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    Vainamoinen's Avatar
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    Heresy

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    In the Middle Age if you questioned Aristotelianism [sic] you were liable to be accused of heresy. This happened, for example, to Galileo. (Ptolemaic Astronomy was, effectively, a part of Aristotelianism.)

    This was nonsense, of course. (And it's actually a nice question how far Aristotelianism is compatible with Christianity.)

    But the point is that Aristotelianism continued to shape people's worldview in the West—and elsewhere—as it had done before the advent of Christianity. (And actually it did have some things going for it, not least that it securely situates man within nature, while Descartes ripped mind from matter, man from nature, and inner from outer, a spilt that has still not been fully healed.) Because Aristotelianism shaped people's worldview they felt threatened when it was questioned. That's why they reached for the charge of heresy—because that was the biggest weapon in the mediaeval rhetorical arsenal.

    I wonder what weapon people would reach for now. I suggest when threatened by an idea nowadays—professionally, personally (and especially if their career and/or self-respect were tied up in an existing view)— they would probably claim the proponent was "unscientific" or offering something that was "not evidence-based".

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    "Heresy" today is no big thing.... but "hate" on one of the PC "protected classes" and see how fast your career ends.... Get accused of Sexual Harassment? Stick a fork in ya... your are done. Refuse to sell a cake to a gay couple? Done. Close up shop. Your business is over. Any act/thought/statement that can be construed as "hating" is met with the howls of "offended" parties and can be heard long and loud.

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    I wonder what weapon people would reach for now.
    Read the paper (or web), listen to the politicians, listen to what "Big Biz" says, check out what the FedGov says. It is happening all around us, every day, non stop.

    The first step is preemptive. Seize the language, define or redefine the terms to suit your objective. Examples: 1 Gay used to mean light hearted and happy. 2. Do you remember some years back when a politician was forced to utter an apology for some asinine thing that was said, and her "apology" was "I'm sorry if the words I spoke offended you." Not that the words were offensive, it is your fault for being offended, and I'm sorry you are so sensitive.

    Whenever someone is out of line with the Politically Correct posture of the moment, the weapon is the six "D" words: Delay, Deny, Defer, Defuse, Debunk, Defame. And there is always the historically used 7th D: Destroy.
    The Buck stops here. I am responsible for my past and my future. So for today: I choose to be happy. I will seek wisdom. I will be a servant to others. I will greet this day with a forgiving spirit.

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    I think the idea of heresy is still around. We just don't use that word when trying to stifle someone's speech.
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    TQP's Avatar
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    See what happens to a person who decides to be vegetarian or whatever on these forums...or *gasp* eat a piece of fruit.

    In all seriousness, while there seems to be less attacks on a person's POV based on religious philosophy, attacking someone based on concepts of (im)morality or by appealing to the pathos (instead of logos) is very much alive. Just take a look around some of the more heated debates here on MDA or on the web elsewhere. Claiming someone's argument is inferior because he/she is just being racist, or has #thinprivilege or #whiteprivilege or #___privilege is pretty hilarious considering every single person in the debate's POV is colored by his/her personal experiences, not just the so-called "privileged" individuals, so every person is just as biased.

    I have pissed off atheists time and time again (note: I'm pretty much atheist/agnostic myself and I LOVE science) by telling them that science is just as much a religion as any other faith. It's just more focused on the man's understanding of the Universe rather than what the man understands the Creator's understanding of the Universe to be. One less level of separation; still the same level of lynching by the scientific community if you propose an seemingly divergent hypothesis. No matter what we do, our sensory download will always be inherently biased and filtered based on our humanistic limitations in perception.

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    Here's a funny/terrifying article from a "civil libertarian" in Australia. Apparently, free speech is actually controlled speech.

    It’s Time To Put An End To Anti-Choice Speech | Thought Catalog

    TL;DR - Freedom of speech means having the freedom to say what I agree with. Everything else should be outlawed!
    In matters of style, swim with the current. In matters of principle, stand like a rock.

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    TQP's Avatar
    TQP
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jefferson1775 View Post
    Here's a funny/terrifying article from a "civil libertarian" in Australia. Apparently, free speech is actually controlled speech.

    It’s Time To Put An End To Anti-Choice Speech | Thought Catalog

    TL;DR - Freedom of speech means having the freedom to say what I agree with. Everything else should be outlawed!
    That's pretty much the thought process of every liberal though. "Those who say ____ should be made fun of!" Yeah, okay...

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    I think that the main weapons that are used today are envy and shame....

    Envy is an incredibly powerful emotion to bestow on another person, and part of the reason is that it is so versatile. It can be used very potently in commercialism, and while that is obvious it is probably not its most effective angle. Politically it can be the bazooka of all manipulations, because it allows its user to actually inject a reality onto someone they are trying to convince....you make someone long for a bygone era, for a totally different state of affairs. You give them someone to blame and a pin cushion to vent their frustrations on. And when you get down to it, what you are actually selling is envy. It works on the rich and poor, on all races, anyone.

    Or as I've heard before, "The greatest enemy in your life is that little voice in your head; that tells you how things oughta be."

    Shame is a huge weapon of choice now too, again for its versatility. From a traditionalist bent, it has been used for centuries to induce conformity to a particular group's set of ideals, political or religious. In modern times this use has gone a little more underground with the advent of the PC police, who mostly go unopposed in current discourse. I can give a recent, infuriating example:

    In reading a newspaper recently (my first mistake), there was an article about abortion rights that I know has no benefit to discuss....but one particular sentence in the article made my hair stand on end. It read: "And I use the word 'woman' only for ease of use and vernacular, in that not all women have vaginas or identify themselves as women."

    Read that a few times. It was not part of the actual position being taken. It was instead a preface to even STARTING the position.

    In other words, because of the fact that something like 1 tenth of a percent of the population are transgender, we cannot ever write the word 'man' or 'woman' anymore without prefacing it by specifying actual anatomy. THAT is how bad it has gotten. So if I write about a patient "44 year old man presents with ______", I am being close-minded and engaging in "labeling".

    What bothers me so much is not that I am against any group of people. If there is one thing on this Earth that is not remotely my business, it is where someone likes to put their reproductive organs. What I am against is this cognitive hangup people have that is very simple; they don't seem to understand the difference between POLICY and FEELINGS.

    In short, I am personally against any governmental policy which discriminates against people, or for the government to allow for people to discriminate openly against one another. That is why we have a government, and it is what makes us different from somewhere like Nigeria, where one cannot even go down certain streets unless they are of a specific ethnicity and religion. Our entire system is setup to protect the minority from the majority, especially in cases where the freedoms of one person are considered to be offensive to others....or as others have said, we don't have freedom of the press so that people can read People magazine. We have it specifically to protect radicals, quacks, or reasonable people with equal protection. The same is true for all of our other protections. They don't exist to protect only the mainstream lifestyles or opinions. That is called Saudi Arabia.

    But here is what the PC police don't seem to understand: that none of that above has anything to do with being offended by other people that disagree with you. You do not have a right to live in a place that is completely sanitized to how you live you life, mostly because it is an impossible aim to begin with. It has to be understood that certain groups, whether from their own choices or something hard-wired, are GOING to have a different experience from the mainstream. It is an inevitability.

    Shame is the tool used by these people in order to elevate themselves, not as guardians against the government dictating policy to these groups, but simply to let them live their life as if they are completely mainstream. That is a delusional, Orwellian ideal to let loose on people. And for as much as that term is thrown around, in this case it fits; because Orwellian means that people must pretend to concur with something that is objectively false....in this case, if you have an XY chromosome, have male organs, and look like a male outside of your clothes, BUT you identify as a female in your heart, your life is going to be different than mine.....understand that I would literally die to protect that person's right to own property, to have marriage legal protections, to be an equal in the eyes of the government. That is what we were founded on...but I will lampoon and deplore people who would insist that this person not be offended by the word "woman" in a newspaper. That is an entirely different thing, and that difference is almost never mentioned.
    "The soul that does not attempt flight; does not notice its chains."

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    Quote Originally Posted by TQP View Post
    That's pretty much the thought process of every liberal though. "Those who say ____ should be made fun of!" Yeah, okay...
    I wonder what makes those people act that way. Maybe they wake up in the morning and say, "Hmmm, I wonder who's gonna rustle my jimmies today?"
    In matters of style, swim with the current. In matters of principle, stand like a rock.

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