Thursday, August 28, 2014

The biggest problem with Intelligent Design...

..Is their internet presence.

Seriously, how is it that there's such a big gap between Michael Behe and the sort of people who approvingly quote Michael Behe? I don't see this sort of shit with William Lane Craig, and Craig's arguments are actually subtler.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Can a catholic oppose marriage?

A hypothetical thought.

Man X and woman Y have plans to be married. Obviously, they're in a sexual relationship.

They have no plans of having any children, despite both being capable of having children.

Is it acceptable to advise them not to be married, regardless of their sexual relationship?

Monday, August 18, 2014

Strawman Dialogues: LGBT Drama Edition

A: There you are! What are you doing on the balcony all by yourself? There's a party going on!
B: Hey. Just thinking, really.
A: Uh-oh. I know that look. You're not just thinking, you're -moping-.
B: A bit of both, I suppose.
A: Fine, then. What about?
B: Oh, just... thinking about how funny it all is.
A: How funny what is?
B: Everything. This party, for starters.
A: What's so funny about it? We're celebrating...
B: ..yet another state having judges legalize gay marriage.
A: That's right. That's GREAT news! The country has never been more accepting of gay, lesbian, trans..
B: Yeah, yeah...
A: It's true!
B: ... What does the world think of us?
A: What? That we're gay?
B: Yeah, and?
A: ...That we're... good... decorators?
B: They think we're delicate guys who want to settle down in monogamous bliss and live.. I don't know.. like Ward and June Cleaver, just we're both Ward.
A: So what are you...
B: ..With turtlenecks, lose the tobacco.. Probably adopting some asian boy instead of..
A: Whatever. So what are you saying?
B: How many cocks did you suck last week?
A: ...What does that have to do w...
B: Because I fucked five guys.
A: Well, it was another party.
B: Right. You?
A: I don't know.. three?
B: Oh, slow week?
A: Shut up. What's your point?
B: *laughing* That the country.. no, the whole world.. is celebrating and supporting an image of gay men that's largely fucking fake.
A: It is not, there's...
B: Exceptions. Like there are to any rule. You know better. You know who we know, you know the statistics.
A: But they don't talk about that side of things.
B: Oh, you mean we're safely in the closet? Well thank heavens for that...
A: Ugh, I... ... What about about lesbians?
B: Man, we're already retreating to that one?
A: Well?
B: Which ones are we talking about? The 75% who are obese, or the ones who eventually develop a taste for dick at rates that could have made Exodus International look successful if they took credit for it?
A: Fine! So there's a gulf between the image and the reality. It's still successful!
B: I'm not questioning the success. We're cheering on acceptance, and we aren't even accepted.
A: Well, give it time! The world is becoming more open to..
B: ...and I'm not sure I want us to be.
A: What?
B: You heard me. I don't know if I even want what acceptance would really mean. You know what I want? The freedom to do what I want without being beaten up. But who convinced me I needed safety in a spotlight? When did that become the brass ring?
A: I can't believe you're saying this.
B: Why?
A: Because it's self-hatred!
B: Or maybe it's self-honesty. Or self-doubt. Or even a little bit of wanting a taboo to remain taboo for the sake of breaking it. Maybe it's a lot of things. But most of all... maybe we're wrong. Maybe we're making mistakes. Maybe we need freedom as much as we need a culture that encourages us to be better. Maybe we're helping drag the world down, not lifting it up.
A: This is revolting. It's betrayal, it's sacrificing everything the LGBT community has worked so hard to...
B: Oh, public sanctification of ass to mouth. The victories I'm doubting...
A: You know what? Go to hell. Stay out here and be morose. I'm going back to the party. If you really think that way, maybe you should reconsider even coming to these things anymore!
B: ...Heh, the first sensible thing he's said in a while, and he was being sarcastic...

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Temporal sneering works in both directions

For progressive consideration:

It's possible, though not certain, that some future generations will look upon my views with disgust and contempt. But it's pretty well certain that most past generations would have looked upon your views the same way.

If you're not bothered by the latter, why in the world should I be bothered by the former?

I'll try to appease Augustine, Aristotle and Aquinas' imagined views of me, thank you. What a hypothetical barista thinks of me a hundred years after I'm dead doesn't concern me nearly as much.

Reading lately...

Picked up Ed Feser's Scholastic Metaphysics. Haven't been able to go cover to cover with it, but I look forward to doing so. Ed's really got a way of being able to arm laymen to understand these terms and arguments.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Strawman Dialogues: the worst kinds of Christians

(Loosely adapted from an actual conversation.)

Atheist: Just tell me this. You know that one asshole preacher? The one with the hair and the big, weird teeth?
Theist: You're going to have to narrow it down a little more.
Atheist: Got caught nailing gay prosti...
Theist: Haggard?
Atheist: Yeah, him.
Theist: Yep, an asshole. What about him?
Atheist: You don't really think he believes any of this shit, do you?
Theist: Hrm. I don't suspect so. Not him.
Atheist: See what I mean?
Theist: No, what?
Atheist: Religion is a tool of exploitation! It makes assholes like him rich, while he fools and fleeces his flock!
Theist: I wouldn't say 'religion' does that, but yeah, it certainly does that at times. You think this happens often?
Atheist: I'm sure it does.
Theist: Alright. So you think it gets exploited by hucksters? Guys who don't buy any of it but see the use of it to make themselves rich?
Atheist: Absolutely.
Theist: And I guess politically useful too. You know, gin people up to go to war and sacrifice their lives?
Atheist: Absolutely.
Theist: And of course you think anyone smart enough to pull that often wouldn't buy any of it themselves?
Atheist: Right! How can you not see that?
Theist: Oh, I think the villains are a bit more diverse, and your description is one-sided and unfair. Still, doesn't this bug you?
Atheist: Why would it? I don't believe any of that shit.
Theist: Sure, but you realize what you just told me, right?
Atheist: What?
Theist: The worst kinds of religious people - the assholes who use it to exploit others, enrich themselves, abuse people - are actually atheists, according to you.
Atheist: Well...
Theist: It's one thing for atheists to be responsible for atheist crimes - and those are numerous - but to have them be responsible for religious crimes too? That's some dark comedy there, pal.
Atheist: Maybe I was a bit hasty in thinking Haggard really doesn't--
Theist: Ah, of course...