…with none of the defining characteristics of a religion. It is because Vox Day says so in Chapter 4, entitled “The Religion of Reason.” Aside from the humorous comparison between an atheist politician and a “toothless, illiterate, homosexual Afro-Hispanic crack whore with a peg-leg,” his opening salvo misses the point when he adds in the footnote that “it appears that telling people how evil and stupid they are may not be the best way of convincing them….” (p. 61) The reason that atheists are distrusted and, in some cases, despised is not because of intellectual elitism and snobbery—it’s because atheism has been caricatured and stigmatized as a pseudo-Satanic cult in most popular media. It is still not socially acceptable to be as open with one’s non-belief as those who believe are. Walking or driving around with merchandise that announces one’s lack of superstitious belief still draws glares or snide remarks mixed in with the head shaking and sympathetic looks. Meanwhile, almost nobody looks askance at people wearing jewelry depicting crosses and dead crucified men, and Jesus fish are practically ubiquitous. Nonetheless, atheists are unpopular—just not for that reason.
Well, I'm thinking that it's about time to return to the grind here. Sorry, I was suffering from massive drama overload both in my real life and online. Anyway, Vox Day has been on my mind so expect the next installment within a few days. I assume his cronies have already declared victory due to my extended absence, but rest assured that whether anybody likes it or not, I will complete this project if only because I have committed to it and abandoning it would be a concession of defeat in the eyes of his fanboys. That and the fact that there's an incredible amount of material waiting for a refutation. So, if anybody missed me--I'm back. If you didn't miss me, .
Also, I semi-announced this on the boards, but the magazine SheVibe, which is totally NSFW, is currently working on a full-size poster of me which I expect to be totally hawt, so when I have more info on it, I'll be letting you people know. For an idea of what it will be like, check out their Eye Candi or magazine covers sections of their site. (Although, going by what they're saying about it, it should be infinitely cooler. )
The atheist community seems overrun by people who have no desire to reproduce. Not just that, but some even despise the concept and those who continue to do so. This is likely due to the fact that people with high levels of intelligence and education tend to have smaller families, and I am by no means trying to criticize anybodys personal choices, but the oft-quoted and equally misconstrued studies about that correlation lead to division between the "breeders" and the childless.
In the spirit of informed choice, I feel that it is necessary for both groups to understand that repercussions of their chosen lifestyle. The following piece is a tidbit that represents only a small fraction of the data on women's health and childbearing. Contrary to popular opinion, having children makes you healthier. Maybe also insane, but it significantly lowers the risk of certain diseases, including things like breast cancer if you breastfeed (which you should, but that's another topic).
And don't worry--I haven't forgotten about Vox Day. I'm just giving my readers a break.
I've been too busy lately to post on topics when they might actually be fresh (novel concept, I know), but I really wanted to touch on the Pope Benedict soliloquy on sex. Having read Humanae Vitae myself, I am quite familiar with the subject at hand. The Catholic Church, while progressive in some areas, most notably science, still clings to these archaic beliefs about sex and birth control. I guess that's not surprising considering that sins "of the flesh" are considered to be more grave than others, but even within the bounds of marriage, birth control of any sort other than Natural Family Planning (which differs from the commonly known Rhythm Method and is more effective, but not by much). The HV also addresses euthanasia and abortion, rules for fair and justified war, and other issues that pertain to the creation or destruction of life.
How's that headline? Do I have everybody's attention now? Good. Because a headline like that should get your attention. Would anybody tolerate "Gay Bashing Week" or "Woman Bashing Week?" The very idea is ludicrous. Yet, Dinesh D'Souza can print an article entitled "Atheist Bashing Week" and hardly anybody bats an eyelash. There's certainly not public outrage and condemnation for such blatant bigotry. He was just joking, you say? Even in all of our stunts, which are regularly criticized by atheists (often quite vehemently), we've only dared to tell people that their god doesn't exist or encourage others to say so and post it to YouTube. Even the mind disorder controversy doesn't encourage physical harm or even allude to it. If we haven't had "Christian Bashing Week," you can bet it's because we find the notion repugnant, even in jest.
D'Souza's piece may have been tongue-in-cheek, but that is of little consequence to the typical reader who barely scans headlines and will be even subliminally influenced by this, much less those who don't have the reading comprehension to detect his almost imperceptible sarcasm. Could any of you imagine a "Muslim Bashing Week?" Even if a "Ha ha! Just kidding!" is added at the end, it is still extraordinarily offensive, and the fact that he isn't facing scorn for this piece is evidence that people are still permitted to discriminate against those evil godless heathens.
Sorry - this is a long one. For my next blog post, I'll be taking a break from Vox so I can kick somebody else's ass and all of you who keep telling me to drop the Vox project will shut up. As to the length--I know it's taking absurdly long and I still have 13 chapters to go. I just wanted to do a critique that was so detailed that nobody would need to read the book to know what it says. I may have to go with the more concise plan, though, so I can finish this sometime, oh....before I die.
Vox Day seems to have a proclivity towards using odd anecdotal evidence gleaned from the writings of Dawkins, Harris, and Hitchens in order to formulate his arguments against atheism, and he continues in the same vein in chapter three. In short order, we discover that “New Atheists” harbor outright hatred for religion and that we “science fetishists” believe that science “dictates” human behavior, rather than merely describing or explaining it.
Hey folks, this is Sapient. Just wanted to get a copy of some segments we recorded of a recent interview Kelly did.
Feel free to comment right here.
ETA: The link to hear the entire interview is here.
Gah--this is taking so much longer than I thought. I’m going to attempt to keep this brief and only address major points so that I can move on to chapter 3. I already have people bitching that I should just “ignore Vox,” but I have no intentions of doing so. His fan-boys would only claim victory, so plod along with me here. (Pretty please?)
It is perfectly understandable, but unfortunate, that Kelly is so wedded to an oppositional context that she tends to blindly fall into applying hostile and incorrect interpretations to various parts of the text in which no opposition is required. This does not appear to be a problem of basic reading comprehension, but rather, the result of reading with a critical filter that causes her to react rather than think through her response to what she is reading. This filter, combined with her failure to read the entire book before beginning the chapter-by-chapter review, leads her into a number of completely unnecessary errors in her critique of this chapter.
I am honored to be hosting the 89th Carnival of the Godless, but before we begin, I need to tell the readers something.
All of the following people are bad representatives of atheism.
At least in somebody's opinion. Every person here adheres to a particular viewpoint, methodology, or philosophy with which some other atheist disagrees. Every single one of them. Yet, here they are, spewing their ideas all over the internet with impunity. The horror! What kind of arrogance would compel these people to voice their ill-informed opinions as if they speak for all atheists? You know, they're doing more harm than good.
At least, that's what we're told. That's what "they" (cue spooky music) want us to believe. But how much truth lies in those accusations? Are those statements not also an opinion that may offend somebody else, likely the person at whom they are directed? Might not that also be perceived as detrimental to "the cause?"
I am officially announcing that the next Carnival of the Godless will be hosted here, on my blog, beginning April 13. Be on the lookout for that. I have gotten a bunch of good submissions already.
The following is a "response" from a Vox Day fan. It is relatively devoid of anything intelligent, but I address it because everybody cries if I don't.
I have some agreement with your comment. However we are not talking proof here, just a suggestion. Correlation implies causation. It is hypothesis generating.
No, correlation does not imply causation, and a hypothesis should be generated before any experimentation is undertaken. The hypothesis comes from pure observation, and is then proven or not by experimentation. Perhaps you should study the scientific method.
But a brief survey with biases may still be hypothesis generating, it is the more detailed study that confirms or rejects this. And my comment about the onus being on the person denying it is because no matter how good a study is there will always be flaws, and your suggestion allows people to continually say that correlation does not equal causation.