Friday, January 02, 2009

Atheism: Bad for Children and Other Living People

Why is it bad?

Because children and other living people often turn up dead under atheist "leaders."

...the statistical analysis will show that the 58 percent chance an atheist leader will order the deaths of more than 20,000 people is much greater than the 16 percent probability that a lifetime habit of smoking cigarettes will cause lung cancer. Correlation is not causation, but such a strong degree of correlation is, at the very least, evidence of a systematic influence...

It's not just atheism sole, however.

...it is not atheism alone, but rather the lethal combination of atheism with an ambitious vision of secular progress that has such a high probability of leading to the guillotine, the gulag, and the gas chamber...

Alliterative death mechanics. Sweet!

What Day doesn't cover in his entry (and which deserves some examination) is the "practical atheist;" the one who is nominally religious but whose life-habits don't agree with the label.

That group, I suspect, occupies a lot more room than the Declared Atheists, and is far more influential in the Post-Modernist "secular progress" machine than are the "Declared."

22 comments:

Deekaman said...

I suspect that the lack of respect for life that comes out of atheism (see: abortion) makes it easier for a leader to commit atrocities on the order of Stalin, Pol Pot, Idi Amin.....they may claim a religion (Hitler and Christianity), but don't practice it - "practical atheist", as you termed it.

Heraldblog said...

Nice example of circular reasoning there, Deek. Hitler in fact co- opted the Catholic church in Germany. The standard issue Wehrmacht belt buckle carried the inscription "Gott mit Uns".

The KKK was revived in the early 1920s as a mainstream, respectable Christian organization, and at its most popular had several million followers. All "good Christians".

Deekaman said...

I believe if you re-read my post, you will see that Hitler co-opting religion is exactly my point.

Dad29 said...

And I am interested in the claim that "Hitler co-opted the RC church."

I doubt it. Not only the Pope, but a lot of German Bishops clearly spoke out against Naziism.

Deekaman said...

Co-opt is probably not the correct term. Hitler claimed Christianity while, in fact, not being one at all. If you like, I'll find some references.

Samuel Skinner said...

"Correlation is not causation, but such a strong degree of correlation is, at the very least, evidence of a systematic influence..."

Did you know that gum sales are correlated with crime?

"but rather the lethal combination of atheism with an ambitious vision of secular progress that has such a high probability of leading to the guillotine, the gulag, and the gas chamber..."

The guillotine was made most famous by Robspierre... who was a deist.

The gulag was used by the Czars before the Soviets co-opted it.
It is still used in Russia.

The gas chamber is the Nazis, who were theists.

Also, "ambitious vision of secular progress"... all progress is secular.

"What Day doesn't cover in his entry (and which deserves some examination) is the "practical atheist;" the one who is nominally religious but whose life-habits don't agree with the label."

So, everyone who isn't Amish?

"I suspect that the lack of respect for life that comes out of atheism (see: abortion)"

Just like theists- generating imaginary crimes to feel better than everyone else. And if other theists don't agree with them, they aren't true Christians(tm).

Notably the pro-lifers lose urgency once you are born- governmment aim to the needy? Never! Even though it is the reason the Godless Europeans have higher LEs.

"Idi Amin"

Was a Muslim.

"they may claim a religion (Hitler and Christianity), but don't practice it - "practical atheist", as you termed it."

How do you practice a belief?

"I doubt it. Not only the Pope, but a lot of German Bishops clearly spoke out against Naziism."

Germany has a strong tradition of subordinating the Church to the state. Or are you going to argue Bismark was an atheist?

"Hitler claimed Christianity while, in fact, not being one at all. "

And you know this... how? Don't forget that the population of Germany (aka the people carrying out the atrocities) were Christians as well. Or did the religious composition of Germany suddenly change in 6 years?

"If you like, I'll find some references.

I'm familiar with the referances. He is against Christianity... but thinks faith is important and regards Jesus as his Lord and Savior. He thinks that Paul co-opted the religion because he was a Jew (and Jesus wasn't- look, anti-semites are nuts) and so it was poisoned.

In short, he was a Christian with a different view from the mainstream- specifically a Protestant :)

Dad29 said...

Your history, Sam, is as deficient as is your understanding of terminology.

Good luck with that. Drive-by "intelligent" snark doesn't quite make it.

PaulNoonan said...

Sounds like Vox is on a bit of a witch hunt. ;)

Super Id said...

The argument fails from the beginning:

"Correlation is not causation, but such a strong degree of correlation is, at the very least, evidence of a systematic influence..."

nope. Correlation and causation are separate concepts. A positive correlation does not establish evidence of a systematic influence. For example, Ice cream consumption has a high positive correlation with murder rates (much more so than Day's atheism/ murder correlation) . Yet no one is claiming that ice cream is a systematic influence of murder.


IF you cherry pick examples you can show a correlation between any events. But cause or a "systematic influence" still lacks. Day merely works backwards, he take a massacre and attempts to show that the leader at the time was an atheist. To be consistent, shouldn't every war between nations with theist leaders should be counted against the theists?

To avoid that result, Dad29 would move the misdeeds of the theists to the atheists by claiming that they were committed by "practical atheists." Yet if we are going to to include practical atheists in the atheist column, to be fair you would also need to increase the number of practical atheist leaders. The vast majority of these leaders, left no massacres in their wake. Thus, the correlation between atheism and massacres would be seriously weakened.

Instead, of attempting to make correlations, we should look for causation. With the ice cream murder correlation, the cause for both is an increased temperature--each peaks in the summer months.

With the massacres, I can make an educated guess that both the massacres attributed to Christian and atheist leaders can be attributed to a leader that was seeking to increase his power base (either political or land acquisition). The massacres were the means. A ruler's belief in a deity or lack thereof factored very little in the outcome.

Deekman: if you are attributing abortion as an atheist concept because of a lack of respect for life, then shouldn't you attribute the death penalty to Theists? After-all, the death to theists? After-all the death penalty was and is still utilized by Christian leaders.

I'd suggest that both would have a correlation causation problem. A lack of belief of a belief in a deity does not cause a lack of respect for life, people to have abortions, or mass genocide.

Deekaman said...

SId:I do attribute death penalty to deists, generally...at least in the US. That said, there is a significant difference (which is lost on supporters of abortion-on-demand, no restrictions) between abortion and the death penalty. Death penalty cases are decided by a jury of peers, based on evidence and provided with as many as 20+ years of appeal. A fetus gets no such deal. As a rule, death penalty supporters revere life snd understand the gift from God that it is. Those who support abortion on demand, I believe, have no such understanding. If you want to make the "rape/incest" argument, that's great. I'm not talking about that. I'm talking about the vast majority of abortions that are performed as a convenience. You can bring up the "health of the mother" and I will argue that the mothers' life is no more important than the babys'. Further, those abortions are, again, a very small percentage of the whole. That's the dirty little secret of abortion.

Dad29 said...

While "a lack of belief in a deity does not cause [various forms of murder, etc.]", a lack of belief in a deity gives no cause to REFRAIN from same.

And I should add that this is all a bit exotic; we are dealing with logical consequences, not emotional ones.

So the belief (or non-belief) SYSTEM has to be in play.

It would be better to state it this way: the fact of murder (rape, pillage, theft, etc.) is an argument FOR Original Sin, which is a defect from the original 'blueprint,' Adam (and Eve) in the Garden.

And to be more specific in terminology, a practical atheist is one who acts as though there is no God, while claiming to believe in One. An atheist is (nominally) honest about his belief.

The practical atheist acts immorally as a matter of course, despite what should be a 'believer's restraint' on those actions.

The atheist has no such restraint in the LOGICAL order, but may act morally due to respect for the social order (which is generally that of 'believers.')

As to abortion/DP, there's another significant difference: the death penalty is administered to those who are guilty of some heinous crime (given the usual: evidence, trial, etc.)

Abortions are administered to the completely innocent.

And, Deekaman, in the case of rape/incest, the CHILD of the criminal is killed for the criminal's misdeed...

Deekaman said...

I am not consistent with the rape/incest argument, but I suspect the Church considers children of that union to be an abomination, but I can't say for sure.

Deekaman said...

I am not consistent with the rape/incest argument, but I suspect the Church considers children of that union to be an abomination, but I can't say for sure.

Dad29 said...

The Church (of Rome, at least) considers ALL children to be gifts from God, period.

Circumstances of conception are absolutely irrelevant.

But the FATHERS are abominable, yes.

Dad29 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Super Id said...

I'm not buying the abortion/DP differences.

To make the DP morally acceptable you have to put conditions on it:

"Death penalty cases are decided by a jury of peers, based on evidence and provided with as many as 20+ years of appeal"

So you rationalize taking a life, which is exactly what the pro choice folks do. Albeit the conditions are different. Yet it is the ability to impose conditions to rationalize an act that has led to the atrocities committed in god's name. (E.g. trying to save the savages, the inquisition's efforts convert the jews, the crusaders efforts to reclaim the holy land and massacring the native populations.)

Dad:
I agree that a lack of belief in God gives no incentive to refrain from committing atrocities. But neither does a belief in God. We can point to certain muslim groups that believe God wants them to kill infidels. With these groups there is an actual incentive to commit these acts. The same cannot be said about the Atheists. But again, I would argue that the belief or lack of belief in god makes no difference in the likelihood of atrocities being committed by a leader.

Finally, A point I'm pondering but have not fully considered:

Can abortion be seen as a virtuous act under Christianity and Catholicism?

My inquiry is as follows:
Christianity teaches that one of the most virtuous acts that in individual can do is to lay his life down for others to reach heaven. Indeed, that is what Christ and other martyrs did for the sinners. Would the same virtues apply to an individual who sacrificed their soul for another?

Arguably, sacrificing one's eternal life would be more virtuous than sacrifices one's earthly life?

In 2007, a document commissioned by Pope John Paul II was published, which was titled "The Hope for Salvation for infants who Die being Baptized" This publication of this document was authorized by Pope Benedict XVI, who indicated that it was considered consonant with the Church's teaching.

Assuming that unbaptized infants do go to heaven, aborting these infants would guarantee them entry to heaven. The would have no opportunity to sin. Their mothers potentially would have sacrificed their own souls in the process. Is that not virtue to lie down ones eternal life so that another can enjoy heaven?

While I'm not up on my saint history, I have a vague recollection that St. Rita prayed that God to kill her children before they would commit a murder and damn their souls. On that note, why is it that someone who asks God to kill her kids a saint but someone who asks a doctor to do it a sinner of the worst kind? Hasn't each put their child into heaven.

Anyway, I'm not committed to an answer but I figured that someone would have some insight.





















The DP is still taking a life. Putting conditions on when it acceptable doesn't make the christians

Deekaman said...

You are making a moral equivalence that isn't there. There is no moral equivalence between, say, a serial killer and an unborn fetus. One has committed the most heinouscrime of taking the life of another, the other is completely and totally innocent.

Dad29 said...

the inquisition's efforts convert the jews,

Wrong.

The Inquisition was prosecuting Jews who were collaborators with the Muslim horde while the reconquista was underway. At least learn a little about history before you yap your flap.

Similarly, you are wrong on your "Facts" about the Crusades. The Muslim horde had also taken (by force) Jerusalem--and the RC's merely were reclaiming the land.

Third major error: the Muslims do not believe in the Christian God. That God is a Trinity; the Muslims' is not.

Can abortion be seen as a virtuous act under Christianity and Catholicism?

Actually, there is ONE circumstance under which abortions are considered morally indifferent; it is the case to save the mother's life. There, the principle of double-effect comes into play.

However, in this age, such procedures are almost never necessary.

The rest of your question is gibberish. Please rephrase with some clarity.

Super Id said...

I agree that there is no moral equivalence between a serial killer and an unborn fetus. But there is a moral equivalence between killing the serial killer through the DP and killing a fetus through abortion.

The innocence or guilt of a victim should not affect the morality of the killing. If if it did, an individual who had killed somebody who had shoplifted five years ago would be more moral than an individual who had killed someone who had never broken the law. Should we, as a society, had out punishment based on what the victim did instead of what the perpetrator did? I don't think so.

IMO, the morality of an act must be assessed as it relates to the actor not the victim. And under those circumstances, the death penalty is far more cruel than abortion. The death row inmate is tortured with the mental anguish of knowing that he will be put to death at a certain time and date. (Sister Prejean, who ministered to death row inmates and later wrote Dead Man Walking, gives a very detailed account of this anguish. In contrast, the fetus is spared the mental anguish of condemnation and in most cases the ability to feel pain.

Further, the morality of the death penalty cannot be defended on the grounds that the executioner is just doing his job and the governor is just following the law. I note that those defenses were unsuccessful at the Nuremberg trials.

All in all, Killing is killing each is a lack of respect for life. Thus, I can't say that the deist DP supporters are morally superior to the pro-choice crowd. Would they not be morally inferior because the DP mandates a termination of a life whereas legal abortion merely provides a choice and the opportunity for the termination?

Super Id said...

Dad: before you criticize my recitation of history, make sure I'm wrong.

Per wikipedia:
"The Portuguese Inquisition principally targeted the Sephardic Jews, whom it forced to convert to Christianity. Spain had expelled its Sephardic population in 1492 (see Alhambra decree); after 1492 many of these Spanish Jews left Spain for Portugal but eventually became targeted there as well."


The Crusades:
I believe I indicated that the crusaders were "reclaiming" the holy lands. But that's a stretch because the crusaders were mostly from western Europe i.e. the Franks, which never had a claim to Jerusalem. But even still, I am not wrong in claiming that atrocities were committed by the crusaders. For a refresher:

"The Jews and Muslims fought together to defend Jerusalem against the invading Franks. They were unsuccessful though and on 15 July 1099 the crusaders entered the city. Again, they proceeded to massacre the remaining Jewish and Muslim civilians and pillaged or destroyed mosques and the city itself."

I visited Jerusalem in the last year and have a decent understanding of its history. Even today, the city still bears its scars from the battles. Some of the buildings that weren't destroyed have low doorways so that the crusaders could not ride their horses into the mosques.

As for my third error, that the Muslim don't believe in a trinity concept of god, I never said that they did. I said they believe in a god and some Muslim groups use that belief as justification to kill. Getting back to the original topic of your post, this was in response to whether atheism is a cause of massacres. Islamic might not believe in a trinity but they are certainly not atheists.

Finally, perhaps my last question was gibberish. I'll try to rephrase:

If it is a virtue to sacrifice ones life so that another can go to heaven, why is it not a virtuous act for a mother to sacrifice her eternal life and guarantee her aborted children their salvation?

I do genuinely enjoy this discourse. I believe there is a flaw in this logic and am hoping that someone will point it out. My intellectual curiosity is secure enough to throw out "gibberish" as a question.

Perhaps the answer lies in the intent of the actor. But that troubles me as well because if a woman had an abortion with the intent of "saving" her child by sending it to heaven she would be as virtuous as say St. Rita who prayed to God to kill her children so they wouldn't sin.

Dad29 said...

But there is a moral equivalence between killing the serial killer through the DP and killing a fetus through abortion.

The DP is licit IF AND ONLY IF the government (justifiably) uses the DP to protect its citizens from an otherwise-uncontrollable aggressor.

I have never argued for the DP, per se; I have only argued that the DP is licit (and it is, given the usual conditions AND the above.)

JPII thought that the West was affluent enough to avoid using the DP through life-incarceration, and I agree with him.

As to the Sephardics: in most cases "conversion" to Catholicism was equivalent to cessation of interfering with the Reconquista.

There were some exceptions. I might suggest that Wiki is not necessarily the most thorough source of historical info on the Inquisition, any more than Rolf Whatshisname's play (The Deputy) is on the activity of Pius XII during WWII.

Anonymous said...

Atheism: Bad for crap parents who can't discipline their children without using the almighty as a threat.