Thursday, December 13, 2012

Mass Shootings—what the Experts are Missing



A lone gunman entered a crowded mall in Oregon this week, killing two people and wounding a 15-year old girl, before taking his own life. Police said that it seems to be a random rampage. Investigators reported that the killer, Jacob Tyler Roberts, 22, had no significant criminal history. His mother said that she had "no understanding or explanation" for his what he did and that it was "so out of his character." Robert’s Facebook friends said: "I have no words for why his happened,” “He was a good guy -- never in a million yrs." [sic], "He was never a mean person.” 

Most experts are as baffled as his friends. However, Ray Comfort, the producer of a new movie called “Genius” believes he knows why people kill. Comfort said, “His friends say that he was a nice guy and that he lost his job and broke up with his girlfriend. But those things have happened to millions and they haven’t gone out and murdered people.” The best-selling author and TV co-host added, “‘Genius’ points to what every mass murderer has in common, something the “experts” either don’t see, or they avoid talking about it. But it’s there. In the movie we asked 15 youths if they would murder for money and each of them had the same thing in common. Something tragic is happening in our country and most people don’t know what it is. Those who want to know what it is should watch the movie.” 

More than 160,000 people have viewed the 34-minute movie since it was put on YouTube a week ago. “Genius” can be freely watched on GeniusTheMovie.com

17 comments:

Azou said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jim W. said...

Great way to stand on the dead bodies and proclaim for your God.

Chris said...

Let me get this straight. You're using the deaths of children in order to advertise your movie?

I could really see Jesus doing this. Can't you Trish?

Jameka Williams said...

This post is dated 12/13/12...the day before the shooting at the elementary school!

God bless you Trish :)

Azou said...

So it's okay to use the deaths of adults to promote a stupid youtube video?

Bzzttt, wrong! Still ecil.

Reynold said...

Jameka, Trish was referring to another incident of the same kind. The criticism stands.

And yeah, you theists are complete vultures. Talk about disrespecting the dead.

By the way, here's a study that you may find interesting on the God Discussion website. The article is titled:
Scholar finds Scandinavian society without religion to be moral, with low crime, with a strong economy, and high standards of living

bassicallymike said...

Reynold,
I love it when you come here to poke us in the eye and actually load our cannon!

The study you reference actually reinforces what is taught in Romans 2:14-16 For when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law. They show that the work of the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them on that day when, according to my gospel, God judges the secrets of men by Christ Jesus.

It is not our contention that man cannot be moral without a religious basis. We do contend that you don’t have a rational basis for inherent morality given your worldview. Our worldview does in fact explain the basis of inherent transcendent morality, our Creator wrote his moral code on all our hearts.

In fact I found a statement in a NY Times article on this study from 02-28-2009 I thought was interesting and actually supports our worldview, not yours. " At one point, he queries Jens, a 68-year-old nonbeliever, about the sources of Denmark’s very ethical culture. Jens replies: “We are Lutherans in our souls — I’m an atheist, but still have the Lutheran perceptions of many: to help your neighbor. Yeah. It’s an old, good, moral thought.”"

Jens seems to reiterate, unwittingly I’m sure, the Romans 2:14-16 scripture quoted above. If there are laws, there must be a law-giver! We contend also that one day, all will give an account to this Creator. I hope you repent and place you faith and trust in the completed work of Jesus. He alone can save you from the wrath to come.

Diogenes said...

"We do contend that you don’t have a rational basis for inherent morality given your worldview. Our worldview does in fact explain the basis of inherent transcendent morality, our Creator wrote his moral code on all our hearts."

No, you just assert that there's a transcendent morality, it's just your allegation, not an explanation in any rational nor scientific sense.

You can't get from a fact-claim directly to a value-statement by any rational method.

You make the unstated assumption that it's "natural" to obey commands of a genocidal, pro-slavery, Middle Eastern war deity.

Your Middle Eastern war deity promotes slavery, genocide, infanticide and rape in the Bible-- yes rape of war captives, see ex. Num. 31. It is not natural to obey sociopaths.

What evidence do you have that that is "natural"? If if were natural, you wouldn't need to scare people.

How do you get from a fact-statement, such as:

1. "Our Middle Easter war deity sanctions slavery"

to a value statement such as:

2. "Slavery is good"

This was in fact the position taken by all US Southern theologians before the Civil War, and some US Northern theologians, and some continued to promote that even after the Civil War.

No, you don't have a rational way to get from 1. to 2.

As for Adam Lanza, the Sandy Hook shooter, he was a product of Catholic schools and a conservative mom who home-schooled him.

bassicallymike said...

Whoa there Diogenes. Looks like both of us have a set of presuppositions which will make for little common ground.

It is not natural to obey the commands of God. On the contrary our natural bent is to disobey. What is natural though is to know that it is wrong to lie, to steal, to kill, to commit adultery…….we can sear our conscience through continual immoral behavior to the point that the internal alarm that wrong is being committed is hardly perceptible.

The slavery strawman aside, you really ought to invest in a Bible with at least references, study notes would be preferable, and, may I suggest The MacArthur Study Bible. What you would have been referred to from the Num. 31 section (no rape mentioned) would be Deut. 21:10-14 which deals with regulations regarding marrying female captives.

Not looking to scare, merely to warn of the judgment to come, if that does scare you, might be time to lay the scientific aside and do some soul searching. Science is useless in measuring the realm of the supernatural, eternal God.

Diogenes said...

"It is not natural to obey the commands of God. On the contrary our natural bent is to disobey."

Whatever. You can't rationally get from the fact-claims of religion to value-statements. This is also true of science. Neither the fact-claims of science, nor the fact-claims of religion, can rationally lead by themselves to any value-statement. It is simply a societal convention that religion, as a human tradition, has the authority to make value-statements which do not rationally follow from its fact-claims alone.

Science, as a human investigative process, cannot logically derive a value-statement from a fact-claim either. But at least scientists admit that.

On the other hand, religionists merely assert their human authority to derive value-statements from fact-claims, which do not rationally follow. But a human tradition says it's impolite to point out that's logical gobbledygook.

As far as your incorrect statements about rape and slavery in the Bible go, I've read those passages thnx. You're just arguing with fundamentalists who know more about the Bible that you do. Many fundamentalists admit the Bible promotes genocide, infanticide, rape and slavery and you're not allowed to criticize that, or you're calling God a liar.

For example, the website "Tektonics" is widely cited by creationists as an expert on interpreting the Bible, and he's widely supported by, e.g., Jonathan Sarfati of the website Creation Ministries International. Sarfati admits that he and the Bible are pro-rape because rape is an effective tool of genocide, citing Tektonics as their expert. They call genocide "corporate responsibility" which sounds quite intellectual.

Example from Tektonics supporting rape, infanticide, genocide, and the ripping of fetuses from wombs:

"The actions of killing the young and unborn, were a way of warring against future generations of the enemy and keeping them from rising up against you in vengeance at a future date. Descendants who were of mixed heritage (due to rapes) would not so readily rise up against their own ancestral peoples.

Such tactics were a matter of national preservation as they would not be today. David's bit about dashing infants against rocks (Ps. 137:9) was no sick desire to witness acts of random cruelty, but a lament that such action would be taken as needed to preserve his own people from the future acts of cruelty of the Babylonians, which would inevitably come to pass.”
[Tektonics. On "Argument by Outrage" as a fallacy of criticism of the Bible. http://www.tektonics.org/lp/outrage.html]

Of course it's not a lament, it's a pornographic celebration of infanticide. Anyway, if you think you know more about the Bible than Jonathan Sarfati and that genius Tekton, then you go argue with them.

bassicallymike said...

You can't rationally get from the fact-claims of religion to value-statements.

When your ultimate authority is the Bible, making fact-claims and value-statements that are consistent with its teaching, is perfectly acceptable. I know this militates against all you believe and have your faith in, but the facts remain.

You look at creation and deny the Creator; you have been given a conscience and choose to do what is right in your own eyes. You, as well as I, will one day give an account of our thoughts and actions before a Holy God. Apart from Jesus substitutionary atoning death, we would be without hope.

You are the one making incorrect statements. I never denied rape existed in the Bible. The Num. 31 passage you cited in your original post does not mention rape as you insinuated.

You state, “As far as your incorrect statements about rape and slavery in the Bible go, I've read those passages thnx.

If you exercised the same level of comprehension with them as you did the Num. 31 passage you might want to reread them.

I don’t deny rape, slavery, infanticide and genocide, happens in the Bible. It’s part of what reinforces the accuracy and authenticity of the Bible. Had this been a made up story, any one in their right mind would have left those parts out. A lot of the raunchier parts of the Bible were allowed, but not condoned by God.

God allowed all of these things to happen, sometimes as punishment for their sinful behavior. Sometimes his chosen people were allowed to be punished for their sinfulness by a nation that was just as sinful as they were.

You look at this, through your humanistic, materialistic worldview, and see something to be abhorred. Your happiness in this world is of utmost importance to you, while for the Christian, God’s glory is (should be) of utmost importance and our circumstances in this world are insignificant, even as slaves, as Onesimus.

When I consider the Holiness of God, and my own sinfulness, it is a wonder that I am allowed to draw the next breath. Unless I repent, I will likewise perish! I’m sure you know the context.

Diogenes said...

Here Trish has argued that the value system of the Bible is the only possible rational value system, which has been falsified, and you can't defend that claim. Nothing you've written defends that.

You agree that the Bible is pro-genocide, pro-infanticide, pro-slavery. But you are disputing that the Bible is pro-rape, ONLY because you have substituted liberal values for true Christianity.

There are more and more fundamentalist theologians who defend the Bible's clear teachings on slavery. If you claim the Bible is anti-slavery or anti-rape, this is just you changing the Bible, to substitute liberal values, so you are calling God a liar. If you don't think Num. 31 describes the High Priest get 32 sex slaves, you're just writing your own Bible, so you're a humanist.

Basicallymike wrote:

When your ultimate authority is the Bible, making fact-claims and value-statements that are consistent with its teaching, is perfectly acceptable.

You cannot rationally derive the value-statement, "Values must be derived from the Bible", only from the fact-claims of religion or from any fact-claims in the Bible.

You can ONLY derive derive the value-statement, "Values must be derived from the Bible", from another value statement, which you got from a human tradition. A human tradition, and only a human tradition, says that religions can make both fact-claims and value-statements, and they don't have to be derived by logic. Believing human traditions makes you a humanist.

You and Trish have basically conceded that your Biblical value system is NOT rational. Your Biblical value system is pro-genocide, pro-infanticide, and pro-slavery but not rational, and also quite humanist.

bassicallymike said...

"You agree that the Bible is pro-genocide, pro-infanticide, pro-slavery.

I don't agree that the Bible is pro any of those things. Those things happened, the Bible reports those things. God does punish law breakers, sometimes with horrific results. God is pro-obedience. Disobey at your own risk!

I believe this conversation has run its course.

Taxandrian said...

Well done, Diogenes. You put the finger on the sore spot.

Reynold said...

bassicallymike
The study you reference actually reinforces what is taught in Romans 2:14-16 For when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law. They show that the work of the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them on that day when, according to my gospel, God judges the secrets of men by Christ Jesus.

It is not our contention that man cannot be moral without a religious basis. We do contend that you don’t have a rational basis for inherent morality given your worldview.

Are you joking? There are little things like "empathy", thinking of the consequences for society, for our children", or even "enlightened self-interest".

Leave it to the religious to take credit even when your god is not believed in or mentioned in any way.

As for that bible verse? It's just more of the same. Thing is: If the "law" is "written on our hearts" as you assume as opposed to it just being good common sense, why not just have "christ" written on our hearts as well?

Reynold said...

Mike: Many of those instances were ORDERED by your god. How could babies possibly do something that would warrant such punishment??

Bear in mind that you can't use the "they'd have turned against the Isrealies later on" excuse. Virgin Midianite women were spared during one such genocidal instance.

They'd certainly pose a greater risk than babies would, now, wouldn't they?

Reynold said...

From zilch on a forum that added to my reply to bassicallymike:

That's exactly it, isn't it? Secular societies, based on empathy, consideration of consequences, and enlightened self interest, work. Is this surprising? If you need fear of God to keep you from robbing a bank, maybe you should stay religious- but I'd say that your society didn't succeed in bringing you up properly if that's the case.

"Absolute", "Godgiven" morals don't make you behave better- they just give you an imaginary imprimatur of righteousness for your actions. If that makes you feel good, and you behave nicely, more power to you. Me, the fuzzy morals supplied by my genes, culture, and reasoning, even if they are evolved entities without a supernatural or eternal foundation, do just fine. As most people's do.


I could also point out that to some extent, even some primates are able to come up with some small set of rules, and even other mammals show emotions. Do they also have "the law" written on their hearts?