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godhatesrepublicans Donating Member (343 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 01:22 PM
Original message
on converting people to liberal politics or a liberal God.
Efforts and courage are not enough without purpose and direction. - John F. Kennedy

I was having a conversation with three friends when one of them said that he never voted and never saw the point. The people I want never stand a chance of winning, so why should I? My other two friends went ballistic, springing to the defense of representative democracy while I stepped back to listen to the conversation that was going on beneath what was being said.

The two defenders of participating in democracy around my kitchen table were horrified that someone they knew didnt believe in voting. Even if you dont support either candidate, casting a write in ballot for who you want at least puts it on the record what you supported, said one defender. Even a write-in vote for Mickey Mouse as a protest vote counts, the other staunch voter added.

No, why should I even do that? Its meaningless! the non-voter shouted.

The discussion beneath what was being said out loud was that the two defenders of democracy were admitting that we mere mortals have no real control over the world around us, but at least we could have SYMBOLIC control over the world. They both took comfort in the fact that while their votes didnt actually matter, at least they had the chance to make their opinions heard. While they had very little control over the outcome, they at least had control over their feelings about the outcome because they had made their opinions known.

Meanwhile, the non-voter of the group was proudly declaring that he was powerless to have even a symbolic control of his world. By being completely powerless, he was also free from any blame for anything going on in the world. Absence of all control equals absence of all responsibility.

This was fascinating for me, since I spend what little free time I have each day trying to convince people to support liberal politicians and to believe in a liberal Deity. The resistance I get when trying to convert people in either way is often the same.

When it comes to converting people to liberal politics, from people who vote I hear the reply of Im powerless and afraid! Only the powerful conservative Republican politicians can save me and my family! I just have to hope that theyll protect me if I do as they say! From people who dont vote I hear Im powerless and angry! The government never does anything for me or even listens to me! Why should I even waste my time?

When I try to convert people to a liberal Deity, the objections I hear from people who believe in God is Im powerless and afraid! God is obviously angry at humanity in general and me in particular! If I follow the rules the conservative Fundamentalist preachers tell me to follow and hate the people they tell me to hate, maybe God will love me again! From atheists and agnostics I hear, Im powerless and afraid of a Universe that doesnt care if I live or die! All the people who talk about God that I ever hear are just interested following strict rules and hating so-called sinners to appease an angry invisible man in the sky! Why should I do that?

In all these cases, people feel swept up by a world beyond all control, and afraid of what is to come. It may be why the commandment Christ gave to his followers more often than any other I can recall was Be not afraid. Its definitely why the greatest leader the United States ever had is best remembered for telling a nation The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.

My advice to anyone trying to convert people politically OR religiously is to address their fears and their feeling of powerlessness. Im still finding the best ways to do so. I make no claims to have found the right way to do it. But its a great place to start from.

=========================================================

The core teaching of conservative politics from ancient times to modern times has always been, Its a dog-eat-dog, rat-eat-rat world; your only hope is to either be the biggest dog or to suck up to the biggest dog. This has always been the preferred philosophy of the rich and powerful. The people in power WANT the great mass of people to be afraid and to feel powerless so that the masses will stay quiet, do as they are told and not make waves.

Hand in hand with the dog-eat-dog political movement you can usually find the God is angry and about to destroy the world preachers. They have been telling their flocks that the world was going to end any minute now for thousands of years, that the disobedient troublemakers would be punished for all eternity and the only path to Heaven was stay quiet, do as they are told and not make waves.

When the dog-eat-dog politicians and the God is angry preachers run a society, they run it right into the ground. They make things go from bad to worse, to keep their followers & believers as terrified and feeling as powerless as possible. They stay on their thrones by setting the rest of humanity at each others throats, calling for crusades against sinners and purges against the disloyal.

When I think of Satan, I think of these people as his main minions. They take average people and make them into sad, degraded pitiful creatures.


Liberal politics from the Age of Enlightenment to the modern day can be boiled down to If all we work together and pool our talent and resources for mutual benefit we can build a better future for all. This is a pot-luck dinner on a huge scale. For this to work well, the people have to feel involved in their lives, care about the people around them and have some trust that everyone else will be willing to work as a team.

Its a self fulfilling prophesy. By appealing to peoples better natures, most people actually try to live up to their better natures. For a liberal political system to work, everyone in it has to be committed to constantly making things better for all. The citizens have to accept responsibility for whatever power they have, and to use it as wisely as they know how. Its a lot of work, more work than staying quiet, doing as they are told and not making waves. But its a lot more satisfying too.

Liberal Christianity has been around for a long time, most of my fellow believers would say since Day One. We dont claim to know when the world will end, and it really doesnt matter much to the various believers in a liberal Deity. We tend to be more interested in getting the hang of ideas like justice, mercy, forgiveness and being all around decent people. Most of us even go so far as to say its more important to live how Jesus said we should try to live than to shout out his name every five seconds.

Its a great comfort, since we are controlling how we react to the world around us, not letting the rest world force us into reacting the way they want us to. It may be only symbolic, like voting for Mickey Mouse, but it gives us control we wouldnt have any other way.

Its a hard set of ideals to live by. But its a lot more rewarding than being filled with fear and helplessness. By trying to live with love & justice, and trying to get others to do the same, were building a better world, kind of like the followers of liberal politics. Maybe thats why the two seem to go hand in hand so often.

It can be a constant struggle. I personally find it hard to forgive the unrepentantly evil minions of Satan known as members of the Republican Party. But since they havent repented yet, come to think of it maybe I dont have to forgive them just yet.

After all, God forgives any who sincerely as for forgiveness, even arm-band wearing Nazis and sheet-wearing Klu Klux Klanners. But Nazis and Klu Klux Klan members would have to first stop calling themselves Nazis and KKK members as part of repenting. So maybe Im right to not forgive Republicans until they change their voter affiliation, throw away their Anne Coulter books and stop living in a dog eat dog manner.


Those are the thoughts I wanted to share with anyone who cared to read them. To convert those around you to following either a liberal political philosophy or to a liberal Deity, first help them feel in control of their lives, their future and their soul.

B.H. Davis
http://www.godhatesrepublicans.org for all your liberal Christian rhetorical needs!
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Wanet Donating Member (197 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 01:28 PM
Response to Original message
1. Great thoughts GHR
I can't add a thing, but I just wanted to thank you for posting this. There are many liberal believers out there, and we need to support each other as we seek with all liberals to make a better world. -- Wanet
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DesertRat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 01:36 PM
Response to Original message
2. Great post and thanks for the link. k&r
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trotsky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 01:55 PM
Response to Original message
3. A few things.
1) From atheists and agnostics I hear, "Im powerless and afraid of a Universe that doesnt care if I live or die!..."

You hear this from actual atheists and agnostics, huh? Strange, because I would expect something like that to come out of the mouth of a caricature of an atheist or agnostic, to be quite honest.

2) Liberal politics from the Age of Enlightenment to the modern day can be boiled down to "If all we work together and pool our talent and resources for mutual benefit we can build a better future for all."

It's true, and please note that this concept has no religious connotations whatsoever. You do not have to anchor it to specific belief in a liberal deity.

3) To convert those around you to following either a liberal political philosophy or to a liberal Deity, first help them feel in control of their lives, their future and their soul.

The use of the word "convert" makes me nervous. It seems pretty clear you think non-believers are afraid in a cold, uncaring universe, and therefore to help them feel "in control of their lives," they'll need your deity. Thanks, but no thanks.
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godhatesrepublicans Donating Member (343 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 03:54 PM
Response to Reply #3
5. Nope, that is pretty much what their arguments boil down to.
Say to some people that you believe in something bigger than yourself, and they go into a total reflexive panic. It usually turned out that Granny used to wallop them with a Gideon Bible when they were "wicked" or some Catholic priest gave them a bad touch.

Mention the comfort that can be found in the thought that the universe may have a benevolent purpose behind it and they start crying and twitching, screaming "Tooth Fairy!!! Easter Bunny!!!" and weeping like a three year old that just lost a favorite toy.

Note I never said you yourself had to believe in a liberal God. There aren't Quakers and Unitarians hiding under your bed, sharpening their knives and scheming how to bring you to Jesus using sand paper and hot sauce.

Take a breath. Calm down, and perceive correctly.

If you believe in one God, 17 Gods or no God at all, I don't give a toss. I'm more interested in getting as many humans to value teamwork, togetherness and all those Sesame Street values that can make life on this blue marble so much more pleasant.

Now as it happens, I think that if we ever get it together as a species, something like "Heaven" may occur. That's my motive. As long as you are willing to join the side trying to make the world better, I honestly don't care if you believe in an afterlife, Jesus, the Virgin Birth or that cats are better than dogs.

The fact is I run into a lot of Atheists who ARE afraid life is meaningless. You seem to not be one of those. Good for you. Have a cookie. You are NOT typical.

Now go forth and preach the gospel of Existentialism, or whatever your philosophy is, and bring more people into the "let's make the world better" fold. I'll work the other side of the street, winning over ditto-heads, Fundamentalists, Republicans and Atheists who feel lost in a chaotic universe. You gather anyone I've missed.



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charlie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 04:03 PM
Response to Reply #5
7. Cripes, that was needlessly snarky
I guess I'm not "typical" either. Hand me one of those cookies, will you?
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trotsky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 04:06 PM
Response to Reply #5
8. Wow.
I'm trying to imagine if I had posted the equivalent screed from an atheistic perspective, complete with judgments on a whole group based on the few people I'd met.

It usually turned out that Granny used to wallop them with a Gideon Bible when they were "wicked" or some Catholic priest gave them a bad touch.

FUCK that. That is no different than an atheist claiming that most people who believe need a security blanket, or have a compulsion to believe in fairy tales. You have no fucking clue how people arrived at their position. No abusive authority figure contributed one whit to my position today, and for you to insinuate otherwise is a personal insult.

Geez, ghr, I thought you were one of the good guys. But mixed in with your message of tolerance and acceptance is a decidedly INtolerant and prejudicial view of us non-believers.
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Evoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 04:35 PM
Response to Reply #8
11. They are incapable of understanding us.
Even the good ones. When belief in god is central to your life, it probably isn't easy to see how someone can live perfectly happy without that faith. I wouldn't get to upset at him...he is ignorant on this topic Unforutanetly, I'm not sure they can understand not having faith anymore that I can understand what would make someone believe in something that doesn't exist. I have never had faith, so I don't understand liberal christians myself. At least I don't talk about conversion, though.
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trotsky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 06:27 PM
Response to Reply #11
15. I know, I've seen it so many times...
and yet here it is, cropping up again, from someone who tries to go out of their way to show just how compassionate and tolerant they are, even to those nasty grumpy atheists.
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Evoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 04:30 PM
Response to Reply #5
10. Ugh...not this shit again.
"If you believe in one God, 17 Gods or no God at all, I don't give a toss. I'm more interested in getting as many humans to value teamwork, togetherness and all those Sesame Street values that can make life on this blue marble so much more pleasant"

That was exactly Trotsky's point. We don't need liberal christianity to do this. And by going on about how we are afraid of believing god, all your doing is separating us from your group, not including us in it. You do your argument a diservice, GHR. I fail to understand why religoius people keep insisting on trying to convert us for us to good. Many of us are already good, and trying to help the world, and all you do is add to the chasm between believers and non-believers by talking about conversion.

I have never been slapped by a bible or fucked by a priest. That approach is completely insulting. My father and many of my family members are atheists, who encouraged me to be skeptical. Liberal christians can be as friendly and loving towards me as they wish, and I will reciprocate. But I will not convert, because I do not believe in god, not because I am afraid to convert.
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varkam Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 04:43 PM
Response to Reply #5
12. Double wow.
Say to some people that you believe in something bigger than yourself, and they go into a total reflexive panic. It usually turned out that Granny used to wallop them with a Gideon Bible when they were "wicked" or some Catholic priest gave them a bad touch.

Actually, according to some social psychological research I recently read, it turns out that most atheists renounced their beliefs not because of satan or bad experiences with christians, but as a result of studying religious scriptures and not because of "Granny" or "bad touches". Can you see how that might be offensive to atheists? It construes the atheist position as some sort of act of rebellion to try and "get even" with the faith.

Funny that you should make that point, and then in the next paragraph seemingly decry the "fairy tale" insults directed towards your faith.

The fact is I run into a lot of Atheists who ARE afraid life is meaningless. You seem to not be one of those. Good for you. Have a cookie. You are NOT typical.

Odd that fact, because none of the atheists that I've met have told me that they are afraid that life is meaningless. In fact, none of the atheists I've met have told me that they think life is meaningless, period. If you think that if someone renounces belief in God then all of a sudden their lives lack overarching meaning, then it would seem you are basing your argument here on what you think atheists are like - and not actual people.

Now go forth and preach the gospel of Existentialism, or whatever your philosophy is, and bring more people into the "let's make the world better" fold. I'll work the other side of the street, winning over ditto-heads, Fundamentalists, Republicans and Atheists who feel lost in a chaotic universe. You gather anyone I've missed.

If you really are intent on winning people over to your point of view, here is a tip: You would do well not to insult their intelligence or their beliefs.
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NMMNG Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 05:53 PM
Response to Reply #12
14. Oh varkam, you know how it is
People have to believe atheists are what they are because they were psychologically traumatized, are weak, are stupid, are stubborn or just plain mean. It can never be because they've put great thought and even study into the matter and come to a decision based on that.


Sigh.

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muriel_volestrangler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 07:49 PM
Response to Reply #5
16. You're amazingly condescending, you know
Your first post was bad enough, but this one is incredible. Do you really get 'converts' from atheism or agnosticism with that kind of attitude? Thinking they behave like a three year old? Assuming their relations were abusive?

I see you've been here a few months. I would have thought you'd have realised that people on this forum would find your caricatures insulting.
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NMMNG Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 12:33 AM
Response to Reply #5
18. Let me turn this around for you
"Religious people are terrified life is meaningless so they have to have a Big Sky Daddy to fawn over and rituals to perform in order to feel as if they actually have a purpose."


This is not what I believe, it's just an illustration of how I can make a statement as offensive and full of sh*t as the one you've made about atheists.

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Random_Australian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 04:26 AM
Response to Reply #5
20. Percieve correctly? You think that people are atheists because they
had bad experience with religious figures?

:wtf:

That is a uniquely American view.

Funny how any atheists in other countries just think about it and come to an informed conclusion about how they want to think.....



..... but inside America it is only because they had bad experiences with religion?

What makes you so angry towards atheists? Did your atheist grandpa clip you over the ears for mentioning religion in childhood or something? :)

O8)

:hi:
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Evoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 03:10 PM
Response to Original message
4. Lol....you religious people don't get us. You never get us.
Edited on Thu Aug-03-06 03:12 PM by Evoman
"From atheists and agnostics I hear, ?I?m powerless and afraid of a Universe that doesn?t care if I live or die! All the people who talk about God that I ever hear are just interested following strict rules and hating so-called ?sinners? to appease an angry invisible man in the sky! Why should I do that??"

WTF? I'm sorry, exactly what "power" does believing in god give you? Especially since god doesn't exist? This is an absolutely shitty caricature of atheists.

To begin with, I don't think liberal christians hate sinners. I don't think many of them follow strict rules, and most of them don't seem to believe in an angry invisible man. They believe in a loving invisible man.

I'm not afraid of the Universe, and I am not preoccupied with death. Do I feel powerless in the grand scheme of the universe...of course, I am powerless. As are liberal christians, as are conservative christians. The only difference between us is that I know I'm powerless, whereas you think that praying to god gives you some measure of control. It doesn't. God does not exist. Any feelings of power your faith give you are false. If anything, god gives you less power. If a meteor is heading to Earth, we would all be equally afraid (unless your a complete moron, which I doubt you are). The only difference is while most religoius people would be blathering prayers to a god that doesn't exist, I would be either doing something that might actually save me, or saying goodbye to my loved ones.

I don't believe in your liberal god. Not because I am afraid of the universe, or afraid of liberal christians or afraid of god. I don't believe in your liberal god simply becuase he doesn't exist. I have never seen evidence of his existence, and I doubt I ever will.
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godhatesrepublicans Donating Member (343 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 04:03 PM
Response to Reply #4
6. Again, take a breath, relax, and perceive correctly.
My response to Trotsky goes double for you, my friend. There is no Priest hiding in your closet, you're safe from the Spanish Inquisition.

You're having what is called a "reaction formation," have a beer and relax. Read my web site, think about how we all define how we react to the outside world, and consider Buddhism, it may help that anger issue you seem to have.
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Evoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 04:17 PM
Response to Reply #6
9. Lol..you just don't understand.
Edited on Thu Aug-03-06 04:39 PM by Evoman
I'm not afraid of a priest, and I am not afraid of liberal christians. I love many liberal christians. My girlfriend is a liberal christian. Your patronizing drivel does not make me angry..it makes me literally roll my eyes that there is yet another person on here claiming to understand atheists, but simply not getting it. Its par for course, and I have come to terms with it. That doesn't mean that I can't call you on it, however.

I am not having "reaction formation". I'm simply responding to something in your post that is mistaken. You are in error, and instead of confronting that error, you have to tell me to "get a beer". I am not angry, nor am I afraid, so please stop insisting that I am.

Again, I'll rephrase the point in my last thread. Most atheists are atheists either because they have never given god much thought, or because haven't seen any evidence for god. In fact, I think your projecting your fears. If anything, Conservative Christians are afraid to be liberal christians because they are afraid of an angry god. Liberal christians are afraid to be atheists, because they are afraid that there is no big daddy who cares about them out in the universe. It is not the atheists who are afraid that life, in the grander scale, in meaningless. We find our own meaning. It is liberal christians who have that fear. That is why they cling to the idea of god, when there is plainly no god out there.

On edit: Your website has everything for liberal rhetorical needs, except what you need to convert people like me. A little thing called PROOF OF GOD'S EXISTENCE.
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Random_Australian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 04:17 AM
Response to Reply #6
19. *ahem* I hereby call BULLSHIT on "reaction formation"
Edited on Fri Aug-04-06 04:20 AM by Random_Australian
(Prework) Reaction formation resolves tension unrecognised by the ego between the superego and the id. (Source: Freudianpersonality theory)

A) The id gets its 'desires' from very primal places. (Source: Freudian personality theory)

B) Conflict is over accepting God. (Source: Above arguments)

C) The superego is socially driven, learned punishments and rewards. (Source: Freudian personality theory)

D) Your post makes clear that you deem it that his superego fears religion. (Source: Quote "There is no Priest hiding in your closet")

E) Therefore the desire that creates the tension is from the id, and is opposed to the superego. (Source: Prework, D, E)

In other words, that the id, the very primal and close to heart piece of the responder, desires God, which he is simply not accepting. (And it would be better for him if he did)


So, either you are telling the atheists that they are conflicted, flawed people for not accepting God, in which case you are the most condescending nasty bit of work that I've seen here, OR you don't know straight fuck about reaction formation.

You choose, but please, share what you decide.
After all, you got the guts to insult people about their religion beliefs, so you should have enough to apologise.

And don't try to tell me I am twisting your words. I wrote it out in straight deductive logic, which adds nothing.
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cosmik debris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 05:03 PM
Response to Reply #6
22. OK, I took a deep breath
I relaxed, I re-read your post and I had a beer. And my conclusion after two days of relaxing and considering your post is that you are condescending, arrogant, insulting, and wrong on so many levels and about so many things. I can't imagine what caused you to post that nonsense, but I wish you a speedy recovery.
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NMMNG Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 05:46 PM
Response to Original message
13. Real live atheists say that tripe?
Im powerless and afraid of a Universe that doesnt care if I live or die!


That doesn't sound like any atheist I've ever encountered. That sounds like something somebody who knows nothing about atheists would surmise an atheist might say.
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beam me up scottie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 10:22 PM
Response to Original message
17. Clueless. Inaccurate. Mistaken. Uneducated. Intellectually dishonest.
I vote for all of the above.

From atheists and agnostics I hear, "I’m powerless and afraid of a Universe that doesn’t care if I live or die! All the people who talk about God that I ever hear are just interested following strict rules and hating so-called “sinners” to appease an angry invisible man in the sky! Why should I do that?"


You know what I hear from my fellow atheists?

Religious proselytizers lie.

Easily.

With a smile on their face and a sly wink to God.

Because they can't let a little thing like immoral behaviour stop them from converting the heathens.

If I believed you had one, I'd weep for your soul.



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Vidar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 02:01 PM
Response to Original message
21. Great post.
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Zhade Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 05:24 PM
Response to Reply #21
52. Insulting atheists results in approval for a "great post"?
You know, I don't go in for the whole "I'm persecuted" thing, but every time I see insults applauded I'm reminded of how easy it is for those who hate us to sway those like you who don't by cloaking their intolerance in pretty, if empty, rhetoric.

I'd ask you to reconsider the notion that atheists are "afraid" of life, the universe, and everything (including these gods for which no objective evidence exists) and if maybe it's kind of insulting to those of us who have absolutely no fear of life, death, or our acknowledged powerlessness over the universe.

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Ron Green Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 12:39 AM
Response to Original message
23. I enjoyed your post, but I'm not surprised at the rolling eyes of some of
the eye-rolling crew. You just can't get away with these kinds of religious/theological statements on the old religion/theology forum without bringing out the usual responses.

Touchy-touchy, Kids.
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beam me up scottie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 12:47 AM
Response to Reply #23
24. religious/theological statements? You mean christian bigotry/proselytizing
Yeah, we're funny that way.

Unfortunately, this isn't a hand picked audience come to hear the gospel according to GW.

Atheists get to disagree with christian propaganda, especially when it's about us.



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IndependentVoice Donating Member (330 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 07:10 PM
Response to Reply #24
60. I'm Atheist and I found nothing bigoted about that.
He was just making an (very) Interesting observation.
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beam me up scottie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 07:24 PM
Response to Reply #60
61. Congratulations, that's one of you.
Edited on Sat Aug-12-06 07:55 PM by beam me up scottie
I'm sure the rest of us (charlie, trotsky, Evoman, varkam, Buffy, muriel, RA, cosmik and Zhade) don't know any better.

Some of us consider proselytizing and the assumption that we need to be saved offensive.

And most of us consider bald-faced lies and broad brush smears about atheists to be even more so.
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NMMNG Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 01:15 AM
Response to Reply #23
25. Yes, we're a little strange like that
When people make broad-brush, blatantly false bigoted statements about us we tend to get a little irritated. I'm sure believers would do the same if an atheist made a post that said similar things about them.
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beam me up scottie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 01:27 AM
Response to Reply #25
26. Oh, come on, Buffy. We're not supposed to mind being stereotyped
(and so hideously incorrectly) when someone from the left does it, remember?

We're just a'skeered of that big ol' universe thingy.
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NMMNG Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 01:30 AM
Response to Reply #26
27. Oh, that's right
I forgot the rules.

1.We can't say anything bad about religious people.
2.We aren't supposed to protest when religious people say bad things about us because that's being "hypersensitive".

Please give me my obligatory spanking now.
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beam me up scottie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 01:38 AM
Response to Reply #27
28. What? And turn all the straight guys on?
No way, you know I only do that for money.

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NMMNG Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 01:47 AM
Response to Reply #28
29. Ah, a working girl.
Here you go .
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beam me up scottie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 01:49 AM
Response to Reply #29
30. Ready?
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NMMNG Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 01:59 AM
Response to Reply #30
31. That's what I need
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Evoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 03:53 AM
Response to Reply #31
35. You guys, this is a serious topic! So stop it!
Immmmma a-a-a-aafraid of the universe, an' Imma a-a-a-a-fraid of spankings. Sniff...I want to accept Jesus so I don't gots to be in no fear no more. And you guys are ruining it!

I'm going to pray for a bullet-proof cape!
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NMMNG Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 04:08 AM
Response to Reply #35
36. Maybe if you're a good boy, Santa will give you some Jesus for Christmas.
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Random_Australian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 06:04 AM
Response to Reply #36
38. Holy FUCK Buffy! "Santa will give you some Jesus for Christmas"
:rofl: I almost DIED laughing! :rofl:

AND I just fell off my chair! :rofl:

I am still :rofl: :thumbsup:
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NMMNG Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 09:33 PM
Response to Reply #38
41. Glad I could brighten your day.
:evilgrin:
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beam me up scottie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 04:19 AM
Response to Reply #35
37. Aren't you supposed to be out preaching "the gospel of Existentialism,
or whatever your philosophy is"?

I like that line so much, I may have to feature it in my sig.

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Random_Australian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 06:08 AM
Response to Reply #37
39. Oh yes! About the sig! You need to change it, that guy was TS'ed.
Edited on Sun Aug-06-06 06:09 AM by Random_Australian
Here was our next Sermon On Athesits (TM)

----------------------------------------------

William769 (1000+ posts)
Fri Apr-28-06 12:06 PM
Response to Reply #95

96. We are helping the poor here.

Also the mentally challenged.

-----------------------------------------------

(The framework of the post did not copy over, I am afraid.)

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...
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Zhade Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 05:50 PM
Response to Reply #39
55. He was? YES!
He was an intolerant asshole. NO loss to DU.

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varkam Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 02:51 AM
Response to Reply #23
32. Why I frequent the R/T forums.
The reason that I come here, to this place, is to have discussions about religious and philosophical matters. I come here because, if I know anything, it is that I know very little: in short, I come here to learn from others. Ever since I joined DU, the R/T forums have been one of my favorite places because of the discussions that I've found myself getting in to. I've had some arguments, and I've slung some mud, but mostly I've just learned to appreciate perspectives that differ from my own.

I am an agnostic/atheist/materialist. Now I know that it is the assertion of some here that people such as myself should not be allowed to post in the R/T forums (what with the whole not believing in God thing and all) and that I should confine myself to the atheists/agnostic DU group. In fact, I frequent there as well - should I have something to say that might offend some of the individuals that come to these forums. But, unfortunately, I'm not able to expose myself to quite as diverse a group there as I am able to do so here (which, I would suppose, is the very philosophy that underlies the existence of these forums).

Some of the responses shouldn't surprise you, and I'm glad that they don't. When an individual makes broad brush statements that are derogatory in nature towards things that I think, and further, things that are central to my very identity, then it shouldn't surprise you that it might upset me. When an individual makes arguments that attempt to tear down the things that I have thought on and read about for a very long time based upon caricatures of the group I belong to, then it shouldn't surprise you that I might not like that. In fact, it wouldn't surprise me that if someone made similar comments regarding your faith, that you would be affected in a similar fashion. There have been many, many instances on these forums when an atheist (or otherwise non-believer) has made derogatory comments with respect to Christianity (or other faiths) and have been called out on them.

It strikes me that your statements reflect a double standard. It seems you think it fine to attack and denigrate members of a group who disagree with you, while surely you would not be so quick to rush to the defense of those unfairly attacking the things that you believe - the things that you hold to be most sacred. I, for one, don't think that any such stereotyping helps further any sort of discussion. Rather, such attacks detract from discussion (which is, after all, why I assume most everyone is here).

I hope that at least some of my thoughts help you to understand it's not simply being touchy to respond in such a fashion, and that why your response won't do anything but fan the flames.

:toast:
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beam me up scottie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 03:01 AM
Response to Reply #32
33. Very classy, varkam.
Nice. :toast:
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NMMNG Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 03:05 AM
Response to Reply #32
34. Thank you!
:applause:


It seems that not only do we have to defend ourselves for having the temerity to not believe in gods, but also for defending ourselves against bigotry. It completely boggles the mind. :crazy:
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godhatesrepublicans Donating Member (343 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 10:06 AM
Response to Reply #23
42. I don't take it personally, I used to be one of them.
They'll eventually realize that they're being just as close-minded as the people they so enjoy feeling superior to, and question their own preconceived notions.

I see it as a process for fanatics of all sorts. People who are convinced they know everything have to realize they don't. Then they might be ready to believe in something bigger and better than themselves without then trying to force it down the throats of others, or feeling smugly superior of the "clueless fools" who don't agree with them every step of the way.

Like I said, I don't care if people worship 1 God, 17 Gods or none at all, as long as they agree on the goal of a finer world. I take the parable of the Good Samaritan as my guide more than The Revelation of St. John the Schizophrenic. (Which is why Fundies hate me even more than the Fundie-Atheists 'round here. :-) )


Now watch, I'll get like 50 flames from people who fixate on the "or feeling smugly superior of the "clueless fools" " bit. Which is a shame, I'd love a few honest dialogs with people who could help me find ways to get through to the religious fundies to get them to see that the "Rapture" fixation is just a way to sit on your ass and wait for the world to end instead of getting up and helping people so that something like "heaven on Earth" might happen.

Once militant Atheists stop fixating on the "How dare you believe in something I disbelieve," part, they are quite effective at finding ways to get Fundies to THINK about their faith for a change.

Give me 10 old fashioned well trained Marxists, and I could turn 1000 right wing neo-Conservative Pat Robertson quoting Ann Coulter reading moron Americans into highly motivated Dan Berrigan anti-war social justice Christians.

...which is an improvement, BTW. :-)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daniel_Berrigan for those who don't remember the old guy.
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Evoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 11:59 AM
Response to Reply #42
44. Liberal christians are just afraid of there not being a god to be atheist.
Edited on Sat Aug-12-06 12:10 PM by Evoman
Many may disagree.

They'll eventually realize that they're being just as close-minded as the people they so enjoy feeling superior to, and question their own preconceived notions.

I see it as a process for fanatics of all sorts. People who are convinced they know everything have to realize they don't. Then they might be ready to not believe that something bigger and better than themselves without then trying to force it down the throats of others, or feeling smugly superior of the "clueless fools" who don't agree with them every step of the way.

Like I said, I don't care if people worship 1 God, 17 Gods or none at all, as long as they agree on the goal of a finer world. I take the golden rules as my guide mor than anything in the bible, since I don't need any god at all to judge me and I STILL do good works. (Which is why liberal christians hate me even more than they hate literalist christians 'round here. )

Now watch, I'll get like 50 flames from people who fixate on the "or feeling smugly superior of the "clueless fools" " bit. Which is a shame, I'd love a few honest dialogs with people who could help me find ways to get through to the religious fundies to get them to see that the "Rapture" fixation is just a way to sit on your ass and wait for the world to end instead of getting up and helping people so that something like "heaven on Earth" might happen.

Once militant liberal christians stop fixating on the "How dare you don't believe in something I believe," part, and stop trying TO CONVERT US ATHIESTS, they are quite effective at finding ways to get Fundies to THINK about their faith for a change.
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godhatesrepublicans Donating Member (343 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 12:13 PM
Response to Reply #44
45. That way lies a circular argument.
Then I say "Atheists are just afraid there IS a God."

Then You say "Prove God exists."

Then I say "Philosophically I can't prove YOU exist."

I've done this dance before. :-)

Instead of dancing in circles, let's go forward. How does Evoman propose to turn Fundie Xians and Kool-aid drinking Repubs into independent thinking people working for a finer world if Evoman disagrees with my original post?
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Evoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 12:42 PM
Response to Reply #45
47. There we go, progress
See, instead of telling us atheists that we afraid of god, or that you want to "convert us", why not ask this kind of question in the first place? Why not give us the respect and dignity that we deserve as intellectual beings, and treat our position, which was reached by observation of the world around us, with respect? As rambo would say, you drew First Blood in this discussion and insulted many of us deeply. When called on it, instead of apologizing, you started going on about fundie atheists (which do not exist).

Now then, let me answer your question. I don't know. I am not sure what to do with fundies. I think that education has to play a big part in it. I think that there has to be a concerted effort to properly teach both critical thinking and science in schools, instead of christianity and the bible (which is all they get at home). Expose people to different ideas, and diversity, and maybe you can start planting seeds of tolerance. Homeschooling for some of the fundie kids may be a deterrent, and that issue has to be seriously looked at as well. Whether this will work or not...I have no idea. We are doing pretty good in Canada.

To be completely honest, it may take the same thing it took Europe before people more or less loss faith in god. A massive loss of life on a planetary scale. After you see the death of millions in your backyard, and brutality on such a barbaric scale, beliefs in god start declining somewhat. Of course, that may lead them to atheism, which you seem to abhor. I mean, who wants to have a more secular society, like the ones we see in sweden and the rest of Europe, when we can have a All-Good Liberal Theocracy instead?
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beam me up scottie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 03:29 PM
Response to Reply #42
48. You used to be one of them? You mean a liberal?
Because your posts in this forum read like they're from another website.

One that attracts and hosts clueless christians who also feel it's their god-given duty to proselytize and convert infidels.

I see you like Wikipedia, perhaps you'll recognize the picture of the dude you remind me of:






They'll eventually realize that they're being just as close-minded as the people they so enjoy feeling superior to, and question their own preconceived notions.

If you're talking about christians who obnoxiously proselytize and preach their version of the truthiness because they believe they need to convert others, we can only hope.

If you're not sure who that is, this will help:


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neebob Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 07:27 AM
Response to Original message
40. So, do you get many converts
with that site title, God Hates Republicans? Or do you have to rely on your ability to understand their fears and help them perceive correctly? Help me understand how this works.
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godhatesrepublicans Donating Member (343 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 10:13 AM
Response to Reply #40
43. Actually I do pretty well.
I've gotten a few hundred people to actually reevaluate their mistaken beliefs about what their God wants from them. And my hope is that a chunk of them will talk to their friends and church members, and get them to read less "Left Behind" and more Dietrich Bonhoeffer. *

I think if you'd like to make a difference by whittling away at the Republicans core constituency we should talk, email me some time! You might help turn things around.

* http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dietrich_Bonhoeffer
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neebob Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 12:35 PM
Response to Reply #43
46. I'm afraid I wouldn't have much luck with your method
since I'm an atheist. If I wanted to whittle away at what you call the core constituency, I'd have to (a) want to talk to people whose beliefs are that far removed from mine, and (b) think long and hard on how to do it without offending them. But if it works for you, you go. I'm having trouble imagining how you engage anyone with a statement that God hates them.
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godhatesrepublicans Donating Member (343 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 03:34 PM
Response to Reply #46
49. well if you change your mind...
But I have to tell you, talking to people with different beliefs isn't as hard as you may think, and can be fascinating.

And offending them isn't the issue, you and I already offend them by not being in their special club. I just think if things are to get any better, some of these people have to have their minds opened a little. Sitting in coffee shops and bitching about other people from afar doesn't work, I did it for 20 years. You have to grab 'em by the collar and shout REPENT!!!

engaging people by telling them that God hates them is a great way to shake up people who think God loves THEM and hates EVERYBODY ELSE. You can either approach people by letting them think you agree with everything they say except a few MINOR differences. Or you can tell people that they're 100% wrong about everything but you're willing to clue them in. It's counterintuitive, but method 2 gets stronger results.

It's not that different from telling someone "THE WORLD ENDS TOMORROW AND YOU MAY DIE!!! Well probably not, but anyway..." http://subgenius.com/slaq.htm

I heard of a guru once who had 2 cards he carried with him everywhere. One card said THERE IS NO FRIEND ANYWHERE. the other said THERE IS NO ENEMY ANYWHERE. Within a few minutes he always knew which card to give someone to knock them off their balance, to disturb their comfortable living on autopilot routine and open them up to enlightenment.
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Zhade Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 05:53 PM
Response to Reply #49
57. "It's counterintuitive, but method 2 gets stronger results."
And on a wider scale, it's given the world the gift of sectarian strife.

Your approach GETS PEOPLE KILLED.

I'm not frightened of anything you said atheists are, but I sure am frightened that someone like you who advocates religious splinter wars hasn't been run out of DU on a rail.

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neebob Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-13-06 12:34 PM
Response to Reply #49
65. You mean if I change my mind about being an atheist?
Because that's what I'd have to do to want to join you in converting people to a more liberal god. Or did you mean change my mind about wanting to talk to people with different beliefs?

Keep in mind that I said people whose beliefs are that far removed from mine - not just people with different beliefs. It's not so much that I don't want to talk to them or I think it's hard; it's that I don't see value in talking to them. I don't have a strong need to change anyone's mind, much less the mind of someone whose intelligence I doubt - someone who believes in the Rapture, for example. Or someone who's convinced that George Bush and his criminal cronies have their best interests at heart.

There, I said it. Call me a snob. I'd rather converse with smart people.
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cosmik debris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 05:17 PM
Response to Reply #46
51. I'm reminded of Fred Phelps
That is the message Phelps sends. Same hate, different victims.

Some people are predisposed to believe that god hates people enough to torture them for eternity just because their groveling is inadequate.

Those are the people who are easily swayed by such arguments as the OP.
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Zhade Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 05:42 PM
Response to Reply #43
53. What did you god allegedly say about humility?
"about what their God wants from them" - what makes you think YOU know better than THEY do? To non-Christians, you've both got the same lack of evidence and lack of authority on what some purported god wants.

You're no Bonhoeffer. He had more humility.

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Zhade Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 05:01 PM
Response to Original message
50. "Its a hard set of ideals to live by."
Funny, from where I sit religion is the easy choice - answers (even if they're quite likely completely wrong), structure, community, support, etc.

Try being an atheist sometime, instead of unwittingly insulting us by suggesting we're "afraid". In my view, it take a lot more courage to confess one's lack of belief in any gods than it does to claim belief in them.

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beam me up scottie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 05:47 PM
Response to Reply #50
54. I don't think his insults are made unwittingly.
He insults atheists repeatedly in this forum and when we protest, he insults us some more.

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Zhade Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 05:50 PM
Response to Reply #54
56. Yeah, and he's quite self-aggrandizing.
What a loser.

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beam me up scottie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 06:06 PM
Response to Reply #56
58. Yeah, I concur with cosmik on this one.
His opinion that the op is "condescending, arrogant, insulting, and wrong on so many levels and about so many things" pretty much covers it.
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cosmik debris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 07:31 PM
Response to Reply #58
62. Thank you
Brevity is the soul of wit. And you can tell the half-wits because they are half-brief.
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beam me up scottie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 07:34 PM
Response to Reply #62
63. I'll have to tell the local fundies to start getting their material here.
It's all so...uh, original.
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IndependentVoice Donating Member (330 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-12-06 07:06 PM
Response to Original message
59. Why does god have to be liberal, or conservative?
Why is it he cant just be god, no strings attached. If he is supposed to be completely beyond our comprehension, then I for one, would think he was above political affiliations.
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Evoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-13-06 02:24 AM
Response to Reply #59
64. NO!
God is a liberal, because I am a liberal. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

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