If atheists do have values, what are they?

There’s an interesting article in the Guardian by Julian Baggini. Now that nearly half of Britons say that they have no religion, he observes, some believers are saying that atheism is also a sort of faith. Though an atheist, he is not of the Dick Dawkins school, and so does not respond with Dickish bluntness. He is not one of those ‘zealous’ atheists who sees religion ‘as an offence to human rationality.’ People like that do seem to have a sort of crusading faith, he says. Excessive trust in the power of reason can be dangerous, he adds.

  • tom_billesley

    Atheism has no catechism.

  • G

    1.) ME
    2.) Things that I want.
    3.) MY rights
    4.) MY freedoms
    5.) Things that are owed to ME.
    6.) How people should treat ME.
    7.) MY property
    8.) MY goals, hopes,ambitions and dreams
    9.) MY importance and self esteem.
    10.)ME (it’s worth repeating)

    • Gareth

      What is more self centred, believing that some magical space daddy takes an interest in your life, or believing that we are all specs of cosmic dust just trying to get by?

      • G

        Oh no poor little Gareth is upset. I’d better not upset him too much or he’ll run blubbering his little eyes out to the nearest judge.

        Atheists, their moral compass points the direction of the most expensive scumbag lawyer.

        “I’m right because ambulance chaser is pricier than your ambulance chaser.”

        In other words, if you can justify it it’s morally right.

        Buh bye Gareth

        • Gareth

          Umm, you seem to be the one in a lather. Just curious, how many times are you going to say “buy bye” tonight. Where do you you get the idea I’m crying about this stuff? As for the other stuff wtf are you talking about, ambulance chasers?

          • G

            Gareth the current popularity of atheism amount many people concides with rise in infantilism and the shedding of personal responsibility among the same group.

            Your nutty attacks on everyone here, your insistence on getting the last word in, your petulant aggression; all of these are a exhibitions of the behaviour I mentioned above. You want your own way and no one can tell you different. That’s as far as I’m going to explain it because I have other things to do. But I want to thank you. I disliked atheists before and you’ve just confirmed for me that I was correct to do so.

            BTW ambulance chaser ihas long been used as a derogatory term for lawyer. If you were as bright as you imagine you are you would have known that.

          • Gareth

            What, no more “buy byes?”

          • Gareth

            *buh

          • Gareth

            Atheists are a tiny minority. Religious people aren’ selfish? Nutty attacks? What is nutty, exactly? Aggressive, petulantly or otherwise? My opponents have been less civil. Want my own way? How do mean? I demand you become an atheist? I think you are projecting. Wow. I know what an ambulance chaser is. It is your assumption that atheists worship them or whatever that i cound ridiculous. No one can tell me different eh? That is funny coming from someone who holds faith (belief without reason or evidence) in such high esteem. I think you just like to dish but can’t take.

          • Gareth

            I forgot to ask about attacks? How am i attacking “everyone on here?” By not believing in a deity. As previously pointed out, I’ve been addressing the the subject of Mr cat fur’s post. I’m not complaining, but i’m the one being “attacked.” Just scroll through and note all the ad hominems, and refusal to engage my actual arguments. I ask lots of questions for someone who insists on the last word, no?

          • G

            Wow 4 replies in a row to what I said. Also, when I scroll through I see your foaming-at-the mouth 500 word replies to others. I read your child like “Oh-yeah?-Well-what-about-you” rebuttals. I realize I was right about the infantilism.
            Spoiled brat who can’t stand hearing that he’s not as smart or perfect as he’s always been led to believe.

          • Gareth

            Powerful rebuttal. Actually, more or less point by point rebuttals is me trying to elicit substantive responses, which no one seems interested in. It is infantile to just hurl insults, as you do. None of my substantive questions get answered. I’ve been accuse of being a 140 character Twitter dummie, and long winded in the same thread. That’s impressive.

          • G

            The dimwitted are always easily impressed Gareth.

          • Gareth

            Haven’t you said “buh bye” already, like 3 times?

          • G

            Twice, are you a habitual liar or just too stupid to count to 3?

          • Gareth

            One, two, many… Why would I lie about that? What would your priest say about you being such a dick?

          • G

            What priest are you talking about princess? As far as being a dick to you? I’m doing it because it’s fun.

            Badgering snotty, little weasels is a hoot.

          • Gareth

            What about your mother? Would she approve?

          • Gareth

            I’m a fairly large mammal actually. And shoulders broader than waist in case you are picturing an obese dude in his mom’s basement. Married too.

          • Gareth

            “Badgering… is a hoot.” So you are a troll?

          • G

            Nope, just hate guys like you.

          • Gareth

            Good! I can feel your anger. I am defenseless. Take your weapon! Strike me down with all your hatred , and your journey to the dark side will be complete!

          • G

            Quoting Star Wars is it?
            Wow, really bringing out the intellectual heavy hitters on me, huh?
            I hope you realize quoting Star Wars on an internet flame war makes you look like the world’s biggest dweeb – right?

          • Gareth

            Nah, it’s pretty funny. In any case I don’t care. My arguments stand on their merits. You’re arguments are thin gruel, man.

          • G

            Your…”arguments” are really nothing of the sort. They have been countered by other posters so I won’t go into it.

            Thin gruel? They seem to be getting your attention.

          • Gareth

            Countered? Most replies are personal attacks. Read the thread. Virtually none of my substantive arguments or questions have been addressed.

          • Gareth

            You have posted comments, not made arguments.

          • G

            Sure I’ve posted comments. – So? All the others have made significant statements which I agree with. Since they’ve already said them there is no point for me to repeat them. I’ve also noticed you’ve avoided responding to a few of them like the plague. Mostly you’ve just prattled on about communists.

          • Gareth

            That is pretty obviously untrue. Avoided like the plague? Hah. I can’t argue with everyone, only so many hours, you know. My initial intent was just to leave a comment for Mr fur about the title and here we are. I’m not sure who you think I was avoiding but it is possible that just because I didn’t directly respond to someone doesn’t mean their arguments weren’t addressed by me in another response. I don’t think any reasonable person can read this thread and conclude that I shy away from arguments.

          • G

            Sure you do dipshit.
            – Jaberwok-
            When there is no God, Man must take his place but more
            accurately some Men will. This Inevitably leads to who can enforce one’s will on whom. In short Violence becomes the supreme ethic…

            – k2 –
            If one abandons the idea of objective morality (as personified by God) then clearly one is left with the subjective. And then making the determination of what is good, beautiful, desirable, valuable, etc., is also subjective. So these atheists happen to believe in empathy toward others – so what? Other people happen believe in antipathy toward their fellow humans,

            – ismiselemeas –
            Trust in the fact that others will act reasonably is the danger.
            Excellent points. You avoided them so fuck you.

          • Gareth

            On jabberwokk: with or without god, men rule hear on earth. It is simply not true that violence is the “supreme ethic” ” of atheism. Atheism is not a code or set of beliefs. It just means you don’t believe in god. Anyway the subject here is that without god everything goes to shit. Things often do anyway, given the corruptible nature of man. I certainly addressed this repeatedly.

            K2
            Pretty much the same goes here as jabberwok. I’ll add that even if one accepts god, that doesn’t negate the “problem” of subjectivity. Within any given church, do all members/ clergy agree doctrinally. I also responded to alain’s
            question that provided sources of morality for non believers. Clearly, as can be seen here, believers are full of antipathy.
            What does trusting anyone to act reasonably, which I don’t by the way, have to do with the existence of god or the morals of individual atheists.

          • G

            The first two responses are fair enough.

            But in your final question we get to the meat of the matter. In Christianity we may have bad apples but overall they try to live up to the standards that the Bible illustrates. With atheists – as i have said before if you can justify it must be ok.
            Lie? Just twist facts & words until you weasel out of it.
            Steal? Just get some lawyer to get you off & Boom! You didn’t REALLY steal. so it’s ok.

            Excuses are an atheist’s best friend.

          • Gareth

            Where do you get this idea about atheists. There are plenty more learned and articulate atheists out there than me, try reading some. What makes you think atheists believe that if a lawyer can get you off it must be moral come from? Not from a published primary source, that is for sure. I think it needs mentioning again, Atheism is not a code or doctrine. It just means you don’t believe in god/s. I’m guessing you don’t believe in Norse gods, correct? So we are not so different, you just believe in one more god than I do. Also, to repeat, attributing anything to atheists as a group does not make sense. There is no common cause, literally and figuratively, among atheists.

          • G

            I don’t have a problem with atheists as a whole. i have a problem with atheists who attack me or the belief structure of people I like. We you and other atheists smear Christians with your “magical space daddy” horseshit do you think you are supposed to get a free pass?

            A guy at my job told me he didn’t believe in God – straight out (even though the topic of the conversation had nothing to do with God – odd). I didn’t bother me at all. He was and is still a great guy.

            But –*BUT* I have come across enough atheists who are complete selfish assholes. That slime bag Christopher Hitchens smearing Mother Theresa. As one atheist fellow said (with refreshing fairness) …”between the two who do you think would be more likely to give you a bowl of soup if you were starving on the streets of Calcutta?”.

            There are people who profess to be Christians who are complete dicks. The difference is … (this is important)…is that if they are truly Christians they know they have no way of weaselling out of it because they will pay for it dearly in the hereafter.

            Can you imagine that scumbag lawyer Johhny Cochrane who got the murderer OJ Simpson off as a Christian? I can’t. Everyone knew Simpson was guilty as hell. Cochrane included but he lied, twisted the truth, used innuendo and generally fucked around in every which way he could get away with and a murderer walked.

            Now, that being said I have to go (FOR TONIGHT). I will pick this up tomorrow.

          • G

            The first paragraph has a small mistake (We you and other..”)
            should be “You and other…”

          • Gareth

            Referring to magical space daddy is not a smear against christians. A smear would be saying something like oh, I don’t know, Christians have no morality, they only think ofhemselves, they will commit any heinous act because they know they can get away with it by asking a special someone for forgiveness anyway. Nazi prison guard? No problem, as long as he tells Jesus he is sorry. Sound familiar? That would be a slur. But of course, as a reasonable person, I know this not to be the case. I’m obviously not looking for a free pass, whatever you mean by that.
            As for Hitch (PBUH) and Theresa, either read the bloc or watch the doc first (on youtube i think) and I would be happy to discuss it with you. Did you know the Vatican actually brought in Hitch to be her devil’s advocate during the canonization process. He was not ignorant about her, that is for sure.
            No way to weasel out? Yes there is. It is called confession.
            Cochrane etc: again with lawyers? Really? You sound like a Muslim apologist that says “oh, but a real Muslim would never kill innocents, therefore the guy yelling Allahu akbar before blowing people up wasn’t a muslim.” Can you not see this? Look, I get the lawyer hate, sort of, but it isn’t really relevant here.
            On imagining Cochrane as a christn, why not? No Christian scumbags?
            Sleep well. I mean it. I bear you no ill will, despite all your “fuck yous” and other traditional Christian salutations.

          • Gareth

            I’m really struggling with my new device. How does book get turned into bloc? Many problems. Don’t buy a Samsung tablet, whatever your spiritual beliefs. Ok for Quakers maybe.

          • Gareth

            Sorry, amish. Samsung will do for the amish.

          • G

            Sorry Dude, confession is not “weaselling out. Not if you are real about it. There are lots of people (Christians included) who say they repent of their sins but don’t really feel any repentance. Their repentance is worth no more than monopoly money. Have you ever done someone wrong and felt *TRULY* sorry about it? If you just apologized just to relieve tension it *IS* weaselling out. if you are really sincere then it’s forgiven.

            In fact I even argued this point with my pastor. My argument went like this: “Who cares if Jesus forgives me if the person is still wronged and there is nothing I can do about it? I won’t bother with his response. research the idea for yourself.

            As far as repentance goes. I do feel bad about a lot of the ways I insulted you yesterday. That’s the reason I say I’m not a Christian because I can’t really honestly attribute that label to myself because I can’t get the hang of the whole “no judgement” and “turn the other cheek” ideas.

            Christian scumbags? Of course there are people who identify as Christians and are total scumbags. I don’t think they are really Christians. The ones that come to mind are a few of the old 1970’s TV evangelists.

            As far as Hitchens. The guy was a drunken, snotty elitist piece of shit. Ignorant of Mother Theresa? Careful cherry picking of facts doesn’t make you a devil’s advocate. it makes you a smear artist.

          • Gareth

            Hitch was literally her Devil’s Advocate. That is a real part of the canonization process, and the Vatican did really use him. Like I said read the book or watch the doc first.
            I’m familiar with many arguments re weaseling out etc. My grampa was a minister for 60 years by the way and I have a good many of his books. I see it differently, what can I say. I don’t deny the difference between actually feeling repentant and just saying sorry, but divinity need not enter the equation. Do you think it just that a Nazi guard, even if repentant, deserves eternal heaven while an unrepentant sinner like myself (I’m not too bad, really), or worse, one of his victims, could burn in hell for eternity? You may not, but many would.
            As a side note, I think our little argument illustrates the problem the conservative party in Canada will have in the next while. Believe it or not I voted for Harper and would for trump if american, yet virtually every time I post some legitimate disagreements or comments, often mild, I get accused of being some kind of evil commie or multiculturalist or whatever. I dont comment often. Now I don’t care personally, I’m comfortable in my own skin so to speak, but it does concern me that this sort of thing empowers the wynnes and trudeaus out there to keep on truckin’. Godspeed, sincerely.
            P.S. Just, curious, did yesterday’s question about what your pastor/priest etc would think of our exchange contribute to a softening in tone? I don’t mean this in a told you so sort of way. In fact, it would actually demonstrate a positive thing that your faith does for you. Also for what it’s worth, I do think the question of religion’s utility a totally different question, and one not so easily dismissed as their supposed truths or the existence of Allah, sorry, God. 😉 (remember, Muslims are supposed to be the humorless ones)
            Cheers.

          • Gareth

            To be clear, when I said “unrepentant sinner,” I meant to God, not that I never feel bad.

          • G

            I didn’t talk to our pastor about the exchange. The softening of the tone was my own doing because I realized I had attacked you too vigorously and I felt actual remorse. But my faith DID contribute because I realized that I have a standard to live up to and my behavior did not do that.

            There in is the point. Yes, you are right. atheists CAN feel remorse. Nobody ever said they couldn’t. The point is Christians have a SET standard that they must live up to even if it is impossible in real terms. As a Christian you don’t get to say “Oh well I just swiped a pen from work. It’s not like it’s really stealing”. YES, damned right it’s stealing.
            Just because it’s a “little sin” doesn’t make any different. It’s an impossible standard, but it’s a worthy one.
            And what do we get for that standard? We get demonized by internet dicks, marginalized by the asshole press ect.

            The reason for my anger is basically ALL self described atheists I’ve “met” on the internet are insufferable assholes who are quick to attack & ridicule. To be truth I am taking Ben Shapiro’s advice to conservatives on this one. Attack them before they can attack you and hit them twice as hard as they could hit you. Like I said. I can’t really call myself a Christian truthfully because I can’t get the hang of that whole “turn-the-other-cheek” idea.

            For what it’s worth I also am an outspoken Trump supporter. I liked Cruz’s Christianity (but I suspect he played it up WAAAAYY more than he actually feels). But supported Trump more because I think he can win and I think he has more of a “fuck you I’m going ahead” attitude.
            It’s going to take a man who is an absolute prick and completely bulletproof to even turn America half way around. Hopefully he drags Canada along with him.

            I could go on but right now it’s supper time.

          • Gareth

            There is nothing wrong with vigour, i think you felt bad because your attacks were rude and baseless.
            What is this “set standard” you speak of? There are probably as many flavours of christianity as atheism. Even within denominations there can be strong disagreements. And again, it is wrong to assume atheists can’t have standards to live up to, we just don’t need the promise of heaven or threat of he’ll as reasons to do so. I can’t speak for all atheists, but i have to look myself in the mirror. Atheists don’t get to say “it’s not really stealing” either. That logical progression you imagine is not real.
            “Demonized by internet dicks:” So. Why do people care what random internet people think? Seriously? This lack of self esteem seems to have now infected too many, not just typical SJWs. As for the press, I think we can agree that the coverage of Islam vs Christianity is absurd. I, and many atheists, certainly the Hitchens and Douglas Murrays of the world, acknowledge that anglicans and baptists don’t threaten civilization. We know that a couple of abortion clinic bombings and Fred Phelps protests are outdone considerably by the religion of peace. I will say that atheists who try to say all religions are the same etc are not intellectual allies of mine. Hell, even Dawkins has suggested that Christianity may be a bulwark against something worse.
            I know of Shapiro but rarely read him. I doubt he suggests making attacks with weak arguments. I definitely think you put in a better effort after sleeping on it so kudos for that.
            I’d still really like an answer to my prison guard question. I’ve done yeoman’s work answering all comers, especially you, and I would appreciate an answer to that question. Is it just that a more or less decent person could face eternal damnation for rejecting Jesus as Lord and savior (I’m not talking some lost tribe that hasn’t heard the word, I’m talking simple rejection), and a mass murderer could go to heaven if he sincerely repents before death?

          • Gareth

            I’m pretty sure my device is christian, or prudish anyway. Keeps changing hell to he’ll. This thing is not mare for people with sausage fingers.

          • G

            You say that atheists have standards. MAYBE they do. But what prevents those standards from being changed from day to day, circumstance to circumstance?

            In answer to your difficult question, I believe yes the guard could go to heaven if he really repented. We are talking about concepts beyond physical. Since you’re an atheist and you don’t believe in these concepts there is no way I can convince you. I’m not going to try. Why bother? You will simply shoot down anything I say, so it’s pointless.

          • G

            I need to explain the comment above a little more. I don’t think there is a real point to discussing these matters with you. you are deeply entrenched in your position and you will not convinced no matter what i say so really it’s pretty much a time waster.

          • Gareth

            You answered half the guard question. Ok, he goes to heaven, but are you ok with him in heaven and his victims, or someone like me spending eternity in hell?

      • Will Quest

        Garreth go genuflex at your vulgar atheist altar of rotting flowers,candles & stuffed animals and sing your hymn ” IMAGINE ” !

        • Will Quest

          ……..

          • Gareth

            Don’t like imagine. Why does everyone here believe atheists are all a bunch of hippies and communists? This is like saying everyone who believes in god is a catholic, or all believers are muslims.

  • Norman_In_New_York

    Modern history shows that atheists have been as intolerant of other people’s religious beliefs as any religious fanatic.

    • Gareth

      That is absurd. And by the way, what can be asserted without evidence can likewise be refuted without evidence.

      • Norman_In_New_York

        Try Stalin, Mao and Pol Pot for starters. Of course there are plenty of tolerant atheists just as there are plenty of tolerant Christians. The rotten apples always gain a prominent place in history books, especially if they seize and are corrupted by power.

        • Gareth

          Stalin, Mao and pol pot didn’t kill people because of atheism, they killed people cuz of communism, which is not synonymous.

          • G

            What did you just say about refuting without evidence.
            Buh bye Gareth.

          • Gareth

            Where is the evidence they killed people to bring atheism to the masses?

          • Jabberwokk

            Please see the entire history of the USSR. It’s quite compelling. And really they’re only Johnny-come-lately.

          • Gareth

            Oh you are right, it was Marx’s Atheist Manifesto that set half the world alight. Hmm, that doesn’t sound right. Something manifesto… Oh shit, it was the communist manifesto. No evidence?

          • Jabberwokk

            Not according to Communists. Communists have traditionally believed that Christianity has been a tool of the ruling classes to keep proletarians and peasants in chains.

            Furthermore The foundation of communism, Marxism, advocates the abolition of religion(It was the opiate of the masses) and the acceptance of Atheism and a materialist worldview.

            When there is no God, Man must take his place but more
            accurately some Men will. This Inevitably leads to who can enforce one’s will on whom. In short Violence becomes the supreme ethic.

          • Gareth

            To be clear, you believe atheism and communism are synonomous? That is just ridiculous. Are all believersin god/gods Catholics?

          • G

            You are being willfully blind and trying to put words in his posting. He DID NOT say that
            and if you were honest –(You know? HONEST – something Christians try to be?) — IF you were HONEST you would admit he never said that but your loose atheist moral compass allows dishonesty when it serves YOUR purposes.

          • Gareth

            I asked because it was not clear, I did not put words in anyone’s mouth

          • G

            Ooo yeah uh huh suuuurreee you did.
            My assessment of your…”honesty” was just confirmed.

          • Gareth

            Above his post I said communism and atheism are not synonomous. His immediate reply was that they are, at least to commies. Read again and then consider apologising for calling me dishonest.

          • G

            I have considered it princess and the answer is “No, I won’t”. You ARE dishonest.

            Twisting statements around isn’t honesty. It’s just a way of making the liar feel justified. This relates to my posting about atheists justifying their actions as a way of feeling morally right even when they are acting unpleasantly.

            I’m getting a pretty good picture of you Tinkerbell and what I see is a spoiled, little shit who hates it when people disagree with him and can’t stand the word “No”.

          • Gareth

            So if not considered synonomous, why are Stalin Mao etc the straws every one here keeps grasping at. If they aren’t the same thing, you can’t use stalin’s terror as evidence against atheism any more than I can use the rape and torture of children, and it’s abetting, by the Catholic Church as reason to suppose that all religious people must condone the rape and torture of children.
            Tinkerbell? Okie dokie. Y’all are the ones who can’t stand having your magical space daddy questioned. I would love it if one of you pious folks would show these exchanges to your priest or pastor. G, Gary? I suspect some of you would only say what you have because you are anonymous. On the other hand, I would have no qualms about people I know reading what I have said. Maybe try to be a little more Christ like.

          • G

            Who said I was a Christian numb nuts? I just can’t stand people like you.

          • Gareth

            Can’t stand Jews ?

            Regardless, would you b ok with your mother reading this? I believe this site recently had a post about civility/staying on point in the comment section. That said, I probably shouldn’t have pulled out “magical space daddy” so soon, it seemed to fill people with so much rage they were unable to actually engage in an argument. But I still think it pales in comparison to the insinuation that atheists are incapable of acting morally, which is what I was trying to debate.

          • G

            You never mentioned you were a Jew, a Gentile, an Polynesian Islander or a martian for that matter. What I DO know is you are a self righteous weasel who has a serious weed up your ass just because you saw a post you don’t like.

            You came close to understanding it when you stated you shouldn’t have pulled your “sky daddy” bullshit. I defend Christians because my wife & friends are Christians and are fine people and I’m sick to death of assholes like Dawkins, Harris, that drunken slime bag Hitchens and…***YOU*** attacking them and their beliefs.

            So in short fuck you dickwad.

            My mother reading? – Don’t know- don’t care.

          • Gareth

            I was clearly joking. I’m an atheist, remember?

            Hah. Like I said, the sky daddy jibe is nothing compared to being accused of being pure evil, which is what i consider communism to be. People like me have far more to fear from religious people than vice versa. In fact, religious people also face more threats, by an order of magnitude, from other religious people, than they do from anyone in the name of atheism. Who flies planes into buildings in the name of atheism?
            It just occurred to me why you, and possibly others think I’m so angry. I bet you read my words in your obviously, and admittedly (“sick to death”)angry voice, rather than the calm one in my head as I type. I pretty clearly tried to have an argument. Read all the responses, they are mostly ad hominem or non-sequiturs.
            Take some deep breaths or maybe ask your magical space daddy to bless you with some calm.
            PS how brave to defend your family from an anonymous internet voice that isn’t even talking to them. I commented on a site I visit often, though rarely comment on. That needs to be defended against? Jesus christ, I thought only lefties needed safe spaces.

          • G

            Exactly when did I call you a communist? If you don’t like the way theists respond to you – tough shit.

            Nobody flies planes into buildings in the name of atheism. Nor do they do it it the name of Christianity.

            As far as safe spaces? When did I ask for a safe space? You particular brand of atheist “honesty” is showing again.

            I now see the attraction of atheism. Whenever you get in an uncomfortable spot just twist those morals until they fit.

          • Gareth

            If you read this thread you’ll see why I mention communism, that is the go to argument for most here. The safe space reference is because you said you were “defending” your family from attacks. If what I say constitutes an attack, you are a precious little snowflake in need of a safe space, or your family need it apparently. You are their white knight that ventures bravely to the grocery store or whatever, while they cower in fear of atheists back at the compound.
            Dude, you had the first post on this article and you were yelling in caps your distaste for atheists, or at least the pathetic caricature of atheists your goldfish brain imagined. But you’re just defending your family. Ok.

          • G

            Yes I did have the first post. Shouting? I capitalized 1 word per sentence for emphasis. Who do you know that shouts one word in a sentence? You’re a fucking idiot. Even your lame attempts at arguing are idiotic.

            White knight? (Weird). You’re a pissy little weasel who likes to smear Christians so I’ll attack you for it. So simple I thought even you would be able understand it. Guess not.

          • Gareth

            USING CAPS WHERE THEY DON’T BELONG IS GENERALLY CONSTRUED AS SHOUTING IN PRINT.

          • Gareth

            Angry internet commenters like you shout one word in sentences.

          • Gareth

            What have I said that smears christians? One thing

          • Gareth

            Feel free to re read. You will not find one smear against Christians and plenty by them.

          • Gareth

            He did in fact suggest they are synonmous, at least according to communists, which would be irrelevant to a non commie anyway.

          • Jabberwokk

            No of course not. Not all Atheists are communists but all communist regimes were Atheistic. Just like not all Muslims perform Jihad but all people who perform Jihad are Muslim.

            That said Marxist communism were materialists and the overwhelming majority of atheists are also materialists so there does exist that overlap.

      • Minicapt

        Like Diderot, Derrida was a fool.

        Cheers

  • Gary

    Note how they don’t want to move to an Atheist nation , or that they can’t cite one productive and prosperous Atheist nation where crime is low and everyone has Rights and freedoms but obey the moral codes of society from the Collective that use the Atheist Moral yardstick suck as how Murder is illegal but not by consensus for the majority because it’s subjective to some people .

    • thehawkreturns

      The USA was not founded as a Christian nation.
      http://www.skeptically.org/thinkersonreligion/id9.html

      • Jabberwokk

        “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal,
        that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights,
        that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness”

        No other worldview but the Judeo-Christian one would give you this. Respectfully sir, you have to be pretty willfully ignorant to not see the Judeo-Christian watermark on the foundation of the USA and throughout it’s culture. And Canada for that matter.

      • Gary

        Try to stay focused . My point is about the wonders and utopic lives of Atheists like Stalin and Mao .

        Try to look at the big picture globally and not your 140 Keystoke limit on Twitter that’s for those with a short attention span .

        We have muslims pouring into Canada and the USA while many of them attempt Dawah to convert infidels by promoting islam as the utopic World with Human Rights for all .
        But this is a ruse because they had to flee their islamic hell-hole of Misogyny , jew-hatred, homophobia and child-bride pedophilia that had the quran as the Authority for the nation .
        In fact….Justin is going to take in close to 50,000 muslims that are refugees FROM islam and it’s Sharia law Human Rights. Sure Obama says that ISIS isn’t islamic, but ISIS has the same quran as Hamas , hezballah and pretty well ever y Muslims and Mosque in canada and the USA.

        For the record , Muhammad at one time had to flee to a Christian nation ruled by a King because even Mo knew how peaceful a Christian society was and that they would tolerate his Death Cult that he was promoting and looking for recruits.

    • Gareth

      What?? Ummm, no good secular countries to live in? Saudi Arabia more your style? What countries do you think are Christian?

      • Gary

        Try to stay focused . My point is about the wonders and utopic lives of Atheists like Stalin and Mao .

        Try to look at the big picture globally and not from your myopic 140 Key Stoke limit on Twitter that’s for those with a short attention span and victims of the new High Screwels handing out grade 12 Diplomas for a grade 8 education .

        • Gareth

          I think you are the one lacking focus. I’ve expessed no utopian sentiments.

          • G

            Another great “I-know-you-are-but-what-am-I” rebuttal from Gareth. Don’t worry Gareth if you ask real nice maybe the moderator will give you a Participation ribbon.

            Guys like you have such fragile self esteem. It hurts you when people don’t constantly tell you what a genius you are. Sorry princess, this is the real world not school where you get some teacher praising your every intake of breath.

            That’s why you’re an atheist. ANYTHING is endlessly debatable. “I’m never morally wrong!” “If I can justify it. It isn’t bad!”

          • Gareth

            Hah. Fragile self esteem?
            I’m pretty much the only one offering actual rebuttals to points made/questions asked. Most of you keep throwing up nonsequiters. Look at your last 2 sentences. When have I claimed to be never morally wrong? I am a flawed human like everyone else.

  • k2

    If one abandons the idea of objective morality (as personified by God) then clearly one is left with the subjective. And then making the determination of what is good, beautiful, desirable, valuable, etc., is also subjective. So these atheists happen to believe in empathy toward others – so what? Other people happen believe in antipathy toward their fellow humans, and find joy and fulfillment in tormenting others. Either approach is equally valid if there is no objective standard built into the nuts and bolts of the physical universe.

    So what is our sense of ethics/morality based on, if not on a God-given conscience? If we are nothing but physical beings and have developed according to evolutionary theory, then our sense of morality has similarly developed to accord us advantages in breeding. So if appreciation of beauty, or empathy toward others helps us pass on our genes, then these qualities will tend to flourish. However, there are clearly going to be circumstances where cheating, lying, raping and murdering will improve our chances of passing on our genes, so in those instances, such behaviour would be good and ethical. From the perspective of subjective ethics.

    • Justin St.Denis

      Great synthesis! And right on the nose! 😉

    • moraywatson

      ‘If one abandons the idea of objective morality (as personified by God) then clearly one is left with the subjective.’

      That sounds like a false argument, especially since as a deity God could not logically “personify” anything, let alone morality. Jesus Christ as a member of the Holy Trinity might be able to personify morality however (?).

      A God might “reveal” morality, or “dictate” morality. But there seem to be quite a number of God’s about, so abandoning the “objective morality” of one of them, hardly seems to leave one immediately in the realm of only subjective alternatives. Rather, it would seem more logical to conclude that there are a number of different bases for morality, such that none are objective, and all are subjective.

      • Alain

        I think it boils down to believing that there is nothing beyond one”s self and whatever one wants is acceptable versus believing that right and wrong, good and evil do exist and we should make the correct choice. For me it doesn’t matter if you get there due to a belief in God, a higher power, Karma or whatever. The majority of those claiming to be atheists appears to fall in line with the first, and they are as fanatical and intolerant as any fanatical religious follower. Claiming one is offended due to a nativity display or a cross and demanding they be banned is a prime example.

  • ismiselemeas

    Trust in the fact that others will act reasonably is the danger.

  • ontario john

    Well, they can always join the United Church. You don’t have to believe in God to be a member. Why they even have ministers that don’t believe in God.

  • andycanuck

    I call them Evangelical Atheists for the in-your-face ones (see any comments section in the world on any report even vaguely connected with Christianity); and Practicing Atheists for the ones who will mention it in context but not otherwise (that’s fine with me) like Instapundit’s Glenn Reynolds.

  • Gareth

    Not a good question/headline Mr. Cat Fur. You and pope “hopey changey” share the same values? You keep posting Douglas Murray videos, why don’t you watch some to get a sense of what sort of values a principled conservative atheist may espouse. Do you believe Christopher Hitchens had no values? One can recognize, embrace even, the Judeo Christian foundation of “western” values etc without believing in a magical space daddy. Many people don’t need commandments to know stealing and killing are wrong.

    • xavier

      Gareth:

      Really? Tell that to the Moslems. A brief reading of the original sources of preclassical and classical works (Xenophon, Aristotle, Plutarch, Caesar, Cicero, etc) would disabuse you of the notion that killing and stealing was wrong.

      Infantcide particularly of girls was rampant in the classical world. It’s really difficult to realize just how radical Christianity was for the classical world
      Rodney Stark’s books on early Christianity would highlight that radicalism.

      • Gareth

        Yes, yes, if only i read what you have… guess what, I have. So stealing was never a crime until Christ? Okie dokie. I said “many.” Some people are just bad. So you you would rape and murder if you didn’t have a space daddy? In any case, none of what you said is very relevant to my argument. Please read again. I noted that one can appreciate the historical value of Christian ethics without believing in a magical space daddy. Mentioning muslims actually helps my case. It shows how dangerous religious commandments can be. A grandfather could only stone his grand daughter to death because of religious beliefs. What else motivates people to commit such lunacy? Communism, as monistic as any of the big three, is a religion as far as I’m concerned (just to get that out of the way. Religious people often try to link communism and atheism)

        • Alain

          I am not attacking you, but please explain why you believe theft, rape and murder are bad. You base this on what?

          • Gareth

            The simple answer is that I don’t want to be robbed, raped, or murdered, and I suspect others feel the same. I am a classical liberal, if you want a long form version of my beliefs try mill, smith, bentham, berlin, etc. I answered your question and I have one for you. Do you think those things are bad only because of some ancient texts and the belief that some deity is watching your every move?

          • Jabberwokk

            “Bang” that’s my answer. Now I decide what’s right.

          • Gareth

            I wasnt clear what you were trying to say until i read your above comment. You must be catholic, correct. Protestants generally believe they have the ability to interpret scriptures for themselves, whereas Catholics defer to “The Church.” So, if catholic, you prefer to take moral guidance from an organization that aided and abetted child rape. That said, just because a litany of clergy raped kids, doesn’t mean I think Catholics generally condone child rape. Everyone here seems to think all atheists are communists.
            Do you have a conscience, or do you only refrain from raping, stealing etc because a book told you? Serious question.

          • Jabberwokk

            Well here’s the rub. I’m not catholic or any other ist, ism, or ic. So had I been I can see your line of logic but I’m not and you went on ahead on that assumption. not very scientific. 😛

            I will answer your question with a question: Is there anything wrong with anything?

          • Gareth

            Sorry, I forgot to mention the most obvious source of morality: life experience. By that I mean parents, friends, society and culture at large to some degree (for better, and often worse). Look, as an atheist, I thank Allah I was born in a WASPY country with British traditions, and yes, even Christian ones. just look at the alternatives. That does not mean one needs to believe in something so outlandish, and obviously contrived, as the scriptures.

        • T.C.

          Well, if you read any of the early socialists you discover that they often discuss the need to in calculate a religious-like fervour in the masses to replace religion with the “science” of Marxism. Since commies believe in Marxism, which advocates a replacement of belief in religion with it’s “scientific” approach to organizing society, that would pretty much suggest that there is no difference between socialism and its iterations – communism and fascism – and the atheists it produces.

          And I really don’t think atheists can “appreciate the historical value of Christian ethics” while in the same breath mocking that history using the term “space daddy.” You either believe in historical relativism or you don’t. Based on your comments, I suspect you pretty much lack the imagination to believe in the former.

          And I thought I would add that my personal experience with atheists,
          like my experience with socialists, indicates that they routinely lie
          when trying to convince you of their beliefs. Usually 5 minutes of
          fact-checking on the internet is all it takes to expose them. Trouble is
          they never stick around to explain why they needed to lie at all. It
          would seem that they believe that killing and stealing is wrong, but
          that their lying for the cause is a morally superior behaviour. From my point of view these are the actions of a zealot. So you’re an atheist. Good for you. Now shut
          the f*** up and run along.

          PS. Please don’t take that last statement personally. I just feel that the concept of Christian Charity is wasted on an atheist. What’s the point? It only works if I believe in a “space daddy.” And if I don’t? I am sure you can “appreciate” that sentiment.

          • Gareth

            In my other comments I said communism is a form of religion.
            Atheists are not necessarily the “products” of communism and fascism. A square is a rectangle but a rectangle isn’t necessarily a square.
            As for mocking with the term space daddy, that is pretty tame compared to being accused of being incapable of having values, as the title of this post does, and to which I was responding, no. I was pretty gentle actually.
            Why don’t you think atheists can appreciate that, historically speaking, Christian parts of the world are more pleasant to live in than the alternatives. Onee could even subscribe to many christian teachings and not believe in god. And you think I lack imagination?
            Do you mean to say moral relativist instead of “historical relativist?”
            How am I the zealot? I responded to the question in the post honestly and in good faith. I never advocated any anti religious policy, I pointed out that one does not need God to have values. Many that believe in god are terrible people too. I don’t care what people want to believe. I believe in freedom of conscience.
            “Now shut the fuck up and run along?” Do you think that not spelling a curse word makes your statement more christian? Seriously, does it? What would your priest or pastor say about you being rude to a stranger?
            And once again, quit conflating socialism with atheism. There are loads of Christian socialists and atheist liberal capitalists. Now maybe you should shut the fuck up and run along.
            P.S. I don’t care if you take it personally or not. See Alain for how to disagree in a more civil, or Christian fashion, hypocrite.