I'm in the midst of a religious debate with a Christian who claims that the following phrase is NOT religious:
I claimed that opposition to birth control is PURELY religious. He claimed that he could conceive of an atheist who believed that "every possible human being had a right to exist and we had no right to block the chance" and would therefore oppose birth control for reasons that are NOT religious.
There is some question whether one can conceive of self contradictions. Just because you can form a sentence embodying a contradiction doesn't mean you can conceive of it beyond the mere words. Take "the spherical cube which is sitting on that table." You can imagine a table but what do you see in your mind as to the object sitting on it. Chances are, if you can picture anything in your mind it is an object that oscillates between being a discrete sphere and a discrete cube. It might be argued that with additional dimensions something like a spherical cube might be possible, but you still have the problem of picturing it in your mind.
That was my first response to him! Pretty much along the lines of, "You've already shown that you have no problem conceiving of a giant telekinetic invisible humanoid that rules the world..."
I didn't think they existed either, but they do.
However, I will note that he was only against pills, IUD's, emergency contraception, implants, patches, and any forms that allow possible fertilization of an egg but not implantation. An atheist can certainly believe that personhood begins at conception and fertilized eggs deserve all basic rights to exist therefore most birth control = murder.
While I'm sure most atheists would fall into the so-called pro-choice camp, the two topics are totally disconnected. There is nothing about opposing abortion that is inconsistent with a lack of belief in a theistic deity.
The question was whether or not an atheist could believe that a potential human had the right to exist and would oppose birth control for non religious reasons. The answer is yes and one non-religious reason is strong opposition to abortive methods of birth control. How exactly are those two topics disconnected?
I was saying only that being an atheist doesn't necessarily imply a position one way or the other on abortion, which is a totally different question. Similarly, not all theists are opposed to abortion. There is the disconnection.
Your responses seem to imply that I claimed opposition to abortion is inconsistent with atheism when I actually stated the opposite as a logical reason why an atheist might oppose birth control. I also cited an example of one such atheist on this very site to answer to the title question of this post.
I didn't claim being an atheist or theist necessarily implies a position one way or another on abortion.
No fighting you two! I'll turn this thread right around!
I repeat: I was saying only that being an atheist doesn't necessarily imply a position one way or the other on abortion, which is a totally different question. Similarly, not all theists are opposed to abortion. There is the disconnection.
We don't disagree.