Memorial Day Weekend Free Fire Zone

This is a long holiday weekend because Monday is Memorial Day in the US. Therefore, news of The Controversy is scarce and we expect traffic to be be light. Nevertheless, your Curmudgeon is on the job.

For your contemplation, we’ll mention some news about a subject we don’t usually discuss around here — this is the headline in the Irish Times: Ireland becomes first country to approve same-sex marriage by popular vote. We don’t need to give you any excerpts.

The irony is that in 2009, that same country adopted a law which, according to Wikipedia — see Blasphemy law in the Republic of Ireland — outlawed the “publication or utterance of blasphemous matter.” We posted about it the day it went into effect: Is This Blog Blasphemous in Ireland?

We don’t know what’s going on over there, but Ireland has some of the loveliest ladies in the world, so as long as one is careful to avoid speaking favorably about the solar system, the age of the Earth, or evolution, it’s probably a great place to visit.

For your weekend amusement, we found some relevant commentary from Ken Ham (ol’ Hambo) — the Australian entrepreneur who has become the ayatollah of Appalachia. He’s angry. We imagine that once again he’s red in the face, foaming at the mouth, and rolling around chewing the carpet. He just posted this on his blog: Ireland and Gay “Marriage”. It’s very predictable, so we’ll only give you one excerpt:

Really, such votes show the continued secularization of the Western world. There’s no doubt that the current generations have been educated to believe the Bible is not an infallible book and that supposed science has disproved the Bible’s history. The religion of naturalism (atheism) has really been imposed on Western nations by education systems, media, the Internet, and secular museums.

That’s all we found today — at least so far. Therefore, your Curmudgeon declares an Intellectual Free Fire Zone. Talk about whatever you think is interesting — science, politics, philosophy, etc. Banter, babble, bicker, bluster, blubber, blather, blab, blurt, burble, boast — say what you will. But beware of the profanity filters.

We now throw open the comments to you, dear reader. Have at it!

Copyright © 2015. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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11 responses to “Memorial Day Weekend Free Fire Zone

  1. Derek Freyberg

    “Oh Kenny boy, the pipes, the pipes are calling,

    “‘Tis you, ’tis you must go, and I must bye.”
    [Except I don’t feel at all bad about sticking around when Kenny and his brand of intolerance fade from the scene.]
    Good for the Irish Parliament, which brought this to the vote, and good for the Irish electorate!

  2. michaelfugate

    I read that many in Australia want marriage equality put to a vote as well. Poor Kenny – time has past him by.

  3. Dave Luckett

    Ken doesn’t know this, because he has a forwarding address care of the seventeenth century, but the secularization of the western world has been underway for at least four hundred years. It was more or less inevitable.

    See, it started when they translated the Bible so that ordinary people could read it. Trouble was, people saw straight off that the Church didn’t go by it, much.

    So the Church had to be reformed. Yeah, that was it. Reformed according to what the Bible says. Ah… but there’s a problem. It can be reformed your way, or my way, or the way that bloke over there wants… And, oddly enough, we’re all reading the same Bible, so the problem really is that it says different things in different places.

    How are we going to resolve this? What does God want? Well, I’ve got this here pike, so suppose you go and see what God wants for yourself…

    You see where this is going.

    Ken’s a walking, talking exemplar of this process himself. He split off from his original congregation, on account of they read the Bible different from him. The main reason he wasn’t introduced to the business end of a pike right then is this thing called secularism. It came in after it was found that while impaling heretics is a fine thing, it works out expensive if they’ve got a few pikes of their own.

    That realisation led to a general agreement that it’s cheaper not to get armies involved. But armies are run by states, so maybe they shouldn’t get involved either.

    And that’s where we came in, and it’s where Ken went out. About 1680 or so, I’d say. Ken’s forwarding address, as I said at the start.

  4. anevilmeme

    Hats off to the citizens of Ireland for doing the right thing.

    I shudder to think how a such a vote would go in ‘Merica.

  5. Dave Luckett, your comment got stuck in the spam filter. I have no idea why.

  6. “Really, such votes show the continued secularization of the Western world.”
    If I were a christian I would comment: “God bless”.
    See, it’s to the advantage of christians as well. For instance the true, original replica of Noah’s Ark, the one build by Johan Huibers, in Dordrecht, is partly subsidized by the municipality of Dordrecht. There is a simple reason why this is possible. Islamic, buddhist, hindu etc. and even atheist projects get the same opportunities ….

  7. Ole Hambo froths and spews:

    There’s no doubt that the current generations have been educated to believe the Bible is not an infallible book and that supposed science has disproved the Bible’s history. The religion of naturalism (atheism) has really been imposed on Western nations by education systems, media, the Internet, and secular museums.

    Not even wrong, Mr. Ham. One of the biggest factors in Ireland’s enlightened vote in their referendum was the widespread loss of respect for the church’s moral authority because of the long and sickening series of appalling scandals involving sexual abuse of children by ordained clergymen and the effective marketering of children, born out of wedlock, by various church ‘adoption charities.’ The abuse of power by the church, and its scandalous attempts to cover up outright crimes and protect perpetrators of genuinely disgusting crimes has done more than any other single factor in awakening people to the dangers of the elements of de facto theocracy which had previously prevailed in Ireland. It’s not down to “education systems” (which the church has long dominated in the Irish Republic), nor “the media”, nor “the internet”, and least of all down to “secular museums.” It’s about people recognising that the church has no place in a modern state, and a modern state has no place in restricting the rights of adult citizens to associate and form whatever relationships amongst themselves they freely choose. End of story–except to add my own applause to the people of Ireland for choosing a mature freedom for themselves in preference to autocratically imposed superstition.

  8. Dave Luckett

    I strongly suspect that part of the cause of the big majority in the Irish referendum is the very reason that Megalonyx gives above, only even more simply put, thus: This was the Irish people telling the Catholic Church to go screw itself, because it had disgraced itself so comprehensively that it had no moral authority left at all. They simply didn’t believe its claims to moral authority, only even more so, they strongly suspected that anything it said was self-serving and hypocritical, and was to be rejected simply because it was the Church saying it.

    You can say, if you like, that that was the wrong reason to vote “Yes”. On an entirely academic basis, I would agree. The vote should have been “Yes” on the grounds of decency, let alone equality under the law. But it was right, anyway.

    But I would also hypothesise that what we have here is a first. People have repudiated the Church before and for many reasons; but this is the first time that I recall a nation, rather than a government, doing it as a considered act, and for this specific reason: that they had found the Church morally – not politically or economically or magisterially – repugnant.

    Ham’s right on one count. Western society has in most places and for most people, become secular. For anyone who hopes for liberty, decency and justice, this is hopeful.

    Now all we’ve got to do is secularize the Islamic communities that are now substantial minorities across Europe and elsewhere. Should be a snap.

  9. @DL: “People have repudiated the Church before and for many reasons; but this is the first time that I recall a nation, rather than a government.”
    No, not if you’re thinking about the RCC.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beeldenstorm

    Dutch government in 1566 still was Spanish and thoroughly catholic.

  10. Garnetstar

    “Such votes show the continued secularization of the Western world.”

    And the problem with that is…..?

  11. @Dave Luckett & Megalonyx: Thank you, Gentlemen, for your sterling essays.