This is a very interesting dichotomy proposed by our friend Professor Dawkins and brings to mind the whole, lesser of two evils argument. I would love to hear your thoughts on this.


This post is from the discussion section of the Richard Dawkins Foundations for Reason and Science's discussion section. The link to the site is here.

Support Christian missions in Africa? No, but . . .

Given that Islam is such an unmitigated evil, and looking at the map supplied by this Christian site, should we be supporting Christian missions in Africa? My answer is still no, but I thought it was worth raising the question. Given that atheism hasn't any chance in Africa for the foreseeable future, could our enemy's enemy be our friend?


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Just trying to establish your minimum criteria for a sentence of torture, that's all.

"So are you suggesting we torture them all?"

Show me exactly where, with a quoted link, I have suggested torturing "them all". Context would also be helpful, if you can grasp it.

You still haven't given me a citation to where I have made that suggestion?

Firstly: No, I have never suggested that we torture them all and you have failed to provide evidence that I ever have.

Secondly: By suggesting that I has made such a suggestion, you had to make the suggestion yourself.

Conclusion: Your suggestion is therefore your suggestion alone, and has nothing to do with me.

But fun word-puzzles you create. :)

Where did I suggest that you made that suggestion - please provide a link.
I refer you to above direct citation from you making that very suggestion.
Do you see the question mark at the end of that list of words?  Are you familiar with the difference between a question and a suggestion?

Yes, it means that you believe I have possibly suggested that "we torture them all". I haven't, and I am inquiring into as to where you believe I have made a similar suggestion.


Let me turn the tables:

Tactic: Confuse the issue and debate to death.

Question1: So are you (Heather) suggesting that we shake babies to death/beat women/kill religious/some other bad stuff?

My default answer 1: You've never said that..?

My default answer 2: Are you sure you 'never said' that?


Conclusion, because you cannot prove you haven't said it, you have therefore suggested it (?)


Tactic: Confuse the issue and debate to death.


Does that tactic seem familiar?

Ok, so I assume that each Sunday you head off to the nearest church, a community you can blend into well, and after the service you mingle with the crowd and talk about how all the anti-gay stuff just seems so wrong, and how people should be voting for their economic interests rather by faith based value sets. You do this every week? Tirelessly? Because this is the sort of thing that you are asking of moderate Muslims, and then calling them cowards for not doing so? Are you a coward too, by that analogy?


Heather, that's a total strawman. Have you read all of my posts here? I don't even understand what you are talking about. You seem to be distorting my position. Here is my point:

Moderate muslims are disturbingly quiet on issues: the killings of u.n workers as a result of koran burning, the Danish cartoons, the gang rape of women, the burka, science education, genital mutilation, death to apostates, gay bigotry and so on. Islam is a hypersensitive baby that needs to grow up and talk with the adults. The moderates are the key to this.


I see moderate muslim intellectuals who are in safe positions of power, those who do not go to church every Sunday, I see them as cowards for not condemning this lunacy. They can help by releasing  simple statements of condemnnation, by making tv appearances, by entering debates and denouncing the fanatics. Where are those muslims of good conscience? They are eerily absent. Now is this really the same as me spouting off in a mosque? I don't think so.



Ok, well my point is that moderate Muslims are moderate Muslims because they are moderate - the same goes for pretty much every group.  When I see Christians in the news it is never because they are voicing their opinion that one should love thine neigbour.


As for the political side, we don't hear a strong voice for moderation for the same reasons we don't here that voice from American politicians.  Political rhetoric is defined by polarizing pleas and words of moderation not only go unheard but they are also punished at poling stations.


You can't base a campaign on, "we shouldn't take religion too seriously," and you can't muster political direction from it either.  This leaves one having to take a hard line of, "violence in the name of Islam cannot be tolerated," and that's not just a bold move, it's political suicide.  Reagan got two terms by pandering to fundamentalists because moderates are more difficult to motivate - because they are moderates.


Social cohesion takes time, and the more force put on a nation the greater it splinters.  I don't know if there is a Middle Eastern country/government that is even a century old.  We could have had over 60 years of democracy in Iran now if Mosaddegh had been supported by the international community rather than sanctioned by embargoes and undermined by a CIA coup.  These countries need some time to develop.  I don't see how cowardice/courage even factors into that - it takes brains and time.


Just a supplementary video - not really necessary to my point:

You know, western science actually has roots in religion. It was the belief that nature was ruled by a rational mind that set people down the path to discern that mind by nature. There was an assumption of order to things because people believed in god. Take a look a Pope Sylvester II. Things didn't actually get ugly until the answers started moving past their understanding god and the understanding that 'god' provided them. I would be interested in seeing what results would be obtained by a travelling lab that gave kids hands on experience with some really cool concepts in science.


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