 02/07/2003 7:30:32 PM PST by Cindy
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To: Notwithstanding
Suppose that, due to a tragic set of circumstances, the Taliban Party candidates sweep Congress and the presidency. If the government is free to legislate morality, I think we can agree the resulting legislating would greatly suck. Only two things would keep such a government from enacting all sorts of bad laws: the Second Amendment, and a general prohibition against the government legislating morality. Only the latter option is nonviolent. (And, given that the Hildebeast was elected, can you be so sure the Taliban party can't possibly win?)
15 posted on 02/07/2003 7:31:21 PM PST by coloradan
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To: Notwithstanding
No problem! here's a few reasons why its a bad idea: The Taliban, Iran, Syria,Saudi Arabia, and Pakistan.
16 posted on 02/07/2003 7:31:26 PM PST by Nateman
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To: ConservativeMan55
I have to argue that the morals laws based upon the majority religion are NOT moral.

Opponents will argue the oppostie, of course.

The context we have been given are conscientious objector and religious use of illegal drugs Supreme Court cases.

17 posted on 02/07/2003 7:31:30 PM PST by Notwithstanding (Satan is real. So are his minions.)
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To: Notwithstanding
Because our form of Gov't is not a religious theocracy?
18 posted on 02/07/2003 7:31:54 PM PST by Jorge
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To: Notwithstanding
All laws are based on morality - from traffic laws to laws against murder.

Religion is just another name for a defining worldview and is no more or less relevent from a secular law point-of-view than something pulled out of Psychology Today.

Religious morality is a legitimate basis for laws.

19 posted on 02/07/2003 7:32:46 PM PST by keithtoo
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To: Notwithstanding
#1 Reason, God gave man free will.
20 posted on 02/07/2003 7:32:47 PM PST by DannyTN (Note left on my door by a pack of neighborhood dogs.)
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To: Notwithstanding
I won’t be much help because I would support legislating morality anytime a super majority agrees and a simple majority could reverse the law. I believe any issue of morality that has the support of almost everyone would be a legitimate law. Laws against murder rape robbery come to mind.
21 posted on 02/07/2003 7:34:11 PM PST by Libertarianize the GOP (Ideas have consequences)
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To: Notwithstanding
Morality is legislated anyway. Arguing otherwise is absurd, morality is legislated every day. It is WHOSE morality that is important. Slander, libel, theft, murder, and any number of U.S. crimes were pulled directly from British common law which got it's foundation in the Magna Carta which in turn can be traced back to the bible.

The position you have been given is IMO indefensible.
22 posted on 02/07/2003 7:35:10 PM PST by Blood of Tyrants (Even if the government took all your earnings, you wouldn’t be, in its eyes, a slave)
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To: Notwithstanding
#2 What is the definition of "religious morality".

If the intent is to regulate behavior in society, that's one thing. But if the intent is to make man's heart pure, that can't be legislated.

All the laws in the world won't change man's heart.
The 10 commandments were given to man to increase man's knowledge of sin. Nobody was ever saved by following the 10 commandments because nobody ever did.

23 posted on 02/07/2003 7:36:25 PM PST by DannyTN (Note left on my door by a pack of neighborhood dogs.)
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To: Notwithstanding
#3 It conflicts with freedom.
#4 Whose morality? Whose religion?
24 posted on 02/07/2003 7:37:06 PM PST by DannyTN (Note left on my door by a pack of neighborhood dogs.)
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To: Libertarianize the GOP
In a place that has 51% white supremists, 39% whites, and 10% blacks, there would be a majority vote for Jim Crow laws, which the white supremists would argue are moral and just. What then?
25 posted on 02/07/2003 7:37:25 PM PST by coloradan
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To: Notwithstanding
If a person does good because he is required to. He may not realize is spirtual condition is evil. Failing to recognize that, that man may never seek salvation.

Therefore, in order that man may be saved, he needs to be allowed to fall enough so that he can recognize that he has fallen.
26 posted on 02/07/2003 7:38:35 PM PST by DannyTN (Note left on my door by a pack of neighborhood dogs.)
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To: Notwithstanding
I'm of the opinion that to determine a matter--we need to know:

(1) WHAT IS THE RELEVANT GOAL?

(2) WHAT IS THE CRITERIA, STANDARD USED TO MEASURE WHETHER ONE HAS REACHED THAT GOAL OR NOT?

(3) WHAT IS THE RELEVANT CONTEXT?

One might assume that the goal was to have an orderly, stable society.

Then the issue becomes--does one want the policeman inside each person or outside walking the beat?

If the policeman is to be outside walking the beat--there will never be enough policemen. And if there are, who polices the policemen?

If the policeman is to be inside each person--then it is impossible to legislate this. Legislating such only tend to make people RELIGIOUS. And as Christ illustrated in His outrage at the pharisees--the super religious can be the most terrible and destructive forces in the culture.

Honorable behavior comes only from an honorable heart. And typically, we cannot change our own hearts. But God is able and willing to change our hearts AS WE CONFESS our flaws, inabilities, imperfections and willful sins and CHOOSE to follow Him day by day as best we can, with His help--in a LOVE RELATIONSHIP with Him.

The MOST honorable and orderly society will arise out of sufficient numbers of its citizens having a LOVE RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD wherein they seek to do God's Will selflessly with God's help, walking moment by moment hand-in-hand with Him.

Otherwise, RELIGION whether legislated by church authorities or laws legislated by civil authorities very easily end up clubs to beat one another about the head and shoulders and particularly to coerce and steal from one another with ever more elaborate and clever manipulations of the law.

Our founding fathers said for good reason that only our society could only survive if it had a moral, spiritual citizenry.
27 posted on 02/07/2003 7:40:37 PM PST by Quix (21st FREEPCARD FINISHED--going to get back to it soonish)
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To: DannyTN; Notwithstanding
#1 Reason, God gave man free will.

Excellent reason. Let me add another: if earthly punishments are used to attempt to discourage behavior, this may shift people's focus away from avoiding the behavior and toward avoiding being caught. If people manage to avoid being caught by earthly authorities, they're apt to believe that they're getting away with their behavior. The message they should be getting, but which earthly attempts at enforcement will not convey, is that there's no "getting away with" anything in God's eyes.

28 posted on 02/07/2003 7:41:14 PM PST by supercat (TAG--you're it!)
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To: Notwithstanding
We cannot legislate religion. We can legislate morality. In general, however, we protect freedom, we protect religious rights -- which in turn supports morality -- and we rely on the general social structure of society to support moral values. Legislation does not need to force morality if the structure of government protects the bill of rights, especially religious freedom.
29 posted on 02/07/2003 7:41:32 PM PST by RAT Patrol
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To: Notwithstanding
"Help: I Need Some Moral Reasons Why We Should Not Legislate Religious Morality "

"render unto caesar what is caesar's"
"render unto GOD what is GOD's"...
politicians n governments don't have "morals"

30 posted on 02/07/2003 7:41:38 PM PST by hoot2
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To: keithtoo
Is there such a thing as secular morality distinct from religious morality?

Most societies agree that murder or theft violates rights of members.

But not all societies agree on polygamy, divorce, substance abuse, etc. Some of these are left in the area of civil contracts and he could argue that laws in this area are "religous morality" and unnecessary.



31 posted on 02/07/2003 7:41:44 PM PST by DannyTN (Note left on my door by a pack of neighborhood dogs.)
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To: jlogajan
I don't know. I think the protection of religious freedom is a support of morality. Our ffathers realized that a free society can only survive if it is willingly moral.
32 posted on 02/07/2003 7:43:23 PM PST by RAT Patrol
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To: Notwithstanding
Use history. Majority religion is not necessarily true religion.
Was is true religion when the Roman Catholics told Galileo the earth was flat? No, Galileo acknowledged the truthfullness of scriptures but held the interpreters in error.
33 posted on 02/07/2003 7:43:44 PM PST by DannyTN (Note left on my door by a pack of neighborhood dogs.)
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To: jlogajan
Christ said that anger in our hearts is = to murder.

Sooner or later, if we are angry long enough with someone, we will murder something about or connected with them even if it is "only" the relationship; their reputation etc.

I think your point about it being survival only is a mostly hollow one. Folks don't think that far ahead when the pleasure of the moment beckons. . . and less so when their pride, egos etc. are involved.
34 posted on 02/07/2003 7:44:12 PM PST by Quix (21st FREEPCARD FINISHED--going to get back to it soonish)
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To: Notwithstanding
I think of this in two ways ... I cannot obey any law which infringes on my religious belief ... but in the first place LAWS were based on the societal mores that make society liveable and protect each person ... this truth evolved from the first establishment of LAW in society.

Since the ten commandments were a coverage of all basic aspects of the interaction of Society ... and other tenets of earlier religions were basically the same thing ... unless that society was an amoral one, history shows that those societies which flaunted aberrant behavior and licentiousness were quickly vanquished or lost their power to keep a place in the world and each of these were lost in the pages of history, many times through the degradation of the people themselves.

I cannot imagine how ANYONE can betray one's own integral sense of right and wrong ... nor can I see any justification of basic morals changing from the beginning.

Laws evolved following natural law itself and time cannot warp that basic and intrinsic Natural law. Sorry I could not make this a more clearly stated response, but ...
35 posted on 02/07/2003 7:44:33 PM PST by AKA Elena
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To: Notwithstanding
The error in claiming "we cannot legislate morality" is to imply that morality is bad. The brilliance of our founding fathers was their ability to conceive of a society that was both free and moral. They chose morality.
36 posted on 02/07/2003 7:44:50 PM PST by RAT Patrol
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To: Notwithstanding
ALL law is legislated morality. Why was it decided that murder should be illegal? Because it's immoral. Why can't I rip the clothes off of any hot woman I see? Because it's immoral. See - legislated morality. The problem you run into is when the morality is downplayed, and there is no longer a basis or foundation for the laws and moral structure those laws support.
37 posted on 02/07/2003 7:45:46 PM PST by warped
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To: Notwithstanding
You've got a lousy position to try to defend. Law has always been grounded in moral issues.

The phrase "religious morality," as distinguished from mere "morality," just makes the argument more confusing.

38 posted on 02/07/2003 7:46:02 PM PST by the_doc
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To: DannyTN
Use Islam.

Islamic countries are ruled by the majority religion. And look at how women are treated there. One anyone in America say that is moral?



39 posted on 02/07/2003 7:46:04 PM PST by DannyTN (Note left on my door by a pack of neighborhood dogs.)
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To: DannyTN
Use History.

It was the majority religion or perhaps the King's religion that most of the pilgrims fled. They came to the US to worship God in their own way. A simple majority doesn't make it right.

Therefore there are concepts such as the sanctity of life and property rights, that transcend religions.
But more specific legalization of religious life is anti-American.
40 posted on 02/07/2003 7:48:09 PM PST by DannyTN (Note left on my door by a pack of neighborhood dogs.)
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To: Notwithstanding
Help: I Need Some Moral Reasons Why We Should Not Legislate Religious Morality

Because you can never be sure who constitutes "we".

41 posted on 02/07/2003 7:50:24 PM PST by Physicist
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To: jlogajan
None may assault, murder, rob, defraud. But all other mutually voluntary associations are permitted.

Is it true that that is what Jefferson's first draft for the Constitution looked like?;-)

42 posted on 02/07/2003 7:52:09 PM PST by StriperSniper (Start heating the TAR, I'll go get the FEATHERS.)
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To: Notwithstanding; keithtoo
All laws are based on morality - from traffic laws to laws against murder....Religious morality is a legitimate basis for laws.

I agree with this assessment. Laws are based on a society's moral code. That moral code springs from the philosophy that underpins the society--be it Christianity, Islam, secular humanism, or atheistic communism.

Personally, I'd rather live in a society where Christian morality (which Thomas Jefferson called "the closest to perfect") was the basis for the laws. That's not a theocracy. It's simply what we had and are now in the process of losing. Libertarianism, divoced from Christian morality, is unworkable in real world conditions.
43 posted on 02/07/2003 7:53:40 PM PST by Antoninus (In hoc signo, vinces †)
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To: Notwithstanding
Oops! Sorry, I didn't realize that you HAVE to take this side in a debate. Wow, that stinks. I think I'd just take a dive.
44 posted on 02/07/2003 7:54:45 PM PST by Antoninus (In hoc signo, vinces †)
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To: Notwithstanding
"The context we have been given are conscientious objector and religious use of illegal drugs Supreme Court cases. " You can point out in a free society that provisions or exceptions can be made. Jehovah Witnesses (wrongly in my opinion)refused to fight in wars, the government allowed them to work behind the lines. I think provisions were made for some Indians with regard to traditional use of certain drugs. But these has a long historical history. The problem here is if you make the exception how do you prevent new religions from popping up which claim a religious right to drugs.
45 posted on 02/07/2003 7:55:03 PM PST by DannyTN (Note left on my door by a pack of neighborhood dogs.)
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To: Notwithstanding
Don't confuse religeon with believing in God.

Our rights are God given, but no religeon is required. You don't have to subscribe to a religeon to be moral.
46 posted on 02/07/2003 7:56:35 PM PST by MonroeDNA (leve the monkeys alone)
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To: Notwithstanding
All we can realistically legislate is behavior. We can't legistate what people think. Morality is the guide to what we THINK, there we can't legislate it. We can only legislate behavior, which can come from immorality OR ammorality - it doesn't matter when you legislate behavior what the cause is.
47 posted on 02/07/2003 7:57:40 PM PST by Kay Ludlow
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To: Notwithstanding
With Faith any evil is possible since no proof is required for a given value's acceptance as a standard. A true morality must be based on truth, or on the "Real World". You need reason to judge the right from the wrong, feelings and whim won't cut it. Unless your choice of values can win out in a "Court of Reason" with logic and facts to uphold the outcome, you've have got nothing but a "Witch Trail" with only superstitions passing verdict.
48 posted on 02/07/2003 8:01:39 PM PST by Nateman
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To: Notwithstanding
Most law is religious morality. Laws against murder, for example, are essentially religious doctrine. In various other parts of the world people kill each other all the time and even eatch each other. If I were to ask the average person why we should have laws against murder, he would have a difficult time giving me an answer.
49 posted on 02/07/2003 8:02:29 PM PST by RLK
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To: Notwithstanding
People who search deep in their hearts realize that God is always urging us in a certain direction. Religeons form when people attempt to codify these faint, persistent winds.

Unfortunately, people always put their own spin on it, and fail in a bunch of ways. Usually they come up with a bunch of rules.

I think the ten commandments is a really, really good shot.

But please don't think that morality comes from religeon. It doesn't. Morality comes from listening to God. Religeons come from people.
50 posted on 02/07/2003 8:02:51 PM PST by MonroeDNA (leve the monkeys alone)
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