Jesus Christ, Jack

In taking his break from getting his cues from FTSOS, Jack Hudson has ventured, once again, into a land he does not understand.

In recent years there has been an increasing antagonism to public displays of religious faith. Whether it concerns the those national symbols which historically refer to our inherited religious beliefs as in the Pledge of Allegiance or the National Anthem, or whether dealing with more explicit religious expressions, as in prayers offered at public events, the opposition to such expressions has grown if not in numbers, certainly in volume.

As every person with any bit of knowledge of history knows, pledge references to God were added in 1954. They have nothing to do with any historical references (not that that would necessarily even matter), but were instead a reflection of a growing paranoia over Communism and a misunderstanding of what atheism actually is. (Pss, it’s about the moral equivalent of not collecting stamps as a hobby – and just as dangerous.) Moving beyond the crackpot claim that one can somehow “inherit” religious beliefs, it’s unclear what sort of antagonism the Star-Spangled Banner has faced in recent times. The last thing I can recall dates a couple of years back when a few people decided to come up with a Spanish rendition, enraging a bunch of Fox Noise employees rednecks.

In the recent past such conflicts usually occurred as the result of what was perceived to be the direct imposition of religious belief on unwilling participants by the state via of the Federal or state government agencies. For this reason the Establishment Clause, that portion of the 1st Amendment which is understood to prevent the government from becoming excessively entangled in religious matters, is understood to be violated when publicly funded educational institutions express in any manner religious sentiments via a state agent like a teacher or curriculum.

Wtf. No. That clause prevents the government from endorsing and/or giving preference to particular religions. Given the fact that the Supreme Court has ruled that atheism is due the same protections (and restrictions) as religion, it is a violation of the First Amendment when any religion is given favor. In other words, not only is the First Amendment not to be construed in the narrow way Jack would prefer, but it has recently been expanded in a definitive direction.

Jack then goes on to cite an instance where a senior citizen center has stopped offering public prayers before meals. The reason has to do with the partial federal funding the center receives for many of the meals it provides. It isn’t at all surprising that a number of people interpret the lack of public prayer as someone telling them to not pray at all. I mean, god damn it. That’s just stupid. No one is saying “SHUT THE FUCK UP! EVERYONE STOP PRAYING!” No. They’re saying, “We aren’t going to lead any prayer as an organization because we may be acting as too much of an extension of the federal government.” It’s unclear just how the legal situation will shake out in this instance, but the position really isn’t unreasonable. But does that stop Jack? Heck no!

…collectively the state acts mindlessly in accordance with the rules and regulations it is given, not in accordance with cultural realities, or traditions, or personal sensitivities. The state is no respecter of individuals, and it’s activities reduce every situation down to the lowest common denominator – in the case of religious liberty, this lowest denominator is always state imposed secularism.

Ah, the ol’ “We’re a Christian nation!” line of thought. It doesn’t matter. The U.S. is set up to be secular and not endorse any religion. It only imposes neutrality (something to which it does not adhere nearly enough). Now, if there was a National Day of Godlessness, it absolutely would be imposing secularism, but the fact that the government says “Pray on your own dime” does not somehow mean “SHUT THE FUCK UP! EVERYONE STOP PRAYING!”

As the state intrudes itself financially into virtually every aspect of our lives – our education, our medical needs, taking care of us in our retirement, etc – it gains the power (or claims to) to dictate to us the manner and degree of expression of our respective faiths. Whether it is limiting personal prayers shared between individuals, or, as in the example above, corporate prayers shared at a meal, the growth of government as our caretaker inevitably entails the imposition of secular restrictions on our lives.

Nope. Dead wrong, you mook. The government will not pay for you to pray. It will not pay to have others encourage you to pray. It is not an extension of your church (I mean, how could it be? It’s actually honest about wanting your money for its own personal use). Oh, and that article Jack cites? It is about a college student and professor who prayed together. Gasp! you proclaim! Why, it must have ended in the limitation of “personal prayers shared between individuals”, you declare! Why else would Jack have cited it?!

In the settlement, announced this week, the four-campus Peralta Community College District recognized the right to “non-disruptively pray on campus.” The district also agreed to remove all records of disciplinary action against the students and pay their attorneys’ fees, said Kevin Snider, a lawyer with the Pacific Justice Institute, which represented the students.

Students still won’t be allowed to lead organized prayers in class, but can pray in other campus locations “to the same extent that they may engage in any other free speech,” Snider said.

“This was a case of voluntary prayer between consenting adults,” the attorney said.

Oh, that’s right. Creationists will always lie for Jesus.

74 Responses

  1. Couldn’t we start a petition for creationists to get some new arguments? This “US as a Christian nation”-crap is getting very repetitive.

  2. Hudson has proved himself to be a disgusting person with no morality whatsoever. He has publicly stated he would support murder as long as his fictitious deity commands it. It is not surprising that he does not understand modern society and law since his mind is stuck in the late bronze age.

  3. Ironically, that makes morality far more elastic than conservatives want. If they’re willing to change what they believe is right and wrong on the whim of some man in the sky, then they have ceased to operate on any principles.

  4. Bob,

    You’re being too generous with Jack. I’m quite sure he’s too dumb to use tools at all. In between huffing through 30-40 cans of paint a day, he manages to have someone ghost write his godly mumblings for his dumb ass and post it online.

  5. perhaps you can tell me is there any evidence that a magic man in the sky did NOT create everything?

  6. Nate, that is the stupidest statement of the month. Do you have any evidence that I didn’t create you? Do you have any evidence that Saturn didn’t reside in your toilet?

  7. lack of evidence is not evidence of lack. there is a great deal we do not know. that’s all I’m saying. science is not absolute by any means. its just as likely that a all powerful turkey created the universe as any other supreme being or that everything sprang into existence following an unexplained big bang.

  8. and science is only observation or prediction based on previous observations. just because we haven’t observed something doesn’t mean it can’t exist. I’m not saying you should believe anything and you have no idea what i believe. i simply think that it is arrogant to dismiss any theory. there are a great many theories just as improbable as “creation” kicking around.

  9. Nate, your arguments are just childish. Religion, on the other hand explains absolutely nothing. Written predictions and even some observations in the biblical text are flat out incorrect. Religion is hardly the source or morality which preceded any of the religions and most religions are immoral while glorifying slavery, murder, genocide, misogyny, etc. There is no evidence of any of the miracles proclaimed in the Abrahamic biblical text. There is even evidence to the contrary in some areas and proof of deceptions like the shroud of Turin.

    So what are you trying to say Nate, other than you are a believer who will believe in spite of having no evidence for the myths and in spite of all the scientific evidence to show a Universe that runs on its own with no need for childish beliefs and fears.

  10. well bob, i was unaware that science worked in such a way that you discounted theories without evidence just because you find them unlikely or “childish” or unpleasant.

    i don’t think i claimed i believed anything. stop trying to pull the classic liberal projection techniques. if we were talking about something political you’d be calling me racist I’m sure.

    I’m not assuming anything other than this question, which no one has a satisfactory answer to: “how did it all begin.”

  11. Theories without evidence are not theories just smoke blowing.

    There you go again, projecting me calling you a racist. Your failure at normal communication is quite obvious.

    You spew straw man argument after straw man argument.

  12. the dictionary says (among other things) that a theory is:
    1. contemplation or speculation.
    2. guess or conjecture.

    there i go? again?
    you just seem pretty intent on disparaging arguments but not refuting them.

    why does an open mind stop at religion?

    why do you think there is absolutely no chance?

    the fact is that the real straw-man argument here is based on the premise that someone, somewhere has disproved a supreme being exists in some capability. even if its true I’m sure its so far of from anything people could even comprehend….

  13. Aw, Nate, you are EXACTLY what I was talking about in the first post. If you’re going to throw bad arguments around atheist blogs, at least get some we all haven’t refuted a million times before. Read a book or something – and not one on apologetics – who knows, you might actually learn a thing or two.

    Very few atheists claim there is NO chance of a god. We just don’t believe there is one, because we have seen no evidence of him/her/it.

    We don’t completely rule out the possibility of invisible flying pigs existing, but as they explain nothing and there are no signs of them existing, we live our lives as if they don’t exist until we get evidence to the contrary. I’m reasonably sure you do the same, which makes you a hypocrite, because you elevate your particular version of god to a higher level, even though you pretty much admit there is the exact same amount of evidence for him as for invisible flying pigs.

    Bring conclusive evidence of god, and most atheists will convert on the spot.
    Unless you also want to reiterate the ancient lie of “atheists hate god”, you must realise that if a god existed, atheists would very much LIKE to know about it, because if hell really exist and is never-ending torture, we certainly don’t want to go there. We would like to be warned about it, but that warning needs to come with evidence, or we’ll have no reason to think it anything more than your personal, sick fantasy.

  14. “you just seem pretty intent on disparaging arguments but not refuting them.”

    You have to make an argument before it needs to be refuted.

    “why does an open mind stop at religion?”

    On the contrary, an open mind looks for evidence, proof, logic and reason but not apologetics and fairy tales.

    “why do you think there is absolutely no chance?”

    I never said that. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. No evidence has been provided. I have an open mind, waiting for evidence. Most theists have closed minds when they take faith over facts.

    “…premise that someone, somewhere has disproved a supreme being exists in some capability….”

    No, you have it all backwards again. The claim of a supernatural being needs to be the one that has to be proven. Nothing has even come close.


    A theory must come either with observation and evidence or with a way of testing the theory. If none of those are supplied or apparent then it is not a theory and nothing but a meaningless wild-ass guess.

  15. arguing with an atheist is like wrestling with a pig in the mud. after a while you begin to think the pig is enjoying itself.

    i suppose we shall all find out in the end. like other things there is little or no scientific proof for, eventually i expect science will find the answer, or it will find itself on the same path religion has always found itself on: some things have no answers. i have to assume there are a great many things that we just cannot comprehend.

    i guess strictly speaking there may be answers to everything but… as my dog cannot be taught to read i know there are things we cannot learn and will never understand.

  16. “arguing with an atheist is like wrestling with a pig in the mud. after a while you begin to think the pig is enjoying itself.”

    This is an asinine statement. As to be expected from someone who spews stupid statements by the truckload. You would think by now your humiliation would stop you from continuing spewing these. “No brain, no pain” might be the lesson here.

    “i suppose we shall all find out in the end.”

    A meaningless, useless statement. What end? Who will find out?

    “like other things there is little or no scientific proof for, eventually i expect science will find the answer, or it will find itself on the same path religion has always found itself on: some things have no answers”

    A stupid analogy, science and religion are nothing alike. Science uses a process, evidence, facts and testing and observation. Religion uses fairy tales and excuses and ignores facts and evidence. They are opposites.

    “i have to assume there are a great many things that we just cannot comprehend.”

    A true statement, finally. More true for those who refuse to seek comprehension and use faith instead.

    “…as my dog cannot be taught to read…”

    That may be true for your dog, but some dogs may some day be able to be taught to read, if it hasn’t already happened. The lesson here, grasshopper, is never say never.

    “…i know there are things we cannot learn and will never understand.”

    No, there is no way for you to know this. You can speak for yourself – maybe you will never understand. Do not presume to speak for all of us, it is offensive.

  17. your general refusal to accept that you to may be wrong is offensive.

    just as science constantly finds itself to be in error I’m sure every religion is in error. as far as finding out in the end… if there is an afterlife than we will all find out, if there isn’t.. well we won’t find anything out. i know this but the idea is still valid.

    and science is constantly in error, science is ever marching forward. as slater said, you can’t rule out the possibility of things you can’t prove. i just wonder if we do find there are invisible flying pigs, whether their bacon will be less tasty or more tasty.

  18. “your general refusal to accept that you to may be wrong is offensive.”

    This shows you to be a liar, Nate.

    Yes, science has errors (no, it is NOT constantly in error – this is your unproven bullshit), but science corrects for its errors and moves on. Religion, on the other hand has never been right and sticks there with faith.

    “…you can’t rule out the possibility of things you can’t prove.”

    But you can give them exceedingly small probabilities. Why are you so hung up on this? It is an obsession with you. Get past it.

    “i just wonder if we do find there are invisible flying pigs, whether their bacon will be less tasty or more tasty.”

    Yet another spew of nonsense. You embarrass yourself over and over.

  19. how does that make me a liar?

    I’m with you on “exceedingly small probabilities”

    oh yes, I’m very embarrassed, blushing and everything.

    why don’t you throw some more insults and swears in, I’m sure that will lend even more credence to your argument. which… apparently is: because something may have a very very very low probability, it must be wrong or non-existent.

  20. Probably a cliche to invoke Einstein here but I’ll do it anyways

    “I cannot accept any concept of God based on the fear of life or the fear of death or blind faith. I cannot prove to you that there is no personal God, but if I were to speak of him I would be a liar.”

    As to what one could believe in, the answer was simple enough.

    “I believe in the brotherhood of man and the uniqueness of the individual. But if you ask me to prove what I believe, I can’t. You know them to be true but you could spend a whole lifetime without being able to prove them. The mind can proceed only so far upon what it knows and can prove. There comes a point where the mind takes a higher plane of knowledge, but can never prove how it got there. All great discoveries have involved such a leap.”

  21. “how does that make me a liar?”

    By claiming I said the opposite of what I said.

    Your quotes in your last comment are useless. You don’t even understand what he is talking about in the last one, do you…LOL

    I’ll let you figure it out.

  22. dissmissive

  23. Well, at least Nate stopped trying to argue. That can only be an improvement, right? Even if he just resorted to childish insults instead, at least there’s a chance he knows some original insults.

  24. The end of argument is never a good thing. Question everything as they say. I’m not going to stay in a discussion where the opposing side is continually dismissive. It leads nowhere.

  25. and the last quote is completely subjective to the reader. it really could go either way.

  26. I’m not going to stay in a discussion where the opposing side is continually dismissive. It leads nowhere.

    So, what you’re saying is, if people disagree with you in a debate, you’re going to throw your hands up and leave?

  27. so what I’m saying is why should i stay in a discussion that is not moving. what is the point? many time when your wheels are spinning you shouldn’t continue spinning them.

  28. But the reason the discussion isn’t moving, is that you are spouting insults and ancient fallacies instead of trying to actually argue your case.

    What did you think was going to happen? Seriously, what do you expect us to do? Pretend your fallacies haven’t been refuted a million times before, and are actually very convincing?

    I, of course, can’t speak for NewEnglandBob, but I guarantee you I’m very open minded. As I said, if there really is a hell and I’m going to it, I would very much like to be warned about it. All you need to do is bring proof of it, so it’s more than just your personal fantasy. Until then, try to put yourself in my shoes. I have no reason to believe the Bible. Would you accept the claim by a complete stranger that the Harry Potter books were true, and you were going to be eaten by an evil wizard if you didn’t follow some absurd rules?

  29. Enhancing Slater’s point:

    We would laugh at the stranger and his Harry Potter nonsense, but if that stranger came here and spewed out made up stories, twisted everything around, misquoted us and took famous people’s quotes out of context, ignored most of our valid points and did it again and again and again, refused to learn proper English and not capitalize words at all then we would no longer be patient with that strangers abusive and offensive behavior.

  30. you began with assumptions about what i believe. i didn’t spout stories. perhaps you could consolidate your valid points for me right here. i must have missed the majority of them in between all of the “there’s no proof for god” stuff. capitol letters, my goodness, i could see you looking down on me if had ben mispelin evrythng. since i have not, capitols seem a small thing to be critical about in a comment on a blog. if its that important to you i’ll be more than happy to do so in the future.

  31. Capitols are what countries and states have, capitals are what sentences have to make them readable.

    “you began with assumptions about what i believe”

    Who is that aimed at? I never did any such thing. It appears that your last response is partially aimed at Slater and partially aimed at me but is unclear in its context, syntax and semantics, so who knows.

  32. you began with assumptions about what i believe

    Projecting much?
    I seem to recall you naming a few things we evil atheists believe and do that weren’t exactly anywhere near true.

    But still, what valid points apart from “no evidence” are you expecting? There are no other points necessary. Without evidence for god, believing in him is irrational, just as you would most likely think of believing in Harry Potter or Santa Claus. As long as you provide no evidence, there’s nothing for us to refute, and we’re perfectly content just taking the rational stance while you don’t.

    I really can’t figure out what else you expect us to say. Atheism is a non-belief, and you cannot prove the non-belief in anything to be true, since it’s not a truth-claim. If you want to talk about what we do believe, you’ll have to narrow it down a bit for us.

  33. I think the issue is this:

    A person who does not believe in anything that cannot be observed will not accept any ideas to the contrary.

    A person who believes there are things that science either cannot explain yet or will never be able to explain will not accept that anything that cannot be observed must be myth.

    For my own part I don’t think the earth is 8,000 years old, it’s obviously billions of years old. I don’t think the earth was created in only 6 days with another for nap time, but I do think that would be a helpful story to illustrate that earth has not always existed to the unwashed masses of 5,000 years previous.

    Where I hit a wall is when you consider the beginning. Matter and energy, it cannot be created or destroyed…. but it must have come from somewhere. If there was a ‘big bang’ what caused it? If it was simply a contracting universe contracting as far as it could and then expanding out again, than what cause it to contract to that extreme in the first place? You could follow that cycle in and out forever of course but why does the cycle exist? If we ever find the true beginning, the moment this matter and energy sprang into existence, we have to remember there must then be something outside the universe we live in.

    I accept both science and belief, and the studies that show prayer seems to have an impact (also extends to just happy thoughts not only people praying) make me think that even if the belief half of my thinking is totally wrong there is no harm but a net positive impact of my praying.

    (I even used some capitals, to brighten your days)

  34. A person who does not believe in anything that cannot be observed will not accept any ideas to the contrary.

    Not entirely correct. Most of us will readily accept that things may exist, which we don’t know about. The difference is, as long as we don’t see evidence of it, we are not going to believe that we know anything about it.

    A god may exist. It’s very unlikely but possible. But as long as we have no reason to believe in it, we won’t, because anything else is deeply irrational.

    A person who believes there are things that science either cannot explain yet or will never be able to explain […]

    This time I have to admit, I think you are flat-out lying.
    I don’t think you really believe that atheists believe that science already knows everything there is to know, and will never discover something new or not be able to discover something.

    The difference is not in what we believe possible, but what we profess to know. You don’t say “God is hypothetically possible”, you say “God exists”.
    We don’t say “We know that no gods could possibly exist”, we say “as long as we have no evidence, we will live as if there was no god – just as we live as if there is no Harry Potter outside books”.

    but it must have come from somewhere

    Come on, Nate. This argument again? This is probably the oldest and most thoughtless of them all.

    Okay, here’s the short and simple version:
    If everything must have a beginning, so does God. That means he explains nothing.
    If we accept that something has been there always or that it is possible for something to spontaneously exist, then it’s much simpler to assume the universe is that thing. Adding a god to the equation is a useless extra variable that explains nothing.

  35. Well as we have no proof of God, it also follows that if there exists we know nothing about the nature of God. What I’m saying is whatever event or being or whatever was the impetus for the creation of our universe must exist outside of it. There could be different laws of physics.

    I think it was the first Men in Black movie that ended with the galaxy being inside a marble that a huge alien was rolling around. What sprang into my mind was “shit, for all we know”. Add universe in place of galaxy of course.

  36. That doesn’t make any sense, Nate. Obviously before the universe existed, that was outside of the universe as well.

    If the current rules of physics are defined by the universe, obviously the creation of the universe, whether by a god or by natural processes, also didn’t necessarily have these rules. Your argument depends on itself.

    And yes, we could all be inside a giant marble. We could also be trapped in the Matrix. These things are not impossible, but like I just said: no evidence means no belief in it, just recognition that it is remotely possible.

  37. “I don’t think you really believe that atheists believe that science already knows everything there is to know, and will never discover something new or not be able to discover something.”

    Of course, I was not trying to say that.

    “We don’t say “We know that no gods could possibly exist”, we say “as long as we have no evidence, we will live as if there was no god”

    You will live as if the only consequences of your actions are temporal? If you don’t get caught its alright by that thinking. I’m glad the majority of the earth believes there may be consequences for what they do here, even if the man with the badge or their mother doesn’t catch them.

    “Well as we have no proof of God, it also follows that if HE exists we know nothing about the nature of God.” First line of my last post should read that way.

  38. You will live as if the only consequences of your actions are temporal?

    Ah, consequences.

    This argument is called “Pascal’s Wager”, Nate. This is another very primitive and easily dismissed argument, that most atheists have refuted a million times before, and are getting rather tired of.

    See, first of all, there are about 4500 gods in different mythologies around the world. You seem to assume that your particular god is the only one you could choose to believe in, but you know that’s not true. Why would we believe in Yahweh over Allah or Odin or Quetzalcoatl or Vishnu?
    – If we don’t know which god is true, there is no way to avoid these consequences.

    Secondly: Belief is not something you choose to have. Even if it really wanted to believe in god, I could not force myself to do so without evidence.

    Thirdly: Even if we accept that Yahweh is true god, is there no chance he would prefer honest disbelief to a dishonest belief out of fear of punishment alone?

    Fourthly: Pascal’s Wager in its standard form assumes you lose nothing by believing in god. This is obviously not true – but you didn’t mention that part, so we’ll skip it.

  39. Thanks Slater for debunking the tired old goddidit arguments of Nate and his straw men arguments and his wrongful attributions of nonsense onto what he knows are not atheist positions.

    Nate, there are several good books by physicists for how it is possible for the universe to have created itself from nothing. These are just hypotheses and not testable theories. but they do come from thinking about it and not from faith that goddidit, which doesn’t explain anything including ‘nothing’.

  40. What is it you lose by believing in a god of your choice?

  41. “What is it you lose by believing in a god of your choice?”

    Being rational and living life to its potential, and not out of fear of a sky daddy or fear of burning in hell for eternity. You also lose the irrational behavior to want 72 virgins and therefor fly planes into building. You also lose being genuinely honest and not just doing the right thing because you think someone is looking.

  42. Yes 100% of people that believe in a higher power of some kind are irrational. You know that isn’t true. Living in fear of punishment is not the point either. The sense that doing the right thing has some meaning, that’s the point.

    Islam did not fly planes into buildings people did. Environmentalism does not crash ships into other ships in the antarctic, people do that.

    If religion is a human construct of no meaning than so are right and wrong.

  43. Apologetics are just so lame. Not worth more than a passing glance.

    “If religion is a human construct of no meaning than so are right and wrong.”

    Most philosophers agree with that statement.

  44. Once again…

    Being dismissive is not an argument.

  45. And one again, there is no argument made, but nonsense. Dismissal is being kind, actually.

  46. And neither is ridicule an argument.

  47. Nate, try to understand: we don’t need arguments, because we’re not the ones making a truth claim.

    You have to present an argument for your god, then we can refute it. As I have explained several times now, very few atheists claim to know that no god exist – we just assume (just as you would regarding anything but your god — everyone does) that he doesn’t until we get proof to the contrary.

    I have already asked you this multiple times, but let’s try it again: What exactly do you expect us to argue for?

  48. It seems to me you are making a truth claim. You are claiming an alternate (i understand atheism is pretty much dogma free but bear with me, i think you know what i mean) system of belief. Namely you don’t believe in a God or gods and put your trust in the sciences for answers.

    All truths are exclusive. you can’t think your right without thinking others are wrong (in most cases) even if you accept the fact that you may be wrong.

  49. Completely wrong, Nate. There is no truth claim there.

    You state “Namely you don’t believe in a God or gods…” and that is wrong. We state that we have no reason to believe in a god or gods. There is a huge difference between the two statements.

    Show us some evidence and we will change our skepticism to belief in three femoseconds. But remember, those making the claim need to supply the evidence or proof. Extraordinary claims need to supply extraordinary proof.

  50. Now you’re flat-out lying again, Nate.

    I’ve explained to you at least three times already that no, most atheists do not claim to know there can be no god. They merely live as if there isn’t one due to lack of evidence.

    It’s not that difficult a concept. Please stop repeating the same stupid misconception after we’ve explained it to you so many times.

    – And yes, this time I’m sounding a bit condescending. It’s very hard not to when you completely ignore what we say and repeat the same lies over and over.

  51. Just an attempt to make this clear to you, Nate:

    Try conclusively proving the non-existence of invisible, incorporeal, flying pigs, without saying “lack of evidence”.

  52. “Try conclusively proving the non-existence of invisible, incorporeal, flying pigs, without saying “lack of evidence”.”

    You cannot conclusively prove anything on the basis of “lack of evidence”. And I would not deign to repeatedly call belief in those pigs stupid or irrational without proof they did not exist.

  53. “You cannot conclusively prove anything on the basis of “lack of evidence”. And I would not deign to repeatedly call belief in those pigs stupid or irrational without proof they did not exist.”

    So, Nate, you totally miss Slater’s point. You are the one who keeps on saying that everyone else must disprove a god but when told that no one can disprove via a lack of evidence, you take offense.

    By your fouled logic, in the above statement, it is NOT irrational to believe in fairies, Odin, the tooth fairy, Big Foot, witches, sorcerers, chairs that talk and walk or anything else anyone has ever dreamed up or told a story about or flat out made up as a lie. All we can do is laugh at you and shake our heads at your misunderstanding of logic, reason and critical thought.

  54. I don’t think it is irrational for people to believe in whatever they want. I’ve been under the impression that a good imagination is something to be proud of. Religion aside, It really can only be detrimental to crush imagination.

    On the religion front, even if it is someday proven false, I’ll still maintain that on the whole there is a net positive. For every act of violence (in the name of almost any cause not just religious ones) there are multitudes of other people who are causing no problems.

  55. And you seem to labor under the impression that I am somehow against atheism. I don’t care. I don’t care if you believe or not. Everyone has the privilege of keeping their own personal belief system.

    What I take offense at is being accused of being stupid, ignorant, narrow minded, foolish, uneducated or any other such rubbish.

  56. Imagination and belief are separate things. I distinguish reality from fantasy.

    “On the religion front, even if it is someday proven false, I’ll still maintain that on the whole there is a net positive.”

    This sentence is gibberish.

    “For every act of violence (in the name of almost any cause not just religious ones) there are multitudes of other people who are causing no problems.”

    And the sky is blue, night is dark, people eat food. These and the above sentence are irrelevant to the discussion.

  57. It doesn’t appear to be gibberish to me, but than I wrote it.

    “Religion on the whole is a positive force for people that believe.” – Is that a little better?

    That’s what I get for trying to do 100 things at a time.

  58. “What I take offense at is being accused of being stupid, ignorant, narrow minded, foolish, uneducated or any other such rubbish.”

    Then stop producing incorrect statements, attributing false statements to people, spewing nonsense and lies and repeating again and again that no one can prove there is no god.

    From above:

    “perhaps you can tell me is there any evidence that a magic man in the sky did NOT create everything?”

    Game, set, match.

  59. ““Religion on the whole is a positive force for people that believe.” – Is that a little better?”

    Yes, much better, and it is true in many cases for many people, but certainly not 100%

  60. Its a fair question.

    If there is not evidence against such a claim than there is no reason that someone who believes in the magic man should be called ignorant or any other such thing.

    Such behavior puts you on no higher a level than the people you call bigots by their words.

  61. Of course not 100%. You’ll never get 100% of people to do anything positive. Maybe 99.9999 (so on)% but there will always be the kid in the back of the class who feels the need to shoot spitballs at the black board.

  62. “Its a fair question.

    If there is not evidence against such a claim than there is no reason that someone who believes in the magic man should be called ignorant or any other such thing.”

    There you go again – backwards with no logic, reason, critical thought or common sense. Yet another incredibly stupid, worthless, inane sentence. Ignorant, ignorant, ignorant.

    “Such behavior puts you on no higher a level than the people you call bigots by their words”

    As Slater said previously – you just lie.

  63. No, not 99.9999 (so on)%. Not even 50%.

    We have gone through that here and listed the myriad reasons for why belief is bad, but apparently you didn’t comprehend those.

  64. Its quite clear that part of the plan is to toss so many insults and dismissals around that the person you are talking to:

    A) Fly’s off the handle, and looks stupid
    or
    B) Gives up

    Your quite simply as prejudiced as anyone else, despite ramblings of how tolerate atheists are. If you want to wrap it in a flag of what you define as logical, be my guest.

  65. So you ran out of inane statements and lies and wrapping yourself in faith and gave up on intelligent discourse, Nate, be my guest.

    Once again, you need to think instead of spew. I skewered your ideas – that is not insults. You look stupid by what you SAY.

  66. You’ve insulted plenty of ideas, its appears to be your main weapon.

    Much of what I’m reading here appears just to be regurgitation of thing prominent atheists say in their books and on speaking tours. How intellectual.

  67. Yeah, just think, I get ideas from books, written by people instead of made up lies and fantasies and Bronze age ignorant bible writers where you dwell – how terrible of me.

    Nate’s motto: thinking: bad, blind faith: good. Asinine!

  68. Nate:

    You cannot conclusively prove anything on the basis of “lack of evidence”

    Which is exactly my point. To repeat myself for the 51,251th time, most atheists do not claim to know for a fact that gods cannot or do not exist. Assuming they don’t is the rational stance that everyone takes on subjects they don’t have a desire to believe in.

    You didn’t try to disprove the flying pigs. No surprise seeing as it’s impossible. Unfortunately you completely missed the point, and apparently still don’t understand that non-belief is not a truth claim.

    I don’t think it is irrational for people to believe in whatever they want

    Well, then you don’t understand the meaning of the word. It is by definition irrational to believe in things you have no reason to believe in. Rational means having a logically coherent reason for something.

    If there is not evidence against such a claim than there is no reason that someone who believes in the magic man should be called ignorant or any other such thing.

    As much as I don’t care what people go around believing in, as long as they don’t try to force it on others (including their own children), yes. Yes, you are ignorant if you believe in the man in the sky, even if there’s no evidence he doesn’t exist.

    The reason is exactly the same as why you’re ignorant if you, as an adult, believe in Santa Claus, Harry Potter or invisible, flying pigs. Claiming that because we can’t know about it, then you know it to be true is not just irrational – it’s a blatant self-contradiction. Even if god existed exactly as described in the Bible, it would still be ignorant to believe in him, because we have no knowledge of him, save for a dusty old book that works just as well as proof of god as the Harry Potter books do of Harry Potter.

    Much of what I’m reading here appears just to be regurgitation of thing prominent atheists say in their books and on speaking tours.

    So you admit you already knew that all of your arguments have been debunked thousands of times before, and you use that fact to call us unintellictual? Are you kidding me?

    For your sake I seriously hope you are a troll.

  69. unintellectual*

    Yeah, it was a typo and I’ve made those before, but there’s just something extra embarrassing about spelling the words “intelligent” and “intellectual” wrong. Sorry.

  70. The only part I’m going to bother to reply to is this:

    “As much as I don’t care what people go around believing in, as long as they don’t try to force it on others (including their own children)”

    What right do you have to tell people what to teach their children? Are you the sort of person that would have every aspect of a persons life controlled by someone else? Should schools or the government really have more power in raising their child than parents?

    What about all these kids I saw (and still see) whose parents stuffed them into Obama-wear? Is politically ideology something people can share with their children? On that note, some people have come close to worshiping his presidentness as a deity.

    I’m tiring of being abused, especially in a discussion where in the end no-one can be right.

    Where will that end?

  71. “The only part I’m going to bother to reply to is this:”

    Translation: I can’t refute any of the others and I have nothing reasonable to say, so lets go picayune.

    “I’m tiring of being abused, especially in a discussion where in the end no-one can be right.”

    Translation: I don’t like it when I have been shown to be wrong on every single issue here. I know I am wrong so I will whine here.

  72. Not true in the least, but if that makes you feel good about yourself… go on believing.

  73. The only part I’m going to bother to reply to is this

    As Bob said, it’s pretty obvious what this means. But go ahead — I didn’t expect you to be able to answer the rest.

    What right do you have to tell people what to teach their children?

    I don’t remember saying I had any legal backing for telling people what they can and cannot do. I said I care.

    Just as I can’t help but care when some Muslim women are punished for being raped, and when the Chinese government lies to its people, etc., I also cannot help but care when people tell their children huge lies, that completely change the way they look at the world, and even that they will be tortured for all eternity if they don’t follow some absurd rules.

    On that note, some people have come close to worshiping his presidentness as a deity.

    And you think that’s relevant? If people actually saw him as some sort of god, which I doubt anyone does, then the Obama-god would obviously be as irrational as the Christian god.

    Btw, ideology is an opinion. Religion is not an opinion, it’s a truth claim about the world and its creation. They aren’t comparable. But sure, I’d also prefer it if everyone made up their own mind on who to vote for.

    I’m tiring of being abused, especially in a discussion where in the end no-one can be right.

    “Being abused”? Seriously? You are the one who’s been throwing insults around since the beginning. The worst we’ve done is sound a bit condescending, which, as I already explained, it’s pretty hard not to when you lie and ignore what we say.

    And what do you mean no one can be right?

    It will end when you stop lying and spouting refuted arguments. You’re in control, mate. Just stop talking and we’ll stop replying.

  74. Damn, blockquote fail. Hope you can read it.

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