|The herd of skeptics. Many reason ralliers forgot to bring umbrellas.|
|Somebody should vet the signs|
|Thank God for photoshop|
The Reason Rally took place in Washington on the Mall on Saturday. I'll wait to read from participants how festivities went, but I trust all had a good time. Unfortunately, it looks to have been a bit rainy.
When the godless festivities are over, I hope that revelers take the opportunity to see the sights. My son and I visited Washington in the fall, and we had a great time.
In case the Reason Rally folks didn't get a chance to visit the Jefferson Memorial, here's a catalogue of the inscriptions on the monument:
"We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, that to secure these rights governments are instituted among men. We...solemnly publish and declare, that these colonies are and of right ought to be free and independent states...And for the support of this declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine providence, we mutually pledge our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor." -
"Almighty God hath created the mind free. All attempts to influence it by temporal punishments or burthens...are a departure from the plan of the Holy Author of our religion...No man shall be compelled to frequent or support any religious worship or ministry or shall otherwise suffer on account of his religious opinions or belief, but all men shall be free to profess and by argument to maintain, their opinions in matters of religion. I know but one code of morality for men whether acting singly or collectively."
"God who gave us life gave us liberty. Can the liberties of a nation be secure when we have removed a conviction that these liberties are the gift of God? Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just, that his justice cannot sleep forever. Commerce between master and slave is despotism. Nothing is more certainly written in the book of fate than that these people are to be free. Establish a law for educating the common people. This it is the business of the state and on a general plan."
"I am not an advocate for frequent changes in laws and constitutions, but laws and institutions must go hand in hand with the progress of the human mind. As that becomes more developed, more enlightened, as new discoveries are made, new truths discovered and manners and opinions change, with the change of circumstances, institutions must advance also to keep pace with the times. We might as well require a man to wear still the coat which fitted him when a boy as civilized society to remain ever under the regimen of their barbarous ancestors."
Here are the inscriptions on the Lincoln Memorial:
|"The providence of God... a living God... Yet if God wills... The Judgements of the Lord are true and righteous altogether... with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right..."|
|Ten commandments inside Supreme Court|
Atheists are an ideological minority in the United States. Their views are at odds with those of the vast majority of Americans. Thank goodness they can assemble and speak on our nation's Mall, in freedom and peace.
In all nations governed by State Atheism, such public expression of non-conformity is brutally suppressed.
In our beloved free country, this is where our Rights come from:
In our beloved free country, this is where our Rights come from:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
Well, make up your mind. Atheists are either a vanishingly small minority allowed to public free speech or they're an all powerful group able to suppress public free speech of Christians.
You can't have both.
Christians are perfectly free to have rallies like this, or to go to church or to have private prayers.
What they aren't allowed to do is force religion into public schools. It's against the constitution.
And ... Atheism doesn't have an ideology. At best, it's a worldview.
Atheists are a fringe, but they sue a lot.Delete
One bigot, along with a Federal court, can be a majority.
Please define "ideology" and "worldview".Delete
If Christians don't want to lose in federal court, they should just stop breaking the constitutional law.
An ideology is a comprehensive set of beliefs and philosophies shared by a group of people which determines their future aims and actions.
A worldview is a way of looking at the world, without predetermining future aims or actions. Atheism is just the simple assertion that there's no supernatural forces such as god(s), and explanations for the world have to be sought on the basis that natural causes are all there are. Disbelief in a god or gods is the only thing all atheists share.
"Well, make up your mind. Atheists are either a vanishingly small minority allowed to public free speech or they're an all powerful group able to suppress public free speech of Christians. You can't have both."Delete
I'll take a crack at that. Yes, they are a minority but not a "vanishing" minority. Yes, they are allowed to the free speech that they deny others. They're free to not believe in God and say so all day long. That's what's so great about America.
No, they aren't "all powerful". No one ever said that they were. Show me where Dr. Egnor said that they are all powerful. But they are powerful, far beyond their numbers. And yes, they do suppress the right of free speech and free exercise of religion of others. People are afraid of lawsuits.
Bachfiend, did you see the woman with the sign? Are you willing to admit now that destroying religion is their goal? Oh, let me guess: "She doesn't speak for everybody."
...Atheism doesn't have an ideology. At best, it's a worldview.Delete
Atheism is a religion
It's a religion because it has gurus promoting fundamentalism like Dawkins, Dennett, Harris and Hitchens.
My answer seems to have disappeared into the Etherverse, so I'll try again.
An ideology is a comprehensive set of ideas and philosophies held by a group that determines in part their actions. It looks forwards into the future. Often it includes a utopia, a perfect state to which the group is striving.
A worldview is the system of principles a group uses to explain the world as is. It's looking back into the past, determining what factors led to the world as it is today. It's concerned with the past and present and has nothing to do with the future.
Atheism is the simple assertion that there's no supernatural, no god(s). Atheists can adopt an ideology, whether communism, humanism, liberalism, libertarianism, whatever. Despite your persistent claims, there's nothing in atheism that makes atheists want to nationalise banks and stick everyone in gulags. To do that, you need to be a communist at least.
And if Christians want to stop losing in federal court they should stop breaking constitutional law by trying to introduce religion into public schools.
God (if he exists) moves in mysterious ways, but not as mysteriously as the Etherverse, which seems to have regurgitated two of my disappeared comments from beyond its event horizon.Delete
This the event where you can trust everyone according to KW.
Looks like a blast :P
I wonder why they called it the 'Reason Rally'? Something to do with the Age of Reason maybe?
They should have brought a guillotine and maybe some a little jar from doctor tar and professor feather.
Jen McCreight (the young woman holding the sign) is a total moron (and a whiner). About a year or so ago PZ posted some nonsensical criticisms of randomized trials that demonstrate the benefits of circumcision without actually having read any of the papers and she mindlessly copied and pasted what he wrote, even though he was completely out of his element.ReplyDelete
The overall message of the Rally was that we are a significant minority, with numbers greater than many groups that muster far greater political power.ReplyDelete
16% of Americans are non-religious or unaffiliated with any religion and represent both the fastest growing and youngest demographic among the range of religious belief. As I’ve opined in my comments before, I believe that this shift is primarily because of the extreme political and policy positions that have become synonymous with Christianity.
Now is the time for atheists, agnostics, free thinkers, skeptics, and humanists, to reach out to the unaffiliated and show them they are not alone, and that together we can fight against the hateful, warmongering, racist, science denying, misogynistic, fear mongering political machine that Christianity has become. It’s time for the closeted atheists and agnostics to come out of the closet and make their voices heard.
I’ve had the opportunity to discuss the rally with numerous neighbors and co-workers, and I’ve been delighted by the receptiveness and support they’ve shown me. Two of my neighbors and one of my co-workers volunteered that they where agnostic, and where happy to learn that like minded people are rallying and organizing for reason and secularism.
Ten years ago about 2000 people participated in the Godless Americans March on Washington. Ten years latter at the Reason Rally it was close to 20,000 people. Ten years from now I won’t be surprised if it’s 200,000.
"16% of Americans are non-religious or unaffiliated with any religion and represent both the fastest growing and youngest demographic among the range of religious belief. "Delete
Where was this polled, San Francisco? You might want to try that little experiment again, say in Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, Florida, Texas, even in East LA. Or maybe is Dearborn or Detroit?
"Now is the time for atheists, agnostics, free thinkers, skeptics, and humanists, to reach out to the unaffiliated and show them they are not alone, and that together we can fight against the hateful, warmongering, racist, science denying, misogynistic, fear mongering political machine that Christianity has become."
Go wipe the foam off your chin, KW.
"I’ve had the opportunity to discuss the rally with numerous neighbors and co-workers, and I’ve been delighted by the receptiveness and support they’ve shown me."
Until you walked away. That's when they said "Man, what is it with people always wanting to push their religion?" Oh wait, you work in some sort of specialized sciences don't you... so that is probably how you folks meet 'womyn' ('females').
"Two of my neighbors and one of my co-workers volunteered that they where agnostic, and where happy to learn that like minded people are rallying and organizing for reason and secularism."
Funny type of agnostic. Maybe it means something different in your part of the world. All the agnostics I know, read works by, and have seen speak seem to think atheism is an extreme position. Many of them are FORMER Atheists and have a reaction akin to ex-smokers when it comes to Atheism; they cannot stand it and can smell it on someone a mile away.
"Ten years ago about 2000 people participated in the Godless Americans March on Washington. Ten years latter at the Reason Rally it was close to 20,000 people. Ten years from now I won’t be surprised if it’s 200,000."
Yeah, sure....And maybe if you water it down and sugar up the name some more you can get 300,000? Try 'Free Pizza for people who like the colour red' and invite Wiccans, New Agers, anti-war activists, trade unions....
In all honesty KW, we did not even hear about it up here. What a snoozer of an event.
The Tea Party Rally was what made the news. Even the rallies in outrage over the killing of that young man in Florida made more press. I had to DIG for it just to find out what you were talking about, only to find it was such a poor gathering that if it was a concert, they would have cancelled the tour!
Barbara Streisand's farewell tour(s) would get more press and interest.
Do yourself a favour - next time save your money for the comic convention.
My replies keep disappearing into the Etherverse, even after succeeding with the spam filter.ReplyDelete
I'll try later with my reply to Michael ...
The 'I am' on the sign I took to be a quote from Exodus 3:14 when God said 'I am that I am'.
'I am' is hence another name for 'God'.
I took the sign as a subtle hint, too subtle for you, to read the bible in full, a supposedly divinely inspired book and the Word of God, and to find the myriad of inconsistencies and straight out insanities. 'I am' means that God would destroy religion if his word is actually read.
"I took the sign as a subtle hint, too subtle for you, to read the bible in full,"
You know this HOW? I think JQ get's the 'subtle' (LOL) jab. That is not the point. JQ posed you a question. Maybe it was too subtle for you?
Maybe YOU should read the comment in full?
'[...] a supposedly divinely inspired book and the Word of God, and to find the myriad of inconsistencies and straight out insanities."
Insanity would be believing you understood a bloody word of what has been written here, Bach. Never mind the Word in the Bible.
"'I am' means that God would destroy religion if his word is actually read."
Are you drunk?
'I am that I am' means the He exists by NECESSITY.
All things come from Him and his will. He is the CREATOR.
How on EARTH do you get that God infers to Moses that religion should be destroyed? In the rest of the book - that apparently you missed - He goes on to instruct Moses how to build the Tabernacle, rituals of purification, and instructs him on how to properly worship.
Here's the idea simplified for you: He created ALL. That includes matter, life, free will (including the choice to follow a religion or not), and even stupid gorpy looking atheists with asinine signs.
The woman's point is that religion should be DESTROYED. Her added sophomoric attempt at blasphemy is not at issue.
Her lame attempt at theology is so utterly stupid and juvenile as to not even be worthy of comment.
That is why JQ didn't bother with it. That is precisely why no one else did either.
Your repetition of it is MIND-NUMBINGLY banal.
You've completely missed the plot.
I read JQ's comment in full. I understand what he's saying, but I stand by my comment.
Have you read the bible? If you haven't, you should. It should only take you about 2 weeks.
"I read JQ's comment in full. I understand what he's saying, but I stand by my comment."
I expected no more.
"Have you read the bible?"
I have read the Bible through several times, actually. In fact, I keep a copy on my bedside table and read a bit each night. Sometimes I read a lot, some times only a chapter or two.
I have just finished Revelations, once again. Soon I will begin anew. Each time I read through it, I find a new light, a new connection. It really is 'the Good book' in so many ways.
"If you haven't, you should. It should only take you about 2 weeks."
Two weeks? It takes a lot longer than that to digest the corpus of works in the modern Christian Bible. A proper study of the Bible takes YEARS, not weeks.
No wonder you have such a hard time with the works of ancient masters too!
It requires more than a fast eye to understand the meaning, context, and language used by the various authors of the various books WITHIN the Bible.
But, I understand the barb. I don't agree with you and pointed out your obvious dodge of the question posed by JQ, so therefore I am stupid and unable to read quickly... or some such juvenile inference.
Shall I reciprocate with a 'Neh-nah-neh-nah-nah! Bach is a old stubborn dumb stupid-head'?
No. I don't think so. The very idea of such an exchange bores the piss out of me.
Instead I will simply note that a man of your education and intelligence should not resort to such name calling and arrogant nonsense.
You really should respond to JQ at least.
And if you can find the time in your busy schedule, perhaps to my own comment regarding the problem of Moses instruction's regarding religion in relation to God requiring his faithful to DESTROY religion. That kind of response would be on topic and informative - at least with regards to your theological statements and beliefs.
JQ asked me what I thought of the woman's sign.
I gave my answer. When I first saw the 'I am' I immediately thought of the biblical quote 'I am that I am' and didn't for a moment think of the possibility of any single person being able to destroy religion. That's hubris.
I don't think that it's likely that religion is going to disappear anytime soon. Not this year, not this lifetime, not this century ...
I was asked a question, and I gave an honest answer. Just because it's not the answer you were expecting is irrelevant.
Your attempts to connect U.S. law with your pathetic religion are fairly weak.ReplyDelete
"Friezes and plaques at the Supreme Court:"
No. The ten commandments are not in the pictures you provided. Those are references to the Bill of Rights, just like similar plaques in the National Archives are. If you bothered to do any research at all, you'd know this was the intention when those were placed.
"Moses on frieze of Supreme Court"
Positioned on equal footing with Solon and Confucius and with several other allegorical figures (including a representation of the fable of the tortoise and the hare) as lawgivers, not as religious figures. Do you think it makes Moses particularly noteworthy to be depicted along with (among other things) a lazy rabbit and a figure that is an allegory for maritime law?
And you may want to consider how important this pediment makes religion when it places Solon on equal footing with Moses. Unless you think that Moses would have been a fan of things like legalized brothels to democratize the availability of sex and the regulation of pederasty.
"In our beloved free country, this is where our Rights come from:"ReplyDelete
No. The Declaration of Independence is not where our rights come from. The Declaration is a document with no legal substance at all.
Our rights come from the Constitution, and that document clearly states where its authority comes from. Not any kind of divine being, but rather, the people. Our rights come from us. Not you desert goatherd deity.
[No. The Declaration of Independence is not where our rights come from.]Delete
Our rights don't come from the Declaration nor from the Constitution. Our rights come from God.
The Declaration declares the Source of our rights, and the Constitution enumerates them and establishes our Creator-bestowed rights in our system of law.
[The Declaration is a document with no legal substance at all.]
It is not legislation, of course. It is our founders' explanation of where the principles on which our laws are based come from, and thus it is the spirit of our rights and the Constitution is the letter of our rights.
The founders understood our nation to have begun in 1776, not in 1787. This is text from Article VII of the Constitution:
Done in Convention by the Unanimous Consent of the States present the Seventeenth Day of September in the Year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and Eighty seven and of the Independence of the United States of America the Twelfth. In Witness whereof We have hereunto subscribed our Names.
The Declaration is our founding document. Twelve years later, we held a Constitutional Convention to set down our rights declared in 1776 into written law.
From the Supreme Court decision in Cotting v. Goddard (1901)
The first official action of this nation declared the foundation of government in these words: "We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. "While such declaration of principles may not have the force of organic law, or be made the basis of judicial decision as to the limits of right and duty, and while in all cases reference must be had to the organic law of the nation for such limits, yet the latter is but the body and the letter of which the former is the thought and the spirit, and it is always safe to read the letter of the Constitution in the spirit of the Declaration of Independence. No duty rests more imperatively upon the courts than the enforcement of those constitutional provisions intended to secure that equality of rights which is the foundation of free government."
Anon, you need to read more widely.
'[...] of any single person being able to destroy religion.'
But you do think it can and SHOULD be destroyed?
It sure is. God-like arrogance is the staple of the religion of 'me'.
"I don't think that it's likely that religion is going to disappear anytime soon. Not this year, not this lifetime, not this century ."
Never, actually. But don't let that spoil your utopian fantasy.
'I was asked a question, and I gave an honest answer.'
You sure have.
"Just because it's not the answer you were expecting is irrelevant."
It was very revealing actually, and it was far more so than I could have expected.
No, I don't think that religion should be destroyed. I just think that it should die a natural death as people realize that it's not true. And that won't be happening anytime soon.
I don't have any utopian fantasy. I just hope that humans will be able to survive indefinitely in reasonable condition.
And also, if you go back to my original wording, I wrote that I don't think that religion will disappear anytime soon. Disappear doesn't mean the same as be destroyed.
" I just think that it should die a natural death as people realize that it's not true."
Which one? Do you mean all religions? How can a person who sees religion as a relative cultural trait expect everyone to adhere to some theory or another against their own personal experiences?
Would you suggest people all will stop believing in science or philosophy in general because a few utterly convinced extremists (your mirrors) think it is 'untrue'?
There will always be religious minded people. There will always be people who, for one reason or another, do not understand them or their faith and choose not to believe.
"And that won't be happening anytime soon."
It's not going to happen at all, so long as there are living humans.
"I don't have any utopian fantasy."
"I just hope that humans will be able to survive indefinitely in reasonable condition."
Nice. Me too.
"And also, if you go back to my original wording, I wrote that I don't think that religion will disappear anytime soon."
We are writing about the SIGN, Bach. Remember? You wrote: "'[...] of any single person being able to destroy religion.'"
No single person. That is a pretty revealing remark.
You did not write 'religion cannot be destroyed, but it may die out one day' or 'it would be immoral to destroy religion, but it may die out someday' or something along those lines.
You stated it was 'hubris' to assume a single person could destroy religion, hence your reasoning about the Obama sign. Your comment was a defence of the sign.
The inference is quite clear. It would take a multitude to do so.
Are you suggesting you chose your words poorly?
christians see this:ReplyDelete
"We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their [GOD] with certain inalienable rights......!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!
"Almighty God... ?!!?!?!?!?!!?!?!!?!
"God... liberty... liberties... liberties......!?!!!!!!?!
atheists see this:
... [A]ll men are... equal [and] to secure the[ir] rights governments are instituted among men.
[T]he mind [is] free... No man shall be compelled to frequent or support any religio[n]... or shall otherwise suffer on account of his religious opinions or belief, but all men shall ... by argument ... maintain, their opinions in matters of religion.
[End slavery] ...Establish a law for educating the common people.
As [the human mind] becomes more developed, more enlightened, as new discoveries are made, new truths discovered and manners and opinions change, with the change of circumstances, institutions must advance also to keep pace with the times.