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Old 10-30-2011, 11:40 AM
 
Location: Earth
24,638 posts, read 14,913,844 times
Reputation: 11108

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Quote:
Originally Posted by whoppers View Post
I understand that the Winter Solstice was around before Christianity - its antiquity is not the issue. The issue that i raised has to do with the specific situation, not the fact that Christmas is just ONE of many, many culturally-specific holidays that celebrate, or transform, the Winter Solstice in one form or another.The specific issue is:

A) A simple nativity scene with sculres, VS
B) A Winter Solstice Sign that boldly attacks ALL religion in very clear, offensive words.

The usual justification for a city to allow such a sign is twofold:
1. Freedom of Speech, and/or,
2. Religious, Political or Gender Equality.

Why does the Atheist sign abuse these legal principles that allowed it (legal allownce is an important issue here - not cutural or popular allowance) to be displayed?
1: As pointed out in the initial post, freedom of speech is no excuse to allow hate speech, and factul speech can still be hate speech. Religions behvior in the past does not apply in this specific exmple being discussed: nativity scene VS atheist billboard.
2. Atheism is not a religion, and hiding behind a religious jutifiction (Winter Solstice display) while spouting anti-religious sentiments (quite unabashedly) is a contradiction in terms. Only someone with a decidedly biased anti-religious agenda would fail to see the ruse that is being perpetrated.

No matter what the past actions of religionists in the public sphere, the atheist sign overstepped bounds of common decency, and was childish, petty, and so transparant as to laughable. When my fellow atheists stop hiding behind the law, the rest of the world might take some positive notice. As it stands now - its clearly abusing the rights granted the sign placers. The nativity scene is not actively attacking other beliefs with arrogant and abusive words.
Religious actions are current.
The stealing and murdering for that specific issue are past, but the pushing of their beliefs on the populace continues.

You think it overstepped the bounds of "common decency" and I don't.
The god billboards in many cities are overstepping the bounds of "common decency" to me. So it the public display of their religious beliefs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by whoppers View Post
Yes, truth can be hateful when tact is not used.
Its not an issue of truth - its an issue of proselytizing inappropriately and tactlessly. Atheists want to show the world they're better option than religion? Act like an adult, and stop trying to ruin other peoples holidays.
You say that the display of a nativity scene is not proselytizing? It is absolutely so.
I'm not trying to show the world that anything is a better option. I have as many rights not to be forced to have their religious symbols in my face.
What's the reason why they insist on having public displays of private beliefs anyway?

Sorry if you don't like free speech.

BTW, the article is 3 years old.
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Old 10-30-2011, 04:52 PM
 
2,934 posts, read 1,439,210 times
Reputation: 593
Quote:
Originally Posted by chielgirl View Post
Religious actions are current.
The stealing and murdering for that specific issue are past, but the pushing of their beliefs on the populace continues.

You think it overstepped the bounds of "common decency" and I don't.
The god billboards in many cities are overstepping the bounds of "common decency" to me. So it the public display of their religious beliefs.


You say that the display of a nativity scene is not proselytizing? It is absolutely so.
I'm not trying to show the world that anything is a better option. I have as many rights not to be forced to have their religious symbols in my face.
What's the reason why they insist on having public displays of private beliefs anyway?

Sorry if you don't like free speech.

BTW, the article is 3 years old.
I know it's 3 years old - I didn't start this thread, by the way.
But again - in this specific situation, if you rid yourself (temporarily) of your personal biases and assess the two displays: one is obnoxious, the other isn't.

Good Lord - people get so touchy about seeing a Christmas Tree, or anything representing religious beliefs. I'm not a Christian, but I still put up a tree - because I happen to like the holiday. It's part of my American cultural heritage, in case you were raised under a rock and are not familiar with it. I don't break down in tears every time I see a Hannukah display though, and then cry "those impudent jerks!". I don't see a Nativity Scene and then stand in shock crying "HOW DARE THEY?" How ridiculous. I'm sorry you're so touchy. Try growing up. Learn to tolerate the things you hate.

For all the modern secularist culturally relativistic teachings being thrown about - there sure are some people who (when actually faced with someone else's cultural practives) like to throw temper tantrums, and then run and put up their own sign showing how stupid that culture's beliefs are.

Religious beliefs shouldn't be something to be ashamed of, and kept hidden in the private sphere. Do you refuse to use money because of the 'religious' sentiments expressed on it? I doubt it.

Again - the main issue is the specific situation. The atheists clearly came out looking worse. Good job. Way to make the rest of us look like zealous overly-sensitive wieners. Separation of Church and State was never meant to prohibit religious displays on government property - it was meant to not favor one particular brand of christianity over others - officially, to avoid the religious persecutions of smaller sects in Europe that sent many people to this country.
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Old 10-30-2011, 07:56 PM
 
Location: 30-40N 90-100W
13,856 posts, read 14,013,256 times
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Personally I don't know that I ever saw how a tree necessarily is all that religious. I mean I've heard it symbolizes Christ as the new Adam, but I think I always thought it was just "the holiday" or that it was maybe even one of those things that started as pagan. That the religiousness of it is more in the religious symbols you put on it. If you don't want religious symbols on it you can just put ornaments involving winter scenes, shiny spheres, candy, cartoon characters, or even sciencey stuff. Put a replica of Betelgeuse, or whatever star you like, on the top and your good.
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Old 10-30-2011, 08:43 PM
 
2,934 posts, read 1,439,210 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas R. View Post
Personally I don't know that I ever saw how a tree necessarily is all that religious. I mean I've heard it symbolizes Christ as the new Adam, but I think I always thought it was just "the holiday" or that it was maybe even one of those things that started as pagan. That the religiousness of it is more in the religious symbols you put on it. If you don't want religious symbols on it you can just put ornaments involving winter scenes, shiny spheres, candy, cartoon characters, or even sciencey stuff. Put a replica of Betelgeuse, or whatever star you like, on the top and your good.
Yeh, it's funny how it's become so commercial: Santa, Christmas Trees, Presents, etc... and a lot of it have 'pagan' origins. But many atheists have some sort of problem with it.... they've already 'won' the battle: most people in American don't celebrate Christmas to commemorate Jesus' birth. So let people have their trees, their presents. I just don't like when people start saying "Happy Holidays". It's Christmas. Not some un-named happy holiday heh heh. If I say "Merry Christmas" - that's what I mean. Not happy Winter Solstice day. If I ever run across someone from another culture who celebrates the Solstice, in the old fashioned way, I might wish them a happy Winter Solstice. Or I might not. Because I might not care less if they have a happy Winter Solstice.
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Old 10-30-2011, 10:37 PM
 
2,934 posts, read 1,439,210 times
Reputation: 593
Hee hee!

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Old 11-01-2011, 01:02 PM
 
374 posts, read 153,589 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Miborn View Post
Atheists Post Hateful Christmas Sign:

"Freedom of speech was never meant to be a license for fringe groups to insult and antagonize the rest of us," says Larry Stickney, President of the Washington Values Alliance.
"While we must all do our best to respect the opinion of those we don't agree with," he says, "the 1st Amendment also guarantees our constitutional right to carry on our nation's religious culture and traditions and we should be able to do so without petty harassment."

The saga all started in October when Washington State gave a permit to a Wisconsin-based atheist group to display its sign alongside a Christian Nativity scene in the state's Capitol in Olympia.
The lengthy message on the sign states in part, "At this season of the Winter Solstice, may reason prevail.
There are no gods, no devils, no angels, no heaven or hell." It then goes into hateful attack mode, saying, "There is only our natural world. Religion is but myth and superstition that hardens hearts and enslaves minds."

Since the atheist sign went up on December 1, Democratic Gov. Christine Gregoire's telephone switchboard has been flooded with calls voicing complaints, up to 200 calls an hour.
Calls mushroomed following Bill O'Reilly's Fox News show highlighting the controversial sign. O'Reilly calls it "political correctness gone mad."
well i'm not an atheist, but i'm not crazy about christmas because i know Jesus doesn't like it. regardless of what ministers and others wants to believe. hates signs been going on for years, . so christians shouldn't be upset because it's hitting close to home. either way your government says people have a right to... this is what happens, the good comes with the bad! peace
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Old 11-01-2011, 03:11 PM
 
Location: Texas
13,056 posts, read 6,322,551 times
Reputation: 6082
The whole Christmas holiday was adopted by Christians in the middle ages to appeal to the pagans they wanted to take under their influence. The midwinter festival predates Christmas by thousands of years. Biblical scholars seem to agree that Jesus wasn't born anywhere near the winter solstice.

Christmas. Was December 25th Jesus Christ's Birthday? What is the origin of the Christmas Tree?
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Old 11-01-2011, 05:04 PM
 
2,350 posts, read 1,362,385 times
Reputation: 1956
Quote:
Originally Posted by whoppers View Post
Yeh, it's funny how it's become so commercial: Santa, Christmas Trees, Presents, etc... and a lot of it have 'pagan' origins. But many atheists have some sort of problem with it.... they've already 'won' the battle: most people in American don't celebrate Christmas to commemorate Jesus' birth. So let people have their trees, their presents. I just don't like when people start saying "Happy Holidays". It's Christmas. Not some un-named happy holiday heh heh. If I say "Merry Christmas" - that's what I mean. Not happy Winter Solstice day. If I ever run across someone from another culture who celebrates the Solstice, in the old fashioned way, I might wish them a happy Winter Solstice. Or I might not. Because I might not care less if they have a happy Winter Solstice.
I guess those people with the "Keep Christ in Christmas" bumper stickers are the people that "don't celebrate Christmas to commemorate Jesus' birth." Right?

Christmas is a holiday, so "happy holidays" is still quite relevant. So you're going to have to get over people calling it a happy holiday.
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Old 11-01-2011, 05:05 PM
 
Location: Ohio
10,915 posts, read 6,123,117 times
Reputation: 6167
Quote:
Originally Posted by Miborn View Post
The lengthy message on the sign states in part, "At this season of the Winter Solstice, may reason prevail.
There are no gods, no devils, no angels, no heaven or hell." It then goes into hateful attack mode, saying, "There is only our natural world. Religion is but myth and superstition that hardens hearts and enslaves minds."
"Hateful attack mode?" Whatever. Maybe you should pray to your god to send you some thicker skin for X-Mas.

Hurtful maybe, but then the Truth does hurt sometimes.
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Old 11-01-2011, 11:18 PM
 
Location: 30-40N 90-100W
13,856 posts, read 14,013,256 times
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"There is only our natural world. Religion is but myth and superstition that hardens hearts and enslaves minds."

Is not "The Truth", but an opinion. And a pretty generalized smear-opinion at that.

I mean do you think Dorothy Day, Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr, Father Georges Pire, Archbishop Romero, Cicely Saunders, Archbishop Tutu, or William Wilberforce were all people of "hardened hearts and enslaved minds"? Can you honestly say, with certainty, that they would have been better people without religion?
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