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Thread: Big Bad Bears - Russia and Putin

  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible View Post
    Even if one's sexuality was a matter of choice, it wouldn't justify prejudice and discrimination. Even if sexual lifestyle, on the other hand, might be a matter of choice, it doesn't justify such either. Personally, I think sexuality, like everything we, as living beings, think or do, is influenced by a combination of one's genetic make-up and their surrounding environment. Not that that necessarily makes sexual feelings a simple matter of choice that can simply be turned on or off at whim.

    Is homosexuality an undue influence though? Why can't it be as perfectly safe, loving, human and natural a feeling as a heterosexual desire might be?
    .
    I am of the same opinion (as to the reason/cause/root etc). As ou described in the animal kingdom some species have it as de rigeur. The Greeks, Spartans, ancient Irish etc apparently all did the same, though it must always be taken carefully the relation of such historic tales as we view them through the Victorian prism, where public schooloys were routinely molested to make them better men (we had the same jokes about christian brothers - "making a man of you" when I was in school). Though rather than creating homosexuals, it just created generations of very damaged individuals.

    On the point of being attracted to every member of the opposite sex - we need to separate male from female in this....for obvious reasons. Women, generally, think and choose. But this is me generalising.

    Danny, the point I was making (about undue influence) was the broad range of measures that the government were using to rebuild society. Personally I believe their should be helplines, info centres etc for the LGBT community - however leaders of the community here, and visitors from Europe and the US (including Peter Tatchell) made a ridiculous comparison with alcohol and narcotic help centres/resources. THis was pounced on by bilious talking heads to slam them as degenerates.

    There are info centres, there are gay marches, there are websites and helplines, so as with any law in any country, it will come down to how it is tested. The part of this law regarding alcohol has worked, though this is down to the industry playing it safe.

    At the end of the story, it boils down to what the vast majority want, and the government are playing to it. When the so-called leaders of the revolution, including Nemtsov and Navalny, are talking about re-educating gays, you know there is a long way to go.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible View Post
    So, when did you decide to be straight then?
    Probably when I found girls more attractive, and realised my pain threshold would not see me last long in prison. I can appreciate good looking men, but the equipment is off putting.


    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible View Post
    Are we? Says who? There's no evidence anywhere to suggest that we have been designed* as a species, let alone designed with some special function or purpose in mind. Science has also observed and documented homosexuality in nature. How can that be if it is unnatural?
    True, in a sense, though I believe we are and certainly there are examples in nature of same sex sexual interaction, though does this mean that heterosexual relations are wrong or unnatural? Should we all go gay? Or should people be allowed to interact with other consenting adults as they see fit (no pun).


    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible View Post
    Just because this tennis player might have found herself to be more attracted to certain members of one sex over members of another at different points in her life doesn't invalidate her feelings or render them unnatural.
    Where were her feelings invalidated? If she chose to be in a lesbian relationship and then a hetero one, she has the right to choose. However it does raise questions as to the reasons/causes of sexual nature and moves more towards the choice (through nature and nurture) than "born this way". Regardless, it helped her career so why not.

    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible View Post
    You presumably identify as heterosexual, but that doesn't mean you find every other member of the opposite sex attractive, does it? You'll still discriminate (to use the term completely neutrally) between members of the opposite sex based on your personal preference, I would imagine. Is that something you can choose? Most probably not. Finding it more convenient (for whatever reason) to be with one member of the opposite sex over another at a particular point in time doesn't mean that your whole sexuality is a matter of whimsical choice. Why would it be any different for this tennis player?
    This doesn't quite make sense, sorry. If you are talking about bisexuality or choosing between genders, they are different matters. In addition attractiveness and interaction are different matters, regardless of sexual preference.

    Wouldn't be a big fan of Gore Vidal, apart from his work being a bit over praised (especially Duluth), I fully turned off once he did his diatribe about Roman Polanski. Which doesn't take away from his general stances, just that he tried to be smarter than the average cat and made less sense. I do agree with him on becoming ghettoized, but this runs against the grain of the modern liberal (which he would have died again dealing with).

    What is most interesting in matters of sexual preference is that the "enlightened" truly go ott to educate the dummies. Those who believe homosexuality is wrong or a sin, will pull up their evidence and quote scripture, those who believe those who believe homosexuality is wrong are wrong, will throw in everything they can and run them down as backwards or evil or facists. Anybody who dares to question will be seen as insulting or somehow uninformed.

    It would be far better if people were allowed to live as they wish, to choose what they choose and not fear public disgrace or retribution for their choice, stance or belief system, or sexual choice - be it bi, hetero, lesbian, gay, transgender.

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    Only here could a discussion abut big bad bears descend into a lively discussion on homosexuality with never a trace of irony!
    Hello, hello? What's going on? What's all this shouting, we'll have no trouble here!
    - E Tattsyrup.

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    Well, now you've gotten to the "bottom" of the matter, we can get back on "top" of the discussion.

    Some worrying signs for after the 12th. Everyone is on hoilday and nobody thinking much (openly) about what is going on. However, VVP's speech on New Years Eve did little to help. His "Crimea voted to return to our motherland" was a bit much, but his idiotic speech was as bland and pointless as, well, anything Coke can come up with. And oddly, the speech was written by a US ex-Coke executive.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spudulika View Post
    Danny, the point I was making (about undue influence) was the broad range of measures that the government were using to rebuild society. Personally I believe their should be helplines, info centres etc for the LGBT community - however leaders of the community here, and visitors from Europe and the US (including Peter Tatchell) made a ridiculous comparison with alcohol and narcotic help centres/resources. THis was pounced on by bilious talking heads to slam them as degenerates.

    There are info centres, there are gay marches, there are websites and helplines, so as with any law in any country, it will come down to how it is tested. The part of this law regarding alcohol has worked, though this is down to the industry playing it safe.
    You're not of the belief that homosexuality is an undue influence though, are you, or do you think it is fair to categorise it as one of these many other perceived undue influences? And, just for the avoidance of any smidgen of doubt, I assume, if I'm reading you correctly, that you advocate the idea of help centres in order to help homosexuals deal with possible social-political repression/discrimination and familial marginalisation rather than to "help cure" themselves of some "mental illness"?

    At the end of the story, it boils down to what the vast majority want, and the government are playing to it. When the so-called leaders of the revolution, including Nemtsov and Navalny, are talking about re-educating gays, you know there is a long way to go.
    Forgive me if I borrow another Vidal quote: "At any given moment, public opinion is a chaos of superstition, misinformation, and prejudice."

    Quote Originally Posted by Spudulika View Post
    Probably when I found girls more attractive, and realised my pain threshold would not see me last long in prison. I can appreciate good looking men, but the equipment is off putting.
    So, are you saying that human sexuality (our sexual desires; be they heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual, asexual...) is a matter of choice?

    But you didn't choose to find girls more attractive, did you? As you say, you just found them to be that way, presumably due to some non-conscious feeling over which you had/have no cognitive control. Your pain threshold isn't something over which you have cognitive control either. You speak of there having been a realisation. That you find male genitalia off-putting is similarly governed by the unconscious. You're speaking of responses that have nothing to do with the separate and distinct realm of decision-making. Sexual arousal has nothing to do with the part of the brain responsible for decision-making. Rather, it is governed by the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems; they are unconscious and non-cognitive.

    We can choose to act upon desires or not, certainly, we can even try to suppress desires, but we can't choose whether or not to have desires. We wouldn't be human otherwise.

    True, in a sense, though I believe we are and certainly there are examples in nature of same sex sexual interaction, though does this mean that heterosexual relations are wrong or unnatural? Should we all go gay? Or should people be allowed to interact with other consenting adults as they see fit (no pun).
    People should be allowed to interact with other consenting adults as they see fit. Engaging in solely heterosexual relations is also perfectly natural. It is perfectly natural because some humans do it. Humans are a part of the natural world, after all.

    Where were her feelings invalidated? If she chose to be in a lesbian relationship and then a hetero one, she has the right to choose. However it does raise questions as to the reasons/causes of sexual nature and moves more towards the choice (through nature and nurture) than "born this way". Regardless, it helped her career so why not.
    Apologies, I shouldn't have implied you were suggesting her feelings were invalidated on the basis that you were arguing her sexuality was a choice. Rather, you were saying her sexuality could be, or was, a choice but that that is still perfectly valid (or right or natural)? Fair enough. However, I would argue she is a bisexual who is simply making a choice out of the options available, whatever might be most convenient or suitable for her at whatever particular time, which is her right to do so. Was she genuinely choosing which sex might have triggered arousal?

    This doesn't quite make sense, sorry. If you are talking about bisexuality or choosing between genders, they are different matters. In addition attractiveness and interaction are different matters, regardless of sexual preference.
    Are they really different matters though? Why introduce such a distinction? Gender doesn't have to come into it when we're simply discussing who we as humans find to be attractive due to our sexuality. In terms of preference, heterosexuals still (unthinkingly or not) differentiate between members of the opposite sex, homosexuals still differentiate between members of the same sex and bisexuals still differentiate between members of both sexes. Despite the varying preferences, each preference still falls under the umbrella of sexual attraction. Sexual preference can transcend gender and is not restricted by the concept.

    Quote Originally Posted by Spudulika View Post
    On the point of being attracted to every member of the opposite sex - we need to separate male from female in this....for obvious reasons. Women, generally, think and choose. But this is me generalising.
    I think I have covered this directly above, but what are the obvious reasons for a necessary separation of genders for the purposes of a discussion on sexual attraction exactly? If you think I've not explained my point satisfactorily above, point out where you think it's lacking and I'll be happy to try and re-iterate it in some other terms.

    Wouldn't be a big fan of Gore Vidal, apart from his work being a bit over praised (especially Duluth), I fully turned off once he did his diatribe about Roman Polanski. Which doesn't take away from his general stances, just that he tried to be smarter than the average cat and made less sense. I do agree with him on becoming ghettoized, but this runs against the grain of the modern liberal (which he would have died again dealing with).
    I can't say he doesn't have other faults. Whether or not he was seeking attention in later life, the outburst about Polanski's victim was reprehensible. Perhaps it was confirmation that he was a past-it intellect. I was simply suggesting his thoughts specifically on the topic at hand might be relevant and constructive/instructive. On the idea of "ghettoisation", he was getting at something similar to the idea of bourgeois nationalism or the notion of identity politics (basing your political goals on perceived or real group marginalisation) dividing or fracturing the broader civil community and its interests, isn't he? I don't think the idea that such fragmentation inhibits the creation of genuine opportunities for ending marginalisation by setting one marginalised group against the other in terms of having their voices heard or the idea that affirmations of difference might perpetuate marginalisation are things with which a modern liberal need necessarily disagree.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible View Post
    You're not of the belief that homosexuality is an undue influence though, are you, or do you think it is fair to categorise it as one of these many other perceived undue influences? And, just for the avoidance of any smidgen of doubt, I assume, if I'm reading you correctly, that you advocate the idea of help centres in order to help homosexuals deal with possible social-political repression/discrimination and familial marginalisation rather than to "help cure" themselves of some "mental illness"?
    I have no opinion in any sense as I do not judge others for their lifestyle choice, to each their own. I believe that they should have continued access to help/information centres, as for the moment (even in the most "enlightened" societies there is still a need) it is important to inform and support, especially in the realm of sexual health - the same with teens and the heterosexual community. I am not aware of any "re-orientation" places, though no doubt there is, no doubt the church is involved and no doubt there are 2 sides to the argument.



    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible View Post
    So, are you saying that human sexuality (our sexual desires; be they heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual, asexual...) is a matter of choice?
    It is one opinion, another is that people are born with predilections (nature), another is that it is due to external societal influences (nurture), or that it is a mental dysfunction, that it is chemical, that it is a result of trauma, it is a result of x, y, z. It is entirely wrong to be entirely sure or determined to force home one point or another, one cause or another. I personally believe that if 2 consenting adults wish to enjoy each others company they should be allowed to do so.

    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible View Post
    Apologies, I shouldn't have implied you were suggesting her feelings were invalidated on the basis that you were arguing her sexuality was a choice. Rather, you were saying her sexuality could be, or was, a choice but that that is still perfectly valid (or right or natural)? Fair enough. However, I would argue she is a bisexual who is simply making a choice out of the options available, whatever might be most convenient or suitable for her at whatever particular time, which is her right to do so. Was she genuinely choosing which sex might have triggered arousal?
    In that particular case there are so many grey areas that it is unfair to comment other than that she did what she did and later in life (she's still young) choose to marry a man and have children. However there are many cases, including hers though I have questions, where it is not a simple "bisexual" tendency. A case in point: Martina Navratilova has changed her story many times, though the original and most pointed is that she was sexually abused by a substantially older male coach as a young teen. She engaged in a semi-consentual relationship with a younger male coach, had a pregnancy scare and "swore off" sex. It was around this time (still a teen) she began travelling with an older female pro who became her first lover. From this, what can be made? She came from a fractured background, was vulnerable and now lives a happy life with her new Russian partner. What is objectionable is the abuse of a minor, simply that. She is now in a good place in her life and settled, and a really wonderful person to boot.


    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible View Post
    I think I have covered this directly above, but what are the obvious reasons for a necessary separation of genders for the purposes of a discussion on sexual attraction exactly? If you think I've not explained my point satisfactorily above, point out where you think it's lacking and I'll be happy to try and re-iterate it in some other terms.
    While appreciated and interesting to read someone's views on the topic, I don't see the need. To each their own and it is entirely within the right of adult human beings to be with whom they choose, regardless of gender, race or creed.



    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible View Post
    I can't say he doesn't have other faults. Whether or not he was seeking attention in later life, the outburst about Polanski's victim was reprehensible. Perhaps it was confirmation that he was a past-it intellect. I was simply suggesting his thoughts specifically on the topic at hand might be relevant and constructive/instructive. On the idea of "ghettoisation", he was getting at something similar to the idea of bourgeois nationalism or the notion of identity politics (basing your political goals on perceived or real group marginalisation) dividing or fracturing the broader civil community and its interests, isn't he?
    It's difficult to read the exact meaning behind a polemicist, though for the Polanski issue he had sense to make, though it just was wrong and too polemical. It boils back to the old school (regardless of background) that "stuff happens". I think his point was that Polanski came from a different background (French/European) where "this sort of thing" was permissable, that girls could be just as bad hustlers as males, that this stuff goes on because it always has. I remember at the time thinking, I wish he has broadened it out from showbusiness - or at least used it as a platform to attack real criminality in the industry.

    Agree on the ghetto idea. Making yourself "special" leaves you open to special attention, which again feeds into the rage machine on all sides and allows for self-publicists and vested interests to take hold.

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    A lot of worry here at present, oil below $50 a barrel, a new structure of investment relations and laws in force to allow "capital return". There have been some other laws from Jan 1st which snuck in. One scare that began in October last year was a law to "ban iphones". As a non-owner I'm okay with it, but it actually wasn't a law at all. It was a reaction from Apple to stop selling their products in Russia due to currency fluctuations. I bought an iPhone for a prize for 30,000rbs in July, the same item is over 50,000rbs now. So Apple halted distribution, but needed a good cover for it - and it was Mikhailov and Partners (local pr firm) who directed the online and media campaign to soften the blow.

    Another law in is the blog law, which requests that any blog with 3,000 or more readers register their real name with the government (actually with the tax authorities). The angle was a clamp down on free speech - partially true - though it is more a means of gathering taxes and controlling advertisements/product placements etc. An example, a blogger in Kazan has more than 20,000 followers, he works with AK Bars bank and reviews financial products. His identity put a bit of a halt to his earnings when it was discovered that he'd been bigging up his employers products because it was his job, but he was a "crusader" until that point.

    And...in football, the exodus is worrying, for hockey also. Could be a ripe time for LOI clubs to pick up top level performers for peanuts - or spuds anyway :-)

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    Oil down again - 45,62$ a barrel. Shale oil is getting hit hard, all those North Dakotan boom towns suddenly questioning the value of bulk buying Levi jeans and cowboy boots.

    One another topic, a very interesting point made on a tv chat show (on the only, kind of, liberal channel left). A correspondant from Radio Ekho (willfind her name in a minute) spoke about how the terror in Paris is a daily issue in Russia. She gave a list of statistics from an NGO and one from the government on murders in the RF of a) journos and b) civilians. The overwhelming number of b) is the usual gang or friend/family, but when she broke it down there are 2.2 people killed each day by Islamic terrorists. She discounted security forces and police from the total. In the meantime the government keep a lid on anti-muslim speak and protests.

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    Capped Player DannyInvincible's Avatar
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    Are those attacks Chechen-related?

    In relation to your raising of the case of Martina Navratilova above, I suppose it shows we can potentially be anything and everything depending on genetic make-up, upbringing and life circumstances.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible View Post
    Are those attacks Chechen-related?

    In relation to your raising of the case of Martina Navratilova above, I suppose it shows we can potentially be anything and everything depending on genetic make-up, upbringing and life circumstances.
    Danny, (2nd part), this is the nub of the whole issue in relation to sexuality etc, it just cannot be down to 1 thing or another, and I always feel very uncomfortable when there is a complete railroading into one category or reason. And ultimately, once 2 adults are happy to be together, fair enough.

    On the Chechens, no, not completely. Although we need to take into account the overflow from Chechnya into the holding camps of Dagestan, Ingueshetia etc. There is a sizeable rump of anti-Kadyrov Chechens who have divided into 2 camps, moderates who want democracy and a Islamo-themed state like Jordan, and those who were educated by Saudi's (after the Iranian backed teachers were murdered) to live by Sharia. The latter are the ones who carry out the bombings (suicide and other) and attacks on civil society. Quite a number have flocked to big urban centres in the south - Volgograd, Rostov, Krasnodar and even here in Voronezh. They have a completely different mental make up and it is not down to recent events, but to a heady mix of religion, culture, drugs and alcohol.

    And I know it was brought up in another thread (by me) in relation to Free PR, the status of minorities, eg sexual, is not covered in the whole of the RF. In areas where sharia law redominates in the south, homosexuals have been flogged and beaten (I have not heard of murder), many young gay males have fled to Moscow and in Moscow I knew 1 lesbian from Makhachkala who was thrown out of her home by her educated and moderate father as he feare personal retribution. Anyway, that's off topic!

    Luckily this year the feared ISIS threats did not materialise, after what happened in Volgograd last December it was a bit nervy moving about.

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    Some very strange things in Russia, and not really covered outside. The former liberal "icon" Navalny was due to have his sentencing confirmed (3 1/2 years), along with his brother, and there was a march of about 100 pro-navalny-ites. A counter march of 500-800 pro-Kremlin supporters met them. There were arrests on both sides, the usual gombeens jumping out like LOI fans, but without umbrellas, and lots of chanting. The cossacks were also out around the country, parading with crosses and icons. Navalny, on Radio Ekho, decried his fate. He said that many more businessmen get away with more yet because he was challenging the authorities his records were pored over.

    Most worrying is the arrival on the streets of "Sabin's Peace Patrol" with their ribbons and attitude. I need to read more about them, but it's a member of United Russia who set up a law and order force to prevent another Maidan. This was the threat by Navalny and his people, that Maidan would be in Moscow. Which scared the living daylights out of most liberals, professionals and thinkers.

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    MyPost; I dunno if you've not been on or if you've simply decided to drop out of the prior discussion on sexuality and not bother responding to my points, but, in light of your reliance in argument on and advocation of the Catholic interpretation of the Bible on the matter, you might find this a thought-provoking read if you get a chance: http://www.salon.com/2014/05/10/the_...ers_are_wrong/

    It's an excerpt from 'God and the Gay Christian: The Biblical Case in Support of Same Sex Relationships' by Matthew Vines.

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    Two excellent reports from Russian TV a couple of weeks ago will soon come to light in the english media (it's not Moscow and most in the english media are afraid to venture from the capitals) - and it's causing a ruckus. Pepsico have gone all out to drive product sales this year, Coke too. Increased advertising, backing of government projects - gloves are off. Why? One region (Vologda) banned sales of fizzy drinks to minors - ALL fizzy drinks. Wait for this to grow!

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    Quote Originally Posted by peadar1987
    The UK is predominantly non-religious or protestant, depending on how the question in surveys is framed. How would you feel about it if the non-catholic majority refused to "cater for" the catholic minority? Not allowed to hold public church services (because catholicism is a non-traditional lifestyle), catholic marriages don't get the same privileges in terms of visitation rights, inheritance and child custody as protestant ones? Do you see what I'm getting at here?
    Discrimination does happen to us, albeit not much in the UK. Instead it happens in the USA, and we know it as the "undocumented Irish".

    It's telling that you think the West doesn't like homosexuals and has no time for them by the way. Most people, especially those who are younger or better-educated, don't have the same problem with other people's sex lives as you do.
    I didn't write the first sentence, and it's not about "education" in the second. It's about realising what the natural order of man/woman attraction is. Men and women are biologically designed to be attracted to each other, because a) they are fundamentally different, and b) to keep the human race going. So those who have turned their back on that order have made a choice to be different. And they celebrate that choice in their own ways. But you can't do that one minute, then demand equality when it suits.

    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible
    Why can't it be as perfectly safe, loving, human and natural a feeling as a heterosexual desire might be?
    See above.

    Is this your position too? The acceptance and protection of minorities and minority interests is all part and parcel of free and open democratic society. Diversity of ideas is strengthening and helps advance our understanding of ourselves and the world in which we live. That is progress and represents security in the self. Closed societies are grounded in insecurity and fear of difference because the very notion of diversity or contrasting modes of thought might be perceived as threatening to the conservation of the established order. Which is truly the weaker grounding here?
    In Russia, people are overwhelmingly conservative, and they prefer order over liberalism. While in society in general, there are behaviours, rules, and laws for people to observe and follow. Those who follow them have an easy life. Those who choose to complicate matters and/or not follow them face a different life.

    The Catholic Church may have some influence over some of the Irish population, but we remain a secular republic. Catholicism is not "our" religion. Many Irish people subscribe to other beliefs and faith systems too, or none even. Or are you in denial of the shared Irishness of these others too? Do you deny me my Irishness because I might be an agnostic atheist?
    It doesn't bother me what you are. The undeniable reality however is that Irish people are overwhelmingly catholic, and our religion is very conservative in many ways. I'm not a bible-basher at all, but I stand squarely with it's stance on this specific issue. One I'd rather not deal with, as unfortunately in Ireland today, there's little tolerance for the alternative view. But regrettably, it's inevitable these days when Russia is brought up, and that says more about Irish people than them.

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    Now back on topic.

    The UN says that an average of 29 people are losing their lives in Eastern Ukraine every day. The toll has now passed 5,000. That's FIVE THOUSAND people, many of whom are innocent victims, who just wanted a normal life, under a government (either Ukraine or Russia) able to guarantee their security and freedom to go about their daily business as they wish.

    As I don't believe the West influenced the Kiev uprising, I don't believe the conflict in Donetsk and Luhansk is being orchestrated by Moscow. It's as accurate as saying that the Irish government was responsible for atrocities in Britain during the troubles, which was never the case.

    20 people were shot in Paris recently. There was rolling coverage of the events for several days, and many world leaders showed up to be seen in Paris, some of them with at best, questionable approaches to the notion of free speech. By contrast, 30 people were slaughtered in Mariupol at the weekend, 80 were injured. There was no outpourings of sympathy for them and Europe's media were more interested in an election in Greece with a toll of 0.

    Priorities, priorities.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mypost View Post
    Now back on topic.

    The UN says that an average of 29 people are losing their lives in Eastern Ukraine every day. The toll has now passed 5,000. That's FIVE THOUSAND people, many of whom are innocent victims, who just wanted a normal life, under a government (either Ukraine or Russia) able to guarantee their security and freedom to go about their daily business as they wish.

    As I don't believe the West influenced the Kiev uprising, I don't believe the conflict in Donetsk and Luhansk is being orchestrated by Moscow. It's as accurate as saying that the Irish government was responsible for atrocities in Britain during the troubles, which was never the case.

    20 people were shot in Paris recently. There was rolling coverage of the events for several days, and many world leaders showed up to be seen in Paris, some of them with at best, questionable approaches to the notion of free speech. By contrast, 30 people were slaughtered in Mariupol at the weekend, 80 were injured. There was no outpourings of sympathy for them and Europe's media were more interested in an election in Greece with a toll of 0.

    Priorities, priorities.
    Although I wouldn't agree with the balance you're showing with the blame game (Maidan-Rebels), I agree completely with the overwhelming non-interest in what's happening in Ukraine. The Irish media are biased towards Greece - money and politics, the World media loved Paris - Oh La La French factor, media and religion, while the conflict in Ukraine is bubbling away, waiting for the Spring thaw and re-invigorated slaughter. Here we're getting (mostly) one side, but I've met refugees from Ukraine, they're very blunt in what they see as two criminal groups having at one another.

    The media rolled from Ukraine (having shot their load on the maidan for a few days), ISIS, Paris (shortcutting it all) and nobody cared. Nobody cares that in Lugansk oblast there are villages without electricity or oil/gas since December - we're at -11 here today and it's terrible, there it's -20 today. Thousands of children had to be given school places in September this year in regions from Rostov to Belgorod to Voronezh - where there is already a strain on the regional budget to re-open school places shut down in the early 2000's.

    The Russian economy garnered more words than the conflict, and Mariupol, like Markale shelling in Sarajevo, nabs a few headlines but disappears from view. And this morning it's all Greece. There is a new Bosnia heating up in Ukraine and we haven't even seen the ethnic communities yet.

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    Capped Player DannyInvincible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mypost View Post
    Discrimination does happen to us, albeit not much in the UK. Instead it happens in the USA, and we know it as the "undocumented Irish".
    And you'd advise those Irish on the end of discrimination to avoid complicating matters by just following the rules?

    It's about realising what the natural order of man/woman attraction is. Men and women are biologically designed to be attracted to each other, because a) they are fundamentally different, and b) to keep the human race going. So those who have turned their back on that order have made a choice to be different.
    I'm sorry to say, but that's just pseudo-scientific bunkum. I made a number of points outlining why this simply cannot be the case up-thread, although you seem to have by-passed them, conveniently. There is no "natural order" to realise, nor is there is some "biological design" with a purpose for us in the mind of some designer. I'm not sure how you can casually make such claims without even attempting to back them up. Humans are a part and product of nature; our actions, thoughts and desires are, therefore, natural by definition. Even if you seek to separate us from nature, how do you explain homosexual behaviour in the animal kingdom, if there is some natural order of things? Just because things might be fundamentally different, doesn't mean they have to be attracted anyway. Do you find yourself attracted to every woman, because that is how you were designed, supposedly? If not, then aren't you turning your back on this supposed order? What about priests who decide to remain abstinent and decline to reproduce? Are they defying this order?

    It doesn't bother me what you are. The undeniable reality however is that Irish people are overwhelmingly catholic, and our religion is very conservative in many ways. I'm not a bible-basher at all, but I stand squarely with it's stance on this specific issue. One I'd rather not deal with, as unfortunately in Ireland today, there's little tolerance for the alternative view. But regrettably, it's inevitable these days when Russia is brought up, and that says more about Irish people than them.
    Very little tolerance for "the alternative view"? You mean your view? C'mon, you're having a laugh. Isn't "the alternative view" (which is an outrageous and insulting description for an establishment position that has enjoyed such mainstream sway for so long to the great suffering of many anyway) an inherently intolerant one itself? It seeks to stick its nose in and cast negative moral judgment on the private family affairs of consenting adults.

    And what do you think the raising of this issue when Russia is mentioned says about Irish people exactly?

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    Seasoned Pro peadar1987's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mypost View Post
    Discrimination does happen to us, albeit not much in the UK. Instead it happens in the USA, and we know it as the "undocumented Irish".
    And do you think this is okay (and incidentally, this is far less severe than the discrimination Russian homosexuals are facing, or my hypothetical anti-catholic UK)? Because initially you seemed to be defending the Russians for sticking to their guns and going with what the majority wanted, flying in the face of what the "weak" West thinks:

    Quote Originally Posted by mypost
    As far as the Russians are concerned, their position is right, and is what they want their society to be. They don't consider the west right to be "tolerant" of diversity, they consider us weak for having to cater for every section of society, even those we don't like and have no time for.
    If you weren't referring to homosexuals in the last sentence, who do you think the West is catering for, in spite of not liking them, and having no time for them?

    As for the "natural order", it is the natural order for humans to sh*t in the corner of a cave and die of septicemia at the age of 28, but I don't see you or the catholic church defending that.

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    Capped Player DannyInvincible's Avatar
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    Some further interesting reading on various research done into human sexuality: http://blog.ted.com/2014/02/20/6-stu...man-sexuality/

    Quote Originally Posted by Jessica Gross
    The standard narrative of human sexual evolution says: men provide women with goods and services in exchange for women’s sexual fidelity. But is that really true or relevant today? Christopher Ryan, the co-author of Sex at Dawn with Cacilda Jethá, takes a deeper look and has quite a few bones to pick with this idea.

    Ryan explains that our sexual patterns are an outgrowth of agricultural models—which accounts for only about five percent of human history. For the other 95 percent, human sexuality was “a way of establishing and maintaining the complex flexible social systems, networks, that our ancestors were very good at.” In hunter-gatherer societies, there were overlapping sexual relationships between members of a community—a more fluid system than the Victorian model we’re wedded to today. In fact, several contemporary societies around the world argue against the sexual myth we’ve built up, too.

    “My hope is that a more accurate updated understanding of human sexuality will lead us to have greater tolerance for ourselves, for each other, greater respect for unconventional relationship configurations like same-sex marriage or polyamorous unions, and that we’ll finally put to rest the idea that men have some innate instinctive right to monitor and control women’s sexual behavior,” Ryan says. “And we’ll see that it’s not only gay people that have to come out of the closet: we all have closets we have to come out of.”

    Below, read up on some more lines of research that suggest out-of-the-box ideas about our sexuality.

    Question: Is bisexuality a sexual orientation, something that’s temporary or an outgrowth of the sexual fluidity we all exhibit?

    Research: In a 2008 study, Lisa M. Diamond of the University of Utah presented the results of a decade-long assessment of nearly 70 women who identified as lesbian, bisexual, or sexually unlabelable. Five times over the course of the study, the women detailed their sexual identities, attractions, behaviors, and their social and familial relationships.

    Results: Based on Diamond’s findings, bisexuality is not a “transitional stage that women adopt ‘on the way’ to lesbian identification” or an “experimental phase” for heterosexuals. Her results, instead, supported that, “Bisexuality may best be interpreted as a stable pattern of attraction to both sexes in which the specific balance of same-sex to other-sex desires necessarily varies according to interpersonal and situational factors,” she writes.

    Question: Which comes first—desire or arousal?

    Research: In a study from 2004, described in this New York Times article, Ellen Laan, Stephanie Both and Mark Spiering of the University of Amsterdam examined participants’ physical responses to sexual images.

    Results: The research indicates that we respond physically to highly sexual visuals before our mind even engages with them. In other words, desire doesn’t precede arousal—it’s the other way around. And we aren’t even aware it’s happening.

    ...

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    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible
    And you'd advise those Irish on the end of discrimination to avoid complicating matters by just following the rules?
    I didn't advise anyone. What I am saying is "When in Rome?..."

    I'm sorry to say, but that's just pseudo-scientific bunkum. There is no "natural order" to realise, nor is there is some "biological design" with a purpose for us in the mind of some designer. I'm not sure how you can casually make such claims without even attempting to back them up. Humans are a part and product of nature; our actions, thoughts and desires are, therefore, natural by definition. Just because things might be fundamentally different, doesn't mean they have to be attracted anyway. What about priests who decide to remain abstinent and decline to reproduce? Are they defying this order?
    You've answered your own question. They have made a decision. The realities of that decision are well known, and what they choose to live with.

    Then you contradict yourself, telling us that humans are a product of nature, after saying we have no natural order. Now it has to be one or the other, not both. I have backed up my "claims" in the last post with a) and b).

    The majority of countries are completely intolerant of non-hetero practices, and in some cases, execute those found doing so. What the Russians have done barely registers by comparison, yet it's the big issue about the country in western media.

    Eurovision is the biggest annual live music concert in the world, where cover versions are banned, and where performers either sink or swim in front of several hundreds of millions of people over 3 minutes. Yet we're informed that this wonderful celebration of European culture is defined and dismissed in the west as a homofest, which I take serious offence to, especially when 99.9% of organisers and performers in it are as straight as a wall.

    And what do you think the raising of this issue when Russia is mentioned says about Irish people exactly?
    This thread is supposed to be about Russia, it's culture, it's identity, it's relations with it's neighbours, Chechnya, Ukraine, the fact that people are losing their lives everyday in massive numbers across the border, the oil/gas situation, and the knock on effects on the Russian/world economy, etc. There's a tonne of material there to work with.

    Sadly, it's yet again hijacked by a pointless debate on the same sht issue that has killed a total of 0, for a country with frankly far more serious issues to deal with.

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