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Re: [skeptics-137] My Contrarian thoughts to thoughts from Don

From: Kansas City S.
Sent on: Friday, March 22, 2013 10:02 AM
Forgot to include this...................

Maybe instead of "Atheism Activism" more of a Sam Harris' position on "promoting rationalism" and "brightness" should be the default position.

Using Socratic Method of Q&A is the shit that maybe the salvation.

OK, now I am done... and ready to go into the bomb shelter!

On Fri, Mar 22, 2013 at 9:56 AM, Kansas City Skeptic <[address removed]> wrote:
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Penny <[address removed]>
I love your spirit, Don, and I admire our young atheists who had the courage to stand on a street corner to interact with parade-goers. 

I'd like to present a somewhat contrarian string of thoughts to Don's...

My basic summation is that society at large is making huge strides in moderating bat shit crazy religion on its own.  Steven Pinker's most recent book shows overwhelming evidence for equal human rights, lower violence, etc though he himself really doesn't mention religion explicitly - I I asked him this question when he spoke at Linda Hall Library last year. Technology, medicine, life extension, interacting with gays, single mothers, every day atheists and new shiny gadgets we play with drive a normal "religious not bat shit crazy" person to be even more moderate.

I'd like to see some sociological studies where "atheism activism" actually plays some meaningful role in changing people's attitudes to any social, educational issues? So far all I have seen (acceptance of gays is the most glaring one recently) is that atheism activism has never been mentioned by people who accepted gays. The same goes for gun control legislation (91% for background checks). I am positive the same was in the 60's with interracial marriage - ATHEISM ACTIVISM NEVER was in any meaningful way a decisive factor.

Don't know, maybe atheism is acting like an invisible Holy Spirit?

It appears to me that "faith position" (if you want to call it this way) is serving more of a role of underwear we use for one day and then toss it into the laundry basket to get another one and don't even think about it. The fact that "faith position" plays a minor role seemed to be supported by the polls when the economic collapse happened a few years ago. I noticed that "social issues" (abortions, gays, god in schools, public prayer) disappeared completely from the top 10 and even 20 issues of concerns for Americans. In short, "position on faith" appears to not determine American sense of what they need from life in difficult situations, but rather a backup position of moderation when you guys know you are fucked. 

In addition, the reality is that everyday grind makes "atheism" activism for an average atheist not sustainable. All Kansas City atheists KCAC activists (or most) appear to have no constraints of families, paying for their kids college, they are younger and are a different breed. Not sure if they will individaully will continue activism as they get married (will they?), have kids (will they?), will get older (will they?", get sicker (will they?) and retire (will they?)

Over the few past years I have evolved from becoming a militant anti-theist in your face to "I don't really give a shit" apatheist. It's fun to spar with bat shit crazies but you know they'll die out and there is nothing they can do about it. You know that even moderates like Fred and John who are hanging out with atheists more than they with their own church people will die out in 1 generation and if stats are correct 75-80% of younger people now (19-42 years old) support gay marriage, equality, and support for evolution is over 50% now - moderation will take place on its own.

Atheist activism is not needed as I see it was not needed in European countries, in Northern Europe Canada, in Australia. Religious people will be shamed and are being shamed into intellectual submission to rationality on their own through societal pressures. To the best of my knowledge and what I have read this has happened in other countries and is happening to America.

While I understand the excitement of moving along all the time, confronting bat shit crazy religious stereotypes, etc, I may say a blasphemous thing - dealing with the bat shit crazy religious people in every day life is not fun for me anymore.

Shall I say that there is no data to point that atheism activism is not pointless?

Ducking for cover and sitting back enjoying the fall out :o)


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