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Posts Tagged ‘thanksgiving’

There’s a popular line about how militant Muslims fly planes into buildings, militant Christians murder doctors who provide abortions, and militant atheists write books.

It succinctly makes the point about the common double-standard in how people with different religious ideas are perceived. So long as you have some kind of faith, you can shout about it all you want, and nobody accuses you of being too aggressive, or “militant”, until you start getting physically violent or killing people. To be a militant atheist, in many cases it suffices to speak your mind.

As it turns out, some people set the bar even lower than that.

It was Thanksgiving recently in the States, and President Obama gave a speech about how this was a time to reflect on one’s good fortune. However, on this occasion he didn’t directly mention God in his message.

Conservative columnist Ben Shapiro’s verdict: militant atheist.

I find this very offensive.

The real militant atheists just aren’t getting the credit they deserve.

Seriously, if that’s all it takes to rile this idiot, how terrifying would he find Richard Dawkins, or PZ Myers? Or even me? I might not seem that scary or militant to you, but at least I actually declare a disbelief in God. All Obama did was go five minutes without mentioning him.

“Somebody ought to remind Obama that when Americans sit down around a meal today and give thanks, they give thanks to God,” said The Las Vegas Review-Journal’s columnist Sherman Frederick, according to the Christian Post. Somebody ought to remind Sherman Frederick that, as of a Gallup poll last year, around 20% of Americans don’t find religion very important in their lives, and around 25% aren’t Christian and so won’t be giving thanks to the same God as him.

It continues to be comically pitiful how much of a monopoly on our attention some Christians need before they start howling about persecution.

(via PZ)

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– President Obama’s proclamation for Thanksgiving was unique in that he didn’t mention God, except when quoting George Washington. So, he sort of did bring him up. But still, LifeSiteNews can barely hold back their disdain.

There’s been a lot of bollocks written lately by people angry that non-believers or non-Christians should be daring to join in with the rigmarole of regimented gratitude. I can’t be bothered to go find some of it again and provide links, but it was just more inane rantings on the theme of “shut up, don’t express your opinions, STOP HAVING FUN GUYS” directed mostly at atheists. If anyone’s rebutted all of this any more articulately than me (my own thoughts didn’t really develop beyond “Oh, fuck off“), feel free to link to it in the comments.

– Uganda is making it legal to kill gay people. It’s called the Anti-Homosexuality Bill.

And Rick Warren is apparently fine with this. Yes, that Rick Warren. The one who Barack Obama described as one of the three wisest people he knows, and who delivered the current president’s Inaugural Invocation.

Come on, guy. Give us something. If we just have to keep liking you because you’re a great orator and seem thoughtful and friendly, we’re not going to be any better than those people buying Sarah Palin’s book who have no idea why they like her except that she’s folksy. We appreciate the occasional namecheck for non-believers, but isn’t this kind of bullshit worth denouncing, and isn’t someone like Rick Warren worth publicly distancing yourself from if he won’t?

– Steve Novella is chairman of the recently formed Institute For Science In Medicine. That guy works insanely hard. And I’m impressed with how many other names I recognise from their list of members.

“A bloke cannot marry his brother; it is not right. A woman cannot marry their sister; it is not right. A bloke cannot marry a bloke because it is not right, and a female cannot marry a female because it is not right. I don’t support this.” Australian politics at work, ladies and gentlemen.

These slippery slopes just keep coming back. I really don’t see the connection. From a judicial standpoint, what would need to happen for incest or polygamy to be legal, in any form? What representatives or political leaders would have to vote on what bills, sign what documents, to put something like that into law? And in what ways does that answer change when some other unrelated legislation on gay marriage is passed?

– I’m not crazy about “The [representation of data] that [company or group of individuals alleged to be powerful and motivated by self-interest] doesn’t want you to see!” as a hook, but these are some pretty interesting graphs, which do a lot to undermine the resilient, annoying, and deeply naive idea that all illegal downloading is straightforward theft. Musical artists are making more and more money.

– I chimed in with a discussion on Twitter earlier today about climate change denialism. Jack of Kent seemed to be at its focus for the most part, and he’s just put up a blog on the subject. I was planning to write about this myself tonight, but all that other nonsense up there got in the way, and now it’s late. I’ll try and get it done tomorrow, because I don’t entirely agree with him, and I’d like to try and figure out exactly what it is that I do think about this.

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