So often as a non-believer, I hold my tongue: Careful not to "disturb" anyone with my crazy thoughts. But lately I've come to feel that THEY are actually already very disturbed themselves.

I think their ethics have to be called into question on a number of fronts.

- hurting our political system (confusing public policy with religious standards)

- lying to children

- undermining science


Who do I voice these concerns to? The average person on the street? The Head of Church? Many churches? There is no one to police the morals of the religious! No one worth convincing is listening... What's a rational athiest to do?

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Replies to This Discussion

As I have said before, enter politics, either as a lobby group or the full fledged candidate. Or you can take the slow road and some form of education and start teaching children to be a bit more skeptical and rational. I can not see how any truly skeptical person could not be an atheist, if they aren't they haven't done a good enough job at being a skeptic.
What's a rational athiest to do?

You could start by posting your question in a forum or group that's relevant. As in not a forum devoted to news items.

atheist news guidelines | nexus gudelines | forum | FAQs | groups
I agree with FG.
All this reading guidelines and getting familiar with a site before diving in and posting is all such a relic of last century. I must be getting old.
You probably like manuals for software, too?! Feh!
No - software manuals are for weenies. I prefer the bare-knuckle approach with software. When I do have to resort to support forums though, I do try and understand them before blundering in and making an ass of myself.
I kinda think you are making an ass of yourself, but that's just me. Sorry for posting in the wrong place. I thought I was starting a disussion related to the news story about kids getting calls from Jesus. I didn't want to talk about that story in particular, but about what we do, or how we react when Christians are being unethical...cuz they certainly don't see it...
But I guess that's life. I don't think I'm making as ass of myself. You don't think you're making an ass of yourself. And Christians think everything they do is Christian. How do you make anyone see the hypocrisy in their own thoughts/behaviors?
I can't hold my tongue either, and end up arguing with people who don't really care either way, trying to explain why religion is such a problem. Most people see it that there are always two extremes, you have your religious fundies, and your 'New Atheists', and both need to calm down as noone is more right than anyone else...

I have a real problem with this; how is an apinion reached by impirical observation and logic, not more valid than one learned by heart from a medieval storybook? Can I explain this to anyone? No

What I have done is join the British Humanist Association (BHA) and the National Secular Society. In the UK they are doing most to put pressure on the government to reduce religious privilege. We have the ridiculous position of being a largely secular populous but having an established church and monarchy; there are unelected bishops who automatically get a seat in parliament and get to put their oar in all the time, this is one thing the BHA is trying to change.

Another is obligatory prayers before a council meeting, or religious schools, segregating our children.

Wherever you live there will be organisations who are fighting the atheist corner, and I'm sure they could do with your support
Sorry, just read Felch's response, can this not be moved by a Mod to the relevant section?
Explaining things civilly just doesn't work does it? They'd yap underwater with a mouthful of marbles and still be oblivious to those around them.

Listen up dimwits - the forum is


You're getting to the heart of my question. So first off, thanks for that.
I have never thought of myself as the type of person who tells others what to believe. But I find myself feeling like the religious right is growing so far from the values I "learned" in Catholic School that they don't even deserve the respect I've always given all people. I feel the need to draw distinctions between good religious people and bad people who claim they're religious and I don't know where to start.
I think we need to develop some sort of "steps to sanity" spectrum.
a) extremists- willing to kill for their God (suicide bombers, abortion clinics, animal sacrifices)
b) fundamentalist- fixed doctrine / not open to science
c) social justice- devoted to poverty/service
d) almost athiests- people who know God is not a person in the sky but an idea of human design

I feel very strongly that groups A and B have to be stopped, but I'm not trying to offend groups C and D. I think they should be my strongest allies. They should care more than I do about the state of Religion. I feel like we do have to reintroduce REASON into our debates about religion. There are beliefs that are fully unacceptable. A position based on empirical evidence is more valid than one based solely on scripture. If we can't explain that then we're in real trouble.
We can't just say "okay, christians don't believe in evolution". That is not okay. Not believing in evolution is not okay.

Today my boss told me he only quit smoking by "giving it to God". That's a harmless belief. He thinks he can hand his problems to God. Sweet deal. I wouldn't try to disavow him of his notions... But when the President starts talking about God (especially in the context of war) I want to lose my mind.
I have always had this dream of starting a private / charter school for non-theists and free thinkers. A place where families could send their children to get a great education without it being underminded by religous nuts and our often poorly funded public schools.


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