Judgmental vs Having No Judgment  

header1979 38M
404 posts
4/17/2006 3:16 pm

Last Read:
5/29/2006 7:35 pm

Judgmental vs Having No Judgment

Recently in the Advice Line and in one of the groups the issues of being judgmental and cultural or moral relativism came up. One was the bestiality question this weekend about how to have sex with dogs. Most people objected to the question and the question was deleted from the website. But before it was deleted, several people spoke in favor of bestiality and one individual posted several rants about how those who objected to bestiality were being judgmental.

The other was a posting about religious freedom in one of the groups that I am member. The posting was a bout a former Muslim who was facing execution in an Islamic country because he had converted to Christianity while living outside the country and was back in the country doing humanitarian relief work.

I want to take issue with the concept of cultural relativism that was brought up in the religious freedom post by one responder who said she learned about it in a college class and several responders implicitly agreed.

Cultural relativism is one of the biggest hoaxes of popular culture going on today. I would challenge any professor in college who tried to foist that poor academic thinking on me. There is a difference between education and indoctrination. When professors put out that type of thought without critical examination, it is indoctrination or "brainwashing." It is too bad that the responder didn’t challenge the professor to justify his position rather than just accepting it as something she “learned in a college class.” She didn’t learn it in an educational sense. She was indoctrinated or "brainwashed" and duped into beleiving that it is education.

She made the statement “ even if I don’t agree with another’s ideas, if put into the concept of their own culture, it makes sense.” OK. Let’s look at Nazi Germany and the holocaust. The concept of the extermination of the Jews when put into the context of the Nazi culture makes sense. Is anyone willing to say that looking at the holocaust in the context of Nazi culture and just observing without judgment makes sense? ? How about slavery in the southern colonies that became part of the US? The concept of slavery when put in the context of southern culture at that time makes sense. Is anyone willing to say that looking at slavery in the context of southern culture and just observing without judgment makes sense? Or how about segregation in southern US states? The concept of segregation when put into the context of southern culture at the time makes sense. Is anyone willing to say that looking at segregation in the context of southern culture and just observing without judgment makes sense? I think this should give people an idea of how bankrupt the concept of cultural relativism is.

There is a difference between belief or opinion and action. In a free society everyone is entitled to their beliefs or opinions. But they are not entitled to act on those beliefs and opinions. And furthermore, their beliefs and opinions are subject to challenge and debate. Contrary to one responders opinion (“veterans fought for freedom of speech…but they also fought for the freedom NOT TO HEAR IT!), there is no right under free speech NOT to hear speech that you don’t like or find objectionable. There is no such thing as freedom not to hear speech. It is all part of free speech. In a free society, one counters speech with other speech. In the US only the Supreme Court has the right to determine the limits of free speech.

The case brought up in the religious freedom post, is not a case of belief or opinion, or of a few clerics acting on their belief. It was a case of actions being taken by a government against an individual using the Sharia (regarded as Islamic law by most Muslims) to force an individual to renounce Christianity or face execution. The Sharia is the law of the land that the courts must follow in some Islamic countries. The case was resolved by the individual being exiled from the country. People can have their personal beliefs about how to interpret Islam but it doesn’t matter. What does matter is how those in authority with power to enforce the Sharia interpret Islam. It is not just a few mindless individual clerics doing this. It is the government enforcing the Sharia as the law of the land. That is a big distinction.

Several responders compared some of the things done in the US by a few clerics or their followers. There is no such counter part to the Sharia in the US. So there is no point in making a comparison between the acts of few Baptists or the position of the Catholic Church on particularly issues. In the US, where we have freedom of speech and freedom of religion, the issues can be debated and religions have the same free speech rights to enter into the debate just as anyone else in the US does. No one gets executed by the government in the US for their beliefs. Even though others may disagree with many religous positions, all, including the religions are entitled to their own opinions. But they are not entitled to their own actions nor is there anything wrong with confronting their opinions that you think are wrong. That is what free speech is all about. It is not mindlessly acquiescing to everything you hear and not challenging it.

The same thing applies to issues on this website. It seems that every time some one expresses an opinion about an issue some one calls them judgmental as in the bestiality question this past weekend. Last year I got into flame war with an asshole who thought the pedophlia was just another preference and that I was being judgmental for condemning it. There is a difference between not being judgmental and having no judgment. Some people haven't grasped the concept yet. There are things that are wrong and it is fact not opinion. And you notice that I didn’t say “different”, I said “wrong.” There is nothing wrong with saying something is wrong.

Pedophilia is wrong. That is a fact.
is wrong. That is a fact.
Wife beating is wrong. That is a fact.
Bestiality is wrong. That is a fact.
The holocaust is wrong. That is a fact.
Slavery is wrong. That is a fact.
Segregation is wrong. That is a fact.
Executing an individual because of their religious belief is wrong. That is a fact.

What do all these things have in common? They are all abuse. They are not acts of consenting adults in private in which no harm is being done. Judgmental is making unfavorable comments about what consenting adults do in private that does no harm. Do you think it is judgmental to condemn abuse? How about child sex abuse? How about ? How about the holocaust? How about bestiality? How about slavery? How about segregation? People who can't make the distinction between being judgmental and condemning acts of abuse are guilty of allowing the abuses to go on unchecked which debases civilization.

So the next time you hear of a people being executed because of their religion, or race or ethnic background, are you going to say that it makes sense in the concept of their culture or will you condemn those as acts as of abuse of humanity and an affront to civilized people? When you hear of child sex abuse or bestiality on this website are you going to say it is just another preference and that you would be judgmental to criticize or will you condemn those acts as abuse and an affront to civilized people?

Be careful before you let your mind be carried away by the mindless cultural and moral relativism that is so prevalent today. There are things that are wrong and no one should be afraid to say so. If you don't, eventually, you may be the victim of the abuses that you tolerate.

That is my rant for today.

flagg134 37M
1582 posts
4/17/2006 5:01 pm

Great pos Header you make solid points as usual. None of the acts stated above are made by mutual consent. Acting on anothers behalf without their consent is horrific. With the bestiality reference how can you say a dog or any other animal can give willing consent. Nor could a child as they don't understand what is happening nor could they possibly control the situation. and Spousal abuse are heinous acts which leave huge mental scars upon the victims potentially damaging there self-esteem and psyche irreparably. Another one that you missed Header could be slavery and child labor both out of nonconsenting people.

No form of genocide wether it be Stalins or Mao Tse Tungs purges or the Holocaust should be viewed with anything but contempt. To judge them as anything else but wrong would be evil in and of itself. Its the apathy in this world that lets wrongdoers run rampant. Some people would rather stay quiet as long as it doesn't affect them. Its my view that we need more people like Sultry, Hippie and TheMissKrissy who will shine the light on such atrocius behavior.


Hippink 36F  
4498 posts
4/17/2006 6:06 pm

Great post! I blogged something along the same lines today about bestiality... that same question and all the reponses it got inspired me, too.
The acceptance of what is right and wrong as told by society is for those who cannot think for themselves. If you don't question WHY, and understand it for yourself, making your own ideas, coming to your own conclusions, you're just a mindless follower. If you try to argue your point, you're going to sound pretty stupid if all you can argue is "Because, it's just wrong." You have to know WHY it is wrong to have a convincing arguement.
Many will just turn their heads, as if looking the other way will make the offending problem not exist. In some cases, we do have to do that, so we can go about our lives. I mean, I could go hunting pedophiles or suicide bombers or murderers... but if I did that, I'd have no life left of my own. Religion is a HUGE demander of faithful following without question. Blind faith.
All I can do is educate myself and try to make sure that nothing bad happens to me or anyone I care about, and if I hear/see of anything wrong, I will do everything I can to stop it, because I will NOT turn a blind eye.

Great minds think alike.
Hippie XXX

How to Get Laid on AFF The Basics
Have fun, play safe!

bardicman 51M

4/18/2006 6:20 am

Wonderful post Header.

I am not dead yet

header1979 38M
507 posts
4/18/2006 11:13 am

Hey Lovespell,

I agree with you concerning cultural relevancy. We do need to understand what causes these things. I was taking issue with those who don't want to make any changes or will do nothing because they feel they shouldn't be imposing their values on others. They don't understand the concept that bad things happen when good people do nothing.

rm_SultryVirgo 49F
567 posts
4/19/2006 1:06 pm

Good post as usual and it continues to bring out in the open the misguided notion that if you challenge another's viewpoint, with your own opinion you are therefore "judgmental".

A disagreement with another's view point, with another's opinion is not being judgmental, it's disagreeing period. The main problem as I see it on this issue is that people have a tendency to take that disagreement as a personal condemnation on themselves as a whole. Which for the most part is not what is being said, generally it is the specific instance that has been brought to the table that is being disagreed with.

They themselves bring the issue out, and by the very nature of how asking a question works you are given opinions and therefore answer's to what they ask. Yet are unable to grasp the concept that just because someone disagrees with it they are judging them. There is notion that unless you agree with someone, you are judging them. And somewhere along the line that message is being used to justify bad and in some cases illegal behavior. An attitude of "I can do this, because I can and if you disagree with my wants you are casting a judgment on me and you are wrong to do so"

Which is a bullshit argument to begin with. If a society has no checks and balances in regards to certain issues you will no longer have a society you will have chaos. You cannot have complete freedom and you cannot have complete restriction, you must have a balance.

The individuals "right" to do what they like, must be tempered with another individuals "right" to have no harm be brought to them just because someone else "can". That is why we have the laws that we do, for the most part it is a prevention measure that says "if you do this, this is what will happen to you". A civilized society is in constant flux in regards to these issues it is a work in progress as society's values change over time. 80 years ago in Canada I as a woman was considered a "non-person" under the law, now today I am just a person, with all the same rights as everyone else. But that still does not mean I have the "right" to do what I want. I must adhere to the laws, and the morality of the land, if I don't then restriction's are placed on me to prevent me from harming another with my right to do what I want.

As humans for the most part we do not like to be told what to do, or more to the point that what we are doing is unacceptable. However as we grow we begin to realize that just because something feels good to us, does not mean that what we are doing is correct. In the cases of abuse, with either animals, children or another adult, those who do these things have made the choice to ignore one of the things that separate us from the animals. The ability to empathize with another's pain. It goes back to "I do it because I can" and they will not be denied their "right" to what they want even if it causes pain, or damage to another. And because another will look at them and say "what you are doing is wrong because you are causing another pain, damage, etc, we will tell why what your doing is wrong and hope that you will understand", they will look upon you as denying them their "right to feel good" therefore you are placing a "judgment" on their "right".

All the while forgetting, that they themselves by practicing these forms of abuse, are taking away another's right to have no harm come to them.

In regards to animals that is a pretty simple argument which I laid out in the hippies blog. The jist is this an animal is not capable of giving consent for an act because they don't have the capabilities to understand what is being asked of them prior to the act. So therefore consent can never be given, they cannot not understand the concept of sex, because animals don't have sex, they mate period. It is only humans and one other species on the this planet that we know of, that have sex for other's reason's besides reproduction. 99% of the animals on this planet only engage in reproduction copulation. But besides that argument, they are not capable of the type of communication that is required in order for consent to be given.

Neither are children until such an age where their brains have developed enough to understand what is being asked of them. Which for the most is during the years after the age of 15 or so. Because they have been educated, and they have developed enough to understand what is being asked of them, and as well the tie in between the brain and the biological response that their bodies are reacting to. They can give consent because they can communicate either their acceptance or rejection of the act prior to the act taking place. Young children cannot do this, they can't say yes to something they don't fully understand themselves, and that understanding of what it is can only come with time and maturity, not force.

Now I have babbled enough, not even going to touch the religious freedom issue I would end up writing a book.


rm_fitjames68 51M
547 posts
4/19/2006 2:56 pm

Some things ARE just plain BAD - and all of Header's and everyone else's examples cited above, from bestiality to genocide, in my opinion fall into that category. I wholly agree that it is nothing but cowardice or stupidity to condone appalling acts perpetrated in another culture, citing moral relativism as a defence. BUT the danger of refuting moral relativism itself is that we open ourselves to moral absolutism - which Swift satirises so beautifully with his Big-Endians and Little-Endians - where we pronounce ourselves and our own culture to be Right and everyone else to be Wrong. I think it's important to know WHERE we draw the line.

A friend of mine was shocked to see dogs trussed up for sale (obviously to be eaten) in a market in Korea. She remarked that in Britain a person would be severely punished for treating a dog that way, and that in Korea a person would be severely punished for punishing somebody who treated a dog that way. Who is right?

I agree with Lovespell, that moral relativism has a use, but that use is strictly this: to attempt to understand why something is happening. Different cultures can agree to differ, or they can just differ, in which case they may openly criticise one another or even fight. I for one would have happily bought the dog in the Korean market, thanked the stallholder - and set the dog free.

header1979 38M
507 posts
4/20/2006 9:02 am

Many thanks to Flagg, Hippie, Lovespell, Sultry and Fitjames for your additions to this blog. Your responses were excellent and provided additional perspective on the original blog. I appreciate you taking the time and interest to provide your thoughts. They will be very helpful to anyone who reads this blog.


SolarPowered0 111M
8026 posts
4/23/2006 11:54 pm


You are one "thought-provoking" dude!

'The only thing necessary for evil to triumph, is for good men to do nothing.' ( Of course, that's a parrot-phrase... )

Cultural relevancy has been a hallmark of academicians for many years. It gives leniency to "critical" thought which otherwise would subject issues to the rigors of known limits. It is a method of eliciting response unconstrained by the foundational boundaries of logic and the benefits of hindsight producing "common" mores which have glued society together for thousands of years... sometimes haphazardly; yet always absolutely. It is a way to allow certain mores to flourish (destructively) in the face of other mores which may not be to the liking of the elitists of the technocracy; mores which are surely capable of defeating the desires of those elite ones.

We will ALWAYS be subjected to the ideas and desires of those who feel the masses have no place in the grander scheme than to "hoe the rows." I give thanks to the God of Nature for His unyielding benevolence in seeing fit I should receive no "formal" higher education. I further bow, to the collective wisdom of the Founders of this Republic which prevailed (for a time) over the whims of the elite; though much of their wisdom has been lost to the onslaught of "cultural relevancy" injected as a result of the "education" of the masses - under the tutelage of said same elite.

Wish I had gotten in on this sooner...

Solar... (out of the clear blue of the Western Sky)

curvymeli 40F

5/2/2006 9:33 am

Excellent post Header.

I have read many of your posts/responses and you are very articulate, succinct when you need to be, and give honest, educated opinions. I would love to be in a room with you chatting the night away, despite the likely disagreements we might have.

header1979 38M
507 posts
5/3/2006 9:06 am

Hey Curvymeli,

Thanks for the compliment. Disagreements can be interesting provided people don't get disagreeable. It makes for lively discussions that I enjoy. Life would be very boring and people would be dull if their were no differences of opinion or perspectives. Thanks for taking the time to write.


header1979 38M
507 posts
5/3/2006 9:10 am

Solarpower has left the website. I will miss his witty, thoughtful and informative comments and emails. He was a great asset to the blogs and the Advice Line and will be missed.

header1979 38M
507 posts
5/3/2006 10:04 am

The following is one of the comments in the group thread concerning an individual who was facing execution because of his religious belief that prompted me to write this blog entry.

“Lady, your argument works here in America. However, we are speaking of a country that is founded in a rather extreme religion. They have their rules and laws. I don't think we can force our values on them and say that we are right and they are wrong. This habit gets this country in trouble too many times. We should respect the rights of other countries to establish and practice their own customs and cultures, no matter how unfair they seem to us.”

I posted in the group thread essentially what I posted here in the blog. It boggles my mind that people think “we should respect the rights of other countries to establish and practice their own customs and cultures, no matter how unfair they seem to us” when we are talking about genocide and execution for religious belief. We should as people and a nation condemn these practices wherever they occur even though we may not be able to do much about it.

Here is the dismissive comment by the individual who made the above comment concerning my response:

“Well I tried to read this...
but anytime someone uses Nazi's or Hitler, in their argument, I figure, why bother.”

If ever you want an example of the mindset that tolerates abuse in the world, here it is. How can one possibly discuss the abuse of the holocaust and not mention Nazis or Hitler. I gave those that hold this opinion an opportunity to rethink the implications of their position. But he still believes that executing people for religious belief isn’t something that we should say is wrong and condemn it as being wrong.

The irony of this is that the individual who made the comment is an African-American. If his viewpoint of right and wrong had prevailed in the world, African-Americans would still be slaves. The Union did not respect the right of the Confederacy secede from the Union to continue the practice of slavery in a separate nation. Slavery was condemned as being wrong and the Confederacy was conquered by military force and slavery was abolished in North America as a result. I wonder how he would feel if he were a slave and people said is was “unfair” but "we should respect the rights of other countries to establish and practice their own customs and cultures." I don’t think he would like that one bit, yet he has no problem with other countries executing people because of their religious belief.
People who holds that view point need to rethink the implications of their position. Otherwise they may become victim to the abuses that others tolerate. There is right and wrong. It is a good thing that there are enough people in the world smart enough to know the difference.

cactusass 56F

5/4/2006 4:02 pm

you are one very intelligent well spoken (written?) person. as well as others that have responded.
how incredibly refreshing! makes me more willing to stick around this site.
funny that one finds them here instead being fortunate enough to run into them in person in one's daily life! we should start a cult somewhere on an island. call it the "isle of bright"
(no spiked kool-aid, nike shoes or comet chasing permitted)

lets, "just do it!"
p.s. if this displays twice its because i have been having problems with the posting key all day.

flagg134 37M
1582 posts
5/4/2006 8:05 pm

Header what you have in that lady is someone who doesn't like confrontation as long as her world is fine why should she worry about what other people do. I can bet you though if she were in such a position she would cry in outrage and people would stick up for her because its the right thing. Not that she deserves it with the lack of empathy and abundance of backwards thinking she has. It all boils down to apathy why should I care what you do if it has no effect on me. That thinking is fine for them until they get a wake up call.


JuicyBBW1001 56F

5/4/2006 8:35 pm

Well said header1979. For a young guy you sure have your head on straight now for some humor is the smaller one just as good as the bigger head?? hehehe


rockofthewesties 56M

5/15/2006 12:21 pm

I never thought I'd read a better post(s) than some of onlfive's, but you've done it. I can't believe you're so young--relatively speaking!
Thanks for an intelligent, thought-provoking site.
And thanks for the Shakespeare quotes!


header1979 38M
507 posts
5/16/2006 8:59 pm

Hey Rockofthewesties, thanks for the compliment. I write professionally on national policy issues in Washington so I try to stay on target or I could lose my job. I try to do a good job here too but I write this stuff so fast that I make errors that I should catch. At least I can't get fired from the website.

I have read everything that Shakespeare has written and have memorized a good bit of it. I am a regular patron of the Shakespeare Theatre in Washington and enjoy the performances very much. Glad you appreciate the quotes.

Take it EZ.


header1979 38M
507 posts
5/16/2006 9:02 pm

Hey Juicy, thanks for the compliment.

I hope the smaller head is very good. I have to let those who have the experience be the judge of that otherwise I would just be shamelessly bragging.

Take it EZ.


header1979 38M
507 posts
5/16/2006 9:07 pm

Hey Daddysbadgirls, Thanks for the compliment.

I think I would like to be on a deserted island with you.

Take it EZ.


8337 posts
5/29/2006 12:11 am

Good post, Header.

I see your point and concur with you.

However, you have to understand why this (Moral/Cultural Relativism) came about.

Obviously a by-product of our PC world.

Everything is given so much leeway by way of academia that people become brainwashed and lose their sense of right and wrong.

Too many professors who haven't had to work for a living, in my opinion.


"My every move is a calculated step, to bring me closer to embrace an early death." -Tupac Shakur

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