(psiox,my reply is not target at you in specific. But why am i replying to you instead of the other? i don't know ... perhaps from your posts i could not tell whether you are just responding to thegreatbadger, or has your own misunderstandings, or somewhere in between )
It does not seem like we are getting anywhere.
I find it more than a bit hypocritical that posters here and at slashdot are always preaching tolerance, while many are totally intolerant of the religious beliefs of others.
Now, hypocritical is not a good word here. It could be accurately used to critize a person. But if you use it to critize a group, you must expect oppositions from both the average joe in the group and those in smaller number but smart Kants/Humes. It does not matter be it a christian group, an ethnic group, environmentalists, left, right, or a 'geek' group. Or the overall population for that matter.
...you never hear about some poor child driven to suicide or the like because they weren't christian. You see -one- christian go down for it and they're immediately a martyr, even when they shouldn't be (i.e. Columbine). Makes a lot of sense, huh?
What do you expect from the mass media? Or a group of people and publishers with a set of common viewpoints? I am quite sure it is the same from some 'extreme minority left' (unions, evironmentalists, etc.) (is the extreme right in majority?)
In any society/community, there are people who are oppressing, with or without propagandists, those who are being oppressed, those third-parties who do nothing to resist the oppressors or help the oppressed, and those third-parties who helped/resisted in one way or another. The oppressions could be either physical or mental. Christians/Jews have been in all these (except propagandists, i hope...) situations in history. It is sad to see people who were once oppressed would turn around to oppress people (see medieval church authority, early soviet union, or, people with post-secondary education...) We should learn from history, should we?
Now time for my personal opinion. There are too much we-they mentality. If J believes in X, and A attacks J's belief in Xprime, then J sees A is one of 'them'. If K also believes in X but not Xprime, then J treat K as a betrayor,traitor. Sigh, X could be shallow liberals, conservatives, chistianity, mormons, communists, imperialists, psedoscience.
And as a christian, i think sometimes we are misunderstood. It is part of our faults, but ... we are often judged by the deeds of some (many? most?) of us rather the real teachings/implications in the Holy Bible.
For example, Christians stand up for their perscribed set of standard-issue morals. ... That's why I still have little respect for even the christians that go out of their way to help people; it's not out of altruism, but a selfish want for salvation.
No, i don't think, we are saved because we help others. Or we help others in order to be saved. We help others /because/ we are already saved. I think many of us help others /even when/ we are not saved, and in some odd situations we would not help if we are not saved.
And finally, agnosticism did not incite genocide because, i think, it never was in power and a majority in history. Or (just a guess) genocide continues/occurs if a person of any belief (include agnosticism) are not amoung the targeted people being killed so they do nothing even able to.
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