Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues.

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Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues.

Postby EmptySet » Sat Jul 17, 2010 1:51 am UTC

The Vatican has recently released a document listing various disciplinary rules, with revised rules for the treatment of paedophilia and child pornography. Unfortunately for the Vatican, rather than welcoming these changes journalists have noted that the ordination of women appears to be treated as an equally grave offence as sexual abuse of minors (ie. grounds for dismissal from the priesthood or excommunication).

Sydney Morning Herald wrote:The ordination of women as Catholic priests is a "crime against the faith", the Vatican has said while it issued a raft of new disciplinary rules.

Cases of "attempted ordination of women" will now be handled by the Vatican's doctrinal watchdog, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF), a Vatican statement said on Thursday.

The new rules put attempts at the ordination of women among the "most serious crimes", along with paedophilia.

...

Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi underscored how the ordination of women is "a crime against sacraments", while paedophilia should be considered a "crime against morals".


I believe the document in question is the Substantive Norms. Art. 5 regards the ordination of women and Art. 6 paedophilia and possession of child pornography. Strangely, only possession of images of children under the age of 14 is mentioned, while actual sexual conduct is prohibited with anyone under 18.

Anyway, thoughts? The Catholic Church has always been against the ordination of women, so is this actually telling us anything we didn't already know?

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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby Vaniver » Sat Jul 17, 2010 1:53 am UTC

EmptySet wrote:Anyway, thoughts? The Catholic Church has always been against the ordination of women, so is this actually telling us anything we didn't already know?
I think it's just journalists using the layout of the code to highlight how behind the times the Catholic Church is- so the answer is no, not really.
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby Xeio » Sat Jul 17, 2010 1:56 am UTC

This is just oh so fun to watch blow up in the church's face.

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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Sat Jul 17, 2010 2:01 am UTC

Dang uppity womenfolk. Next thing you know, they'll be wanting to vote.

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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Sat Jul 17, 2010 2:12 am UTC

Much as I think the position is antiquated, anyone with the power to perform an ordination would understand that doing so is flagrantly contrary to Catholic doctrine. In general, it makes sense that you fire people if they're deliberately doing things that they know you don't want them to do. And the fact that the punishment for sexual abuse is no worse simply reflects the fact that the Catholic Church is not a governmental organization and has no power to do anything beyond kicking the abusers out.
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby mmmcannibalism » Sat Jul 17, 2010 2:59 am UTC

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:Much as I think the position is antiquated, anyone with the power to perform an ordination would understand that doing so is flagrantly contrary to Catholic doctrine. In general, it makes sense that you fire people if they're deliberately doing things that they know you don't want them to do. And the fact that the punishment for sexual abuse is no worse simply reflects the fact that the Catholic Church is not a governmental organization and has no power to do anything beyond kicking the abusers out.


I demand the Catholic church wave their fingers angrily at pedophiles but only look scornfully at those who ordain women...
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby Xeio » Sat Jul 17, 2010 3:02 am UTC

mmmcannibalism wrote:
TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:Much as I think the position is antiquated, anyone with the power to perform an ordination would understand that doing so is flagrantly contrary to Catholic doctrine. In general, it makes sense that you fire people if they're deliberately doing things that they know you don't want them to do. And the fact that the punishment for sexual abuse is no worse simply reflects the fact that the Catholic Church is not a governmental organization and has no power to do anything beyond kicking the abusers out.

I demand the Catholic church wave their fingers angrily at pedophiles but only look scornfully at those who ordain women...

Well, I guess it's an improvement over "protect the pedophiles" and "excommunicate the women". Now pedophiles are just as bad as women priests.

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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby Aikanaro » Sat Jul 17, 2010 12:18 pm UTC

See, this is why I thank God for the existence of sex-change operations, hermaphrodites, etc: to blur the lines that we stupid humans try to view as absolute black-and-white. Now, we just need to find someone who wants to have a male-to-female change, and somehow convince them to become ordained first. Maybe some sort of online prize or funding assistance? And yes, I'm a manipulative bastard, what's your point?
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby Lucrece » Sat Jul 17, 2010 4:26 pm UTC

Aikanaro wrote:See, this is why I thank God for the existence of sex-change operations, hermaphrodites, etc: to blur the lines that we stupid humans try to view as absolute black-and-white. Now, we just need to find someone who wants to have a male-to-female change, and somehow convince them to become ordained first. Maybe some sort of online prize or funding assistance? And yes, I'm a manipulative bastard, what's your point?


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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby skeptical scientist » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:33 pm UTC

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:And the fact that the punishment for sexual abuse is no worse simply reflects the fact that the Catholic Church is not a governmental organization and has no power to do anything beyond kicking the abusers out.

They don't have the power to report the crime to the proper authorities?
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby 22/7 » Sat Jul 17, 2010 9:34 pm UTC

skeptical scientist wrote:
TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:And the fact that the punishment for sexual abuse is no worse simply reflects the fact that the Catholic Church is not a governmental organization and has no power to do anything beyond kicking the abusers out.

They don't have the power to report the crime to the proper authorities?
Now, now, let's not be hasty. If a priest was reported to the authorities they might be arrested, and then what good would they be to their flock? Plus, if we were to go around arresting everyone who did something as heinous as molesting children, we'd have to arrest all those women who want to be priests, too, and everyone who attempted to aid them in their devilish plot. And really, who wants that? No, no, it's much more Christlike to damn them to the fiery pits of hell for all eternity than to ask them to go to prison for breaking the law. I'm sure that if we only knew of any early church leaders who faced criminal charges, they'd have acted in the same manner. Alas, no such record exists.
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby The Reaper » Sat Jul 17, 2010 11:35 pm UTC

22/7 wrote:
skeptical scientist wrote:
TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:And the fact that the punishment for sexual abuse is no worse simply reflects the fact that the Catholic Church is not a governmental organization and has no power to do anything beyond kicking the abusers out.

They don't have the power to report the crime to the proper authorities?
Now, now, let's not be hasty. If a priest was reported to the authorities they might be arrested, and then what good would they be to their flock? Plus, if we were to go around arresting everyone who did something as heinous as molesting children, we'd have to arrest all those women who want to be priests, too, and everyone who attempted to aid them in their devilish plot. And really, who wants that? No, no, it's much more Christlike to damn them to the fiery pits of hell for all eternity than to ask them to go to prison for breaking the law. I'm sure that if we only knew of any early church leaders who faced criminal charges, they'd have acted in the same manner. Alas, no such record exists.

Wouldn't that be "follower-of-christ-like" than actually "christ-like?". But thats another argument altogether.

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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Sat Jul 17, 2010 11:53 pm UTC

skeptical scientist wrote:
TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:And the fact that the punishment for sexual abuse is no worse simply reflects the fact that the Catholic Church is not a governmental organization and has no power to do anything beyond kicking the abusers out.

They don't have the power to report the crime to the proper authorities?

Of course, but that power isn't relevant to the document in question. It's more or less a list of things that get you excommunicated; there are of course other policies dealing with criminal offenses (though they have been rightly criticized), but those policies don't come up in this section of canon law.
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby Arancaytar » Sun Jul 18, 2010 6:38 am UTC

EmptySet wrote:The Vatican has recently released a document listing various disciplinary rules, with revised rules for the treatment of paedophilia and child pornography. Unfortunately for the Vatican, rather than welcoming these changes journalists have noted that the ordination of women appears to be treated as an equally grave offence as sexual abuse of minors (ie. grounds for dismissal from the priesthood or excommunication).


Equal? Has anyone actually been excommunicated for raping children? I seem to remember they just shuffled them around to other places so they could avoid conviction, preferably isolated third-world places where they could rape to their hearts' content without fearing a complaint.

So yeah, ordaining women must be much, much worse.
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby Heisenberg » Mon Jul 19, 2010 6:02 pm UTC

Xeio wrote:Well, I guess it's an improvement over "protect the pedophiles" and "excommunicate the women". Now pedophiles are just as bad as women priests.

As crappy as this characterization is, it's more honest than the stuff I've been hearing over the radio. Despite the spin, this is actually an increased punishment and represents a crackdown on child abusers.

And while excommunication might not sound bad to us, I imagine it's pretty shitty for someone who has given up everything and devoted decades to studying and serving the Church.

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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby Osha » Mon Jul 19, 2010 7:17 pm UTC

Aikanaro wrote:See, this is why I thank God for the existence of sex-change operations, hermaphrodites, etc: to blur the lines that we stupid humans try to view as absolute black-and-white. Now, we just need to find someone who wants to have a male-to-female change, and somehow convince them to become ordained first. Maybe some sort of online prize or funding assistance? And yes, I'm a manipulative bastard, what's your point?

OK, sorry if this is HORRIBLY OFF TOPIC, but this post really got to me. perhaps further replies should be in one of the myriad trans threads or in PMs, but I didn't want this to go unresponded to.
Spoiler:
First of all "hermaphrodite" is generally considered outdated and offensive, pleaste try to use "intersex" in the future.
Second of all, I sincerely doubt it would be as easy as "do your ooga booga sex change doodad and wobble the church rules from the inside and make everything all better!". Because it's happened before for one thing, and of course they didn't magically realize the error of their ways and stop being homophobic, sexist, and transphobic all at once in a heartwarming christmas miracle movie climax. They fucking made a transphobic decision and swept it under the rug as best they could, as always friggin' happens. More generally, when people exist outside of socially constructed binaries with associated binary rules and procedures, society doesn't just change the laws the first time an exception comes up, they come up with excuses, and say it's the person who has to change to fit the system. And it really fucking stinks.
Third of all, I'm glad I and other trans people exist too (I presume you are including trans people in the "etc", there's more to us than "sex change operations"), but not so I can teach privileged transphobic people valuable life lessons and broaden their worldviews by existing. That part stinks and they don't listen. No, it's because we tend to be fucking awesome, and there are so many amazing trans people I know who just light up my life.

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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Mon Jul 19, 2010 7:27 pm UTC

But Osha, it's just so convenient to use trans people for feminist and anti-homophobic causes and then throw them under the bus.
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby Aikanaro » Mon Jul 19, 2010 10:04 pm UTC

Osha wrote:
Aikanaro wrote:See, this is why I thank God for the existence of sex-change operations, hermaphrodites intersex individuals, etc: to blur the lines that we stupid humans try to view as absolute black-and-white. Now, we just need to find someone who wants to have a male-to-female change, and somehow convince them to become ordained first. Maybe some sort of online prize or funding assistance? And yes, I'm a manipulative bastard, what's your point?

OK, sorry if this is HORRIBLY OFF TOPIC, but this post really got to me. perhaps further replies should be in one of the myriad trans threads or in PMs, but I didn't want this to go unresponded to.
Spoiler:
First of all "hermaphrodite" is generally considered outdated and offensive, pleaste try to use "intersex" in the future.
Second of all, I sincerely doubt it would be as easy as "do your ooga booga sex change doodad and wobble the church rules from the inside and make everything all better!". Because it's happened before for one thing, and of course they didn't magically realize the error of their ways and stop being homophobic, sexist, and transphobic all at once in a heartwarming christmas miracle movie climax. They fucking made a transphobic decision and swept it under the rug as best they could, as always friggin' happens. More generally, when people exist outside of socially constructed binaries with associated binary rules and procedures, society doesn't just change the laws the first time an exception comes up, they come up with excuses, and say it's the person who has to change to fit the system. And it really fucking stinks.
Third of all, I'm glad I and other trans people exist too (I presume you are including trans people in the "etc", there's more to us than "sex change operations"), but not so I can teach privileged transphobic people valuable life lessons and broaden their worldviews by existing. That part stinks and they don't listen. No, it's because we tend to be fucking awesome, and there are so many amazing trans people I know who just light up my life.

Spoiler:
1: Apologies, I thought it was the scientifically and Basically Decent term. I....thought "intersex" meant, well, other things. I will try not to make this mistake in the future.
2: Was unaware it had happened, and yes, that sucks. Was hoping more on the order that the more things that blur the lines come up, the better the odds of them landing in the spotlight. Basically, the more it happens, the more clearly it forces them to define themselves, resulting in them eventually either 1: approaching sanity, or 2: making their INsanity more and more obvious to everyone else.
3: Um, not really sure how to respond, since beyond these fora, I don't know m/any trans people. Is it okay if I'm happy that there are people who help to blur the social distinction lines, though? You could put it down as one more reason you're awesome, maybe? I promise to try not to throw you under a bus later? I don't even know where there are any bus stops near me....

And as a side note, okay, so that does mean that technically, someone could legally be female, and still be a priest. I still wonder, for the sake of speculation, how Catholic "law" applies to someone intersex.
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby beyondweird » Mon Jul 19, 2010 10:17 pm UTC

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:But Osha, it's just so convenient to use trans people for feminist and anti-homophobic causes and then throw them under the bus.


...offtopic, but this reminds me of my friend's comedy routine about being trans. She has a wonderful little segment about being in her (well, back when she was a he, and thus clearly a sexist little stereotyped man :P) Gentleman's club, doing gentlemanly things, and being approached by a gentleman who asks him to infiltrate these darned feminists, and all it will take is a small operation.
Less funny when told, but oh she is fantastic at pointing out that this attitude does exist quite frequently.

Anyway, on topic, this is one of the reasons I'm glad to be Church of England - we're allowed women vicars, and we're working on the whole Bishop thing. Miles behind the times in my opinion, but at least it's a start. I've never quite got the whole 'no ordained women' thing myself to be honest...
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby gmalivuk » Mon Jul 19, 2010 10:21 pm UTC

beyondweird wrote:I've never quite got the whole 'no ordained women' thing myself to be honest...
I think it's because they worry women priests might be on their periods during Communion, and then you won't know if you're getting Christ's blood, or just the priest's.

Or something. All I know is it probably has to do with periods somehow.
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby mmmcannibalism » Mon Jul 19, 2010 10:31 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:
beyondweird wrote:I've never quite got the whole 'no ordained women' thing myself to be honest...
I think it's because they worry women priests might be on their periods during Communion, and then you won't know if you're getting Christ's blood, or just the priest's.

Or something. All I know is it probably has to do with periods somehow.


Jesus was a dude and since the priest is symbolically Jesus he has to be a dude so it doesn't fuck up the universe(being raised catholic has the occasional benefit like knowing this stuff).
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby beyondweird » Mon Jul 19, 2010 10:35 pm UTC

mmmcannibalism wrote:
gmalivuk wrote:
beyondweird wrote:I've never quite got the whole 'no ordained women' thing myself to be honest...
I think it's because they worry women priests might be on their periods during Communion, and then you won't know if you're getting Christ's blood, or just the priest's.

Or something. All I know is it probably has to do with periods somehow.


Jesus was a dude and since the priest is symbolically Jesus he has to be a dude so it doesn't fuck up the universe(being raised catholic has the occasional benefit like knowing this stuff).


Haha, I more meant that I understand the principles behind it, I just think they're stupid principles. For instance, yes, none of the 12 were women, but there were women disciples and in fact, it's stated that they often gave financially more than the men. And, obviously, the women as the witnesses of the resurrection.

So yes, I more just think they're silly principles.
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby gmalivuk » Mon Jul 19, 2010 10:36 pm UTC

mmmcannibalism wrote:Jesus was a dude and since the priest is symbolically Jesus he has to be a dude so it doesn't fuck up the universe.
Because as we all know the most important part to any symbol of Jesus is the penis?
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby mmmcannibalism » Mon Jul 19, 2010 10:42 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:
mmmcannibalism wrote:Jesus was a dude and since the priest is symbolically Jesus he has to be a dude so it doesn't fuck up the universe.
Because as we all know the most important part to any symbol of Jesus is the penis?


It was a long drawn out contest but the penis stuck it out...
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Mon Jul 19, 2010 10:46 pm UTC

It comes from… well, historically it's because the church's traditions were laid down in an intensely, openly patriarchal time, and some of its scriptures were written by intense, open patriarchs, but the theological explanation involves the idea that there are essential* differences between men and women, that Christ was a man, that all the people that Christ called to be apostles were men, and that priests act in the person of Christ while celebrating certain sacraments.

*In the essentialist sense.

(I once read the foreword to a book by the wife of an Orthodox priest. She described how her husband, formerly an Episcopal priest, left that church some time after co-authoring the Baltimore Declaration, a call to theological orthodoxy within the Episcopal Church. She criticized the notion that priests have to be male because Christ was male; after all, priests don't have to be first century Palestinian Jews! But the Orthodox Church also has a male priesthood, which she explained as necessary for the priest to act in the person of the Father.

Later, I read the Baltimore Declaration, which in part states that "We repudiate the false teaching that God is male (except in the incarnate Christ).")

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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby Le1bn1z » Mon Jul 19, 2010 10:48 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:
beyondweird wrote:I've never quite got the whole 'no ordained women' thing myself to be honest...
I think it's because they worry women priests might be on their periods during Communion, and then you won't know if you're getting Christ's blood, or just the priest's.

Or something. All I know is it probably has to do with periods somehow.


.....

OK.

The real reasons are social, cultural and theological. Periods haven't come up in any of the debates I've seen, either in the Roman Catholic Church or the Worldwide Anglican Communion, at least, none of first-world branches.

The theological mask is that, according to scripture, Christ appointed only male apostles for purposes and reasons which are HIs own, and one does not question to Will of God. The apostles are the explicit forebearers of the priesthood and, especially, the episcopate (the goverance of bishops.)

In the Church of Englad, the resolution they reached was that priests could be any followers of Christ, moved by the spirit, but that the episcopate, the biships, must hold true to the tradition of the apostles, and be men. This is ironic for the Church of England, of course, becasue during the 1500s marriage controversy they reasoned that, although the Bible does not mention of the apostles being married, authority is not given to man to make religious law not directly and explicitly directed by scripture; to do so is to presume to know the mind of God, and is blaspheme. Which is why the Church in Canada green-lit women bishops a while back.

Then there's the question of the social and cultural function the priest is required to fulfil. More than a preacher, for thousands of years the Catholic Priest was the peacemaker in thousands of communities accross Europe. It fell to the priest to resolve fueds and end inter-clan warfare. He was a political bigwig, and in order to fulfill this role, the priest needed to fit into the cultural world he sought to convert. That meant being a man, in those days, at least.

I might also point out that the liberal churches which have made concessions on these sorts of things collapsed throughout the world. That's because they have little prospect of convertying people like you or any of the secular, liberal agnostics who care strongly about this sort of thing, but alienate traditionalists who flee to more conservative churches.

Being more liberal has not helped the Anglican church to thrive in Canada, and has been gutted by born-again alternatives. The United Church, once the dominant protestant denomination and the great hope for eccumenical unity, will be dead within a generation.

Finally, people should keep in mind the conservative parable of the fence in the road. A reformer and a conservative come accross a fence in a road. The reformer says, "this fence is ridiculous! I see no purpose for it! We should move it immediately!" The conservative replies, "Nothing comes from nothing. If it is here, it is here for a reason, and until we know what that is, we shouldn't touch it at all."

It is only the smug and the foolish who judge the efforts of millenia with a glib remark based on a focused lack of knowledge of the topic.

The Church is an institution of faith, its appeal and function is, by definition, often counter-intuitive to those who are not part of that faith.

It is for them to chart their own path in accordance with their consciences, as we are free to chart ours. If people are really upset, well, they are free to join any other church of their choosing or to create their own.

The fact that so few do leave the conservative Catholic Church for, say, the Anglican church highlights the lie that reform will necessarily lead to rejuvination of faith and fortune for Roman Catholicism.

(That being said, I'm proud to be Anglican, and of our principled stances on LGBT issues and our women priests and bishops. I'd rather be in a smaller church according to my conscience than in a massive one according to the conscience of some guy in Rome.)
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby (╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻ » Mon Jul 19, 2010 11:08 pm UTC

tl;dr
bottom line is it's harder to molest children and hand out crackers without a penis.
Heyyy baby wanna kill all humans?

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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby Le1bn1z » Mon Jul 19, 2010 11:16 pm UTC

Meaux_Pas wrote:tl;dr
bottom line is it's harder to molest children and hand out crackers without a penis.


Sums up your entire position on the difficult opinions of other people, I guess. Fits well with this thread. Sums up a lot of other posts, as well.

Understanding and respecting the opinions, cultures and traditions of others is hard work.

Intolerance, ignorance and bigotry is simple.

Won't point out the irony. It was either obvious before you wrote this, or will be lost on you regardless.
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby podbaydoor » Mon Jul 19, 2010 11:38 pm UTC

Le1bn1z wrote:
Meaux_Pas wrote:tl;dr
bottom line is it's harder to molest children and hand out crackers without a penis.


Sums up your entire position on the difficult opinions of other people, I guess. Fits well with this thread. Sums up a lot of other posts, as well.

Understanding and respecting the opinions, cultures and traditions of others is hard work.

Intolerance, ignorance and bigotry is simple.

Won't point out the irony. It was either obvious before you wrote this, or will be lost on you regardless.

What makes you think she doesn't understand? I understood the theology and reasoning behind my Baptist churches' insistence on only males in the church leadership too friggin' well. Discussed it with teachers and preachers and wrestled with that issue (among others) to reconcile it with my personal faith. Ultimately I concluded that understanding it did not mean I had to respect it.
tenet |ˈtenit|
noun
a principle or belief, esp. one of the main principles of a religion or philosophy : the tenets of classical liberalism.
tenant |ˈtenənt|
noun
a person who occupies land or property rented from a landlord.

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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby Le1bn1z » Mon Jul 19, 2010 11:49 pm UTC

podbaydoor wrote:
Le1bn1z wrote:
Meaux_Pas wrote:tl;dr
bottom line is it's harder to molest children and hand out crackers without a penis.


Sums up your entire position on the difficult opinions of other people, I guess. Fits well with this thread. Sums up a lot of other posts, as well.

Understanding and respecting the opinions, cultures and traditions of others is hard work.

Intolerance, ignorance and bigotry is simple.

Won't point out the irony. It was either obvious before you wrote this, or will be lost on you regardless.

What makes you think she doesn't understand? I understood the theology and reasoning behind my Baptist churches' insistence on only males in the church leadership too friggin' well. Discussed it with teachers and preachers and wrestled with that issue (among others) to reconcile it with my personal faith. Ultimately I concluded that understanding it did not mean I had to respect it.


The smug reduction of Roman Catholicism, the largest unified religious group in the world, to child abuse and "handing out crackers." That was the first clue.

It is intollerant. Its willfully ignorant (perhaps some grasp of some issues, but generally less interested on figuring out other people than mocking them). Its also sectarian bigotry.

On the same level of some choice racial slurs I could mention. But there always has been a double-standard on these boards when it comes to avoiding slurs.

Good for you understanding the Baptist arguments. As I mentioned, I'm pro women preists and bishops. Its one of the reason I'm an Anglican. However, I do believe that understanding a position is a pre-req to criticism.
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby thc » Mon Jul 19, 2010 11:52 pm UTC

Leibniz, I always enjoy reading your posts because of how well written they are, even though I often disagree with them.

Re: Historic and traditional arguments: Tradition is no excuse for sexism. The "male-only" institution is a total anachronism in this day and age that values gender equality (more).

Finally, people should keep in mind the conservative parable of the fence in the road. A reformer and a conservative come accross a fence in a road. The reformer says, "this fence is ridiculous! I see no purpose for it! We should move it immediately!" The conservative replies, "Nothing comes from nothing. If it is here, it is here for a reason, and until we know what that is, we shouldn't touch it at all."

And if those reasons are historically sexist?

Being more liberal has not helped the Anglican church to thrive in Canada, and has been gutted by born-again alternatives.
...
The fact that so few do leave the conservative Catholic Church for, say, the Anglican church highlights the lie that reform will necessarily lead to rejuvination of faith and fortune for Roman Catholicism.

The "lie" posited by whom? What exactly is the lie? Because no one argues that bigoted and damaging doctrine can appeal to people... or even that people can willfully ignore it so long as 1) it doesn't affect them and 2) they can ride the "enlightenment" high for all its worth. (And don't forget about the amazing pageantry!).

But even then... note how many gay people leave the Catholic Church. That alone should tell you something.

Also, it's irrelevant. It shouldn't matter whether having a particular doctrine leads to "rejuvenation and fortune." The Church is (supposedly) a moral institution and it's supposed to be doing what is right, not what is popular.

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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby gmalivuk » Tue Jul 20, 2010 12:31 am UTC

Le1bn1z wrote:The real reasons are social, cultural and theological. Periods haven't come up in any of the debates I've seen
I apologize if you were under the mistaken impression that I was being serious in that post.

It's a stupid outdated rule, and therefore I will mock it openly.
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby Le1bn1z » Tue Jul 20, 2010 1:04 am UTC

thc wrote:Leibniz, I always enjoy reading your posts because of how well written they are, even though I often disagree with them.

Re: Historic and traditional arguments: Tradition is no excuse for sexism. The "male-only" institution is a total anachronism in this day and age that values gender equality (more).

Finally, people should keep in mind the conservative parable of the fence in the road. A reformer and a conservative come accross a fence in a road. The reformer says, "this fence is ridiculous! I see no purpose for it! We should move it immediately!" The conservative replies, "Nothing comes from nothing. If it is here, it is here for a reason, and until we know what that is, we shouldn't touch it at all."

And if those reasons are historically sexist?

Being more liberal has not helped the Anglican church to thrive in Canada, and has been gutted by born-again alternatives.
...
The fact that so few do leave the conservative Catholic Church for, say, the Anglican church highlights the lie that reform will necessarily lead to rejuvination of faith and fortune for Roman Catholicism.

The "lie" posited by whom? What exactly is the lie? Because no one argues that bigoted and damaging doctrine can appeal to people... or even that people can willfully ignore it so long as 1) it doesn't affect them and 2) they can ride the "enlightenment" high for all its worth. (And don't forget about the amazing pageantry!).

But even then... note how many gay people leave the Catholic Church. That alone should tell you something.

Also, it's irrelevant. It shouldn't matter whether having a particular doctrine leads to "rejuvenation and fortune." The Church is (supposedly) a moral institution and it's supposed to be doing what is right, not what is popular.


Of course you're right, tradition in its own right is no more reason for something than "progress." The logic of the fence is that of trust and respect. We trust and respect people, in general, not to be a priori stupider or more evil and we are. Otherwise, we are snobbish a-holes.

So, when confronted with a confounding doctrine, what we ought to say is, "huh. Well, this is weird. Why is this here? It seems to be holding us back and causing no end of problems." Then, we go away and say "oh, well, I see it was put here for reasons A, B and C, with unintended benefits X, Y and Z." Then you reason "it also causes problems D, E and F. Changing will improve A and B, and may have unintended consequences. In similar situations M and Q hav happened." Then you do the balancing act.

If the historical reasons for something are offensive, the modern reasons might not be (the monarchy is a good example) and vice versa (I think the historical reasons for male-only priesthoods are relatively innocuous, taken in context, but contemporary ones are hard to justify.)

The lie of rejuvination by reform was often proposed by theological liberals within the Anglican and United Churches. I had family involved with the reform of each, so I have some personal connection to the disputes. The liberals claimed that reform would help reach out to a broader population, and stem the flow of people from the church.

This was the rationale behind a lot of liturgical reform, notably the introduction of the Book of Alternative Services, which changed the several centruy old language to be more modern.

Its not the only reason for reform. As I said, better small and right than big and wrong. But, at the same time, there' a large number who smugly put the Chruch's failure to keep congregations in America and Europe down to archaic traditions alientating the liberal mainstream. In fact, the new liberalised mainstream has little interest in religion, no matter how you package it. Congregations love these old wierdnesses, and the will of the congregations ought to at least have some role in figuring out the future of the church.

Its a tough question. You and I come down on the same side, but I believe in giving such questions the respect they deserve.
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby EsotericWombat » Tue Jul 20, 2010 2:48 am UTC

The idea that misogyny deserves respect because it's wrapped in arcane theological rationalizations is an intellectual dead end. The fact is, the Vatican is actively choosing to court backward douchebags who don't like that the Anglican Church has become more tolerant-- at the expense of treating Catholic women like people.

Respect is earned, and the Vatican has been in deficit mode for some time now.
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby Le1bn1z » Tue Jul 20, 2010 3:14 am UTC

EsotericWombat wrote:The idea that misogyny deserves respect because it's wrapped in arcane theological rationalizations is an intellectual dead end. The fact is, the Vatican is actively choosing to court backward douchebags who don't like that the Anglican Church has become more tolerant-- at the expense of treating Catholic women like people.

Respect is earned, and the Vatican has been in deficit mode for some time now.


By your standards, the vast majority of the world consists of douchebags.

Most people who are not douchebags are wealthy, white, Christian or an atheist/agnostic breakoff therefrom and living in the USA, Europe or the Old Dominions.

Eliteist much?

Also, you're sort of way, way, way overstating your case. Being able to become a priest is not the be all and end all of person-hood.
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby EsotericWombat » Tue Jul 20, 2010 3:44 am UTC

If the vast majority of the world is actively seeking to disengage itself from institutions that practice tolerance, then I have no problem with saying that the vast majority of the world are douchebags, because it's actions and attitudes, not demographics, that inform my opinions of people. My guess is that you're full of shit, though.

Also, you misspelled "elitist."
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby Le1bn1z » Tue Jul 20, 2010 3:59 am UTC

EsotericWombat wrote:If the vast majority of the world is actively seeking to disengage itself from institutions that practice tolerance, then I have no problem with saying that the vast majority of the world are douchebags, because it's actions and attitudes, not demographics, that inform my opinions of people. My guess is that you're full of shit, though.

Also, you misspelled "elitist."


Ummmmmm.....OKKKKKK...

So, from your high pedestal where personal attacks pass for reasoned ethical arguments, and where you are one of the very, very few decent people in a world populated by "douchebags," do you have a plan for making the world a better place, or do you just intend to hurl obscenities and insults at anyone who agrees with you but encourages respectful engagement with those who don't?

You're sentence "...seeking to disengage itself from institutions that practice tolerance..." makes no sense. Much of the world is not tolerant. At all. China is a wildly intolerant place. India's religious elites are dominated by men in most, though not all, religions practiced there. Islam has stricter limits on women participating in religion than do Baptists or Romans. Most Christians in Africa and Latin America seem very comfortable with male leadership. So what are these institutions they're "disengaging" from? The institutions which have animated spiritual and political life for most of the world for millenia are explicitly intolerant, and remain so to this day.

"Tolerant" institutions are opposed in much of the world as modern-day imperialism. Especially since many of its proponents, like you, have all the grace, subtlety and genuine respect for these people as a bunch of Blackwater Mercs on a bender in Baghdad.

As it happens, the African branches of the World Anglican Communion have been engaging in a campaign to have all of Canada's Anglicans (including yours truly) expelled for supporting women priests and gay rights.

So, seeing as I'm more or less about to be excommunicated by a church that never excommunicates anyone for believing in the authority of women bishops, seeing as I've got a personal connection to this and, most of all...

seeing as I actually have studied this, know about this, thought about it seriously all far more than some snotty, western elitist out to civilize a world of barbarians through personal insults, I'll leave you with some advice:

Shut up, and don't reiterate this idiocy in public.

Its embarassing to you, and to those who actually take women's rights in the Chruch seriously and aren't just issue-tourists looking to show off. You make our job much harder, and weaken our position in a fight we could well lose.
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby thc » Tue Jul 20, 2010 4:28 am UTC

Of course you're right, tradition in its own right is no more reason for something than "progress." The logic of the fence is that of trust and respect. We trust and respect people, in general, not to be a priori stupider or more evil and we are. Otherwise, we are snobbish a-holes.

I guess, this is where we fundamentally disagree. I flat out DO NOT trust people - especially evangelicals and religious leaders in power - to not be evil and make evil decisions. I think this point of view is perfectly justified considering history, contemporary issues in general, and more personally, what religion did to the civil rights bill in my home state of Hawaii. Does this really make me a snobbish a-hole?

Much of the world is not tolerant. At all. China is a wildly intolerant place. India's religious elites are dominated by men in most, though not all, religions practiced there. Islam has stricter limits on women participating in religion than do Baptists or Romans. Most Christians in Africa and Latin America seem very comfortable with male leadership. So what are these institutions they're "disengaging" from? The institutions which have animated spiritual and political life for most of the world for millenia are explicitly intolerant, and remain so to this day.

"Tolerant" institutions are opposed in much of the world as modern-day imperialism. Especially since many of its proponents, like you, have all the grace, subtlety and genuine respect for these people as a bunch of Blackwater Mercs on a bender in Baghdad.

You are exactly right that much of the world is far worse. The Church's views on women and gays are hardly egregious compared to shit happening in China, Middle East, Africa, etc. That simply means that there is a lot of work to be done... but I care disproportionately, perhaps irrationally, about the doings of the Catholic Church because of the proximity it has to my own life.

Do I respect the people who are responsible for this sort of crap? That's actually a tough question... but in the end, I'm going to have to agree with the other poster: No I don't. At least, insomuch as I do not respect their beliefs. And considering that your beliefs are equivalent to your identity, saying I don't respect your beliefs is tantamount to saying I do not respect you. Misogynistic and homophobic beliefs, combined with power, are harmful and dangerous in ways that impinge on people's rights and value as human beings. The "civilized world" - yes, I do mean the liberal west - needs to make clear that things like stoning women and torturing gays for fun will NOT be tolerated.

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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby EsotericWombat » Tue Jul 20, 2010 4:48 am UTC

@Le1bn1z: You admittedly didn't understand what I said, and then proceeded to extrapolate an entire attitude towards the rest of the world from it. Classy.
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Re: Vatican: ordination of women a crime. Controversy ensues

Postby Le1bn1z » Tue Jul 20, 2010 4:56 am UTC

@ thc

I think we're heading a wee bit off topic with the stoning of women and of gays thing. Bit of difference between stoning and not carrying a mitre.

But lets talk women in the priesthood.

The first question is, what do we do about it?

Well, we can yell, scream and call them names. This gets nobody anywhere, really. Not when it comes to cultural change. The stonning of women and of gays I'm right behind you on. The response from Canadian Christians to Uganda's proposed stoning of gays there was not kindly. Rage, I think, is the right term.

However, where people aren't getting hurt and where the vast majority of the normal population is onside, taking your stance of playing condescending overlord, especially as a whitey marching into Africa, will not win you any kudos. In fact, the best thing that could happen for the women's rights movement within the Church, somedays, is if people like Esoteric Wombat just STFU.

Its sort of like the support William Wilberforce got from Jacobins and Republicans when he was trying to fight the slave trade. Great. Just what I always wanted. Help from traitors and enemies of the state.

So, trying to convince conservatives of the viability of a transformation of the church to be more inclusive, the last thing we need is people like you or E.W. screaming that religion is evil, and that you support reform to make the church more in line with atheism.

Great. I wonder who will read that at Synod? The female Bishop of Nova Scotia, or the Primate of Uganda?

Which is why I accused buddy of dishonest issue shopping. EW doesn't give a rat's ass about the church, and I doubt you do either. In fact, you want it dead and gone. So why are you pretending to care about reform of the faith?

Unless you're thinking of mimicing the far-right strategy of polarising all of society into atheist and fanatical extremes, you're doing nobody and good.

Second, where do you get off passing judgement simultaneously over billions of people representing dozens of ancient cultures and composing hundreds of countries, ranging from Martin Luther King Jr. to Ghandi?

Now, I know you likely have a high school diploma, and maybe even a college degree. But pretending you have even the remotest credibility to pass such sweeping and total moral judgement over over MLK, Ghandi, Mother Theresa, the Underground Railroad, Equiano, W Wilberforce, John Newman, Tommy Douglas, the entire Salvation Army, the old folks working at the homeless shelters at churches, the soup kitchen people, the folks at Red Crescent, the courageous ladies working at womens' schools in Afghanistan, a whole lot of allied vets and dead from WWII, the Vatican resistance agents who smuggled Jews out of Rome during the holocaust, the priests who opposed Hitler and were killed in the Holocaust, bunches of Jews killed in the Holocaust, most Jews period and so many other people because you read a couple of books from the comfort of Hawaii in highschool.... well, it strikes me as arrogant and ridiculous. Neither of us are the moral or intellectual equivalent of many of those you so brazenly contemn.

I'm not saying we should agree with everything such people say. But as human beings, we owe them the respect and dignity of our opposition being as resolute as it is respectful and consciensious, and made in full knowledge of our own human fallibility. I also understand your discomfort with inequality. I share the same discomfort. But the character of a person is never black and white, and to cast one's judgement of people in those terms is utterly unfair.

And I never said "always trust people not to be evil." I said that humility and self-understanding dictate that we understand we are only human.

Being only human means that on average we are no smarter or better than humanity. Sometimes we're right, sometimes we're wrong.

When we come accross something we don't like or don't understand, we have a duty to understand first and judge only afterwards. As Dylan would say, "Don't criticise what you don't understand."

Ironically, you and EW are guilty of the same crime as the Catholic Church, lashing out with intollerance from a place of willful ignorance.

As a progressive, you of all people should know that it is such arrogance from which tyranny is born.

EsotericWombat wrote: @Le1bn1z: You admittedly didn't understand what I said, and then proceeded to extrapolate an entire attitude towards the rest of the world from it. Classy.


Your entire contribution thus far has consisted of personal attacks based on.... nothing from what I can see. If I had to guess, I'd say you know nothing of this subject save what you've read from others here and what you've checked on Wikipedia, if you've gone that far.

I understood what you said. Sweeping, obscene insults of whole civilizations are hard to miss, as are accusations of ignorance backed up by absolutely no positive contribution of your own.

So, if you have nothing useful to say, shut up and leave the topic to people who care enough to have a serious conversation about it.

thc is a far better advocate for your position than you. Leave it to thc.
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