State Trooper preaches about Jesus during traffic stop.
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08-10-2014, 06:41 AM
RE: State Trooper preaches about Jesus during traffic stop.
(08-10-2014 03:56 AM)hell-lover Wrote:  Actually it was a perfect time. The lady had just committed a crime and should be thinking about God. Anytime is a good time to hear about god - you never know when your time will run out.
Absolutely not on several levels.

As a government employee on the clock the officer should not be preaching.
As a police officer the position of power should not have been abused to advance personal opinions.
Government equipment should not be use to transport personal material, no matter what it is.
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08-10-2014, 07:23 AM (This post was last modified: 08-10-2014 07:28 AM by Reltzik.)
RE: State Trooper preaches about Jesus during traffic stop.
Unless you think that anyone with a badge should have the authority to hassle you with any religion of their choosing... and do so in a situation where you are compelled to stay put and sit through their proselytizing... then this is a terrible abuse of power.

Should a woman be compelled to stay put while a Muslim cop demands to know whether she attends a mosque, and if not, why the hell not? Given that he's visibly armed and in a position of considerable power over her?

And if it's not okay for Muslims, but it is okay for Christians, that means that the Establishment Clause is being violated.

The problem here isn't that she was preached at or questioned about religion. It's not even that the person doing so was a government employee. It's that the proselytizer was clearly on the clock on a government job, was prominently displaying his government affiliation (to the point where the entire encounter was dominated by his role as a representative of the government), was wielding the power of the state in a manner that kept her in place as a captive audience, was asking his questions in a time and manner where she might reasonably have felt compelled to answer, and abused his privileged, government-purpose access to her (the traffic stop) to engage in some very non-government-purpose activities (the pamphlet distribution). This is edging into the territory of a government forcing you to attend a particular sermon of its choosing... though obviously it's not that extreme in this case. But still, it's an abuse of power that negated the driver's freedom to pursue religious exploration according to her own desires. This isn't a question of the cop's freedom of religion or speech... the cop retains that, though it is circumscribed in this and other ways while acting as a representative of the government. (For example, a cop wouldn't be able to campaign for a certain political candidate in that context, either, even if he does retain that right while off-duty.) The question is whether the cop abused his government-issued authority in that situation, and what censure his government should make to punish such abuse.

Ask yourself if your position would be identical if it had been a strong atheist position being espoused instead... if he'd noticed a cross on her necklace and started haranguing her for it in the most cliched, stereotypical manner possible. If your position there is that the cop was overstepping his authority, then pushing Christianity in that context (or a particular denomination/congregation of Christianity) is just as much of an overstep. If you're not prepared for EVERY religion to have that power and privilege, then you shouldn't be prepared for ANY religion to have it. If you can't be for cops having this power when what they're pushing is what you don't like, then you shouldn't be for cops having this power when what they're pushing is what you do like. You either trust them to make the call on what religion is best for you and whether they're allowed to push it on you, or you don't. If you don't, then don't give them that power, and don't tolerate them misappropriating it.

As a former government employee myself (education system), and an atheist, I would NEVER have used my power, position, or privileged access to a student's time to call out their religious positions. I might have discussed the matter if they initiated the conversation and were insistent about it, but I would have made it completely clear that (1) I was speaking "off the clock" and not as a representative of my school or the government, (2) that they were completely free to disagree with me and that what they said would not impact my formal evaluation of them in any way, and (3) they were free to change the topic or leave at any time. Even then, I would have seen myself as pushing the boundaries of acceptable behavior, and tried to avoid or minimize such conversations... and did go out of the way several times, saying it would be inappropriate for me to discuss in that context. I would have held any government representative to that same standard, regardless of whether they were pushing strong atheism, Christianity, Islam, Scientology, Paganism, Zoroastrianism, or Pastafarianism.
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08-10-2014, 07:28 AM
RE: State Trooper preaches about Jesus during traffic stop.
(08-10-2014 07:23 AM)Reltzik Wrote:  Unless you think that anyone with a badge should have the authority to hassle you with any religion of their choosing... and do so in a situation where you are compelled to stay put and sit through their proselytizing... then this is a terrible abuse of power.

Should a woman be compelled to stay put while a Muslim cop demands to know whether she attends a mosque, and if not, why the hell not? Given that he's visibly armed and in a position of considerable power over her?

And if it's not okay for Muslims, but it is okay for Christians, that means that the Establishment Clause is being violated.

The problem here isn't that she was preached at or questioned about religion. It's not even that the person doing so was a government employee. It's that the proselytizer was clearly on the clock on a government job, was prominently displaying his government affiliation (to the point where the entire encounter was dominated by his role as a representative of the government), was wielding the power of the state in a manner that kept her in place as a captive audience, was asking his questions in a time and manner where she might reasonably have felt compelled to answer, and abused his privileged, government-purpose access to her (the traffic stop) to engage in some very non-government-purpose activities (the pamphlet distribution). This is edging into the territory of a government forcing you to attend a particular sermon of its choosing... though obviously it's not that extreme in this case. But still, it's an abuse of power that negated the driver's freedom to pursue religious exploration according to her own desires. This isn't a question of the cop's freedom of religion or speech... the cop retains that, though it is circumscribed in this and other ways while acting as a representative of the government. (For example, a cop wouldn't be able to campaign for a certain political candidate in that context, either.) The question is whether the cop abused his government-issued authority in that situation, and what censure his government should make to punish such abuse.

Ask yourself if your position would be identical if it had been a strong atheist position being espoused instead... if he'd noticed a cross on her necklace and started haranguing her for it in the most cliched, stereotypical manner possible. If your position there is that the cop was overstepping his authority, then pushing Christianity in that context (or a particular denomination/congregation of Christianity) is just as much of an overstep. If you're not prepared for EVERY religion to have that power and privilege, then you shouldn't be prepared for ANY religion to have it. If you can't be for cops having this power when what they're pushing is what you don't like, then you shouldn't be for cops having this power when what they're pushing is what you do like. You either trust them to make the call on what religion is best for you and whether they're allowed to push it on you, or you don't. If you don't, then don't give them that power, and don't tolerate them misappropriating it.

As a former government employee myself (education system), and an atheist, I would NEVER have used my power, position, or privileged access to a student's time to call out their religious positions. I might have discussed the matter if they initiated the conversation and were insistent about it, but I would have made it completely clear that (1) I was speaking "off the clock" and not as a representative of my school or the government, (2) that they were completely free to disagree with me and that what they said would not impact my formal evaluation of them in any way, and (3) they were free to change the topic or leave at any time. Even then, I would have seen myself as pushing the boundaries of acceptable behavior, and tried to avoid or minimize such conversations... and did go out of the way several times, saying it would be inappropriate for me to discuss in that context. I would have held any government representative to that same standard, regardless of whether they were pushing strong atheism, Christianity, Islam, Scientology, Paganism, Zoroastrianism, or Pastafarianism.

Well said. Thumbsup

"If you keep trying to better yourself that's enough for me. We don't decide which hand we are dealt in life, but we make the decision to play it or fold it" - Nishi Karano Kaze
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08-10-2014, 07:32 AM
RE: State Trooper preaches about Jesus during traffic stop.
The Trooper should be punished in some way but not fired and ordered to cease evangelizing while on duty.

Trouble rather the tiger in his lair than the sage among his books. For to you kingdoms and their armies are things mighty and enduring, but to him they are but toys of the moment, to be overturned with the flick of a finger.”

― Gordon R. Dickson
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08-10-2014, 07:33 AM
RE: State Trooper preaches about Jesus during traffic stop.
(08-10-2014 03:56 AM)hell-lover Wrote:  Actually it was a perfect time. The lady had just committed a crime and should be thinking about God. Anytime is a good time to hear about god - you never know when your time will run out.

No she actually didn't commit any crime, try reading the article before posting.
And it is not a State Troopers job to evangelizing while on duty.

Trouble rather the tiger in his lair than the sage among his books. For to you kingdoms and their armies are things mighty and enduring, but to him they are but toys of the moment, to be overturned with the flick of a finger.”

― Gordon R. Dickson
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08-10-2014, 07:36 AM
RE: State Trooper preaches about Jesus during traffic stop.
(08-10-2014 06:04 AM)Mathilda Wrote:  
(08-10-2014 04:11 AM)hell-lover Wrote:  I think about God 24/7 as any Christian should.

Is that why Christians condemn the practice of masturbation?

Actually, biblically speaking, I think you could make a strong argument for masturbating so long as you were thinking about God during it. You couldn't be thinking about having sex with God, but just thinking about how awesome he is, or something.

The Bible actually makes no explicit prohibitions on masturbation. The justification for banning it tends to come from a combination of a few verses:

Genesis 38:9
Quote:9 But Onan knew that the child would not be his; so whenever he slept with his brother’s wife, he spilled his semen on the ground to keep from providing offspring for his brother.

This one is typically more of the anti-birth control passage, but one could use it to say that any "spilling of seed" would be sinful. Of course, the context of this passage talks about a single act when someone went against God's will, but that doesn't stop people from believing that it is wrong to ejaculate without the explicit intent to procreate.


Matthew 5:28
Quote:28 But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.

So, here we're told not to think sexy thoughts about people, or we might as well be committing adultery. Certainly cuts down on the usual things you'd think about while masturbating.


Matthew 5:29-30
Quote:229 If your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. 30 And if your right hand causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell.

Now, the immediate following verses tell you to remove body parts that cause you to sin, and it is commonly assumed that if you are thinking lustful thoughts, that you might be using your eyes to sin by oggling women and using your hand to sin by masturbating... except that it never actually explicitly forbid masturbating. It's just assumed. That whole argument is circular.


So, you can remain 100% adherent if you do not think lustfully about a woman while masturbating (or any other time), and indeed, you should be ever mindful of God, as well.

Christians: meditate on the love of Jesus while you masturbate; God's into that shit, and he likes to watch.
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08-10-2014, 07:41 AM
RE: State Trooper preaches about Jesus during traffic stop.
(08-10-2014 05:13 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  
(08-10-2014 03:56 AM)hell-lover Wrote:  Actually it was a perfect time. The lady had just committed a crime and should be thinking about God. Anytime is a good time to hear about god - you never know when your time will run out.

Actually what he did was a crime. Wasting the public's money pushing his cult. Amazing how many Americans don't get that how un-American and how unpatriotic that sort of crap is. Hundreds of thousands of Americans have sacrificed their lives to make sure we are free from that garbage.

And BTW, Church Lady, "The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good." ... Jebus done tole you "Judge not, lest ye be judged". I see you personally think you know better than your savior.

BB, your post reminded me of this gem:

"It is my personal, humble opinion that anyone seeking to mix church and state has failed to understand the nature and role of either. Being founded upon the principle that all men are created equal and deserving of equal protection under the law is what makes the American system of democracy such a gift to mankind. Attempting to mix the inherently exclusionary imperatives of a particular religion into the resolutely inclusive system of the American constitutional form of government is to work against everything that America stands for. Religion is a personal, subjective affair for the individual; politics and public policy is an impersonal, objective affair for everyone."
~John Shore

“I am quite sure now that often, very often, in matters concerning religion and politics a man’s reasoning powers are not above the monkey’s.”~Mark Twain
“Ocean: A body of water occupying about two-thirds of a world made for man - who has no gills.”~ Ambrose Bierce
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08-10-2014, 07:56 AM
RE: State Trooper preaches about Jesus during traffic stop.
One of our local highway patrolmen does this regularly. He's not pushy and he means no harm but I do believe it shouldn't be allowed. Just like myself with the inmates I oversee, the officer is in a position of authority and possible intimidation to the civilian he has pulled over in a traffic stop. That civilian is not allowed to leave the traffic stop until the officer allows.
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08-10-2014, 08:48 AM
RE: State Trooper preaches about Jesus during traffic stop.
(08-10-2014 03:56 AM)hell-lover Wrote:  Actually it was a perfect time. The lady had just committed a crime and should be thinking about God. Anytime is a good time to hear about god - you never know when your time will run out.
So tell me, who does God think about after he commits his crimes? Consider

I am not accountable to any God. I am accountable to myself - and not because I think I am God as some theists would try to assert - but because, no matter what actions I take, thoughts I think, or words I utter, I have to be able to live with myself.
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08-10-2014, 08:55 AM
RE: State Trooper preaches about Jesus during traffic stop.
(08-10-2014 07:32 AM)Winterwolf00 Wrote:  The Trooper should be punished in some way but not fired and ordered to cease evangelizing while on duty.
I think he should be fired. He was a) stealing time engaging in activities that was not part of his job, b) violating the separation of church and state by pushing Christianity from a government position, c) neglecting his real duties - this is likely not the only time he has done this and how many violent crime victims aren't being attended to while he's engaging in this nonsense...?

Police officers have a very serious position. There should be zero tolerance for goofing off in any manner. Fire him.

I am not accountable to any God. I am accountable to myself - and not because I think I am God as some theists would try to assert - but because, no matter what actions I take, thoughts I think, or words I utter, I have to be able to live with myself.
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