What’s Wrong with the World

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What’s Wrong with the World is dedicated to the defense of what remains of Christendom, the civilization made by the men of the Cross of Christ. Athwart two hostile Powers we stand: the Jihad and Liberalism...read more

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4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Phil on Jul 31, 05:47:

Ha. That's funny, given the physical damage that men do to each other all the time. Can you say "damage to the sphincter"? In sheer numbers, far more heterosexuals have anal sex than do gay men. You knew that, right? ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Phil on Jul 31, 05:33:

Well, Phil, at the moment there is no jurisdiction in the US where sodomy is illegal, but that doesn't tell us anything - given the way the courts have rammed their legislation home. Pun intended? For a thousand years and more, it was quite literally true that a person who was physically incapable of sexual intercourse (such as with no male sexual organs) was considered incapable of contracting marriage and therefore was legally barred from it. I don't know what you want me to do with an argument that b ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Phil on Jul 31, 05:18:

True, by an arbitrary determination that "orientation" shall mean only the sex of the target of sexual desire, not the species, nor any other feature. Just like how a person using their foot to write changes the definition of "handedness?" Wait, what if a person uses their left hand to pick up a ruler and then uses the ruler as a tool! Oh no! The definition of handedness is totally arbitrary and it could change at any time! By simply acknowledging that left-handed people exist, we have opened up Pando ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Tony on Jul 31, 00:32:

I'd say your point is well-taken if you can show any jurisdictions in the modern U.S. where people who are physically incapable of having sex are legally barred from marrying, and also if you are willing to positively assert that you personally think they ought to be barred from marrying. Well, Phil, at the moment there is no jurisdiction in the US where sodomy is illegal, but that doesn't tell us anything - given the way the courts have rammed their legislation home. For a thousand years and more, it was ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Tony on Jul 31, 00:09:

I’ll also rehash the same argument I’ve made dozens of times over the years: Society allows plenty of exceptions to those traditional goods when it comes to heterosexual couples. If a heterosexual couple cannot have or simply doesn't want children, nobody in society gets to annul their marriage or treat it like it is fake. Step2, you leave ambiguous which goods and the ways of falling away from them you are talking about. Lots of heterosexuals want the goods of sex without marital commitment, but few of u ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Tony on Jul 30, 23:42:

Generally, the term "sexual orientation" is understood to refer to the trait of being primarily physically attracted to a particular sex or sexes of human beings. To follow out what Lydia says, Phil, yes, that's pretty much what the term "sexual orientation" is currently taken to mean THESE days. But what, precisely, makes "to a particular sex" a characteristic of sexual attraction that is so all-fired important? Why not note the particular color, or the particular size, or the particular N that a person ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Phil on Jul 30, 23:26:

Actually, as far as I know all jurisdictions have had a basis for civil annulment on the grounds of non-consummation. Yes, that's after the fact, but it is definitely related to your question, Phil. That's a valid point, Lydia, and it is true that there is a societal expectation of sexual intimacy and sexual exclusivity in marriage. I'm sure we differ on what sex is, and I'm sure you have a well-reasoned philosophical argument for why the only acceptable definition of "sex" is penis-in-vagina intercourse ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Phil on Jul 30, 22:58:

The point is that the state is being inconsistent with the logic they are using. Nobody denies that at the moment the state is being inconsistent enough to outlaw such a ridiculous notion. We're talking about civil marriage here, not about religious marriages, or any particular church's definition of marriage, or about the joining of souls, etc. The state's logic is that there isn't a rational purpose to impose a gender restriction on the adult participants in legal marriages, but there is a rational pur ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Throat_Warbler_Mangrove on Jul 30, 22:51:

Step2 wrote: "It's bad enough that Dunsany is behaving like a cartoon villain twirling his mustache. Attempts to proselytize him are equally cartoonish." It's worse than than that, I think, because it should have been clear by now that Dunsany is trolling. ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Step2 on Jul 30, 21:06:

And if you are willing to stake (and therefore permit) a claim as to "what sort of goods man ought to pursue" you have to accept the possibility that the TRADITIONAL goods of marriage are, actually, "the sorts of goods man ought to pursue". I’m honestly curious if you imagine that I’ve ever written, anywhere, that the modern traditional goods* of marriage are bad and nobody should pursue them. I’ll also rehash the same argument I’ve made dozens of times over the years: Society allows plenty of exceptio ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Lydia on Jul 30, 20:16:

This is the status quo, Tony. Can you cite a state that has an "intent to have sex" test as a precondition for marriage? Actually, as far as I know all jurisdictions have had a basis for civil annulment on the grounds of non-consummation. Yes, that's after the fact, but it is definitely related to your question, Phil. As a matter of fact, I can give you more data: The Brits, who like legal technicalities, had to puzzle over this issue when they legalized same-sex "marriage," because the question then arose ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by MarcAnthony on Jul 30, 19:38:

Phil, Those things, which may range from preferences to paraphilias, are not considered to be within the spectrum of sexual orientation. Why should I care about this? The question is what SHOULD be considered sexual orientation and why, not what is "considered" to be within the "spectrum of sexual orientation". As you point out, you understand that there is a rational basis to prevent 4-year-olds from marrying. I understand that there is a rational basis to prevent 4-year-olds from marrying. And the stat ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Phil on Jul 30, 18:14:

In case it wasn't clear, I feel it appropriate to point out that I was using block-quotes to respond to actual quotations from Tony's post, while I used simple italics to denote hypothetical questions from hypothetical persons (or to indicate questions that involved a mishmash of ideas.) I don't want to imply that Tony said things that he didn't. ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Phil on Jul 30, 18:13:

I have a question for our pro-gay defenders: what is sexual orientation? Generally, the term "sexual orientation" is understood to refer to the trait of being primarily physically attracted to a particular sex or sexes of human beings. Most people are "heterosexual;" that means that they are primarily and innately attracted to members of the opposite sex. A smaller number of people are "homosexual." That means that they primarily, innately, attracted to members of the same sex. Some people are "bisex ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Truth Unites... and Divides on Jul 30, 18:02:

Dunsany: "I'm a vindictive person by nature, and nothing will please me more than the annihilation of the religious right." One point for honesty. And self-assessed honesty is a good thing. A very good thing. Now, you'll hear many Christians say something like, "I'm a sinner by nature." And a good number of Christians will then follow-up and say something like, "Jesus Christ, through His Work and Blood on the Cross, paid for my sins, and this repentant sinner now follows Jesus Christ as his/her Lord ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Phil on Jul 30, 17:32:

I have a question for our pro-gay defenders: what is sexual orientation? To better understand the term, let me first make a comparison. (I'll add more in a future post if there's time.) Sexual orientation in humans is similar to "handedness." Both are hard to define, yet most people fit into a particular category, innately, without thinking about it, and without necessarily trying to be one way or another. Most people are right-handed, and this is something that is usually natural and effortless for th ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Nice Marmot on Jul 30, 09:58:

"It is the INCOHERENCE of the Anthony Kennedy's of the world who deny to the state a role in deciding, preferring, and choosing one person's view of the good over another's, and then goes and does EXACTLY THAT when it can trample on traditional moral views of the good over untraditional views with hob-nailed boots." Right -- you can't coherently posit a total elasticity on the one hand, while advocating a radical inelasticity IN ONLY ONE DIRECTION on the other. A good cannot be simultaneously both inheren ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Tony on Jul 30, 06:54:

Phil, the point is not whether I understand the difference - of course I do. And I have made it clear that I do in a hundred ways. The point is whether the STATE understands it. If the notion is that the state has to be neutral about religions, not deciding between your religious beliefs and mine, And the state extends that into being extra-neutral about all questions that have a religious component, not preferring any position over any other when the parties disagree about religion, And the stat ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Phil on Jul 29, 22:54:

Tony, It's not clear whether you're actually soliciting a response from your "pro-gay defenders" or you're just spouting off, but I don't think a response is warranted unless you can first acknowledge that you personally understand that there is a difference between a consenting adult human being and an inanimate object or an animal. You indicate in one paragraph that the woman a lesbian night choose to marry has the same marriage rights as everyone else. Then in the next paragraph, you get the vapors ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Tony on Jul 29, 22:25:

If years of me explaining why all these objections fail and why adult consent as a necessary condition for intimacy that isn't inherently exploitative or harmful hasn't gotten through to you yet, In order to stake a claim that consent and non-exploitation and non-harmful are categorical characteristics that ought to matter to society, you have to first be willing to stake a claim as to "what sort of goods man ought to pursue." Because you have to be willing to say NO to the man who pursues pain in his fel ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Lydia on Jul 29, 22:14:

By ditching the principle that underlies why society should care in the first place, you have destroyed any limiting basis. That is a very succinct statement of an argument that others _will not_ see. Civil marriage is a special governmental acknowledgement of the relationship. Why "we like having sex together" should be thought to constitute anything remotely like a basis for such special acknowledgement is in a sense too _rational_ a question for those who have swallowed the kool-aid of homosexual "marri ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Tony on Jul 29, 22:04:

To repeat myself, marriage is 1) a committed and intimate relationship (which at minimum implies an exclusive partnership), 2) between consenting adult persons, 3) that connects their fates and fortunes together for the foreseeable future, 4) that is publicly acknowledged, 5) and may indicate a mutual signal for nesting behavior and raising children born to or adopted by the couple. Step2, without working off of principles of human nature, it is impossible to establish that society ought to care whether ( ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Tony on Jul 29, 21:41:

I'm a vindictive person by nature, and nothing will please me more than the annihilation of the religious right. Yeah, we knew that you were a barbarian at heart. Using the term properly. But please, don't be shy about it, you needn't use such subtle euphemisms instead of saying what you really mean. Say, why don't you sign up right now for the job of chief torturer? If you get your foot in the door early, I suppose you might have a better chance at making it all the way to the bottom. Though there is ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Step2 on Jul 29, 21:34:

If years of me explaining why all these objections fail and why adult consent as a necessary condition for intimacy that isn't inherently exploitative or harmful hasn't gotten through to you yet, I don't know what will. I've even provided a general definition to counteract this "Marriage could mean absolutely anything" nonsense. To repeat myself, marriage is 1) a committed and intimate relationship (which at minimum implies an exclusive partnership), 2) between consenting adult persons, 3) that connects t ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Tony on Jul 29, 21:23:

I suspect that Stephen's stab at defining sexual orientation is as fair and reasonable as any out there - it is certainly a close shot for the notion that the average person would use if they didn't spend tons of time thinking about it and drawing out distinctions and consequences. And Lydia is quite right about inherent tensions (in some cases) and outright contradictions (in other cases). What I was trying to pull out, mainly, was the pure arbitrariness of their hanging their hat on just a couple of ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Lydia on Jul 29, 19:33:

Stephen J., I know you aren't advancing this position but just sort of spinning it out as a target, but I find it interesting to note its internal tensions. So, for example: "Sexual orientation" refers to that category of persons to which your sexual attraction is predominantly or wholly exclusive, i.e., you rarely or never experience spontaneous sexual attraction to anyone outside it, and can only respond sexually to intimate activity with persons outside your normal orientation under extreme and possibly ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Stephen J. on Jul 29, 18:54:

I'm not a defender of same-sex activity, but purely for discussion purposes I'll try to advance a definition of "orientation" in the sense I believe it is typically understood: "Sexual orientation" refers to that category of persons to which your sexual attraction is predominantly or wholly exclusive, i.e., you rarely or never experience spontaneous sexual attraction to anyone outside it, and can only respond sexually to intimate activity with persons outside your normal orientation under extreme and possi ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Lydia on Jul 29, 17:13:

One of the most bizarre things about court opinions on this topic is the way that the rational basis test has been twisted out of all recognition. Over decades of jurisprudence the three-tier system for scrutiny was worked out, and the rational basis level was the lowest. It could be easily satisfied. My town has all kinds of nit-picky ordinances that could easily pass it. An ordinance, for example, about moving one's garbage bin up to within x feet of one's house except during stated times just before and ... [More]

Here comes the zero-sum game again

Comment posted by MarcAnthony on Jul 29, 10:55:

He confirmed that he does think moral values are objective because they are grounded in god... ...Which, of course, is not equivalent to "he believes in divine command theory". There are nuances in such a position you're apparently not able to grasp. ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by MarcAnthony on Jul 29, 10:47:

Dunsany, what part of Untenured's characterization do you really object to? The part where morality is a matter of will, but even if God is real not God's will because you don't like it? What is wrong with that characterization? The part where you think that objections to divine command theory somehow work for all forms of theistic morality? The part where you think fundies are stupid and shouldn't be put into positions of power? Which part do you deny? ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by The Masked Elephant on Jul 29, 09:27:

You're scaring me Dunsany. Just listening to you talk makes me cringe at the thought of where you and your vindictive spirit will be hanging out in another 50 years. ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Dunsany on Jul 29, 09:13:

Since people are mocking me, I'll let it be known that seeing religious conservatives freak out over gay marriage never fails to put a smile on my face. Watching "parachurch" institutions be crushed by civil rights law will be even more delicious. I'm a vindictive person by nature, and nothing will please me more than the annihilation of the religious right. ... [More]

4th Circuit Panel Strikes Down Virginia's Constitution

Comment posted by Untenured on Jul 29, 07:43:

I just can't wait for the Dunsany com-box comedy act to show up: "Morality is subjective and boils down to a matter of will, but divine command theory is wrong because God could will certain things that I don't like. And all theistic morality is divine command theory because I lack the mental acumen to parse the differences. And it is okay to lie and cheat in order to put you stupid fundies in your place, but we can't let you stupid fundies into positions of power because you might do things that, by my own ... [More]

The whim of the inquisitors

Comment posted by GoldRushApple on Jul 29, 03:45:

Boonton makes this topic VERY boring. ... [More]

The arrogance of Muslims and the cowardice of police

Comment posted by Mike T on Jul 28, 08:45:

One day, conservatives will wake up to the reality that if the police are going to side with the barbarians, the police should be shown no mercy or quarter. ... [More]

Will Jonah Come Again to Nineveh?

Comment posted by Lydia on Jul 27, 16:45:

Tony, I would say it is questionably just for us to be involved in actively establishing a real bad guy in power. There's a big difference between tolerating and actively establishing as far as one's own responsibility for what follows. We can see this in a sort of mini-situation. Imagine that you could wave a magic wand and put a man in power over a small village. He would have the despotic ability to, say, torture and kill any woman in the place to satisfy himself (if that's the kind of thing he's into), ... [More]

If everything is holy, nothing is holy

Comment posted by Nice Marmot on Jul 26, 13:04:

"For Maximus, the divine plans or logoi are eternal activities of God’s, of which creatures created according to them are contingent instances. In this way, Maximus avoids and precludes Origen’s views as well as panentheism while upholding creation ex nihilo." Yes, that's my understanding as well, and I imagine Ware, etc., would agree. In that sense the term "panentheism" is inaccurate. I think, though, that the word is sometimes used in a rather simpler way to combine, as it were, God's immanence and om ... [More]

If everything is holy, nothing is holy

Comment posted by Tony on Jul 26, 09:50:

If there could not be miracles if there were not what you call natural order, then either creation ex nihilo is not a miracle or it is not possible, for there as no “natural order” antecedent to it. Perry, I understand that you don't like Lydia's theology, but don't go casting stones at non-existent problems. Nothing in what Lydia said suggests the foolishness of denying creation ex nihilo. And accepting creation ex nihilo does not require an abjuration of a natural order - which Thomas (and all Thomists ... [More]

If everything is holy, nothing is holy

Comment posted by Lydia on Jul 26, 09:49:

Perry, I'm not entirely sure what position on the Sacraments you are attributing to me under the heading of the "classical Protestant position," but I would encourage you not to jump to conclusions. I've had a somewhat unusual position concerning Holy Communion for some years now, though I think it may have been Thomas Cranmer's position. Perhaps you would still dub it Pelagian or what-not, but it is a Real Presence view and nothing like memorialism (for example). http://lydiaswebpage.blogspot.com/2012/08/ ... [More]

If everything is holy, nothing is holy

Comment posted by Perry Robinson on Jul 25, 22:12:

Nice Marmot, It is true that Ware and others use that terminology at times. I think what they mean to convey is that God is the formal cause of creatures. But since the Orthodox do not think that the term divine nature exhausts or denotes the divine essence per se, there is no panentheism. That thesis is precisely a thesis about deity creating the world out of its own essence. For Maximus, the divine plans or logoi are eternal activities of God’s, of which creatures created according to them are contingen ... [More]