Recently the atheist student organization on the campus of the University of Texas – San Antonio held what I would surmise as a publicity stunt. In the public form of the school campus the group offered to exchange porn for bibles. There are several issues, most of which are associated with immature behavior and what I would term adolescent level judgment.

Offering to exchange porn for the Christian bible would almost be the equivalent of offering to exchange a Boston Red Sox fan a Yankees hat for outfielder Dave Roberts’ glove. Not only is this sacrilege and insulting it is structured to be an insult and to infuriate a group that they obviously disagree with. Based on the student’s response of holding prayer groups on the spot they have accomplished this task.

In breaking new we recently find out that the Republican National Committee has published and presented a PowerPoint presentation depicting our President and several members of the Democratic congress as comic book characters or children’s story villains. According to the reports this presentation was provided to the “large donors” of the RNC and was intended to be a scare tactic to drive contributions to the party and its members. In my view, there are very little if any differences in both activities.

Resorting to an extreme tactic to either make a point or drive donations simply shows poor judgment and an extreme lack of character. Poking someone in the eye and then insisting that they listen to your position or opinion is not only absurd it is a most telling sign of one’s mental capacity to engage in a civil disagreement.

Why am I disturbed by this behavior? Two reasons… one being this collage group is claiming to represent a position that I subscribe too and two they are resorting to tactics that insult not only the Christian position but the intellectual position of atheists around the world. “Drawing attention” to one’s self or agenda by acting like a group of school children should not be on the table as an option to pursue.

Intentionally engaging in activity you know is the most offensive activity you could possibly engage in to insult and degrade another person or group of people is always, in every instance, without exception a bad idea. There is no sociological, psychological, or anthropological evidence that this activity will lead to anything other than a fight, a war, or a terrorist attack. This is so egregiously wrong that it should be removed from anyone’s list of options that happens to have a maturity level above a ten year old.

Redeeming quality…
It has been suggested that anyone who would agree that the Christian bible is itself “smut” should back this campaign. There are variations on the definition of the word smut, none of which I would use to describe any theological text. Regardless of you opinion of the Christian bible, supporting a position that places yourself or a group in a position of advocating an activity that is the most insulting to someone you disagree with is simply absurd. One would expect that we could disagree without being disagreeable.

It has also been suggested that it is in fact the religions extremist are themselves responsible for the perception of the porn industry and thus anyone else who does not subscribe to their rhetoric would not find porn objectionable. This is simply an ill conceived argument. I am personally aware of people who follow no particular theological practice that find issue with many points the Christian dogma condemns.

Going after our own…
My position of displeasure and disappointment in this group as well as my vocal condemnation is a direct result of my position of “cleaning one’s own house”. I do constantly remind my Christian and Muslim friends that it is their responsibility to stand up against what they themselves claim is a bad representation of their own respective faiths. (Pat Robertson or Alhaji Mutallab for example…) If someone is misrepresenting, degrading or outright insulting or damaging a mutual position it is the responsibility of every person sharing that position to not only work to condemn the activity but initiate activity to counter the destructive activity itself.

To the students of the University of Texas – San Antonio atheist group, I strongly encourage you to withdraw from any future activity that even remotely resembles this type of engagement as well as issuing a full public apology not only the any religious theology you have obviously insulted but to the entire world of atheists who have now damaged by your actions.

- Peace, Chad

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"Let a thousand godless flowers bloom ..." --Pharyngula

The following could compete with any porn in existence today and it's directly from the Bible.

Ezekiel 23
23:1 The word of the Lord came to me: 23:2 “Son of man, there were two women who were daughters of the same mother. 23:3 They engaged in prostitution in Egypt; in their youth they engaged in prostitution. Their breasts were squeezed there; lovers1 fondled their virgin nipples there. 23:4 Oholah was the name of the older and Oholibah2 the name of her younger sister. They became mine, and gave birth to sons and daughters.3 Oholah is Samaria and Oholibah is Jerusalem.

23:5 “Oholah engaged in prostitution while she was mine.4 She lusted after her lovers, the Assyrians5 – warriors6 23:6 clothed in blue, governors and officials, all of them desirable young men, horsemen riding on horses. 23:7 She bestowed her sexual favors on them; all of them were the choicest young men of Assyria. She defiled herself with all whom she desired7 – with all their idols. 23:8 She did not abandon the prostitution she had practiced in Egypt; for in her youth men had sex with her, fondled her virgin breasts, and ravished her.8 23:9 Therefore I handed her over to her lovers, the Assyrians9 for whom she lusted. 23:10 They exposed her nakedness, seized her sons and daughters, and killed her with the sword. She became notorious10 among women, and they executed judgments against her.

23:11 “Her sister Oholibah watched this,11 but she became more corrupt in her lust than her sister had been, and her acts of prostitution were more numerous than those of her sister. 23:12 She lusted after the Assyrians – governors and officials, warriors in full armor, horsemen riding on horses, all of them desirable young men. 23:13 I saw that she was defiled; both of them followed the same path. 23:14 But she increased her prostitution. She saw men carved on the wall, images of the Chaldeans carved in bright red,12 23:15 wearing belts on their waists and flowing turbans on their heads, all of them looking like officers, the image of Babylonians13 whose native land is Chaldea. 23:16 When she saw them,14 she lusted after them and sent messengers to them in Chaldea.15 23:17 The Babylonians crawled into bed with her.16 They defiled her with their lust; after she was defiled by them, she17 became disgusted with them. 23:18 When she lustfully exposed her nakedness,18 I19 was disgusted with her, just as I20 had been disgusted with her sister. 23:19 Yet she increased her prostitution, remembering the days of her youth when she engaged in prostitution in the land of Egypt.

23:20 She lusted after their genitals – as large as those of donkeys,21 and their seminal emission was as strong as that of stallions. 23:21 This is how you assessed22 the obscene conduct of your youth, when the Egyptians fondled23 your nipples and squeezed24 your young breasts.
While I ultimately have no problem with someone swapping out a bible for porn (as I think there is more valuable info to learn from the porn), I do think this was a bad idea. This will only serve as more fodder for them that atheists are evil incarnate - and will of course tie us with wild crazy sexual escapades (not that there's anything wrong with that).

But I think their point is being devalued by choosing to swap it out with porn. They should swap them out for either a Dawkins book, or just some random work of fiction indicating that it and the bible are both equal works of fiction. IMO.
In their blog they call it "a clever reversal of the projects some religious groups have in which they collect porn and distribute bibles".
I fully agree - it is clever!
Their "point" is to trigger a debate on the ethics of the Bible and the Koran, and it seems like they're succeeding. Well done!
I don't mind porn, as it amuses me, but I question what positive information can be learned from pornography.
I think calling the Bible smut is less insulting to someone then calling it fiction. Calling it smut just points out that some of the contents inside are what you would find in violent and pornographic films or literature. Calling it fiction is flat out saying that something someone completely believes in and devoted their life to is not true.

Now to us, calling the Bible fiction isn't offensive because that is how we percieve it, and its hard for us to empathaize with what that means to them since we do not have any sacred texts that completely lacks evidence but we follow.
I have friends who attend UTSA, I may have to ask them about it.

It is kind of ridiculous, but they were intending to insult, and in that, they succeeded. What do you expect from an age group that considers beer and ramen to be a complete meal? *shrug* I am more curious if anyone actually made the trade. >.>
Supposedly they collected 10. I'm sure none of the traders were exactly hardcore xians. They were trying to be provocative, they succeeded. We're talking about them.
Was it mean spirited, yes, was it just using the campaign to poke fun at Christians, no. The campaign was used to not only be noticed, but to point out that something the Biblical group is so against has many similarities to what can be seen in their sacred text. The Bible includes many stories that you would find in pornography so it is no different.

The college students were only trading pornography with the contents of two or more consenting adults engaging in the perfectly normal act of sex. If they were distributing any pornography that contaned illegal actions, especially actions that take place between nonconsenting adults, or people who are not of age to consent, I could see a problem, but the fact is, much of what you can see in the porn they were handing out is tame compared to what can be read in the Bible, morally.
Is this about pornography? No, it isn't! According to Chad Wilson it is about insulting people!
Why are these people feeling insulted? Could it be that the college students are calling them names or otherwise characterizing them in a degrading way. Like calling them “immature”, or having an “adolescent level judgment”, or questioning their “mental capacity”? No, that was all mr. Wilson's shit, his way of trying to insult the atheist students. I have found nothing of this kind at the student's blog.

So why are they insulted? Could it be because of this?

“Q: My religious text is the infallible pinnacle of moral decency. Where could you possibly find fault in it?
A: The Bible and the Koran endorse slavery (Lev. 25:44-46; Col. 3:22; Koran 24:58), misogyny (Lev. 15:19-30,33; 27:3-7; Deut. 22: 23-24; 1 Cor. 14:34-35; 1 Tim 2:9; Koran 2:282; 24:31), violence (just search for any combination of the words “fire,” “blood,” “pain” and “doom”), and genocide (Ex. 12:29-30; Num. 31:1-54; Koran 17:16-17). God kills or commands the death of at least 2,270,365 people in the Bible, many of whom were simply in the wrong place at the wrong time. The Koran isn’t much better.
These books do say something about loving one’s neighbor, being kind and charitable, and many other commonplace platitudes. But do we need the bloody mess that comes in between these statements? Haven’t many of us figured these things out for ourselves? Why does the divine consciousness that wrote or inspired these books contradict itself so markedly?”

Slavery, misogyny, violence, genocide - it's all in the Bible. The student's are pointing to it and saying this is not good – that's all!
And what do mr. Wilson do? He jumps up screaming “sacriledge and insulting”! And then he starts threathening all of us:

Intentionally engaging in activity you know is the most offensive activity you could possibly engage in to insult and degrade another person or group of people is always, in every instance, without exception a bad idea. There is no sociological, psychological, or anthropological evidence that this activity will lead to anything other than a fight, a war, or a terrorist attack. This is so egregiously wrong that it should be removed from anyone’s list of options that happens to have a maturity level above a ten year old.

Incredible! So pointing to what the Bible has to say about slavery, misogyny and violence will lead to a terrorist attack! And this holy shit he wants us to believe he has some kind of scientific evidence for??? If so, he better check his sources!
It's the old story. It is the victim's fault!
This is exactly the same logic that causes religious fanatics to stone the raped woman and let the rapist go – if only he pray forgiveness for his lustful thoughts...


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