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30 September 2008 @ 01:46 am
"Do you have a book from which you get your values?"  
I heard the most ridiculous thing on the radio on the way to work this afternoon.

A man was on the radio talking apparently about how marriage should be between a man and a woman. It was some conservative talk show, so I wasn't really surprised. Working at a call center for Republican groups/candidates/causes, you hear a lot of that kind of crap anyway. (Yes, yes, I'm throwing my own beliefs out the window for money, I being a registered Independent and VERY socially liberal (though extremely fiscally conservative in most cases). Sue me. It's $10.25 an hour.) I wasn't the least bit offended; I guess I've been a bit desensitized. The only reason that whole argument still bothers me is just the sheer level of ignorance it takes to honestly believe that gays shouldn't have equal rights IN THE EYES OF THE LAW, whatever your personal sense of morality may be. Then again, I always have had an issue with trying to legislate morality. But I digress.

This man began to talk about how the left wing doesn't have good enough morals. And the man says something along the lines of this speech (keep in mind, it's what I heard on the radio, spoken through once, about 11 hours ago, so it won't be the exact words, but as close as I can remember):

"Here's a good question I love to ask the secular left. I am a firm believer in the Bible; it is the word of God. It is the book from which I get my values. Do YOU have a book from which you get YOUR values? And if you don't...where do you get your values? To which, they invariably answer, 'My heart.' Well let me explain something to you. The heart...is a weak thing. The heart is a feeble source of morals."

Now, that's about where I rolled my eyes and turned the station and muttered some profanities, the general idea of which was that this guy was clearly an ignorant right-wing elitist like the majority of these conservative talk show hosts (mind you, I don't get to hear any liberal talk show hosts in my area, but I know liberals can be rather freaking elitist as well so don't take this as discrimination. There's a damn good reason I'm Independent.).

Three problems I'm having with this.

ONE: What is with this notion that anyone non-religious clearly can not have any solid or virtuous source of morality? People are capable of being good people, without having to be TOLD how. They learn from life. Which leads us to

TWO:. I do NOT get my values "from my heart." I get my values from LIFE. I get my values from watching the way things are, the way things work. I get my values from cause and effect, and paying attention to how my actions affect others, for the better or worse. I get my values from weighing my knowledge, the pro's and con's of my own actions and beliefs, and figuring out when something is worth negative consequence and when something isn't. I think that's a damn better way of obtaining morals than a book. Which leads us again to

THREE:. YOU'RE criticizing those who get their values from a source other than a BOOK? Does this man realise how ludicrous that is? He's the one who bases his entire set of beliefs, morals, standards, and values, on what he's TOLD is right and wrong and good and bad, rather than figuring it out for himself and WHY what's right is right, and WHY what's wrong is wrong, and so on and so forth. Instead of understanding the effects of an action and how that makes it good or bad, he says that an action (or thought, or concept, etc.) is good or bad based off of what a book says. I'm sorry, I think ACTUALLY LIVING is a slightly more reliable (and intelligent) source of values than a BOOK.

But hey, what do I know?
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themistressmoonthemistressmoon on September 30th, 2008 07:01 am (UTC)
Haha. But you don't believe everything the books tell you, now do you? (And that IS an AMAZING book, surprisingly. I hope you get to read it soon. I'm totally buying my own copy.) The difference is, Sandy, that you still think for yourself. There is a difference between blindly following what you're told to believe, and taking aspects of what you hear elsewhere and applying what makes sense and what feels right to you. The former is what this man thinks is the ONLY way to obtain true values and morality, and that's what disgusts me.
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themistressmoonthemistressmoon on September 30th, 2008 07:05 am (UTC)
Hm. I wouldn't call it strange. Just...multi-layered. ;)

And this guy seriously reminded me of another Rush Limbaugh. I heard part of his show again this afternoon, too, by the way. Talking about how all he read was one sentence of the Bailout bill and he already knew it was something he would never support. Yes, because without hearing the details, what it entails, or how it works, the first sentence will give you a clear distinction of how you feel about it. =/ I hate that man.
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themistressmoonthemistressmoon on September 30th, 2008 07:12 am (UTC)
Haha! How is an Asian-style drop-kick different from any other drop-kick, exactly?
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themistressmoonthemistressmoon on September 30th, 2008 07:15 am (UTC)
Oh. Well that just makes a WORLD of difference. How DARE I be so blind and ignorant. Clearly, it's ASIAN, that's the answer to EVERYTHING.

"Why did God create the universe?"
"Duh! It's ASIAN!"
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themistressmoonthemistressmoon on September 30th, 2008 07:19 am (UTC)
...=( I'm sorry. I'm a horrible person and I don't deserve to live.
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themistressmoonthemistressmoon on September 30th, 2008 07:21 am (UTC)
Yes. Yes, I am. *attempts to kill self with ibuprofin*
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themistressmoonthemistressmoon on September 30th, 2008 07:24 am (UTC)
...You ARE a stupid joke.
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themistressmoonthemistressmoon on September 30th, 2008 07:25 am (UTC)
STOP REPLYING SO FAST, I'M TRYING TO DO OTHER STUFF!

...Your MOM is a stupid joke!

AND SO IS YOUR MOM'S FACE

AND YOUR FACE'S MOM

Yeah that's right. I just stole your next insults. What NOW biatch!
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themistressmoonthemistressmoon on September 30th, 2008 07:28 am (UTC)
...Touche.
Miley Jo Calderonelenne_de_reuck on September 30th, 2008 07:27 am (UTC)
From one of my favourite websites
Q: Why do you constantly criticize the Bible? It is recognized worldwide for its inspiring words.

A: The Bible also says:

"Samaria shall become desolate; for she hath rebelled against her God: they shall fall by the sword: their infants shall be dashed in pieces, and their women with child shall be ripped up." (Hosea 13:16)

"Wherefore David arose and went, he and his men, and slew of the Philistines two hundred men; and David brought their foreskins, and they gave them in full tale to the king, that he might be the king's son in law. And Saul gave him Michal his daughter to wife." (1 Samuel 18:27)

"And it came to pass, when the letter came to them, that they took the king's sons, and slew seventy persons, and put their heads in baskets, and sent him them to Jezreel. And there came a messenger, and told him, saying, They have brought the heads of the king's sons. And he said, Lay ye them in two heaps at the entering in of the gate until the morning." (2 Kings 10:7,8)

"And there was a great famine in Samaria . . . ." (2 Kings 6:25) "And the king said unto her, What aileth thee? And she answered, This woman said unto me, Give thy son, that we may eat him to day, and we will eat my son to morrow. So we boiled my son, and did eat him: and I said unto her on the next day, Give thy son, that we may eat him: and she hath hid her son." (2 Kings 6:28,29)

"Their children also shall be dashed to pieces before their eyes; their houses shall be spoiled and their wives ravished." (Isaiah 13:16)

". . . and they shall have no pity on the fruit of the womb; their eye shall not spare children." (Isaiah 13:18)

"Then Menahem smote Tiphsah, and all that were therein, and the coasts thereof from Tirzah: because they opened not to him, therefore he smote it; and all the women therein that were with child he ripped up." (2 Kings 15:16)

King Solomon had hundreds of wives and concubines, clearly sending the message that females are property. (1 Kings 11:3)

A wife is referred to as a man's property. (Exodus 20:17)

Non-virginal brides must be murdered. (Deuteronomy 22:20,21)

Females slaves can be used sexually. (Exodus 21:7-11)

Homosexuals must be murdered. (Leviticus 20:13) and (Romans 1:24-32)

Old King David uses a virgin for a "warm-up." (1 Kings 1:1-3)

Drunkard sons must be murdered. (Deuteronomy 21:18-21)

Wartime booty, virgins, are to be saved and raped. (Numbers 31:17, 18)

You should beat your children with rods. (Proverbs 23:13,14)

Jesus says you must hate your whole family. (Luke 14:26)

Jesus tells a parable about 10 virgins marrying the same groom on the same night. He utters not one word of condemnation about such an obscene situation, but merely goes on about the lamps and the oil. (Matthew 25)

Women must keep silent, learn only from husbands. (1 Corinthians 14:34,35)

Women must submit to husbands. (1 Timothy 2:11,12)

Women must speak to husbands in fear. (1 Peter 3:1-7)

This is all obscene. The "context" argument does not hold. There is no moral context into which murdering babies may be inserted. It is not a matter of willfully overlooking anything positive. It is a matter of being forced to overlook a great deal of horrific violence. Why must that be a pre-condition to reading the so-called "holy" Bible?

Analogy: Imagine a 100-page book of photos. 50 of them are hard core pornography including bestiality, S & M, and child pornography. The other 50 pages are exquisite—photos of sunsets, hummingbirds, waterfalls and daffodils. Now. Would you keep that book on your coffee table?

This is what I call the Pearl-In-The-Dung Syndrome. And the Bible suffers from it. If I must plow through piles of dung to uncover a pearl here and there, I refuse to do it. There is too much real beauty in literature (Emily Dickinson, John Keats, Shakespeare, Percy Shelley) to bother trying to pry out the Bible's rare pearls. What isn't boring in that book is sadistically cruel, rabidly misogynic and just plain primitively stupid.

But even more important, the Bible is supposedly the guide to morality, inspired by a deity. Why is any of that awful stuff included in such a supposedly wonderful document? Why does anyone have to make excuses for the filth in it?
Miley Jo Calderonelenne_de_reuck on September 30th, 2008 07:29 am (UTC)
Resource
http://www.thehappyheretic.com/default.htm

Basic morality is a matter of seeing what is harmful and what is not. Do not do what harms. It's not about heart, mind, books...it's about common sense and a basic understanding of how to live.

P.S. "Go Ask Alice" is fake.

http://www.snopes.com/language/literary/askalice.asp
themistressmoonthemistressmoon on September 30th, 2008 07:32 am (UTC)
Re: Resource
I've heard a lot of those quotes before. I don't have any problem with Christianity; and I get that people want to take the good messages out of the bible. (Though I don't really agree with it, and I'm glad there are people like yourself who can actually point out to those who don't know the Bible well yet claim to follow it, that no, it not all pretty and happy things.)

But it's annoying that people think the Bible is the ONLY source of morality, and unless you are Christian it is impossible for you to be anything but evil. That notion is annoying beyond reason.

P.S. I'd been guessing (or more like hypothesizing) as much as I was reading. But it was still an interesting story.
farrangerfarranger on September 30th, 2008 03:27 pm (UTC)
I get my values from the Kazantzakis's "Zorba the Greek."

"A beautiful woman, boss, is made to be loved. Eh? To be loved! Dance with me, boss."

I found you from another friend's journal. May I add you?

themistressmoonthemistressmoon on September 30th, 2008 03:37 pm (UTC)
Haha. Sounds like a good source of values to me. =P

Sure. I'll add you back. ^.^