In God We Teach
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In God We Teach

2011, Religion  -   941 Comments
Ratings: 8.63/10 from 82 users.

In God We Teach is the story of Matthew LaClair, a student at Kearny (NJ) public high school who secretly recorded his history teacher (David Paszkiewicz) in class, and accused him of proselytizing for Jesus.

After approaching the local school board for redress and receiving none LaClair took his secret recordings to the media. When these recordings were made public, the story exploded, engulfing not just Kearny, but rippling across America as well.

The teacher, in danger of losing his job strenuously denied it. The specifics of the controversy lead directly to the church and state arguments that are in the news this election year. With Stephen Colbert, Alan Dershowitz, Neil deGrasse Tyson and others.

Directed by: Vic Losick

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941 Comments / User Reviews

  1. I think that he was definitely doing the right thing until he decided he had a problem with the club. Personally, I was glad that the teacher had found an appropriate setting for his "science", and I think he kid just took it a step too far when he went after a religious club that you choose to be in (no one who had different beliefs was being forced to listen to it, like they were in history) after he didn't even attend the school anymore.

  2. this teacher is piously arrogant -- yes, he has demonstrated that there is such a thing. i am aggrieved that he has indoctrinated his own children and is encouraging the irrational thoughts of the students in that religious "club" and most especially by the fact that he is STILL teaching -- excuse me, i meant proselytizing. he is living proof of what Sam Harris has shown to be the logical end of an illogical belief system; this teacher would indeed fly a plane into a building for his god. i only regret that Matthew wasn't a better defender of his viewpoint -- for excellent argument/discussion, see QualiaSoup and ThereminTrees on youtube or here in topdocumentaries. quod erat demonstrandum.

  3. I love the ending......"It's on youtube......that's how the gospel spreads."


  4. Wow, "I don't believe that my religious beliefs trump the Constitution, but I do believe that the word of God does."

    Let me clear it up for ya....I don't believe that my belief in the word of God trumps the Constitution, but I believe the word of God does.


  5. From his explanation of the Big Bang Theory, thank "God" he isn't a science teacher.

  6. This man should never be allowed to TEACH, ever again.

    Maybe Sunday school, but that's it.

  7. no such thing as god. keep your voodoo out of school.

  8. You know the teacher intentionally told those students that if they are not Christians that they belong in Hell because he wanted to inflict fear into their minds. It is how the religion works.

    “If he believes that Noah co-existed with dinosaurs, then he is ignorant and scientifically illiterate and such people should not be welcomed among the ranks of teachers.” – Neil deGrasse Tyson.

  9. Ooohhhhh man crazy Christians at it again. Every time that teacher opens his mouth I just wanna kick him in the head.

  10. These people are so brainwashed its funny. Every time I hear people taking religion so seriously I cant help but think their completely insane. Dont even get me started on teaching your kids religion when their f--king 6 years old.....thats so f--ked

  11. That teacher is a damn id**t. He shouldn't be teaching ANYONE.

  12. Very commendable, Mr LaClair.

    For me this demonstrates the hypocrisy of a nation that claims to want to keep 'church' and 'state' separate, but has the words 'In God We Trust' on it's banknotes.

  13. W O W - who are these people? Just chill out and practice religion in your own time fella....

  14. The christian republic of America, USA uses religion in state as much as Iran, they go to war in the name of god and they bless the ppl in the name of god after every public speech

  15. It's a shame that this fiasco didn't occur between a teacher and a student who were less smack-able.

  16. Dear teacher, you only have the cure for cancer if it demonstrably cures cancer.

  17. Good job kid! School is a place for facts...not fairy tales!! Keep that Jesus $hit in your temple of brainwashing.

  18. Even simpler is the fact that most Americans have joined the antichrist movement. But folks, freedom of speech is among us in the form of Islamics who teach "Allah," and Buddhists who teach "Budda." I wonder if we could get this guy to teach us more about those two gods and then he would probably get approved of by all the complainers!=^)

    1. And just what do you have to support your opening statement?

    2. Have you noticed that people who make the most ignorant comments as evidenced by their poor grammar and spelling abilities,
      invariably are christians or right wing fanatics? Such developed abstract thinking skills. I wonder how their attention span lasts long enough to view a documentary.

  19. Plain and simple if you want your child to learn religion in school, send them to a private religious institution. It's that easy.

  20. Block-head thought he was doing good by throwing in a little evangelism here and there, but he forgot the laws of the land. The kid SHOULD just leave it alone, though

    1. No, that kid should play it up for all it's worth. I'd love to see that "teacher" canned.

  21. This makes Christians look like closed-minded idiots. The response was to ban recordings? Really? I think every class should be recoded and streamed for every parent to be able to check on at any time. There would be more accountability for some of these dogmatic and lazy teachers.

    1. I see pros and cons. You've stated the pros. However, if the classes are recorded and streamed, religees have as much access to them as anyone else and have an equal opportunity to interfere in perfectly good teaching.

  22. i am against all forms of proselytizing

  23. If that kid asked the teacher about his beliefs then he has a right to tell people what he believes, as long as he doesn't push his religion on people. I'm a Zoroastrian not a Christian. if people ask me about my religion I tell them there is no god but Ahura Mazda and Zoroaster is his prophet.

  24. was it a history or science class? he's a history teacher and everyone keeps saying 'in a science class'...

  25. Although I agree with a lot of Matthew's views, I think that at times it was a bit too much. But I do applaud him for trying to make a difference; hopefully there will be more situations like this brought to light so that there can be a movement to further separate church from state. Although church and state are separate, there is a grey area, and there should be no grey area when the government is involved.

    1. I think - you are right.

  26. Professionalism is reviewed prior to hiring and yearly required in all public school districts. Clearly boards of education and government 'funders' need to insure that a working knowledge of the constitution as it applies to religious separation from publicly funded education, and limits of academic licence, as well as a basic knowledge of the sciences must be demonstrated during those reviews. There is 'no' excuse that this is not being done except intentional ignorance...
    Stamp it out! everywhere!
    Private schools paid for privately have rights to add specific community or group optional classes - however, national diplomas can not be achieved at 'any' school unless the secular national curriculum is taught without bias. (These schools however, should not be eligible for special tax exemptions or for government funding)
    In all cases an 'inclusive' education means all classes will be taught based on the approved national curriculum- which is peer reviewed to present the 'best' sources available... when that leads to a religious studies class for example, 'all' major religions and their known histories must needs be taught as well.
    Educators who claim they can not separate their religious bias from their teaching-need to find another job.(period)

  27. Stopped watching video after kid said he didn't stand for flag salute....

    1. Why's that?

    2. What's so bad about that?

    3. Why?

  28. not everyone is so deeply embedded in their beliefs, but this man thinking features among some of my friends haha

  29. ACLU, Anti.defammation League are organizations to promote Jewish secular interests and atheism!

    1. What's the matter with secularity and atheism?

    2. Nothing is wrong with either atheism nor secularism. But when it becomes militant like fundamentalist islam or christianity, then it becomes a problem since it does not permit alternative narratives and discourses to enter into the picture!

    3. And when it gets in the classroom or government, it becomes an even bigger problem.

  30. im so sorry for children who are forced to listen to religious stuff in schools... really sorry :(

  31. lol, I laughed so hard at this teacher, just utterly amazed.

  32. boy what a whinner that teacher a man...quit complaining about being harrased or your rights violated...this isn't heaven ok? live with word....Jesus lived in the midst of a ultra corrupt Rome..

  33. how bout those Jewish people in Poland and Germany who were "patriotic"? You don't have to be Christian to be patriotic. Sorry you don't. God said pray for the government/any government. Just like the Republican Party thinks they own the Church and Christians....right...plenty of Democrats are Christians too.

  34. He's a free thinker and free the kid has guts. He'll make a million and I'm sure he will.

  35. The be an evangelist and not a teacher. Ok? Don't bring up cancer...that's not a comparison...he talks in circles. Just keep it and hope and walk the talk.

  36. WWJD? Well, he would have waited till class was over....that's for sure. And he wouldn't have belittled or name called that's another thing. Harrass and bully not apart of my Lord. And you call yourselves Christians? Hardly...Gandhi was closer to Christ than a lot of you.

    1. I have too much respect for my intelligence to want to be called a Christian or be anywhere near what you perceive as Christ.

  37. that minister was just like a politician..."twisting this kids' rights and freedoms into the wind"...and yes Jesus wouldn't be booing but probably crying...

  38. you can't justify what he have an obligation to teach first...go ahead and live your faith...walk the talk...

  39. The kid's right, a history teacher shouldn't be mixing history lessons with religion. Religion belongs in churches, mosks, temples, not in the classroom.

  40. I'm an atheist but.... I can't help but feel like the kid is a kind of a little ****. I think he was fishing for trouble. It would be one thing if he asked the teacher to not talk about religion first, but I think he was intentionally trying to get the teacher talking about it specifically to get it on tape.

    1. Matthew did not initiate the discussions on religion. The teacher did. Paszkiewicz keeps making this claim but it's not true.

  41. My question is, what were the goals that were wanted to be achieved, and how close is the result to those goals?
    The Teacher hasn't seemed to have changed his ways. The school hasn't stopped the same thing happening to other students. So if the goal was to stand up for true patriotic principles/the Constitution to make things better for those that follow, it wasn't reached it seems.

    Can a Minor, in a case such as this one, initiate legal action in the USA? Or is it the legal responsibility of the Parents to ensure the rights of their child aren't being infringed (if the school isn't doing it's job)? I think a better way to handle it, if attention for Mathew wasn't sought after, would have been at the point where it was clear it wasn't going to be resolved sensibly, the parents should have taken over and started legal proceedings. If the school won't recognize the law, force them to. That would have taken some of the heat and attention off of Matt and put it on his parents, which it may actually have been up to legally anyway? And achieved in a stronger way then the media has the message of the stated goal of keeping the separation of church and state. (probably getting that lying Teacher sacked, and put all schools and teachers on notice countrywide. The media probably would've jumped on the band wagon if it went to court, it'd be a 2 for 1 deal, but a lot stronger message.)
    Take the money from the win, give it back to the taxpayers of Kearny. Or use it to promote awareness of the constitution. Keep some for Matt's education, give the rest back in a useful way. Use it to right some of the wrongs done by that Teacher. (anyone that had a problem with the legal fee's should ask the school about that, they're the one's breaking the law)
    I think Mathew was right, the Teacher was very wrong. The way all parties handled it could have been done much better.
    I'm sorry, but I don't consider dancing around to (Mum's?) enjoyment aged 8 a sign of a patriot in the making necessarily. And I think the issue of not standing for the Pledge is being combined with the issue of a teacher physically abusing a student. The reaction/assault was the problem, the 'seated Pledge' was the catalyst. Sitting as well, could be interpreted as a provocation rather then a protest, as the assault was the real issue.
    To me, it's the little inconsistencies like that and others such as why just record the teacher straight up, (it was prudent in hindsight, but it does suggest an expectation/preparation for a conflict such as what developed, was there any leading beforehand or did the first day Matt think of recording it the teacher go on another Preach-a-thon unassisted,) why go to the media instead of court. These HINT at more motive then just standing up for 'true patriotism'. That, plus the way things have ended up. (teacher continuing on, interviews with Neil de Grasse Tyson, it seems to me the outcome doesn't really match up 100% with the stated aim, although the legal ability was there to achieve it)

    Good luck to Mathew, I hope he does well. I personally don't believe there was absolutely no element of attention seeking, whether initially or developing later. Do I blame him, NO. I don't blame his family for loving and defending him either, or helping to advertise/promote his rewards for his efforts. It means they're decent people/family.
    It seems many things get absorbed under the banner of patriotism. The definition between people seems to change, depending on which end of the 'stick' they're getting. A friend of mine is a returned Veteran. He came over and read some of these posts, I can't repeat on here most of what he said. Suffice it to say his definition of patriotism is quite different to many here. His idea of 'skirmishing for liberty on the front lines' and emotional ties to some symbols is very different, I guess a lot of it just comes down to our own personal experiences and perspective.

  42. Did he just bless a barbecue, **** man you guys need to see the real ****,hey my dad died in korea,strange thats were my flag was made.

  43. Thank you, Azilda. Watching Matthew's courage and integrity unfold firsthand was the realization of my highest dreams. As for the teacher, he's still there and I'm told he's still doing the same thing. In fact, he has said so publicly.

    1. Why hasn't he been terminated?

  44. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
    The Catcher in the Rye
    To Kill a Mockingbird
    Bridge to Terabithia
    The Lord of the Flies
    Of Mice and Men
    The Color Purple
    Harry Potter Series
    Slaughterhouse Five
    The Bluest Eye
    According to a site supported by the New York Times these popular books have been the most banned in American Schools for reason such as: racial issues, profanity, disrespect children show to adults, excessive violence, sexuality, use of drugs, use of witchcraft and the fear that fantasy and reality could become confused for children.
    The bible contains all these subjects, therefore it should be banned from primary, middle and high school. If parents want their kids to access the bible, they can do that at home or in church. If students want to study the bible they can do that in college or on their own without the influence, a public teacher supported by public school, could provide.

    If on the other hand the bible is allowed and or spread to all public schools, then they should also make sure that all sacred texts from ALL religion from east and west are also provided in order to allow all students a full range of comparative possibilities.

    1. Your last paragraph makes sense. The paragraph beinning with "The bible contains" doesn't.

    2. To Kill a Mockingbird, The Lord of the Flies and Slaughterhouse Five are 3 of the best books I have ever read, moreover in my opinion they form part of the most important contemporary literature dealing with extremely relevant sociopolitical issues. Should be required reading in schools. The phrase 'Lest we forget' springs to mind.

      The bible should be optional and extra curricular, unless discussed for the history of printing or inside religious classes. I agree with your point about all religious texts being included in religious classes, along with Norse mythology, ancient Greek mythology and any other long dead religions we have texts from.

      Harry Potter I have no opinion on at all.


    3. The first two books you mentioned were required reading in my earlier high-school years, at a public school. I enjoyed them both as well. Some of those years were also spent in a private, religious school. The Bible was required reading there. I didn't enjoy that the same. To progress on to the next year one of the required subjects you had to pass was Bible Studies.
      One thing I remember from that class, the Bible teacher said, 'Love thy neighbor', and a kid replied 'just don't get caught!' ;)
      Now in hindsight, the extra money spent on the private school was a scam. Regurgitated verses versus entertaining and relevant literature. Wasting time on unwanted religious studies instead of things that did interest me like English, Science and Maths. And my poor Mum thought she was doing me a favor. It took me 2 years to convince her otherwise. ;) RIP Mum.

    4. I agree with your post. I was not suggesting that the books on the list should be banned, i was using this list (i found on the net) as an example to show how the bible contains all these same accusations and more.

  45. Sixes, if we take bibles out of school libraries will we also have to take out The Odyssey etc? What about books on folklaw and fairy tails? Or Strewwelpeter? Think of all the art and literature that wouldn't make sense without some knowledge of the bible. What would we have in its place, books about the bible by people that don't like it? Should we also erase any religiously influenced history? You don't have to take it as gospel truth, but you must see it has a place. Removing it altogether is censorship and I don't like that much. Apart from that, do you actually think any kid is going to check out the good book instead of Captain Underpants? All you have to do is teach kids how to think, not what to think. They can do the rest themselves, or not. It's their choice, let them make it themselves ;)

    1. I don't like it either. Back in the sixties we had the same problem with the Dictionary of American Slang. Max Rafferty, an ignoramus who served two terms as State Superintendent of Public Instruction in California, tried to get the book, a scholarly work, removed from the school libraries on the grounds of obscenity. This is the same individual who also threatened to revoke the credentials of any teacher using Eldridge Cleaver's "Soul on Ice" or Le Roi Jones' "The Dutchman."

    2. Censorship should be a tool not a weapon :)

    3. I don't understand.

    4. Hold on a mo Fluffy Ears!!

      Whare have I said that bibbles should be removed from schools? Don’t bother looking, I just haven’t said it!! Not that anything Factual would interest you of course. What I do say is we should stop giving this only good in parts “book” PROMINENCE!

      Now whares my Sniper Rifle???

      The RabbitPieLoving One

      _!!__[oo] = Rabbit caught in headlights. Such an Easy Target!!

  46. If the teacher were Muslim preaching his religion this whole situation would have played out different.

    1. I certainly hope not.

  47. This douche should not be teaching

  48. Stroppy? (Are you throwing down the glove?) No way! Every post was submitted with a cheshire cat grin.
    Just between us, I was indeed probing the Good Old Boys Club (mum's the word).
    But we must not frighten the hens too much, else they stop laying.
    I think you, though at times hard to understand, are a force for the good on this blogg.
    As is Az, for instance, and others like her.
    It takes an enormous amount of courage to continue to express one's opinion in the face of insult and ridicule.
    It takes no courage whatsoever to dispense insult and ridicule.

    Edit: this is @AntiTheist666

    1. @aptnw

      Hello again, nice to hear the dulcet tones of your keyboard ;-)

      In God we Teach???

      Yes I remember the lessons of Hen’s and Chicken’s in School. We mustn’t scare the Birds eh? Geese a laying and all that. The G.O.B. club lol. Do you remember the story of the Golden Egg from school?
      What about China Eggs?... Protected fervently on this site, like the Chinaman of Konigsberg, they are unaware of the Fowl Folly they make?

      “I think you, though at times hard to understand, are a force for the good on this blogg.”

      You need only to ask? ”I do my best to be misunderstood” can you guess who said that?

      ”As is Az...” These six letters are just spell blinding. As is Az.

      Keep commenting @aptnw, I admire your pluck.

      The Plucky One

    2. Tongue in cheek notwithstanding, or maybe because of, depending on the direct object, your positive approach deserves respect and a final answer.

      I have no quarrel with any moderator and don't feel hard done by. They have every right to do what they do.
      I would have handled things slightly differently and started with some admonishing before censoring, but I have nothing but respect for the difficult task they face and how they deal with it.

      My problem is a personal one. From the age of 8, I've had a hate hate relationship with bullies.
      Because of all the travel I was always the outsider and apparently fair game for bullies.
      At that tender age when I head-butted my first bully in the solar plexus (which should give an idea of the age difference) I found out that being confronted head on (so to speak) was a bully's worst nightmare.
      I have nursed a black eye or two over the years, though usually bullies run and cry foul.
      When I encounter someone putting down someone else just for voicing an opinion, my blood boils.
      That alone was the reason for my participation.
      If anybody feels scorned by comments presented, their first step should be an introspective one.

  49. @Mods
    I would like to post this hear where it might see the light of day? As opposed to the barely trodden wilderness of the philosophy dept. I think here is ok in the religious and educational sense. Though the post is mostly philosophical there are relevant issues, like why isn’t good philosophy taught in schools? When religious non-sense is? And what is so important about truth? Why not Untruth? I can think of nothing better for young minds to get into? It’s up to you of course; if you disagree I’ll post in The Dark Dungeon where people see by Lanterns, even in the Mourning.

    Beyond Good and Evil: Prelude to a Philosophy of the Future.

    By Friedrich Nietzsche 1886

    As if Philosophy isn’t a monstrously large subject already, with Nietzsche we add a Giant just to make it even more Massively Complex. Thank Dog N. Shook it all up and sorted out most of it for us.

    Refuting, Religion, Rationality and Reason is no small task. Dear Friedrich achieves it and lays it all bare before us! Definitely a Philosophy of the Future. Sadly it seems this Future is still a long way off. Before going any further, I must say that all that follows is just my considered opinion. Nietzscheans are noted for their differing interpretations of N. Unsurprisingly everybody else thinks they know more or love him more blah blah. And it will shock no Nietzschefiles when I say MY WAY is the ONLY WAY to get to know this most MISUNDERSTOOD GENIUS!

    Thus, on we go, BEYOND good and Evil.

    First, watch this Fab doc. Second, Read/Listen to the book. The Helen Zimmern translation (1906) is available free; I find it a little dry and lacklustre maybe it’s showing its age? Both of the other 2 that I know are worth paying for but my preference goes to Hollingdale (1973) over Kaufman (1966) and you can see him in this Doc. I love this guy too, watch, and try and tell me you don’t.

    If you like to see Grand Posturing Philosophers get a Right Kick up the A$$ then Chapter One is Showtime! And what a Hilarious Show it is! As every Gross Pontificate is shown up as an Autobiographical Clown peddling his wares in a Circus! We Free Spirits need no Farcical Falseness, we need clean, clear, cold – Hyperborean air to breathe!

    Books not your thing? Try it as an audiobook? Again free, some of it is well read and some of it is dire. Again I think paying for a good quality version would be well worth the money. Some of the issues are easy to get to grips with and some are tricky, but because Nietzsche writes mainly in aphorism you can always move on and come back to it.
    Third, read/listen to “The Twilight of the Idols” (His best work, though not his easiest to grasp) the Ludovici translation trumps all here!
    Fourth, read all the rest of his works, by now you will not be able to resist anyway.
    Fifth, Read all his letters.
    Sixth, Read the latest medical evidence relating to why he went insane.
    Seventh,and only now, read some critique of Dear Friedrich, not surprisingly there is fair bit of it!
    Six Hundred and Sixty Sixth, come and tell me why you Love him more than I?

    Some Harry Potter fans might like these closing words, use them like charms!

    “De Omnibus Dubitandum” = Doubt Everything!

    And if anyone you don’t care for says it to protect themselves,

    You can spear them with “Sapere Aude” = Dare to Know!”

    This you might say is the tension between the Apollonian and the Dionysian?

    The Crucified One

  50. "To make Matthew a hero in all of this, at MY EXPENSE..."

    "Pride goeth before the fall..."

  51. Regarding Colbert's statement about being Catholic and using the Nicene creed to explain creationism, it is interesting to note that the Catholic Church's official position on creation upholds the theory of evolution.

  52. @ vladco
    Let me first say that I think this is a great site with many useful and interesting documentaries and the comment section is largely enjoyable.

    It is obvious that anyone who owns a site is entitled to do with it what he/she wants, as long as it is within the laws of the country and rules and regs of his/her ISP.

    The definition of moderate is “calm, temperate” not “censor”, so if I have one criticism it is that the term moderator is wrongly chosen.
    When someone says “my wife fights a lot” and someone else replies “she might have reason to”, I don't find that “sleazy” at all. Debasing your ex in her absence is another thing.

    I'll continue to enjoy your documentaries (thank you very much for them, and I hope you earn a bucket load for your deserving efforts) but I won't be contributing to the comments any longer.

    If I may end with an idea for improvement, if you number the comments and include that number in the “in reply to” statement, it would take the confusion out of a lot of confusing replies.

    1. @aptnw:

      What you maybe fail to realize these comment sections are to comment in regard to the docs in question, not superimposing personal vendettas nor personal agendas on to other posters.

      Before and if, all the off topic stuff starts up again on this doc I will remind you and all others, all off topic posts will be promptly removed.

    2. In God we Teach and the Rights of Free Speech.

      Thought Police, Morality and Regulation.


      What a shame you won’t be commenting any longer. Why? I feel an appeal to @Vlatko always helps when you spell his name right. I’m guessing you feel a little hard done to by the Mods? We rockers are much nicer lol. It’s a tough old job keeping all the people happy all the time. Unsurprisingly mistakes happen from time to time, get over it and move on.

      No lives or limbs were lost here, a few dented egos maybe but nothing worth withdrawing your voice for. Unless of course you don’t have anything to say anymore. There’s a wide and varied range of topics going on here, surely something fires your imagination. I’ve been coming here for some time now and have been impressed with the fairness that goes on behind the scenes. There are plenty of regular contributors that I’m sure you’ll get along with and bizarrely new ones turn up every day

      I said shame earlier because when you weren’t baiting or sniping or just being well.....stroppy. Your posts were interesting and well put and not without a certain charm. So Goodbye or Hello again?
      I wondered what you made of this doc. A grand exposé?

      The Crucified One

  53. LaClay is just an attention seeking GEEK ! He is one of the Many rotten apples in todays Society not only in the U.S but also the UK .
    Looking at this kid and his family they just arogent people who love the lime light.

  54. I’m guessing this is the paragraph in question.

    “I’m direct typing on the post and if I’m in a hurry I don’t proof read. You may find a phrase repeated in a second line, which and that misused or from for form.”

    There’s a workstation next to the equipment I use. It's main purpose is to interface with the instrumentation. Through the magic of modern technology, at times, there are three or more programs running. A work processor is not one of them. I always keep email and the internet browser up in the background. There is also a speaker phone close at hand. I have customers who expect a quick response.

    Not very long ago I was able to multitask rather easily, not as well as the computer but two or three at a time. Recently my fingers have become dyslectic. Short term memory isn’t what it used to be and my stored memory access is a bit slower. The computer has replaced the engineering handbook. It’s quicker and the information on the monitor is easier to read. Increasing the size of the font is very helpful. (Unfortunately parts of this will become part of your experience somewhere in the future.)

    As Robert has pointed out, some language rules have become passé but the program remains set to exit a nested loop when the work register equals certain variables.

    The computer is new but it still locks up or crashes. It too will execute a function in error. That thought alone brings on a little comforting smile.

    1. @Philio

      That’s so much better and much?

      Your Righting is so much easier to Read when you drop the dissimulation and subvert the subterfuge. Don’t write with a squint ;-) This post I feel is sublimely subtle and Q.I. So much more interesting than Rithmetic!

      A little lesson in the 3 R’s lol

      In the light of this I cordially invite you to a chat about what Dear Friederich might have to say about this matter, over at a place that is Beyond good and Evil. Here at TDF

      Dinner is at 8
      Daggers are at Dawn

      The Inviting One

    2. That’s appreciated and well received but I have to decline, today. On Wednesdays and Fridays I must answer to a higher authority. Her three R’s are Relaxation and Recuperation by moving to Rhythm played by a live band.

      Dinner is at 8 and if the three R’s are not part of the evening, it is Daggers as Dawn.

      ”God created woman. And indeed, that was the end of boredom—but of other things too! Woman was God’s second mistake.”

  55. @Philio--and anyone else who is interested.

    Achem has suggested that I post my thoughts on a math thread. So I have selected "Story of Maths."

    I ask only two things:

    1. That you respond to this post.

    2. That you provide me with your comments pro and con. Once again, I will not take umbrage at a constructively negative reaction.

    I would like to emphasize that this is not a private communication and that anyone is welcome to participate.

    Waiting for your acknowledgment.

    1. I find my way there.

    2. I assume this means yes. Just give me some time to organize my thoughts.

      Without trying to seem too self-aggrandizing, I posted something on the "Fermat's Last Theoreom" thread. I thought you might be interested.

  56. @Achems_Razor

    I would like to share my thoughts about a better math textbook with Philio and anyone else who might be interested. However, Philio is concerned that this is off the topic; but I can think of no other place to do so. What do you suggest?

    1. Yes, "Fermat's last theorem" on TDF

    2. Does this mean that you would like me to use the thread on Fermat's last theorem for this purpose?

    3. If you want to talk math, would be more on topic, or just enter math on top in the search box for docs, will give you choices concerning math docs. Take your pick.

      Edit: still the discussion has to be concerning the doc also, can't go on a tangent divorced from the doc's entirely, so you guys would have to figure out a way to have a private discussion about your math textbook.

    4. "The Story of Maths" seems to be best. However, this is not meant to be a private discussion.

    5. Question for you Achem - (?) -I was gonna ask robertallen1 as it has to do with him - but wow he seems so darn busy chatting away - chatting away. I didn't feel it proper to interrupt him when he's on a roll. And as you are sorta by default a majordomo here on TDF. I figured I could ask vous. The question, "Is he (robertallen1) a triplet so to speak?" And does he (they) sleep? Sans doute he is polymath. But are there three of him - more?

      Wondering and amused. I never closed the door on grade nine - so I keep quiet Achem.

    6. No, I'm simply one person. And if you have anything to ask me, please ask me directly.

    7. Point taken robertallen1. Tnx for the heads-up. But do and please keep in mind - it is how I play with my world. I meant no offense to vous. You are,(adjectivally) brilliant. It's just that I'm chicken sometimes.

      Here's my comment on this doc - directed at the general audience.

      The question (debate) is. "Who is right - the teacher or the student?"

      It's rather easy - first turn off your monitor and listen only; thereby avoiding, the 'liking people for their countenance only syndrome'.

      And you will, if you have a nugget of common sense realize - student wins - teacher fails.

      Repeat after moi, 'Con-sti-tu-tion'. Got it? If not - see 'Scopes'. see 'Dover' and such.

      Amen (so-be-it) Vanc Bc


    8. More especially Dover. Remember, Scopes lost and was fined $100. On appeal to the Tennessee Supreme Court, the Butler Act was upheld (although eventually repealed in 1968), but Scopes' fine was invalidated on a technicality. See also, Epperson v.Arkansas (1968), McLean v. Arkansas (1982), Edwards v. Aguillard (1987).

    9. "Here's my comment on this doc - directed at the general audience.

      The question (debate) is. "Who is right - the teacher or the student?"

      It's rather easy - first turn off your monitor and listen only; thereby avoiding, the 'liking people for their countenance only syndrome'. "

      I actually do listen to many documentaries rather than watch them, since I often play them while at work instead of listening to music or the radio. So I met your requirement there.

      Who is right? IMHO, the student.

      Why? Because the teacher made it very clear that he considers proselytizing to be a mandate of his personal religious belief. In fact, he made that very statement in the film.

      Someone of that mindset will never respect the rights of others to NOT be proselytized to.

      Nor, obviously, can he be trusted to maintain the boundary between his personal religious beliefs and the rights of others to have their own beliefs.

      Children are particularly vulnerable to the active recruiter, and in this country, we have specified that taxpayers have the right to an education for their children that does not subvert their private beliefs. This teacher would as happily convert a Jewish or Muslim or Hindu child as an atheist one.

      What is so pernicious is the brand of fundamentalist religion that tries to put science and faith at odds, as if the apple and the orange were comparable fruits. Each has its own sphere, each has its own function, and each is NOT like the other.

      We have the human right to choose either the apple or the orange, or both. We're not required to make them into the same thing, or even taste alike.

    10. Well put and please note that in general science never actively tries to encroach on religious beliefs. Shame it's not the other way around.

  57. In my first school we had a pagan headmistress, no hymns or prayers, lots of odd stories though. Our best Christmas play was about a woman who found a baby in an acorn. Middle school was prayers (lords prayer and some other nonsense the headmaster made up) every morning, nobody paid much attention though, it just meant assembly was over and we could get up from the cold floor. Secondary school we had RE lessons for the first two years, it covered all the big religions and a few others for interest. Everyone dropped it when we chose our options, did history instead. I don't have a problem with my kids being taught about religions, they're part of our history, other cultures etc. Do not want anyone filling their impressionable little heads with it though. Guilt, sin, and nasty 'true stories' about heaven and hell and a man in the sky that watches your every move. Creepy. When my daughter was given a place in a catholic school I refused it. The education authority were a bit put out but we got a place in a lovely god free school. All in all, no harm done :)

    1. You hit the nail on the head. There is nothing wrong with an academic discussion about religion, biblical scholarship, etc., as long as it goes no further. To my surprise, the course I took in comparative religion turned out to be one of the best--and the teacher was an ordained minister.

      By the way, if you want something really odd along this line, read the protogospel of Thomas.

    2. Gnostic ? I found a translation by Thomas Lambdin, am I reading the right thing? Some very lovely little sayings in it, some that we still use today. I'll save it and give it some attention when I have better time to do so. Noisy here right now, school holidays. It reminds me of The Prophet, Khalil Gibran. Not so beautifully written though. You can see where the confusion comes from, most of the verses can be taken literally, or plainly. With a little twist they could easily be mysterious. Like Thomas says, when two become one, there is God! It's just hearts and minds, to thine own self be true etc.. Funny that so much has been made of so little. If it was read the right way it would probably mean more :)
      Read God as 'truth' :)

    3. I hope so. Does it have "Jesus" born in a cave?

    4. No, I must have the wrong thing. Will look again :)

    5. Look up Infancy Gospel of Thomas.

    6. Found it, yes I have read it before. You might like The Good Man Jesus and the Scoundrel Christ by Philip Pullman, if you like stories :)

    7. Thanks for the recommendation.

      Now, don't you wish that Gospel had gotten into the canon. At least, it would pep up religion a bit.

    8. Haha, yes! He's not the Messiah, he's a very naughty boy :)

    9. Isn't the story about his bringing a dried fish to life (actually I think it was a smoked deli-type fish) absolutely priceless?

      You've had experience. What would you do if you had to raise a child like this?

    10. Got lost in thought there, trying to define my parenting techniques but really I'd do what all parents do, wing it and hope for the best. He's just a kid, raise him with love and rules. :)

    11. You do that and he might just change you into a kippered herring or worse yet, a kipper.

    12. He might, but then he'd miss me and change me back. I think given the choice of fish or woman most boys, big and small, would choose the woman :) Seeing as this is all pretend I think I should have special powers too, or at least a force field. It's a funny idea, raising the son of God. Bet he put his step dad through hell. There's a book for you to write, when you're done with the maths :)

    13. It's also a funny idea trying to keep him from decimating the entire neighborhood. How do you spank the son of god? Or do you just confine him to his room--but dammnit, he could resurrect himself.

    14. There is one thing left, every mothers last resort, words of such power that even jesus would weep.
      'just you wait 'til your dad gets home'!!

    15. I like that.

    16. I'm off to bed, sweet dreams Mr Allen :)

    17. "Bet he put his step dad through hell."

      God, that's hilarious on a couple of levels! (Or maybe even 3! :/ I'm a step dad and a stepson, lol.)

      I've told you before that you need your own show... (Trampoline pants!? Hahahaha.)

      edit- I came up with "epileptic hair" once, which seems a distant cousin, somehow, lol.

    18. Maybe you should wear my pants on your head ;)

    19. Oh, sure! I'd look like Guinan from Star Trek!

    20. Gnostic literature as a whole is very interesting. Most are mystical. Some are philosophical. Hermetic influence is obvious.

      In you're interested, the “Thunder Perfect” or “Thunder Perfect Mind” is a woman’s account of her experience. Unfortunately many are fragmented. The Gospel of Mary (Magdalene) is very fragmented but reveals the interplay between the guys in there self importance and the gal responding as a loving sister.

      Search on “Nag Hammadi Library” for a complete list and links to PDF files. The probable first site listed will be It’s one of the better ones with a more extensive and eclectic library.

    21. I ended up at gnosisdotorg, best one I could find without wandering too far. I got myself wrapped up in this as a young teen, started with Le Morte d'Arthur and ended on Hermes Trismegistus. Think I thought I might find the Holy Grail, what a plonker :)

    22. “Le Morte d'Arthur and ended on Hermes Trismegistus” The various incarnations of the Arthur ledged when approached in ways other then a simple story are fascinating. Some are expressions of the gestalt of the times and others are predictive, such as the move from arranged marriages into the romance era.

      The connections between the Grail legends and the Hermes literature are also fascinating (to the interested). Myth serves a metaphysical function, a cosmological function and a sociological function. I found Joseph Campbell’s insight and scholarship the most informative. He was a prolific author and lecturer (I was lucky enough to attend some of his lectures). His videos and books are very available in various forms on the web. Some examples are “The Hero’s Journey”, “The Hero with a Thousand Faces”’, “The Power of Myth” and much more.

      The Psychological model he uses is that of Carl Jung but broadens its scope with previous thinkers. That naturally moves into the Hermes literature that morphed into Alchemy. Alchemy produces two approaches to the Grail myths. Arguably, The most noted practitioner was Isaac Newton in the sciences pertaining to metallurgy and chemistry and Jung for the philosophical and psychological.

    23. I think it's more accurate to state that myths, like fables and legends, serve as wonderous and wonderful abstractions (I'm leery of the words and metaphysical and cosmological) e.g., the myth of Icarus and Daedalus, the fable of the tortoise and the hare, Le Morte d'Arthur.

      There is really no difference in structure and intent between the myth of Sisyphus and the biblical account of Adam and Eve. Yet, while most regard Sisyphus as a fictional character, too many have trouble regarding Adam and Eve in the same light.

    24. There is no difference in basic structure. Culturally they gave guidence to the path, place and purpose of the individual. The path from child to worrior to sage and beyond in various tribes. For the Apache woman it was the story of the corn maiden.

      The former modern myth for a fulfilling life has been pretty much shattered and is being replaced with a new one. It's a work in progress.

    25. I still find chicken little illuminating, especially when viewed in terms of the religious right.

      What is this new myth that you refer to in your last line?

    26. The new myth is a cultural work in progress but here is an outline of it's predecessor:

      Learn and respect the rules within the family. They prepare you to; venture in to the unknown world outside, get an education and good grades will reward you with a successful career, in finding a proper mate and live a fulfilling and purposeful life.

    27. Think my answer to this might be two long and off topic, better suited to an Arthur doc. I like what your saying though, impossible not to get drawn in and then off at all sorts of tangents. I do remember thinking that the stories were just a way to square Christianity with the old religions, weaving them together. Haven't given it much thought in a good many years but it did open up interests in other subjects. Maybe it was just the romance, with added blood, guts and horses. I didn't find the grail, I became a riding instructor instead :)

    28. If that is your bliss, you found the Grail.

    29. What's a bunch of utensils to a fine stallion?

      You certainly have a strong argument for Chrtianity trying to square itself with religions (and I might add legal codes) which preceded it.

    30. Nothing like a good honest horse. Except a man of the same mettle ;)

    31. I just read my reply to you, muddled and vague! You're a smart man, you know what I mean. Like my comment I am muddled and vague today, got up to see Venus but she didn't show and Passport to Pimlico is on :)

    32. What a neat movie! It is so typical of the British to produce films where the stars were, like Stanley Halloway, plainly unglamorous. It also has some of my favorite character actors such as Hermione Baddeley, Naughton Wayne, Basil Radford, Raymond Huntley and Sidney Taffler. During its heyday, the British film industry excelled in producing socially-themed movies such as this one. Henry Cornelius, the director, died too young, but at least he also directed Genevieve with three of my favorite stars, Kenneth More, John Gregson and, of course, Kay Kendall, another tragic death.

    33. Very good film, not much Hollywood sparkle. Looks like they found the cast at bus stops on the way to the studio :)

    34. Should there be, considering that Pimlico could hardly be characterized as a Ritzy district. As I mentioned, the British film industry of that time thought nothing of casting the older and the middle-aged in start parts and tackling social issues with an intelligence, aplomb and depth virtually foreign to the American films. As examples, "Whiskey Galore," "Chance of a Lifetime," "I'm All Right, Jack," "Hue and Cry," "Ladies Who do."

    35. Not quite the same but it brings us back on topic (almost), whistle Down the Wind. Magical :)

    36. I've seen that movie, too.

    37. I forgot to mention another fine British movie starring to older people: "The Happiest Days of Your Life." I'm surprised I forgot all about it because it's another of my favorites.

    38. ...that my friend, whoever you are and who I will never meet was - (your comment) - straight-up hilarious. Yes - I laughed out loud.

      Shades of - Oscar Wilde.

    39. There are many ways to read any text defined as scripture accepted and banned. All are interesting when read a little differently. Some ways are literally, allegorically, peshar techniques, and through critical text assessment but among the worst are authorized versions. Authorized, the trust me text interpretations, rarely if ever pass a critical text assessment as published. The question that should always be raised, just who was the authorizing authority and specifically why was it limited. What was the motive?

      Here’s a small example of literal: If you refuse to assume, the mental statement “I know”, and ask instead what exactly the literal translation is, you may be very surprised. It’s rather simple to do in this day and age. All the tools are right in front of you. Genesis 1-1 “Bereishit bara Elohim et hashamayim ve'et ha'aretz”

      Bereishit literally translates as “the head”, “a point of emanation” like a plugged artesian well or a capped volcano.

      Bara is a verb “to open up”, rarely used but always used with Elohim or similar appellation as the subject. So far Elohim is opening up the “the head” or “point of emanation”.

      Elohim literally translated is power (in Egyptian, neter), powers or an abundance of power. Because superlatives for words were always expressed as more than one repetition of the word as in verily, verily or holy, holy, holy, “m” would indicate a short cut superlative as in "chaim" literally life in abundance. Nowhere there is there ever a specific name given this power. The reference is always to an active principle, a process as is I Am that I Am.

      et hashamayim ve'et ha'aretz actually is literally “the heavens and the earth”. However their universe was usually seven spheres above and the earth two below. It was there “everything existent” but “bereishit” a void without form. Sound familiar?

      A New Testament link to “bara Elohim” would be the first phrase in John 1-1. In the beginning was the Word (Logos). The most common literal usage at the time for logos was the principle of order and knowledge, rational principle that governs. It’s like a pattern or form, something to be embodied, made real and active as a follower is instructed.

      Genesis 1-27 in the image: attempt the literal on your own. This is the first creation of what ever first constitutes a differentiating property of a human being. Just what is that image? Reference John 4:24 the first three words are a statement and the second is an instruction. A spirit, ever see one? Genesis 2:7 makes no claim of being an image of Elohim.

      Literal can be can be informative as can allegory but it needs a primer (Philo of Alexander’s rules of allegory). Peshar techniques require both. It’s used on The Dead Sea Scrolls. Reference them or Dr. Barbara Thiering. Critical text analysis is more like a discipline but points to a “Q” source that is similar to the Gnostic Gospel of Thomas.

    40. However "literal" translations work a barbarity on both languages. Try to translate "to kick the bucket" into any other language or "Mabel, you're a nice girl, but you speak like a fish." Or from French to English, "Cela ne vous regarde pas" or the George Duhamel novel "Tel qu'en lui meme." It just doesn't work. Secondly when the sentence structures are basically different as between Latin and English, it also doesn't work. A translation should read as if the original work were written in the language of the translation. Two of my favorite examples are Carlyle's Translation of "Wilhelm Meister" and Jacque LeClarq's translation of Rabelais.

      Critical text analysis is vital and fascinating. Have you read any of Bart Ehrman's books?

    41. Part of your post is precisely the point. Who is to be trusted with translation, a biased translator or a scholar with no objective but a pure translation. I’ve always chosen the scholar, especially in newly discovered stashes.

      I’ve read more books on critical text assessment than you would believe, so I’m not sure.

    42. Not sure of what?

    43. If that author was in the mix.

    44. I'm having trouble understanding this. "That author" obviously refers to Bart Ehrman about whom I asked you. It's the "in the mix" that puzzles me.

    45. At one time I was a veracious reader, now only occasionally. When a self posed question becomes an obsession. I’ll read. As a youth I mentally rebelled to words like imprimatur and nihil obstat being required as prerequisites. I had to know why. I picked up a book about Teresa of Avila that had, to my amazement, both an authorized translation and a word for word unedited translation. In comparing the two it became quickly apparent that the translator hadn’t a clue or that was the purpose.

      That eventually led to Old and New Testament textual criticism texts. Many were course texts but never a course taken. Becoming more interested with inconsistencies and arguments, “The Oxford Debate on the Textual Criticism” was an obvious choice.

      This process continued with the publishing of the “Nag Hammadi and Dead Sea Scroll” finds.

      As to the most recent, fragments of the poetry of Sappho were found. That sparked an interest so “The New Sappho on Old Age: Textual and Philosophical Issues” was a choice. Published works of Jung were of interest and the last purchase was his “The Red Book”.

      That is a small example of the mix. The answer to reading anything by Ehrman is no. He is too recent and most of the others too many.

    46. I just can't get voracious reading out of my system.

      Have you ever skimmed through any interlinear translations? How can one do a word-for-word translation and have it come out sounding right? During my graduate studies, a girl translated "The Last Night of Don Juan" by Rostand." Just about every sentence began with the pronoun "one." This works in French, but not in English. Now give me a word-for-word translation of "Il n'y a pas de quoi" which at all sounds like English.

      Again, I refer to Carlyle's translation of Wilhelm Meister. One of my professors who was fluent in German informed me that although the translation was far from scholarly, it captured the flavor and intent of the work more vivdly than any other. This is what's important.

  58. there is plenty of historical information that points to real problems confirming religious doctrin, so if this history teacher were as passionate about his subject - why is his focus so incredibly narrow? Why isn't he demonstrating his competency as an educator by really looking carefully at all historical literature which would include other religious dogma? If he were teaching my children that rubbish, I'd certainly take him to task and hope he looses his privilage to ever set foot in another classroom unless the classroom teaches evolutionary biology.

    Matthew only did what I would wish all students do, and that is fight for the separation of church and state.

  59. ooo political buttons... what a trouble maker.

  60. You don't know the community of Kearny. I do. I married a girl from Kearny and it was mandatory for me to go there multiple times per year for family religious holidays. They're a Roman Catholic town with a strong Irish/Scottish old school tradition. You can actually order "haggis" and assorted "meat pies" at many local restaurants lie.

    It's not uncommon to be eating fish 'n chips with your family at The Argyle Inn and a couple of bagpipers will come blaring through the restaurant with their pipes braying out in full volume like castrated donkeys. One of those god-awful, Braveheart battle marches will explain everything you need to know about the attitudes of Kearny's public schools towards parts of the 1st amendment they don't like or understand.

  61. If Mr. Paszkiewicz really wanted to follow the injunction in The Book of James to carry forth the truth, he'd realize that the best way to do that is to conform to the laws of Caesar in his classroom and, given his job as a paid teacher in a secular school, a direct approach is not necessarily the best one.

  62. i SHOULD be typing out a 10 page essay on how moral panics contribute to the creation and control of everyone stop bothering me! lol

  63. I may have a computer problem...wrote a couple comments here a while back and they're still not posted.

    1. When things go wrong with mine I clear the search history, cookies etc and see if it helps, then I mess about with things I don't understand, panic, use the restore point, restart, panic, Google til my eyes bleed, fail and take it to someone that knows what they're doing. By then I've pretty much killed it anyway. Luckily they know me and keep all my photos on a disk at the shop. They don't even ask me what I've done now, they just make it better :)

    2. @dewflirt,

      LOL... hahahha... that was funny.

      "I clear the search history, cookies etc and see if it helps, then I mess about with things I don't understand, panic, use the restore point, restart, panic, Google til my eyes bleed, fail and take it to someone that knows what they're doing"

      Joke aside, actually you're right. She just needs to clear the cache and the cookies from her browser (without panicking). Or try a different browser. I bet she's using IE.

    3. @Vlatko

      Good advice. Perhaps now that most of us have big hard drives and lots of memory the old rules of good housekeeping are not applied. Regular junking of unused material. Regular disk cleanups and defrags. I’m curious as to which you might think is the best browser? I’m currently using Chrome and like it.

    4. @AntiTheist666,

      Long time FF user, but for the last several months I'm using Chrome.

      We're off topic... I'll delete these.

    5. @Vlatko and all.

      I don’t know who’s aware of this; I haven’t seen it mentioned anywhere here but I would like everyone in the uK to know that the slightly cut down version of TDF works really well on the iPhone Safari browser with Wi Fi. Which is getting more and more available over here.

      The Mobile One

    6. Have you started on Grabbe yet?

    7. ”Have you started on Grabbe yet?”

      My God Robert lol.

      This is the british postal service we’re talking about! The country is recovering from four days of insane madness which included 2 consecutive bank holidays! I’ll be surprised if it’s here within a week or more. I’ll let you know as soon as I get it. Have you any plans to listen to that Spinoza radio broadcast?

      The Expectant One

      P.S. Your last recommendation was excellent so I have I high hopes for Grabbe.

    8. I simply asked the question out of curiosity. I didn't mean to rush you.

      As for the Spinoza broadcast, I want to allot a block of time so that I can give it the attention it deserves. I should be able to get to it within the next week or so.

    9. As for Spinoza and our beauty of not knowing. In my time, within
      my game? he rocks.. like Blake -

    10. @Teddy Mcd

      ”As for Spinoza and our beauty of not knowing. In my time, within
      my game? he rocks.. like Blake –“

      Hmm Spinoza? A Noble Rocker? Maybe we just stick him on drums? Blake? I say defo Lead Vocalist. I suggest Schopenhauer on Bass and Nietzsche on Lead guitar?

      The Crucified One

    11. @Sisyphus

      No offence taken Robert, I can’t be rushed lol, it’s not here! I’m really pleased about your plans for Spinoza. Please read my post about him again just before you listen to it. I believe it’s a fine example of an important point you made about a year ago. I have another even brighter gem for you also but we’ll get to That, post Spinoza.


      In god we teach?

      I think this doc has given us some us strong memories of early school days and how for some including me it was very confusing. I’ve already posted about the teaching of religion (called religious INSRUCTION in my early days) and the rudiments of evolutionary theory. To add to this confusion Story Telling figured highly for our young, impressionable minds. No prizes for guessing what we got! Fairy Tales, Myths, Legends and Fables, (Aesop’s figured highly, one of my faves.)

      Confused young kids??? Of course not!!! I distinctly remember being read “Hansel and Gretel” by the Brothers Grimm. The teacher was a fine orator and had a deep rich voice; during some of the chapters I had chills! By halfway through the book I was convinced that all adults were insane and I was going to keep them at arm’s length forever, not realising it wouldn’t be very long before I would experience adult - hood.

      The Grimm One

    12. Found your comment, it was our, er, disqus problem.

    13. That might not be the discus server rather than your computer. I reiterate my first suggestion: try contacting discus.

  64. So, could I have recorded my school teacher telling me I came from a monkey and tried to get her fired? I memember that terrible experience vividly.

    1. I doubt very much if that's what your teacher told you. So film away, but remember, teaching evolution is not against the law and your alleged terrible experience was probably due to your desire to remain wilfully ignorant.

    2. Oh, yes it was! That's how it was meant and that's how I understood it, basically, complete with the pictures. Teaching evolution to children should be against the law. If they want to learn the theory when adults, it should be offered as a college course.

    3. Now think real hard. Did your teacher say you were directly descended from a monkey or merely state that monkeys and humans share a common ancestor?

      Also, why shouldn't children learn at least the rudiments of science (and whether you like it or not, evolution is one of them) at an early age? Even if most never become scientists or anything close, it sharpens the mind in a way that religion cannot.

      Before you promote legislation against the teaching of evolution (which so many religees and other types of ignoramuses have tried to do before you), I suggest you examine the history and consequences of such attempts.

    4. but evolution is a well established fact....

      would you say we shouldnt teach gravity to children?

    5. Epic: I'll be unusually blunt (since this is on-topic), since I'm also in a bad mood. Gravity is a theory that has no eternal consequences when taught in school. Evolution, when taught to young minds in elementary school, can lead a person to the point where they deny God's existance which is a soul-damning event, should they die in that state of disblief. If you don't like Christians and our understanding of the world and scinece (as you see it), then what does it matter? We all die and turn into dirt--absolutely nothing more. But, for a Christain, turning your back on God leads to eternal never-ending burning in Hell.

      I feel like I barely escaped with my soul because some teachers over and over and over and over again hounded the theory of evolution into my 6 or 7 year old brain, and I didn't have the mental facalties to know it was trash at the time. Don't like church? Don't go. Don't send your kids there. Don't like evoloution? No choice, unless you homeschool, but my loving POOR parents had no idea what they were putting their kids through in public education.

      Christians offer life--a good life now and eternal life to come.
      Evolutionist offer only death and Hell.

      You may feel evolution is a scientific truth (like that fool that gave up his faith and made a documentary about it). But what if YOU'RE the one that's mistaken? What a mistake. If I'm wrong, nothing ABSOLUTELY nothing is lost in my short time on this planet. I still enjoy science, arts, the world around me, AND faith.

      Atheists on the other hand are half-people in my mind--neglecting the soul and willing to take the eternal gamble that they're right. So foolish in my eyes.

      I wish school vouchers were given so Christian parents without a substantial income could still have a free educaiton for their children in a private academy like my son is in now. If they want to change their mind later as an adult, fine. It's their choice, but we should give our children the best we can when they are small to have a good life and to have eternal life. The theory of evoltution should be illeagal to be taught to school children.

      With love and peace,

      Charles B.

    6. you think I am half a person do you?

      I usually do not get mad at you, but I am now, you have no right to say that to anybody, atheists or no, by saying what you have said means you have included Buddhists or any others that do not bow and scr@pe to your invisible deities, did I ever call you or any religee, a half-people?

    7. what does it matter that someone who believes in magic and doesnt understand science after it has been explained to him OVER AND OVER again, calls you half a person?

      its like a midget calling you little....who gives a f***?

    8. I agree, I really don't give a flying f*** either, but could not let it pass. So just treating Charles like a child that he is.

    9. Maybe you should have. No reason to stand on ceremony with anyone so ignorant and contemptible.

    10. @His Forever

      The abuse of young minds especially in school is a hot topic of mine also. I too speak from direct experience and from a Fathers perspective. From before my children (1 of each, now in their mid 20’s) were even a twinkle in my ex wife’s eye, I had plans for their Education through to University. And I would be happy to debate this very important subject with you rationally but there seems little point? When you say:-

      ”Atheists on the other hand are half-people in my mind”

      Let me put you straight on this in my case. I have beautiful, tangible, empirical medical evidence from Qualified Health Professionals to state that I am quite the full person thank you!

      What have you got Charles?

      This may seem strange but I’m hoping you meant it as an insult. That would be no problem for me, I would just shrug it off and move on.

      However, If you really mean it?

      ”Atheists on the other hand are half-people in my mind”

      There would be little point in debating anything with you when my opinion would only be worth half of yours! You’re beginning to sound like a muslim who thinks women are only half people too!
      And I won’t even mention EVOLUTION! One of the few things in life the species can be really proud of!

      I hope you see that by your own logic you have now lost at least half the respect that atheists had of you from before you made such poor statement.

      Unkeep the faith.

      The Crucified One

    11. Leave me out. I never had any respect for him--but again, I'm only half-atheist.

    12. @robertallen1

      "Leave me out. I never had any respect for him"

      Lol, so half of none then?

      "but again, I'm only half-atheist"

      Wtf is one of those? Please explain?

      The Mystified One

    13. I really don't care one way or the other.

    14. "Gravity is a theory that has no eternal consequences when taught in school. Evolution, when taught to young minds in elementary school, can lead a person to the point where they deny God's existance which is a soul-damning event, should they die in that state of disblief."

      where in the theory of evolution does it EVER say that god is not real?

      the only harm done here are people teaching their kids that the bible is literal. now you have a kid thinking that humanity is born into sin and is utterly evil and lost until they just believe in this magic man. THAT is harmful.

      there is not a single school on this planet that teaches evolution to kids that are 6 or 7.

      "Christians offer life--a good life now and eternal life to come.
      Evolutionist offer only death and Hell."

      christians offer a brainwashing jail of life that doesnt let you think. it makes you a robot. christianity teaches people that it is okay to be stupid.

      "You may feel evolution is a scientific truth (like that fool that gave up his faith and made a documentary about it). But what if YOU'RE the one that's mistaken? What a mistake. If I'm wrong, nothing ABSOLUTELY nothing is lost in my short time on this planet. I still enjoy science, arts, the world around me, AND faith.

      actually i know evolution is a scientific fact. it happens. deal with it. it is proven over and over. there is no debate whatsoever.

      now what if you are wrong and the muslims are right? what if you are wrong and the hindus are right? what if you are wrong and the buddhists are right? what if you are wrong and one of the 30 something thousand other branches of christianity is right?

      you have JUST AS MUCH of a chance of ending up in an unpleasant after life as i do. dont try that pascals wager garbage on me.

      "Atheists on the other hand are half-people in my mind--neglecting the soul and willing to take the eternal gamble that they're right. So foolish in my eyes."

      christians such as yourself are scared helpless people too stupid to grasp the world they live in so they need to resort to fairy tales about magic and demons to make them feel like they understand this big confusing world. making up things like a soul, and heaven and hell. completely childish and ridiculous.

      if you think i insulted you before (which i actually edited so as to not insult you) just keep coming back at me with these elementary level responses charles.

      blame the education system and now brainwash your children because YOU were too stupid to grasp evolution. that is pathetic.

    15. I'm willing to take the chance that all other religions are wrong, but not the chance that Christianity is wrong.

      If evolution doesn't try to say there is no God, then why do nearly 100% of those that follow this theory choose to be atheists--baring the odd compromising evolutionary Christians that try to have their cake and eat it to.

      Evolution is taught in every elementary school in the country, or at least it was in mine. Go find a 1st grade science book and count the references to evolution, please. I'm sure there are many.

      I fully grasp the concept of evolution, I just reject the theory.

      True Christians are fearless in the aspect of terror that you're referring to. I don't want to die, but I have very little fear of death. I sleep soundly on most nights. There's a reason why religious people live longer as a general rule--if not for the real help of God, then for the comfort of a fearless heart.

      Epic: One thing is for absolute sure, we'll know the truth in just a few short years, both you and I. There's nothing wrong with Pascal's Wager in this instance as it's a very wise understanding of the world.

      Haven't you ever wondered why humans as a whole are so religious, given our superior intelligence? It's a God-given vacuum in our soul and we fill it with either God, or gods of our own making, or faith in a theory that is mathmatically nearly impossible if not entirely mathmatically impossible.

      I would much rather take the chance on educating my children whom I love more than my own life, by giving them every basic skill scientifially, mathmatically, and religiously (a faith in God), than to not.

      You educate your children, I'll educate mine, but unfortunately I don't have a choice if I want to send my kids to public school, other than to have them taught something I feel is the most dangerous theory on the planet.

      If evolution was taught in college as an elective course, I'd be fine with it, but it's not. I was taught it starting from my earliest gradeschool memories. Weren't you? That wasn't my choice, and I choose to give my kids better than that.

    16. Charles, I really believe you know in your heart that Evolution makes perfect sense, that it is an accurate, even if incomplete, assessment of the history of species. I think the problem with you, which a lot of us here would probably agree with, is the profound cognitive dissonance it causes... You are simply unable, or unwilling, to reconcile, in any way, what it says with all the structures that were erected in your mind from an early age to help you cope with the awareness of your own mortality, because THAT is what religious belief ultimately stems from, plain and simple, however it has been further complicated to suit and accommodate different needs and fears over the centuries. This dissonance is the reason you get so agitated! Furthermore, this little seed grows into the feeling that you are being persecuted, or morphs into a deep fear of something that it could never actually mean: That if you had the courage to fully change, or even just modify, your views of the world that are blatantly irrational, that this would constitute a total rejection of the people who love you and raised you.

      Now, Charles... I want you to lay back on the couch. I'm going to fix you a hot cup of chamomile with lemon, put on a disk of soothing ocean waves, and I want you to understand that everything is purely alright, man, and I want you to make the effort...


    17. Nrennithos64: (even harder to spell than your pysmythe!) Friend, you know my heart -- nearly everything, including evolution when explained by a highly intelligent and scientific mind to a less educated person or less informed person does indeed sound correct, or at least plausible. In this case, the matter is not just what "seems right to man" as the Bible says there is a way that seems right to man, but the "end leads to death."

      Stated simply as I've said before, if evolution is correct, then there is no God; no God, no purpose in life; no purpose in life--no reason to exist or live. The outcome is so devistatingly unthinkable, so there must be more to life than just total chance and purposelessness.

      That and the fact that in the moments when you DO hear God's voice (which is not often for me to be honest) it's strong and reassuring and purpose-giving. Never doubt in the dark what you've learned in the light--or in the word of Dora from Nemo "Just keep swimming! Just keep swimming!"

      Purhaps this is why God honors faith above nearly all other characteristics.

      So let me ask you this: Are you 100% an atheist? You believe neither in the soul, nor God, or any spiritual thing? Why or why not.

      From the heart,

      Charles B.

    18. Each one of your posts increases in ignorance.

      Not only are you ignorant of evolution but you refuse to learn anything about it. Yet on and on you go taking up space with your ignorant walls of text, trumpeting that evolution is wrong because it gives rise to atheism and that without belief in some little fairy in the sky manipulating the puppet strings life is meaningless. " . . . there must be more to life than just total chance and purposelessness" is proof of nothing.

      "God honors faith above nearly all other characterists." You don't know this any more than a cockroach does; you've only deluded yourself into thinking you do.

      Is it any wonder that you're the laughing stock of anyone with any intelligence and education?

    19. Mr. Allen, I usually don't answer your comment, but this time, I'll make an exception. All the proofs of God's care and help in my life, such as the divine healing of my mom or other answers to prayer, you'd dismiss just as quickly as my "feelings".

      If if a person was raised from the dead, you'd still not believe--hey, in fact, besides Jesus, you can find at least a dozen testimonies of just that (not a recussitation but an actual resurrection days later).

      People who have met angels/demons/Jesus--liars or gas bubbles in the blood at the time of death.

      Miracles of any kind--unreproducable at your command, lies, or just plain misunderstood science.

      You think me a mor-*n, but I think what a perpetually unhappy person you must be to have that much venom towards sincere people of faith.

      Charles B.

    20. All we have to substantiate this supernatural gibberish of yours is your word and the word of others equal to you in ignorance. To think that a grown man like you are supposed to be still believes in angels and demons. Do you also believe in ogres and gorgons?

      Your feelings are worthless; your so-called testimony is worthless and without hard evidence, everything you write is worthless--which says a lot about you.

      The one thing you're right about is the venom toward those like you because you can't keep it to yourselves, but insist on spreading your ignorance and superstition into everything, especially the schools and the government. So it makes me happy to bash those like you every chance I get.

    21. Morning C, no reason to be alive? How wonderful, a truly frivolous gift then. Big, shiny and utterly pointless! My favourite kind :)

    22. Are you slyly attempting to take me on a late night stroll along the Magdalen path with Hugo and John Ronald?

      I generally hate one word summations of anything, Charles, unless that word is "convoluted," but "atheist" would have to be admitted as being serviceable enough, as far as all the deities of the world (or not of the world!) are concerned. About the soul, I admit I know nothing, and I'm thoroughly convinced that you don't, either.

      All the same, despite the facetiousness in my previous post, I want you to know I have a LOT of sympathy for what I think you are going through right now... I've been there, honestly. You and I come from not only the same part of the country, but, I take it, were brought up in the same nightmarish denomination, Pentecostalism, and I know (I mean, I REALLY KNOW, Charles) the psychological stranglehold this group attempts to put upon their children, so that they don't "stray from the word". Not a lot of ceremony and pageantry there, and even less scholarship, but rather a bunch of straight up fear-based tactics which clearly amount to child abuse probably more than any other Christian group I'm aware of, including the RCC sex scandals, simply because of the sheer numbers, and because it's so emotion-based against a group that has so little sophistication with which to fight off such attacks. It's insidious, the penalties they attempt to place upon you for the effrontry of ever simply using your mind, for following your reason to its logical conclusions to the best of your ability, for being honest with yourself BEYOND what they have taught you the parameters of that have to be.

      I think if you ever feel you need to be BOLD, Charles, you should not be afraid to do it. You may eventually find that whatever conclusions you come to are not so hard to live with, after all.

    23. I'll get back to you.

    24. You know nothing about evolution, yet you call it trash. That makes you uneducated and backwards. Then you want to legislate against evolution's being taught in public schools; that makes you contemptible, for you want everyone to conform to your level of ignorance.

      I don't believe you've ever read anything about evolution which is why you use the red herring of atheism as an argument against it. As a matter of fact, Kenneth R. Miller, one of the foremost evolutionary biologists, is a practicing Catholic. If you had listened to your teacher you would know that evolution does not stand for the proposition that man came from monkey, but rather that man and monkey share a common ancestor. In other words, you're attacking something you know nothing about and want to know nothing about and want your children to know nothing about and to top it all, demand respect for your idi"tic stance.

      Whether you like it or not, evolution is a fact; religion is not which places it on just about the lowest rung of intellection. Investigation and hard evidence with the ability to draw intelligent conclusions from them (i.e., science) far outstrip anything your religion with its silly belief system has to offer. "Atheists on the other hand are only half people in my mind . . . " In other words, anyone who exhibits the intelligence to reject your fatuous twaddle and the fatuous twaddle of others like you is only half a person--what a lame assertion. Obviously, the only way you can justify your own belief system is to categorically demean others who refuse to accept it--and can give sound reasons for doing so.

      You can't prove there is a god and a soul anymore than my macaw; yet, you expect others to accept your unfounded drivel on its face and in support, you cite Pascal's wager: what if I'm right. Well, I believe in the tooth fairy and whether I'm right or wrong, I have nothing to lose and those who don't have a lot to lose. So my belief is just as good as yours.

      With all the contempt I can muster.

    25. now you are lying? doesnt your religion tell you that you shouldnt lie? isnt that a commandment?

      we all know that your teacher said that you share a common ancestor with chimps today....

      edit: sorry had to delete the mean stuff i left....bad mood and all.

    26. May be the teacher was a very religious person and was using his teaching position to make fun of science.

    27. But the mean stuff was so appropriate. Your indignation is certainly just.

    28. You're insulting me. As a elementary school child, what I remember is the idea which states you came from a monkey. I even was brainwashed so much that I thought my dad's lips were evolving to wrap around the Pepsi bottle more and more (he's got big lips). It did nearly soul-devistating harm to be taught that trash in school as a child. Said as nicely and politely as possible.

    29. If you're serious, you deserve to be insulted.

    30. Deadly serious.

    31. You came to us a few days ago saying that you are going through some rough. I am just starting to read the thread from here up...and already i see that you are getting wrapped in some heavy discussion. Charles, i don't think this is what you need at the moment. Perhaps it would be better if you ask questions to people. By opening up and trusting that perhaps the answers will supply you with words that you need to hear at the moment. We knew where you stood, we just don't know where you stand now. Allow your insecurities to surface and may be if you ask a few questions some answers will ring true to you and open a wider view on your personal journey.
      I like you and i don't like to see you in such confrontation.

    32. Charles,
      Nobody deserves to be put down and ridiculed for their beliefs. No matter what they are.
      As you read more of robertallen's posts, you will come to realise he is the quintessential bully, who pulls himself up by dragging others down.
      This becomes even more obvious when you realise that, though he ostensibly detests religion, he largely posts on religious subjects.
      Because there is more opportunity to ridicule others.

      What would be the better approach?
      Disagree, debate, offer counter arguments, or even ignore somebody with a different view?
      Or insult, put down and be condescending to that person, which is what robertallen does.

    33. @aptnw:

      You are trying to derail, hijack, troll, or bait @robertallen1: into an emotional response on this and other posts.

      It seems you want him to loose his cool on this and other posts, from your direct and indirect attacks.

      Stop and desist, anymore posts such as this off-topic deriding post will be removed.

      Please read the "comment policy"

    34. I don't mind being attacked for what I post. However, I mind very much being attacked for what I never posted, out-of-context distortions such as the recent one concerning Newton's Third Law (and I've admitted that in that instance, I could have done better) or downright lies such as aptnw's assertion that I took umbrage at his view of my country when indeed I agreed with him and that I was trying to get even by deriding his when the opposite was true (this being a textbook example of baiting).

      I simply wanted to make my position clear.

    35. I’ve come back to TDF after a long absence and found new and interesting contributors and others. One of the new and interesting contributors is @robertallen1. If that’s not a given person’s experience, than that should trigger the questioning of their method of confrontation. Nothing is learned through derision.

      After scanning his posts, a question popped up. That was, where is his center confrontation, thoughtful inquiry or contributor? After being engaged properly, he confronts with thoughtful inquiry and contributes, properly.

    36. @Philio:

      Center confrontation? none, it was slyly done to gradually elicit an emotional response from robertallen1, through derision, defamation of character, which did not work, from the person in question.

      Anyway, all off topic, I stand to what I have said.

    37. I must have missed something. My comment was in support of your statement and not a criticism. Hope you didn’t misunderstand. I found @robertallen1 centered and engaging. He is making me jump back a few years to things long since put aside and that’s a good thing.

    38. I know it was in support, no problem, probably my bad. Was not referring to you.

    39. You understand perfectly.

      Now, are you at all interested in my thoughts about how a math textbook should be written? If you are not, just tell me so and I promise not to take offense.

    40. Of course I’m interested in your thoughts and would enjoy reading and mulling them over through discussion but we have been off topic. Our moderator has been patient. I don’t want to push it. There may be another doc out there where this conversation would be on topic. If there is one let me know.

      Further, I rarely take offence. That’s an emotional response. The energy in any emotion can be redirected for benefit without harm.

    41. Dare to be clear Philio.
      The second paragraph sounds positive, if a bit patronizing.
      The first paragraph is more confusing.
      "If that’s not a given person’s experience than that should trigger...." is "than" a typo, or are you using it to introduce the rejected choice? The comma behind "confrontation" suggests a typo.
      If that is the case, are you using "that's" and "that" equivalently to "this" in computer programming?
      Or, if you wouldn't mind, could you repeat it in plain English?

    42. It's a mirror thing, one gets what one gives. If you want information, give information. Criticisms can be constructive or destructive. Those attributes can also coyly merge as in a personal attack laced with good information.

      To your first question, I’m direct typing on the post and if I’m in a hurry I don’t proof read. You may find a phrase repeated in a second line, which and that misused or from for form.

    43. "Which" and "that," those troublesome correlatives. I have discarded all the rules I have read as unrealistic and unviable. In short, one can be substituted for the other for the other with no concomittant decline in literacy. It's a matter of choice. Suppose Marlow had written, "Is this the face which launched a thousand ships" as opposed to "Is this the face that launched a thousand ships?" It's hard to believe that he stopped in midsentence to ask himself whether he were writing a restrictive or non-restrictive clause.

    44. I had a similar debate with a teacher. When she asked what will you do when you need these skills. I said, hire someone like you. Chalk it up to the arrogance of youth.

    45. My point is when would you ever need these "skills"

    46. It’s been quite a while since I had to present a formal paper and I don’t know the standard today. Then such errors affected the grade.

      If communication to higher management is implicit in your career, the answer is yes. You are evaluated by your communication skills implied or not. There was a different problem if your vocabulary was large. The basic instruction was to communicate compatible to eighth reading skills.

    47. Fine, but I was referring to the alleged difference between "which" and "that." No one pays any attention and none is needed as the words are interchangeable.

    48. I yield.

    49. Thank you.
      So it is roughly similar to the "this" statement in programming as I understand it.
      But, again, the second paragraph of your reply is completely beyond my understanding.
      Could you please rephrase that in common English.
      I would like to point out that communication is a transfer of data between two or more entities which are able to understand the data transferred between them.
      Anything else is commonly referred to as gobbledygook.
      I respectfully request that you use your language skills to project your views to the largest audience possible.

    50. “You are trying to derail,....”
      Not really.
      When I see a lie, I will try to get to the truth.
      When I see a bully, I will confront his bullying head on.
      We all have an occasional jibe at someone but no-one else puts down people consistently for no valid reason like Robert does.
      You may have noticed that his stance has softened somewhat.
      He is now using the fourth and last tool in the bully's toolbox: involving others in his plight.
      No, I am not a bunny and I don't run out of batteries. I agree it is cute.
      As long as Robert puts down people rudely for thinking differently, there should be someone to pull him up.

      If anything, it is disappointing that none of you ever mention to him to take it easy.

    51. In case you haven't noticed, this is a public forum, so anyone can become involved. Your statement that I have elicited such involvement is simply another example of your distortion.

      And no, your support of LindaCurl anent Shakespeare demonstrates the absence of a desire to get to the truth. Docoman found out right away that the assertion of Shakespeare's Jewishness was a hoax. Why didn't you? After all, you both have the same tools and the same access and after all, you pride yourself on your ability to research? I'll tell you why, because you're more interested in trolling and trying to put me down than anything else.

      And I think it's a bit premature to be patting yourself on the back, especially based on the false assertion that my stance has softened somewhat. Rest assured, it hasn't, especially towards dishonest, deceitful, mendacious little you.

      Not once have you provided a thoughtful treatment of issues or for that matter anything approaching a factual exposition, either relevant or irrelevant to the documentary at hand. Almost all your posts have been dedicated to trying to "pull me up" by hook or crook and, quite frankly, you do not have the wherewithal to succeed. So Achems assessment of you is directly on point, Battery Bunny.

    52. He said when he sees a lie, he will try to get to the truth. From what I've seen, more then once now, I'd say aptnw's problem is actually spotting the lie in the first place.
      Edit- I've seen him criticize your critical thinking. But both time's I've read his comments now, I thought he displayed a woeful lack of ability to critically analyze, and was easily misled by what I considered obvious lies.

    53. Bingo!

      And right obvious lies, such as those about Shakespeare. But again, we all know what this stems from. Like a religee, his agenda supersedes everything, including facts, critical thinking and basic honesty.

    54. I thought this example was even more obvious. In another bad, bad doco, while showing the Twin Towers coming down, they say 'the case arose just 2 years post 9/11' (in an effort to further their point)
      I pointed out this falseness, more then once;
      September 11, 2001
      Her arrest, October 8, 2004.
      Just 2 years?
      But, even as simple as I tried to make this to see, it obviously passed him by when watching it, and the multiple times I pointed it out. OR, somehow he agreed with the 'doco', as this was just one of the false things I pointed out, but instead he said "didn't you see the piles of evidence", from what he called "Absolutely a must see documentary." Amongst asking other questions I'd already addressed.
      Then asks me, "Didn't you listen at all?" and suggests, "Maybe you are letting yourself be influenced by personalities, rather than facts."

      It did feel eerily similar to talking with a religee. You may have a point.

    55. Do you need piles of evidence to back up an assertion that in a decimal system 2+2=4.?

    56. That was very well said. Thank you.

    57. you were not taught that trash. what happened is you didnt understand what the teacher was telling you. if you thought that humans evolved while alive (like your dads lips evolving) or if you thought that you came from a monkey then you were not paying attention in class.

    58. Epic, I know what I was taught. Once again, they had all the little pictures of the short necked giraffes reaching up higher and higher into the trees, and then the necks got longer and longer and the short necked ones all died, and the long neck ones had longer and longer necks. If the giraffe's necks were getting longer by reaching harder and harder into higher and higher trees, when wouldn't my dad's lips naturally be getting bigger and bigger as he drank Pepsi every day form the glass bottles? It was applied science, wasn't it?

      Now as an adult, I understand more. I believe God may have pre-determined a set range of possibilities in an animal's genetic code that can be utilized and activated by the environment. Fish can change quickly sometimes depending on their environment and still be within the same category of a "fish". I watched the necropsy of the giraffe and they suggested that had God formed the giraffe it wouldn't have had a long nerve that went all the way down it's neck just to go back to it's brain, but would have had a two ich nerve instead.

      Maybe gifaffe's necks did get longer over a process of time (and maybe not), but to say that is a prof of evolution (a byproduct of the process) is jumping to a conclusion they already had. So, I suspect most of your proofs of evolution would be similar (ring spiecies, residuals of useless anatamy parts that are leftovers from evolution but are redundant now), etc. I've read quite a bit on talkorigins. I just wish I had the extensive scientific training and background to analyse many of the arguments myself thouroughly.

      We'll see. It's late. Sorry for getting you so upset, but I still have a hard time grasping the anger you feel towards Chrstians. For me, eternal souls are at stake--in your understanding nothing is at stake but a theory and what might or might not be your definition of proven scientific "truth".

      What I do fear is someday they will take my kids for no other reason than because I'm a Chrstian, or take my life, or both. More Christians (I suspect) give their life every single day for their faith than all atheists in all centuries combind. It would be interesting to know the exact statistics.

      Good night, and blessings!

      Charles B.

    59. No, you obviously don't know what you were taught. Likewise, despite your claim, you know little about evolution and from one of your assertions, even less about speciation and timeframes (e.g., your equation of the evolution of the necks of giraffes with your dad's drinking of Pepsi). Your use of catchwords such as ring species, fails to impress as by your own admission, you lack the knowledge that goes with them. Of course, this does not stop you from expatiating from ignorance, e.g., "I believe god may have determined a set range of possibilities in an animal's genetic code." What you believe does not count. Where is your evidence?

      Martyrdom does not establish the validity of anything except dying. People who give their life for something as pathetic as their faith are gullible mo"ons who deserve their fate. By your own statement, atheists are a lot smarter.

    60. @His Forever
      you misunderstood. the giraffe's necks weren't getting longer. the ones with the mutation for longer necks ate better and therefore were better able to pass on their genes to the next generation. the ones in that next generation born with even longer necks (another mutation) survived even better and so on. evolution does not claim that one generation extended their necks during their lifetime. you go on to list a complete rejection of some of the evidence we do have for evolution without an actual logical reason for this other than a lack of understanding of the phenomena in question. try looking up "observed instances of evolution" and explain that to me. i will give you a head start the "long term e-coli experiment" (people must be getting tired of me citing that study) now please don't dismiss it because you don't understand it. science is not atheistic even if many scientists are also atheists they are completely separate. many denominations of your faith have accepted evolution as gods tool. while many members of most if not all denominations do accept evolution. speaking only for myself the anger towards Christians is the byproduct of their refusal to keep their beliefs out of areas they are not welcome or qualified to be part of. their denial of facts, Galileo (yes still), their interest in protecting their institution more than turning in pedophiles, the complete disregard for women s rights. the indoctrination of children, the willful lying, and twisting of facts that they do not agree with and so on (i could go on for many more lines)

    61. I'm curious about one thing. What caused the giraffe's necks to stop growing longer? Was it basically some genetic mutation standing for the proposition, "Enough already?"

    62. @robertallen1
      with any mutation there is a cost benefit calculation. the muscles nerves tendons and so on required for even longer necks all require energy to sustain. so there would be a point that the increase in energy consumed (food) would be outstretched by energy spent (increase in energy spent on accessibility )

    63. Then there must have been some species with even longer necks which because they were not viable went extinct--the law of diminishing returns.

      I find it interesting that the neck of the okapi, the giraffe's only living relative, which is also found in Africa is only about average for the size of its body.

    64. @robertallen1
      you would assume so but as you know fossils are a rare find and as far as i know there are no examples of longer neck giraffes. the okapi while related and also living in Africa had a different evolutionary path. it would seem that their evolutionary adaptations allowed them to eat food closer to the ground but poisonous to most competition so a longer neck wasn't advantageous to them as food was readily available to them due to a alternative mutation

    65. Thank you.

    66. Over-The-Edge: What's so exciting about the e-coli experiment? Break it down for me. Last I heard there wasn't much if any change in a few decades, unless that's old news.

    67. @His Forever,
      the long term e-coli experiment is what many religious people have been demanding from science where evolution is concerned. it is repeatable,observed proof of speciation . Charles evolution does not disprove god. nothing in science disproves god. it only makes god unnecessary to explain things. you can keep your god and still recognize that evolution is a fact. i am sorry but it is a fact and that is not up for debate. i believe that your reasoning skills are developed enough to see that.

    68. Over the Edge: The e-coli in the long term experiment did not change from one type of bacteria to another, even in 50,000 generations. There was no kind to kind transition.

      The adaptablity of bacteria is well-known. That's not news. God created them with the genentic means to be flexible within their environments (and the constant presence of the citric acid in the groth medium favored one particular adaptation over others). Where you see proof of evolution, I see prof that like begets like begets like begets like, baring minor adaptation.

      For a moment, I was worried (not) that the e-coli had sudden grown legs and walked off the peti dish. Phew! I feel better now.

      My prediciton: in 10 billion trillion generations from now, they will still be e-coli. Let's wait and see.

      Peacefully Yours,

      Charles B.

    69. Where are you getting your information, from one of your idiotic creationist websites? Once again, you're wrong, wrong, wrong. It's just that you know so little about evolution and basic biology and, in the name of your idiotic religion, wish to learn nothing about them that the results are completely beyond your wilfully and woefully limited comprehension.

      But let me give you another example. Birds evolved from theropod dinosaurs which, for your information, were reptiles. And don't try to say it didn't happen because it did and you will find the abundant evidence if you will read up on it, not that you will because once again your idiotic religion stands between you and education.

      You just cannot get it through your head that your bible of which you really know nothing is not a biology textbook.

      As you have no training in any of the sciences, your predictions are as worthless as everything else about you.

    70. @His Forever,(do you mind if in the future i still call you Charles)

      they are a new species. that is exactly what i have been asked for over and over again for years. not saying you have been asking me that but i have been having this debate for a long time. as soon as what is asked for is given instead of accepting it ,the question is changed. now many use the word "kind" that is not a scientific term so cannot be met scientifically.. when i ask for a definition of "kind" the answer is either given so loosely as to make the definition useless or defined as something that evolution does not hold as a claim. how come when a requirement is met the goalposts are moved? you state "For a moment, I was worried (not) that the e-coli had sudden grown legs and walked off the peti dish." i do realize that you were not completely serious in that quote but i fear that there is enough seriousness in that statement to be scary. you do understand that nothing in that statement is compatible with evolution? evolution never claims that one species turns into another. only as population drifts away from the original these small changes add up and eventually they drift so far apart they are considered a new species and there are many (as a matter of fact museums full) of examples of this happening. the time involved for what i fear you are asking for (if even possible by evolutionary standards) is usually in the millions if not hundreds of millions of years and therefore not directly observable in real time. do you reject the fossil record? do you expect to see a half one species and half another species fossil? when examples are given that are not what you would expect (or demand in some cases) please understand that while they are not what you demand they ARE what evolution demands and please don't set your own standards and requirements onto a area of science you don't understand. how would you like it if when we talk religion i came out with the statement. "well if god were real why can't i fly" and expected you to defend that with something other than "that is nonsense". or if i attributed passages to the bible that were never said and asked you to defend them and if you can't god is not real. or "jesus never turned water into maple syrup" so he cannot be the son of god. do you understand now?

    71. I do prefer Charles, actually. I was half way playing around when I foud out you can change your pen name, but I do like the new one much better. Scanning only as I'm nearly out of mintues. Sorry, can't stay.

    72. @His Forever

      Charles, I have to say that I’m disappointed! I see you have chosen to reply to everyone on this thread but me! I can take being insulted easily but being IGNORED really gets my back up!
      I ask a serious question in a post that begins:

      “The abuse of young minds especially in school is a hot topic of mine also”

      I’d like to know where I stand with you? If this is how you’re going to treat me perhaps I should IGNORE you too. I also asked a very serious question regarding insulting names over at Sci Show Chemistry, also IGNORED.
      If this is what christianity teaches about decorum, civility and manners it has patently failed again!

      The Ignored One

    73. Why should this bother you?

    74. @robertallen1

      Why should this bother you?

      Because I am vain, I was raised in vanity, it was inevitable, the whole notion of humankind is built on ego and vanity.

      The Vain One

    75. Sounds like something from Ecclesiastes.

      I see nothing wrong with constructive ego and vanity, the two traits that keep me honest with myself and in dealings with others.

    76. "Sounds like something from Ecclesiastes."

      Ouch that hurt!

      You could have at least said it sounded Zarathustrian!

      The Hurt One

    77. "Vanity of vanities, all is vanity." Ecclesiates 1-2.

    78. @robertallen1

      Oh my god Robert what have you done!

      "Vanity of vanities, all is vanity." Ecclesiates 1-2.

      You have proved a part of the bibble to be true!
      Thankfully it’s only 0.000000001% true

      The Zarathustrian One

      P.S. Very well remembered and spotted. Bravo!

    79. I'll give it a higher truth rating. Ecclesiastes is one of the few books of the Bible that I like and I believe your hero, Nietzsche, liked it too. "Nothing new under the sun" 1:9 is also found there. Proverbs is nice too--of course, it can't beat Chronicles 1 and 2. When taken as literature, the Bible stands fairly tall, although the individual books were not meant to be pieced together like an encyclopedia, but when taken as anything else, it falls flat.

    80. I'm not sure what the question is in that paragraph, precisely. Most of people's questions are not expecting a reply. I don't think expressing your opinion in a classroom on the topic of your faith is abusive at all. If you have a more specific question that needs to be answered, I'll try but no guarantees. My internet is down. I'm paying by the minute on this broadband stick. 3rd time in a few weeks someone has stolen the phone cables for scrap metal. I hate this place sometime. For pennies they're making me miserable as I have to teach online AND pay double for it!

      Peacefully Yours,

      Charles B.

    81. In a history class? As a matter of fact, in any class.

    82. Obviously they're not.

    83. @robertallen1
      sadly i might have to admit i was wrong on that assertion. but i will still hold out"faith " that i am right for now. at the end of the day i do agree with achems in that he is my favorite "religee" here and you have to give him credit for sticking it out far longer than most here

    84. No, I don't. The time he spends posting in his various incarnations could be spent in learning.

      Your latest response and many of those which have preceded it are sterling examples of the time and effort you have put into mastering your subject. So I find it execrable when he and those like him in their wilful ignorance impugn your statements and those of their intellectual betters. I can understand someone not being interested in a subject--after all, no one person can be interested in everything--and therefore positing no opinion, but when someone who has no desire to acquaint himself at least rudimentarily with a subject posits a negative judgment on it, that person has crossed the line, which is what has happened with His Forever and one other individual and deserves no respect.

      Drawing on your vast knowledge of the subject, I would like to ask you: When all is said and done, isn't it more accurate to view evolution on the whole as basically a zig zag or even something similar to a parabola or ellipse rather than the popular straight line? If so, it seems that the drawings depicting evolution found in many textbooks are inaccurate. I would appreciate your comments.

    85. I don’t. The time he spends posting in his various incarnations would be better spent picking up some knowledge.

      Who is he and others just as ignorant to impugn your statements which are the product of the time and effort you have put into a serious study of your subject? I can understand a person being indifferent to a subject—after all, we can’t be interested in everything—and therefore gives no opinion; but when a person refuses to acquaint himself rudimentarily with a subject and then posits a negative judgment on it, he has crossed the line which is what has occurred with His Forever and one other person—and is entitled to no respect.

      But let me draw on your knowledge. Isn’t it more accurate to view evolution as a zigzag or perhaps a parabola or even an ellipse rather than as the popular straight line? If so, it seems that the drawings depicting evolution found in many textbooks are not accurate representations.

    86. @robertallen1
      i have personally witnessed Charles accept knowledge and admit he was either mistaken or wrong so i have seen the potential. while those instances are infrequent they have happened. the zig zag or other description may be appropriate for lets say the whale in the development of leaving the water for land and then going back to the water. the branching description of the tree of life (or even straight line)is more than appropriate for tracing the lineage of any and all species. i feel that the confusion of those who are beginners to the subject is great enough without introducing a complexity that will be understood and accepted as their knowledge grows. weather it be the straight line description of the accent of man (most if not all have seen it) or the branching effect of the tree of life depiction are more than adequate for explaining the basic principles.and when you speak of textbooks i am assuming you are talking about possible confusion of those who honestly wish to learn and not those who are just looking for anything to grab a hold of for denial purposes. the second group is irrelevant to me. i hope i understood what you were proposing

    87. You have understood perfectly, except that I was not proposing anything, as I lack the knowledge to do so.

      Thanks greatly for the elucidation. Is it that when taken as a whole, evolution zigzags but that the branches within it remain pretty much linear or is it that certain branches of evolution such as the whale and its ancestors zigzag while others such as hominids evluve pretty much in a straight line?

    88. @robertallen1
      the more appropriate is "when taken as a whole, evolution zigzags but that the branches within it remain pretty much linear". also i would like to say this description (and i know you understand this but others might not) does not mean that evolution is a journey to a particular goal.

    89. I thought my first option was the correct one; I just wanted to make sure.

      Unless we can consider survival of the most fit as a goal or subgoal, but that seems to be stretching it.

    90. I just realized you share the same name as Charles does that make you feel? lol

    91. Epic: You're too intelligent and too educated to take on scientifically, but the Bible does say that God chooses few that are "wise" according to the world's standards. Not sure why that is, but it does seem to be so.

      I don't know if I ever shared the story of my name, actually. On the day I was born, my mother ask the Lord what to call me. She heard the name "Charles Matthew" which she later found out meant "manly" and "A gift from God" so from my birth I've been a "man who is a gift/sent from God."

      My dad changed my middle name to his own, however, so I have the "Charles Matthew" to my own son. I like it very much. At one of my darkest hours, I asked, "Am I still Charles Matthew" and it was one of the few times I've heard a strong reply (in my heart), "Yes. You always have been and always will be a Charles Matthew." Or words to that extent.

      Unless God touches your heart apart from your intellect (which is possible), then I'm sure you won't change your mind.

      Unless I totally loose my faith and fall into total dispair (like Chris from Why I am no Longer a Christian), then neither shall I. Hopefully.

      It goes back to Pascal's Wager: I truely would rather be in my shoes than yours, and that's a well-thought-out reply, not just a flippant response.

      Charles B.

    92. Your mother asked the lord what to call you and she heard the name "Charles Matthew." Is she sure it wasn't just an engine backfiring, a dog whimpering or a cat screeching. Maybe it was Santa Clause breathing down her neck. Your anecdote is the stuff that movies are made of, not mature, rational thought.

      Again, what makes you think you know anything about something which by your own definition you can know nothing about? How about letting us in on the secret? You can't expect us to take you at your word.

      It seems that the only despair from which you are suffering is the wilful ignorance engendered by dogma and superstition and the mental paralysis that goes with it.

      In light of everthing you have asserted, you just don't have it in you to draft a well thought out reply.

    93. You made me laugh out loud with your first paragraph in response to Charles!

      I have another word for all those voices that religee's hear, gods and devils whatever, "schizophrenia"!

    94. It's not schizophrenia which I don't think is a valid medical term any longer although there is certainly a disturbance of sorts there.

    95. Having fun yet?

    96. Az...well half of me is, the other half am looking for, I know it is here somewhere, probably joined the other half-people! lol

  65. I think this multinfinity level hotel is talked about in "Into Infinity And Beyond" documentary which is here on TDF but no longer available. It is still available on youtube.
    A good watch.

  66. Dewy

    "It's all rather untidy, needs a woman's touch"

    Yes I know what you mean; it can seem awful messy at times. But we should never be daunted by the task. And it’s not quite as bad as it may seem. Thanks to people like Cantor who did great work on the hierarchy of infinities mathematicians today count, add, multiply and invent new infinites all the time. From they’re point of view they’re looking at frozen plank seconds. So it would seem some infinities are bigger than others.

    As for the hotel paradox. Think of it this way this infinite hotel is full. No more can get in, yet you could have an infinite number of people waiting to get in and still get them all in. Because even in one frozen second of plank an infinity (The Hotel) contains the infinite and all it hierarchies. So all the occupied rooms just bump up. I hope that’s helped and I haven’t embarrassed myself.

    The Dionysian One

    1. Sixes, I enjoy being a bit daunted. Like putting a horse to a jump that might fall you off. If every number and space between has its own infinity that's fine, not even going to mention that you said some infinities are bigger than others. Leg puller! :)

    2. I’m surprised you didn’t pull the other one? ;-)

    3. I only have two hands and one of them is typing ;)

    4. @dewflirt

      Infinity? It’s a big subject? When people ask me what it is I say I don’t know but i think his name is Graham and he's 42 ;-)

    5. When I say goodnight to my little one she says ' i love you Graham' and I have to love her infinity, then we keep loving each other one more 'til I make it out of the room. Did you watch Sixty Symbols? One of my favorites. Wouldn't it be wonderful if something flat like 42 was the answer, then we could all wonder what 42 meant :)

    6. @Ariadne

      Your little one is very lucky to have a Greek Goddess for a Mother. I’m sure that your little one will have a fine time in SCHOOL with a great TEACHER like you. Sixty Symbols? I think I remember it vaguely? But I’ve slept since then and it’s all gone. I can’t have thought it was that good? Perhaps you could refresh my memory and tell me why it’s one of your faves? On the appropriate doc of course. Just let me know where you’ve put it? The restaurant at the edge of the universe perhaps.


    7. @dewflirt

      “then we could all wonder what 42 meant”

      How about this? 6 x 6 + 6 =

      Just a thought.

      The Universal One

    8. @AntiTheist666

      isn't 42 the "Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything" but we forgot the you at the restaurant at the end of the universe for the question. don't forget your towel

      p.s if you haven't read the hitchhikers guide to the galaxy the above.makes me look crazy if you have i just look like a geek lol

    9. @over the edge

      Lol. I am an Ancient Geek.

      Yes thanks for the towel and thanks for all the fish.

      Above all Don't Panic!

      The HitchHiking One

  67. Christianity is scary! Funny how Jesus couldn't save himself, what makes you think he could save you?

  68. Big Menu of God

    Student rebelling against the Teacher, nice doc. portraying science collision with the religion!!!! This got me into question how to reconcile evolution,big bang,etc with my religion(non christian) now???? All this is really confusing!
    Christian believe in Jesus n holy god, Muslims believe in Prophet Mohammad & Allah, Hindus believe in many Gods (Brahma , Vishnu, Shiva n their incarnations), Buddhists believe in Buddha and enlightenment with no God, ,,and so on with many other religions, There are also people who believe in none , the atheists, agnostics & so on. I have respect for their faith and its up to them and the people have their right to practice their own set of beliefs but i don't think that if anybody has any right to impose their beliefs unto others.
    So let's keep our faith to ourselves and promote peace and harmony in the world ,this is our home and we're a big family :)

  69. In God we Teach

    How things change? I wish when I was in school (mid 60’s –early70’s) I could sneak a camcorder in and film some of the outrageous behaviour of teachers back then. Physical abuse such as slapping about the head, hair pulling, throwing objects such as blackboard erasers were fairly commonplace. Then there was the cane. (Corporal punishment) This was administered to the hand or backside, either way it was painful. I speak from experience, I was occasionally naughty. Lol. Some teachers seemed to get a kick out of it.

    The teaching of religion was everywhere. Every day in Assembly there would be at least 2 hymns and two prayers. Then there would be 2 religious classes each week. I would ask some of the friendlier teachers how can you teach evolution and the bible? They would smile and just fob me off with excuses. Most of my friends also hated religion but just went along with it.

    I’m glad the young man in the doc did what he did and hope that Teachers who proselytize are exposed everywhere. Just like physical or mental abuse this has no place in the classroom.

    The Crucified One

  70. Lol. Don't mind me mate, I'm medicated. :) What was missing from the whole was me following properly what you were communicating, no doubt my error. (another homer simpson Dohhh from me)

    1. @docoman

      In God we Teach

      Oh Teacher I need you, like a little child.
      You got something in you to drive a schoolboy wild
      ”...Elton John/Bernie Taupin

      Lol. Don’t mind me either, I’m insane!

      The Crucified One

    2. "“Oh Teacher I need you, like a little child.
      You got something in you to drive a schoolboy wild”"

      Have you been looking at Az's picture showing her nice bum again?

      AntiTheist666 The horny One ?

    3. @docoman

      In God we Teach

      Hey Teacher,... leave those kids alone” Pink Floyd

      Az’s picture? Where do I find it? Horny One? You got that right, twice! ;-)

      The Devilish One

  71. I too enjoy cosmology although i have never studied it in books, i have had my mind wrapped with it for ever. Don't we all? My last two years here on TDF has brought a few additional thoughts on it too. Each and every one of us is just a bone in a universal soup. Once we have an idea of what the bone is about then the rest of life is mainly about the soup.
    In my mind we create the soup the same way a bone creates the stock. If enough of us agree the earth is round then it is, if enough of us agree there was a big bang then it was, if enough of us agree there are other universes, then there are, and it has gone like this for ever. If enough of us come to agree this reality is just an illusion then it will be and this reality may change instantly with this realisation.

    I may be wrong, i may be right, i may never know. What i feel is that not only is the universe expanding but it is expanding because our perception is's like they go bone in stock or hand in hand. Is infinity a measure of our imagination? If so then infinity is not natural and physical until our mind reaches it's edge and pushes it further.

    Cosmology deals with the universe(s) and it's natural laws but since it is our conciousness that receives the information of what we see and experience, then cosmology has to deal with conciousness. And when conciousness becomes the scale of cosmology there is no saying where it will go.

    1. @Azilda

      Great post Az, lots of tangible and tasty analogies.”Stock in hand” LOL. Cosmology, infinity and consciousness all cooked up into a delicious meal. Scrummy!

      The Hungry One

  72. freedom of speech, wow one of the biggest social control tool in history.

  73. and man created god in his image.

  74. "Preaching in The Classroom”.

    (Backed to the music of “Smokin the Boysroom”)

    “No, nay, never!

    What would Nietzsche say? .....“Schopenhauer as Educator” perhaps?
    Not wishing to be didactic here but we could learn some SIMPLE lessons? Like when is a Human Being not a Human Being? Besides the bleedin obvious ;-)

    The Crucified One

    PS I don't wish for much but being able to experience SchoolTime again would be one of my three.

    1. What's the two other?
      It's never too late to go to school...the advantage of going late in life is that you end up surrounded by younger energy and some get centered by savoir faire. In your case i don't doubt, some many.

    2. @Azilda

      School Education And Further Education?

      Thanks for your suggestion. But I have been there and done that. I went back to uni as a mature student (full time) for three years in 96. I was 39 yrs old and in my prime. (Read Pomp.)The exams and screening process had already taken 18 months just to get there. What a riotous learning experience that was! It took me a decade to get over it! I was a cheeky, rebellious lad in junior school and already an atheist aged 8/9. Can you imagine the high jinks I got up to in uni where I was surrounded by all that “younger energy” as you so rightly put it? ;-)

      ”What's the two other?” I’m not telling but you’re in both of them.

      Thankfully my thirst for knowledge is seldom sated and the chances I’ll go back again are good if I can find a course that gets my juices flowing. State and Private Education is fine, the best however is through yourself and The University of Life. It’s never too late to learn. But be careful, the more we learn, the less we know.

      The Dumb@ss One

    3. Let me guess, having a woman and a cook.

    4. Well we got no choice
      All the girls and boys
      Makin all that noise
      'Cause they found new toys
      Well we can't salute ya
      Can't find a flag
      If that don't suit ya
      That's a drag

      School's out for summer
      School's out forever
      School's been blown to pieces
      Alice Cooper

  75. Preacher more then teacher. The kid, although correct, is an attention seeking brat I suspect. The teacher is a liar. Which commandment was it that said 'Thou shalt deny thy law breaking' ? The hypocrite should be sacked, told to find a job that suits him better. More so because of his response to the complaint rather then the 'first-time' preaching complaint itself (sack him for any repeated 'preaching' incidents, a warning first time to me seems sufficient). Maybe his church has an opening more suited to his 'talents'.

  76. The student was very brave and did the right thing. The teacher was a coward and knew exactly that he was manipulating his students to his own narrow moral point of view. If he wants to preach fine, but not in a public school room. He didn't lie? Please! Now, the teacher and his supporters sugar coat the whole thing with Christian love and all its propaganda.

  77. Perhaps one day these 2 embattled men will achieve the maturity of a calm mind. It appears, however, they will each remain in their emotional and reactive state for longer than is good for them. At least the documentary provided the occasional reasoned thinker so these 2 men can watch this documentary later on and obtain some level of wisdom

  78. 20:00... it just WOW speech. :D 12th century present our days. Home school their children till 12 years, thats cool :D:D. I am so glad my parents were not religious.

  79. The world is round not Flat!

  80. for the last time. big bang didnt appear from nothing. it was a COMPRESSED ENERGY FIELD. not empty.

    1. @Trisha:

      Really? that is not what most top theoretical physicists say, Stephen Hawking, Brian Greene and others.

      Please site your qualifications, your sources and peer reviewed empirical proof! We all want to know!

    2. Correct me if I'm wrong, but as I undersnd the big bang, it refers to an expansion more than anything else. Therefore, it was something created out of something which I believe is Trisha's main point.

    3. I suppose we should wait to see what Trisha had in mind, my take is that the BB started from an infinite singularity, same as a black hole becomes past the threshold of the event horizon where time stands still.

      I think what she was getting at is that the BB singularity started from something instead of nothing, some kind of energy field, which is not true because at the BB everything then started, energy fields et al.

    4. Again please correct me if I'm wrong, but it doesn't seem to stand for the proposition of something out of nothing as the religees seem to think.

    5. The religee's proposition is that nothing can come out of nothing, has to be something like ID creationism, whatever their religions aspire to.

      Mostly the scientific comunity subscribes to the premise that the universe did come out of absolutely nothing as "Stephen Hawking says in his book "the grand design"

      If a person wants to drive a religee nuts mention the fact that universes can also appear out of regular bubbles here on earth or even grown on a computer says MIT physicist Alan Guth.

      edit: a good doc to watch on this subject with Hawking on TDF is..."how did the universe begin?"

    6. I begin to see. I don't mean to sound niggling, but in this context, what is nothing? It's certainly not anything like a black hole, for to me that's something.

      Also, in the second paragraph, do you mean that the scientific community subscribes to the premise; aspires seems strange here?

    7. From what I understand. the scientific community has only various theories on where our Universe came from and what caused the "big bang" but they remain only theories. Science has gotten down to the billlionith of a second of the "big bang" but can't break through to the other side.
      Still, you should take my understanding with the same validity as this History teacher as we are both untrained and unqualified to make valid opinions on the subject...yet we still do.

    8. And for the first time, thank you. I've been trying to tell people this (and I'm not a physicist or even in the sciences) and yet I keep hearing the same old crap, especially from religees, about the big bang being invalid because it stands for the proposition of something created out of nothing when indeed the opposite is the case, i.e., something created out of something. I wish it were called something other than this term coined so pejoratively by Dr. Hoyle.

  81. As usual, this "teacher" and all of you people that are backing him are avoiding the main argument here, which is that he broke the law!! He tries to lie his way out of it, and then when the kid tells him he's on tape he tries to turn it around like he's a victim of a set-up! He makes it seem like he is being impartial and presenting both sides to let the kids make up their own minds, and he probably would have been alright if he would have presented it in that manor, but that statement about going to hell was strictly his wacked out opinion! Then he tells the kids in that club tthat "just because it's against the law doesn't mean it's wrong". WTF!!! Is that what you want your kids or grandkids to be hearing in class? If so, get the F#@% out of public schools and serve that Jim Jones punch to each other in your own schools!!

    1. Religion is an emotional argument made by emotional people. Applying facts to a statment made in an emotional statement will usually find conflict.
      Sadly, this teacher seems to lack the maturity we expect from academics.
      Oh, and the kid is still to youn to possess th wisdom needed to be a valid spokes person on the radio. But that doesn't seem to stop anyone.

    2. Sadly this teacher is still teaching.

      Do Bill O'Reilly (yech) or Oprah (double-yech) seem to have the wisdom needed to be a valid spokesperson, no matter the media? I think the kid has done pretty well for himself so far and we'll just have see what happens

  82. I was wrong with my prediction(first comment on this long thread)....400 in 4 days, that's not including all the comments i made in the middle of the night after my first night on the town in weeks.
    Funny how around here nobody ever talks religion. It's not that we don't have churches. 1 got sold and transformed into a house, 1 has become a music hall/second hand store in the basement, 1 is now a beautiful dentist office....they are slowly being put to good use, not bad for a town of 10,000.
    I suppose when you live surrounded by mountains, a gorgious lake and as many trees as one can imagine....if you need to talk to yourself just go for a walk.

    1. Why confine yourself to a building and ask the residents to explain the world when you can take a walk in the world and "hear" it talking?

  83. fire this teacher immediately,

  84. People keep forgetting there is a difference between facts and wishful thinking. I keep asking myself why if I have an imaginary friend that I speak to I will most likely be hospitalized and put on drugs, yet if millions have the same problem we call it religion. Keep our schools for facts not stories that make weak people feel better about themselves.

  85. Social evolution on the other hand is doesnt drive that one. The idiots with tye money and weapons a rollar coaster. Nature doesnt have the emotional, and deceptive outlook. Its a mechanism.
    Society is more clay and cattle then a mechanical means.

  86. Remember, evolution has one rule. Death is the majority and life a reward. The earths decay even the universe itself racing faster evry second to its demise. There is no going back on dna. Mount improbable is all uphill.

  87. God, it is sad and hilarious watching you people FIGHT with each other... (most) EVER booty's got a BIG EGO; (most) EVER booty's got some personal stake that gets in the WAY of any COMPROMISE, or even AGREEMENT; (most) EVER booty's just gotta rip his brains out of his skull and hold it up to the next person, yelling, "See! Do you see!? Mine's BIGGER than yours!" for whatever particular ulterior reasons, perhaps laudable, there may be.

    If you should slip up and tell a person (in a moment of weakness) "Wow, am I st*pid," you'll find they won't have any trouble believing you, for some reason... But if you should dare to suggest to them the opposite about yourself, anticipate being thrown onto the rack and tortured (perhaps very subtly!) into proving it for the rest of your association with them...

    Frankly, this entire competitive aspect to human relations, while often necessary, devolves at the drop of a hat into a sight that is less than pretty or profitable, becoming little more than a transparent exercise in protecting one's ego at any expense. And the good points that are made on either hand tend to get lost in the RACKET of the CLUBS.

    1. @brennilthos64

      A most excellent, observant and sensitive post.

    2. Think I may have to scribble world peace from my birthday list and ask for a riot shield instead :)

  88. This is not about a person's individual beliefs. Believe what you want. Believe in heaven, hell, Jesus, Krishna, Mohammed or whatever you want. In a private capacity that is your business.

    But if a teacher, a state employee, in a classroom, tells my son that he belongs in hell if he doesn't share that teacher's beliefs, then that teacher has broken the law, breached the constitution and deserves to be fired.

    1. ahmen brother, you are 100% correct, anyone who tries to preach their beliefs on me gets the f@@@ off treatment. If you want to believe in something that doesn't exist and you get comfort in that well done you.
      IMO we will never ever grow as a species until religion is completely ripped out.
      It causes more conflict and more killing then everything else put together.
      In the name of the father i kill you, yeah well done makes a lot of sense.....

  89. It’s always amazing how this subject matter brings a deluge of comments pro and con. This last slew displayed bigotry and arrogance from both sides of the debate. The encouraging thing is there are healthy smatterings of rational thinkers “understanding” and permitting each their own belief.

    What we have in this documentary are two evangelists from opposite camps, one being savvier than the other, a cleverer ape. One has local community support the other media support. Both have support groups but of course, one is less rational than the other. The problem being that the extremes of each polemic would deny the other freedom in some fashion. History past and present displays this as a certain truth.

    All believe in their own myths. Some are more simplistic than others. Both sides would react vehemently at their belief system being called a myth. One has empirical data and experimental proofs for their stand “up to a given point”. All things beyond that point are speculation and imagination, idealized conception, a set of often idealized or glamorized ideas and stories surrounding a particular phenomenon or concept, simply a myth.

    How did the universe begin? How did life begin? Some thinkers stop at the moment just prior to the big bang, stating that before it time did not exist and reason therefore before time there was nothing but a mega massive point in the void containing the entirety of what would become the universe. Biologically that would be called a seed. (That thinker disappointed me. It sounds like he gave up.)

    What is mass? Current research believes it’s the result of the action of a hypothetical particle that is not really a particle or anything definable beyond mathematical logic. It is euphemistically called the “god particle”. It remains undetected but predicted.

    One of the problems in explaining the beginnings of a property called “life” is that of folding proteins in the most efficient manner. Scientists developing software using the current super computers of their times have been trying crack this one for decades. They have given up on the software and are now relying on “Gamers” to crack the problem. It seems that gamers have a better grasp of spatial relationships then Science aided by super computers. Hey, a tool is a tool be it an organism or electronic logic.

    And then there is the “who and why am I” question. One camp believes the individual experience of “I Am” to be an illusion the other believes there is more to it. Nether camp knows.

    One camp believes all is the falling action of spontaneous generation out of nothing the other believes there was intelligence involved but uses the same starting point, nothing. What do they have in common, “nothing” (pun intended) but the awareness of their own existence? Drop the angst and the vitriol. Both sides of the argument get very boring.

    Both sides have positive effects on civilization as a whole but both are in dire need of a governor, the mechanical kind. Curb the evangelism and sniping.

    1. @Philio:

      There we go, one of the best posts (so far) on this doc.

    2. Wrong. There's only one valid side and that's the empirical side, if only because it's testable. The rest is unmitigated, weak-minded, unprovable, cop-out crap.

      Wrong: Empiricists don't know everything and probably never will, but the other side doesn't know anything and never did. In addition, empiricism is expanding and self-corrective whereas its opposite is not.

      Wrong. Mythicism is only on one side and by definition, it's not the empirical one--a conjecture is not a myth; a false or ignorant statement is.

      Wrong. Empiricism has had far more positive effects on civilization than its counterpart which has provided only fairy tales.

      In short, the cleverer ape wins out hands down--and no, we don't need a governor or referee, simply more empirical education.

    3. I sense some angst in most of your posts. You’ve proven my point and stated your belief. As far as wrong goes……

      First of all “Mythicism” is not a word. How can you prove and/or have the “Big Bang” theory self correct, by running equations in reverse? That is not empirical proof. Causing mini-big bangs in a collider misses by a very huge order of magnitude. One can cause a clock to run in reverse but that doesn’t reverse time. How about “String Theory” or any other theory that speculates on the very distant past or very far out future? I’m not demeaning their efforts. I laud their knowledge, patience and tenacity. All still remain guesses until the guess is proven.

      Here is another. The universe is expanding and some day all “matter” will disintegrate as will their component parts. The universe will go out with a very dim and very cold flicker. This very solar system we inhabit will be nonexistent at that time when time ceases. Can that be proven? Who will be there to record the empirical data?

      Then maybe it’s a huge oscillator that expands to its maximum chaos then collapses back into its primordial point in the void. Then it begins all over again. Maybe the universe is a torus that wraps back around itself on a continuing journey. We can only image the edge of the background radiation. What happens beyond that horizon? We imagine there is nothing. Someone or group we call Brahmans had the same myth four thousand years ago. I can’t say they had no data. If I did it would be a guess.

      Science stands on the shoulders of giants, some of them ancient giants. The ancient Egyptians called their “powers” by a name. We call them Egyptian gods. The word they actually used was “neters”. There was one for every manifestation of force. We give this force the name energy as in “solar energy”, “wind energy”, atomic energy and etc. They had their symbols we have ours.

      All is speculation on the accumulated knowledge of the times. The ancient myths were the basis of ancient science. Where would we be today without it? Our myths just rest on better data.

    4. And in light of better data, there is no reason to cling to ancient myths or demand that others do so or else.

      At least string theory and the big bang are accurately termed what they are and not something else. There is nothing wrong with educated guessing and conjecture provided there is something empirically and intellectually substantial behind them--and this far transcends anything religion has to offer.

      While it is not empirical, but logical and abstract in nature, mathematics is only an artificial means of describing the empirical--and a fine one at that--but it all boils down to the empirical from which intelligent conclusions (read abstractions) are drawn.

      In short, we don't need religion or anything of the sort.

      If you sense some angst in my posts, it is because I have no respect for those who try to pass off their ignorance as knowledge or demean their intellectual betters--and this "teacher" is guilty of both.

    5. I hope you do not understand my posts as promoting any religion. I resist any and all attempts to thwart free thought and free thought necessarily includes a vivid imagination. I’m talking about unprejudiced thought, thinking out of the box and ignoring all impediments regardless of their source, professor or pope. It is promoting the “what if they are all wrong” scenarios. That has taken courage in some measure within every field of endeavor.

      No matter how you slice it we ultimately think in symbols whether they involve the movements of objects, propagation factors or any such mental inspirations. Some convert them into equations (just different symbols). Some use equations to promote deeper thought pictures and some forego the math (philosophers). (Then there was Pythagoras a philosopher, social activist and a mathematician as where others in his era and ours.)

      The ultimate end is of course the empirical, the pragmatic. In our experienced reality something consistently and dependably works or it doesn’t. If it doesn’t, then try another path, imagine another answer.

      Then there is the other world, quantum strangeness, where something is and isn’t at the same time. Where “nothing” is both the sum of a vibration and its quiescent state and “something” is dependent on the position in a cycle. I have “empirically” dealt with that my whole career. At certain magnitudes the “nominal percent” the professor said you needn’t pay attention to proved to be an essential factor in a finished real-world application. That is the pragmatist at work.

      While buried in the technical, an occasional visit to teachers the likes of a Joseph Campbell often proved an oasis. Living between two opposites is in itself a type of “strangeness” but, at times, a creative strangeness.

    6. I'm glad you agree that the ultimate end is the empirical, the pragmatic; however, I must qualify this somewhat to the ultimate scientific end as opposed to the ultimate artistic end, if there be one.

      I keep encountering the vague locution "thinking out of the box." Like "freedom" and "interesting" it can mean whatever you want it to. I'll spare you examples, but as far as I'm concerned, it's as meaningless as the distinction between micro and macroevolution.

      I don't pretend to know whether we ultimately (and I'm reading this to mean pre-programmed) think in symbols or are conditioned to do so and thus have no opinion on the matter which, quite frankly, is merely academic. But I wish you hadn't brought up Pythagoras because we know next to nothing about him or his actual teachings. As a matter of fact, a number of scholars have raised doubt as to whether he contributed at all to mathematics.

      I am curious. What is or was your career?

    7. Re: Pythagoras, et al - Considering the prejudiced eye cast concerning ancient vs. modern achievements, it’s rather tough to isolate any original thinker. Histories are written by the victors, revised by researchers and manipulated by activists to recruit the unknowing. Did James Watt invent the steam engine? The answer to that question must have a prerequisite, specifically what type of steam engine. Italy thinks Marconi invented radio. Everyone knows it was a Russian.

      As far as occupation, in my first life I designed ways to convert analog information both the physically obvious and the manifesting properties into useful controls or sensing methods and their measurement when analog was just morphing into digital, an EE. I realized that salary and career path was more lucrative than a career in physics. (That is either pragmatic or a cop out, view dependent.) That said I have also been a soldier in time of conflict, a teacher (night school) and have occupied every chair in the business world and can now pursue any line of thinking found intriguing.

      Continuing education is a must within and without the hallowed halls. Today’s haughty orthodoxy bores me. I attempt to be a balanced skeptic. Personal interests are physics, philosophy, psychology (and psychiatry), ancient history and civilizations, comparative religion and mythology. (There are a few more.) I find joy in wrestling with both the objective and subjective, then again who’s objectivity. Things that intrigue me the most are the implications of the “I am” statement, the cause of mass and the why of failed civilizations (devolving societies). There, in answer to you question, is more information then most will put out there.

      The young man in the documentary is no mystery nor is the teacher. They are products of their upbringing and their communal belief’s reinforced value system. Both are the products of religion. I believe I saw him wearing a Yarmulke. Each has followed their cultural myths. Myth encompasses more than religion. There is the metaphysical function of myth but there is also a cosmological function, a societal function and a psychological function. These functions change and expand with increased knowledge. I’m asking you to expand your definition of myth.

      Modern society has its myth. Within that myth are instructions to successfully move through the phases of life. A synopsis of them would be obey the rules, go through the initiations (obtain the diplomas or skills) be of benefit to the community and you will be happy and successful. There is a myth (the negative use of the word) within the myth. Not all are successful, not all are pleased with their outcomes, the rules are not followed by everyone and of course those that follow the rules are taken advantage of by those who don’t, simply the cost of being.

      There are also two paths to follow, the conformist and the nonconformist. Each can be a force to elevate a society or tear it down. I employ an expanded use of the word energy. There is the energy of physics and the energy of emotions. Both have opposites. Both can be used to produce a useful force and a destructive force. A neutral position can prove dangerous from either potential. Properly applied knowledge is the savior.

      The physicist and the meta-physicist lovers in me are fighting. One is beginning to see equations. It’s time to stop.

    8. You're right. Someone comes up with part of something and history distortedly credits him with the entirety. Robert Fulton did not invent the steamship; Joseph Guillotine did not invent the device which bears his name and Charles Darwin was not the first evolutionist.

      If you want to define myth to mean worldview, fine. It's one of those words like theory which to a layman means one thing and to a scientist another. As long as the "myth" is backed by hard evidence and intellectually valid deduction, I have no problem--of course, I'm speaking scientifically.

      However, Dr. Dawkins might consider what you call "myth" as "meme," i.e., something genetically preprogrammed and so there appears to be a conflict in which I take no sides.

      Which part of you is beginning to see equations, the physicist or the meta-physicist?

    9. “Memes” yes, but with a story example behind it, as in Campbell’s “Hero’s Journey”. We all make that journey in some fashion. I find Dawkins arrogant and condescending. I preferred Hitchens. I’ll miss his debates especially with his brother. (And by the way Jesuits were interesting and stimulating and Dominicans were dull but better boxers.)

      I deleted a whole paragraph that used the equations E=IR and E=M(C*C) (superscripts don’t translate on posts) after stating a dual views of energy. Here is a short walkthrough.

      The physicist or EE”s knows that the manifestation of any “E” is the product of properties described by “I” (force) and “R” (resistance). In the first equation “I” and “R” are variables. In the second “(C*C)” is a constant leaving one variable “M” as the determinant. Envision “E” above the line and the other examples below the line.

      The meta-physicist will consider “I” and “R” as a product of the group minds within a society, the movers, shakers and the obstinate, that produce “E” the resultant society.

      Then in the second equation when considering a constant below the line the only variable is “M”, mass. In terms of an “R” it is a variable. In the first equation when “R” is reduced to near zero “I” (force) asymptotes or produces a non-reality, infinity.

      The second may be more disconcerting. “M” can reach critical. The physicist is tempted to speculate how they are related but answers quickly. He knows what critical mass produces.

      The meta-physicist tends to view it in terms of continued existence, being. (A whole other subject better suited for a Nietzsche, Heidegger, and Jaspers discussion.) That almost sounds schizophrenic.

      That is actually how I see this student, teacher confrontation, as a microcosm of a society in change hopefully not out of control.

    10. On the contrary, I like Dawkins because he is arrogant and condescending, especially towards religees although I often wish he were not so polite, e.g., his 90-minute discussion with Wendy Wright. On second thought, perhaps it's his manner of speech and the way he was educated that make gives him that seeming arrogance and condscension--and I wouldn't have him change this for anything in the world. Quite frankly, I find Hitchens more condescending and arrogant than Dawkins and while I respect some of his abstract thought, but not his politics,I often find him hard to take. However, I admit that Jesuits are the only Catholics I've ever respected.

      Your equation notwithstanding, I see this student/teacher confrontation as a down-to-earth battle between wilful ignorance and education with the roles reversed.

      P.S. If you feel you need super and subscripts, I suggest that you type out your equation or whatever in Word Perfect or Word and then copy it to your post. I realize it's awkward, but it's better than nothing.

    11. I love and admire hitch, and dawkins. Sam Harris is also a great speaker and advocate. But nobody speaks of the cosmos as elegantly and beautifully as Sagan. Just sayin Carl Sagan.

      However religion does deserve ridicule and contempt Either we have good reasons for what we say as truth or we dont.

      For instance, If a neighbor says i have a ruby the size if a bus in my backyard and he digs for it every friday him and family.
      And you ask him how he knows its there.

      If he says that, well god told me so. Or that well, me and my family are closer because of this belief and the activity of digging for it together bonds us. Or if he were to say, i wouldnt want to live in a world without that being the case. Would you not look at him as a fool? These are indeed the ramblelings and assertions of a madman or a lunitic and hed be locked away.

      But change the ruby to a god and now its to be taboo or accepted as sane? I think not. Either everything is ok to discuss and judge or nothing is. Tabooism is bs and i claim my right to treat religious claims accordingly.
      If it can be asserted without evidence it can be dismissed without evidence. Period. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.

      Scratch that hitch. Just sayin Carl Sagan.

    12. And speaking of Hitchens, Dawkins, Harris and, let me add, Dennett, have you seen "The Four Horsemen?" If not, it's on You Tube.

      While I admire and respect Dr. Sagan, the cosmos is simply of no interest to me.

      I need to call one of your statements into question: "If it can be asserted without evidence it can be dismissed without evidence." When religees deny evolution based on no evidence other than the Bible (which is no evidence at all), the best counter is to provide tons of examples.

    13. I suggest that you look up mythicism on wikipedia.

    14. Good call. I learned something

    15. If it helped, I'm happy. However, I reiterate my position that all the good things you enumerated and elaborated on (except religion--not a good thing) are based on or stem from empiricism.

  90. Whether I agree or disagree, this kid is a real "smart ass!"

    1. Good and we need more of them.

  91. Whether I agree or not, this kid is a real "smart ass!"
    He is certainly getting a lot of adjulation which I expect is feeding his ego!!

    1. I think he didn't expect this situation to unfold the way it did. As in many situations all of us get caught in, things snowball before our eyes and we follow at first and end up pushing later on.
      The media, once again, was responsible for making this big, media love stuff like that, it sells paper and bring the tv rating up. Without the national media, this would have remain a county news, and him just a bullied boy (even more so after this).
      This was a great lesson for him, he propbably learned more through this process than any school class could have taught him. Let's hope he takes the acquired knowledge for the benefit of all. His radio job is a good follow up!


    2. So what? He deserves it.

    3. better to be a smart ass than a dumb ass

    4. Well put, but lost on somebody like Ms. Smith.

  92. The difference between secular and religious ideologies is that any idea of the former which causes harm can be rationally revealed so, whereas the latter, by its nature, can rationalize the most evil crime as not only reasonable but virtuous. No concept has enabled good people to act in the most heinous manner and still left them thinking those actions were good.
    God B.Less

  93. Besides im sure she can take it and dish it but she is a woman. Lets not forget that. Let the opposition set the tone.

  94. Ep

    Tell your lil bro to chill. Lol jk

    Robert, you shouldnt be so quick to condecend or insult. It nulls your point. It also takes away options of fully prgressing a topic to a higher level. Might i add i do admire your fiestyness but shes not totally against nor is everybody else that replys. Save that stuff for the next religee that comes to you crooked. You get what i mean? Trust me im bad about it too. Just slow down turbo. Lol

    1. My grand son's nickname is little turbo because his dad is Turbo...made me smile.

    2. Ha! Glad somebody got a smile out of that. I mean, i laughed.

    3. Is that the mask they made you wear in the hospital? lol
      Quite the scary avatar at 6am.

    4. Lol. Thats to avoid inhaling the stench of redemption.

  95. I think the kid is smart, he was possibly stired by his lawyer dad, i also think his cause and the way he delt with it was just and fair.
    As my kids grew up, every school they attented offered the choice of not taking religion class and the option of moral class instead. I remember at one school my oldest daughter went to the library instead of religion class since no other choices were offered, she was not the only one to skip it and it created no problem.
    Those schools were in Quebec, BC, California, Texas (library) and Belgium.

    I was never interested in religion and was lucky to be given a choice very early in life, a choice i took with no hesitation.

    I am a spiritual person if believing in the power of self is such. I am the only GOD i'll ever meet face to for energy to energy...i'll find out or not when it's my time, as death remains a surprise for every one of us

    1. At least this I can agree with wholeheartedly.

    2. “Science is not only compatible with spirituality; it is a profound source of spirituality. When we recognize our place in an immensity of light?years and in the passage of ages, when we grasp the intricacy, beauty, and subtlety of life, then that soaring feeling, that sense of elation and humility combined, is surely spiritual. So are our emotions in the presence of great art or music or literature, or acts of exemplary selfless courage such as those of Mohandas Gandhi or Martin Luther King, Jr. The notion that science and spirituality are somehow mutually exclusive does a disservice to both.” ? Carl Sagan,

  96. The attitude of Pazkiewicz in this video makes me sick to my stomach. It's so typically xtian in the way that he plays the martyr. How is it that he's the victim when it was the kids in his class who had to sit and listen to his mythological propaganda? And aren't we all bombarded enough by the constant barrage of their religious nonsense? How is it that children can be expected to remain skeptical if they're taught this junk 7 days a week? (Answer: The Republi-Jesus-Xristo-Fascists don't want them to be skeptical; they want them to BELIEVE!) They have a day that they can preach all they want to the people who choose to sit and be lectured to, so why do people like this teacher feel the need to subject students to it in a setting that's been constitutionally protected from the narrowing of church and state?

    This is an injustice to justice everywhere. This teacher should have been fired, had his teaching certificate cancelled, and run out of all public classrooms. If jesus-freak schools want to hire him, have at it, but leave public schools out of the nut-fudge-fringe mythology-mongering.

    This kid is a hero. He spoke truth to power and they hated him for it. I've been in his shoes, too. I know how kids can shun a person just because the kid dared to speak up and speak out. I was the sole non-believer at a small, rural, Bible-Belt high school. I KNOW the feeling!

    And I say this directly to the kid in the orange shirt in the religion class at about 0:36 minutes into the video: We who don't believe in your mythology believe that we only get ONE chance to get it right, and our lives are IT! Every atheist I know has far more sympathy, empathy, and compassion for human suffering than ANY xtian, dead or alive, including the one that got the giant splinter up his *ss (Jebus). Your comment about how people turn cold to people with disabilities, et cetera, actually fits the applied-xtian model far, FAR more than it does any atheist model. And I specifically use the term "applied-xtian" to differentiate between that and the 'theoretical-xtian' model that xtians teach but don't actually live...just like the teacher in this video who went on-camera and lied, lied some more, and then lied to cover it all up. He would be an embarrassment to any school system, but I'm sure that the xtians forgave him, something they certainly didn't feel up to with the kid who started this all. There's a word for their behavior: Hypocrisy.

    The applied-xtian model is the one actually put forth in the real world, and it is invariably wholly different, and almost entirely devoid of selflessness. Why? I assume that it's because xtians think that they can do anything they want to do right up until they lay on their deathbeds, and then suddenly repent and convert, just like the Holy Roman Emperor Constantine did. Bottom line: The hypocrisy of your statement is overwhelming.

    "Do you think Mr Tyson felt threatened? I just rocked his worldview." HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    The day that Neil deGrasse Tyson has his "worldview""rocked" by a self-avowed ignorant school teacher is the day that the ignorant school teacher ascends to heaven on the back of a stallion...along with Muhammad.

    What. A. Load. Of. Horsesh*t.

    Mr Pazkiewicz has no place teaching anything but his mythology. His "worldview" needs rocking, but I have in mind something a bit more concrete than interstellar nothingness. Also, his complete ignorance of the Big Bang Theory and how it works is astonishing. Where DID this guy get his teaching degree? Walmart? Yikes, even.

    1. Not only does the student come off as more intelligent than the teacher and his fellow students, but he appears to be telling the truth while the teacher, backed by his students, appears to be lying. Had we been treated to meaningful clips from the tapes, we could be certain of this. This was clearly the fault of the makers of the documentary.

      One question that should have been asked was how much American history did the student learn from Mr. Pazkiewicz. Once again, the fault lies with the makers of the documentary.

      I'd rather be right (read honest) and unpopular than wrong (read dishonest) and popular. So much seemed to hinge on the popularity of a teacher who, as you rightly point out, should not have been teaching in the first place. The problem with popularity is that it tends to override far more important considerations, in this case the concepts of Constitution, education, intellectual competence, for which the students and their parents evinced no regard, as evidenced by some of the statements made at the meeting of the school board.

      Like you, I was offended by the school teacher's conceited comment about the attention he received from Neil deGrasse Tyson and his overblown statement that he, an obscure history teacher, had rocked Dr. Tyson's worldview. How much more delusional can one get--and this is the pompous, self-pitying fool to whom parents gleefully entrust their children's education.

      While I agree that Mr. Paskiewicz should have been terminated rather that being handed a reprimand, I think a more condign punishment would have been to force him to give a public lecture on the concept of separation of church and state.

    2. You don't know the community of Kearny. I do. I married a girl from Kearny and it was mandatory for me to go there multiple times per year for family religious holidays. They're a Roman Catholic town thru & thru.

  97. Typos kill me. I hate typing.

    1. I type too quickly for the system and read too quickly to catch all my typos, but at least I get the grammar and usage correct.

      For the time being, we're just going to have to live with keyboarding.

  98. Ok robert. Do you know absolutely that the blical man jesux exsisted on this earth with or without being the divine son of god? And if so, please state your evidence to support such a extraordinary claim.

    Or admit that you made a poor choice of words saying you know for sure 100% that this is fact. Mayne even that you are swayed to the side that he did. Then please gibe the evidence in which was the determining factor in persuading you.

    Then lets be done with that. Because wether he did or didnt, doesnt mean anything at all. It implies nothing.

    1. Please show me one instance where I stated that I knew for certain (read 100%) that the man "Jesus" existed. I merely agree with the consensus of biblical and historical scholars who've studied the subject more deeply than I have, Dr. Ehrman among them, just as I agree with the consensus of scholars that Lucretius and Manilius existed. Dr. Ehrman's book merely re-enforced my view on the subject.

      While I tend to agree that Jesus' earthly existence is probably academic, considering that what is preached and studied to such a great extent is the baggage surrounding him, I think it's fair to ask you why you think such a natural person never existed.

    2. Thank you.

    3. @eireannach666

      O/ oHell from north Wales.

      Swap ye jesux for GodSux

      It’s a new brand of Anti-theistic Cola I’m launching. Taste the difference, Its delicious lol
      I think the chances are more likely than less likely that a real man called jesus did exist .But that’s all. I see you’ve met The Prince of Darkness. Robertallen1 ..Holy Mackerel ...I’m surprised he hasn’t mentioned the Proto Gospel of Thomas yet?

      The Crucified One

    4. Well Horns to you sir! And a Crown of Thorns indeed. Sure but i claim royalties50%. Also, people need to start paying Achems for religee. Just sayin'
      Carl Sagan.

      It seems to me, nomatter which case of existence you choose to fancy for the carpenter, fact remains it has no place in a classroom. Not in a learning enviroment such as a public school. In fact it belongs at rest with zeus , thor and santa claus. Religion is not science. It is in fact corrossive to science. Faith is the belief in spite of and/or for the lack of evidence. It teaches people to be prideful in ignorance.

      "Nevertheless,Thomas Jefferson believed that the habit of skepticism is an essential prerequisite for responsible citizenship. He argued that the cost of education is trivial compared to the cost of ignorance, of leaving government to the wolves. He taught that the country is safe only when the people rule..that kind of skeptical questioning, don't accept what authority tells you -attitude of science- is also nearly identical to the attitude of mind necessary for a functioning democracy. Science and democracy have very consonant values and approaches, and I don't think you can have one without the other.” ?im just sayin, Carl Sagan

    5. @eireannach666

      Thanks for your HornyThornyology re O/. Just Sayin...nice one. But that was me with my arms up shouting to you. (Stolen from @devilinwaugh)

      As for religion in the classroom. nay, NAY, NAY I say. I speak from bitter experience when some early classes were called religious INSTRUCTION! These were later changed to religious education. A complete waste of valuable schooltime on young impressionable minds.

      The Crucified One

    6. I dont know exactly what you mean. Restate this. I feel asif you read me wrong or im reading you wrong. And wtf is hornythornyology? Explain yourself please.

    7. @eireannach666

      Sorry if I wasn’t very clear. I was agreeing with you that religion has no place in the classroom, hence my nays. Perhaps I should have added re Jefferson yay, YAY, YAY.

      As for ”wtf is hornythornyology?”

      You said ” Well Horns to you sir! And a Crown of Thorns indeed”

      Which I thought was your understanding of what O/ stood for?
      Horny = Sexy = Good. Just Sayin. The rest is just a lame pun about the study of birds, also Good.

      I hope the muddy lake we’re swimming in is a bit clearer now?

      The Crucified One

    8. @antitheist

      Oh. Ok lol. Sorry. I didnt want to assume. Thanx for the clarification.

    9. I believe a distinction has to be made between teaching religion (i.e., endeavoring to instill doctrines) and treating it objectively,. That is courses in comparative religion, history of beliefs, biblical history, etc. are perfectly acceptable provided they remain non-normative.

    10. @eireannach666

      Thankyou too, assuming anything is not for me. I am sceptical about everything. Most especially about those things I think I’m most sure about?

      What did you think of schooltime? How was it for you? Hymns and prayers every assembly? Trying not to laugh??? Sorry about all the questions? Here’s another, what really rocks your boat?
      Best Regards.

      The Crucified One

      Edit. I’m so tempted to add, jumpers for goal posts? Hmm. Thank god I’m not so foolish!

  99. Great movie! They certainly went out of their way to let everyone give their perspective. I have to admire Matthew's courage to speak up, and I found Paszkiewicz' ideological certainty to be scary. He's someone who could feel sanctimonious and self-righteous while pouring hot lead into the bodily orifices of heretics. It's exactly that kind of moral certainty, and willingness to ignore facts which don't support his biases, which have been causing wars for centuries.

    1. And also which disqualify him as a teacher in a public school.

  100. Whilst you all bicker - atheists and religees alike - looking, looking, thinking, thinking, the real world is turning rather (not so) insidiously beneath your feet. This red herring has stolen your attention for far too long.
    Go watch 'The power Principle' and catch a glimpse of the real world you live in xx

    1. Please define 'real world' to me.

    2. @eireannach666
      The 'real world' is the one I have to step out into now. Hmm..'The real world' needs more time than I can afford at the moment to explain to you. Perhaps watching that doc I mentioned may clarify my comment.x

    3. Maybe. However i was looking for a personal perspective or definition. Ill remind you another time. Thank you for replying.

  101. big deal, the guy is wanting to cause trouble. its up to him if he chooses to listen no? why couldn't the guy just ignore it. There are far worse crimes, and allot of bull that is allowed to be taught in schools. If he got issues, then focus them his attention on something people actually care about. In my opinion god is a man made entity, the universe and time, are just forms of different energy, and conscience is a manifestation of time, and that people who want to believe that when they prey they aren't talking to themselves, most of the adult population of the world, are deluded. it sickens me to be taught fact from fiction, right from wrong from adults and find that i become one, ii realise that most adults cant even seem to see whats infrount of there eyes. if god did exist, his grand design has to be criticized, because life , aint all that. in nature its KILL or be KILLED, and humans, apparently the more advanced form of life, are actually only as complex as the instincts of the sperm cell from which they come from, only a fully developed brain has billions of cells. if you break it down it explains why there is war, and why humans are so evil. its the dna, and if gods made that, the his is solely responsible for all the pain and suffering life has endured as a result. well done o great creator. you made a worthless form of

    1. You've missed the point of the documentary.

    2. actually Lozza there is a law against what the teacher was doing that is why its a big deal and why the kid rightly brought it to the attention of authorities.

      the community are the ones that turned it into a media circus.

      what do you think they are teaching kids in school that is so terrible if i may ask?

  102. how about all the bull, that is taught in the curriculum. its allowed and there are no issues about it being taught to young minds.

    1. And just what are you referring to?

  103. The problem with the major religions like the top 3 ( you know which ones I am talking about ... ) The problem is that they may mean to be good and to unite huge numbers of people... but the top 3 religions are too easily co-oped to create false wars israel/Palestine and things like the Crusades.

    Same thing can be said about science. Scientists give us this incredible power to thrive, but at the same time also allows companies like Monsanto to poison our food or Nukes to poison the Earth.

    It is a two edged sword.

    As I see it... spirituality is so obvious and under all our noses that we do not see it.

    We are organisms and we are connected to nature and earth and plants. We are of the earth, grown out of it. PERIOD... if you refute this, you are blind. It is Common Fact and if you do not believe it... try not eating plants of the earth and see how long you live.

    THEREFORE, we LOST our spiritual truth long ago.

    Now, the question is... what DO we believe in... well we have to connect with nature and think like nature, the plants, the sun the air... FEEL it again... it is NOT a concept it is the bottom line.

    Amazon Shamans are on the right track as well we the North American Natives and their shamans.

  104. At around 38 minutes, check Neil deGrasse Tyson trying to explain the Big Bang. He seemed so embarassed and I don't think he himself could believe what he was saying. More of a fairy tail than the Bible creation account.

  105. At around 38 minutes, watch Neil deGrasse Tyson try and explain the Big Bang. I think even he was embarrased at what he was saying. It sounded more of a fairy tale than what the Bible says about creation.

  106. @ Azilda - (ever-thoughtful)
    @ Achems Razor - (wit)
    @ robertallen1 - (smarty pants)
    @ Waldo - (so very caring)
    @ Valtko - (so mindful)
    @ and the crew (usual TDF suspects)

    Thanks - for our assumed wisdom. At the very least we confess our nescience in feigned style.

  107. Anytime I start getting mad at religious zealotry, I just have to stop, breathe a second, and remember that I used to be indoctrinated too. It took years to break free, and there was plenty of second guessing followed by research. These people are just so dumb, they don't even realize it, I was one of them once, and wow, so much nicer now that I'm out. They can say whatever they want, but the most enriching experience in my life was the moment I realized that I was not an experiment for some psychopath's demented will.

  108. 200 comments already? lol

  109. Mr. LeClair sounds more intelligent than his ex-teacher who has no business teaching in a public school, for he has shown himself as incompetent in and ignorant of his subject as the science teacher who tells his students that the world is only 10,000 years old and that dinosaurs and humans co-existed. If my kids wound up in either teacher's class, I would immediately go to the principal and the board of education demanding that these teachers be removed like pronto and if that didn't work, I would, like Matthew LeClair, go to the media, only screaming far more loudly.

    It's hard to imagine people more moronic than some of those revealed in this documentary, but I guess imbecility, like genius, is ageless. On the other hand, it was refreshing to hear from Dr. Miller.

    With all this said, what bothered me most about this documentary, besides the shoddy editing, was that nothing of substance was played of the subject surreptitious recording. I especially wanted to find out what Mr. Paskiewicz really said and whether he was baited or whether his comments were sua sponte.

    I admit that I enjoyed the end with Kate Smith singing "God Bless America" over the credits--of course, that's when singing was singing. I really like this song although I don't believe a word of it.

  110. @robert

    Even given jesux was real or even given the miricles, still it doesnt add merit or backing to the bible and surely it doesnt at all impl his divinity or that there is a god. It merely implies jeaux was a great magician. Or that peoples claims are exagerated. Im sure the laws of physics arent going to just suspend themselves for jesux. Or do you know something i dont? Because the bible dicredits itself from the first of either testement. Pick one. Your favorite. It starts with untruths. How can you belive any word out of a persons mouth if they start out full of it?

    1. I'm simply saying "Jesus" existed AND NO MORE. I don't see how I can make this any plainer. I've cited three non-biblical sources and suggested that you read Bart Ehrman's latest book which I finished about a week ago.

    2. Your three sources are nomore than heresay. They are not eyewitnesses nor were they even born yet. Not credible in a court nor is it here. Its hearsay.

    3. A court of law has nothing to do with this--I also stated quite clearly when they lived. Also, all three of the sources that I mentioned were scholars and historians held in high respect by scholars of both their day and ours which means that they are fairly reliable. These people also had nothing to prove by stating that "Jesus" existed and that he was crucified. As a matter of fact in the "Passing of Peregrinus," Lucian treats Christians rather harshly.

      But again, you seem to feel that you don't need to read anything of value one way or another.

    4. Ok first your statement of when they lived and their job title means only that its third hand testemony by a bunch of people being charged to write what they are told by the people who say what goes in the books. Youve offered no physical evidence. Second i too have evidence. The buddist have physical carbondatable evidence. Do your three stooges? And still despite that you can offer a cross or piece of, maybe grave sites of the decipiles, something testable or provable. A colaberation of liars is trumped by one cold hard fact.

    5. You obviously know nothing about the lives of the three people I've mentioned and to call them stooges merely highlights your wilful ignorance. There is also no physical evidence of the existence of Petronius Arbiter except fragments of the Satyricon--so by your reasoning, there is not enough to support his existence. We have nothing of the writings of Aufidius Bassus, the historian, not even a snippet--but, of course, by your logic, he simply didn't exist.

    6. Ok dont humor yourself. Are you mad? Dont be.

      Well obviously youre taking this personally and youve got nothing testable or visable to add. Its ok. Call me ignorant or whatever but in reality youre gullable. Hey i have a leprechauhn for sell. Ten people will tell you im not lying. Wanna buy it? Itll make you rich.

      Ok im miss the point. I dont care crap about jesux. If he lived or died doesnt matter. It doesnt make his story true or untrue but merely up in the air. However, it seems to me you want him to exist. You cant be swayed. I waited for you to show evidence of a physical nature.

      But i guess this is the end of this talk. Thank you for your time.

    7. I also can't provide you with physical evidence of that Socrates,Pindar, Hesoid, Lucretius, Manilius or Atilla the Hun existed, but there's little doubt in the minds of scholars that they did, whether I want them to or not.

      You also keep going on not about "Jesus" existence, but about the irrelevant baggage attached to it.

      And if relying on intelligent, respectable and respected scholarship makes me gullible, it's a lot better than relying on a wilful ignoramus like you.

      Once again, you are no better than the most rabid fundamentalist.

    8. Pliny was a lawyer. Already credible right?. He was only a kid whn nero went nuts on christians. He also was in the care of his caretaker who was offered to be emperor after nero killed himself but declined the offer.. Why pliny couldnt mention any of this or the christian hunts that took place on his youth go figure..He was given a silver spoon and inherited wealth from his family and by mid age he was the states prosecutor . Now if the states prosecutor isnt aware of these christian hunts then maybe start to question them even happening.

      Pliny became a senator,and survived the hunts even though several of his friends were executed. Became consul even to the high priests.

      Curious, is it not, that such a well-placed, well-educated Roman grandee, directly and intimately involved in the Roman judicial system and a personal close chums and pals with, who? , the same tacitus and suetonius, who in the second decade of the 2nd century seem so ignorant of christian hunt or even chistians .... but its explained if the christians were not yet an established sect and were not being hunted on such a scale..hmmm?

      Note from ref:
      It's worth noting that unlike the 247 letters Pliny himself prepared for publication (so-called books 1-9), book 10, which contains the celebrated letters "96" and "97", was published posthumously and anonymously. "It is surprising," says Betty Radice (translator of the Penguin edition), "that no more letters were to be found in the imperial files or among Pliny's personal papers to add to this record of the relations between one of the best of Rome's Emperors and his devoted servant." On the other hand, Tertullian (c.160-220 AD) discusses the letter and refers to Trajan's reply in his Apology, chapter 2, which suggests authenticity:

      " We find that even inquiry in regard to our case is forbidden. For the younger Pliny, when he was ruler of a province, having condemned some Christians to death, and driven some from their stedfastness, being still annoyed ..."

      Sources: Tacitus [c.55 -117AD], The Annals, The Histories (Penguin, 1964) Dan Cohn-Sherbok, The Crucified Jew (Harper Collins,1992) Henry Hart Milman, The History of the Jews (Everyman, 1939) Josephus [c.37-100AD], The Antiquities, The Jewish War (Hendrickson, 1987) Leslie Houlden (Ed.), Judaism & Christianity (Routledge, 1988) Frank Zindler, The Jesus the Jews Never Knew (American Atheists, 2003) Suetonius [c.69AD-140AD], The Twelve Caesars (Penguin, 1980) Norman Cantor, The Sacred Chain - A History of the Jews (Harper Collins, 1994) Edward Gibbon, The Decline & Fall of the Roman Empire (1799)
      K.Humphreys and affiliates. 1994

    9. Again you continue your irrelevancies and meaningless innuendos. This discussion, if you can call it that, is only about whether "Jesus" existed as a man. And, quite frankly, glossing through your second textual wall, you make a case for the human existence of "Jesus." How well you do so, you will never now because you refuse to read Dr. Ehrman's book on the subject (and by the way, he discussed Pliny in detail) or works by equally reputable scholars. Therefore, your "scholarship" is questionable and your opinion worthless.

    10. You are an itellectual ignoramous. I love how you keep saying that im dense etc. I merely took the opposing virw for the sake of it. Ive bern telling you that your evidence is not but hearsay which indeed it is on top of interpetations. I dont care if jesux was cut into ieces like humpty dumpty or if he had wolverine healing and flrw around on a magic carpet. Fact is son is that you claim knowledge along with this author in which neither you or anyone else has anyway of knowing. You are so convinced that you think any oosition is ignorance because your book says so. Hmm faith in it? Well you can insult, sifestep, circle around it all you lile. Realoty is that you cNt rove anything excet how arrogantly convinced youve become in another persons word and take on old evidence. Are you getting royalties? Just stop while your ahead. You may realize one day that before you claim definitive knowledge you might want to make surr you base it on fact and not interpatation or opinion. You never had the thought that maybe you should retract the statement of solid fa-vt and merely say i believe based on this book. Typos. Sorry all. My phone stinks.

    11. Excuse me, but by refusing to read works by acknowledged experts in the field, you're the ignoramus and a wilful one at that. Furthermore, you are obviously unable to distinguish between faith and reliance.

      And speaking of relying on books, what have you been doing? And speaking of statements, you're the one who started this by asserting that "Jesus" never existed.

    12. I can continue on providing support in stance of jeaux not existing if you'd like. I wasnt near done. I was hoping the evidence on your sife would come pouring out of where ever youve been hiding it but if your done i can be. Ill give you last word if you refrain from insult

    13. No no no. Shame on you. Insult after insult with you. Wow. Thats real big of you. I wish i was so smart that i didnt have to back up what i say and could insult people instead. Nice showing of your vast and deep grasp for the english language. Very mature and saavy. Cheers.

    14. And you remain steadfast in your ignorance. Again, you're no better than a fundamentalist and therefore deserving of insult.

    15. Btw did this author win any nobel prizes for this before unknown and highly crucial discovery of hers? Seeing as it would be crucial to theologians everywhere if one could state as a matter of factly that jesux did indeed exist?? No? Hmm. I wonder why?

    16. Of hers? Are you referring to Dr. Ehrman who takes the mainstream view of most biblical scholars and historians for at least the last few hundred years. So it is not unknown and certainly not a highly crucial discovery. Again, you show your ignorance.

      P.S. What does the Nobel Prize have to do with all this or is this just another irrelevancy which you're thrown in.

    17. I have no intention to read the book suggested but i would ask since you have read it and support it without doubts...what is the proof provided in the book.
      Was the coffin found with Jesus's bone laying in it? IF so how was it identified to THE Jesus? Was it a someone said, someone said..., why do you support the find? What convinced you it is the real tamale?
      Don't answer, i too am an ignoramus....tell me you who knows, why do you know without a doubt?

    18. @Az

      Good luck. Hes a hard nut to crack. Oh and Robert, peAce bro. I love you man.

    19. "bro" That's really intelligent and shows a lot of class.

    20. Lmao. Slainte. Youre awesome. Im going to follow your posts.

    21. Just a nut of dough like the rest of us. A dough nut with a belly button.

    22. Doughnutz or Gonutz?

    23. If you're too lazy to read the book or another of equal repute, I'm too lazy to summarize it for you.

    24. I am not asking that you sumarize the book, i am asking that you summarize what convinced you.

    25. First of all, I'd rather you got it from an acknowledged expert rather than from me, but a lot of it has to do with the detailed textual and historical analysis, pro and con, which Dr. Ehrman goes through in perhaps more detail than he needs to, which I attribute to the enthusiasm he brings to his subject.

      While I'm not going to do your homework for you, I will provide two suggestions:

      1. Read up on Dr. Ehrman I suggest in Wikipedia.

      2. Wikipedia also has a fine introductory article entitled "The Historicity of Jesus."

      But most of all as I have stated, read Dr. Ehrman's book (the most accessible I have found so far on the subject) or one similar to it.

    26. Again you don't understand. I am not asking to see why Dr.Ehrman thinks what he thinks, i am asking why you think what you think.
      Reading his book would not tell me one bit why you were convinced.

    27. After you've done your homework, then ask me the same question.


    28. if you or anyone actually wants the Ehrman books I have them all in pdf format.

    29. Good, let's see if anyone takes the bait.

    30. What do you mean by "let's see if anyone takes the bait"?

    31. I mean now that you've made the books readily available, let's see if she'll actually read one.

    32. okay, understand.

    33. I am not interested in spending my time reading about someone's claim about Jesus's past.
      If Jesus wants to appear to me, i'll talk to him otherwise it's all; i heard that they heard, he said that they said, i read that they wrote.
      Proof is non existant.
      Yes a few Jesus were burried, and they'll never be able to prove "without a doubt" that THE Jesus was in the box.
      You are interested in that stuff, bible included...good for you, not my cup of tea!
      Bait is not for me...i am no religious fish!

    34. As usual, you get things wrong. My statement merely concerned "Jesus'" human existence--nothing else.

      I know this is difficult for you to comprehend considering your disdain for scholarship.

    35. As usual, you are predictable in your response.
      Why would i want to read a book about Jesus the human, which one? Do you even know how many Jesus existed in those days besides the ones that were excavated? Why would anyone spent years studying this stuff makes me laugh.
      I have no disdain for scholarship, i have the utmost respect for self education in any fields especially when the interest is genuine and socially improving. I could supply a homework or two in the field if you wish.

    36. Again, you get everything wrong. You know the person I'm talking about--and if you will recall I acknowledged that Yeshua was a common name at the time and that Christos was not a surname, but a title, to which you responded inanely with a statement about marijuana.

      "Why would anyone spent[sic] years studying this stuff makes me laugh." This is not only an expression of ultimate disdain for scholarship, but also of ignorance of everything about it. And, by the the way, just what do you mean by "socially improving?"

    37. Do you know how to built a square picture frame from rough wood? Do you know how to tile floors and walls? Do you know how to take care of a child? Do you know how to split wood? Do you know how to use power tools? Do you know how to use a darkroom? Do you know how to make bread? Do you know how to cook for 50-100 people? Do you know how to sew? Do you know how to garden? Do you know how to change the oil on your car? Do you know how to dance?
      What would studying the possible life of Jesus Christ bring to my life? What does it bring to yours?
      Once again i do not have disdain for scholarship, no matter how many times you accuse me of it. I tend to think many people with scholarship have disdain of people who don't. Happily some see that life experiences can't be matched by education in certain fields and vice versa.
      You are the bulliest person on this site, improving your social skills would make reading your post 10 times more pleasant. Buy hey! don't believe me and just keep being arrogant, i am starting to like you like that. It takes one in anything.

    38. Shall I remind you of your hybrid rhetorical question-statement, "Why would anyone spent[sic] years studying this stuff makes me laugh" which, whether you admit it or not, flies in the face of your denial of a disdain for scholarship. But you're right, "many people with scholarship have disdain of people who don't," especially when those people not only make ignorant statements on subjects they know nothing about, but refuse to cure their ignorance through learning.

      You still haven't explained "socially improving" in light of scholarship and now you have something else equally cryptic to explain, "It takes one in anything."

    39. Wrong....
      I refused religion class as much as i could for myself being raised in Quebec where nuns were some of our teachers. I refused religions classes for my daughters when it was made easier by then. And i refuse religion schooling as an adult directly or indirectly.
      That includes your book and the bible. If someone wants to spend years studying that stuff, it's their business but it will continue to make me laugh.
      As for most other university subjects, i raise my hat to those who have the patience to sit for such long years. Their disdain for people who don't, make me laugh also.
      I see knowledge in the millions of facet in comes into. I have as much respect for the rice field worker watching his rice grow as i have for the astronaut watching the earth from afar.

    40. Excuse me, but this has nothing to do with religious schooling or with religion, but rather objective scholarship of which biblical scholarship and related topics form a part.

      "As for most other university subjects, . . . " Which subjects are you excluding?

      Considering the comparative intellectual efforts involved, I have considerable difficulty respecting a peon in the field as much as I do a rocket scientist. If you say we need both, fine. But which is the greater accomplishment?

    41. Just watched an interesting programme on keenTalks, The Element. Ties in quite nicely with what you and Az are discussing :)

    42. Excuse me, but if your book (or the bible) was required to be read in high school, it would have everything to do with religion and therefore would be banned.

      I don't measure people the same way you do. Our scale is very very different. You could never understand my perspective with your attitude.


    43. This really displays the extent of your knowledge of the subject. Books about religion and the Bible (not religious instruction) are not banned and neither are academic discussions relating thereto. If a teacher wants to compare and contrast Christianity with Buddhism or the Bible with the Koran, he has the right to do so as long as no normative judgments are made.

      Anyway, considering your refusal even to read about the book I recommended (and there are a number of online reviews), you have no business making the ignorant statement which opens your post.

    44. read: required.

      biblical scholarship is a farce.
      The bible is fully altered from it's origin, it was a pick and choose and leave aside certain texts, an origin that sprouted from previous mouth to mouth teaching, of which we have no proof.
      People can study the bible, i quit when i was 10, old enough to realize it wouldn't do any good in my life. The only good part of it, is already written inside of me.

    45. You have no idea what you're talking about and your wilful ignorance equates you with the most rabid religee.

      In my mind, that makes you despiccable.

    46. @robertallen1

      I hope you know that you have my respect but please reconsider your last comment to Azilda.

    47. It is wilful ignorance. She has no idea what biblical scholarship is and she calls it a farce. This is no different from a creationist with no concept of evolution calling it a farce. Both are despiccable.

    48. @robertallen1

      Azilda and the rest of us are all allowed to have our views whatever they are. Religion and god may be despicable but not people. Show us you’ve got a big heart to match that big brain of yours and apologise to Azilda please.

      The Disappointed One

    49. Absolutely not.  Agreement or disagreement has nothing to do with it.  Her statement about biblical scholarship coupled with her unwillingness to learn at least what it's about renders her no better than the most virulent creationist and in my book, this makes her intellectually despiccable.


    50. @robertallen1

      Re “I will try the search and get back to you.”

      It seems like you’re not going to reply but in case you were thinking about it let me save you the effort, don’t bother!

      In fact I will have no further discourse with you for the time being. You once had my respect Mr. Allan but not anymore. I’m sure you don’t care but I do. Your INSULTS to Azilda have gone beyond the palest of pales. YOU of all people know the power of words. And to think I’ve read comments of you describing MANNERS and GENTLEMANLY behaviour. You obviously don’t know the meaning of these 2 simple words! I see why of course, they’re TOO SIMPLE for YOU!

      Let me give you a SIMPLE English Lesson you petulant name calling little bully boy! Those in good command of the English Language know the difference between certain words and when and where it is appropriate to use them. Let’s use the word DESPICABLE as an example. We all enjoyed the delicious irony when you kept misspelling it. LOL. I ‘m laughing now but I was deeply saddened at the time.

      Definition of DESPICABLE.

      : deserving to be despised : so worthless or obnoxious as to rouse moral indignation: vile

      Source. Merriam – Webster dot com.

      Let’s not make any mistake here. As insults go it’s high up there. And let’s not forget this, she told you she was INSULTED!

      You then went on to with much grace (Read Sarcasm - Read Disgrace) say.

      “this places you on a par with the most rabid religee and hence undeserving of any respect (is that perhaps a little better?).”

      And then, even though I asked you to apologise, you sickeningly carried on your attack

      “her unwillingness to learn at least what it's about renders her no better than the most virulent creationist and in my book, this makes her intellectually despiccable”. (Read SICK)

      Frankly bob I’ve seen better behaviour in low level troll school. Shame on you.

      Tell me if I’m wrong here. We use the word despicable to describe murderers, rapists, paedophiles, violent criminals etc. We don’t use it to describe bright witty poetic beautiful people like Azilda. All human beings are worthy of respect. In fact don’t tell me anything. Let me ask you once again, please apologise. It’s a matter of honour. I will say no more on the subject.

      The Astonished One

    51. No way. And no, all human beings are not worthy of respect.

    52. I am not sure what to say....i know you and Robert have had some good exchanges in the past, i wouldn't want those to stop because of me. What you are asking would prove to be a miracle. I suggest we put this episode to rest.
      I have often times suggested to Robert to tone down the insults, he most often answer that the person he is writing to does not deserve respect. Perhaps this will change from now on.

      Valtko's post "@robertallen1,
      Ok calm down. If you disagree, say it in polite manner. No insults please."

      I appreciate your caring, and i will on my side be more judicious.

    53. "No way. And no, all human beings are not worthy of respect. "
      A self-proving statement possibly? I guess it depends on what you find worthy of your respect.
      Robert is smart in some areas, deficient in others. As we all are. At least he is consistent. A dog barks, it's what it does. Robert insults, it's what he does. Az will try to understand and forgive, it's what she does.
      Expecting Robert to apply the same rules to the knowledge, skill and application of decent, likable social interactions that he does to other more academic pursuits that interest him, is akin to expecting a dog to meow. It's just not in them. You're wasting your time if you expect anything other then to register your disapproval. (which was actually my initial reason for signing up to TDF. lol )

      P.S. I talk sh1t, it's what I do ;)

      @Vlatko, my old computer couldn't handle my TDF addiction anymore, it blew a MB. I blame you!! :) Thanks for your work on the site mate, I had TDF withdrawals while I did a rebuild.

    54. @Docoman

      Lol. Thanks for your very amusing reply. Cats and dogs eh, who’d have thought it? Do you like Cosmology? While I gave your comment a thumbs up, I was perturbed by the massive black hole in the centre of it. I just don’t want people to get sucked into that kind of destruction ;-)

      The Crucified One

    55. Mission accomplished, I made you lol. Oh yeah, ya gotta love Cosmology. Although my interest in it exceeds my knowledge I'm sad to admit. Which part perturbed you? Was it the whole hole or only part of the hole within the whole? Hmm, now I have a whole lot of hole questions.
      Holy sh1t, it may just be wholly sh1t. :)

    56. @docoman

      Mission accomplished, I made you think and ask questions? :-)

      “In God we Teach”
      Sermon, oops sorry, lesson for today.
      Wholly holes?

      It’s all part of the Cosmology Game in which you have to precisely point out the vague (but true) point I made. “There is nothing outside the text”.

      Holy Kangaroo sh1t, I think he’s gonna make it.
      Aren’t you? No worries, “I do my best to be misunderstood” ;-)

      The Cryptic One

    57. Is the correct answer;
      "Do we assume that nature obeys the same laws at all places and times?"
      I guess I answer yes to that.

      docoman, the confused One. :)

      If a god made the universe, would black holes therefore be Holy holes?

    58. What about black holes. What about other planets with different atmospheric and gravitation conditions?

    59. I was talking about my earlier stance on we are what we are, expect people to do what they normally do. In that context, I realized that my answer to that question would be yes.
      In my limited understanding, if the BB theory is correct, before and for a short time after the BB the 'laws of nature' (read physics) were not as we currently know them. And in that context the answer must therefore be no.

    60. You raise an interesting point. If the BB is true, when did the "laws of nature" (read physics) as we know them first come into being and did they do so all at once or did they evolve.

    61. And how would you measure it, if time is relative to the observer and not a constant.

    62. I have no idea. I'm just posing the question.

    63. @docoman:

      Ah! time you mentioned, gives me an opportunity to ease into this discussion, time is an illusion so says Julian Barbour. Barbour says that we live in a universe without time, motion, or change of any kind.

      "Time is nothing but a measure of the changing positions of objects. A pendulum swings, the hands on a clock advance. Objects and positions are therefore more fundamental than time. The universe at any given instant simply consist of many different objects in many different positions."

      "Barbour likens his view of reality to a strip of movie film. Each frame captures one possible NOW, which may include blades of grass in a blue sky, Julian Barbour and distant galaxies. But nothing moves or changes in any one frame. And the frames-the past and future-don't disappear after they pass in front of the lens.

      "This corresponds to the way you remember highlights of your life, "you remember very vividly certain scenes as snapshots.

      There is no past, present and future, all is static, until you pull out the snapshots out of your picture book, by all your probable nows, taking into consideration all the interactions.

    64. How would Barbour explain Redshift? And momentum? It would seem to me that these two phenomenon would require one 'frame' being influenced by it's past, and having an influence on it's future frame. Kind of screws up his idea doesn't it?
      His idea may explain why an object at the quantum level can be anywhere maybe?

      Edit- And/or the Doppler effect.

    65. Like a zoetrope :)

    66. Ahh, you did a Robert on me! Made me look up a word lol.
      I'm tired and already straining my grey cells :(
      Shouldn't there have to be some mechanism that allows cause and effect? Otherwise couldn't one moment be completely random from the next? When a zoetrope is made, there is a predetermined order of the pictures. If there wasn't, it wouldn't work properly. But with time, what happens next is unknown and yet to be determined, (at least from my perspective) but is definitely influenced by what happens now.

    67. I'm sleepy too, and that was just me dipping my oar in the sea of tranquillity. How about infinite chains of infinite zoetropes ;)
      Also I know less than nothing about this subject, I just appreciate it's beauty :)

    68. Woo, slow down! I'm still trying to wrap my mind properly around the concept of infinite :) Give me some time, I am male ;)

    69. The bigger a thing is the more difficult it is to imagine, so if you can't get your head around it, you've got a clue as to how big it is. So you sort of can after all :) And that makes so much sense I could be a scientist ;)

    70. THe subject itself is complex and it has been said by even the greatest of all physics experts and gurus even my favorite Richard Feynman who without his work wed be nowhere, was moced to remark "If you think you know Quantum therory, then youdont know the slightest thing about Quantum theory. "" We can also state that Quantum theory has been proven to the accuracy of measuring the width of north america to within one hairs breathe. Which means that there us a whole lot of truth in it. We deal with probabilities and not many absolutions. The theories needed in QT/M/P to explain the subatomic world and the quantum strangeness are soooo far from what seems real that people find it hard to grasp. But what is real might not always be heartwarming or normal. In fact it can be alarming, and flat iut freaky. But to me our obsoleteness in the cosmos only adds to my appriecation of ou

    71. Our existence and awareness there of more special than could ever be perpatrated by a god or a burning bush. We are a way for the cosmos to know itself. We are indeed connected to everything inca quantum way in which we ate one with the cosmos. "The cosmos is everything that ever was,is, or will be!" *Just sayin Carl Sagan

    72. "In Mandarin Chinese, cosmos and universe are both translated as ?? yuzhou, which literally translated means space-time (? yu = space + ? zhou = time)."

      Although it is thought the expression spacetime came from is much older.

      But then, is there a cosmos if there is not 1 i.

    73. Well on the not understanding it, looks like I'm up there with the best of them. In fact my lack of understanding might mean I'm a genius :)

    74. I think I understand time being a measure of the changing positions of objects, with position and the object being more fundamental then time. That's why it's time that changes because of special relativity. Why satellites time is different to ours on the surface.
      But I think I lose him with his analogy with a film strip. Unless you view time not as a continual flow, but a series of instants in a row. But as per my questions, there must still be something allowing cause and effect to work, 'linking' the instants??

    75. Yes!

      Achems i agree with this. Time is a measurement indeed . However time is merely the observation that things came from somepoint and are moving towards another. Its reletive as well. So the measurement of time changes depending on where your observing and what or whom is observing.We dont live in just the 4d world we percieve. We live in what seems to me an 11d world. We only percieve 4d because our brains only allow or need these deminsions to let us navigate through "Middle World" as opposed upper ir lower world in which birds or bacteria live in. And beyond that the quantum world in which all worlds exist in is really the only reality. The quantum world is what we need to all understand as much as possible in order to grasp the vast numbers and the infinite. "The universe isnt queerer than we suppose, it may be queerer than we can suppose." Some things we may never know. And the complexity which we do know us that of simplicity.

      Complexity arises from simplicity. Which is why to envoke a god is to disregard this obvious and ever so true observation. To explain the the unexplainable with the even more unexplainable only complicates the issue and makes it more complicate ,thus explains absolutly nothing.

      Junk theory us not better than no theory. If we dont know than its not ok to speculate anyhing. Thats the nonarrogence if science as opposed to the extreme arrogence if religion which claims knowledge of things it cant know.

      Infinity is not so hard to grasp if you first except that the scales in which seem ot normal use to humans to be only that of humans. We live at best 100 years. We in our lives may never see a star die yet we know its inevitable. Geological time is a scale of inevitabity. In fact time is a neccessity in order for evolution. Cosmic time is the likewise only its the equivalent. In order for us to understand infinity, we must realize 1,is as far from infinity as a trillion is. Trillion is such a big number that a person could start counting from one by ones and never reach infinite if they reached 100yrs old.

      Infinity has been wrestled with for a very long time. Its even driven some mathmaticians to suicide. I mean its a crazy thought to deal with. Infinity minus infinity is what? Can infinity be a negative? These are fun questions which we know the answer. Anybody want to try to answer?

      Also if there is a hotel with infinite rooms. And it says full or no vacancy. And you want a room. The keeper says if you can make room its free. How do you make room?

    76. Let me rephrase. A person wont reach a trillion in 100yrs. This is a small number as opposed to a google 10^10^10 or a googleplex 10^10^100 which all are every bit as far away from infinity as the number 1. Get it?

    77. eire666...

      lol easy, look up Hilbert's paradox of the grand hotel, on Wiki.

      Giving this info for others, because I know you know.

    78. Infinities, are they only imaginary? As a small example, we casually write down the term “zero” but is there every a real zero divisor as a lone operator of any physical state? Stated otherwise, can any physical operator ever reach an absolute zero state? (I really hate one word in the next statement but) The question itself is an oxymoron. If a physical operator is zero, it simply isn’t.

      So infinites can only be approached, infinitely. It’s always becoming (present perfect tense.)

    79. And speaking of infinities, what about Georg Cantor who demonstrated infinities inside infinities, e.g., the set of integers inside the set of real numbers, inside the set of all numbers? And the whole thing drove him crazy.

      Mathematically, it is questionable to treat infinity as a demarcation such as a number, i.e., the concept of infinity + 1 is as meaningless as the concept of infinity -1. It is better to say that under certain conditions, certain functions become extremely large or extremely small, i.e., the limit as x approaches 0 of 1/x becomes extremely large, while the limit as x approaches 0 of -1/x becomes extremely small, while the limit as x becomes extremely large or extremely small of 1/x = 0, a definite number and the limit as x approaches 2 of 1/x = 1/2.

      If this is what you mean by your statement that infinites can be approached only infinitely, I can understand it. If not, I can't and would appreciate clarification.

    80. This is when the comment section becomes enjoyable, thought before comment followed by example and questioning. Then again, from what I gather, that is inherent to your profession.

      The answer to your question is yes. My statement was provocation couched in a weak stab at some humor.

      “it is questionable to treat infinity as a demarcation" – The understanding of the concept is useful and logical as Cantor shows. But all infinities are the same size because they use the same base system, numbers (in whatever fashion). I would speculate that is what drove to distraction.

      Now were heading into math and philosophy, off the subject. At a minimum they inform a physicist of an error in the definition of an operator or the engineer of a serious design problem.

    81. It was probably more the serious design problem than anything else which drove Cantor mad juxtaposed to the rejection of his discoveries by many of the leading mathematicians of his day. In other words, there's a contradiction. If all infinities are the same size, they can come only in two varieties, the infinitely small and the infinitely large with nothing in between (an infinity of moderate size is meaningless) and claiming these infinities (or two infinities wrapped up in one, so to speak) can have subsets of infinitely large size contradicts the statement that all infinities are the same size. This, I believe, was Cantor's paradox and long after his death not only, changed the way we endeavor to regard the concepts of the infinitely large and the infinitely small, but opened up new, unexplored areas of mathematics.

      Another concept of interest is when a function goes from the numerable to the infinitely large or small and back, e.g., 1/|x|

    82. That gave me a chuckle. I’ve actually used a similar equation. In a past life that would be seen as control parameters. The task would be to take the concept into a reality. The equation defines two opposite asymptotes ramping up in a positive direction finally defining a limited area between the parallels. In the case below I'm thinking rotational speed limit.

      Say I wanted to isolate a domain of operation defined by the value between the two asymptotes. The values at ramp up would define at first a maximum of force decreasing as optimal area of operation is achieved. In this case the area defined between them. Such an application would choose a limit in this case 2 would be the lower limit and parallel would be the prime (always). Any decrease below 2 would increase force applied and above 2 would decrease force applied to a predetermined minimum. If a tighter limit is necessary any positive value of the Y axis may be chosen. Good for maintaining consent speeds for rotating apparatus.

      Note the word always.

    83. The applications are many, but one of the things I find interesting is when a population model corresponds to a hyperbolic function (which is what I think you're describing, especially when you mention asymptotes). Do you define the non-continuous values away to create an artifically continuous function or do you try to work with the function as it is. I'm not a mathematician, so I hope my description makes sense.

    84. Hyperbolic function, yes and I was pointing out a different view. There is a difference between concept and reality, one concept and many possibilities of a reality but with limits. The concept of infinity cannot be experienced but remains useful. In the example I gave it ultimately defines a continuous steady state between two controlling factors, the limits of the positive and the negative factors. The only example that comes to mind defining such a state is the concept of a photon inhabiting the concept of empty space (to drive home the point). (This is remarrying the divorced couple, Philosophy and Science for the benefit of their children, engineering and application.)

      Continuous, non-continuous and artificial – Continuous exists in theory only. When the concept enters application artificial controls are a necessity and that renders them non-continuous. In essence you factor out or limit the infinity. A short circuit, in theory, takes resistance to zero and current trends toward infinity. Neither factor achieves either state but will produce high temperatures. Think welding, a pragmatic application.

      Controlling factors vs. hyperbolic populations – In NATURE populations are self regulating, as in too many mouths to feed will ultimately produce a decline in population. This may include natural infertility. We however suffer under illusion of human control, safety and stability. This leads to overindulgences of every nature, consumption and life style. There are two mitigating and unpredictable factors. The first is nature it self. Even IF we were able to control and provide for a given population nature still has the trump card. The wild card in the model is the population being controlled.

      As an example, Egypt’s old kingdom functioned very well for almost 1000 years. From all appearances the population grew and probably exceeded the approximate 2.1 children per family necessary to maintain a stable population. Apparently they were a happy, read satisfied, and a well fed population. (The word happy today is more complex, much greater expectations.) Life was good until nature threw its trump card, natural catastrophic climate change, a major long term drought. The collapse of the civilization and anarchy followed. There are hints of cannibalism in some records, an example of the wild card.

    85. You seem to have a considerable background in math, probably greater than mine? Could you give me a rundown on this for I have something I'd like to ask you.

    86. @robertallen1
      You again! Aren't you bored yet with a subject that can only ever reach a stalemate? We would oust a Govt if religious teachings were mad mandatory in schools here.
      Go oust your government and leave those who think the earth is only 6015 years old to 'get on with it'.
      If you are living in a country that will change science education to align with a certain religious notion - then time to get out or throw THEM (political policy makers)out!!
      You live in the most heavily armed and 'glamorous' third world nation on the planet. You have Hollywood and you have blood on your hands.
      Makes the 'religee debate' look like 2 hookers fighting for the same corner. Have a nice day.
      NB: I guarantee my view of Venus transiting the Sun this week will be awesome ! x

    87. Math and I have had a complex relationship, love, hate, avoidance and necessity. Math is not my field but a necessary tool. It is much easier, quicker and less expensive to calculate parameters than to create something using trial and error filled with mechanical variables needing sequential adjustments. That is one side of the love relationship. An example of the hate side would be the tiresome (to me) calculation of seeming endless current loop equations all effected by configuration and the physical properties of the materials in use. Math is a word that is part of multiple and diverse disciplines. For me it’s always application specific relatively little in my field anymore but business trends and bookkeeping remain.

      I find enjoyment in envisioning a concept or taking an existing one, considering multiple fascists and creating useful new applications. That was my first love. It involved both the freedom of working alone and the excitement of discovery in project specific groups where another’s idea would trigger new insights. However, the group thing was not always mind expanding. When individual egos superseded the mission objective, the concept of the “sum of the parts being greater than the whole” is not always a truth.

      Those being said, pose your question. It may be an enjoyable exercise.

      Further, I don’t consider myself anyone’s greater or lesser. I sure your math skills are comparable. We all participate in the process. If you remain a part of academia, you’re up on whatever the latest new happens to be and have the challenge of encouraging learners to perceive. Some think they can’t, some won’t. Some want the security of what is considered to be proven. Others seek less solid ground. Each, if they can manage to get out of their own way, has talents to be shared and explored, “even the dull and the ignorant”, Re: Desiderata.

    88. Please correct me if I'm wrong, but you seem to enjoy the more theoretical (read pure) aspects of math than its applications.

      Also, please indulge me with the answer to one further inquiry, before I pose the question I wanted to ask you which is quite mundate and far from earth-shaking. Which mathematics courses have you taken?

      P.S. No, I am not a mathematical academic, much less a mathematical genius.

      P.P.S. "multiple fascists"--cute.

    89. Pure vs. application – that’s always a conundrum, Plato or Aristotle, potential or actual. I see value in both the ideal and the manifestation. There is the appeal form brain and the insight from one that knows it’s just an organ responding to stimuli.

      Then there is the Logos, Ethos and Pathos encounter. Logos is more than logic. It’s symbolic and can be presented philosophically or as mathematically pure (those two terms should synonymous) in an attempt to appeal to the intellect. Then there is Ethos. It requires faith or trust in the expositor. Is there the agenda? Is it ever absent? Next is Pathos. How does it make you feel? It’s the meat of any of today’s media and motivational speakers. It’s the wild card. The rest is falling action love, fear, hate, joy and so on leading to some type of action. The motivator is emotion. They are visceral, not rational, often unavoidable and not always negative. Examples of this are all over the TDF posts.

      Logos is a loaded term. Does the expositor really understand it or is it simply a vehicle to be used (an ego pump)? Or worse, does the expositor care? (That post should be more line with the topic.) And so to your question……

      Math Courses - Other than the basics, various discipline related courses in, calculus, linear and abstract algebra, differential equations, and statistics (multi-discipline). There were others some PIA’s (first word is pain) job requirements and a few just due to other interests, some examples would be set theory, vector functions and bookkeeping.

    90. Thanks for your response--now for my question.

      Why are the textbooks so almost uniformly bad? Most of them are hard to learn from and the authors seem more interested in a display of brilliance rather than clear explication. The best calculus text I've found is Thomas and that's far from ideal for while the expositions are in general clearer than those found in many such texts ,too many of the problems cannot be worked from the exposition and previous knowledge--i.e., they are out of left field. This is what I call the puzzle book approach which as far as learning leads to nothing but frustration.

      I have yet to find anything approaching a decent text in abstract algebra; some of them start off well enough, but after a few chapters leave the reader in the dust. For differential equations, the most commonly used text seems to be Boyce and diPrima which is abysmal. Raineville is better for a beginner learning the theoretical aspects although his first work on intermediate differential equations is unintelligible, but that's about it.

      If the authors of these books teach the way they write, it's no wonder that mathematics has such a bad name. I'm not a quarter of a mathematician these people are, but I can certainly write much better textbooks, ones that would provide a true learning experience and an approach to more difficult problems which the reader would not only benefit from but enjoy.

      I would appreciate your thoughts.

    91. Texts --- Here it is a question of intent, sales, ego enhancement or education. Publishers sell books. If you remember there was an option of purchasing new or used books. Used books are just as informative as the new. Better if the prior owner added good notes. So, why buy new? Easy, New Math and Set Theory required new books. Here my comments would be akin to Richard Feynman’s and echoed by Kline (can’t remember this first name) in his book “Why Johnny Can’t Add”. Give them the basics first.

      I’m finding it harder and harder to reject out of hand the “dumbing down of the population” conspiracy.

      I’ve just deleted a few paragraphs due to a self inflected head thump. You have stated you can, so do. Producing an engaging and educational textbook is a worthy endeavor.

      Today there is no need for a publisher’s acceptance or sales to any academic institution. There are no accreditations necessary. Write your book. Find a way to test it (use in tutoring comes to mind or fit examples into your lesson plan) and self publish.

      Document it to protect it (good luck) and make it available on the internet. This is the global information age. I am not kidding. Do it.

      I’ll make you a promise that will keep itself. As you compose (write it using a pen and transcribe later is better than typing) you will be instructed and deepen your knowledge and understanding of the specific subject and many related.

      Teaching is an art form with few artists. Ref: Jamie Escalante – It’s a shame he didn’t publish.

    92. You're right about the limited need for new editions of older textbooks, except as a money-making device for the publishers. For in general there is little difference between a current edition of a text and its predecessor.

      However, I would appreciate your direct comments on the quality of math textbooks. In other words, based on your experience, is what I have to say about them valid? How did the textbooks stack up to the classes in which they were used?

      I have no intention of writing the type of textbooks I've described, for It would take partnership with a trained mathematician who thinks as I do and once it's completed, how would I go about promoting it? However, if you are interested in my specific ideas, I would be happy to provide them.

      I agree with you that writing about your subject gives you a deeper understanding of it--or at least is supposed to--and in that respect that teaching (read presenting) is indeed an art form.

      P.S. I'm glad you mention beta testing. It's obvious that in their haste to see themselves in print and start supplementing their income, many of the authors of these textbooks never subjected their works to this.

    93. This is opinion. Text books where any form of abstract reasoning is the subject are more ill-equipped and confusing than ever. The case for this becomes more prevalent where the student is attempting to be self taught or the teacher relies too heavily on the text. In many cases rote learning for basic skills has been replaced by the abstract. How can you understand an abstraction without knowledge of existing forms?

      This is fact. I was lucky. The teachers from the 50’s were still teaching. The text books had no agenda other than the subject matter. Teachers left the politics at home. A solid foundation had been formed. My education was interrupted for seven years. Uncle Sam needed another misguided child. When I returned to the hallowed halls I was shocked at what had changed in seven years. There were elementary and middle school subjects being taught like 101 courses and you couldn’t escape the politics. This was so much so that I taught my kids to challenge the view and motive in open class, especially the ad homonym.

      There was a book published in 1997 and made available as open source. Much as I spoke to you about.

      “Abstract Algebra: Theory and Applications” - Thomas W. Judson

      Our monitor is being very patient.

    94. You seem to agree with me, but as I've indicated previously, this does not need to be the case. I believe that rote learning and abstraction can be combined into a harmonious and delightful whole. It's just that this is not being done very well,if at all--and part of the reason seems to lie in the writing style employed and the puzzle-book approach of too many of the authors.

      While I agree that politics and religion have no place in the classroom except as academic subjects, I don't understand how this applies to textbooks and am also puzzled by the meaning of your statement that elementary and middle school subjects were being taught like 101 courses. Whatever elucidation you can provide would be appreciated.

      Thank you for the recommendation. I will check it out. However, it's strange that RAF which puts out the Problem Solver series refuses to put one out on Algebra Algebra (I know this because I have talked to a member of its editorial staff) and Cramster refuses to provide answers to any books on the subject (This again I know from direct communication with the company.) I hate to bring up conspiracy theory, but in this case, I'm beginning to wonder. And speaking of conspiracy theory, I don't understand your denial in your last post of the conspiracy to dumb down when it's all around us and so would appreciate an explication.

      P.S. Ad homonym--cute.

    95. I guess I see the word abstract as being derived from a first principle. If a proper progression is enforced through the text, I’m very sure such a text could be accomplished but it hasn’t been. I do remember one that provided student experience with only text and workbook interaction.

      “I don't understand your denial in your last post of the conspiracy to dumb down when it's all around us and so would appreciate an explication” – It’s not denial. It’s irony, a bad personal habit.

      Rant at ad homonym – I should have deleted (divided attention today)

      I hammered on the words basic skills. The elementary and middle school reference would be college course instruction in sentence structure and composition, reading skills (let alone comprehension), basic or pre-algebra, plane geometry and more. Then again they are major and minor specific but required subjects. Up until ten years ago applicant interviews were a part of running a business. Take it from there.

      As a young student I was part of a learning experiment in middle school, Temac programmed learning. It was a set of texts to progress from algebra through plane geometry into pre-calc and calculus (The last was not part of the test program). It progressed from a more or less single theory page to exercise pages then a final test per section completed. The whole process was to take six semesters.

      It was a great program for some. (I just searched it to Amazon. It’s unavailable but listed.) You were able to progress at your own pace with little or no teacher intervention. Some blew through all three levels in less than three semesters, some took six and others couldn’t finish. One size doesn’t fit all and that may be the point.

      in finem - this thread

    96. Evening Blue, spent almost two hours chasing my wiki tail last night trying to understand this, why can't you guys just draw a picture? Couldn't even get to understand the question without trying to understand the maths first, finally lost it when I read that the distance between 0 and 1 is the same as the distance between 0 and infinity. For a split second I thought that made sense, then I realised I was more confused than ever, then I crocheted a pod full of peas because that seemed the thing to do. If it's an infinite hotel how can there be no room, and if it's full its not infinite. Then there's infinite odds and infinite evens, does that mean there's two infinities in one. Also if there is an infinity between 0 and 1, how do you even get from 0 to 1? I'm sooooo lost :)

    97. are lost are you? will answer off the top of my head, hate looking stuff up.

      You are talking about distance, yes infinite distance is the same between 0 and 1, and 0 to infinity unless you finite it by giving exact measurement.

      And yes there are many infinities, in an infinite hotel it is full until you start moving people around as in moving someone in and out of room 1 to room 2 and 2 to room 4 even numbers. And at the same time to move someone in and out from room 3 to room 6, to the odd numbers.

      So you see, made 2 infinities at the same time, even and odd numbers. And at the same time you could juxtapose prime numbers for a third infinity and so on.

    98. Unless you finite it? You mean finite infinity?
      OK, so is this like the even people (numbers) are in rooms while the odd ones are between rooms? You bounce people along the even numbers and also the odds, overlapping cyclic arches. Always empty and full?

    99. Flirt...why do women always complicate things?

      What the hell is cyclic arches?

      I made it simple, there is no finite infinity, infinity means just that, an infinite distance!

      All we are doing is moving people upwards making more rooms available. So simple!!

    100. You can't move people up into a room that isn't there, where does the person in the first room go? If there is a room to move into the hotel is not full! You said 'and 0 to infinity unless you finite it' Thought you were saying you could limit infinity, I misunderstood, sorry :) cyclic arch - place a circle on a line, Mark the point they meet an roll the ball 'til that point touches the line again. In my minds eye the doors are the points. Simple picture, not a complicated lady thing :)

    101. infinite hotel means that you can make infinite rooms out of nothing, just like our universe is made from absolutely nothing, from geometric points. No, am not going to explain that! you want to get complicated, so will I lol. the people from room one move into room 2 from room 2 into 3, from 3 into 4 and on and on and on. infinite means you can make as many rooms as you want 10^500 and upwards.

      Your cyclic arch chick thingy doesn't cut it here.

    102. OK, so there is no paradox, just infinity ;)

    103. Are you trying to say that you can make an infinite hotel infinite but you can't make a finite hotel infinite?
      That's easy enough.
      I don't see how this explains infinity.

      @eireannach666 wrote: "Also if there is a hotel with infinite rooms. And it says full or no vacancy. And you want a room. The keeper says if you can make room its free. How do you make room?"

      A hotel with infinite rooms would never say no vacancy.


    104. Ah, company in the labyrinth! Did you drop breadcrumbs? :)

    105. I work in two shifts every day...going back in 2 hours. Not sunny, so no beach.

    106. You have to find your way out first, sure your boss will understand it's a long walk to the door from your room at the Finitey Inn :)

    107. Az...Yes, a infinite hotel would say it is full if it thought it was full, and would put up a no vacancy sign, they did not know any better. But now you are making more rooms in the hotel much to their chagrin. Simple math!

    108. I personally find it easier to think of it in terms of numbers.
      You can count in whole numbers, 1 2 3 4 ect, and just keep going, always adding 1 more, and go on forever (theoretically). You could do the same thing counting in even numbers, 2 4 6..., or odd, 1 3 5..., or as mentioned, other units like primes.
      Also, between 0 and 1 you can do the same thing. 0.2, 0.22, 0.222 ect, always adding another 2 to the end. Every time, the number gets slightly larger, but it doesn't matter how many more 2's you add, you'll never actually reach the next whole number, 1.

    109. Oh! See I was thinking too literally about hotels! Wondering where the person in the furthest room went. It's not really counting though is it, just a lot of ones! Just add another 1 and stick a man in it :) intimate and full at the same time, and if you do count, you can count in an infinite number of ways? Am I there yet? Those hotel beds are looking very inviting ;)

    110. Yeah, I had the same problem with the hotel analogy, it contained/limited it in my mind. With numbers you can just add another unit without a building crew :)
      It's still counting. Like the difference between counting something in inches or centimeters, pounds or euros, its just a different unit to count by.
      I always preferred my own bed. You don't know who's been doing what before you got there in a hotel ;)

    111. Just noticed my typo, intimate and full ;) maybe a motel and not a hotel :)

    112. more like the Tower of Babel.

    113. This doesn't explain infinity, it describes it. That's very different.

    114. You're right. My male thinking, the 'how' more then the 'why'.

    115. Right. And this is known as a limit. See Achilles Paradox.

    116. And don't forget about infinite series.

    117. Yes, and even convergent infinite series.

    118. Those are sort of fun, aren't they. Now that I think of it, the infinite is as much fun to play with as imaginary numbers.

    119. Right, I especially like "the mandelbrot set. Don't know if you saw the doc, on TDF called...

      ..."Fractals: The Colors of Infinity"...

    120. No, I haven't, but I appreciate the suggestion.

    121. I was wondering where your were….

    122. @Achems

      Any thoughts on Nietzsche’s “Eternal Recurrence” in “Deep, Deep Eternity”? Is it possible? Have you read any of his works? I hope you don’t mind the questions?

      The Curious One

    123. @Anti:

      Not really into philosophy, sort of skirted philosophy years back but as Hawking said philosophy cannot keep up with science, therefore for me "philosophy bakes no bread"

    124. Actually it does; it's just that the bread comes out unleavened.

    125. @robertallen1,

      In 1920s, we learnt about the expanding universe in the same decade as we learnt about quantum physics, each of which falls so far out of what you can deduce from your armchair, that the whole community of philosophers that previously had added material to the thinking of the physical scientist were rendered essentially obsolete at that point.

      Philosophy has basically parted ways from the frontier of the physical sciences, when there was a day when they were one the same.

      That story is quite different when speaking about religion, ethics, politics etc.

    126. Good point. So when it comes to the physical sciences of nowadays, why do we even need philosophy?

      I'm not quite clear on what you mean in your last line. Would you mind elucidating?

    127. I think Philosophy is more like sourdough. When you cook it you save a lump for the future. The bread you get is good and tasty but it gets eaten away and then you make an other one.
      So in a way philosophy is always renewing itself and adapting to the time being.

    128. Nietzsche says that all prior philosophers are essentially little more than an assembly of autobiographers! Which is both profoundly insightful, and really, really hilarious. I just started reading this man, finally, but I think I'm going to like him. Whoever says that Germans don't have much of a sense of humor takes a swing and a miss on that one, at least, imo.

    129. Also, speaking of philosophy, do you remember that one id**t who asserted that homosexuality was wrong because it went against Aristotle?

    130. @Achems

      Ok, thanks for answering. I respect your opinion. Maybe we can talk about the Bakery cliché another time? If you’re bored maybe? lol

      The BusyBaking One

    131. @Achems

      Not only do you have my respect but a certain admiration, I have told you this before. I feel it’s a bit of a shame that philosophy wasn’t your thing. Please forgive me for one last try with you. Nietzsche is an exceptionally good read without any philosophy being applied. Indeed he has a lot to say about the materialistic atomistic perspective. As @Brennilthos64 has mentioned, he is also highly amusing. Knowing German here could have even greater benefit. I leave you with a quote from dear Friedrich.

      ”He who sees the stars as above him, lacks the eye of the discerning one”

    132. @FlirtyDew

      Good evening Ariadne

      Well Done.

      That’s the paradox hon. You could have just as easily asked how does one get from 0.00000001 to 0.000000011 therefore motion seems impossible. But don’t worry there’s an infinite number of paradoxes as well to get those neurons firing nicely.

      The Infinite One

    133. It's all rather untidy, needs a woman's touch :)

    134. Dewy

      Yes I know what you mean; it can seem awful messy at times. But we should never be daunted by the task. And it’s not quite as bad as it may seem. Thanks to people like Cantor who did great work on the hierarchy of infinities mathematicians today count, add, multiply and invent new infinites all the time. From they’re point of view they’re looking at frozen plank seconds. So it would seem some infinities are bigger than others.

      As for the hotel paradox. Think of it this way this infinite hotel is full. No more can get in, yet you could have an infinite number of people waiting to get in and still get them all in. Because even in one frozen second of plank an infinity (The Hotel) contains the infinite and all it hierarchies. So all the occupied rooms just bump up. I hope that’s helped and I haven’t embarrassed myself.

      The Dionysian One

    135. Ariadne, very funny! Who are you? Bachus? ;)

    136. When i write: "If enough of us come to agree this reality is just an illusion then it will be and this reality may change instantly with this realisation." I keep forgetting who but someone Achems has quoted a few times has stated this idea on paper.

      This could create a different kind of big bang, perhaps a law of the unnatural we know nothing of yet could explode in our face. We first have to be enough to identify it that way. We can never say never even when it sounds completely impossible, but we always have to realize that in the is impossible.

    137. Possibly the entry/gateway to or creation of another dimension/universe? I hadn't heard or thought of that idea, interesting.
      Would we be the 'gods' of that realm, it's Creator? Or just gaining access to somewhere we can't/don't go now?

    138. Would we? Aren't we already? That is if we define god a whole different way. Who says god has to be what god is, has been. God is a word representing an idea like a baby in a womb. I say it's about time it birth into what it could be...some thing unthought of for eons.
      The answer could be right in front of the black hole of our eyes.
      Good day to to work, there is bread to be made, i love playing with dough.

    139. I think that's part of our problem. Too many people believe what they're told to, not what they've come to think for themselves. (whatever they believe)
      I think the whole 'god issue' is a philosophical question that arises because it's a symptom/side-effect of our 'ability to reason'. I've never seen any other species do what I would interpret to be worshiping a god.
      That's just my suspicion. I currently see no way of telling, maybe I'm just blind to it. If that is the case, at least it's my blindness and not someone else imposing it on me.
      As you said, we should never say never. I'm still learning. :)

    140. Bear with me if this sounds a bit weird, it's only a half-baked idea I'm struggling to find the words to convey.
      I find the idea that Barbour talks about, (that Achem was kind enough to post up bless his big brain), about time being an illusion we've created to make sense of what we observe, very interesting, and possibly linked to your idea.
      Our reality is defined by our brain/thoughts, our interpretation of what our senses are telling us about our environment. If something so fundamental to us as our concept of time could be only an illusion, what else in our reality, what we think we know, could also be an illusion. A construct of our brain to explain what we think we 'see'. The way we interpret our inputs is majorly affected by our knowledge. (if you hear an unknown sound at night it could be scary, if you know what you heard is only the gate creaking in the wind it's not.) Our reality is affected by our knowledge. It makes sense then, that as our knowledge increases, our interpretation of our surroundings (the universe) and therefore our reality will change with it. One example is the affect the Apollo missions had on our collective reality. When they got to the moon, and came back with those pictures of Earth, many people together for the first time realized we are just a big spaceship flying through space. Seeing was understanding better, on a large scale.
      If our species survives long enough, there may be a time (change) in the future when our knowledge expands to a point where we reach a very different collective reality. (assuming our brains are big enough to handle it) If we were able to see all the illusions of our interpretation of what the universe is, and thus have a chance of seeing past our illusions, the resulting reality could be very different and completely unlike anything we can currently even imagine.

      I wonder what it was like the first time our species, or possibly a preceding hominid species, realized they had the ability to reason. (not when they got it, but when they first realized they had it) It must've blown their minds when they realized they could think, way better then any other animal! Maybe that's why we're the only one's left, it literally 'blew' their minds! lol. Maybe ignorance really is bliss. :)
      I wonder if that is the case, if we could handle a sudden 'shift' in our reality. Most, if not all of us, have a massive mental problem if you took or radically changed our beliefs and therefore our perceived reality. You can see that here on TDF often. It may well be likely that change by necessity has to be slow for us to handle it. More evolving may well be required yet.

    141. I suspect many already perceive the breath of a new reality (i do, don't you?)
      The new age mouvement that has been around for longer than we think (Helena Blavatsky and George Gurdjieff and even before) may sound mumbo jumbo to many but as with everything, what comes out of it may have some validity. When enough accepts "something", it seems like "something" accepts us.
      We can no longer see our reality as solely physical existence, it is obvious (at least to those who claim it) that our conciousness/subconciousness has a mind of it's own and a power of it's own too, if directed with intent.
      I see this as if the mass is still on the threshold of that new dimension, and that is because science (which provisions the accepted notion of reality) is still tip toeing just past the doorway and because religion says God has power over you.
      As Blake wrote: "when the New Age is at leisure to pronounce, all will be set right". He may have been right ahead of his time.
      Big steps are being taken thanks to Quantum this and that. I don't think the quantum scientists were expecting to include the non physical but it is becoming that way. And also thanks to people rejecting the religion jails, minds are becoming freer.
      As with every new mouvement, the status quo is being shaken by people's curiosity.
      We (humans) have been travellers in the physical world, we have been around and around, deep and high, and even off the earth. In all these voyages one thing we never leave home is our conciousness so why not travel there while staying still?

    142. There's a lot in this comment that could be responded to, but I'm gonna limit myself to what I see as its central idea. That is, that humanity profits from a perception of a reality that is bigger than itself, or what it assumes to be bigger than itself. But who was it who said that men have a tendency to make gods out of such notions, out of mere disposition or genuine need?!

      We may follow such pretty witches into the forest as long as we dare, but it really BEHOOVES us (lol) to at least lay out a few bread-crumbs behind us, so that we may find our way back out if the seduction fails to live up to its promise. I would have a real fear and suspicion of any "collective reality," whatever it may be founded upon, seeing what boiling cauldrons all the previous ones have led to.

      So, as you say: Easy does it!

    143. Mr P, your new face is worrying me a bit :)

    144. It's a Barong mask, but a variation of the kind typically made, with different colors and stylings... But don't fret, he's the "good dragon" of the Balinese cosmos. :)

      (It's all about the art for me, anyway, not the theology.)

      edit- Intended to study Cultural Anthropology in college to completion... Got sidetracked and never went back.

    145. I'll take your word for it, might have to jump from the door to my bed tonight though ;)
      It's those boggly eyes!

    146. Women by any chance? ;)

    147. Eiensteins god or the conceptual god of physics i.e. god as a term and not as a being. Thats a huge misinterpetation amoungst ppl. I agree with you kitten. And i like the analigy using the blackholen lol funny.

    148. Not leaving us already?

    149. @docoman

      Lol. But no. There would be little gained if I showed you exactly what I mean. Don’t be confused, I’m confident you’ll get there in the end. It’s only vitally important. Nothing to worry about ;-)

      The Unhelpful One

    150. docoman, the blissful One.

    151. Dohhh, I repeat things.

      Dohhh, I repeat things.

      docoman, the rested One. :)

    152. @docoman


      Duhh.? Hmm...

      “There would be little gained if I showed you exactly what I mean.”

      However there would be much gained if you showed me... What is missing from the whole?
      I lied about being unhelpful, I just try to let people help themselves.

      The Amused One

    153. Sounded more like the description of a big bang bang than a black hole to me.

    154. Ya got me there, I was doing my thing, talking sh1t. :)

    155. this is name calling....and if you look in the comment policy it is not permitted.
      Too bad the moderators leave you roaming around like a wild horse with your insults.
      Before you use such word as despicable, learn to spell it.


    156. Again, you make statements concerning what you know nothing about and don't want to know anything about and this places you on a par with the most rabid religee and hence undeserving of any respect (is that perhaps a little better?).

      Incidentally, you mention how much the bible has been altered. How would we know this without biblical scholarship?

    157. Easy, a book of books translated so many times, transcribed so many times, dissected so many times, a book from thousands of years ago....who would have thought it to be original.
      You're only upset because you apparently have spent years of your life studying the bible and for that reason we should all think it's serious business and not a farce.
      I have seen you makes farce of hundreds of people here...doesn't taste good, does it?
      You best posts are the ones you write in agreement as for your dissagreements they are always vile and rarely constructive.
      Still good day Robert...i am off to work, enjoy the company of others.

    158. Az...The word despicable is sitting on the fence, could go one way or the other, basically a mild ad hominem attack, but did not use swear words and such.

      Wild horse?? Ha, Ha, you are also reverting to ad hominem name calling.

    159. at least you know how to spell it.

    160. You still can't tell a typo from orthographical ignorance. But again, you don't know about a lot of things you think you do--and what's worse, you refuse to learn.

    161. Why is it that every time you write the word you always write it the same way? Once a typo, twice two typos, third time it's obvious it's an orthographical ignorance.


    162. Again you're wrong. It's that like most double letters, the double c's don't respond quickly on the keyboard and sometimes I don't pick up the error.

      Now, why is it that you constantly write about subjects of which you know nothing and have no desire of learning anything about?

    163. Az...You and robertallen1 fight like an old married couple, hark! I hear bells, shall I gas up the plane?

    164. Never mind. There are better things like the question I'd like to ask you, considering that your science background exceeds mine.

      Is there such a thing as devolution? To oversimplify, suppose a creature (read species, genus, etc.) develops in a certain way, but as the environment changes, it develops in another and if the environment changes back to what it was, the creature reverts to its "original" form? I hope I've expressed myself somewhat clearly.

      If so, considering how much the earth has changed within the last 2.5 billion years, the straight-line evolution depicted in so many textbooks is far from an accurate representation.

      I would appreciate your comments.

    165. The way things are going am beginning to wonder about that myself, even cro magnon, were anatomically modern humans that had brain power as humans now.

      It still seems that it is straight line evolution so far in as much as humans are concerned, but! and a big but! because of the changing diets and techno advances humans are getting weaker physically or fatter by all the fast food, high fructose diets in vogue now, will there brain power diminish? you betcha!

      Already happening now as we speak, one example is the "dumbing" down of the masses! through news media, television etc: And to me "RELIGION" so the way that I see devolution is devolution as to "George Orwells 1984" scenario.

    166. I agree with you as to the dumbing down, especially in popular entertainment. Compare the movies of 50, 60 years ago to what's being put out now. (Prior to looking at your response, I was watching a fine old British movie of 1959, "Left, Right and Center.") Compare the popular songs of today with those of the 20's, 30's, 40's and early 50's. Compare Edward R. Murrow with Oprah Winfrey (if you can without vomiting).

      But I did not ask my question in a cultural sense, but in a biological one. In the spectrum of evolution, is there such a thing as devolution as I've tried to describe in my poast.

    167. @robertallen1,

      Ok calm down. If you disagree, say it in polite manner. No insults please.

    168. Correct Az. The thing tho' about the bible is as Northrop Frye (one of my many mentors) said - is that it is (the bible) the fount of western literature.

      Carry on girl - carry on - I got your six.

    169. Are you a pilot? i got your six

      The bible is the fount of western literature....what is the fount of the bible in your opinion?

    170. @Teddy Mcd

      Wow, impressive. Frye was quite a guy. Got anymore juicy namedrops? Come on now don’t be shy.

      The Critical One

    171. It would help to finalize the last 14 hrs of arguments you've had with eireannach666.

    172. Az...Jesus bone? damn, how about... "The Temple Of The Tooth"... they have a big, big, religious movement about one "tooth" supposedly Buddhas tooth in Singapore, all wrapped up in a ton of gold shrine...Crazy religee's!

      So if they found a bone of the big JC, it would be...The Temple Of The Bone...More crazy religee's!

    173. Really? A tooth? Ok ill bite! (Get it?) Ok seriously i missed something here yo. Please tell me the 'root' of the tooth. Dont feed me more then i can 'chew.'ok seriously. The tao of tooth you say?

    174. The temple itself is located in Kandy Sri Lanka, and is "believed" to house the upper left canine tooth of the lord Buddha. An object of great relevance.

      Google for more info. Only reason I mentioned this in the first place was watching a doc I pulled out of the library.

    175. Lol Nice. Whats the name of the doc? Maybe we can talk Vlatko into grabbing it?

    176. Around the world in 80 treasures, probably not available for streaming on the net, or maybe it is, did not look.

    177. Right on, ill see if i can find it. Hey, need i assume that Randy is no longer with us? I kinda missed that grumpy .... well fill in the blank. Lol

    178. No, Randy is long gone, but, another heads up, all of us have to stay on topic, no off topic talk, stringent rules! lol

    179. Ahh. Well sad to hear and glad to hear. Lol thanx for the heads up.

    180. Look. I dont care if an it wrote that piece of garbage your for some reason holding on to and seriously defending at all costs. You never have once dine anything but moan and groan and name call. Let it rest. Btw its obvious your mad. You dont even see humor in anything or even acknowledge a humorous attempt. Im bored. Go away. Ok go. Last word. Lol. Lame.

    181. I see. So as far as your concerned a work by one of the world's foremost biblical scholars is a piece of garbage--and this you know without even having read it. I only mention this one work ,not because I cling to it (another one of your mischaracterizations), but because it seems to be the most accessible one for the general public so far.

      P.S. What does humor have to do with this or is it just another of your red herrings?

    182. Sure a court has plenty to do. You only except these standards of evidence there .. why would you not expect the same here. id say the stakes are as high. Besides would you convict someone based on testimony given by third party colaberators?

    183. I say no he didnt. My proof lies in the fact that this extraordinary claim is not backed bt extraordinary evidence. Only fabrication or hearsay. The onus is on you to prove your previous statement that he lived.

    184. What is so extraordinary are mere existence. To hell with what you say, people with no religious agenda who know a lot more about the period than you do generally agree that such a person existed--EXISTED AND THAT'S ALL!

      All you do is state. You refuse to read anything scholarly or informed. You're no different than a fundamentalist!

  111. @robert

    Lol. Thats your proof he existed? Hearsay. Really? Ok youve just helped the case in my favor. How about i throw you one. How about the closest thing there is happens to be what the buddhists say about hin being a buddhist and living there to a ripe old age and they claim his remains! Ok see im a fair person. In fact there is even a doc on it here on tdf. Called did jesux die or something to that nature.

    1. eire...just a hint, if you want to reply to someone hit the reply button for that person, your post automatically comes up on the top anyway, it has changed somewhat since last you were here.

    2. Ah, Vlatko is fixing it up nice in here eh? Too funny. I was going to carry on as usual yo. Lol. Thanx Achems. Good looking out. I like it better this way i must say. Great job Vlatko. Looking good. My apologies for my ignorence . Just sayin Carl Sagan.

    3. Try Bart Ehrman's latest book. And bear in mind that my statement applies only to the man "Jesus." By the way, it's hearsay that Socrates existed. We have only Plato and Xenopon's word for it.

    4. His book i do not need. You tell me what out of that book can be proven to where its relevent and applies here. I want your words.

    5. In other words, you wish to remain ignorant.

    6. The Diary and Letters of Gouverneur Morris, Minister of the United States
      Toward an American Revolution: Exposing the Constitution & Other Illusions.
      Envoy to the Terror: Gouverneur Morris and the French Revolution

      Howard Swiggert The Extraordinary Mr. Morris.

    7. No. I will ask you to prove your point. I dont need to read your book. I want you to state what it is you know and how you obtained this knowledge.

    8. I obtained this knowledge through reading books by those with no religious agenda who are experts in their field. You should do the same.

    9. Dont bring poor old Socretes in this. Hes not here nor his followers to defend themselves.

    10. Defense has nothing to do with it. You're the one who objects to hearsay, yet history is full of it. There are only two references to Lucretius and none to Manilus; yet, no one doubts that they existed.

    11. We are talking about Jeaux and i doubt any of the bible true. Id bet 90% is bs.

    12. You must be really dense! Have I used the Bible as a source?

    13. No but the people you clam had alot to lose if they didnt play along.

    14. Again, it's obvious you know nothing about their lives.

      Are you merely playing the curmudgeon?

    15. I stated what that meant. It means just because sombody lived, it doesnt mean what people of easy influence and that werent there, say about him is true. Without the physical evidence its nothing but fabeication and/or hearsay. All the events ib his life are nothing without proof. Ever play the game telephone when you were in school? You know where i say something in your ear and by the time its at the other end of clasz its not at all as i stated?

    16. I just can't seem to penetrate. I merely stated that "Jesus" existed. I WENT NO FURTHER. Incidentally, all three sources I named mention the crucifixtion--and don't take this to mean anything other than what it states. Also, Pliny the Younger and Tacitus were contemporaries, so don't try to snow me with the telephone game which you cannot prove took place.


    17. Neither Pliny the Younger nor Tacitus lived during Jesus's lifetime. It took five seconds on google to look that up. :/

    18. Boy, are you dense! I stated numerous times that they came later.

    19. Your attempt at insult is taken as hostile. One moment. Ill return with my nrxt victums story. Im on my phone so forgibe my slow pace.

    20. And it's supposed to be because you've blown a simple statement virtually undisputed by the majority of scholars in the field (and these people know a lot more than you do about the topic) out of proportion.

      Consider this, there is no hard evidence for the existences of most the millions of people of the ancient world.

    21. Exactly. So anybody who says he did or difnt exist is in the position to defend their statement. But ill assume you wo.t think that this was my point in disagreeing with you from the start. I dont care if he did or didnt. But i never claimed i had the answer either. Nevermind. Dense huh? Ok brainiac. You win. I concede.

    22. At the risk of sounding tedious, I recommend Dr. Ehrman's book or a similar work. The view I have expressed of the existence of "Jesus" the man is, again as I have mentioned, the one held by the majority of mainstream biblical and historical scholars throughout the world and quite frankly, you are ill-equipped to go up against them.

    23. "Also, Pliny the Younger and Tacitus were contemporaries, so don't try to snow me with the telephone game which you cannot prove took place."

      Sounded like you were advocating them being contemporaries to Jesus. Should have clarified that point. And since they were not, by several decades, their testimonies are irrelevant.

    24. Although Pliny the Younger and Tacitus were, as you mentioned, a few decades later, their histories are relevant, in that they are the closest non-biblical, scholarly literature we have.

      No writings, biblical or otherwise, have been found contemporary with "Jesus."

    25. Your claim that jesux was real is extraordinary. So far you offer hearsay.

    26. And so far you offer nothing except your refusal to even read anything scholarly.

    27. Archaeologists have unearthed the tombs of 71 Yeshuas from the period of Jesus' death.
      Which one are you guys talking about?

    28. If you're saying that Yeshua (or Joshua) was a common name of the time, you're right. Also, Christos was a title meaning the anointed one and was not a surname. That's why when referring to the person later known as Jesus Christ, I place the name "Jesus" in quotes.

    29. And here we are back with that claim that marijuana was used during those days: "This holy anointing oil, as described in the original Hebrew version of the recipe in Exodus (30:22-23), contained over six pounds of kaneh-bosem, a substance identified by respected etymologists, linguists, anthropologists, botanists and other researchers as cannabis, extracted into about six quarts of olive oil, along with a variety of other fragrant herbs. The ancient anointed ones were literally drenched in this potent mixture."

    30. What a silly answer.


    31. I agree, thought that myself!

    32. You forgot "Amanita Muscaria" the priests used to drink each others urine after it was ingested, to give themselves a religious epiphany.

    33. Az...Maybe the one from..."Cercle Zetetique"...Jesus Christs grave in Shingo Japan.
      Between lake Towada and Hachmohe city, there are even descendants living there. Just as good as any other. A lot of the big JC's floating around Eh?

    34. No side stepping. Suport your extraordinary claim please.

    35. I make no extraordinary claims. The consensus of scholars is that Lucretius and Manilius existed. Try St. Jerome for the former and E. A. Houseman for the latter.

      Are you putting me on?

    36. Existence does not build credibility. Just because i live doesnt mean ppl can claim im pyscic after i die, make up some stories and it be true.

    37. I'm "pyscic" What does that mean? And speaking of the unintelligible, how about an interpretating of the statement "existence does not build credibility?

  112. @robert
    Wow. Ok first that comment wasnt directed to you sir but now that youve got my attention, what about Morris? His pegleg,or that he was a womanizer that happened to write the first part of the constitution? Oh wait, you want me to dwell on the fact he was a religious man...well somewhat. He would be refered to as a religious moderate these days. Whats the point? I never said religees were bad people or that they werent capable of great things. Whats your point?

    Second, what part of what i said makes you think im pro-any religion in schools or universities? Obviously i need to elaborate for you. Please tell me what it is that led you to that conclusion if you would sir.

    Also i said at worse. Not best.

    1. Either I did not express myself well or you didn't comprehend. I added my comment merely in support of yours regarding the religiousity of our founding fathers. Mr. Morris was one of the most blatant atheists and anticlerical personages among them. He was far from the religious moderate which you depict him as being. As a matter of fact, he was such a blatant atheist and anticleric that Jefferson and Adams were reluctant to send him out as ambassador to, I believe, Norway or perhaps it was Finland, which at that time was considered atheist heaven (so to speak). Also, apparently he was a notorious drunk. So how can you help but like a guy like that?

    2. No he was a religious moderate where are you getting your facts? Morris was "theistic rationalist" or moderate these days because he spoke on a god who interfered and in biblical morals and principles. He was a person who taught freedom of religion, seperation of church etc.. you are wrong to say he was atheist.

    3. I suggest you read what Chris Rodda has to say about him.

    4. Ill give several sorces to reference if youd like that say otherwise.

    5. Depends on how expert these people are--and by that I don't mean whether they agree with me or Ms. Rodda.

  113. @pavo

    No. The teacher has no right to use that forged fraudulant piece of orchestrated poison as a reference in any class. Especially science and /or history. Its noncredible and has no evident backing behind it. Its not a valid documentation of history or anyother topic.

    Only class its good for referencing is in a theology class and perhaps a literature class. Psalms was written beautifully. Still it isnt a valid piece of nonfiction. It belongs in the fiction section next to Jupiter and Icarus.

    It was our first and worst attempt at everything. And should be treated as such. Its a horrible book to read.

    Thomas Payne even remarked after his first part of The Age of Reason was written, he went to finish after he was let out of a French prison for writing it, and returned to America, where he then actually read the book, he remarked on how vile and cruel the book was to mankind.

  114. Fire the halfwit teacher! How can anyone believe in a literal hell when it is written in an allegorical book during a period of such literature..There are more reasons to believe that Jesus never existed than vice-versa (o/w we would have some comprehensive contemporary accounts. We dont. **Watch The God Who Wasn't There) Paul (the founder of Paulianity, I mean Christianity) believed Jesus was in the sky, not a physical being at all! The whole of Christian mythology (Sun worship) is clearly tied to astronomical movements of the sun and stars. And most importantly if the book was written by the 'creator' he might have known the world was not flat, that the heavens were not 'hung, ' and so on. No, these are the books they used to burn and torture millions of innocent people for absurd charges like witchcraft.
    Pursue spirituality (that means explore the inner recesses of the mind to discover it's true nature. (if you look carefully you will find there is no such thing as 'you.' and duality is an illusion. But this takes practice. But the rewards are great. There is no heaven or hell beyond that within. Of this we can be sure.

    1. "Jesus" the man definitely existed--but without the baggage. I suggest Bart Ehrman's latest book, "Did Jesus Exist?" We don't have any comprehensive contemporary accounts probably because he was a celebrity only among few. As evidence of his obscurity during his life, the closest reliable sources, written about a century after his demise (Tacitus, Lucian, Pliny the Younger), only gloss over him.

  115. @pavol

    You have no idea what you are saying. This country was NOT made by Christians. It was founded on the right to believe as you choose as long as it stayed at home. The founders of this country were secular and diest at worse. Thomas Payne wrote one of the greatest pieces of literature ever that clearly refuted the Christian beliefs and even the fact of jesux existing himself. The Age of Reason. I reckommend it. Also Ben Franklyn was Atheist. Thomas Jefferson a diest as well. I suggest you do your research my friend. Read any of Jeffersons or Paynes books concerning religion. I bet you find out how wrong you are.

    Which is shamefull. That Americans are now defending a country full of intolerant religees. The same types of people in which they originally set out to be away from and out from under now finding ourselves totally overwhelmed by intolorence and uneducated misimformed "leaders". Goerbells would come here and be proud.

    1. Don't you mean "deist AT BEST." If you want something to hang over the heads of every religee, read about Gouverneur Morris, one of the main drafters of the Constitution.

  116. Are homosexual teens to be worried about stright teachers?

  117. Who would be worried about a honosexual teacher? That statement shows your own intolerance. A homosexual teaching is fine. They like same sex relations. So what? You imply that a kid would be in danger for this? How so? How is it more or less danger then if it were a stright tescher? Id be more worried if he was a convicted or even accused sex offender. His/her sexual preference is beside the point. Thats out right discrimination. Saying if he was open with it is worse. It compares to all the homosexual religees that cant be themselves in your churches. Or all the nontheist politicians that have to lie about their nonbelief to finf a job. And on and on. You say all created in the likeness of god? Oh except the atheists and honosexuals and the like eh?

    True colors come through.

  118. More muckraking atheistic rubbish. Americans believe their constitution was found on Christian principles and was therefore a Christian nation, tolerant of all other religions. This 'tolerance' of other religions was the necessary loophole through which the freemasonic founding fathers continued to build and support atheistic, marxist evolutionary politics whilst supporting 'Satanic/Luciferian' worship. It is ludicrous to outlaw Christianity or JC for under the rules of 'diversity and equality' the teacher should be free to draw examples from his faith when illustrating a principle or period.

    Sad fact (for the Christians) is that it is all the same g-d if they but realised, as with the Muslims, Buddhists and Hindis. Everyone's been had.

    1. 'Hindis' ? Hindi is a language. You mean Hindus

    2. Do I take this to mean that you're defending an ignoramus such as that teacher?

      Also, to hell with what most Americans believe about their constitution; they're wrong.

  119. I'm heartbroken by this story. The teacher was a decent and lovable guy (despite his obvious lies to save himself) - but he did not see that it is child abuse to teach religion as truth and especially not in school. My heart goes out to these people and their indoctrinated children. My heart also goes out to the student. He was clearly very sorry for the teacher and about what he had done - but he had no choice but to do it. It is a tragical dilemma and he chose to be on the right side. We live under laws and the Constitution is clear as glass. The teacher was wrong and broke the law and we all need to admit that. Our actual religion has nothing to do with it, unless you want a totalitarian theocracy. All sides need to be careful what they wish for.
    Birric Forcella

  120. @Sharron


    1. @eire666:

      Hi, long time no see!

    2. Yes sir. Indeed. I returned as i prophesied. Too bring tidings of great fill that one in.

      Glad to see you are still on here passing that bong'o'truth around bro. Ahh its gotta be my hit and my turn to pack that bad boy.

    3. @robert

      Wasnt trying to under or over anything. Teaching the facts is what their job is. As to what style or method they use is not my concern as long as the ones he/shes teaching
      are getting the knowledge in, understand it, and can apply it. Im no teacher. I resect it and think they are underpaid. Try not to read too far into my comments. I usually say exactly what i mean. I wasnt downplaying the teachers role. Just poiting out the issue i had with the issue.

  121. A teacher has no buisness trying to put his/her own personal beliefs into a classroom at any level.

    Teach the facts and that is all. Let kids and others draw their own opinion on what the implications are. A teacher isnt teaching if the teacher leans to one side of the debate or the other in the classroom.

    1. I agree that the teacher was completely out of line. However, you are oversimplifying the concept of teaching.

  122. There is no such thing as objective teacher - everyone has their own agenda. That's like someone saying they don't judge - everyone judges all of the time. It's amazing how ignorant Americans are - the Bible is the all time number 1 best seller whether you believe it or not. Millions have developed their philosophies from it including is interesting that Judeo-Christianity gets so little respect while most other religions are younger....Jesus was right - the world will hate Him.

    1. Might does not make right nor does age.

    2. Does it count toward sales if millions go around giving it away...leaving it free in hotel nightstand drawers...etc?

      What if Bill Gates went around giving away Darwin's "Origin of Species"? Does that make its science claims more true as distribution numbers mount?

    3. Of course the world will hate him if he ever returns. What would he think of St Peter's and the Vatican? They'd crucify him all over again.

  123. I think the whole American approach to separation of church and state is hypocritical. The nation is pretty much the most religious in the western world. Pointless discussion anyways. In this particular situation it simply comes down to the teacher doing something wrong by expressing his personal views as opposed to offering an objective approach.

    1. And the less so it becomes, the better it will be.

      There is nothing wrong with a teacher expressing his personal views as long as it is made clear that they are such. Also remember, even experts have biases.

  124. i think it was a good move on the part of the creator of the film to include a professor who has been reprimanded for the same reason but for having opposite views.

    its not just about religious people. its about teachers stepping over their boundaries as educators.

    1. What you say is true. But in this case it's a double whammy when you get a teacher crossing the line when he's teaching history and putting his own views across.

  125. Very well edited! Point well-made by just offering opportunity for Senor Paszkiewicz - to put his foot in his mouth!

  126. Fight among yourselves while I rob the world - so say the capitalists. You don't have to be a believer or an atheist to be poor and homeless.

    1. What does this have to do with anything?

    2. I'm simply pointing out that while you spend your time debating this matter there are those who stand to benefit from you becoming fixated on an issue which cannot be resolved in conventional ways.

      "your time" refers to your limited lifespan.
      "debating" means here any type of dialogue in favor or against said concept.
      "benefit" refers to capitalists
      "fixated" means you become entrenched or devoted to any meaningful thought regarding said concept.
      "issue" here meaning specifically religion.
      "conventional ways" meaning logical and structured debate.

    3. I still don't know what you're talking about.

    4. Definitely can't help ya then.

    5. Oh, hell yes! A fellow traveler with Marxist literacy...good one, comrade.

  127. that teacher is delusional. with a pinch of crazy. O_O; why'd he be let loose to teach kids is beyond me!

  128. Slaps O'Reilly on the face for being a bully. The fundamentalist agenda keeps showing it's ugly head. Good on you Matthew for being brave.

  129. So this teacher wants the US to be centered around Judeo-Christian values.... well, whether he likes it or not, Islam is an Abrahamic religion, just as are the other two. He can't claim exclusivity. That's just hypocritical. If such a mess were to be imported into government, we would see a huge problem. When you can't separate religion from politics you get things such as Sharia law within a western government, such as is happening in Britain. Then you get young girls being vaginally sewn, such as is happening in Scotland. Where do you stop? Best not to have any of it and run a purely secular society.

  130. There's no Catch 22. Mr. Paszkiewicz had no business doing what he did. He's the one who started the mess, not his student. As such, he deserves neither sympathy nor respect.

    1. Perhaps...but didn't Matthew LaClair actively pursue this action without an attempt to directly express his objections to the teacher? He didn't act in good faith...but then neither did the history guy.
      I suspect if he had, the teacher might have accommodated his request. Of course, then there would be no grand conflagration concerto for dancing the 1st Amendment Waltz. And we all love that crazy two-step...

    2. Might have doesn't count. I probably would have done the same as Matthew, if not more so,especially if I received no satisfaction from the school board.

    3. There would also have been no change in the teacher's behavior long-term. This was longstanding, purposeful behavior that was so far out of line that it had to be brought to the attention of the teacher's superiors, who obviously know for years what he was doing but refused to do anything until someone took action aggressively. The teacher didn't need an opportunity to stop this behavior. He complained on the same recordings that got him into this mess that he wasn't allowed to do what he was doing. He knew he was way out of line, but year after year he did it anyway. You can't stop someone like that with a personal request.

    4. Do you know if the teacher still has a position within the school?

  131. Bottom line, what has Christianity to do with history? There is no evidence that Christ existed. It's a ruddy religion. The man had NO right to bring religion into school. What has sexual orientation to do with history? Nothing. It's a sexual preference and has nothing to do with the topic at hand. As usual you get the loving Christians manipulating and lying. They really are a shameful bunch.

    1. Shameless you mean.

    2. That too

    3. Wrong. "Jesus" the man most definitely existed. Read Bart Ehrman's latest volume, "Did Jesus Exist." But you're right about the rest.

    4. As I live a long way from a library why don't you enlighten me with some scientific facts that prove that Jesus existed. If you are able to you will certainly be a first. I have read this, but I'm not convinced because the story of Jesus reflects the Egyptian myths. It's too close for comfort. However, do your best, I'm all "ears".

    5. I said as a man and only as a man. In other words, such a person existed without the baggage. For sources, try Lucian, Tacitus and Pliny the Elder (I hesitate to quote Josephus). In addition, there's a fine article on the Historicity of Jesus on Wikipedia.

      P.S. "I have read this." What is "this?"

    6. I did respond to you with a link. Maybe they don't publish links. It's an article in the Huffington Post called Did Jesus Exist written by Bart Ehrman. As I said in my response. I have no problem with the man existing as a man, and maybe even a member of the Essene Sect at Qumran, where I have a problem is accepting all the attachments of divinity, God head, virgin birth etc. All much too close to the Egyptian and Greek Mystery religions which were allegorical and based on metaphor - not literal like the Christian cults.

    7. They don't. And if you noticed, I stated "without the baggage." And no, he was probably not an Essene.

      By the way, what do you think of Dr. Ehrman?

  132. Mathew LaClair is a hero in my opinion....How arrogant (some may even say 'evil') is a teacher who tells an impressionable group of students that they deserve to go to hell if they do not agree with his views.

  133. Not sure who annoyed me more... Probably the kid...and the teacher. The kid was smug, the teacher whined. They were both in the wrong and both petty enough to still be sniping at each other a year later. Grow up, Shake hands and move on. All that money spent for what, could have been sorted in 5 minutes. Daft. I guess the kid has youth as an excuse, he'll grow up :)

    1. No, the teacher should have known better, but, of course, his silly religion superseded his judgment and intellectual honest.

    2. You will go to hell for that statement. You will burn forever in the fires of hell with with the dark lord satan. If you think that the kid is wrong, that is what surely awaits you.

      Does a statement like that illicit an emotional response from you? If it does, you now know how the kid felt.

    3. You're going to turn purple and grow a tail. Only works as a threat if you believe it :)

  134. The teacher is an outright hypocritical liar, claiming he simply couldn't recall exactly what he said that day, when that exact message is one that is preached very consistently by the faithful; the student strikes me as a grandstanding, egotistical little twit, probably a future professional pundit of some sort, who, a little too obviously, prides himself on the 50 I.Q. points advantage he's certain he holds over the vast majority of the rest of humanity; the teacher is blond, 6-feet tall, looks like he ought to be hanging out with Barbie, and everybody loves him, for some reason; the greasy little pale-faced student looks vaguely like Lee Harvey Oswald, and nearly the whole of Kearny, NJ thinks he ought to fry in hell.

    Frankly, the parties on both sides of such an obvious issue annoyed me.

    1. wow, I was with you until your started to spit fire, brimstone and BILE. Why so personal about the young lad? Yeah he's got a bit of growing up to do but hell, so have you by the looks of things. pfffff...

    2. He really seems smart enough to know better already, and apparently it came off more personal than I actually intended any of it. But, hell, if you really want to be an a55hole about it, buddy, by all means, knock yourself out, AS WELL. Seems to me that puts you in the same boat you just threw me in.

  135. i believe in separation of church and state

  136. Separation of Church and State? Ok, provided we start with the separation of Synagogue and State.

    1. ahh you hate gays and Jews eh? Gay Jews must get right up your flared nostrils.

      Why START with the separation of Synagogue and State first? Why? Why not start with church and state, start with the biggest organisations and work our way down?

    2. Why work our way down? Do it all at once.

    3. even better, no discrimination that way.

    4. I agree with you - start with the biggest (i.e. most powerful) organisation and work your way down. That's why I'm all for the separation fo synagogue and state first. You know, the tail that wags the dog in our pernicipous modern times.

      As for hating gays & jews. No, I don't hate gays, they simply disgust me. And Jews? Actually, given the 2,000 year long attack on Christianity (ever read the Talmud?), I think your accusation should be reversed. Why do Jews hate me? But, as I said, it's the tail that wags the dog.

    5. Haha. Such an ignorant piece of scum you are. Rant all you like. Saying the Earth is flat doesn't make it so.

    6. Thank for your eloquent reply!

      I've always been impressed by the elegance of expression of the rainbow nation. Yes, you are quite right about the flat earth. Good point! Good analogy! Same as saying that a sodomite is a man - doesn’t make it so.

  137. 0:38:49 "Now I'm not a scientist"

    Wow I'd never have guessed

    1. Really, I almost did a spit take when he thought he shook Neil Degrasse Tyson's world view.

  138. If creationists have their way then the USA will regress back to the stone age!

  139. Who wants to feel persecuted Jack? We are living in the dark ages if we decide we need persecution. I am a retired nurse, and consider a myself a Christian. If the Islamics do not have to hide or be ashamed of their faith, why should I?
    If homosexuality is ok, why is it not ok to be a follower of Christ? and to admit it? Being a closet Christian is no better than being a closet homosexual. BTW, I think we in this nation are far to anal(no pun intended=) and not enough intellectually appreciative of what we have in the way of freedoms.

    1. The islamics? Don't you mean them foozy woozies or the towel heads? Wow, you attitude is astonishing.

      Look, no-one is saying you can't be a christian and be free to express it but what you can't do is preach your narrow perspective as fact in a public school. It's plain wrong, illegal and (most significantly) the teacher was found to be in the wrong. Deal with it.

      Now imagine if he was demanding that soviet style communism was the only true, fair and proper way to arrange society and if you dont go along with him you deserved the firing squad. Not cool eh?

      Teachers don't get paid for preach their own waffle they get paid to teach the curriculum. If not, they shouldn't be teachers. That's the rules.

  140. The Teacher was in the wrong - caught in the act.
    All he had to do was apologies and end of story.
    he is welcome to his faith - don't shove it down everyone else's throat.

    He can't do that - he makes the kid out to be wrong - that he was attacked.

    The teacher attacked the kids everyday in class - he was the preditor.

    Freedom is what is at stake here. The Far right thinks they are patriots - they are the biggest cause for undermining what it is to be an American.

    The rest of us need to wake up and get involved before we wake up in a totalitarian environment where we are forced to pray someone else's prayers ( one of the many christian sects)

  141. Please PEOPLE??!!! Its 2012!!!
    What god?? Which preaching? What madeup Jesus of Nazarass??!!
    Will you please stop counting (nonmuslims) atheists as christian?
    Will you ever figure it out that it is all fake?
    Que separation of religion and state? RELIGION SHOULD BE DEAD FOR LAST 1800 Years!!!

  142. The teacher had no right to impose his religious beliefs onto his students. Religion is a personal thing.

  143. thanks to the open mindedness of american people. religion will no longer be a part of life. with stark contrast, in india religions are considered heritage and are protected like nothing before. in india criticizing religion is a bad thing. it is so inhuman, barbaric society that it is a shame of india.

  144. and yes,Bill O'Reilly is a buffoon and a talking ape dancing to Rupert Murdoch's tune.A bully and an oafish thug who flaunts his pseudo-Christian holier-than-thouness for the less than astute viewer.He's a wretched insult to intelligence

  145. Some light must be cast on the fact that this debate is being waged in expense of our children's upbringing. As an analogy - it's like an unhappy couple that fights all the time. It creates a generation of extremists that swing one way or another and maintain little or no recognition of balance. Whatever your view is you must agree our children should not suffer our problems, for we exist primarily to ensure their lives are better. Using them as grounds to fight an age-old debate is irresponsible at best.

    Edit: And damned shameful too.

  146. Very interesting..The (Scopes)Monkey trial (which by the way,was actually a strange event grossly exaggerated by media because it made for more sensational Religion/Science news interest).The potential danger of Religion in a secular learning environment is that it claims authority based on nothing more than the devotion to one scripture.It's like having only one cookbook of 3000 year-old recipes

  147. That teacher is in the wrong occupation. If his true passion is spreading the word of God then he should be an evangelist or a preacher or a teacher in a Sunday school. God knows if a Sunday school teacher tried to promote evolution in a church forum the Church would dismiss him or her without batting an eyelash and nobody would have a problem with that. The fact that he thinks it's okay to preach instead of teach purely because the majority of his students share his religious principals is not only ludicrous but is in blatant defiance of the freedom this country was founded on. NO religious group should have sway over the way this country is governed even if it is in the majority. Those that think faith is more important than freedom should realize that they would think very differently if they were not in the majority. If 85% of the country were Muslim or Jew and trying to advocate teaching their beliefs as part of the curriculum in public schools, these people would be ready to go to war to prevent that. But because they're not on that end of the stick they think it's okay to push their beliefs into society's face because it is their hope that it will eventually push out or overwhelm any other faiths and turn this country into the theocracy they think they want. It is BECAUSE of the freedom provided by the separation of church and state that they are ABLE to have their faith the way they want it without threat of being ostracized or denied any rights or opportunities because of their beliefs. It is the zenith of hypocrisy to live in this country under this flag and believe your faith makes you superior to any other. ALL men are created equal. Not all Catholic men. Not all Christian men. Not all white men. Not all heterosexual men but ALL men. I wish those who are so anxious in their zealotry to tear down the walls separating church and state could get a taste of what it's like to live in a society governed by a religion that isn't their own. I think perhaps they might sing a different tune then.

  148. Why do fools immediately label individuals as attention seeking and glory grabbers, when in fact these individuals have the conscience to raise legitimate issues and concerns, about their education?

    David Paszkiewicz is ignoring accessible historical evidence, available to all, which presents details of many religions, guilds and cults before Christianity.

    Before enforcing a religious identity on any person, let them follow the path of all religions, guilds and cults before Christianity, and let them learn about the beliefs, rituals, symbols and historical dramas, which are visible in Christianity today. Unfortunately such an education is a high education with knowledge of plagiarism and a thorn in the side of sheep promoting the religions of the world today. Age does not bring wisdom!

  149. This was epic! One of the best parts were the comments shared about why there is separation of church and state in the first place, and yet it is viewed by some that there is a war on Christianity. Could you imagine what this country would be like if there was forced religious teachings!? I'd suggest you look at the Middle-East or N. Korea if you want to know the answer to that question. Thankfully, this man stood up to the "authority" and made a point that the purpose of the public education system comes not from conjectures, scripture or opinions, but from conveying the facts of life. If this conflicts with your belief system, too bad. Pick another country or school system. It is refreshing to know he saved himself from someone who was trying to "save" him. Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.

    1. Indeed. They say, "if you deny what I'm saying you will perish". WTF? They all (well the fundamentalists mostly) sing the same song, believe me or die. Some even take it upon themselves to murder people deemed to be in violation of the strict religious codes. How dare they take someone else's precious life because they disagree with them.

      This kind of fascism needs to be waged war against if necessary. You have the right to choose your religion, politics etc but you don't have the right to impose it on other whether that's condemning people (like this teacher did) or by execution. Horrendous and unforgivable.

  150. I apologize to all. In an earlier thread I tried to defend how things used to be in this country. I went to public school from 1960 to 1973. In those times we had morning prayer and a pledge of allegiance to the American flag. All school functions started with the same.
    The point I really wanted to make was made by some others posting here. Quoting Jack 1952 " All this student had to do was present the evidence to the proper authorities and ask that the teacher be asked to stop his religious discussions. If the teacher refused then start legal action".
    Thank you Jack 1952

    1. Your welcome, David. I went to school in the same era. I went to a private Protestant primary school for the first eight years where prayer and Bible study was integrated into the curriculum. I have and did not have any problem with that. I then attended a public high school and we had prayer at the beginning and end of each school day. I did and still do have a problem with that. It is an inappropriate forum for any religious activity. However, this student is nothing but a glory grabber, and I do not approve of his grand standing attitude.

  151. This teacher had no right to proselytize in a public school classroom but I find the behavior of the student to be self serving. All this student had to do was present the evidence to the proper authorities and ask that the teacher be asked to stop his religious discussions. If the teacher refused then start legal action. This student gathered his evidence and started his lawsuit knowing full well the furor it could cause. I think that he has demonstrated his penchant for seeking the spotlight with his behavior in the past and that he revels in the attention that he is now receiving. He isn't doing it for idealogical purposes. It is to bolster his massive ego.

    1. Even if he went through the steps, the later outcome with the school board is better for future prevention of the proselytizing. Anything short would just make him keep talking after the student had left or in other classrooms.

    2. That is pure speculation and if he does continue then take any and all steps necessary to force him to stop, including dismissal and legal action. This student is not interested in justice. It was the notoriety that a public platform would give him that was and is his main interest. He had previously tried to get people to notice him by not standing for the flag but it didn't garner the attention he craved. This religious issue suited his agenda perfectly. He could care less about giving the guy a chance to reconsider his actions. How this furor affects the man's family never entered his mind. All he wants is his moment of glory. Justice should be tempered with mercy and understanding, a concept that this young man doesn't understand.

      This teacher's discussion of religion in class did not cause any harm to this individual student. It is probably the best thing that ever happened to him.The student was right to try to stop what this teacher was doing. It is the method he uses and his motives that I don't like. A case of being right and wrong at the same time.`

    3. It very clearly states at the end of the movie 55:45 "The LaClare family never filed a lawsuit".

    4. Yet, the ACLU is involved. This entire matter could have been handled with greater discretion but that was not in this student's best interest. He is the only person who benefits from this action being handled the way it was. It polarized the town, disrupted school activities, and caused people to react in ways they would not normally behave. In effect, a cannon was used when a flyswatter would suffice.

      This teacher was not given the chance to see where he went wrong or the opportunity to speak to his students, privately, in the classroom, why it was inappropriate to speak in the manner he did. This would have been a more effective way for all the students to learn about the constitution and how and why it is necessary. Instead, many of the students will now view the constitution as a weapon against them and not as a tool to protect their beliefs. Not quality education at all.

      This student viewed this incident as an opportunity and could care less whether the his constitutional rights were violated.

    5. The motive is immaterial. It needed to be done regardless.

    6. I agree, something had to done but this was not the way to handle it. What this does is polarize a community and fuels a Christian need to feel persecuted. It draws a line in the sand and forces people to take sides. If the majority decide that this teacher did no wrong it may have consequences that the rest of us do not like...maybe a return to prayer in public schools and allowing teachers to speak out against homosexuality because it is against their beliefs and the Christian majority has now spoken. I don't like what this teacher did. I, also, don't like how this issue has snowballed into a national news story.

    7. so? who was found to be in the right and who was in the wrong? A simple question with a clear answer. So you don't like the way the student and his parents went about things or you think there was some manipulation or entrapment? And yet, the final outcome clearly shows who was right and who was wrong. Get over it.

    8. BTW, your not offering anything more than cynical conjecture and ascribing motives without any evidence. Even IF the young person has made some errors in judgement (we'll allow him a few of those while he grows some more eh?) he was still found to be right. Th eteacher was found to lack good judgement and actually broke the law. GET IT NOW? NO? Rinse and repeat.

    9. Of course, I get it. No need for sarcasm.

      I agree that the teacher broke the law. Something had to be done. As I commented before, justice does not alway have to be punitive or vindictive. It should be tempered with mercy and understanding. The school board also deserves blame for the way it handled things. They knew what this student was about and should not have allowed him the opportunity to use it to seek attention. This entire tempest could have avoided if those involved would have just used some common sense.

      As for the student, he demonstrated his predilection to seek attention by not taking part in the flag ceremonies. He knew this would ruffle feathers and this is exactly what he wanted.

      For those who have religion as their pet peeve, I understand their support of this student but it should not be a knee jerk reaction because religion happens to be his cause of the moment. One should support the student because he has reached that conclusion in a mature and thoughtful manner...not just because he hates religion. That too is bigotry.

    10. it was tempered with mercy and understanding, he kept his job. I agree with you on that point, he didn't need to loose his job but he could (and should) if he continues to go off curriculum. Mercy appeals to atheists also.

      And yep the school board didn't respond properly; also a fair issue the student raised. Ruffle feathers or not it is his right to not stand for the flag, he's making a political/philosophical point regardless who's nose it puts out. Too bad if you don't like it, get over it. That's the whole point of freedom. I'm still sure you don't get it though.

      So what if he's attention seeking? Seriously, big deal. He ran circles around intelligent adults. Good for him. He highlighted weaknesses which then shed light on further weaknesses. He did the school a favour even if (as per your OPINIONS) his motives may have been off. It doesn't make a difference to the correct and proper outcome. He lay a trap maybe? The bait worked eh? There was a problem or two at school, he was right to do what he did and the outcome supports his actions.

      I think I know what your saying (correct me if I'm wrong btw), the student was out to get one up on a religious person. Ok, maybe not the most sporting of motives (assuming that was his motive, you have yet to offer and real or even imagined evidence btw) but AGAIN the outcome is what matters most surely. The ends justify the means? No, but the means weren't so bad.

      I guess I believe that these issues are public issues and therefore should be raised in and aired in public which I why I support the student.

      That's all I have to say, I've bored myself now. Easy.

    11. Jack and others who presume that Matthew did any of this for attention do not know him. I knew he had a deep commitment to justice when he was eight years old, and was marching around our house while "Won't You Join In Our Crusade" from Les Miserables was playing on our sound system. Everything he has done that drew any attention he did because he thought it was right. Usually it cost him.

      Jack is just dead wrong about what could have been done to stop this teacher's behavior. He was and is on an evangelical mission. It is obvious listening to the recordings that this behavior had been going on for years. And in fact we did present evidence to the authorities. They did nothing. Despite this, we never started a lawsuit, only filed a notice of claim to preserve our rights. The fact that this caused a furor is the fault of people who refuse to accept the law regarding separation of church and state in public schools. Comments like Jack's, which place the blame on the person trying to see that the law is obeyed, are maddening. And how he imagines that the evidence could have been gathered after the fact is beyond me.

      On multiple occasions, we offered the responsible parties opportunities to do the right thing quietly and privately. First Matthew held a meeting in the school principal's office to offer the teacher a chance to be truthful; he was not. Then for a month we practically begged the school's administrator's and Board of Education to resolve the matter simply by educating students and faculty about the issues: church-state separation, the science curriculum and the role of education in a free society. Again, they refused. Only after spending $120,000 of taxpayer money did they finally agree to do what we asked them to do in the first place. And all of it could have been done quietly and without cost to Kearny's taxpayers. This is all clearly spelled out in the film. There is simply no basis for anyone saying that we did not try to resolve this quietly. That is not consistent with someone who is merely seeking attention.

      This may not persuade anyone who has decided without knowing the facts - or paying attention to the film - that Matthew was just seeking attention but in point of fact, you do not know him, or his passionate commitment to justice. I do.

    12. Your kid's smarter than the teacher and deserves all the attention he's gotten, whether he sought it or not. I hope that his radio show leads to better and finer things.

    13. Who ever were not convinced that your son's (i suppose) intention were genuine, should see that now. 2 great comments!
      What a pleasure to read from someone who was directly involved.
      thank you

    14. I was discussing this specific issue with a friend when I jokingly commented how the teacher reminded me of my brother. I realized that not only did they share a strong physical resemblance, but they were also public school teachers and devout Christians....but (huge but) my brother would never use the classroom as a platform for his religious views. This may have subconsciously affected my views concerning this incident. Although, I'm not religious in any way, being the oldest of a large family, I have always felt a strong urge to defend my younger siblings no matter what. Without realizing it, I may have been doing that here.

      Sometimes a passionate commitment to justice can be interpreted as, and develop into, a smug sense of moral superiority. Couple this with a feeling of self satisfaction and accomplishment and a person may start to believe that they have a special a way, a type of evangelical fervour. A trap I hope this young man can avoid.

      Good luck to him in the future and lets hope he can keep both feet firmly planted on the ground.

    15. What a refreshing change of pace this note is, Jack: the willingness to look at ourselves and not react defensively. We'll try to live up to the Faith you just expressed in us.

  152. Religion is a choice, and I chose not to participate in religion. My choice doesn't make me right or wrong and my choice doesn't make anyone who is religious right or wrong as well. It doesn't make us any different from each other either, we are after all still, only Human.
    Perhaps this teacher, David Paszkiewicz, should have chosen to teach Religious Studies instead of History, at least we have Religious Studies here in the UK,though I'm not sure if they have the same in the USA. He seems to be better at and get kicks from lecturing and giving talks about religion, I didn't get to see one of his history classes so my point there is kinda invalid but with some merit.
    One thing I'd like to point out is that even if the students asked David Paszkiewicz or any other teacher for that matter, a questions regarding religion during their history lesson, shouldn't he/they have acknowledged the question but politely reminded the student that this is a History lesson and not Sunday school, so in that context their religious question(s) have no relevance regarding this particular history lesson, however, if they really want his opinions or his interpretations of said religious question(s), then they should go see him after the history lesson. Isn't that a reasonable response so that all of this could have been avoided? Or do people not think like that anymore?
    I suppose like the saying goes, hindsight is 20/20 vision. :P

    1. Being as evangelist as the teacher was, I'm sure he'd seize every opportunity to insert god into the discussion, whether it be the subject material or a student's question. I'm not going to go all conspiratorial but maybe even some of his club members were in the class and asked religious questions in order to bring it up. It (Religion), just as you said, should not be answered in a history or science class because it would be irrelevant. He should be quoting historical documents and people, not the bible.

    2. Religious pumped minds always try to weasel the teachings of faith every chance they get to prove themselves as good people, and "sin" the next minute just like the rest of us.

  153. The 1st Amendment is there to protect the rights of the minority from the majority.

  154. I am a 59 year old Catholic. Before College, I went to Catholic school from 1958 to 1970. Never once did I witness a reference to religion outside the Religion class.

    In Science classes, Evolution was taught, in Religion classes, Creationism was taught (students, teachers, staff, everybody was catholic then). I once asked a teacher of Religion if Evolution was an atheist belief. This old Jesuit Brother replied, absolutely not! And continued to tell me that I was intellectually 'infantile' and 'non rigorous' if I really thought that way. He said that science is not a belief system and that religion is not based on empirical evidence nor independent repeatable experiments, religion is based on Faith.

    Today, not only do I think that teaching religious dogma in an History class is intellectually dishonest (not paid by public funding to do this!) I think it is intellectually weak to think Darwinism is the faith of the Atheist and that Creationism is the Science of the faithful.

    Creationism does not belong in Public school (except in religious study classes) no more than Darwinism belongs in Sunday school. I think that Americans should worry about intellectual clarity in their school system and not tolerate any unprofessional behaviour from their teachers no matter how popular or 'religiously self righteous' they are. RL.

    1. You sir - I don't know how to thank you enough for your kind words!!

      Signed as a frim agnostic :))

    2. What do you know, a likeable Catholic. Probably it's the Jesuit training.

      But how can you ask Americans to worry about intellectual clarity in their school system when most of them haven't the vagues idea what either word means, much less the combination of the two?

    3. Thank you -robertfallen1- for the compliment (I think?). In my day Jesuit teachers (I am generalizing) did not care if you got the right answer to a question or not. They were very interested in 'how' you came up with the answer. Anyone speaking up was tested with a bombardment of skeptic questions and commentaries.

      With this method (Socratic teaching and revision) one learned to shut up and listen before expressing half baked ideas. One learned to be accountable for one's thought processes. What you said in class was important enough to warrant serious attention and investigation.

      To answer your question about intellectual clarity: It is simply not taught at a young age anymore. You can blame school boards, government, parents but American students start off just as smart as any in the world, and it is certainly not their fault if first grade is more 'day care like' than the old style discipline training facility. Maybe Americans children need something in the middle? RL.

    4. Please take it for a compliment. Your description of education in the Jesuit schools redounds to the credit of both the Jesuits and their students. Every Jesuit-trained Catholic I have met has proved to be the respectable exception rather than the despiccable rule.

      While what you say about education is true, I also blame the popular culture. It's troglodytic from one end to the other--and the same for the role models who speak and act like pigs.

  155. This Event unfolded like this because in the eyes of the Government teachers only purpose is to keep the flow of the system.

    And in order to not bring attention to itself there willing to throw any One individual under the buss in order to Create a distraction.

    Similar to how Politicians talk about irrelevant subjects.

    It makes sense if you look back in American History and see how our government sees anything that challenges them as a Threat.

    They even stopped Democracy in other countries because then we would not have the unstable country to take advantage of.

    I love seeing the Past and the Present Unfold :D

  156. The answer is clear. All public school systems need to fire every teacher that has any religious belief. While your at it, fire the police, firemen, judges, and all public servants who have faith. Sound CRAZY to you? Of course it is. It is also crazy to ask all the faithful to leave their faith in the car because it is illegal to express it in a public facility. How do you do that?

    This is an emotionally immature young man that has felt he is a "loser" all of his life and found a way to get attention. How sad the parents and lawyers choose to support Matthew's cry for attention. He says his lack of honoring the flag by not standing does not mean his is not patriotic. It IS unpatriotic. Matthew was saying "Hey look at me...I need attention!".

    14% of the worlds population is non-religious. 86% have religion so I ask you which is the majority? The phrase "separation of church and state" itself does not appear in the United States Constitution. The First Amendment states that "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof." Seek balance with morals and laws.

    1. Have any religious belief that you want however when it comes to a profession such as law enforcement, teaching, firefighters etc... leave your bible at home. How would you feel as a child raised in a muslim household being told that youll burn in hell without accepting christ. A teacher has no right to preach to my children about their personal beliefs. Keep religion at home or in your church.

    2. @David
      the separation of church and state is the law. where/how it came to be is irrelevant. your choices are:
      1 obey the law
      2 break the law (be a criminal)
      3 change the law (while obeying it in the intern)
      4 don't work for the government
      so what is your choice? would you feel the same if the teacher was a satanist, Scientologist, fundamentalist Muslim .polygamist believed in animal sacrifice and so on? your stat of 86% is misleading. how many of those are religious in name only (non practicing) and again that 86% is made up of all faiths so you have no problem with any belief of the teacher being taught to the child? lastly the United States was formed mostly by people fleeing the oppression of the majority in their country of origin. are you suggesting that we should throw that away?

    3. I find it interesting that the student is more aware of reality then the teacher. Go live in iran if you want to live in a religious state. All monotheistic religions worship the same deity anyways. Its just a matter on how you interpret long outdated (and rewritten many times over) scriptures written by people who were ancient at age 30, living in mud huts, walking around with open soars with nothing to eat, trying to explain why life was so awful. Oh gee, it must be some god testing us... This was before refrigeration, internet, the combustion engine, aphex twin, plastics, football, modern medicine, the rest of the universe past neptune, electricity, taco nights, the super bowl, space exploration, lsd, the LHC, bill hicks, a round earth, and common sense, of course. Mr. Paszkiewicz should teach at a christian school if he wants to teach religion. That is why there are private schools, so children can be brought up in the way their parents want them to be. Its brainwashing nonsense, and i feel sorry for the children who have to be put through it, but thats not my decision. But in this case, this man should be fired. And most of the 86% (I don't know how u pulled out that statistic, id like to know who asked every person on the planet) live in oppressive societies and communities where children have no chance of getting away from the dogma that is smashed into their brain from day 1 until they become adults. It's all they know, so thats what they teach their children and so on ad nausea.. The only "loser" here is the teacher trying to press his insane views on children. And you can have morals without worshiping an invisible deity, you silly goose.

    4. "All public school systems need to fire every teacher that has any religious belief."

      only if they are teaching it to others.

      "While your at it, fire the police, firemen, judges, and all public servants who have faith."

      certainly if their beliefs are influencing their decisions.

      "It is also crazy to ask all the faithful to leave their faith in the car because it is illegal to express it in a public facility. How do you do that?"

      so like others have asked you, would you care if this person was a satanist? or a muslim? or what about if they were homosexual?

      "This is an emotionally immature young man that has felt he is a "loser" all of his life and found a way to get attention."

      how do you know he has felt a loser all his life?

      " He says his lack of honoring the flag by not standing does not mean his is not patriotic. It IS unpatriotic."

      what IS patriotism and how was not standing for the flag a sign of a lack of patriotism?

      "14% of the worlds population is non-religious. 86% have religion so I ask you which is the majority?"

      so what?? that doesnt make it right? truly an adult knows that....

    5. i'm not sure i agree with your analogous comparison about homosexuality, epicurus. i'm gay, and i am social worker (in some ways, kind of like a teacher). I discuss neither my sexuality, nor any of my views related to homosexuality with my clients.

      i also refrain from discussing my political perspectives, and religious views. if a client wishes to discuss her's or his, i will validate their views, but i do not involve my own. it is otherwise inappropriate.

    6. exactly. anyone should be able to teach any position as long as their personal opinions dont get in the way.

      i completely agree with you.

    7. But suppose the teacher states explicitly that they are his personal views? Or suppose the teacher states that the book teaches one thing, but he believes another?

    8. that is not their job. and when it comes to religion it is questionably moral.

    9. Suppose a teacher is teaching Civil War history and the textbook says that the war was fought primarily over slavery; however, being somewhat conversant with the subject, he knows that this is a distortion, that states' rights was the bigger issue. Should he blithely teach what the textbook says although he knows that it is wrong or indicate that the textbook says one thing, but that his research points to something else?

      Before you answer, please recall that certain states have laws against teachers knowingly teaching something they know is wrong.

    10. in the case of history it ought to be as accurate as possible. that is that.

    11. I think that applies to any subject. But you haven't answered my question.

    12. the teacher is not paid to talk to kids about his/her personal views.

      he could do so in a different setting. not during class where he is being paid to teach facts.

    13. You still have not answered my question which is if a teacher knows that something contained in a textbook (e.g., a history textbook) is either untrue, inaccurate or expresses a view which goes contrary to that expressed by noted and respected experts in the field, does he blithely teach the error or indicate that although the book says one thing, the facts (or noted experts) say another?

      In other words, is the teacher merely a rubber stamp for the school system's administration or does he have some discretion?

      Note, this has nothing to do wiith religious doctrine which obviously has no place in the classroom unless taught academically.

    14. if a text book claims something that is false then it is the teachers job to correct that.

    15. I assume you mean in front of the class.

    16. yes.

    17. Being a gay man, I find being grouped with satanists to be completely offensive, inappropriate and bigoted but most of all, completely ludicrous. If that's the category you think gay people belong in I'm guessing you've never known any. I don't think it's fair to put Muslims in there either. Do you automatically categorize anything different from yourself as the work of the Devil or Evil incarnate? Is there even the slightest chance that you might see that judging and automatically condemning entire categories of God's children isn't very Christlike? "Judge not lest ye be judged yourself". Everyone knows that one. Even Atheists and Devil worshippers know that one. So why does it seem like that's the one cardinal rule of God's that is easiest for most Christians to ignore?

    18. I hardly think Epicurus grouped gays and satamist together with Muslims in any specific way. Just because they all appear in the same sentence doesn't mean he is saying one is equivalant to the other. His point was that all of these groups share a collective belief or participate in some collective activity, just like christians do. The difference is that society has predominantly rejected these groups and their beliefs and would waste no time or debate about stopping any teacher from promoting them.

    19. @vertigokid
      i agree with Waldo. i have been visiting this site for years now and had the pleasure to interact with Epicurus on many occasions. in my opinion he is no more anti homosexual than he is anti science. i believe his post was meant to judge the tolerance of the original poster than to show any lack of tolerance on his part.

    20. "Being a gay man, I find being grouped with satanists to be completely offensive, inappropriate and bigoted but most of all, completely ludicrous."

      I understand what you are saying because there is a huge difference. however the point here is about the person holding a view that ought not be taught because it is not part of the curriculum.

      however i feel YOU have a bigoted inappropriate and completely offensive view of satanists.

      "Do you automatically categorize anything different from yourself as the work of the Devil or Evil incarnate?"

      you clearly missed my point and dont know me.

      you spoke way too soon.

    21. "gay man". I used to think "Politically Correct" was the biggest oxymoron I've ever heard, but "gay man" takes the cake.


    22. it wasnt me who said gay man. it was the guy i was quoting.

    23. I didn't say it was you. Why don't you read what other say/write?

    24. what the hell r u on about?

    25. Contrary to the stereotype you seem to embrace about gay men, oompaul, you would be surprised to find that gay men come in every form from the butchest of cops and construction workers to the most flamboyant of drag queens and female impersonators and all shades of normal inbetween. The reality is gay people are pretty much the only minority you can't automatically pick out of a crowd. Anyone could be gay. You really can never tell. Sure there are a lot who are undeniably what they are but there are twice as many who look like the boy next door or your cousin or your teacher. They look like personal trainers and pilots, doctors and nurses, cops and firemen, fishermen and athletes. Very few of us are limp wristed florists or hairdressers although we might have those particular markets cornered. lol

    26. Thank you for your kind, though somewhat confused (not to mention, confusing), answer.

      In your La-La land of post-modern appearances, anyone can be anything they want to be - even sodomites can think of themselves as 'men'! Unfortunately, in the real world, men are heterosexual, whether they have limp wrists or not, and gays, whether they are construction workers or not, are not men. If heterosexuality is not the specific distinguishing characteristic that identifies a man as a man, then what, pray tell, is? (I’m going to enjoy this!)

      I know, I know, I know. That a “man” is, by definition, heterosexual, is one of those awful fascist 'hate facts' that the tolerant rainbow zombies should be totally intolerant of, and, of course, I am obviously a homophobe, even though I'm not sure what I'm supposed to be afraid of. That some queen will break into my house at midnight and rearrange the furniture in my kitchen? But, if it gives you meaning, call me a homophobe if you want to.

      I repeat. Just like the terms “vegetarian meatball”, “true lies” (you should know about that!), “diversity is strength” (one of my own personal favourites), “government intelligence”, “gay marriage” and “big details”, the term "gay man" is an oxymoron - makes about as much sense as a “square circle”!

    27. "That a “man” is, by definition, heterosexual"- lol Really? By whose definition? Is that all it takes to be a man? The correct sexual orientation? I thought all you needed was male genitalia. But if we're talking about a man in a deeper sense it takes much, much more than just the right orientation and I think most would agree. Some examples of things a real man has? Ok, let's see...experience, responsibility, ambition, strength, honor...These things define a real man. Sexual orientation has nothing to do with it. I've known plenty hetero "men" who hardly qualified to be called that because they had none of the traits I just mentioned. Somebody programmed you to think in such simplistic terms, man. Someone who had the same thing programmed into them.

    28. Why are you so confused?

      But, thank you so much for your answer and insight into my failed programming! OK, let’s see if I get this. A woman (I mean a person with a functioning vagina) with "experience, responsibility, ambition, strength, honor" should really be considered a "real man"? Yea, right.

      You say that you thought that "all you needed was male genitalia" to be a man. Then you say that "I've known plenty hetero "men" (I assume you mean persons with male genitalia) who hardly qualified to be called that because they had none of the traits" (i.e. "experience, responsibility, ambition, strength, honor"). Which is it? Male genitalia, or "experience, responsibility, ambition, strength, honor"? Btw. for the record, I don’t consider sodomy as ‘honor’, or 'responsible' (eg. NAMBLA and STD statistics). I agree with Dante who placed sodomites and usurers at the lowest circle in his Inferno - same thing, sterile reproduction if you’ll excuse the oxymoron. But when talking about homosexuality it’s practically impossible to avoid oxymorons, as the very heart of homosexuality is an oxymoron - it wants to be what it is not and it is not what is wants to be. Apparently homosexuality was withdrawn from the official list of psycho-pathologies in the 70's. Go figure! Hey, but we’re making progress. It would seem that they are now pushing to make nationalism a disease!

      So, you still haven’t given me the specific defining characteristic of being a “man”. Is it, as you ‘simplistically’ (your term) imply a mere biological arrangement? Is it a person, regardless of biology who displays "experience, responsibility, ambition, strength, honor"? I told you I was going to enjoy this.

      As for your psycho-babble about programming, you'll forgive me if I don't comment.

    29. heterosexuality does not make one a MAN.

      just because you say it doesnt make it so.

      there are many homosexuals out there much more manly than you.

      your problem is you are heavily indoctrinated by your religion. its a shame. no one should waste their time conversing with someone as ignorant as you.

      a man is anyone that holds an XY chromosome if you want to be biological about it,

    30. Golly, you are exited, aren’t you? But I guess it fits the typology!

      In spite of your somewhat hysterical comment, not to mention the ad hominems and predictable psycho-babble about religion (huh?), I do wish to thank you for your answer. I must confess that I am somewhat perplexed since you wrote, “no one should waste their time conversing with someone as ignorant as you.” And yet, you did converse. In two minds are you? In this regard, see my earlier comments, and in this note, about the existential oxymoron.

      Being a man derives from a cluster of attributes and I won’t even say that being heterosexually active is necessarily one of them. I would be hard pressed, for example to consider a monk, freely living in complete sexual abstinence as “not a man”. Yet, there are certain attributes which most definitely NEGATE the possibility of a person being a man. Let me explain with an analogy. Water (H2O) is a compound made up of 2 hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom, ok? Now, if I were to say that helium is an essential element in the H2O compound, you would, quite rightly, say, what you’ve got is no longer water - you might not know what it is, but it sure ain’t water. In other words, though (to put it mildly) the concept “man” may be a tad more complicated than that of water (and I would agree with you about the chromosomes - but these are necessary, but not sufficient conditions), one can nevertheless indicate certain attributes which, if present, NEGATE the possibility of the person in question being a man. For example, if the person in question practices sodomy (both the necessary and sufficient condition for being homosexual), then that would be like the helium atom in the compound H20. It ain’t water no more. So, why not call it what it is? Same with homosexuality - why not call it what is, instead of trying to “be a man”? Gays are not men and they are not women. I repeat, gays are living oxymorons - they are what they don’t want to be, and they are not what they want to be. I, personally, consider that a form of madness and my suspicions are confirmed by research:

      1. Higher rates of major depression, generalized anxiety disorder and substance use or dependence in lesbian and gay youth.
      2. Higher rates of recurrent major depression among gay men.
      3. Higher rates of anxiety, mood and substance use disorders, and suicidal thoughts among people ages 15 to 54 with same-sex partners.
      4. Higher use of mental health services in men and women reporting same-sex partners.

      As far as your comment about my religion is concerned, let’s ignore it, shall we? Total red herring and I certainly won’t rise to that silly bait, except to say that, seen religiously, homosexuality is a rebellion against the Logos itself. As the Latins knew, “Quem deus vult perdere, dementat prius”.

    31. I notice that you don't give the source for your figures which immediately makes them suspect--and I don't think Epicurus or any one should ignore your religion which seems to supersede all independent judgment--the Logos, what a joke.

    32. Give the source? This is hardly a scientific convention. All you have to do is go on the net and look up the statistics yourself. It's not rocket science to do that, you know!

      Logos is not a religion, you buffoon! It's the bases of Platonic philosophy, and hence of all western philosophy until the post-modernist found the key to undo 2,000 years of culture. But, you wouldn't know this, would you?

      I've said what I wanted to say and I'm not going to repeat myself in further 'dialogue'. Homosexuality is an existential neurosis in which a person doesn't want to be what he is and cannot be what he wants to be. It’s not a biological defect and it’s not a moral issue - it’s a rebellion against Logos and as such, a form of madness.

    33. You made these claims; it's up to you to back them up. If you can't, then you've either lied or distorted, probably the former.

      So what if the Logos has been around for 2,000 years? That doesn't make it right or even intellectually or socially acceptable. So, so much for your inane argument against homosexuality and by the way, all western philosophy does not stem from Plato. And yes, I would know this and so would Epicurus, because we're both better educated than you are.

    34. Hmmm echo?

    35. Yea, right, so what if people have claimed that 2 + 2 = 4 for thousands of years? That doesn't make it right. And the law of non-contradiction? Don't like it!

      Hey, you won't be offended if I don't buy into your liberal nonsense, would you? For people like you, reality is the state of non-compliance to your La La Land vision of what is and what is not real. Hence you inhabit the Alice in Wonderland world of oxymorons. I said before, those whom the gods would kill they first make mad.

      As far as all of western philosophy stemming from Plato, well, actually, Whitehead said it did, and no one (apart from the brain robertallen) has ever disagreed.

    36. Now, you've revealed your ignorance of basic mathematics. On a system of 4's, 2+2=0. People have also believed in witches or such for more than 2,000 years. That doesn't make it right.

      Your claim of what Whitehead said about Plato seems to be from "Process of Reality." Had you provided the entire quote, it would have been obvious how you've mangled its meaning to suit your agenda.

      In short, you're an offensive, little cheat.

    37. Talking to you is like being a guest at the Mad Hatter's tea party. Fun for a while, but then it gets a tad tedious. Take care now.

    38. And reading your posts is like listening to Donald Duck trying to discuss quantum mechanics, amusingly ignorant, but pathetically uncurable.

    39. "I must confess that I am somewhat perplexed since you wrote, “no one should waste their time conversing with someone as ignorant as you.” And yet, you did converse."

      someone has to waste their time to warn others.

      what you are describing is your culturally based views on what a MAN is. one could also say someone is not a man if they do not take care of their children....once again just arbitrary culturally based rules.

      "1. Higher rates of major depression, generalized anxiety disorder and substance use or dependence in lesbian and gay youth."

      due to people like you.

      "2. Higher rates of recurrent major depression among gay men."

      due to people like you.

      "3. Higher rates of anxiety, mood and substance use disorders, and suicidal thoughts among people ages 15 to 54 with same-sex partners."

      due to people like you.

      "4. Higher use of mental health services in men and women reporting same-sex partners."

      due to people like YOU

      your religion is not a red herring it is the sole cause of your illogical ramblings here.

      nothing you have said made sense. it only framed more obviously your ignorance.

      that H2O example was atrocious.

    40. Ep
      Hey, how goes it btw, long time no talk.

      I was hoping that youd take that route. I couldnt agree more. I was just waiting for you to reply since the statement was thrown your way.

      Also i havent seen the the studies on this, but it is self-evident that the cause for these mental problems,assuming that is what the studies show, is the damage done to the pysche from years of having to hide,lie,and be victum to all the differant kinds of abuse handed out by society. Not to mention how much self inflicted damage.

      Even as religion teach made in gods likeness,apparently not if your gay,or nonbeliever,or of a differant philosophical background. Religion is the only sect that actually deems ones sexual oriantation or which position you do it in wrong, or immoral or against good principle. Nowhere else is this an issue. Another example would be when a buddhist, an athiest, or anyone of non abrahamic religious sect , has to lie and act as if they too share the ideas of their peers, just to get a job, or house etc.. its all because of the same issue. Religion is evil. It poisons society period.

    41. I really am curious to know why homosexuals are so keen to be considered 'men'. Why is this such an issue to you? Heterosexual men never even give the issue a second thought, but, judging from your passion, you seem positively obsessed with being 'a man'. Got doubts? Of course you have. And I understand that. The Artistotelian law on non-contradiction states quite clearly that a thing cannot be both A and B at the same time - you cannot be ‘a man’ and ‘not a man’ at the same time (which is exactly what a homosexual tries to be).

      In conclusion, let me repeat what I said to robertallent in a previous comment.

      I've said what I wanted to say and I'm not going to repeat myself in further 'dialogue'. Homosexuality is an existential neurosis in which a person doesn't want to be what he is and cannot be what he wants to be. It’s not a biological defect and it’s not a moral issue - it’s a rebellion against Logos and as such, a form of madness.

    42. "Heterosexual men never even give the issue a second thought . . . " Have you ever heard the word "macho?"

      Did it ever occur to you that when Aristotle employed his man-not a man paradigm, he was simply using the word man as a concrete example and that he could have just as soon used the word book? Are you aware of the developments in logic occurring after Aristotle, such as those of Leibnitz, Kant and Russell? Is the concept of dialetheism too modern for your inane religious beliefs? One way or the other applying Aristotle's Law of Non-Contradiction to homosexuals is specious nonsense.

    43. "I really am curious to know why homosexuals are so keen to be considered 'men'. Why is this such an issue to you?"

      because just having sex with other men shouldnt negate you from manhood. if you want to make an arbitrary standard for what a man is go nuts but realize it is not universal.

      "Heterosexual men never even give the issue a second thought, but, judging from your passion, you seem positively obsessed with being 'a man'. Got doubts? "

      All that is needed for the forces of evil to succeed is for enough good men to remain silent. I am a good man who will stand up for the rights of others when i see they are CLEARLY being oppressed.

      "you cannot be ‘a man’ and ‘not a man’ at the same time (which is exactly what a homosexual tries to be)."

      this is not true. once again there are many men out there who take it and give it in the a** who are more manly than both of us.

      "Homosexuality is an existential neurosis in which a person doesn't want to be what he is and cannot be what he wants to be."

      YOU HAVE NO GROUNDS TO BASE THAT ON. in fact making a person who is homosexual not be homosexual would create what you call an existential angst.

      "it’s a rebellion against Logos and as such, a form of madness."

      clearly you dont know what madness is and you need to know that madness has NOTHING to do with "logos"

    44. I've had enough of this 'dialogue'. You are a walking cliché and seem to have serious trouble understading the points I make.

    45. Excuse me, but you're the one with the shoe on the wrong hoof. I'm sure that I can speak for Epicurus in saying that we've both heard all of your arguments before ad nauseum and that they are so naive, simplistic, uneducated and ill-informed as to render comprehension an unconscious effort.

    46. the points you make dont make sense. no one understands the points you make because you use false analogies.

      now if you said GAY MAN is an oxymoron like LOGICAL RELIGION i would have understood what you mean................

    47. You must be more sympathetic. oompaul doesn't understand oxymorons any more than he does philosophy or anything else for that matter. So his world is filled with the new and unnameable.

    48. @robertallen1

      Oh my Godsux!

      If only Philosophy were taught instead of religion? Speaking of which I have left 2 posts for you at “The Great Philosophers: An introduction Western Philosophy.” Your opinion would be appreciated.

    49. Or perhaps philosophy of religion.

      As I believe I informed you--I think it was almost a year ago--I found this series of documentaries boring, boring, boring. I also believe that I expressed my indifference as to the way in which philosophers define abstract qualities such as bravery, goodness, evil which take their normativeness from context--even academically, I find such considerations tedious; however, I realize that many respected academics do not.

      You asked for my opinion, but about what? The only definition indication in this regard seems to be your question about Grabbe which I would appreciate if you would repeat.

    50. @robertallen1

      Yes as separate subjects, perhaps along with “The History of Philosophy” lol

      ”As I believe I informed you—“
      Yes, I remember all that. YOU proposed a deal. I accepted. I hope you remember that I relieved you of your obligation when you first expressed your displeasure at the subject. You did however go on to say this.

      ”I am still waiting to hear your anecdote, for a good (or even not so good) anecdote can drive a point home more forcefully than a philosophic dissertation.”

      I am merely fulfilling my obligation. It’s good policy when dealing with the Devil himself.
      I wanted your opinion of the radio broadcast I mentioned.

      As for the Grabbe question. I asked why does the Devil tell his son? to study Philosophy? And why did you exclaim so much about it. If you reply, please post in the Philosophy Dept. Cheers.

    51. Look, I tried to get into a discussion with you but was met with a barrage ad hominem attacks, red herring after red herring and Mad Hatter logic. You obviously have limited reasoning abilities and, accordingly, you are wasting my time. Yet, you have learned the deconstructive “gay discourse” very well, which is to say, the law of non-contradiction applies to your adversaries, while you are exonerated from it! You remind me of Orwell’s newspeak in 1984, and I quote,

      “To know and not to know, to be conscious of complete truthfulness while telling carefully constructed lies, to hold simultaneously two opinions which cancelled out, knowing them to be contradictory and believing in both of them, to use logic against logic, to repudiate morality while laying claim to it, to believe that democracy was impossible and that the Party was the guardian of democracy, to forget, whatever it was necessary to forget, then to draw it back into memory again at the moment when it was needed, and then promptly to forget it again, and above all, to apply the same process to the process itself — that was the ultimate subtlety; consciously to induce unconsciousness, and then, once again, to become unconscious of the act of hypnosis you had just performed.”

      Saying that a sodomite is a man is newspeak and on the same level as “war is peace”. Homosexuals are trying to impose their pathological La La Land ontology on the rest of us, turning notions like masculinity, femininity and marriage into meaningless contradictions, or, to stay on theme, oxymorons, and no one is supposed to notice.

      "When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean -- neither more nor less."
      "The question is," said Alice, "whether you can make words mean so many different things."
      "The question is," said Humpty Dumpty, "which is to be master - - that's all."

      Now, I’m sorry to have to say this, but I have no intention of answering you. If you really feel you need to have the last word, go for it. As for me.

      I’m outa here.

    52. It would be so nice if by "I'm outa here" you meant that you're off to the library to read up on all the subjects you know nothing about.

    53. OK, so you've read my answer to Epicurus as well. Good. Same goes for you. Your silly little one-upmanship comments, and hysterical personal attacks (part of the 'gay way' I guess) are really quite tedious - not the sort of thing men relate to (but you won't know that, will you?).

      Anyway, you too, if you feel the need (and you probably do, given your obsession with me) may have the last word.

    54. Your ability to guess is on a par with your ability to learn.

      By the way, how do you know so much about what men relate to? Has it anything to do with the company you keep?

    55. how come a man cant be a sodomite? where is the universal rule that states that?

      you are out of here because you are not making any sense.

      you type a lot but i dont think a single person here understand what you are saying other than you think homosexuality is wrong.

    56. I've been pondering your remarks and I've decided that the next time I see the gay couple next door, I'm going to tell them that the bad news is that their conduct is wrong because it goes against Aristotle's Law on Non-Contradiction and the good news is that they are merely going through an existential neurosis from which they have a good chance of recovering.

    57. after copy pasting your "research" i read the paper that it comes from. lets see what else it says.

      The data contradict previous findings that there are no significant differences in the mental health of heterosexuals and LGB people, adds Cochran, who notes she is concerned that these findings may give ammunition to people who want to falsely promulgate the argument that gay people are by nature mentally ill.
      For one thing, she says, "these are certainly not levels of morbidity consistent with models that say homosexuality is inherently pathological." For another, the data simply don't prove either pro- or anti-gay arguments on the subject, whether it's that the inherent biology of homosexuality causes mental illness or that social stigma provokes mental illness in LGB people, she says.

      In a study that examines possible root causes of mental disorders in LGB people, Cochran and psychologist Vickie M. Mays, PhD, of the University of California, Los Angeles, explored whether ongoing discrimination fuels anxiety, depression and other stress-related mental health problems among LGB people. The authors found strong evidence of a relationship between the two.
      Again using data from one of the large public health surveys, the team compared how 74 LGB and 2,844 heterosexual respondents rated lifetime and daily experiences with discrimination.
      They looked at particular instances of discrimination, such as not being hired for a job or being denied a bank loan, as well as feelings of perceived discrimination, such as the sense that people treated them with less respect. The team also assessed rates of mental health disorders in both groups.
      LGB respondents reported higher rates of perceived discrimination than heterosexuals in every category related to discrimination, the team found.
      While the findings do not prove that discrimination causes mental health problems, they take a step toward demonstrating that the social stigma felt by LGB people has important mental health consequences. That again points to the need for tailored mental health treatment, in particular therapy that includes ongoing discussion of how discriminatory experiences may affect stress levels, they note.

      wow. imagine if everyone was gullible enough to just take you at your word.....i win.

    58. The problem is that so many people take bunkshooters such as Kent Hovind, Jerry Falwell, Ray Comfort and oompaul at their word

    59. Hi Mr A, what's a bunkshooter? Opposite of a debunker? :)

    60. If you can use words chiefly British, I can use words chiefly American. A bunkshooter is a word applied by Carl Sandburg to a hellfire and brimstone preacher. Bunk is short for bunkum or bunkcombe, a county in North Carolina, known for its guess what? I think by now you get the meaning.

    61. I get it. Chiefly British words? But we both speak chiefly English Mr A, sorry to all if I'm confusing :)

    62. No apology necessary. You're right; we both speak chiefly English, but certain words or phrases such as "knock up" and "bloody" have different meanings in either country and others never seemed to have crossed the Atlantic.

    63. Do ask if I ever use any you don't know, always happy to spread the gibberish :)

    64. I can glean the meaning from the context, but if you would like me to point them out to you, I will.

    65. No Thankyou, if it would be so easy there must be loads of them. Sweet dreams :)

    66. Perhaps you should read the paper again as well as my comments. Facts are one thing (i.e. statistics) while Politically correct interpretations (i.e. discrimination) another. Gays have bought into the 'victimization' theme hook line and sinker. You need to prove the correlation, not simply state it.

    67. "While the findings do not prove that discrimination causes mental health problems, they take a step toward demonstrating that the social stigma felt by LGB people has important health consequences." That's all the correlation Epicurus has to do.

      On the other hand, you have distorted not only the article but Epicurus' comments on it--and I, for one, will not leave your religion out of it because that's obviously what drives you to do it. The logos--what a joke.

    68. "Perhaps you should read the paper again as well as my comments. Facts are one thing (i.e. statistics) while Politically correct interpretations (i.e. discrimination) another. "

      exactly what someone not trained properly in reading scientific papers would say.

      exactly what is warned against in every first year science based class.

    69. Ah my apologies to you Epicurus. I didn't look deep enough into what you were trying to convey. The mistake was mine but one I think a lot of gay people might make at a glance so perhaps not the best grouping of words. All too often I am reminded that the gay community still has a long way to go when I read comments on any given page. I live in a very modern, liberal city and often take for granted that prejudices, fear and hatred of gays is still very much alive in this country and all too often, religion is the fuel being poured on this fire by the church. It would be interesting to see how homosexuality would be viewed in our society if those select passages in the bible didn't exist since it seems to be the only justification these people have to explain their hatred. Without it I think attitudes might be a lot different.

    70. right on. i completely agree with everything you said here.

    71. yup

    72. I think it's a little obvious this teacher wasn't being put through this because of his faith, but because he was trying to sell his faith to young minds in an inappropriate setting. If he wants to preach he should go be a preacher, not a teacher. Trying to indoctrinate his beliefs in a public school system is beyond reprehensible. Would you want some atheist teaching evolution in your sunday school class?

    73. I would not like someone teaching evolution in Sunday school but I would approach this person, in private, and ask him to stop. I would not go to the press and turn it into a media event. If the teacher refused to stop his inappropriate behavior then steps must be taken that leads to his dismissal. It would be up to the teacher to turn into a media event and he would only do so if he thought it suited his personal agenda.

      I didn't mean to speak for David but I also don't like to see this teacher become the poster boy for the Christian right because a student wants to see his name in the paper.

    74. you are missing the all important points. Sunday school may not be bound by the same rules as public schools. The rules are clear about teaching religion in public schools. The teacher in this case broke the rules and the authorities upheld the students complaint i.e. the teacher was found to be in the wrong.

      Two facts have failed to dawn on you, let me repeat them for you: 1) it is illegal to preach ones own brand of religion like he did in a public school when he should just get on and do the job he his paid to do. 2) He was found to be in the wrong!

      It's a personal choice and a right to take whatever story you like to a newspaper. So you say you wouldn't? That's your choice. Separation of church and state is a big issue and news worthy in my opinion, so I applaud the students actions.

      You say , it would be up to the teacher to turn it into a media event? The student reserves that right also as I've outlined above. BTW, the student did initially approach the school but was ignored and invalidated, he had little choice but to take it further. Good for him, this overbearing and inappropriate religious preacher has been silenced so now some history can get taught instead of his baptist flavoured bigtory.

    75. I was about to reply to Jack1952 but you did it for me. I owe you one. I particularly like your line -" Separation of church and state is a big issue...". Simple, succinct and sums it up.

      Nature works in mysterious ways - I say.

    76. Considering that going to the school board proved futile, I think that David did the right thing by making a media circus out of it. These religees should be exposed for what they are, even if one of them achieves martyrdom. Keeping this situation under wraps only intensifies the problem.

    77. We also don't want to give them their martyr on a silver platter. Maybe there was no way to avoid this furor given a grand standing student, an ineffectual school board, and a teacher who does not have the integrity to admit when he is wrong. I guess I just don't like the student's smugness.

      BTW, I don't like the teacher's attitude either. He knows history and what the constitution stands for but he doesn't have the integrity to say that he knew that what he did goes against the law of the United States. Things may have ran out of control in his class but he should be mature enough to realize this and apologize to those students involved. Had he done this you and I would not be discussing it right now.

      Everyone has a right to personal beliefs. They should also realize that there are appropriate forums to discuss those beliefs and to do it there. To hate the religious person just because of his beliefs is bigotry. Unless he is advocating that some people do not deserve the same rights as others then we should treat them just as we do anyone else. A little respect and courtesy would go a long way to solve some of the ills of the world.

    78. I have no problems with religious people as long as they remain intellectually honest. When they resort to intellectually dishonesty (lying, distortion, stating beliefs as matters of fact) as the religees who post on TDF, then they deserve no respect or courtesy.

    79. the kid caught the teacher with his hand in the cookie jar
      and took action ....why do you want to blame the kid...If the
      teacher wants to preach he should get a job in a religious
      school.....maybe even become a "Nun"

    80. There are two widely disparate views of patriotism in this country today, tragically so. Matthew's view of patriotism is service to country by standing for its principles. This includes following the law, contributing to society and on occasion dissenting when you think the cause is just. A few of us noticed in the 2000s that anyone who disagreed with the President-at-the-time or his war in Iraq were branded as traitors. The right to dissent was on very shaky ground.

      When he was in the eighth grade, Matthew had a teacher who physically picked a student up out of his chair when the student did not stand for the pledge, even though under the law it is his right to remain seated. Seeing that, Matthew concluded that outward, superficial displays of patriotism had become confused with true patriotism, and that this attitude had gone dangerously far. That is what prompted him to stop standing for the pledge.

      What galls me the most is the way superficiality has turned patriotism on its head. The easy and superficial things do not make our country free. They're only songs that people sing to themselves to tell themselves they're being patriotic, and that provides easy cover for evading the real responsibilities of citizenship.

    81. I believe it was Samuel Johnson who said that patriotism was the last resort of a scoundrel. I know that Ambrose Bierce disagreed with him, claiming it was the first.

    82. I know Bob Dylan said In I & I. Patriotism is the last refuge to which a scoundrel clings, a brilliant poem, (song), that suits this nicely.

    83. I'll take Johnson and Bierce any day. At least they had class and talent.

    84. funny that Bob Dylan was born Robert Allen Zimmerman.

    85. PLLaClair
      please pass along my thanks to Matthew for standing up. remind him that people only attack a persons methods when they cannot attack their message

    86. Matthew is is trouble-making, arrogant, whimpy kid who is on a crusade because of some deep emotional trauma, probably caused by being bullied for having such a whimpy an effeminate appearance. No wondered he is backed by leading jewish organizations who despise Christianity and Christians. These jewish ******* control the media and they try to undermine the nation with their dirty hollywood productions

    87. If anyone is suffering from an emotional trauma, it's you, especially when confronted with your intellectual betters such as Matthew.

    88. Matthew, like yourself, is an intellectual lightweight. It is evident that his intention is neither freedom of speech nor plurality of thought, but rather an attempt to destroy another's thought and ideas just because they do not concur with his. This intellectually arrogant ******* wants to spread his dogma of secular humanism in the same way his former teacher wants to spread his dogma of creationism. It is obvious that you do not see this for what it is, or perhaps do not want to see it. The ACLU and the Anti-defamatiom League want everyone to sing along in the chorous of Political correctness, multiculturalism and atheism. Those who do not go along with these ideas have beocme the the new class enemies to these ****** interest organizations. To h*ll with them!

    89. Seccular Humanism is not a dogma

      Name me one thing in secular humanism that YOU MUST BELIEVE or be punished for. DO you even know what the definition of dogma is? You can dispute or challenge beliefs in the secular humanist philosophy because it is plural it is a set of guidelines not something you MUST BELIEVE or go to HELL

    90. Wow, just a little anti-Semitic, aren't we? Not to mention homophobic?

      Characterizing a kid for having a 'wimpy effeminate appearance' is pretty poor justification for your own arguments. In fact, it kind of lends credence to the other side.

      You've made a lot of personal statements and I seriously doubt you know any of the individuals involved personally.

      I smell a little conspiracy-theory thinking going on here...It's always easier to demonize an entire ethnic group rather than come up with a coherent discussion about whatever organization you theorize is out to get you.

      Btw, there's not a thing wrong with secular humanism, atheism, agnosticism, apatheism, buddhism, islam, eastern orthodoxy, native american spiritualism, or any other 'ism' people choose to follow. In the US, we consider it our right to choose our religion or lack thereof.

      You obviously didn't get the point that the teacher's behavior was long-standing and abusive, and that Matthew realized he wasn't the only one being bullied. Teachers--and principals and school boards!-- are adults in positions of authority; it took a rather brave youngster to stand up to it.

      That's true whether he's 'wimpy and effeminate' or not--just shows you don't have to be a '@$$hole' to stand up for what's right.

    91. kolyakalugin
      all i see from you is hatred and bigotry. you made many claims in your to back them up with facts? or is baseless accusations all you have? lets see shall we please provide proof for
      1"ACLU, Anti.defammation League are organizations to promote Jewish secular interests and atheism!"
      2 Matthew has "some deep emotional trauma"
      3/"he is backed by leading jewish organizations who despise Christianity and Christians"
      these statements were not given as opinions but asserted. nobody in their right mind would do this without concrete evidence to back it up would they?

    92. Showcase patriots always hide behind lapel pins and flag waving. Isn't that timeless? Those of us who have been skirmishing for liberty on the front lines know that real patriotism runs too deep for symbols.

  157. Surely the teacher had to have known he was treading on thin ice by bringing the issue of religion up in school. I'm sorry, but when the day comes that I am asked about my faith by a student, my answer is "this topic is not appropriate in this setting".

  158. Sad. As a teacher I found this especially upsetting. I think neither one is a hero.

    The teacher went too far with his comment, but it sounds to me like Matt had strange or unclear motives about why he recorded his teacher in the first place. Did he want the attention? On some level I think he did. That's not necessarily a bad thing of course.

    As for the recording...This is a constant problem in the public school system now. Students go to class, take pictures or make comments then immediately post to Facebook or Twitter - so recording is just the tip of the iceberg. It makes all teachers very uncomfortable.

    Teachers and students must be able to discuss topics - sometimes polemic - without the fear of being trapped or derided. My fear is that these sorts of events create more stringent laws that will make it harder for teachers like me to provoke intelligent, engaging debates in the classroom.

    Matt seems to be a good young man and the teacher has a good soul. It's a shame.

    Hmmm...maybe I should show this in the classroom... I'll think on it.

    1. Look for a documentary on Youtube called "Because the Bible tells me so". I think you would appreciate it.

    2. I see nothing wrong with taping a teacher in the classroom where he is ostensibly supposed to be practicing his profession. If taping makes him feel uncomfortable, he probably doesn't know his subject or at best his knowledge of it is shakey.

    3. I can agree with that. However it's illegal for teachers to tape students without them knowing... In the same vein I would love to show parents how their children act.

    4. Fair enough.

    5. I'll bet it would stimulate some very interesting discussions if you do show it to the students. Sounds like a good idea to me.

  159. Well done Matthew LaClair. 'All that is needed for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing'. The Christian right in the U.S.A. is as bad as the Islamic right in Iran - I guess it's a case of two rights making a wrong.

  160. religion teachings and lectures in schools= Ignorance defends itself

  161. This just shows us how Christians could be equally annoying as Muslims,and that is why I have some respect only for Judaism,because they won´t encourage anyone to convert into their religion.Of course,the whole idea of "God" is more than ridiculous,and religious people are simply childish individuals unwilling or incapable to see and accept the obvious truth.
    The worst thing here is indoctrination of youth,which is something one can expect in Iran,Saudi Arabia etc.,but not in society that claims to be advanced!
    That being said,believers please don´t advertising your fairy tales at inappropriate places,like...schools?!Thank you.

    1. "the whole idea of "God" is more than ridiculous" - one does not simply prove or disprove the existance of god/gods

  162. I can't believe all these people blame THE KID for having caught a teacher breaking the law and doing something he totally shouldn't. The reason is irrelevant. Professional pride alone demands that personal opinions of the sort expressed are to be kept to oneself.

    All the **** about his family and community work, children, his convictions.
    As opposed to applauding this young man for showing initiative and courage in standing up to peer pressure and da systemz.

  163. Yep, atheists are cold toward the handicapped. That's why so many of us work for or with them as social workers and legal professionals. I've got a case going to trial today against a nominally religious man who has been trying to get out of paying support for his severely mentally disabled son for the last twelve years. Before I started this job, I was working one-on-one with disabled children in their homes, and let me just say anecdotally that in my experience, the more church-going the parents, the more neglected the child was and the less their parents knew about their condition. I have atheist friends who run charities for the homeless, who've done stints in third world countries for HIV prevention and education work, who've dedicated themselves to building housing for people in disaster areas, to teaching, and much more.

    Religiousity != morality. In the literature, the personality traits most tied to religious belief are usually authoritarianism and retaliatory behavior. I've heard time and time again "If there were no god, there'd be no reason to act morally!" That just indicates to me that the christians speaking would run amok if they didn't believe someone was peering over their shoulder all the time.

    Grown ups have to judge their behavior for themselves, instead of relying on a parent figure to make those decisions for them, and enforce their moral choices with the promise of rewards or the threat of punishment.

    1. Atheists also help with food banks and on the (illegally) declared "Day of Prayer" donated blood instead. Yep, we are just monsters, aren't we? Fact is, we don't go around bragging about what we do so people can see how moral we are.

    2. My atheist group is doing a food drive right now... :)


    There is a plague, a mortiferous and deadly plague that spreads among fellow humans.
    It disperses and spreads itself by meaning of BRAINWASHING.
    It takes away the capacity of reasoning, thus leaving only the animal instints and ignorance impress (imprecate) themselves into the mind.
    This plague has a name, RELIGION. It can always be recognized by the inherent stupidity of the religious acts.
    A mass? A Burial grave? A baptism? Tribal symbols expressed repetidely throu generations since the beggining of humankind history.
    Amazed we discover that different social models and societies af all models in human history were inmersed themselves in the same religious acts.

  165. Fnertz: Christians! If you truly *believe* this means that you will NOT lie, you will NOT steal, you will NOT covet another one's belongings! This means a HARDER life - not an easier one! If you just reap the benefits of a strong community and still continue to be immoral - it will NOT matter if you "believe in Jesus"! He will NOT want you!


  166. It pains me to have to tell you this cause I thought you had it sussed:

    Christians! If you truly *believe* this means that you will NOT lie, you will NOT steal, you will NOT covet another one's belongings! This means a HARDER life - not an easier one! If you just reap the benefits of a strong community and still continue to be immoral - it will NOT matter if you "believe in Jesus"! He will NOT want you!

    You do NOT have the right to be immoral to "serve a purpose" - to spread His word. Living a moral life is the goal. You have NOT understood this basic fact!

    At about 38 minutes in a guy in an orange t-shirt says something like: "If you endorse atheism it makes you a colder person, colder towards handicapped and so on. If you don't believe in an afterlife then why not steal, why not live selflessly?"

    I try to be a good person because I want other people to be happy - NOT BECAUSE I HAVE SOMETHING TO GAIN FROM IT!!! How cynical is that??!!
    Talk about not understanding the message...

    I have always felt really nauseated when people say something like: "If you do good you will go to Heaven". Self self self self self.. BY GOD you will do good because it is a good thing to do and then at the end of your life you will see if you did enough!! Stop being so f***ing selfish!

    /A believer

    1. Either your quoting this doc which I have yet to watch, or you really dont understand biblical Christianity. "BY GOD you will do good because it is a good thing to do and then at the end of your life you will see if you did enough!!" This statement is purely heretical. It is not by any means of works that a believer is granted eternal life. It is not by following the commandments or obeying the law that God grants salvation to a believer. Purely by grace through faith which is the gift of God is the Christian saved. If you are justified by anything you do then glory to you, not to God.

      "Christians! If you truly *believe* this means that you will NOT lie, you will NOT steal, you will NOT covet another one's belongings! This means a HARDER life - not an easier one!" Indeed the Christian life is a harder one, and Christians are instructed to be held to a higher standard than the people around them, as well as to go against the original desires of the heart. However, If the Christian truly believes, then it means they will surely lie, steal, covet, and so on. To believe in one's sin is to recognize his/her great need for a savior.

      The point of the Christian life is not "I can" it is "I can't, but Jesus did it for me." Christianity is not about obeying the law for Jesus, its about obeying the law because of Jesus. If one is truly saved by grace through faith, God through the Holy Spirit will change the believer's desires from sinful to righteous. They will no longer desire to choose to sin, they will desire to act in righteousness. Its not behavior manipulation, but character transformation. Not some religion of moralistic therapeutic deism, but a changing of the heart on the inside which will be reflected on the outside in sincerity. Its not about doing good things for anyone to get into Heaven, its about the freedom of doing exactly what you love to do, and that which you want and love to do is in accordance with God's law.

      Check out Ephesians 2:8-10 or Galatians 2:16-21 and see how your works oriented gospel pans out. Also, if you READ your Bible, you'll find plenty more evidence proving that there is nothing you can do for or offer to God in order to be justified.

      For the record, Im not trying to convince the many atheists on this forum to engage me in debate, i've concluded that it goes next to nowhere in 9/10 cases. I only post this to specify the truth to those who think they know what Christianity is all about because they go to church on Sundays.

    2. ahhh a christian "specifying truth". Don't try and sell your ideas as truth, you've given us your opinion and nothing more.

      Then again, that's what religious people do. Each religion claims to have the truth*. A million and one different truths all claiming to be be the only one real truth. Laughable but actually dangerous.

      *The more moderate religions tend to not fuss over such stuff.

    3. Yes, but is it so ludicrous to believe that if there is a God, that he created the world with the intention of there being one absolute truth about him? It only makes sense for each religion to claim truth. If they don't, then why believe?

      And for the record I was not trying to sell my ideas as truth. Only specifying what biblical Christianity teaches to another professing believer. I might believe that it is the one absolute truth but by no means am I trying to sell my opinions to you or any other readers here in this forum.

      Like I said before, those debates make very little headway (Especially via internet forums) in the actual search for truth and make much progress in infuriating those who are unable to take part in intellectual discussion about such topics. It always ends up with people going back and forth while dumping out as much theology and philosophy they have stored up in their minds until one or more parties is too frustrated to continue.

      If what your looking for is victory in such arguments, then for the sake of time, I will go ahead and admit defeat. Not because I have no defense for my faith, but because I know my words will most likely not change your mind and surely not change your heart. The above questions are rhetorical, but I find myself incapable of preventing your reply.

    4. nah, that's a very fair reply imho, very well put. Your right about making little headway with these types of discussions and it sort of becomes a contest. I'm already running out of steam, I've started to bore myself already.

      I accept (and stand corrected) you are not trying to sell truth but some hard liners try to and use threats of hell fire and other sanctions now and in the hereafter, if not headed. Very unpleasant and logically impossible - they can't all be right. Which leads to your question: then why believe? A very good question. I've grown to like you ;-)

      As you've been so humble, allow me to admit defeat also ;-) Peace.

  167. Maybe the teacher should proselytize for Allah, and that way he would be more acceptable to the antichrist liberals!=^) I thought we had freedom of speech in this country? only if you don't use it-right?

  168. Matthew LaClair is An Angel! Come Fly with me.............

  169. What would Roger Williams have said about this topic, as a respected associate of Native American Indians? US History? The Bible has zero references to North and South America whereas ROMnEy's Religious Beehive has included them....

  170. They don't like you 'cos you're smart kid. Don't stop being smart.

  171. Thought the most damaging evidence against the teacher is that he denied things he actually said. Believe that he honestly didn't remember but that is the problem.

    To the teacher's point, if a student asks a question about hell, how does he answer an essentially religious question except from a religious viewpoint. . . especially when he prefaces it with, "This is my opinion." Guess he could have told about hell without telling students they belonged there if they didn't share his views.

    If Christianity was the minority religion in America, then Christians here would prefer secular government that did not prefer one religion over another. Christians in Egypt can only hope for that as Islamic fundamentalism comes to power.

  172. my prediction is 500 comments in the first three days.
    Got to go to work...some of us have to serve others...hahahaha