By: B.W. Ellis
Sorry, but they did.
“Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned” –Luke 6:37
Ignoring the obvious fact that nobody named “Luke” actually wrote this passage, and certainly, nobody named “Jesus” uttered the words, let’s take this at face value for a moment to describe the conundrum that Christians face today.
Christians constantly judge and for centuries have condemned women, homosexuals, non-Christians, and non-believers to torturous murder, rape, even attempts at genocide. As recently as this year we have seen Christians abuse and contort the legal systems intended to defend this nation to permit discrimination of minorities under the guise of religious freedoms.
Their judgment of women is so incredibly severe that a dedicated Christian family opted to take a case all the way up to the Supreme Court to acquire the “right” to break the health care law and deny the medications that aid a woman in her daily life. All due to some contorted view of what some carpenter may or may not have said, or intended to say, almost 2000 years ago.
For arrogance on an epic level, for hypocrisy that constantly sets a new low, for searching high and low for the ability to forcibly inflict immoral Christian doctrines upon the body politic, I claim the right to treat Christians as poorly as they treat others.
Why Should Atheists Claim That Mantle?
“He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.” –John 8:37
Now, the supposed savior was, of course, defending a woman who he would also see beaten by her father or her husband (see the New Testament), and if she was a slave he would tell her to be silent and submissive even when her master was beating and raping her (again in the New Testament), but the idea is intended to support the argument that a hypocrite has no right to attack another.
Convoluted as the fictional source of this gem in the muck may be it does approach a point. That we should hold ourselves to the higher ground of morality when seeking to dole out punishments is indeed a noble pursuit, yet in the real world, it is an ideal that is unattainable.
What fun would it be if we were only permitted to cast stones upon people if we were of a pure nature, and would it not violate that nature to cast the stone? It is supposed to be this rhetorical trap that prevents the violence yet it fails when you apply it to a society with laws and customs that require punishment.
So let me suggest that the one group of people who most closely match this ideal of a person without sin are the Atheists who reject the concept of sin, to begin with. Statistically speaking there are far fewer criminals who identify as Atheist, the countries on this planet that are the most civilized, the most developed, the most secure and happy are the ones who reject the trappings of faith and embrace the logic, reason, and evidence that the scientific method demonstrates.
Nonbelievers are the people who act good toward one another not for the promise of paradise or the threat of damnation but the solace of knowledge that this life is the only one they have, that it is the only chance we have to exist, therefore we should be good to each other in order to make the most of it.
Tragically the very application of the ideology of Christianity is more and more the root cause of the behaviors that the muck covered gems of wisdom in the New Testament warn against. Christian scriptures are the very cause of their own ruin, therefore they cannot be allowed to take the moral high ground in the contest of who gets to cast the stones.
So What is With the Mean Spirited Nature of the Criticisms?
There is, I admit, a sense of mean girl satisfaction in the harassing and debasing of the right wing Christian. A joy at the frothing all caps mania of the responses that dig deeper and deeper into the jungle of the mind so brainwashed as to have become a swamp.
That form of recreational poking of the rhetorical stick in the massive soft pasty white underbelly of the true believer is a natural (and yet distinctively juvenile) reaction to people claiming that we will burn in the worst place they can imagine.
There is also the satisfaction of the occasional moderate who claims to believe only because of their forced indoctrination. Their eyes opened wide by the snarky reference to god the rapist (New Testament, he didn’t ask to impregnate Mary), or the idea of the human race being the product of incest (Old Testament, who did Cain and Able beget their offspring from?), or from the enumeration of the long list of contradictions the bible presents with itself much less the observable universe.
The people who leave their faith are my favorites because they are the ones who honestly did not think through the ramifications of the scriptures and eventually were willing to question the faith and come out the other side changed. They demonstrate the courage of their convictions and follow logic, not faith, to a different perspective. These are my favorite intelligent people to find in the ocean of the deliberately ignorant.
But are Atheists Really That Mean?
When an Atheist “attacks” a person of faith, what exactly are they doing? Are they flailing off the skins of the Christian? Are the burning them at the stake? Are they imprisoning or enslaving them? Are they butchering them or waging war against them? That is what Christians have done to Atheists.
Certainly, we have examples in human history of nonbelievers who demonstrated some of the cruelest of barbarous acts, yet can we say that those acts were a result of their Atheism? It’s not like Stalin was following the scriptures of Atheism, there are none. Pol Pot was a psychotic tyrant who decimated people in droves, yet nowhere in his biography would you read of him claiming a divine right to do it, especially since by their very definition Atheists do not subscribe to the existence of a divine right, in any situation.
Many people attempt to claim Hitler as an Atheist but the more we look at the life and times of the most infamous madman of the 20th century we discover Christianity as his base motivator. If you don’t believe me read his autobiography.
In the history of mankind the weight of blood and corpses, the crushing burden of hate and despair, and the tragic tonnage of persecution at the behest of the faithful Christian so over tips the scales of balance when weighed against the crimes of Atheism that to compare the two as equals or opposites is to court ignorance on an epic scale.
Outside of China, you will never see an Atheist in the halls of power seeking to permit discrimination of a Christian, at least not by any sensible definition. For far too long Atheists have been the target of persecution and therefore have experiences that teach us better than to make that error in judgment.
No, by no measure do or could Atheists be as vile and horrific to Christians as they are to us. Even the most radical and outspoken militant anti-theists would not dare go near the rape fantasies of the Duck Dynasty patriarch. You simply do not see the reverse being anywhere near as barbaric as that bearded con man.
Since I cannot be polite in this regard and get the purchase I seek to grab on the cerebellum of the religious fanatic I choose to embrace the impolite methodology, for I know that no matter how mean, how vile, how brutal in my logic and reasoning I will never approach the simple and inescapable reality that the person on the other side of the conversation is defending something with a history that is far more immoral than Atheism.