My standpoint (quite a rant really)
I don't believe in God. Really. I acctually used to believe in God, but it was more in the invisible friend way. In fact, it was excactly like in the invisible friend way.
I was lonely as a child. I didn't feel lonely and it didn't matter much to me, but I was lonely. So, after hearing about God in class (religion class) I thought he would made a great invisible friend. So, for a couple of weeks I played LEGO with him, I also made up a friend for him (no, it wasn't Jesus). Then we came to the ten commandments and it clearly stated that you shouldn't have any other Gods before him (or something like that), and I was acctually terrified. I had, unknowingly, sinned against God. I gave him up soon after that. I was around 10 at the time.
You might wonder, I guess, why I first heard about God in school. Why not at home. I shall tell you. I am not american, I am swedish. With a few exceptions, noone believes in God in this country. Not really. A few bears into a late Saturday night, and someone might bring it up. Why are we here? And that's pretty much it.
Therefore, it seemed to me quite odd when I about half a year ago stumbled upon Dr. Dino and his videos on youtube. I saw a man who acctually believed that the world was 6000 years old, and that Noah indeed fittet the arch with 20,000 species of bees. Quoting first grade texts books, he made his case, and I watched with awe. Clearly, any man that believed this must be an exception in his community. It turned out, it was the other way around. Come the rational response squad, and I understood just how bad it was. In a country where people are acctually allowed to rant about the fires of hell and who's going to enjoy them in a national news cast, something has clearly gone wrong.
So what is so wrong about it? I will tell you.
Nobody knows if we have a soul. Nobody knows if God exists. Nobody , for that matter, knows of that God's plans. Religion, however, makes people claim that they do. Being so sure about the workings of a devine and omniscient being is obviously the recipe for disaster. It is obvious, that any man who believes that he knows wheter or not the eternal judge dislikes homosexuals, it going to be very pro or against homosexuals. In the case of Christianity it has turned out to be so obvious that he does not like them, that there are states outlawing oral and anal sex. How do they know that such acts are condemned by God? It's in the bible.
But why is it, that it is in the bible? Could it be that the people who wrote the bible believed that it was a matter of choice, and making such a choice is clearly unnatural? I think that that might be the reason. We now know that there are biological and psychological reasons for homosexuality, and that it has little to do with cognition. We also know that it is common throughout the animal kingdom. Of course, we also know that The Black Widow eats her mate to provide food for her ickle babies. Of course, this is a factoid. But it still gives the right idea.
We do not know wheter homosexuality is natural or not, in the same sense that we do not know wheter sex for leisure's sake is natural or not. But what we do know, is that there is no such thing as 'natural'. Any activity may be prescribed as baing natural, and there is nothing devine about it.
But this text has nothing to do with the rights and wrongs about homsexuality.
I'm here to say a few things about atheism, and where I think you lack. Yes, I do acctually think that you lack. Not in the sense as in you don't believe in anything, we both know that's not true. But you miss something here. The Christian point of view.
I listened to the Ergun Caner show (I think that was his name), and it occurred to me how Christians view the matter of AIDS, for example. At one point Caner said that there were no such things as victimless actions, in short. For example, if you shoot a guy, someone has to die (namely the guy you shot). There cannot be evil without there being suffering of innocent people. God, in all his visdom, decided to give us absolutely free will, knowing, that doing so would render alot of innocent people hurt. Not giving us free will, would be worse however, because then we would be mere sheep. All evil acts have innocent victims. Christians just happen to believe that both abortion and homosexuality is an evil act. For some reason, I don't know why, they believe that when someone shoots another person, it is not the shooter who killed the other person, it was the evil act in itself. And, that's why there is AIDS. People do mean things, and it is does things that create AIDS, plaques and so on. Every evil act has innocent victims, and if it is a victimless crime, someone in the world gets AIDS.
I think, that is what Caner was talking about. Now, I don't know if that's a correct interpretation, if it isn't, please correct me. What I mean with all this is, atheists must think outside their box in order to get to Christians, or theist of any sort.
When someone asks a Christian: "if God created the universe for our sake, how come there are so many other galaxies? Why didn't he just create our own solar system?", the question will only bewilder a Christian, because, evidently, God did create other galaxies. So, what should the question be then? I don't know really. Perhaps we will never know, but thinking outside your own box (and being an atheist doesn't render you boxless) is a good start.
Ironically believing in God is all the reasons you'll ever need to believe in a God. Every arguments for God requires a pre-assumption of God. When Micheal Behe says that Irreducible Complexity is a sure sign of a creator, and that means that God exists, he is making this mistake. By the way, Irreducible Complexity has not been observed yet, not in the eye nor in the bacteria flaggelum. Those are the kind of arguments believers seem to use, but still they claim that those are not the reasons why they believe in God, because even they realise that God must not be that Creator. My question is, why do you use that as an argument in the first place? Come with an argument that acctually makes sense, that is not circular and is valid.
The bible belongs to the same realm as does the norse Eddas. In the realm of mythology. It certainly shouldn't hold an entire nation in an iron grip. Religion makes adult people have an invisible friend, and being particularly smug about it.