Thursday, April 17, 2008

Warren Jeffs and the FLDS

Some excerpts from Carolyn Jessop's FLDS memoir... Carolyn was born in a polygamist camp in Northern AZ... where she was married-off to a 50 year old when she was 18... and she was one of the lucky ones.

While obviously extreme, this is why people shouldn't foist ANY religion on children. Imagine indocrinating boys in elementry school on how to treat women (as done below) ...
clipped from

Jeffs, who is currently in prison for arranging the marriage of an underage girl, exercised extraordinary control over the community even while Uncle Rulon was still the nominal prophet, and eventually became the prophet himself, when Rulon died in 2003.

Page 195: Some of Carolyn's stepdaughters were married to Jeffs, and she feared his temper. She writes: "One day he brought one of his wives into the [school] auditorium, which was packed with boys. Annette had a long braid that fell past her knees. Warren grabbed the braid and twisted and twisted it until she was on her knees and he was ripping hair from her head. He told the boys that this was how obedient their wives had to be to them."

Pages 216, 223, 231, and 234: As Rulon's deputy, Jeffs banned the color red; movies, television, and the Internet ("except for business purposes"); clothing with "large prints" or plaid; immunizations; and sex not for procreation.

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Intellectual Insurgent said...

People foist religion on children all the time, whether you call it Christianity or democracy. Let's be honest about what religion is.

It is the mythology that guides your life. Fighting to spread democracy is no different than fighting to spread God.

Rick said...

There's a big difference in foisting a belief in democracy on someone and getting them to believe in an ultimate authority in the sky. The devil is literally in the details.

Reason can be used to argue the merits of any social system: for and against... Religion is founded on unknowable premises, that are taken "on faith"...

Big difference in my book

Intellectual Insurgent said...

The devil is not in the details. Foisting is foisting. The only issue is whether you like what's being foisted.

But freedom and foisting are incompatible, no matter what is being foisted.

Rick said...

Come 'on... "Foisting is foisting". Really?

So inculcating a skeptical, inquiring mind in your child is the same as teaching him god created the world 6000 years ago and mankind shouldn't question the truths of the bible?

You can't seriously believe the stuff you are writing...

There are simply some ideas - like subjecting ideas to reason and skepticism - that are healthy... Others are harmful (like promoting dogmatic belief).

Please don't come back with the "who gets to decide" silliness. I'm not advocating 'foisting' any particular dogma unless you want to play word games and call a "belief" in the utility of an open yet skeptical mind "dogmatic". Its the very quality that lets you reject dogmatism -- and it's the only one we've got.

Rick said...

Besides... that's what you are saying when you say "freedom and foisting are incompatible". Implied in that statement is the right of people to decide for themselves. But how do you get them to do it unless you "foist" the idea upon them?

In other words, telling an evangelical christian family that they should allow their children to decide what they want to believe as they grow up would be considered 'foisting' your beliefs on them.

Intellectual Insurgent said...

Come on Rick.

This religious devotion to "reason" is only half the story.

Happiness, sadness and human emotion cannot be understood through reason. There are things that cannot be subjected to the scientific method.

And skepticism is not the province of secular rationalism. Ask people why it is they will strip naked and take whatever pill the doctor says to take and you will find out how much "faith" is behind that as well.

All people have faith - you just poo poo at those who don't have faith in the same things that you find so compelling to follow blindly. You are in the military right? Are troops supposed to second guess the commander? Have a healthy skepticism about the orders? Slaughtering people thousands of miles away because GW said to do so? Sounds like religion to me.

Whatever parents want to raise their kids with is their business. Why is it yours?

If you don't appreciate having other peoples' beliefs rammed down your throat, why do you think they should tolerate having your beliefs rammed down theirs - even if you think yours are so superior because they are based on "reason"?

Rick said...

Why do you say “Happiness, sadness and human emotion cannot be understood through reason.”? What are the grounds for that statement? People have and continue to study the mental and physical underpinning of emotion such as “happy” or “sad”.

And it’s no frigg’n mystery. We KNOW – via research – that having mutual, kind/loving relationships with other human beings tends to make people far happier than having belligerent/hateful relationships with them. We know (empirically) that “giving” tends to make people happier than “receiving” … Researchers understand some of the connections between the exterior world and our mental states… In short, we know A LOT about emotion. To imply its beyond ‘reason’ is not correct. The foundations of human (and animal) emotion are being studied – via the scientific method – as you read this. Do you have another method you think will help us understand emotions foundations? Contemplating life from the confines of a cave perhaps?? Maybe it is better, but I bet you will use data, analysis and reason to determine which is better.

You say I …follow blindly with regard to medical science? You don’t know what you are talking about… Do you know what I do before taking any prescription drug? Councilor you’re leading the witness…

Maybe a lot of people take the edicts of medicine at face value, but at least the DATA is there for people to review. If they want to be convinced solely on the basis of the latest Merc commercial that (as you would say) isn’t my fault – or the fault of the scientific method… That’s consumerism – which you seem to indict along with science and reason.

They are NOT related in the least. Sure, consumerism may throw around scientific terms but that doesn’t indict science or the method. Surely you see the distinction.

Simply put, the scientific method is the best system mankind has come up with for determining ‘truth’ since we’ve been on this planet…. Would you care to posit another system that may work better? If you can, you’re obviously smarter than anyone who has lived to date.

Of course you can throw your hat in with those I disparage: who think you can get to truth by putting your “faith” in some ancient script… some mystical experience… some ‘sage’. I’ll dismiss that out of hand since I can readily disprove ANY NUMBER of their “truths”.

Finally, your argument boils down to a form of the old “by telling me to be tolerant your are being intolerant … because telling me to do ANYTHING is forcing a dogma down my throat” … Well, you can attempt to stand on that rhetorical trick, but it doesn’t change the fact that reason, data and rationality are the best tools we have for uncovering truth… Again, care to posit another method?

If you don't appreciate having other peoples' beliefs rammed down your throat – beliefs/ideas are reflections of the physical world we live in. We base our lives on them… Some are good, some are bad: it’s that simple. I’m not “ramming” anything down anyone’s throat: I’m simply pointing out that the conclusions they’ve come to are NOT CONSISTENT with the world we actually live in… anymore than believing you can walk off a cliff and expect not to fall off.

So unless you have something to back up your rhetoric – well, I think you are piss’ng into the wind.