All Forums > General Discussion > Non-Sports > THE WAR ON CHRISTMAS!!!!!
3/25/2013 1:37 PM
Posted by MikeT23 on 3/25/2013 1:29:00 PM (view original):
Anyway, I guess it depends on ones definition of fringe. 

I'm against animal abuse but, fortunately for anyone within viewing range, I'm not stripping down on the sidewalk to protest it.   That seems like a fringe activity and, because of that, I think PETA is a fringe group.

You, being an athiest, are against Jesus displays at government buildings.   I don't think you're going to rip them down when you walk by but I'm not sure any of these athiest organizations are doing that either. That would be "fringe", IMO  Seems like they migh write a nasty letter to someone though.  I could probably equate that arguing with swampy on the internet about the War on Christmas.   If you agree, would you consider yourself a fringe athiest?
When I say fringe, I don't mean just a small number, I mean an extremist. Tossing paint on people wearing fur coats, building a $25,000 underground gun safe so that Obama can't steal your guns, etc.

Arguing that Fox's made up "War on Christmas" is ridiculous certainly isn't a fringe belief.

3/25/2013 1:40 PM
Posted by bistiza on 3/25/2013 1:31:00 PM (view original):
You're right, there are atheist organizations. Those groups have an agenda but are on the fringe, similar to PETA, the NRA, Focus on the Family, etc. Most people who identify as atheist don't belong to any such group or have any agenda. They just don't believe in god.

I'm not sure why they have to identify themselves as being "atheists" or anything at all for that matter. If you don't believe in something, you simply don't believe in it.

I don't believe in ghosts, but I don't go out looking to find and identify myself as part of a larger group of people who also don't believe in ghosts. It's completely pointless.

I'm glad you can at least admit some of these people DO have agendas. However, I think the other groups you claim are "on the fringe" are not anywhere close to the fringe of society and actually have far more of a legitimate claim to do what they do than any of these crazy atheist groups.
____________________________
 "If you don't believe in something, you simply don't believe in it."

Exactly. There just happens to be a term for people who don't believe in god. Atheist. The opposite of a theist. It doesn't have anything to do with making yourself part of a larger group any more than it would if we assigned a term to people that don't believe in ghosts. It's just a term.
3/25/2013 1:52 PM
Posted by bad_luck on 3/25/2013 1:37:00 PM (view original):
Posted by MikeT23 on 3/25/2013 1:29:00 PM (view original):
Anyway, I guess it depends on ones definition of fringe. 

I'm against animal abuse but, fortunately for anyone within viewing range, I'm not stripping down on the sidewalk to protest it.   That seems like a fringe activity and, because of that, I think PETA is a fringe group.

You, being an athiest, are against Jesus displays at government buildings.   I don't think you're going to rip them down when you walk by but I'm not sure any of these athiest organizations are doing that either. That would be "fringe", IMO  Seems like they migh write a nasty letter to someone though.  I could probably equate that arguing with swampy on the internet about the War on Christmas.   If you agree, would you consider yourself a fringe athiest?
When I say fringe, I don't mean just a small number, I mean an extremist. Tossing paint on people wearing fur coats, building a $25,000 underground gun safe so that Obama can't steal your guns, etc.

Arguing that Fox's made up "War on Christmas" is ridiculous certainly isn't a fringe belief.

That's sort of my point.  I don't see any of these athiest orgs doing anything extreme.  To the best of my knowledge, their "agenda" is to prevent religious beliefs from invading their day to day lives.    No prayer at HS football games, no baby Jesus display at the State House, etc. etc.    But they're not sneaking onto the football field and break bottles the night before the game, they're not stealing the little baby Jesus from the manger at the State House.

I don't know they're "fringe" as much as a "club" for like-minded individuals.
3/25/2013 1:59 PM
Anyway, other than what you've quoted, I have no idea what bis is trying to prove.

I just thought it was funny when you said "There are no athiest organizations."   Then you claimed they were "fringe". 

Both statements seem false based on your definition of "fringe". 
3/25/2013 2:05 PM
Posted by MikeT23 on 3/25/2013 1:53:00 PM (view original):
Posted by bad_luck on 3/25/2013 1:37:00 PM (view original):
Posted by MikeT23 on 3/25/2013 1:29:00 PM (view original):
Anyway, I guess it depends on ones definition of fringe. 

I'm against animal abuse but, fortunately for anyone within viewing range, I'm not stripping down on the sidewalk to protest it.   That seems like a fringe activity and, because of that, I think PETA is a fringe group.

You, being an athiest, are against Jesus displays at government buildings.   I don't think you're going to rip them down when you walk by but I'm not sure any of these athiest organizations are doing that either. That would be "fringe", IMO  Seems like they migh write a nasty letter to someone though.  I could probably equate that arguing with swampy on the internet about the War on Christmas.   If you agree, would you consider yourself a fringe athiest?
When I say fringe, I don't mean just a small number, I mean an extremist. Tossing paint on people wearing fur coats, building a $25,000 underground gun safe so that Obama can't steal your guns, etc.

Arguing that Fox's made up "War on Christmas" is ridiculous certainly isn't a fringe belief.

That's sort of my point.  I don't see any of these athiest orgs doing anything extreme.  To the best of my knowledge, their "agenda" is to prevent religious beliefs from invading their day to day lives.    No prayer at HS football games, no baby Jesus display at the State House, etc. etc.    But they're not sneaking onto the football field and break bottles the night before the game, they're not stealing the little baby Jesus from the manger at the State House.

I don't know they're "fringe" as much as a "club" for like-minded individuals.
I would say the atheist groups that file ridiculous lawsuits are fringe. It takes a lot of time and effort to file a lawsuit. Taking all that time and effort to make a big deal out of little religious things (ask swamp for a list if you need one) seems like a fringe activity to me.
3/25/2013 2:14 PM
Exactly. There just happens to be a term for people who don't believe in god. Atheist.

I'm simply saying the term and especially identifying with it and others associated with it - all of it is completely unnecessary.  The very fact that anyone feels the need to identify as part of a group that doesn't believe in something is foolish.
It doesn't have anything to do with making yourself part of a larger group any more than it would if we assigned a term to people that don't believe in ghosts. It's just a term.

Atheist is WAY more than "just a term".

I'm sure there is a term for someone who doesn't believe in ghosts, but I don't know what it is and don't care to look it up right now. The very fact that people aren't even aware of what it is shows how little significance it has.

If the term "atheist" was merely a term, it would have an equal lack of significance. So few people would identify with the term or use it at all that most people wouldn't even be aware of it. Obviously that isn't the case, because it's more than "just a term" - it is used as an identifier, which as I said, is foolish.

Let's all get together and identify ourselves as a common group who does NOT believe in something. Everyone who doesn't believe in ghosts over here. Those who don't believe in aliens over there. Now those of you who don't believe we're really inside the Matrix in the corner there. Those who don't think we're all the imagination of a creature that is the combination of a panda bear, an elephant, a donkey, a zebra, and a scorpion, you meet here in the center. Wait, that's probably everybody.

Do you see how ridiculous it is to form a group or identify based on a LACK of belief in something?

If you say you DO believe in something together, fine, that makes some sense and can at least lead to a uniform identity. But to say you're all agreed on the LACK of belief in something and that is part of your identity is absurd and foolish.
To the best of my knowledge, their "agenda" is to prevent religious beliefs from invading their day to day lives.
No. Their agenda is to prevent anyone from having the freedom to express any religious belief except what they say is okay. They realize this won't fly under most circumstances, so they try to find ways to make it happen where other people are forced to do as they say, such as with these asinine challenges against public displays and the like.
3/25/2013 2:23 PM
Posted by bistiza on 3/25/2013 2:15:00 PM (view original):
Exactly. There just happens to be a term for people who don't believe in god. Atheist.

I'm simply saying the term and especially identifying with it and others associated with it - all of it is completely unnecessary.  The very fact that anyone feels the need to identify as part of a group that doesn't believe in something is foolish.
It doesn't have anything to do with making yourself part of a larger group any more than it would if we assigned a term to people that don't believe in ghosts. It's just a term.

Atheist is WAY more than "just a term".

I'm sure there is a term for someone who doesn't believe in ghosts, but I don't know what it is and don't care to look it up right now. The very fact that people aren't even aware of what it is shows how little significance it has.

If the term "atheist" was merely a term, it would have an equal lack of significance. So few people would identify with the term or use it at all that most people wouldn't even be aware of it. Obviously that isn't the case, because it's more than "just a term" - it is used as an identifier, which as I said, is foolish.

Let's all get together and identify ourselves as a common group who does NOT believe in something. Everyone who doesn't believe in ghosts over here. Those who don't believe in aliens over there. Now those of you who don't believe we're really inside the Matrix in the corner there. Those who don't think we're all the imagination of a creature that is the combination of a panda bear, an elephant, a donkey, a zebra, and a scorpion, you meet here in the center. Wait, that's probably everybody.

Do you see how ridiculous it is to form a group or identify based on a LACK of belief in something?

If you say you DO believe in something together, fine, that makes some sense and can at least lead to a uniform identity. But to say you're all agreed on the LACK of belief in something and that is part of your identity is absurd and foolish.
To the best of my knowledge, their "agenda" is to prevent religious beliefs from invading their day to day lives.
No. Their agenda is to prevent anyone from having the freedom to express any religious belief except what they say is okay. They realize this won't fly under most circumstances, so they try to find ways to make it happen where other people are forced to do as they say, such as with these asinine challenges against public displays and the like.
____________________________________
"Let's all get together and identify ourselves as a common group who does NOT believe in something. Everyone who doesn't believe in ghosts over here. Those who don't believe in aliens over there. Now those of you who don't believe we're really inside the Matrix in the corner there. Those who don't think we're all the imagination of a creature that is the combination of a panda bear, an elephant, a donkey, a zebra, and a scorpion, you meet here in the center. Wait, that's probably everybody."

Does 80-90% of the population believe in ghosts? Or aliens? Or the Matrix?

Nope.

So we don't have a term for people who don't believe in ghosts (that I know of) or aliens or the Matrix. We just call them rational, sane, intelligent, etc.

But since 80-90% of the population believes in god, we can't just call the non-believers "the rational ones." That would be insulting to 80-90% of the population. So we call them atheists.

Most atheists aren't a member of any sort of atheist group and don't have a uniform identity, other than a lack of belief in god.
3/25/2013 2:49 PM
So we don't have a term for people who don't believe in ghosts (that I know of) or aliens or the Matrix. We just call them rational, sane, intelligent, etc.


So if your definition for "rational, sane, intelligent, etc." is 80-90 percent of the population agreeing (which is flawed in many ways, but it is YOUR definition), then apparently atheists are NOT rational, sane, or intelligent. That's quite a statement you're making there, especially since you've stated you are among those who identify as atheists.
But since 80-90% of the population believes in god, we can't just call the non-believers "the rational ones."
Now you're trying to tell everyone the term atheist is supposed to be politically correct and  you're also saying it's okay to insult people as long as they're not in the majority but when they are you have to come up with some way not to insult them.

Do you realize how arrogant and ridiculous that is?
Most atheists aren't a member of any sort of atheist group and don't have a uniform identity, other than a lack of belief in god.

Calling yourself an atheist means you identity as an atheist and therefore have that in common with anyone else who does the same. Wow. Even a child could explain that much to you.
3/25/2013 3:23 PM
Hold on a sec.  Friday you said athiest organizations didn't exist.    Now we know you had no knowledge of them.    Yet, hours after acknowledging they do exist, you're willing to claim "Most atheists aren't a member of any sort of atheist group and don't have a uniform identity". 

Are you suddenly an expert on what organizations athiest have joined?  
3/25/2013 3:51 PM
He's the Czar of Everything, remember?



3/25/2013 4:28 PM
Posted by MikeT23 on 3/25/2013 3:23:00 PM (view original):
Hold on a sec.  Friday you said athiest organizations didn't exist.    Now we know you had no knowledge of them.    Yet, hours after acknowledging they do exist, you're willing to claim "Most atheists aren't a member of any sort of atheist group and don't have a uniform identity". 

Are you suddenly an expert on what organizations athiest have joined?  
I'm guessing based on my experience with other people I know that don't believe in god. I don't belong to any sort of atheist group. The only time I talk about it is here. It's not part of my day to day life. Other people that I know are atheists don't really talk about it or join groups. So my evidence is anecdotal and limited. If you have something better, please share it.
3/25/2013 4:41 PM
Posted by bistiza on 3/25/2013 2:49:00 PM (view original):
So we don't have a term for people who don't believe in ghosts (that I know of) or aliens or the Matrix. We just call them rational, sane, intelligent, etc.


So if your definition for "rational, sane, intelligent, etc." is 80-90 percent of the population agreeing (which is flawed in many ways, but it is YOUR definition), then apparently atheists are NOT rational, sane, or intelligent. That's quite a statement you're making there, especially since you've stated you are among those who identify as atheists.
But since 80-90% of the population believes in god, we can't just call the non-believers "the rational ones."
Now you're trying to tell everyone the term atheist is supposed to be politically correct and  you're also saying it's okay to insult people as long as they're not in the majority but when they are you have to come up with some way not to insult them.

Do you realize how arrogant and ridiculous that is?
Most atheists aren't a member of any sort of atheist group and don't have a uniform identity, other than a lack of belief in god.

Calling yourself an atheist means you identity as an atheist and therefore have that in common with anyone else who does the same. Wow. Even a child could explain that much to you.
___________________________________
"So if your definition for "rational, sane, intelligent, etc." is 80-90 percent of the population agreeing"

No, that's not what I'm saying. Regardless of how many people believe (or don't), it's rational to conclude that we are all not living in the Matrix. If someone you knew really believed it, you would question their mental health. If 80% of the population believed we were really living in the Matrix, I would consider that equally as crazy.

Going back to god, I think it's completely irrational to believe. But that's what faith is, belief in the absence of evidence. If that works for you, that's fine, but it doesn't work for me.

You are free to worship whatever god you want, however you want. You're just not allowed to use public money to do it. 

3/25/2013 4:53 PM
Regardless of how many people believe (or don't), it's rational to conclude that we are all not living in the Matrix.

How do you determine the statement "we are all living in the Matrix" isn't rational? You said before it was based upon the percentage of people who believe something, but now you have backpedaled and admitted this is flawed logic. So how do you determine it?

Show me how you classify such a statement as less than rational. Perhaps defining rational is similar to defining "real", ala Morpheus:

"What is real? How do you define real? If you're talking about what you can feel, what you can smell, what you can taste and see, then real is simply electrical signals interpreted by your brain."
If someone you knew really believed it, you would question their mental health.

Why would I question their mental health? They are free to believe what they wish, and I cannot conclusively prove we're not in the Matrix or something similar to it.
You are free to worship whatever god you want, however you want. You're just not allowed to use public money to do it.

No one is using public money by allowing a statue or plaque to simply remain resting where it has always been. There are plenty of other examples where public money is not used but radical atheists are causing problems.
3/25/2013 5:09 PM
Posted by bistiza on 3/25/2013 4:53:00 PM (view original):
Regardless of how many people believe (or don't), it's rational to conclude that we are all not living in the Matrix.

How do you determine the statement "we are all living in the Matrix" isn't rational? You said before it was based upon the percentage of people who believe something, but now you have backpedaled and admitted this is flawed logic. So how do you determine it?

Show me how you classify such a statement as less than rational. Perhaps defining rational is similar to defining "real", ala Morpheus:

"What is real? How do you define real? If you're talking about what you can feel, what you can smell, what you can taste and see, then real is simply electrical signals interpreted by your brain."
If someone you knew really believed it, you would question their mental health.

Why would I question their mental health? They are free to believe what they wish, and I cannot conclusively prove we're not in the Matrix or something similar to it.
You are free to worship whatever god you want, however you want. You're just not allowed to use public money to do it.

No one is using public money by allowing a statue or plaque to simply remain resting where it has always been. There are plenty of other examples where public money is not used but radical atheists are causing problems.
_______________________________________________

How do you determine the statement "we are all living in the Matrix" isn't rational?

Because there isn't any evidence that we are.

You said before it was based upon the percentage of people who believe something

I never said rationality was based on the percentage of people believing something. I said that not believing that we live in the Matrix is rational and also that most people don't believe we live in the Matrix.

Why would I question their mental health? They are free to believe what they wish, and I cannot conclusively prove we're not in the Matrix or something similar to it.

Insane people still have the freedom to believe whatever they want. That doesn't make them less insane. 

No one is using public money by allowing a statue or plaque to simply remain resting where it has always been. 

Public land is public money.



3/25/2013 5:09 PM
Posted by bad_luck on 3/25/2013 4:28:00 PM (view original):
Posted by MikeT23 on 3/25/2013 3:23:00 PM (view original):
Hold on a sec.  Friday you said athiest organizations didn't exist.    Now we know you had no knowledge of them.    Yet, hours after acknowledging they do exist, you're willing to claim "Most atheists aren't a member of any sort of atheist group and don't have a uniform identity". 

Are you suddenly an expert on what organizations athiest have joined?  
I'm guessing based on my experience with other people I know that don't believe in god. I don't belong to any sort of atheist group. The only time I talk about it is here. It's not part of my day to day life. Other people that I know are atheists don't really talk about it or join groups. So my evidence is anecdotal and limited. If you have something better, please share it.
I don't.  As I said, I have no idea of the membership numbers of the athiest organizations that you didn't know existed until this morning.   Nor do you.

But, if nothing else, you've admitted that your evidence is based on a tiny number of athiests in your circle of contacts.  And you've also admitted that athiests don't really talk about being athiests.  Yet you followed that with "or join groups."   One has to assume that an athiest joining a group wouldn't talk about their organization since, as you said "Other people that I know are atheists don't really talk about it."

Perhaps it's just better if you stop talking about athiest activity like you know something about it since you don't really know what the others do when they're not around you.
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