Thursday, December 08, 2005
Atheist Jerk Watch #1
A recent Wall Street journal opinion blog item accused atheists of acting "like jerks all the time." They admit to engaging in a little hyperbole, but they think they are entitled since the authors used to be militant atheists, from roughly ages 5 through 17, when they realized that militant atheism is silly and that being a militant atheist is tantamount to, well, being a jerk!
From a local newspaper in San Antonio, here's the latest example of atheist jerkiness:
A group of atheists at the University of Texas at San Antonio was asking students to exchange bibles for porn magazines: “We consider The Bible to be a very negative force in the history of the world,” student Ryan Walker said. He is part of a student group calling itself the “Atheist Agenda.” So they sponsor a “Porno for Bibles” event, where they gave free pornography to people who traded in religious scripture. These people are not jerks, they are fools!
Club members were on campus asking students to exchange religious materials for pornographic magazines like Black Label and Playboy: Smut for Smut! Forgive me Lord!
Now, it's true that religious people can be jerks too. As agnostic David Gelernter writes, "when a deadly earnest young Christian approaches, displays an infuriating though subliminal holier-than-thouness, and tries to convert me - it happens rarely, but occasionally - I metamorphose for an instant into a raging leftist." But one can at least understand the overeager Christian: He thinks he's trying to save your soul! On the other hand, the militant atheist wants to make sure you know you don't have a soul!
Besides, organized religion does a lot more than try to convert people; it also engages in various humanitarian good works. To the extent that there is such a thing as organized atheism, it seems to be about nothing other than getting in people's faces.
By the way, if there is a United Atheist Society (UAS not USA), I nominate Sam Harris for its President. He is notorious for inveighing against “the mad hordes of religious imbeciles” as he does in a recent article in Free Inquiry. Also see Harris’ recent article on Katrina titled There is No God (And You Know It).
Bottom line: The fool says in his heart: there is no God! (Psalm 14.1 & 53.1) And you know it! (John 17.3)