Godlessness

Friday, October 31st, 2008

Frankly, I wouldn’t mind a little more Godlessness in my politics, thankyouverymuch.

Elizabeth Dole is one senator who really needs her sanctimonious butt booted out of politics.

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28 Responses to “Godlessness”

  1. #1 |  Dave Krueger | 

    To me, godlessness is a reason to vote FOR someone, not against them.

  2. #2 |  ktc2 | 

    /sarcasm on

    How dare those damned atheists think they have a voice in this Christian nation!

    /sarcasm off

    Got to love God’s Own Party (GOP).

    Wasn’t it Bush I who said that no atheists should be considered patriorts or citizens? Pretty sure it was.

  3. #3 |  ParatrooperJJ | 

    She one of the better senators actually.

  4. #4 |  rjbrash | 

    >Wasn’t it Bush I who said that no atheists should be considered >patriots or citizens? Pretty sure it was.

    That was George the Elder. The Bastard!

  5. #5 |  * | 

    Para, as a resident of NC, with absolutely no knowledge of any of Dole’s accomplishments, would you care to enlighten me as to how Liddy “Watergate” Dole is a good senator?

  6. #6 |  freedomfan | 

    I don’t vote based on someone’s religious beliefs, or lack thereof. To me, if a candidate is running on a platform that will shift the government closer to its Constitutional model of limited scope and enumerated powers, then that candidate has my vote, regardless of how he spends his Sundays.

    But, some voters do (looking either for theism or atheism), and I suppose that’s their right.

    The article isn’t especially clear on what the reality is and whether Dole is lying, not that it would surprise me if either one or both of them were. According to the Washington Post article, Hagan didn’t take money from GAPAC, but a GAPAC advisory board member hosted a Hagan fundraiser.

    For people who are thinking that Hagan is an atheist hero here, she is very clear that, “Well, I believe in God. I taught Sunday school. My faith guides my life.” Neither candidate is putting down her bible.

    Anyway, for me, the CNN article has an odd quote that sounds like it’s from Dole’s lawyers. (It’s the second paragraph that’s interesting – I include the first just for context in determining the “they” at the start of the second paragraph.)

    “Kay Hagan attended a fundraiser event in Massachusetts in September held in the home of two anti-religion activists, Wendy Kaminer and her lawyer husband, Woody Kaplan,” Dole’s attorneys said in a letter to Hagan’s lawyer.

    They described Kaplan as a founder and advisory board member of the GAPAC. The letter said Kaplan and Kaminer were advisory board members of The Secular Coalition for America, which it described as “the national lobby for atheists, humanists, freethinkers and other nontheistic Americans with the unique mission of protecting their civil rights.”

    Doesn’t that make it sound like it’s Dole’s lawyers who are describing The Secular Coalition for America as “the national lobby for atheists, humanists, freethinkers and other nontheistic Americans with the unique mission of protecting their civil rights”? That’s the worst description they could come up with? These are people who are protecting their civil rights? It sounds like the description the group would have of itself. How is there anything wrong with that? Everyone should be doing that. It’s a compliment.

  7. #7 |  Jeff | 

    freedomfan – “it’s a compliment”

    Not to a significant swath of North Carolinians. Remember, hatred of atheists is the last remaining socially acceptable bigotry (you can make a case for anti-Muslim hate, but I don’t think that’s really acceptable anymore). To these people, atheists don’t deserve civil rights. It’s like telling the ’59-’76 incarnation of George Wallace that black people deserve civil rights.

    I’d be curious to see the results of a poll that asked Americans if atheism should be a crime. I think you’d get a “yes” response from at least 20% of the population. Broaden the question to “should the government keep tabs on atheists like we do with terror suspects,” and you’d probably crack 40.

  8. #8 |  Brandon Bowers | 

    Whether either of them is atheist or christian is irrelevant. The fact that Libby Dole has chosen to make this an issue instead of discussing actual policy issues is disgusting. It’s not the atheist/theist argument that matters, it’s the fact that it’s being used as a distraction. NC voters should choose the candidate that supports individual liberty and smaller government, and although the fact that Dole has pulled this crap should serve as a strike against her, it should not serve as the sole criterion.

  9. #9 |  Mark | 

    The whole episode leaves me unfulfilled: the Senate get either a bible-thumping incumbent back or someone who either a) is an atheist but doesn’t have the guts to admit it or b) has been wrongly accused of being an atheist but is also a bible-thumper. I’m looking for the candidate who says “My religion is my business and not something I am going to bring to work with me as I defend the Constitution!” Where is that candidate?

  10. #10 |  Andrew Williams | 

    I’ve disliked Libby Dole even since she, in her position as head of DOT, basically blackmailed the DC government into raising the drinking age to 21. “No raise age, no money for fixing roads!” To Hell with her and the horse she rode in on.

  11. #11 |  FWB | 

    But it still leaves/begs the question of whether or not humans would have any morals w/o God/religion. Since no one that I know was raised in a sound proof box with absolutely no external moral or otherwise inputs, the question goes unanswered. Someone must volunteer a future child. That child must be totally isolated from all human contact until reaching adulthood. At that point, around age 25, when the mind is fully formed or close to being fully formed, the person can be evaluated to determine the extent of moral development.

    There ain’t no separation of church and state in the Constitution. There is a separation of state from church.

    Besides, the voters choose whom they wish. Should one move to an area and not like the currect elected public servants, one is free to 1) vote against them or 2) move on.

  12. #12 |  Zeb | 

    FWB,
    I tend to doubt that a human mind could become fully formed absent any human contact. Moral development depends on socialization. The Golden Rule is a pretty easy one to figure out, with or without a God to punish you if you are naughty.

    As an atheist with a strong moral sense, I find such questions annoying. Though I have encountered people who probably would have done bad things had they not been afraid that the big G was watching. Scary.

  13. #13 |  Former Army | 

    #11:

    “But it still leaves/begs the question of whether or not humans would have any morals w/o God/religion.”

    What exactly about this thread/post “begs” that question?

    “Since no one that I know was raised in a sound proof box with absolutely no external moral or otherwise inputs, the question goes unanswered. Someone must volunteer a future child. That child must be totally isolated from all human contact until reaching adulthood. At that point, around age 25, when the mind is fully formed or close to being fully formed, the person can be evaluated to determine the extent of moral development.”

    Your ridiculous experiment wouldn’t answer the question either way. If the kid turned out to be a murderous, thieving sociopath, theists would claim that growing up without God caused him to be that way. However, if he turned out to be a perfectly moral human being, theists would claim that he must have received his morals from God because he couldn’t possibly have learned them from humanity. Heads you win, tails I lose.

    “There ain’t no separation of church and state in the Constitution. There is a separation of state from church.”

    Explain how you get one without the other.

    “Besides, the voters choose whom they wish. Should one move to an area and not like the currect elected public servants, one is free to 1) vote against them or 2) move on.”

    That just about sums up why I don’t vote.

  14. #14 |  Les | 

    But it still leaves/begs the question of whether or not humans would have any morals w/o God/religion.

    No, it doesn’t. There are many good humans who have lots of morals and thoroughly reject God/religion. Indeed, morality based on fear of eternal punishment from an all-powerful authority is not really morality at all, but rather behavior modification, and a weak form of it at that.

  15. #15 |  JSB | 

    I’m just tired of all of the bitter, venomous, hate-filled comments that are constantly being directed at Christians. It seems as though people are all for freedom of thought and the whole “you should be allowed to be/do what you want as long as you don’t hurt others” UNLESS what you want to think/be/do concerns Christianity. I personally have never done anything to harm others or take their rights away with my practice of Christianity, and yet I’m constantly having people give me all manner of demeaning titles like “fool”, “ignorant”, “religious nut”, and many others…

    So my question is, why is it that every other conceivable practice is defended and supported but if one even dares to mention that he/she might believe in Christianity that person is immediately hated and labeled as untrustworthy regardless of what they say.

    And I know the big argument against Christians is the whole “well they aren’t tolerant of other people’s beliefs”…but that in itself is being intolerant of an individual’s belief.

    Whatever…I know a long stream of comments will probably result all of which state how stupid I am, or how there is no god, or how everything I believe in is a lie. I’m just so tired of the double-standard by all of those who proclaim that they are “tolerant” to other beliefs…until they encounter a Christian.

  16. #16 |  David | 

    Also, how does “no God or religion” equal “no human contact of any sort?”

  17. #17 |  Nick T | 

    FWB,

    Are you saying that people raised in atheist homes, or homes that are not actively religious etc. Are still influenced in their moral developmental in a very significant and meaningful way simply by having human contact?

    The question you believe is left unanswered is “whether or not humans would have any morals w/o God/religion.” Why doesn’t the fact that many morally upstanding peopel exist who have not been raised in any religion or practice no religion currently serve as a resounding answer to that question in the affirmative?

  18. #18 |  Nick T | 

    On a separate note, the Dole ad does seem to be the closest ad I can recall to a viable claim of libel by between political campaigns.

    People say some terrible things in campaigns, but as far as putting iit into an ad, this might be the worst. Regardless of what readers here feel about the role of religion in politics, given the people and voters involved, this was beyond the pale.

  19. #19 |  Les | 

    I’m just tired of all of the bitter, venomous, hate-filled comments that are constantly being directed at Christians.

    Not just Christians, FWB, but fundamentalists. And maybe the types who think that secular folks must, logically, be incapable of being moral.

    So my question is, why is it that every other conceivable practice is defended and supported but if one even dares to mention that he/she might believe in Christianity that person is immediately hated and labeled as untrustworthy regardless of what they say.

    This is not a good question, because you can’t show that “every other conceivable practice is defended and supported but if one even dares to mention that he/she might believe in Christianity that person is immediately hated and labeled as untrustworthy regardless of what they say.”

    It’s just not happening. It would be like me saying, “Why is it that agnostics are being burned alive and people think that’s okay?”

    I’m just so tired of the double-standard by all of those who proclaim that they are “tolerant” to other beliefs…until they encounter a Christian.

    Again, I don’t know what you’re talking about. Like Muslims and Jews and Hindus and atheists and everything else, there are different kinds of Christians. Most deserve to be tolerated and some don’t. The ones that don’t are the ones who would deny equal rights to people who don’t share their particular interpretation of Scripture. Those people have always been on the wrong side in the battle for increased liberty.

  20. #20 |  Cynical In CA | 

    Wow. Just when this blog was starting to tolerate anarchism (somewhat), now a religious thread is started? Good “God!”

    As someone who hit the daily double (anarchist/atheist), I am aware of the impossibility of this point of view being respected by the mainstream. Thank “God” for that!

    As for “godlessness,” well, just like everything else, politics is godless. God is imaginary. Go read “Why Won’t God Heal Amputees” for several days/weeks worth of entertaining and logically valid and sound proofs of the imaginary nature of “God.”

    The very imaginary nature of “God” renders the term “atheist” objectionable. Why should what I believe be expressed in terms of something that only exists in the irrational human mind? Therefore, the new term for “atheist” is “rational.” Or “sane.”

    There is no way a professed rational (atheist) can win elective office in the United State. Talk about political repression, a gay minority female theist has it all over a straight white male atheist. Add “statist” to the equation and I and others like me are just about the most oppressed individuals on Earth, if we choose to be.

  21. #21 |  Cynical In CA | 

    Take it from me, engaging FWB or anyone of his/her ilk in a logical debate on religion is doomed to failure.

    You will NOT teach the pig to sing.

    You WILL waste your time.

    Knock yourselves out.

  22. #22 |  JSB | 

    I just don’t understand why so much anger is directed at Christians…

    “Take it from me, engaging FWB or anyone of his/her ilk in a logical debate on religion is doomed to failure.

    You will NOT teach the pig to sing.

    You WILL waste your time.”

    This very well illustrates the mentality that I mentioned previously. The problem lies in the fact that each person in such a “debate” will see the other’s logic as being flawed in some way simply because neither side will admit to being wrong. So even if I employ flawless logic in some debate, I would imagine that there would still be quite a few people saying “your logic is flawed…you are a close-minded fool…it’s hopeless trying to talk to you” simply because an atheist will not accept a Christian’s arguments and vice-versa.

    I just want to know why there is a resentment towards people who are commenting here who are Christians…I’ve never done anything to harm any of you, and I’ve never wished harm on any of you here, and yet the very mention that I’m a Christian and an individual feels the need to immediately label me as a pig. Why should somebody who simply says “I’m a Christian” be insulted so quickly?

    And I’m not even trying to convert anybody here…I’m simply saying that I really wish this anti-Christian sentiment would be explained. I know most of you don’t believe in any deity, so I can understand that this can be a source of your angst, but is that all it is?

    At any rate, I do want to point out that I will not attack anybody here simply because I disagree with their views…and I think that civility can go a long way in helping ease the tensions that always arise when Christianity is brought up.

  23. #23 |  Les | 

    JSB,

    If you could point out examples of the “anti-Christian” sentiment you find here, I’d appreciate it. What I see are “anti-theist” or “anti-fundamentalist” attitudes, but nothing specifically against Christianity. This thread is about the bigotry of the cultural right as evidenced by Mrs. Dole’s campaign ad, so some venom is to be expected.

    And you have to expect some hostility when you imply that people cannot be moral without adhering to a major tenet of your personal philosophy (a belief in god/religion).

    Also, I don’t doubt you and I can completely disagree and be civil at the same time. It’s actually essential, I think.

  24. #24 |  NC Native | 

    I personally couldn’t care less if Kay Hagan believes in God or not. And while I’m trying disparately to vote for people based on their views, accomplishments and character, I simply cannot vote for somebody who puts out such a blatantly slanderous ad. I hate politicians who put out bullshit attack ads, it makes me *want* to vote for the other person just on principle.

    If I were planning on voting for Liddy (which I wasn’t), this ad would have changed my mind.

  25. #25 |  Cynical In CA | 

    “I just don’t understand why so much anger is directed at Christians…”

    JSB, near as our interests don’t conflict, I have no anger toward anyone. Vis-a-vis religion, I accept the natural right of an individual to believe whatever he or she wants to believe (Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Jew, anyone). As long as our interests don’t conflict. If a religious person respects my lack of religion, we’re gold. Often, it does not work out that way, especially if a professed “atheist” were to run for political office.

    I have found that my beliefs can stand the light of reason, whereas religionists beliefs tend to be very insular and fragile when confronted by reason. That’s my experience, it’s not universal by any means, but my experience is common to many. Just read arguments between theists and “atheists” on religious boards. It’s almost always the theists who abandon logic and argue from emotion or ad hominem or some other logical fallacy. It is very predictable, like being unable to teach a pig to sing.

    As for that metaphor (an old joke as we all know from this election season), I don’t believe for a second that you are genuinely offended by it, and if you are, you are embarrasingly sensitive. You made a strawman argument and appealed to emotion to avoid the main contention, which is that Christian persecution relative to Christian population is vanishingly small in comparison to “atheist” persecution relative to “atheist” population, which manifests itself in the near-total exclusion to public office.

    It takes a lot of balls to claim persecution as a Christian in the country. That being said, if Christians (and other religionists) would publicly announce that there is no logical basis for their belief and stop forcing their illogical beliefs on the rational among us, I could live in harmony with you guys to the end of my days.

    Shall I risk another metaphor? Why not.

    I think monkeys will fly out of my ass first.

  26. #26 |  Cynical In CA | 

    “I know most of you don’t believe in any deity, so I can understand that this can be a source of your angst, but is that all it is?”

    Not in my case. Try your pop psychology on another sucker.

    Not trying to convert anyone. Rrrrriiiigggghhhht.

    Actually, go ahead and attack anyone here because of one’s views. Patton loved it when the Germans shot at him because then he knew where they were. Sensible.

  27. #27 |  Gary McGath | 

    JSB regards it as “anger directed at Christians” when people object to Dole’s using religious bigotry as a campaign tool. It’s the typical reversal that the “Christian Nation’ people are always trying to pull. Anyone who dares to talk back when Christian bigots attack non-Christians is attacking Christianity. Anyone who doesn’t say “Merry Christmas” on command is imposing political correctness on the Christians. Anyone who objects to the imposition of Christian prayers by public schools or the posting of Judeo-Christian religious commands in courtrooms is persecuting the Christians.

    JSB says it’s intolerant to object to intolerance by Christians. If “tolerance” were an absolute virtue, then it would indeed be wrong ever to object to anything. But there is no virtue in being tolerant of religious bigotry. There is no virtue in tolerating a senator who attacks her opponent for talking to people who don’t share her religion.

    But of course JSB thinks that intolerance of intolerance is wrong. Nice and selective, there.

  28. #28 |  Xaq Fixx | 

    I was REALLY disappointed by Kay Hagan’s response. A candidate supportive of Atheist would make me happy.

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