Christian Love On Display

While many Christians are using their best damage control techniques to deny any association with Norway mass murderer Anders Behring Breivik, they continue to show their love for Atheists including this latest example on Fox News’ Facebook page. The following comments were some of the most telling after Blair Scott, Communications Director for American Atheists, appeared on America Live with Megyn Kelly the other day to discuss his group’s court case over the cross at the 9/11 memorial.

Obviously Fox News was quick to moderate most of these out of existence but it is nice to see once again the amount of love these folks have for their fellow humans. I feel it don’t you?

(from American Atheists via the Examiner)

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Gervais Hosts The Golden Globes

Noted Atheist and comedian Ricky Gervais hosted the Golden Globes Sunday night and I am guessing next year’s awards will not be featuring him. Firstly he pulled no punches while roasting some of Hollywood’s biggest and brightest throughout the show including Charlie Sheen, Johnny Depp, Angelina Jolie, Cher, the entire cast of Sex and the City 2, Scientology, Tom Cruise, John Travolta, Hugh Hefner, etc. Watch:

And in his closing he likely pissed off some of the most humorless among us (besides the Hollywood elite), you know who you are, with the line “And thank you to god. For making me an Atheist.

Almost makes me sorry that I didn’t tune in…almost.

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It's The Moon You Idiot!

Bill O’Reilly shows his ignorance again in his latest interview on religion/atheism using his favorite “proof” of a God. “The sun goes up and the sun goes down…the tides comes in, the tide comes out

Of course you knew Colbert or Stewart would have something to say about this and Stephen Colbert didn’t disappoint. He had astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson on to explain tidal forces for Papa Bear O’Reilly who really should come up with a few better examples if he wants to provide proof of a supreme being…you know something that science hasn’t already debunked 100’s of years ago.

Maybe he should just use the fact that people actually watch him, that’s a bit miraculous isn’t it?

The Colbert Report Mon – Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Bill O’Reilly Proves God’s Existence – Neil deGrasse Tyson

Colbert Report Full Episodes Political Humor & Satire Blog</a> Video Archive

P.S. – Must give a little love to Colbert for quoting the classic line in the above piece which pretty much explains the existence of all religions throughout human history.

There must be a God because I don’t know how things work.

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Maybe That Is Why They Are Atheists?

A new survey by Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life found that atheists and agnostics were more knowledgeable on the bible, Christianity, and other world religions than those professing to follow those religions.

Researchers from the independent Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life phoned more than 3,400 Americans and asked them 32 questions about the Bible, Christianity and other world religions, famous religious figures and the constitutional principles governing religion in public life.

On average, people who took the survey answered half the questions incorrectly, and many flubbed even questions about their own faith.

Those who scored the highest were atheists and agnostics, as well as two religious minorities: Jews and Mormons. The results were the same even after the researchers controlled for factors like age and racial differences.

The more you know…?

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Liberals And Atheists Have Higher IQ's On Average

So says a soon to be published study.

Evolutionary psychologist Satoshi Kanazawa at the the London School of Economics and Political Science correlated data on these behaviors with IQ from a large national U.S. sample and found that, on average, people who identified as liberal and atheist had higher IQs. This applied also to sexual exclusivity in men, but not in women. The findings will be published in the March 2010 issue of Social Psychology Quarterly.

The IQ differences, while statistically significant, are not stunning — on the order of 6 to 11 points — and the data should not be used to stereotype or make assumptions about people, experts say. But they show how certain patterns of identifying with particular ideologies develop, and how some people’s behaviors come to be.

The reasoning is that sexual exclusivity in men, liberalism and atheism all go against what would be expected given humans’ evolutionary past. In other words, none of these traits would have benefited our early human ancestors, but higher intelligence may be associated with them.

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Atheistic Bigotry

Some surveys show that Atheists are among the most hated groups there is. The video below takes a look at that disdain (some would contend bigotry) and provides some insight and statistics on that subject including comparing Atheists to Theists in several different societal categories.

Take particular note of the makeup of the prison population especially if you, like most fundies, believe that Atheists are immoral, it might surprise you, and then again it might not…

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Why Are You An Atheist?

I mentioned in passing yesterday how recent polls have shown a marked increase in the number of people that identify themselves as non-believers. One study shows that the number has doubled in the past 2 decades with 15 percent saying that they do not identify with any religion, the only group that has shown increases in all 50 states. Why this growth?

I can only speak for myself but that information got me thinking as to why I became a non-believer.

Obviously, everyone is born a non-believer, often only becoming a believer in one form of religion or another after years of indoctrination by their parents and/or the environment they grow up in. I am no different having been raised Protestant going to Sunday school and Sunday services without fail for most of my formative years.

All through those years while going each week without complaint outwardly, I felt that what was being taught didn’t make any sense and the older I got the stronger that feeling got. After leaving home for the military I stopped going to church altogether and to be honest never gave religion any more than a passing thought for the next 20 years or so.

Recently I began wondering why religion held no place in my life especially considering that I now live in the heart of the Northern Bible Belt where “clinging to guns and religion” is not just a slogan and where there is a church on almost every street corner. Given the fact that I grew up indoctrinated in Christianity, why then did I shun it despite being in a perfect position to continue the faith?

I’ve done a lot of reading on this since then and I’ve heard many stories from other non-believers. Many often revolve around the person in question not being able to get around the contradictions in the bible or the unprovable nature of religion in general, the latter reason is especially prevalent with those holding high opinions of science. I myself think that both of these probably contributed to why I have long been a non-believer, the stories in the bible after all are quite hard to believe. But this is certainly the same thing all but the staunchly (aka blindly faithful) religious deal with daily, it isn’t called “faith” for nothing now is it?

Then I read something somewhere, and hopefully whomever said it will forgive me for not remembering where I saw it, but this one quote explains perfectly why I have decided to be more than just a quiet non-believer and complete my conversion from a Christian to an active Atheist.

“The biggest reason for the increase in Atheism is Christians…”

Think about that for a minute, I did.

I honestly believe that I would have gone through the rest of my life just ignoring religion as I had for the first 20 years after leaving home. Then recently I began noticing a whole new phenomenon from my perspective (I know, it’s always existed). Christian fundamentalism.

Of course as Americans, we have been exposed to fundamentalism for most of our history and we got a re-enforcing lesson in the craziness of religious fundamentalism in spades on 9/11 but to me it wasn’t us, it was them. Now though I was noticing more and more some of the same type of intolerance, hypocrisy, and downright hatred of others being exhibited by my neighbors, it was no longer just them to me, it was us as well.

In the past decade we have had a horrible child abuse scandal come to light, perpetrated by the Catholic Church. We have had a President, George Bush, using the biblical mythology of Gog and Magog as one reason for invading a foreign country not to mention his willingness to use religion for political gain and policy decisions. We’ve seen states like Texas attempting to re-write public school text books using the bible and we are witnessing the downfall of the party of Lincoln because of, I believe, the strong influence of the religious right. (It’s amazing isn’t it, the party that quotes the Constitution like scripture is likely hurting because of their ignorance of it?).

These are just a few examples of many that motivated me and this post has been a long time in the making for me. It took me 25 years to come to the self-realization that I have always had the “foundation” so to speak to be an Atheist only needing religious fundamentalism to trigger my complete religious de-conversion. Now that I have come to that conclusion I can honestly say that I am more content than I can ever remember and remarkably I can thank Christians for that. Apparently religion is good for some things after all…

If you are a non-believer or a doubter, what if anything motivated you?

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Pope: Atheists Responsible For Global Environmental Changes

Just blame the Atheists for everything.

Is it not true that inconsiderate use of creation begins where God is marginalized or also where his existence is denied? If the human creature’s relationship with the Creator weakens, matter is reduced to egoistic possession, man becomes the ‘final authority,’ and the objective of existence is reduced to a feverish race to possess the most possible.”

So the wingnuts go from denying climate change to blaming Atheists for it. Is there any wonder that the number of non-believers is growing every day? Intolerance and hypocrisy will do that…

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