Atheism is ‘lack of belief’? Sequel

I’ve been told over and over again, and in the most passionate if often vehement fashion, that atheism is not a religion but simply the absence of belief.   I wrote an article refuting this claim here.  In debates with atheists on the subject I am always being assured that newborns are essentially atheists because they are born without any beliefs.  I’m told that atheism, being lack of belief, means that newly born babes qualify as atheists.  Of course that is ridiculous and in fact rather anserine.

Today, I came across this article on the web entitled Children as young as four to be educated in atheism.

My, but my atheist antagonists ought to be embarrassed at this!

Surely even the most ignorant and incompetent atheist can see that there can be no need to educate young children into atheism if atheism is truly their inborn lack of belief! They are born atheists, according to them!

Isn’t it amazing how atheists contradict themselves at every turn? If newborns are already atheists why in the world would they need indoctrination in atheism? Surely just being left alone would suffice to leave them atheists. Ah, but the atheist will claim they will be inundated with theistic or deistic ideas during their lives so we must protect that innate atheism! Really? Why?

Atheism is an idea that doesn’t matter. It leads to no good, it helps no one and it tends to either universal anarchy and chaos or totalitarian despotism (remember the more than 170 million killings under officially atheist regimes in the 20th century alone).

If, by atheist reasoning, the universe really created itself out of nothing (the atheists only origins option), and if the universe consequently really has no meaning, no purpose, no good and no evil, why should anyone care what anyone else believes anyway? Why are atheists so adamantly evangelistic on making sure all remain, as they allege, “atheists from birth”.

Obviously they feel they need more.  Should theists now start using PANIC HEADLINES of the atheist genre?

Atheists, now they’re coming for  your children!

– to mimic the Times article on Dawkins’ latest drivel “Creationists – now they’re coming for your children” , on which I commented here.

Of course, this kind of headline would be entirely justified in this case, if only because they want to preach their inane religion in public schools (as though they don’t already under the guise of science and secular humanism which possesses the entire public ed system in the West). These people are fanatically against teaching any kind of religion in schools and even having any kind of religious symbol displayed in any public place, yet here they come! They now want to indoctrinate kids in schools into their religion, all while claiming kids are naturally atheistic!! Can you say HYPOCRITES!?

We now know that children are born as intuitive theists (Barrett, Bloom, Kelemen, …), not atheists at all.

“Intuitive Theists”?: Reasoning about Purpose and Design in Nature”
Children’s Attributions of Beliefs to Humans and God: Cross-Cultural Evidence
“Religion is Natural”

Now here I will quote Dr Michael V. Antony, a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Haifa, Israel. Dr. Antony addressed this “lack of belief” argument thus (my bold):

It is often said by atheists that atheism is not a positive position at all – a belief or worldview – but merely a disbelief in theism, a refusal to accept what the theist believes, and as such, there is no belief or position for there to be evidence for. Evidence is not needed for ‘non-positions’.

While the word ‘atheism’ has been used in something like this sense (see for example Antony Flew’s article ‘The Presumption of Atheism’), it is a highly non-standard use.  So understood, atheism would include agnosticism, since agnostics are also not theists. However, on the common understanding of atheism – no divine reality of any kind exists – atheism and agnosticism are mutually exclusive. Some insist that this non-standard sense of ‘atheism’ is the only possible sense, because a-theism means without theism. But if that were a good argument, the Space Shuttle would be an automobile, since it moves on its own (mobile=move, auto=by itself). Ditto for dogs and cats.

Yet none of that really matters, for even the non-standard sense of ‘atheism’ does nothing to neutralize evidentialism’s demand for evidence. As we saw, evidentialism applies to all ‘doxastic’ attitudes toward a proposition P: believing P, believing not-P, suspending judgment about P, etc. Therefore evidentialism says, with respect to the proposition God exists, that any attitude toward it will be rational or justified if and only if it fits one’s evidence. Now it is true that if one had no position whatever regarding the proposition God exists (perhaps because one has never entertained the thought), no evidence would be required for that non-position. But the New Atheists all believe that (probably) no God or other divine reality exists. And that belief must be evidence-based if it is to be rationally held, according to evidentialism. So insisting that atheism isn’t a belief doesn’t help.

Mere absence of belief is not a position.  It’s a passive psychological state.  Atheism is position, it is a chosen position, not the natural one.  Atheism, as denial of reality, is a form of insanity, therefore it is doubtful we will ever cease having to deal with atheist nonsense.  Will we ever see the end of this blatant insanity?

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Has Dawkins lost his mind?

Dawkins’ latest  book “The Greatest Show on Earth: The Evidence for Evolution”,  reveals an enormous amount of new evidence, facts, calm clear reasoning, fair play and true altruistic objective motives from the part of your fave atheist … or not.

Let’s see, here’s how the article from the Times on the book was presented:

“Creationists, now they’re coming for your children”

Sounds like the latest Stephen King title doesn’t it. This is fear mongering propagandizing at its worst.  Notice the use of a key technique in propaganda spreading– that of the PANIC HEADLINE!.

Omg!! “THEY’RE COMING FOR YOUR CHILDREN!”

But hey, when you’re an atheist trying to sell something to the public, anything goes right?

The  most hypocritical thing about all this tripe, is that Dawkins’ own university was founded by creationists! But “BEWARE Oh public”, says the Times!  Creationists might build schools, hospitals, charity orgs, clinics and they may have founded the modern scientific method and most of the great scientists of history were creationists, but BEWARE!  These evil people, like Newton, Maxwell, Pupin, von Braun, Leibniz, Boole, etc., are secretly planning to take over your minds!

Talk about demonizing the opposition, another propaganda technique that is supposed to NEVER be used in scientific controversies! (Here’s where the inane, ‘no controversy here’, nonsense claim comes in).  Dawkins has lost it big time with such ridiculous sensationalist headlines.

This is truly risible. This book is twisted pseudo-science, wishful thinking, terrible philosophy and impoverished theology that only an ignoramus will swallow whole without question.

If the title doesn’t do it for you well here’s some quotes:

People who reject the theory of evolution should be placed on a level with Holocaust deniers

Imagine you are a teacher of more recent history, and your lessons on 20th-century Europe are boycotted, heckled or otherwise disrupted by well-organised, well-financed and politically muscular groups of Holocaust-deniers. …They are vocal, superficially plausible and adept at seeming learned. They are supported by …Imagine that, as a teacher of European history, you are continually faced with belligerent demands to “teach the controversy”, and to give “equal time” to the “alternative theory” that the Holocaust never happened but was invented by a bunch of Zionist fabricators.

This book is necessary. I shall be using the name “historydeniers” for those people who deny evolution: who believe the world’s age is measured in thousands of years rather than thousands of millions of years, and who believe humans walked with dinosaurs.

I shall from time to time refer to the history-deniers as the “40percenters”.

Notice the comparison of a scientific theory to a historical fact.  Two entirely different domains are brought in to cloud the issues and confuse the readers.

Theories are meant to be questioned, scrutinized and debated – not historical facts. And this even the more intelligent atheists know.

So now that we have been assured by reverend Dawkins that anyone who doubts Darwinism is equal in guilt to a holocaust denier, and now that we have seen the light of his new strategy for crushing all opposition by comparing those who doubt Darwin to those that doubt the Nazis ever did any wrong to Jews and others, I suppose we must all rest our case and concede, right?  Well no, of course not.

If I look at the evidence that tells me so very clearly that neo-Darwinism is a crock and the greatest scientific blunder since the flat earth (now strangely making a comeback) I must not only be wrong but a history denier equally guilty with the holocaust deniers!  (though I can go and see the gas chambers and furnaces any day I wish to)

Talk again about demonizing the opposition by aiming for the sympathetic heart, among which no one sympathizes more than the creationist Jews and Christians!  Dawkins now reigns supreme for vile lies and attempting public manipulation.

Worse, Dawkins himself wrote,

“[the universe] has precisely the properties we should expect if there is at bottom no design, no purpose, no evil, no good, nothing but pointless indifference.”

Think about that for at least 1 second.  He claims there is no good or evil, no purpose.  So, um gee Dick, why do you imply that both the Holocaust and its deniers are somehow wrong, evil, not good? Can’t this guy see his own hypocrisy? You can’t have it both ways.  Either there is a God with moral character and demands upon moral agents, and humans are indeed moral agents, or there is no such thing as evil or good. This is pure trickery on Dawkins part.  He believes there is no evil but calls Darwin doubters “or wicked”!? The duplicity and self-contradiction are striking. It’s amazing that anyone is still blinded by this shyster.

The phrase, “There is no God, and Richard Dawkins is his prophet”, comes to mind.

Dawkins of course is a master manipulator – a mind conditioner.   He makes sure not to stop his fanatical ravings to give the readers time to actually think about such lame accusations and foolish comparisons. Most of his fans won’t anyway because they let their high priests think for them. Few of the new atheist crowd can think for themselves.

It’s just a question of time before he and his goons actually start demanding the removal of such persons from society as “genetically defective”, “menaces”.  Indeed, such has already been proposed.

Then he smoothly slips into a somewhat more “reasonable” mode claiming that we have all the evidence we need:

“Evolution is an inescapable fact, … Evolution is within us, around us, between us, …. Given that, in most cases, we don’t live long enough to watch evolution happening before our eyes, we shall revisit the metaphor of the detective coming upon the scene of a crime after the event and making inferences. The aids to inference that lead scientists to the fact of evolution are far more numerous, more convincing, more incontrovertible, than any eyewitness reports that have ever been used, in any court of law, in any century, to establish guilt in any crime.” -my italics

Outside of the fact that this is truly hilarious, he now attempts to insure the poor beguiled victim reader into believing that nothing else in all history has ever had the amount of evidence available that Darwinism has! Good grief Dawkins, are you senile, or just delusional and a raving fanatic? Yes, the man has clearly lost his mind, properly answers the title question.

Yet notice his use of the very phrase he so publicly deplores when used by Intelligent Design proponents – “inferences”.
He infers one thing, but a whole slew of other equally or more intelligent and equally or better educated detectives than himself infer something entirely different – not so curiously he “fails” to mention this fact.

He may fool the non thinking ones and fool easily those who already hate God, religion and any science that supports such by inference, i.e  those who already have an “axe to grind” against anything that disturbs them in their materialist stupor. But he isn’t fooling the thinking, informed person at all.

Shame on this uncouth charlatan for writing such folderol in the name of science!

As any thinking, lucid person would have suspected, Dawkins new book does indeed contain something new – even more hysterical and highly injurious, false accusations against any and all who oppose the high priesthood of materialism’s origins myth -Darwinism.

I found it hard to believe when I read through his evidence for evolution, that he actually presents dog breeding as solid evidence for Darwinian evolution. Seriously? Now that is either incredibly low and deceptive of him or incredibly stupid. If animal breeding, which humans have been doing for thousands of years, tells us anything, it is that you can’t produce anything but a dog by breeding dogs. The taxonomic Family remains, no matter how much one attempts to produce anything else. Breeding thus shows that there are strict limits, genetic lines that cannot be crossed with success, even with the help of intelligent artificial selection.

So yes, Dawkins has either lost his mind -at least on this subject- or he is far more evil than most have suspected … or both.

Capital Punishment, Right or Wrong

Today’s world is a seething morass of moral confusion.  We have much insanity running amok in governments and public life on the moral plane.  The inmates seem to be running the asylum. The criminals appear to be running the prisons. What was once holy is now profane and that which was once an abomination is now lauded from the highest pulpits of society as good.

On the one hand we have the death penalty being removed from the sanctions of law and on the other we have the murder of children being sanctioned as “good” because either they are still in the womb or because they are not really human at all yet (see Peter Singer et al.).

“Curiouser and curiouser” the world goes as God is rejected and replaced by Darwinian fitness based, collective cultural whims set up on the auction block for the highest bidder and sold by the use of sly marketing techniques.

Here I present some of the reasons why capital punishment is a necessary sanction for specific crimes.

It would be so nice if we lived in a truly peaceful world wherein all citizens lived by the Golden Rule.  Unfortunately that is not the case.  On the contrary, because humans have free will and motility, and because that means that selfishness can and does exist, we live in a world where selfish persons may make free choices to rape, rob and murder others for their own profit and reasons.

Perfect pacifism is simply not possible in such a world.

Violence is unfortunately sometimes the only means available for stopping selfish persons from destroying the lives of others. I personally deplore gratuitous violence of every kind. Thus I also necessarily deplore crimes of violence committed against innocent persons.

Therefore I ask the following questions:

  • If all violence (use of force) were always wrong why do we have armed police forces?
  • If all use of deadly force were always wrong why do we have armies?
  • What would the world be like if there were no police and no army?
  • If no amount of murdering can ever deserve the forfeit of the life of the perpetrator then what is life’s true worth? Given this, is the life of the perpetrator worth more than the life of his victims?

How long would an unarmed police officer last on the job? How many violent criminals would take advantage of the unarmed policeman? Then, how many policemen would be ruthlessly murdered on duty? Finally, in light of this, who in their right mind would want to become a police officer?

It becomes more than obvious rather quickly that in a violent world the removal of all capital punishment cannot produce peace, safety or justice.  A very superficial study of history is sufficient to reveal that where there is no law enforcement there is no real law at all, and where there is no armed law enforcement, such enforcement becomes impossible in proportion to the selfishness and criminality of individuals rises.

Generalized intelligence and virtue are the only reasons  to allow democratic freedoms, and as such intelligence and virtue are abandoned in favor of moral stupidity and hedonism, freedoms and safety are naturally lost.

What do pacificists think would happen if all death penalties were outlawed? We all know they themselves would not live very long. Certainly they would lived shorter lives than the man that arms himself.  Criminals that resort to deadly force will not be stopped by some mere written rule without enforcement.  Indeed, there is no such thing as law without sanctions and enforcement.

Now this clearly leads to the question: if capital punishment were always wrong why are our police officers and soldiers armed with deadly force?

When a soldier shoots and kills an invading enemy he is practicing capital punishment. When a police officer shoots and kills a criminal on the verge of committing murder he is applying a death penalty on the spot.  Therefore, if all capital punishment is wrong then is this soldier, this policeman also wrong? Would any victim-to-be think so? Obviously not.

Were there some other way of stopping an invading army we’d all be for it. Were there some other way of stopping a murder – same thing.  Of course in the case of an imminent murder police may use some other non fatal force like a taser if possible.  But there we get into specific circumstances of whether deadly force ought to be used or not and I’m not going to go there in this article.  The point is that there are indeed many incidents in which the response of deadly force, i.e. capital punishment, to an unlawful threat of imminent and severe harm, is the right response.

The question arises however, on whether one that has committed murder ought to be himself killed after the crime? This is the real crux of the debate.

Those opposing capital punishment most often state that if we kill the killer we are doing exactly what he has done and are thus no better than he.  This kind of thinking means that, in that view, no amount of murdering, torturing or raping can bring about the forfeit of the perpetrators own life.  It is however clear that such a view implies that the life of the killer is in fact worth more than all the lives of those that he has killed!  Does anyone seriously believe that?

The no death penalty view also implies that strict principles of justice ought not to be applied to the killer.  How so? Under strict justice if you steal 100 dollars you must repay 100 dollars plus damages to the robbed party. If you steal a car then the value of the car must be restored to the victim plus damages in lost wages etc.

Again there is no such thing as law without sanctions.  But sanctions must be equal to the value of the laws in question. Jay walking, for example, is by no means worthy of life in prison. Going 20 over the speed limit is not worth having ones arm cut off. Stealing a loaf of bread does not deserve having ones hand amputated.

Such penalties are not just in proportion to the offense but in fact severe injustice.  The scales of justice would be seriously off kilter if such severe sanctions were applied to such minor offenses.

So what of murder? Hardly a minor offense.  So, does one life not equal another life? Where do we get off pretending it doesn’t? Those who preach this kind of severely imbalanced “justice” by claiming that in fact a life does not equal another life are do not understand the very nature of justice itself.  If the sanction to “you shall not murder” is less than the value of the precept itself, less than the consequences of the crime itself, then justice is not being served at all. By removing the death penalty for such crimes we have in fact defeated justice itself and are declaring that the life of the murderer is worth more than the life of the murdered.

Under such a crippled view we can find no justification for having either armed police forces or armies at all. All killing would be murder.  The soldier defending his country from invaders as with deadly force as much as the police officer preventing murder would both be murder as well.

Another example: any man has a right and duty to protect his family from an intruder into his home.  If there is clear intent to rape, steal and to kill, deadly force is justified, if no other means is available.  Any man that would not do so would be a coward and a disgrace for allowing his family to be subjected to such horrendous crimes.

Therefore if the use of deadly force used under the circumstances is not morally wrong, how can we possibly see the delayed use of deadly force after the crime as morally wrong? A life equals a life and thus strict justice requires life for life.

About two thousand years ago and man of great learning and experience stated, concerning officers of the law, “He does not bear the sword in vain” – the Apostle Paul in his letter to the Christians in Rome.

To remain logically consistent, those opposing capital punishment are thus forced to oppose the existence of armed police and national armies as well. Is there any sane person that would indeed plead for such? Allow me to seriously doubt it.

Am I promoting persistent capital punishment in all capital crimes? No. There is indeed a place for mercy, leniency and pardon.  However nothing but leniency and pardon is exactly equal to no justice at all ever. Mercy triumphs over judgment but if no judgment is ever applied the law is without sanctions and no law at all.