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The Paradox of Applying the Typical 2nd Amendment Argument to the Dallas Shootings

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posted on Jul, 11 2016 @ 08:25 AM
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a reply to: Gryphon66


A loaded firearm in the hands of a human being represents the awesome power of life and death.

True statement. But I propose an incomplete one. Hear me out on this:

Humans have always held the power of life and death over each other. While firearms are convenient and efficient at killing, they pale in the area of inflicted pain beside less regulatable methods. Burning is extremely painful, for instance, yet it is inconceivable to try and regulate fire.

What I believe that the Founders realized is that humans will always have access to the best weapons known, by definition. This is because, in reality, there is no such thing as a Federal Government. What we call the Federal Government is really just a group of people to whom we have given certain accepted duties and privileges. There is no hand in the government, no finger in the government, capable of pulling a trigger or pressing a launch button, that is not part of a human. No police uniform, no badge, has ever fired a projectile from a barrel. In every case, a human operating as part of a group of humans collectively labelled the Federal Government, has been the one to take action.

That is why, when I see others looking for more regulation, more restriction, more checks, I always wonder why they want to place that power of life and death in the hands of humans who have demonstrated ineptitude, indifference, and intolerance seemingly at every opportunity.

In the cases of the shootings in Baton Rouge and Minnesota, the police department never pulled the trigger. Humans operating within the group called the police department did. The actions of those humans should be investigated thoroughly, as would be expected should any other human have acted the same, and they should be subject to the same rules of conduct, the same penalties for misbehavior, and the same standards as any other human. I think that's really all the people protesting want: equality. Openly investigate the case, present the findings openly, and let the chips fall where they may.

By doing this one simple thing, confidence in the police as a group will be restored, public acceptance of policemen and their privilege will rebound, and the humans in the police department group will be safer. But we don't do that.

Instead, the accused are given a paid vacation (when one is paid for a period while not being required to report to work, that is called a vacation in most occupations and is considered a benefit) while the investigation is performed; the investigation is carried out in total secrecy; details of the investigation are rarely made public, and if they are, they are almost never publicized; and the verdict on whether or not to charge is typically delivered without any supporting facts or reasoning beyond "We have determined..."

Is it any wonder there is mistrust?

From this perspective, I must ask another question for debate: given that we have all met self-absorbed individuals in our lives, is there really such a thing as tyrannical government? Or is that term just a mask to hide the fact that what we are really discussing is tyrannical actions by people, just on a larger scale than we deal with on a normal basis?

And does that change the discussion?

TheRedneck




posted on Jul, 11 2016 @ 10:41 AM
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a reply to: TheRedneck

*nodding vigorously*

Exactly. And further ... knowing that what we call "government" is really more aptly described as "people doing government" we come even closer to my fundamental complaint/issue/"well of despite" with the concept: what kind of person fundamentally wants to regularly exert power-over others?

At least in a formal setting in which that is "your job"? Every day of your life? Eeek.

I realize that people are different, and that there are many (arguably, about 5% of any population) that "naturally" either are in charge, want to be in charge, or (and this smacks of woo to me) has the natal/natural talent for leadership.

I know that there's competition among all of us, constantly. If there's three of us in a room, two are consciously or unconsciously plotting against the one and the one is innately jockeying for position vis-a-vis the other two. We see it on here all the time ... we state our positions, and then we defend them, not just logically or reasonably, but with vigor, anger, sarcasm, connivance, etc.

I would guess that many posters are in the 5% therefore, LOL.

I've had administrative positions my whole adult life in small businesses, having between 10 and 20 people that I supervise. I do it, I have skill at it ... but I don't like it. In my heart, I really just want to be "just another member of the team."

But again, I think I'm atypical in that regard.

To me (and this is a simplification admittedly) it always comes back to the nexus between power-over and the power to harm/defend.

I would be a proponent of "live and let live" until the day I died. For the most part, I don't care what others are doing ... what drugs they use, what they do romantically, what religious beliefs they have or don't have, etc. etc.

I just don't care. Perhaps that makes me anti-social. Perhaps it means I've managed to climb up one tiny microscopic rung of the evolutionary ladder in which I am content with governing myself alone and glad to leave it to others to govern themselves as long as they leave me and mine be.

Except, of course, they don't.

Then, it becomes a idealistic chicken-egg problem ... are people unruly because there are laws, or are there laws because people are unruly.

I absolutely agree with you about the innate human urge to violence. And really, in my own terms, knowing the reality of that (that we ALL have that inside us, or that we all have the potential to burn, pillage, rape, rip faces off, and all the other grants of our primate heritage) to me, the measure of our "civilization" is made in the degree to which we manage (not control) that urge to violence.

Racism is really an urge to violence (at some level) against those that we see as "other." That's why I argue at times that we are all "racist" because we all have that basic instinctual reaction. It is a measure of our character development, in my estimation, as to what degree we manage that innate urge.

Given that fact, along with the fact that "government" is really "other people" rather than some vague, arcane, abstraction ... when we talk about "standing up against a tyrannical government" what we really are saying is that "we are going to dispense violence against those others like us who hold some sort of power over us (or at least we think they do.)"

Understood in those terms, the idealistic nature of many of our arguments can be see for what they clearly are.

IMO.


(sorry for the rambling)


edit on 11-7-2016 by Gryphon66 because: Spelling formatting



posted on Jul, 11 2016 @ 12:51 PM
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If he legitimately felt he was resisting tyranny then yes, the Dallas shooter did have justification for what he was doing.
His actions were exactly what the 2nd amendment was put into place to enable.
Honestly thats not really a question.
The difference between criminals and people revolting to resist illegal government acts is if you win or not.
Washington, Jefferson and Adams would have been Drawn and Quartered if the revolution failed.
You must decide the justification for your cause.
The amendment is in place to safeguard the ability to have that debate. If you have no arms then debating about the justification for a revolt is really not worth it.



posted on Jul, 11 2016 @ 02:35 PM
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originally posted by: Dragoon01
If he legitimately felt he was resisting tyranny then yes, the Dallas shooter did have justification for what he was doing.
His actions were exactly what the 2nd amendment was put into place to enable.
Honestly thats not really a question.
The difference between criminals and people revolting to resist illegal government acts is if you win or not.
Washington, Jefferson and Adams would have been Drawn and Quartered if the revolution failed.
You must decide the justification for your cause.
The amendment is in place to safeguard the ability to have that debate. If you have no arms then debating about the justification for a revolt is really not worth it.



Interesting, so the distinction between murder and patriotism is based on depth of feeling?

And winning of course. One must be on the winning side.

So, does that make the act of heartfelt defense morally relative? I.e. the act in itself is not good or bad, ethical/non-ethical?

I think you're the first to make that argument here in this thread. Congrats.



posted on Jul, 11 2016 @ 06:06 PM
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a reply to: TheRedneck

The problem is the op is trying to link what this murderer did to anyone and everyone who believes in the Second Amendment. The OP directly referenced his belief of how what this murdered believed should not be different from the arguments made by opponents of gun control policies. It's obvious the op is trying to use this tragedy for his belief in gun control/bans.

The belief this murderer had is not the same type of belief as those espoused by most Americans who believe in the right to own and bear arms.

This would be the same thing as saying the goals the NAZIS had were the same as the goals the Allies in the Alliance had during WWI and WWII.


edit on 11-7-2016 by ElectricUniverse because: add and correct comment.



posted on Jul, 11 2016 @ 06:34 PM
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originally posted by: TheRedneck

It has been said that one man's hero is another man's criminal. In the end it usually depends on your perspective.

Take ISIS, for example. I would assume you consider ISIS combatants as terrorists, just as I, along with a huge percentage of Western civilization, do. Yet, to someone raised among ISIS, I would expect them to be considered martyrs or even Freedom Fighters. Which view is correct? It depends on the perspective.
...
TheRedneck


How in the world can anyone think that what ISIS is doing must mean the same for them as people we believe in self defense?...

ISIS is not defending themselves. They are raping, pillaging at will, forcing people to bow to their views or be murdered. That is not the same as people who believe in self protection.

The Dallas murderer was not defending himself, he attacked and murdered officers because of their color, Blue.

The argument the op and you seem to be making is that there is no difference between defending yourself and attacking, raping and pillaging. How is that a concise argument? It defies reason.



posted on Jul, 11 2016 @ 07:51 PM
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Belief in itself is not what makes you actions honorable. It is what your actions do that define whether your beliefs are honorable or have ill intent.



posted on Jul, 11 2016 @ 08:01 PM
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a reply to: ElectricUniverse

The OP has a point, and IMO it is a point that is essential for anyone serious about defending the second amendment.

Suppose the time did come that citizens chose to take up arms to overthrow the government. Who would their primary targets be? I propose it would not be small-time thugs, but rather authority figures: elected officials, appointed officials, and law enforcement.

The Dallas shooter went after law enforcement.

I also propose that citizens taking up arms to revolt would not suddenly turn out en masses as an organized fighting force, but rather would start with a few individuals and spread to others. After all, if the government became so corrupt as to require overthrow, do you not think they would be corrupt enough to quickly squelch any organized revolutionary attempt?

The Dallas shooter was a lone wolf, whose statements indicated to police that he believed there would be others joining him.

The comparisons in this case are valid. Rights, in order to be defined as such, must apply to all individuals whether we as individuals agree with their reasoning or not. If, as many have indeed claimed, the second amendment implies a right to overthrow tyranny, that implication must extend to any individual who sincerely believes they are fighting against tyranny.

I for one do not believe we have an express right to overthrow a tyrannical government. Such a right would require a much more precise definition of what constitutes tyranny than we presently have; othrrwise it is a right to chaos. Instead we have the right to own and bring to bear in self-defense a weapon of our choosing. As long as we have that right, we do not need a right to revolt. Revolts are by definition illegal acts against that being revolted against. An illegal activity cannot be a right, but then again, a revolt does not require legality. A revolt is a last resort to violence, only successful when oppression becomes so great the majority would rather die fighting than continue to live under the oppression.

And the second amendment has nothing to do with goals.

To simplify the thread, I will respond to your next post here as well:

The comparison I made between average Americans and ISIS was not meant to equate, but to compare. Regardless of your (true) point that one is defensive and the other offensive, both believe they are doing "right." I would hazard to say that, in their own mind, every criminal, terrorist, and dictator believed they were in the right. That would apply to Adolph Hitler, Ghengis Khan, Charles Manson, Vladimir Dracule, Tiberius of Rome, William Tecumseh Sherman, and any other horrific example you can think of. They may have been purely evil, mentally deficit, morally bankrupt, but they thought they were doing the right thing.

And absolutely none of what I have just posted invalidates a single syllable of the second amendment.

TheRedneck



posted on Jul, 11 2016 @ 08:27 PM
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a reply to: Gryphon66

We have the aversion to supervision of others in common. I ran a corporation (my own) for ten years. I loved the work, but hated the administrative part. In my mind, if a supervisor has to do much more than assign work, there's a problem with the person taking up his time.

In my work, I have purposely chosen an occupation where the norm is just that: get an assignment and complete it. Little to no supervision required or desired.

Your "rambling" brings up another though which may be germain to the discussion. In essence, I believe at our core we are all animals. The thing which separates us from that, and which therefore makes us human, is the ability to control our base emotions and take action based on thought instead of emotion. Thus, that ability would be the trait which indicates the degree of intelligence and evolution we have attained.

During my college career, one thing stood out to me: the absolute lack of racist actions. I have sat next to some of the most intelligent people I have known, and they were a mix of black, white, asian, and came from about every country I can think of. We talked, studied, researched, and created together, in an atmosphere completely devoid of prejudice.

Contrast that to what I saw when I left the campus, the same thing all of us see every day: the racism, the slurs, the underlayment of suspicion and distrust. It may be minor compared to a few decades ago, but it is still there. And when I looked closely, the greatest contributors were those who also denigrated me for having the unmitigated gall to try and learn.

Intelligence is the antithesis of racism.

TheRedneck



posted on Jul, 11 2016 @ 09:06 PM
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a reply to: TheRedneck

Still not the same argument. The Dallas murderer was fueled by hatred towards people of other colors. He hated whites, and all Americans that wear blue. He frequented and was member of black separatist websites that demanded an incitement to violence. To murder and kill whites and any police officer in sight was his motto. That argument is completely different to those espoused by most Americans who believe in their right to own and bear arms.

No matter how the op tries to spin it. It is fairly obvious his intention was to label Americans who believe in the second amendment as the same type of person as this murderer was, and that is a fallacious argument.

That is the sort of argument that leads to a total ban on citizens being able own and bear arms... That is the sort of argument that leads governments to label anyone and everyone who disagrees with government decisions as "hateful and violent", simply because they disagree with some government decisions...


edit on 11-7-2016 by ElectricUniverse because: add and correct comment.



posted on Jul, 11 2016 @ 09:49 PM
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a reply to: TheRedneck

Agreed, again. A tangential issue, as we can see here, is the ascendancy of blind belief in the last decade, the absolute travesty of living in an absolutist, dichotomous reality. By that I do not, per se, include religious faith, although when that regularly blinds folks to the reality that is right before their eyes, it is the same thing equivalent to a "mental virus."

When you spoke of those you worked beside in college, what would you say was the universal characteristic they shared? Intelligence, perhaps, but what does that mean in practical terms? ... a rapid and expansive memory for details and facts ... sure. But primarily, intellect is the ability to look at the world and clearly interpret what it sees. A scientifically-trained intellect goes even further and applies strict "rules of evidence" to understanding the world around us.

Both change as the data changes, and as the interpretive framework (theory) changes.

Belief never changes. It can't. It either is or isn't. It only persists or it is destroyed. Just as it is impossible for some to understand that those involved with ISIS are not devils but human beings JUST LIKE US who have radically different sets of BELIEFS that bind them just as ours BIND us.

And of course, the ubiquitous NAZIS get tossed into every conversation even obliquely touching guns and gun control. We forget that yesterday's NAZIS are today's GERMANS, one of our strongest allies in NATO for decades. Same people, in come cases, literally.

What's the difference? Belief structure.

For a specific and personal example ... it doesn't matter here how many times I take pains to clarify what I intended in this discussion, there are those who only wish to come in and twist what we are talkinga bout to fit their one-sided, blind agenda.

The Second Amendment is critically important in the sustenance of anything resembling our traditional way of life in this country. However, blind absolutist BELIEF on either side of the issue, unwilling to move and unable to compromise, is what will destroy the Second (and the rest of our Constitution, actually).

A very basic truth from biology pushes forward in my mind: any organism that can't adapt, dies.



posted on Jul, 11 2016 @ 10:22 PM
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originally posted by: Gryphon66
...
For a specific and personal example ... it doesn't matter here how many times I take pains to clarify what I intended in this discussion, there are those who only wish to come in and twist what we are talkinga bout to fit their one-sided, blind agenda.

The Second Amendment is critically important in the sustenance of anything resembling our traditional way of life in this country. However, blind absolutist BELIEF on either side of the issue, unwilling to move and unable to compromise, is what will destroy the Second (and the rest of our Constitution, actually).

A very basic truth from biology pushes forward in my mind: any organism that can't adapt, dies.



Do tell us, why didn't you mention at all the actual beliefs of the Dallas murderer and instead your first response was to try to link what this man did with the belief in the Second Amendment?

Can belief blind some people? sure, but it wasn't a belief in the second amendment that made the Dallas murderer do what he did. It was his belief that he had to murder whites and police officers that made him do what he did.

I would call your argument one sided because it was you who tried to link what the Dallas murderer, Micah Johnson, did with Americans who believe in the second amendment.

For that matter, you just showed I was right and your point was to claim that the second amendment must be "changed so we can evolve and adapt"... That is called "gun control". You just proved my point.


edit on 11-7-2016 by ElectricUniverse because: correct comment.



posted on Jul, 11 2016 @ 10:50 PM
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a reply to: ElectricUniverse


The Dallas murderer was fueled by hatred towards people of other colors. He hated whites, and all Americans that wear blue.


The American Revolution was fueled by hatred of the English monarchy.

Under the English monarchy, people's property was taken without cause, taxes were levied without representation, and Americans were forced to fight in wars they disagreed with.

Under present-day U.S., several black citizens have been killed by white police officers under very suspicious conditions, property is regularly seized before a conviction, and the tax burden is many times what it was in 1776. Under present-day U.S., high-ranking government officials are accused of heinous activities costing American lives and threatening national security and then not indicted... in the same breath that it is indicated anyone else would be indicted.


That argument is completely different to those espoused by most Americans who believe in their right to own and bear arms.

That is not the focus of the thread. Is it different to the view that the Second Amendment exists to allow citizens to overthrow their government if necessary?

I do not claim to know what every proponent of the Second Amendment thinks its primary purpose is. I know what I think: it exists to allow citizens the necessary tools to effectively defend themselves. That defense might be from an animal, a criminal, or from actions of a tyrannical government. That separates my belief from that being considered, since the Dallas shooter was not acting in self-defense; he was the aggressor.

But you and I both know, have both heard claims that under sufficiently heinous conditions the Second Amendment can be used to justify offense as well as defense. That attitude is what is dangerous, for it is likely (according to his own words) the mindset behind the Dallas shooter.


It is fairly obvious his intention was to label Americans who believe in the second amendment as the same type of person as this murderer was, and that is a fallacious argument.

That is not obvious to me.

This entire discussion is predicated not on the validity of the Second Amendment, but on one particular line of thought on the reason behind the Second Amendment. In that context, it is legitimate. The Second Amendment exists; that is a fact. The reason it is a fact is irrelevant to it being a fact, just as the (as yet unknown/unproven) reason gravity exists is irrelevant to the fact objects respond to gravity.

Do you think that if we debated a theory of gravity, the planet would suddenly shoot off into interstellar space?


That is the sort of argument that leads governments to label anyone and everyone who disagrees with government decisions as "hateful and violent", simply because they disagree with some government decisions...

Where have you been? That's already happening, and has been happening for a very long time before this thread started.

That's like me accusing anyone who uses the term "nazi" on ATS of giving Germany the idea to start World War II.

TheRedneck

edit on 7/11/2016 by TheRedneck because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 11 2016 @ 11:19 PM
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a reply to: Gryphon66


When you spoke of those you worked beside in college, what would you say was the universal characteristic they shared?

I would say two characteristics: creativity in application, and the ability to communicate effectively. Strangely enough, language barriers were little more than a minor inconvenience in communication.

"Intelligence" was perhaps a poor choice of words. It is a blanket catch-all that covers so many detailed attributes associated with knowledge and ability.


Belief never changes.

Oh, but it does. Johnson himself proved that. He was ex-military, which meant he once had a desire to fight and risk his life for his country. In Dallas, he demonstrated a hatred for others who serve his country. Somehow, somewhere, his belief changed.

Changing belief can also be a positive. As we learn, we change and adapt to the new information with new thoughts on our beliefs. Our morals may remain intact, but the beliefs based on those morals can adapt.

An example pertinent to our discussion: my moral center says that all people have the right to defend themselves, and to have access to the tools needed to do so. I have always felt that way and probably always will. That is my moral center. I once believed that any change to the Second Amendment was dangerous and could set a precedent to remove it entirely. That belief has changed. I now would support an amendment that clarified the use of "arms" in the Second Amendment to not include items such as nuclear weapons, grenades, warhead missiles, all the way down to fully-automatic firearms. Why? Because such an amendment would make no practical difference in daily life (these devices are regulated anyway, most with reasonable cause) and the amendment would legally confirm that regulation of other weapons is unconstitutional.

I would oppose vehemently any similar amendment that sought to allow regulation of any other weapon. That would violate my moral center.

The morals remain; the belief changes.


The Second Amendment is critically important in the sustenance of anything resembling our traditional way of life in this country.


On this we agree. But on adaptation, I can only partially agree... there is a line beyond which I will fight to the death to maintain the Second Amendment as-is, rather than see it diluted from its original purpose: effective self-defense. Any change must be strictly limited to practically unanimous agreement among the citizenry, as in the case of nuclear weapons.

TheRedneck



posted on Jul, 12 2016 @ 04:24 AM
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a reply to: TheRedneck

Indeed, intellect is a wide measure and has many different applications. I shouldn't have "put words in your mouth" with my definition, I see that yours is just as applicable.

We're going to have to be content to disagree on the nuance of how we see "belief" though. To me, belief is uni-directional; that's why I often refer to it as "blind." It has no ability to change or alter its course. It cannot adapt because the second it truly considers the alternative (or the opposite) might be truth, it ceases to exist (what we sometimes call a "loss of faith" in the religious context).

You very clearly saw the hypothetical at the heart of my scenario in the OP. That is obviously because you engaged your intellect and not your belief. Others, not so much. And indeed that is exactly one of the problems I'm pointing to (as you know).

The Second Amendment (the empowerment of the people with the fundamental ability to defend ourselves, our families, and our communities) is too critically important to us as Americans, to our way of life and our national identity, to allow it to be challenged OR corrupted, and of course, to my mind the absolutists are in the process of corrupting the real meaning. (And perhaps that is my belief, LOL)

We see this in the inflexibility of their arguments about "defending against tyranny." When that is repeated back to them, with the central roles recast with actors modeled on real events, they fundamentally freak out. That's because their position is based in belief ... an inflexible, brittle, uni-directional force that cannot alter, amend or redirect its force.

When we think about what the "standing up to tyranny" might actually look like, we can see, via the intellectual approach, that it could take multiple forms, and further, that we as individuals PROBABLY WON'T UNIVERSALLY AGREE on that form and some will look on these acts as rebellion, or terrorism, or murder, et. al. Some of us will be offended, and turn on the "defenders" ourselves (which is the utter madness of a civil war) ... and the difference there, I argue, will be the difference between intellect and belief.


==========================================================================================================

NOTED AGAIN, FOR THE COMMUNITY: I am a supporter of the Constitution and all of its Amendments, including the Second, both in the letter and the spirit. My OP has little to do with the actual facts of the Dallas shooting, and am I not attempting a factual analysis of same. In my mind, particularly as the facts unfold, I see that the individual in the Dallas shooting had a multitude of issues, and I am by no means excusing, condoning or sympathizing with his murder of those five police personnel.

Anyone who says differently is a blatant coward and an obvious liar.
edit on 12-7-2016 by Gryphon66 because: Noted



posted on Jul, 12 2016 @ 03:03 PM
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a reply to: Gryphon66

Perhaps we don't have to disagree...


To me, belief is uni-directional; that's why I often refer to it as "blind."

Your examples make me think perhaps it is in some situations. That of course brings up the question of what situations?

As I mentioned, racism and intolerance do not exist in technically-oriented (read non-party) universities in my experience. Yet, both do exist in other areas. You specifically mentioned religion as an example of consistent belief systems. Traditional religion in this country is an exercise which requires almost no thought. The book is read, the translation into everyday life is revealed, and everyone smiles and nods their heads (or shouts "Amen!")

At least that has been my experience with much of it.

Now, let me say there is nothing whatsoever wrong with that IMO. Typically the translations are at least made with good intent (WBC notwithstanding). But there is so much more. The words we read today do not have the same meaning they had back when King James commissioned the thing. Newer translations are available, of course, but each layer of translation will introduce error.

What I do is to read the book, then look up what I just read, word for word, in Strong's Exhaustive Concordance. From there I can get the original Hebrew/Greek words used, their chronologically accurate translations,their roots, and their derivations. From that information, I can reconstruct in my language what was said in that language. The differences, while not earth-shaking, are still eye-opening.

That process requires intelligence and curiosity. Listening to the preacher does not. My process causes me to occasionally reshape my beliefs to some degree, as new information is gleaned. Listening to the preacher maintains a steady, stable belief system. So perhaps it is the same mental ability or disability that causes racism to wither and die in universities that also leads beliefs to cement themselves in other, less intellectual arenas?

Just some food for thought.

TheRedneck



posted on Jul, 12 2016 @ 09:06 PM
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originally posted by: Gryphon66
Belief never changes. It can't. It either is or isn't. It only persists or it is destroyed. Just as it is impossible for some to understand that those involved with ISIS are not devils but human beings JUST LIKE US who have radically different sets of BELIEFS that bind them just as ours BIND us.

And of course, the ubiquitous NAZIS get tossed into every conversation even obliquely touching guns and gun control. We forget that yesterday's NAZIS are today's GERMANS, one of our strongest allies in NATO for decades. Same people, in come cases, literally.


Yes, we are all people first. What is interesting about both ISIS and the Nazis are a belief in their supremacy over fellow human beings (ISIS extreme religious views where even a fellow Muslim can be an infidel, NAZIs the Aryan Master race) and this belief as governing ideology. ISIS invades countries to establish a caliphate, the NAZIs gain political victory to rule Germany and then invade other countries to rule with their belief.

The Nazi cult suffered a loss of its ability to govern after the nation of Germany was militarily defeated, but the cultish beliefs of Nazism had to be confronted, forced from the minds and hearts of Germans, and made sure to never be allowed to return. I don't think that people nowadays understand that Jews were understood to be a problem not just in Germany but in many, many other countries. It was, however, the cult of Nazism that infected Germany and then Germany infecting other countries which gave rise to atrocities. And it was not only Jews who suffered these atrocities but anyone either not of the master race or anyone who would not follow the practices and beliefs of the Nazi cult.

Germany and we are allies today, because they no longer subscribe to Nazi beliefs.



posted on Jul, 12 2016 @ 11:51 PM
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a reply to: TheRedneck

That process requires intelligence and curiosity. Listening to the preacher does not. My process causes me to occasionally reshape my beliefs to some degree, as new information is gleaned. Listening to the preacher maintains a steady, stable belief system.
Marshall Mcluhan's scale. A preacher would be on the hot (not a pun on hellfire) side of the scale while the Bible itself would be a cool medium.

The preacher, like TV, provides a full experience, from the instructional aspect to the emotional interpretation. One must absorb it all at the pace which the preacher dictates or the message is lost. There is little room for personal cognitive activity because, if he's doing it right, you don't have a chance to think about what he's saying, it just gets pumped into you.

The Book, on the other hand, provides a stimulus for self analysis and introspection. At a pace determined by the reader.

Interesting, but the 2nd amendment? How about Section 8 of article 1 and what it says about the militia mentioned in the 2nd? Is this applicable to the OP?

edit on 7/13/2016 by Phage because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 13 2016 @ 04:48 AM
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a reply to: TheRedneck

Redneck, I've given myself time to ponder your thoughts ... as there are several "points of departure" there for me, LOL.

So many words for what we're discussing ... belief, knowledge, viewpoint, understanding ... when I was very young I was an avid Christian. Your description of your approach reminded me of what I used to do ... particularly using Strong's to look up individual words. Of course, my tendency to question the accuracy of others' statements didn't begin with my tenure at ATS, so you can imagine how well my "well, that word actually means _________ in the original MS" went over with the fundamentalist preachers of my youth in rural Georgia, LOL.

In my terms of comprehension though, what you are speaking of is not "belief" but rather knowledge or more aptly understanding. I say that again because you describe the process of change in your understandings of things, and change denotes a different quality altogether for me from belief.

Perhaps racism and intolerance have a lower incidence in the fields you mentioned because of wider experience with people, which in turn generates a less dogmatic/ideological/belief-based viewpoint on the world, etc. What I find most characteristic of the "believer" mindset is the tendency to speak in absolutes. Of course, physical reality has some constants that are absolute, but most terms of human existence are not, yet, that belief-based mindset is polluted with intransigent "truisms" or "factoids" that again, can only be true or not-true, on or off, and as those tend to cluster and rely on each other structurally like a complex crystal ... to let go of one would be to destroy the whole mass ... and most, again, absolutely cannot do that or will not do that, REGARDLESS of the facts, evidence, information, etc. some of which can be seen with their very eyes, that contradict, disprove and or negate those beliefs.

I followed the tale of my own religious dragon (belief) to its own end. I can vividly remember the moment that the whole thing collapsed under the weight of experience. For many years, I still pursued all the avenues available ... conventional religions, philosophical systems, fanciful, arcane, fantastical systems, etc. And all of them, for me, resulted in the same thing: when I held the beautiful butterfly wing of belief up to the sun, the barest breeze reduced it to oblivion.

Your mileage will vary, LOL.

When I say things like that, some people think I'm holding myself up as superior to them. And perhaps, at times, in some contexts, that's the way it comes across. I will say that a belief-based world is paradoxical in the amount of energy it consumes, because there are times that I long for that very CERTAIN paradigmatic basis to rely on, because sometimes, when you try to live based only on the facts that can be firmly proven ... the world can seem like a dark, cold and lonely place.

At this point though, I have little choice. Thanks for making me think again, Redneck.

edit on 13-7-2016 by Gryphon66 because: Noted



posted on Jul, 13 2016 @ 05:04 AM
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a reply to: desert

And in my understanding, it's easy to see that at the heart of the ISIS and NAZI movements the primary characteristic was authoritarianism, which thrives in an environment of unbridled belief (whether religious or cultural). A believer can commit atrocities because they are always 110% certain that their belief is the only correct way, and anything else, and anyone else, with a difference or contradictory view is dangerous ... because, again, it threatens the absolute nature of their own beliefs.

Of course, those absolute positions can create a most self-contradictory and even paradoxical viewpoint, which again brings me back to my query in the OP. We saw several of our friends absolutely INCENSED because they thought I was equating the Dallas shooter to a 2nd Amendment zealot. An authoritarian hates the government when they are not in control; every revolutionary is a frustrated policeman.



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