Carnival of the Godless #89
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?"
The strength, and weakness, ironically, of atheism is found somewhere in the cacophony of voices boisterously discussing, debating, even arguing, about the multitude of differing opinions on absolutely any subject. There is no official arbiter to whom we defer--there is no dogmatic adherence to a code of any sort. And while I do not know whether there is a right or wrong side in this matter, I do know that it takes all sorts of people to get anything done--the outspoken, the introverted, the contemplative, the determined, the educated, the uneducated, the friendly, the angry. No one person is a good representative of the diversity and differences of the atheist community.
Almost one year ago, Brian and I appeared on Nightline with the Banana Boys, Ray Comfort and Kirk Cameron. It was an experience about which I still can't decide how I feel, so I vacillate between wishing it had never happened (although there would be no crocoduck...) and wishing I could do it again. The deluge of criticisms poured in, and continue to this day. Some constructive; some not so. But, despite all the people telling us that we had done irreparable damage to "atheism" by our amateur performance, not everybody felt that way. I received this email today:
"I have officially stopped being a Christian since watching your awesome
debate against Ray Comfort and Kirk Cameron. Mr. Brian and Ms. Kelly, you
rock. You defended your beliefs well and kicked arse. I just wanted to
thank RRS for freeing my mind. If you have any, ANY, info, please send it
In my mind, even if this was the only email of this nature (which it isn't), it was worth it. And you can take from that whatever you choose.
Welcome to the April 13, 2008 edition of carnival of the godless.
Joe Dunckley presents Church leader declares crackpot ideas, gets free air time posted at Cotch dot net.
DWSUWF presents "The maxim of civil government being reversed in that of religion, where its true form is..." posted at Divided We Stand United We Fall, saying, "And what of our time? Does the electorate still impose a religious test for public office? It speaks well for our time that Keith Ellison, the first Muslim congressman was elected in 2006 and serves today. But could a Muslim be elected president? The eagerness with which some have propagated and defended the fraudulent “Obama is a Muslim” e-mail points to how much religious intolerance remains. Could a Jew be elected President? Possibly. How about a Native American who practices the religious rituals and ceremonies of his ancestors? Could a professed atheist or agnostic get elected to major office anywhere regardless of secular qualifications?"
Jason presents 1689: Kazimierz Lyszczynski, the first Polish atheist posted at Executed Today, saying, "I know this is pretty late for the March 30 carnival; I hope not *too* late ... what can I say? I'm constrained by history."
Martin Wagner presents Closed captioned for the humor impaired posted at The Atheist Experience, saying, "In which Kazim offers some suggestions to Christians who think they can sway atheists merely by incessantly quoting the Bible, and comes up with The Star Trek Rule."
Christian Bachmann presents Atheism is compatible with the Ten Commandments posted at Joy of Freethinking, saying, "I guess that most atheists may not be aware of the fact that they observe the Ten Commandments better than many observant Jews and Christians."
Hemant presents It?s Dangerous for Children To Know Atheism Exists, Says Illinois State Legislator posted at Friendly Atheist.
Buffy presents “Myth 2: Religion Does More Harm Than Good” posted at The Gaytheist Agenda, saying, "A dissection of a theologian's attempt to dispel the "atheist myth" that religion causes more harm than good."
C. L. Hanson presents BYU wrap-up posted at Letters from a broad..., saying, "The BYU segment of the online atheist novel Exmormon has been posted, including the deconversion scene and the famous gratuitous love scene."
Greta Christina presents The Blasphemy of Creationism posted at Greta Christina's Blog, saying, "Why creationism -- and the idea that the Bible trumps science and evidence -- is more disrespectful to the creationists' God than anything any atheist could say or do."
Greg Laden presents It is OK to be an atheist, but not an uppity atheist posted at Greg Laden's Blog, saying, "This is a bit of a follow up you may want to look at: http://scienceblogs.com/gregladen/2008/04/it_is_ok_to_be_an_atheist_as_l.php"
Allen in Fort Worth presents "Under The Banner of Heaven", Warren Jeffs, The FLDS, and The WFZ Ranch posted at The Whited Sepulchre, saying, "why does God give some people revelations and messages without giving the same information to everyone else?"
Matthew Armstrong presents Dave Makes Arguments Fun! posted at Anthroslug the Much Put-Upon, saying, "An artist friend produces another variant on Creationist Bingo - fun at science classes, school board meetings, and Republican party functions!"
Beth Patterson presents The Onion headline: Buddhist Monk Wins Serenity Competition posted at Virtual Teahouse, saying, "A little satire is good for the soul...whatever the hell that is! Beth, Virtual Tea House Host"
Ariah Fine presents Isn’t It The Churches Job? So, Why Do We Ask The Government? posted at Trying to Follow.
Greta Christina presents Atheism, Bad Luck, and the Comfort of Reason posted at Greta Christina's Blog, saying, "An atheist perspective on runs of bad luck... and why I find this perspective far more comforting during difficult times that the supposed "comfort" of theism."
vjack presents A Non-Believer in Church: First Free Will Baptist at Iuka posted at Mississippi Atheists, saying, "posted by Oliver"
eltower presents Gott mit uns posted at Gospel of Reason, saying, ""In the dark depths of the lack of knowledge of early human history, maps can be found in divine interpretations, counsel is given from trances and most importantly deeds, good or evil, bear from a higher cause. Of course, depending on where you look, not much has changed at all. One would be hard pressed to believe that a world where superpowers invade sovereign countries because ‘God’ told them so was a world in the XXI century, and not in the age of the Trojan Wars.""
Michael Dorian presents POLYGAMY IN TEXAS—OR RAPE AND PEDOPHILIA? posted at NYC-Atheists Blog, saying, "The Carnival of the Godless Blog is a tremendous idea. My blog is relatively new (just three months old) and I've been doing my darnedest to attract traffic. So glad I came across this. I hope my submission is selected. In any case, I'll be back for more. And thanks!"
Rook Hawkins presents On Paul and Identity.
That concludes this edition. Submit your blog article to the next edition of carnival of the godless using our carnival submission form. Past posts and future hosts can be found on our blog carnival index page.