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LanternWaste Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:24 PM
Original message
"I just don''t want them forcing it down my throat"
"I just don''t want them forcing it down my throat". That's a phase we either hear a lot or say a lot, especially when it comes to religion. I was involved in a thread that danced around this very thing earlier today.

I've heard the phrase used to describe or indict people for praying in public or talking about their faith outside of home or church. But mainly, I've heard it used in reference to people who actively witness-- regardless of whether it's verbally, or a co-worker with Biblical phrases pasted around their desk cubicle or even someone who passes out literature door to door.

And honestly? I really don't care one way or the other. But the earlier thread got me thinking, "what happens if if I replace the word 'religion' with the word 'progressive'"?" In other words, when we talk about our Progressivism, our love of what we believe the direction of this country (and indeed, the entire world) should be to others who do not agree with us, are we guilty of "forcing it down their throats?"

We talk about politics at the lunch table. I have political statements and quotes taped all around my work station and have gone from door to door passing out political literature and advertising the candidate that I honestly believe is the right choice. Heck, I even have politically oriented t-shirts that I wear. The very thing that religionists are indicted for with the phrase, "forcing it down my throat" is what we do on a political level.

If my premise is correct, then isn't it disingenuous to say (for all intents and purposes) "we condone forcing one philosophy (progressive politics) down people's throats, but it's just wrong on so many levels to force another thing (religion) down their throats.

It's certainly not a separation of church and state issue, as this is purely on an individual level. Forget churches and bodies of congress-- I'm talking real grassroots activism, regardless of whether the activism is for religion or for politics.

So I guess my fundamental question is this: Is it o-kay to force politics down peoples throats, but not religion? Or am I simply missing an obvious and relevant point on this?


Now... before you begin to think I'm posturing or trying to be clever, I'm not. I had this conversation with myself this afternoon and what I wrote above is the conclusion I came to. But it's difficult to truly examine an idea from all sides when I don't know what all the side are. I'm hesitant to post this as it looks to be flame bait (even to me), but it's really not. It's an honest question I've been grappling with all afternoon and I'd really like some additional perspectives on this one.

I'd also like to add that maybe this should be posted in the Religion group, but it seems to me that my question isn't about religion per se; it's more about contrasting as to why if A is good, then why is B bad?

Thanks (and 'A Christmas Story' has just started on TCM if you're interested...)
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leftofthedial Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:26 PM
Response to Original message
1. quit trying to force that crap down my throat
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Deja Q Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:28 PM
Response to Original message
2. Any one can say that about any topic.
The trouble with perception is twofold: One is the perception of the person(s) speaking. The other is the perception of the person(s) listening.

Anyone worth any integrity is going to listen to multiple points of view and try to get to the bottom of things the best they can.

I dunno. All I do know is, it is human nature to develop a core set of beliefs and as one ages, it becomes increasingly difficult to alter them.
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LanternWaste Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:36 PM
Response to Reply #2
7. Thanks for the insight
Thanks for the insight. And I think you're right about the difficulty in changing an already decided upon opinion, as I still think the '92 Cowboys were the best NFL team to ever take the field... :) (now *that's* flame bait)

Serioulsy, thanks man.
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Joe for Clark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:47 PM
Response to Reply #7
15. Totally disagree.
Its the 1979 Steelers man.

Joe
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U4ikLefty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:49 PM
Response to Reply #7
17. Um, the Dallas Cowboys werent't even the best team of 1992!!!
Edited on Fri Dec-15-06 08:54 PM by U4ikLefty
The Oilers would've busted their balls in the Superbowl if not for the "comeback" of the dreaded Bills. Warren Moon was 10-times the quaterback that Aikman pretended to be.

The ofensive line was the only legendary thing about the early-1990's Dallas Cowboys...they were the reason the won anything in the post-season.
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Joe for Clark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:54 PM
Response to Reply #17
18. You may be right -
But I'll tell ya - I think Terry Bradshaw could beat the snot out of any linebacker - with his helmet. Pretty tough guy back then. He was the only quarterback against the protective rule they put in play for quarterbacks - there was a reason.

Joe

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U4ikLefty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:59 PM
Response to Reply #18
20. Now Bradshaw was a different story!!! He was a hell of a man to stand in there
& take the hits in the 70's NFL. People like him & Tarkenton have much respect, because they took hits that toady's quarterbacks would get 15-yards a pop for. I really wish they would get rid of some fof the stupid rules...like being able to ground the ball when out of the pocket. But that''s just my own prejudice.

Peace & enjoy Sunday!!!
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Joe for Clark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 09:05 PM
Response to Reply #20
21. Great post - totally agree -
I just want it to Sunday -RIGHT NOW.

Joe
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U4ikLefty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 09:12 PM
Response to Reply #21
23. Cheers m'man!!! Great to hear from a real NFL fan on DU.
I'll be drinking a Guiness to ya on Sunday!!!

Peace
U4ikLefty
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Mayberry Machiavelli Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:28 PM
Response to Original message
3. Laws, written by politicians, reflect the values of the society. Laws represent
"cramming values down one's throat."

In our system we vote for the lawmakers, who, hopefully, will reflect the values we think they represent (like not aggressively invading countries, for example).

I have no problem with this.

If this idea troubles you, does it trouble you any less when right wingers try to cram right wing policies (nonreligious) down our throats? Like driving the country into a war the rest of us didn't want?

The alternative to what is "troubling" to you, as I see it, is anarchy. :shrug:
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sniffa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:30 PM
Response to Original message
4. i thought this was gonna be about terry schiavo
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LanternWaste Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:33 PM
Response to Reply #4
6. Now talk about wrong on so many levels...
Talking about wrong on so many levels...


:spank:
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lvx35 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:32 PM
Response to Original message
5. Religion vs politics: the difference.
I HAVE to pay for politics through taxes, I don't have to pay for religion. So I will accept absurd beliefs in the religious realm, because I don't have to pay for them or believe in them and people are free...They don't affect me. But if you ask me to PAY for policies based on absurd beliefs of any kind, its a different matter! So that's why I can shove politics down other's throat (I pay for it) but not religion. I don't pay for other people's churches.
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alfredo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:45 PM
Response to Reply #5
12. In a way you do pay for religion. In your town they take
up prime real estate without paying property taxes. One town in Texas (I believe) is going bankrupt because churches have bought up land and now the city is seeing reduced tax revenues because there's no room for tax paying businesses.

Also, through their membership they can influence the laws of your city.
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lvx35 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 09:16 PM
Response to Reply #12
24. See, that's where I draw the line.
when membership starts influencing laws, its a political force, and I have the right to shove myself down their throats. The religious right is a political force.

But before that line, I don't care if they are dressing up like donuts worshipping Homer Simpson. :)
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alfredo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 09:32 PM
Response to Reply #24
25. Instead of Ommmm It is D'ohhhhhhhhhh
I remember reading that you can tell who holds power in a community by looking at who has the biggest buildings.
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Warpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:37 PM
Response to Original message
8. Politics and religion are different
which is why we separate them. However, it's equally impolite to inflict either on unwilling people in the form of harangues.

It's quite one thing to wear one's faith or politics on one's cubicle walls, quite another to call one's co workers sinners for not converting to the one true faith or stupid for not converting to the one true political paradigm.

My own policy at work was always to wait to be asked. That covered lunch room conversations. That didn't cover cornering them at the water cooler to lecture them, pushing unwanted literature at other people during working hours or banging on their doors and disturbing them at home.

It's called MANNERS, folks. Lecturing peers is not mannerly, no matter what the subject is. Nor are ostentatious praying, annoying people to whose homes you have not been invited, distributing tracts of any type to people you know will consider them obnoxious, and generally trying to harass other people into believing as you do.

That's where the line is, folks.

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Tierra_y_Libertad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:40 PM
Response to Original message
9. Politicians or preachers. Both have their hands out and both want to be the boss.
Both are quick to supply easy answers and offer to "save" the people if they're put in charge.

"I never submitted the whole system of my opinions to the creed of any party of men whatever, in religion, in philosophy, in politics, or in anything else, where I was capable of thinking for myself. Such an addiction is the last degradation of a free and moral agent. If I could not go to heaven but with a party, I would not go there at all." --Thomas Jefferson to Francis Hopkinson, 1789.

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More Than A Feeling Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:46 PM
Response to Reply #9
13. Ain't that the truth, and you can add the media in there too
Not as unaccountable as some preachers, but more unaccountable than politicians. Who elected Bill O'Reilly or Thomas Friedman anyway? So why do they keep talking?
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shadowknows69 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:41 PM
Response to Original message
10. "A Christmas Story" is the greatest movie ever made
That is all. Have a merry day.
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More Than A Feeling Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:44 PM
Response to Original message
11. Nancy Pelosi isn't going to damn anyone to hell for not voting Democratic
God might damn someone to hell for not voting for (ie. following)God , if you listen to some people.

I actually asked a question similar to yours in R/T already, which was, "why am I, as a liberal Christian, more willing to sell my party to other people than I am to evangelize for my faith, when they involve similar activities?"

Maybe the reason is that voting for a party isn't quite as final as joining a faith. You can vote the guy out again if you decide you made a mistake, but there might be eternal consequences if you do that to God.
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0rganism Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:46 PM
Response to Original message
14. expressing beliefs & opinions is a matter of personality
Edited on Fri Dec-15-06 08:48 PM by 0rganism
Some people are irrepressible -- they will express their opinions and beliefs regardless of circumstance, whether it's evangelism or activism, from any angle. Some won't, regardless of context. Some pick & choose.

As to the whether it's regarded as "forced down the throat", well, that's as much up to the recipient of said expression, as far as I'm concerned.

It really doesn't matter what the topic is. Could be politics, religion, money, race, sexuality, philosophy, or quantum mechanics. Some people will hold forth, and some will choose to take offense, and that's normal.

So is it "disingenuous" to condone expression of one thing and suppress another? Perhaps, but I think a more descriptive phrase is "human". DU has a greater than average concentration of progressive activists, so naturally you'll find more people inclined to promote progressive politics at the expense of, say, fundamentalist religion. That is no more (or less) disingenuous than what you'd find upon going to an evangelical site and noting that the majority there would prefer to promote Christianity while leaving politics aside, or even advocating conservative politics as a corollary.

It's just what we do.
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xchrom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:47 PM
Response to Original message
16. well the very nature of progressive liberalism is that it's
Edited on Fri Dec-15-06 08:49 PM by xchrom
based on the best information possible at that given time tempered with getting the best results for the common good -- everyones common good.

top, bottom, and sideways.

it is -- or it should be rational.

that's not shoving down any one's throat.

the conflict we find our selves in today -- when you take corporatism out of the mix is an irrational fear of modernity mixed with a blame the victim mentality.

in fact -- it's brutal.

so as you can see -- there's not much i agree with in your premise.
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baldguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:54 PM
Response to Original message
19. I don't go out much.
Does that mean it's OK for my neighbor to put bars on my windows and a lock on my front door?
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kikiek Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 09:11 PM
Response to Original message
22. I don't think they are the same. Politics is necessary to the survival of our
democracy. It it tangible and poor participation can cause the collapse of our country and how it functions so it is vital. People need to be drawn in and kept abreast of what is going on. Participation in religion isn't vital to our country. Religion is whatever it is to the individual. Maybe very important, maybe not. So in a nutshell I see it as we all "have government" because we all need it. The same cannot be said for religion.
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stillcool Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 09:39 PM
Response to Original message
26. Both are benign as words...
but politicians and preachers have the ability to apply personal emphasis for their own use and gain.
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Seeking Serenity Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 09:53 PM
Response to Original message
27. It's called a "double standard," and I say it stinks.
Let's face it, folks. Most of us here at DU, the protestations to the contrary, are human beings who are inclined to believe that what "we" do is good and right and virtuous, while what "they" do, even if the same in form if not in substance, is wrong and bad and "shoving it down my throat" (the epitome of violent imagery).

So we do n and we call it good and virtuous, sincerely acting on our deeply held beliefs and wanting to share that message and enlighten our fellow human.

"They" (the people with whom we disagree, i.e. evangelicals, conservatives, etc.) do n and "they're" just shoving it down our throats and how dare they, and why can't they keep that to themselves or their homes or churches.

Let's don't fool ourselves. Breaking the cycle of denial is the first step on the road to freedom.
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Withywindle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 09:55 PM
Response to Original message
28. To me, it's a matter of whom it affects and how.
Personally, I don't believe it makes any difference to me what the person sitting next to me on the bus believes in a religious sense. (I don't belong to a religion that believes in proselytizing or "saving souls.") Religion is a matter between an individual, God(s), their clergy, family, etcetera. Ultimately, it is personal. Unless they try to push it into the political agenda--and if their values say they should do that, well, bully for them, but I'll fight it tooth and nail. Otherwise, leave it alone.

Politics, however, affects everyone's lives very directly. It is literally a matter of life and death. People die because of the way others vote. Look at the carnage in Iraq--would President Gore have done that? Would President Kerry have abandoned thousands to die in New Orleans? Sure, both men have their flaws but I do strongly believe the answer is NO. And you can extrapolate this to all political levels and all kinds of issues. Whether I vote for someone who will improve health care or workplace safety or environmental stewardship may very well mean life or death for someone, so it's a responsibility that's much bigger than a personal matter.
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CurtEastPoint Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 08:01 AM
Response to Original message
29. Is this another Ted Haggard post? :-) n/t
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Katzenjammer Donating Member (541 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 08:22 AM
Response to Original message
30. Politics is about how we get along with one another. Religion is about getting along with God
We know for sure that there are other people, so we know for sure that politics is important and has big consequences. It's also something whose consequences don't depend on belief. If we start a war, for example, people die. That is not open to debate or a matter of faith. Whether someone is dead is completely testable, but whether they survive on some other plane is not.

So preaching better politics is a good thing, but preaching religion is an intrusion on personal space.
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JNelson6563 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 08:39 AM
Response to Original message
31. This is a good discussion point
I can't help but not your chosen word in regard to promoting religion: Witnessing. A very gentle term.

It is in fact all the same, one is trying to sell, pitch, persuade, convince another to see and agree with one's own point of view.

That is where the similarities end.

Let us compare the differences now. Religion is everywhere and many religious are very aggressive and persistent when it comes to their promotional efforts. How many channels on TV that are religious content only? My local paper has a "Faith" section once a week. There are endless radio stations that are religious programing. And the sales force! Zowie! Recruiting methods politicians can only dream of using! Believe what we tell you and paradize awaits you are this miserable existence, don't believe and torture for eternity is what's in store for you. Oh, and one caveat on the paradise thing, you need to help "save" as many fellow humans as possible. I mean that is some powerful incentive!

So the one selling religion, as opposed to politics, has a lot more at stake as far as they are concerned. It goes without saying that such a motivated sales agent would be more aggressive and persistent. Considering there are so, so many people who also believe, to varying degrees, as the more zealous sales agents among them do, they often support and/or admire their efforts, their devotion.

Then there's the link between politics and religion. Obviously the right wing has co-opted religion as exclusively theirs and, to keep that group in their base, have helped to make it all the more acceptable, even encouraged, to be preaching salvation at all times. The hard core religious are much like the right wing in their promotional efforts and the two groups aid each other as much as possible.

Know how we see the sometimes blatant, sometimes more subtle bias in the media? How obvious it is to us that things are always slanted in our corporate owned media toward the right wing and the oligarchs who suport them? How the right wing view is constantly shoved down our throats?

Welcome to the world of the atheist in "Christian America". Religion is more prevasive than the right wing propaganda and even more aggressive.

Julie
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Toots Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 10:22 AM
Response to Original message
32. You are putting up a valiant effort
What did Jesus say about it? Something like pray in your own room and not out in public like the hypocrites. You just don't seem to get it. Religion is and should be private. Governing on the other hand is very public at least in a country where the people govern.....You seem very much to want religion to dictate. Get off it...
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