A woman is forced to marry her rapist? Not necessarily.

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A woman is forced to marry her rapist? Not necessarily.

Postby DjVortex » Sat Jul 07, 2012 4:57 pm

One of the staple arguments for the immorality of the bible is the law about a man raping a woman and then having to marry her. This argument is repeated without much thought and investigation by many atheists.

For an alternative perspective, please watch this video. The video is, surprisingly, not made by a Christian apologist, but by an atheist, and his arguments are actually quite sound. Please do not pre-emptively dismiss it as false without having actually watched it. (I'm not saying that the guy in the video is right. I'm just saying that the "woman forced to marry her rapist" is not actually all that clear-cut, and he presents good arguments why not.)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bso69_yxppU
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Re: A woman is forced to marry her rapist? Not necessarily.

Postby dobbie » Sun Jul 08, 2012 1:02 am

All I can say is that he didn't present good arguments, the way I see it. Because ...

1 - First I have to rant it’s spooky that the video takes fifteen minutes for an exegesis on a brief Bible passage. It’s a red flag to me.

2 - Disagree where the video states "it’d make more sense" to see the same word we see in Deuteronomy 22:25, which talks about rape.

Well, it’d “make more sense” if one word for “rape” appeared throughout the scriptures, and so there would be no question. Or am I being too strict?

The video opines that a synonym is okay within either a story or poem. Afraid I don’t buy into it; it's a bid to explain away Genesis 34:1-7: Now Dinah the daughter of Leah, whom she had borne to Jacob, went out to see the women of the land. And when Shechem the son of Hamor the Hivite, the prince of the land, saw her, he seized (laqach) her and lay (shakab) with her and humiliated (anah) her.

For what it’s worth, further notice that in Deuteronomy chapter 22 the verses about adultery (not rape and sexual abuse) don’t use the words “seizes her/lay hold on her.”

3 - The video evokes Exodus 22:16. But it’s to do with seduction not rape, so I say. It’s a separate and distinct law from that law in Deut. 22.

4 - Deuteronomy 22:28-29. I'll make a better law. Better for the commandment to require that the rapist (assuming he raped) pays the father the shekels and marries his victim. But these newlyweds live apart if she is so inclined, and also they divorce after six months if she wants to. Further, the commandment should mandate that once those conditions have reached their fulfillment, the divorcee will be called an honorable woman again and free to re-marry.

5 - Here’s a pastor on the topic:
Deuteronomy 22:28-30 - Re: Ask Pastor Jack Schaap
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Rrz9JBedCE&feature=related

The pastor suggests that the young girl enticed the man. But I fail to see an informative biblical basis for what the pastor says about it.

Also, his going off topic for 80% of the time is what makes the good pastor Schapp a typical theist. Ha.

6 - If they’re willing partners in the passage, the author should have stated it outright.

In sum his arguments aren't convincing.
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Re: A woman is forced to marry her rapist? Not necessarily.

Postby DjVortex » Sun Jul 08, 2012 4:38 am

dobbie wrote:1 - First I have to rant it’s spooky that the video takes fifteen minutes for an exegesis on a brief Bible passage. It’s a red flag to me.


I don't understand why. Could you please explain? What does it matter how long an argument is?
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Re: A woman is forced to marry her rapist? Not necessarily.

Postby sepia » Sun Jul 08, 2012 12:38 pm

I don't know much about Hebrew, so I can't check the validity of his transations, but I think his method of argumentation is good. I want to point out two things:

1) The claim, that the bible just means raping because it could be raping is just an argument from ignorance.

2) Maybe we will use the same strategy against creationist. Just think about the "miracles" in the bible or the quran. It would be double standard to ignore it in this case.
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Re: A woman is forced to marry her rapist? Not necessarily.

Postby dobbie » Sun Jul 08, 2012 4:13 pm

DiVotex wrote: What does it matter how long an argument is?


In this case it's fifteen minutes on two short Bible verses. I rant here that it's almost always the case that such length will contain too much unnecessary stuff or some kind of "technical" argument, which somebody else can refute in two minutes. And sure enough that is what happened as far as I'm concerned about it.

For example the time it took for him to compare Bible verses for their wording didn't result in a convincing argument. In order to explain away what he didn't want, he said something such as if it's the Torah law, the words cannot be synonynous, they can only be one word for one meaning. But if it's a story or poem, there can be synonyms. I was asking, Says who? Whose rule is this? He extrapolated for a while on that kind of business. All for what? His mere opinion on the matter.

Most of his other arguments went about the same way. For example the passage "legalizes rape" he says, if it is taken to mean rape. I was thinking it does no such thing as "legalizes rape." He was wasting his time which such rhetoric.

Says a man can marry a woman whether she and her father want it or not, by raping her. Well, that's one way of looking at it, but it doesn't guarantee that the verse doesn't mean rape.

By the same token, I can speculate that a woman and a man can circumvent the father's wishes against their marriage, by their lying together willingly and then invoking the law which says the man pays the shekels to the father and marries the woman. Exactly what the couple had in mind all along. But my mere speculation doesn't guarantee that the verse means mutual consent.

In other words his points took too long, he could have been briefer, and far briefer stuff on YouTube refutes his arguments in their way. So as soon as I noticed that his video was fifteen minutes long, my bias said Oh, oh, now we're in for it. Ha.
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Re: A woman is forced to marry her rapist? Not necessarily.

Postby DjVortex » Sun Jul 08, 2012 4:53 pm

sepia wrote:2) Maybe we will use the same strategy against creationist. Just think about the "miracles" in the bible or the quran. It would be double standard to ignore it in this case.


I don't understand what you mean. Could you elaborate?

dobbie wrote:In this case it's fifteen minutes on two short Bible verses. I rant here that it's almost always the case that such length will contain too much unnecessary stuff or some kind of "technical" argument, which somebody else can refute in two minutes. And sure enough that is what happened as far as I'm concerned about it.


If I understand correctly, your complaint is simply that he could have been more brief and present a more compact argument, but he made his presentation needlessly long. That might be so, but I don't see how that's a point against what he's saying. Maybe he's not an experienced speaker/debater and hence rambles more than necessary, but that doesn't automatically mean that his main point isn't valid.

Anyways, I think that he does make a good point: It's not so clear-cut whether the passage is talking about non-consensual rape, or whether it's talking about an illicit but consensual relationship. (In the latter case, it would basically be establishing the principle of a "shotgun wedding".) I don't think skeptics should be spouting so carelessly "women are forced to marry their rapists" because it's not that self-evident at all.
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Re: A woman is forced to marry her rapist? Not necessarily.

Postby dobbie » Sun Jul 08, 2012 5:37 pm

DiVortex wrote: If I understand correctly, your complaint is simply that he could have been more brief and present a more compact argument, but he made his presentation needlessly long. That might be so, but I don't see how that's a point against what he's saying.


It doesn't say anything about what he's saying, it an indication of something he's about to say. That is, my experience is that when a person takes three times longer than anybody else does (whether an experienced speaker or not) that person won't present very good arguments in the first place.

All he had to do was to show that Bible editions are divided on the meaning of the passage. Some Bible editions strongly suggest mutual consent. Other editions denote rape. Thus the translators are divided on the vague passage. He comes down on the side of mutual consent. But his arguments do nothing to bring closer to the matter.

The fifteen minute length, which I noticed before watching it, tipped me off. Perhaps just a coincidence. But I rant it was an indication of what was to come in the video. And that's my bias.
Last edited by dobbie on Sun Jul 08, 2012 5:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: A woman is forced to marry her rapist? Not necessarily.

Postby dobbie » Sun Jul 08, 2012 5:38 pm

DiVortex wrote: I don't think skeptics should be spouting so carelessly "women are forced to marry their rapists" because it's not that self-evident at all.


I can agree with that. I was just bitching about the content of the video presentation, that's all.
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Re: A woman is forced to marry her rapist? Not necessarily.

Postby sepia » Sun Jul 08, 2012 6:12 pm

DjVortex wrote:I don't understand what you mean. Could you elaborate?

The Video claims that the term rape is or may be a wrong translation. In some cases we could use the claim, that something is a wrong translation against a creationist claim. I brought biblical miracles as an example, because this miracle-argument deals with the text of the bible.
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