Edward Tarte Says to Priest: ‘You’re Too Good for the Catholic Church”

[Link to video]

About Edward Tarte

I am age 78, once a Catholic priest for five years (in the 1960's), then a math teacher for 44 years up to the present day. I became an atheist a few years ago. My hobbies are music and chess.

  • http://www.sunstonescafe.com/ Paul Sunstone

    Most of the time, I’m of the opinion that most people are at least a little bit better than their religions.

  • roberthughmclean

    Jeez Paul, that wouldn’t be difficult. Religions don’t offer much of a benchmark.

    • http://www.sunstonescafe.com/ Paul Sunstone

      That’s a good point! Maybe, I should be dismayed that so many people seem only a little bit better than their religions. Damn!

  • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

    Do you have an online source for that RC doctrine Edward? When I’ve pointed out that the RC Church doesn’t even allow abortion in the case when a woman’s life is at risk, nobody ever believes me, even when I cite the not to distant pass case of the hospital in AZ.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Excommunication_of_Margaret_McBride

    • Miss_Beara

      They don’t even allow abortions to 9 year old rape survivors.

      • http://twitter.com/enuma enuma

        Or 16 year old girls who need chemotherapy.

  • C’mon, man

    I remember trying – trying – to dialogue with Tarte. I do not normally try to engage atheists, but I made an exception for Edward because his personal story intrigued me. How could a Catholic priest leave the Church? How someone (presumably) familiar with realism, essentialism, and the great Catholic theological tradition leave the path of wisdom? But I could not get into any of that because Tarte, when he became an atheist, entered into what I call “shithead atheist” mode. It’s very similar to “shithead fundamentalist” mode where bare, question-begging assertions and snark replace rational discourse.

    *sigh*

    • Claire

      Hmm, if you try to engage with Mr. Tarte in the manner you presented yourself with in this comment, then there is no wonder your discussion was doomed to fail. I suggest to reflect on how others might perceive your words next time, since you sound like you do not respect atheists and see them as rational and moral humans. Also you seem to automatically perceive that Mr. Tarte’s experiences as a Catholic priest invalid.

      So in return: *sigh*

    • Edward Tarte

      Instead of calling me a shithead, do you have anything worthwhile to say about the actual content of this video?

      • C’mon, man

        Hello, Edward.

        There is not much to say, I think. Your video’s intended audience seemed to be limited to one man, a priest in Texas. Otherwise, there is not much in the video that I can address. No where in the video do you even attempt an argument against the intrinsic immorality of direct sterilization. You merely assume the opposite view, which may be an uncontroversial assumption with those who agree with you, but it, nevertheless, begs the question against orthodox Catholics and moral realists of any or no religious affiliation. It assumes exactly what is in dispute. I may as well simply contradict you and be on my merry way. That is what conversing with “new” atheists is usually like, anyway.

        I do not think you are really interested in dialoguing and studying each other’s positions for the purpose of reaching agreement in truth. That requires a deep willingness to pursue mutual understanding and an intellectual generosity to see each other’s arguments at their best. No, this is not the attitude you take in your videos, Edward. And I don’t think you’ll be changing.

        • Rain

          “I do not think you are really interested in dialoguing and studying each other’s positions for the purpose of reaching agreement in truth.”

          Well when one half of the dialogue amounts to magic faeries says not to use condoms, then that half leaves something to be desired, and there really isn’t much point. So bye bye, have a nice day too.

          • C’mon, man

            Yeah, this is why I encourage actually learning about each other’s arguments. Magic fairies? You are so ignorant that atheists ought to be ashamed. But no, you guys are proud of your flagrant stupidity.

            • http://www.facebook.com/callice.lieder Callice Equality Lieder

              Have you ever heard of self-fulfilling prophecies? Basically when you approached people on this site with an antagonistic and insulting tone people are going to respond in kind. It’s a normal and common problem with communication. While I have reasons to doubt your sincerity about wanting to have a genuine discussion with atheists, it will greatly help your cause if you try another, less insulting, approach. :)

              • Anti Hitch

                No it won’t, because the atheists don’t want genuine discussion. They have already decided anything you say is delusional, as some of them about pointed out.
                The main point is to be sure that these haters don’t get political control.
                And, given their personalities, it will be very rare for atheists to get elected to political office, so lets keep him riled up.
                Screw accomodation…I want the atheists out in the open telling Christians what scum they are.
                I want to know who my enemy is.

                • piet puk

                  Obvious troll is obvious.

        • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

          Can we have a dialog and study each other’s positions on the intrinsic morality of slavery for the purpose of reaching an agreement in truth?

          • C’mon, man

            Thanks for proving my point, Rich, about the ineptitude of many atheists.

            By comparing a moral prohibition against direct sterilization to the immorality of slavery, you are assuming precisely what is in dispute between us: that the Catholic Church’s prohibition on direct sterilization is immoral. That is called begging the question, assuming an argument’s conclusion in its premises.

            It is rather profound, Rich, that you do not even notice your own question-begging.

            • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

              It is rather profound that you can’t see how immoral it is for the Church to prohibit direct sterilization.

              The bigger point is that we are sooo far apart on this that it makes as much sense to discuss, as for one to discuss slavery with someone who thinks it’s perfectly moral.

              Slavery is immoral. Period.

              The statement that me getting a vasectomy is immoral- is wrong. Period.

              Yes, I’m begging the question. There’s nothing to discuss You’re just as wrong as your child rapist protecting pope.

              • C’mon, man

                There is nothing more to discuss, then, Rich. You admit your fallacy. Like I said to Edward, if question-begging assertions suffice, then I will just contradict you and be on my merry way:

                Getting a vasectomy is immoral. Period.

                Table-pounding is fun. This is internet atheism, yo.

                • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

                  What more can we expect from someone who rapes little kids.

                • C’mon,man

                  lol, I’ll let the neutral reader see why I use the term “shithead atheist” mode. I also direct Edward and the other atheists who took offense at my term to see these deliberately facile comments (see Rich’s shameless admission), dishonest caricatures (see Rain’s comment), and generally ignorant comments.

                • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

                  What’s the difference between slavery, child rape, and direct sterilization? You think one of them is worthy of debate. And you assume that none of us have ever heard your arguments on the matter. Maybe not yours, but I’m guessing they’re pretty close to the church’s.

                  Yes, if you poke someone hard enough, they’re likely to go all shithead mode on you. Congratulations on a pretty good troll. Extra points for the passive aggressive and self declaration of a win.

                • Legal Student

                  Classic Strawman.
                  Grade: F

                • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

                  Not a strawman, a false equivalence. I was going to explain the distinction, but maybe I’ll save my time and leave that as an exercise to the student.

              • C’mon, man

                There is nothing more to discuss, then, Rich. You admit your fallacy and have left the path of reason. As I told Edward, if question-begging assertions suffice, then I will just contradict you with an assertion of my own and be on my merry way:

                Getting a vasectomy is immoral. Period.

                Table-pounding is fun. This is internet atheism, yo.

          • Edward Tarte

            Rich, thank you. I studied the Catholic Church’s sexual morality during my last year in the seminary, so I am familiar with the arguments on both sides of this issue. I now recognize what I did not recognize when a Catholic, that the Catholic Church has a pathological preoccupation and obsession with sex, and that its claim that tying Fallopian tubes is intrinsically immoral is a sick claim with no reasonable basis whatsoever. It is just as clear to me that the Catholic Church is wrong in this matter as it is clear to me that slavery is immoral. That is why I did not elaborate on this issue during my videos. I may, however, take up the issue in one or more future videos.

            • Brian

              When you do take up the issue in a video, Edward, maybe you could try tackling the real arguments – you know, the ones that inescapably arise from a realist and essentialist philosophical perspective. If you don’t do that, then you are just doing more table-pounding. Think about it.

              • Carmelita Spats

                Hell, I’ll table pound, spank the pope and give crucified Jesus Christ a good nipple torquing: Women are not open vulvas to be inseminated so that they birth for the cult using nothing but a hydraulic pump and a revolving door. I have more dignity than that. The Catholic Church’s “natural method” is not only unreliable but completely gross, grotesque and just plain icky…By the time you count the safe days, you abstain and you
                keep a tight schedule on sexual intercourse, you end up with precious
                little time for sex unless you treat menstrual blood (which smells worse than rotting asparagus) as a “lubricant”, and enjoy ejaculating while she’s bleeding like a stuck pig. Who the hell cleans the
                sheets? The woman? Fortunately, it is not for this space to imagine Ratzinger’s soggy sexual mutations. We do not have enough wine on hand for that.

                I’ll go with sterilizations any day. Wanton breeding is immoral because bringing hungry mewling attention-deprived kids into this exhausted world zips right by “touching” and races right
                past “disturbing” and lurches its way, heaving and gasping and sweating
                from the Christoholic armpits, straight into “Oh. My. Science…,what the hell is
                wrong with you people?” The gods just don’t
                want more children per acre than there are ants or mice or garter snakes
                or repressed pedophilic priests. We already have three billion humans
                on the planet who subsist on less than two dollars a day. Every other
                child in the world (one billion of them) lives in abject poverty. We are
                burning through the planet’s resources faster than a Republican can eat endangered caribou stew. Note to Ratzinger: If god wanted women to have a massive pile of children, she’d have given their uterus a
                hydraulic pump and a revolving door. Stop it now. Now, go forth to a glorious sterilization. Snip. Snip. Praise!

                • Legal Student

                  Buck V Bell, decision by Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes (an atheist) seems to be what you need here.

                • Brian Scott

                  Why is it you can’t distinguish between forced and voluntary sterilization? Have you been so damaged by authoritarian memes that you can’t recognize this is about choice?

            • Legal Student

              Edward, do you agree with Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, (an atheists) and his decision in Buck V Bell?

              • Brian Scott

                Why should we give a rat’s ass if he’s atheist? Your bigotry is showing.

      • Anti Hitch

        There are plenty of corrupt preachers, and corrupt priests.

        Many like Barker and Loftus continued to preach for a while after they no longer believed.

        Its not suprising that there are Priests like that as well.
        Thats one reason the church has so many problems; its obvious there is a component of their leadership who aren’t even trying to follow Christ, and are, like Edward, willing to Deny Him.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=553145445 Gordon Duffy

      my question, as an ex catholic, is – how can anyone stay?

    • RobertoTheChi

      You must be in shithead catholic mode.

      How can anyone stay in the catholic church? How can someone familiar with the child rape and cover up, archaic, harmful dogma and brainwashing stay in this pedophile ring?

      *sigh*

    • Piet Puk

      If this is your way of ‘trying’ to have a dialoge, than it you that is the problem, not Mr. Tarte.
      Maybe you should try harder.

      • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

        “Maybe you should try harder.”

        Or at this point, maybe try less.

    • cipher

      *sigh*

      Drama queen much?

    • Bob Carlson

      How could a Catholic priest leave the Church?

      I thought Edward had done a superb job of explaining that here. After watching part 2 of that video pair, it was apparent that Edward hadn’t had been inculcated in Catholicism as a child, as most priests are, so I asked what it was that had drawn him to the Catholic Church. He replied that he had touched on it in a YouTube video “Edward Tarte–Catholic Church’s Grip on Me In The Seminary.” Rational discourse is exactly what Edward has provided. It is unfortunate that your inability to face reality causes you to respond in a thoroughly inappropriate manner.

      • Edward Tarte

        Bob Carlson, thank you so much.

    • C’mon, man

      btw, you guys are taking offense at “shithead atheist” mode. Why? Many atheists proudly own how relentlessly rude, crude, and offensive they are.

      • Edward Tarte

        I am not relentlessly rude, crude, or offensive. I am relentlessly refined and polite. I base my religion videos on reason and evidence. I base my piano and Mr. Music videos on my love of music and my desire to share it with others. I base my math videos on my love of math and my desire to share it with others. By no reasonable definition am I a shithead.

        • C’mon, man

          Edward, I am surprised that you think your efforts are good-natured and sincere. Video after video, I see the same problems. Like I said earlier, true dialogue requires a deep willingness to pursue mutual understanding. We must strive to understand each other’s views correctly and in their best possible articulation. I think you should ask yourself if you think you are doing that.

          What I see in your videos is a pattern of crude and misguided presentations of what the Church actually teaches and why. The Catholic Church bases her moral teachings first of all from the counsel of reason. You repeatedly claim that they come from “bronze-aged” texts, so that makes me wonder if you were ever educated in the Catholic moral tradition. If so, where are the arguments against realism and essentialism?

          • Brian Scott

            Where are the arguments for it? We’ve been through the neoplatonic dance before. You’re arguing for supposed “external” entities independent of operationalist procedures and which have no predictive power. The universe follows. Introducing classes and universals and trying to square-peg, round-hole them into the reality adds complexity with no additional productivity.

            Given that classification and properties are tools meant to navigate a vast world, the supposed “counsel of reason” from which realism and essentialism draw are arbitrary and depend on the prejudices of espouser. Which means, yes, it does come from “bronze-aged” texts and tarting it up with outmoded philosophy from a bunch of pagans who did it much better doesn’t give it any more substance.

      • piet puk

        I don’t find it offensive, I find it telling something about your character you yourself are blind to.

  • IgtheistMorgan

    At Lamberth’s outlook and Worldview [ http://woolamb.wordpress, I objurgate the Vatican as a great source of evil, despite its good works. I reblogged that to other of my wordpress.com blogs.
    Come on man, c'mon man, why would a rational person thrash a honest man instead of that vile organization? Draw your own conclusions, man!
    My blogs @wordpress.blogspot, tumbler and posterous belie the "lies" of religions.
    Google Lamberth's naturalist arguments against God to find them.
    Paul, yes as most American Catholics pay lip service to the Vatican about the right matters. However, on the economic social programs, it does emit the right view, but whilst I hope Catholics will follow its advice there, I'd prefer they do so, because that is the way to go to help the economy and - people, they should let go of its power, by withholding tithes, and even better leave the villain!
    I'm a gnu atheist; I blast religion [ My Kaufmann blog. wordpress is more gentle].

    • Edward Tarte

      Igtheist, your comment would be much more worthwhile if you would use the English language in a simple, direct, easily understandable manner.

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/chidy/ chicago dyke

    I love you, Edward Tarte. you are the most awesome person to make youtube videos ever.

    • Edward Tarte

      Chicago dyke, thank you so much.

  • SteveS

    Another interesting ethics challenge from Edward. I was just sitting here thinking that this is a perfect teaching moment for God. How about ending all dispute? The almighty could simple create an abdominal pregnancy in a few thousand catholic priests (and a few thousand evangelical preachers, as well). Then they could confront an issue they have no comprehension of. Didn’t Florynce Kennedy say “if men could become pregnant, abortion would be a sacrament”.


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