Mowing down psychological tall grass and tangled weeds; clearing the field and planting new seeds. Thoughts lifted from my angry days, when someone asks my opinion and then denies it. If I tell you my favorite color, who else would have the "right" answer? Challenge it, oppose if you must, but to correct it is to erase my existence. If we all had the same thoughts, there would be no need for democracy. Cogito Ergo Sum.


If "reason" is your enemy, then you better believe I am too.

What do you say to this?

Is the church, or the members thereof, actually willing to argue and be proud that to have faith, it must supplant reason?

These kinds of statements, arguments, positions are the reasons I have grown to despise faith - even the "polite" kind that isn't attacking me. Because the polite kind, the kind that wants to have it's views without condemning or arguing with mine, still acts as a segment in the pole holding up the tent that covers the rest of the genuinely "are you fucking kidding me?" crazy faith - the kind that says kill your kid with your bare hands if you think the "devil" is inside him.

Every argument, religious or otherwise, involves reason.

Want proof?

Even the most "faithful" of believers uses "reason" in their every instantaneous movement, decision, and intention. People don't put their hand on a stove they know is hot because reason tells them (maybe from experience) that there would be REAL consequences to ignoring what they know about hot stoves and how badly human skin reacts to that kind of heat.

I got into a fight - online, mind you, but if I were standing next to him in person his ears would have been ringing from the volume of my shouting - with a guy who DENIED - just flat out waved his dick in the air and DENIED that any atheist does not have faith.

I stand in living proof that the asshole is gaping, hairy, and WRONG. I do not have faith, I have REASON.

So this dumb bastard just kept arguing with me. (there's a larger point I must save for another discussion about blaming someone who is getting more angry as you proceed; he acknowledges you are getting angry, He acknowledges that he knows he is the reason the other is getting angry, that person plods forward - either oblivious or belligerent - and just says he has untrammelled freedom to say whatever he wants to say....who then you throws up a red flag and decries that the OTHER GUY (the angry one) - well, his reactions must have limits.

Got that? You can say whatever you want; but if the other guy is angry, and targeting you - he has limits. I wonder if that person would see a bear at the zoo, beneath a sign that says "do not feed the bear"; tear the sign down, feed the bear, and then blame the bear for mauling the dumb bastard who gave him a slice of his pizza and lost and arm for his generosity.

That's reason - to know enough that a bear will eat you, you don't give the bear the chance - is that in an argument, you have "faith" that the law will protect you even when the other guy is pointing a gun at you and screaming for you to shut the fuck up, you keep yammering....and then your relatives want the cops and the courts to clean it all up and punish the other guy ex post facto.

Would it not be more "reasonable" to say, "Hmm, this conversation is not going anywhere productive, the other guy doesn't look healthy or restrained, I probably ought not to feed that particular bear".

Faith says carry on, you will be protected.

Now there's another argument that I'm basically claiming hostile tactics must be respected, and I'm not. Shooting someone who says something you don't like is unwarranted. Punching him in the face is not even allowed; after all their just words.

But at some point, when you hold up your hand and say "this argument is not healthy, let's stop", and the other guy thinks it's great to have this kind of tension out in the open - says it's "healthy" for the community for these kinds of things to be aired out -

I call bullshit, and I'm using reason as my basis.

Having the law punish someone for an illegal act after it's too late to repair the damage the conflict inspired is dumb. Unless you believe that it serves some greater purpose, perhaps the will of some god, in which case the reasonable person should still rightly call you galactically and shamelessly stupid.

Humans have big brains and opposible thumbs. These two characteristics are supposed to set us apart (and above, we claim) the other animals on the planet. But whenever we, collectively or individually, make such stupid decisions in the light of our capacity to reason - like war and economic collapse - what basis are we using at that point to claim we're better than all the "lesser" animals?

We were smart enough to see the problem coming.

We had the means to stop it,

but our ego, our hubris, or grossly unjustifiable overconfidence in our own noble justifications (in the light of all the ignoble ones) allowed us to fuck up just as bad as the dumb "lesser" animals who never had any chance to make the right decision.

We did - do.

We make those choices based on a body of logic, casually referred to as "reason".

If that's your enemy,

I'm building a fence between you and me, and I'm going to bean anything that comes over the top with a big, sharp rock at the very least.

If reason is your enemy,

then so am I.

and I do not, will not,


apologize for your duplicity.

Gaping Asshole said that it was faith that I used, as an atheist, in order to convince myself it was OK to drive across a bridge.

I said it was reason that gave me confidence to drive across the bridge because I understood the underlying mechanics that made the voyage possible.

I argued that "faith" - the believe that there are unseen forces at work, and those unseen forces will act in ways that are impossible to imagine or explain - if I felt "faith" would get me to the other side no matter what,

...then I should not even need a bridge, should I?

Faith says that (whatever it might be that I would have faith in) will get me to the other side of that chasm with or without a bridge.

Confidence, I argued, that is based on reason, is what allows me to proceed across the bridge; I understand many of the fundamental laws of physics, enough of the laws of engineering and mechanics, enough of the principles and practices of modern construction to know that the bridges I traverse will support me and whatever else is on it.

On those days I don't (I can show you that bridge) I don't drive across the fucking thing, because I don't have FAITH that will save me when the goddamn bridge fails. (the limit on the bridge says 12 tons; it's the main road on the way to a coal-fired power plant that someone I know used to work at; I saw the log books and the trucks that cross that bridge weighed over 30 tons loaded, and they were NOT the only thing on that bridge.

So I used "reason" to say that the extra five miles to go around that bridge were worth my time and fuel, faith was not involved in the process.

And said dickhead, his name was John C. Howell of Beaverton Oregon, with a smile on his face and claiming that such arguments were healthy for the entire community that was there to watch it, kept on insisting that all atheists have faith.

And nobody could understand why I got pissed.

I don't have faith.

I have REASON, and REASON gives me 'confidence'.

John said they were synonymous and interchangeable.

I present to you the above photo, which proves that I'm not the only one who thinks they are not the same, and the others who agree with me are not always atheists.

Religious people have as much contempt for logic and reason as they insist that I do for their faith. They take for granted that everyone else will treat them according to social customs and legal precedent, many (most) of which are not based on superstition or conjecture, but on reasoned arguments presented in an open society and only agreed upon after it is found to be acceptable to as many of the crowd that can be called on to support it.

We suspend "reason" when there is no explanation - and we supplant it with "well, 'G'od must have had one (he always does, I am told) even if 'H'e never explains it to us"

And that gives me no comfort what so fucking ever.

That it gives others comfort is great, I won't take their faith away from them, as long as their faith or their support thereof is not being used to take my comfort - reason, logic, and healthy skepticism - away from me.

And this seems to have some bearing on the conflicts of our age; all ages in fact, and not just the conflicts unique to me.

You want to go through life with your thumb to your nose in the face of reason? Feel free. But the First Amendment says I can't take it away from you, it does not say I have to support you, encourage you, or in any conflict or exchange, if the faithful chooses to pit their faith against my reason, nobody is going to argue with me (and expect to win) by saying the First Amendment protects their faith, but not my reason.

Particularly if these hypocritical louts are going to start insisting that atheism is a religion. I think they bit themselves in the ass on that one - because if "atheism" is a "religion", then would atheists not also deserve all the rights and privileges of all the religions who want to blame atheist as the root of all evil?


Listen - read - I dont' care what you believe in. But in a symbiotic society where we must interact, engage, and even at times depend on one another, there has to be a mutual agreement of respect.

Religious people say atheists are disrespectful of their faith; I typically respond that all atheists can not be held responsible for the actions of a few - for if that were true, I've got some Christians who they had better answer for and fast -

but the larger point is that to hold up faith as not just an alternative to reason, but a better one - a preferred one - is such rank hypocrisy that I will not tolerate it. Faithful people are far more dependent on reason than I am on faith. In fact, you try to show a faithful person what it looks like when reason is abandoned -

like me saying "I dont' give a fuck about your religion, you're a liar, a fool, and I'm not going to let you destroy my country" - well, they don't like that.

But they will then turn around and say the same thing to me as an atheist.

I find that unreasonable.

and I do not stand for it.

So if you see me, as an atheist, getting rather animated, loud, and arguably hostile in the face of some devoutly faithful people,

please don't try to argue that you always know the atheist started it; or at least dont' fall back on the First Amendment argument when there are so many Christians making the accusation that atheism is a religion as a perjorative statement. If it casts aspersions for atheism to be regarded like a religion, then why?

Is it because they think atheists make claims that they find unreasonable, and they use reason in the argument to make their point?



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