I've been pondering this for quite some time, and some recent observations prompted me to write about it. Remember about a year ago when I wrote about The Arrogant Atheist? Yes, then I did some other stuff that was similar. I've noticed that atheism (and its kid brother, agnosticism) and liberalism go hand-in-hand. It appears that there is an elitist approach to atheism.
Why would someone claim to be an atheist? I can think of several reasons, including:
- Upbringing and bad educational experiences
- Bad experiences in life
- Cultural influences
- Political and social environment
- Peer pressure, or the desire to please other people
- Disappointment based on bad experiences in life (i.e., expecting God to be a grand Santa Claus in the sky, giving you whatever you want, whenever you want it)
- Moral choices
Please pay attention, 007! I am not going to say that all atheists are the same, and that my definitions will fit all of them. These are observations and generalities coupled with my own experiences and discussions. I've met atheists that are very matter-of-fact about their lack of belief: "I'm an atheist." End of discussion, big deal.
First, there are peaks and valleys in the popularity of atheism. The colleges and universities that help to spawn this unfortunate state of mind were usually founded by Christians, and for a Christian purpose. Well, that obviously faded. In the late 1960s and early 1970s, there was the Jesus People movement among the young. That faded as well. And atheism would gain popularity for a while.
A recent discussion in Gizmodo took shots at a Christian organization for objecting to porn being available on airlines. The details of that are not what I'm after, but I noticed the anti-God crowd having a field day slinging rotten fruit at the people that want to make a stand for what they believe in. And one unintentionally amusing comment was made to the effect of, "You're an atheist and said so. I respect you more for that." Oh, please! There's an elitist shock value that comes with claiming to be an atheist, like the desire to make little old ladies say, "Oh!" in shock at dinner parties. You're an atheist, Cupcake? Wow, what a maverick you are. Or would have been. Nowadays, your kind is a dime a dozen.
Many atheists that I've come across want to show that they're renegades, and that they're more intelligent than everyone else. (For that matter, I'll never forget an atheist in my school, he was about fifteen years old, and exclaimed, "I think all Christians should be burned at the stake!" What a stronzo.) These arrogant cafones want to destroy the faiths of those of us who believe in a higher power. They want to silence us and essentially put us in a box.
These elitists claim that they are protectors of freedom, and do not want to see the establishment of religion in government. Fine, neither do most of us. (F'rinstance, who wants mandatory Bible instruction in school from a teacher that resents presenting it in the first place?) Those arguments ring hollow. There's something going on here, and they probably don't know it themselves.
It's a morality thing. If there's a God, then he makes the rules -- maybe we should find out what he has to say. And he may not like the way you're living. So, you dismiss his existence and carry on as if your choice was reality. Why do you think they're so opposed to Intelligent Design theories being presented? Oh, I think I just answered that a few sentences back.
I suppose that I had better go on into more dangerous ground. I can't help it.
How many atheists are Liberals? One...two...one thousand...six thousand...never mind, there are quite a few. OK, how many atheists are Conservatives? One...two...uh, considerably less, I believe.
That's because people who do not believe in a higher power are drawn to political parties that have an "anything goes" stance on morality. Why is abortion so important to American Liberals? They claim to protect a woman's "right to choose". Yeah, and she also had the right to choose to use birth control, or to keep her legs together in the first place. But that's a moral point, and will not be discussed.
The unbelieving elitists were incensed that their liberal candidate for the Presidency of the United States lost by several million votes in 2004, and voter turnout was very high. Afterward, many liberal sour-graping elitist liberals were blaming the more Conservative southern states for the loss. Well, and blaming religious people. And blaming anything else they could think of. But they also wanted to protect the country from the evil Conservatives, even though their position was clearly outvoted. Although the votes were cast, they wanted to save us from ourselves. Oh, how generous. The elite, losing minority wants to protect the unintelligent, uninformed and religiously deluded people and make things go their way! Scary.
This "map" from Michael "Fat Bastard" Moore says a great deal. They resent believers. In fact, Liberals are afraid of people who believe in God and have moral convictions.
I think these are fair questions to ask. And I can't help my observations. Check them for yourselves.
So, if you claim to be an atheist, and you're one of those arrogant types, I suggest that you ask yourself a couple of questions. First, is it an intellectually honest position?
Second, if you're wrong and you come face to face with God, do you feel lucky? Well, do ya, punk?
Addendum 9-04-2008: I promise that this is unintentional, but I'm happy to have found it. The day after I posted this, Rush Limbaugh said something very powerful that fits this topic:
"To believe in something greater than government, to believe in something greater than global warming, to believe in something greater than health care for all, to believe in something greater than pure, unadulterated socialism, is to be demeaned and disparaged. Like God is to be condemned. People who believe in God are to be condemned. The American left -- which now embodies the working class government, the Washington government, the American mainstream media, and the Democrat Party; that's the American left -- are truly frightened of God. That's who they're trying to beat. They're trying to wipe God out of every heart and soul in this country that believes in God. God is their competitor. Those of you who believe in God and are God's soldiers, you become the enemy on the battlefield."Addendum 11-11-2008: Dr. Paul Kengore has some exit polling results that support what I say here.
— Rush Limbaugh, 9-03-2008