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  • While you may not agree that certain rights come from God, our forefathers do not seem to agree with that point of view. That is why they express "We are endowed by our Creator with certain inalienable rights."

    That said, I am a fundametalist baptist, and I believe in individual soul liberty. :)

    • Well, let's clarify. I believe rights come from God. However, I believe that even those who do not believe in God must also believe that we possess inalienable rights. Since I have no right to govern other people, a just legal system may only be established between us by consent, and since they are not going to agree with my that rights come from God, it's important to me to emphasize that we have rights by virtue of self-ownership whether or not there is a God. Meanwhile, those of us who know about God

      J. David works really hard, has a passion for writing good software, and knows many of the world's best Perl programmers
      • I agree with your arrument, although I'm sure that some of the consequences will be unacceptable to some people. You can consider a religion to be a form of government - it provides a framework of rules and guidelines for individuals to follow in living out their life. Just as self-ownership implies that government is valid only to the extent that it works by mutual consent of the individuals governed, it also implies that a religion is only valid to the extent that it works by mutual consent of the indiv
      • Meanwhile, those of us who know about God can probably appreciate more fully the fact that we have self-ownership as a gift from Him.

        Meanwhile... I'm sitting in church one day and start thinking to myself:

        This Garden of Eden thing... it is a cage. A nice cage, mind you. But a cage none the less.

        Then, one day this dude comes along and says "if you eat this, you'll be able to get out of the cage".

        So... you bite.

        Next thing you know... you are on your ass in the middle of nowhere.

        But you aren't in a cage any mo
        • You really do not understand that "Garden of Eden" thing. Really you don't.
          • Happily guilty.

            A few years of not attending church and the indoctrination starts wearing off.

            A few more years and the oppressiveness of it all finally wears off.

            Then, you truly do feel free.

            But... it isn't the Garden of Eden thing... it starts much earlier in the story.


            One day there was this kid who was really bored because he like never dies and stuff... so he decided to make some new toys to play with.

            The neighbbor kid next door sees what he is doing and comes over and picks up one of the toys.

            This make
      • Ah, yes that does clarify what you meant.
    • They also wrote that all men are created equal.

      Then, in a subsequent document directed that black men be counted as less than a whole white person.

      Point being, they've been known to make mistakes.


      More importantly, the writing of the second document was a compromise. It is entirely possible that the use of the word 'creator' instead of 'God' was also.

      While the existence of God is debatable, the fact that each person has "a creator" is less so... for instance, my parents created me. That isn't so
      • Well, of course they made mistakes they are people. It wasn't until the 1900's that the full effect of that statement comes to bear (sufferage, civil rights movement). We are still in many ways still struggling with it. However, that wasn't the point I was making anyway. And you a probably right that "Creator" was used instead of "God" as a compromise, but that is something only they know for sure.

        • However, that wasn't the point I was making anyway.
          I'm sorry. I think I missed the point then...

          I thought you were trying to say that our forefathers thought freedom came from God.

  • You should clarify that the link goes to "The Oracle Newspaper" of the University of South Florida, not to a publication by one of the dominant closed-source database companies. :-)
  • I find I surprise people a lot.

    I find that many people get that "deer in the headlights" look when confronted by rational, reasoning thought.

    Maybe that is what it is...

    It is surprising how much of our day to day living is "dictated" by dogma of some kind, leaving little room for actual thinking by people.

    They are just coasting along and you come out with a response that causes them to have to slam it into gear without even a clutch... because their first instinct is to pigeon-hole the response but the squar