Public Enemy Number One

« March 2006 »

Memo to America: BOO! BOOGA BOOGA!

Did I scare you? Are you scared? Are you chicken? Are you gonna cry? Are you gonna cry, baby? Big baby? Quaking in your boots? Terrified? Scared of the mean old... atheist?

Oh, if only the University of Minnesota had done their study sooner. To think of all the wasted years, all the mileage I could have gotten out of being part of the single most hated and feared minority in the country. Oh, what fun I could have had! But now I know, and knowing is 53.4% of the battle, adjusted for inflation.

I kid you not. They did phone surveys of 2,000 people, and did in-depth interviews with 140. And atheists came in dead fucking last. Below Muslims, illegal immigrants, homosexuals... You see, we don't share their vision of American society. And they wouldn't want their kids marrying us.

According to lead researcher Penny Edgell, those surveyed viewed us as the "ultimate self-interested actor who doesn’t care about anyone but themselves". Well fuck you too, deity-humper. Just because I don't care about YOU doesn't mean I don't care about anything.

I have a challenge for all y'all who went and got surveyed. NAME ONE ATHEIST. Who isn't me. Even better. Name an atheist organization. Name a dangerous atheist. Do it. You can't, can you? You're stumped. You've got nothing. I could name a dozen completely bugfuck religious zealots who are actively engaged in ruining society RIGHT NOW, but you don't trust the atheists.

Obviously, you fear us because you do not understand us. Case in point, Cole Ries, president of the Maranatha Christian Fellowship. I'm sure he's a perfectly nice fellow, leading his fellow fellows in their fellowship, all nice and kind and Jesusy. But he uttered what I hope is not a common misconception about atheists. ACTUAL QUOTE TIME!

"Atheists seem to be concerned with the human good. Where I differ as a Christian is that I’m more concerned with God’s will than man’s will. I don’t believe that anybody is really an atheist. I believe that deep down everyone knows there is a god.”

And he started out so good, too. Didn't demonize us, didn't think we worshipped Satan, drew a clear and kind distinction, and then TOOK A GIANT STEAMING DUMP all over our lack of a belief system by saying that we didn't really mean it.

We mean it. We're not agnostics. We're not hedging our bets. We have fewer moments of doubt than a seminary student. It's not like we sit around in dark coffeehouses yelling about the finality of life and the absence of heaven, then go outside, see a butterfly and a rainbow, and wink at the sky. That's not how it works, and it's patently offensive to suggest otherwise.

But I'm not surprised. It's in the fundamental nature of the two groups. People of faith look into their hearts, search their feelings, and BELIEVE that atheists are a menace to society. Atheists, on the other hand, look at the historical record and the empirical evidence, and are stark raving terrified at the vast, religious majority we just learned hates our guts.