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Sat Nov 7, 2015, 07:04 AM

Religious children are meaner than their secular counterparts, study finds

Source: The Guardian

Religious belief appears to have negative influence on children’s altruism and judgments of others’ actions even as parents see them as ‘more empathetic’

Children from religious families are less kind and more punitive than those from non-religious households, according to a new study.

Academics from seven universities across the world studied Christian, Muslim and non-religious children to test the relationship between religion and morality.

They found that religious belief is a negative influence on children’s altruism.

“Overall, our findings ... contradict the commonsense and popular assumption that children from religious households are more altruistic and kind towards others,” said the authors of The Negative Association Between Religiousness and Children’s Altruism Across the World, published this week in Current Biology.

“More generally, they call into question whether religion is vital for moral development, supporting the idea that secularisation of moral discourse will not reduce human kindness – in fact, it will do just the opposite.”

Read more: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/nov/06/religious-children-less-altruistic-secular-kids-study

91 replies, 7316 views

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Reply Religious children are meaner than their secular counterparts, study finds (Original post)
newthinking Nov 2015 OP
GoneFishin Nov 2015 #1
Enthusiast Nov 2015 #30
SusanCalvin Nov 2015 #2
Erich Bloodaxe BSN Nov 2015 #8
Dustlawyer Nov 2015 #53
thesquanderer Nov 2015 #3
JudyM Nov 2015 #7
Moliere Nov 2015 #21
Chemisse Nov 2015 #4
mdbl Nov 2015 #5
Chemisse Nov 2015 #6
bjobotts Nov 2015 #75
Cal Carpenter Nov 2015 #63
ailsagirl Nov 2015 #67
Demeter Nov 2015 #9
LiberalElite Nov 2015 #16
Fairgo Nov 2015 #10
Demeter Nov 2015 #19
whathehell Nov 2015 #20
trillion Nov 2015 #80
maddiemom Nov 2015 #28
Chemisse Nov 2015 #73
Perseus Nov 2015 #11
fasttense Nov 2015 #33
Bluenorthwest Nov 2015 #45
fasttense Nov 2015 #56
Perseus Nov 2015 #59
fasttense Nov 2015 #62
valerief Nov 2015 #50
daleo Nov 2015 #68
valerief Nov 2015 #72
Lionel Mandrake Nov 2015 #88
dembotoz Nov 2015 #12
JustAnotherGen Nov 2015 #13
Demit Nov 2015 #18
mountain grammy Nov 2015 #37
JustAnotherGen Nov 2015 #55
Le Taz Hot Nov 2015 #86
madokie Nov 2015 #14
Major Nikon Nov 2015 #15
FailureToCommunicate Nov 2015 #17
tavernier Nov 2015 #22
smirkymonkey Nov 2015 #89
tavernier Nov 2015 #90
polly7 Nov 2015 #23
Enthusiast Nov 2015 #26
polly7 Nov 2015 #29
Enthusiast Nov 2015 #31
polly7 Nov 2015 #35
Enthusiast Nov 2015 #54
olegramps Nov 2015 #39
polly7 Nov 2015 #41
Bluenorthwest Nov 2015 #47
polly7 Nov 2015 #48
mountain grammy Nov 2015 #42
polly7 Nov 2015 #44
Enthusiast Nov 2015 #24
Sunlei Nov 2015 #32
Cyrano Nov 2015 #25
mantis49 Nov 2015 #38
valerief Nov 2015 #52
ZombieHorde Nov 2015 #91
Sunlei Nov 2015 #27
struggle4progress Nov 2015 #34
DeepModem Mom Nov 2015 #36
NonMetro Nov 2015 #61
DeepModem Mom Nov 2015 #65
NonMetro Nov 2015 #87
SharpProgress Nov 2015 #83
TlalocW Nov 2015 #40
DeepModem Mom Nov 2015 #43
valerief Nov 2015 #46
paleotn Nov 2015 #49
SoapBox Nov 2015 #51
PufPuf23 Nov 2015 #57
snort Nov 2015 #58
trillion Nov 2015 #78
Aristus Nov 2015 #60
ailsagirl Nov 2015 #69
MisterP Nov 2015 #64
daleo Nov 2015 #66
bananas Nov 2015 #70
Initech Nov 2015 #71
kimbutgar Nov 2015 #74
trillion Nov 2015 #76
WestSeattle2 Nov 2015 #77
PatrickforO Nov 2015 #79
Half-Century Man Nov 2015 #81
SharpProgress Nov 2015 #82
silvershadow Nov 2015 #84
Spitfire of ATJ Nov 2015 #85

Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 07:23 AM

1. "Meaner" is as good a word as any. nt

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Response to GoneFishin (Reply #1)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:54 AM

30. I thought so too.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 07:25 AM

2. In essence,

They are given permission to be mean to people not like them. Not always, but often enough to notice.

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Response to SusanCalvin (Reply #2)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 08:31 AM

8. Oh to folks like them too. After all, everyone is a 'sinner'.

But when your belief system revolves around punishment and judgement, who spends eternity happy, and who spends it in torment, you're going to wind up wanting to judge and punish people in this life too, despite that little line about leaving things in God's hands...

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Response to Erich Bloodaxe BSN (Reply #8)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 11:09 AM

53. Indoctrination is not a healthy thing!

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 07:36 AM

3. Likewise the party of the religious right is meaner than the more secular party (n/t)

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Response to thesquanderer (Reply #3)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 08:31 AM

7. Maybe we need studies to get this to make headlines. (sarcasm). Nt

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Response to JudyM (Reply #7)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:15 AM

21. They'd just defund them or make then illegal

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 07:54 AM

4. My first thought was perhaps those who choose to be religious could be more likely

to be a certain type of people, who also models less compassion to their children.

But this study included areas around the world where religion is not a personal choice, but almost a cultural mandate.

From the study:

". . . children who are raised in religious households frequently
appear to be more judgmental of others’ actions, while being
less altruistic toward another child from the same social environment . . . "

Perhaps this has something to do with growing up under a group of rules (prayers, church attendance, and behaviour rules), combined with harsh consequences (spankings, hell).

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Response to Chemisse (Reply #4)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 08:04 AM

5. It's a mind screw

to grow up with all that nonsense dogma. Those who succumb live in duel worlds of reality and non-reality. How can your mind ever find an even keel? That conflict alone makes one psychopathic.

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Response to mdbl (Reply #5)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 08:11 AM

6. Good point.

Altruism is for the secure and mentally healthy.

Kids growing up in such a skewed environment are neither (imo).

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Response to Chemisse (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 8, 2015, 01:43 AM

75. Faith thru fear of punishment.Authoritarian & condescending rightousness

 

Indoctrinated to believe everyone is bad until they believe as they do.
Used to dominate others, not help others. Disagree with them and they just get angry.

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Response to Chemisse (Reply #4)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 03:26 PM

63. "...combined with harsh consequences (spankings, hell)."



well done

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Response to Chemisse (Reply #4)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 04:24 PM

67. Definitely more judgmental & also arrogant and condescending nt

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 08:32 AM

9. I learned THAT in grade school

 

I went to public school, and took catechism classes Monday afternoons at the local Catholic grade school. They were one tough and ugly bunch over there. The attitude of the nuns may have had something to do with that...

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Response to Demeter (Reply #9)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:02 AM

16. Oh, you were one of THOSE... (kidding)

I went through 12 years of Catholic school. Public school was looked down on. One of my nuns called a nearby public h.s. "a den of iniquity."

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 08:35 AM

10. It makes sense

relegion teaches a lesser morality. Do right to avoid punishment, rather than do right, because it is right.

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Response to Fairgo (Reply #10)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:08 AM

19. A Very Thoughtful Insight--thank you!

 

I think you have summed it up exactly.

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Response to Fairgo (Reply #10)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:12 AM

20. Religion teaches

one to do right for the love of God and to avoid punishment. It's not all about the punishment.

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Response to whathehell (Reply #20)

Sun Nov 8, 2015, 02:02 AM

80. It really depends which church you go to. Remember that church that protested the homeless shelter

 

in their neighborhood? Correction, it was another church who put up a statue of the homeless Jesus after a wealthy neighborhood also protested the homeless. But I remember Democracy Now interviewing the minister and parishners of the achurch that actually protested a homeless shelter coming into their neighborhood.

http://www.npr.org/2014/04/13/302019921/statue-of-a-homeless-jesus-startles-a-wealthy-community

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Response to Fairgo (Reply #10)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:49 AM

28. Yes! Right to the point.

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Response to Fairgo (Reply #10)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 07:01 PM

73. Yes. In a nutshell.

And the use of punishment to exert moral influence might overpower or cloud over a child's natural tendency towards altruism.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 08:39 AM

11. It makes perfect sense

For example, in the catholic religion, the moment a baby is born he is a sinner (Original Sin), from that moment own you are drilled with the fact that you were born spiritually defective, and you must "cure" yourself of that sin, which you didn't commit, but nonetheless it is necessary to start the "guilt" training...and then throughout your life you are made feel guilty for saying a bad word, and as many stupid things as they can think of. Anyway, you are trained to punish, guilt and punishment, so your normal reaction has to be one to punish anyone who does anything that does not conform with ones beliefs.

Religions create differences between people, they divide, and its used as a tool by those not very moral to control people. That is why politicians love to wrap themselves with the flag and religion. Politicians know that people who are fanatic to religion, and many are, will vote for a politician just because they think that "he is a man of God, he attends church".

Many will not agree with Karl Marx's ideologies, and I am one of those, but he was right when he said "Religion is the opium of the people".

Sinclair Lewis knew: "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross."

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Response to Perseus (Reply #11)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:02 AM

33. Karl Marx was NOT condemning religion as a drug that puts you in a stupor

 

The full quote is beautiful. "Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people."

He was praising religion as a pain killer. That it makes capitalism bearable. That it is the beautiful part of the world not the bad part. You have to remember that back in the days of Karl Marx, poppies were grown in every garden. The flower provided opium for the pain of life. During the civil war, it was considered patriotic to grow poppies for the opium. Opium was not looked on as an illegal drug like it is today. To compare something to opium, and the beautiful poppy flower it comes from, was to praise it.

He was saying almost the opposite of what we attribute to that quote.

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Response to fasttense (Reply #33)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:33 AM

45. Except that opium addiction has been around much longer than Marx and even influenced geopolitics

 

with the Opium Wars and such. Use of opium was known to Marx to be potentially lethal, there is no way he thought of it as purely good. Not a chance.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_Opium_War

What Marx was saying is not the opposite of what we see in the quote. He's saying religion is like opium, a relief that is not actual relief. A highly mixed sort of blessing, one which comes at great expense.

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #45)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 11:39 AM

56. Of course opium addiction was around

 

So was alcoholism and other addictions. Opium was NOT illegal to grow and use in England back then. It was Not the fearfully abused drug he was describing. Claiming it is the sigh of the oppressed, the heart of the heartless, the soul of the soulless is not saying it will put you in a stupor, kill you and all your society.

He is saying that it makes pain bearable. Yes he is saying religion is a relief from capitalism but he is NOT saying that relief will kill you. He is saying that out of the horrors of capitalism, religion, something good, is born. If he wanted to say it was going to put you in a stupor and kill you he would have said that.

By the way, he thought the opium wars were unethical. https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1858/09/20.htm

"That such an empire (China) should at last be overtaken by fate on [the] occasion of a deadly duel, in which the representative of the antiquated world appears prompted by ethical motives, while the representative of overwhelming modern society fights for the privilege of buying in the cheapest and selling in the dearest markets-this, indeed, is a sort of tragical couplet stranger than any poet would ever have dared to fancy."



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Response to fasttense (Reply #33)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 12:38 PM

59. My understanding from reading information

about Karl Marx was that he thought of religion as a way to make people numb, for them to stop thinking and that is why he had made that reference, but your take on it, which seems to be substantiated is very interesting.

If I am not mistaken, Marx was not a religious person, he understood how religion was used by those in power.

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Response to Perseus (Reply #59)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 02:54 PM

62. There are many myths about Marx

 

"‘Everybody’ thinks that Marx was saying that religion was dope manufactured by the ruling class to keep the masses happy. The real Marx, however, was concerned with much more weighty problems. Among other things, he was thinking about how an abstract human being could exist. He concludes that one could not. ‘Man is the world of man, state, society’, and the conception of God was a necessary conception in an ‘inverted world’. Once the world was right side up, the idea would not be needed. Meanwhile we should pay attention to it."

https://www.marxists.org/subject/marxmyths/cyril-smith/article2.htm

A fuller quote of what Marx was saying about religion:
The foundation of irreligious criticism is: Man makes religion, religion does not make man. Religion is indeed the self-consciousness and self-esteem of man who has either not yet won through to himself or has already lost himself again. But man is no abstract being squatting outside the world. Man is the world of man, state, society. This state and this society produce religion, which is an inverted consciousness of the world, because they are an inverted world. Religion is the general theory of this world, its encyclopaedic compendium, its logic in popular form, its spiritual point d’honneur, its enthusiasm, its moral sanction, its solemn complement and its universal basis of consolation and justification. It is the fantastic realization of the human essence since the human essence has not acquired any true reality. The struggle against religion is therefore indirectly the struggle against that world whose spiritual aroma is religion.

Religious suffering is at one and the same time the expression of real suffering and a protest against real suffering. Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people. (Critique of Hegel’s Philosophy of Right. Introduction.)

Anyway, I'm an atheist and see sometimes the beauty Marx was seeing in some religions. There is the altruism, the desire to make people equal, the need to see a loving design in the hate filled world. There is beauty in religion but there is horror hidden there too.

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Response to Perseus (Reply #11)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:55 AM

50. Yep, religion is just a tool of the PTB to divide and conquer. I remember my

first Catholic confession at age seven. I struggled to come up with sins. I'm sure the priest laughed to himself at the ones I came up with. "I lied to the milkman 52 times." (Because I said my mother wasn't awake yet when she was and didn't have money for him.) Stuff like that. Ridiculous shit.

I was an atheist by the time I was nine. I remember this, because I'd speak to friends about questioning whether there's a god and they got angry at me. All of them did when I brought it up. I was amazed they were afraid to even broach the subject.

At twelve or so, I decided to give the god shit another try. I went to Mass in the morning for about two weeks (not quite every day) to see if I'd "get it." I got nothing but bored and decided right then not to question my good sense again.

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Response to valerief (Reply #50)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 04:28 PM

68. My mom grew up Catholic

She said the same thing about making up sins for confession.

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Response to daleo (Reply #68)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 05:39 PM

72. It was crazier than thinking a strange man broke into your house once a year.

At least, we got presents out of that.

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Response to valerief (Reply #72)

Sun Nov 8, 2015, 03:21 PM

88. LOL.

Santa Claus (St. Nicolaus) is sort of like God. He's omniscient: "You better watch out ... you better be good ... He knows when you've been naughty, ... ." He also has other supernatural powers, like flying through the sky and visiting 7 billion people in a single night.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 08:45 AM

12. sad but seems to have a high degree of correlation with my experiences

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 08:49 AM

13. I learned this when I became a UU 11 years ago

Then started volunteering for "Sunday School".

Was Sunday School (no quotes) teacher in the Baptist church too. My wake up call about the rigidity of children in religion came in 2007 when I shared the Christmas Story.

Baptist church children - takes 10 minutes to read through. Nod heads. No questions.

UU children taught to Question Everything in "Sunday School" - two weeks. Seriously.

Questions -
Were BOTH of his parents Jewish?
Are you SURE?
How do YOU know? (a lot of interfaith families in our little congregation).
From a six year old - statement: Virgins canNOT have children.
Was there a doula?
Why weren't there any wise women?
STATEMENT - Animals don't talk. (played a Garth Brooks song HUGE mistake)
STATEMENT- That wasn't sanitary.
Was his mother in the Leaugue of Women Voters (that little girl was my favorite - I tell no lies!)


I wrote this in a blog and still have the text - they cracked me up!

Sharing because when children are taught to not question things - they accept cruelty and inhumanity without question.




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Response to JustAnotherGen (Reply #13)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:07 AM

18. Love this post. Kids are great. Thanks for the smile!

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Response to JustAnotherGen (Reply #13)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:10 AM

37. When you give kids the room to question

this is what you get... wonderful post, love it! Restores my faith in children!

Just a note, my Baptist relatives would NOT see the humor, and the kids would have soap in their mouths. Give them a reason to be mean.

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Response to mountain grammy (Reply #37)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 11:38 AM

55. I would have gotten the same soap

In the mouth when I was a kid!

It's my parents fault.
They sent me to a Catholic Prep School.

I learned - wow! There is an entirely different bible than the King James or Torah?

Big mistake. Huge. Phenomenal!

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Response to JustAnotherGen (Reply #13)

Sun Nov 8, 2015, 08:23 AM

86. Great story!

I love the League of Women Voters girl. LOL!

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 08:56 AM

14. Reminds me

of why I'm such a happy NON Believer in anything God

Thank you very much

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:01 AM

15. My experience has been that ultra-religious upbringing also leads to assholery as adults

They tend to have less empathy towards others, especially if they don't look and believe as they do. They are more likely to exhibit duplicitous and manipulative behavior.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:03 AM

17. Well, duh...

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:17 AM

22. I think the same can be said for organized politics.

I was involved with our local party and the folks were pretty pleasant, and then I was nominated to be a state delegate so I attended some larger events ... JJ dinner, etc.

It was an eye opener. They were mainly nasty, competitive, cliquey party climbers, and if you weren't somebody important, they didn't have much time for you. I was a total nobody so I could disappear into the background and observe. I saw enough to make me decide that organized politics is as dishonest as organized religion.

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Response to tavernier (Reply #22)

Sun Nov 8, 2015, 04:00 PM

89. Funny, I think that's true of most organized groups with a hierarchy.

I guess that is why I am not much of a joiner.

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Response to smirkymonkey (Reply #89)

Sun Nov 8, 2015, 06:42 PM

90. I still canvas and hold up signs

and vote for our candidates, but I saw little value or a sense of camaraderie at these large events. To be honest, it led me to believe that term limits are a much more honest way to run a government.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:17 AM

23. I remember as a child in school with my friends

(in a very small town) the year the 'Convent kids' joined us. They had previously all gone to school at the Catholic Church Convent, which was closing. That first year was the year I realized how much I hated bullies.

Just one example .... many of them (not all - two became some of my best friends and still are to this day) would form a large circle and push one of us around in the middle, back and forth, kicking and hitting - always, laughing and calling out nasty names. One girl they did it to had epilepsy, her parents took her completely out of school soon after. I was small but tough as I'd worked hard taking care of my farm animals since I could practically walk and had five brothers who taught me to fight, so after they tried it with me a few times they gave up ... if one of my brothers was around, some also got a beating. No-one ever told our teachers, that was just something you didn't do back then. My very best friend was their favourite target, and I'm not sure why. She was the nicest, quietest, kindest girl in our room and had never said a mean word to, or about, anyone. I probably jumped in to help her at least 4 times. She died at 12 of bone cancer, about a year after they joined us. I still feel sick thinking of what they put her through first. Her life was so short, and they made some of it very miserable.

They kept this up, not as violently ...... but with 'mean-girl' bullying crap for years. Always in a group, never, ever alone.

I just couldn't understand the meanness, and don't to this day. Some of us still talk about it - we all remember it.

Religion didn't seem that important in most of our families - those of us who'd always gone to that school. We had a small United Church but it closed when I was about 13. If we did go, it was fun. Our minister was very nice, we all got to join the choir and we loved singing our hearts out .. but that's about all I remember. The kids that came over from the convent were from families for whom religion was very, very important, and still is. I know their families now all very well and they're great people who contribute a lot to this town and area. But yeah ......... back then, it was horrible for a while.

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Response to polly7 (Reply #23)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:48 AM

26. That is quite a story, polly7. Thanks for sharing that.

So sad.

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Response to Enthusiast (Reply #26)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:53 AM

29. I'm actually crying a bit thinking of it here ...

and missing my friend.

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Response to polly7 (Reply #29)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:56 AM

31. I also grew up in a very small community so I witnessed similar events.

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Response to Enthusiast (Reply #31)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:05 AM

35. I'm sorry you witnessed it too. I'm kind of amazed it still affects me so much, probably mostly

just remembering Judy, I can still picture her in the middle of those attacks as clearly as when they happened.

When I really think about it, I'm not quite sure the difference in religion was totally behind it all .... most of those families had very large farms and oil and mineral rights ... maybe that was a factor, too - we just, didn't. But even so, just having that complete lack of empathy and the mindset to do what they did is something I'll never completely understand as long as I live.

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Response to polly7 (Reply #35)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 11:10 AM

54. This is why the attitude I see on Fox "News" when they promote intolerance and bullying

troubles me so much.

There would be quite enough intolerance and bullying even in a society where everyone was actively trying to stamp it out.

I have always believed, in an environment free of coercion and intolerance, Fascism cannot take root. I believe that is why we see the coarsening of our society as in Trump's racist rant, for example.

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Response to polly7 (Reply #23)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:14 AM

39. I would enjoy reading your post, but the bug is distracting.

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Response to olegramps (Reply #39)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:17 AM

41. Sorry, but I like the bug. It's for LOonix, a great poster missed by many people.

And my post wasn't anything earth-shattering, so don't feel bad about missing it.

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Response to polly7 (Reply #41)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:42 AM

47. LOonix aside, I hate the bug and to be honest with you it is so annoying to my old eyes that I have

 

had all sig lines blocked for ages simply to avoid that bug. I hate that bug.
At first I had to have LOonix on ignore, then I learned how to block sigs alone. Then I could see the posts.
It's that bad for my eyes, and apparently I am not alone. For years now, no sig lines. Because of the bug, so I hope you who use it get lots of joy out of it because it is a drag for some of us.

I can't see your bug. But I don't get to see any sig lines. Have a nice bug!

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #47)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:47 AM

48. Well, sorry about that.

It's great that you've blocked sig-lines if it bothers your eyes, I suggest everyone who has an issue with it do the same. You have a nice 'whatever' now, too!

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Response to polly7 (Reply #23)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:20 AM

42. That brings back a memory or two..

A year after my dad died, I was 11 and in a new school. My good "friend" was a Catholic girl. My mom was a non practicing Jew, my dad had been a non practicing Catholic when he married my mom and took lessons in Judaism to please my rabbi grandfather. When I shared this with my Catholic "friend" she assured me my dad was burning in hell.

many religious kids are mean.. they're raised that way.

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Response to mountain grammy (Reply #42)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:28 AM

44. That's terrible.

I'm so sorry, for the loss of your dad so young, and for the cruelty. I'm sure it affected you badly.

I've always believed children are just naturally empathetic and compassionate - it takes some mean influence to rid them of those qualities. I don't know how anyone could do that to their own child.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:40 AM

24. It is natural for children raised in a strict religious tradition to be less tolerant of

those in other traditions. Unless, of course, parents and clergy promote tolerance of other traditions which in itself is non-traditional.

I was raised with a strict Catholic upbringing. I just knew the Protestant children around me were being indoctrinated with false teachings. The nuns told me so (lol). So that undercurrent of religious tension was always present even if it remained in the background.

This is why I have no sympathy for those that would blur the distinction between church and state. I have little sympathy for those that want prayer in school, for example. I mean, which prayer? I'm sure Protestants wouldn't feel comfortable saying the Hail Mary prayer. Just as there are those that would place restrictions on science education because it offends their "young earth" religious sensibilities.

So even in the USA with its great religious tolerance written right into the constitution there is room for improvement.

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Response to Enthusiast (Reply #24)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:58 AM

32. Our Freedom of religion & the freedom, the right to place a Church anywhere (tax free) is IMO,

one of our countries Freedoms that seems to work the best, (have the clearest, Local & Federal laws & rules) in our society.

We should all start our own personal Churches to have those same 'Freedoms'

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:47 AM

25. Neil DeGrasse Tyson on "intelligent design"

by some "supreme being":

"And what comedian configured the region between our legs—an entertainment complex built around a sewage system?"

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Response to Cyrano (Reply #25)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:13 AM

38. Ooohhh, that is too funny...

Made my day!!!!!

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Response to Cyrano (Reply #25)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 11:03 AM

52. He was great on Larry!!! nt

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Response to Cyrano (Reply #25)

Mon Nov 9, 2015, 04:42 AM

91. Wait,

there's a difference between the entertainment complex and the sewage system? That's news to me. As far as I'm concerned, both are the food court. Who doesn't enjoy a hearty meal?

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 09:49 AM

27. yes, 'religious' kids especially a pack' can be Lord of the flies or romeny scissorhands cruel

they learn from their parents and the other spare the rod crowds.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:05 AM

34. As is often the case with research in the social sciences, the proxies may be poor

It seems odd, for example, to interpret stronger disapproval of anti-social behavior as evidence for less altruism:

... Children from religious households favored stronger punishments for anti-social behavior and judged such behavior more harshly than non-religious children ...

To this, one might add that nobody has any good definition of "religion," that moral development ordinarily changes quite a lot over ages 5-12, and that even most 12 year-olds don't reach a particularly high level of ethical thinking

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:09 AM

36. This would not be true of the very liberal, socially-active Protestant denomination...

to which I belong. Faith leaders led, and still lead, civil rights marches. King was the Rev. Martin Luther King.

Many churches, including my own, feed and clothe and arrange medical care for people in need with no religious message whatsoever attached. The door is open, and people in the community know help is available.

I abhor fundamentalism and its growing influence in recent years, but to paint all faiths with that broad brush IMO is misplaced.

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Response to DeepModem Mom (Reply #36)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 02:07 PM

61. IMO, Spot On!

But The "broad brush" seems to apply more to the title of the article than the study itself, which was far more circumspect about their findings,

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Response to NonMetro (Reply #61)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 03:41 PM

65. Thank you, NonMetro!

Soon after I posted, an alarm went off in my house (all okay now, after visit from alarm service guy and repair). I'll look with interest now into the study and its findings.

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Response to DeepModem Mom (Reply #65)

Sun Nov 8, 2015, 01:34 PM

87. Your point about the "broad brush", though, is something people need to think about

Because we do this in a lot of ways. Conservatives do this to liberals, vice-versa. I'm not religious myself, but I see this stuff of "Christians" this, or "Muslims" that, or "atheists" this or that. Even with race or ethnicity, even age, this happens. It's wrong. Broad brushes are applied to Baby Boomer, Millenials, and in many other ways, too. So, I think we can all do better, if we try, to qualify the things we say about one another.

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Response to DeepModem Mom (Reply #36)

Sun Nov 8, 2015, 04:41 AM

83. Regardless of the church you come from...

You're still indoctrinating children to believe in hell. You might not think it's such a big deal, but hell has been linked to all sorts of disorders and behavioral issues. Imo, it's on the same level as child abuse.

And as the study shows, being religious yourself, you're more likely to regard your children as behaving with empathy.

Even the most liberal churches still produce children that think Atheists are bad people, or defective, ect.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:15 AM

40. I wonder if any of the attitude can be traced to the whole

You sin against someone, it's more important to ask forgiveness of God than of the person. I don't think the different sects don't put it out there as blatantly as that, but if it is one of the main tenets of Christianity. You do something wrong, you ask God, who wasn't involved, for forgiveness. Once you do that, you're fine so who cares about the person you wronged?

TlalocW

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Response to TlalocW (Reply #40)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:27 AM

43. I've never heard that it's not important to make right with people one wrongs. What faith teaches that?

Is that a fundamentalist view? Have not experienced it in liberal Protestantism.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:40 AM

46. Their parents are meaner, too. nt

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:54 AM

49. Religion is tribal by definition....

....so I'm not the least surprised.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 11:01 AM

51. Oh ya!

Holy and Pious...with a license to do whatever they want.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 11:52 AM

57. Religious children and people in general are meaner and less moral

from my anecdotal experience of 60 plus years.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 12:29 PM

58. They could have just called me.

This required a study? Without a doubt I've dealt with some pricks in my 6 decades but the christers take the cake.

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Response to snort (Reply #58)

Sun Nov 8, 2015, 01:58 AM

78. The Mormons in my family are the worst people I've ever met.

 

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 12:57 PM

60. I'm sorry to say this seems true to me, based on an example in my own family.

My step-daughter's oldest son is a putrid little nimrod; a mean-spirited bully, a cry-baby, and a greedy, spoiled little shit.

I wish I didn't have to say that about one of my own grandchildren, but it's true. My step-daughter is an entirely church-focused fundy who home-schools all four of her kids. They are all petty, spoiled, unsocialized little brats who can't even begin to comprehend the idea of thinking of someone other than themselves. This isn't just casual observation, either. The whole squabbling clan lived with me for almost a year before moving out of state. I can't tell you how glad I am that they're gone.

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Response to Aristus (Reply #60)


Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 03:34 PM

64. especially those damn Methodists

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 04:23 PM

66. This comes as no surprise to anyone who survived childhood

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 05:09 PM

70. First question: Why was this published in a Biology journal?

This has fuck-all to do with biology.

Was it rejected by several psychology and sociology journals for crappy methodology?

On the webpage for the article:


That should be a clue there's something wrong.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 05:21 PM

71. Wow, I'm shocked, shocked I tell you!

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sat Nov 7, 2015, 10:01 PM

74. I agree

I went to Catholic school for 12 years. My parents never forced me to go to church but the kids who went to church Sunday were awful to me and the first time I was called the " n " word was from a boy who came from a strict catholic family. The Irish catholic family who lived across the street from me went to church every Sunday, they never let their kids play with my sister nor I. I saw the hypocrisy at a young age of church going people.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sun Nov 8, 2015, 01:49 AM

76. Especially the fundy ones.

 

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sun Nov 8, 2015, 01:54 AM

77. I totally believe the results of this study. Try being

a non-believer in Utah or Texas, and you quickly experience first hand how evil many Christian kids can be. Very ugly human behavior.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sun Nov 8, 2015, 01:59 AM

79. Interesting choice of words here. The word 'mean' in the context it is used in the

OP means 'unkind,' or 'more punitive.'

But there is another meaning that may be even more apropos in this case.

I'm thinking of the word 'mean' in terms of being ignoble, base, small minded and petty. Think about the 'holy rollers' you know in this context. Do they come across at times as smug, sure they are somehow better because they've said the 'sinner's prayer' and are 'saved' and you're not?

Honestly, when it becomes obvious someone is religious because they make it a point to 'confess' their faith, I usually go the other way. When someone actually TELLS me they are a Christian, I go the other way while buttoning up my wallet pocket.

That's really sad, too. Not the intent of the avatar Jesus at all, I'm sure. But the dogmatists have once again fucked up something beautiful with...well...dogma.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sun Nov 8, 2015, 02:37 AM

81. Belief in a hell makes you mean.

You have to accept that the one that everybody claims to love you the most (he sacrificed himself/only son in your honor) is willing to burn you in a fiery lake of molten rock for considering rule breaking in 1/14000000th of your existence.
A 100 year earthly life (as part of the eternal existence of the soul) compared to the closest example of eternity; the 14 billion year scientific estimate on the age of the universe. According to what I have been warned about, you don't even have to commit sins, thinking about them is enough to cause damnation.


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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sun Nov 8, 2015, 04:15 AM

82. Anyone who grew up non-religious....

Already knew this.

I remember in 8th grade I began interacting with kids from a private Catholic school for the first time. I was taken aback by how... just... mean they were. It was like nothing I had ever seen.

Verbally abusive and physically combative.

The final glaring difference was that they really really hated anything perceived as gay.

It was in their eyes. Hell was in their eyes.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sun Nov 8, 2015, 05:29 AM

84. And as they grow up, they become hateful, bitter old coots who vote Republican while

 

drawing food stamps.

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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Sun Nov 8, 2015, 06:03 AM

85. The ultimate authority figure is the invisible judge who sees all....

 

Oh wait, that's Santa Claus.

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