Atheist Extremists: Different Crazy, Same Bitter Pill

| August 14, 2012 | 7 Comments

 

 

Muslim extremists are so convinced that nonbelievers are going to Hell that they helpfully hasten infidels’ brimstoned journeys by hacking off their heads.

Christian fundamentalists call on the Prince of Peace to strike down homosexuals while they scream in the faces of parents who buried their murdered children. Zionists kill Muslims who are living on Palestinian land and raise the Torah in defense. Hindu radicals bomb mosques, and the Taliban cuts off girls’ noses for simply learning how to read. For as long as there have been theists there have been fanatics. And now atheists are getting in on the act.

Non-believers have been around as long as believers, yet because of fear of social alienation, or worse, they’ve chosen to read their Bertrand Russell books in coffee shops amongst their own ilk and not ruffle too many feathers. When the founder of American Atheists, Madalyn O’Hair, first appeared on the Phil Donahue Show in 1967 (and many times thereafter) discussing why she didn’t believe in a god, she was perceived as a threat — and an evil one, at that. And the organization that O’Hair founded has, over the years, become increasingly emboldened by a society that has grown somewhat more accepting. And now they are demanding to sup at the same table as their belligerent theistic brethren.

The American Atheists organization has for decades shown nothing but haughty disdain not just for religions in general but toward the religious themselves. Theirs is little more than a crusade in reverse and they’re as fired up as a hyperventilating preacher in a tent revival.

This election season, one of the very few things that’s garnered bi-partisan consensus is a united disapproval of the atheistic organization’s two new billboards going up next month in Charlotte, North Carolina, prior to the Democratic National Convention. And it seems Christian zealots actually have a tenuous alliance with American Atheists, in denying that Mormons are Christians – a fact made clear by the organization’s separate billboards for Christians and members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. (These same billboards will not, however, be seen in Tampa, Florida, during the Republican National Convention as requests by American Atheists to purchase space was denied.)

American Atheists’ culture of intolerance is as embarrassing to moderate agnostics and “non-believers,” as Westboro Baptist Church members are to moderate Christians. The organization’s cri du coeur that atheists and agnostics should be respected and come out of one of the last remaining metaphorical closets is a valid one, but aggressively disrespecting others’ for their beliefs is detrimental to their own cause. After all, the belief that there is no god is also a belief.

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  1. Annmarie R. says:

    Finally a voice of reason! I cannot agree with this more and I’ve always said that someone needs to tell this AA people that they’re not getting any converts! I aove friends and family who are Christians and they’re liberals and they’re intelligent. What these people get wrong is that they’re not telling people WHY what they believe is wrong (or stupid) but they’re calling the people who BELIEVE stupid. And come on now — “sadistic”? THey’re just as crazy as those right winger Christian groups —– maybe the AAs should take up snake handings!

    • arensb says:

      And come on now — “sadistic”?

      Well, we’re talking about the god who told Abraham to kill his own son. Who gave Jephthah victory in battle in exchange for the sacrifice of his daughter. Who sent bears to kill 42 kids for making fun of Elisha. Who “hardened Pharaoh’s heart” because he wasn’t done inflicting plagues on the Egyptians. Who sends people to be tormented after they die if they don’t worship him the right way. Who, in fact, punishes people for being descended from people who ate the wrong fruit.

      How is “sadistic” not an apt word?

  2. Buck Jones says:

    Oh I don’t have any problem at all with tweaking the beaks of some of the local Christians there in Charlotte during the convention. If it makes them stop and think for a moment, I’m happy. Oh, and the fact that they separate the Mormon’s into a separate bag of crazy (we’re all about recycling, donchaknow, put them in the proper bin!) is even better! So on this one, I think it’s a swing and miss, Glittersnipe.

  3. AJ Stevens says:

    It’s pretty obvious that the author of this piece is fairly biased against atheists. The term “ilk,” which she uses to describe atheists and their supporters, only has negative and perjortative meaning. The author is also seemingly prone to hyperbole and false anologies. While atheists might “rabidly” hold to their views and look down on believers, by no means are their actions analogous to those of the religious fanatics in her comparisions. Sure, the condescension and hauteur of atheists and non-believers may rankle and ruffle the feathers of the religious, but that’s pretty much all the “harm” atheists have committed. Religious fanatics and believers have a long history of actually killing people who don’t believe as they do, as well as a hefty number of wars started on religious pretexts. The last time I checked, these types of criminal actions can not be associated with or attributed to any atheist group. (I call it criminal, because, in my opinion, the loss of life over differing beliefs as to whose deity is the one and only is senseless and, well, criminal; I can not think of any situation where killing someone is a viable, legitimate, and appropriate response for differing veiws.)

    Finally, not believing in God or any higher power is, in fact, a belief, it’s not really equivalent, philosophically or practically, to the belief in a God. Believers take on blind faith, in the absence of any tangible, quantifiable evidence that their God exists. There is also the corresponding belief that one MUST do good and treat their fellow man with kindness and respect, because their God tells them to – if they don’t, they’re going to Hell. Yet, if they slip up, all they need to do is ask and pray for forgiveness, truly repent their misdeeds, and voilà they’re back on track.

    In contrast, atheists believe as they do, because they have seen no evidence that God exists. They have come to this conclusion by critically observing the world and logically assessing the case for God. Additionaly, most atheists began as theists of some stripe, their life experiences and thoughtful, rational considerations led them to think that “No, there is no God.” And as obnoxious as the author views atheists and their beliefs and behaviors, atheists aren’t evangelical: meaning, they’re not going door-to-door trying to convert people. As for morality, atheists believe (largely, there are always outliers) in doing good simply for the sake of doing good; there’s no one hovering above them telling them they HAVE to be good or face the consequences. Finally, the burden of proof lies with the believers, i.e., the theists. As atheists are driven by logic and reason, given irrefutable proof of a higher power, they would concede.

    (Oh, and the distinction between “general” Christians and the Mormons is a valid distinction. By separating the 2, they highlight what makes Mormons different from your average Christian. Differences could also be highlighted between the many different flavors of Christianity that currently exist or have existed throughout history. Pointing these differences out isn’t to say “Mormons aren’t Christian,” it’s to say they’re a different stripe of Christian. )

  4. josh says:

    Yeh cause ya know, atheists are trying to get constitutional amendments passed to ban christian marriage, and are trying to alter the laws to outlaw creation “science”.

    What a load of shite this is, until atheists start bombing churches and assassinating priests, there is no comparison.

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