I believe that the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world.
I believe all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of kinship, love and tolerance.
I don't believe in distinction of any kind, such as
- race, colour, ethnicity, nationality
- sex, gender identity
- sexual orientation
- language, culture
- religion, spirituality
- political opinion
- any opinion
- origin (social, national or any other kind)
- age
- weight, size
- looks, beauty or lack of it
- disability or illness, visible or invisible, of mind or body
- property, wealth
- birth
- other status or identity

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

I have been watching Penn and Teller

I love the guys :-)

But - I couldn't watch the 12 steps program. It's not fair to call it a cult, because no-one is forced in to the program, no-one is forced to stay and it doesn't cost anything. Sure, there are rules and certain amount of religiosity involved, and it doesn't work for everyone, but the world is full of people whose lives have been saved by 12 steps. I haven't heard of anyone whose life was harmed or lost to 12 steps movement. Perhaps they presented these people in the show, but I doubt that. I won't watch it.

Gun control... to me it's obvious the 2nd amendment is helplessly outdated. But, sure, let the USonians play with their guns and shoot each other.
What I don't understand is that most of the gun-toters are also Christian - and the kind of Christian who think they are the only RIGHT kind of Christians, who take the Bible as literary truth, demand "intelligent design" is taught in schools and other such crap, but if you quote them some Bible, they will tell you you're evil. :-> "Thou shall not kill", "But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil" and I'm pretty sure it says something about it being better for you to loose your hand than soul and something about rich men getting to heaven, but - I'm not Christian. I've just read the book. Unlike many Christians. ;-) Nevertheless, my point is, that according to how I understand the Greek Scriptures, it would be better for me to get mugged, raped and killed, than loose my soul by trying to kill another human being, how ever bad I judge that human being to be. I will survive any bodily harm and any loss of property, and if I die, I will meet my maker a bit earlier than I expected, but as not a bird falls from sky without God knowing it, why would I die without God's knowledge and acceptance of that? Isn't God the Lord of Life and Death? Isn't life God's gift? There are thousands of miraculous survival stories, people have survived shootings, beatings and stabbings that SHOULD have killed them... So, no, I find the gun-toting Christians to be weak in faith, and trusting more in gun than God, how ever they justify that. Gun might save your life and property, but it won't save your soul. (The fact that I am not Christian doesn't matter at all. You know I'm right. :-D)
I have lived my whole life in countries with very strict gun control laws, and I don't have any need to carry a gun with me. I have been wishing to have a gun so that I could shoot some of these antisemitic idiots around here though. I think it's a good thing I don't have a gun, because even though I don't think the world would loose anything if there was fewer idiots, but because I don't want to go to jail because of idiots. Also, I cannot know if one of these idiots is going to be the forefather of next Mozart :-D I love Mozart :-) (On the other hand, I'm also 100% sure of that even if the supposed forefather dies before he manages to breed, God will find someone else to forefather the next Mozart. I am not fatalist. God has a backup plan for every possible occasion.)

Then comes the endangered species act... We are presented to poor Lindy Mongiove, handicapped woman, who wanted to build herself a home, near her mother, church and community, but - alas - there was a bird living on her property and she isn't allowed to build her a house! O ve! She is currently living with a friend, showers in the backyard, poor woman. All because of a bird and ESA. Now, I have compassion to her, it cannot be easy to live in other's corners, when the only obstacle to own living is a bird, but - even though I think human rights trump the animal rights at any time, that it is more important to save the human species before any other species, that I would save a human in need before an animal in need, I don't think one human's discomfort due to her obstinacy is more important that trying to save endangered species. I also don't think 7 billion people have right to push all the other species off this planet, or say "I am a human so I have the right to live where you are living, because you are just an animal". People really don't need to turn any more wilderness into human habitat.
Why cannot she live with her mother? In the program she was saying she wanted to live near her mother, not her family, so I assume her mother lives alone in a house. Lindy is probably never going to marry and get children, she would be living alone - or with her personal assistant - all her life. She would end with two houses when her mother dies.
I'm sorry, Lindy, but I cannot see how your life was destroyed by ESA. Looks to me it was destroyed by your irrational wish to live in your own house, your stubbornness not to change the plan after it has turned out to be difficult or impossible to follow, and stupidity of not finding out if you may build on the property before purchasing it. I'm sure ESA isn't doing much good, I trust Penn and Teller (in spite of it all), but Lindy isn't a good example of a person whose life was destroyed by ESA.

Laughing at witches, new-age people, tarot readers, feng shui and alternative therapy methods like homeopathy or reflexology is all fine by me, even though I am one of the people they would be laughing at. I believe there is more in the life than what can be observed, measured and tested, but I have no problems with other people believing differently. I start getting "problems", when people find my beliefs "offensive", try to limit my right to believe any BS I want to believe in, try to force me to believe their beliefs, and punish me if I refuse, by getting verbally abusive and so on.

16 comments:

Jeff S. said...

"I have no problems with other people believing differently. I start getting "problems", when people find my beliefs "offensive", try to limit my right to believe any BS I want to believe in, try to force me to believe their beliefs, and punish me if I refuse, by getting verbally abusive and so on."

Just a thought, but saying you want to kill people who have beliefs that are different than yours, or making fun of people or portraying their views as offensive may not be the best way to get your point across here. I'm sympathetic with many of your sentiments, but you can't really say that you'd like to kill them because their beliefs are stupid. As stupid as certain beliefs are, you are basically being verbally abusive because they have a different opinion than you.

It may not be such, but it does come across as hypocritical and sounding like you really do have a problem with people believing differently than you.

Jeff Gedgaud said...

I disagree with your points and opinion. Penn & Teller are right for the most part, the government is ruling from on high with no exceptions except for money. If you have money good things will be yours but if you don't you can be in trouble.

Take the endangered species act and Lindy, she buys land and wants to build a house but can't because of an endangered species supposedly living there. Walmart, who has lots of money, got permission to build in the area but she cannot. What sense does this make to me, none.

Sarel said...

About the twelve steps, I am an alchoholic and drug addict who has been clean for five years. I went to a rehabilitation program who's method is taking responsibilty of your life and your issues, and understanding and addressing your problems using many physiological therapeutic methods. The center is run by a professor of psychology, has 1 social worker for every ten patients and one of the counselors has a degree in criminology. This center is the most popular and successful drug rehabilitation center in Israel.
I have been to AA and NA, I never connected with those places mainly because I am an ex-orthodox jew who is now an atheist/agnostic. I do not believe in god, yet I respect others beliefs.
What Penn & Teller mainly are saying is that Twelve step programs are over-glorified and people are "forced" to go to them by courts. True, they are not forced, you have a choice, jail or rehab, I personally chose rehab because I didn't want to ruin my life more in jail, therefore, I had to stay in the program. But if the only option is a twelve step rehab program, and you are an atheist like me, you're screwed. What they are saying is, it is not the only option, there are many useful programs out there. I believe that it is not the program (AA, NA, or even the one that I did) that cures you, it is your choice to change your life and do something about it.
Watch the episode, then judge it.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps it is your belief in those "BS things" that so easily helps you miss the point P&T make entirely.

-- 12-Step Programs --
You say that you couldn't watch the episode about 12-step programs and go on to say that no one is forced in to the program. If you actually watched the episode you would have realized that people ARE FORCED to attend 12-step programs. Whether it be court ordered (thankfully this is diminishing) or employer mandated, people are forced to attend them.

While not like a cult in the traditional sense there are many similarities between the two. The 12-step program mentality makes NO attempt what-so-ever to address the underlying behavior that led to the addiction. Instead, people are told they are not responsible for their behavior and that they are powerless to stop it. This is not the right mentality someone who is trying to beat an addiction should have. On top of all that, their methods have remained rigid over 70 years instead of changing as further evidence comes out.

Relapse rates among 12-steppers is over 80% and the programs are generally seen as a failure by those who attend them.

-- 2'nd Amendment --
You claim the 2'nd amendment to the constitution is "helplessly outdated", and that most gun owners are christian and right-wing nut jobs. The failure of logic in that one is basic.

What happens when we deem an amendment to the constitution as outdated? We vote to repeal it. What we don't do is go around making impossible to understand laws restricting the rights granted by the amendment. Passing all these feel-good gun control laws is akin to passing a law that says Christians can only read certain parts of the bible. You either repeal the whole amendment in a court of law or leave it alone.

I think you get the idea that it's the criminals who kill other people and not the law abiding citizen, so I won't bother with that whole spiel. The 2'nd amendment is not only there for protection of liberty but for protection of the whole country. Many leaders in war time have thought about invading the US mainland. One of the greatest obstacles they would have had to overcome is an armed populace, and they knew it.

The forefathers of our country deemed this idea so important that they placed it above the right to due process and warrant-less searches. If you want to see it gone, start a movement to repeal it.

-- Endangered Species Act --
Again, you miss the entire point of the episode here. You say that you "don't think her discomfort is more important than trying to save an endangered species". First of all, her rights as a human should trump that of an animal. This also includes her right to security and comfort, not just the most basic of human needs. The example of the Walmart in that episode is all you need to refute that. Instead of the government taking a closer look at her surroundings, they simply write her off. In reality, building her home on that piece of property would not further contribute to the decline of the Florida Scrub Jay.

Ketutar said...

I didn't notice earlier that someone commented, and I apologize for not responding earlier.

Jeff S,
"saying you want to kill people who have beliefs that are different than yours... ...may not be the best way to get your point across here".

Where have I said that I want to kill people whose beliefs are different than mine? I don't recognize that attitude, and I'm pretty sure I have never said anything like it anywhere. You might have misunderstood my sometimes a bit fuzzy way of expressing myself or my lacking knowledge of English.

Ketutar said...

Jeff G. Ok. Thank you for commenting.

Ketutar said...

Sarel, as I said, 12 steps doesn't work for everyone, and you are right, it's not the program that cures you, it's your choice to do something to change your life. I'm glad to hear that you have found something that works for you.

One thing, though. You don't need to believe "the higher power" is anything supernatural or divine. "The higher power" can be the community as well, your group, your friends and other supportive people around you.

Ketutar said...

Anonymous,

Now... I don't know what you are forced to do when you choose to do 12 steps as rehab, but I can't imagine it's worse than needing to go through 90 meetings in 90 days. You don't need to DO anything but sit there and not disturb others, if you so choose, you can sit and think about your own things, and not even listen. No-one can force you to listen.
And, frankly, even if it's a choice between jail or meetings, or your job and meetings, or no job and no meetings, it's still a choice.

"Relapse rates among 12-steppers is over 80% and the programs are generally seen as a failure by those who attend them."

I can think a lot of reasons to this - if it is even true.
One is that 12 step programs are usually run by ordinary people with no specific training, and with ordinary intelligence, so mistakes are made.
Another is that if you feel you are being forced to do something against your will, you will not do a good job.
I don't know who these "those who attend them and see them as a failure" are. I know several people who are active in the program, who think they work. So perhaps "those who attend them" are people who don't want to attend them, but feel forced to do so, or those for whom it doesn't work.

"The 12-step program mentality makes NO attempt what-so-ever to address the underlying behavior that led to the addiction. Instead, people are told they are not responsible for their behavior and that they are powerless to stop it."
I don't know why you think this is true, because it is not. People are told that they are very much responsible for their behavior.

Ketutar said...

I don't mention "right-wing nut jobs" anywhere in my post, neither do I speak of gun owners, but gun toters. So the failure in logic is all yours.

The 2nd amendment is helplessly outdated. I don't expect you to agree, but before you start attacking my logic, you might want to ask why I think that way.

That USA hasn't repealed the 2nd amendment says nothing about whether the law is outdated or not, just that USonians don't think it is. There is a difference, but I don't expect you to understand that.

I doubt it is hard to make laws impossible for you to understand. I'm sure there's a lot of laws impossible for you to understand. Like the Constitution.

Most gun toters I have met, heard, talked with, are Christian and the kind of Christian I describe. Might be there are other kind of gun toters out there, I just haven't met them.

"I think you get the idea that it's the criminals who kill other people and not the law abiding citizen"
All criminals were law abiding citizens before they broke the law. That's the problem with guns. You really can't tell if a "law abiding citizen" is that or is he/she a criminal who just hasn't broken any laws yet...

Are you saying a police killing a person is not law abiding citizen? Or a soldier who kills another person? Or if someone kills another person in "self-defence"? Or are you saying people killed by "law abiding citizens" are not people at all? :-D
Do bother with "that whole spiel".

"Many leaders in war time have thought about invading the US mainland. One of the greatest obstacles they would have had to overcome is an armed populace, and they knew it."
All they have to do is drop some bombs, and they know it. All the guns in USA couldn't stop Pearl Harbor or 9/11.

"The forefathers of our country deemed this idea so important that they placed it above the right to due process and warrant-less searches. If you want to see it gone, start a movement to repeal it."

As far as I know there are movements to repeal it. Some of your countrymen actually understand that you don't live in the 18th century anymore and see that there are other ways of solving problems and keeping the country's sovereignty and liberty, that also keep the gun related crimes and deaths statistic very low. One just needs to look at how others do it. Your logic is like saying "a horse was good enough for The Forefathers, so it's good enough for me! Ban those damned automobiles!" :-D

Of course human rights trump animal rights. But owning a house is not a human right. She has enough security and comfort living with her mother. If not, let her build the necessary changes in her mother's house. She should have checked if it is ok to build on the land before buying it. Being stupid is not an excuse to break the law, how ever stupid you think the law is.

And Walmart - yes, in USA you can buy anything. Like "right" to break the law. If you think this woman should get a house, start a movement to repeal the law. :-D

Anonymous said...

"I couldn't watch the 12 steps program. It's not fair to call it a cult, because no-one is forced in to the program, no-one is forced to stay and it doesn't cost anything."

Joining a cult is a personal choice and cults are usually free to join. You can also probably leave them, but the other members and leaders will not take it kindly. So your argument is false because you are trying to differentiate 12-steps from cults by pointing out their similarities.

One of the several definitions of a cult is as follows:

"A system for the cure of disease based on dogma set forth by its promulgator."

Sounds like a cult to me.

Don't get me wrong, I never take everything P&T say as the absolute truth, even though they are usually right.

Sometimes, I have no idea where they find the losers they present in their shows, especially when they get into alternative stuff.

I know people who do alternative practices, but they still collaborate with physicians and always disclose the limitations of their treatments when working with clients. I would like to see some of those people on the show, but they are hard to find because the idiots are usually the loudest ones.

Anonymous said...

I have never been to your blog, and will probably never come back. However, before I left I wanted to tell you to go fuck yourself.

It has already been pointed out that the 12 step program IS forced upon people. I'm not going to dwell on that because frankly, I don't give a damn.

As for the 2nd amendment, again, fuck off. You don't live here, and you OBVIOUSLY are ignorant as to what goes on over here. I am not a Christian and do not claim any other brand of faith or spiritual bullshit, but I too am familiar with what the bible says. To tell someone that they are "weak in faith" just because they own a gun is ludicrous. Do you even know anyone who owns a gun? Yes, people have guns for protection. A rational person might realize that wanting to protect one's self and one's family is a pretty important thing. My older sister is a Christian AND wants a gun for home protection. Her wanting to keep her children safe doesn't mean she lacks in faith, it means she's not a lazy piece of shit that expects her God to do everything for her. People also have guns for hunting and target shooting. Hunting animals, not people, as you must assume since you decided to quote the bible. People in the bible kill animals all the time. People who kill people would kill them with or without gun laws, and with or without guns. You can't stop the insane by making bullshit laws. You stop them by removing them from society for the protection of everyone else. I'd also like to know how you came up with the idea that most gun toters are Christian. Did you get that from your little TV show, too? Maybe, before writing an exhaustively long rant about the "RIGHT kind of Christians" do a little research. Maybe, oh I don't know, actually know what's going on in another country before creating a misguided opinion on it.

As for your response to whoever Jeff S. is.... "I have been wishing to have a gun so that I could shoot some of these antisemitic idiots around here though." Those are your words, sweetheart. You can't say something like that then try to play stupid when someone decides to call you out on it. If you don't know English well enough to realize when you threaten to kill a group of people, don't use it as the primary language of your blog.

Now for the REAL reason I decided to leave this comment. Lindy is a grown ass woman who wants to live as dignified a life as she can in her current condition. How about I sever part of your spine so you're forced to live in a wheel chair and then tell you to suck it up and go live with your mom. If she's not dead yet, I'm sure she's pretty close to dying. Shit, why do you not live with her now? When she dies you're going to inherit her house. How selfish of you, living somewhere someone without parents could be living. If you actually payed attention to that episode instead of trying (and failing, by the way) to come up with clever things to write about in your blog, you would have seen the neighborhood in which she was trying to build. It is absolutely absurd. It's easy to criticize someone else's decisions when you have never had to experience what they are going through.

I find you extremely hypocritical. You don't want people to be verbally abusive towards you, yet you have the audacity to publicly insult someone on a number of levels without having any sort of background knowledge into her situation (other than what you half listened to on a TV show). You obviously have a problem with people believing differently than you, so take yourself off your self-righteous perch. Perhaps you should just keep your mouth shut and stay in the kitchen where you belong.

Karla Aileron said...

It sounds like you don't have a lot of experience about the things you are talking about. Saying our 2nd Amendment is outdated is ridiculous. They wanted to be able to defend themselves against others. Yup, even today people want to defend themselves. Saying that it makes sense to let the government take away our guns because we can't handle them. Even though you missed the points about how we had been in a Revolution with the British government and our forefathers showed they weren't going to just take it and fight when the Declaration was written is one thing, but how about you look further into time at Hitler and Stalin and their implementation of gun control. Yeah, don't think it worked out too well for their people. Bad people will always be able to get guns and bullets no matter what gun control laws are out there. They don't care about laws, (which is why they are bad people). I don't understand why people don't get that.
Also, with the lady who couldn't move on her property because of the bird, it was very ignorant and incentive what you said about her. She said in the show she wanted to live close to her mother, but not with her. Also, I have worked with people with disabilities and I have known plenty to have relationships. She looks like she has done a lot even with her disability and it means a lot to her to be self-sufficient. Why would you think just telling her to live with her mom was the best solution? Hey, maybe her not wanting to do that might have something to do with her mom having cancer and she doesn't went to make her take care of her on top of her illness? Are you really young or something or have you just never had any life experiences or picked up a book?

Ketutar said...

Anonymous, July 20, 2014

I don't care one bit whether you read or not or come back to take responsibility of your words or not.

I have already addressed that "forced upon people" crap. You obviously don't understand the concept. But, sure, I don't give a damn about that either.

That you live in USA doesn't make you a law specialist.
Also, one can see a situation better when one is not in it. You have obviously a lot of emotions about this issue, which makes you pretty bad at estimating the situation properly.

Your sister should read the Bible better. God clearly states that He will take care of her, but she goes and gets a gun to take care of herself, which means she doesn't trust in God.

Yes, I do know people who own a gun. But that is 100% irrelevant. On the other hand, you don't understand such difficult concepts as relevancy. :-D
Also the rant about hunting and hobby shooting is irrelevant, I wasn't talking about that. I also didn't say anything against owning guns... looks to me someone is jumping into conclusions... and it's not me.

A rational person understands that we live in a civilized society and there are rules, and if you don't live in a civilized society where you can trust your fellow human beings and members of society, then you need to change things. But you are not rational. You are too emotional for that.

Do you think you can stop the insane by making non-bullshit laws? :-D Do you think criminals follow any laws, whether they are bullshit or not? You're really special, aren't you?

No, what I assume is that USonians are human beings of reasonable intelligence, so what is possible for non-USonian, should be possible for a USonian. But maybe I am wrong, and you are all stupid and scared. You are making a very good case for that assumption.

"I'd also like to know how you came up with the idea that most gun toters are Christian."

Actually, I was basing that claim to my personal experience, but just because you asked, I checked my beliefs, and according to statistics collected by among others U.S. Census Bureau, Central Intelligence Agency, Public Religion Research Institute and Pew Research Center I'm right.

"I have been wishing to have a gun so that I could shoot some of these antisemitic idiots around here though" is not the same as "I want to kill people who have beliefs that are different than mine". But according to a study conducted by the U.S. Department of Education and the National Institute of Literacy, 14% of adults in the U.S. can’t read and 21% read below a 5th grade level. Maybe you're one of them.

"You don't want people to be verbally abusive towards you"

Do I say I don't want people to be verbally abusive towards me? No. I said that I get problems when you get verbally abusive towards me because you disagree with me. I have no problems understanding that most people get problems when that happens, nor that sometimes I say things people react on and I have no problems with taking the consequences.

"yet you have the audacity to publicly insult someone on a number of levels"

Oh... like how, actually? :-D

"without having any sort of background knowledge into her situation."

Nope, that's you. "I have never been to your blog, and will probably never come back." (Notice the link...)

"You obviously have a problem with people believing differently than you"

Nope, you're wrong again :-D

"Perhaps you should just keep your mouth shut and stay in the kitchen where you belong."

There are two things in kitchens men like you should be very aware - and vary - of before you send women like me in there... :-D

Ketutar said...

Karla,

I don't know what kind of experience you are referring to, but I know the law and I understand it and its applications.

There is not a word in the 2nd Amendment referring to self-defense. When one knows the history and the history of the people who wrote it, it becomes quite obvious what it means.

My view is also supported by the different trials about this issue.

"They wanted to be able to defend themselves against others."

Actually, no. That was not why the law was written. Which makes it irrelevant that people want to defend themselves. That issue is discussed in other parts of the legislation.

"Saying that it makes sense to let the government take away our guns because we can't handle them."

I don't understand what you are trying to say here.

"but how about you look further into time at Hitler and Stalin and their implementation of gun control"

You really should study your history better.

"Bad people will always be able to get guns and bullets no matter what gun control laws are out there."

Go back and read what I wrote about that. HOW DO YOU KNOW A PERSON IS BAD BEFORE HE/SHE COMMITS A CRIME? I don't understand why people don't get THAT!

Firstly, I don't think you meant "incentive".

Secondly, I stand by my opinion. She should have checked if she may build on the property before purchasing it. She didn't. Everything else is irrelevant.

Thirdly, I am disabled. So perhaps I understand her more than you think I do...

Nevertheless, from my point of view the situation is this: Lindy has to either continue fighting with ESA and I assume we all know that is practically just waste of time and money, or try to sell the property and get a new one (AND THIS TIME GO AND CHECK FIRST IF SHE MAY BUILD ON IT OR NOT BEFORE SHE BUYS IT!), or do nothing.
What ever she decides, she either has to live with her friend or with her mother. I suppose she can choose to live on the street as well, though I don't see that as a viable option.

I don't understand why you assume having your mother as your "room mate" makes you less independent. You make HER MOTHER sound like a some sort of a monster! Controlling and unable to understand that an adult person wants to have an independent life? So horrible that it's WORSE living with her than living in the corners of your friend, where you have to shower in the backyard under a hose like an animal! THAT is the alternative, Karla! Which of these alternatives do YOU think sounds most attractive?

Tell me who would take care of her in her house and why can't this person help her in her mother's house? Does your society assume that the mother takes care of her daughter even when the mother's sick and not capable of doing that?
SERIOUSLY?
SO SERIOUSLY THAT YOU THINK IT'S SELF EVIDENT AND A REASONABLE REASON TO WHY SHE DOESN'T WANT TO SHARE THE HOUSE WITH HER MOTHER?!
AND YOU DON'T EVEN SEEM TO UNDERSTAND HOW WRONG THAT IS!

YOUR SOCIETY STINKS, AND IT'S NOT ESA, SOME BIRD OR ME.

Timer said...

Wishing to live in ones own home by a cancer ridden mother is "irrational?"

hilary l said...

You are an idiot.(That's a period at the end.) So, to recap. You are an idiot. Period.