Archive for nglreturns.myfreeforum.org Nglreturns is a forum to discuss religion, philosophy, ethics etc...

NGLReturns Daily Quiz - Play here!
 



       nglreturns.myfreeforum.org Forum Index -> Christian chat
Ketty

A blog: Intolerance in the Age of Tolerance

http://www.blogos.org/compellingtruth/angry-atheists.php

A lot of food for thought in the above blog. "Why are Atheists so angry?"

Let's face it, arguments and disagreements happen every minute of every day, and sometimes those conflicts can get heated. Invite opposing political party spokespersons to a syndicated news program, and it isn't long before tempers flare, insults are traded, and others' ideas get maligned.

Further, we should be honest and admit that Christians are guilty far too many times of being discourteous to non-Christians and committing the error James wrote about long ago: "With the tongue we praise our Lord and father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God's likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers, this should not be" (James 3:9-10).
trentvoyager

Why are Atheists angry?

Are we anymore angry than the rest of society - I doubt it. Sounds a load of tosh to me.

And as the source quoted doesn't sound as if it is coming from a neutral position - I would seriously question whether it should be used for a starting point in a debate.

Speaking for myself this morning I am not angry. Slightly irritated by high pollen levels. But not angry.

The debate was between two relatively well known polemecists, it would be unusual if they didn't at least "appear" to be angry.
Ketty

trentvoyager wrote:
Why are Atheists angry?


I was majoring more on the  "Intolerance in the Age of Tolerance"

trentvoyager wrote:
Are we anymore angry than the rest of society - I doubt it. Sounds a load of tosh to me.


Of course it does.

trentvoyager wrote:
And as the source quoted doesn't sound as if it is coming from a neutral position - I would seriously question whether it should be used for a starting point in a debate.


Wotchit, you're sounding angry.

Of course it's not a neutral position.  It was written by a Christian and is posted in Christian chat.  I would say it's quite a rare thing for a discussion being started on a message board from a position of neutrality.  You said it as if it's a bad thing.

trentvoyager wrote:
Speaking for myself this morning I am not angry. Slightly irritated by high pollen levels. But not angry.

The debate was between two relatively well known polemecists, it would be unusual if they didn't at least "appear" to be angry.
 

As I said, I was majoring more on the intolerance thing.   Glad to hear you're not angry btw, but the slight irritation is perhaps showing through.  Hope you're not too itchy eyed and sneezy.  
Shaker

Quote:
When you come to Christ and surrender your declaration of autonomy to His will


etc., etc.

This part of the screed - something I see a great deal - reads like the unconscious testament of a slave in love with his chains, not to mention the slave master. This kind of Uncle Tom-ism may suit some, doubtless, but it's not for me; nor, I would say, is it for anybody who holds self-respect, autonomy and independence in any regard.

As for the intolerance side of things: I feel that in many cases this is a bit of a whine rather than a soundly-based, genuine complaint. I say this on the basis that in today's world people are free to criticise, challenge, critique and pick apart ideas - beliefs - which very recently were widely deemed to be off-limits. We live in an age of information never before seen since the invention of the printing press - but now, of course, the reach and impact of all this information is something that Gutenberg and Caxton et. al. could never have dreamt of. Unless you live in Afghanistan or North Korea or Saudi Arabia, most human beings are bathed in a constant sea of information - ideas, beliefs, thoughts of human beings not only now but of all human beings since the invention of writing. All of this can be had by the average person on a device which can fit in your trouser pocket.

Consequently - apart from those illiberal closed societies I just mentioned - we live in a marketplace of ideas which are up for challenge and criticism by anyone in any place at any time. Anybody with an internet connection, anyone who can sign up to Facebook or Twitter or who can open a blog, can take on anything they wish. Some of those ideas until very recently in historical terms weren't allowed to be challenged and criticised, or at least if you did so you ran a good risk of torture and/or a violent and excruciating death. When any body of ideas/beliefs has had its own way for a long time, has seen itself as beyond challenge and has been surrounded by privileges, when it finds itself being forensically examined it's dollars to doughnuts that the same shrill shrieks ("Intolerance!" "Persecution!" etc.) will ensue in short order. The 'angry atheist' trope is of exactly the same order as the 'militant atheist' trope: no question that if you look hard enough you can find a few people here and there to whom it applies, but overwhelmingly this is a ploy used to characterise people who dissect beliefs deemed to be sacrosanct. The Hitch could (famously and magnificently) work up a good head of steam when he was given free rein, but when you see softly-spoken and mild-mannered people such as Richard Dawkins and - especially - Dan Dennett and Sam Harris, the latter so laid-back that he's practically horizontal - labelled as 'militant,' you can pretty much take it as read that what's at work here isn't a sober and reflective appraisal of manner and tone but the deliberate mischaracterisation of people deemed to be treading on forbidden ground. You can call it the Corporal Jones Syndrome: they don't like it up 'em.

There is such a thing as real persecution, real intolerance in the world, but there's a sort of function creep at work here where simply being able to answer back is deemed to be 'intolerant,' which has the inevitable and obvious effect that when you want to refer to real intolerance and persecution, what words do you use then?

I posted the following (by the American writier and activist Greta Christina) a while back in the Favourite Quotes thread, but I make no apology for reposting this section because to me it bears directly on this issue especially where it comes to religion:

Quote:
Atheists talk a lot about the parallels between the LGBT movement and the atheist movement. I talk a lot about it myself. But I think we need to remember that, for all the parallels between the two movements, there are some important differences. And one of the biggest differences is this:

There is nothing about saying, 'I am queer' that implies, 'You are mistaken to be straight.' But there is something about saying, 'I am an atheist' that implies 'You are mistaken to believe in God.' Coming out as queer is a subjective statement about what is true for you personally. Coming out as atheist is an assertion about what you think is objectively true about the external world. When we come out as atheists, we're not just saying what's true for us. We're saying what we think is true in the world. And by implication, we're saying that people who disagree with us are wrong. Even if we're not actively trying to persuade people out of religion—heck, even if we don't care whether people believe in religion—we're still saying that we think religion is wrong.

We need to cop to that.

We need to acknowledge that, for atheists, coming out is different than it is for queers. We need to acknowledge that, for atheists, even the gentlest, least-confrontational, 'Don't believe in God? You are not alone' forms of coming out are, in fact, still confrontational. Not just because people don’t want to hear it; not just because the conventional etiquette demands that we not say it. Because it is. Because we're telling people that they're wrong.

I think we need to accept that. And I think we need to take responsibility for it.

There are a lot of different ways for us to say it. We can say it in gentle, diplomatic 'You can be good without God' ways. We can say it in snarky, in-your-face 'You know it's a myth' ways. We can say it in bald, statement-of-fact 'There's probably no God' ways. There is room for both confrontationalism and diplomacy in this movement, and in fact the movement is stronger with both methods than it would be with just one or the other.

But I think we need to accept that this is always going to be a difficult topic. I think we need to accept that being honest about who we are and what we think is always going to ruffle some feathers. I think we need to accept that ruffling feathers is not the worst thing human beings can do to one another. It's not even in the Top Ten. And I think we need to accept that being out as atheists, and maintaining our integrity as out atheists, may always be seen—and felt—to be a little bit churlish.

Because it is.

That’s just going to have to be okay with us.
trentvoyager

Quote:
Wotchit, you're sounding angry.  


Ooh look projection.
bnabernard

Quote:
When you come to Christ and surrender your declaration of autonomy to His will


Simple business studies.

bernard (hug)

       nglreturns.myfreeforum.org Forum Index -> Christian chat
Page 1 of 1
Create your own free forum | Buy a domain to use with your forum