Do you think we should tiptoe around religious issues for fear of offense?
Hell no, we should try offend them, maybe then they will rexamine their beliefs.
4.5% (6)
4.5% (6)
Absolutely not, religious people should hear how insane their views are to an outsider.
18.7% (25)
18.7% (25)
Not really, it is just another viewpoint open to discussion, respect should only factor in to the same extent as one would give an opposing political view.
64.9% (87)
64.9% (87)
Yes, to an extent, but some things must be examined and possibly changed.
7.5% (10)
7.5% (10)
Yes, it is important not to hurt peoples feelings at all.
0.7% (1)
0.7% (1)
You missed my viewpoint you bastard! (Other, explain)
3.7% (5)
3.7% (5)
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Poll: Respect, Religion and Offense

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I came into this thread expecting to see something resembling a discussion about respecting belief, and instead walked into a series of horrific posts about how ridicule and outright hostility is the best way to treat people who don't believe as you do. Oh, sorry, no - I correct myself. That's how religious people should be treated by the non-religious, however the religious must offer respect approaching reverence to "science" because science.

I see such arguments circulating discussions about home security, albeit with different wording. At some point, someone will state quite clearly that they believe that when an intruder enters your house, you basically should have the right to murder that person in any way you so deem appropriate. Be it horrific death by kitchen knife, a quick double tap to the skull, or the slow and painful baseball bat to the throat.
"They were in my house, I have the right to defend myself!" they cry, however we're not talking about a murderer - we're talking about an intruder. Until that person has advertised their murderous intent, you cannot claim self defense. The same system that has granted you the right of self defense has granted that person the right to a trial, the right to imprisonment, etc. It's all apart of being a member of a civilised society.

Trying to explain that religion itself is evil and thus must be expunged from our civilised society requires an enormous amount of faith - ironic, really. We have to believe that all religious people are evil (they're not), all effects of religion are evil (they're not), religion prevents good (it doesn't), only non-religious people are good (not true), and thus only non-religious people have the right to be a member of our civilised society.
This type of thinking is very dangerous, and is actually the very type of thinking you're attempting to remove. "Religion is evil because I don't believe in it, it leads people to points of view I disagree with, and because wars have been fought in the name of it. We should all get rid of religion to make us more morally grounded according to my morals, smarter according to my metrics, more advanced - which is important because I said so - and ultimately better because it falls in line with what I believe in. You can trust me, I know all of this, because I'm not religious".
Replace the word "Religion" with "[Ideal]", and you have the cause of more wars then all of the religions of the world combined. This is simply unsustainable and dangerous thinking.

If the religious are not allowed to have their beliefs because they disagree with yours, then you're not allowed to have your beliefs because yours disagree with theirs. That's the logic being employed here.

If you want to remove religion, for whatever reason, you need to better understand the issue. The issue isn't religion, and frankly never has been. Religion didn't cause any issue pointed to. Much like my "home security" analogy, where the issue isn't guns or weapons, religion also isn't the cause of the issue at it's core. Guns don't kill people, as they say, people kill people. So, we're the problem.
In an ideal world, we could address the issue of gun control at a person-by-person level. However, it's impractical and virtually impossible due to population levels involved, and so we employed a simpler solution that has been incredibly effective: Gun Safety education. You can tell the real "Gun Lovers" from the "Gun Nuts" by their understanding of gun safety, and how guns should be treated and handled. It's reduced gun violence quite extensively.

So, if you want to remove religion, then bigotry, hated, outright hostility and denigration are quite possibly the worst possible ways to achieve your goal. It makes you feel better, but ultimately makes society toxic and hateful. This type of oppression has never worked, and in fact only makes the targeted group more indoctrinated and radicalised, leading to open armed conflict, resulting in war. History teaches us this, and provides numerous examples.
You simply need to educate people.
I'd actually recommend bringing in a universal "Religion" class into secondary schools, serving to educate children against the extremist views of basically every major religion of the world. As they learn about all of the world's religions, and I'm not talking about brainwashing them into being members of a religion but educating them about Religion as a concept, the children would learn where they originated and major historical events influenced by "religion"; they'll basically be inoculated against it's most dangerous forms.

However, I don't think the goal should be the removal of religion, but merely and an educating of religious people. If you think you have the right to tell people what to believe and not believe, then you must logically provide that same right to everyone else in your society, otherwise you're basically the very thing you're arguing against. If you have the right to be openly hostile to someone of a different belief, they inherent the same right. They can legislate against you, oppress you, insult you, and lie about you as much as they chose. Do you want to live in that world? I sure as shit don't.

tstorm823:

Bashfluff:

Uh...no. I don't know if you understand those arguments. They're meant to combat belief, yes, but in the way that person used the argument in a way that certainly does so!

Well, communication had to break down eventually, and I finally lost you. I'm not too worried about that though.

Explain further.

So a reasoned thought can't be in the form of a meme? It can't be satirizing religion? It can't insult it? I'm not saying anything but how those communities THINK. Scientifically. Rationally. It's like a bar for atheists, where they can be loud, rowdy, and uncouth. But it still shows lots of things about the community as a whole in so far as what we value. You probably want the /debateanatheist stuff if you want "soft," reasoned debate, as well as the Atheist Experience T.V. show (although they can get a bit heated sometimes). I'm not talking about places that play nice. I'm talking about places that show how we think. There are plenty of places where we do play nice. I don't care to visit them much, but I know they exist. *shrugs*

Everyone who says that entertainment and comedy can send serious messages has a poor concept of serious. And if those places show how you think, you think like one piece of a stagnant, circle-jerking hivemind.

I have two words that show you're wrong: Mark Twain.

Yes, they should. If applied in the proper context, an argument can be repeated. There's no lack of intelligence in doing so as long as it's RELEVANT. When someone asks you what 2+2 is, you say four. Or what pie is. Or what the capital of Washington is. That more and more people are doing this means that they are MORE educated, to draw a parallel. What matters is how the argument is applied.

But an arguement is dependant on its assumptions. 2+2=4 only works because 2 and 4 mean the same thing to everyone. "God" (amongst other things) does not mean the same thing to everyone, even among atheists, and as such, identical arguements need not reach identical results.

[quote="tstorm823" post="528.398403.16327235"][quote="Bashfluff" post="528.398403.16327080"]

I don't think you understand again...everything is subjected to the standards of evidence.

@Zeh Don

Trying to explain that religion itself is evil and thus must be expunged from our civilised society requires an enormous amount of faith - ironic, really. We have to believe that all religious people are evil (they're not), all effects of religion are evil (they're not), religion prevents good (it doesn't), only non-religious people are good (not true), and thus only non-religious people have the right to be a member of our civilised society.

Nah. You don't really need to believe all those things just to think that religion is a net negative for society. In fact, I'd call that quite a strawman. I'm not exactly an Antitheist, so I dunno about "expunging" religion, but do I think more secularization is a good thing? You bet. Do I think force needs to or should be involved? No. Both because I'd find that unethical but also because I don't think it'd be effective. Education, exposure to different belief systems etc., that does the work quite splendidly. It's why some religious groups prefer isolation (of various forms) so as to avoid that risk of exposure to other worldviews. My main point, anyway, is that hating religion =/= hating religious people.

Rastelin:

Lil devils x:
snip

Telling how your religion which no one I know have even heard of is peaceful and grabbing the opportunity to do a little preaching at the same time is not addressing the issue. You have told me about your belief before. Small powerless religions are not the problem here. They never was. It is the established influential ones that is and any supporters they manage to muster.

But ignorance and a wacky view on how the world works are not assisting the general intellect. Stone tablets and whats not are no more part of any science that talking snakes or virgin births are. Your firm belief makes you think you hold the answers however outrageous the claims. There are others who do the same as you, like say every other religion out there.

No one you know has heard of the Hopi? They do not teach about Native americans, or their beliefs or practices in History class? Hopi are considered the Grandfather tribe in North America, and still reside in the single longest continuously occupied village in North America, I would have thought it might have been mentioned. When the Navajo came across the Bering Strait, it was our ancestors who named them "Navajo", meaning Newcomers, and they called us "ancient ones". You fault others rather than your own ignorance of the many religions of this earth, yet you hold them in contempt without understanding the material you are discussing here. There are thousands of religions you apparantly know little about. The only reason our people are few in number was due to the extermination, not because we are some " wacky, nonestablished religion". Among the tribes, the Hopi are respected and have been quite influential, and have been in contact with tribes globally, not just in the Americas. They recently hosted the " Return of the Ancestors Gathering" which is quite an honor for any tribe, where elders from tribes all over the world unite as one people. Our religion has been established much longer than the religions you are discussing here, and been in harmony with many more much older religions than the ones you speak up for a very long time, attempting to discount those religions simply because you are not aware of them is not doing your research on the topic you are discussing. If you are going to hold all religions responsible for the atrocities carried out by a few, you at least should be informed about the topic you are discussing.

The stone Tablets should be mentioned in many religions, due to the fact that we believe we have the history of when they received them kept by our tribe and others who also hold this shared history. We still have our stone tablets, and 2 of the other 3 tribes who received them, tell us they still have theirs. The only tribe who does not know where theirs went as of yet, were the white race. Since everyone else still has theirs, you would think they would start looking for where theirs went.

Where is your kept history from the time before the migrations? Has that been lost too?

As for " preaching" exactly how do you explain your religion, lifeplan, culture without actually explaining it when the person you are speaking to doesn't know anything about it? I was addressing each of your points, not " preaching". You made accusations about " the peaceful ones" considering I am Hopi, meaning " peaceful ones", I would assume that would apply to me, since you actually addressed us by name. LOL!

Zeh Don:
snip

Thank you, you said it better than I ever could.

Skeleon:
@Zeh Don

Trying to explain that religion itself is evil and thus must be expunged from our civilised society requires an enormous amount of faith - ironic, really. We have to believe that all religious people are evil (they're not), all effects of religion are evil (they're not), religion prevents good (it doesn't), only non-religious people are good (not true), and thus only non-religious people have the right to be a member of our civilised society.

Nah. You don't really need to believe all those things just to think that religion is a net negative for society. In fact, I'd call that quite a strawman. I'm not exactly an Antitheist, so I dunno about "expunging" religion, but do I think more secularization is a good thing? You bet. Do I think force needs to or should be involved? No. Both because I'd find that unethical but also because I don't think it'd be effective. Education, exposure to different belief systems etc., that does the work quite splendidly. It's why some religious groups prefer isolation (of various forms) so as to avoid that risk of exposure to other worldviews. My main point, anyway, is that hating religion =/= hating religious people.

If you read the bottom of his post, he brings up exactly what you suggested.

Zeh Don:
d

"I came into this thread expecting to see something resembling a discussion about respecting belief, and instead walked into a series of horrific posts about how ridicule and outright hostility is the best way to treat people who don't believe as you do. "

You came in this thread expecting to hear what you wanted to hear, and then you found someone that disagreed. That's...kinda how the world works, my friend. And if you want to hear how I think religious people should be treated regarding their beliefs, instead of equating how I said we should beliefs instead of people, you can look upward.

"however the religious must offer respect approaching reverence to "science" because science."

I never mentioned them offering "respect approaching reverence to science because science".

"Trying to explain that religion itself is evil and thus must be expunged from our civilised society requires an enormous amount of faith - ironic, really"

Oh?

" We have to believe that all religious people are evil (they're not), all effects of religion are evil (they're not), religion prevents good (it doesn't), only non-religious people are good (not true), and thus only non-religious people have the right to be a member of our civilised society."

Why do we have to believe that all religious PEOPLE are evil to think that religion is bad? That doesn't really make a whole lot of sense. There are many people who are a part of harmful groups and ideologies who aren't evil.

Why do we have to assume something is totally evil if we want to get rid of it?

Why do we have to assume only non-religious people are good?

You're advancing a position I've not only distanced myself from, but never really implied that I was a part of.

"Religion is evil because I don't believe in it, it leads people to points of view I disagree with, and because wars have been fought in the name of it. We should all get rid of religion to make us more morally grounded according to my morals, smarter according to my metrics, more advanced - which is important because I said so - and ultimately better because it falls in line with what I believe in. You can trust me, I know all of this, because I'm not religious".

You do not understand my position, or that is a horrible strawman. A more accurate representation would go a little something like this:

"Religion is evil because (all of the things I've previously mentioned about religion being evil blah blah blah). Religion should die because according to morals that we as a collective can reason are correct, many religious tenants are ALSO immoral, as I have previously stated. This is the same type of reasoning that we use in every aspect of our lives, that goes beyond myself and my preferences, and it will not be as easy as looking at some book and stopping there, but it will ultimately be better because it will be a morality that will be based on logic and empathy, and it will be one that we can back up to anyone. You can trust this, because that's part of what we do already, and although some don't realize it, it WORKS."

"If the religious are not allowed to have their beliefs because they disagree with yours, then you're not allowed to have your beliefs because yours disagree with theirs. That's the logic being employed here."

I never said they're not allowed to have their beliefs, and I'm not saying that religion should die because it's not a belief system that I subscribe to. Go back and read what I said again.

"Religion didn't cause any issue pointed to."

...? Yes, it did. That was my whole, "For a good person to do an evil thing, that takes religion". bit of the argument.

"So, if you want to remove religion, then bigotry, hated, outright hostility and denigration are quite possibly the worst possible ways to achieve your goal. It makes you feel better, but ultimately makes society toxic and hateful. This type of oppression has never worked, and in fact only makes the targeted group more indoctrinated and radicalised, leading to open armed conflict, resulting in war. History teaches us this, and provides numerous examples.
You simply need to educate people."

As much as I would dispute my methods being bigotry, I would say that a more antagonist approach, or a more hostile one, deserves scorn some of the time, because it's not what's needed all of the time. YES. Educate. Be nice. Show empathy. Help people learn. All of these things are good. But you also need people willing to step up and debate religion, willing to say, "This is a bad thing," willing to actually combat religion.

" If you think you have the right to tell people what to believe and not believe, then you must logically provide that same right to everyone else in your society, otherwise you're basically the very thing you're arguing against. If you have the right to be openly hostile to someone of a different belief, they inherent the same right. They can legislate against you, oppress you, insult you, and lie about you as much as they chose."

I don't believe I have the right to tell people what to believe and not believe. I've never advocated conversion by force. I do agree that anyone has the right to be openly hostile to me, and I welcome it and hope that I may better myself from hearing the reason they're so hostile, because I probably have done something to earn that hostility. I don't believe you can legislate or oppress them, although you can insult them and lie about them (the latter I wouldn't recommend myself, but you can do it), and I'm glad people are free to make their own choices on what to say.

You need people to be nice and you need people to play hardball. I'd like to think I'm good at doing both, although I like hardball just a mite bit better, and I'm here to fill that role.

Helmholtz Watson:

Zeh Don:
snip

Thank you, you said it better than I ever could.

Skeleon:
@Zeh Don

Trying to explain that religion itself is evil and thus must be expunged from our civilised society requires an enormous amount of faith - ironic, really. We have to believe that all religious people are evil (they're not), all effects of religion are evil (they're not), religion prevents good (it doesn't), only non-religious people are good (not true), and thus only non-religious people have the right to be a member of our civilised society.

Nah. You don't really need to believe all those things just to think that religion is a net negative for society. In fact, I'd call that quite a strawman. I'm not exactly an Antitheist, so I dunno about "expunging" religion, but do I think more secularization is a good thing? You bet. Do I think force needs to or should be involved? No. Both because I'd find that unethical but also because I don't think it'd be effective. Education, exposure to different belief systems etc., that does the work quite splendidly. It's why some religious groups prefer isolation (of various forms) so as to avoid that risk of exposure to other worldviews. My main point, anyway, is that hating religion =/= hating religious people.

If you read the bottom of his post, he brings up exactly what you suggested.

Do you not understand my argument? I mean, you applaud a post that just cannot have gotten it more wrong. What is your impression of my argument?

Bashfluff:

Do you not understand my argument? I mean, you applaud a post that just cannot have gotten it more wrong. What is your impression of my argument?

Do me a favor and answer my previous question. I did as you asked and looked at what you said to other people, one of your comments was that religion can be physically harmful to a person. So again I ask you, how is every religion physically harmful?

Helmholtz Watson:

Bashfluff:

Do you not understand my argument? I mean, you applaud a post that just cannot have gotten it more wrong. What is your impression of my argument?

Do me a favor and answer my previous question. I did as you asked and looked at what you said to other people, one of your comments was that religion can be physically harmful to a person. So again I ask you, how is every religion physically harmful?

I'm truly sorry, I missed it. Forgive me.

Not every religion has every problem that another has. Sometimes religions can command that people chop of the tips of you penis, for instance. Or kill other people. Or enslave other people. Shit like that. I'm saying that every religion has problems, not that they all have the same problems. Some threads are the same, but not all.

This is about the best take on this issue I've seen, most concise anyway.
Of course it comes from Sam Harris:

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