In a previous article I have argued that the bible teaches intellectual dishonesty in place of critical thinking. Something else the bible teaches is that atheists are not to be trusted:
The fool says in his heart ‘There is no God.’ They are corrupt, they do abominable deeds, there is none that does good.”–Psalm 14:1
I am going to make an argument that atheists are more righteous than believers, and from a biblical perspective as well as a reality-based perspective. I chose the quote from Psalms for a good reason. This is fighting talk. Before one even opens a conversation with a Christian, one must understand their perspective. Atheists are corrupt, do abominable deeds and there is none that does good.
Fortunately, we are long past the time when believers had the power to openly persecute, imprison, or murder nonbelievers. This is not such a dim and distant memory though, and it’s only recently that one has been able to stand up and openly proclaim oneself to be a non-believer.
And one might, as many Christian apologetics do, choose to claim that this quote is taken “out of context,” but, as we shall see as we progress through this argument, no matter which way you look at the Bible it must – by definition – be taken “out of context.” The current evangelical Christian approach is to accuse atheists of being communists and point to the various communist regimes as being a graphic example of governments without God.
“Pol Pot murdered millions,” is a favorite attack on atheism, despite the fact that anyone with half a brain must realize the Pol Pot’s lack of belief in a deity had absolutely nothing to do with his murderous regime. Pol Pot didn’t murder because he was an atheist, he murdered because he was a paranoid psychopath.
Unfortunately, most Christians waived their rights to think for themselves the moment they accepted the nonsense in the Bible as being true. And history is littered with examples of the Christian masses accepting blindly whatever those in authority tell them, and that includes the suggestion that atheists are evil.
So this is my first point, that by accepting the Bible, one accepts the premise that atheists are evil, and this does not allow for compromise. No matter how many times one redefines the meaning of the words in the Bible, or “interprets,” them, there is no getting away from the fact that atheists are evil and God will burn them by throwing them into the lake of fire when they are dead, along with the adulterers and liars.
But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death. Revelation 21:8
So, with a few exceptions, such as the Unitarian Universalists, who will eventually start calling themselves Secular Humanists, the Christian has fired the first salvo in a war of words against the nonbeliever. One could argue that the most appropriate response is to ignore these attacks, “turn the other cheek,” and be the better person. But we only need to go back to the 1800s to see where that approach got us.
Slowly but surely we have managed to extricate ourselves from the grip of religion, where atheism, homosexuality, and any number of other “abominations,” were variously illegal, immoral, or punishable by imprisonment or death. At least in the Western world, that is.
My reaction to the Christian attacks on atheists and others is to respond with reason, logic, and ridicule. Many Christians complain of “persecution,” when they are ridiculed for voicing their beliefs, but my thinking is – if you’re going to hold and voice ridiculous beliefs, you must expect to be ridiculed, and the most “righteous,” thing to do is to bring those beliefs into the light and examine them for the nonsensical, irrational hate mongering that they are.
And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise. Luke 6:31
Which is, of course, my first foray into explaining why atheism is more righteous than theism, in particular, biblical theism. I will leave the Muslimists alone (for now), but any argument against one monotheistic irrational belief system actually applies to all of them.
This is my first argument. That Christians attack non believers and claim to be acting as they wish people to act towards them. Thus, I feel righteous attacking their beliefs right back, as requested.
Real world implications
How does this affect day-to-day decision-making, and what are the practical implications of this distorted version of critical thinking, combined with a belief that atheists are evil?
Given that the Bible teaches intellectual dishonesty, whilst at the same time persuading its followers that it is teaching critical thinking skills, there are some practical implications when we consider our day-to-day life. For example – one third of Americans claim to not believe in evolution, although I’m tempted to think that the actual number is far higher than this, just the fact that many of them claim to believe in only a certain type of evolution, called “micro evolution,” and do not accept that “macro evolution,” takes place. Whether they reject evolution completely or accept the micro/macro bullshit, they claim this is because of “lack of evidence.” Which – if you think about it, is a perfect example of intellectual dishonesty. The bible teaches them not to think about it of course.
One practical implication of this is the inability to decide whether or not to have an influenza shot. I mean – if you had a shot last year, how do you make a decision as to whether or not you need one this year? Given the fact that you don’t believe the influenza virus can evolve and change.
Much of what we understand about human biology and medicine comes from our understanding of evolution. How can one make a valued judgement about animal testing or stem cell research or any number of important medical procedures and experiments if one is of the opinion that humans are not related to other animals? Given that there are no atheists in the U.S. Congress and at least a third of them don’t believe in evolution – how are they qualified to make decisions in this arena? The answer is – they are not. This means they will either vote against anything they don’t understand or be forced to rely on some one else to tell them what to think. But – why are so many U.S. Congressmen and women religious believers?
Religious believers tend to distrust atheists more than almost any other group, and are unlikely to vote for anyone who does not believe in things with no evidence. According to a 2012 Gallup poll, Americans are least likely to vote an atheist for President. 43% would not vote for an atheist, even if they were otherwise well qualified.