Atheism and religion in the news XVIII
And yet more news once again. At the bottom of today's blog, there is a link to a google video of an interview of Noam Chomsky about the media today. I agree with many of his points, this should give you an idea of where I am coming from.
All those who hate Chomsky need not worry, the interviewer is rather aggressive, he's not from American TV btw, and he's from the BBC. J
Hitler and atheists.
Anyone who has argued with a theist will usually experience a real life version of godwin's law, they always bring up Hitler. This authour does a good job of refuting it.
It would be impossible to write a book of this sort without addressing the three subjects that inevitably come up when atheists are contending with Christians. Just as atheists anticipate the need to answer for Stalin and Mao, Christians are expected to answer for the Inquisition and the Crusades. And both sides recognize the need to deal with the Hitler question. Like Einstein, the Führer made enough ambiguous statements to leave the matter up for discussion; unlike Einstein, no one is eager to claim Hitler and his National Socialists as members of their intellectual camp. The Unholy Trinity have no choice but to concern themselves with the matter, of course, and they do so largely in the manner that one has come to expect from them. Harris wastes eight pages attempting to tar the Catholic church and Pope Pius XII with guilt by insufficient opposition, then on the basis of no evidence whatsoever, declares that Auschwitz was a logical and inevitable consequence of the Christian faith. Hitchens also complains about the Catholic church and relates a few irrelevant anecdotes about Italian Fascists and Irish Blue Shirts, but then shows genuine insight when he notes that the Hitler regime shows us "with terrible clarity what can happen when men usurp the role of gods."
Atheists in Foxholes.
A new facebook has started up, you don't have to be in a foxhole to join either.
An ex-muslim speaks about her experiences and why she calls herself an "atheist ex-muslim" rather than simply an atheist.
In this day and age everything is framed within the context of ‘faith', especially for those of us deemed to be Muslims - no matter how clearly and loudly we profess and live otherwise. I think this is in large part due to the existence of a political Islamic movement, which strives to gain legitimacy for its terror and misogyny by claiming to represent vast number of people under the label of Muslims.
More crazy muslim doctors, no bombs this time though.
The title speaks for itself.
Special treatment is being demanded by female Muslim medical students who are refusing to obey hygiene rules brought in to stop the spread of deadly superbugs.
Why Don't Jews Like the Christians Who Like Them?
Love thine.........errr, enemies?
Evangelical Christians have a high opinion not just of the Jewish state but of Jews as people. That Jewish voters are overwhelmingly liberal doesn't seem to bother evangelicals, despite their own conservative politics. Yet Jews don't return the favor: in one Pew survey, 42 percent of Jewish respondents expressed hostility to evangelicals and fundamentalists. As two scholars from Baruch College have shown, a much smaller fraction-about 16 percent-of the American public has similarly antagonistic feelings toward Christian fundamentalists.
A history of violence in Christianity.
A muslim talks about Christianity from his perspective of coming from a religion of "peace". A perfect example of how theists cherry-pick their arguments.
Christians often forced compliance to their religion on others. Augustine, one of the must influential people in the development of Christianity, fully supported this practice quoting the Bible passage, "Go out to the roads and country lanes and make them come in, so that my house will be full." This violent fundamentalism has been far too common in Christian history.
Even today, Western armies lead by fundamentalist Christians occupy Muslim countries and support unpopular regimes on the citizens of other Muslim countries.
House Resolution 888: A Beast of Apocalyptic Stature
A disturbing piece of American law being proposed.
"In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth . . . and God saw everything that he had made, and, behold, it was very good." So begins and ends the Christian antediluvian history of the earth-all 788 words of it.
It is this scant "history" that fundamentalist Christians, including members of Congress and the President, want taught in public schools in place of the 150 years of accumulated science embodied in the theory of evolution. This sliver of Christian history is the thin edge of the wedge they hope will split Jefferson's wall separating church and state and allow fundamentalist dogma to pass for fact in science classrooms.
Expelled, the movie.
A critic reviews not the movie, but the publicity going around it currently.
Every so often, a group will try to promote its cause and give itself the proverbial rake in the face. The pointy end of the rake came up when the makers of "Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed" started bribing fundamentalist schools to organize mandatory field trips forcing students to watch the film. Bribery? Great publicity move! That garners about as much credibility as a Republican politician in a bathroom stall.
Hope for the millennials?
Religion amongst the next generation.
But my students' "dogma aversion" (as one put it) goes liberal Protestantism one further. These young people aren't just allergic to dogma. They are allergic to divinity and even heaven. In the religions of their imagining, God is an afterthought at best. And the afterlife is, as one of my students told me, "on the back burner."
To be quite honest, I have no idea what the hell this is and I`m hoping someone will tell me.
Fall into the beauty
of a rose
and cognize yourself.
If you cannot
you will not
be the rose.
Religious vs. secular terrorism.
An interesting analysis of the differences between the two.
The major Islamist terror tactic has, since the early 1980s, been the suicide bomber. In contrast to secular terrorists, Islamist suicide terrorists need not escape; their planning focuses instead on how to deliver the perpetrator to the target area. Suicide bombers are walking smart bombs, able to position themselves among crowds or in restaurants to achieve maximum carnage. During the 2001-02 terror wave in Israel, Hamas and Islamic Jihad bombers, for example, made last minute target selections in order to bolster the number of civilians they could kill. Islamist terrorists also need not use time to augment their demands. While the Marxist groups of the 1970s might have threatened hostages against concrete demands, Islamists seek to kill first and lecture later. Islamists do take hostages but, in such cases, their goal is as likely to be to draw out terror in a 24-hour news cycle than to win concessions.
Noam Chomsky on the Media.
If you read the opening of this blog, I won't need to repeat myself. The first part is the interview, later on there are speechs.