Idiotic Comment of the Day Award!

December 9, 2008

We’ve been getting a lot of comments lately on many different posts.  I haven’t taken the time to blog for too long.  The wealth of comments, both positive and negative, tell me that it is time to start blogging again.

I enjoy both positive and negative comments.  Positive comments help us all to feel like we’re appreciated and part of the larger atheist community.  Negative comments are great for sparking debate and thought.  But sometimes, negative comments are just plain idiotic.  Here’s one of those:

The comment is a response to the post, “Sorry Children of Texas, You’re Fucked,” from August 8, 2007.  The post is about the appointing of a evangelical creationist to head the Texas BOE.  Tammy Polio says:

I attended a private school in Michigan, received a much better education-oh yes and even learned Darwins theory. Not teaching science as you see it is not the problem with Texas schools you morons. The fact that they do not teach, and spend the whole year teaching kids how to pass tests instead of teaching them to read. I doubt you are a parent but a stupid liberal who never even learned words from the dictionary based on your f-ing language. I have a child in school who has been assisted on assessment tests so our school keeps their exemplary status.I now have to be in the room with him to make sure he is not assisted. The whole system is corrupt and pathetic. Do you really think it is more important that your theories are taught over just the basics? If you have a problem-move. In case you weren’t taught in your public school we still pledge to one country under God. You sound angry. If you want to know the truth God can reveal it. I would know that,because no matter what we are taught it cannot be just because someone is speaking it in front of a class. WE have to embrace because we beleive it to be true.

Let’s look at this one part at a time!

I attended a private school in Michigan, received a much better education-oh yes and even learned Darwins theory.

Okay – good start, Tammy.  Let’s first congratulate you on attending a private school and receiving a much better education.  Better than what?  To what are you referring?  And of course you learned Darwin’s Theory if you attended any sort of accredited school because guess what?  His theories are the basis and springboard for 98% of the study of biology.

Not teaching science as you see it is not the problem with Texas schools you morons. The fact that they do not teach, and spend the whole year teaching kids how to pass tests instead of teaching them to read.

First off, this isn’t about teaching “science as I see it.”  This is about teaching science as 95-99.9% of scientists see it. There simply isn’t any sort of widespread support for Creationism in the scientific community.  This isn’t about idealogy.  It’s about facts and evidence.  Science is, by nature, non-subjective.

Regarding your point here about teaching how to pass tests – we agree on this fact.  George W. Bush’s “No Child Left Behind” act forces teachers to “teach to the test” as opposed to giving them a valuable real world education.  Most of my friends who are teachers despise this, but it is unfortunately their job now.

I doubt you are a parent but a stupid liberal who never even learned words from the dictionary based on your f-ing language.

Apparently Tammy Polio would like to personally attack me here.  That’s fine.  She’s right about two things in this sentence – I’m not a parent and I’m a liberal.  My 3.5 GPA and graduation with honors isn’t important for understanding how the education system should work in this country.  It doesn’t mean much.  And Tammy would probably discredit it, since I went to a state university and not some fancy private school.  My “f-ing laguange” is a demonstration of emotion.  Sticks and stones, Tammy.

I have a child in school who has been assisted on assessment tests so our school keeps their exemplary status.I now have to be in the room with him to make sure he is not assisted. The whole system is corrupt and pathetic.

Again – I agree.  This is horrible.

Do you really think it is more important that your theories are taught over just the basics?

These theories ARE the basics.  What about the theory of gravity?  Should that not be taught either?  Please read earlier posts on the different semantic understandings of the word “theory.”  The theory of evolution is overwhelmingly supported by scientists worldwide and it is essential that it be taught as “the basics.”

This is where the comment gets kind of psycho-crazy-like with rants in a couple different directions.

If you have a problem-move.

That’s absurd.  I believe in the America that the founding fathers envisioned — one in which religion was not forced on its citizens.  Maybe a brief jog down memory lane will bring up a history lesson from your private school.  You might remember that one of the things that brought us to this country was the desire to live in a country without the establishment of an oppressive religion.  This country is about freedom.  Freedom is NOT “If you have a problem-move.”  That’s the opposite of freedom.

In case you weren’t taught in your public school we still pledge to one country under God.

We did pledge to “one country under God” in schools, but this is unconstitutional.  This type of thing never bothered me though, because most children don’t have enough life experience and smarts to make up their minds about religion yet.  The indoctrination of these children with the idea that this is a “christian country” is wrong, however.  Study the history of the Pledge of Allegiance, Tammy.  Again, I’ve already covered this in earlier posts.

You sound angry. If you want to know the truth God can reveal it.

I was actually starting to think the negative comments on my blog are sounding much angrier than anything I have to say.  And this is an atheist blog, we don’t believe in God here.

I would know that,because no matter what we are taught it cannot be just because someone is speaking it in front of a class. WE have to embrace because we beleive it to be true.

Someone is not just “speaking it in front of a class” to make it true.  The theory of evolution isn’t something someone just made up, Tammy.  It’s the accepted and agreed upon theory for the origin of species according to more than 95% of scientists worldwide.  Why would we give equal time in schools to a theory of Creationism that only a tiny percentage of scientists believe?  Imagine this – imagine no one went to school for 2-3 generations.  After this, when everyone decided to start going to school again, half the population believed that the moon was made of swiss cheese.  Maybe there was support in the holy book for it, I don’t know.  99.9% of scientists dispute it – but since half the population believes it – we now have to teach that the moon “might be” made of swiss cheese.  Sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it?

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82% of Americans Believe in Afterlife

March 25, 2008

A new poll cited at the Florida Ledger finds that 82% of Americans say they believe in an afterlife.

A recent survey by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life showed that about 16 percent of American adults havetunnel no particular religious belief, including about 4 percent who identify themselves as atheists or agnostics. A 2007 Pew survey showed20 percent of adults ages 18 to 25 have no religious affiliation, almost double the percentage in 1986.

The number of 82% early in the article is not cited to a specific source. Assuming 18% of Americans do not believe in an afterlife, that flies in the face of the other statistics in the study because guess what? If you don’t believe in the afterlife, you don’t believe in religion. (The one exception here would be perhaps if you see Buddhism as a religion, in which case there is still an aspect of samsara or return to the world).

I was interesting in the number of 18%. It seems to make the non-religious community seem larger. It’s probably a more accurate number of non-religious people in this country. Whenever polled, the number of atheists will always remain low, like the 4% from the Pew Forum study because people don’t like to be labeled as atheists. They will say they’re not sure they believe in god, but if you call them agnostic, it bothers them. They may say they certainly don’t believe in god, but they won’t label themselves as an atheist because of its negative connotation. But regardless. If the 82% number is accurate, that means that almost a fifth of this nation doesn’t believe in the concepts of heaven and hell! That’s an incredible number.

18% of Americans

  • is equal to roughly 54 Million Americans
  • want immediate withdrawal from Iraq
  • have pre-diabetes.
  • are disabled.
  • do not own cell phones.
  • are drug/alcohol dependent.
  • of adults use Instant Messaging.
  • and get this one.

  • is equal to the estimated COMBINED population of Iraq and Afghanistan.
  • It’s a lot of people. Imagine if the combined population of Iraq and Afghanistan did not believe in an afterlife. I think that would significantly change things for the better. There are possibly that many people HERE in the U.S. who don’t believe in an afterlife.


    McCain on Religion

    March 5, 2008

    faithwatch
    PFW:29


    Honesty in Youth

    March 4, 2008

    Man Who Claims He Went to Hell Scams Christians

    February 20, 2008

    Bill Wiese is a scam artist. He claims that he went to hell for exactly 23 minutes and now has written a book and spends his life lecturing about his experience in hell.

    hell

    Here’s a link
    to the guy’s web site.

    My first thought was – “Okay, so this guy had a nightmare and now is getting rich by convincing people it was true?” If that’s the case, I could make a great deal of money lecturing people on the dangers of going to school naked.

    But Wiese assures us that it wasn’t a nightmare:

    But first I want to address a couple things, questions that might be in your mind. The first question that would be inbill wiese mine, if I was listening to me, would be, “How do you know it wasn’t just a dream that you had? A Bad dream?” A couple points to make, first of all, I had left my body. I saw my body when I returned, lying on the floor. So I know for sure it was an out of body experience. Some Christians have said, “Oh a Christian can’t leave his body.” But that’s not true, In 2 Corinthians 12:2, when Paul was caught up into the third heaven, He said, “whether in the body, or out of the body I do not know.” So if he didn’t know that must mean it’s possible. And also he said in verse 1 that it was a vision, so I believe this comes under the classification of a vision.

    What a fucking lunatic. Here’s some video from FoxNews about the story:

    Christianity’s motivation for morality is fear. There is no better example than Bill Wiese. Christians want to be good because of fear that if they don’t they will be put into a burning place to work for eternity. They will define what “hell” would be like in Earthly terms – fire, etc. Yet to describe what “heaven” would be like is supposedly beyond what we can comprehend. What a load of garbage. Your religion is based on fear. That’s weak.


    The Price of Atheism

    February 17, 2008

    Sorry I’ve just been posting videos lately. I’m in the middle of the spring tour and haven’t had much time to dedicate to TGR lately.


    Why The Ten Commandments Are Unnecessary

    February 5, 2008

    The Ten Commandments are unnecessary as a moral code. This may seem like a bold statement to a non-secular reader, but hear me out. The Ten Commandments are often used as an argument for a be-all, end-all moral “law of the land” and I argue that not only are the Commandments redundant, they are completely unnecessary to a rational, thinking human.

    First let’s take a look at the Ten Commandments as they are stated in Exodus 20:2-17:

    2 I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery;commandments

    3 Do not have any other gods before Me.

    4 You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.

    5 You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, punishing children for the iniquity of parents, to the third and the fourth generation of those who reject me,

    6 but showing steadfast love to the thousandth generation of those who love me and keep my commandments.

    7 You shall not make wrongful use of the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not acquit anyone who misuses his name.

    8 Remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy.

    9 For six days you shall labour and do all your work.

    10 But the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God; you shall not do any work—you, your son or your daughter, your male or female slave, your livestock, or the alien resident in your towns.

    11 For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but rested the seventh day; therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and consecrated it.

    12 Honor your father and your mother, so that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.

    13 You shall not murder.

    14 You shall not commit adultery.

    15 You shall not steal.

    16 You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour.

    17 You shall not covet your neighbour’s house; you shall not covet your neighbour’s wife, or male or female slave, or ox, or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbour.

    Or, in short:
    1.I am the Lord your God/You shall have no other gods before me
    2.You shall not make for yourself an idol
    3.You shall not make wrongful use of the name of your God
    4.Remember the Sabbath and keep it holy
    5.Honor your Father and Mother
    6.You shall not murder
    7.You shall not commit adultery
    8.You shall not steal
    9.You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor
    10.You shall not covet your neighbor’s house/wife

    At this point, I’m going to propose something about what we know as “the golden rule.” I propose that “the golden rule” is a naturally understood feeling in humans. I think humans naturally know to treat others how they wish to be treated. I further propose that any behavior outside of that is taught behavior. It is my belief that humans have an inborn desire to show compassion and are born as good people. I also believe that our natural understanding of the golden rule is proven by societies’ desire to improve and build communities. So this “golden rule” of treating others how you wish to be treated sort of gives us a pretty good moral compass in and of itself just through guiding us to show compassion.

    Now let’s examine how many of the Ten Commandments fall under the scope of The Golden Rule:

    1.I am the Lord your God/You shall have no other gods before me
    2.You shall not make for yourself an idol
    3.You shall not make wrongful use of the name of your God
    4.Remember the Sabbath and keep it holy
    5.Honor your Father and Mother
    6.You shall not murder
    7.You shall not commit adultery
    8.You shall not steal
    9.You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor
    10.You shall not covet your neighbor’s house/wife

    The last six on the list can all be hit with the simple idea of treating people how you would wish to be treated. They’re all “do good, not bad” Commandments. Since I think that showing compassion and treating others how you would wish to be treated are inborn desires, these 6 Commandments can go.

    This leaves us with the first four. And you’ll notice that the first four contain NO moral code. They do not contain anything that would determine anyone’s behavior without an accompanying existing law. Let’s look at them separately.

    1.I am the Lord your God/You shall have no other gods before me This is the “committment commandment” that all religions have. All religions have something in them that says “You will believe in me and nothing else and if you believe in the other stuff, you’re wrong.” Otherwise, there would be no commitment to the religion and people would be hybrid believers. Any one religion can’t thrive and exist without this one, so as a law of the religion this is necessary. However, as a law of moral code, unfortunately it is not.

    2.You shall not make for yourself an idol Sorry, Ruben Studdard. In reality, this is an expansion of #1. If you make yourself an idol, it threatens the authority of the leader guy. Again – necessary for religion, NOT necessary for morality.

    3.You shall not make wrongful use of the name of your God So I don’t have to say that this one is not necessary for morality in any way. A person can lead a good and moral life using any language they want. This is otherwise known as the “sticks and stones” theory.

    4.Remember the Sabbath and keep it holy To be quite honest, I can not think of a single reason why a “holy day” is necessary other than to give people time to commit to the religion. As a moral guide, it does nothing for a person.

    Essentially, these first four commandments were never meant to be a moral guide to its followers, but rather a way to honor their creator. The rest of the commandments could be summed up with the words “show compassion.” And showing compassion is an inborn desire.