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NeoNote — the American compromise

There's some speculation that religious tolerance and freedom of religion grows out of religious plurality. That was something that was pioneered by American Christians (love them or hate them) by way of the English Protestants. Basically they didn't want another church telling their church what to do. It's not perfect by any means. Even today some American Christians believe that religious freedom means putting Christianity (and specifically their version) permanently above all other possibilities.

But (and this is important), acknowledging other faiths is the only way they can keep others from messing with theirs. I'm not sure it could have happened if they hadn't been so busy arguing over which version of Christianity was going to be "in charge." Their compromise gave other faiths a wedge into the American religious landscape.

As far as I can tell, that compromise is unique to America and to a lesser extent the UK. It's why America has separation of church and state, at least on paper. It's why America is mostly obsessed with protecting religious freedom. These protections don't exist in other nations. Even the Universal Declaration of Human Rights only recognized religious rights because of American influence, and it has been one of the most hotly debated items.
NeoNotes are the selected comments that I made on other boards, in email, or in response to articles where I could not respond directly.

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Personally I'd be willing to live and let live with Christians.

Personally I'd be willing to live and let live with Christians. But that works two ways. If my beliefs don't control the actions and beliefs of monotheists, then theirs don't control mine. That means that the law must treat every faith (and even no faith) equally. Neither help nor hinder. No special consideration or privilege. But at the same time, some Christians act as if their religion must be raised above all others, even by those who do not practice it. Freedom of religion does not mean putting Christianity first. It means choice, even if that choice is one you do not agree with.
— NeoWayland
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NeoNote — Unstable people (and not who you think)

Now, see, I was going to make nice here and just touch on the subject.

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You see, I've done this before.

You see, I've done this before. When True Believer Christians told me I was damned and a mortal threat to their children. When conservatives told me that only one way could save the country and anything else threatened their children. When progressives told me that capitalism and individualism were dead and should stay that way for the sake of the children. When well-fed third wave feminists in designer clothes told me about how they were oppressed by the patriarchy and wouldn't have children. When pagans lectured me on the evils of monotheism and how love would save the world. Always, always, ALWAYS the pattern is exactly the same. In the absence of understanding, triviality dominates. The enlightened demand sacrifice from everyone else. "For the children" is for those living and in charge. Anyone who offers an absolute won't brook dissent. Experts are uniquely qualified to fuck the situation up beyond any hope of repair. Government is not your friend.

So you have a chance here to change your behavior, change your pattern and accept responsibility. Your choice.
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❝All religions are not equal…❞

All religions are not equal, not because of their doctrine or sacred writings but because individuals chose to make it better. For example, for centuries the Bible was literally considered the how-to guide for making slavery practical. And not just among Christians.

The writings didn't change.

As a libertarian, I oppose government sponsored foreign aid. For what it's worth, I oppose government sponsored domestic aid for obvious reasons.
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The Gods Do Not Vote

The Gods Do Not Vote, So Why Are You Asking Them?

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NeoNote - No news source is going to be unbiased

Everybody has a narrative they believe in and everybody is the hero of their own story.

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NeoNote — Dualistic viewpoint

I'm not something less, I'm something else.

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It's only shame if I accept the premise.

It's only shame if I accept the premise.

As I see it, the vice or virtue isn't in the label. It's in how you touch the lives of others. The honor is in giving truth when needed, helping when you can, and leaving the World a little better than how you found it.
     — NeoWayland, comments from Column: What of the Christians?
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NeoNote — Demonizing the press

When the press shows that it can't be trusted with even some truths, why should the press be trusted?

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NeoNote — Religion & government

It may be a religion, but if it relies on force, any and all opposition is justified.

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from crux № 12 — climate change

Climate change" is losing it's credibility with the public, and it's dragging the environmental movement down with it.

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from crux № 17 — spiritual warrior

All I am saying is that you should check your experience with others who have a different perspective, people you can talk with face to face.

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NeoNotes - Real religion

Christians are much nicer when they aren't the only game around.

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Politics corrupts faith

We know politics corrupts faith and religion. We've ample evidence what happens when the People of the Book try it.
     — NeoWayland
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Good person

Sometimes I ask Christians if someone can be a good person without being Christian.
     — NeoWayland
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NeoNotes —Somebody finally said the C word

And that means I can say not all Christians.

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Core of Christianity

Exclusivity is not the core of Christianity. How Christians live their life is. That shows in how they touch the lives of others.
     — NeoWayland
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Nicer

Christians are a lot nicer to be around when everyone else doesn't have to defer to them. “One path among many” means Christians usually pay attention to what others say. It means Christians have to defend what they say and do without hiding behind scripture.
     — NeoWayland
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A god of love

Personally I prefer Christians when they aren't spouting hellfire in the name of a god of love.
     — NeoWayland
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from crux № 8 — rights & revised history

This brand of revisionism uses hard confrontation with constantly escalating stakes. You can't win against it by being loud, that just makes you the closest and biggest target.

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NeoNotes — the Johnson amendment

As I said, the tax exempt status is a "devil's trade" intended in large part to silence churches.

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from crux № 13 — Competiton

Competition drives the free market…

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NeoNotes — Parity is the keystone

If I don't share your faith, I shouldn't be bound by it. If you don't share my faith, you shouldn't be bound by it.

This is parity. It can be derived from what Christians call the Golden Rule. It's also called the Ethic of Reciprocity and is arguably the keystone of Western Civilization besides being found in nearly every culture on Earth. Behavioral studies show that a rudimentary form exists in higher mammals. Fair is fair.

One of my "party tricks" is showing that you can build an entire moral, ethical, and legal system based on nothing but the Ethic of Reciprocity. No "Higher Law." No use of force except in defense. No one faith and no one group raised above all others never to be questioned.

Just treating each other as we would want to be treated. Nothing more, nothing less. Live and let live.

NeoNotes are the selected comments that I made on other boards, in email, or in response to articles where I could not respond directly.

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NeoNotes — Marriage revisted

That is when marriage ceased to be religion and control shifted to the state.

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from crux № 19 — Free market

It constantly amazes me that the defenders of the free market are expected to offer certainty and perfection while government has only to make promises and express good intentions.
     — Lawrence W. Reed

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NeoNotes — Religion enshrined in law

Why should any religion be enshrined in law? Raised above all others as THE Moral Standard?

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from crux № 11 — Ultimate truth

I've seen the arguments in enough other contexts to distrust anyone who claims rationality prevents any opposing view. Even more so when they dismiss any other possibility unheard because they have the Ultimate Truth That Must Not Be Questioned.
     — NeoWayland
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NeoNotes — government requires

If you didn't choose your morality and if you do not commit to your morality, is it really yours?

Or did it just get sacrificed for the greater good?
     — NeoWayland
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One thing he would not be

If Christ himself were alive, one thing he would not be would be is a Christian.
     — Mark Twain

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NeoNotes — Who gets to call the shots

For length reasons, this entry appears on it's own page.

“Freedom is what matters.”

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from crux № 15 — make it better

“I want a government that is smaller than absolutely necessary.

I believe that people are perfectly capable of making their own choices and that society is the better if people do exactly that.”

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from crux № 10 — the system

We've been taught that government is supposed to govern and control the other guy.

That's the guy who is the problem.

Not us. Never us. It's not our fault.

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NeoNotes — Conversation - updated

“Climate is changing Because it's HUMANITY'S FAULT and WE'RE SCREWING UP THE PLANET!!!!!"

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NeoNotes — Pardon…

It would not honor my faith, and it dishonors the Divine as I perceive it. It would require me to break oaths & promises that are at least as important to me as yours are to you.

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NeoNotes — American Christmas

Christians are nicer people when they aren't the only game in town

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A Pagan looks at the “War Against Christians”

Some people are deliberately confusing the issues to advance their beliefs

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