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Thread: not in my name, atheist edition

  1. #1
    libertine librarian sandwitch's Avatar
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    not in my name, atheist edition

    Last night a man killed his openly-Muslim neighbors in their own apartment. As described by Slate:

    On his Facebook page, Hicks was a vocal atheist. He described himself as a supporter of “Atheists for Equality” and he lists himself as a fan of television shows like The Atheist Experience and authors like Richard Dawkins. His most recent posts include a picture from United Atheists of America asking “why radical Christians and radical Muslims are so opposed to each others’ influence when they agree about so many ideological issues.”
    I've been watching Muslim twitter bitterly/satirically call for a response from the atheist community that we don't condone his actions. I dismissed the idea as parody, but remembering that there are people who legitimately expect that from Muslims- should we have atheist organizations specifically to make public relations gestures of good will? It's not like this is the first time atheists have acted in deliberate violence against theists, or have attempted religious suppression.

    I know we all like to think of ourselves as being so different from each other, but that isn't not the case for many theists as well.
    I wanna see your goodreads, so add me.

  2. #2
    Amen P-O's Avatar
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    Nobody asks Christians for a response to Muslim terrorism...despite the fact that they're both theists. It's a faulty analogy.
    Violence is never the right answer, unless used against heathens and monsters.

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    Ieilaelite pensive_pilgrim's Avatar
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    “Our preliminary investigation indicates that the crime was motivated by an ongoing neighbor dispute over parking,” the Chapel Hill Police Department said in a statement.
    But the father of the victims thinks that it was a hate crime, so... I guess that makes for a more provocative headline.

  4. #4
    libertine librarian sandwitch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by P-O View Post
    Nobody asks Christians for a response to Muslim terrorism...despite the fact that they're both theists. It's a faulty analogy.
    This is what I mean by "we all like to think of ourselves as being so different from each other, but that isn't not the case for many theists as well". We aren't uniquely non-community. Many Christians don't consider themselves accountable for the actions of other Christians, and many Muslims don't consider themselves accountable for the actions of other Muslims. While I agree with those people, there are many who do demand such gestures- and maybe their reasons aren't totally invalid. That's what I'm trying to explore.

    Quote Originally Posted by pathogenetic_peripatetic View Post
    But the father of the victims thinks that it was a hate crime, so... I guess that makes for a more provocative headline.
    If you'd prefer to speculate on that, it would be more fitting for the News forum. As it is, there are enough established instances of atheists persecuting people of religious beliefs that the topic I'm trying to discuss merits its own thread.
    I wanna see your goodreads, so add me.

  5. #5
    wetback Space Invaders Champion Fitz's Avatar
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    Did he scream praise dawkins as he blew off their heads? That'd probably be my deciding factor.
    Then why did he put the Devil in me?

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    Tawaci ki a Gnaska ki Osito Polar's Avatar
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    Right. I'd say that we're about as much a community as "people who don't drive Hondas" are. However, there's an outsider perception that we ARE a community. So when something like this happens, it would be nice to have a marketing department for our non-community that delivers an on-point response to the news story. There are a couple out there, but in my opinion a lot of them are better at shit-stirring than doing anything else.
    "I don't have psychological problems." --Madrigal

    "When you write about shooting Polemarch in the head, that's more like a first-person view, like you're there looking down the sight of the gun." --Utisz

    David Wong, regarding Chicago
    Six centuries ago, the pre-Colombian natives who settled here named this region with a word which in their language means "the Mouth of Shadow". Later, the Iroquois who showed up and inexplicably slaughtered every man, woman and child renamed it "Seriously, Fuck that Place". When French explorer Jacques Marquette passed through the area he marked his map with a drawing of a brownish blob emerging from between the Devil's buttocks.

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    Senior Member Sir Caveat's Avatar
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    Nah no need to apologize. "Atheists are loving and kind people." "About the most soft hearted and accepting people there are."


  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Osito Polar View Post
    Right. I'd say that we're about as much a community as "people who don't drive Hondas" are. However, there's an outsider perception that we ARE a community. So when something like this happens, it would be nice to have a marketing department for our non-community that delivers an on-point response to the news story. There are a couple out there, but in my opinion a lot of them are better at shit-stirring than doing anything else.
    I vote for The Onion.

  9. #9
    Tawaci ki a Gnaska ki Osito Polar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike View Post
    Nah no need to apologize. "Atheists are loving and kind people." "About the most soft hearted and accepting people there are."
    I think that guy and people like him are a little strange. I am not sure, but I think they're a reaction to living in places that are intensely culturally Christian. Since most places I've lived haven't been like that, I feel like I can not care very much about religion ... and not need to proselytize my ambivalence about it.

    Therefore, I sincerely feel that there is no atheist community to speak of. Making generalizations about them is similar to making generalizations about people that don't collect stamps. I mean, that only works if you're in a worldview where there's "us" and "anyone else" and you think that "anyone else" is united against you. That mindset is probably more common than it ought to be, but it's pretty far from reality.

    That being said, it would be nice if there were a marketing group that would express our condolences about stuff like this. Actually, someone with some kind of mantle of authority as an atheist spokesperson who checked on the guy and collected donations to help with his medical bills WOULD be a good idea. It's just weird to think of a figurehead for people who DON'T believe a particular thing. He's be like the Pope of folks who don't believe in the Loch Ness monster.

    Quote Originally Posted by last_caress
    I vote for The Onion.
    Sure, why not. Or Dan Savage. Or Bill Maher. Or Penn Jillette.
    "I don't have psychological problems." --Madrigal

    "When you write about shooting Polemarch in the head, that's more like a first-person view, like you're there looking down the sight of the gun." --Utisz

    David Wong, regarding Chicago
    Six centuries ago, the pre-Colombian natives who settled here named this region with a word which in their language means "the Mouth of Shadow". Later, the Iroquois who showed up and inexplicably slaughtered every man, woman and child renamed it "Seriously, Fuck that Place". When French explorer Jacques Marquette passed through the area he marked his map with a drawing of a brownish blob emerging from between the Devil's buttocks.

  10. #10
    TJ TeresaJ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Osito Polar View Post
    Right. I'd say that we're about as much a community as "people who don't drive Hondas" are.
    There are probably many more freelance atheists than freelance Christians or Muslims etc, but there are definitely atheist communities. They meet online, host conferences, post billboards, do all sorts of stuff!

    That said, I don't know that atheist-motivated violence is systemic enough to warrant a response.

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