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View Full Version : Christians. Good, Bad, and Charity



PhinPhan1227
06-23-2007, 01:17 PM
First of all yes. If everyone were an atheist the world would be a better place. Please don't go off on me about values, because I have more of those than a religious person every will. Set aside the fact that God is an impossibility, religion teaches nothing but to look down upon women, and books like the bible are completely full of hate.

It is the job of a doctor to supply these things to patients. It was an item she needed, there is no law that says she can't be given that item. That item should be given to her. It's about womens rights.

If he feels that strongly about it then be a preacher, it is not his job to regulate who can and can't have children, especially when raped.


There's a church near me. After Katrina almost the entire congregation went to NEw Orleans to help with the recovery. Some of those folks were there for more than a week. One guy left his $12k bass boat there with authorities unasked for when he had to go back to work because they were short on boats. Didn't get it back for almost two months. And no, we aren't talking about wealthy people here. Lower middle class for the most part, economically speaking.

Call me crazy, but those folks seem to have some decent values to me. Oh, and for the record, churches housed many, if not most of the refugees, in some cases for months. Darned evil folks those church goers.

And hey, any time you want to discuss the mathematical possibility of God, give me a shout. Atheism is as much a faith as any other religion.

Pagan
06-26-2007, 07:50 AM
There's a church near me. After Katrina almost the entire congregation went to NEw Orleans to help with the recovery. Some of those folks were there for more than a week. One guy left his $12k bass boat there with authorities unasked for when he had to go back to work because they were short on boats. Didn't get it back for almost two months. And no, we aren't talking about wealthy people here. Lower middle class for the most part, economically speaking.

Call me crazy, but those folks seem to have some decent values to me. Oh, and for the record, churches housed many, if not most of the refugees, in some cases for months. Darned evil folks those church goers.
I don't know what prompted this, but it can easily be countered with that church that goes around protesting at soldier's funerals.

Like you've said to me in the past, that's just one example bro. For every good one you bring up, a bad one can be volleyed back at you. I think what he was trying to say is that without religion, none of the religious bull**** would be around. :wink:

finswin56
06-26-2007, 09:38 AM
I don't know what prompted this, but it can easily be countered with that church that goes around protesting at soldier's funerals.

Like you've said to me in the past, that's just one example bro. For every good one you bring up, a bad one can be volleyed back at you. I think what he was trying to say is that without religion, none of the religious bull**** would be around. :wink:

I think that part could only be considered true because it's the bad ones that make the news. There are thousands upon thousands of churches that just go on doing their thing w/o any public recognition. They contribute to their communities and stay under the radar.

I understand the disdain for the "bad" ones, but in no way do they represent an equal share of organized religion.

DrAstroZoom
06-26-2007, 09:46 AM
I think that part could only be considered true because it's the bad ones that make the news. There are thousands upon thousands of churches that just go on doing their thing w/o any public recognition. They contribute to their communities and stay under the radar.

I understand the disdain for the "bad" ones, but in no way do they represent an equal share of organized religion.

Exactly ... churches acting as they should is not newsworthy and are thus niever discussed. Christians acting in an un-Christian manner, on the other hand, are sure to make the news and/or the water cooler.

Pagan
06-26-2007, 10:33 AM
I think that part could only be considered true because it's the bad ones that make the news. There are thousands upon thousands of churches that just go on doing their thing w/o any public recognition. They contribute to their communities and stay under the radar.

I understand the disdain for the "bad" ones, but in no way do they represent an equal share of organized religion.
You are correct, but there are also thousands upon thousands of people who don't belong to any organized religions who contribute to their communities and stay under the radar also.

However, there aren't too many non-religious doctors who turn away patients based on their beliefs, are there?

Phin highlighted Alex saying that he has more values than religious people do, and turned it into "look what this church did". All I'm trying to do is point out that you don't need to belong to any church to do good also, and that not ALL church goers are warm & fuzzy.

Too many times, their beliefs breed intolerance...and that's just fact. Ask any gay man. :wink:

finswin56
06-26-2007, 11:19 AM
You are correct, but there are also thousands upon thousands of people who don't belong to any organized religions who contribute to their communities and stay under the radar also.

However, there aren't too many non-religious doctors who turn away patients based on their beliefs, are there?

Phin highlighted Alex saying that he has more values than religious people do, and turned it into "look what this church did". All I'm trying to do is point out that you don't need to belong to any church to do good also, and that not ALL church goers are warm & fuzzy.

Too many times, their beliefs breed intolerance...and that's just fact. Ask any gay man. :wink:

You're definitely right about most of this, and I will leave it at that. I don't want take this thread any further off course.

Stitches
06-26-2007, 11:30 AM
There's a church near me. After Katrina almost the entire congregation went to NEw Orleans to help with the recovery. Some of those folks were there for more than a week. One guy left his $12k bass boat there with authorities unasked for when he had to go back to work because they were short on boats. Didn't get it back for almost two months. And no, we aren't talking about wealthy people here. Lower middle class for the most part, economically speaking.

Call me crazy, but those folks seem to have some decent values to me. Oh, and for the record, churches housed many, if not most of the refugees, in some cases for months. Darned evil folks those church goers.

And hey, any time you want to discuss the mathematical possibility of God, give me a shout. Atheism is as much a faith as any other religion.

Crazy! :tongue:

PhinPhan1227
06-26-2007, 02:15 PM
I don't know what prompted this, but it can easily be countered with that church that goes around protesting at soldier's funerals.

Like you've said to me in the past, that's just one example bro. For every good one you bring up, a bad one can be volleyed back at you. I think what he was trying to say is that without religion, none of the religious bull**** would be around. :wink:

Riiight. 30 nutjobs are comparable to the millions who do the bulk of charitable good works in America. Come on Pagan. You had litterally hundreds, if not thousands of churches throughout the Gulf and other areas who provided shelter, food, money, and other things to the refugees of Katrina. Are you going to compare that to the TENS of people who are protesting at sodliers funerals? Really?

Stitches
06-26-2007, 02:17 PM
Riiight. 30 nutjobs are comparable to the millions who do the bulk of charitable good works in America. Come on Pagan. You had litterally hundreds, if not thousands of churches throughout the Gulf and other areas who provided shelter, food, money, and other things to the refugees of Katrina. Are you going to compare that to the TENS of people who are protesting at sodliers funerals? Really?

Are you saying Christians are responsible for the bulk of charitable good works in America?

PhinPhan1227
06-26-2007, 02:23 PM
Atheism is the lack of religion;
a- is a prefix for lack of or without.
theis-root for religion.
Combine them to create "without religion or religion-less." So, how is a faithless person without a religion religious? Isn't that like discussing Richard Simmon's or Tom Brady's heterosexuality?


Lol...by your definition I would be considered an atheist by many Christians since I don't hold with much of their religious dogma.

Problem is, you're the only one who defines it that way. Just about everyone else, including the folks who make the dictionaries, define it THIS way...

"a·the·ist /ˈeɪθiɪst/ Pronunciation Key - Show Spelled Pronunciation[ey-thee-ist] Pronunciation Key - Show IPA Pronunciation
–noun a person who denies or disbelieves the existence of a supreme being or beings.

Atheism is a belief system because it states a belief that no god exists. There's no way to prove that assertion. Furthermore, it's not even a scientific assertion since in an infinite universe, simple evolotionary theory would posit that eventually you WOULD get a being who had evolved to what most people would consider a "god-like" state. So not only is it impossible to prove there's no god, it isn't even possible to prove there probably isn't a god.

Now, AGNOSTICISM is rock solid. They don't know whether there is or isn't a god. No way to effectively argue against that stance. But that isn't atheism.

PhinPhan1227
06-26-2007, 02:26 PM
You are correct, but there are also thousands upon thousands of people who don't belong to any organized religions who contribute to their communities and stay under the radar also.

However, there aren't too many non-religious doctors who turn away patients based on their beliefs, are there?

Phin highlighted Alex saying that he has more values than religious people do, and turned it into "look what this church did". All I'm trying to do is point out that you don't need to belong to any church to do good also, and that not ALL church goers are warm & fuzzy.

Too many times, their beliefs breed intolerance...and that's just fact. Ask any gay man. :wink:


According to the study on charity that I just read, most individual charity in America comes from folks who attend church. That's just simple numbers.

I have no problem with the assertion that a person who is without faith can be a perfectly moral person. I have a problem with the assertion that because a person HAS faith, they are less moral than a person who doesn't. That was what Alex said, and that's just not acceptable.

PhinPhan1227
06-26-2007, 02:30 PM
Are you saying Christians are responsible for the bulk of charitable good works in America?


That's actually a rather silly question. The vast majority of Americans are Christians. Therefore, the vast majority of individual charitable acts in America will have been performed by Christians. That's just simple math. But statistics have also shown that people who attend church also donate more money per capita than people who don't. Now, you could certainly explain that as the social impact/pressure of charity which church imparts, rather than some superior moral status, but again, the fact remains that church and charity go hand in hand.

Stitches
06-26-2007, 02:35 PM
That's actually a rather silly question. The vast majority of Americans are Christians. Therefore, the vast majority of individual charitable acts in America will have been performed by Christians. That's just simple math. But statistics have also shown that people who attend church also donate more money per capita than people who don't. Now, you could certainly explain that as the social impact/pressure of charity which church imparts, rather than some superior moral status, but again, the fact remains that church and charity go hand in hand.

That's more what I was looking for, thanks. I didn't mean for it to come off as a silly question, as I was looking for a percentage answer.

And we both know charity can come in more forms than just money. I'm only mentioning it because you mention Christians donate more money per capita. Though I'm sure Christians donate time equally as well as money(at least as well as most others).

ih8brady
06-26-2007, 04:05 PM
Lol...by your definition I would be considered an atheist by many Christians since I don't hold with much of their religious dogma.

Problem is, you're the only one who defines it that way. Just about everyone else, including the folks who make the dictionaries, define it THIS way...

"a·the·ist /ˈeɪθiɪst/ Pronunciation Key - Show Spelled Pronunciation[ey-thee-ist] Pronunciation Key - Show IPA Pronunciation
–noun a person who denies or disbelieves the existence of a supreme being or beings.

Atheism is a belief system because it states a belief that no god exists. There's no way to prove that assertion. Furthermore, it's not even a scientific assertion since in an infinite universe, simple evolotionary theory would posit that eventually you WOULD get a being who had evolved to what most people would consider a "god-like" state. So not only is it impossible to prove there's no god, it isn't even possible to prove there probably isn't a god.

Now, AGNOSTICISM is rock solid. They don't know whether there is or isn't a god. No way to effectively argue against that stance. But that isn't atheism.

By your definition, some animisms or smaller religions without gods are, in fact, not religions. Maybe you are an atheist. Not all atheists claim to believe there is no god, but all atheists reject religion(no such thing as an atheist Shinto practicer). Richard Dawkins says he's "agnostic" on the question of whether gods exists or not, but he's an atheist. In fact, is it ever possible to prove a negative? Questions over Russell's Teapot or forgotten religions can be raised if one wishes to make arguements from ignorance. And, there is a difference between a belief system and a religion.

Pagan
06-26-2007, 04:47 PM
Riiight. 30 nutjobs are comparable to the millions who do the bulk of charitable good works in America. Come on Pagan. You had litterally hundreds, if not thousands of churches throughout the Gulf and other areas who provided shelter, food, money, and other things to the refugees of Katrina. Are you going to compare that to the TENS of people who are protesting at sodliers funerals? Really?
I said that was one example Phin. There are others. I never said ALL of them. You on the other hand are trying to make it sound like they all ARE.

When you get right down to it, and I'm NOT saying that churches are the same as this, The Klan does alot of charitable work too. Should you ignore the bad because of the good they do?

I mean, at the same time some of these churches are doing all this, might they not have priests who are molesting altar boys?

That's the last I'll say on this, the thread is originally about a doctor, not about the Church of Our Lady of Perpetual Motion helping out during a disaster. :wink:

Eshlemon
06-26-2007, 05:21 PM
Everybody should give to charity, it makes you feel good. Scientist told me so:

Brain gets a thrill from charity (http://www.finheaven.com/boardvb2/showthread.php?t=201076)

ckb2001
06-26-2007, 05:27 PM
Atheism is a belief system because it states a belief that no god exists. There's no way to prove that assertion. Furthermore, it's not even a scientific assertion since in an infinite universe, simple evolotionary theory would posit that eventually you WOULD get a being who had evolved to what most people would consider a "god-like" state. So not only is it impossible to prove there's no god, it isn't even possible to prove there probably isn't a god.


Let me just correct something here for accuracy PhinPhan1227. First of all, note that it's not clear whether the universe is infinite or not. So, the very last sentence of yours is false. You CAN prove the probability of God existing is exactly zero (that can actually be done even in an infinite universe, but the point at least right now is that since we don't know the universe is infinite, one can't say science could never provide that kind of probabilistic argument for "God-like" entities). I did that in another thread already, but maybe I should lay the argument out in more detail so I can just refer to it in future debates (that's assuming I don't forget where it is :lol:)


Here's how you can prove the probability God (defined as an omnipotent being - one that can change anything in Nature at will) exists is zero percent.

First, note that the information humans collect is finite - we have only collected finite amounts of data up till now and all data we collect in the future is finite. If with this first assumption you are wondering about whether data that represents an infinite number of possibilities is finite or infinite, then use the common measure of information we call entropy (goes back to Shannon's theorem). That measure of information shows we only collect finite amounts of it.

Second, note that through any set of finite data points an infinite number of distinct mathematical functions can be fitted.

Third, note that the hypothesis an omnipotent God exists is a unique function where God is represented as a catch-all parameter (meaning it's something whose value determines the value of all other variables). Thus, this model consists of a set of variables: "God", x1, x2, x3, ... where the variable "God" determines all others. The important point here is the model is UNIQUE, meaning there can't be two such distinct models! And remember, you can't add relations like x1 = x2*x3 because such relations would limit the ability of the "God" variable to determine such relations.

Fourth, note that since there is only ONE unique model with an omnipotent God, we are looking at the probability God exists as 1/infinity, which is ZERO.

So, yes you can prove the probability God (the kind we are discussing, so an omnipotent one) exists is zero. Of course, that doesn't mean it's not possible, since the probability of choosing any integer from the set of all integers is zero but it is possible.


Anyway, those are some factual corrections. Otherwise, yes the assumption God does not exist is as much a religious belief as the assumption God does exist. But, one CAN calculate the probability of God's existence as zero, and that holds even in an infinite universe, since in an infinite universe whatever evolves can't actually change everything in Nature - it can't change ALL laws of Nature. A proof of that would require Goedel's Incompleteness Theorem where it's basically been shown no axiomatic system can prove all propositions to be either true or false - you need some outside source of information to do that.

Quelonio
06-26-2007, 11:01 PM
the idea of charity organizations is something I have always had issue with, yeah they give money to people, but normally they make more than they give away, so they aren't really things doing stuff out of the goodness of their hearts (some are, most aren't) they are just excuses for reunions and parties... The great cartoonist Quino had a wonderful cartoon about this:

http://www.finheaven.com/images/imported/2007/06/s16-1.gif

for those of you that do not know spanish:

Susanita: Mi soul also hurts when I see poor people, believe me!

Susanita: That's why when we grow up we will join one of those charities that help the poor.

Susanita: And we will organize coctail parties! With chicken and turkey, and pork! and all that!... that way we can get some funds...

Susanita: So we can buy poor people rice and pasta and all that crap that they eat....

Eshlemon
06-27-2007, 12:00 AM
the idea of charity organizations is something I have always had issue with, yeah they give money to people, but normally they make more than they give away, so they aren't really things doing stuff out of the goodness of their hearts (some are, most aren't) they are just excuses for reunions and parties... The great cartoonist Quino had a wonderful cartoon about this:

http://www.finheaven.com/images/imported/2007/06/s16-1.gif

for those of you that do not know spanish:

Susanita: Mi soul also hurts when I see poor people, believe me!

Susanita: That's why when we grow up we will join one of those charities that help the poor.

Susanita: And we will organize coctail parties! With chicken and turkey, and pork! and all that!... that way we can get some funds...

Susanita: So we can buy poor people rice and pasta and all that crap that they eat....

No denying some charites do less good work compared to the fundraising aspects. But I disagree and go with most do, some do not. If your interested in finding out about your charity here's a good rating site...like everything else charities are "buyer beware":

http://www.charitynavigator.org/index.cfm


Which includes stuff like the top 10 Overpaying their For-Profit Fundraisers:


Rank Charity Program Expenses Professional Fundraising Fees
1 Association for Police and Sheriffs 3.4% 91.9%
2 The Committee for Missing Children 11.2% 86.1%
3 American Foundation for Disabled Children 10.5% 84.2%
4 Wishing Well Foundation USA 9.3% 81.0%
5 Disabled Police Officers of America 13.6% 78.9%
6 National Children's Leukemia Foundation 10.2% 73.8%
7 Foundation for Children with Cancer 24.5% 70.6%
8 National Police Defense Foundation 27.4% 67.8%
9 Police Athletic League of New Jersey 22.6% 67.1%
10 American Association of the Deaf-Blind 23.8% 65.4%

http://www.charitynavigator.org/index.cfm/bay/topten.detail/listid/28.htm

Basicly for me, I would never give to charities who's fundraiser side exceed the programs expense...looking for 1-3 ratios at the worst I begin even considering acceptable. If you can't find your charity, contact the charity to find out the balance sheet. If they give you a hard time about asking, most likely it's because there's a good reason for them not wanting you to know.