Ronald A. Lindsay - Observations on Ethics, Law, and CFI
Posted: 15 November 2010 12:46 PM   [ Ignore ]
Total Posts:  170
Joined  2009-06-02

How did his studies at Catholic Georgetown University set CFI President and CEO Ronald A. Lindsay on the primrose path to atheism? Does he now count himself a lawyer or a philosopher, neither, or both?

Point of Inquiry asks Ron about the basis for ethics for atheists and secularists. Are atheists nihilists, as is often said? Would that necessarily be bad? Host Robert Price and Lindsay carry on a brisk, illuminating discussion of Aquinas, Kant, and Hume, applying their insights to ethics and public policy.

One often hears secularists complaining that religious believers are voting the theological party line of their church, e.g., in the case of abortion. But does it matter where their moral convictions come from? Is it the genetic fallacy for us to say they are trying to “impose their theology on the rest of us”?

Finally, he provides his privileged perspective on the direction and approach of CFI since the departure of founder Paul Kurtz.

Ronald A. Lindsay is a bioethicist, lawyer, and President and CEO of the Center for Inquiry. For many years he practiced law in Washington, DC, and was an adjunct professor at Georgetown University and American University, where he taught jurisprudence and philosophy courses.

[ Edited: 15 November 2010 12:59 PM by Adam Isaak ]
Posted: 21 November 2010 06:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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In the dialog—Lindsay was raised a Roman Catholic and explains his conversion to atheism.
He notes there is a Roman Catholic 10 commandments and a Protestant(?) one
This was new to me…
Always something to learn here!

Posted: 05 December 2010 10:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Joined  2005-07-20

Ron Lindsay did well, I enjoyed his talk, his exit story was interesting.  I was curious to hear more about the differences between his leadership and Kurtz’, what ways will he have the CFI move forward with the mission, and how has the mission changed.  Robert Price did well too.

The old mission was approximatly, “The CFI promotes and defends science, reason, critical thought, and freedom of inquiry into all human endeavours”, as I recall.

The new mission is, “The mission of the Center for Inquiry is to foster a secular society based on science, reason, freedom of inquiry, and humanist values.”

It looks like a change from defense to offense.  Many religious will find that offensive, I think.  With a defensive posture, I think that many moderaly religious would join our stance to defend seperation of church and state, promotion of science, and other core issues.


Ron also talked about modern people disagreeing about the Ten Commandments.  But in the work of the ancient Jews, the Bible, there is also disagreement.  The popular version is at Exodus 20:1–17 but is not called “Ten Commandments”.  The version called the “Ten Commandments” (at the end) is at Exodus 34:10-28.  The popular version is repeated at Deuteronomy 5:4-22.

God’s name is Jealous, BTW (that’s after He said His name now and forever will be “I AM” at Exodus 3:14, Allah has many names).

Notice that the commandments aren’t clearly numbered 1-10, and people debate them, in part, because of that.  That debate is what Ron was referring to.

(I fixed the links, some needed a double escape.)

[ Edited: 12 December 2010 09:58 AM by jump_in_the_pit ]

bicycles: less mass, no fuel, lower speed, more beautiful, more quiet, lower cost, less wear-and-tear on the roads, more social because you can talk to people beside you, low-impact heart healthy exercise, easy parking… they are not perfect, but are they better than cars?.

Posted: 05 December 2010 10:28 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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I loved the story of the atheist NUN! :-P


Church; where sheep congregate to worship a zombie on a stick that turns into a cracker on Sundays…