A More Sober Take

The movie was less than classic, and I’m a little embarrassed to refer to it. But in Father of the Bride Martin Short told Steve Martin that “every party has a pooper, and that’s you, George Banks.”  Poor George, he was just trying to bring sanity to a family going berzerko. Likewise, amongst other concerns, Darryl Hart wonders aloud if the latest bout of declarative statements has more to do with thanking the Most High for not being born a Gentile than beating one’s chest and begging for mercy:

I do not mean to question the motives of anyone who signed, but isn’t it possible that a measure of moral grandstanding goes into these statements, along with very little policy or legislative reform, because these statements are so far removed from the legislatures, courts, and chambers of elected officials? Meanwhile, such statements do function to throw down yet another gauntlet in the culture wars, thus inviting as much opposition as support and cementing the stalemate that already exists between the parties of morality and license.

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This entry was posted in Civil religion, Culture War, DG Hart, Front Porch Republic. Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to A More Sober Take

  1. John Yeazel says:

    He has a way of going to the heart of a matter which closes in on the jugular- to quote him:

    I do wonder if heteros have found an easy scape goat in gay marriage when marriage among heteros is in a shambles. I wonder if we could have a Colorado Springs Declaration on the Family that called upon the communions of everyone who signed the Manhattan Declaration to enforce ecclesiastical discipline against all divorced church members who have not followed church or biblical grounds for divorce.

    Overall, the prophetic pose in the public square by Christians has the real potential to look self-righteous. You’d have thought our Lord’s encounters with the Pharisees would encourage his followers to avoid that appearance as much as possible.

  2. John Yeazel says:

    This has nothing to do with this post but I was browsing at Barnes and Noble this afternoon and ran across this list of one persons Top Ten Interesting Philosophy Quotes and thought the folks at the Confessional Outhouse might enjoy trying to guess who said them. Disregard and erase this if you see fit or move it somewhere else. I will not be offended in whatever you choose to do. I enjoyed trying to guess who said them and someone else may too. Here they are:

    1) “Men are good in one way, but bad in many”

    2) “Man stands face to face with the irrational. He feels within him his longing for happiness and for reason. The absurd is born of this confrontation between the human need and the unreasonable silence of the world.”

    3) “The unexamined life is not worth living”

    4) “Philosophy begins in wonder”

    5) “Every proposition which we understand must be composed wholly of constituents with which we are acquainted.”

    6) “The life of man is of no greater importance to the universe than that of an oyster.”

    7) “A full grown horse or dog is beyond comparison a more rational, as well as a more conversible animal, than an infant of a day, or a week, or even a month, old.
    But suppose the case were otherwise, what would it avail? The question is not, Can they reason? nor, Can they talk? but, Can they suffer?”

    8) “Nothing can possibly be conceived in the world, or even out of it, which can be called good, without qualification, except a good will.”

    9) “A crowd….in its very concept is the untruth, by reason of the fact that it renders the individual completely impenitent and irresponsible, or at least weakens his sense of responsibility by reducing it to a fraction.”

    10) “Man is condemned to be free”

    This person who wrote this list included the following in his further reading list- Albert Camus, Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens, Immanuel Kant, Richard Norman, Carl Sagan and A.E. Taylor. It probably can be surmised that he has given up hope of finding certainty in any sense or a unified field of knowledge in any discipline. The above quotes certainly fit into his mode of thinking. I think it is good sometimes to try to put yourself in the shoes of those who are really feeling a sense of despair- it is not a good place to be. Thomas Reid, the architect of Scottish Common Sense Realism once said after finishing a book by David Hume and actually conversing with him- “I despise philosophy and its guidance and choose to dwell among the vulgar and those who possess common sense. From what I know of Hume- he was a very likable fellow whose philosophy reeked of despair. Reid and Hume were fairly good friends who deeply respected each other but never came to terms philosophically. I found that to be very interesting.

  3. Chris Sherman says:

    John,

    Looks rather Twainish to me

  4. Chris Sherman says:

    or not

  5. RubeRad says:

    less than classic

    Sez you! I’ll have the chipper chicken, in my polyaster tuxado!

  6. John Yeazel says:

    I should not have posted the above- sorry about that. But I will give the answers and leave it at that. My point was that this person who wrote the list and the book I was browsing through was coming across as very authoritative and that he had the last word on the matter of what was interesting. I thought this very arrogant and typical of many with advanced higher education degrees. I do however have more empathy for those who are truly seeking answers to tough problems and questions and seem to be able to find no way out of it. It was with that in mind that I posted the quotes. Here are the answers for the few who may be interested:

    ) “Men are good in one way, but bad in many”- Aristotle

    2) “Man stands face to face with the irrational. He feels within him his longing for happiness and for reason. The absurd is born of this confrontation between the human need and the unreasonable silence of the world.”- Albert Camus

    3) “The unexamined life is not worth living”- Socrates

    4) “Philosophy begins in wonder”- Plato

    5) “Every proposition which we understand must be composed wholly of constituents with which we are acquainted.”- Bertrand Russell

    6) “The life of man is of no greater importance to the universe than that of an oyster.”- David Hume

    7) “A full grown horse or dog is beyond comparison a more rational, as well as a more conversible animal, than an infant of a day, or a week, or even a month, old.
    But suppose the case were otherwise, what would it avail? The question is not, Can they reason? nor, Can they talk? but, Can they suffer?”- Jeremy Bentham

    8) “Nothing can possibly be conceived in the world, or even out of it, which can be called good, without qualification, except a good will.”- Immanuel Kant

    9) “A crowd….in its very concept is the untruth, by reason of the fact that it renders the individual completely impenitent and irresponsible, or at least weakens his sense of responsibility by reducing it to a fraction.”- Soren Kierkegaard

    10) “Man is condemned to be free” – Jean-Paul Sarte

  7. John Yeazel says:

    I am not sure why that smiley face with the sun glasses posted that way. I must have hit a semicolon instead of the 8.

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