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Majority of Evangelicals pro torture

A new survey is out on torture, from Pew Research Centre. The group most likely to support torture is white evangelicals(60%+ pro torture). The group most likely to say torture is never justified is mainline protestants (30%), followed closely by non religious (25%).

 

http://www.cnn.com/2009/US/04/30/religion.torture/index.html#cnnSTCText

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sighsnootles's picture

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ROTFLMAO!!

 

you know, that simply strengthens my views on evangelicals as quickly becoming that which they set out to destroy....

boltupright's picture

boltupright

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I don't support it.

 

Bolt

Birthstone's picture

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CNN said "Churchgoers more likely to support torture"  UGH!!!  Again with lumping us all in!  How can we shout loudly enough to be heard?  

Tyson's picture

Tyson

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I am an evangelical and I think torture is sick and disgusting and I do not support it in any form for any reason.

Tyson's picture

Tyson

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Is this source an American source? Is the 60% based only on those evangelicals that responded to the poll? Were all evangelicals polled or just a sample? Should it be, "60% of American evangelicals are pro torture"?

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Kinst wrote:

A new survey is out on torture, from Pew Research Centre. The group most likely to support torture is white evangelicals(60%+ pro torture). The group most likely to say torture is never justified is mainline protestants (30%), followed closely by non religious (25%).

 

Never heard of Pew Research Centre. As for the statistic re. evangelicals, I find that pretty sad.

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consumingfire V3.0 wrote:

Is this source an American source? Is the 60% based only on those evangelicals that responded to the poll? Were all evangelicals polled or just a sample? Should it be, "60% of American evangelicals are pro torture"?

 

Yeah, that's more like it. Somehow I seriously doubt they polled evangelicals in Canada, Korea, Africa, Australia, etc.

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Pew Research Center is worth looking into - they've done a few things I've heard about and its well done.

 

CF - yes - it is American - Guns & God  - I think the connection is the part about Non-Christians beating up on Good Christians - and somehow some the Christian Right (politically speaking) enshrine protecting themselves (meaning the Christian Country blessed by God- the USofA) from terrorists as a Christian priviledge.  Or soemthing like that. 

But the news paints all with the same brush.  I have to say that at least "Evangelical" helps separate some groups, but obviously not all.  Poor CF

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bishop

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To me, torturing someone is like spiritually raping them.  The people that support torture would quickly change their perspective if they were the ones being tortured. 

Any one who enforces torture is creating a hell on earth and is taking the role of the devil. 

Any one who supports torture is supporting the works of the devil. 

It's odd that 60% of  godly americans are supporting satans service. 

yuk.

 

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Freundly-Giant

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60%? Ewww, that makes me queezy.

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Well at least mainstream Christians were among the most likely to oppose torture so that's good news at least. This is just my guess but evangelicals are the most dogmatic and judgmental and going along with that have the least empathy. They don't look at people who are different as being worth considering. That's very unchristian. Look at the story of the good Samaritan, the parables of the lost coin or the lost sheep (99 here and one missing, go look for the missing one), all the healing and ministry from JESUS, JESUS washing the disciples feet, etc. The Bible teaches us compassion and empathy. We are supposed to "love our neighbors as ourselves". How does torture sync with that????

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As a student of politics I'll say that Pew is pretty well known and accpted, at least in the U.S.

LBmuskoka's picture

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The Poll results are more interesting when read. 

The Religious Dimensions of the Torture

 

Other things to note.  The poll was only conducted in the US.  The sample size was 742. 

 

The question posed:   Do you think the use of torture against suspected terrorists in order to gain important information can often be justified, sometimes be justified, rarely be justified, or never be justified?

 

So given that question, where do WCer's fall.....

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 How is this a surprise?

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LBmuskoka wrote:

 Other things to note.  The poll was only conducted in the US.  The sample size was 742. 

  

 

So then if the poll was only taken in the U.S. and the sample size was only 742, that is hardly a fair representative. How many of that 742 were actually evangelical? The poll and it's assesment seem rather dubious to me.

 

For the benefit of the doubt, let's say that all 742 people polled were evangelical. If "60% of evangelicals" are pro-torture, that leaves us with around 445 evangelicals in that sample who are pro-torture. There are certainly more than 742 in the world, let alone in the U.S.

 

I think the poll, the article title and numbers are extremely flawed and misleading. I do not doubt that there are probably many evangelicals who are pro-torture. But I feel safe in assuming that the majority are not. The poll may show the state of evangelical thinking on this matter in the U.S. (but with such a small sample, how can one truly know)? But it certainly is not representative of evangelicals world wide.

 

So it really should read that 60% of evangelicals polled in the U.S. are pro-torture.

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I just looked at the survey. Of the 742 sample, only 174 were U.S. evangelical. If 60% are pro-torture, that leaves only around 104 of 174 evangelicals polled that are pro-torture. How can anybody believe that this is representative with such small numbers? The results of this survey are extremely flawed and misleading.

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Tyson

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Don't buy the hype that this survey is shovelling. If I were to believe everything it says and use no disernement, close to 50% of white mainline Protestants also are pro-torture. I could also assume that members of Protestant denominations that place social justice high in priority would be included in that 50%.

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LBmuskoka wrote:
The question posed:   Do you think the use of torture against suspected terrorists in order to gain important information can often be justified, sometimes be justified, rarely be justified, or never be justified?

So given that question, where do WCer's fall.....

Never. Duh. It's not hard.

 

ShamanWolf wrote:
How is this a surprise?
We've all probably been judged by evil-gelicals at one point or another. They scare the **** out of me. That's why I came to Wondercafe in the first place, to find sanctuary, to hide from hypocritical religious people. I expect american evangelicals to be extra crazy, this is just a really clear example. Like they say, the christian right is neither christian nor right.

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Kinst wrote:

  We've all probably been judged by evil-gelicals at one point or another. They scare the **** out of me. That's why I came to Wondercafe in the first place, to find sanctuary, to hide from hypocritical religious people. I expect american evangelicals to be extra crazy, this is just a really clear example. Like they say, the christian right is neither christian nor right.

 

1) I have never judged anybody, ever. And I take offence to the word "evil-gelicals".

 

2) How can you say this when the sample size is so bloody small? Of the 742 polled, only 174 were evangelical.

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Kinst wrote:

 Like they say, the christian right is neither christian nor right.

 

Then those that say it are guilty of fallacy.

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Kinst wrote:

LBmuskoka wrote:
The question posed:   Do you think the use of torture against suspected terrorists in order to gain important information can often be justified, sometimes be justified, rarely be justified, or never be justified?

So given that question, where do WCer's fall.....

Never. Duh. It's not hard.

 

For one so young, you are so much more intelligent than politicians.

 

I happen to agree with you 100% but the reality is that other polls have shown people from different persuasions to answer yes to the "sometimes" which was the percentage that pushed the evangelicals into the 60% bracket. 

 

Thus the reason I highlighted the question was, before tossing stones one should count one's own glass walls.

 

For an interesting cross cultural opinion check out this link

World Citizens Reject Torture, BBC Global Poll Reveals

 

LB


Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster.      Friedrich Nietzche

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LBmuskoka wrote:


Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster.      Friedrich Nietzche

That's a fantastic quote and fantastic advice. 

We should replace the word monsters with the word terrorists and pass this advice up to our government. 

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742 is a bit small for a national survey but within the bounds of legitimate, even if only just. 1000 is really good, 742 is tolerable. Having said that it would be better to "over-poll" in order to get a good breakdown of the different brackets individually. My guess is it had a 5% margin of error. 4% is better obviously and 3% is the best. The only time I've ever seen better than that is a "poll of polls". Where 5 or more polls ask identical questions and you average them together. We get that every four years leading up to an election but that's the only time I've seen that. The margin of error says if you conduct the poll 100 times then 95 times the results will be no more that number off in either direction, in this case between 55 and 65 percent.

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The part that I find difficult to believe is that only 30% of main line protestants believe that torture is never justified.   I would think in the UCC it would be closer to 100%. 

 

I find any support of torture to be incomprehensible - unacceptable - not even to be thought of or considered.  No matter what the circumstances.  Never. 

Do I get my point across?   I thought most people in the UCC would agree with me.  I think that this was an American survey and the UCC wouldn't have been included.  But surely there are American churches who feel the same.

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Hypothetical:
 
A wacky political group invades a school and steals 6 kids, and one of them happens to be yours.  They tell you that the kids are in a place where they will all drown in 6 hours when the tide comes in if their demands are not met. You scramble to get the things they want and 3 hours before the deadline, the exchange of information of where the kids are for ransom demands goes terribly wrong. When the dust settles there is only one member left of the bad guys. He does not want to reveal where the soon to drown kids are.
 
Six kids, will be dead in 3 hours,
Bad guy, knows where they are,
You, about to lose your child,
Louisville Slugger leaning in the corner,
Tick, tick, tick…
alta's picture

alta

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Saul_now_Paul wrote:

 

Hypothetical:
 
A wacky political group invades a school and steals 6 kids, and one of them happens to be yours.  They tell you that the kids are in a place where they will all drown in 6 hours when the tide comes in if their demands are not met. You scramble to get the things they want and 3 hours before the deadline, the exchange of information of where the kids are for ransom demands goes terribly wrong. When the dust settles there is only one member left of the bad guys. He does not want to reveal where the soon to drown kids are.
 
Six kids, will be dead in 3 hours,
Bad guy, knows where they are,
You, about to lose your child,
Louisville Slugger leaning in the corner,
Tick, tick, tick…

If you can't stick to your values in a time like that, then they weren't really values at all.  More like hobbies.

For myself, I would not torture the information out of him.  However, I would make it quite clear to him that his only chance of survival is tied to that of my child.  If he says nothing, he dies in 3 hours too.

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Saul_now_Paul

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Hi alta,

 

So you think it is better to let 6 children die and then execute the culprit than to knee cap him and save your kids?

 

Admirable values.

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boltupright

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Saul_now_Paul wrote:

Hi alta,

 

So you think it is better to let 6 children die and then execute the culprit than to knee cap him and save your kids?

 

Admirable values.

You got me thinking there. Man that puts a whole new twist to it, eh?

 

Many of those hard line terrorists are not afraid to die for the cause, but to water board them & keep them alive & repeat it & repeat it, after a while they will no doubt cough up the information. Unless they just don't know the location then what?

This would be the way for them to accomplish this by only sharing the location with very few of them.

 

 

 

Bolt

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Saul_now_Paul

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Hypothetical:
 
Canadian Base in Kandahar loses communication with armored personnel carrier.  They send out troops to investigate, and find that the vehicle has hit a mine and been incapacitated.  All six personnel are missing.
 
Three days later, a Taliban insurgent is captured in the middle of the Canadian Base and about to dump anthrax into ventilation system, which would have wiped out everybody on the installation.
 
 
 
The reason he was able to get to that point on the base was because they are holding and torturing the survivors from the destroyed vehicle. Your troops are being tortured, your security is compromised, and the safety of the entire base is extremely diminished because they have your people.
 
Do you:
 
1)      Give him Tim bits and double/doubles for the remainder of the war?
2)      Extract the information to recover your troops?
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seeler

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I would hope that I would hold up my values - no torture under any circumstances. Humane treatment for the remainder of the war - possibly tried as a war criminal when it is over. 

In the other case - tried for murder of six children (if it happens).  Humane treatment and life sentence if found guilty.

Saul_now_Paul's picture

Saul_now_Paul

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Hi seeler,
 
But what are values?
 
Is a moral value that you do not want to torture someone really greater than the value you place on your child?
 
Would you really rather your children die than to have to punch a bad guy?
 
I’d have no problem punching him for my kids, or for the one in your avatar. They are more valuable than some law I have made up in my head about not punching bad guys.
Saul_now_Paul's picture

Saul_now_Paul

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I can tell you that if the Allies in 2nd WW held to the staunch views held by all above, none of us would be living in the True North, Strong and Free.
seeler's picture

seeler

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My values. 

 

I try to see the face of God in everyone I meet. 

 

I do not support torture or anything that degrades the value of human life - we are all children of God.

 

The fact that someone else is doing what I consider wrong, doesn't give me the right to do wrong as well. 

 

If I believe there is a reason for torture, and my enemies believe in torture, what separates me from my enemy?   Is my judgment of when it is justified superior to his? 

 

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boltupright

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What about this scenario?

 

The gvmt. Is implementing a new monitary system that will include being able to track & locate every indevidual that is involved in this new system.

 

The way it will work is that a special chip will be inbeded inside your body where it will be easy to scan.

 

Everytime it scans, all information including your assets, employment status, address, bank information, drivers licence, etc. etc. will be seen by whoever does this scanning according to what institution they will represent.

This would be done in a way that if you want to buy, sell, drive your car, pay your bills etc. etc. this will be law to conform to this system.

 

If citizens decide to not accept this system will be forced to under the law.

Even if they use an excuse like, refusal for religious reasons, they will still be forced to under the law to accept this "harmless new system".

 

If  citizens decide that this cause is worth fighting against, they will be regarded as traitors & terrorists.

 

The U.S has ratified new legislation that allows the govmt. to detain anyone who is suspected of terrorist activity, & take them anywhere in the world, & hold them as a prisoner, & torture them. All the while not having to charge them with a crime.

 

Now what if one like you or I was like one of those people who believe it is the mark of the beast. & We fight against this system, we will be regarded as terrorists!

 

So now this torture idea doesn't fly well does it?

 

 

Bolt

 

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Kinst,

 

I wonder how this would tie in with the latest brain research on the 'Political Nature' of our brains?

 

You can start here: http://www.nature.com/neuro/journal/v10/n10/abs/nn1979.html

 

Also, perhaps this can shed light as well:

Q: What is the Tragic Vision vs. the Utopian Vision?

A: They are the different visions of human nature that underlie left-wing and right-wing ideologies. The distinction comes from the economist Thomas Sowell in his wonderful book "A Conflict of Visions." According to the Tragic Vision, humans are inherently limited in virtue, wisdom, and knowledge, and social arrangements must acknowledge those limits. According to the Utopian vision, these limits are “products” of our social arrangements, and we should strive to overcome them in a better society of the future. Out of this distinction come many right-left contrasts that would otherwise have no common denominator. Rightists tend to like tradition (because human nature does not change), small government (because no leader is wise enough to plan society), a strong police and military (because people will always be tempted by crime and conquest), and free markets (because they convert individual selfishness into collective wealth). Leftists believe that these positions are defeatist and cynical, because if we change parenting, education, the media, and social expectations, people could become wiser, nicer, and more peaceable and generous.

--from here http://www.isteve.com/2002_QA_Steven_Pinker.htm

 

Just look at the different points of view expressed in this one thread :3

 

Deterministically free willed,

Inannawhimsey

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Saul_now_Paul

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Hi seeler,
 
You may be right. I guess it all boils down to how we prioritize our values.
 
I think that doing nothing to save the kids is a greater wrong than to bat around a criminal. I guess, which is the lesser of two evils?
 
sighsnootles's picture

sighsnootles

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Saul_now_Paul wrote:

So you think it is better to let 6 children die and then execute the culprit than to knee cap him and save your kids?

 

Admirable values.

 

thank you... as has been said earlier, when life is good, everyone has fabulous values. its only when the chips are down that you REALLY see who has the christian values. 

 

although i am also against capital punishment, so the whole 'execute the culprit' thing would be out.

sighsnootles's picture

sighsnootles

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Saul_now_Paul wrote:

You may be right. I guess it all boils down to how we prioritize our values.
 
I think that doing nothing to save the kids is a greater wrong than to bat around a criminal. I guess, which is the lesser of two evils?
 

 

interesting, saul... how come, in your mind, the only two options are ...

- do nothing

- torture a prisoner

sighsnootles's picture

sighsnootles

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boltupright wrote:

What about this scenario?

 

The gvmt. Is implementing a new monitary system that will include being able to track & locate every indevidual that is involved in this new system.

 

The way it will work is that a special chip will be inbeded inside your body where it will be easy to scan.

 

Everytime it scans, all information including your assets, employment status, address, bank information, drivers licence, etc. etc. will be seen by whoever does this scanning according to what institution they will represent.

This would be done in a way that if you want to buy, sell, drive your car, pay your bills etc. etc. this will be law to conform to this system.

 

If citizens decide to not accept this system will be forced to under the law.

Even if they use an excuse like, refusal for religious reasons, they will still be forced to under the law to accept this "harmless new system".

 

If  citizens decide that this cause is worth fighting against, they will be regarded as traitors & terrorists.

 

The U.S has ratified new legislation that allows the govmt. to detain anyone who is suspected of terrorist activity, & take them anywhere in the world, & hold them as a prisoner, & torture them. All the while not having to charge them with a crime.

 

Now what if one like you or I was like one of those people who believe it is the mark of the beast. & We fight against this system, we will be regarded as terrorists!

 

So now this torture idea doesn't fly well does it?

 

 

good lord, have you been reading those wonky tracts that the weird people on the street are handing out??  you aren't taking them seriously, are you??

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Saul_now_Paul

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Yes Bolt,
 
If we find ourselves in that predicament we will be regarded as terrorists. And lose our heads. It could be worse.
 
sighsnootles's picture

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if we find ourselves in that predicament, we will need to take our anti-psychotic medication again...  good grief. 

 

i can't believe anyone actually BELIEVES that nonsense.

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Saul_now_Paul

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sighsnootles wrote:

Saul_now_Paul wrote:

 

You may be right. I guess it all boils down to how we prioritize our values.
 
I think that doing nothing to save the kids is a greater wrong than to bat around a criminal. I guess, which is the lesser of two evils?
 

 

interesting, saul... how come, in your mind, the only two options are ...

- do nothing

- torture a prisoner

 

Sorry sigh,

 

I forgot about the comfy chair.

sighsnootles's picture

sighsnootles

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ROTFLMAO!! 

 

are you being serious, saul??  do you honestly think that torture is the only option available?!?!

 

please tell me you are being sarcastic!!!

alta's picture

alta

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Saul_now_Paul wrote:

Hi alta,

 

So you think it is better to let 6 children die and then execute the culprit than to knee cap him and save your kids?

 

Admirable values.

I repeat: if values can't survive being tested, they weren't values at all.

 

Hypothetical:

You knee-cap the kidnapper; he laughs at you.  You beat him with the bat: he spits in your face.  You water board him; he tells you how much he enjoys your desparation.  You continue to torture untill he dies without telling you anything.  Now you've lost your kids and sold your soul.

LBmuskoka's picture

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Here's an article that may help one rethink the torture debate....

 

click link for full article How ’07 ABC Interview Tilted a Torture Debate

 

Excerpt 

In late 2007, there was the first crack of daylight into the government’s use of waterboarding during interrogations of Al Qaeda detainees. On Dec. 10, John Kiriakou, a former C.I.A. officer who had participated in the capture of the suspected terrorist Abu Zubaydah in Pakistan in 2002, appeared on ABC News to say that while he considered waterboarding a form of torture, the technique worked and yielded results very quickly. 

 

Mr. Zubaydah started to cooperate after being waterboarded for “probably 30, 35 seconds,” Mr. Kiriakou told the ABC reporter Brian Ross. “From that day on he answered every question.” 

 

His claims — unverified at the time, but repeated by dozens of broadcasts, blogs and newspapers — have been sharply contradicted by a newly declassified Justice Department memo that said waterboarding had been used on Mr. Zubaydah “at least 83 times.” 

 

For more on the declassified documents click Waterboarding Used 266 Times on 2 Suspects 

 

After the 83rd time I think I would confess to anything....

 

 

LB


“It works, is the bottom line, Thirty to 35 seconds, and it works.”   Rush Limbaugh (just multiple that by 83)

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seeler

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When we read of a prisoner being tortured in Iraq or Afghanstan we are shocked and horrified.  We take it as proof that these countries are barbaric, that they need our help to establish and guarantee freedom.

 

Does it make sense then to say that we are justified in using torture 'in some cases'?

 

I imagine that other countries only use it 'in some cases' as well, and justify it as a means to achieve their goals. 

boltupright's picture

boltupright

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Saul_now_Paul wrote:

 

Yes Bolt,
 
If we find ourselves in that predicament we will be regarded as terrorists. And lose our heads. It could be worse.
 

 

Yeah, it could be worse.

Seems like some of the people here are a bit taken aback by talk of the end times.

Seems they will be quite taken aback when these things come about.

 

 

Bolt

boltupright's picture

boltupright

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sighsnootles wrote:

boltupright wrote:

What about this scenario?

 

The gvmt. Is implementing a new monitary system that will include being able to track & locate every indevidual that is involved in this new system.

 

The way it will work is that a special chip will be inbeded inside your body where it will be easy to scan.

 

Everytime it scans, all information including your assets, employment status, address, bank information, drivers licence, etc. etc. will be seen by whoever does this scanning according to what institution they will represent.

This would be done in a way that if you want to buy, sell, drive your car, pay your bills etc. etc. this will be law to conform to this system.

 

If citizens decide to not accept this system will be forced to under the law.

Even if they use an excuse like, refusal for religious reasons, they will still be forced to under the law to accept this "harmless new system".

 

If  citizens decide that this cause is worth fighting against, they will be regarded as traitors & terrorists.

 

The U.S has ratified new legislation that allows the govmt. to detain anyone who is suspected of terrorist activity, & take them anywhere in the world, & hold them as a prisoner, & torture them. All the while not having to charge them with a crime.

 

Now what if one like you or I was like one of those people who believe it is the mark of the beast. & We fight against this system, we will be regarded as terrorists!

 

So now this torture idea doesn't fly well does it?

 

 

 

good lord, have you been reading those wonky tracts that the weird people on the street are handing out??  you aren't taking them seriously, are you??

 

I've done my own research on the matter so no. I didn't get my information from wonky tracts from weird people on the street.

I am taking these things very very seriously indeed.

 

Bolt

boltupright's picture

boltupright

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alta wrote:
 You knee-cap the kidnapper; he laughs at you.  You beat him with the bat: he spits in your face.  You water board him; he tells you how much he enjoys your desparation.  You continue to torture untill he dies without telling you anything.  Now you've lost your kids and sold your soul. 

 

I don't think anyone at the time of torture would laugh or spit in anyones face unless they are conditioned to feel no pain.

There are people out there that do not feel any pain whatsoever.

I don't know what this condition is, but it is a rare medical condition.

No pain at all, they get broken bones & don't know they are broken untill the bone snaps to where it is obvious. No feeling at all.

Torture would be useless on such a person.

 

 

Bolt

Kinst's picture

Kinst

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Saul_now_Paul wrote:

Hypothetical:

 
Canadian Base in Kandahar loses communication with armored personnel carrier.  They send out troops to investigate, and find that the vehicle has hit a mine and been incapacitated.  All six personnel are missing.
 
Three days later, a Taliban insurgent is captured in the middle of the Canadian Base and about to dump anthrax into ventilation system, which would have wiped out everybody on the installation.
 
 
 
The reason he was able to get to that point on the base was because they are holding and torturing the survivors from the destroyed vehicle. Your troops are being tortured, your security is compromised, and the safety of the entire base is extremely diminished because they have your people.
 
Do you:
 
1)      Give him Tim bits and double/doubles for the remainder of the war?
2)      Extract the information to recover your troops?

Trick question. War is evil, we shouldn't be at war in the first place.

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