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Atheist ad campaigns stir the pot during holiday season

Discussion in 'The Pub' started by lornetkowiec, Dec 4, 2010.

  1. religious intolerance, atheists should just practice their beliefs in private and not force it down the throats of everyone else.
  2. No more unreasonable than the religious posters they're next to. It's a good 'un. I might have preferred something a bit less direct like an Epicurus quote, mind.
  3. fixed:

  4. As a Pagan, Christmas can be a bit over the top, some Christians believe they have the only true religion.
  5. And heh to the comments in the link given
  6. Some?:-s
  7. Ah, another starclad. So's the wife.

    My OPINION, is that the Atheists have the right of it, but I don't know that, any more than they or the pope know that what they believe is right. Hard Atheism is a religion - just like Catholicism or Islam. Show me someone who REALLY believes it and I'll show you a nutter.

    I believe in science and logic. But I can read tarrot. Can I explain that? No. Spiritually, I'd like to believe that the soul can go on. I'd like to believe that my 'psychic perceptions' are really that and not just my imagination, but I have no good evidence either way. I certainly can't rely on them.

    Logically, I find the notion of a supreme being, a creator, hard to accept. It's all just a little too convenient. And if he / she / it does exist, then I cannot for the life of me believe it's anything like the evil, capricious, nasty f#cken thing described in the old testament. We shouldn't be trying to pray to that, we should be doing Bruce Willis and trying to nuke it.
  8. Kneedragon, there is a great mystery within life, Ive spent the last 30 years or so working to understand it. Cant say I will ever fully comprehend, but what words fail to grasp, there is something within us that silently knows.
  9. Some really interesting replies. My original question was could anyone imagine this happening in Australia? I am really glad I don't live in the US of A where billboards like these are put up - is any idiot really going to be swayed to change life-long beliefs by a billboard? Plus some people in the States pushing for ridiculous ideas like creationism to be taught in schools at the expense of science...Thank goodness it isn't like that over here.

    +1 twainharte, good edit - EVERYONE should just practice their beliefs in private and not force it down the throats of everyone else.
  10. How can Atheists both have the right of it and be nutters? Atheism does have its zealots, but zealotry doth not a religion make.

    I realise that you've qualified the particularly strident type as 'hard atheists', but what sets them apart from the soft(?) atheists? A proselyting mission? Not all religions have it (only those you've listed, which are, in this regard, anomalous). A leap of faith that goes beyond available evidence? We make such leaps almost every second of our waking lives, and to demand rigorous proof for everything we do would be closer to obsessive paranoia than rational scepticism.

    Which brings me to the nub of the matter: sure agnosticism is more sceptical than atheism to the degree to which, in the absence of rigorous demonstration of proof, it refuses to place its bets. But what evidence can you gather for the absence of a non-existent metaphysical being? Is belief without rigorous proof, in this context, so inimical to reason?

    Hard atheism isn't a religion any more than soft (agnostic?) atheism. It's a political movement. And politics can only exist in a space of conflicting interpretations. Should politics be subsumed by the category of religion for being based upon belief?

    On a related note, did anyone catch the final five minutes of Sleek Geeks this week?
    The chuckles can be had here for those who missed it:
    It's Episode 4 (02 Dec 2010). You'll want to start at 23'55" mark...

    I wouldn't have recognised Bernita without the crazy afro hair she used to have, if she hadn't been referred to by name. Have they pulled this kinda stunt before? Given the demographics of the audience, I'm (pleasantly) surprised they got it approved.
  11. basically most people with a belief believe they are right.

    Christmas has actually become a vehicle for pagans and atheists as well......I mean WTF is up with those flying reindeer's, how about Easter with rabbits I mean WTF. Like ive said, atheists and pagans should really just leave their believes in the privacy of their own homes and leave Christians to celebrate Christmas as how it was meant to be celebrated.
  12. You reminded me of a quote I heard once - not sure who...:

  13. Many people, religious nut jobs and aetheist zealots alike - are not happy to just be, they want to make the world a better place.

    As an atheist bordering on being a zealot myself, I totally understand why jehovah witnesses go door knocking. In their mind, they're interrupting your dinner to change the world - a small price.

    So when I hear about schools wanting to "give both sides of the argument" to creationism/evolution, I can't just stand by and think "well I need to be tolerant of all beliefs". Screw that.
  14. Athiest have no beliefs, big difference. We work on emperical eveidence, and if we have none it does not worry us, cause we will work it out eventually.

    If you beleive in a god, you are wrong. Go take a look at your local museum, it will instantly disprove all your 'theories'. Oh sorry, i forgot, dinosaurs were put their by your god as a test.. ](*,) ](*,)
  15. i can imagine it happenning here actually.
    the athiest movement over there was borne out of need.
    christian nutjobs nowadays are trying to influence and change the community at all levels of politics.
    they don't wear their true colors on their sleeves and operate in a more clandestine manner to blend into the community... they look and act like everyone else and appear normal enough, but behind the masquerade are just brainwashed individuals seeking to assert the belief system of their church in YOUR home.
    have a look and see just how many 'family first' candidates their are in locality.
    how many are working at your local council
    how many sit on the board of your kids school
    they're organised, they're mobile and very well funded.
    ... and before you know it, little Timmy comes home from school one day talking nonsensical garbage about how a giant sky fairy loves him and created the family dog.
    it's happenned over there and it's here now
    the athiest movement there is just trying to combat it on the same playing field.
  16. @ ogben
    ... Yes, I would concede that Atheism is a political movement, born to counter the efforts of the fundamentalist christian right, and as such, I whole heartedly approve.

    I wrote an essay on religion in Jan '06. I'm going to post it. It's not an effort to sell any particular religious idea - indeed it contains a very explicit warning to avoid religious gurus like the plague. It is a bit off topic, although the topic seems to be sliding a little. It is long. If you're not interested, then just skip to the next post.

    I don't believe in shoving religion down people's throats, but I'm happy to discuss it with other happy - reasonable - people.
    Some thoughts on religion, metaphysics and divinity.

    I have thought for many years that I am an agnostic, a rather apathetic one. “I don’t know, I have insufficient data to speculate, and I’ll find out soon enough.”

    The ABC played an interview with Arthur C Clarke recently, some of which touched me very deeply. (More on that later.) That led me to thinking about what I believe and what I could believe.

    Let’s start with the existence or otherwise of God. I cannot bring myself to accept that an old man in a white robe and a beard created the universe in seven days and is omniscient, omnipotent and immortal. That has got to go in the same file as Santa Clause, the Tooth Fairy and the Easter Bunny. It’s a good story for children and the feeble minded.

    On the other hand divinity might exist. You couldn’t pour it from a test tube into a beaker, but you couldn’t pour courage, nobility or creativity either. An abstract concept can still be a very real and powerful thing.

    Most of us would be familiar with the Gaia concept, that the world and all the life on it make one great collective organism that on some level has awareness and consciousness. I’m a bit sceptical but it’s not an idea I’d like to dismiss out of hand. For one thing, how would we know? For another, what harm does it do? Compared to the stories told in The Epic of Gilgamesh, which found their way through Chinese whispers into the Old Testament, the Koran and the Torah, this view of the world is a lot more benign and helpful.

    If you subscribe to the idea that the world is alive, and you make up one tiny part of that life, then having a little meditate and communing with the world makes a lot of sense. Asking her for a pay rise or bigger breasts does not.

    I’m pretty confident that all the life on this planet, plus all the other life out there in the universe, is not part of one gigantic creature. However, I would go along with the idea that the force itself, that thing we call life, (even though we have a very imperfect understanding of what it actually is), that might qualify as divine, and worthy of a certain amount of love and respect, if not worship.

    The most persistent force in the universe is entropy. Everything turns to dust in the end. But the force which opposes that, which breaks the rule, is life. Life is what the bible means when it talks about the Creator, because that’s what it is. It is the only thing which does. What better definition do you need for divinity than that?

    So we should worship life? Perhaps. Let’s talk about worship for a moment, what it should be and what it shouldn’t be. My concept of worship is akin to what people do during meditation. It is an altered mental state, a form of advanced concentration. You might focus on the divine, your relationship with the divine, feel your love and respect for it, allow yourself a little wonder and humbleness and awe at being one tiny part of it. Allow yourself to understand that you are one tiny piece of something huge and miraculous and wonderful beyond all understanding. This should bring about a sense of joy, peace and fulfilment.

    Now let’s talk about what worship shouldn’t be. My first and biggest reservation about worship is that it marks you as a victim. It’s like walking around with a bulls eye on your chest at a gun club. It’s like bending over to pick up the soap in the prison shower.

    The mental state one strives for during worship is akin to self hypnosis. It is an extremely suggestible state. If it is conducted with care and intelligence and understanding and benevolence and support, then it may be a wonderful thing. But if it is conducted for the profit or benefit of the leader or the church or the guru, then it is an abuse of power on the same scale as the sexual abuse of a child by an adult in a position of power and trust over that child, like an uncle or teacher or football coach or priest.

    It comes as no surprise to me that we are hearing a flood of complaints about child sex abuse within the church. The church is an institutional culture, developed and refined for two millennia to find or create weakness and dependence, create and nurture vulnerability, trust and absolute obedience. It must be an irresistible magnet for sexual predators. If you can’t get into the police force, try the church. That’s not to say there aren’t good people in the church doing good things. Sure there are! The vast majority of them are. But the whole institution is structured and organised to foster and hide and protect those that are not. The whole institution has evolved and been refined to feed like a vampire off the devotion and trust of its congregation: their money, their thoughts and opinions and values, their morality and basic decency, their property at the end of their lives, and the bodies of their children.

    In case you hadn’t noticed I have a very big bee in my bonnet about the abuse of power and trust. The systematic, institutional exploitation of the weak, the poor, the young, the gullible and poorly educated makes me sick in the stomach. What can you say about an organisation that has as a piece of basic dogma “Give me a child until he’s seven and he’s mine for life.”? Even heroine pushers don’t start until they’re about that age. The church starts at conception. It’s got it’s hooks well into you by the time your mum notices that her period is late.

    So what does the church have to offer? What is it trying to sell you? Freedom from guilt and life everlasting in heaven. Ok, that sounds pretty good. I’ll have five of those thanks. Yes please, gift wrapped.

    Let’s look at the concept of the immortal soul first, because I find to my surprise I half believe this one.

    It has been a feature of human folklore and tradition and belief for tens of thousands of years that some form of life goes on after the death of the body. We’ve found burial sites dating to before the end of the last ice age, where the corpse has been cleaned up, dressed in their Sunday best, covered in flowers and petals, and (significantly) equipped with the stuff they’ll need to take a major journey. Spear, axe, knife, shoes on the feet plus a spare pair, water bag, hard rations, flint…

    We have believed for fifty thousand years that the death of the body might not be the end of the road. That’s a pretty persistent belief. Virtually every primitive people have had rich and complex stories about the spirit world. It is a common thread throughout all of human history and culture that there exists a physical world and a spiritual world. We have always believed this.

    Another common idea is that admission to the spirit world is not automatic. Not everyone survives the transition. You need a coin in your mouth to pay the ferry man. You need to repent your sins on your death bed or you’ll go to the other place. It’s a fairly common and extremely predictable feature of most religious teachings to connect admission to the afterlife with good behaviour in this one. If you are a teacher or parent or authority figure of some kind, how simple and obvious is it to say "Don't hit your sister or you won't go to heaven." It would kind of puzzle me if it didn’t happen all the time. And it does.

    But it’s not consistent. Even the bible makes the point very explicitly that you can live a good life but be in the wrong state of mind at the end and miss out. You can also be a very bad person but get the right mental tune playing in your head at the end and make it. It also makes the point that being rich doesn’t help. I would tend to rephrase that slightly myself, to say that the kind of mental machinery one needs to accumulate money and property and power in this life will be of little help at the end of it, in surviving the great transition.

    What else does the bible have to say that might be helpful? Well it says we should pray a lot. I wouldn’t entirely disagree with that. Remember what I said about worship. “Please God can I have a new car?” isn’t going to be helpful here. But practising the skill of getting into that self hypnotic state where you’re very conscious of being alive and part of the great web of life, connected in some mystical way to all other living things and viewing life itself as a divine entity, and being grateful and joyful at all the above, that may be very helpful.

    Martial arts students practice their moves over and over, to get them right and to keep fit and to make those moves a reflex action, completely instinctive and automatic. Why? Because when things start getting exciting there’s no time to think about what you’re going to do, you need to be doing it. I suspect we should pray a lot for the same reasons, because when the heart stops beating and the blood stops flowing there isn’t much time left to think about these things. I think if we are to survive the great change, we should practice the mental art of gathering our ‘life’ together and willing it to go where the other life is. Is that like “Go toward the light, Johnny!” Well, yes, it could be.

    Now might be a good time to mention Arthur C Clarke. The BBC did one of their excellent Background Briefings on him, including an interview. They listed some of his ‘inventions’ and finished with a little book reading from one of his novels. It was apparently the opening paragraph, but I didn’t catch the name of the novel. It’s not one I’ve read. Remember, I’m quoting from memory here, so this may not be word for word.

    I don’t know about you, but that works for me. I heard that read out on the radio at half past nine in the evening, and I had to stop the cab because I couldn’t see where I was going. I was weeping tears of joy. In one elegant, spare, poetic paragraph, Arthur has nailed it. He’s set down and laid out the dreams and aspirations of a technical people. If he never wrote down any idea before that one and never set finger to key after, he deserves all the accolade we can give him. There is nothing so rare or precious as a beautiful mind, and he deserves the nearest thing to immortality that we can give him. Thank you Arthur, you’ve inspired me to think religious thoughts, and that takes some doing.

    Similar ideas surface in more modern sci-fi. David Zindell writes near the end of “Neverness” that “ … man is a bridge, between an ape and a god.” In Peter F Hamiltons’ “Nights’ Dawn” trilogy he explores ideas of planes of existence, universes and subuniverses that exist at higher or lower energy states. He weaves and entangles ideas from theoretical physics and religion and mysticism in wonderful and fascinating ways. Of course writers have been flirting with these ideas for a long time now. Shakespeare wrote “What a piece of work is man, How like a God … “

    My concept of heaven is to go on living after this bag of blood and guts has stopped working, and explore, learn, find others who have transcended and communicate with them. I want to step up a plane, go to the next level, become more than I was, expand my mind and consciousness and wisdom. I speculate that there are more levels, perhaps many more, and my ambition is to keep stepping up as far as I can go. I look at Greg Bears’ upwardly mobile cosmonaut, Pavel Minsky, and I smile and wish.

    Hell is an overused word. We use it a lot to mean a number of different but related things. The strict biblical sense, as an underground prison for souls who’ve been naughty, I’d lump that with the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy. I can easily imagine a religious person who dies and transcends, believes himself to be guilty or unworthy, goes down into the earth because that’s what religion and folklore has told him to expect. Just imagining that scenario is enough to give me another reason to want to kick my local priest. That person would have imprisoned himself, possibly for a long time, possibly until the crushing despair and the darkness brought about true death, all because of religious brainwashing. That does sound pretty much like hell to me. A hell that didn’t exist before the church created it.

    What does hell mean to me, personally? An extended period of intense suffering from which I cannot escape or extricate myself. Suffering without purpose, for no benefit, that leads to no higher understanding or gain to myself or others. An absence of hope, with no end in sight. Been there a few times now.

    And the devil? Just like god and santa clause and the tooth fairy, the devil is a classic case of anthropomorphism. We like to put a human face on an abstract concept, especially when it’s important to us. Consider liberty. Liberty means being free of slavery, bonded labour, government without representation, arbitrary detention, telemarketers perhaps… Liberty does not mean some ugly broad in sandals and a toga looking miserable because her shoulder hurts. That statue is an artistic representation, a literary device. There are lots of them; metaphor, simile, hyperbole, onomatopoeia, and … (what’s the one where the weather matches the mood on the stage?) and anthropomorphism. The trouble with these excellent devices is they can confuse the student, who isn’t bright enough or sufficiently sophisticated to read between the lines to the intended message. Think of Bruce Lee in “Enter the Dragon.” He tells the lad “It’s like a finger pointed to heaven. [swift clip under the students’ left ear.] Don’t look at the finger. You’re missing all that heavenly glory.”

    The bible is a great piece of literature. It contains much that is instructive and wise, but it is a Sears Catalogue of literary device. It contains more metaphor, simile, anthropomorphism, allegory and analogy (and every other elegant and clever literary device) than any other single work of literature known to man. And it has been misinterpreted and misrepresented, often deliberately, by every shyster and snake-oil salesman since Peter went to Rome. From the rulers of Constantinople to Torquemanda and the Inquisition and Jim Jones and the KoolAid, every second ratbag in the last two millennia has found a way to twist the scriptures for his own ends.

    Do you think god carved the ten commandments and gave them to Moses? With no witnesses? If you were the CEO and chairman of the board of (say) General Electric, would you draft a memo to all staff that the whole corporate agenda had just been changed, then write it on a serviette after a liquid lunch and hand it to your PA and never mention it again? Or do you think maybe Moses carved them? Do you think that perhaps one of the reasons we insist on the separation of church and state is that the bible itself contain numerous examples of the misuse of religion for political ends? It didn’t start with the printing of the King James version. The characters in the bible were already misusing religion right there in the stories. Religion is a tool with which the wolves herd the sheep. “Don’t hit your sister or you won’t go to heaven.”

    The next time someone offers to be your spiritual or religious guide, punch him in the mouth and run a mile.

    You may note that my religious ideas seem to be drawn as much from science and sci-fi as from religion. I would counter that my thoughts and ideas have been fostered by curiosity, a desire to seek the truth. The fundamental difference between science and dogma is that one permits the re-evaluation of old ideas in the light of new evidence and one does not.

    I don’t hold my present opinions on spiritual matters to be the final and ultimate truth, just a snapshot of where I'm at in my thinking at this moment. If a better idea comes along then I’m willing to look at it. I will however, be very sceptical about any school of thought that demands as a basic prerequisite, that I suspend any and all rational analysis and place myself in a state of self hypnotic suggestibility before moving to step two. If they solicit donations from the faithful while they are in that state, perhaps preceded by a few miracle cures, then I’ll be out the door before you can crank out a benediction.

    Some thoughts on mysticism. Some things are mystical because we don’t really know what we’re talking about but we’re trying to work it out anyway. For example, string theory seems to suggest many more dimensions than the four we readily perceive, and a multitude of other universes. Does this imply that the sentient mind may build part of itself in one or more of these higher dimensions or alternate parallel universes? And when the life support packs up, it’s that part which may be able to survive without the brain that built it? Is that what a soul is? I don’t know, but I find the idea fascinating.

    Then there’s the other kind of mysticism, the kind that’s not designed to seek answers but to provide a mechanism for bamboozling the seeker. A cunningly constructed framework for the peddling of snake-oil. A sharp edge for the separation of a fool and his money. The absolute best one of these, the world champion and grand Pooh-Bah, is the Cabala. A better mechanism to confuse, obfuscate, cloud and manipulate has yet to be invented. It’s a work of genius.

    On psychic phenomena of other kinds, spoon benders, water dowsers, mediums, palm and tarot readers and what-have-you, I’d say most of it is rubbish. Like the Cabala, most of it is just someone trying to shake you down for a few shekels. Having said that, I’ve seen some things that I find very hard to explain. On more than one occasion, more than ten, I’ve seen and experienced things that conventional science would scratch its head about and conclude that I was deluded. Perhaps I was, but I don’t think so. Not every time.

    “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” Just because you can fly a kite into a thunderstorm and get lightning to run down the wet string, jumping from a key to the earth, (Why do I suspect that was a fudged result?) doesn’t mean you know about Ohms Law or integrated circuits. Science is about the pursuit of knowledge, the search for the truth. A firm belief that you can’t inquire into some subjects, or talk about them, sounds more like religious dogma than science to me.

    Popperism contends that any serious scientific thought which cannot be tested, proven true or false, is a bad idea. If you take that as a guideline, an indication of how good, sharp, clear scientific thought should proceed then I would strongly agree with it. But if you take the ball and run with it, to a position that says “Something about this line of thought smacks of the metaphysical, so we can’t think about this.”, then I think we’ve tossed the baby out with the bath water.

    An inquiring mind should be able to think about and talk about anything it damn well wants. We just need to be crystal clear about what we know, what we suspect, and what’s just idle fancy. To do otherwise is dishonest. People will say we’ve fiddled the data, flipped the images, leant on the research assistant to donate her eggs.

    Arthur C Clarke also said that any level of technology more than slightly in advance of your own was indistinguishable from magic. Not only do you not know how it works, you are ignorant of even the basic principles it works on. Spooky stuff. Metaphysics. Mysticism. Magic.

    The act of comprehension causes the symmetry breaking which resolves the wave / particle duality, enforcing an 'Exclusive Or' condition on the photon, making it a wave or a particle but no longer both. This is one of the most heavily tested and carefully examined facts in science, because it has some freakish implications. It means that whether we know and understand something has a physical effect on the outcome. Mind over matter. Magic. Think of a computer game with infinite randomly generated levels. When you finish one, the software creates a new one for you, a fresh new world that didn’t exist until you opened that door and looked. If a tree falls in the forest and nobody is there to hear, does it make a noise? Correct answer: “Unknown.” Perhaps there’s no tree and no forest. Does the light in your fridge go out when you shut the door? A sparky or an engineer might say “Check the switch with your finger. If the light goes off and on and the switch can be shown to be working correctly with regard to the position of the door, then yes, the light goes off.” I heard a clever solution to this problem recently. “Take your camera phone and set it to record. Place it in the fridge and shut the door. Open the door, take the phone out and play back the recording.” I like that one. Quantum theory gives us the full answer. If you do the phone thing then you have resolved with certainty whether the switch worked correctly on that occasion, and it’s reasonable to assume that it usually does, but you don’t know that. Truth is, when the door shuts, the light might not only stay on but the celery might be dirty dancing with the broccoli. We just don’t know.

    One of my all time favourite fictional characters was the kitten called Pixel, created by Robert A Heinlein. Pixel could walk through walls, because she was very young and had not yet learned that she couldn’t. Pixel is an obvious reference to Schroedengers’ cat, but delightful.

    Ok, I know, I’m rambling. The point is that in some way, on some level, to some small extent, human awareness, consciousness, comprehension, actually has a physical effect on the universe that it observes. Magic. Spooky stuff.

    Does this imply that there is something divine, supernatural about the human mind? Perhaps. It does suggest (to me) that other dimensions or alternate universes are real and do exist all around us, and that part of what we are (sentient beings) exists in these other dimensions. It does suggest to me that we have done ourselves a grave disservice by permitting the separation of the disciplines and the resultant creation of the many different paradigms or jargon sets.

    When we talk about the Astral Plain, is that the same as the Spirit World, or the Other Side? Is that in any way related to higher dimensions or alternate universes? Is a soul the same thing as a ghost, or a shade or a spirit or a transcendent creature of light and energy? What about a god? Or perhaps an angel?

    Are we bamboozling ourselves by inventing dozens of different frames of reference for the same thing? Or very closely related phenomena. Perhaps we’re missing out in the pursuit of knowledge and truth because scientists are muttering about complex amino acids in twigs while the religious are drooling about the creation of leaves. Can’t we see we’re all talking about the same thing? Wake up and enjoy the forest.

    Perhaps your God has a beard and a white robe, pushes the waters apart by telekinesis, likes to see Bambi and Leo being friends. Mine writes software, with algorithms like v = I * r and f = m * a, and e = m c ^ 2. Perhaps our mental constructs to understand our gods are mind numbingly different, but is it possible we’re talking about the same god?

  17. I can't tell if you are being serious or not - however, Easter is a pagan ritual which has been absorbed into Christianity. Not sure about Christmas.
  18. Religion freaks me out a bit... A lot.
    Why do we spend all of this life worrying about the next one ??
    Don't get me wrong. I hope there is an after life. Because as far as I am concerned life is pretty good. And I would love another go around.
    But we as humans keep changing the rules to suit ourselves. Not the God. And if I was a god, I would be pretty pissed off at that.
    And then we have all these different gods to suit different people.
    So is it a creed or just something to suit our lifestyles. Or something to get on our soap box about and rant ???
    How many people have been killed in the name of god ??? Have different religions ever got along side by side. Like ever in history for any period of time ????
    So is religion there to make god feel better about himself or us ??? Isn't it meant to be about the god.
    And we came long after most other species. Is god a lizard or a bird or a mountain. Why must he be like us. From what I see we are like a bad virus on anything beautiful in nature.
    Like ghosts and UFOs. I don't know anyone of sane mind that has seen either. Yet no one is game enough to completely deny they exist.
    Seems like these days if your a hard working beef and three veg sort of person there is nothing to celebrate. Why do gays have to get out and say I am gay. Like hell I love sex but it does not take up all my life or time. I don't need to wear a t-shirt stating I am strait or have a parade.
    Why to we have to wear every one Else's baggage. Why do we have to have it thrown at us till we agree.
    I am not knocking all these things. I just don't get why you have to throw it in our face. If it makes you feel comfortable being gay, Muslim, catholic, atheist or what ever........isn't that enough. Isn't that what it's all about.
  19. Not any more and not even that at all, its now been commercialized and has nothing to do with any religion. So basically atheists trying to change things once again.

    Why should religious schools need to teach atheists beliefs, again isnt this pushing their own belief system? why should religious public school students be forced to listen study to atheist beliefs? The big bang and how life sprouted from nothing is a belief system the same as creationism.