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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk bklynboy68's Avatar
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    Default Penn Gillette & Glenn Beck

    This is definitely worth watching!

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  2. #2
    Baluchitherium
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    I watched… Interesting stuff. I'm with him on most of what he says, but I think Penn is inconsistent and flat wrong on religion/public lands. I was a little surprised Beck didn't respond in some way.

    He talks about freedom and inclusion, but wants to exclude religious people. They've paid into the public land as much, if not more, than anyone else. If you want to stop use by any group that will make someone feel left out, you may as well close and sell the land. "Fairness" shouldn't dictate that every event should be benign and non-offensive to everyone, but rather "fairness" should mean that everyone has the same rights and opportunities for use.

    He's right when he says people need to get over the idea that they have a right to not be offended. I just wish he'd extend that thought to public lands.
    Posted from yo' mama's house.


  3. #3
    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    I'm a big fan of Penn's. He will almost always be the smartest guy in the room. He also tends to know more about religion than most people he talks to that consider themselves religious.

    What he's saying is that one's "right" to have a nativity scene on public land that he/she paid for shouldn't supersede his right as an atheist who also paid for that to not want it there. His property (income) is being taken from him by force to pay for land that is being used to, among other things, support a specific religious point of view. Even if every single religion in the world is represented, someone who doesn't believe in any of it is being forced to pay for it. I don't find that an inconsistent position from him at all. You may not agree with it, and that's fine, but his point of view is all about the most freedom possible for the individual. He alludes to this in the chat, but these laws don't exist to protect the majority opinion. There might be a town of 50,000 and 49,999 of them are Christian and want the nativity scene on public land. Penn is saying we should be protecting the 1 atheist's right not to have to pay to advance that point of view through government-owned land.

    While I basically agree with him, he's a much more extreme libertarian than I am. Libertarians tend to be about principle, even if it's something that is seemingly innocuous like this, so someone who is hardcore about it will be just as passionate about this as something that might seem to be a much larger battle.

    Me, I don't give a shit, and I am an atheist. I don't get offended that easily. And while I agree with him on the principle, I'm never going to be nearly as passionate about it as those fighting back against a perceived, IMO, war on Christmas, so why bother with it?
    Last edited by lovemachine97(Version 2); 12.08.12 at 06:04 PM.

  4. #4
    Baluchitherium
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    I understand what he's saying. What I'm saying is, I find it inconsistent to espouse liberty while restricting the freedom of another. If use of public land is going to based on allowing only things that all citizens can endorse, there's going to be very little, if anything, allowed. Or is it only a bias against religion?
    Posted from yo' mama's house.


  5. #5
    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
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    not a fan of Beck but that was an excellent interview. Penn Gillette is a very interesting character.

  6. #6
    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lovemachine97(Version 2) View Post
    I'm a big fan of Penn's. He will almost always be the smartest guy in the room. He also tends to know more about religion than most people he talks to that consider themselves religious.

    What he's saying is that one's "right" to have a nativity scene on public land that he/she paid for shouldn't supersede his right as an atheist who also paid for that to not want it there. His property (income) is being taken from him by force to pay for land that is being used to, among other things, support a specific religious point of view. Even if every single religion in the world is represented, someone who doesn't believe in any of it is being forced to pay for it. I don't find that an inconsistent position from him at all. You may not agree with it, and that's fine, but his point of view is all about the most freedom possible for the individual. He alludes to this in the chat, but these laws don't exist to protect the majority opinion. There might be a town of 50,000 and 49,999 of them are Christian and want the nativity scene on public land. Penn is saying we should be protecting the 1 atheist's right not to have to pay to advance that point of view through government-owned land.

    While I basically agree with him, he's a much more extreme libertarian than I am. Libertarians tend to be about principle, even if it's something that is seemingly innocuous like this, so someone who is hardcore about it will be just as passionate about this as something that might seem to be a much larger battle.

    Me, I don't give a shit, and I am an atheist. I don't get offended that easily. And while I agree with him on the principle, I'm never going to be nearly as passionate about it as those fighting back against a perceived, IMO, war on Christmas, so why bother with it?
    in theory what he says is fine. In reality it can't work. Because it can't just be religion. If the 1 non-Christian can veto any use of public land to have a nativity scene or can veto the Boy Scouts rights to use a park. Then why can't the one non-baseball fan veto the championship parade on city streets? In one breath he says people have to know they don't have the right to not be offended and in the next breath he says the rights of the non-christian being offended is greater than the rights of all Chistians.

  7. #7
    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by VegasVic View Post
    I understand what he's saying. What I'm saying is, I find it inconsistent to espouse liberty while restricting the freedom of another. If use of public land is going to based on allowing only things that all citizens can endorse, there's going to be very little, if anything, allowed. Or is it only a bias against religion?
    Right, but those "rights" stop when they trample on someone else's--in this case forcing an atheist to pay to display a religious point of view on government property.

    Example: I'm free to put a nativity scene on my property. I'm also free to buy property with other Christians and display a nativity scene.

    But in this case, the government is forcing the atheist to pay for the property that is displaying a nativity scene. Even if most of the area is fine with it, the atheist may not be, yet is compelled to pay to display a religious point of view because the government forces him to pay taxes and pay for that property or go to jail. There's a difference.

    But it comes down to how one views the establishment clause. Madison and Jefferson believed it to create a "wall of separation" between religion and government. Others believe in a much narrower view. I happen to be one of the former, but other than discussing it intellectually as a practice in and of itself I don't have much of a dog in the fight.

    Quote Originally Posted by It's Mike View Post
    not a fan of Beck but that was an excellent interview. Penn Gillette is a very interesting character.
    He really is. Anyone that sets a record at their high school for SAT scores, but finishes at the bottom of their class, then goes to clown school is probably destined to live an interesting life.

    He owns a patent (http://www.google.com/patents/US5920923) on a "hydro-therapeutic stimulator" which is essentially a spa/Jacuzzi jet that's placed for clitoral stimulation. As he's explained, he added to this in his backyard Jacuzzi by adding two foot prints that are "about the size" of his feet on either side of the hydro-therapeutic stimulator. This way, a guy "about [his] size" with a penis "about the size" his could stand and receive oral sex while a woman "about the size" of his wife is enjoying the hydro-therapeutic stiumlator.

    That, my friends, is awesome.
    Last edited by lovemachine97(Version 2); 12.08.12 at 07:19 PM.

  8. #8
    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by It's Mike View Post
    in theory what he says is fine. In reality it can't work. Because it can't just be religion. If the 1 non-Christian can veto any use of public land to have a nativity scene or can veto the Boy Scouts rights to use a park. Then why can't the one non-baseball fan veto the championship parade on city streets? In one breath he says people have to know they don't have the right to not be offended and in the next breath he says the rights of the non-christian being offended is greater than the rights of all Chistians.
    Because of this: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..."

    Like I said--there are broad and narrow interpretations of this. Penn obviously interprets it broadly, along with the guy who wrote it, James Madison, and Thomas Jefferson, who said it creates a "wall of separation" between government and religion.

    In this case, Penn's right to "free exercise" is called into question by forcing him to pay to display something that is inherently religious with which he does not agree. The argument is that he is specifically protected from that in the first amendment which has been incorporated into the states with the 14th amendment.

    One could make an argument that that is too broad an interpretation, and that's fine too. I recognize someone may think that this doesn't count, that Penn isn't being forced to practice the religion. I disagree, but it is a legitimate argument, and there are others.

  9. #9
    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lovemachine97(Version 2) View Post
    Because of this: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..."

    Like I said--there are broad and narrow interpretations of this. Penn obviously interprets it broadly, along with the guy who wrote it, James Madison, and Thomas Jefferson, who said it creates a "wall of separation" between government and religion.

    In this case, Penn's right to "free exercise" is called into question by forcing him to pay to display something that is inherently religious with which he does not agree. The argument is that he is specifically protected from that in the first amendment which has been incorporated into the states with the 14th amendment.

    One could make an argument that that is too broad an interpretation, and that's fine too. I recognize someone may think that this doesn't count, that Penn isn't being forced to practice the religion. I disagree, but it is a legitimate argument, and there are others.
    but if u want to look at as broadly as he does then it can get very stupid very fast. He doesn't want the boy scouts using a public park, is he ok with someone wearing a cross while on a public street? is that ok? I think when one starts to waste time arguing over silly things like nativity scenes in the public square that you lose support from those who might agree with you on bigger things. You start to look a like a crazy person.

    Not that I have an issue with not having a nativity scene at city hall. Why would they have one? As a Catholic (who has a nativity scene in my house) I don't understand the purpose of having one in a public square. It seems all that ever happens to ones up here is they get vandalized by idiot kids. You'd like to think the people that continue to spend money replacing it could spend that money helping poor people (I'm guessing that Jesus would approve of this as well - just a hunch).

  10. #10
    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by It's Mike View Post
    but if u want to look at as broadly as he does then it can get very stupid very fast. He doesn't want the boy scouts using a public park, is he ok with someone wearing a cross while on a public street? is that ok? I think when one starts to waste time arguing over silly things like nativity scenes in the public square that you lose support from those who might agree with you on bigger things. You start to look a like a crazy person.

    Not that I have an issue with not having a nativity scene at city hall. Why would they have one? As a Catholic (who has a nativity scene in my house) I don't understand the purpose of having one in a public square. It seems all that ever happens to ones up here is they get vandalized by idiot kids. You'd like to think the people that continue to spend money replacing it could spend that money helping poor people (I'm guessing that Jesus would approve of this as well - just a hunch).
    Well, I got into that a little bit earlier too by saying, as you may remember, I come from the Carolla school of "don't give a shit" atheism. Nativity scenes on public land doesn't make me think twice. Who cares, I say.

    I'd be interested to hear Jillette respond to the wearing a cross on a public street. I am sure he has a better answer than I do.

  11. #11
    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lovemachine97(Version 2) View Post
    Well, I got into that a little bit earlier too by saying, as you may remember, I come from the Carolla school of "don't give a shit" atheism. Nativity scenes on public land doesn't make me think twice. Who cares, I say.

    I'd be interested to hear Jillette respond to the wearing a cross on a public street. I am sure he has a better answer than I do.
    i think society would be a much better place if people adopted a "who gives a shit?" attitude on most of these things. We waste so much time worried about stupid shit.

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    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by It's Mike View Post
    i think society would be a much better place if people adopted a "who gives a shit?" attitude on most of these things. We waste so much time worried about stupid shit.
    Ricky Gervais says offense is taken, not given, so those offended may wanna look in the mirror or lighten up.

    I tend to agree.

  13. #13
    Baluchitherium
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    Quote Originally Posted by lovemachine97(Version 2) View Post
    But in this case, the government is forcing the atheist to pay for the property that is displaying a nativity scene. Even if most of the area is fine with it, the atheist may not be, yet is compelled to pay to display a religious point of view because the government forces him to pay taxes and pay for that property or go to jail. There's a difference.
    That's part of living in a society though. You give a little and you get a little. There's nothing in the Bill of Rights about the right to have your own way all the time.
    Posted from yo' mama's house.


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    Atomic Punk bklynboy68's Avatar
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    I think what complicates the issue more for people against nativity scenes is that Christmas is a Federal Holiday. Cities and towns who display nativity scenes have a right to do so because they are celebrating a fedrally recognized holiday. The Supreme Court has ruled that this does not violate the Establishment Clause as long as there are other secular displays of Christmas ( like, a Christmas tree). You will find that most of these lawsuits are filed by organizations with deep pockets that take on small towns with limited budgets. In Florida, a small town was sued by some group out of state (Illinois,I think.) but they took them on and it was thrown out of court.
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    Video aside you have to have alot of respect for Penn. He can sit down with Beck or Rachel Maddow and come away looking very good even if you don't agree with him.He's an athesist but he never says you have to be an atheist he's antimarriage hetero or gay but never says you have to get married hetero or homo and he articulates his points so well about it.I think if he was a better looking(sad to say) guy he could be the head of a ticket because he is a uniter not a divider.If Gary Johnson can get 1.5 million votes Penn can get alot more.His fiscal ideas are brilliant. If you have never seen his act in Vegas you need to go.
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