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The fundies of yesteryear were just to bad as today's

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Ignacio Upton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 04:02 PM
Original message
The fundies of yesteryear were just to bad as today's
We all know how Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson, James Dobson, and Fred Phelps are batshit crazy. However, they are not the first in terms of lunatic fundies. For example, the 1920's had fundies ten times stupider:

Billy Sunday:

"If I had my way with these ornery wildeyed Socialists and IWWs, I would stand them up before a firing squad and save space on our ships."
-Commenting on the Palmer Raids and deportation of suspected Communists.

"America is not a country for a dissenter to live in."
-Commenting on free speech

"If some of you women would spend less on dope and cold cream and get down on your knees and pray, God would make you prettier."
-Commenting on Women's Rights.

""The fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of Man is the worst rot that ever was dug out of hell and every minister who preaches it is a liar."
-Commenting on the Social Gospel and compassionate Ministers.

Also, Aimee Semple McPherson:

"Please order your minions of Satan to leave my station alone. You cannot expect the Almighty to abide by your wavelength nonsense. When I offer my prayers to Him, I must fit into His wavelength reception."
-In response to Federal calls for regulating the wavelength of her radio show.

Who could forget Clarence Darrows cross examination of William Jennings Bryan during the Scopes Monkey Trial:

Darrow: "Do you believe Joshua made the sun stand still?"
Bryan :"I believe what the Bible says."
Darrow: "I suppose you mean that the earth stood still?"
Bryan: "I don't know. I am talking about the Bible now. I accept the Bible absolutely."

At least with Bryan he was progressive on economic and foreign policy issues.

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amitten Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 04:06 PM
Response to Original message
1. Thanks...
for the perspective.
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MisterP Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 04:07 PM
Response to Original message
2. Bryan may actually have turned fundie after leaving the Wilson
Cabinet--he was the "boy preacher of the Platte" in the '96 and '00 and '08 campaigns, to be sure, but not particularly literalist or dispensationalist
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napi21 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 04:08 PM
Response to Original message
3. There have always been religious extremists around.
You can go back to the Crusades and find real wars!!!

I think they come to the surface every so many years, get a following because of some issues that convince a majority that their ideas are better than what they have now, and win a few elections.

BUT that same majority finds out that they didn't realize how good they really had it before the nuts, and vote them OUT!

I think you're seeing the recession of the fundies now.
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undergroundpanther Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 04:11 PM
Response to Original message
4. bullies
assholes,bigots and control freaks of the past are the same bigoted sick assholes you see today.All justifying thier want of domination through scriptures. They want to be god ,but they know they are not,so they will be god by proxy by speaking for him and pretending it is not thier own rigid bully personality flaws,and neurotic repressed desires to bully and control others and make society be as they want it to be.
To all control freaks,authoritarians and social engineers, religious or otherwise I say, fuck YOU!
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Cyrano Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 04:13 PM
Response to Original message
5. Do you think lunatics like Dobson, Roberson, Falwell, et al, can be cured?
There is, of course, another explanation. What they believe or don't believe is irrelevant. As long as they can make a fortune off the beliefs of anyone dense enough to buy the snake oil they're selling.
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undergroundpanther Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 04:19 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. They don't think anythings wrong with themselves
No they can't be cured they are sociopaths they do not have a conscience,so they cannot introspect to understand they are flawed in their ethics and behavior enough to learn why what they do hurts people and why it's wrong to hurt other people. I say lock them up,take away their money machine/church/air time ..or kill them by lethal injection and be done with them. Some people cannot be reformed because they do not feel guilt,love,compassion, remorse or shame..They are soulless and they are not like people capable of understanding what is right and wrong..
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happyslug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:29 PM
Response to Original message
7. As to the quote from the Scoops Trial, that is NOT what happened:
Edited on Wed Oct-19-05 05:33 PM by happyslug
The actual Transcript form the Trial:

Darrow:--The Bible says Joshua commanded the sun to stand still for the purpose of lengthening the day, doesn't it, and you believe it?
Bryan:--I do.
Darrow--Do you believe at that time the entire sun went around the earth?
Bryan--No, I believe that the earth goes around the sun.
Darrow--Do you believe that the men who wrote it thought that the day could be lengthened or that the sun could be stopped?
Bryan--I don't know what they thought.
Darrow--You don't know?
Bryan--I think they wrote the fact without expressing their own thoughts.
Darrow--Have you an opinion as to whether or not the men who wrote that thought.

Gen. Stewart--I want to object, your honor; it has gone beyond the pale of any issue that could possibly be injected into this lawsuit, expect by imagination. I do not think the defendant has a right to conduct the examination any further and I ask your honor to exclude it.

The Witness--It seems to me it would be too exacting to confine the defense to the facts; if they are not allowed to get away from the facts, what have they to deal with?

The Court--Mr. Bryan is willing to be examined. Go ahead.

Mr. Darrow--I read that years ago. Can you answer my question directly? If the day was lengthened by stopping either the earth or the sun, it must have been the earth?
Bryan--Well, I should say so.
Darrow-- Now, Mr. Bryan, have you ever pondered what would have happened to the earth if it had stood still?
Darrow--You have not?
Bryan-- No; the God I believe in could have taken care of that, Mr. Darrow.
Darrow-- I see. Have you ever pondered what would naturally happen to the earth if it stood still suddenly?
Bryan-- No.
Darrow--Don't you know it would have been converted into molten mass of matter?
Bryan--You testify to that when you get on the stand, I will give you a chance.
Darrow--Don't you believe it?
Bryan--I would want to hear expert testimony on that.

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slackmaster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:30 PM
Response to Original message
8. But now they have TV and the Internet
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WI_DEM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:33 PM
Response to Original message
9. There's more to Bryan than the "Monkey Trial"
He was ahead of his time in many areas including progressive taxation, direct elections of US Senators, the right to vote for women, minimum wage, old age security income, ending child labor, a 40-hour work week, and many other progressive ideas which came to fruitation later on.
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happyslug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-20-05 07:23 AM
Response to Reply #9
10. Bryan's position on the Money Trial reflected his Christianity.
And the fact you are your brother's keeper. Bryan's conversion to Anti-Darwinism came via opposition to Anti-Social Darwinism (Social Darwinism which Charles Darwin appears to have opposed, is the doctrine that the rich are "fitter" than the poor and thus we should NOT help the poor for that helps the less fit to survive, and thus the best solution for the poor is to leave them suffer and die off so you have a more "fit" population). The utimate form of Social Darwinism is Nazism. Bryan did not live long enough to see the Nazis come to power, but the Doctrine the Nazis used he did see and opposed.

Furthermore in the trial Bryan had been called as an Expert Witness on the Bible. His testimony was thus as an Expert on what was in the Bible and how those words were to be interpreted. The actual issue at trial was whether the State could FORBID the teaching of evolution. Bryan himself commented that he had no problem with people teaching the theory of Evolution but if the majority of Taxpayers oppose such teaching than their tax dollars should NOT be used to teach something their oppose Thus the "Bryan" law on Evolution only forbad teaching evolution in tax payer supported schools (Remember the Majority express their position through their state legislature, thus in those states that adopted the Bryan Amendment the majority of Voters supported banning teaching Evolution in taxpayer supported schools).

In many ways this Scopes is the demonstration of the classic dilemma in any Democracy, when does Majority Rule give way to a minority position? In a "True" Democracy the minority always losses, but such a position has NEVER been the position of Modern Democracies. Some protection of Minority Rights exists. The Fight in Scoops was where do you draw the line on Majority rule? Bryan's position was when it came to taxes and how taxes are used, the right of the Majority should be absolute (This extended to controls on Big Business and other economic rules). On the other hand if you are willing to spend your own money than Bryan believed you had the right to spend it as you saw fit, if you wanted to teach evolution Bryan had no problem with that Bryan even went further permitting books on the subjects in School Libraries, but stop while before teaching it as a subject to students when the Majority of Taxpayers did NOT want it taught to their Children.

On the other side was the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) who opposed NOT teaching evolution as a violation of the Separation of Church and State on the grounds the opposition to teaching Evolution was based on Religious grounds. The position of the ACLU valued this separation more than it value maintaining local control of Government and the idea of Majority Rule. This is one of the reason the Scoops Monkey Trail fascinates us to this day, it is the conflict of the two threads of modern democratic rule, Protecting minority rights as shows in the concept of Separation of Church and State and the concept of Majority Rule. Even Bryan had problems with the Tennessee version of his law, when Bryan first proposed what became known the "Bryan's Statute" Bryan refused to add any fine to the law and when a fine of $100 was added by the Tennessee Legislature Bryan opposed that addition (and offered to pay Scoop's fine, but Scoop informed Bryan the town already had agreed to pay it before he even "Taught" evolution to his students, the fine was paid by H.L. Mencken's Balitimore Newspaper as part of Mencken's coverage of the Trial).

Given the above you had two issues at trial, first did Scoops teach the Evolution in violation of law? This was a question of fact reserved to the Jury (But conceded from day one in the trial by the Defense and lead to Darrow famous request to the Jury to Convict Scoops). The second issue was one of law; did the Bryan statute violate the doctrine of Separation of Church and State? That was ONLY presented to the Judge and preserved for review by the Appellant court. Darrow put Bryan on the Stand to address this second issue and than only as an expert on the Bible. The reason for this was that Bryan position as Prosecutor was that WHY the Legislature passed the Bryan Amendment was unimportant, it was passed and since it did not establish or further any religion the law was constitutional. The law was simply the manifestation of Majority will, that it coincided with the religious dogma of the Majority did NOT make the law unconstitutional. Bryan further believed that since Evolution advocated a position that many people believed UNDERMINED their religion, it was an attack on Religion and as such a violation of the Freedom of Religion. Thus all the Legislature were doing when passing the Bryan Amendment was protecting the people's freedom of religion from tax-paying supported attacks on that religion.

Now the above is often confused by how people have handled the Scoops Trial since the 1920s. First, "Inherit the Wind" was written in the late 1950s and is more an attack on McCarthyism than Bryan (and the difference between Bryan's position in Scoops and the Prosecutor in "Inherit the Wind" is the reason the Authors of "Inherit the Wind" Changed the name of everyone in the play and ignored the fact the trial had been "made up" i.e. Scoops was told to "Teach" the Evolution so that the Town could take up an printed offer by the ACLU to defend any teacher who taught evolution and Bryan's offer to assist any state in defending that state's Bryan's Amendment).

Now some of the Script from the Scoops Trial ended up in "Inherit the Wind" but a lot of Bryan's statements were deleted or changed to reflect the issue of the use of Government to attack minority opinion (i.e. McCarthyism) than Bryan's position that tax-payers dollars should only be spent how tax payers want those taxes to be spent. Sounds like a fine line but it is NOT, Bryan's position is one in any healthy Democracy balancing Majority rules with protection of Minority rights. McCarthyism is not only a refusal to use TAX money to finance a minority but also to use TAX money to prevent that minority from even expressing its side. Bryan's position is you have lost the election and we have won and we get to decide how to spent taxpayer's dollars, but you can spend your money as you see fit. McCarthy's position was we won the election and you can NOT even complain of that lost, but you can NOT even spend your money except as McCarthy thought you should (For example Bryan would have opposed using the House Un-American Committee to look for Communists in Hollywood as a violation of Freedom of Speech, while McCarthy thought is was perfectly acceptable to use tax payers money to look for and punish people who advocated Communism even they were doing it with their own money.

Thus Bryan was NOT in the same league as the others you mention and was more popular then the others. Bryan's legancy is the change of the Democratic Party to a Reform party instead of a Me-to party it had been from 1860s till 1896. If you read the transcript you will see Bryan is less the strict beleiver in the words of the Bible than its message.
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happyslug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-20-05 08:57 PM
Response to Reply #10
11. Bryan's Statement at the end of the Trial:
Contains one of the Best Statements I have ever hear:

Here has been fought out a little case of little consequence as a case, but the world is interested because it raises an issue, and that issue will some day be settled right, whether it is settled on our side or the other side. It is going to be settled right. There can be no settlement of a great cause without discussion, and people will not discuss a cause until their attention is drawn to it,

The Rest of his statement (From the New York Times, July 21, 1925):

I dont know that there is any special reason why I should add to what has been said, and yet the subject has been presented from so many viewpoints that I hope the Court will pardon me if I mention a viewpoint that has not been referred to, he said. Dayton is the centre and seat of this trial largely by circumstance. We are told that more words have been sent across the ocean by cable to Europe and Australia about this trial than has ever been sent by cable in regard to anything else doing in the United States. That isnt because the trial is held in Dayton. It isnt because a school teacher has been subjected to the danger of a fine of from $100 to $500, but I think it illustrates how people can be drawn into prominence by attaching themselves to a great cause.

Causes stir the world, and this cause has stirred the world. It is because it goes deep. It is because it extends wide and because it reaches into the future beyond the power of man to see. Here has been fought out a little case of little consequence as a case, but the world is interested because it raises an issue, and that issue will some day be settled right, whether it is settled on our side or the other side. It is going to be settled right. There can be no settlement of a great cause without discussion, and people will not discuss a cause until their attention is drawn to it, and the value of this trial is not in any incident of the trial, it is not because of anybody who is attached to it, either in any official way or as counsel on either side.

Human beings are mighty small, your Honor. We are apt to minify the personal element and we sometimes become inflated with our importance, but the world little cares for man as an individual. He is born, he works, he dies, but causes go on forever, and we who have participated in this case may congratulate ourselves that we have attached ourselves to a mighty issue.

Now, if I were to attempt to define that issue I might find objection from the other side. Their definition of the issue might not be as mine is, and therefore, I will not take advantage of the privilege the Court gives me this morning to make a statement that might be controversial, and nothing that I would say would determine it.

I have no power to define this issue finally and authoritatively. None of the counsel on our side has this power, and none of the counsel on the other side has this power. Even this honorable Court has no such power. The people will determine this issue. They will take sides upon this issue, they will state the questions involved in this issue, they will examine the information not so much that which has been brought out here, but this case will stimulate investigation and investigation will bring out information, and the facts will be known, and upon the facts as ascertained the decision will be rendered, and I think my friends and your Honor, that if we are actuated by the spirit that should actuate every one of us, no matter what our views may be, we ought not only desire but pray that that which is right will prevail, whether it be our way or somebody elses.

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