Paul Manata: Babies are Born Guilty and We are all Slaves
It takes an evil sort to believe that newborn babies are sinful and deserving of death, but that's exactly what Paul Manata believes!
I believe babies sin immediately...
I've actually encountered many Christians who have expressed this kind of view. I have yet to meet an atheist or agnostic who has expressed anything so condemning of something so clearly innocent.
Later in the thread, Paul Manata confuses the concept of self-ownership with the concept of God owning everyone and everything in his poor attempt to justify original sin:
Adam was chosen by God. We suffer. We are not punished for his sin (as your wrongly asserted in your previous post). But we reap the consequences. I vote in, say, Bush. He invokes laws. My son may suffer for some. But he's not old enough to vote, you say! Doesn't matter. He was chosen for him. God chose for us. He made the best choice. His choice was infallible. His choice was perfect. Adam was the best representative we could have. He stood in for you. He was chosen to be your representative, just like, say, Duncan Hunter was chosen to be my son's representative, even though my son didn't vote.
I bet you'd gladly accept a million dollar inheritance from your grandfather, even though you did nothing to deserve the money, and you didn't choose him to be your grandfather. Same with Adam. We could have inherited the blessings and no one would have complained. But we inherit the sin, and we whine and moan. Thus it's us who are irrational (irrationality is a consequence of sin) and not my argument.
Emphasis Paul's. Now, can you spot the error?
In first scenario, God chooses Adam to represent everybody. Which means that before Adam represented everyone, it was God that represented them. Everyone belonged to God, and then by decree they belonged to Adam (even though they weren't born yet!). Adam fucked up, and then God makes every person suffer because they were owned or represented by Adam.
In the second scenario, a person accepts a million dollars that he didn't earn. But notice that it was him who chose to accept it, which implies self-representation. A person is free to choose whether he wants to accept the million dollars because he represents himself, but in the first scenario, a person was not free to choose because he was represented by God or Adam, and never himself.
Paul Manata wholly denies self-ownership as a foundation, and then tries to assign consequences to all of humanity for something that someone else did. All the while, every human on Earth is a permanent slave; enslaved to God, then to Adam, and suffering the consequences of their master's actions.
Paul then tries to make an analogy, but by using a comparative example where self-ownership is in play! It is easy to see how they don't equate. In the Adam scenario, we have no choice but to inherit the fruits of Adam's actions, whether they be sinful consequences or holy blessings; it's not our choice to make! Yet in the second analogy, the person is free to accept or reject the offerings of the older relative (in this case one million dollars). In the second analogy, it is his choice to make!
In the first situation there no choice for the individual; no self-directed action or responsibility is possible. But in the second situation, there is nothing but complete self-directed choice. In the second situation, the consequences can clearly be assigned to the person in question, for he was able to use his consent and choice through self-representation or self-ownership.
These two scenarios are simply not analogous, because the fundamental component, representation/ownership of action, is different between the two scenarios to a mutually exclusive degree.
I wonder if Paul Manata could ever provide a real-world analogy that would properly fit the original sin problem? I doubt that any Christian could.
Either you start with self-ownership or you don't. In the real world, you do, but in the Bible, you don't. Since self-ownership and other-ownership are mutually exclusive, no proper analogy is possible.
The concept of original sin is in an illogic and immoral category all it's own.