1. Howard_B
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    Howard_B Active Member

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    Baptists and Poker ?

    Discussion in 'Research' started by Howard_B, Nov 20, 2014.

    Hi all,

    Would an American Baptist Church person play poker ? and play in a 'for money' tournament ?

    Looking for an anomaly in a Spy, who has taken on the ID of someone else. She has won a small number of 10k tournaments recently. If the original person was a Baptist .... would this be highly unlikely ? improbably ? or normal ?

    Also what are people in American Baptists churches called ? "Baptist" is that all ?

    Tks
     
  2. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    I don't see why, in general, they wouldn't. But your question is extremely complex. Religion in the United States is quite complicated, and it can be hard to determine what, exactly, a person would call themselves. Many just refer to themselves as "Christian," although there is quite a dispute over just what that means and who is entitled to call themselves that. The largest denomination are Southern Baptists, most of whom (but not all) would likely refer to themselves as Evangelical Christians.

    If you're just looking for an answer to whether a person who identified themselves as Christian, or Baptist (or perhaps what you mean is very devout to their religion), *most* would not have a problem with gambling, but there are many splinter groups of all the Christian sects within the U.S. who would.
     
  3. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    If I Google "baptists gambling" it appears that the Southern Baptists definitely oppose it. Now, I don't know if most would adhere to that, or if it's just a policy thing that's largely ignored.
     
  4. Howard_B
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    Howard_B Active Member

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    Thanks guys ... I had thought that Baptists in the States were very strict ... but it seems not. I'll have to think of some other route:meh:
     
  5. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    Some will say that they're strict, but in practice not heed those restrictions. Almost anything might go. Mormons are very anti-gambling, but interestingly enough, many mormons own a lot of casinos or invest in casinos, and Mormons financed a lot of Las Vegas.

    You could do whatever you want -- if this is a character who was Southern Baptist but you wanted to make her a gambler, you certainly could. But if she's a minor character and you wanted some other character to say, "A ha! She's Southern Baptist and therefore would not gamble! Something is amiss," then that probably wouldn't work.
     
  6. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    Just like any religious group, adherents vary. Look how many Catholic women admit to using birth control. Now in some Latin cultures, Catholics are less likely to use birth control but it's also true that in some of those cultures, families tend to be large due in part to other cultural influences.

    Alcohol, Acts 29 and the SBC
    If you need it in your story, there are always evolving congregations breaking with tradition. If you want to stick to the traditional, go with @ChickenFreak's information.
     
  7. gwrolls
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    gwrolls Member

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    Even if it was against the doctrine, you could still play the baptist off as one that doesn't always follow the rules
     
  8. Howard_B
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    Howard_B Active Member

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    It's the opposite :cool:. This character is being investigated as a mole. Issues arise where the lead investigator travels to Chicago to check on his college and family background. I had the idea that while in Chicago it would be discovered that he was a baptist ... and thus the fact that now he is suddenly a recent poker tournament winner of 10k......would result in even deeper digging and the discovery that he is not who he claims to be... If that is clear o_O
     
  9. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    You're better off being more creative with your identity anomoly, I think. You simply need a few facts that don't add up, for example, she says she's 36 but her sister tells you she's actually 38. She says she was born in St Mary Hospital in New Orleans but the hospital has no such records. She says she worked at the IBM branch in New York but the managers say they've never heard of her. But when you show the manager her photo, they say, "Oh, you meant Mary Scott!" Only you know that's not her name. And that's when you find out even your records could be wrong and she's used multiple names across different States.

    And so on.

    But using something easy like "She's a Baptist! She can't possibly gamble! Something's amiss!" - that sounds awfully childish and not a little bit unbelievable. I'd be wondering just how prejudiced such a person would be - for me it'd be a heavy mark against whoever was investigating.
     
  10. gwrolls
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    gwrolls Member

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    Well, yeah, that sounds great then :p
     
  11. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    I appreciate where you're going, but this particular scenario isn't really going to work. (If you want a devout Southern Baptist, you'd be better off picking a city like Dallas, rather than Chicago.) Americans are a funny bunch -- there is A LOT of picking and choosing exactly what you're going to follow in religion over here -- I believe much more so than in other parts of the world. There are very few religions that have such strict prohibitions against particular vices that the overwhelming majority of adherents really follow -- that is, because we tend to pick and choose what we like in religion, it would be a very tenuous connection to any particular portion of religious doctrine, like gambling where you could make any sort of connection between being a follower of the religion and refraining from certain activities.

    The only religion that *might* work would be Mormonism. But they don't really hide their religion so much, because proselytizing is a big part of their religion. Someone who has an ulterior motive might play down that part, but would still probably adhere pretty closely to other parts of the religion, so that could work if if your mole was discovered to be Mormon.
     
  12. Howard_B
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    Howard_B Active Member

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    Maybe check my initial post Mckk ........ it was simply a question. It has been fairly clearly answered. Thank you. End of.
     
  13. Fitzroy Zeph
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    Fitzroy Zeph Contributing Member Contributor

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    Watch Oscar and Lucinda, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oscar_and_Lucinda_(film)
    If nothing else you'll see a very funny movie. But yes, if the rationalization of your characters' behaviour is done well, they can be anything and be gamblers.
     
  14. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I did read your initial post. It's true you're not being creative enough, as you can already see, given that everyone has said your current way doesn't work and you stand the best chance if you made them a Mormon, and even then it's doubtful. If you don't like negative answers, don't ask on a forum. End of.
     
  15. Howard_B
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    Howard_B Active Member

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    Mckk I don't wish to get into an argument but you make far too many assumptions in how you respond to a poster. I have a list of about seven alternatives to my first question. I have no shortage of creativity. However I have other things to do with my time that write a lengthy post listing all of my ideas when all I want to do is check on one simple issue that I know nothing about. So I chose to post a question asking about Baptists.

    This is a research forum section and not a creative ideas forum, and hence I didn't ask for alternative ideas. I have plenty of them.

    It seems however that you don't enjoy the practice of actually reading what original posts actually say and then attack the poster when they point that out. I will continue to post and ask questions on the forum. Perhaps if you cannot deal with what people actually ask instead of making up all kinds of other stuff in your head, then you yourself should stop posting to the forum.
     
  16. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    If my saying I feel your solution lacks creativity, it is certainly a criticism - perhaps one you feel is unjust, but since you do not state you have other alternatives, I cannot assume that you do have other alternatives. The problem, then, is that you failed to express other details - details you chose to hold back - and I am responding precisely to only what you have expressed. It is not for my lack of reading, but your lack of information.

    If you take criticism as an "attack", perhaps you're simply being too sensitive. Nowhere was my expression aggressive, and I only tried to give you other alternatives. Alternatives you don't seem to need, and if extra unnecessary ideas is an offense to you - again, don't post on a forum. I was trying to be helpful, and yet you seem to have taken offense that I dare try to offer some ideas.

    People make assumptions - it is how communication works unfortunately. You don't want people to assume too much, then express yourself more clearly. I have looked at your original post 3 times now - you do not list other alternatives, yet I was supposed to know you had other alternatives. You're being far too sensitive and you withheld information that you felt you did not need to share, and I responded based on what you did share. I'm not the one with the problem here. Do not tell me "You need to actually read what I asked" because that's the point - I did read, and you did not write that you had other alternatives.

    You blame me for assuming too much - so assuming you had only 1 idea when you only expressed 1 idea is assuming too much, but apparently I was supposed to assume you had other alternatives when you only expressed 1 idea?

    I'm expressing myself in exactly the same way as I do in all my other posts - and as you can see, I've posted quite a bit and been on this forum for quite a while. You're the first to have a problem.

    But as you say, we both have better things to do. Over and out. Grow a thicker skin, seriously.
     
  17. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    Wow.

    I once worked a volunteer job. When a volunteer did work that wasn't quite what the lead wanted, the lead would say something like, "I'll have to dock your pay for that." The idea was to remind herself that when someone is doing something for you for free, doing you a favor, your right to criticize is substantially reduced.

    If you paid Mckk a fee, maybe you should ask for your money back. If not...
     
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  18. Renee J
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    Renee J Contributing Member

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    When my mom was a child, her Baptist grandparents didn't even like the idea of playing any games with a standard pack of cards. But, they could play with UNO cards.
     
  19. Karwedsky
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    Karwedsky Member

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    I think it depends on how "devout" that baptist character is. I grew up in the "Bible Belt" and from my experience with southern US baptists, the vast majority would probably oppose gambling in any form as a sin. That's not saying that no baptist would ever gamble, but while doing so they would most likely have some kind of identity crisis because it would be "going against their religion".
     
  20. b3av3r
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    My grandparents are Southern Baptist and do not believe in gambling of any form. This includes a lottery or even Bingo along with traditional casino games. However, at the exact same church plenty of people have no problem with gambling. It completely depends on the person. I know plenty of divorced Catholics who have no problem with premarital sex or birth control. Religious attitudes differ from church to church even within the same denomination so a person could be from a very conservative Baptist church and have much stricter beliefs than a person who attends a more liberal Baptist church.
     
  21. Commandante Lemming
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    Commandante Lemming Contributing Member Contributor

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    I've known some very strict Baptists but it's important to note that there are many, many protestant denominations that use the label "Baptist" in the United States - they all trace their roots back to the basic doctrine of the Baptist movement within the 18th century English separatists, but over the years they split over a lot of issues into a mulitiplicity of different groups - each with a particular creed. You could find big differences between, say, a Southern Baptist, an American Baptist, a Free Will Baptist, and a Full Gospel Baptist.

    If you're interested in the actual history of it, go here
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baptists.

    and here
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Baptist_denominations#United_States

    I don't know how much of research-oriented guy you are, but if the particular strictures of your character's religious affiliation are important to you, I would pick a specific Baptist denomination to affiliate him with and research their particular doctrines.

    If you're looking for a stereotypical "American Evangelical from the South" - use the Southern Baptists. They're the biggest and among the most conservative.
     
  22. Commandante Lemming
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    Commandante Lemming Contributing Member Contributor

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    As a side-note note - if you're looking for an evangelical group with strict and/or odd doctrines to play your character off - I'd use either the Wesleyan Holiness movement or the Pentecostals (or better yet, Holiness Pentecostals - there is overlap)

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pentecostalism
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holiness_movement
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Pentecostal_Holiness_Church
     
  23. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    Depends on the church I suppose. My grandfather was a southern Baptist preacher, and wouldn't countenance gambling of any kind, so for him it would have been "no."
     
  24. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    All of these later replies though, aren't really addressing the crux of the OP's question. Certainly, there are individual churches and branches of the religion where gambling would be deeply frowned upon and discouraged. (Although even then, that doesn't mean that all members really would refrain from engaging in it.) His question, as I understood it, was whether the mere discovery that the particular person was a Baptist would mean that there was no way he could have participated in gambling tournaments, and that that discovery, in and of itself, would be sufficient to "out" the person as a spy. I firmly believe that it would not.

    That is not to say that there aren't churches, including Baptist churches, where gambling is viewed as a sin, and that could absolutely be used to create a complex character who is a member of said church, but nonetheless wants to gamble. However, that's a very different question (albeit one that is more complex and interesting as a writing issue).
     
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  25. Link the Writer
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    Link the Writer Flipping Out For A Good Story. Contributor

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    Doubt it, unless they honestly didn't care about/played loose with their doctrine. Not everyone follows their religious doctrine to the nth degree. I'm Episcopalian, but that doesn't mean I'm clamping on their doctrine with a vise-like grip.

    It would depend on what she herself feels about it. She might actually not care, but if she did, she would have inner conflicts between what her church says versus what she personally wants.

    And Baptists really spy on each other? I never heard of this.

    Around here, pretty much.
     

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