Voting for Muslims

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BankFC's picture
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In the thread "Zero Capital Gains" the conversations veered off into a religious debate over voting for Muslims.  Let me put my position out there right now.  I would not ever vote for a practicing Muslim. 
Ashland quoted some Old Testament scripture, but failed to realize the New Testament is the covenant Christians live by.  Feel free to quote ANYTHING from our scripture you want.
While we're at it, I think I'll quote some from your Koran:
[9.30] And the Jews say: Uzair is the son of Allah; and the Christians say: The Messiah is the son of Allah; these are the words of their mouths; they imitate the saying of those who disbelieved before; may Allah destroy them; how they are turned away!
The call for the destruction of Christians.
[3.67] Ibrahim was not a Jew nor a Christian but he was (an) upright (man), a Muslim, and he was not one of the polytheists.
The Koran depicts Christianity as POLYTHEISM????
[5.51] O you who believe! do not take the Jews and the Christians for friends; they are friends of each other; and whoever amongst you takes them for a friend, then surely he is one of them; surely Allah does not guide the unjust people.
How clearly do you need it spelled out?
This is just a sample of text I found in 20 minutes or so of browsing last night.  I have no doubt there is more.
Please tell me, with all sincerity, how a FAITHFUL, PRACTICING MUSLIM could have America's (a predominately Christian country) best at heart.  It goes against what they believe!!!
I am honestly open to hearing a real answer to the contrary.

now_indy's picture
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good post, and VERY good questions.

Roper's picture
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I read the book "The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades)" last year.  It has many examples like the ones above plus many more. 
Language like that is kind of hard to deny when it's in black and white.

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BankFC wrote:
Please tell me, with all sincerity, how a FAITHFUL, PRACTICING MUSLIM could have America's (a predominately Christian country) best at heart.  It goes against what they believe!!!
I am honestly open to hearing a real answer to the contrary.

Thanks for moving this question to a new thread where it belongs. <?:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
I'd say a Muslim can do it the same way an observant Jew can do it (remember the Old Testament verses quoted in the other thread which stand contrary to our democratic values) or a Christian can do it when we're talking about verses from the New Testament where there are questions related to universal application to today’s values.
<?:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Jefferson didn’t see a conflict, btw.
I think the real danger is what Ashland mentioned in the other thread;
1) Deconstructing old religious texts
2) Claiming every adherent of the religion adheres to every element of the text AND they all read it the same way
 
3) From the above two points asserting that every believer of said religion holds values antithetical to liberal democracy. 
 
For the record I’m not attempting to insult anyone’s religion nor am I anti-religious. I’m simply asking for an even application of evaluation methods  to all faiths.  You can’t allow for a “cafeteria” approach by members of one religion and claim that rounds off the sharp edges of their religion’s source text and then claim Muslims are monolithic and use every line of their ancient text to show they hold anti-democratic views that make them unsuitable as political office holders.
 

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mikebutler222 wrote:BankFC wrote:
Please tell me, with all sincerity, how a FAITHFUL, PRACTICING MUSLIM could have America's (a predominately Christian country) best at heart.  It goes against what they believe!!!
I am honestly open to hearing a real answer to the contrary.

Thanks for moving this question to a new thread where it belongs.
You're welcome.<?:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
I'd say a Muslim can do it the same way an observant Jew can do it (remember the Old Testament verses quoted in the other thread which stand contrary to our democratic values)
I am not Jewish, and do not live by Old Testament laws or sentiments.  Ashland tried to use Old Testament scripture to depict Christian beliefs, which just doesn't fly.
or a Christian can do it when we're talking about verses from the New Testament where there are questions related to universal application to today’s values.
<?:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Jefferson didn’t see a conflict, btw.
Are you referring to Thomas Jefferson?  
Do you have a specific historical reference to Jefferson's view of Islam???
I think the real danger is what Ashland mentioned in the other thread;
1) Deconstructing old religious texts
Deconsructing...you mean taking them out of context?  If so, yes I agree, and this can happen (i.e. putting on the armour of God has nothing to do with war) but some things are very black and white, such as calling for the destruction of Christians.
2) Claiming every adherent of the religion adheres to every element of the text AND they all read it the same way
 
In the South you might call this a "back seat Baptist."  Mike, if a Christian DID adhere to all the tenants of the New Testament, overall what kind of person would they be?
Now ask yourself the same question about a Muslim.  If you need help with that, Google "9/11"

3) From the above two points asserting that every believer of said religion holds values antithetical to liberal democracy. 
 
This is where you are having a  disconnect.  How can there be a democracy among people who BASIC RELIGIOUS BELIEF is that you are against Allah and they have been instructed by Allah to destroy you.

For the record I’m not attempting to insult anyone’s religion nor am I anti-religious. I’m simply asking for an even application of evaluation methods  to all faiths.  You can’t allow for a “cafeteria” approach by members of one religion and claim that rounds off the sharp edges of their religion’s source text and then claim Muslims are monolithic and use every line of their ancient text to show they hold anti-democratic views that make them unsuitable as political office holders.
 
What you are saying, really, is that you'd vote for a Muslim candidate as long as he/she didn't follow the Muslim belief, did not do as the Koran instructs, and was "westernized" in their political belief system. 
 
Well, it kind of like having pit bull as a pet.  You can teach a pit bull to be kind, to mind what you say, and to be a good companion.  But, if that pit bull ever becomes true to it's nature, it could turn on you in an instant.  The true nature of many in Islam is violence in the name of Allah. 
 

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BankFC wrote: <?:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
Please tell me, with all sincerity, how a FAITHFUL, PRACTICING MUSLIM could have <?:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />America's (a predominately Christian country) best at heart.  It goes against what they believe!!!
I am honestly open to hearing a real answer to the contrary.

Thanks for moving this question to a new thread where it belongs.
You're welcome.
I'd say a Muslim can do it the same way an observant Jew can do it (remember the Old Testament verses quoted in the other thread which stand contrary to our democratic values)
I am not Jewish, and do not live by Old Testament laws or sentiments.  Ashland tried to use Old Testament scripture to depict Christian beliefs, which just doesn't fly.
You don't live by the Old Testament, but Jews do. Why wouldn't your comments about Muslims and the Koran apply at least to observant Jews.  Doesn’t your logic mean that Joe Lieberman is a threat to US democracy?
BTW, I'll never understand why Christians wholly disown every last element of the Old Testament as if that was some other god speaking there. It isn’t as if Jesus said “Hey, all that stuff in the older book, ignore it”. But that's for another day.
or a Christian can do it when we're talking about verses from the New Testament where there are questions related to universal application to today’s values.
Jefferson didn’t see a conflict, btw.
Are you referring to Thomas Jefferson?  
Yes.
Do you have a specific historical reference to Jefferson's view of Islam???
“…..that our civil rights have no dependance on our religious opinions, any more than our opinions in physics or geometry; that therefore the proscribing any citizen as unworthy the public confidence by laying upon him an incapacity of being called to offices of trust and emolument, unless he profess or renounce this or that religious opinion, is depriving him injuriously of those privileges and advantages to which, in common with his fellow citizens, he has a natural right . . .”
 
 
 
I think the real danger is what Ashland mentioned in the other thread;
1) Deconstructing old religious texts
Deconsructing...you mean taking them out of context?  If so, yes I agree, and this can happen (i.e. putting on the armour of God has nothing to do with war) but some things are very black and white, such as calling for the destruction of Christians.
Are you saying there aren’t “very black and white” verses in the Bible that could cause non-believers a great deal of worry? Aren’t you back to assuming every line is seen and believed by every Muslim the same way? Would you dare do that to Christians? To Jews?
2) Claiming every adherent of the religion adheres to every element of the text AND they all read it the same way
 
In the South you might call this a "back seat Baptist."  Mike, if a Christian DID adhere to all the tenants of the New Testament, overall what kind of person would they be?
 
“Overall”? Now we have the “overall” standard instead of the every single line standard?
Now ask yourself the same question about a Muslim.  If you need help with that, Google "9/11"
Well, at least you stated what others were thinking but wouldn’t. Do you think 9/11 is a representation of American Muslim (that’s who we’ve been discussing, US Muslims as political candidates) thoughts and hopes?
3) From the above two points asserting that every believer of said religion holds values antithetical to liberal democracy. 
 
This is where you are having a  disconnect.  How can there be a democracy among people who BASIC RELIGIOUS BELIEF is that you are against Allah and they have been instructed by Allah to destroy you.
See above….BTW, there are places where Muslims and other religions live side by side in peace, even Democratic countries where that’s true. See Turkey…
 
For the record I’m not attempting to insult anyone’s religion nor am I anti-religious. I’m simply asking for an even application of evaluation methods  to all faiths.  You can’t allow for a “cafeteria” approach by members of one religion and claim that rounds off the sharp edges of their religion’s source text and then claim Muslims are monolithic and use every line of their ancient text to show they hold anti-democratic views that make them unsuitable as political office holders.
 
What you are saying, really, is that you'd vote for a Muslim candidate as long as he/she didn't follow the Muslim belief, did not do as the Koran instructs, and was "westernized" in their political belief system. 
 So long as they don’t follow your definition (or Al Qaeda’s for that matter) of the Muslim faith. I have to keep going back the Keith Ellison, the Muslim serving on Congress. Politically I agree with him on just about nothing, but a criticism of him that he’s either not really a Muslim or that his religious beliefs make him the equivalent of a political pit-bull seem pretty misplaced to me.
 
 
Look, I’m with you about the dangers of the naive among us who don’t understand that the motivation behind Al Qaeda is a radical thread of Islam and mistakenly blame their violence on some Western notion about past US policies grievances. OTOH, I think it’s every bit as dangerous to make broad sweeping statements about what ALL Muslims believe or how they read their religious texts, especially when we’re talking about American Muslims.

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Sorry I did not see this thread before.  
 Quote!by Mike  Frankly, as an agnostic,
Mike, that pretty much sums it up.  
Most agnostics do not believe in anything.   

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Greenbacks wrote:Sorry I did not see this thread before.  
 Quote!by Mike  Frankly, as an agnostic,
Mike, that pretty much sums it up.  
Most agnostics do not believe in anything.   

 
Good for you, Greenbacks. If you're going to be a religious bigot, give it your all....

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BankFC wrote:I am not Jewish, and do not live by Old Testament laws or sentiments.  Ashland tried to use Old Testament scripture to depict Christian beliefs, which just doesn't fly.This is Christianity's problem.  It uses a Bible made up of two parts, where the second part (the New Testament) is mutually exclusive with the first part (the Old Testament)  Not only that, but the second part (the New Testament) is even mutually exclusive with itself...not to mention the fact that it is mutally exclusive with history, Jewish laws, and Jewish culture.It always amazes when, on one hand, Christians pull out and quote verses from Leviticus in order to condemn things like homosexuality, but then on the other hand, they proceed to tell us that they are no longer under these laws, because all of the Old Testamenet laws are abolished and obsolete!!!! (never mind that the text of the Old Testament states in no uncertain terms that these laws are Eternal and shall never be added to or subtracted from.)...isn't religion fun?

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Shouldn't any person running for any public office have the ability to put their religious beliefs aside for the good of their constituents? I don't understand why a Christian would be better able to run this country than a Jew or a Muslim.  This country has no national religion, and each person is free to worship as he/she chooses, so it seems irrelevant that this country is mostly Christian.  I don't want Christian beliefs dictating the laws I have to abide by any more than Muslim or Jewish or Agnostic beliefs guiding the politics of our country.  If the candidate in question is intensely religious and incapable of separating their own personal values from what is best for the country, I would not vote for them no matter what their religion.
As a side note, haven't plenty of wars been fought by Christians in the name of their God? It seems most religions teach that they are the best, the only true faith and all others are evil and threaten their faith, no?

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I always laugh when Christians claim that "our entire existence as a nation
is based on Christianity and the Christian Bible." 
Can you name a single governing principle of the United States that is
based on Christianity?  Where are the rights of "life, liberty and the pursuit
of happiness" found in the New Testament?  Where are separation of powers,
rights of the accused and the rights of people to govern themselves found in the
New Testament?I'm going to reproduce a passage of the New Testament and
I would challenge anyone to tell me, honestly, if it reflects the values of the
founding fathers of the United States of America:"Let every person be
subject to the governing authorities; for there is no authority except from God,
and those authorities that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever
resists authority resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will
incur judgment. For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Do you
wish to have no fear of the authority? Then do what is good, and you will
receive its approval; for it is God's servant for your good. But if you do what
is wrong, you should be afraid, for the authority does not bear the sword in
vain! It is the servant of God to execute wrath on the wrongdoer. Therefore one
must be subject, not only because of wrath but also because of conscience. For
the same reason you also pay taxes, for the authorities are God's servants, busy
with this very thing. Pay to all what is due them -- taxes to whom taxes are
due, revenue to whom revenue is due, respect to whom respect is due, honor to
who honor is due."-- Romans 13:1-7 (NRSV)When he wrote "to whom
honor is due," Paul meant what he said: obey the authorities and pay
their taxes without question
. Their power is "from God," not the
people, so whatever they do or command has the authority of God. Paul did not
mean we should evaluate or question the authority of God, but we should give
honor "where it is due," which is the authorites.Certainly you wouldn't
suggest that the Crown of England was less "due" the obeisance of its citizens
than would Imperial Rome when Paul wrote Romans 13.  To interpret Romans 13 as
sanctioning revolution instead of opposing it is flat-out denial.In his
epistles, Paul repeatedly declared the "old written code" of the Jews to be
"dead," "cancelled" and "abolished."  It is replaced by what Paul called the
"new life of the spirit," a new "law" that simply involved salvation through
spiritual melding with "Christ."  THAT is THE principle of Christianity, and
nowhere in the Declaration of Independence or the Constitution is this principle
mentioned, let alone endorsed.In fact, Jesus (or even "God" or
"Creator") is never mentioned anywhere in the Constitution. Neither is "loving
your neighbor as yourself." The whole foundation of America is in
complete opposition to the New Testament and Paul (the major author.) 
Americans do not believe that earthly governments act on the authority of God. 
We do not believe that rebelling against earthly authorities is rebelling
against God...but that is what the New Testament says. You may also disagree
with what the NT says, but that is what it says.The NT tells
Christians to obey their governments, not to oppose them. Do you think this
philosophy works as part of the "basis" of the United States of America, where
citizens are encouraged to speak their minds to the government and to overthrow
it should it ever fail to serve them?Again, the NT says that the
authority of government comes from God.  In America, the authority of government
comes from the People. That is a concept that derives from the philosophy called
"secular humanism" that is so reviled by the Religious Right. The United States
of America owes far more to the French humanist philosophers of the mid-1700s
(Montesquieu, Voltaire, Diderot, Rousseau, d'Alembert, d'Holbach and Condorcet,
etc.) than to Christianity.

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I am a conservative Christian. I read and study God's word every morning. I live by his word and his promises.
It always amazes me how people who have never studied his word can claim to know him or know what he is asking of you?
If all of you would spend time in his word you would answer all your questions. I would suggest joining a Bible study group. One that reads from the Bible ( NKJ, KJ,NIV)
If your community has a BSF (Bible Study Fellowship) for men I would highly recommend it! It is nondenominational. 
 

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Greenbacks wrote:
I am a conservative Christian. I read and study God's word every morning. I live by his word and his promises.
 
I certainly see nothing wrong with that. OTOH, there seems to be a lot of debate among Christians about the specifics and meanings of "his word and his promises", otherwise there wouldn't be so many denominations. If we can acknowledge these fissures in Christianity, why would we pretend other religions are monolithic?<?:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
BTW, Greenbacks, just curious, but your studies into his word and promises, have they lead you to a position on what he says about respecting the beliefs of others, to include agnosticism? I’ve always found it interesting to listen to someone claim some special insight into God’s views on humanity just seconds after they’ve displayed some of humanity’s worst traits towards another.
 

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[
BTW, Greenbacks, just curious, but your studies into his word and promises, have they lead you to a position on what he says about respecting the beliefs of others, to include agnosticism? I’ve always found it interesting to listen to someone claim some special insight into God’s views on humanity just seconds after they’ve displayed some of humanity’s worst traits towards another.
 
As far as agnostic's 
Matthew 7:6 Don't give holy things to dogs. They will only turn and hurt you. And don't throw your pearls to pigs. They will only step on them.
Mike:
Jesus uses really strong language here. At first, he seems to be breaking the very command that he just gave about being non-judgmental. But instead, Jesus is reminding us that being non-judgmental does not mean we are undiscerning, wasteful, and silly. We are to recognize that there are some people so hardened to receiving the message that they will not listen; we are to quit wasting our time in trying to convince them. He chooses the powerful imagery of a well-known proverb to make his point. He says similar things in a softer way elsewhere. The bottom line, however, is that there comes a time when we realize that people will not hear the Gospel message. Their repeated determination not to hear and their unwillingness to respond don't mean we are to try harder, but simply to try elsewhere! Being a nonjudgmental person does not mean we refuse to "see the handwriting on the wall" and keep wasting our efforts on those who refuse to hear.

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Greenbacks wrote:[
BTW, Greenbacks, just curious, but your studies into his word and promises, have they lead you to a position on what he says about respecting the beliefs of others, to include agnosticism? I’ve always found it interesting to listen to someone claim some special insight into God’s views on humanity just seconds after they’ve displayed some of humanity’s worst traits towards another.
 
As far as agnostic's 
Matthew 7:6 Don't give holy things to dogs. They will only turn and hurt you. And don't throw your pearls to pigs. They will only step on them.
Mike:
Jesus uses really strong language here. At first, he seems to be breaking the very command that he just gave about being non-judgmental. But instead, Jesus is reminding us that being non-judgmental does not mean we are undiscerning, wasteful, and silly. We are to recognize that there are some people so hardened to receiving the message that they will not listen; we are to quit wasting our time in trying to convince them. He chooses the powerful imagery of a well-known proverb to make his point. He says similar things in a softer way elsewhere. The bottom line, however, is that there comes a time when we realize that people will not hear the Gospel message. Their repeated determination not to hear and their unwillingness to respond don't mean we are to try harder, but simply to try elsewhere! Being a nonjudgmental person does not mean we refuse to "see the handwriting on the wall" and keep wasting our efforts on those who refuse to hear.

Interesting. And you see no difference in "not wasting your time" in attempts to convert someone who will no be converted  and simply being insulting (as you were) towards someone who doesn't share your faith?
 
How very "Christian".....

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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Agnosticism (from the Greek a, meaning "without", and Gnosticism or gnosis, meaning knowledge) means unknowable, and is the philosophical view that the truth value of certain claims—particularly theological claims regarding metaphysics, afterlife or the existence of God, god(s), or deities—is unknown or, depending on the form of agnosticism, inherently unknowable.
Agnostics claim either that it is not possible to have absolute or certain knowledge of God or gods; or, alternatively, that while certainty may be possible, they personally have no knowledge. Agnosticism in both cases involves some form of skepticism.
Demographic research services normally list agnostics in the same category as atheists and non-religious people,[1] although this can be misleading depending on the number of agnostic theists who identify themselves first as agnostics and second as followers of a particular religion.
I'm assuming that this is a fairer chacterization of you, Mike?  Honestly, I saw the chacterization of "doesn't believe in anything" as a very mild insult at worst and I'm surprised it struck such a nerve with you.  Perhaps Greenbacks meant to insult you, but I didn't take it that way.  I understood it to merely explain your point of view as a natural skeptic. 
The above definition did make me curious as to whether you fell into the pure agnostic camp, or were an agnostic theist or simply a non-religeous person.  I also found it interesting that an agnostic such as yourself could appear to identify so closely with our current president who is very open about his Christianity.  I'm not picking...I'm simply curious.  You've obviously not held Christianity against the current president, which makes you a pretty fair agnostic in my mind, so perhaps you really could vote for a muslim...
I, on the other hand, would have a very difficult time voting for a Muslim since I share little with the Muslim ideology, but frankly, lunatics on any fringe make me nervous.
FD:  I consider myself a Christian...somedays a better Christian than others, but a Christian nonetheless.  Having experienced salvation, I personally find it impossible to have any doubt that God exists.  I chalk up Biblical inconsistencies mostly to faulty memories and transcription errors, and for the most part, they appear pretty insignificant when looking at the larger picture.  Having said all that, I'll not attempt to cram anything down anyone's throat and I respect your right to doubt.

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mikebutler222 wrote:I'd
say a Muslim can do it the same way an observant Jew can do it
(remember the Old Testament verses quoted in the other thread which
stand contrary to our democratic values)

The core difference being that Judaism has a set of oral traditions
that modifiy/interpret/recast the base text into an inoffensive
religious system. Thus I have no problem with Joe Liberman for example.

Islam commands its followers to kill non-believers, and they do that; early and often. Islam is wholly incompatible with western civilization vs Judaism being part of it, and Mormonism as a mostly harmless new religious movement.

The OT verses cited, refer to the Amalekites who don't exist today.
Thus Jews are not commanded to smite anyone these days. And the issue
is moot for Christian's since they don't beleive in direct application
of the OT.

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Just to let it be known that if I join this debate I am on Mikebutler222's side!<?:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
Joedabroker, was it you who wanted to know from me why Bertrand Russell's opinion on this matter was any more valid then yours?  I looked it up, it was not Joe, it was Indyone. So I apologize to Joe and I don't want to pull Indyone into any discussion he's not in of his own Free Will.
Here is a link to that other brouhaha though. I must admit, I looked like I was having a whole lot of fun!
http://forums.registeredrep.com/forum_posts.asp?TID=3562&amp ;KW=bertrand+russell&PN=0&TPN=5
There was a segment on 60 Minutes where Bob Simon was talking with a guy who used to teach anti Everybodyism to Muslims, but changed his mind and now risks his life trying to deprogrammer his students.
Point being that there are lots of parts of our religions that we tend to discount as we live in the age of nookie. Young boys in sexually repressive societies tend to be willing to fight to the death (if it'll end the dull aching in their nutz) and old men are willing to convince them to do so (so they'll have any sensation in theirs). But men getting some are generally less willing to die.
Funny thing is that this is not a secret. All the way back to the days of Plato's Republic, a question has been "How do we make killing for your country, and possibly dying for it look good, but not so good that soldiers look for the opportunity to die?"
Point being, religious mores have been set so that there is a constant supply of the Young, Dumb Full of... ready to defend their religion.
Would I vote for a Muslim? I won't vote for anybody who is a religion first. First you must be a rational, intelligent human, then you must have a call to American public service, then you can be any number of things religion being one of the lesser of the lessers.

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AH crap, it was Indyone afterall!
Sorry Joedabroker!

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Indyone wrote: <?:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
 Honestly, I saw the chacterization of "doesn't believe in anything" as a very mild insult at worst and I'm surprised it struck such a nerve with you. 
I agree it was very mild and it  didn't really offend me at all. My only point was the jump on greenback's part from a claim of piety (studying the Bible and all) to sneering at someone else's faith or lack there of. I just thought it was worth pointing out.
Indyone wrote:
The above definition did make me curious as to whether you fell into the pure agnostic camp, or were an agnostic theist or simply a non-religeous person.
That’s an excellent question, and a fair one. I guess I’d fall into the middle category as I find the concept of a universe of pure chance, with no higher being a bit disconcerting. I’m all so fairly uncomfortable with the concept that just one religion has figured “God” out or with the idea that, just by accident of where and when I was born, that I’ve been exposed to the “one true” religion.
Indyone wrote:
  I also found it interesting that an agnostic such as yourself could appear to identify so closely with our current president who is very open about his Christianity.  I'm not picking...I'm simply curious.  You've obviously not held Christianity against the current president, which makes you a pretty fair agnostic in my mind, so perhaps you really could vote for a muslim...
I don’t hold anyone’s religion against them. I was raised Catholic and still have a warm spot for Christianity. I’m troubled by the “you’d don’t believe as I do” conflicts between the various religions and with non-believers. Aggressive atheists who feel the need to “challenge” others (actually, they want to challenge Christians. They seem to never challenge people of other religions and can hold a “live and let live” attitude with them) drive me nuts, as to the “OMG, you’re going to Hell unless you let me save you” types.
Why we need to conform others to our way of thinking on religion is something I’ll never understand. I’m not bothered by W’s religion because I don’t see it being forced, and frankly, many of the moral positions he reaches by way of  his faith I’ve reached via an agnostic route.
It’s also funny to me that so many of the people that shriek in horror about W’s religion and are happy to stereotype large swatches of people based on the Christian beliefs can be so open and respectful of so many non-traditional and/or non-Western faiths. Why can’t we be that respectful of everyone’s faith or non-faith?
Indyone wrote:
I, on the other hand, would have a very difficult time voting for a Muslim since I share little with the Muslim ideology, but frankly, lunatics on any fringe make me nervous.
If I thought it was fair or accurate to assume all of Islam was a monolith believing in the same things the fundamentalists do, I’d be with you 100%.
 
Indyone wrote:
FD:  I consider myself a Christian...somedays a better Christian than others, but a Christian nonetheless.  Having experienced salvation, I personally find it impossible to have any doubt that God exists.  I chalk up Biblical inconsistencies mostly to faulty memories and transcription errors, and for the most part, they appear pretty insignificant when looking at the larger picture.  Having said all that, I'll not attempt to cram anything down anyone's throat and I respect your right to doubt.

 
Believe me, I have no problem with that. I completely agree with you about the “trying” part and the inconsistencies of the Bible. I’d apply the same to the Koran and most every other religious text.
 

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AllREIT wrote: mikebutler222 wrote: <?:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
I'd say a Muslim can do it the same way an observant Jew can do it (remember the Old Testament verses quoted in the other thread which stand contrary to our democratic values)
The core difference being that Judaism has a set of oral traditions that modifiy/interpret/recast the base text into an inoffensive religious system. Thus I have no problem with Joe Liberman for example. Islam commands its followers to kill non-believers, and they do that; early and often. Islam is wholly incompatible with western civilization vs Judaism being part of it, and Mormonism as a mostly harmless new religious movement.
 
I just don’t understand how you can, in the same paragraph essentially say that the OT verses that strike us as incompatible with Western democracy can be ignored, but that similar verses of the Koran have to be read literally, assumed to be held by all Muslims as written, and stand as proof Islam is incompatible with democracy.
 
It seems to me the only differences are that we’re familiar and comfortable with Christianity and Judaism and feel comfortable ignoring the “inconvenient” verses (and even the radical elements and see them as an aberration)  and we won’t extend that same standard to Muslims.

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BTW, I'm used to being pretty much alone on this (welcome, whomit). <?:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
 
When Ellison was elected and said he wanted to use the Koran to be sworn in I was amazed to find myself virtually alone among friends and co-workers to not be horrified/scandalized by it.
 

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Whomit, for the record, I'm not debating Mike...just asking for his views and giving an unsolicited opinion.  I have no intention of getting drawn into a debate where you call Christians retarded.  I'm comfortable with my beliefs and you won't shake me from them...not with the opinions of a thousand Nobel Laureates.  I know what you are...your kind was forseen many years before either of us walked this earth.
...and after viewing the election thread, I doubt if Mike is interested in having you "on his side"...

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Mike, thanks for your response...and I stand corrected on the whomit comment...politics (and religion) makes strange bedfellows...

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Indyone wrote:
Mike, thanks for your response...and I stand corrected on the whomit comment...politics (and religion) makes strange bedfellows...

 
I have to admit I didn't read beyond whomit's first line, so don't hold me responsible for everything he might say. 

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mikebutler222 wrote:Indyone wrote: I, on the other hand, would have a very difficult time voting for a Muslim since I share little with the Muslim ideology, but frankly, lunatics on any fringe make me nervous.
If I thought it was fair or accurate to assume all of Islam was a monolith believing in the same things the fundamentalists do, I’d be with you 100%.
I thought I'd better clarify this...I'm not labeling all Muslims as lunatics on the fringe.  I was simply stating that most likely, there would be enough policy differences between a Muslim politician and myself that I would select candidiate B if, as expected, that candidate shared more common values with me.
I'll say it again, lunatics on ANY fringe make me nervous, be they Muslim, Christian, agnostic, or whatever.

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Indyone wrote:
Whomit, for the record, I'm not debating Mike...just asking for his views and giving an unsolicited opinion.  I have no intention of getting drawn into a debate where you call Christians retarded.  I'm comfortable with my beliefs and you won't shake me from them...not with the opinions of a thousand Nobel Laureates.  I know what you are...your kind was forseen many years before either of us walked this earth.
...and after viewing the election thread, I doubt if Mike is interested in having you "on his side"...

 
Ha ha... That's rich Indyone. My "kind" was foreseen. Does that mean that we evolved to this point? I mean, if we weren't here before, for us to have been "foreseen" we must not have been here, does that mean we grew out of the "foreseers?"
I don't call Xtians "retarded" any more than I would adherants to any other religion retarded. But... That's not to say I think of them as possibly less so either.
Quite to the contrary, I give the Holy Catholic Church a tremendous amount of credit for the advancement of science throughout the ages (talk about being one of the few). After all, if you made a claim that went against the Vatican you had BETTER have done your homework! Chances are that you won't get to defend your position to a group of peers, so your work had better be completely independently provable.
This lead to a rigor in the sciences that has held it well in stood.(huh?)
But what do we have today? The Kansas School Board banning the teaching of Evolution. I guess that has been overturned but the very idea that people whoes religion comes first before all else is a danger to this country. I don't care which religion it is, they are all approximately equal in the damage they could do.
BTW I'd also object to a PETA first candidate, or an Earth First candidate, or a KKK andidate. So it's not really religion, per se that is the problem. 

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"I'll say it again, lunatics on ANY fringe make me nervous, be they Muslim, Christian, agnostic, or whatever."
Indyone, we're basicaly on the same page, but I'd like you to explain how and what an agnostic "Fringe" is.
There MAY be an  Atheistic fringe. But A-Theist means No God, agnostic doesn't really come close to meaning that. An Agnostic knows that he doesn't know.
An Atheist believes that he Knows that there is no God.

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Wow - a few words, a little research, and now this...

My two cents and you'll see me no more on this topic.

Religions are terrific. All of them. Each one of them at some point or another has provided peace & a sense of worth to someone.

Starka, I love that you are a religious guy. I trust that your religion guides you in your practice, and gives you grace.

I hope it's not the same grace, though, bestowed on Tom DeLay.

Washington Post 9/29/05
"A Texas grand jury indicted House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Tex.) yesterday on a charge of criminally conspiring with two political associates to inject illegal corporate contributions into 2002 state elections that helped the Republican Party reorder the congressional map in Texas and cement its control of the House in Washington."

Too bad it's people that practice religions. People who focus on certain aspects of the text that tell them to make war instead of peace. Sometimes these people believe that all means justify the ends - even if the means have us break the covenant made with our Maker.

This, unfortunately, happens often when people feel unheard, misunderstood, or taken out of context. People then feel like they need to force a result.

For me, being a Muslim is the rituals and the text - sometimes. For the most part, though, the text scares me as much as it scares all of you. It was written in the 7th century! Times were a bit different then. Did you know that Islam was created to make an alliance between several warring tribes? Yeah, there wasn't enough food. People were starving. A larger group of people allows for certain individuals to specialize in agriculture while others can do math and others can turn iron into tools. Islam was used as a tool to solve the day's most pressing social issues. It provided a uniform language & a high level of rigor for its followers so that they didn't regress into their prior habits. It's one of the reasons that Islam is amongst the fastest growing religions in the world today. What social problem was Christianity the answer for? What social problem is it still the answer for? You want to make a difference? Give people a clear pathway to achieve what it is that they want out of life. Isn't that what we do? Isn't that what our religions do?

What I am most inspired by, though, is the mystism. In my religion Allah is 'A' and I am 'a'. I learned that in 2nd grade, and I still remember it. It gives me meaning. You see, if I have something - anything - to do with my God, then I must strive towards being more like... well, at least better every day. This is my role in my practice, as a citizen of the United States, and as a human.

I'm not running for election. I'm gunning for your business. And I'm getting it because people in my practice don't ask me about my religion. They ask me if I can get them from here to there. I build them a path & light it along the way. Isn't that all that matters anyway?

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but the very idea that people who's religion comes first before all else is a danger to this country. I don't care which religion it is, they are all approximately equal in the damage they could do.
I agree with this thought.
An Agnostic knows that he doesn't know.
Agnostics are hedging their bets.  They don't know if there is God, but they aren't denying it either.  Who knows, they might come face to face with Her.... or not, and it is best not to be surprised.  I don't know if there is a purpose to life but I'm willing to believe that there is.  That is called faith.  Agnostics just don't know that they have it (faith) because they can't recognize, name or categorize it.  But, they can be convinced. 
Atheists deny the existence of God or any other Supreme Being. They also want everyone else to deny God and want to force their own disbelief onto others.

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ooops, excuse me.  This must be another topic "for, from and about reps".  Funny, call me stupid or a pathetic idiot, but it doesn't seem to "relate" to reps, that I can tell. 

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FreedomAdvocate wrote:ooops, excuse me.  This must be another topic "for, from and about reps".  Funny, call me stupid or a pathetic idiot, but it doesn't seem to "relate" to reps, that I can tell. 
 
"Pathetic" seems to fit. I hope you get the help you so obviously need....

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Babbling Bunny,
Why dinja just ask for your password? We have it. (JK)
" I don't know if there is a purpose to life but I'm willing to believe that there is. "
Cool. A deep idea (is there a meaning to life). I toss back and forth on this one all the time. Personally, I do not see the purpose of life being to glorify some uber being. The idea that there is a God who is so insecure that It (I mean no disrespect by being gender neutral) needs us to live and die in It's glorification just tends to discredit the entire notion of God Itself.
The only logical purpose of live is survival of the species (so far as I can see). Logical given that this is the primary directive of all living things on the planet. To that end there is a need for us to live a moral life (at least ever since Adam and Eve got tossed from the garden of Eden.
There is a book titled Ishmael which is a pretty dumb book but it talks about what the Adam And Eve myth is relating to. The explanation given by the author is that Cain represented argiculture and Abel represented hunter gatherer/ gazer shepard societies. When Cain decided that he needed the land that the HG/GS societies were using, they gave those societies three choices, join, move or die. In any case, Cain killed his brother. This theory is expanded on in Jared Diamond's Guns Germs And Steel which is another silly book, by my estimation, but he makes the same basic claims that the rise of agriculture is the rise of civilization as we know it and so the mores that we have today are assumed to be the "only" way and I'm willing to have this discussion within those parameters. I still keep my hippie cred of believing that their is another way, but I don't expect us to revert to it until after the rapture; which BTW reverts the world to an existence where God provides all and the need for agricultural labor is abolished, which means we're hunter gatherer/shepard grazers all over again.)
Ok so we exist within a society and for that society to survive there are certain "rules" that ought to be adhered to. These are pretty much spelled out in the Ten Commandments (I admit, that I am looking at this from a eurocentric POV). Jesus shows up and then there is the Eleventh Commandment. Love thy Brother as you woud love Me.
I think that these are mostly good rules. But I don't think there needs to be a God to have codified them. The reason there needs to be a God is to have someone enforce them. No laws are worth the stone tables they are etched by lightening on if there is no way to enforce them.
What is it? 30% of the first 10  that are self referential? I am the Lord. Remember to keep Holy the sabbath, and Ixnay on the Graven Images. Everything else is pretty much how to get along (and setup for the story of David who breaks pretty much each of them in turn doesn't he.
So what is my purpose in life? To create children who will carry on the job of creating life that will carry on the job of carrying on the job. I really don't need a capital G God to do that. I have several sisters who will have no children, and yet their lives served a purpose in that they helped continue a society wherein my children can go forth. Not every Bee procreates, but each one is helpful to the survival of the hive.
I am really much more of a Gnostic, than an agnostic. I believe that there is a consequence for a life badly lived. But I'm also (by virtue of this belief) A theist. I don't believe in a centralized power being. I make my moral choices as a result of my duty to the hive to raise children who chose to follow the rules of society but at the same time, challenge the "mob thought" of societies.
Up until recently, atheists were content to let churchgones be churchgones. Now, however they have come out swinging. I can't deny that today there are atheist that want to abolish religion. Not all atheists, mind you, but some. I can't say I blame them either. But I wouldn't vote for someone whose first description on them self was Atheist. Down the list (of things important to him) sure, I do think we could use more avowed atheists in the decision making process.
 
 

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BankFC wrote:
In the thread "Zero Capital Gains" the conversations veered off into a religious debate over voting for Muslims.  Let me put my position out there right now.  I would not ever vote for a practicing Muslim. 
Ashland quoted some Old Testament scripture, but failed to realize the New Testament is the covenant Christians live by.  Feel free to quote ANYTHING from our scripture you want.
While we're at it, I think I'll quote some from your Koran:
[9.30] And the Jews say: Uzair is the son of Allah; and the Christians say: The Messiah is the son of Allah; these are the words of their mouths; they imitate the saying of those who disbelieved before; may Allah destroy them; how they are turned away!
The call for the destruction of Christians.
[3.67] Ibrahim was not a Jew nor a Christian but he was (an) upright (man), a Muslim, and he was not one of the polytheists.
The Koran depicts Christianity as POLYTHEISM????
[5.51] O you who believe! do not take the Jews and the Christians for friends; they are friends of each other; and whoever amongst you takes them for a friend, then surely he is one of them; surely Allah does not guide the unjust people.
How clearly do you need it spelled out?
This is just a sample of text I found in 20 minutes or so of browsing last night.  I have no doubt there is more.
Please tell me, with all sincerity, how a FAITHFUL, PRACTICING MUSLIM could have America's (a predominately Christian country) best at heart.  It goes against what they believe!!!
I am honestly open to hearing a real answer to the contrary.

Wow, 20 minutes of research on google and you know every intention and motivation of every muslim on the planet much less the religion itself. That's about as credible as my judging 30 years of someone's life and his/her intellegence based off of what cartoons or TV shows they watch.
That is awesome. Maybe you should use these new found mind reading skills to run for office yourself and save our planet.

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To revive an old topic. Check out this article:

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/08/business/yourmoney/08khan. html?_r=1&oref=slogin

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mikebutler222 wrote:BankFC wrote:
Please tell me, with all sincerity, how a FAITHFUL, PRACTICING MUSLIM could have America's (a predominately Christian country) best at heart.  It goes against what they believe!!!
I am honestly open to hearing a real answer to the contrary.

Thanks for moving this question to a new thread where it belongs. <?:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
I'd say a Muslim can do it the same way an observant Jew can do it (remember the Old Testament verses quoted in the other thread which stand contrary to our democratic values) or a Christian can do it when we're talking about verses from the New Testament where there are questions related to universal application to today’s values.
<?:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Jefferson didn’t see a conflict, btw.
I think the real danger is what Ashland mentioned in the other thread;
1) Deconstructing old religious texts
2) Claiming every adherent of the religion adheres to every element of the text AND they all read it the same way

3) From the above two points asserting that every believer of said religion holds values antithetical to liberal democracy. 

For the record I’m not attempting to insult anyone’s religion nor am I anti-religious. I’m simply asking for an even application of evaluation methods  to all faiths.  You can’t allow for a “cafeteria” approach by members of one religion and claim that rounds off the sharp edges of their religion’s source text and then claim Muslims are monolithic and use every line of their ancient text to show they hold anti-democratic views that make them unsuitable as political office holders.
 

 
All of them are a sham.  Hucksters.  Now even the pope has denounced all other forms of Christianity besides roman catholic. Bah.

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As a planet, we are in deep sh*t. Thats my philosophical contribution to this thread.

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ManagedMoney wrote: BankFC wrote:I am not Jewish, and do not live by Old Testament laws or sentiments.  Ashland tried to use Old Testament scripture to depict Christian beliefs, which just doesn't fly.This is Christianity's problem.  It uses a Bible made up of two parts, where the second part (the New Testament) is mutually exclusive with the first part (the Old Testament)  Not only that, but the second part (the New Testament) is even mutually exclusive with itself...not to mention the fact that it is mutally exclusive with history, Jewish laws, and Jewish culture.It always amazes when, on one hand, Christians pull out and quote verses from Leviticus in order to condemn things like homosexuality, but then on the other hand, they proceed to tell us that they are no longer under these laws, because all of the Old Testamenet laws are abolished and obsolete!!!! (never mind that the text of the Old Testament states in no uncertain terms that these laws are Eternal and shall never be added to or subtracted from.)...isn't religion fun?
Well said.  .  It has become a joke frankly.  If the OT is/was the supposed "Word of god" then why is it that most of it is no longer to be followed?  Who decided this?  Pick and choose; pick and choose. 
It's like showing a prospect the annual returns w/o dividends for their current fund, and showing annaul returns w/ dividends for proposed fund--Bad Ethics.  And that coming from those who are supposed to be so "ethical" 
Thou shalt not judge.  Lot of finger pointing here bubs.
Doesn't god love all of "his" creatures that "he" created? (a mere 5000 or so years ago)  My two pesos...

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While I agree with some components of your post... We have to remember that all writings(including the OT, NT, Koran, Bhagavad Gita, etc.) are tracks of what was occuring during those times. Therefore, they need to be taken in the context of the time.

The OT took place during the resettlement of the Israelites into Canaan & the afterwards. There were wars, etc. The NT is a record of a much more peaceful period. The Koran was written at a time of war & famine, and it needed to appeal to the ruling class, the warrior, the merchant, the mother, and the peasant.

Whether we agree with them or not, this is why we have a clergy. To interpret ancient rituals & scripture and apply them to the current day.

Religious extremists the world around use original scripture to justify the most evil of acts. I believe religous pluralists ought to 'correct' for context.

An interesting new book just hit the shelves. I know the author pretty well and he's good guy and has a terrific message:

Acts of Faith by Eboo Patel.
Here's the Amazon link: http://www.amazon.com/Acts-Faith-American-Struggle-aGenerati on/dp/0807077267/ref=pd_bbs_sr_2/105-6932873-6514060?ie=UTF8 &s=books&qid=1184618482&sr=8-2

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I'm sure glad we all have one thing in common...Money!!!!
Call it a common "religion" if you will, but it sure brings people together...right?

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THE CURRENT PRESIDENT IS A PRACTICING CHRISTIAN....... NEED I SAY MORE?????? 
 

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So.....is he just practicing or is he getting this Christian thing perfected and nailed down?  (no pun intended )
Do say more.

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Dust Bunny wrote:
Atheists deny the existence of God or any other Supreme Being. They also want everyone else to deny God and want to force their own disbelief onto others.

Blanket statement.  Not every atheist wants to force their disbelief onto others, just as every religious person doesn't force the "word of God" on everyone else.  Remember Thou shalt not judge...

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Dust Bunny wrote:
So.....is he just practicing or is he getting this Christian thing perfected and nailed down?  (no pun intended )
Do say more.

Pun taken

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