googlef87758e9b6df9bec.html A Sure Word: February 2012

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Farewell to Davy Jones

I was surprised and saddened today when I heard about the passing of Davy Jones. At the risk of giving away my age, I remember watching the Monkees when I was young. A few years back, when my daughter was younger, she was watching a Barney special. At one point, some monkeys were pushing a bed out onto the stage when Baby Bop said, “Hey, hey, they're the monkeys.” My daughter never understood why I found that so funny.

I actually had a fleeting encounter with Davy Jones about 10 years ago or so. Maybe it's generous to even call it an “encounter.” It was more like a near-encounter. Let me recount it for you.

I was attending a men's retreat in Northern KY, just across the river from Cincinnati, OH. During one of the breaks, I had gone into the lobby of the hotel and noticed a group of men standing around at the opposite side of the lobby. I didn't think anything about it and went back into the conference room. After a few minutes, my father-in-law came back to the table and told me it was Davy Jones who had been in the lobby.  He was apparently staying at the same hotel as we were but I didn't even see him.  Like I said, it was a near-encounter.

Here's the funny part. Ken Ham of Answers in Genesis was the featured speaker at the retreat. When the meeting resumed, he announced to everyone that Davy Jones was just in the lobby. He then said something to the effect of, “I guess here's a man who really was once a 'Monkee'.” I'm sure everyone saw that one coming but it was still a good laugh.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure of Jones' spiritual condition. We should all pray for his family and surviving bandmates. Farewell to the man who was once a Monkee.

Monday, February 27, 2012

7 Theories on the Origin of Life

Whenever creationists asks about the origin of life, evolutionists usually respond by saying, “that's not part of evolution.” I've always thought it was rather convenient of them to propose a theory where all life has descended from a common ancestor yet excuse themselves from explaining origin of the common ancestor but never mind that now. Everyone knows what's really going on: evolutionists secretly know that the origin of life is a legitimate question for which they have no answer. So they dodge the question with, “that's not part of the theory,” in hopes of buying enough time to come up with a plausible natural explanation which they will make a part of their theory.

LiveScience is an online, science magazine that regularly posts “countdown” lists, similar to David Letterman's Top 10 lists. One list they have is the top 7 theories on the origin of life (I guess they couldn't come up with 10). Each theory received a short description which you can read for yourself but here is an even briefer summary:

Electric Spark: Inspired by the Miller-Urey experiment of 1953, this theory suggests that lightning interacting with methane gas in the earth's atmosphere created amino acids.

Community Clay: This is the idea that mineral crystals in clay helped organize the first living cells.

Deep-Sea Vents: Some people believe life began in the hydrogen-rich environment of submarine, hydrothermal vents.

Chilly Start: Instead of super-hot, hydrothermal vents, some believe life began inside hundreds of feet of ice that supposedly covered the early oceans.

RNA World: Before DNA, some speculate that life began with RNA. Of course, they don't have a conclusive theory on the origin of RNA either.

Simple Beginnings: Instead of developing from complex molecules such as RNA, life might have begun with smaller molecules interacting with each other in cycles of reactions.

Panspermia: This is the idea that life did not begin on earth at all but was brought here from space via comets or meteors. Some extremists who hold this view believe life was intentionally planted here by intelligent aliens but LiveScience didn't mention them in their description of panspermia.

I know these are meant to be thumbnail sketches of the various theories but I believe they say a lot about scientists' ideas about the origin of life.

First off, I noticed the casual use of the word “theory.” Some creationists have criticized evolution by saying, “It's just a theory.” This usually brings howls of ridicule from evolutionist explaining how a “theory” is more than just a “guess”; It's supposed to be a well-substantiated, well-supported, well-documented explanation for our observations. Here, though, they just mean “guess,” don't they? “Theories” are only well-substantiated when creationists suggest that evolution is just a guess. When evolutionists use the word, “guesses” are fine. The correct title of the countdown should be “7 Guesses About the Origin of Life.”

Some of these guesses, though, don't even address the origin of life.  Panspermia, for example, merely pushes the problem further back and onto another world.  And the idea that life began as RNA instead of DNA doesn't explain the origin of RNA.

Did you also notice the huge range covered by the various guesses? Maybe life began in hot vents or maybe it was in ice. Maybe it formed in the sea or maybe in the clay. Maybe life didn't even begin on earth. Some of these competing theories... I mean "guesses"... aren't even close to each other but are mutually exclusive. It's not like scientists have narrowed it down to a range of ideas – they're wild guesses. This isn't science; it's story telling.

This brings me to my final point. It's painfully obvious that scientists truly have no idea about the origin of life. Yet, if they have no idea, then how can they credibly claim that God didn't create life? Do they really mean to say, “I don't know how life began but I KNOW God didn't create it!”? Yes, they really do mean to say that. Even though they have absolutely no idea how life began, they refuse to consider the possibility that God created life. It's disqualified in advance because of their tenet of methodological naturalism. I've written before how there is no scientific reason to reject a supernatural explanation. It's merely their bias.

Some evolutionists would rather continue in ignorance rather than consider a plausible, supernatural explanation for the origin of life. Still others would rather believe we are martians, planted here by aliens rather than believe we are created by God. It's their presupposed naturalism which blinds them to how silly they're being.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

He Didn't Say It – But I Will

Now that he's topping the polls as the current frontrunner in the Republican primaries, Rick Santorum has become the new target of the liberal media. Over the last couple of days, much hay has been made over Santorum's comment that Obama's agenda was driven by “some phoney ideal – some phoney theology. Oh, not a theology based on the Bible – a different theology but no less a theology.” The alternative media (MSNBC, NBC, CBS, etc) has seized upon that as an attack on Obama's religious views and are crying foul.

You can watch the full context of the remarks here. It's easy for people with limited command of the vocabulary to pounce upon the word “theology” and see it as a discussion about Christian religion but from the full context, it's rather obvious to rational people that the “theology” he intended is that of radical environmentalism. Santorum even spelled that out for those media reporters who confronted him about it. He further clarified that he does not question Obama's Christian faith but, even now, the bias-driven reporters on the left continue to misrepresent him.

The ironic thing in all this is that there really is a big question about Obama's faith. Let's face it, here's a man who has been the President of the United States for more than three years. He's in the public's eye daily. There is a camera on him nearly every moment of the day that he steps foot out of the door. Everywhere he goes, everything he says, everything he does is reported in excruciating detail. Yet after all this time, he's still not able to convincingly persuade people that he's not a Muslim! Isn't that odd?

Now, certainly I'm not trying to brag but I will use myself as an example. Anyone who has known me for any length of time beyond a casual meeting knows that I'm a Christian. It's simple things that give it away. He will hear me talking about my faith, he will see me reading the Bible, he will see me going to church, maybe he will even read my blog! It would be impossible for anyone, after 3 years, to suspect me of being a Muslim. That's they way it should be. Acts 1:8 says, “ye shall be witnesses unto me.”

What do we know about our President's faith? I know that he never bothered to join a church after moving to Washington. I know that over the prior decade or more that he claimed to have attended “Reverend” Wright's church, he says he never once heard any of the “reverend's” incendiary remarks making it unlikely he truly attended. I know that he's radically pro-abortion, pro-gay marriage, and pro-many other things that seem contrary to Christian values. I know that on at least two occasions, he misquoted the Declaration of Independence by saying, “We are endowed.... with certain unalienable rights” - omitting the words “by our Creator” even though they are in Declaration and were on his teleprompter! I know that in his last thanksgiving proclamation, he gave thanks to Alaskan Natives, American Indians, and US veterans before mentioning giving thanks to God. Oh, and I know that he's a bald-faced liar.

Jesus said that we can judge people by their fruits (Matthew 7:16,20). There's nothing about the President's life that convinces me he's a Christian. His blatant lack of fruit belies any occasional reference to God or the Bible. So let me be clear: I do not believe the President Obama is a Christian. Senator Santorum may not say that – but I will.

Advantage After the Fact

I was browsing online and came across an interesting article about the supposed “evolutionary advantage to tears.” Actually it was only mild interesting but it does give me an opportunity to demonstrate a key flaw in many such evolutionary scenarios.

The article states that humans are the only creatures that cry (I suppose they should say “only creatures known to cry”). The article begins by asking, rhetorically, “Why do we cry?” From there, it goes on to speculate that crying “evolved” as a mechanism that elicits sympathy from other people. To quote the article, Fundamentally, crying is a way to get what you want — that’s why babies do it. (Sorry, mothers.) Or, that clever turn of phrase adults use: 'The squeaky wheel gets the oil.'

I found this photo online. It's the same photo, side by side, except that the one on the right has had the tears digitally removed. I must say, I was a little surprised at the dramatically different impression given by the presence of tears. Perhaps there is something to the idea that crying provokes sympathy. So I will amend my earlier comment and at least admit the subject matter of the article is somewhat interesting.

Let me digress for a moment. I believe we have emotions because God has emotions and we are made in His image (Genesis 1:27). We are not like the animals (Genesis 2:20) and so I don't expect us to display (or not display) emotions the way animals do. This isn't really the point of my post, though, so let me return to the subject at hand.

The whole article is remarkably contrived and goes to great pains to explain to why crying supposedly evolved but misses a key point – namely, how crying evolved. You see, there's a lot more involved in crying than the production of tears. After all, tears are also produced to help clean the eye. Many animals produce tears for this purpose. Yet with crying comes an association with strong emotions, facial expressions, sobs, etc. Each of these had to evolve in order for the production of tears to be identified with a display of emotions. Furthermore, in order to garner sympathy, the observer must himself have already evolved the ability to recognize crying as a display of emotion.

Here's the problem: In hindsight, it's easy to speculate what survival advantages some particular trait might offer its hosts. However, evolution is not a directed process. It doesn't matter what advantage the end result might be; no trait will evolve unless there is some advantage for the host every step of the way. When some alleged ancestor first began over-producing tears, for example, it obviously did not garner sympathy from anyone or anything. “Evolution” did not know it would eventually be seen as a display of emotions and so that trait could not be said to have evolved to elicit sympathy.

The speculation about crying demonstrates the typical habit of evolutionists to proffer “why” some given trait has evolved. Birds evolved colorful feathers in order to attract a mate. Lions evolved thick manes to shield their heads and necks when fighting other lions. Some animals have evolved stripes as a means of camouflage. The list is goes on and on.

There's a sort of circular argument going on here. Animals that can run fast will catch more prey. Therefore, animals that can run fast evolved that ability in order to catch more prey. Do you see how that sounds a little silly?

The ability to identify the survival advantage of a particular trait does not begin to explain “why” the trait evolved. Even assuming evolution were true, I can say with certainty that crying did NOT evolve in order to elicit sympathy. To suggest any reason “why” a certain trait evolved ascribes a purpose to the process.

In this case, I know crying is the product of design. God made us emotional creatures. Perhaps we do empathize with people when they cry. However, whatever selective advantage might be realized from crying is not any kind of argument for evolution. It's merely an attempt to describe the advantage after the fact of it already existing.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

It's Not Funny Anymore!

Liberals are crazy. I mean that literally. Liberalism is a mental disorder and I'm just waiting for the AMA to recognize it as such. Normally it's not acceptable to laugh at people who are mentally challenged but I have made an exception for liberals. At certain times in the past, I've just found their twisted way of thinking to be funny. One example I've used before is how liberals want to ban salt and legalize marijuana. It's hilarious. Lately though, it's getting out of hand.

You might have already heard about the recent incident in Hoke County, NC, where a 4 year old kindergartener was told her homemade lunch wasn't acceptable. According to the Carolina Journal, The girl’s turkey and cheese sandwich, banana, potato chips, and apple juice did not meet U.S. Department of Agriculture guidelines, according to the interpretation of the person who was inspecting all lunch boxes in the More at Four classroom that day.” The little girl was served a cafeteria lunch instead and her parent received a note explaining that, “students who did not bring a "healthy lunch" would be offered the missing portions, which could result in a fee from the cafeteria, in her case $1.25.

It's tempting to make another joke about the hypocrisy of liberals. I could say something like, “liberals don't want to test welfare recipients for drugs but want to inspect kids lunches” but the situation is too alarming to make jokes. This is like a Seinfeld episode come to life. It's the soup Nazi snapping, “No turkey for you!”

The event has captured nationwide attention and the school's actions have been harshly criticized. In a follow up to the story, tried to explain that this was all a misunderstanding. Assistant Superintended in Hoke County, Bob Barnes explained, “The assessment requires the school to review children's lunches for nutrition.... If a homemade lunch is determined to be missing one of the food groups required by United States Department of Agriculture regulations, the school is supposed to offer it to the student for free.”

Does he really think that helps his case? The problem is not necessarily how this situation was handled. The problem lies in the very premise that school officials believe its their job to inspect kids' lunchboxes in the first place. This is a symptom of liberal elitism. They think they know what's best for us and so have deployed federal agents to make sure we're taking care of ourselves correctly.

Watch this short video where Debbie Squires tries to defend the elitist position before a Michigan House Committee Meeting (I apologize for the poor video quality):

Do you see what I mean? Elitists think we might want to take care of ourselves and our kids but we just don't know how. They see it as their job to step in and protect us from our own ignorance. Where do these regulations stop? Will there be federal agents in restrooms to make sure everyone washes their hands before exiting? Maybe we should take our cars to the BMV every month to make sure our tires are properly inflated and our fluids topped off. When we renew our driver's licenses, maybe we should provide proof of gym membership to demonstrate we're also getting enough exercise.

Actually, I'd better stop before I give liberals ideas for new regulations.

The NC example is another reason why homeschooling has become so popular. Unfortunately, it's gone far beyond the schools. Rush Limbaugh has warned before that liberals might be funny when they're out of power but when they're in power, they're dangerous. I see what he means. The police state has already gotten out of hand. We don't need help from the government to live our lives. This isn't funny anymore!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Killing Weeds, Killing People – Same Thing?!

A Few weeks ago, BioEdge published an incredible article discussing the ethics of organ harvesting. In the article, two bioethicists made the astonishing claim that killing by itself is not morally wrong.” They tried to justify their position with the following reasoning:
[I]f killing were wrong just because it is causing death or the loss of life, then the same principle would apply with the same strength to pulling weeds out of a garden. If it is not immoral to weed a garden, then life as such cannot really be sacred, and killing as such cannot be morally wrong.
Do I really need to comment? Their flawed reasoning is plain for all to see. Well, maybe it's not so plain. Rather than soundly condemning the claims of these so called, “bioethicists,” the author of this article, Michael Cook, actually seems to defend them. He writes:
This radical conclusion may shock some readers, but the authors are not murderers. They want to bring greater precision to what we mean by killing. Rendering someone totally and permanently incapacitated is just as bad as taking a life, or so they contend. Killing totally disabled patients does them no harm.
That last line is a hoot! “Killing totally disabled patients does them no harm”? In what universe does killing a person do them no harm? I suggest that there is no interest in bringing a greater precision to the term “killing” but rather this is an attempt to blur the meaning.

What would prevent Mr. Cook from immediately denouncing these absurd ideas? I'll tell you. If scientists practice a secular brand of science, one where there is no absolute standard of right and wrong, then moral decisions are driven by what is expedient. He can see the point the bioethicists are trying to make: namely, we have people who are vegetables and we have people who need organ transplants. To him, this is a worthwhile discussion.

This highlights the dangers of moral relativism.

In the Christian worldview, we know that all people are created in the image of God (Genesis 1:26). There is value in human life. We are not like the animals and we are certainly not like the plants. We are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14) and even the most pathetic human is infinitely more valuable than a weed. Questions about the “quality of life” are relative and subjective and certainly do not supersede the fundamental “right to life” which has been endowed upon us by our Creator and protected by our Constitution. Truth is absolute and the Bible specifically condemns the taking of innocent human life.

These bioethicists have made several flawed assumption in reaching their conclusion. Foremost is the overt assumption that there is no qualitative difference between human and plant life (I suppose they also treat animal life with equal regard). They make no attempt to defend this idea but seem to rely on a fundamental understanding that a clinical definition of “life” applies equally to all “living” things. “Life is life,” if you will. If we start with that assumption, then the bioethicists are correct. If all things are equally alive, then there really is no difference between a human and a plant.

Once we cross that bridge and equate humans and plants, then we can rationalize the taking of certain lives for the sake of others. It's the same reason we pluck weeds so other plants can grow. If a person is only alive in a persistent, vegetative state, then why not harvest his organs to help someone who can recover and contribute to society? It's a sort of evolution – a societal “survival of the fittest.” The lion eats the zebra in order to survive. Is that “wrong”? It's nature's way for the strong to exploit the weak and if we can “weed out” the unfit members of our society to benefit the more fit, on what grounds can anyone say it's wrong?

Of course, why stop with the persistent vegetative? What about the permanently disabled? People who are victims of something like downs syndrome will always be dependent on others and thus will always be a drain on the resources of those who help them. Why not harvest their organs for the benefit of people who can become productive if they could only receive transplants? You can see this is a slippery slope where might makes right. Even so, the problem remains – on what grounds can we say it's “wrong”? If it's only wrong because the majority says it's wrong, then eugenics could prevail if its proponents can only persuade enough people to their view. Then suddenly what we believe is “wrong” now will become “right.”

As I've said many times before, atheists are not rational people. More specifically, anyone who rejects the absolute truth of the Bible is irrational. Even though they have no objective standard by which they can judge right and wrong, they still act like such a standard exists. These same people who claim that plant life is the same as human life will devote themselves to taking care of their families and also cut their grass. They will tell their children it's “wrong” to lie even though their own worldview is silent on the subject. They call Christians “evil” and say creationists are lying yet there is no scientific standard which identifies anything as “evil” or makes lying “wrong.” In instance after instance, these people conduct their lives in direct contradiction to their own worldview.

Fortunately, Christians are not confused and can see the difference between humans and weeds.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Talk Origins Says Evolution Can Be Falsified (TO) describes themselves on their homepage as “a Usenet newsgroup devoted to the discussion and debate of biological and physical origins.” That sounds somewhat benign. I would say they are more like a Usenet group devoted to ridiculing Christians in general and creationists specifically. I used to frequent their site fairly regularly but they no longer post new material so once I had read everything, I stopped going there.

Just the other day, I happened across their site again while researching something else. The article that I stumbled upon was in their “Index to Creationist Claims” and was a short post meant to rebut the claim that evolution cannot be falsified. You can read it here.

A good scientific theory should falsifiable. That's not my rule but one agreed on by the scientific establishment. The complaint raised by creationists (including myself on this blog) is that ToE cannot be falsified and so is not a good theory. No piece of evidence, no matter how damning to the theory, is sufficient to dissuade evolutionists from their beliefs. Any new find, no matter how much it might contradict previous understandings of evolution, is simply worked into the theory.

Normally, evolutionists are reluctant to suggest ways evolution might be falsified. I believe it's because they have been burned too many times in the past when some unexpected find upsets some point of their cherished theory. If they put something down in writing, they are putting themselves at risk that such a thing might actually be found someday. If they had been sincere, I would have to give kudos to TO for at least trying. However, the possible items they have suggested could disprove evolution cannot be serious. We'll look at them one by one.


I suppose they are saying that if the fossil record did not show any progression of life or change in species, then evolution would be falsified. I think it's funny they would suggest such a thing. We've already found millions of fossils and evolutionists have built their “nested hierarchy” based on what they have found. In other words, they've already spelled out what they identify as a progression in the fossil record so how could the fossil record ever be used to falsify the theory? It's a sort of prediction after the fact. This would be like me saying that the existence of God could be falsified by a lack of written revelation. Well, we already have the written revelation from God (the Bible) so this could not ever be used to falsify the existence of God. Therefore, it can't be a serious suggestion.

I once had an evolutionist suggest that evolution could be falsified by showing that animals don't reproduce. Yes, he was serious! Of course, animals are already known to reproduce so evos are safe from having their theory falsified by this test. In that same manner, “progression” has already been identified in the fossil record so TO can suggest that a static fossil record could falsify evolution without worrying such a thing would ever be found.


In Greek mythology, the chimera was a creature with a goat's head, a lion's body, and a tail ending in a snake's head. In this context, a chimera is any creature that is a composite of other creatures. A centaur, for example, was a composite of a human and a horse.

Bizarre creatures like centaurs or mermaids would be difficult to fit into evolution's precious “nested hierarchy” but neither would falsify evolution. Evolution uses similarities between animals as evidence of their relatedness. Therefore, if a chimera were found, it would not be evidence against evolution but would actually be evidence of a previously unknown relationship between different groups.

Let's be honest, TO knows we're not ever going to find a centaur. But say we found a creature that shared features with... oh, I don't know... say a reptile and a bird. Oh, wait! We've found that already. Have you ever heard of Archaeopteryx? Per Wikipedia, “Despite its small size, broad wings, and inferred ability to fly or glide, Archaeopteryx has more in common with other small Mesozoic dinosaurs than it does with modern birds. In particular, it shares the following features with the deinonychosaurs (dromaeosaurs and troodontids): jaws with sharp teeth, three fingers with claws, a long bony tail, hyperextensible second toes ("killing claw"), feathers (which also suggest homeothermy), and various skeletal features.

If we ever find a fish with hair, the headline the next day would not be, “Evolution proven wrong.” It will be, “New find shows fish more closely related to mammals than previously believed.”


This item suffers from the same flaw as the first item above. It's a test that has failed in advance. We already know that mutations accumulate in the genes (known as genetic burden). And since mutations already accumulate, TO knows that no mechanism preventing them from accumulating will ever be found. Evolution is safe from this test.


I can't tell if TO is making a joke here or if they're trying to be serious. How can they be serious? I mean, if God created an animal in front of my eyes, how does that disprove evolution? Even though God created that animal, everything else could have evolved! This isn't even close to disproving evolution.

Perhaps they are attempting to make a concession. They concede that, if God appeared and created something before their eyes, they would be forced to acknowledge that creation as revealed in the Bible was true. However, I don't believe even that would convince some people. After all, Jesus did turn water into wine and multiplied the loaves and fish. Even though He performed these acts of creation in front of literally thousands of witnesses, they still did not all believe.

IN CONCLUSION, this is merely more of the same. New finds in science have overturned previously held theories about evolution but nothing will ever threaten THE theory of evolution.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Bob Hope on Zombies

Here's some comic relief.  I know it's an oldie but it's still a goodie.  Enjoy!!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

What is the Evidence for Atheism?

Evolutionists are supposed to be all about the evidence.  They claim they refuse to believe anything without evidence.  They ridicule Christians and creationists with claims that we believe in a God for whom there is no evidence.  The fact of the matter, though, is that evolutionists are very confused people.  When I ask them for the scientific evidence that supports the philosophical underpinning of their brand of science (methodological naturalism), they reply with blank stares and bad logic.  I'm still waiting for evidence.  Yet as confused as evolutionists are, atheists have to be worse.

If atheism is the default belief of intellectuals (or so I've been told) and if “reasonable” people demand evidence before believing anything (or so I've been told), then I have a very simple question for atheists: What is the evidence for atheism?  I mean, if atheists don't believe things without evidence then they must have evidence that there is no God, right?  Well what is it?  Please show it to me.  I'm very curious how you came to your belief if you only followed the evidence.  I've asked this question many times over the years and the answers I've received only serve to highlight how irrational and arbitrary atheism actually is.  

Let me qualify something; I've said before that I would never claim to be a philosopher or scholar but I have studied logic a little.  I know enough to understand that it is impossible to prove a universal negative.  To say, “No where in the universe does X exist” is not a defensible position.  No one can know something doesn't exist anywhere in the universe unless he's actually been everywhere in the universe and seen that it's not there.  What's worse, he'd have to have been everywhere in the universe in a single moment in time lest the thing he is looking for should move around and always be in a different place than the observer.  

I've blogged before how worldviews like empiricism are contradictory and self defeating.  There is no evidence, for example, that proves knowledge is only gained by evidence.  To put it kindly, holding a self-contradictory worldview is irrational.  Atheists, on the the other hand, have a zealot-like faith in a position they cannot ever possibly know to be true.  That's just nuts.

Knowing that a universal negative is impossible to prove, a clever atheist will usually put the burden back onto the Christian to prove that God does exist.  This is a red herring and intellectual dishonesty on the part of the atheist.  It is the atheist who is saying that there is no God, thus claiming a universal negative to be true.  If he were honest and rational, he should, at the very least, claim he has not seen convincing evidence that there is a God.  That is not what is happening.  The atheist asserts that nowhere in the universe does God exist.  If he makes that claim, he must prove it.  He cannot make the bald assertion that there is no God and then throw the burden onto the Christian to prove him wrong!

In the face of impossible logic, many atheists will usually retreat to the more easily defended position of saying, “I have never seen evidence for God.”  This is an amazing concession because they are virtually admitting to agnosticism instead of atheism.  When they assume this attitude, I've found they usually claim to still be atheists.  That's rather odd because they have already admitted they cannot know with certainty that what they claim is true.  To still have a resolute belief there is no God is simply that zealot-like faith shining through again.

The more subdued position agnosticism and saying there isn't evidence (or convincing evidence) for God sounds reasonable at first hearing.  However, it is simply another way of shifting the burden of proof away from the atheist.  Remember, these are usually the same ones who claim to not believe anything without evidence.  If they refuse to acknowledge the possible existence of God, then they are not holding to agnosticism but to atheism.  If they sincerely believe there is no God, then their own arguments demand they have evidence for it.

Furthermore, this idea of not having evidence for God is not a positive argument for the atheist's position.  I want to hear the evidence that there is no God – not criticisms of arguments for the existence of God.  To invoke a lack of evidence for God is essentially an argument from silence.  The atheist-pretending-to-be-agnostic is saying, “I have not seen evidence for God therefore there is no God.”

OK all you atheists out there:  You talk about evidence?  You talk about proof?  Then educate me.  Don't tell me I don't have evidence for my belief.  Tell the the evidence for yours.  What is the evidence for atheism?   

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Obama to Catholics: “To Hell With You”

A few months back, the Department of Health and Human Services released guidelines mandating that by the summer of 2012, all individual and group insurance plans must cover contraception, sterilization procedures, and abortion inducing drugs. Prior to the passage of Obama-care, one of the many criticisms of the plan was that it would ultimately violate the religious liberties of employers and individuals. The Administration assured us that the religious conscience of the people would be safe. We see now that was another lie.

In an editorial, Catholic Bishop, David Zubik, had some hard hitting words about the Catholic response to the new guidelines. Here are some highlights from his column:
It is really hard to believe that it happened. It comes like a slap in the face. The Obama administration has just told the Catholics of the United States, “To hell with you!” There is no other way to put it.
A million things are wrong with this: equating pregnancy with disease; mandating that every employer pay for contraception procedures, including alleged contraceptives that are actually abortion-inducing drugs; forcing American citizens to choose between violating their consciences or providing health care services; mandating such coverage on every individual woman without allowing her to even choose not to have it; and forcing every person to pay for that coverage no matter the dictates of their conscience.
So-called exemption
Let’s be blunt. This whole process of mandating these guidelines undermines the democratic process itself. In this instance, the mandate declares pregnancy a disease, forces a culture of contraception and abortion on society, all while completely bypassing the legislative process. 
This is government by fiat that attacks the rights of everyone — not only Catholics; not only people of all religions. At no other time in memory or history has there been such a governmental intrusion on freedom not only with regard to religion, but even across-the-board with all citizens. It forces every employer to subsidize an ideology or pay a penalty while searching for alternatives to health care coverage. It undermines the whole concept and hope for health care reform by inextricably linking it to the zealotry of pro-abortion bureaucrats.
For our church this mandate would apply in virtually every instance where the Catholic Church serves as an employer. The mandate would require the Catholic Church as an employer to violate its fundamental beliefs concerning human life and human dignity by forcing Catholic entities to provide contraceptive, sterilization coverage and even pharmaceuticals that result in abortion.There was a so-called “religious exemption” to the mandate, but it was so narrowly drawn that, as critics charged, Jesus Christ and his apostles would not fit the exemption. The so-called exemption would only apply to the vast array of Catholic institutions where the following applied:
Only Catholics are employed;The primary purpose of the institution or service provided is the direct instruction in Catholic belief;The only people served by the institution are those who share Catholic religious tenets. (Try to fit this in with our local Catholic Charities, which serves 80,000 every year without discrimination according to faith. It would be impossible!)
Practically speaking, under the proposed mandate there would be no “religious exemption” for Catholic hospitals, universities, colleges, nursing homes and numerous Catholic social service agencies such as Catholic Charities. It could easily be determined that the “religious exemption” would not apply as well to Catholic high schools, elementary schools and parishes since many employ non-Catholics and serve both Catholic students and, through social outreach, many who do not share our religious beliefs. Such a narrow “religious exemption” is simply unprecedented in federal law.
Kathleen Sebelius, and through her the Obama administration, have said “To hell with you” to the Catholic faithful of the United States.
To hell with your religious beliefs,To hell with your religious liberty,To hell with your freedom of conscience.
We’ll give you a year, they are saying, and then you have to knuckle under.
I could not have said it any better. I've said before that I'm not a Catholic. However, it's no stretch of the imagination to see how these guidelines are a threat to the religious liberty of all believers. It even erodes the rights of non-believers since it establishes a precedent that the government's agenda for a better society trumps individual liberties.

This is another call to arms. We need to let our legislators know that we will not stand still while our God given rights are trampled by the very government we established to protect them. We need to challenge this in the courts and we need to defeat its advocates at the ballot box.

Hopefully, November of 2012 will be the end of the Obama administration and the beginning of the repeal of Obama-care.