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Bid to toughen Louisiana anti-bestiality law draws pushback

The Louisiana state Capitol on a foggy night in January 2013. Photo courtesy of Creative Commons

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — In Louisiana, a proposal to strengthen the law against bestiality is facing unexpected opposition from conservative lawmakers who see it as an underhanded move to strike the state’s unconstitutional ban on sodomy.

Creating a new, wide-ranging anti-bestiality law would untangle the offense from the ban on sodomy in Louisiana’s “crime against nature” statute, prompting some lawmakers to label the measure a sly chess move.

“This bill was written because the far left wants to undermine our other laws that protect family and traditional values that the people of Louisiana hold dear,” said Sen. Ryan Gatti, a Republican who was one of 10 senators to vote against the bill.

“That was our concern, that it most likely will be used as a Trojan horse to delete the sodomy law,” he said.

News about lawmakers voting against the measure that would expand the state’s four-word bestiality law with requirements for mental evaluations and penalties for trafficking provoked confusion and mockery outside the Deep South state.

Six states have expanded laws on bestiality crimes in the past three years, according to Leighann Lassiter, director of animal cruelty policy at the Humane Society of the United States, which is advocating for the rewritten law. Three states, including Louisiana, have similar proposals working through their legislatures.

“This has been the first time we’ve seen one hint of opposition to these bills,” she said. “It’s quite surprising.”

For Sen. J.P. Morrell, what has been frustrating is that opposition to his bill is rooted in fear that games are afoot to remove the state’s unenforceable statute against “unnatural” sex in Louisiana.

“I don’t know how to answer a conspiracy theory,” he said. “There’s no evidence that the bill does that. What you hear from people is that they don’t trust me because I’m a Democrat from New Orleans.”

Anti-sodomy laws in Louisiana and other states were invalidated in 2003 by the U.S. Supreme Court, which ruled that forbidding people of the same sex from certain sexual conduct violated the 14th Amendment. Despite that ruling, Louisiana’s existing law remains on the books.

Morrell has not been shy about his distaste for regulation on what kind of sex is allowed between consenting adults in Louisiana, but he emphasized that he’s not taking aim at that rule with this proposal.

He said the measure would modernize an inadequate Louisiana law that doesn’t account for today’s technology. He even urged fellow lawmakers to vote against an amendment that sought to strike the anti-sodomy law because it would ensure his bill’s failure.

On the Senate floor, he offered a stern warning: “God forbid you vote against this bill — good luck explaining it.”

His bill passed the Senate 25-10 and awaits debate in the House of Representatives. It’s unclear how the measure will fare in the House because the leader of the Louisiana Family Forum, a Christian conservative organization with considerable sway in the chamber, has raised concerns about it.

“I think the provisions of his bill go way too far,” said Gene Mills, president of the group.

The Humane Society’s Lassiter said holes in the law haven’t prevented district attorneys from prosecuting cases where people are having sex with an animal. Opponents to the Louisiana bill have said that’s good reason to leave the state’s law as is.

But the existence of online marketplaces for buying and selling animals for sex complicates matters when that act falls outside the law’s boundaries, Lassiter said. Bringing animal cruelty charges is an option, though authorities often have to prove harm has been done, which isn’t always clear in these cases.

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Anthony Izaguirre

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  • This shows how far right-wing evangelicals will go to ensure they can keep oppressing gays: they’ll protect bestiality by law! *headshake*

  • They actually have a rather decent governor in the person of John Bel Edwards who, like Obama with his recalcitrant Republican Congress, faces relentless opposition in the Republican-controlled State House. The previous Republican governor, Booby Jindal, bankrupted the state and now Edwards, like Obama, has the unenviable task of cleaning up the horrible mess without any help from Republicans.

    It’s the same old story – voters elect Republicans over contentious “social issues,” the elected Republicans go on a massive spending spree with giveaways to the rich, the voters (temporarily) wake up to the fact that they’ve been duped and decide to give some Democrat a chance to do the dirty work of cleaning up the mess, only to have that person face absolute obstructionism. The voters get disgruntled, forget who caused the mess in the first place (since Americans have notoriously short attention spans) and the dreary, endless cycle repeats itself – over and over and over again. It’s depressing.

    The same will happen in Alabama with the fluke election of Doug Jones. Just you watch. He’ll be voted out in the next election by some fire-breathing, born-again, wife beater who loves Jeeeezus.

  • Liberals who claim a “right” to sodomy exists have no principled basis to oppose bestiality.

  • Of course they do. Animals can’t give consent. There done. Kiss a canned talking point goodbye.

  • Not projection. Reality. And it’s getting worse in the eastern hemisphere. Soon, as Trump advances his authoritarian agenda, it will be imported over here to add to Trump’s toxic brew of scapegoating Mexicans, Muslims, and other assorted brown people. As the debt grows from his great tax cuts, he’ll need to find new scapegoats to add to the collection in order to distract the populace.

    Homophobia is currently very popular in Russia. By stoking the flames of homophobia as Putin has done, the populace doesn’t have to spend too much time thinking about how he pocketed $200 billion of their money. That $200 billion is really why Trump is so enamored with Putin. He wants to do the same thing here. And you Republicans are letting him get away with it – little by little.

  • Soon, as Trump advances his authoritarian agenda, it will be imported over here to add to Trump’s toxic brew of scapegoating

    Sounds Tin Foil Hat to me. You are giving the guy too much credit He is just another “tool” of the New World Order

  • Deep State is what conservatives say to cover up the fact that Trump is wildly incompetent and corrupt.

    Somehow Trump, unlike any president before, Republican or Democrat, is at war with all functionaries who have experience, skills and professional ethics. His own picks for official positions are specifically unqualified, or seek to destroy the function of the offices they run.

    Trump is trying to create the Derp State. A Zaire level kleotocracy of people plundering public resources.

  • So you made my point, Stupid.

    Sodomy involves consenting adults.

    Conservatives love to defend sexual abusers and pedophiles but attack those in consensual adult relations. (See Roy Moore supporters)

    Bye bye.

  • Its the lbgt crowd that wants this kind of stuff. Makes sense to me. After all, if 2 guys can “marry” each other and guys who put on skirts are considered girls what would be wrong with getting it on with an animal?

  • Yup. You support abusing animals sexually because you want to attack adults in consensual relations. Totally following Fundy Bigot Logic.

    “Its the lbgt crowd that wants this kind of stuff. ”

    You know this because you asked them? You have some secret desire towards bestiality you are not telling us and just want to project here?

    “After all, if 2 guys can “marry” each other and guys who put on skirts are considered girls what would be wrong with getting it on with an animal?”

    Bigots have no concept of what the words “consenting adults” mean.

    You are telling me you want to get it on with an animal and want to use marriage equality to justify it. Given the kind of things you post, I can totally believe you want to have relations with animals and are incapable of consensual adult relations.

    Thank you for confirming such things, sicko!

    You realize I am just going to ridicule you mercilessly here and you are making it easy. The more you post, the more I am going to make fun of you and cast aspersions that you commit animal abuse.

  • Actually I like having you around to embarass.
    We already know there is no such thing as homosexual “marriage”. To have a marriage you MUST have a husband and a wife. Only a man can be a HUSBAND and a woman a WIFE. Without this you don’t have a marriage. You have been duped if you think there is such a thing as homosexual “marriage”.

    No doubt many in the lbgt crowd want to leave all options open when it comes sex with anything.

  • Insane people can’t legally consent either. And any guy that says “Sure, go on dude, you can shove your dick up my ass” is either insane or retarded.

  • So the argument employed is trying to justify your sex with animals by invoking the legality of marriage equality and personal bigotry against gays.

    I didn’t realize that bestiality was such a big thing among conservatives/bible thumpers. You have opened my eyes.

  • I am not the one arguing for having sex with animals. That is all you. You seem to be part of the great Louisiana animal buggery lobby we haven’t heard about until recently.

    “We already know there is no such thing as homosexual “marriage”.”

    Nope. It exists and is legal. They even issue licenses for it and have ceremonies. Reality does not seem to be your strong point.

    Maybe all that sex with animals has given you some kind of disease affecting your cognitive functions.

    “No doubt many in the lbgt crowd want to leave all options open when it comes sex with anything.”

    I don’t see them arguing for legalized sex with animals, just you.

  • Since the legal definition of sodomy includes oral sex and since 44% of heterosexual men and 36% of hetero women have admitted to engaging in anal sex, you are almost certainly correct.

    Then again, we’re talking about a group of people for whom the missionary position is considered risqué.

  • It appears you didn’t follow the article. Conservatives are the ones opposing the anti-bestiality law.

  • Exactly. If sex has no intrinsic purpose, such as procreation, and is not restricted to man and woman as nature intends, then there is no reason to object to such things. The “consent” issue is a straw man and one of the few things the left has as a stop-gap, since they are now incapable of distinguishing good from evil. It is non-sensical to say that consent is what makes any particular sexual behavior okay or not,
    or gives it meaning. And it is precisely because an animal could not consent that one could argue that it is permissible, because the animal doesn’t know any better.

    There is actually a push to normalize and/or legalize bestiality in states and countries where it has been illegal, by the left/LGBTXYZ folks, & which now has the euphemism of “inter-species relations” to make it sound palatable and also a clear sign that something is afoot; in fact there was even very recent movie which promoted the idea. It would not be at all surprising is this bill is a sly attempt to promote other things. There is also a push by the left to legalize pedophilia or at least lower the age of consent, and also polygamy (now w/ the euphemism of “Polyamorous relationships”). Remember when conservatives were laughed at when they said that if sodomite “marriage” is legalized, these things would follow? It didn’t take long, did it? It is not hard to see how consent would easily fall by the wayside with other things, e.g., one person says it was consensual another says it wasn’t. And imagine how easy it could be for an adult to get a child to say they consented to something, or even if a minor truly consents, that then it’s okay?

  • Exactly. If sex has no intrinsic purpose, such as procreation, and is
    not restricted to man and woman as nature intends, then there is no
    reason to object to such things. The “consent” issue is a straw man and
    one of the few things the left has as a stop-gap, since they are now
    incapable of distinguishing good from evil. It is non-sensical to say
    that consent is what makes any particular sexual behavior okay or not, or
    gives it meaning.

    There is actually a push to normalize
    and/or legalize bestiality in states and countries where it has been
    illegal, by the left, & which now has the euphemism of
    “inter-species relations” to make it sound palatable and also a clear
    sign that something is afoot; in fact there was even very recent movie
    which promoted the idea. In some countries bestiality it is now
    expressly permitted, such as recent legalization in Germany. There is
    also a push by the left to legalize pedophilia or at least lower the age of consent,
    and also legalize polygamy (now w/ the euphemism of “Polyamorous
    relationships”) Remember when conservatives were laughed at when they
    said that if sodomite “marriage” is legalized, these things would
    follow? It is not hard to see how
    consent would easily fall by the wayside with other things, e.g., one
    person says it was consensual another says it wasn’t. And imagine how
    easy it could be for an adult to get a child to say they consented to
    something, or even if a minor truly consents even if true that then
    it’s okay?

  • Doesn’t “abusing animals” rest on the assumption that the animal doesn’t enjoy it?

  • Here’s a few tidbits from Obergefell v Hodges Kennedy can dust off and reprogram if the case shows up at the SCOTUS:

    “The fundamental liberties protected by the Fourteenth Amendment’s Due Process Clause extend to certain personal choices central to individual dignity and autonomy, including intimate choices defining personal identity and beliefs.”

    “Under the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, no State shall deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.’ The fundamental liberties protected by this Clause include most of the rights enumerated in the Bill of Rights. See Duncan v. Louisiana, 391 U. S. 145, 147 149 (1968). In addition these liberties extend to certain personal choices central to individual dignity and autonomy, including intimate choices that define personal identity and beliefs.”

    “… rights come not from ancient sources alone. They rise, too, from a better informed understanding of how constitutional imperatives define a liberty that remains urgent in our own era.”

    “The idea of the Constitution was to withdraw certain subjects from the vicissitudes of political controversy, to place them beyond the reach of majorities and officials and to establish them as legal principles to be applied by the courts.’ West Virginia Bd. of Ed. v. Barnette, 319 U. S. 624, 638 (1943). This is why fundamental rights may not be submitted to a vote; they depend on the outcome of no elections.'”

    “Finally, it must be emphasized that religions, and those who adhere to religious doctrines, may continue to advocate with utmost, sincere conviction that, by divine precepts, ….. should not be condoned. The First Amendment ensures that religious organizations and persons are given proper protection as they seek to teach the principles that are so fulfilling and so central to their lives and faiths….”

  • An adult cannot “get” a child to say they consented to sexual conduct if that child is under the age of consent. If they’re underage, consent is impossible as a matter of law.

  • I’m not sure what’s funnier, headlines like “Conservatives Oppose Anti-Bestiality Law, Say ‘Goes Way Too Far,'” or the fact that these conservatives seem under the impression that Louisianistan’s sodomy law is still in effect.

  • You seem to be putting a lot of effort to justifying bestiality, in light of the laws currently on the books. One would say you are obsessed with supporting its legality as if it were a personal matter to you?

    So how long have you been having sex with animals?

    “said that if sodomite “marriage” is legalized, these things would
    follow?”

    The opponents of gay marriage are the die hard supporters of legalized bestiality!

    It doesn’t get any funnier than this!

  • You are putting so much energy into the legalization of bestiality. Who knew you were such a sick little prevert?

    “There is actually a push to normalize and/or legalize bestiality in
    states and countries where it has been illegal, by the left/LGBTXYZ
    folks,”

    Evidently not! According to this article, conservatives who are against gay rights are the leading opponents to banning buggery!

    How long have you been having sex with animals?*

  • “But the existence of online marketplaces for buying and selling animals for sex complicates matters when that act falls outside the law’s boundaries.”

    I am very naive. I had no idea that this could become a business, advertising online. Well, why not if pornography is so rampant – which I also don’t understand.

    The Republicans are willing to allow the abuse of innocent animals because they fear a side effect over a law they can’t even enforce. They will knowingly permit the abuse of animals and protect the abuser. They can pass a very pointed law that addresses the issue and they refuse to do so.

    Jesus would not approve.

  • The answer would be “nothing” if the animal were capable of giving, and had so given, “informed consent”.

    Look it up.

  • Old joke

    What do you call a New Zealander with a sheep under his arm – in lurve.

    What do you call a New Zealander with a sheep under one arm and a goat under the other – bisexual.

  • “If sex has no intrinsic purpose, such as procreation, and is not restricted to man and woman as nature intends, then there is no reason to object to such things.”

    Error

    “nature intends” is your mistake.

    Nature does not have the capacity to “intend”.

    Your argument fails.

  • 1 Corinthians 13:13

    Your “faith” must exclude the possibility of Heaven and your “hope” – that God is as stupid as the person who imagines it.

    As to “love” – did you ever experience it?

  • “”If sex has no intrinsic purpose, such as procreation, and is not restricted to man and woman, then there is no reason to object to such things.”

    The fixation on “nature intends” is a diversion.

  • Actually, Hillary was not unattractive in her youth (in my subjective opinion), but once again the thread strays from the question of the article. We must grant, that rightly or wrongly (and I think wrongly), the courts have ruled that gay marriage is proper and legal; naturally it follows logically that gay sex is legal, therefore old Louisiana statutes on the subject are moot. One need not confuse the issue of bestiality with homosexuality. While both are condemned in scripture, for purposes of law one is legal and one (for the time being) is not. Personally, I have no confidence that such will remain the case. Under present trends I fully expect to see the legalization of inter-species sex approved in the near future, protests by the Humane Society nothwithstanding.

  • YOUR Jesus would not approve. THEIR Jesus will approve of anything, as long as it translates into “get the gays.”

  • If sex has no intrinsic purpose…

    It has several purposes, not just yours, not just your churches. If you have ever had sex for any reason other than the explicit intention to reproduce, you have just invalidated your own argument.

    And since old people cannot reproduce, we should outlaw that.

  • It’s funny, but it isn’t gay people refusing to strengthen the laws against sex with animals. It’s heterosexual, good christian, Republicans.

  • ” And imagine how easy it could be for an adult to get a child to say they consented to something, or even if a minor truly consents, that then it’s okay? ”

    RCC priests are very good at this – lots of experience – 2000 yrs worth….

  • Is at all possible that antigay people will not focus on the anal sex they are not having and are not a witness to?

    The fact that some 40 of heterosexual jails regularly engage in anal sex, that anal sex is a huge part of heterosexual porn, should tell you something.

    But you are too busy thinking about the anal sex that two people you don’t know and who haven’t talked to you about it are having.

    Perhaps you should think about something besides toteo men you don’t know having anal sex.

  • It certainly makes for a good living for some folks.

    The statement “If you have ever had sex for any reason other than the explicit intention to reproduce, you have just invalidated your own argument.” as it stands is untrue.

    Doing or avoiding an action with multiple motivations is more common than sole purpose motivation.

  • The reddest states have the lowest ages of consent (for marriage.) It’s a convenient workaround, since once married, these girls no longer have any say in the matter, they are expected to submit. Their chastity in the face of rutting males is solely their responsibility right up to the point they say “I do.”

  • Is that what you murmur in their floppy ears? “You like it, don’t you. One baah for yes, two baahs for yes, yes.”

  • They don’t expect consent as pertinent in their wives, why would it ever enter into account? Narcissist Authoritarian Religious Conservative leaves no room for outside autonomy.

  • No

    And please enlighten David as to why “for an adult to get a child to say they consented to something, or even if a minor truly consents, that then it’s okay?” proves that he doesn’t have a clue about “informed consent”. I’m sure you understand it.

  • But respect for a living creature’s physical and emotional integrity is a fundamental test of a person’s humanity is it not? That’s why we have rules (adequate or not) that govern farms, markets, livestock haulage and abattoirs

    I know that Genesis says Adam had dominion but dominion is not the same as disrespect – it also says he was “to dress it and to keep it” – which means that mankind has responsibilities to nurture the rest of life doesn’t it?

    So the fact that obtaining informed consent from an animal is impossible does not remove the humane impulse to treat animals with respect.

  • I would tend to go with lower hanging fruit – not having sexual relations with a non-human living creature is a fundamental test of a person’s humanity, morality, and sanity.

    Given that we slaughter animals and eat them, I am not very sanguine that having some sort of sexual relationship with one is lower on the scale of “treat(ing) animals with respect”. That looks like a dead-end for building a case.

    Do you have some solid information on how animals feel about the matter?

    The correspondent whose argument you rejected out-of-hand seemed to offer a more productive approach: natural law.

  • You’d have to define what you mean by “natural law”. If it includes the idea that morality is fixed and defined by nature/creator then I disagree entirely.

    We set rules about how we treat our food producing animals, imperfect though they are there is a basic view that, religious objections aside, the animals should be treated in such a way as to cause minimal physical and mental stress. I understand that the main driver may be that lesser stressed animals produce more profit but most developed countries have active animal welfare organisations although my country may be unique in that the Society for the Protection of Animals is R-SPCA whilst that to protect Children is N-SPCC where R=Royal and N=National.

    After I’d hit send I thought that the simpler answer would have been self-respect rather than respect for the animal. Having been involved with a full-blown psychopath I hesitate to use any argument that assumes self-esteem – 1% of the population has none.

  • If you begin with an a priori that human beings are exempt from the laws which every animal, planet, atom, electron, galaxy – you name it – are governed by, conversation and reason come to a grinding halt.

    Now, which laws and how they are governed are open to discussion.

    I certainly believe that form follows function, and that we can deduce from form that – for example – the male organ of reproduction in human beings is not intended to be a can opener.

    The notion that “animals should be treated in such a way as to cause minimal physical and mental stress” may or may not be relevant.

    I am unable to find any evidence that animals enjoy or dislike sexual congress with human beings.

    Given the sorts of things human beings engage in that are completely lawful, I don’t think “self-respect” has a bright future in discerning the appropriate levels of human conduct.

  • This I suspect is at the root of our difference. ” the male organ of reproduction in human beings is not intended to be a can opener.”

    I fully agree with the statement you make but totally disagree with the implication that I think you carry from it.

    the male organ of reproduction in human beings is not intended to be anything. There is no evidence for “intent” and, as far as physical bodies are concerned, a lot of evidence for the absence of any intent/plan/design.

    There is no “natural law” involved – simply evolution. There is no morality in evolution, there cannot be. Just as a water cannot decide to boil when heat is applied so evolution cannot dictate its response to external pressure.

    Not law – expediency.

    We human beings (most of us) have the (possibly unique – though current experiments are throwing real doubt on that) ability to feel concepts of right and wrong. We are not uncovering law – we are developing morality.

  • The notion that “the male organ of reproduction in human beings is not intended to be anything” was contradicted when you wrote “male organ of reproduction”.

    That provided the evidence for “intent”.

    Evolution appears to be part of the natural law. Setting up a straw man of opposition between the two does not advance an argument.

    I generally find that people who oppose natural law, which is rather fundamental to both English and American law, as well as international law, do so because they intend to engage in, or already engage in, something naughty.

  • No sir.

    The “male organ of reproduction” is a description of one of its functions – not a limiter of its permissible uses.

    And there is neither evidence, nor logical reasoning, to support “intent”. Evolution basically means the unthinking. unpurposed trial and error of mutation – there is no end in mind – simply a random change which may, or may not, produce reproductive benefit.

    As to evolution appearing to be part of natural law – only if this natural law idea of yours was real. Then, and only then, it would be necessary to hold the “part of” view to uphold the reality. As the reality is not justifiable the argument is specious.

    That which is fundamental to English law is often continued into American law – its inclusion in either is historic and the product of a world where humanity was struggling to make sense of matters we now understand. Longevity is often more a demonstration of the inactivity and procrastination that tradition thrives upon than it is a validation of underlying truth.

    I generally find that people who oppose natural law, which is rather fundamental to both English and American law, as well as international law, do so because they regard the idea as unsupported, unnecessary and contrary to observation. That does not imply any malfeasance – simply a yearning for honesty.

  • The “male organ of reproduction” apparently was preferred to “male can opener” because you could spell “reproduction”?

    I don’t want to point out how absurd that sounds.

    Not only is there evidence, there is logical reasoning, to support “intent”.

    It is how we can surmise how long extinct animals functioned.

    https://www.fasebj.org/doi/abs/10.1096/fasebj.23.1_supplement.825.3

    It is why we can from nothing more than skeletal remains determine whether a bird was a fruit eater or a raptor. It is why we refer to the “male organ of reproduction” rather than the “male can opener”.

    We don’t know that evolution is unthinking unpurposed trial and error of mutation – although like rejection of the notion of natural law that certainly fits the schema of, say, a homosexual atheist better than some other models.

    That there is a natural law and that it is real forms the very basis of physics, astronomy, biology, in fact all the sciences. There is no point in conducting experiments, recording the results, and the rest of it if it’s all random chance. One day the apple falls from the tree, the next it goes sailing into the sky.

    What matters do you think humanity was struggling to make sense of that we now understand that bears on English and American law and jurisprudence?

    The law of gravity?

    The speed of light?

    I generally find that people who oppose natural law claim that they do so claiming the idea is unsupported, unnecessary and contrary to observation.

    And yet observation supports the conclusion that nature follows laws and form follows function.

    Rather than simply a yearning for honesty, it appears to be a tapdance motivated by other forces – such as wishing to engage in something that runs afoul of natural law.

    On this side of the Atlantic “We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness …” is generally held in high regard except by a minority whose motivations have little or nothing to do with observation.

    One of the problems they find is that it is hard to make a case for rights for minorities once one scraps it.

    Just as you’re finding it hard to justify laws against bestiality without it.

    But, hey, all that matters is that one gets what one wants, eh?

  • “I don’t want to point out how absurd that sounds.”
    I can understand that – it’s your (deliberate?) misunderstanding of what I said.

    “It is why we can from nothing more than skeletal remains determine whether a bird was a fruit eater or a raptor.”
    We can work out how something was used but that is not an indicator of intent. That which works is reproduced – mutations are not produced because they are desired, they arise and are kept because that which they do is desirable. You are confusing intent with good-fortune and the kicker is that there is so much that lead to dead ends – mutations that were undesirable – or do you see them as evidence for intent to die out?

    I asked you to define what you meant by “natural law” and suggested it was not to do with morality – you failed to do so but implied a moral element; you now seem to be interpreting it as “the laws of physics”. In which case I agree that there are certain, physical laws which are natural to our universe. Why anyone would think that implies intent is a step beyond logic I’m unable to fathom.

    On your side of the Atlantic, as has been said, fifty percent think the universe was created as it now is in the last 10K years, 40% think it was created as it now is but more than 10K years ago – and 10% are right. Frankly, what your bit of paper says about the universe is no more relevant that what any of the differing religious scriptures say. I agree that it seems that few of your compatriots use observation as the doorway to reality that it is when allied with critical thinking.

    Your analysis of of other people’s “difficulties” is debatable, but necessary to maintain the fiction you are pursuing.

    What one wants is truth. The best way to get there is the scientific method – a process which excludes the irrational thinking required to believe in the supernatural. And yes – science is the process by which we get to the best possible answer based on the evidence and skills available at any given time. That is not always the right answer, but when it isn’t the proof of its inadequacy comes through further application of the method – not through mysticism.

  • Addressing my comments with “it’s your (deliberate?) misunderstanding of what I said” really makes it clear you have not thought any of this through in any significant way.

    I understand exactly what you’re saying, and it’s import, and am rather sure you don’t.

    In fact you’re bordering on sloganeering, e.g. “You are confusing intent with good-fortune”. Well, no. Evolution involves winnowing various approaches to the challenges an organism faces by eliminating those that do not work at all, by favoring those that work better than others, to accomplish a purpose. That’s why warm coats are a feature of animals in cold climates, not fishes in the ocean.

    The statement “We can work out how something was used but that is not an indicator of intent.” is absurd on its face.

    Using that logic a ball pein hammer MIGHT be a toothpick. Now THAT is mysticism.

    I have laid the groundwork for defining”natural law”, which may or may not have something to do with “morality” – which we have also not defined.

    We can’t get to either because as soon something sounds like it might be used to determine what a person OUGHT to do, you get cramps and raise various objections which basically consist of elaborate not very well-founded versions of why you don’t want to go in that direction.

    To wit “The best way to get there is the scientific method – a process which excludes the irrational thinking required to believe in the supernatural.” while at the very same time denying in some form of magical thinking what the scientific method seems to point to if it runs afoul of your preconceptions.

    And THAT is the fiction.

    How you can hew to it and then write “What one wants is truth.“ eludes me.

    Instead write “What I want is truth, as long as it does not involve a natural law that might contradict something I believe or do.”

  • “to accomplish a purpose. ”

    No

    If a favourable result occurs it is retained – there is no “purpose” – simply an achievement.
    – – – – –
    “The statement “We can work out how something was used but that is not an indicator of intent.” is absurd on its face.

    Using that logic a ball pein hammer MIGHT be a toothpick. Now THAT is mysticism.”

    No – are you suggesting that the first light-sensitive cell was a deliberate production designed to solve the problem of finding food/evading predators? – If so – what evidence do you have to support that. Occam’s razor says the cell evolved, the facility it provided was beneficial, the animal passed the successful variation on to more progeny than those without “sight” because it lived longer etc. etc. – neither need nor reason to impute intent – just the good-fortune of a beneficial variation.
    – – – – – –
    “I have laid the groundwork for defining “natural law” which may or may not have something to do with “morality”

    It’s down to you to define what you mean since you introduced the term. If you don’t know what you mean – we’ll just drop the subject.
    – – – – – –
    “which may or may not have something to do with “morality” – which we have also not defined.”
    lets start with a simple definition – morality is the code of conduct acceptable to the majority of a population.
    – – – – – –
    “To wit “The best way to get there is the scientific method – a process which excludes the irrational thinking required to believe in the supernatural.” while at the very same time denying in some form of magical thinking what the scientific method seems to point to if it runs afoul of your preconceptions.”
    What does the scientific method point to that runs afoul of my preconceptions? Be specific.
    – – – – – –
    “What I want is truth, as long as it does not involve a natural law that might contradict something I believe or do.” Nonsense – just because you can’t make a case that stands up doesn’t mean I have to abandon reason.

  • “We already know….”

    the you that thinks you are “We” is getting to be a smaller number every day .

    you can keep repeating the old definitions as long as you want . it will not change a thing .

    you perhaps are the one duped . sorry for you situation .

  • This is all quite amusing. Had you presented it prior to WWII, you’d have been drowned out in laughter.

    So, you believe that the law of gravity was the result of a random process?

    “If a favourable result occurs it is retained – there is no ‘purpose’ – simply an achievement.”

    This has always been one my favorites. The feminists nearly fifty years ago argued for 100% nurture and 0% nature. A million years of evolution counted for naught.

    As it turned out nature won.

    Extensive research demonstrates that the woman is suited to be a mother and the man to be a father, and this is reflected in inherent differences in the designs of the brain, the breasts, the pelvises, the upper body structures.

    Like the law of gravity, you can overcome it, but you can’t eliminate or deny it.

    A ball pein hammer is not a toothpick. No matter how much you wish it to be so, if you jump out the 25th floor of a building and wave your arms, you are not going to fly.

    No, I am not suggesting that the first light-sensitive cell was a deliberate production designed to solve the problem of finding food/evading predators.

    On the other hand, were there not a use for it, it would not have evolved and remained.

    “It’s down to you to define what you mean since you introduced the term.”

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natural_law

    Your “Morality is the code of conduct acceptable to the majority of a population” was rejected at Nuremberg.

    For good reason.

    I first gave the problem serious consideration in reviewing and studying the war crimes trials there. The tribunal was compelled to do logical back flips, engage in circular reasoning, and otherwise try to invent a square circle because – like yourself – the Soviets would not accept natural law. They wouldn’t accept it because they engaged themselves in behavior which could not be justified under any natural law theory except survival of the fittest.

    So, the simple solution to the criterion of the tribunal – any damned fool knows that gassing children is abhorrent – was dropped for a porridge of references to treaties, agreements, and various high-sounding precepts of the League of Nations.

    You, unfortunately for your case and like the Soviets, can’t make a case that stands up to anyone who happens not to be invested in some behavior and/or belief which requires a rejection of natural law.

    And you immediately run into the problems of trying to create a raison d’être for rights for minorities (if “morality is the code of conduct acceptable to the majority of a population”), laws against bestiality, bases for war crimes trials, and on and on.

    Thomas Jefferson was correct. The existence of natural law is self-evident.

    The only discussion worth having is to what extent natural law should be used as a criterion in human behavior.

    Btw, IMHO morality is the differentiation of intentions, decisions and actions between those that are distinguished as proper and those that are improper. It is human conduct subordinated to the ideal of what is right and fitting.

  • Bob, the only kind of people who want to have intercourse with living things that can’t give consent (animals, children, the infirm), are sick individuals. People for whom sex is nothing more than a means to feel powerful by dominating weaker beings. They aren’t interested in sex with an equal partner. They only want to use sex to bully someone, or something. Such people are dangerous.

    That’s an entirely different issue from whether we should eat animals or not.

  • Didn’t you copy and paste this comment from further upthread? Can you not think of anything else to say?

    You sound an awful lot like Josh Duggar, back when he used to work for the Family Research Council. He loved to argue that homosexuals were interested in pedophilia, and that granting civil rights to gay people would increase the danger to children.

    That is, until it was discovered that Duggar had molested his own sisters as a teenager, and that his parents had covered it up. After that came to light, he had to leave the FRC. Strangely enough, I haven’t heard him crowing too much lately about the supposed moral superiority of married heterosexual men. I wonder why that is?

    P.S. Can you provide proof or documentation for any of the claims you’ve made in your comments?

  • That “the only kind of people who want to have intercourse with living things that can’t give consent … are sick individuals.” is a question, not the answer.

    You’ve presented two cases where consent is considered essential in all manners of interaction: children, the infirm. They’re human.

    We eat animals. We kill them for their parts. To the best of my knowledge neither requires permission.

    What we’re looking for is a basis in law to ban this practice that does not require a religious belief.

    So far I’ve proposed considering natural law and gotten some pushback.

  • demand your money back from whoever taught you english in school .

    of course words change and definitions change . else we would not see change in languages or dialects .

    a thousand years ago you could praise god by calling god awful, as in filling one with awe .

    now you would only insult god saying that .

    words change and meaning change .

  • I hope you’ve practiced saying this with your hands on your hips, punctuated with your index finger when your voice rises on “using it”.

  • No. They don’t change. Marriage has always been defined as a relationship between a man and a woman. That’s why homosexual “marriage” is not marriage because to have a marriage you must have a husband and wife. Only a man can be a husband and a woman a wife. Without each of them in relationship to each other you don’t have a marriage.

    Same goes for female. A female will never have a penis no matter if a guy puts a skirt on.

  • I read as far as your straw man – “you believe that the law of gravity was the result of a random process?”.

    If you think that there is a rigid, immutable “natural law” then, unless you subscribe to that despicable and inhumane notion “divine command morality”, you believe that God is subject to its dictats? Which the Bible says he regularly broke.

    And, since you still haven’t defined it, you presumably don’t know what you mean by “natural law”. Until you do there is no possibility of rational discussion – you will just continue to move the goalposts and invent statements I haven’t made.

    I’m done.

  • As usual you were done when you began, claiming a scientific approach, and then bailing out with a variety of conditions, objections, a prioris, and mystic statements that precluded a scientific approach.

    It did not take long before your anti-religious script arose – e.g., “divine command morality”, “you believe that God is subject to its dictats?”.

    I assiduously avoided any mention of a deity and stuck to observable reality. So much for “rational discussion”.

    We never got to defining natural law since you began by denying that such thing existed, a priori, sans observations, because such a notion would run head long into your existing preconceived bedrock.

    You know, I know, and everyone else knows that I moved no goal posts.

    So, we can’t derive a coherent morality that includes rights for minorities from “morality is the code of conduct acceptable to the majority of a population”. We also find that “morality is the code of conduct acceptable to the majority of a population” was rejected by the Nuremberg Tribunal.

    That leaves your moral Land Rover stuck in the moral mud spinning its wheels.

    My natural law approach, however, provides for rights for everyone, would have provided a sound basis not only at Nuremberg but at every war crimes trial since, provides a sound rationale for outlawing bestiality, and appears to have one flaw only: it might interfere with some folks’ ideas on the morality of some of the behavior they engage in.

  • you seem to have lost any point, moving to a trollish trait of repeating a comment that was directed to you .

    do you have anything to add to the conversation ? emphasis on the word ADD ?

  • If only so that you can understand what you’re arguing about in future –

    define what you mean by “natural law”.

  • in a document on the various forms of illegal and illicit sex, in a document of over 7000 words in english, the vatican in the final paragraphs uses 3 words to say the obvious about bestiality : that it too is wrong. to you that means that “RCC priest were/are….” really into it .

    that is a strange and absurd interpretation of what was said or meant or of what the reality is . your comment is truly bizarre .

  • My neighbor says we need to keep government out of this matter. He loves his Dolly the Sheep.

  • You really should change religions – something along the lines of Animism or Shamanism as practiced by peoples such as the Inuits in the northern reaches of North America.

    Their holy men – the Angakkug have never engaged in bestiality ! The caribou are too-large, the polar bear too dangerous and the seals are too slippery !

    As an apologist for the RCC and clergy – your life is understandably impossible especially in regard to their centuries long practice of bestiality.

    Join the Inuits – become an Animist ! You’ll have nothing to apologize for.

  • come back patrick when you can follow and engage in a real conversation, rather than typing the irrelevancies that the strange little voices in your head dictate .

  • and then the supreme court in this country came and changed the definition . many many other countries have done the same .

    and they could do it because the majority of their people began to see that the reality of life as people lived it had changed .

    you don’t like it . your right . you are going to insist that the old definition is the only correct one . your right . but if you insist that the legal definition has not changed, you will be obviously wrong . and if you insist that the way a majority of people use the word should not be accepted, you will simply be seen as obtuse .

    definitions change whether you like it or not .

  • At least you have the excuse that your ignorance and inaccuracies are the result of genetic predispositions rather than indolence.

  • Your request itself was a deflection.

    Be prepared to wait until hell freezes over.

  • Not at all. It’s a request for you to put your proverbial money where your mouth is.

    I am prepared, as I knew you would never rise to even the most simplest of challenges.

  • Since I never mentioned even having a spouse, my money is already where my mouth is.

    So, ta ta and all that.

  • If the supreme court said there were square circles in your closet would you check to see if they are there or would you think that you were lied to?
    The requirements of a marriage have not changed nor can they. What we have now are fake marriages. Its that simple.

  • JP, i understand that that is what you believe . it is a matter of faith to you . great . but what you believe and what others experience and live are two different things .

    we are not talking about logical impossibilities . we are talking about practical realities .

    and that, obviously, definitions change .

  • the male organ in question immediately has two obvious functions . one is reproduction . the other more frequently used function is not .

    nature seems to “intend” multiple uses for many parts of our bodies . to assume a simple natural law conclusion about anything is often but jumping to conclusion .

  • i am sorry to hear that you don’t have a way of relieving yourself of excess fluids from your body .

  • you give no signs of knowing what it is for . likely because you are simply trying to be argumentative .

    but that “tool” as you call it is for sex (and often procreation but not always, as even when one does it just as you would approve, procreation does not occur) .

    and that “tool” as you call it is for allowing the body to dispose of its waste water .

    two functions . one tool .

    i know that .

    unlike you .

    [p.s. i would happily leave the snark behind for a serious conversation if you would also .]

  • 1 – My comments on its use were spot-on.

    2 – English sentences begin with capital letters.

    3 – What serious conversation?

  • your continued use of “can opener” is spot on to nothing .

    your continued ignoring of countervailing facts are spot on to nothing .

    what conversation ? the one i offer and the several that others have offered but you have spurred by simply repeating a poor metaphor such as the can opener that proved nothing other than you have premises that others don’t share and you refuse to engage as too meaning ..

  • I am sorry you had trouble following my reasoning prior to the conversation collapsing, which it assuredly has done.

  • “[your] reasoning prior….”

    which was ? that everything only has one purpose ? that intent is obvious ? that there is some conscious creator giving intent ?

    what reasoning ?

  • Apparently “the conversation collapsing, which it assuredly has done” means something quite different to you than to me.

  • and yet you respond .

    if either of us really valued our time, we would not be spending so much time on arguments that run around in circles .

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