Even though I am English, I still take an interest in American politics. At the moment, I am despairing that all the main players in this election all seem to be anti-gay and anti-abortion. It sickens me that we live in a world where, despite everything, all people are not equal and two millenia old superstitions still have a tight grip in politics. So here is my question:
As an atheist, who do you want as president?
I would rather have an incompetent, do-no, Democrat as president, than a narcissistic, cater to the rich, Republican.
I love it when I hear politicians say "God Bless America." A country founded on genocide, built by slavery and currently ruled by greed. Our main export is war. We have the highest homicide rate of any developed country, highest incarceration rate of any industrialized country.
I guess on retrospect it is exactly what their god likes in a people.
And a disproportionately large percentage of the incarcerated are theists.
God bless us. God bless us, everyone.
Our country was founded on liberty and freedom. You give no credit to great thinkers in such people who helped found our country as Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Paine, James Madison, John Adams to cite a few of the more astute individuals. In addition, we were much less violent towards the Native Americans than the Spaniards or "later Mexicans" were. Over 90% of the Native American population died not through genocide, but through European disease as the Native American population had never built the antibodies necessary for these diseases since they had not come into contact with western civilization prior to that point in history.
How many of those great thinkers espousing freedom and liberty owned slaves? How much liberty and freedom did women in this country have before they could even own property and vote.
We were founded on an abstract idea of freedom and liberty but every step we have taken to established those liberties have been fought tooth and nail. Usually by the people who claim the highest level of patriotism and have the flag wrapped around themselves the tightest,
Yes the native americans died more of disease than battle. Which is actually true of most wars, including WWI and WWII. Of course handing out blanket purposely laced with small pox didn't help at all. How about that, the God Blessed morally superior American Government with the first example of biological warfare.
Even today, who fights harder against equal rights of women and homosexuals more that the piously patriotic right wing? The 'real americans.'
Agreed Mike, and @Sassan you can't compare what the US did with Spaniards and Mexicans because by evidence of our dark skin we mixed with the natives and combined our cultures and Mexico still has a large population of Natives Americans unlike the US which has a scattered few in reservations.
What does mixing have to do with anything? Genocide took place on levels one cannot even fathom. Some people talk about Columbus like he was the most "evil killer" when in fact he did little killing. Go look up the Spanish thugs Vasco da Gama, Vasco Nunez de Balboa, and Ferdinand Magellan who were personally sent by the King of Spain to KILL and wipe out.
So are we keeping score? Should we start a tally?
Indians were treated horribly all over the Americas. Just because some of us criticize our nation's ugly bits doesn't mean we're ignoring bad stuff others have done.
Ultimately, none of this has anything to do with the 2012 presidential election.
Pizarro was no sweetheart, either.
Look buddy, it was a different world. That doesn't provide justifications for slavery but you cannot judge the world of then to the world of today. The mentalities were just drastically out there embedded with scientific ignorance and hocus pocus such as that "Africans are of a different race" in which many otherwise respected members of society took as fact.
At least Thomas Jefferson fell in love with one of his slaves and fathered children with her. :). He truly loved Sally Hemings. And he treated his slaves as humanely as possible for the times.
The history of humanity is not beautiful but you cannot single out just us for owning slaves. How about the Muslims who owned slaves? How about the tribal Africans who conquered the neighboring tribes and sold fellow Africans off as slaves to the colonialists? No single nation or culture is without blemish or shame through the historical record. But I guess you would not be able to say a single positive thing about any period of history in the world except for Cyrus The Great when he helped free the Jews from slavery in Babylon; followed by rebuilding their temples and helping those who wanted to go back to return to their homeland.
Wrong is wrong. No matter what the times were. If they didn't think slavery was wrong then it wouldn't have been a contentious issue from the very founding of our country. They new it was wrong. Right the world of today is differrent. We no longer have slavery in the US, yet. We have managed to export it to China and India and any other third world country where the multinational corporations can set up shop to take advantage of a desperate population. Yet we have no problem running down to Walmart to buy their cheap crap, and it is cheap because they are willing to use Chinese prison labor to make it and ship it to us. That, in today's world, not the world of 200 years ago, is condoning slavery.
As humanely as possible for the time would have been to free them, not give them an extra ladle of slop or an extra blanket. Wait until the kids are older before he sold them off to another plantation, what a damn humanitarian.
Yes muslims owned slaves and there have been plenty of atrocities done by many societies throughout history. Do any of their founding documents start with "
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness
Do we hold ourselves to our own standards or do we aim for slightly better than the worst example of human behaviour and proudly claim that we are not as bad as they are?
The Spanish killed more than we did so we aren't as bad yeah for us. The Africans were already killing and enslaving each other, why we were practically innocent in the whole process.
What about the Chinese, their treatment while building the railroad was almost as bad as to the african americans. No Irish need apply was a very common sign.
To imply that American has been a paragon of liberty and freedom for all of it's history is a truly Gingrichian understanding of history and helps me to understand your awe of Newt's grasp of history.
So you take the position that there are absolute rights and wrongs. Based on what? Normally, it takes a religion to create an absolute. I'm not saying it's impossible to appeal to an absolute without a religion, but I suspect your appeal is to 21st Century values.
What evidence do you have that the Founding Fathers "knew" slavery was wrong? Where is the memo or letter or even quotation that says, in essence, "We know slavery is wrong, but we don't give a f*ck"? As far as I know, Thomas Jefferson thought it was fine to bonk a female slave who was helpless to say no. I can only conclude he saw her as a thing to be used and had no qualms about that.