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 agree Reggie. I respect people but I don't respect everyone's beliefs. I could not respect a belief that says, for example, that any one who doesn't believe like you do must be killed. I could not respect a belief that Santa Claus is real from someone who's in their twenties, or a belief that Elvis is still alive. I do respect people though and I don't think it's wise to bash believers as an atheist; especially if I'm hoping to help them think through their erroneous beliefs. Bashing them will only make them defensive and they won't be open to anything we have to say (not that many of them are so open to hear our ideas anyway. Once many of them hear that we are atheist/agnostic/agnostic-atheist, they stop communicating with us and begin rehearsing their own prejudices, like “You hate God!” or “Why are you angry at God?”).
Agnostic just means to not know as gnostic means to know. You can be a theistic agnostic or an atheistic agnostic.. most atheists are also agnostics so you saying you're not an atheist, just an agnostic tells us that you're a theistic agnostic (since you're not an atheist agnostic) in which case you'll find that you're surrounded by atheists far more than theists here.

You're right.. everyone has the right to believe whatever they want to believe.. and I'm pretty sure most atheists would have zero problem with them if that's where it ended.. but the fact is that religious people aren't content to just believe. Right now we face major battles in gay rights- because of religious people (the same was true for civil rights and women's rights), the Texas school board is currently rewriting the curriculum for the entire country to reflect religious beliefs and republican values, in my state atheists are not allowed to hold public office, people lose their jobs, their friends, and their families for being atheists.. we are surrounded by religion. The fact that religious people rarely keep it to themselves has caused immense harm throughout history and throughout the world and not speaking out against that harm would be remiss or even unethical. It would be like watching someone beat their child and shrugging and walking away with the thought "well, they have the right to their beliefs". I'm sorry, but I cannot just walk away from that.

Religious extremists oppress or take away rights, they fly planes into buildings or bomb abortion clinics, they protest soldiers funerals, and picket gay pride events- atheist extremists blog. So I'm sorry, but it's not even close to comparable.
Why feel ashamed of other Atheists? What they say and do is not your responsibility nor is it any of your business. As you said yourself "Everyone has the right to believe what they want to believe"
If some atheists believe that the religious are a bunch of morons then that is their prerogative and certainly no reflection on your beliefs.

I have been known to flame in that manner on Youtube from time to time, but there is a good reason for it. Usually the people I am flaming are either supporting or running a church that is only interested in one thing. Donations.

These people make me angry because they prey on the less educated and actually encourage less thinking.

I am of the belief that their are three kinds of religious people among the zealots.
1. The Leaders who dont believe a word they preach but make a damn good living from it.
2. The completely brainwashed. People who have been so indoctrinated from birth that it is almost impossible for them to think any other way without suffering some kind of mental breakdown,
3. The worst kind.. THE LAZY ASSES.
These are people who are just too lazy to learn or research anything for themselves. They want answers to be provided for them. They cant be bothered to fact check anything and they actually get angry at people who question what they believe because that means they have to actually think which is something that takes effort, something they really don't want to have to put into anything. Why do you think they support replacing science with creationism? I'll tell you. Because its so much less to learn and think about!

These Atheists you talk about are angry with the religious because they are the cause of pretty much every problem in the world. Bad education, Human division,. Homosexuality, Anti Abortion and female freedoms constantly under attack from religion. The list goes on and on. In the US you cant even get into the political arena if you claim to be an atheist.
Are you surprised some of us get angry? These people seem to be doing everything they can to make our lives hell in order to make their lives more pious.

Though most of the time I am pretty tolerant I understand where the anger comes from.


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