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Old 01-12-2012, 02:40 PM
 
Location: 30-40N 90-100W
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I have to say I think it makes some sense. Atheists in the US are a small and distrusted minority. Feeling distrusted could cause bad feelings in you. Granted in many cases small and distrusted minorities try harder to be nice and unthreatening, but still it makes sense it could produce some angst.

Another issue might be that many American atheists, from what I can tell, don't want to be accepted as a minority group. If they did they might pursue a "we're not that different from you" type strategy, but that's mostly not what they do. At least not of late. Instead many of them I think do see atheism as part of making a better society. So if you're goal is to change societies values, not simply be accepted within it, confronting the dominant society makes some sense. Although not a great example possibly some vegetarians are like that. Many of them might just want to be accepted within the society, but I think at least some of them do feel a moral obligation to better the lives of animals so confront "the meat industry."

What I find more interesting is why British atheists, at times, seem so intense. From what I can tell Britain doesn't distrust or ostracize atheists. Possibly it's that Britain does still have an established church so, even if most of the British aren't real observantly Anglican, atheists feel the state is in some ways preferring others to them. Or maybe it's that "moral crusade" stand that Atheism isn't simply a personal choice, but a better way to live and so eroding theism is good for society.
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:02 PM
 
Location: Ohio
19,992 posts, read 14,277,179 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lille Ida View Post
I understand that. But you cannot do anything about why Americans are very religious which I feel is sad.
Yes, I can do something. I can educate them.

I can set them on the path to agnosticism or atheism by continually forcing them to confront the glaring contradictions, hypocrisies and absurdities of their "faith."

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lille Ida View Post
Why do people say what they believe in, at work or in politics? Religion shouldn't matter. Maybe because religious people are afraid of their rights being taken away?
No, the religious freaks have always had the upper-hand.

The tide is turning. More people are turning away from religion, and that is good. Now we just need to get those people to turn away from non-existent god-things and the world will be a better place for all.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lille Ida View Post
Why do American Atheist care if God in mentioned in public places? In Scandinavia we have bunch of Christian holidays and nobody of us care less. We love our days off. They used to take us to church on Christmas and Easter, despite not believe in God we all still went and had fun to skip classes.

Many secular Scandinavians still baptist their children and get married in church, but most of them don't believe in God.
That would be part of the hypocrisy I mentioned.

I remember the whispers.

I was raised Romanian Orthodox. Not a lot of Romanians here, so there isn't a Romanian Orthodox church around. We did go to the Greek Orthodox church in Finneytown, and on special occasions or holidays, we'd go to Fort Wayne, Indiana, or Youngstown or Cleveland Ohio (there are large populations of Romanians there and many orthodox churches).

So because we didn't go to church in the neighborhood, we were, you know, dirty nasty heathens.

And even when people did eventually come to learn that we did go to church, the whispers didn't stop, because, you know, we went to one of them "funny churches."

Doing something about it...

Mircea
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Old 01-12-2012, 07:24 PM
 
9,894 posts, read 6,761,314 times
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regarding the original question:


European atheists are calm and do not preach atheism to others. Some American atheists tend to be a bit more militant (or cultist). That was the main theme of my earlier thread. I am glad some folks noted that.
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Old 01-12-2012, 07:47 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mircea View Post
Yes, I can do something. I can educate them.

I can set them on the path to agnosticism or atheism by continually forcing them to confront the glaring contradictions, hypocrisies and absurdities of their "faith."


The theist is always trying to tell non-believers to what to think.

The atheist merely asks that the theist begin to think.
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Old 01-12-2012, 10:50 PM
 
Location: Sitting on a bar stool. Guinness in hand.
4,429 posts, read 5,676,997 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Julian658 View Post
regarding the original question:


European atheists are calm and do not preach atheism to others. Some American atheists tend to be a bit more militant (or cultist). That was the main theme of my earlier thread. I am glad some folks noted that.
I know alot of regular folks that defend atheism not preaching it. Granted there are people that I've named below and some of their followers that do push (your word is preach) atheism but they are from my observation a minority of actually atheists in America. Granted they are a really loud/vocal/ and to me very enjoyable entertaining minority. Love the youtube debates.

For the cult thing. Perhaps there are some that are looking to create a movement to pool the power of atheists (and agnostics). Probably more of a defense tactic on a political level. These ongoing intelligent design in the science classrooms court cases have kind of pushed a lot of atheists/agnostics together to say with one voice "HELL NO!"
But overall there will most probably be no centralized atheist movement overall. This is because other than not believing all deities, atheists have a wide myriad of other beliefs/and world views that effect their atheism and importance of that atheism in regards to dealing with issues that are in thier lives and Vice versa. (Basically weighing your atheism against your other beliefs/view and deciding how much one will effect the other given a certain situation.)
Let me ask you. Do you think Stalin; mark twain, James D. Watson, and Lance Armstrong would join the same atheist cult group just because they all don't believe in deities? Or perhaps do you think that they believe so strong atheism everything else in their lives second to that atheism and would together push/preach atheism? Methinks Not. These people all have different goals and different agendasin their lives and probably would have no connection with each other, other than their atheism.
But this has been pointed out in your thread that you put here on the atheist/agnostic forum.



But let me get back to the OP.


Actually it really only been in the last 10 years since things have really been wound up between Atheist (even agnostics pushing the bounds of atheist like myself) and those who believe in god/gods. I think the 9/11 attacks, presidency of G.W. Bush, and the Dover evolution case really roiled a lot of non-believers up.

On top of that the new atheists came into their own. the late but great Christopher Hitchens (British/American) Dawkins (British), Dan Dennet (American), Sam Harris (American), Michael Schermer (American), Lawrence Kruse (American), Ayaan Hirsi Ali (I think the Netherlands????), and A.C. Grayling (British) Started to have a lot debates about the subject and more importantly these debates got on Youtube so the ability to see these folks on world wide scale was a lot easier. Also the more aggressive tactics used by these people actually took down the fear factors that some atheists had and gave these folk ammunition when of voicing ones opinion about the subject. Granted at of times when people get liberated a small amount of them tend to get a go a little over the top. But again this is a small amount.
I think the pool of people that OP of this thread is pulling from is probably small. I would thing Militancy is probably higher in the northeast and Left coast with atheist than say other parts of the country. Believe me there are a lot of P.Z. Myers out there.

Plus looks what happening right now in the political theater right now. Guys like Rick Perry, Rick Santorum, and Michele Bachman make Non-believers skin crawl. This is because (and people can argue whether it in constitution or not) I think these guys are going to violate the separation of church and state. That a really no-no not just for atheists but for a lot of folks out there. So these people that are running are really stoking the flames of anger again.
So if you’re coming to America right now and during election season....well....make sure you bring your earplugs. Cause there is going to be alot of yelling and screaming in general going on.

Last edited by baystater; 01-12-2012 at 11:16 PM..
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Old 01-12-2012, 11:47 PM
 
Location: 30-40N 90-100W
13,856 posts, read 23,001,491 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Asheville Native View Post


The theist is always trying to tell non-believers to what to think.
We theists aren't any more a monolithic group than atheists are. You can think whatever you want, it really is up to you.
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Old 01-13-2012, 07:38 AM
 
Location: Somewhere out there
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Default Hmmm Not so fast!

Well.. with one critical difference, Thomas... You guys all believe in a God and therefore there's some commonality and mutuality there.

Not so with atheists. No creeds, rules or limitations of how or what we are allowed to think. No biblical guidebook or list of sins and commandments, thank God! (pun intended...)
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Old 01-13-2012, 10:39 AM
 
7,249 posts, read 5,596,779 times
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Yzette pretty much nailed it.

Some atheists in the US are a bit more militant as a counter to the theocrats who try to use the government to force religion and religion-inspired bigotry on everyone else.

One of our presidents (G H W Bush) actually said that he doesn't know that atheists should even be considered citizens. His son used religiously-motivated hatred for gay people as a major part of his 2004 campaign, and with great success.

The religious right in this country routinely tries to use government institutions and schools to promote their religious views. They routinely use taxpayer money to promote their religious views. They routinely pass laws to enforce their religious views.

Someone has to stand up to that. To their credit, many religious people also stand up to it, but far too people many go along with it, either because they believe it (the fundamentalists) or because they see some benefit to pandering to the religious extremists (e.g. the big business conservatives in the Republican party, who go along with it because they need the support of the religious extremists).
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Old 01-13-2012, 11:38 AM
 
16,300 posts, read 24,993,806 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas R. View Post
We theists aren't any more a monolithic group than atheists are. You can think whatever you want, it really is up to you.
I do, all I would ask is that you view the ancient superstitions you follow as just that, ancient superstitions written by man to quell his fears caused by the ignorance of the era.

The problem is that your book of authority, is so full of whopper's that the fact anyone would give it any credence is beyond my comprehension. How can anyone read the drivel and with a straight face say "yep, I'll buy that".
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Old 01-13-2012, 11:49 AM
 
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Greatly appreciate everybody's respond. I want to point out that just because there are some Christian extremist evangelical does not mean they presents all 249 million American Christians or 2.2 billion Christians worldwide. The majority of Christians don't really care about theocracy, and many of them are cultural Christians (like in Scandinavia).

How would American Atheist feel if the U.S. has similar Christian culture as in Scandinavia how I told you it is in our countries, like having Christian public holidays, taking children to church on high holidays, singing Jesus song on St. Lucia Day (Dec 13) but had NO "In God We Trust" as motto? Would you accept it and like the way it is in Scandinavia? Or do you want to get rid of religion totally from the U.S. such as getting rid of Christian holidays, tax religious places, got rid of religion being taught in school, no Christmas decorations at public places etc. being 100% free from religion?!
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