Dawkins urges atheists to “come out of the closet,” wear scarlet letter “A”

posted at 3:18 pm on August 3, 2007 by Allahpundit

Via doubleplusundead, all that’s missing is an irritating, consciousness-raising chant. “We’re here, we’re … not crippled by superstitious fear, get used to it”? Doesn’t flow. “We doubt, we’re out, get used to it,” maybe? Alas, nothing rhymes with “skeptical.”

Here’s the homepage, which marks a new stage in the transformation of “new atheism” from rational argument to aggrieved identity group. Starting with the clumsy borrowing from gay rights slogans in a transparent attempt to appropriate the mantle of persecution and ending with Dawkins’s letter, which concludes with a dopey exhortation to throw atheist “coming out” parties, darned if he isn’t going to have himself a capital-m Movement whether or not there’s a pressing need for it.

Some of our commenters call this sort of thing evangelical atheism but a moron with a scarlet “A” on his chest really isn’t trying to convert you. He’s just trying to get in your face in his own passive way and remind you that nonbelievers exist in case you missed Hitchens’s last thousand appearances on cable news or somehow avoided his, Dawkins’s, and Sam Harris’s ubiquitous books. I hate to frag a guy on my own side but honestly, we can do without these pity parties.

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But my GOD IS AWESOME T-shit is cool….

tommylotto on August 3, 2007 at 3:20 PM

A for…

Ah hell Allah would just ban me again.

thareb on August 3, 2007 at 3:21 PM

Oh c’mon… even a Christian can have similar atheistic views about a secular society.

This just gives more proof to the fodder that AtheISM is a religion compared to being an AtheIST.

Skywise on August 3, 2007 at 3:21 PM

Richard Dawkins
A.hole.net

Hening on August 3, 2007 at 3:22 PM

Atheists are so punk.

Zach on August 3, 2007 at 3:22 PM

Maybe Michelle will buy you this instead of an iPhone.

right2bright on August 3, 2007 at 3:22 PM

We’re not heretical, we’re skeptical ?

lorien1973 on August 3, 2007 at 3:22 PM

Everyone’s skeptical; I thought the point of atheism was to assert there is no God without any skepticism?

Really, though, atheists need to get their least obnoxious people out front. The one’s who usually choose to be representative are so horrible they probably push people to religion.

Not that I’m complaining.

frankj on August 3, 2007 at 3:26 PM

Oh man, I am so looking forward to Atheist Pride parade.

gabriel sutherland on August 3, 2007 at 3:29 PM

Alas, nothing rhymes with “skeptical.””

How about:
Skeptical with no Testicle,
Irascible,liberal “A”sshole….

Hey, I’m a poet.

Keith_Z on August 3, 2007 at 3:30 PM

Is that Darryl Dawkins?

LakeRuins on August 3, 2007 at 3:31 PM

Anyone trying to get in my face is not “passive.”

Connie on August 3, 2007 at 3:31 PM

Oh man, I am so looking forward to Atheist Pride parade.

gabriel sutherland on August 3, 2007 at 3:29 PM

Ha!

Bad Candy on August 3, 2007 at 3:31 PM

tommylotto on August 3, 2007 at 3:20 PM

Was that a deliberate misspelling? ;)

Connie on August 3, 2007 at 3:33 PM

You mean to say you can get banned for language that passes PG-13 by the MPAA?

What I told you I was Marilyn Monroe and had a sudden attack of Tourette’s Syndrome?

Keith_Z on August 3, 2007 at 3:34 PM

receptacle

see-dubya on August 3, 2007 at 3:35 PM

Alas, nothing rhymes with “skeptical.”

dyspeptic hole? Too hard to work into a sentence.

Nosferightu on August 3, 2007 at 3:36 PM

I’m sorry, but I think that Dawkins and the other biggie Atheists and their followers are trying to build the non-Deistic analog to a church.

Of course, I could be wrong and Allah right with his tried and true grievance group theory.

Bad Candy on August 3, 2007 at 3:36 PM

Really, though, atheists need to get their least obnoxious people out front. The one’s who usually choose to be representative are so horrible they probably push people to religion.
frankj on August 3, 2007 at 3:26 PM

I think that’s the case with all activist causes. The obnoxious loudmouths get all the attention and become the de facto representatives.

angryoldfatman on August 3, 2007 at 3:37 PM

Oh man, I am so looking forward to Atheist Pride parade.

gabriel sutherland on August 3, 2007 at 3:29 PM

Yeah, I’m sure atheists in thongs will be swell, just swell.

Kralizec on August 3, 2007 at 3:37 PM

a moron with a scarlet “A” on his chest really isn’t trying to convert you. He’s just trying to get in your face in his own passive way and remind you that nonbelievers exist

So, they’re ike Libertarians?

someone on August 3, 2007 at 3:38 PM

Atheism is the new tribal arm band.

The Race Card on August 3, 2007 at 3:38 PM

Really, though, atheists need to get their least obnoxious people out front. The one’s who usually choose to be representative are so horrible they probably push people to religion.

Not that I’m complaining.

frankj on August 3, 2007 at 3:26 PM

Sounds about right. Honestly, the people frankj describes here are the people I’m really railing against in my piece.

Bad Candy on August 3, 2007 at 3:39 PM

Yes, let me rush right out and buy that, so I can get beaten to death by a gang of grumpy First Wives on my way home. I’m sure they’ll stop to read the small print.

Tanya on August 3, 2007 at 3:39 PM

I want to thank Dawkins. It’s not as if atheists weren’t already annoying little gits, he has to make them even more so.

Vyce on August 3, 2007 at 3:40 PM

It’s not as if atheists weren’t already annoying little gits

Them’s fighting words, sucka.

Allahpundit on August 3, 2007 at 3:43 PM

Wait… what’s an atheist?

NeoConNews on August 3, 2007 at 3:44 PM

Atheism is to religion as bald is to hair color.

Nonfactor on August 3, 2007 at 3:44 PM

Told you this had flamewar potential, Allah!

Bad Candy on August 3, 2007 at 3:45 PM

Alas, nothing rhymes with “skeptical.”

How about receptacle?

crazy_legs on August 3, 2007 at 3:46 PM

Augh! see-dubya beat me to it!

crazy_legs on August 3, 2007 at 3:46 PM

Atheism is to religion as bald is to hair color.

Nonfactor on August 3, 2007 at 3:44 PM

I’d say its more like a toupee if you’re a evangelist tool like Dawkins.

Bad Candy on August 3, 2007 at 3:48 PM

Abyss of the faithless.

canopfor on August 3, 2007 at 3:51 PM

T-Shirts used as billboards is annoying no matter what your cause.

I hated Christian T-Shirts when I was a Christian. The most I could muster was a ‘No Jesus No Peace; Know Jesus Know Peace’ hatpin. It took me a while before I realized how tacky proclaiming my Christianity in that manner was.

This new athiest attire is just as tacky. There are plenty of atheists who find Dawkins to be more than annoying.

HeIsSailing on August 3, 2007 at 3:52 PM

Well, they make a very substantive and powerful case for their beliefs (or supposed lackthereof) by wearing a shirt with a big stupid letter on it and another guy’s name. Sweet, spend money to promote your belief in nothing!

NeoConNews on August 3, 2007 at 3:54 PM

I do not know how accurate this is, but came across it some time ago and found it “interesting” anyway.

The results of the Christians vs atheists in prison investigation

MB4 on August 3, 2007 at 3:54 PM

I like the scarlet “A” t-shirt idea, but why do I have to shill Richard Dawkins’ website?

I guess I’ll have to bootleg it…

Enrique on August 3, 2007 at 3:55 PM

Really, though, atheists need to get their least obnoxious people out front. The one’s who usually choose to be representative are so horrible they probably push people to religion.

We’ll do it as soon as the Christians and Muslims do it. :)

Enrique on August 3, 2007 at 3:56 PM

Enrique on August 3, 2007 at 3:56 PM

I am pretty sure for most Christians Jesus is their leader.

EnochCain on August 3, 2007 at 3:58 PM

I actually agree HelsSailing, I can’t stand that type of display on the religious side either. I just think its funny that the Dawkins types keep on with this “we’re not a religious movement” charade. It totally is, it might not be a religion in a traditional sense, but it is an analog to religion and a religious movement.

Bad Candy on August 3, 2007 at 3:59 PM

Allahpundit, you nailed EVERY SINGLE WORD of your post. I loathe aggrieved identity groups.

I have a tiny little FSM emblem on my truck, but I’ll stick to my “Conservative”, “America”, and “Gun Control Means Never Having To Say I Missed You” Tshirts.

And I only wear that last one at home.

RushBaby on August 3, 2007 at 4:00 PM

Skeptical Receptacles make us dyspeptical.

There you go.

Tennman on August 3, 2007 at 4:01 PM

I like the scarlet “A” t-shirt idea, but why do I have to shill Richard Dawkins’ website?

I guess I’ll have to bootleg it…

Enrique on August 3, 2007 at 3:55 PM

How’d I know you’d like it.

The link I have has a link in it to a Cafepress place that did their own versions.

Bad Candy on August 3, 2007 at 4:01 PM

right. that’s stupid.

jummy on August 3, 2007 at 4:02 PM

Stock market just “crashed”.

Maybe God got upset by all this atheist talk?

MB4 on August 3, 2007 at 4:05 PM

RushBaby on August 3, 2007 at 4:00 PM

FSM is about as funny as genocide, I’m sorry, I just can’t find it funny, and I’ve really, REALLY tried to find it funny. Most of these goofy internet things I find entertaining, but FSM just annoyed the hell out of me from day one, and I’m not even a creationist or ID person.

Bad Candy on August 3, 2007 at 4:08 PM

Bad Candy on August 3, 2007 at 4:08 PM

The absurdity of the emblem is what struck me (fish wars).

RushBaby on August 3, 2007 at 4:11 PM

Alas, nothing rhymes with “skeptical.”

Actually, to the surprise of many, the rhyming correlative to “skeptical” is in fact “orange.”

Weight of Glory on August 3, 2007 at 4:15 PM

To all interested, read C.S. Lewis’s book Miracles. Focus mainly on the 2nd and 3rd chapters.

Weight of Glory on August 3, 2007 at 4:16 PM

FSM is about as funny as genocide,

It took a search to find out what FSM stood for. Now I get it.

I don’t think FSM was ever intended to be funny. I understand the point of it as a theoretical abstraction, but I have never found it very convincing. It is about as philosophically provocative as Russell’s Teapot (not very). Is FSM also an invention of Dawkins’, or did he get it from somewhere else?

HeIsSailing on August 3, 2007 at 4:17 PM

I hate to frag a guy on my own side but honestly, we can do without these pity parties.

Well, I’m glad you said it since you can do it from their perspective.

I can’t say that Christianity is completely immune from things like this, but growing up, I was really just told not to be ashamed of being a Christian and not to deny it. I wasn’t told to be “OUT” and proud about my Christianity.

Although, it seems a little different. For me, it’s one of the things I feel that identifies me. I’d always thought atheists felt differently though, as though it was no more than their opinion, not their lifestyle.

Am I wrong though? Do you feel that being an atheist is part of you identity, Allah (or any atheists here)?

Esthier on August 3, 2007 at 4:19 PM

Oh ye who haven’t seen the truth! I offer my pity and greatest consultation! Perhaps as you get wiser ye whilst understand the truth!

I prefer Russel’s Teapot to FSM, he’s like a mini Cthulhu rip off.

And what’s that adage? The longer a conversation about atheism the probability someone will compare it to religion approaches one. The prophecy has been fulfilled!

Nonfactor on August 3, 2007 at 4:21 PM

Alas, nothing rhymes with “skeptical.”

How about this Allah?

About God we are skeptical
But we know the earth’s elliptical

Kowboy on August 3, 2007 at 4:21 PM

I am more than skeptical of Dawkins’ scarlet letter T-shirt spectacle. It would be simply delectable if he would shove them up his receptacle.

(Where Dr. Seuss when ya’ need’im?)

My collie says:

My-oh-my CC. Feeling a bit cranky today, are we?

CyberCipher on August 3, 2007 at 4:21 PM

HeIsSailing on August 3, 2007 at 4:17 PM

And why is FSM or Russel’s teapot any less plausible than your God?

Nonfactor on August 3, 2007 at 4:22 PM

I am pretty sure for most Christians Jesus is their leader.

I know, and what a gasbag that Jesus guy was. “Love thy neighbor?” Puh-leez. Have you seen my neighbors? They’re always giving me crap for smoking pot on the porch in front of their kids. Hey, it’s my porch! And why can’t they keep their kids inside the house like responsible parents?

And where did “love” crap ever get anybody, anyway?

Enrique on August 3, 2007 at 4:22 PM

Ask an atheist if he can prove that there is no god, He can’t.
So just like the person that believes in God he too is a believer, not a knower.

The mere fact that there was a genesis of matter time, space, gravity, and energy is enough for me to think there is something that had to have a proactive involvement. That in it’s self is comparable to the paranormal.

This is what I think not what I believe.

But to follow any doctrine that originated in the Middle East is folly and should be re-thunk.

Because those people are whack!

TheSitRep on August 3, 2007 at 4:23 PM

HeIsSailing on August 3, 2007 at 4:17 PM

Maybe, but the morons who did take it as a joke made it about as unfunny as they could. You got real tired of seeing rAmen and “his noodly appendage” after a couple million times and people still thinking its the funniest thing ever.

Bad Candy on August 3, 2007 at 4:24 PM

The nice thing about Atheists is that they don’t get married and have children at the rate Christians do (or other Religions for that matter.) This has got a lot to do with how much their sphere of influence has shrunk over the past few decades – especially since Roe Vs. Wade.

There simply aren’t as many of them around!!

BTW – if they are so proud why don’t they just wear a shirt that says I AM AN ATHEIST.

Nobody is gonna know WTF the big red “A” is for… Not as though they are really “Outing” themselves…

thareb on August 3, 2007 at 4:24 PM

Is FSM also an invention of Dawkins’, or did he get it from somewhere else?

HeIsSailing on August 3, 2007 at 4:17 PM

FSM is a parody religion “invented” by Oregon State University physics graduate Bobby Henderson to protest against the decision by the Kansas State Board of Education to require the teaching of intelligent design as an alternative to biological evolution. In an open letter sent to the education board, Henderson professes belief in a supernatural Creator called the Flying Spaghetti Monster which resembles spaghetti and meatballs. – wiki

RushBaby on August 3, 2007 at 4:25 PM

Esthier asks:

Do you feel that being an atheist is part of you identity?

Yes. Since leaving Christianity, I no longer believe in a diety, a spiritual realm, or an afterlife. This has drastically affected my identity – hopefully for the better.

HeIsSailing on August 3, 2007 at 4:25 PM

I wish the “atheists” could bring themselves to make finer distinctions. Most “atheists” of whom I’m aware don’t believe in the existence of an eternal, singular, personal god who is the sovereign, creator, judge, object of worship, and redeemer. Even if the world lacked a god resembling a human, universal emperor, we might still find in it beings that fulfill these various roles. For example, on Aristotelian-Darwinist-Nietzschean grounds, one could claim that the past is sovereign, natural selection is creator and judge, the things animals must love and pursue (or hate and flee) are our objects of worship (or dread), and great-great-grandchildren redeem all our sins. For that matter, I think my own existence, alone, could redeem the entire past, and that the coming of others like me would redeem the entire future. Rather than ask whether there’s a god, it seems much better to ask what is divine, or what is god?

Kralizec on August 3, 2007 at 4:26 PM

I can’t rhyme with skeptical either.
I guess I’m completely ineptical

TheSitRep on August 3, 2007 at 4:27 PM

And why is FSM or Russel’s teapot any less plausible than your God?

Nonfactor on August 3, 2007 at 4:22 PM

Do we really have to go this route?

Atheism is to religion as bald is to hair color.

Nonfactor on August 3, 2007 at 3:44 PM

I’d say its more like a toupee if you’re a evangelist tool like Dawkins.

Bad Candy on August 3, 2007 at 3:48 PM

I’d have to agree, I think. If atheism has nothing to do with religion, then there wouldn’t be this “dire” need to proclaim yourself in groupthink.

Christianity has nothing to do with religion. Christ’s biggest pet peeve was always the religious jerks, the ones who pushed to have Him killed.

Christianity is used by those wishing to establish religion, dogma and the like, and the same thing can happen here, especially in this sense that atheists must announce themselves as though they are in opposition to religious people, donning a red A like a soldier’s uniform.

Esthier on August 3, 2007 at 4:28 PM

Do you feel that being an atheist is part of you identity, Allah (or any atheists here)?

I certainly don’t, but I suspect I’m a minority. I don’t identify anyone with their religion (or lack thereof) unless they’re really aggressive about it.

Tanya on August 3, 2007 at 4:31 PM

I’d always thought atheists felt differently though, as though it was no more than their opinion, not their lifestyle.

Am I wrong though? Do you feel that being an atheist is part of you identity, Allah (or any atheists here)?

Esthier on August 3, 2007 at 4:19 PM

I fervently HOPE it’s a matter of opinion, and while probably unavoidable part of identity, not part of “lifestyle”. That’s why I resoundingly agreed with AP and his condemnation of this Dawkins crap.

RushBaby on August 3, 2007 at 4:33 PM

Do you feel that being an atheist is part of you identity, Allah (or any atheists here)?

No, but I have sort of a limited identity.

Allahpundit on August 3, 2007 at 4:33 PM

I’m a Christian, but I have friends who are athiests. Doesn’t bother me. We do have some rather spirited discussions, which I find very interesting. However, they haven’t been able to answer my last question in our discussion of the koran flushing incident, so maybe you can help me AP.

Exactly what would I have to flush down a toilet to offend an athiest?

Kowboy on August 3, 2007 at 4:35 PM

Tanya:

I certainly don’t, but I suspect I’m a minority. I don’t identify anyone with their religion (or lack thereof) unless they’re really aggressive about it.

No, actually that makes sense, and I share this sentiment. I rarely discuss my atheism with friends/family, and given the choice I just don’t care what others believe either. I don’t need an atheist nametag to identify myself. And I really don’t care what other folks believe either, just so long as they can laugh about their beliefs every now and again. If you can do that, you are okay by me.

HeIsSailing on August 3, 2007 at 4:36 PM

objectionable? It’s a near rhyme, at least.

TexasDan on August 3, 2007 at 4:37 PM

And why is FSM or Russel’s teapot any less plausible than your God?

The root idea is that Christianity is not the conjecture of the mind, but rather the witness of divinity. If one doesn’t not believe the word of those who say they are witness, that is one thing, but it is not the same as – we can’t identify the wind scientifically therefore there must be a wind god.

Spirit of 1776 on August 3, 2007 at 4:37 PM

Do you feel that being an atheist is part of you identity, Allah (or any atheists here)?

Sure, but hating the Chicago Cubs is also part of my identity, so I wouldn’t make too much of the atheism thing.

Enrique on August 3, 2007 at 4:39 PM

…especially in this sense that atheists must announce themselves as though they are in opposition to religious people, donning a red A like a soldier’s uniform.

Esthier on August 3, 2007 at 4:28 PM

Yep, that’s it.

RushBaby on August 3, 2007 at 4:39 PM

No, but I have sort of a limited identity.
Allahpundit on August 3, 2007 at 4:33 PM

Heh. True, ‘blogger deity’ is somewhat limited.

Spirit of 1776 on August 3, 2007 at 4:39 PM

we can’t identify the wind scientifically therefore there must be a wind god

Um, but the wind is self-evident…

Enrique on August 3, 2007 at 4:40 PM

Exactly what would I have to flush down a toilet to offend an athiest?

Kowboy on August 3, 2007 at 4:35 PM

That’s easy – an iPhone

Bradky on August 3, 2007 at 4:41 PM

I don’t identify anyone with their religion (or lack thereof) unless they’re really aggressive about it.

Tanya on August 3, 2007 at 4:31 PM

I suppose I might not have the same definition of “really aggressive” as you do, but to pretend that I do, would this mean that you don’t identify others who claim to be Christians but don’t get in your face about it as Christians, meaning they may go to church frequently but don’t bring Christ into every conversation?

Yes. Since leaving Christianity, I no longer believe in a diety, a spiritual realm, or an afterlife. This has drastically affected my identity – hopefully for the better.

HeIsSailing on August 3, 2007 at 4:25 PM

So you feel that it is something that defines you as a person?

That’s interesting.

For me, it’s another one of the reasons I am what I am and why I do what I do, like being a woman or being 25. I didn’t think a disbelief in God carried that much weight in a person’s life. I believed it was more of a side note, more akin to a taste in music.

Esthier on August 3, 2007 at 4:41 PM

Do we really have to go this route?

Yes. I won’t be happy until you admit that FSM isn’t any less plausible than your God. You could of course prove me wrong… who am I kidding?

I think. If atheism has nothing to do with religion, then there wouldn’t be this “dire” need to proclaim yourself in groupthink.

So you suggest people don’t share their beliefs with others for risk of “proclaiming themselves in groupthink”? I’ll say it proudly that I like pasta, but saying it doesn’t mean that have have a need to proclaim myself in groupthink. If I were the only atheist in the world I’d still say proudly that I’m an atheist. Religious people might not understand this concept, but at the heart of it is the principle of existential choice.

Christianity has nothing to do with religion.

Stop the presses!

Christ’s biggest pet peeve was always the religious jerks, the ones who pushed to have Him killed.

That didn’t stop him from telling his followers to create a religion around him and worship him on certain days et cetera. The entire point of Christianity is the overthrow of one previously conceived religion (Judaism) for a newly formed religion (Christianity).

Christianity is used by those wishing to establish religion, dogma and the like, and the same thing can happen here, especially in this sense that atheists must announce themselves as though they are in opposition to religious people, donning a red A like a soldier’s uniform.

Esthier on August 3, 2007 at 4:28 PM

Agreed. The stories of what Jesus taught are pretty interesting and there are some pretty nice socialistic ideas included in them, but that didn’t, hasn’t, and won’t stop people from taking those ideas and turning them into corporate doctrines, and it won’t stop people from following those corporate doctrines as gospel truth.

Exactly what would I have to flush down a toilet to offend an athiest?

Kowboy on August 3, 2007 at 4:35 PM

Free thought.

Nonfactor on August 3, 2007 at 4:42 PM

If one doesn’t not believe the word of those who say they are witness, that is one thing, but it is not the same as – we can’t identify the wind scientifically therefore there must be a wind god.

Spirit of 1776 on August 3, 2007 at 4:37 PM

Oh, so I guess if someone told you they’ve seen the FSM and have a list of the rules he wants us to follow it’d be a much more acceptable idea to you?

Nonfactor on August 3, 2007 at 4:43 PM

Exactly what would I have to flush down a toilet to offend an athiest?

Kowboy on August 3, 2007 at 4:35 PM

Free thought.

Nonfactor on August 3, 2007 at 4:42 PM

Nice!

And speaking of the absurd, did anybody check out one of the headlines that was up top earlier today?

Various Deities Still Sorting Through Victims Of Tragic Queens Bus Accident

RushBaby on August 3, 2007 at 4:45 PM

Enrique on August 3, 2007 at 4:39 PM

Yeah I will believe that when you find a way to bash the Cubs in several threads that have nothing to do with baseball..excluding this one of course.

EnochCain on August 3, 2007 at 4:48 PM

Free thought.

Nonfactor on August 3, 2007 at 4:42 PM

Don’t think so. That would piss me off too. Whether you’d like to believe it or not, Christians are capable of free thought.

That’s easy – an iPhone

Bradky on August 3, 2007 at 4:41 PM

No, that would just piss AP off. lol

Kowboy on August 3, 2007 at 4:49 PM

Free thought.

Nonfactor on August 3, 2007 at 4:42 PM

Personally, I don’t care that you people are atheist. More power to you – it’s none of my business. it’s your condescension toward anyone who thinks differently than you that disgusts me. Okay, we get it. You know EVERYTHING and we’re just stupid. You’re such free thinkers, aren’t you? Then why is it that while I never get evangelized by people at work or on the street etc, you all won’t ever shut the hell up about what you think about us? I hear it all of the time at work about how us religious people have mental issues or we’re backward or as my boss once put it – we’re all part of one big cult. I’ve never once said a damned thing about how pompous and insufferable atheists can be. If you know everthing why don’t you just shut up about it? If you truly felt okay about your position, why do you have to continually posture every chance you get? And remind us of what “free thinkers” you are?

foxforce91 on August 3, 2007 at 4:50 PM

Oh, so I guess if someone told you they’ve seen the FSM and have a list of the rules he wants us to follow it’d be a much more acceptable idea to you?

Nonfactor on August 3, 2007 at 4:43 PM

it would be a start, wouldn’t it?

TexasDan on August 3, 2007 at 4:51 PM

Sure, but hating the Chicago Cubs is also part of my identity, so I wouldn’t make too much of the atheism thing.

Enrique on August 3, 2007 at 4:39 PM

Well, no, I think the Cubs reference can make perfect sense if it’s something you’re passionate about.

I guess that’s what I was getting at; I never believed atheists were passionate about not believing in God.

And I really don’t care what other folks believe either, just so long as they can laugh about their beliefs every now and again. If you can do that, you are okay by me.

HeIsSailing on August 3, 2007 at 4:36 PM

If I’m perfectly honest, I don’t care what anyone believes, I just can’t have that many decent conversations with people who ignore the issue altogether, whether you call yourself a Christian, a Hindu, atheist or whatever.

Believe what you want, but at least think about it. Don’t be something because its what you’re parents are, and don’t mindlessly rebel against what your parents are, or we just won’t have any common ground on which to have a conversation.

Esthier on August 3, 2007 at 4:51 PM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wts-dntnyh4

One of my favorite bits about atheists-content warning.

EnochCain on August 3, 2007 at 4:53 PM

C.S. Lewis…”Miracles”…Chapters 2 & 3. I promise, it is well worth it. For Christians it will provide a very solid argument for the supernatural, if for nothing, than to provide a solid basis for reason. For the Atheist, it will provide a well reasoned argument that they must deal with before moving on to any other argument.

Weight of Glory on August 3, 2007 at 4:53 PM

Um, No.

JayHaw Phrenzie on August 3, 2007 at 4:54 PM

I believed it was more of a side note, more akin to a taste in music.

Esthier on August 3, 2007 at 4:41 PM

There are weddings and funerals and christenings and so on, and in polite society, atheists will go into a church to honor these events.

To extend your analogy, let’s say you had a taste for classical music. Society around you believes in heavy metal, and your family attends heavy metal concerts. You attend heavy metal concerts, and while you are there you long for your delicate violins. And perhaps you will, concert after concert after concert, come to dread the sound of electric guitars. And soon you would conclude that is is part of your identity.

RushBaby on August 3, 2007 at 4:55 PM

Yes. I won’t be happy until you admit that FSM isn’t any less plausible than your God. You could of course prove me wrong… who am I kidding?

Sorry, I should have just said “no thanks,” but you can take that as me saying it now, seeing as I have no interest in proving anything to you.

Nonfactor on August 3, 2007 at 4:42 PM

As to the rest, how is it that you can disagree with me on one sentence, then disagree with me when I restate the theme of that sentence in a different form?

That’s an art form I might need one day.

Esthier on August 3, 2007 at 4:55 PM

would this mean that you don’t identify others who claim to be Christians but don’t get in your face about it as Christians, meaning they may go to church frequently but don’t bring Christ into every conversation?

Nah, I don’t have a problem with people talking about what they do or don’t believe. That’s not aggressive. Religion’s interesting.

It’s the people that are really hateful and humorless toward those who believe differently that I tend to label. They exist on all sides — yours, mine, and theirs — and they deserve a metaphorical “beware of dog” sign.

For normal, civil people, I just personally find that there are much more interesting things that identify them.

Tanya on August 3, 2007 at 5:00 PM

If you truly felt okay about your position, why do you have to continually posture every chance you get? And remind us of what “free thinkers” you are?

foxforce91 on August 3, 2007 at 4:50 PM

Because if atheists just shut up it’d make the religious people think they have carte blanche to enforce their dogma on everyone else. If religious peoples didn’t try and inject their dogma into everyone else’s daily lives I wouldn’t be as outspoken against them.

it would be a start, wouldn’t it?

TexasDan on August 3, 2007 at 4:51 PM

I really hope you were joking.

Believe what you want, but at least think about it. Don’t be something because its what you’re parents are, and don’t mindlessly rebel against what your parents are, or we just won’t have any common ground on which to have a conversation.

Esthier on August 3, 2007 at 4:51 PM

100% agreed. Believe what you want. Make shrines to L. Ron Hubbard in your bathroom, just don’t try and enforce your beliefs on me, no matter how right you think you are.

Sorry, I should have just said “no thanks,” but you can take that as me saying it now, seeing as I have no interest in proving anything to you.

Don’t worry, I never expected you to anyways.

As to the rest, how is it that you can disagree with me on one sentence, then disagree with me when I restate the theme of that sentence in a different form?

Esthier on August 3, 2007 at 4:55 PM

Because Christianity is not what it was or used to be. Definitions change over time. Christianity is one of those words. Judging by your definition of Christianity there are no real Christians in the world. Semantics.

Nonfactor on August 3, 2007 at 5:02 PM

Why can’t the spokesmen for Atheism be normal people? They are always some nutty lesbian or coked up British guy. That’s a big reason why a lot of Atheists want to stay in the closet.

SoulGlo on August 3, 2007 at 5:02 PM

Being in a state of atheism or theism to me are equally short sighted.
One has stopped his search and settled for nothing.
The other stopped his search and settled for myths.

TheSitRep on August 3, 2007 at 5:02 PM

To extend your analogy, let’s say you had a taste for classical music. Society around you believes in heavy metal, and your family attends heavy metal concerts. You attend heavy metal concerts, and while you are there you long for your delicate violins. And perhaps you will, concert after concert after concert, come to dread the sound of electric guitars. And soon you would conclude that is is part of your identity.

RushBaby on August 3, 2007 at 4:55 PM

Except that no one enjoys weddings, funerals and christenings, at least no one I personally know. They’re largely boring rituals that mark solemn a milestone occasion, like a graduation.

To discover that you have come to dread attending one of those, or even if you discover a dislike for actual church services, could just even prove nothing more than a distaste for ceremonies in general, which many church services seem to be.

Maybe I haven’t grasped your analogy, but I don’t quite understand how you can compare a belief in God to the ceremonies those who believe in God attend. For me, they’re very completely separate. I have no problem being a Christian who rarely steps foot in a church and do not believe church membership is at all necessary for someone who believes.

But I think I may have misunderstood you.

Esthier on August 3, 2007 at 5:04 PM

100% agreed. Believe what you want. Make shrines to L. Ron Hubbard in your bathroom, just don’t try and enforce your beliefs on me, no matter how right you think you are.

One ammendum. I don’t think anyone can “mindlessly rebel.” Anyone who is rebelling is putting at least some thought into it.

Nonfactor on August 3, 2007 at 5:04 PM

The root idea is that Christianity is not the conjecture of the mind, but rather the witness of divinity. If one doesn’t not believe the word of those who say they are witness, that is one thing, but it is not the same as – we can’t identify the wind scientifically therefore there must be a wind god.

Spirit of 1776 on August 3, 2007 at 4:37 PM

meteorology 101 Google it!

TheSitRep on August 3, 2007 at 5:05 PM

just don’t try and enforce your beliefs on me, no matter how right you think you are.

If only this worked on people who think socialized medicine is a good idea…

Bad Candy on August 3, 2007 at 5:05 PM

TheSitRep on August 3, 2007 at 5:02 PM

Sounds like you are advocating searching! You should design a T-shirt!

RushBaby on August 3, 2007 at 5:05 PM

“Is that Darryl Dawkins?”

No, but that does give me the opportunity to refer to Richard as “Albino Thunder.”

DRPrice on August 3, 2007 at 5:05 PM

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