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Ethics Vs. Science


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#1 Guest_juhgail_*

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Posted 22 October 2005 - 02:48 PM

Well, this forum says we should be able to debate anything, so I am going to start something I feel very strongly about.

And I will preface this by saying I submit this topic and my opinions with the UPMOST respect to everyones personal beliefs. I wont apologize how *I* feel. I will respect your opinions even if I don't agree with them.

Abortion and stem cell research and Gay Marriage.

Heavy stuff. Yes. But it needs to be discussed.

I was driving in Texas yesterday on a business trip back to the airport. I was listening to some christian radio station talking about these topics and it made me angry.

It ties in with the feelings I had watching West Wing. But West Wing made me come to a realization.

I realize that religion has NO PLACE in politics or ethics.

This country's main religion is Christianity.

To ME, it seems they feel that we must use THEIR values to govern. The more devout Christians feel that there should be no abortion. They feel that we SHOULD have the 10 commandments SHOULD be in the courts. They feel we should NOT do stem cell research. They feel there should NOT be gay Marriage.

But thats where the problem is. They are using THEIR morals and THEIR ethics (their religious morals and religious ethics) to judge if something is good or not.

These topics need to be decided on their scientific merit (abortion, stem cell) and their legal policy (gay Marriage)

Does it matter that when you tell a gay couple they cant marry its discrimination? Pure and simple. Period. The "christians" say "we need the sanctity of Marriage". They quote the bible. Well a lot of people don't belief in the bible. I dent and I don't feel that a RELRELIGIonould govern public policy.

I also belbeliefat a woman has the right to choose if she wants to end a prepregnancyor whatever reason. When she wants. How she wants. Her choice. Her body. HER MEDICAL DECISION. Its has nothing to do with Religos choice. Its a medical chochoiceery simple.

I also belbeliefat this country is CRAZY. Her we are with medical tectecnologyat can start to help cure SO MANY diseases. And the christian's say "oh, its killing a baby". I personally don't believe that. I feel ththeyf we can use tgtheseISCARDED emembryoso help save lives, we should.

We should do everything we can to promote stem cell research so we can help our citizens. I don't bbeliefan eembryois "life" or a baby. I bbeliefits a mass of cells that can save lives.

Now, The major voice of religion in this country is cchristianity I am using generalities from what *I* see in the news and media. The "rReligious right are christians in this country.

They dot speak for me, and they SHOULD NOT speak for me.

We need to get religion OUT of making these decisions.

I will, again, say I submit this topic with the UPMOST respect for others beliefs. I don't agree with them, but I RESPECT those beliefs.

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#2 acklan

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Posted 24 October 2005 - 08:04 AM

Man you brought your own whip and everything. :thumbsup:

Like you, let me start with the disclaimer. These are my opinion and are not intented to influence or change other peoples minds. Wow that felt good.

Let me start with gay marrage. I have stated in other post on this site that everyone would be well servered if everyone would stay out of each other's bedrooms unless invited. Any couple can have a legal contract that would cover every aspect of marrage. While the legal minds of the day never excluded gay marrage they probibly never thought it would be an issue either. Marrage started between a male and a female several hundred years ago and I really don't see any point to change now. Like you said it is a matter of law. To change who can marry would be changing the law. Marrage is a civil contract. Instead of gutting it, draw up a new contract taylored to the gay needs. Like any legal document if you start drawing lines thru the parts the don't apply you still end up with an entirely new contract, and a poor one at that. In all honesty the gay community is who will be hurt till the bugs are worked out. Each state should convene a panal of judges to outline a workable contract for same sex partners and tweak it in mock civil trails with real laywers and real judges. But when all is said and done the first couples will pay the price for a vane attempt to change the law instead of making new law. IMHO

Stem cells...non issue. Science is so close to developing an alternative there won't even be need or an issue in the next couple of years.

Here is where the feathers fly. If it's, "her body, her choice" and as science has decided not proven that life doesn't start till birth. Then the male should not be forced to take a paternaty test until birth. After all it's not a child. The male should not have to pay child support. After all it's her chioce , he had no say in the matter. The law of feticide should be taken off the books. It's no more than a tumor until it is born. After all sience has decided it is not a human, because if it were human it would be illegal to kill...right.

You mentioned morals. I would be happy if we could get back to any morals, christain or not. This counrty is becoming amoral and is suffering from it.

I respect your opinion, and if we met I would buy lunch. These threads are important because it gets people thinking. The only bad part is when someone trys to suppress others opinion.

Just to give you a point of reference why I feel like I do on abortion. I have 6 1/2 yr twins. they were born at 6 mos 1 wk. They stayed in the hospital 3 weeks. With no religon involved I can see these babies were clearly human and not a mass of loose cell that should have been flushed. Religon or not, christain or not, I just don't see how someone can terminate a life, althought I know the scientific community has decided it is not.

Just a thought.
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#3 Heretic Monkey

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Posted 24 October 2005 - 11:10 AM

I completely agree with Juhgail. The country should be based on logic and reasoning, and what would be best for the ENTIRE country, not just the ones that run it or hold the majority.

#4 acklan

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Posted 24 October 2005 - 01:41 PM

With all due respect whose logic? Through out history the idea of one persons logic ruling the masses is not uncommon. Lenin, Stalin, Hitler... all thought they had the answer. The made decissoin for everyone, and everyone lost.
The counrty we have now is as fair as any in history. That does not make it perfect, but we could do alot worst.
Just because it is good for you what make what you want right for everyone else?
In this conurty we had a small group of people oppress another group until the conurty as a whole stopped it. The solution is not was not perfect, but it took a majority to make the change.
The solution is not the few dictate to the many, not the masses oppress the few, but a option for all parties.
And you might as well face it, no matter what happens not everyone is going to agree or like the end results. Thats not an opinion that is a fact.
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#5 jgweed

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Posted 24 October 2005 - 02:08 PM

Ethics (morality to be precise) and religion are a matter of personal choice and commitment, and as such, are individual in nature and apply to a private view of the world. Science, which is cumulative and public in nature, and subject to objective verification, occupies an entirely different human horizon.
Nothing but misery and human degradation has hitherto resulted when these are politicised; the history of the Inquisition and more recently, the results of Talibanisation of some countries, should make us all painfully aware of what happens under the Cuius regio, eius religio frame of mind. Christians should be more than aware of this, since their early history was one of persecution by an intolerant Imperial Rome.

Ethics, considered as an intellelectual discipline, and science share (among other things) a realisation that no one particular viewpoint is absolutely correct and valid, and that viewpoints have varied from one time to the next or one place to another, and most likely will continue to do so. Neither of these is a closed system, and for both, the future is open. In ethics, this view is nicely put by Nietzsche, who wrote that "there are no moral phenomenon, only moral interpretations OF phenomenon."

By their very nature, modern Western religions tend to just the opposite because they present the world with a closed system of dogmatic beliefs, overlooking the actual existence of other religious systems and denying the validity of beliefs these hold.
Any person who has THE TRUTH is naturally disposed to force it on all others; if without hubris, he will accomplish it by making his life an examplar of it, or employ the gentle art of persuasion in the knowledge that men will eventually recognise the truth he upholds.
Impatient men, drawing from the dark fund of a will to power or the prison of passion and zeal, will turn to political means promote this world view. What warrant for adoption of their evergrowing list of thou shalts do they provide but the brute force of government agencies and the supplanting of natural with supernatural law?

Regards,
John
Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one should be silent.

#6 blackrider

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Posted 25 October 2005 - 09:35 PM

you guys raised some very good points. I believe morals are relative. we cannot find a common ground since it is determined by culture and generation

#7 BanditFlyer

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Posted 26 October 2005 - 12:29 PM

Does it matter that when you tell a gay couple they cant marry its discrimination? Pure and simple. Period. The "christians" say "we need the sanctity of Marriage". They quote the bible. Well a lot of people don't belief in the bible. I dent and I don't feel that a RELRELIGIonould govern public policy.

I also belbeliefat a woman has the right to choose if she wants to end a prepregnancyor whatever reason. When she wants. How she wants. Her choice. Her body. HER MEDICAL DECISION. Its has nothing to do with Religos choice. Its a medical chochoiceery simple.

We need to get religion OUT of making these decisions.

I will, again, say I submit this topic with the UPMOST respect for others beliefs. I don't agree with them, but I RESPECT those beliefs.


Abortion - I completely agree, in fact, in some cases, I feel that abortion should be allowed even 20 years after the third trimester ;) By the way, that's called the death penalty.

Gay marriage - problematic - this is somewhat interfereing with church and state. Guess who originally created the concept of marriage - that's right, the church. So if you force the church to redefine marriage, then the state is interfereing in church affairs - not legal, at least not according to a little old scrap of paper we call the "Constitution". But it has been done before - we told the Mormons they couldn't have more than one wife.

We need to get religion out of making those decisions - why? Religion is just a group of people like you and me? Why let us vote if you're not going to let them vote? Are we better than them?

Do you REALLY Respect their opinions? If so, then let them vote. Else, be honest with the rest of us.

#8 rms4evr

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Posted 26 October 2005 - 08:20 PM

I am a Christian. That should tell you how I feel on these issues.

HOWEVER...

I was taught in church (and have read in the bible) to show God's love to everyone... especially the non-christians. I do not:

1)Walk up to pregnant women who have had an abortion and call them "baby-killers."
-These women have reasons for getting an abortion. Maybe they are scared; maybe they can't afford a kid. In any case, they need someone to sympathize and listen to them, NOT someone to condem them.

2)Treat homosexual couples like garbage and call them names.
-Once again, they have reasons for choosing that lifestyle. They need loving families and friends, not relatives who will shun them and make them feel horrible.

3)Look down on stem cell research.
-I believe God has a purpose for every human life. Who are we to determine that purpose? What if that purpose is helping a scientist discover a cure for cancer or some other disease? If those embryos are going to be thrown away, why not let them have a purpose?

I believe in the sanctity of life and of marriage. But, I also believe that we (Christians) need to be a little more understanding when dealing with everybody else. I also think that we should just show compassion to these people, and not condem.

One last thing: your religion and beliefs should drive your politics, but politics should not drive your religion. I hate it when all Christians pledge their loyalty to the Republican party. Not all Republicans are devout Christians; they just use religion as a way to gain followers. These politicians do not speak for me.

#9 BanditFlyer

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Posted 27 October 2005 - 04:38 PM

I've met lots of people who hate, and I never bothered to stop and ask about their religious beliefs. Have you met lots of Christians who call women who've had abortions baby-killers, make fun of gay people, etc.?

The most fervent Christian I've ever met, who told me that Catholics aren't Christians, is almost more devoted to the democratic party than to her religious beliefs.

I've met religious people on both sides of the political aisle. Are you among the "all Christians" who pledge their loyalty to the republican party?

"I was taught in church (and have read in the bible) to show God's love to everyone... " How about Republicans????? Or anyone else you might have a disagreement with?

#10 Rogue4Twenty

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Posted 27 October 2005 - 07:58 PM

It sounds like everyone here is aggreing with eachother, that the morals of the Church are firm, but they have no reason to tell people what to do with their lives.. It is interesting that no one has come forward yet in the defence of the sanctions on life and marrage. Usually, some Jesus (pardon the pun) comes along and says that they fight these topics because God says something and we are doing the opposite (abortion and gay marrage).

So before this turns into an argument more than a discussion... let me make my point. There IS a sanction on life.. but not in the way that the church believes. The sanction is that everyone has the right to do what they will.. and should not be forced to go against their own beliefs. If they feel abortion is right, and in heaven it is not right.. let God sort them out, since he is the only one that really knows what is truly acceptable. And marrage?? Fighting Gay marrage is... in fact... just Gay hating.

I won't lie, I feel uncomfortable around gays... and I make ALOT of gay jokes. I might even say I hate gay people... but if they want their love to be considered a marrge.. who has the right to say it is not? Let them have a name for their joining. It is not that big of a deal to me and about 90% of the rest of the world.. But if it is not that big of a deal... Then tell these extremeists that they are out of line trying to make sure gays cannot be married.

For the record, I have no faith in god. If this discredits me, I appologize for my longwinded nothingless.

#11 BanditFlyer

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Posted 27 October 2005 - 08:20 PM

It sounds like everyone here is aggreing with eachother, that the morals of the Church are firm, but they have no reason to tell people what to do with their lives.. It is interesting that no one has come forward yet in the defence of the sanctions on life and marrage.

As a contrarian, I beg to differ. I differ for 2 reasons:
1) I'm a contrarian, so any time people start agreeing with me, I change my mind
2) I mentioned in an earlier post something about the fact that the church is a sanctioning body for marriage - therefore, redefining marriage is messing with the separation of church and state, which would make any gay-marriage law unconstitutional. BUT, we have interfered in religious freedom before, as with the forcing of Mormons to change their religion to not allow marriage of one man to more than one woman.

The sanction is that everyone has the right to do what they will.. and should not be forced to go against their own beliefs. If they feel abortion is right, and in heaven it is not right.. let God sort them out, since he is the only one that really knows what is truly acceptable.

As I mentioned before, I believe in abortion...after the umbilical cord is cut. That's right, after birth. I have the right to do what I will(like murder - oops, I mean post birth abortion - The mothers of my victims would say, "It's my body, don't tell me what to do with it" and I would extend that out to 20 years after they gave birth to "it"), and let God judge me - by the way, that implies that you won't let the courts judge me right?

It is not that big of a deal to me and about 90% of the rest of the world..

The Constitution of the United States doesn't appear to be that big of a deal to 90% of people nowadays

#12 rms4evr

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Posted 27 October 2005 - 11:33 PM

Several points:

*I HAVE NO BEEF WITH THE REPUBLICAN PARTY!!!!!!
I'm sorry if I didn't clarify; it's the hypocritical polilticians that I can't stand (the ones that says one thing, and do another, of whose policies contradict what they say they believe). May they be with ANY party.

I live in a VERY conservative area. In my old high school, every school official was as far right as they come. When one female student, who was a bisexual, was harrassed in the girl's locker room, the assisstant principal said that she DESERVED it because of her sexual orientation. BanditFlyer, I have met MANY more people like this in my area. My overwhelming desire not to be like them has shaped who I am today. I know that not everyone is like this. Can someone please introduce me to them? Seriously, I want to meet someone who isn't a right wing hypocrite.

The bible clearly says no to judge people. And I try not to (I'm not perfect; no Christian is). So, when people do something like that, I try not to make a scene. Basically, I keep my nose out of it. If the women getting abortions, or my friends (yes, friends) who are of a different sexual orientation come to me for help, then I will do what I can. But if they don't want to be preached at, I BACK OFF.

However, I believe that God gives power to the courts to judge: ie, the Supreme Court. And the Supreme Court (hopefully) makes judgements based on the Constitution. So if they keep abortion legal, or legalize gay marriage, I might not like it, but I'm not the judge. And I didn't write the Constitution. I'm not going to D.C. to protest and complain about it. God has a bigger plan for all of this; I have no right to interfere.

Once again, I apologize if I wasn't clearer in my previous post.

#13 BanditFlyer

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Posted 28 October 2005 - 12:07 AM

On a lighter note, did I mention I was a contrarian? :thumbsup:

I enjoy judging people. No seriously ! Everyone is wrong. Everyone. If someone ever agrees with me, then I must be wrong. Actually, I only start doubting myself when my opinion appears to be in the majority.

I too came from a very homogeneous background. Ethnically diverse, but everyone seemed to have the same opinions. I was always the outsider. I always will be the outsider.

I agitate - it's who I am. Unfortunately, politics and religion were among my favorite topics - Why? Because they're so controversial, and taboo. They made it easy to agitate, and easy to disagree, since everyone else held the exact same opinion. It was easy to be contrarian because everyone was marching to the same drum. That made it easy for me to be off by a half-step.

That's my past, and, I'm afraid, my present. Thank you for sharing your past. Maybe in the future I can change, or at least will want to change?

The homogeneity of opinions in our pasts made me think about how people, including me, make their decisions. Let's face it Humans are a herd animal.

I use the term "herd" rather than "flock", because "flock" evokes images of a shepard tending to an obedient, respectfull, intelligent flock of sheep. Sheep respect their leader.

Herd fits our species better, because we're not respectfull, obedient, or intelligent. We're lazy, mentally lethargic cows, chewing our cud, following the herd according to the fashions set by the wolves who are leading us to our slaughter.

Cows have no leader, all they have is emotions. They stampede when the wind changes. All they are is a dangerous, stupid mob, fit to chop into pieces and use as food or clothing.

Surprise, I'm also fond of Arthur Schopenhauer, 'founder' of pessimism :flowers: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schopenhauer

#14 Rogue4Twenty

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Posted 28 October 2005 - 06:27 PM

ya, cow... uuumm... NOT REALLY!!!

We do what we will, we have no single leader because we have evolved from the theory that is "follow me because I can beat you up". Now we choose what to believe in. And I choose not to believe in god, not to have a single leader, and not to chew on crud.

#15 Papakid

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Posted 08 November 2005 - 01:17 AM

Altho I can't add much to or disagree with much of jgweed's post--it pretty much expresses my thoughts on the subject--I would lkie to examine one portion of the original post:

I also belbeliefat a woman has the right to choose if she wants to end a prepregnancyor whatever reason. When she wants. How she wants. Her choice. Her body. HER MEDICAL DECISION. Its has nothing to do with Religos choice. Its a medical chochoiceery simple.

I can't disagree more that abortion is purely a medical decision. While I also detest the extremists stance on this issue, I think that the use of abortion as a means of contraception is a valid ethical concern.

This is where Christians of a more reasonable bent draw the line. And yes there is such a thing as a reasonable Christian. There are some that beleive abortions based on medical reasons should be allowed. Or in the case of rape or incest. The latter two can be debated even, but I beleive if a woman is about to die because of a pregnancy then it should be ended.

I generally lean toward pro-choice, but I am uneasy about doing so. Because there are certain economic and social realities the result of which means that abortions are going to happen anyway and it is better that it be legal (so the woman and doctor aren't considered criminals) and a safe medical procedure. But I don't like that it happens and potential mothers of any moral compass shouldn't like to make the decision either. Because this isn't about just one woman's body and a right. It's about being allowed an option and the ability to make a hard decision. And the fact is that we're dealing with more than one body here. Whether considered potential or actual, there is another person to consider. It takes two to tango, and a fertilized egg is a combination of two bodies. The result of which is two bodies--the woman's and the embryo's. And what about the father? It is part of his body too.

Bottom line is, if a woman wants to use contraception, she should do so before another life begins. And it may sound harsh, but the most effective contraception is abstinance.

juhgail, I don't know if you have ever had an abortion and that's your own business. But I would guess that you haven't. It seems that those who expouse the rhetoric that you do are not the ones who go thru that experience. Most women who do end up in support groups. I have much more respect for those women. I don't have respect for those who say,"Oops, looks like I'm pregnant. Time to go get an abortion. Tra-la-la."

You want this to be a simple issue. It's not. It perplexes me why anyone would be perturbed that it's controversial. I can understand being angry over the tatics of the extremists on the pro-life side. The most strident think it is simple and only see the problem in black and white. But to say that the opposite is true and simple is also strident and makes your position no better or less extreme.

We always did feel the same

We just started from a different point of view

Tangled up in blue--Bob Dylan





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