linguoboy wrote:Massimiliano B wrote:You use the word "belief" as a synonim of "whim".
Because to outsiders they're essentially indistinguishable. We don't have a magic helmet we can put on someone's head which will tell us accurate whether they "sincerely believe" what they are saying or are simply trying to game the system.
From this point of view, I cannot know whether who doubts sincerely believes it or not.
linguoboy wrote:Massimiliano B wrote:I'm not talking about the sincerity of beliefs.If someone is Christian, or Muslim, no one has to question his beliefs.
Not even if their beliefs lay far outside the mainstream of their respective faiths? If someone says, "My child doesn't have to study geology because I know as a Christian that the Earth is only 7,000 years old" will you respect that belief? What if they believe their children need to be educated in the existence of a vast Jewish financial conspiracy?
I already said that parents should have the right to decide which kind of teachings are good for their children. When you have to deal with questions as delicate as those which affect the moral and religious sphere, the decision should be made by the parents. Geology has nothing to do with moral and religion.
linguoboy wrote:You want a special privilege to pull your children out of sex ed classes because you claim they're against your "beliefs" (although you haven't explained how).
There may be someone who - supported by a religion or philosophy - sees sexual education as something that instils an impertinence and arrogance in the way your body is conceived and treated - i.e. as a mere organ whose desires and appetites have to be satisfied by any means.
linguoboy wrote:Massimiliano B wrote:linguoboy wrote:Massimiliano B wrote:linguoboy wrote:Why should the opinion of one "religious person" be privileged above the sincerely-held beliefs of another?
I don't talk about opinons of single persons, but about religious positions and philosophical positions that have arisen throughout the course of centuries and so are rationally well-grounded.
It's begging the question to say that a religious or philosophical position is "rationally well-grounded" simply because it's been around a long time. The Virgin Birth, to name just one example, is an irrational belief no matter how long Christians have maintained it.
Not "simply because it's been around a long time". The rationality of a belief comes first, then its long life.
So if "rationality" is primary, why even consider the longevity at all?
The rationality is sustained by the longevity. You cannot see just in one instant - like in a mathematical theorem - either whether a belief is rational or not, or its entire rationality.
linguoboy wrote:Massimiliano B wrote:linguoboy wrote:So what this equates to is saying that the beliefs of persons who claim membership in centuries-old religious bodies should be privileged above the beliefs of persons who do not. Again, how can you defend this in the face of a doctrine of equality? [See CFREU Ch. III, Art. 21.1: "Any discrimination based on any ground such as sex, race, colour, ethnic or social origin, genetic features, language, religion or belief, political or any other opinion, membership of a national minority, property, birth, disability, age or sexual orientation shall be prohibited."
Here I don't read the word "whim", which you are fond of using.
To make a point. You're making a tendentious distinction when you talk about "sincere beliefs" as if there's any foolproof method for determining which beliefs someone holds "sincerely".
You introduced the word «sincerely»:
linguoboy wrote:As I said, what's the vetting process to determine whether a particular parents' beliefs are sincerely held or not? (and is that really a can of worms the state wants to open?)
Then I wrote that you don't have the right to question the «sincerity» of my beliefs - unless I believe something which is against life - that is, against rationality. So, as you can see, I think there's a criterion that allows us to distinguish between whims and well-grounded beliefs. I think also that all the great religions accept this kind of rationality.
linguoboy wrote:Moreover, at the end of the day, the focus needs to be on what's best for the children, not what's most accommodating for their parents. If the parents' beliefs regarding the proper way to raise children are harmful, then it doesn't matter a whit how "sincere" they are. There are people who honestly believe they need to beat the Devil out of their children in order for them to grow up properly. (Google "Christian domestic discipline" and prepare to be sickened.) It's the responsibility of the state to prevent them.
I agree with you.
However, I believe that the Devil is something.