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Thread: Healthcare question for Christians

  1. #211
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    Re: Healthcare question for Christians

    Quote Originally Posted by SouthernDemocrat View Post
    Let me try to summarize my beliefs on this subject the best I can. I am not saying that Christians have to or even necessarily should support a federal Universal Health care System. It's foolish to think that a Christian or anyone for that matter should have to from a moral perspective support a program that could very well be unworkable just because the intentions of it are good.

    My personal opinion as to the various bills being debated in congress right now is that they do not do enough to curb costs, they don't address the major issue of personal responsibility for ones health, and being that we have some 300 million people in this country with tens of millions of uninsured and under-insured, I have my doubts about whether such an effort to insure the uninsured and better insure the under-insured could ever be effectively managed and thus would ultimately do anything to control spiraling costs.

    What I am doing is actually addressing the larger issue, this compartmentalized Christianity that has been promoted by the religious right for the past 30 years. Basically, they selectively draw this line that exists no where in scripture between how you are called to act as an individual and how your government acts. I say selectively because they are quick to attempt to use the government to promote their religious beliefs. Such as their attempts to bring prayer back in school, religious beliefs into biology class, the entire same sex marriage issue and so on. Basically, anytime it suits their larger political ideology. However, because they are aligned with a political ideology far more than the Christian faith, they also will excuse injustices practiced by the government. The problem is, if you as an individual are not supposed to torture someone, then you should work to ensure that the government that you elect is not torturing people. If you the individual are supposed to be a good steward of creation, then you should work to ensure that the government you elect is one as well. If you the individual are supposed to seek peace and justice whenever possible, then you should work to ensure your government that you elect and that represents you does the same.

    You see in scripture kings are told to be righteous and just as well. In a republic, every citizen is something of a king. So just like David and Solomon had to be wise, righteous, and just kings, every Christian voter has to be when going to the polls or the town halls as well.

    Its very dangerous when people choose to compartmentalize their conscience when its politically expedient to their personal ideology.
    You're talking like a conservative, in case you didn't know. Personal responsibility is a conservative tenet.
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  2. #212
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    Re: Healthcare question for Christians

    Quote Originally Posted by SouthernDemocrat View Post
    Let me try to summarize my beliefs on this subject the best I can. I am not saying that Christians have to or even necessarily should support a federal Universal Health care System. It's foolish to think that a Christian or anyone for that matter should have to from a moral perspective support a program that could very well be unworkable just because the intentions of it are good.

    My personal opinion as to the various bills being debated in congress right now is that they do not do enough to curb costs, they don't address the major issue of personal responsibility for ones health, and being that we have some 300 million people in this country with tens of millions of uninsured and under-insured, I have my doubts about whether such an effort to insure the uninsured and better insure the under-insured could ever be effectively managed and thus would ultimately do anything to control spiraling costs.

    What I am doing is actually addressing the larger issue, this compartmentalized Christianity that has been promoted by the religious right for the past 30 years. Basically, they selectively draw this line that exists no where in scripture between how you are called to act as an individual and how your government acts. I say selectively because they are quick to attempt to use the government to promote their religious beliefs. Such as their attempts to bring prayer back in school, religious beliefs into biology class, the entire same sex marriage issue and so on. Basically, anytime it suits their larger political ideology. However, because they are aligned with a political ideology far more than the Christian faith, they also will excuse injustices practiced by the government. The problem is, if you as an individual are not supposed to torture someone, then you should work to ensure that the government that you elect is not torturing people. If you the individual are supposed to be a good steward of creation, then you should work to ensure that the government you elect is one as well. If you the individual are supposed to seek peace and justice whenever possible, then you should work to ensure your government that you elect and that represents you does the same.

    You see in scripture kings are told to be righteous and just as well. In a republic, every citizen is something of a king. So just like David and Solomon had to be wise, righteous, and just kings, every Christian voter has to be when going to the polls or the town halls as well.

    Its very dangerous when people choose to compartmentalize their conscience when its politically expedient to their personal ideology.

    While I don't agree with you on several specific points, that was nonetheless an excellent and well considered post.

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  3. #213
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    Re: Healthcare question for Christians

    Quote Originally Posted by Bassman View Post
    Not I, but the Word of G-d!
    Your interpretation of the "Word of G-d".
    "An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied propagation, nor does truth become error because nobody sees it." - Gandhi

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    Re: Healthcare question for Christians

    Quote Originally Posted by American View Post
    You're talking like a conservative, in case you didn't know. Personal responsibility is a conservative tenet.
    I don't mean personal responsibility as in "sorry your kid has cancer, but not my problem you are on your own".

    Instead, I mean personal responsibility for your health in that we need to allow Medicare, Private Insurers and Employer Group Plans to charge you insurance rates based on the risk your lifestyle choices present. For example, if you are a bad driver and speed a lot, you will pay a higher auto insurance rate than a good driver. However, if you are a smoker or weigh 300 pounds, you will pay the same Medicare rate as a non-smoker that eats right and exercises regularly.

    As it is right now, with Medicare and the vast majority of employer group plans, you pay the same rate regardless of whether you make good life choices regarding your health or bad life choices regarding your health. You can be obese and pay the same rate as a marathon runner. The problem with that is that the result is that people that make good life choices regarding their health subsidize the poor life choices of others. We will never get spiraling costs under control if we dont do something about that.
    Last edited by SouthernDemocrat; 08-14-09 at 07:25 PM.
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    Re: Healthcare question for Christians

    To expand on my disagreements with you SD, I think the line between individual actions and collective/gov't actions is indeed distinct.

    I would not support the US government in attempting to actually force Christianity on anyone, because 1- faith is a choice, without choice it is merely forced hypocrisy... 2- it is not the business of the US government to mandate anyone's religious beliefs. That is a matter for religious organizations to seek to persuade individuals to believe, not for government.

    If we allowed individuals to take vengeance for their self, after the fact, we'd run great risks of the punishments being excessive and of people being punished without reasonable proof of guilt. This has been seen during the frontier days with "vigiliance committees". With the government legal system, there is an accepted and relatively objective standard by which guilt is punished, rather than the emotionally-charged suspicions of the victim or victim's family; and a set of standard punishments, rather than the excessive punishments a grieving family might impose. I would refer to Romans 13, "The magistrate does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the revenger of evil, and the terror of the unrighteous."

    Warfare, and our conduct during war, is a slightly trickier issue. Scripturally warfare appears to be justifiable under various circumstances, and there is an acknowlegement that when the "king" calls you to go to war, you go. If the "king" is wrong to go to war, it is the king's fault, not the fault of those who obey him according to the law of the land. When the soldiers who had converted asked Jesus what they should do, whether they should continue to be soldiers or desert being implied, he told them to be content with their pay (ie no robbery, no not-paying-the-inkeeper, no extortion) and to not "terrorize the people". From this I conclude that soldiering is an honorable and moral profession, as long as soldiers conduct themselves honorably and morally.

    As citizens of a democratic Republic, we loan a measure of our sovereignty to our representatives though elections. I agree with you wholeheartedly that we should exercise care to vote wisely and justly... as hard as that is sometimes given the choices we're stuck with.

    Jesus surely did not support the pagan and frequently-harsh or oppressive Roman government, yet he said "render unto Caesar that which is Caesar's due" when asked about taxes.

    Caesar's word was the law of the land, at times the highest law from which there was no appeal. The equivalent in the USA is the Constitution. "I cannot lay my finger on that article of the Constitution that allows the legislature to use the public treasury for charity."
    Last edited by Goshin; 08-14-09 at 07:27 PM.

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    Re: Healthcare question for Christians

    Quote Originally Posted by SouthernDemocrat View Post
    Instead, I mean personal responsibility for your health in that we need to allow Medicare, Private Insurers and Employer Group Plans to charge you insurance rates based on the risk your lifestyle choices present. For example, if you are a bad driver and speed a lot, you will pay a higher auto insurance rate than a good driver. However, if you are a smoker or weigh 300 pounds, you will pay the same Medicare rate as a non-smoker that eats right and exercises regularly.

    As it is right now, with Medicare and the vast majority of employer group plans, you pay the same rate regardless of whether you make good life choices regarding your health or bad life choices regarding your health. You can be obese and pay the same rate as a marathon runner. The problem with that is that the result is that people that make good life choices regarding their health subsidize the poor life choices of others. We will never get spiraling costs under control if we dont do something about that.
    You make an excellent point, again. I would point out, however, that even relatively young champion athletes get cancer or other serious illness sometimes, such as that bicycle super-athlete, whatsisname. You know, the one that kept winning the big French race. Gah, I can't recall, I don't pay much attention to sports.

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  7. #217
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    Re: Healthcare question for Christians

    Quote Originally Posted by Goshin View Post
    You make an excellent point, again. I would point out, however, that even relatively young champion athletes get cancer or other serious illness sometimes, such as that bicycle super-athlete, whatsisname. You know, the one that kept winning the big French race. Gah, I can't recall, I don't pay much attention to sports.
    Well yeah, that's why everyone needs health insurance. One of our big problems in terms of out of control costs are the chronic and very expensive conditions large segments of the population end up with such as diabetes, emphysema, some forms of heart disease and so on that are basically self induced due to a lifetime smoking, not exercising, and not eating right. Everyone should be free to do to their bodies what they want, but why should others have to pay for the consequences of their poor choices. So if you want to eat fast food 5 times a day and balloon yourself up to 300 plus pounds, then fine, its your right to do so, but you should have to pay a higher insurance rate or medicare rate due to the higher costs of the inevitable health problems that will result. To me that makes a lot more sense than trying to tax fast food and donuts.

    As it is, some one can take terrible care of themselves and the taxpayers pick up the tab once they turn 65 for the diabetes care and the knee replacements. Yet a single mother with breast cancer that loses her employer insurance has to be absolutely destitute before she can get any assistance. If you ask me that's a pretty screwed up system we have going and neither side is even remotely trying to address it.
    Last edited by SouthernDemocrat; 08-14-09 at 07:46 PM.
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  8. #218
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    Re: Healthcare question for Christians

    Quote Originally Posted by Hatuey View Post
    We didn't have a war over taxation itself we had a war over among other things, what people considered to be taxation without representation. Do you feel that you are not being represented in our government? Do you not have politicians representing you and your neighbors in Congress?
    Actually we did have a war that involved taxes. In fact initially taxes were not levied against the people, but companies doing buisness.

    Yes I do, and I am not being represented as are allot of people.

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    Hyperbole indeed.
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  9. #219
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    Re: Healthcare question for Christians

    Quote Originally Posted by Goshin View Post
    "If a man shall not work, neither shall he eat."
    Does this apply to children?

    "If one of your countrymen becomes poor and is unable to support himself among you, help him as you would an alien or a temporary resident, so he can continue to live among you."

    Leviticus 25:35

    Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will not be exhausted, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys.

    Luke 12:33
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    Re: Healthcare question for Christians

    Quote Originally Posted by SouthernDemocrat View Post
    From a theological standpoint, we are not under a dictatorial Caesar. In a Republic, a government is owned by and thus is the collective arm of the people.

    This whole notion of "compartmentalized Christianity" many on the religious right promote is an absolute heresy. There are hundreds if not thousands of versus in scripture on helping the poor and the sick. Lets look at these for example:

    Deuteronomy 15:11

    "There are always going to be poor and needy people among you. So I command you: Always be generous, open purse and hands, give to your neighbors in trouble, your poor and hurting neighbors."

    Isaiah 1:17

    "Learn to do good. Work for justice. Help the down(trodden)"

    Proverbs 14:21

    "It's criminal to ignore a neighbor in need, but compassion for the poor--what a blessing!"

    Proverbs 14:31

    "You insult your Maker when you exploit the powerless; when you're kind to the poor, you honor God."


    Proverbs 21:13

    "If you stop your ears to the cries of the poor, your cries will go unheard, unanswered."

    Proverbs 31:9

    "Speak out for justice! Stand up for the poor and destitute!"

    And of course the Parable of the Sheep and the Goats:

    Matthew 25:31-46

    "31: "When he finally arrives, blazing in beauty and all his angels with him, the Son of Man will take his place on his glorious throne. 32: Then all the nations will be arranged before him and he will sort the people out, much as a shepherd sorts out sheep and goats, 33: putting sheep to his right and goats to his left. 34: "Then the King will say to those on his right, "Enter, you who are blessed by my Father! Take what's coming to you in this kingdom. It's been ready for you since the world's foundation. 35: And here's why: I was hungry and you fed me, I was thirsty and you gave me a drink, I was homeless and you gave me a room, 36: I was shivering and you gave me clothes, I was sick and you stopped to visit, I was in prison and you came to me.' 37: "Then those "sheep' are going to say, "Master, what are you talking about? When did we ever see you hungry and feed you, thirsty and give you a drink? 38 -39: And when did we ever see you sick or in prison and come to you?' 40: Then the King will say, "I'm telling the solemn truth: Whenever you did one of these things to someone overlooked or ignored, that was me--you did it to me.' 41: "Then he will turn to the "goats,' the ones on his left, and say, "Get out, worthless goats! You're good for nothing but the fires of hell. 42: And why? Because-- I was hungry and you gave me no meal, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, 43: I was homeless and you gave me no bed, I was shivering and you gave me no clothes, Sick and in prison, and you never visited.' 44: "Then those "goats' are going to say, "Master, what are you talking about? When did we ever see you hungry or thirsty or homeless or shivering or sick or in prison and didn't help?' 45: "He will answer them, "I'm telling the solemn truth: Whenever you failed to do one of these things to someone who was being overlooked or ignored, that was me--you failed to do it to me.' 46: "Then those "goats' will be herded to their eternal doom, but the "sheep' to their eternal reward."

    Scripture does not deal with some of your actions in some circumstances. There are no such limitations on helping the poor and the sick. Just like you cannot turn your back on them in person, you cannot turn your back on them at the voting booth either.

    Now you might say that I think there is a better way we can collectively help the poor and the sick through government than the ways that are being proposed, and that's fine, but to argue that the commandments to help the poor and the sick that are found throughout scripture do not apply to you when you write your congressman or go to the voting booth is pure heresy.
    What does any of that have to do with Government force?

    Remember, Christian friend, GOD is the enforcement arm, not the Government.

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