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Posts tagged "Atheism"

h/t: Brian Tashman at RWW

On what planet is Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid an “atheist Mormon?” 

Only In David Barton’s world. 

H/T: Kyle Mantyla at RWW

h/t: Katie Halper at AlterNet 

h/t:  John Prager at AATTP

Pastor John Hagee used his sermon on June 3rd, 2012 to reflect upon the sacrifices made on this day … and also to tell atheists to get out of America “if our belief in God offends you” because they are not wanted and won’t be missed while also calling on Congress to "outlaw the practice of witchcraft and Satanism in the US military, lest we offend the God of Heaven." 

h/t: RWW

On Sunday, John Hagee delivered a sermon to his congregation during which he raged against the supposed “War on Christmas” which he began by declaring that America was founded as, and still remains, a Christian nation. As such, if atheists and humanists don’t like being wished a “Merry Christmas” … well, they can just get out of the country.

Telling atheists to get out of America is one of Hagee’s favorite pieces of advice, so it was no surprise to hear him declare it again during his Sunday sermon when he told any atheists listening that "if you pass a manger scene and someone is singing ‘Joy To The World,’ you can take your Walkman and stuff it into your ears, or you can call your lawyer, or you can just exercise your right to leave the country; planes are leaving every hour on the hour, get on one."

h/t: RWW

Former half-term governor of Alaska and failed vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin is worried “angry atheists” want to “abort Christ from Christmas.”

Speaking at Liberty University on Thursday, Palin addressed the “War on Christmas,” and the “angry atheists” out to ruin the holiday for everyone else. Palin invoked the words of Founders like Thomas Jefferson — who she said despite his writings on the separation of church and state — would be up in arms against people attempting to “abort Christ from Christmas.”

Palin said that Jefferson’s message has been grossly distorted by atheists attempting to use him for their own agenda, and argued that the nation’s third president would be on the side of Christians fighting to celebrate the holiday.

"Thomas Jefferson today, he would recognize those who would want to try to ignore that Jesus is the reason for the season, those who would want to try to abort Christ from Christmas. He would recognize, for the most part, these are angry atheists armed with an attorney. They are not the majority of Americans.”

She also complained that there is a double standard that somehow makes it okay for atheists to take offense at public displays of religion on government grounds, but religious people can’t get offended when they believe “their holiday” is being undermined. Palin concluded that people should follow Jefferson’s example and refuse to “sit down and shut up.”

How ironic is it that Palin chose Jefferson to use in her paranoid “War on Christmas” fantasy? In reality, Jefferson very clearly rejected the superstitions and mysticism of Christianity that Palin and other conservative Christians continue to embrace…including the notion of a virgin birth, the supposed “reason for the season.”

Delusional much, Sarah?

h/t: Diane Sweet at Crooks and Liars

Last weekend, John Hagee continued his sermon series ”The God America Has Forgotten,” during which he railed against ”false teachers” who preach “heresy” by supporting things like marriage equality while also blasting atheists for not ever having contributed anything to the world.

Citing 2 Peter’s warning about false prophets, Hagee declared that the church today is full of teachers who are preaching deceptive doctrines and causing Christians to lose their souls.

"When you endorse a man marrying a man," Hagee bellowed, “you are a false teacher.” He continued in this vein, attacking those who support a woman’s right to choose, or preach replacement theology, or deny the inerrancy of Scripture , demanding that they all “do the world a favor: get out of the pulpit and get yourself a secular job”:

Later in the sermon, Hagee turned his wrath toward atheists.

"Let me tell you," he said, “atheism has never painted a masterpiece. Atheism has never dispelled fear. Atheism has never healed a disease; faith in God has, but not atheism. Atheism has never given anyone piece of mind. Atheism has never dried a tear. Atheism has never given an intellectual answer to the creation. Atheism is bankrupt and empty; it’s brain dead.”

It’s YOU and your ilk, Mr. Hagee, that are false teachers of God!

H/T: Kyle Mantyla at RWW

An effort to create positions for atheist chaplains to serve in the military is one that is welcome by former Navy Chaplain Gordon Klingenschmitt, who was the guest on the "Talk To Solomon" program recently to discuss the issue.

The whole thing really did not sit well with host Stan Solomon, who said that atheism is “basically sticking your head up your butt and wondering why it’s dark” and said that being an atheist chaplain is like being “a sensitive cannibal who says grace before he chews your leg off.”

After Klingenschmitt claimed there was no need for atheist chaplains in the military and the whole thing is really just a way to undermine the Christian chaplains and reduce our numbers,” Solomon asserted that it was all a part of the effort to implement President Obama’s health care policy by encouraging wounded soldiers to kill themselves.

"An atheist chaplain," Solomon declared, “would be the perfect vehicle for convincing wounded warriors that they should end their lives because there’s nothing in the future and there’s nothing now, so why not just save money and kill themselves”.

From CPNlive’s Talk To Solomon:

h/t: Kyle Mantyla at Right Wing Watch




The Boy Scouts of America, one of the nation’s largest private youth organizations, is actively considering an end to its decades-long policy of banning gay scouts or scout leaders, according to scouting officials and outsiders familiar with internal discussions.

If adopted by the organization’s board of directors, it would represent a profound change on an issue that has been highly controversial — one that even went to the US Supreme Court. The new policy, now under discussion, would eliminate the ban from the national organization’s rules, leaving local sponsoring organizations free to decide for themselves whether to admit gay scouts.

“The chartered organizations that oversee and deliver scouting would accept membership and select leaders consistent with their organization’s mission, principles or religious beliefs,” according to Deron Smith, a spokesman for the Boy Scouts’ national organization.

Individual sponsors and parents “would be able to choose a local unit which best meets the needs of their families,” Smith said.

The discussion of a potential change in policy is nearing its final stages, according to outside scouting supporters. If approved, the change could be announced as early as next week, after the BSA’s national board holds a regularly scheduled meeting.

Only seven months ago, the Boy Scouts affirmed a policy of banning gay members, after a nearly two-year examination of the issue by a committee of volunteers convened by national leaders of the Boy Scouts of America, known as the BSA.

In a statement last July affirming the ban, its national executive board called it “the best policy for the organization.”

But since then, a scouting official said, local chapters have been urging a reconsideration. “We’re a grassroots organization. This is a response to what’s happening at the local level,” the official said.

“It’s an extremely complex issue,” said one Boy Scouts of America official, who explained that other organizations have threatened to withdraw their financial support if the BSA drops the ban.

While the national scouting organization sets broad policies, more than 290 local councils nationwide govern the day-to-day conduct of the more than 116,000 local organizations. Individual scouting troops are sponsored by religious and civic organizations that represent a diversity of views on the issue of allowing gay scouts and leaders.

It’s a good sign for America and the Boy Scouts of America by allowing gay scouts into the club. I expect that there will be a fundie/evangelical splinter group from the BSA (who prohibits atheists and agnostics) if this happens, similar to when the Girl Scouts of America in the early to mid 1990s decided to allow lesbians into the GSA and the substitution of “God” in their Promise.


Well, this is promising. But I mean, the real issue here is BSA’s ties to the LDS church. One out of eight scouts are Mormons. The LDS church registers every boy as part of their social programs for teens. They have a huge voice in the organization.

Also, what about non-believing members still being kicked out?

On agnostics and atheists, the BSA will still prohibit them (likely due to LDS influence). Once that ban on non-believing members is dropped, then the BSA will be a truly inclusive organization.

(via a-catch-on-song)

Christian radio host: Punch atheists ‘in the mouth’ for their ‘war on Christmas’ (via Raw Story )

Conservative Christian radio host Matt Barber says that an atheist group should be punched “in the mouth” after they filed a complaint that sought to stop a Michigan man from erecting a nativity scene on public land. In 2008, the County Road Commission in Warren had denied John Satawa a permit to place his nativity scene in a public median because the Freedom from Religion Foundation complained that it violated the separation of church and state. That led to a federal lawsuit and the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled earlier this year that Satawa could continue to display his creche.


The “War on Christmas” has arrived and the 700 Club is doing all it can to stoke fears that Christmas may cease to exist. Host Pat Robertson warned that “the Grinch is trying to steal our holiday” as “miserable” atheists “want to steal your holiday away from you” simply because they can’t stand the joy of Christmas. “Atheists don’t like our happiness, they don’t want you to be happy, they want you to be miserable,” he said. “They’re miserable so they want you to be miserable.”

h/t: Brian Tashman at RWW

The number of Americans who do not identify with any religion continues to grow at a rapid pace. One-fifth of the U.S. public – and a third of adults under 30 – are religiously unaffiliated today, the highest percentages ever in Pew Research Center polling.

In the last five years alone, the unaffiliated have increased from just over 15% to just under 20% of all U.S. adults. Their ranks now include more than 13 million self-described atheists and agnostics (nearly 6% of the U.S. public), as well as nearly 33 million people who say they have no particular religious affiliation (14%).3 

Religious Affiliation

However, a new survey by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life, conducted jointly with the PBS television program Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly, finds that many of the country’s 46 million unaffiliated adults are religious or spiritual in some way. Two-thirds of them say they believe in God (68%). More than half say they often feel a deep connection with nature and the earth (58%), while more than a third classify themselves as “spiritual” but not “religious” (37%), and one-in-five (21%) say they pray every day. In addition, most religiously unaffiliated Americans think that churches and other religious institutions benefit society by strengthening community bonds and aiding the poor.

With few exceptions, though, the unaffiliated say they are not looking for a religion that would be right for them. Overwhelmingly, they think that religious organizations are too concerned with money and power, too focused on rules and too involved in politics.

The growth in the number of religiously unaffiliated Americans – sometimes called the rise of the “nones” – is largely driven by generational replacement, the gradual supplanting of older generations by newer ones.4 A third of adults under 30 have no religious affiliation (32%), compared with just one-in-ten who are 65 and older (9%). And young adults today are much more likely to be unaffiliated than previous generations were at a similar stage in their lives.

In 2007, 38% of people who said they seldom or never attend religious services described themselves as religiously unaffiliated. In 2012, 49% of infrequent attenders eschew any religious affiliation. By comparison, the percentage describing themselves as unaffiliated has been flat among those who attend religious services once a week or more often.

Over this same period (2007-2012), change in self-reported levels of religious attendance has been relatively modest. In 2007, 38% of U.S. adults reported attending religious services weekly. Today, the figure is 37%. And although there has been a four-point uptick over the past decade in the number saying they seldom or never attend services, the change over the past five years has been more modest (from 27% saying they seldom or never attend in 2007 to 29% in 2012).

Summarizing these trends from another angle, the religiously unaffiliated population is increasingly composed of people who rarely or never attend religious services. In 2007, 68% of religiously unaffiliated Americans said they seldom or never attend religious services. As of 2012, this figure has risen slightly but significantly to 72%. Over the same period, the share of religiously affiliated adults who seldom or never attend religious services has declined slightly.11 

The religiously unaffiliated are heavily Democratic in their partisanship and liberal in their political ideology. More than six-in-ten describe themselves as Democrats or say they lean toward the Democratic Party (compared with 48% of all registered voters). And there are roughly twice as many self-described liberals (38%) as conservatives (20%) among the religiously unaffiliated. Among voters overall, this balance is reversed.

Politics by religion

The liberalism of the unaffiliated extends to social issues, though not necessarily to attitudes about the size of government. Nearly three-quarters (72%) of religiously unaffiliated Americans say abortion should be legal in most or all cases, compared with 53% of the public overall. And 73% of the religiously unaffiliated express support for same-sex marriage, compared with 48% of the public at large. But the portion of the unaffiliated who say they would prefer a smaller government providing fewer services to a larger government providing more services is similar to the share of the general public who take the same view (50% and 52%, respectively).

Social Issues of the unaffiliated religion

Download the Full Report (1.37MB, 80 pages)  

H/T: Pew Forum