Abortion of unwanted fetuses is good.
But euthanasia of unwanted dogs is bad.

Reading over my post on animal euthanasia (in the context of the AB 1634 mandatory spay and neuter bill), it occured to me that people might think that when I refered to "the manufacture of new morality" that I was being unduly argumentative.

Having given the matter some thought, I am convinced that if anything, I was understating the case.

Consider these California abortion statistics:

In California, 897,590 of the 7,574,045 women of reproductive age became pregnant in 2000. 59% of these pregnancies resulted in live births and 26% in induced abortions.

[...]

In 2000, 236,060 women obtained abortions in California, producing a rate of 31.2 abortions per 1,000 women of reproductive age.

Compare the above with these California dog euthanasia statistics:

For 2005, 293,142 dogs were "processed". Approximately 39% of the dogs were euthanized, about 20% were reclaimed by their owners, another 30% were adopted, and some 5% were transferred. Along with a smaller percentage of dogs that escaped/stolen or died from other causes.

[...]

California has over 12 million households, and if even 50% of those households have 1 dog, the minimal population would be 6 million dogs. If based on the licensing being approximately 20%, then an estimate of nearly 8 million dogs may be made. From this information with approximately 300,000 dogs entering the shelter system in 2005, this represents roughly 4% of the potential dog population.

The euthanasia rate then is about 2% of the total dog population.

Unless my calculations are wrong, the California abortion rate works out to 3% of the total population of women. Slightly higher than the euthanasia rate for dogs. The similarities in overall numbers also startled me. (Between 6 and 8 million dogs, and approximately 7.5 million women of reproductive age.)

It is not my purpose here to debate the morality of abortion. But it strikes me that under similar logic to that being used by the proponents of AB 1634, the abortion rate could be cited for the proposition that there is a "human overpopulation crisis," and that because it's awful that babies are being killed, all women of reproductive age should therefore be sterilized. This would mean no more unwanted pregnancies, and therefore no more abortions.

Of course, such an argument would be greeted with scorn, because there is no moral comparison between animals and human fetuses.

Right?

Clearly, whether dog euthanasia is a more objectionable practice than the killing of a human fetus is a matter for moralists. Personally, I would not imprison a woman for killing her fetus, as I don't agree with the argument that it's murder. And while I guess a lot of people would disagree with me, I do think killing a fetus is morally more egregious than humanely euthanizing a dog.

Much as I'm trying to stick to logic here (and not settle morality questions), considering that the primary argument in favor of AB 1634 is based on dog euthanasia being immoral, I'm forced to ask a basic question:

How can simple, humane, dog euthanasia be immoral if human abortion is morally acceptable?

Because the fetus does not know it's being killed? (Neither does the dog, so that's not an argument.)

Because the fetuses are killed humanely while dogs are not? (No, actually it's quite the reverse.)

There seems to be a fundamental inconsistency here.

But I guess inconsistency is nothing new where it comes to the manufacture of new morality.

I think I know what Peter Singer would say, but I still think there's a difference between humans and animals.

posted by Eric on 05.04.07 at 06:56 PM










Comments

This bill is for birth control for aninals to prevent over population. I don't think anyone thinks abortion is "good". Wouldn't you rather see people people using birth control than having abortions? Why not look at it from from that point of view. Why kill when you can prevent having to for humans OR animals?

By the way, euthanasia at the shelter is not like euthanasia at the vet. There is a lot of stuggle and the dog imay not know its being killed but he or she is very frightened. While shelter staff tries to be as humane as possible there us usally a struggle involved. Dogs who are taken to the vet to be euthanized are usually very sick and weak. Young, healthy dogs are much harder to euthanize and it is a traumatic experience both for the dog and the shelter worker. I want to invite you to come to the shelter and witness for yourself.

P. Stanfield   ·  May 5, 2007 12:07 AM

Me thinks you have opened a can of worms that will go places we do not want to explore.
Hugh

Hugh   ·  May 5, 2007 8:01 AM

I think that the flaw in your comparison is the use of black-and-white thinking rather than grayscale thinking. That is, you are assuming that a fetus is either a living, valuable creature or it is a worthless piece of tissue. I suggest that the problem becomes much easier when you think of the fetus in percentage terms. The zygote at conception is 0% human; during the course of gestation its humanness increases until it reaches 100% at birth.

This explains why everybody finds late-term abortion objectionable (albeit necessary in some cases). An eight-month fetus is pretty damn close to a human being. On the other hand, many people have no problem with the idea of aborting a one-month zygote -- it's barely visible to the eye. Yes, there are people who insist that it's still human, but my suggestion is that our problems are more easily addressed by thinking in terms of percentage of humanness.

Now, of course, a dog is not a human being, but we still place value on that creature because it is possible to have an emotional relationship with a dog. I propose this as the measure of moral value of a creature: to what extent can a normal person have an emotional relationship with that creature?

We can all agree that we can have some degree of emotional relationship with a dog; for purposes of argument, let's just grab a number out of a hat: 5%. Let's say that the relationship you can have with a dog is 5% as fulfilling as the relationship you can have with a normal friend (let's not get into the really intimate relationships with one's spouse or soul-mate). That's what gives the dog some moral value in our eyes. Killing a dog destroys that ability to relate to others, and we find that objectionable. Think about our values for animals; we seem to place value on them based on how much we think we can have a relationship with them. (This, I think, explains the otherwise irrational outcry over the killing of baby harp seals -- those big brown eyes look so soulful.)

Putting it all together, I can see why I'd be more abhorred by killing a dog than killing a one-month old fetus. There's more human relationship in the former than the latter.

Froblyx   ·  May 5, 2007 11:30 AM

I would also go with a grayscale rather than black and white. But I see it as a matter of competing priorities/rights. Women making their own choices is a priority. Living human babies are a priority. But, the grown females right trumps that of the fetus.
Now, living dogs are a priority. Overpopulation is a priority. Which trumps? Personally, I vote overpopulation. It's kinder, imho, to euthanize them than to lket them starve due to overpopulation. But I suppose I can see where others think the other priority (living dogs) trumps.

On the bright side..Women are worth more than dogs! What a welcome (relatively recent) change in western society ;-)

Stephanie   ·  May 5, 2007 1:20 PM

Froblyx, while I think you may be correct, that's awfully shaky ground on which to build a system of morality.

When I first meet my new neighbor, he has a very high emotional relationship number. After several years of annoying me, it drops to 5%. Can I morally kill him, now?

Basing morality, or much of anything else, on feeling is not a very good idea, despite the current prevelance of it.

mrsizer   ·  May 5, 2007 1:26 PM

"When I first meet my new neighbor, he has a very high emotional relationship number. After several years of annoying me, it drops to 5%. Can I morally kill him, now?"

You misunderstand my meaning. I'm not talking about the QUALITY of the relationship; I'm talking about the CAPACITY to develop a relationship of any kind. A dog has that capacity to some degree. You neighbor has that capacity to a large degree. A zygote does not possess any such capacity.

Froblyx   ·  May 5, 2007 3:15 PM

Froblyx:
Basing a system of morality on feelings is the hallmark of moral relativism. You are judging the worth of another person by their use in making you happy. Could you be more egocentric? You deserve a gold star from the American Public School System! You swallowed your indoctrination well.

Your utilitarian worldview logically leads to abortion and euthanasia of those who are smaller and weaker, when those who are bigger and stronger feel they are inconvenient.

Our founding fathers wrote that we were "endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights, to life...," -inalienable meaning the big and strong have no right to take it away from the little and weak. Imperfect as the founding fathers were in practicing what they preached, they knew that humans have something special from our Creator. Something a dog or a seal does not have. The value of an animal simply does not trump the value of a one month old human embryo. Each one of us lived as human embryos with our same heart beating then as now, before being lucky enough to survive our motherís whims and experience our own birth.

If as you believe, a baby only becomes 100% human at birth, is it 98% human at 8 months gestation? What is the other 2% supposed to be? When that baby is born prematurely at 8 months, say, in your view does that mysterious 2% of his composition instantly convert into humanity when he changes location from living inside his mother to living outside?

And if a person's value is determined by measuring "what extent can a normal person have an emotional relationship with" them, does that mark for death a grouchy old lady with incipient Alzheimer's? At what point in the progression of her dementia (as she has bad days, and good days) has she dipped below 100% human in your surface-level sophisticated but morally bankrupt grayscale worldview? I feel sorry for your family members who may someday get so sick they are incapable of providing you with the emotional relationship you propose to value above a human personís intrinsic value.

Bride of Scenwulf   ·  May 5, 2007 5:58 PM

"You are judging the worth of another person by their use in making you happy."

I repeat:

You misunderstand my meaning. I'm not talking about the QUALITY of the relationship; I'm talking about the CAPACITY to develop a relationship of any kind.

"they [the founding fathers] knew that humans have something special from our Creator. Something a dog or a seal does not have."

We've been talking about moral issues. If you want to talk about the legal issues, that's another discussion I'll be happy to have. But I don't think it appropriate to cite the founding fathers as the ultimate arbiters of moral decisions.

I myself deny your claim that human beings possess some special essence that sets them apart from other animals. Yes, we have all sorts of wonderful capabilities, and yes, we've conquered the world and taken over many ecological niches. But giraffes have longer necks than we do, eagles have better eyesight, cats have better paw-eye coordination, and dogs can run faster. That doesn't make any of them superior either. It just means they're different. If you want to believe that you have a soul, by all means, continue in your belief. I have no desire to assault your spiritual beliefs. Just don't push them onto me as if they're fundamentally true. They aren't. They're just your particular beliefs, nothing more.

"If as you believe, a baby only becomes 100% human at birth, is it 98% human at 8 months gestation? What is the other 2% supposed to be? When that baby is born prematurely at 8 months, say, in your view does that mysterious 2% of his composition instantly convert into humanity when he changes location from living inside his mother to living outside?"

No, what is changing is not the location of the creature but the degree of development. A preemie is less of a human being than a regular newborn. Indeed, we recognize the differences between young and adult in our laws and our customs. A child who commits a crime is treated far more leniently than an adult, because we recognize that the child is not yet fully developed.

This doesn't mean that a child should be denied the protection of the law -- or even a newborn or a fetus. We just have to scale the law to reflect our subjective preferences. We can set a point that determines where the law kicks in to protect a fetus. Indeed, we could set multiple points: at what age a fetus is so poorly developed that the mother can have abortion on demand, at what age the mother must be facing a health issue from bringing the pregnancy to term, at what age the fetus must be defective to permit an abortion, and so forth. We can set a variety of such levels, if we so choose. I realize that there are people who would extend the full panoply of legal protections to the fertilized egg. While I myself consider this ridiculous, I recognize the subjectivity of this issue and the consequent need to make a democratic determination.

Froblyx   ·  May 5, 2007 6:25 PM


"I realize that there are people who would extend the full panoply of legal protections to the fertilized egg. While I myself consider this ridiculous, I recognize the subjectivity of this issue and the consequent need to make a democratic determination."

Ah, Democracy. How we have deified thee!

Working Definition of Democracy:

Two wolves and a sheep deciding what's for dinner.

The reason we have a Republic, and not a Democracy, is that our Constitution recognizes that a Democracy has limits, otherwise it becomes destructive of the lives and welfare of its constituents, just as you blithely recommended.

The reason we cannot "make a democratic determination" in your case is because WE HAVE NO RIGHT. We have a Bill of Rights for the constituents, that is BEYOND the power of the Constitution.

Destroy those exceptions, and you place the bulk of Americans in a State of Nature (i.e. The Jungle), and they will NOT obey the State. They will fight it until it reinstates those protections.

As to the abomination of "partial human beings" see the arguments in the Dredd Scott decision of the Supreme Court, where the infamy of calling slaves only "part human beings" was thrown out. If you start down your road, you wind up with that.
There are no "part human beings".

"A child who commits a crime is treated far more leniently than an adult, because we recognize that the child is not yet fully developed."

Sure we recognize differences between children and adults. But we do that to protect the innocent or inexperienced, not the opposite. Your confused thinking doesn't even let you realize that you are proposing execution for the least developed, standing the logic of the quoted statement on it's head!

"I myself deny your claim that human beings possess some special essence that sets them apart from other animals. But giraffes have longer necks than we do, eagles have better eyesight, cats have better paw-eye coordination, and dogs can run faster. That doesn't make any of them superior either. It just means they're different. If you want to believe that you have a soul, by all means, continue in your belief."

Triumphally dislocated logic. On the one hand you say that animals are not better or worse than we are, only different. But later on you say that fetuses and premies are "less developed" than we are, and therefore can be aborted. (The fact that you can make that decision for them, and not call it murder, implies you are superior, obviously.)

What you don't understand is that absent the concept of the inviolability of human life because of the soul, the only authority left is that of the State. And as the Twentieth Century showed us only too clearly, States that dismissed a God above us all, examples Nazism and Marxism, proceeded to wipe us out in the hundreds of millions. Because of course, we were only animals.

Which is precisely why I have to fight your position tooth and nail. Because you may be an innocuous human being for all I know, but the philosophy you preach is poison, the poison that led straight to the Death Camps and the Gulag.

Scenwulf   ·  May 6, 2007 6:51 PM

"The reason we cannot "make a democratic determination" in your case is because WE HAVE NO RIGHT. We have a Bill of Rights for the constituents, that is BEYOND the power of the Constitution."

Indeed so. However, the Constitution at no point declares a fetus to be a human being. It refers only to "persons", and that term was surely NOT meant to include fetuses, as the Founders could not possibly imagine a fetus surviving outside the womb. Therefore, the Constitution provides no protection for fetuses. If you want to amend the Constitution to expand the definition of "person" to include fetuses, by all means do so. But the Constitution does not provide any textual support for the inclusion of fetuses as persons.

"Destroy those exceptions, and you place the bulk of Americans in a State of Nature (i.e. The Jungle), and they will NOT obey the State. They will fight it until it reinstates those protections."

As I recall, the announcement of the Roe v. Wade decision didn't set off mass rioting, anarchy, murder, and mayhem. Is there any evidence to support this dire prediction?

"If you start down your road, you wind up with that."

This is slippery slope reasoning, which is generally recognized to be invalid.

"On the one hand you say that animals are not better or worse than we are, only different. But later on you say that fetuses and premies are "less developed" than we are, and therefore can be aborted."

The difference here is between characteristics and degrees of development. There is no objective basis to declare that a long neck is better or worse than sharp eyes (except in terms of fitness, I suppose). There is an objective basis to declare that a 6-month old fetus is more developed than a 3-month old fetus. You can measure the difference.

"What you don't understand is that absent the concept of the inviolability of human life because of the soul, the only authority left is that of the State."

Indeed so, and that's why I'm so glad I live in America. Here, the state is the only authority that has power over my life. In countries like Iran, religion has power over people's lives. Some people prefer that. I don't.

"States that dismissed a God above us all, examples Nazism and Marxism, proceeded to wipe us out in the hundreds of millions."

Perhaps some review of history is in order. Hitler was a Catholic. Naziism was most definitely not atheistic. Indeed, Nazi propaganda often played up the dangers of the godless Soviet hordes -- just like you do.

"the philosophy you preach is poison, the poison that led straight to the Death Camps and the Gulag."

Perhaps a closer inspection of the philosophical roots of Naziism and Soviet Communism would serve you well. Atheism had absolutely nothing to do with it.

Froblyx   ·  May 6, 2007 7:58 PM

Froblyx, you spouted nonsense about Hitler et al to the wrong guy...


Bride of Scenwulf   ·  May 7, 2007 2:41 AM

Where do I begin with you?

"Indeed so. However, the Constitution at no point declares a fetus to be a human being. It refers only to "persons", and that term was surely NOT meant to include fetuses, as the Founders could not possibly imagine a fetus surviving outside the womb. Therefore, the Constitution provides no protection for fetuses."

Precisely because a fetus WAS considered a person is why Roe vs Wade had to be passed, to permit the execution of of what was considered INDEED a person, which is why it was illegal to perform an abortion.

"As I recall, the announcement of the Roe v. Wade decision didn't set off mass rioting, anarchy, murder, and mayhem. Is there any evidence to support this dire prediction?"

I didn't say it would. I said an assault on our Bill of Rights would. But it should have. In fact, the law that has permitted a Holocaust of 50 million humans in this country since Roe vs. Wade is the GREATEST indictment of current American society I can think of. What can compare?

"This is slippery slope reasoning, which is generally recognized to be invalid."

Since when? Since you say so? The Pope said back in the 1930's, when the Anglicans accepted it in the Lambeth Conference (and other mainline Proterstants followed shortly), that birth control would lead to an explosion of sexual libertinism, abortions, homosexuality, incest, etc. And it has. He was right. And that's just ONE example.

"Slippery slope" has been proven over and over again. How about Hitler's "slippery slope", was that disproven? Give him an inch, he took a mile. The Ruhr, Austria, Poland, Czechoslovakia... "These are my last territorial demands!"....Yeah, right.
Ask Neville Chamberlain is there's no proof of a "slippery slope."

"The difference here is between characteristics and degrees of development. There is no objective basis to declare that a long neck is better or worse than sharp eyes (except in terms of fitness, I suppose). There is an objective basis to declare that a 6-month old fetus is more developed than a 3-month old fetus. You can measure the difference."

And who says the length of a person is the measure of his/her development? You?
Should we execute dwarves, or even the very short? Frankly, your argumentation is so deficient, you have me on the verge of reporting you to the authorities for mental deficiency. Start praying they aren't atheists. Hard.

"Indeed so, and that's why I'm so glad I live in America. Here, the state is the only authority that has power over my life. In countries like Iran, religion has power over people's lives. Some people prefer that. I don't."

You'd better. Because a State with no master but itself sooner or later will start down the road to genocide, if threatened sufficiently. Only Christianity would stand squarely and say no, as it did in the last World War.

"Perhaps some review of history is in order. Hitler was a Catholic. Naziism was most definitely not atheistic. Indeed, Nazi propaganda often played up the dangers of the godless Soviet hordes -- just like you do."

Which brings me to your colossal ignorance as to the Christianity of Adolf Hitler. Hitler may have been born into a Catholic family, but if you read "The Young Hitler I Knew", by his best pal, he saw it as a threat, a bastardized religion hewn out of Judaism, a weakening influence on German resolve. And there are literally thousands of books that confirm this. Catholic....?
That is malicious, shameful slander.

Hitler was a thoroughgoing atheist, who flirted with Germanic and occult paganism, as a tool, and on occasion blathered about God to the country and the troops for PR purposes. You really need to read a little, you are SO far off track it hurts. He blackmailed the Vatican throughout the war by threatening to liquidate a half million "mischlinge" (mixed Christian-Jewish people). He plotted the kidnapping of the Pope, until Mussolini's brother in law, Count Ciano, tipped off the Vatican.
He massacred the priests of Holland when they spoke openly against the Jewish persecutions, recommending that Catholics in Holland put on yellow Stars of David on their sleeves to thwart the Gestapo. He threatened to massacre any other priest or nun that openly/verbally resisted.

Do yourself a favor and read what Golda Meir (Israeli Prime Minister) said upon the death of Pius XII. Or what the Chief Rabbi of Rome wrote about him.

And then slink away in shame for your comments.

"Perhaps a closer inspection of the philosophical roots of Naziism and Soviet Communism would serve you well. Atheism had absolutely nothing to do with it."

Where would you like to begin? "The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich", by Shirer?
Toland's 3 volume "Adolph Hitler"? Or Joachim Fest's "Hitler"? "The Black Book of Communism" by 8 of Europe's most influential Socialists, who give chapter and verse on how the Communists justified ANYTHING in their long, sordid stain on the 20th Century.

Read them, and then talk about Hitler's
Catholicism and Stalin's Russian Orthodoxy (Yes, I know he considered the seminary as a youth, so what? The Faith isn't responsible for who wraps himself in it's flag. He was an avowed Atheist all his life.) and there being no connection with atheism.

I leave you with this quote from the most important book you need to read to understand this issue, "Catholic Martyrs of the Twentieth Century":

"On July 2, 1937, Joseph Stalin issued an order through the Soviet Politburo to all levels of the Communist Party that all former detainees-- especially kulaks, political prisoners, and religious priests and ministers-- should be arrested or rearrested 'in order to EXECUTE IMMEDIATELY the most harmful elements through admisnistrative steps taken at sessions of the Soviet troikas.'" (quoted in Antoine Wenger, "Catholiques en Russie d'Apres les Archives du KGB, 1920-1960, page 155)

Nikolai Yezhov, Stalin's People's Commissar for Internal Affairs (an Atheist Jew, and head of the KGB) carried out the order, specifying that it should target "Church men to be found in prisons, camps, and labor colonies.

Now, by your logic, Judaism is responsible for this monster's actions.

Good for the goose is good for the gander. One or the other, what will it be?

Is Judaism responsible? After all, 80% of the Menshevik leadership was Jewish, and 45% of Lenin's Politburo was too, including Trotsky, Kamenev, Zinoviev, and two others I can't remember. All Jewish atheists. And so was Marx.

Are the 120 million dead at the hands of this monstrosity to be laid at the feet of Judaism?

I think not.

It is the clinical, cynical creed of atheism that considers us animals, as you said.

And that made the slaughter ALL the easier, didn't it?

Scenwulf   ·  May 7, 2007 2:43 AM

"Precisely because a fetus WAS considered a person is why Roe vs Wade had to be passed,"

Roe v Wade was not a law that was passed, it was a Supreme Court decision in which the court struck down a law banning abortion. The decision includes no determination of the personhood of the fetus; it addresses only the conflict between the state's interests and those of the mother. At no point does it declare a fetus to be a person.

"I said an assault on our Bill of Rights would [touch off mass rioting in the USA]."

There have been many laws and decisions perceived by various groups as assaults on the Bill of Rights. None of these has had such effects. Some evidence is needed to back up this unsubstantiated claim.

""Slippery slope" has been proven over and over again."

An explanation of the role of the slippery slope argument in logic is called for here. The slippery slope argument claims that a currently acceptable condition will inevitably lead to a later unacceptable condition. The slippery slope argument makes no attempt to discredit the present condition; it hinges on the belief that the current condition will inevitably lead to the unacceptable condition. In some cases, that process that leads from the former condition to the latter condition can be explained and justified, in which case the argument is not a slippery slope argument. The term 'slippery slope' applies only to those cases in which the causal process by which the former condition leads to the latter condition is not explained. The slippery slope argument is really just a form of argument by association. The former condition is perceived to be similar to the latter condition, and therefore the two are connected by mere association, not causality. This is why the slippery slope argument is invalid. The way to correct a slippery slope argument is to fill in the causal process by which the former condition leads to the latter condition. This has not been done in the cited case.

"And who says the length of a person is the measure of his/her development? You?"

I don't know of any authority who declares that the length of a person is a measure of development, and I certainly made no such claim. The developmental process is measured by a series of milestones during fetal development, most of which are based on activation of some anatomical subsystem.

"Because a State with no master but itself sooner or later will start down the road to genocide"

The USA has no master but itself. There is nothing in the Constitution making Christianity the master of the American state. The decisions of the democratic process, not a theocratic one, are what control the American government. This information is provided in the very first civics courses.

"Only Christianity would stand squarely and say no, as it did in the last World War."

The passivity of the Pope in the face of strong evidence of the Holocaust belies this claim.

"Which brings me to your colossal ignorance as to the Christianity of Adolf Hitler."

There is a great deal of documentary evidence on this point, not just from Hitler's associates, but from Hitler himself. Here are a few quotes from Mein Kampf:

"Hence today I believe that I am acting in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator: by defending myself against the Jew, I am fighting for the work of the Lord."

"Verily a man cannot serve two masters. And I consider the foundation or destruction of a religion far greater than the foundation or destruction of a state, let alone a party."

"For the political leader the religious doctrines and institutions of his people must always remain inviolable; or else has no right to be in politics, but should become a reformer, if he has what it takes!"

"Certainly we don't have to discuss these matters with the Jews, the most modern inventors of this cultural perfume. Their whole existence is an embodied protest against the aesthetics of the Lord's image."

"...we must pray to the Almighty not to refuse His blessing to this change and not to abandon our people in the times to come."

"How truly wretched was the attitude of pre-War Germany on this one very question! What was done to check the contamination of our youth in big cities? What was done to attack the infection and mammonization of our love life? What was done to combat the resulting syphilization of our people?"

"Parallel to the training of the body a struggle against the poisoning of the soul must begin. Our whole public life today is like a hothouse for sexual ideas and simulations. Just look at the bill of fare served up in our movies, vaudeville and theaters, and you will hardly be able to deny that this is not the right kind of food, particularly for the youth..."

[I offer these two quotes for their ironic mirroring of some of the assertions made in previous posts. It would seem that some Americans think in very much the same terms as Hitler.]

I'll not continue this cavalcade of evidence. It is quite clear that Hitler was religious in thinking and motivation. His religious beliefs were the font of his murderous policies. Had he been an atheist, he certainly would have borne no ill will against Jews.

Moreover, Hitler's barbarism is merely a continuation of previous Christian barbarism. The long bloody history of Christian cruelty towards those who do not believe the correct beliefs is obvious to the most casual observer of history.

As to the root causes of Stalin's behavior, I suggest that an examination of Russian history demonstrates that Stalin was merely continuing a Russian tradition -- and Russia was a devoutly Christian state prior to Stalin. The banishments to Siberia, the callous attitude towards the lives of the Russians, the eagerness to slaughter any and all who opposed the state -- these were long traditions in Russian history. Stalin killed more Russians because there were more Russians for him to kill. It didn't matter whether the state was Christian or atheist -- it was Russian.

"It is the clinical, cynical creed of atheism that considers us animals, as you said."

There is nothing cynical about atheism, nor does the acknowledge of reality reduce the moral imperatives of the atheist. May I suggest that a comparison of the rhetorical styles of the two of us -- in particular, the use of invective -- reveals something about the moral fiber of atheism versus Christianity?

Froblyx   ·  May 7, 2007 11:45 AM

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