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Thread: Judge blocks sale of polygamous sect assets

  1. #1

    Default Judge blocks sale of polygamous sect assets

    Judge says Utah violated the Constitutional Rights of Warren Jeffs' polygamous group

    I know there have been concerns of abuse in polygamous cults, but I think that this was the right decision. If people are being abused, there are other legal remedies for that than to take the assets of the group's trust and sell them off, piece-by-piece.

    I don't understand what some people have against polygamy; in my opinion, it should only be against the law when at least one of the people involved is a minor.

  2. #2
    Butterfly Mage

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    Quote Originally Posted by KTH View Post
    Judge says Utah violated the Constitutional Rights of Warren Jeffs' polygamous group

    I know there have been concerns of abuse in polygamous cults, but I think that this was the right decision. If people are being abused, there are other legal remedies for that than to take the assets of the group's trust and sell them off, piece-by-piece.

    I don't understand what some people have against polygamy; in my opinion, it should only be against the law when at least one of the people involved is a minor.

    Most rational people don't care about polygamy (other than wondering why someone would WANT multiple wives when one can be enough of a drag). But when pseudo-Mormon cults dress up systematic child-rape as "polygamy", it will raise quite a bit of ire. There's no crime that looks better by masking it in religion.

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by Butterfly Mage View Post
    Most rational people don't care about polygamy (other than wondering why someone would WANT multiple wives when one can be enough of a drag). But when pseudo-Mormon cults dress up systematic child-rape as "polygamy", it will raise quite a bit of ire. There's no crime that looks better by masking it in religion.
    Mm, maybe. I guess it depends what you consider rational - I'd say that rational people can oppose same-sex marriage on religious grounds, but it's the same thing. I personally don't think it is anyone's business what goes on between consenting adults, except those adults. When children are brought into it, I agree with you, but not all polygamists are like that and enough people oppose same-sex marriage that I would have no problem believing they'd oppose legal recognition of polygamous marriages between consenting adults.

  4. #4
    Butterfly Mage

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    Quote Originally Posted by KTH View Post
    Mm, maybe. I guess it depends what you consider rational - I'd say that rational people can oppose same-sex marriage on religious grounds, but it's the same thing. I personally don't think it is anyone's business what goes on between consenting adults, except those adults. When children are brought into it, I agree with you, but not all polygamists are like that and enough people oppose same-sex marriage that I would have no problem believing they'd oppose legal recognition of polygamous marriages between consenting adults.
    Actually, "rational" and "religious grounds" are mutually exclusive. "Rational" requires a concrete reason. For instance, the rational reason why rape is bad is that it violates the free will and consent of another. "Religious grounds" just means that someone is following instructions from an old book. There's no "rational" reason to exclude polygamy and same-sex marriage. The reasons are always "religious".

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Butterfly Mage View Post
    Actually, "rational" and "religious grounds" are mutually exclusive. "Rational" requires a concrete reason. For instance, the rational reason why rape is bad is that it violates the free will and consent of another. "Religious grounds" just means that someone is following instructions from an old book. There's no "rational" reason to exclude polygamy and same-sex marriage. The reasons are always "religious".
    I'm not sure I agree with you. You said rape is bad because it violates the free will and consent of another, but why is that itself inherently bad? If there is no god or religious authority, there are no absolutes except what we, as people, agree are good and bad. If you view it in the lens of moral relativism, rape's not inherently bad when considered rationally, either. If you consider it that way, it's hard to consider holding opinions based on religious principles any more irrational than holding them based on what you think are right and wrong.

  6. #6
    Butterfly Mage

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    I think humans have innate morality that doesn't require religion. We inherently know that raping and killing is bad. We don't need a book to tell this to us. In fact, some religious texts override our innate morality by convincing people that killing, rape, slavery, and genocide is "holy".

  7. #7

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    Maybe we do, but if that's the case it varies from person to person and from culture to culture. At least with religion, there is usually at least a document detailing what is and isn't moral, supposedly from a higher authority. That's a huge difference compared to, "I feel like this shouldn't be allowed, so it's immoral," because at least then, if you're a follower of that religion, you can say objectively (within the confines of the religion) that something is or isn't wrong.

    What you're saying is that things are moral and immoral because we say so, and that's no better a source than religion's, "our belief system is right because it is," system of morality.

  8. #8

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    Even from a rational standpoint rape is wrong. It simple economics. The raper gains only momentary pleasure out of the act. While the victim is forced to deal with much worse physical and emotional pain for a much greater length of time. The loss is far greater than the gain from the unnecessary act so therefore it is bad.

  9. #9
    Butterfly Mage

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    Quote Originally Posted by KTH View Post
    Maybe we do, but if that's the case it varies from person to person and from culture to culture. At least with religion, there is usually at least a document detailing what is and isn't moral, supposedly from a higher authority. That's a huge difference compared to, "I feel like this shouldn't be allowed, so it's immoral," because at least then, if you're a follower of that religion, you can say objectively (within the confines of the religion) that something is or isn't wrong.

    What you're saying is that things are moral and immoral because we say so, and that's no better a source than religion's, "our belief system is right because it is," system of morality.
    I'll take it a step further. Religion is the LAST place that you want to take your morality from. For instance, in the Old Testament, parents are supposed to murder their children for being disrespectful, having premarital sex, or coming home drunk. Under secular law, that is a felony and not a holy act. Likewise, the Koran permits lying and violence against non-Muslims. And yet, practitioners of both faiths think their holy texts are the end-all-be-all of morality. In fact, both books are quite immoral.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Butterfly Mage View Post
    I'll take it a step further. Religion is the LAST place that you want to take your morality from. For instance, in the Old Testament, parents are supposed to murder their children for being disrespectful, having premarital sex, or coming home drunk. Under secular law, that is a felony and not a holy act. Likewise, the Koran permits lying and violence against non-Muslims. And yet, practitioners of both faiths think their holy texts are the end-all-be-all of morality. In fact, both books are quite immoral.
    Not that I disagree with your view of most religions - I personlly hold that outsourcing your moral judgement to an ancient text is intellectually lazy -but I wouldn't necessarily say that adhering rigidly to an ancient and arbitrary code of ethics is irrational. It only becomes irrational when you refuse to acknowledge that it is arbitrary, and seek to impose it on others.



    Quote Originally Posted by BruanHam View Post
    Even from a rational standpoint rape is wrong. It simple economics. The raper gains only momentary pleasure out of the act. While the victim is forced to deal with much worse physical and emotional pain for a much greater length of time. The loss is far greater than the gain from the unnecessary act so therefore it is bad.
    Economics is an equally arbitary concept (and I say that as an economics graduate). So one person loses much more through the act than the other gains? So what? The rapist has still gained from his actions. Society as a whole may have suffered a net loss, but again, so what? Why should the rapist care?

    I'm not sure that there is a purely rational basis for ethical judgement - even foundational concepts like "do unto others as you would have them do unto you" and "for the greater good of the greater number" imply a value judgement of some kind. Even if you start looking at some of the more "amoral", historical philosophers, you find value judgements. Neiztsche believed that there was no absolute guarantee of values - but he still advocated that the individual should express a Will to Power - to overcome themselves, and become something greater. Why? Why should I? Machiavelli advocated doing practically anything to ensure a strong, secure state. Again, why? What's so great about a strong state?

    The closest thing to a rational basis for an enforceable code of ethics, in practise, is majority concensus, simply because the majority has might on its side, and is thus able to enforce said concensus - but that concensus could take any form.
    Last edited by Akastus; 25-Feb-2011 at 17:48.

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