I Side With...

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Re: I Side With...

Postby Bog » Fri Sep 07, 2012 9:37 pm

ITALIANO wrote:. I find it absurd that one can be a devoted Christian yet at the same time strongly believe that killing a person is a good thing.


You may not know it, but you are describing W circa Texas governship.

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Re: I Side With...

Postby ITALIANO » Thu Sep 06, 2012 6:11 pm

criddic3 wrote: instead of calmly explaining why they don't believe in it.


Well, but actually it's those who believe in something which hasn't been proven that should explain why they do believe in it...

Plus, I dont know about America, but at least in Europe atheists are very calm and very balanced - unlike some religious people.

Speaking of Europe, I think more Americans should visit it. They should especially visit some countries on the Mediterranean - Italy included - which are full of very old buildings called temples, dedicated to gods nobody today believes in. A sad destiny, for these poor gods - scientific discoveries destroyed them one by one. Because people used to find a god for every thing they couldn't understand or explain, like storms for example, or the wind - and gods weren't necessary anymore when science gave a reason for all these facts of nature. Today, of course, we still don't know what happens after death, and we want to believe that SOMETHING happens. (Even I am, I guess, agnostic because of this).

Sonic Youth, I know that religions were and sometimes still are very aggressive, and violent even. But that's usually when they mix with politics, or with power. But as far as I know death penalty is approved by a large majority of Americans, and these are normal people, with no political agenda except their own conscience and beliefs. I find it absurd that one can be a devoted Christian yet at the same time strongly believe that killing a person is a good thing.

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Re: I Side With...

Postby criddic3 » Thu Sep 06, 2012 2:32 pm

Sonic Youth wrote:
criddic3 wrote:
OscarGuy wrote:Apparently, Italiano, you didn't read my post. TV pundits don't discuss atheism because the large number of Christians in the country would descend on them like vultures and they would be fired for even espousing that belief. The only time I ever hear it discussed in specific terms is in comedy circles where they can play it off as a joke. There are plenty of Americans who don't believe in the existence of God.


I think that could be an exaggeration. This country was founded partly on the idea of free speech and freedom to worship or not worship as you wish. I'm not an evangelical, and I have problems with my own Catholic church, but I would never want someone fired for expressing their atheist belief. I would only feel offended if the person specifically mocked certain religions. That's the problem with many atheists is that they go on rants mocking any and all religion instead of calmly explaining why they don't believe in it.


Actually, many atheists keep their mouths shut, only you don't know it. The few that are bold enough speak to out are the type that come across as intemperate in general. But they're not necessarily representative of most atheists who are either keep quiet out of respect to others or are not comfortable to reveal their beliefs to those who are religious. You say the problem with atheists is that they mock the religious. But fundamentalists don't mock atheists. They demonize them. And let's not pretend it doesn't happen, and that it's not worse.


Well, I'm not a fundamentalist. And I would say that any blanket statement about any (peaceful) group is unwise. Most people who believe in religion in America are what might be termed "mainstream" in that they believe in God but don't necessarily try to force that view on to others. Yet when people like Bill Maher talk about religion, they mock the intelligence of those who believe in a higher being. As was mentioned before, intellectuals like Thomas Jefferson even believed there to be a higher power than ourselves. So, when those louder atheists post signs up saying that not believing in God is simply the smart thing, you have to wonder what planet they live on.
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Re: I Side With...

Postby Okri » Wed Sep 05, 2012 7:27 pm

1. Italiano, you'd be depressed to learn about some ciricula. Here's an example

2. I went to a wedding recently where my uncle told a couple of my younger (teenage) cousins that I was an atheist. They asked my parents why they didn't punish me. I'm 28 and haven't lived at home for a decade.

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Re: I Side With...

Postby Sonic Youth » Tue Sep 04, 2012 7:55 pm

criddic3 wrote:
OscarGuy wrote:Apparently, Italiano, you didn't read my post. TV pundits don't discuss atheism because the large number of Christians in the country would descend on them like vultures and they would be fired for even espousing that belief. The only time I ever hear it discussed in specific terms is in comedy circles where they can play it off as a joke. There are plenty of Americans who don't believe in the existence of God.


I think that could be an exaggeration. This country was founded partly on the idea of free speech and freedom to worship or not worship as you wish. I'm not an evangelical, and I have problems with my own Catholic church, but I would never want someone fired for expressing their atheist belief. I would only feel offended if the person specifically mocked certain religions. That's the problem with many atheists is that they go on rants mocking any and all religion instead of calmly explaining why they don't believe in it.


Actually, many atheists keep their mouths shut, only you don't know it. The few that are bold enough speak to out are the type that come across as intemperate in general. But they're not necessarily representative of most atheists who are either keep quiet out of respect to others or are not comfortable to reveal their beliefs to those who are religious. You say the problem with atheists is that they mock the religious. But fundamentalists don't mock atheists. They demonize them. And let's not pretend it doesn't happen, and that it's not worse.
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Re: I Side With...

Postby criddic3 » Tue Sep 04, 2012 7:42 pm

OscarGuy wrote:Apparently, Italiano, you didn't read my post. TV pundits don't discuss atheism because the large number of Christians in the country would descend on them like vultures and they would be fired for even espousing that belief. The only time I ever hear it discussed in specific terms is in comedy circles where they can play it off as a joke. There are plenty of Americans who don't believe in the existence of God.


I think that could be an exaggeration. This country was founded partly on the idea of free speech and freedom to worship or not worship as you wish. I'm not an evangelical, and I have problems with my own Catholic church, but I would never want someone fired for expressing their atheist belief. I would only feel offended if the person specifically mocked certain religions. That's the problem with many atheists is that they go on rants mocking any and all religion instead of calmly explaining why they don't believe in it.
"If you can't stand the nut on the left and you can't stand the nut on the right, go for the Johnson,” Jonathan S. Bush (10/21/2016)

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Re: I Side With...

Postby Sonic Youth » Tue Sep 04, 2012 7:34 pm

ITALIANO wrote:
Big Magilla wrote:The list of "famous atheists" I copied is from a pop website so naturally it's on the light side. In fact some of those listed were/are actually agnostics. There are more agnostics (doubters) than there are atheists in the world. Polls show the rise in people identifying as Atheists in the U.S. has increased from 1% of the population to 5% in recent years.

Although church attendance in the U.S. is higher than that in most countries, the general view is that the freedom of religion we have in this country means the freedom to believe or not belive as well as attend the church of one's choice. Per Wikipedia, Gallup International indicates that 41% of American citizens report they regularly attend religious services, compared to 15% of French citizens, 10% of UK citizens, and 7.5% of Australian citizens.



Certainly a very religious country. Still - and I swear that I don't want to open THAT subject again - for a country where 95% to 99% of the population believes in God, and most, I guess, in a Christian God, isn't it a bit of a contradiction that death penalty still exists, that so many wars are launched..? I wonder how deep this religious beliefs are - definitely very deep for some, but, I'm sure, not for all.


Doesn't seem contradictory to me. Wars and executions are perfectly in accordance with the history of Christianity (or any religion, for that matter).

You'll be relieved to learn, Italiano, that civilian capital punishment in the U.S. is only enforced by state law, and in 17 states the death penalty is illegal. If you happen to visit one of these godless states, I promise you that after they've singled you out through racial profiling and waterboarded you, they will not execute you.
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Re: I Side With...

Postby OscarGuy » Tue Sep 04, 2012 10:35 am

Religion in the United States is built on hypocrisy. People claim to follow the teachings of Jesus, but then preach hate, intolerance and revenge against those who do not share their beliefs, which are all antithetical to the teachings of Christ.

My benefit is that I grew up in the Methodist Church, one of the least "strict" protestant denominations. They were among the first to permit female pastors and have never really had a hard tack stance against homosexuals, though they don't openly support them like some Episcopalians. I doubt this is true of other religions, but my confirmation class (I was in Junior High at the time) actually required us to learn something about other religions. We visited both the local synagogue and the neighboring Catholic Church to understand what other religions were about. It was a fairly open and honest discussion about it. So, I was already exposed to a more free thinking approach to Christianity.

I live in the Bible Belt. The World HQ of the Assemblies of God Church is right here in my hometown. We have a church on nearly every corner and more churches per square foot than most cities in the country I'm sure. So, this is a heavily religious city (there's currently an ordinance to expand protections of gays and transgenders before the city council which prompted a huge outcry from religious groups in the city saying it opened them up to suit for discrimination, but that's another story altogether). I went to school exclusively in this city from Kindergarten through College, so believe me when I say this isn't exactly the most free-thinking area of the country. I still managed to get a solid education. So, I can attest that regardless of religious leanings of a city, the education system is fine. The issue isn't with the system, but the student. In this country, students are more heavily influenced by their parents than by the education system, so if there's a failing in this country with regard to religious understanding and the education system, it's certainly not the fault of the education system.

Also of note is that I attended Catholic school from 2nd to 5th grade, so I've had a rather broad base of experience in religious studies in my time. That I could come through all of that and still hold rather liberal beliefs, I think I turned out ok.
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Re: I Side With...

Postby ITALIANO » Tue Sep 04, 2012 10:15 am

Big Magilla wrote:The list of "famous atheists" I copied is from a pop website so naturally it's on the light side. In fact some of those listed were/are actually agnostics. There are more agnostics (doubters) than there are atheists in the world. Polls show the rise in people identifying as Atheists in the U.S. has increased from 1% of the population to 5% in recent years.

Although church attendance in the U.S. is higher than that in most countries, the general view is that the freedom of religion we have in this country means the freedom to believe or not belive as well as attend the church of one's choice. Per Wikipedia, Gallup International indicates that 41% of American citizens report they regularly attend religious services, compared to 15% of French citizens, 10% of UK citizens, and 7.5% of Australian citizens.



Certainly a very religious country. Still - and I swear that I don't want to open THAT subject again - for a country where 95% to 99% of the population believes in God, and most, I guess, in a Christian God, isn't it a bit of a contradiction that death penalty still exists, that so many wars are launched..? I wonder how deep this religious beliefs are - definitely very deep for some, but, I'm sure, not for all.

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Re: I Side With...

Postby Sonic Youth » Tue Sep 04, 2012 9:18 am

OscarGuy wrote:It sounds like the list was put together as a way to shame some of them considering they put Kim Jong'il and Mao Zedong on the list.

One name I'm surprised isn't on there is Thomas Jefferson.


He was a deist with Unitarian sympathies and rejected many core concepts of Christianity, but not an atheist. He believed in a spiritual higher power (or at least he said he did) even if that higher power wasn't necessarily Jesus.
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Re: I Side With...

Postby Big Magilla » Tue Sep 04, 2012 8:50 am

The list of "famous atheists" I copied is from a pop website so naturally it's on the light side. In fact some of those listed were/are actually agnostics. There are more agnostics (doubters) than there are atheists in the world. Polls show the rise in people identifying as Atheists in the U.S. has increased from 1% of the population to 5% in recent years.

Although church attendance in the U.S. is higher than that in most countries, the general view is that the freedom of religion we have in this country means the freedom to believe or not belive as well as attend the church of one's choice. Per Wikipedia, Gallup International indicates that 41% of American citizens report they regularly attend religious services, compared to 15% of French citizens, 10% of UK citizens, and 7.5% of Australian citizens.

Americans are brought up not to discuss their religious or political beliefs, though that has certainly changed in the last few decades. Americans have become very vocal about their politics. The "born again" Christians (various Protestant denominations) and Catholics (yes, theere are "born again" Catholics) believe it is their mission to bring everyone they meet into the fold and they've increased in numbers in recent years.

In the old days no one would ask someone they hardly knew what their religious beliefs were, but nowadays people come up with questions they would never have asked even a decade ago. I get questions like "have you found a church or have you stopped going?" or comments like "I go to the Catholic Church, my wife goes to the Protestant Church", stopping short of the obvious "what church do you go to?" To the first question I say "I've found a church, but haven't gone yet" and cut off any further discussion. To the second I just smile or nod and change the subject.
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Re: I Side With...

Postby Bog » Tue Sep 04, 2012 8:18 am

Jill Stein and Gary Johnson were far above everyone on my list. Shockingly, or my own fault not paying attention...Barack dropped way down to the 60s on my test largely due to him and I on opposing sides on gun control and capital punishment, and apparently my rating them of high importance. My own head must have been in the sand unaware of Obama's stance on these issues...not that anything has mattered but healthcare.

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Re: I Side With...

Postby ITALIANO » Tue Sep 04, 2012 8:13 am

The list is I think mostly composed of names that ordinary American people could easily recognize, or at least have vaguely heard of. Most European intellectuals - starting from Sartre - are or were atheist, but I guess that their names wouldn't mean much to those living on the other side of the Atlantic.

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Re: I Side With...

Postby OscarGuy » Tue Sep 04, 2012 8:04 am

It sounds like the list was put together as a way to shame some of them considering they put Kim Jong'il and Mao Zedong on the list.

One name I'm surprised isn't on there is Thomas Jefferson.
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Re: I Side With...

Postby Sonic Youth » Tue Sep 04, 2012 8:02 am

Issues of substance discussed on TV? Never heard of such a thing...
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