Cognitive Dissonance: 2011

Cognitive Dissonance

Cognitive Dissonance: a discomfort caused by holding conflicting ideas simultaneously The theory of cognitive dissonance proposes that people have a motivational drive to reduce dissonance. They do this by changing their attitudes, beliefs and actions. Dissonance is also reduced by justifying, blaming and denying.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Do you know why they called it "the Dark Ages?"

Take a gander at this article, ( then consider the fact that it is the year 2011. Pilots are refusing to fly these simple banners stating things like "Atheism is Patriotic" on the 4th of July because of threats of violence and the possibility of losing their jobs! I lived in Kuwait City for some time, and was in Iraq in '04 and '05 and this smacks of the same kind of religious bullshit that occurs in these ass-backwards hell holes. Apparently people have forgotten that this country was founded on the basis of religious FREEDOM and not Christian principles! Many Religious Right activists have attempted to rewrite history by asserting that the United States government derived from Christian foundations, that our Founding Fathers originally aimed for a Christian nation. This idea simply does not hold to the historical evidence.

The United States Constitution serves as the law of the land for America and indicates the intent of our Founding Fathers. The Constitution forms a secular document, and nowhere does it appeal to God, Christianity, Jesus, or any supreme being. (For those who think the date of the Constitution contradicts the last sentence, see note 1 at the end.) The U.S. government derives from people (not God), as it clearly states in the preamble: "We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect Union...." The omission of God in the Constitution did not come out of forgetfulness, but rather out of the Founding Fathers purposeful intentions to keep government separate from religion.

Seeing as Monday is the 4th of July let's address the Declaration of Independence. Many Christian's who think of America as founded upon Christianity usually present the Declaration of Independence as "proof" of a Christian America. The reason appears obvious: the Declaration mentions God. (You may notice that some Christians avoid the Constitution, with its absence of God.) However, the Declaration of Independence does not represent any law of the United States. It came before the establishment of our lawful government (the Constitution). The Declaration aimed at announcing the separation of America from Great Britain and it listed the various grievances with them. The Declaration includes the words, "The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America." The grievances against Great Britain no longer hold today, and we have more than thirteen states. Although the Declaration may have influential power, it may inspire the lofty thoughts of poets and believers, and judges may mention it in their summations, it holds no legal power today. It represents a historical document about rebellious intentions against Great Britain at a time before the formation of our government. Of course the Declaration stands as a great political document. Its author aimed at a future government designed and upheld by people and not based on a superstitious god or religious monarchy. It observed that all men "are created equal" meaning that we all have the natural ability of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That "to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men." Please note that the Declaration says nothing about our rights secured by Christianity. It bears repeating: "Governments are instituted among men." Moreover, the mentioning of God in the Declaration does not describe the personal God of Christianity. Thomas Jefferson who held deist beliefs, wrote the majority of the Declaration. The Declaration describes "the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God." This nature's view of God agrees with deist philosophy and might even appeal to those of pantheistic beliefs, but any attempt to use the Declaration as a support for Christianity will fail for this reason alone.

Finally the fact the US was not founded on any Christian (or otherwise religious) principles is spelled out in plain terms, in black and white in the Treaty of Tripoli. "As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion.." How could it possibly be anymore clear?

So any claims that being an Atheist, Agnostic or otherwise in opposition to Christian beliefs are unpatriotic is absolutely false! The fact that so many pilots refused to fly these banners for such idiotic reasons makes me furious. This is a free speech issue and I hope someone with the means will take legal action against these people for denying us as Atheists our constitutional right to publicly share our beliefs, or lack there-of.

I cannot believe this is happening in the US in 2011, what IS this world coming to? Are we in fact getting dumber??? You be the judge.

Have a happy and safe 4th everyone!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

What now?

"To hear a religious parent say "You're an embarrassment to the family" is hurtful and is made no less painful by the confidence that your rejection of superstition was the necessary, healthy and right choice. I heard these words this morning, and while they cut deep, they serve as an example of how religion attempts to quell legitimate counter-arguments by attempting to shame those who present them. Even family."

This is a quote from "The Thinking Atheist" who is a guy named Seth that hosts a website, a podcast and of course Facebook and Twitter pages/accounts. I read this quote this morning, like 12 hours ago and I haven't been able to get it out of my head all day. After officially and publicly separating myself from Christianity I got a lot of comments like this, probably since I was even more (publicly) outspoken then, than I am now. Since then I've gone through some stages, sort of similar to the stages of grief actually, as odd as that might sound. Not having come out the other end of that I am stuck in a familiar pattern of frustration and anger and I cannot decide what to do about it. Literally removing all my Christian friends from my life would solve some of my problems, however the problems it would create are probably even worse. I could publicly ask people to leave me the fuck alone and keep their idiotic dithering to themselves, but that isn't practical either considering how much I use social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter. And it doesn't help me decide what to do about the members of my family who have been laying guilt trips on me so thick I feel like I'm being crushed. It's breaking my heart, and it's taking up way far too much of the space in my head. I had a friend who always told me I chose what thoughts I "rent" space out to in my head. But I can't kick this one, and I am confronted by this issue on nearly a daily basis.

I know I have nothing to feel guilty about, and I know that the fact they keep bringing up my shortcomings or mistakes I made in the past (some 2 decades ago) just shines a spotlight on their immaturity. But I can't help but feel like I'm a bad person! I spent YEARS of my life judging people for not blindly accepting the Christian faith, I mean, it was so "obvious" that it was the "truth". The truth was, I had never actually given it any real consideration, it was all I knew, it was how I was brought up and all these smart people around me that I respected so much seemed to genuinely believe these things. Now as I stand on the outside looking in I wonder HOW on earth ANYONE could possibly buy into such blatant bullshit. But, I digress, back to the point. I have nothing to feel guilty for, as much as I hate the sound of this term, I am the *shudder* victim here. Maybe I'm frustrated because now I am presenting these people with cold hard facts that are obviously in direct opposition to what they believe and their ears and eyes are closed. Why should I care? It's their problem not mine. Or is it? It seems it's constantly becoming my problem lately. I was hoping this would help me reach some conclusion, yet it has not.

So, I move forward hoping for some clarity and wondering how to obtain it. I miss North Idaho more than ever at times like this. There is a rock, high above a lake where I used to take these questions....

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Kicking a dead horse...

A week or so has passed since Harold Camping a pastor/broadcaster from Family Life Christian Radio predicted the beginning of the end of the world.  The vast majority of thinking people paid this absolutely no mind, however a small percentage actually bought into the idea that May 21st was in fact the end of the world.  That day my Facebook news feed was full of commentary, jokes and discussion about the 6pm deadline (Pacific Standard Time, apparently Jesus prefers the West Coast of the United States for some reason) for the second coming or the beginning of Armageddon, depending on whether you believe in a "pre-trib" or "post trib" rapture.  The funniest thing to me was all the Christians who were making jokes about this.  They seem to forget they're just as crazy as Harold Camping, the only difference is they don't claim to know the day it's going to happen.  The fact that Christians say things like "we don't need to worry about the environment, Jesus is coming back before it will become a problem for us or our children" is absolutely asinine!  I want to know how I can confront these people with the facts about the ridiculous things they believe in a manner that will jar them into a realization of the fact that they are as bad, or worse than Mr. Camping.  He's 89 years old, he has an excuse for why he's gone looney, his brain is full of plaque and cholesterol.


Saturday, March 5, 2011

And the battle continues...

Apparently only the religious are allowed to express their beliefs in public forums such as Facebook and Twitter, and anyone with divergent or contrary beliefs such as myself are apparently expected to remain silent.  The amount of ignorance I am confronted with on a daily basis is staggering, it seems that belief in god means that one must completely abstain from any use of logic or reason when explaining, discussing or defending one's beliefs.  I am also seeing a total lack of historical knowledge, whether it be ancient or modern the faithful seem to ignore the implications of their predecessors actions and behaviors in regards to their religious beliefs and the erroneous claims they continually make about god and religion.  Even more ironically, there seems to be a strong patriotic connection for many of these people, god and country often go hand in hand in many of their ramblings.  Yet they know little or nothing about the foundations of the United States and the fact that the vast majority of our founding fathers were atheist or agnostic, and the ones who weren't could hardly be described as Christians.  Even though it appears to be futile I continue to engage them in debate, I challenge their notions of god and the statements they make and almost invariably their response is something akin to a child plugging his or her ears, stomping their feet and yelling "NO, NO, NO I CAN'T HEAR YOU!"  Which is then followed by a list of "amens" and some idiotic and illogical statement about faith.  I spend a lot of time and take great care to make sure that my answers/responses are respectful, thorough and insightful.  However they seem to barely read let alone actually consider the facts about the issues or what I have to say before they vomit out the same kind of ridiculous response.  These people are quite literally brainwashed.

At this point I am not yet sure what it will take to break through the walls of lies and propaganda that have been built up around their feeble minds.  However, if I do discover some universal approach to exposing religion for what it is a Nobel Peace Prize will surely follow in short order.

I wish everyone who has to deal with this in their life, whether it be family members, co-workers, friends or just simply the Mormon and Jehovah's Witness door-knockers the best of luck.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

In response to yet another fundamentalist on Facebook...

Comment made by a friend of a friend on Facebook: I respect that everyone has the right to their own beliefs, that is one of the things that make this country so great. Jay, the only advice I would give to you is to search deeper. If you are looking for proof or facts in trying to find God, you will never find your answer, and I hope you do spend more time searching. The fact that tragedy and dispicable acts occur everyday just as there is unmeasurable love shared everyday is itself a testimony that there is good and evil forces at work. Those that choose to spend their lives uplifting, loving, and serving others will earn their eternal reward, just as those that spend their lives doing the opposite will earn their consequences. In the end the answers we find in this lifetime depend on the determination we have in searching for them. Good luck in your journey brother :)

My response Jay Voigt: I have to (respectfully) catagorically disagree with everything you said. Evidence/proof of god is exactly what we should be looking for/at. I spent 20+ years "searching", I attended a bible college, I smuggled bibles into Cuba, I provided physical security for missionaries in Sudan and at one point I held the tite of "Youth Pastor". I did everything I was supposed to do according to the bible, the interpretation of the bible and instructions I got from my pastors over the years. In the end there was absolutely no evidence whatsoever to support the existence the Christian god or of any god(s) at all, I have done my due diligence.

In response to your assertion that the existence of "good" and "evil" in the world points to or is evidence of the existence of god. That statement is a logical fallacy, in no way does the existence of good and evil prove there is a god. First of all the terms good and evil are relative, and subject to qualification by the person using them. I will admit that our society and much of humanity in general would agree on some fairly universal tenets by which to determine what qualifies as good and what qualifies as evil. However, there exists no universal standard by which to measure the terms, and therefore they are arbitrary. Secondly, assuming we could establish a universal definition of good and evil, their existence would not necessarily mean that the only conclusion that could be drawn is that the Abrahamic god of the bible must therefore exist. Any number of inferences could be drawn in this situation, any number of gods could be inferred and implicated as the source of good and evil at this point. As well as any number of other possible reasons or causes.

I personally refuse to believe anything on blind faith, to do so is plain and simply put, ignorant. To accept something as truth that cannot be proven, or disproven (like religion) in spite of a total and utter lack of evidence/proof/facts is just foolish! Christians use the bible as evidence, but they rarely if ever consider the facts about the bible. I can't fathom how I ever justified defending something so devoid of a foundation and steeped in ignorance, manipulation and outright lies. To accept a book written in 4 different languages by over 40 authors (some of which are unknown) over the course of about 1600 years, that borrowed stories and legends from dozens of earlier cultures as absolute and universal truth is absolutely ludicrous. As if all that isn't enough to reject the bible as a work of fiction, it was further altered, manipulated and changed at least a dozen times since the Council of Carthage (a group of men) decided which books of the bible had been inspired directly by god. Furthermore, it has been established through comparison to the few original texts available that each time the bible has been translated, there has been is obvious bias to fit the doctrine and ideals of the group responsible for each translation. For example, the King James Version has blatant Anglican leaning "interpretations". Furthermore, countless examples of contradictions and instances of obvious ignorance infest the bible from cover to cover. Do you really believe the earth is really at most 10,000 years old? Do you believe that god put fossils in the ground to test our faith? Or that somehow starlight that is millions of light years away has somehow reached us here on earth in a fraction of the time it should take if we used the constant and unchanging speed of light as a measurement? And finally, many people use personal experience as evidence for god, such as answers to prayer or miraculous healing of an illness, none of which can be substantiated and must be dismissed. The bible is a poorly written, irrelevant and mostly incoherent collection of contradictory stories about an tyrannical god that supports slavery, murder, child rape etc... with a son that says we can now ignore all that stuff because he died for our sins. Somehow his supposed death and resurrection is a greater sacrifice than the 1 million men and women who have given their lives for us since the inception of our country and weren't magically brought back to life. I should add here that there isn't ANY contemporary corroborative evidence from the time Jesus supposedly lived that documents his existence, let alone all the miracles and other disruptive activities he supposedly engaged in. The romans were meticulous record keepers, if there had been a man running around doing magic and causing a stir the way Jesus was purported to have would have been documented somewhere. Also, did you know the first "gospels" weren't written down until at least 60 years after Jesus was supposed to have died? Do you really think any oral record of Jesus life was kept unchanged by people as superstitious and susceptible to manipulation as the common citizenry from that period in history?

There is no god. Religion is poison to progress and reason, it stirs up dissension at best and inspires torture, murder and other such "evil" acts in it's worst forms. You see religion isn't the answer to the problem of "evil" in the world today, it's the cause of it. I hope everyone will be willing to open their mind, think objectively and free themselves from the crippling, ignorant constraints of Christianity, Islam and Judaism.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Islam, the religion of peace?

A video was released on the internet today of a 19 year old girl, covered by her burkha, buried up to her waist in the ground, being stoned and then shot to death in Afghanistan in August of 2010. Why, you ask? Because she declined to take part in an arranged marriage (after being sold to a man for $9,000) and ran away to be with the man she loved in Pakistan. This according to the "Sharia" or holy law of the Koran is considered adultery and is punishable by being stoned to death. The young woman who's name was Siddqa was lured back to her home village in Afghanistan after being assured that no harm would come to her or her husband, Khayyam if they returned to see her family.  This was a fatal mistake, they were drug out of her families home in the middle of the night, convicted by a "kangaroo" court of local religious officials and sentenced to death by stoning.  At this point she was buried up to her waist in a 4 foot deep hole in the ground and pelted with rocks the size of her head. However she survived the stoning and was then shot in the head at point blank range by an AK-47.  Her husband was then led out into the same space with his hands behind his back and was also stoned to death.

The videos of these kinds of barbaric acts are scarce, but the occurrence of these kinds of atrocities are far too frequent in countries that are ruled by religious laws.  Yet we still hear members of the Islamic faith trying to sell us the idea that it is a peaceful religion.  I would go so far to say that no religion can claim to be peaceful, least of all Islam. The entire globe is in the grip of fear due to constant threats from religious zealots who claim that Allah has charged them with the task of taking the lives of those who do not believe the same things they do.

The ignorant, archaic ideals that drive people to commit these kinds of crimes need to be stamped out in every country and culture around the globe!  How do we accomplish a task of that magnitude?  I have no idea, but I choose to join the ranks of people who simply believe in the sanctity of life for no other reason than the fact that I value mine and I want my fellow human beings to have the most productive and fulfilling life as possible.  

Monday, January 24, 2011

It's already the last week of January!

I realize I said this blog would focus on Politics & Science in addition to all the religious stuff I've been writing about, so I figure it's about time to make good on that promise.  So, since the State of the Union speech is on Tuesday of this week, I'm going to switch soap boxes and try to focus on the politics aspect of the blog this week.  I'd also like to make a couple posts about some of the recent advances made in science.  I am headed to Washington DC this coming weekend and am planning on spending some serious time at the various Smithsonian Museums, hopefully I'll get some serious inspiration while I'm there for some science updates.

I hope everyone is well, and you haven't written me off as an extremist Atheist already! haha.

Cheers everyone,

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Don't confuse your beliefs with Knowledge, unless you have knowledge of your beliefs

"The study of theology as it stands in Christian churches,is the study of nothing; it is founded on nothing; it rests on nothing; it proceeds by no authorities; it has no data; it can demonstrate nothing."  Thomas Paine

Creation vs. Evolution/Intelligent Design is one of the most hotly debated topics of our time.  Fundamentalist Christians believe that the genesis account of creation is literally true, and that god created the earth in 7 days.  We now know that this is absolutely ridiculous, and it's painfully obvious that whoever wrote the book of Genesis (or rewrote it) had no scientific knowledge and was simply trying to fill in the gaps of their understanding with something to explain the appearance of life on earth. Which is what mankind has been doing since the beginning of recorded human history, using god(s) to fill in the blanks.

Evolution, in spite of what your pastor says on Sunday is not a fabrication by a group of men and women under the control of a the devil.  Evolution is a scientifically proven theory (if you're unfamiliar with the word 'theory' when used in a scientific context, you should look it up before you say something that will expose your ignorance) with consistent and predictable results in regards to the outcome of empirical experiments conducted across a broad spectrum of scientific disciplines.  Biology and genetics both confirm the hypothesis of evolution, as do geology and paleontology through the geological column and fossil record as do plate tectonics and radiometry.  If you're not familiar with the fossil record, you might be interested to know that fossils do not just appear in groups of the lifeforms we're familiar with today (which they would if they appeared on earth over the course of a week).  They appear in order, over billions of years starting with simple, single celled organisms and progressively get more and more complex, with apes and humanoids appearing 1.8 and 1.3 million years ago.  You might also have heard your pastor say that "humans did not descend from apes" and that's absolutely true.  It's just another poorly understood argument that creationists use to attempt to debunk evolution.  Humans (homo erectus) evolved along side of apes from another type of humanoid, however you might be interested to know that our DNA only differs by about 1% from apes, we just took another branch on the way up the evolutionary tree.  If you find these subjects confusing, or if they're just out of your personal scope of knowledge, then consider this simple fact about astronomy.  We know for a fact at what speed light travels (186,282 miles per second) and we also know how far away the furthest galaxies are in our universe are.  It's simple math then to deduct how long it would take light from the stars in those galaxies to reach us here on earth.  I bet you can't guess how long it's taken the light from the furthest stars to reach earth?  4.5 billion years, the same approximate age of the earth, and another incontrovertible scientifically proven fact.  This is just the tip of iceberg in a long list of hard evidence demonstrating the facts of evolution.  The answer from "creationists" is the equivalent of a 2 year old child plugging his/her ears and stomping his/her feet on the ground while yelling "no, no, no it's not true".  When asked why it's not true, the only answer they can give is, "because the bible says it's not".  The bible was written by men and most of the genesis stories were borrowed from Mesopotamian folklore and other cultures that predate Christianity.  If you don't believe me, then just do the research for yourself, the flood story and the creation story are simply borrowed modifications of earlier attempts to explain phenomenon that ancient humans simply couldn't understand because they didn't have the scientific knowledge we have today.  

The reason the bible claims the earth is only 6000 years old is because 2000 years ago when it was written, the authors only had 4000 years of written history to base their writings on.  Why only 4000 years?  Because that was when the first written records of human history began.  Cuneiform, the earliest written language appears about 6000 years ago, explaining the reason for their assumptions about the planet's age. If you find yourself among the extremely unfortunate group of fundamentalists that believe that the Genesis account of creation is true and the earth is only about 6000 years old.  Then please explain why god would conspire with nature to perpetrate a vast and elaborate fraud?  Why would an all powerful creator cause light from distant stars to appear to have taken billions of years to reach earth?  Why would god give us no explanation as to why the geological column shows fossils appearing in order of complexity in accordance with a 4.5 billion year timeline that appears constant throughout the entire universe?  Why did he create river beds and ocean floors with hundreds of thousands of annual sedimentary layers?  Why would he create continents that obviously once fit together, and continental drift explained by plate tectonics that appears to have taken billions of years to move into their current positions on the globe?  The evidence for evolution and an old earth is incontrovertible, to deny it in spite of the facts is idiocy. 

There is no god, the story of Jesus isn't confirmed in any written accounts from the time when Jesus was said to have been alive.  What about the gospels you might ask?  I doubt your pastor has explained to you that the first "gospel of Jesus" wasn't written until about 70 years after the death and resurrection of Jesus was supposed to have occurred.  This means that the story of Jesus was passed down for 70 or more years by word of mouth.  Have you ever played the game where a group of people sit in a circle and a secret is whispered to the person to next to you, then passed around the circle until the final person says the secret out loud?  Every time I have played this game the secret that reached the final person never even remotely resembled what the original person had said.  Yet millions of people hold these ridiculous, contradictory stories of Jesus as absolute, universal truth in spite of the fact they're obviously fabricated.  If you have the capacity to be objective, simply open your eyes to the facts and use common sense and you too can be free from the evil tenets of religion.

Good luck.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The religious right

Jerry Falwell said "I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People For the American Way, all of them who have tried to secularize America. I point the finger in their face and say 'you helped [9/11] happen."  Fred Phelps Sr. and his congregation from Westboro Baptist church regularly picket the funerals of dead American service members. As well as the funerals of the victims of last weeks shooting in Tuscon also claiming that these tragedies are God's judgement for the acceptance of homosexuality in the United States. Erick Erickson, the right wing blogger, self proclaimed evangelical Christian has also sited homosexuality as one of the reasons for the tragedy in Arizona.  This week he wrote on his blog that "people should be focusing on a saving faith in Jesus Christ", and pointed out that Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was Jewish and that she should be thankful for a second chance at eternal life. Apparently, even though she is a member of God's chosen people (see the old testament) she was doomed to an eternity of hellfire. This is the same Erick Erickson who called Supreme Court Justice David Scouter a "goat fucking child molester". Additionally he said Justice Scouter should be "beaten to a bloody pulp" and said he would "pull a shotgun" on any government employee that tried to make him fill out the American Community Survey.  Just today in another display of hypocrisy from the right, Sarah Palin attempted to decry the inflamed rhetoric she accused the media and left wing of with more of the same kind of speech and said she would not be silenced.  I don't think there is anything I want more from that lunatic then some silence.

The religious right continues to make themselves look like idiots, and I personally thank them for helping those of us with the ability to think on our own prove our point.  On the other hand, we really should stop putting the spotlight on people like Sarah Palin, the media is giving them a platform they wouldn't have on their own.  Put some focus on the humanists, agnostics and atheists, the homosexuals and pagans and all the other groups that are being blamed by evangelical Christians for so called "social decay" for a change.  Listen to their words of comfort and kindness that come from a place of genuine concern for other human beings with no ulterior motives.  When I turn on the news I feel like I'm watching a ping pong match of ridiculous ideals and empty words bouncing back and forth from the far left to the far right.  Put some focus on the middle!

I don't have a whole lot more to say on this subject, these people's words and actions do all the work.  In the meantime I'll work on finding some real balance in a country that desperately needs some.

Be fair.

Monday, January 17, 2011


I recently joined a website called, it's a site devoted to supporting people who have left the Christian faith.  I am also a fan of the website on Facebook, so I see a lot of the articles and forum topics that are posted/updated on a daily basis.  There's a theme that I see in a vast majority of the stories that people submit, rejection.  The people who say they believe in love and reconciliation are the first people to damn their so called loved ones.  Maybe it's because they recognize the fact that what they believe is by definition insane and they wish they had the courage to admit that there is no god.  Personally I have experienced quite a bit of this kind of treatment from my family and friends.  I think everyone who chooses to confront me has their own reasons for why they disagree or dislike the choices I've made and they're entitled to their opinion.  I have thick enough skin from a lifetime of verbal and emotional abuse that it just rolls of my back.  However, some of these kids who I'm reading about are genuinely distressed by the hateful, spiteful, ignorant reactions from their family and friends.  So I'm going to challenge the "Christians" to put the rubber to the road and actually demonstrate the love you say that Jesus showed the world, if you really believe all the tenants of the Christian faith then you believe that you are just as unworthy as the next person.  So live that way and show some love, kindness, acceptance and grace to people who don't subscribe to the same things you do.

If I was still pounding pulpits and thumping bibles I would be very concerned that people are receiving so much more love, kindness and respect from so called "godless" people than from the Christians in their lives.  Personally, I can say that except for 2 people, literally 2 I have gotten nothing but negativity, judgement and condemnation from the religious folks in my life.

More insightful people might accuse me of being angry, and I will not deny the fact that I am indeed hurt and angry.  I feel cheated, slighted and like I missed out on some of the best and most important parts and childhood and adolescence.  I take that into account every time I write something like this.  In fact, a personal fear of going overboard and lashing out in a way that would make me just as big of a hypocrite as the people I'm addressing has held me back from commenting on these thoughts and feelings until today.  But I feel like if these words only reach one set of ears and spare one person the heartache of being rejected by the people they love and respect it's absolutely worth it.

I'm so sick and tired of the hypocrisy.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Lies, Fear & Propaganda!

In response to the shooting in Arizona on Saturday, the Christian Extremist group from Westboro Baptist Church, best know for their "God hates fags" slogan released a statement saying they were thankful for Jared Loughner, the alleged shooter and proclaimed that god sent him.  They also stated that they will be picketing the funerals of the victims of this henious crime, which includes a 9 year old girl who was born on 9/11/2001 which they claimed as a sign from god that her murder is somehow symbolic.

I have a really hard time remaining composed when talking about Westboro Baptist Church's campaign against gays, dead soldiers and their support for acts of terrorism and the wholesale murder of children and innocent human beings in general.  However, I think that is a normal reaction considering how totally and absolutely revolting their abhorrent ideals are.  The members of Westboro Baptist, Christians, and members of other faiths who share these and similar ideals are so diluted and psychotic that I can't seem to come up with language strong enough to convey my disgust.  While I will acknowledge that the beliefs held by Westboro Baptist are extreme, I know from my 20+ years of experience as an evangelical Christian (I now consider myself an ex-Christiant and Atheist) that the core ideals and sentiment of hatred towards homosexuals and any other group of people opposed to their beliefs is not isolated to this radical group.  Intolerance, ignorance, hatred and bigotry are rampant throughout the Christian, Jewish and Islamic faiths.  Homosexuals, abortion clinics, stem cell research, President Obama and the government are NOT the problem in this country, the extreme religious right and other similar religious organizations are the problem.  Ignorance is the problem.  Closed minds that refuse to recognize facts in light of overwhelming evidence are the problem.  People clinging to antiquated ideas and a god that offers eternal life because they're too afraid to acknowledge the truth about life and death are the problem.  Religious extremists trying to impose their ideas and "morals" on the rest of the United States and the world is not only a problem, it's a global emergency.  It's given rise to genocide, war, terrorism, slavery and a laundry list of unspeakable offenses and tragedies.  All in the name of what Christians and Muslims claim to be a loving god who is intimately involved in the lives of each and every person on the planet. If that is true, why doesn't he stop the slaughter of the very people he is supposed to love and care for?  None of it makes any sense, especially the vile ramblings of a groups who's ideals are comparable to a far less intelligible version of one of Adolph Hitler's rants.

So I think anyone and everyone capable of rational thought will admit that there's a problem, which begs the question.  What can we do to fix it?  I think many things have to occur to right this sinking ship, but first, I think we have to absolutely and totally remove all aspects of god and religion from politics, public policy, school curriculum, etc.  Second, we have to marginalize the religious right and all other religious groups and churches by acknowledging that they are in fact huge cults that survive on ignorance, fear, lies and propaganda.  Finally, we have to turn our focus to the future and making progress that is in the best interest of mankind in general, not in the best interest of religious groups, special interest groups or large corporations.  I know that most of the people I went to church with were convinced that Jesus would be returning before the end of their lifetime, so I'm confused as to why they're so involved in politics and public life.  They should be holed up in their underground bunkers preparing for Armageddon and leaving us to conduct our sinful lives in peace.  We will be offered a second chance after the rapture right?  So unless that happens (which would be some evidence actually in favor of the bible being true, of which there is literally none at this point) I will be moving on with my life, re-educating myself as quicly and thoroughly as possible in areas of study with an actual basis in facts and doing my very best to expose religion for what it is, false.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Fishes With Feet.

2 years ago I was hiking along lake Coeur d'Alene in the panhandle of Idaho. It's one of the most beautiful places on earth and I would know, my passport has 62 stamps in it. It was a Sunday afternoon in late March and I was doing what I frequently did while walking, I was praying. I reached the top of the hill, found my favorite spot on a mossy rock, sat down and stared out at the lake. At that moment, I realized something I think I had known subconsciously for a long time, no one and nothing had ever answered a single one of my prayers. Suddenly I realized that I was talking to myself. That snowy late Spring afternoon I set out on a journey to discover the truth about god. What I've learned so far is that there is no greater evil on this earth than organized religion. There is nothing more dangerous, hateful, ignorant, short-sited, murderous and vile on the face of this earth than the followers of god and the Abrahamic faiths.

With all that in mind, and being sick and tired of banging my head against a wall debating my friends, family and Facebook contacts, I've decided to systematically address the propaganda and lies put forth by the church. I'm also going to be sharing the advances of science in regards to the proof of evolution. Finally to round out the two controversial topics I plan on doing some political commentary as well.

There are 3 main pages associated with this Blog - Politics, Science and Religion.  Each page's title pretty well described it's content, I plan to update each page at least once daily with headlines, articles and other publications.  Additionally, I will update at least one of the three pages with an extended commentary composed by me.  I hope no matter where you stand on these issues that you'll find some substantial information here and answers to your questions.

Keep an open mind.

In progress.

About 2 years ago I began a journey that started with a couple of realizations about myself, my life and my situation.  2 years later, I've come a long ways and still have a long ways to go, but I finally feel like I have something to contribute.  I plan to use my tiny corner of the Blogosphere as a sop box, a place from where I will reach out and try to free people of the oppressive constraints of religion, share actual facts about the advancements of science and open people's eyes to truth about the people who are running their country and their lives.  I am sure the vast majority will find me extremely controversial, which is fine, I want to rouse people out of their seats, push the limits of their comfort zones, encourage them to investigate and understand what they believe and help them open their minds through the use of logic and reason.  Richard Dawkins hit the nail on the head in the introduction to his book The God Delusion, when he said people often don't realize they have a choice.  A choice to genuinely question the beliefs of their parents, of their childhood and of their society.  I not only suggest that we all have a choice, but we have a duty to all of mankind to investigate and understand everything we believe.