ZRH
Topic Author
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Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Thu Aug 17, 2000 12:13 am

It happend on the flight SR 103 on August 13th (A 330-200) from JFK to ZRH:
There were about 30 people belonging to an orthodox religion (no matter what religion) in economy class.
20 minutes before breakfast about 15 stood up and began with their prayers in the ailes, at the emergencie doors and worst in rear galley. I woke up and the other passengers could hardly go to the toilet. The F/A had problems to serve breakfast, but they kept cool. Most passengers and I were very much bodered and I did not like it at all. I think airlines should not allow this molestation of passengers. I shall perhaps write a letter to Swissair.
What is your opinion on this?
 
AA737-823
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Prayer In The Asiles

Thu Aug 17, 2000 2:10 am

You can't regulate someone's religion. There is nothing wrong with a group religious activity in flight. Now, if their practices had included opening an emergency exit in flight (I know, I know, it's impossible but pretend here) and throwing flight crew out into the wild blue- that would be different. But they weren't harming anybody. So someone had to go to the bathroom? Big deal- hold it. You don't mess with someone's religion.
 
varig md-11
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C'mon It's Not Only Prayers In The Aisle!

Thu Aug 17, 2000 2:25 am

hi ZRH
unfortunately i don't think you can do anything about it...as long as they don't challenge severely safety.My mind is just like yours and such facts bother me.
AA737-823 since you seem to support those things,you find it normal FA are bothered while they're trying to work? you also find normal everybody has to witness this kind of ceremony while everybody's trying to rest and enjoy their flight? well ok as far as you're concerned but don't try to explain it is normal people has to pray!!!! because it's not any simple prayer (i don't care about religion). it's a spectacle that doesn't belong in a plane where 250 people have to endure this.For your information they would do it even in case of turbulences and wouldn't listen to FA: just ask any FA who has encountered the situation
AF TW AA NW DL UA CO BA U2 TP UX LH SK AZ MP KL SN VY HV LS SS TK SQ PC RG IW SE LI TN
 
Guest

RE: C'mon It's Not Only Prayers In The Aisle!

Thu Aug 17, 2000 2:36 am

im not sure about int'l airlines, my experience is in US law but i have to agree theres not much you can do thats worth the time and effort since the plane was in the air. aside from the annoyance factor, no harm was done, unless you were hit or something like that. you may argue that you were unable to rest but unless made you screw up at a meeting, there's no real reason to persue any action. thats just a quick thought.
 
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sammyk
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RE: AA737-823

Thu Aug 17, 2000 3:31 am

You said "You don't mess with someone's religion." But its just fine and dandy for religion to mess with someones wanting to go to the bathroom? What if they can't hold it? What if they have a bladder problem? What if they're sick? Oh sorry, please piss in your pants, I need to pray. Or how about for someone wanting to do their job in the proper manner? Sorry, you can't give that man a pillow or a drink or whatever until I'm done praying. Get real. I would have walked over (take note, I didn't say walked ON the person) the person to take a piss.

I respect all religions, but they should not cause an inconvenience to others, especially if they are in a minority situation (30 out of 200 people on an aircraft). Unfortunatly those that choose to pray in public and cause inconveniences do not respect those that do not follow their religion.

Kinda sad.

Sammy
 
IndianGuy
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RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Thu Aug 17, 2000 4:14 am

I come from a very religious country myself, but this is ridiculous! It just isnt done.

I am surprised that SR F/A's could allow such things. I think no passenger should be allowed to do anything that causes discomfort to other co-pax, and/or prevents the cabin-crew from performing their duties normally.

I know airlines go to great lengths to keep all pax in good humour, but surely u got to draw the line somewhere. If i was on that flight, i would definitely have blown a fuse.
 
frequentflyer
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RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Thu Aug 17, 2000 4:43 am

Well... pax were bothered, even woken up, and F/A work was impeded.

I think this is enough to imply it should not happen.

Religion also advises not to bother thy neighbor, doesn't it? So they should not have done it.
Take off and live
 
prebennorholm
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RE: C'mon It's Not Only Prayers In The Aisle!

Thu Aug 17, 2000 4:50 am

I'm afraid that there isn't much which can be done about it.
But at least they should have told the FA what was going to take place, so the FA could have announced it for everybody in advance. Not knowing what the hell is going on, and if it will last 2 minutes or half an hour...!
Failing at least to do so is showing the outmost disrespect for the rest of the fellow passengers.
Preben Norholm
Always keep your number of landings equal to your number of take-offs
 
Guest

RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Thu Aug 17, 2000 2:40 pm

I would be furious if some religious zealots started waking everyone up with their crap. I have been on flight before where a certain christian mob had a group on the plane. This mob (not mentioning the religion) actually tried to peddle their crap to half the pax and the FA's were confused as to what to do.

Finally the pilot came over the PA and put the fasten seatbelt sign on to make them go back to their seats. I was absolutely furious! I have no problem with religions but let them keep it to themselves. At the very least the airlines involved should at least have a prayer room (such as MAS) for such activities.

mb
 
flyf15
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RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Thu Aug 17, 2000 3:36 pm

Just imagine if some unexpected severe turbulence came up... "religious activities cause 7 broken limbs and dozens of bumps and bruises on swissair flight"
 
Guest

RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Thu Aug 17, 2000 6:57 pm

The group which ZRH is reffering to is a group of orthodox JEWS. Being a part of this minority i have to explain something: Orthodox jews have to pray 3 times a day: morning, noon and afternoon. It's not a choice (like between chicken or beef in lunch) but a moral obligation. Since they can't pray in any other part of the plane, they have to cause some innconvenience to the other passengers. It's not because they are primitive and rude by nature. It's because they have to pray on specific "schedule".
The title "strange experience" which ZRH chose as a title suggests that the person which wrote this post seems to be a bit "not so enlightened" to say the least.
Please, try to be a little more tolerant next time. The only "strange experience" here is reading your post.
 
avion
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RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Thu Aug 17, 2000 7:20 pm

If you want to pray on a plane fly first class. Swissair is obviously christian an airline of a christian country so they are not supposed to have prayer rooms on board.
And why cant you pray in your seat?

Avion
 
ZRH
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RE: GKE

Thu Aug 17, 2000 7:39 pm

To GKE: It was really a strange experience! Three people from Lebanon travelled next to me and they were very bothered. I am tolerant, but people who disturb others with their religion are not tolerant! Everybody can practise his/her own religion in privacy, but it is very intolerant to molest others with their ceremonies. Religion is an absolutly privat matter. It has nothing to do with minority or majority. I don't understand why they could not wait with their prayers only two hours. I will suggest Swissair not to allow anymore such ceremonies on their flights.
 
na
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RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Thu Aug 17, 2000 8:00 pm

I respect every religion as far as their prayers or whatsoever ceremonies don´t disturb other people (who in this case even have absolutely no chance to go away). It should be selfunderstood that a grownup person in the year 2000 should be able to hold back at least for a few hours during flight. We are not in the 15th century anymore.
I absolutely don´t like that what happened during your flight. Do these people think they´re better than others? Did they ask before that? They didn´t show respect to the majority of the passengers, that seems for sure. If someone wants to pray on board he should do it sitting with his mouth shut. especially during early morning hours when other people want to sleep.
Airlines should not allow this.
 
ZRH
Topic Author
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RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Thu Aug 17, 2000 8:04 pm

Na: That's it, what I meant. Show respect to other people.
 
apioca
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Religion Is By Definition Strange

Thu Aug 17, 2000 8:10 pm

Pray all you want, it´s a matter between you and your god(s) why bother everyone else with it?

I am getting so sick of all this: "You-have-to-be-tollerant-when-it-comes-to-religion" why is it that religion is allways given such leeway? The amount of wars fought in the world due to religion is appaling - mostly due to the fact that some members of one religion have a need to impose it on others. (ie the socalled Christian missionaries.)

I say : ban all kind of public religious displays and we will have a more peacefull world.

As for the person who claims that jews have special duty to pray (inpublic) 3 times a day, all I can say is that one chooses what to believe in or not to believe in. Fine with mee to be a practising jew, muslim, christian Budist or what ever but dont pester everyone around you with it.

Had I been on that flight I would have asked them loud an clear to shut up! Religion or no religiopn there is no reason why non-belivers should be exposed to such CRAP!
 
Guest

RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Thu Aug 17, 2000 8:20 pm

Well, the people praying on the airliner were probably Muslims and Muslims have to pray five times a day.   
 
Guest

RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Thu Aug 17, 2000 11:38 pm

No, EK, they were Orthodox Jews, and me being Jewish myself can say they're psychotic. ZRH I know exactly what you went through, a good friend of mine went to Tel Aviv last summer on TowerAir, and jesus (no pun intended) I can't begin to imagine what that flight was like.

Orthodoxy in almost any religion is dangerous, troubling, and selfish. Yeasterday it could be orthodox Jews praying on a jetliner, today it could be Islamic fundamentalists blowing up a US housing base in Saudia Arabia, and tomorow it could be Ulster unionists provacatively marching through a Cathloic neighborhood. Extremism as now practiced has caused more difficulty, heartache, and tension in the world than most everything else and will likely never go away. Forever will they're be individuals who believe that becasue god is the most important thing in the world, they have the right to trample on others in his name with no regard to anyone else. I'm sorry for the molestation you were caused on the ZRH bound flight due to religious extremism, but just thank yourself that your not an abortion doctor in the midwest UnitedStates or an Indian brahman in Pakistani controlled Kashmir. Only than would you truly appreciate the danger and virulence extreme religion can cause.
 
frequentflyer
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RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Fri Aug 18, 2000 12:23 am

GKE: we do not need your lecture on tolerance.

What's more, your post is strangely one-sided when you mention "They have to cause inconvenience to other pax". Kinda laughable at, would not we talk about onboard safety.

Everybody on a plane has to care for others' safety and comfort, orthodox or not. No minority has a right, let alone a duty, to act different.

Just wondering whether all of this does boil down either to arrogance or carelessness, not to say selfishness.
Take off and live
 
flashmeister
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RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Fri Aug 18, 2000 1:02 am

People, PLEASE!!! Come on!! With all of the horrible things going on in the world, we should be thankful that the one thing we have to bitch about today is the fact that someone interrupted your beauty sleep above the Atlantic.

Let's really look at this:
- BLOCKING RESTROOMS: If they are truly holy people, they will move for the incontinent person screaming as they run for the can. (And, to put it back on them as Avion did above, why can't the incontinents get a prescription before the flight to avoid this sort of thing??)

- SAFETY: Which is more dangerous? Hanging out and chatting in an aisle or near an exit door, or praying briefly and returning to your seat? These people were not constructing temporary temples out of exit doors and oxygen masks. Please...

- PAX COMFORT: Again, if they are truly holy people, they would have politely excused themselves past their rowmates, prayed quietly, and discreetely returned to their seat. I seriously, seriously doubt that people were screaming and wailing at once.



What this is really about is intolerance. If one of you wanted to listen to your Discman and turn it up all the way to the point where the passenger next to you can barely hear it, you'd throw a damned fit if they asked you to turn it down...

I'm disappointed to see that the people who post here -- generally intelligent and open -- are so focused on the comfort of their own personal bubble that they cannot COMPROMISE to allow others to perform moral duties they consider crucia for the comfort of their respective bubbles. I mean, come on... what's the harm in praying? Oh yes, it's discomforting to you. Jesus wept.

This is the root of another Airliners.net topic: Air Rage. Because people are now so hell-bent on living happily and unfettered in their own bubble, and not compromising one little bit for others' comfort, they now see it as being completely logical to pitch a hellacious fit over one more shot of vodka or an inch of legroom.

Finally, for you, TWAneedsHELP, for someone pontificating that extreme religion is dangerous, turn the scope on yourself. In your post, you've pigeonholed eight different groups with the broadest of brushes. You call a prayer on a flight "molestation"? No one as far as I could tell was preaching the gospel or trying to save anyone -- they were practicing their PRIVATE faith. When we try to control PRIVATE actions, you're restricting the very freedom that you say is so precious -- to be exactly what you want to be and nothing else.

Come on, people... be tolerant of others' beliefs and actions, and they will tolerate yours. Otherwise, we're headed for a world of isolation and confrontation.
 
KALB
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RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Fri Aug 18, 2000 1:16 am

In the real world I am a hospital chaplain, and as a spiritual care giver in a diverse setting I'll do anything to accomodate patients'/families' spiritual and religious needs as long as it does not threaten the health code or safety of others. It does not seem that the religious group in question tried to impose their beliefs on other passengers, they were only trying to practise their faith according to the dictates of their religion. I'm sure if there was a real need for a passenger to use the WC, they would only need to say, "Excuse me, but I REALLY Need to get through, thank you."
 
avion
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RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Fri Aug 18, 2000 1:27 am



These jews were customers of Swissair. So the FA's were hesitant to tell them that they should stop.

My question: Isnt it possible tp pray in your seat?

Avion
 
Guest

RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Fri Aug 18, 2000 1:45 am

Actually that was very articulate and thought out Flashmeister. I commend you for your rational and reasonable responce. However, I know how Orthodox Jews pray and being a memeber of the faith I know a little about them too. Without sounding too problematic I can assure you that with regards to their religion they aren't the nicest kindest people in the world. They becoem very sensitive and very stubborn. Its easy to believe that they were all standing up and with little care to other passengers praying. I do have one question however, when Jews pray and "doven" its actually supposed to be very quiet. It is a private, spiritual practices that usually includes much reading and bowing. I would be surpirsed to hear that they were making loud noises during they're prayers.

With that said, it still doesn't excuse them from inconveinecing others and making a scene. They should, out of respect to humanity, really make verty effort they can to be polite, quiet, and respectful to others. Thats what their religion dicates however. But I know very pious people and they often times disregard respect and dignity to others to accomodate their own (or should I say self-important) worshipping.
 
ZRH
Topic Author
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RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Fri Aug 18, 2000 3:31 am

To clear it: They did not make noise, they only murmured. They didn't block the toilets but the ailes. I think we should close this discussion, I did not want to start a discussion about "tolerance". It does not belong to this forum. I only wanted to tell a story what happened on a flight and that other people could be offended in their religion or feelings if a group of people show their religion in such a public way, which I don't like and understand at all.
 
redngold
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Joined: Wed Mar 22, 2000 12:26 pm

RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Fri Aug 18, 2000 5:56 am

ZRH: were the people rocking forwards and backwards while they were praying? That would be called "daven."

If they were "davening" then they may really have moved out of consideration for the other passengers. Who wants someone "muttering to themself and fidgeting" in the adjacent seat? This could easily be misunderstood and/or caust the next person to be extremely uncomfortable.

Please don't accuse me of being insensitive, I am just saying how someone who doesn't know about the practice of prayer might think.

redngold
Up, up and away!
 
IndianGuy
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RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Sat Aug 19, 2000 5:05 am

Well, i do not think that religious compulsions give people the licence to cuase trouble to other pax. I am a christian in an deeply religious hindu country, and i have never had any problem whatsoever.

i dont practise my religion in public, and neither do my countrymen, irrespective of their religion. Certainly not on an aircraft! Its not only irritating, but also unsafe.
 
killjoy
Posts: 601
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Face It, Extremists Are A-holes

Sat Aug 19, 2000 6:42 am

OK, I don't want to sound too rude, but religious zealots are what I just about loathe most about this planet. I don't have any problems with skin-color, race, not even religion normally.

But extremists... urrgghhh.

I don't care if they're hindu, christian, jewish, whatever. It's when they get in my face that I get ticked off. Why should I respect them when they clearly don't give a shit about me?

For example, if a woman comes here from a country that makes them wear extremely covering clothes, we should respect their culture, honor their traditions, stop being racist bs bs bs...

However, when my friend visited a country like that she was forced to buy separate clothing to wear there because *they* imposed their traditions on *her* when she was a guest. Nice!

This is clearly what happened on the aircraft. In a smaller scale, causing less problems, but it was the same ignorance of others' rights.

If someone had tried to ask them to stop, they would probably have been accused of intolerance and/or racism. That is totally wrong. If some idiot would go sit in the aisle without a religious reason, everyone would be all over him/her. But not if that person has a religious reason to inconvenience a planeload of people. Heaven forbid, that would be racism!

Don't even get me started on the morons who hold marches just to piss of the people a few blocks away who hold a different belief, or the bastards who violate basic human rights in the name of religion. But that's another story.

One last point about the plane: A religious reason should not allow people to do what they would never be allowed to do without that reason. That's reverse racism and everyone knows it but are just afraid to be sued for intolerance.

Sorry if I got a bit carried away. These people just really piss me off...
 
Guest

RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Sat Aug 19, 2000 7:10 am

Here here sister!
 
airmale
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RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Sat Aug 19, 2000 7:31 pm

If they were Muslims (I am), then its true that we have to say our prayers five times daily no matter what, but our religion is totally against causing hinderance of any type to anyone, anywhere so what they did on the flight was wrong, if there had been a sudden emergency situation they definitely would have been in the way, besides making a mockery of religion is also a big sin in muslims and the were doing exactly that, islam does allow us to put off our prayers during travel if its inconvinent and we offer them later , not only that we can also pray sitting our our seats ,(especially since during travel our prayers are shortened considerably so as not to make it difficult for us to offer them), and those people could easily have done that.What they did was wrong.
.....up there with the best!
 
ZRH
Topic Author
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Joined: Tue Nov 16, 1999 11:32 pm

RE: Redngold

Sun Aug 20, 2000 8:08 am

To Redngold: Yes they were rocking forwards and backwards and they were murmuring.
 
Guest

RE: Killjoy

Sun Aug 20, 2000 4:13 pm

well, it's nice to see people debate on moral matters as a cover-up to their anti-semitic beliefs. I don't mind someone like ZRH, which can cover his prejudise thoughts "cleverly" (someone prevented him to go to the toilet... - like my 4 years old son), but the real a-hall is KILLJOY. Beside the fact that he says he is not religious at all (like me) - it seems that he got carried away with words up to a point that everyone that is misfortuned enough to read his rubbish would say to himself: "what an idiot!"
Next time try to read what you write before posting it.
And last words: anyone who holds any humanistic beliefs won't chose as a user name "kill". Try to post some of your views in the KKK forum. They will be more than happy to read them.
 
ZRH
Topic Author
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Joined: Tue Nov 16, 1999 11:32 pm

RE: GKE

Mon Aug 21, 2000 5:51 am

GKE: I only don't like people who are exremly indecent and obscene. This is no matter of religion or prejudism. I have the opinion that all passengers have to behave when they travel together with other 200 people. These prayers did not. I dont care at all what religion they have. When you read my first post, you see that even didn't mention the religion, it was you who brought up they were jewish! I only dislike all people who misbehave.
 
Hepkat
Posts: 2134
Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2000 8:22 am

RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Mon Aug 21, 2000 6:26 am

Wow, what a debate!

This is what I think:

First of all to GKE. I don't think Killroy was being anti-semitic or prejudiced in what he/she said. I really didn't see the need for you to bring up the KKK bit, that was probably pushing it too far. In a way, I do agree with Killroy, that sometimes some groups impose their way of thinking on everyone else, and if you object to that, then you are labeled racist. The example of the friend going to a religious country and being forced to wear a headdress was a perfect example of this I thought.

Secondly, about this topic. I think these Jews taking the flight should have informed the FAs about their intentions and gotten permission IN ADVANCE of the flight. By doing so, the flight crew would have had time to figure out if this activity would have interferred with safety or not. Perhaps on that particular day the pilots were expecting bad weather, in which case they probably would have not given permission for the Jews to pray in the aisle. Maybe they were expecting great weather the whole way and then would have approved it. The point is, they should have given the flight crew the CHOICE to decide whether their activity would have interferred with safety or not.

By getting up and praying unexpectedly, which is how I understood it, they put the crew in a tight spot, for how could they then ask them to be seated without looking suspiciously prejudiced?

The other thing is, had they discussed it with the airline in advance, maybe they could have come to an agreement on HOW to carry out the praying without it affecting other passengers or safety. Maybe the FAs could have delayed, for example, serving meals until the prayers were finished, or something else. I'm just throwing out ideas here.....

So, that's my two cents.
 
gerardo
Posts: 3372
Joined: Sun May 21, 2000 6:22 pm

RE: Strange Experience On A SR Flight From JFK To ZRH

Mon Aug 21, 2000 6:13 pm

I think, we are getting far away from aviation and more into a very interesting to read discussion about an actual theme.

I understand ZRH, if he says, that those prayers were bothering. I also understand GKE, if he says, that people belonging to that religion need to pray at a specific schedule. Having been studying and working close together with people belonging to the jewish religion (Zurich has a lot of jewish habitants, as you may know), I know a little bit of their habits.

There's just one particular thing, which makes me think. Why does a passenger, like in this case ZRH, have to be waken up, if somebody else wants to do something he has to do because of his religion? Why do I have to be bothered? In "our" (whatever this means) point of view, this does not show respect for others. For me respect to other people is more important than a prayer at the right time. But this my point of view, based on my culture and religion.

Regards
Gerardo
dominguez(dash)online(dot)ch ... Pushing the limits of my equipment
 
killjoy
Posts: 601
Joined: Thu Dec 02, 1999 6:00 am

RE: Killjoy

Mon Aug 21, 2000 11:58 pm

"well, it's nice to see people debate on moral matters as a cover-up to their anti-semitic beliefs."

I *was* treating it as a moral matter. I started off by saying that I don't care which religion they represent. The example might look like it was targeted at a specific group, but I used it just because it recently occurred to a friend.

"I don't mind someone like ZRH, which can cover his prejudise thoughts "cleverly""

I don't think he was being prejudiced either... Just annoyed at what the people did.

BTW, if he is, why would it be more honorable to do it "cleverly"?

"but the real a-hall is KILLJOY. Beside the fact that he says he is not religious at all (like me) - it seems that he got carried away with words up to a point that everyone that is misfortuned enough to read his rubbish would say to himself: "what an idiot!""

I'm *not* religious and I hate extremists of my own official religion as well. So maybe I got a bit carried away, but the point behind is NOT rubbish. Especially since it isn't targeted at any one religion as you seem to think.

"And last words: anyone who holds any humanistic beliefs won't chose as a user name "kill". Try to post some of your views in the KKK forum. They will be more than happy to read them."

I've been using Killjoy ever since I started playing Doom as a kid and I'm not going to change it everywhere I go to reflect "humanistic beliefs"! It's just a name!

(BTW, check what killjoy means from a dictionary. It has nothing to do with taking someones life)

As for the KKK thing, I'm NOT RACIST. I hate *extremists*. The KKK *are* extremists! I hate them too! (OK, that kinda makes me sound like an extremist myself, but it's not like I want to restrict their freedom for what they think, I just don't like them)

What made you so sensitive anyway? It's not like I'm the first one to get a bit carried away on this forum...

One more time, I'd like to repeat that my main point was sound: A religious reason should not allow people to do what they would never be allowed to do without that reason.

NO MATTER WHAT RELIGION/NATIONALITY/RACE THEY REPRESENT.

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