Author Topic: Jesus on slavery  (Read 1264 times)

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Offline Xero-Kill

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Re: Jesus on slavery
« Reply #29 on: July 11, 2013, 10:26:34 AM »
You are making a lot of assumptions about the quality of life a slave might have enjoyed, and while surely some did live relatively comfortable lives, the larger majority did not. Many lived in squalor, endured violence and rape, died in the fields due to exhaustion, famine, and disease. Many men chose to watch as their wives and daughters were dragged off to the master's house for his sick pleasures, if the master bothered to take them from their sight at all. Mothers sat helplessly idle while their husbands and sons were brutally lashed for minor indiscretions. Don't try to paint the alternative with a rosy hue.

I personally would never choose inaction in the face of such atrocities. I could NOT stand by and watch my wife and children be brutalized. I would kill that motherfucker, or he would kill me. There would be no room for an alternative. Are you suggesting that you would suffer even half of what I just described, which cannot even remotely compare to the reality of it, over death? Especially considering that death is a guarantee regardless of the choices you make. The only thing that changes is the time, place, and circumstances. The slave will die regardless of his choice, the only difference is whether it be on their knees or on their feet. Would you trade your family's well being for an extra day of life, a month, a year? What is the going exchange rate? Just how bad are the conditions you are willing to endure for just a little more time?

Also note that I am not talking about a conscience decision to either A) be a slave or B) die. I am saying that it is inborn in your character because when the slave master comes looking for subjects, you don't have time to weigh the pros and cons of it all. You are either willing to let your being become subject to the whims of another, or you are not. You are either willing to do whatever you can to protect you and yours, or you're not.

Hell, even if one is caught completely off guard and taken prisoner before they can react... every day they don't kill the master in his sleep and burn down his plantation, they are enslaving themselves. The only thing that could prevent one from acting is fear and that makes them a coward and weak willed, plain and simple.
"Our fathers were our models for God. If our fathers bailed, what does that tell you about God? You have to consider the possibility that God does not like you. He never wanted you. In all probability, he hates you. This is not the worst thing that can happen."

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Re: Jesus on slavery
« Reply #30 on: July 11, 2013, 03:03:17 PM »
You are making a lot of assumptions about the quality of life a slave might have enjoyed, and while surely some did live relatively comfortable lives, the larger majority did not. Many lived in squalor, endured violence and rape, died in the fields due to exhaustion, famine, and disease. Many men chose to watch as their wives and daughters were dragged off to the master's house for his sick pleasures, if the master bothered to take them from their sight at all. Mothers sat helplessly idle while their husbands and sons were brutally lashed for minor indiscretions. Don't try to paint the alternative with a rosy hue.
 

I do not know the statistics on what ratio were worked to death.  Rape  was probably definitely common, however I don't know how someone brought up in a slaves world would mentally deal with it.  Free people would be absolutely crushed by it But I am not truely sure that is the case with slaves in all instances.  Rape might be a bit strong as well it might have been perceived as an obligation you must endure.  If your brought up to believe you will sleep with the master you may not view it much worse than a day in the fields.  I just don't know the mental impact of the physical act of expected sex.

I have read many places also that slaves were typically not worked to death, or Starved.  You would not take your nice new farm tractor and run it with out oil, or otherwise destroy it.  Slaves were expensive farm implements one does not usually damage one intentionally unless it is for some purpose.  That purpose would be punishment to insure order.

I personally would never choose inaction in the face of such atrocities. I could NOT stand by and watch my wife and children be brutalized. I would kill that motherfucker, or he would kill me. There would be no room for an alternative. Are you suggesting that you would suffer even half of what I just described, which cannot even remotely compare to the reality of it, over death? Especially considering that death is a guarantee regardless of the choices you make. The only thing that changes is the time, place, and circumstances. The slave will die regardless of his choice, the only difference is whether it be on their knees or on their feet. Would you trade your family's well being for an extra day of life, a month, a year? What is the going exchange rate? Just how bad are the conditions you are willing to endure for just a little more time?

You may have strong opinions on this but this was obviously not the case for the slaves in mass.  Most slaves obviously did not fight back or commit suicide.  so the average slave did not feel as you do. 


Also note that I am not talking about a conscience decision to either A) be a slave or B) die. I am saying that it is inborn in your character because when the slave master comes looking for subjects, you don't have time to weigh the pros and cons of it all. You are either willing to let your being become subject to the whims of another, or you are not. You are either willing to do whatever you can to protect you and yours, or you're not.

Hell, even if one is caught completely off guard and taken prisoner before they can react... every day they don't kill the master in his sleep and burn down his plantation, they are enslaving themselves. The only thing that could prevent one from acting is fear and that makes them a coward and weak willed, plain and simple.

again this is obviously not the case.  Slaves did not choose their lot in life, they were brought up with their life being as it was.  Like I said with the rape thing it was probably not considered rape by either party the master obviously felt a right to do it and the slave likely felt it was their duty.   I am sure there were exceptions but I am pretty sure it was not the same kind of life altering thing it is for free person.  Slaves by being slaves was their life.  Thoughts of freedom existed but generally speaking I bet after a  generation or two slavery was probably just a reality.  Freedom was just like thinking about winning the lottery,,, (boy wouldn't it be nice?) now back to the old grindstone.

Mind you I am not saying that a woman should have been obligated to have sex with her master at his whim but I think it fell into a different category than rape mentally for both parties.

Offline Xero-Kill

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Re: Jesus on slavery
« Reply #31 on: July 11, 2013, 04:39:23 PM »
Quote
Slaves did not choose their lot in life, they were brought up with their life being as it was.

I can see we will simply have to disagree on this, however, you do see the direct contradiction you are posing here. This is the very definition of accepting ones lot in life.

"Hmmm, this slavery thing really sucks, but oh wells, it is what I was born to be!"

There is entirely too much equivocation in your response for me to attempt to refute it, so I will simply rest my case where it is.
"Our fathers were our models for God. If our fathers bailed, what does that tell you about God? You have to consider the possibility that God does not like you. He never wanted you. In all probability, he hates you. This is not the worst thing that can happen."

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Offline Azdgari

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Re: Jesus on slavery
« Reply #32 on: July 11, 2013, 05:24:08 PM »
A yes or no answer can be expanded upon. I fail to see how the question is incoherent. Difficult to answer, certainly. I think that makes it a good question, one that provokes further discussion.

Oh, it's easy to answer.  Yes or no questions are very easy to answer.  It's just that the answer would be meaningless.

"Objectively wrong" - unless you mean "objectively factually incorrect" - is an incoherent, self-contradictory concept.  That's why your question is meaningless.
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Offline nogodsforme

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Re: Jesus on slavery
« Reply #33 on: July 11, 2013, 09:32:42 PM »
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Slaves did not choose their lot in life, they were brought up with their life being as it was.

I can see we will simply have to disagree on this, however, you do see the direct contradiction you are posing here. This is the very definition of accepting ones lot in life.

"Hmmm, this slavery thing really sucks, but oh wells, it is what I was born to be!"

There is entirely too much equivocation in your response for me to attempt to refute it, so I will simply rest my case where it is.

Clearly you have not studied the history of oppression or slavery much. I teach working class college students about subjects like this. We learn about African slavery plus native American genocide, apartheid, Stalin's Russia, China under Mao.

In every class there are a few who state, unequivocally, that they would never allow themselves to be oppressed or enslaved. They would fight slavery, apartheid, Stalin, Hitler, Mao. These students tend to be male, more conservative in ideology, with strong opinions about right and wrong, but like most of my students, fairly apathetic politically.

They don't vote, don't write letters to the editor, don't participate in political activities. They have never protested anything, never participated in a strike, never taken a stand that would threaten their everyday comfort. Even though they have lives that suck; they struggle to pay for school, work at low-paying bad jobs, have no health care, endure police harassment, have unfair landlords, get ripped off and jerked around at every turn.

Yet, they declare that they would risk torture and almost certain death to escape if they were black and a slave in 1845. Right.  People have endured all kinds of oppression in order to survive, and to keep their kids and other loved ones alive. Just like my students don't directly revolt against their oppression--most slaves did not either. Slaves who revolted tended to be the ones who had not been "seasoned" or "broken" yet, had not had their spirits destroyed by abuse.  They also tended to be the people who had not grown up as slaves. Many owners would not buy "fresh" slaves for that reason, preferring people who had never known life as free people.

There are not just a few possible choices: accept/submit happily to your slave condition, try to escape, or kill the masters even when it means your own death. Some slaves committed suicide, and even killed their own children to escape slavery. Hunger strikes were so common that there were tools to drill open a slave's mouth and force in food. People escaped constantly, that's why the penalties were so high for trying it. Most were caught, because there were few safe places to go. Once caught, your feet were broken or one cut off to make it harder to run again. Ears, noses, other body parts mutilated to make the slave easily identifiable. There are a whole lot of other possibilities in between those. The human condition is, first, to survive at all costs. And still people kept running away.

Slaves also sometimes revolted en masse. Life on a plantation surrounded by people who hated your guts was a terrifying existence for the masters and overseers. They slept with their cutlasses by their sides. Revolts, or even the threat of one, again were dealt with very harshly. When a revolt was successful, as in Haiti 1804, other slave societies punished it with invasions and embargoes, and cracked down even more at home to prevent a repeat in their countries.

But the vast majority of slaves resisted in other ways. They played dumb and ruined tools or crops. They worked slowly and inefficiently. They accidentally let the horse run away, or let the heavy load fall on the hated overseer. They covered for each other and protected each other--when someone slipped away to visit a child or husband on a neighboring plantation, for example. Slave masters knew they were barely in charge. They feared being poisoned by the cook, or having their children poisoned--and sometimes it happened.

So, brave talk is just that. A few of us would revolt and die. Most of us would adapt and survive so there would be a next generation who might someday be free.

Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Offline nogodsforme

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Re: Jesus on slavery
« Reply #34 on: July 11, 2013, 10:57:22 PM »
To return to the bible for a minute, there are people who say that slavery was not that bad then because there were rules masters had to follow. And if the master did not? Eff the rules. After you were beaten to death, the master had to pay a fine for breaking the rules. Poor, poor master.

You weren't paid, you could not leave, you had no say over how you were treated, who you married or what happened to your family,  and now you are dead. I have yet to encounter a Christian who wanted to be a biblical slave or have their child be one.

I can't post pix for some reason, but here's a link to an article about the slave named Gordon who was whipped bloody and had the layers of back scars to show for it. It took him two months to recuperate from the beating. He escaped and traveled 80 miles on foot, outsmarting trackers and their dogs. He eventually joined the Union army to fight in the civil war. His army medical exam was when they discovered his scars. IIRC it was this famous photo that made Lincoln understand how bad slavery in the "genteel, civilized South" really was.

http://usslave.blogspot.com/2011/10/whipping-scars-on-back-of-fugitive.html

The photo of him in his ragged clothes and hat shows so much dignity and personal integrity. You can see that although he was beaten, he was never broken. :'(

In any discussion of slavery we have to remember that it is not just that someone can be this cruel to you. It is the fact that somebody owns you, and can therefore decide whether or not to be that cruel to you

Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Online jaimehlers

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Re: Jesus on slavery
« Reply #35 on: July 12, 2013, 12:44:29 AM »
But they DID choose. The only thing you have proven is that "most people" are weak willed. Plenty of other people chose the converse as well. I am sure many fled successfully, many were killed, but they were not enslaved. The ones that allowed their fears to override their higher reasoning spent centuries under a whip enduring hard labor the likes of which none of us can likely fathom. They still chose.
I'm not going to be nice here, and I apologize in advance, but you need your nose rubbed in some reality, since I'm pretty sure you have even less of a clue than you think you do about how bad it really was.  Unlike you, I've actually studied chattel slaves.

Chattel slaves, such as the ones in the American south, were not given any sort of a choice at all.  They were systematically terrorized, oppressed, and beaten down by their owners in order to ensure that they would not think to escape or rebel.  And virtually all of them were born into slavery.  They were kept as ignorant as possible - most slaves weren't even taught how to read, and their owners certainly did everything they could to smash any inclinations towards independence of thought.  The ones who successfully escaped or rebelled were the ones who had such strong wills that they could overcome a lifetime of such treatment, and even then it took luck.

How dare you sit there on your moral high horse and act as if it was a simple matter of being strong-willed, of not letting emotions overcome reason?  How dare you act as if it was a simple matter of choice, that they 'decided' to keep being slaves?  It takes systematic training and education to teach people how to think rationally, how to keep their reason on top of their emotions.  The only thing slave owners cared about was ensuring that slaves wouldn't dare to get 'uppity', to fight back, to rebel, even to try to escape.  If they got 'uppity', they were beaten and terrorized back into line.  If they fought back or rebelled, they were publicly executed as an object lesson to other slaves.  If they tried to escape, they were hunted down like animals and dragged back into slavery.

They were never given the choice to not be slaves, not from the day they were born.  Indeed, their owners did everything they could to ensure that they would never be able to make any meaningful choice about their status as slaves.  Someone like you doesn't have the right to act as if they chose to remain slaves simply because you, who have never had to deal with anything that even slightly approximates what they went through, think that they were weak-willed for not trying to do something about it.  All your attitude does is justify slavery by blaming its victims for their own enslavement, and that's pretty contemptible, even with your apparent lack of knowledge about how horrible chattel slavery really was.

I strongly suggest you take some time to look up how chattel slaves were treated, and spend some time thinking about just how difficult it would be to escape such a life when you're locked into it from the day of your birth.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2013, 12:55:35 AM by jaimehlers »

Offline Azdgari

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Re: Jesus on slavery
« Reply #36 on: July 12, 2013, 07:18:56 AM »
Maybe Xero-Kill's knowledge of how slaves lived, stems from viewing their depiction in various movies?  Usually in movies with slaves, the slaves are given a good deal of character development that involves at least some of them being fully-emotionally-developed human beings.  This is most often because the slaves are the protagonists of such films, and the main characters need to be ones we can easily relate to.  Usually also, the film will depict some defiance from these main characters, and maybe even a slave uprising that changes the status quo.

While this helps make for an entertaining movie, it paints an inaccurate picture of what a life of slavery did to people.  The Hollywood idea of slavery doesn't fit with what really happened, and in some places - in some ways - continues to happen.
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Offline Anfauglir

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Re: Jesus on slavery
« Reply #37 on: July 12, 2013, 08:23:44 AM »
Indeed, I see your point, but I feel that my point still remains valid. While the black slaves in the 1700s had no "legal" rights, they also had no obligation to obey the law.

True.  Nor does anyone, ever.  Point being, though, is what those laws are.

Many men chose to watch as their wives and daughters were dragged off to the master's house for his sick pleasures, if the master bothered to take them from their sight at all. Mothers sat helplessly idle while their husbands and sons were brutally lashed for minor indiscretions.

See, THAT is "slavery", to me.  The fact that whatever the "master" chose to do to them, that was okay.  If the law says your master can do what he wants to you, and you may not leave, that's slavery.  Its what makes the difference between being a slave, and having a job.  With one, when it gets too much you can quite and walk away, and the law supports your right to do so.   With the other, you cannot.

I personally would never choose inaction in the face of such atrocities.

Good show!

Now imagine that - because you struck your master - he is going to beat and kill your children, and another random ten slaves, while the police and judges look on and approve?  Still so keen to stand up and revolt?

People asked why the Jews in Germany didn't fight back.  The answer was similar - that for every German they attacked, 100 Jews were killed.  Kinda puts a lot of people off fighting back - and, indeed, leads to others in the oppressed groups stopping them from doing so, because of the reprisals.  Reprisals which (if not strictly legal) would not be punished.

Nutshell?  We all - ALWAYS - have a choice as to what we will put up with.  But slavery is when there is no legal or public support if you choose to say "no".

Please note that I am not arguing the morality or ethics of slavery as I find it detestable. I am simply indicating that, regardless of the outcome, options remain. If you are enslaved, it is by your own doing or lack thereof.

Be glad that Timo isn't here.   ;D
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Offline Xero-Kill

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Re: Jesus on slavery
« Reply #38 on: July 12, 2013, 11:13:08 AM »
Quote
Slaves did not choose their lot in life, they were brought up with their life being as it was.

I can see we will simply have to disagree on this, however, you do see the direct contradiction you are posing here. This is the very definition of accepting ones lot in life.

"Hmmm, this slavery thing really sucks, but oh wells, it is what I was born to be!"

There is entirely too much equivocation in your response for me to attempt to refute it, so I will simply rest my case where it is.

Clearly you have not studied the history of oppression or slavery much. I teach working class college students about subjects like this. We learn about African slavery plus native American genocide, apartheid, Stalin's Russia, China under Mao.

In every class there are a few who state, unequivocally, that they would never allow themselves to be oppressed or enslaved. They would fight slavery, apartheid, Stalin, Hitler, Mao. These students tend to be male, more conservative in ideology, with strong opinions about right and wrong, but like most of my students, fairly apathetic politically.

They don't vote, don't write letters to the editor, don't participate in political activities. They have never protested anything, never participated in a strike, never taken a stand that would threaten their everyday comfort. Even though they have lives that suck; they struggle to pay for school, work at low-paying bad jobs, have no health care, endure police harassment, have unfair landlords, get ripped off and jerked around at every turn.

So, brave talk is just that. A few of us would revolt and die. Most of us would adapt and survive so there would be a next generation who might someday be free.

Is this an attempt to label me as such? If so, I spit on you!

I have served 3 tours for the US military in Afghanistan, I am very active politically, I vote, I would call myself liberal if I had to have a political label even though I don't much care for either party. I have a decent living and do not want for much. I have zero involvement with the debt system in the US, which actually makes me in the top 20% in terms of actual wealth.

My stance on this stems from having spent almost 2 years in a war torn region of the world, and the COUNTLESS people I have encountered that are just completely hopeless. They all claim to hate this dictator and that dictator and yet they wouldn't do shit about it themselves. Instead, we had to come to their rescue. They bury their heads in the sand, give the man want he wants, and when someone strong comes along they cling to them in the hopes they will be saved. They don't even realize that because they always cling to whatever man of strength comes along with silver promises is precisely why they were oppressed in the first place. It was after the time I spent around these cowards, I decided then and there that I would never find myself in their shoes. I would rather die. So my "brave talk" comes from a bit more than an armchair perspective of the subject. You can "study" oppression all you want, but until you have witnessed it, you don't know shit.
"Our fathers were our models for God. If our fathers bailed, what does that tell you about God? You have to consider the possibility that God does not like you. He never wanted you. In all probability, he hates you. This is not the worst thing that can happen."

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Offline Xero-Kill

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Re: Jesus on slavery
« Reply #39 on: July 12, 2013, 11:27:57 AM »
But they DID choose. The only thing you have proven is that "most people" are weak willed. Plenty of other people chose the converse as well. I am sure many fled successfully, many were killed, but they were not enslaved. The ones that allowed their fears to override their higher reasoning spent centuries under a whip enduring hard labor the likes of which none of us can likely fathom. They still chose.
Unlike you, I've actually studied chattel slaves.

Chattel slaves, such as the ones in the American south, were not given any sort of a choice at all.

Everything else you wrote is irrelevant. To the first point, you can see my response to NGFM. Your "studies" are just that, studies. Conducted in a classroom centuries removed from the reality.

To the second point, in particular the bold portion. This is the very crux of my argument. No one can GIVE you your choices, they are intrinsically yours, and NOTHING can ever change that. That is the point I am making. Nothing more. You don't like being a slave, fantastic! Now, go do something about it or STFU. None of the great strides in human rights were GIVEN to the oppressed, they had to be TAKEN. So a bunch of cowards sat around lamenting their situation until some one with a pair finally came along and did it for them. They didn't obey the laws, or wait for it to be socially acceptable... they stood up and said NO! They always had that chance, from the first day. Every day they spent in their condition WAS at their own discretion.
"Our fathers were our models for God. If our fathers bailed, what does that tell you about God? You have to consider the possibility that God does not like you. He never wanted you. In all probability, he hates you. This is not the worst thing that can happen."

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Online jaimehlers

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Re: Jesus on slavery
« Reply #40 on: July 12, 2013, 12:39:00 PM »
Everything else you wrote is irrelevant. To the first point, you can see my response to NGFM. Your "studies" are just that, studies. Conducted in a classroom centuries removed from the reality.
Are you really so arrogant that you think your own opinion on slavery trumps the records of what really happened?  That you can pretend that people who have actually studied the subject are not knowledgeable about it simply because it didn't actually happen to them?  If so, you are not simply ignorant on this subject, but also delusional.

Quote from: Xero-Kill
To the second point, in particular the bold portion. This is the very crux of my argument. No one can GIVE you your choices, they are intrinsically yours, and NOTHING can ever change that.
This statement pretty well demonstrates how abysmal your ignorance on this subject is.

If someone puts you in chains, don't you think that they've taken choices away from you?  If someone chops off one of your hand, don't you think your choice of which hand to use has been pretty well removed?  If someone lames you by severing your Achilles tendon - or by chopping your foot off - don't you think your choice of how to move has been pretty well curtailed?  If someone treats you like a beast of burden, day after day after day, for your entire life, and you've never had any experience of being treated differently, don't you think that it's just a little difficult to think of yourself any other way?

You, having lived your soft, comfortable life, having grown up being treated like a person who actually matters for your entire life, do not even have the slightest conception of how truly awful the reality of slavery was.  And is.  And while people who have studied it may not have a particularly good idea of how bad it was, we have a far better idea than you do, you who are so arrogantly foolish that you think that slaves chose to be slaves because they didn't fight hard enough not to be slaves.

Quote from: Xero-Kill
That is the point I am making. Nothing more. You don't like being a slave, fantastic! Now, go do something about it or STFU.
Are you really this fucking ignorant?  You seriously think that unless someone does something about being a slave, they shouldn't complain about it?  Every time I think you've demonstrated the depths to which your ignorance descends, you say something like this and show that there's still more to come!

Quote from: Xero-Kill
None of the great strides in human rights were GIVEN to the oppressed, they had to be TAKEN. So a bunch of cowards sat around lamenting their situation until some one with a pair finally came along and did it for them. They didn't obey the laws, or wait for it to be socially acceptable... they stood up and said NO! They always had that chance, from the first day. Every day they spent in their condition WAS at their own discretion.
No, it was bloody well not at their own discretion.  Pay attention before you make an even bigger fool of yourself than you already have.  The entirety of Southern society, their laws and customs, were designed to enforce the institution of slavery and keep their mobile property from doing anything about it.  They were made to feel powerless in order to curtail their ability to do anything about it.

I have served 3 tours for the US military in Afghanistan, I am very active politically, I vote, I would call myself liberal if I had to have a political label even though I don't much care for either party. I have a decent living and do not want for much. I have zero involvement with the debt system in the US, which actually makes me in the top 20% in terms of actual wealth.
In other words, you're coming at this from a top-down perspective, not a bottom-up perspective.  It makes all the difference in the world, trust me.  But it doesn't excuse your ignorance, especially when you have people who do have that perspective trying to tell you that your opinion is just flat-out wrong.

You have a position of relative power and affluence.  You've been taught all your life that what you do matters, that you have a say in the way your country goes, that you can do something about it if you don't like it.  But a lot of people who grew up in a bottom-up situation don't have those advantages.  They don't have power, they don't have money.

Here, this example might make sense to you.  Imagine that you live in a society where you're absolutely forbidden to own, carry, or use a gun, under any circumstances.  If you're caught with a gun, you get beaten and probably maimed to teach you otherwise.  If you actually use it, you'll be executed, without even the courtesy of a kangaroo court, in a pretty horrible way as an example to others.

Oh, and the ones who set these rules have all the guns, and every one of them is watching you and anyone like you to see if you might have a gun - and if they think you do, they'll either beat you down to take it away from you, or they'll just shoot you, and your family too, just because they can.

Now, don't you think that it would be just a little bit difficult for people trying to change that situation to do something about it, especially without outside help?

Quote from: Xero-Kill
My stance on this stems from having spent almost 2 years in a war torn region of the world, and the COUNTLESS people I have encountered that are just completely hopeless. They all claim to hate this dictator and that dictator and yet they wouldn't do shit about it themselves. Instead, we had to come to their rescue. They bury their heads in the sand, give the man want he wants, and when someone strong comes along they cling to them in the hopes they will be saved. They don't even realize that because they always cling to whatever man of strength comes along with silver promises is precisely why they were oppressed in the first place. It was after the time I spent around these cowards, I decided then and there that I would never find myself in their shoes. I would rather die. So my "brave talk" comes from a bit more than an armchair perspective of the subject. You can "study" oppression all you want, but until you have witnessed it, you don't know shit.
And this is why you don't know shit about what it's like for people who actually have to live in those circumstances.  You basically swung in like Tarzan, beat up the bad guys, and then swung off.  You literally don't know jack shit about having to actually live with people like that, about what their daily lives are like, about the fear and hopelessness they have to face dealing with people who will fucking kill them at the drop of a hat if they even give them a dirty look.  As far as they were concerned, you and yours were just the latest group of conquering warlords.

You don't have any idea what that's really like on a day to day basis.  Not even the slightest clue.  Nothing in your life has even come close to that - you absolutely have the wrong perspective to really understand how life works for people who aren't in positions of power and affluence, able to make choices for themselves, like you are.

Don't get me wrong.  I commend you for what you did.  But to judge others for not doing the same when you are ignorant of the experience of living like them, that just makes you egotistical and self-righteous.  And it pisses other people off, who have had to deal with harshness of their own, who have the personal experience of how bad it was for them and how difficult it was to deal with it, so how much worse must it have been for these other people.

EDIT:  And it pisses me off even more when you write utter crap like, "everything else you wrote was irrelevant", simply so you don't have to address it or even act like it matters.  I don't give theists who pull that same kind of crap any leeway, and I assuredly am not going to give any of it to you.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2013, 12:48:17 PM by jaimehlers »

Online jaimehlers

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Re: Jesus on slavery
« Reply #41 on: July 12, 2013, 01:39:08 PM »
In the effort to maybe get through to Xero-Kill about this, I'm going to write down a short history of some of the things I had to go through while I was growing up.  Just so he maybe understands just how difficult it is for people to 'choose' to break out of an awful situation - even here in America, where that kind of thing is encouraged, and where people aren't systematically being oppressed by the authorities in charge.

I was born in the Midwest.  The first five years of my life were mostly unremarkable.  About the only thing that's really worth mentioning is that I adopted a cat who was really too young to be taken away from his mother, and my parents helped me feed him so that he survived.

When I turned five, I went to kindergarten.  I had virtually no experience with other children, but all in all it wasn't too bad.  Until I turned six, and it turned out that I needed glasses.  Thick-lens glasses.  I was not blind without them, but my whole world was a blur, from about six inches from my face on.  I couldn't even distinguish a human-sized figure from the background scenery at 50 feet, especially as I got older and my eyesight got worse.  My eyes were something like 20/1200 and 20/1400 by the time I was out of high school.  So I got teased by other students, and it (both the glasses and the teasing) pushed people who I might have gotten along with away.  For a while, I think I tried to make friends with the ones who were teasing me, which just encouraged them to tease me more.  I also picked my nose, and got teased for that too.

I just kept getting teased and teased, getting angrier and angrier, until I finally lost my temper and started getting in fights as an attempt to get back at them for the way they were hurting me.  Since I threw the first blow almost all the time, I was the one getting in trouble.  I got put in a classroom for students with behavioral disorders, and that just made it worse, because it set me apart even more and made me more of a target, causing me to blow up, creating a vicious cycle that fed on itself.

And then my cat, the one I'd helped rescue, who I loved like nothing else in the world, died from an infection when I was about eight.  I think something broke inside of me because of that.  Even today, more than 20 years later, I still cry a little when I remember finding his body...cold and lifeless in the basement.  It felt like my world had ended.  Not only was I being tormented at school, but I'd lost someone who was very special to me.  And if that sounds a little strange referring to a cat, I don't care, because he was much more than a pet to me.

Anyway, after that things really started coming apart for me.  The teasing still continued, most of the students knew me at least by reputation and didn't want anything to do with me because of how violently I reacted to being teased.  I don't remember exactly when it started, but at some point I actually started biting people when I attacked them.  Because I couldn't get them to stop, couldn't get them to leave me alone, and I had to deal with it far too often.

In sixth grade, I finally got transferred to a different school.  I suffered very little teasing there, mostly because I was ignored, or at best thought of as the strange transfer student who had some weird habits.  I could live with that.  Compared to the oppression and torment I'd suffered at school, it was like night and day.  But when I went to junior high, I got put back in the school where most of my former classmates were, and apparently they felt betrayed since I'd transferred schools.  Don't ask me why, I don't have the first clue why.  So the teasing continued, and I was plunged back into that nightmare.  I had an incident where I thought I'd nearly killed someone (it's complicated, he had a plate in his head, and they were concerned that I had seriously injured him.  He was okay, though), and I nearly broke down on the spot when I'd realized it.  After that, I started trying to get a handle on things, although at first I did so by simply suppressing my temper.  All that did was ensure that when I inevitably lost my temper, I had far more fury inside me so I was much more vicious.

I slowly started learning more effective anger management techniques after that, and I went to a different high school than most of the ones who'd grown up teasing me, so I was slowly able to start mastering my temper so that I could actually function in society.  It helped when I got eye surgery to correct my vision, which made a huge difference in how I saw myself, and I eventually earned my bachelor's degree.  When I was 30 (which, considering that I am well above average as far as intelligence goes, should tell you something about how awful things were).  All those bad experiences warped me badly enough that I couldn't even manage college for a while, and I ended up working food service job after food service job, and getting fired from them (for frequent tardiness, not for anger, but still).  I finally got tired of working subsistence service jobs, went back to college, and discovered that I was actually able to do well - I had a GPA of over 3.8 from that school.  And things have steadily been improving for me since.

----

That all happened right here in America, with support systems in place to help people cope with hardship, and I still almost didn't get out of it.  If things had gone even a little differently, I might be a criminal, or a deadbeat, so worn down that I didn't care about trying to break free anymore.

Now, Xero-Kill, imagine how much worse it must be in a country where the rulers only care about their own power and wealth, who see their people as little more than sheep to be shorn, and otherwise kept in their corral.  Or a country where you have a slave class who are actually legally locked into slavery - who have to flee to a different country in order to be anything other than a slave, and who are not simply docile sheep to be shorn, but potentially dangerous work animals who have to be carefully watched and put down if they start getting out of line.

Are you starting to understand a little about why so many people stayed in slavery or whatever the local equivalent was rather than actively trying to fight back or escape?  Even then, you can be sure that most of them passively resisted every chance they got, but living as a slave was still being alive.  If you died, that was that - you couldn't even be sure that your death would do any good.

EDIT--Oh, yes.  Just to avoid misunderstandings, I know perfectly well that the crap I went through was nowhere near as bad as a slave's lot in life.  But it gives me a little bit of a basis for comparison.  Enough of one, at least, for me to be able to know that however bad it was for me, it was immensely worse for slaves.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2013, 01:43:01 PM by jaimehlers »

Offline nogodsforme

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Re: Jesus on slavery
« Reply #42 on: July 12, 2013, 05:13:45 PM »
Quote
Slaves did not choose their lot in life, they were brought up with their life being as it was.

I can see we will simply have to disagree on this, however, you do see the direct contradiction you are posing here. This is the very definition of accepting ones lot in life.

"Hmmm, this slavery thing really sucks, but oh wells, it is what I was born to be!"

There is entirely too much equivocation in your response for me to attempt to refute it, so I will simply rest my case where it is.

Clearly you have not studied the history of oppression or slavery much. I teach working class college students about subjects like this. We learn about African slavery plus native American genocide, apartheid, Stalin's Russia, China under Mao.

In every class there are a few who state, unequivocally, that they would never allow themselves to be oppressed or enslaved. They would fight slavery, apartheid, Stalin, Hitler, Mao. These students tend to be male, more conservative in ideology, with strong opinions about right and wrong, but like most of my students, fairly apathetic politically.

They don't vote, don't write letters to the editor, don't participate in political activities. They have never protested anything, never participated in a strike, never taken a stand that would threaten their everyday comfort. Even though they have lives that suck; they struggle to pay for school, work at low-paying bad jobs, have no health care, endure police harassment, have unfair landlords, get ripped off and jerked around at every turn.

So, brave talk is just that. A few of us would revolt and die. Most of us would adapt and survive so there would be a next generation who might someday be free.

Is this an attempt to label me as such? If so, I spit on you!

I have served 3 tours for the US military in Afghanistan, I am very active politically, I vote, I would call myself liberal if I had to have a political label even though I don't much care for either party. I have a decent living and do not want for much. I have zero involvement with the debt system in the US, which actually makes me in the top 20% in terms of actual wealth.

My stance on this stems from having spent almost 2 years in a war torn region of the world, and the COUNTLESS people I have encountered that are just completely hopeless. They all claim to hate this dictator and that dictator and yet they wouldn't do shit about it themselves. Instead, we had to come to their rescue. They bury their heads in the sand, give the man want he wants, and when someone strong comes along they cling to them in the hopes they will be saved. They don't even realize that because they always cling to whatever man of strength comes along with silver promises is precisely why they were oppressed in the first place. It was after the time I spent around these cowards, I decided then and there that I would never find myself in their shoes. I would rather die. So my "brave talk" comes from a bit more than an armchair perspective of the subject. You can "study" oppression all you want, but until you have witnessed it, you don't know shit.

You have no clue what I have done before becoming a professor. Suffice to say I have lived and worked for many years among very poor people in some of the same kinds of places you have served. I have lived in two dictatorships. I have seen a lot of suffering and death. That is why I chose to teach about it, not because I have only studied it from my armchair.  I don't understand why you got so offended when I described my students.  I would never "spit" on you or your experiences.
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Offline The Gawd

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Re: Jesus on slavery
« Reply #43 on: July 13, 2013, 06:36:31 AM »
To be fair, I see what X-K is saying, though I dont think it is accurate for the topic. I think there are situations less... whats the word? oppressive? no. encompassing? No. I cant find the word I'm needing to use to describe how controlling and devastating the system of slavery was so just understand thats what I am referring to. But there were choices that some could make to try and escape such deplorable conditions. And as others have already pointed out, those "choices" arent really choices at all, its basically choosing to live or die.

Some people made that choice, some people chose life.

I dont want to classify one "choice" over the other as strong or weak, as it is not an accurate portrayal, nor fair to people in real life situations. I agree with ngfm, people always talk a lot about what they WOULD do if they were in that situation, and most times what they said they would do and what they actually would do are opposite ends of the spectrum. However, I think that there are some who would indeed "choose" death (run or fight). As I likely would. And I base this off of real life events.

I have, now, a criminal record for literally fighting against police two times for what the judge would later call "unlawful arrests" and both times, if you pay attention to the news, I ran the real risk of being shot and killed (being a black male in early to mid 20's at the times) with no witnesses for the second event. I can tell you for a fact what goes through my mind in those situations are pictures of slavery, pictures of lynchings, King's murder, the Civil Rights footage of fire hoses and attack dogs, etc. And I let them know that they are not going to treat me like that without a struggle and that they are going to have something to show for it. Of course it is "illegal to resist even unlawful arrests" so this has somewhat affected my housing options and adds a small hoop that I have to jump through sometimes for employers. It also frightens my mother who doesnt want me to end up like Trayvon Martin or the numerous other victims of such violence. And I can say I have been able to tone it down some fore the sole sake of being alive to raise my daughter. Without her, I can safely say, I would be a problem for law enforcement.

Now, this is not to compare my situation to slavery. Obviously two EXTREMELY different scenarios with slavery being exponentially more abrasive and controlling. However, I recognize the affect slavery MUSTVE had on them, because even though I did not go through it, the thought of it and my people's history has made me risk death on two occasions. I can only imagine how fucked up actually being in the institution of slavery would have had me.