Many people in this country were shocked when the U.S. Navy recently announced the removal of all Bibles from military hotels under their control. This was in response to pressure from the Freedom From Religion Foundation, a well-known atheist group.
The surprise is not the hypocritical stance of the Freedom From Religion Foundation, but rather the fact that an established bulwark of American strength and patriotism caved to a self-serving group of religious fanatics. The previous sentence may seem out of place if you don’t realize that atheism is actually a religion.
No, dude, the previous sentence seems out of place because it is absurd.
As atheists don’t believe in god(s) — they have no religion. The term is a word for a negative, and this leads to a few semantic issues.
This confuses the religious because they are used to terms of religious identity being a declaration of allegiance to a view, rather than of separation from. This confusion then leads them to assert that a denial of their religion must be an avowal of another. They then do things like declare the so-called New Atheists as hypocrites for denigrating religion while sticking to an unstated one of their own, or declare that because science has an epistemology and religion has an epistemology, therefore science is just another faith (when religion’s problem is that science’s epistemology provably works much better than religion’s).
A standard response is to note that if atheism is a religion, then “bald” is a hair color, and not collecting stamps is a hobby, not kicking a kitten is a form of animal abuse and so on. Another is to note that if the definition of religion was expanded enough to legitimately include atheism – say, by defining a religion as “any philosophy on life” – then practically everything in the world would be a religion, such as socio-economic policies or views on equality. (British law has come close to finding this in employment discrimination cases.)
“”I think that “atheist” is a term that we do not need, in the same way that we don’t need a word for someone who rejects astrology. We simply do not call people “non-astrologers.” All we need are words like “reason” and “evidence” and “common sense” and “bullshit” to put astrologers in their place, and so it could be with religion.
Some atheists piss me off every once in a while, but not nearly as often or as much as the dumbasses of the “atheism is a religion” crowd.