Sunday, May 15, 2011


I'm not going to argue laws or work place policies.  What I am pondering is the accepted social prejudice in the US toward atheism.  I am an atheist and can be vocal about that at times.  It boils down to this -- I don't need made up stories to justify why I am alive, why my life sucks, why good or bad things happen, why we can't explain everything ever to occur in the whole huge, unknowable universe.  Nor am I so pretentious or self-righteous as to think I deserve an explanation for all those things as if my mere existence obligates that kind of response.  Kind of arrogant to think I am entitled to that kind of stroking.

But here's what I'm pissed about:  If my believing friends say something to the effect that god has a reason, or they can take solace in god's plan... and so on... that's perfectly fine in polite society.  They're just sharing what they  believe and are doing me a favor by enlightening me to their sacred knowledge, even if I choose to ignore it in the end.  But if I vocalize the fact that god is false and belief in anything supernatural is irrational and wrong then I am considered subversive and anti-social.  I'm pretty sure this is what is called a double standard. 

This is the First Amendment to the US Constitution:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

We have no official religion in the US and I take issue with the very premise that this is a Christian nation, or any kind of god following nation.  For anyone to insist it is is a dismissal of my rights as a citizen and, in fact, a denial of the Constitution itself.  And let me say, where  Christians or other zealots may have rights to share their beliefs with me, even if I don't want to hear them, I have the same rights.

And in terms of my private life, I have the right to talk as I will.  Sure, there are accepted rules within personal relationships regarding the manner in which parties communicate, but I still reject the notion that censoring of one's self or ideas even in that context is unacceptable.  I can accept it if a person says "I'd rather not discuss it."   But that person owes me the same respect.  And it's a practice most believers I know can't seem to grasp.  A double standard they refuse to admit.


  1. i can relate to your annoyance regarding the "gods plan" and "everything happens for gods reasons" rhetoric. i find this stuff intensely annoying myself. i heard it said recently that atheists are the most intensely religious people of all!Ha!
    i think for people to claim the ability to understand the animating forces of the universe and life are indulgances in an over simplifications of matters that are best acknowledged as mysteries because they are beyond our capacities to understand. Einstein himself stated the "mind of god", or to put it another way, the greatest animating forces of the universe, are unfathomable, which sounds right to me. our inability to accept mystery is a symptom of our fear.

  2. si pensamos muy parecido, los llevas muy bien puestos, que pena que estemos tan separado y a la vez en el mismo globo, me dejas anonadado con tu dialéctica en el blog, será tu máscara de dura que te pones en un museo donde todo es marmol, ( dureza 9, 10 para el diamante )y por dentro que somos ? solo te invité, no voy a ir a tocar a tu puerta, mi casa no tiene y ventanas tampoco.

  3. Vazquez,

    I am not sure the translation on this is right but I think you said we have certain ideals in common and you are shocked by the dialectic? (Anonadado: shocked? stunned? Two different concpets in English.)

    About what I think is "hard mask:" I never think I wear one and I fail to see why logic or confrontation are construed as such.

  4. Virginia, Good points. ABC hosted a debate called "Does God Have a Future" last year. Michael Shermer and Deepak Chopra each partnered with another to debate the premise of faith in the supernatural. Youtube has it -- all posts somehow edited or numbered incorrectly but the best of them are posted by Neuro-Pulse -- if you are interested in that. I didn't know about it at the time, I am watching it lately.