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What happens when society rejects a faith-based moral standard?

Massachusetts evangelical college is about to find out

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  • slcdenizen Murray, UT
    July 15, 2014 8:48 a.m.

    Faith-based moral standards? Women are burned with acid and stoned to death under the same "moral" banner in other countries. Why would these 15th century education requests deserve a second thought? Society's train is moving at a steady pace, either jump on or get lost.

  • MaxPower Eagle Mountain, UT
    July 15, 2014 9:18 a.m.

    One can be moral and areligious.

    One can be immoral and religious.

    Some of the worst deeds in history have been done in the name of Faith Based Morals. The Crusdades, The Inquisition, Mountain Meadow Massacre, Waco just to name a few.

    If we simply do unto others as we would have others do unto us (admittedly a New Testament teaching, but not necessarily a faith based moral, just good common sense from the Master) then the ills of society would disappear.

  • Bob A. Bohey Marlborough, MA
    July 15, 2014 9:20 a.m.

    What happens? Absolutely nothing changes. The world keeps on going on as it has since man first walked upright. Period.

  • mhenshaw Leesburg, VA
    July 15, 2014 9:43 a.m.

    >>Why would these 15th century education requests deserve a second thought?

    Because if the government can compel a private religious institution to act contrary to its members' beliefs, then religious freedom--all freedom of belief, in fact--is threatened. You're free to think what you want about others' religious beliefs; but a government that can compel private religious groups to violate their own beliefs could trample anyone's freedoms (including yours) if they ever became unpopular with the majority.

    I don't know whether Gordon College takes public money. If so, it should have to abide by the public nondiscrimination standards. Any group taking money from the public sphere should have to abide by public standards; but an entirely private religious institution, taking no public money, should be free to admit and employ only those who adhere to their teachings.

    >>Some of the worst deeds in history have been done in the name of Faith Based Morals.

    And some have been done in the name of other pursuits and philosophies entirely disconnected from religion. The fact that some religious people act immorally isn't a sound justification for condemning religion writ large.

  • Kindred Mesa, AZ
    July 15, 2014 9:45 a.m.

    Here we have another example (among many) of reasonable religious views being made out as ridiculous by closed-minded media and politicians. From the article, the stance of the school is that they will not hire someone whose activities, not proclivities or identity, are at odds with the school's teachings about living a moral way of life. This position is held by any institution. No business, government entity, or charitable organization would reasonably be expected to hire someone whose activities are in direct opposition to the principles on which the organization is built. It seems there is only a problem when those principles are religious. Most honest people of faith understand that all of us have desires that are not in line with the teachings of their religion. It is whether we act on those desires, not the desires themselves, that makes us moral or amoral.

    By the way, it is ridiculous to point an accusing finger at religion because a tiny fraction of its members perpetrated a crime. These crimes do not condemn religion, they condemn humanity.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    July 15, 2014 10:06 a.m.

    Abandoning faith based moral standards is arguably an improvement. This is evident in the number of religious ortganisations seeking the right to officially endorse bigotry and discrimination.

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    July 15, 2014 10:33 a.m.

    "What happens when society rejects a faith-based moral standard?"
    ______________________________

    My response to this latest emotionally-charged Deseret News leading headline is that a diverse society not under obligation to adhere to moral standards that are faith-based. It is however under obligation to protect all citizens from discriminatory practice. The larger question that begs and answer here is why a president of an evangelical Christian college would sign a letter claiming religious liberty protection from Federal anti-discrimination policy.

  • Jamescmeyer Midwest City, USA, OK
    July 15, 2014 10:38 a.m.

    If God, science, and personal observation all tell me one thing, and people who stopped reading this sentence when I said the word "God" want to try and force me to support otherwise, said people aren't terribly convincing.

  • Furry1993 Ogden, UT
    July 15, 2014 10:59 a.m.

    This has nothing to do with "religious liberty" and everything to do with prejudice, bigotry and discrimination. Truly sad.

  • Furry1993 Ogden, UT
    July 15, 2014 11:15 a.m.

    "What happens when society rejects a faith-based moral standard?" Not a darned thing, either good or bad. Except, of course that religious dogma and practices aren't imposed on people who don't agree with them and/or don't follow them.

  • Kalindra Salt Lake City, Utah
    July 15, 2014 11:17 a.m.

    So, the executive order in question would state that companies that choose to bid for contracts from the Federal Government and get paid by taxpayer money must not discriminate against those taxpayers in their hiring practices.

    If companies want to be allowed to discriminate, they can simply choose not to bid on federal contracts.

    No one is forcing anyone to do anything.

    Those who claim a higher ground based on "faith-based moral standard[s]" should not be seeking super-citizenship and an exclusion from the laws that everyone else is expected to follow.

  • BoringGuy Holladay, UT
    July 15, 2014 11:42 a.m.

    You're welcome to your moral and religious standards. Just please quit trying to impose them on others. A lot of us aren't interested.

  • Nancy L.V. Las Vegas, NV
    July 15, 2014 12:00 p.m.

    If God is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow, what makes us think that Man can go around God's back and legislate morality? The First Amendment says: "... the United States Constitution prohibits the making of any law respecting an establishment of religion, impeding the free exercise of religion." If anything there has been a breach in the “free exercise of religion” or religion is under attack! This leaves religion no other option but to file law suits to exercise what has been legally protected for hundreds of years under the U.S. Constitution!!!

  • mhenshaw Leesburg, VA
    July 15, 2014 12:18 p.m.

    >>You're welcome to your moral and religious standards. Just please quit trying to impose them on others. A lot of us aren't interested.

    That argument is common, pithy, and false. Gordon College isn't forcing a moral standard on anyone; quite the opposite, it's the school's opponents who are trying to impose their moral standard on the school.

    Every BYU grad is familiar with this exact situation -- the same arguments have been hashed and rehashed for decades regarding the BYU Honor Code. If you don't like the Code, don't attend the school. Once you choose to attend and are required to follow the Code, don't complain that someone is forcing a moral standard on you. The obligation to live the standard was the consequence of the choice you to made to be there despite thousands of reasonable alternatives. If the obligation is distasteful, make a different choice.

  • Andrew American Fork, UT
    July 15, 2014 12:52 p.m.

    Not sure how folks think there is no connection between secularization of society and moral decay. Divorce, murder, out of wedlock births, infidelity, violence, drug use, robbery, abortions, incarcerations, property crimes. All of these result from lack of faith in God and keeping the commandments. Each has increased significantly for the last two centuries accelerating since the 1960s. Seems like we need more religion not less religion. Let's not get confused about what is good and what is bad. Sorry if some of you have been wronged by religion in the past or some religious people; but let's not miss the mark on what is really happening.

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    July 15, 2014 12:53 p.m.

    Nancy L.V.,

    “...The First Amendment says: "... the United States Constitution prohibits the making of any law respecting an establishment of religion, impeding the free exercise of religion."
    ______________________________

    You’re being either sloppy or slightly creative in your ‘quotation’ of the First Amendment. Let’s take a look at the precise wording which reads as follows.

    “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof...."

    I take that to mean only what it says. It prohibits a law specifically respecting an ESTABLISHMENT of religion or the free exercise thereof. It says nothing about religion not being bound by the same laws that are applicable to one and all, both the religious and the non-religious.

    The First Amendment was never intended to give religion a special dispensation from the rule of law. But that’s the way it’s being twisted and misrepresented by today’s right wing religious zealots.

  • Kalindra Salt Lake City, Utah
    July 15, 2014 1:19 p.m.

    @ Andrew: Sorry, the facts do not back up your assertion. All those things have actually been decreasing recently.

    @ Nancy: No one is being prohibited from practicing their religion, they are merely being required to be responsible for the consequences of their decisions - including following the laws governing the operation of a business they may choose to have.

  • nonceleb Salt Lake City, UT
    July 15, 2014 1:31 p.m.

    The assumption is that faith-based morality is superior. Asian cultures influenced by Shintoism, Confucianism, Taoism, and Buddhism (all of which do not adhere to a personal, rule-dictating God) have less social violence and crime, and a more orderly society than Christian-based Western Civilizations. These cultures have proven you do not need a belief in a God to be a moral society. In fact the Muslim world, which is God-intoxicated and faith-based morality is enforced with a vengeance, is the most violent, oppressive, and chaotic part of the world. As for those who say we need even more religion, the extremism and intransigence of religious fundamentalism (which is growing faster, while moderate Protestantism is declining) contributes to many turning away from religion altogether. In both religion and secular humanism, moderation is far more effective in fostering a civil society.

  • A Guy With A Brain Enid, OK
    July 15, 2014 1:59 p.m.

    Wow. Based on the majority of these comments, the blind are out in force today.

  • Aurelius maximus Berryville, VA
    July 15, 2014 2:33 p.m.

    @ slcdenizen

    Ever heard of a fallacy because you just used one when you said this :

    "Faith-based moral standards? Women are burned with acid and stoned to death under the same "moral" banner in other countries. Why would these 15th century education requests deserve a second thought? Society's train is moving at a steady pace, either jump on or get lost."

    It is known as : False Analogy: The fallacy of incorrectly comparing one thing to another in order to draw a false conclusion. E.g., "Just like an alley cat needs to prowl, a normal human being can’t be tied down to one single lover."

    Comparing people what people in one religious country to us and what we are doing in our country is ridiculous.

    What I understand from this article is that religious folks are just asking to continue to live the way they have been living according to their faith.

  • AerilusMaximus Berryville, VA
    July 15, 2014 2:39 p.m.

    @Maxpower
    "Some of the worst deeds in history have been done in the name of Faith Based Morals. The Crusdades, The Inquisition, Mountain Meadow Massacre, Waco just to name a few."

    Plenty of bad deeds happen daily and have nothing to do with faith at all. Thousands of abortions daily, nutrient deficient foods that cause cancer, nuclear bombs that killed thousands upon thousands in Japan during WWII, just to name a few.

    Science has plenty of the blame to share for the problems of the world. In today world it probably has more especially in the past century leading up to today.

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    July 15, 2014 3:22 p.m.

    Aurelius maximus,

    "....What I understand from this article is that religious folks are just asking to continue to live the way they have been living according to their faith."
    ______________________________

    If what they want is to follow their religious beliefs, I’m behind them 100% as their vocal ally. But if they want to cite the First Amendment as their loophole from compliance with the law, they’ll have to look elsewhere for support. For that, they might fare better if they try the U.S. Supreme Court.

  • mhenshaw Leesburg, VA
    July 15, 2014 4:06 p.m.

    >>The First Amendment was never intended to give religion a special dispensation from the rule of law.

    First, you're taking an extreme interpretation of the argument -- no one is saying that religions should be immune from the rule of law. That's a straw man.

    Second, I think you're ignoring the clause that says, "...or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..." The First Amendment was very much intended to prevent government from compelling people to engage in practices that violated their beliefs and consciences. Of course it has limits, and the Supreme Court has ruled accordingly; no right is absolute. But the Founders clearly intended for people and churches to have very wide latitude in how they practice their beliefs. Any government interference must have an extraordinarily justification.

  • Frozen Fractals Salt Lake City, UT
    July 15, 2014 4:14 p.m.

    @Kindred
    "will not hire someone whose activities, not proclivities or identity, are at odds with the school's teachings about living a moral way of life."

    It is about proclivities or identity because the "activities" they're against is anything that would show what the proclivities/identity of that person are. Their desired policy is simple: conceal, don't feel, don't let them know; make one wrong move and you're fired.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    July 15, 2014 7:56 p.m.

    Max Power (and anyone else claiming religion has claimed the most lives)

    Sorry. But Stalin, Mao, Hitler (who had an interest in the occult but was not religious), and Pol Pot outstrip the competition.

  • A Quaker Brooklyn, NY
    July 16, 2014 12:38 a.m.

    I'll ask this question again. Whose faith? Mine? Yours? The Pope's? The Orthodox Jewish Rabbinate's? The ISIS Caliphate's? The Australian Aborigines'? The former cannibals of New Guinea? Catholics? Lutherans? Methodists? Presbyterians? Eastern Orthodox? Seventh Day Adventists? Episcopalians? Buddhists? Hindus? WHOSE faith?

    Count the number of different churches and houses of worship in any decent-sized town. Is it not clear to you that "people of faith" cannot agree on what that faith should be, or how it should be practiced? The history of Christianity alone is rife with schisms, some of them violent, most of them upsetting. Early members of my denomination were hung at the gallows for heresy, not in Teheran, but right here in America by Christian government officials. (Look up Boston Martyrs.)

    One of the reasons we have so many faiths expressed in the USA is our religious freedom, and the key to that freedom is that no one may be compelled to hew to any particular faith. We do that by not enshrining any into law, yet allowing all to coexist.

  • Bob K Davis, CA
    July 16, 2014 1:53 a.m.

    If the school said that they will not hire anyone having sex outside marriage, OK, maybe.

    But then, the school discriminates if it won't hire legally married Gay people.
    And, of course, no one really goes on a witch hunt to find whether a straight employee is having unmarried or adulterous sex, barring flagrancy
    --- while they will assume the "sinner" Gay employee will have unmarried sex.

    I agree that they should not have people giving religious instruction who do not follow the codes of their church -- but cafeteria workers, gardeners, secretaries?

    And where in the world do they recruit straight women gym teachers and straight male choir and show directors? Fantasyland?

  • sharrona layton, UT
    July 16, 2014 7:32 a.m.

    RE; A Quaker, Whose faith?

    The “PALE” of Christianity. The Manhattan Declaration: (united in the belief of the Triune God), Orthodox, Catholic, and Evangelical Christian leaders support "the sanctity of life, traditional marriage, and religious liberty", signed by more than 150 American religious leaders.

    The sanctity of human life, the dignity of marriage as a union of husband and wife and the freedom of conscience and religion are foundational principles of justice and the common good, we are compelled by our Christian faith to speak and act in their defense. In this declaration we affirm: 1) the profound, inherent, and equal dignity of every human being as a creature fashioned in the very image of God, possessing inherent rights of equal dignity and life; 2) marriage as a conjugal union of man and woman, ordained by God from the creation, and historically understood by believers and non-believers alike, to be the most basic institution in society and; 3) religious liberty, which is grounded in the character of God, the example of Christ, and the inherent freedom and dignity of human beings created in the divine image.

    @Twin Lights, Don’t you think most Mormons would agree with above?

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    July 16, 2014 8:24 a.m.

    Sharrona,

    Regarding the quote, I would be in support of this.

  • ExTBird Springville, US-UT
    July 16, 2014 9:09 a.m.

    @Twin Lights

    "Religion might of killed countless people...but Atheists have killed more!"

    How sad that the so called "good guys" have to use Stalin/Hitler's body count to hide their own. Religion claims to have the answers to fix society. Religion loves to try and claim the moral high ground in pretty much every debate...ever. Everything religion does it does in the name of God. So the fact that there is even a measurable body count (one that has to be hidden behind Hitler no less *eyeroll*) is enough for many people to stay as far away as possible. From where I am sitting the biggest difference between a Atheist and a Religious person is that the Atheist will at least be honest about why he is killing you.

    Also, do some research into the Nazi party/Hitler that goes beyond 9th grade history. The Nazi party has ties to Christianity, and Hitler himself used the New Testament to try and show that Jesus was Aryan and antisemitic. There was religious reasoning behind the massacres of WW2, it is beyond ignorant to act like religion played no part in what happened to the Jewish people.

  • A Quaker Brooklyn, NY
    July 16, 2014 9:53 a.m.

    @sharrona: Not good enough. 150 signers doesn't begin to scratch the surface of religious diversity. (And, I must tell you, that any list including Gary Bauer, Tony Perkins, and Brian Brown, antigay lobbyists who lead no church but instead make a rich living peddling hate and fear, is not one I'd be proud to see my religious leaders on.)

    There is far more to Christianity than Catholicism, Eastern Orthodox, and Evangelical. You don't get to choose which denominations are Christian or what they must believe. I don't see many mainline Protestant pastoral signatories. As for other religions, that declaration explicitly excludes the beliefs of Jews, Moslems, Hindus and Buddhists, not to mention the traditional Ancestor Worship religions of the Far East.

    There is much faith in America, but it is a diversity of faith. You're welcome to your own beliefs, but so is everyone else. Where acting on your beliefs violates the legal rights of others, that's where we need to draw a line.

  • Eagle78 Salt Lake City, UT
    July 16, 2014 10:24 a.m.

    A Quaker,

    "There is much faith in America, but it is a diversity of faith. You're welcome to your own beliefs, but so is everyone else. Where acting on your beliefs violates the legal rights of others, that's where we need to draw a line."

    Bravo my friend. I support everyone's right to their faith. Just keep it to yourself where it belongs. Do that and we all get along. Try and make the law enforce your beliefs and we run into the problem we are facing now. People will not stand for discrimination just because you try to hide it behind faith. Freedom of Religion is your right. Just like I have the right to be free from your religion.

  • sharrona layton, UT
    July 16, 2014 10:30 a.m.

    RE: ExTBird The Nazi party has ties to Christianity?

    Dietrich Bonhoeffer was a German Lutheran pastor, theologian, anti-Nazi dissident, and key founding member of the Confessing Church. His book,The Cost of Discipleship became a modern classic.

    Bonhoeffer became known for his staunch resistance to the Nazi dictatorship, including vocal opposition to Hitler's euthanasia program and genocidal persecution of the Jews. executed by hanging on April 9, 1945, 3 weeks before Hitler's suicide.

    RE: A Quaker: Good enough for,“The accreditation of an 'evangelical Christian”. The Apostle Paul,

    ”We know that the law is good if one uses it properly. We also know that the law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, for the sexually immoral, for those practicing homosexuality, for slave traders and liars and perjurers—and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine that conforms to the gospel concerning the glory of the blessed God which he entrusted to me.

  • 1978 Salt Lake City, UT
    July 16, 2014 11:02 a.m.

    "What happens when society rejects a faith-based moral standard?"

    Why not ask Nazi Germany, Communist Russia, Communist China etc. How did it work out for them?

  • ExTBird Springville, US-UT
    July 16, 2014 11:27 a.m.

    @Sharrona

    --"Positive Christianity was a movement within Nazi Germany which blended ideas of racial purity and Nazi ideology with elements of Christianity. Hitler included use of the term in Article 24 of the 1920 Nazi Party Platform, stating "the Party represents the standpoint of Positive Christianity"-- Little tidbit from the article.

    While it might of been a abysmal failure, and had plenty of opposition (Confessing Church) the point is that there was a religious, Christian influence. Hitler himself wasn't a fan of religion, but he understood the power it has to control and used it. I know it makes the religious folks uncomfortable, but I didn't start us on this line of commentary. The facts are facts, there was a religious influence surrounding the nightmare that was WW2. So is someone wants to try and compare body counts to prove some childish point you have to at least give credit where it is due.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    July 16, 2014 11:50 a.m.

    ExTBird

    First, the facts are the fact. Non-religious zealots are simply more efficient killing machines. If the issue is that being non-religious is better, the facts do not back it up.

    Second, errant religious zealots have been a problem and have killed folks. No question. Often more in the name of politics identified with religion than specifically in the name of religion only but that does not mean it is not a problem.

    Third, overall religious folks are good guys (not just talking Christianity) who do a lot of good and help their societies.

    Fourth, Hitler may have used a lot of things to further his agenda. But he was not religious and his agenda was not religiously motivated. Whether others who participated use religious dogma to allow them to participate in the slaughter is likely. But of course there were non-Jews who suffered at his hands due to their religion. Let’s be realistic. Most of these madmen are equal opportunity killers. If you don’t go along with them, you can be next.

  • Eagle78 Salt Lake City, UT
    July 16, 2014 12:29 p.m.

    I think everyone here should be careful about what you try to label as "fact". You're both wrong. The details surrounding big events are never as black and white as people try to make them seem. If you try to speak in absolutes all the time you are going to get yourself in to trouble.

    Trying to lay the fault of the Nazi massacre at the feet of Christians is wrong. It is just as wrong though to try and pretend like those events were completely free of religious influence. The "fact" is that there are a lot of contributing events that made WW2 so horrible. Both religious and non-religious. It was only really when you mixed them both together that things turned very ugly.

    If WW2 is a example of anything it is that evil men will do evil things. Doesn't matter if it is for church or state. I do think it is the prime example on why keeping the two separate is so important. Religious zealotry mixed with government/military might goes bad for everyone.

  • Pops NORTH SALT LAKE, UT
    July 16, 2014 8:14 p.m.

    Craig wrote: "If what they want is to follow their religious beliefs, I’m behind them 100% as their vocal ally. But if they want to cite the First Amendment as their loophole from compliance with the law, they’ll have to look elsewhere for support."

    What you're saying is that there's an easy way around any right - all you have to do is pass a law against it, and then those who wish to exercise what was once a freedom are then somehow obligated to obey the new law and abandon their rights simply because the law passed. The real problem is that the law itself violates a fundamental right and should not have been passed, and, failing that, should be struck down.

    Gay marriage is, among other things, a frontal assault on freedom of religion.

  • ExTBird Springville, US-UT
    July 17, 2014 12:31 a.m.

    Religion is, among other things, a frontal assault on logic. People have a right to be free from your religion's prejudice. They are free of it and will remain that way. Slowly, but surely you're losing ground on this fight all over the country. I'm okay with it being viewed as an attack if that is how you want to see it. You have insulted those poor people long enough. It is time the government put you in your place.

    19 states have made it legal, and 9 states have had the ban overturned and are waiting appeal. Only a matter of time before justice actually wins out and this nonsense is stopped from coast to coast.

  • Aurelius maximus Berryville, VA
    July 17, 2014 5:09 a.m.

    @ExTBird

    "Hitler himself wasn't a fan of religion, but he understood the power it has to control and used it. I know it makes the religious folks uncomfortable, but I didn't start us on this line of commentary. The facts are facts, there was a religious influence surrounding the nightmare that was WW2. So is someone wants to try and compare body counts to prove some childish point you have to at least give credit where it is due."

    It is interesting / funny how you think that religiously minded people are always soooo easily manipulated.

    I have heard this line of commentary frequently from atheists.

    I don't think brainwashing is limited to religious people tho. I think brainwashing is the inability to think differently. It steps out of ones normal thought patterns and into another.

    It is common to see a lot of the same thought patterns over and over again on these boards. To me that is an inability to think differently.

    I don't recall anywhere in the scriptures where we are commanded to be close minded. I could be wrong.

  • AerilusMaximus Berryville, VA
    July 17, 2014 5:21 a.m.

    @ nonceleb

    "Asian cultures influenced by Shintoism, Confucianism, Taoism, and Buddhism (all of which do not adhere to a personal, rule-dictating God) have less social violence and crime, and a more orderly society than Christian-based Western Civilizations. These cultures have proven you do not need a belief in a God to be a moral society."

    The key word is "moral". It all depends on what you define as moral is. If moral just consists of not killing each other then you are correct for the most part. I doubt you could say the morality in the United States is the same of these Asian countries.

  • greatbam22 andrews afb, MD
    July 17, 2014 7:15 a.m.

    I find it interesting how many are trying to "cure" the world of religion. The world has already been gradually declining in religious thinking in general from decade to decade. I don't believe it is because of Atheists either.

    The capitalists in this country have already got that covered. Some of the biggest Churches in the US are known as Stadiums. Instead of learning about Christ and loving your neighbor they are learning about sacking the QB and tackling as hard as they can.

    @ ExTBird

    "Religion is, among other things, a frontal assault on logic. People have a right to be free from your religion's prejudice."

    Hmmm...and it is from religion that the ideas such as "thou shalt not kill, thou shalt not steal, etc." were really standardized.

    Granted they might have existed and been thought about but a Religion like a government is what really started enforcing these ideas.

  • ExTBird Springville, US-UT
    July 17, 2014 8:37 a.m.

    @Aurelius maximus

    Religiously minded people are easily manipulated. The faith you have in a greater power isn't the problem. It is the faith you put into your church leaders that puts you at risk more than us dirty heathens. God might be incorruptible, but man sure isn't which is your weak spot. You believe what the prophet/pope/whatever tells you because you believe that he won't lead you astray.

    At the same time you all believe that your specific denomination is the "one true church of God". If that is true then 90% of the religious people in the world have been duped because their religion is wrong. If the Roman Catholic church is the true church then the LDS church is a lie. Joseph Smith was a fraud. If the LDS church is the one true church (which most people here at DN believe) then the Pope as some explaining to do etc. Same goes for every other religion. You all claim to be the "one true church" so the vast majority of religious people are wrong by your line of thinking.

    Easily. Manipulated.

  • Eagle78 Salt Lake City, UT
    July 17, 2014 8:45 a.m.

    "Hmmm...and it is from religion that the ideas such as "thou shalt not kill, thou shalt not steal, etc." were really standardized."

    Unfortunate that he didn't have the time to put "thou shalt not discriminate against people while hiding behind my name" on the list. Maybe that was too long for the tablet. Stupid cosmic stationery!

  • greatbam22 andrews afb, MD
    July 17, 2014 10:50 a.m.

    @ExTbird

    "The faith you have in a greater power isn't the problem."

    LOL really..first time I have heard this before because I have frequently heard this is one of the largest crux of the problem but.....ok.

    "At the same time you all believe that your specific denomination is the "one true church of God".
    If that is true then 90% of the religious people in the world have been duped because their religion is wrong."

    Not really..there is a large difference from going to heaven, going to the celestial kingdom, and then exaltation within the Celestial Kingdom.

    What most Christians believe heaven is is going to live with Jesus (terrestrial).

    I personally believe that if people live according to their specific religion they'll still be given an opportunity to go to the Celestial Kingdom.(still living with Jesus but God too.)

    Just because you go to the Celestial Kingdom does not mean you are "like" God. Exaltation and Eternal Life are two different things.

    We still are the "True" Church of Jesus Christ but others have true in them and will be rewarded accordingly by the Father according to following what they personally believed.

  • TheProudDuck Newport Beach, CA
    July 17, 2014 3:51 p.m.

    Every knee must bow and every tongue confess the dogma that when it comes to sexuality, consent is all that matters.

    Other worldviews must be suppressed with all the force of the Inquisition. That is what passes for "liberalism" these days.

  • TheProudDuck Newport Beach, CA
    July 17, 2014 3:55 p.m.

    "The assumption is that faith-based morality is superior. Asian cultures influenced by Shintoism, Confucianism, Taoism, and Buddhism (all of which do not adhere to a personal, rule-dictating God) have less social violence and crime, and a more orderly society than Christian-based Western Civilizations."

    Read up on what the soldiers of the culture influenced by Shinto did to their fellow beings in 1931-45 and get back to us regarding violence.

    As for "orderly societies," order is (1) a recent innovation in China; the place was the Wild West until living memory; and (2) not necessarily a function of morality, if order is enforced through a hard-line autocracy that will shoot you in the head and bill your family for the bullet if you get an inch out of line.

  • Lilalips Attleboro, MA
    July 17, 2014 8:52 p.m.

    @nonceleb: My brother lived for several years in two Asian cultures working for a multinational company. The treatment of women is much, much worse in Asian cultures in general than in our Western Judeo/Christian founded culture. The rule of law is MUCH stronger in this country too. They tried and tried to bribe him but couldn't do it. It is commonly done there all the time. He also spoke of a violent porn culture there that surprised him greatly because the cultures appeared to be so orderly and peaceful. So we are not perfect. But we should be free to believe and to teach that sin is sin is sin. When we are not free to do that catastrophe of epic proportions is not far behind. Food storage anyone?

  • Pops NORTH SALT LAKE, UT
    July 18, 2014 9:30 a.m.

    "Religion is, among other things, a frontal assault on logic."

    That's not been my experience. Many decades of the study of science, philosophy, and religion, and a sincere effort to live according to God's will, have left me more convinced than ever of the reality of God. God's commandments and teachings are completely logical. When we struggle with that idea it is usually because we humans tend to have a very limited perspective. With a broader perspective, the pieces fall into place and it's a beautiful tapestry of reason and logic.

    Sometimes we struggle because of a personal weakness, of which same sex attraction is an excellent example. The fact that we sometimes struggle, however, doesn't change what is true or moral. When we abandon God's advice and rely on a relativistic moral "standard" (now there's an oxymoron), we're bound to do things that will have regrettable consequences. We will, in fact, reap the whirlwind. That's the nature of the universe we inhabit, and no amount of good intentions or sincerity can ever change it.

  • Pops NORTH SALT LAKE, UT
    July 18, 2014 9:56 a.m.

    "Religiously minded people are easily manipulated."

    I've found the opposite to be true. Religiously minded people - as opposed to those who only pretend to be religious, or those who reject religion - tend to stay true to a fixed standard that has existed for centuries, while those who aren't thoroughly grounded with an an unchanging moral standard tend to go with the flow.

  • Not Asleep Lewiston, UT
    July 18, 2014 12:48 p.m.

    Wow. Some people need to get out and see the world and read some real history books. Religion or faith, though it has some knocks against it, has done more for billions upon billions of simple people and their families, and thus for societies, than any other force or influence. Those who use the examples of other countries and talk about less violence, less crime, more morals-- shame on you for amazing ignorance. You need to go travel-- pick a country, any country. Try starting in South America, then skip over to the East Asia, then try India. I'm sorry, but you are living in a vast mirage of ignorance if you believe practically any of these other countries are "more orderly societies." Try reading "Wild Swans" a history of China as told by a Chinese woman; "Gulag Archepelago" a dark narrative of Russia during the revolution; "The Story of Civilization" by Will Durant will take you on a tour of these wonderful "more orderly societies." After reading, go travel, like I have done. When society rejects faith-based morals, get ready for massive oppression on a scale that should frighten all of us.

  • On the other hand Riverdale, MD
    July 18, 2014 11:03 p.m.

    What happens when faith-based institutions accept federal dollars?