[Vision2020] Ripping the Easter Bunny's Head Off : Was:Of, By

Chasuk chasuk at gmail.com
Sat Mar 15 02:29:34 PDT 2008

I don't rip the heads off Easter bunnies, and I tolerate Santa.  I've
attended religious ceremonies in mosques, synagogues, Hindu temples,
and Hare Krishna ashrams.   I didn't giggle, and I didn't criticize.
I've worshiped with a variety of pagans, Baha'is, Sikhs, and even a
few Zoroastrians.  Again, no giggling, no ridicule.

The problem with being a non-theist in a largely theistic culture is
that we all look alike.  Because I look like a Christian (after all,
what do Christians look like?), and speak highly of Jesus, people
erroneously assume that I am a theist.  They clasp my hand warmly and
say things that I am expected to acknowledge or concur with, and I
frequently can't.  I am a confessed hypocrite, but I am not a liar,
and remaining silent would be lying by omission.  In my experience,
people ultimately prefer dissent.  If you remain silent, then you are
betraying their implicit offer of friendship by "pretending" to be one
of them.  Of course, the verbalized dissent also causes problems --
namely, exclusion from their clique -- but it causes problems
immediately,  which, in my estimation, is preferable to a problem
delayed.  Further, the immediate problem is usually short-lived,
whereas their feeling of betrayal is interminable.

Anyway, a non-theist encounters situations like this quite often.  It
has several times effected my career.  When I declined to represent my
squadron in the National Day of Prayer, you would think that I had
committed infanticide.  I decline to say the pledge for reasons
political, religious, and philosophical, and, when someone
occasionally notices, the conversation is often ugly.

However, I support prayer in schools.  I support the prayer in school
that actually exists: anyone can pray whenever they wish, as long it
is not disruptive or coercive.  That has never changed, despite the
common misconception.  I don't care what it says on our currency, as
long as I can spend it.  I don't believe that the words "in God We
Trust" should be there, but I consider it too petty (and
counterproductive) to legislate.  Militant atheists should leave this
quaint Cold War anachronism alone.

On Sat, Mar 15, 2008 at 1:30 AM, Donovan Arnold
<donovanjarnold2005 at yahoo.com> wrote:

> My biggest problem with Atheistic belief is that it defies logic in two
> ways.

> 1) That you can prove No God exists

Agreed.  You can't prove that God or Gods don't exist.  Hardcore
atheists claim too much.

> 2) It assumes all evidence of a God is not evidence

Atheists naturally don't find the purported evidence of God's
existence persuasive, or they would be theists.  How is this


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