first .. I'm not even atheist, I am agnostic. (but I'm still going to hell.)

There are some situations in which I feel the need to defend religion and its followers from hateful atheists.

Everyone has the right to believe what they want to believe, and to worship what they want to worship. There is no rule in any lawbook that says otherwise. You can be Jewish, Buddhist, you can worship the ground, nature, space, or goats. It doesn't matter, you have that right as a citizen. (Now, keep in mind I'm talking about America because I am not sure about other places.)

There are Christians who openly bash and persecute peoples of different religions and cultures. There are Jewish, Muslim, and Buddhist people who do the same thing. Pagans and Wiccans, Satanists, and Atheists.

And unfortunately..

There are some atheist people out there who are unforgiving and unrelenting in their bashing and hatefulness towards peoples of any religion.

The one thing I was taught in life were morals and ethics. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

Christians preach love for all, and there is a bible verse in which it says (roughly, don't know word for word)"He who gets slapped in one cheek, turn the other and ask no questions, for it is your duty to forgive." I took this to mean that you should let people walk on you. Of course, they don't, and neither does an atheist. Unless that's your personality.

So occasionally, I will meet an atheist whose purpose in life is to be hateful towards Christian people. I feel ashamed of these people. I am, as agnostic, a part of this "disbelieving blasphemous group" and people like those who actively seek to be hateful offend me. Their screams of "GOD ISN'T REAL, YOU'RE A STUPID MORON AND YOU NEED TO JUST KILL YOURSELF AND GO TO YOUR HEAVEN SO THE REST OF US CAN LIVE PEACEFULLY" and etc are offensive to me.

They are the types of atheists that religious people think of when they think of atheists. It is human nature to take a little bit of good and a mouthful of bad, and then complain and bitch and moan about the bad, while ignoring that tiny piece of goodness.
These are the same atheists that scream respect from religious people and tell the religious people they are not following their God's wishes by being angry and spiteful in return.

This comes back to, "do unto others as you would have them do unto you."

Religious people can be just as hateful, but I am not talking about that group, I am talking about OUR group. They should be ashamed of themselves just as much as hateful atheists should be ashamed of theirs.

Sorry this was so long and I hope I don't lose any friends over it. It's just something I was thinking about.

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I noticed that! It is very annoying and causes confusion. I hate having to do blockquotes and do @ so-and-so just to avoid confusion...but apparently with Ning's quirks, this is the only way to avoid confusion. ::headdesk::

I think the important thing to remember is that we are all individuals - responsible for our own actions. You aren't responsible for mine just because you and I are both non-theists, and I am not responsible for yours.

And as far as the Golden Rule goes, I'd say that you have no business telling other Atheists (or Agnostics) that they are doing it wrong and that you are ashamed of them. If you feel that something they are doing is "setting back the cause" (so to speak), by all means speak to them. Tell them what you think the consequences of their strategy might be and tell them what strategy might better accomplish their goals. But as far as I am concerned, respect shouldn't just be between religions/worldviews, it should be between individuals as well.

Live and let live. Let them do their thing.

(I realize the irony of saying this, but you did bring up the topic in a discussion setting!)
I didn't mean to offend anyone..I was merely stating my thoughts after observing a different forum in which some theists and atheists were fighting about something trivial.
unfortunately, it was atheists who went to that forum to post rude comments and begin harassing them about how they were all stupid, when the theists were minding their own business.

The point I wanted to make was that you can't complain about them shoving their beliefs onto you, when you are doing the same thing in return.
Desirai, you didn't offend me :)

I would never go to a theists forum, especially to harass them. Most people wouldn't do that face to face but the internet allowing people to be anonymous leads some to to think they can act any way they want.

When atheists talk about christianity, I expect them to have done research, the same same when christians talk about atheism. So, if a theist comes to an atheist forum and spouts nonsense, I expect to see them get a little thrashing. Same for an atheist who goes to a christian forum.
That's my position as well. I am not going to go into a religious forum and try to change people's minds. I don't like when people do that to me so, I don't do it to others. That being said...

If you are like my MIL, who came into my home 3 years ago and announced that my dh and children are going to hell, I will voice both my disagreement and my annoyance at you saying that to me.

If you come into this forum, espousing nonsensical religious crap, then yeah, I might just come at you.

If you email me, Twitter me, IM me telling me my views are wrong and I am somehow harming myself, my children, etc...I am gonna get irritable.

If you respectfully address me, and have a true interest in debate or understanding of where I am coming from, then I am there, in a respectful way.
The point I wanted to make was that you can't complain about them shoving their beliefs onto you, when you are doing the same thing in return.

I see your point. Now, follow me through on this, OK?

Because Christians make up a significant majority, they're the ones "calling all the shots" that affect everyone and that are depriving certain groups of fundamental human and civil rights because of their belief in a god and the Bible that they claim to be an inviolable truth.

To put this into perspective:

  • it's not atheists forcing religionists to go get abortions or go get on the birth control pill, but religionists have pushed through laws making reproductive choice inaccessible for women who do not share their beliefs.
  • it's religionists — not atheists — justifying the removal of real sex ed in place of abstinence-only ed (which has proven to be an utter failure) in public schools; but atheists are being forced to live with those consequences, because of someone else's belief system that is constantly billed as an inviolable truth (without sufficient proof).
  • it's not atheists who pass laws (like in North Carolina) that bar someone based on religious belief (or lack thereof) from political office who won the popular vote of their constituency ; but this is what happened to an atheist candidate for some public office because of Christians putting laws on the books that favor their beliefs.

So, all in all, it's been theists forcing their beliefs on us by injecting their belief into the laws of this land. That doesn't seem very fair, does it?
It took them until 1961 to rule on that? Sheesh. I am surprised it wasn't brought to the fore as soon as the 14th Amendment was passed. Amazing...

And you're right about the anti-atheist laws from our colonial days. One thing about that which bothers me is that many states had other antiquated laws, but over time those laws were consigned to the ash heap of antiquity long before mid-20th century. Why did it take so long for atheists to be recognized as equal citizens?
Pick a team!
I don't think it's just atheists. In just about every group I've been ashamed of some things they have said about the 'out' group. When I went to the Unitarian Universalist church, I was embarrased about some things said about conservatives. In my parent's chuch I've been embarrased by some things said about liberals and about non-believers. I think sometimes pro-choice people state the view of pro-life unfairly, and I know that pro-life says utterly unconscionable things about pro-choice.

It's not an atheist/religious thing. It's an in-group/out-group thing.
I'm sick of hearing BS like this. You open with "Everyone has the right to believe what they want to believe, and to worship what they want to worship." Well if everyone can believe what they want, why can't I believe that religious people are morons and openly state it? This kind of double-standard is what's embarrassing. People want others to tread lightly on religious beliefs, but that's not going to happen anymore. We can say what we want to say about anything we want. If you or religious people find the things said offensive, then that's the fault of you guys; you're only as offended as you want to be.
People need to lighten up. Everybody, everywhere (not specifically on this forum).

I don't mean on the rhetoric. I mean on the bitching, moaning and whining. When I lash out at religion (yes, I'm one of those jerks at times) people shouldn't even take it as a personal affront. It's not like I want to take their rights and freedoms away which is endorsed by many States against atheists and non-believers.

Personally I feel perfectly justified in trampling religion and the bigotry that goes with it.


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