While standing in line waiting to check out earlier today I happened to notice that the family in front of me were in the midst of their second annual family reunion. They had it written on the back of their matching shirts. Just as I was about to go back to listening to some music one of the younger ones ran past me with an adult in hot pursuit.
That’s when I saw what was written on the front of the shirt. Right under a pair of praying hands was the sentence “the family that prays together stays together”. Now I’ve heard that sentence more than a few times over the years, but today was the first day I really paid attention to it. I was struck by exactly what is being implied towards us non-believers.
If we don’t pray not just as individuals, but with our families, we run the risk of seeing or causing the destruction of our families.
I suppose it’s meant as benign, but since most believers are taught from the cradle to the grave that we non-believers are one step from being axe-murderers, I’m not too sure. So, I looked up where the sentence came from and how the believers use it.
It seems to have started with a priest back in 1943 and is always used to to degenerate non-praying families and cast blame for anything that goes wrong in family life and society. It’s not benign IMHO.
The funny thing is, guess who’s more prone to divorce. Conservative Christians who also tend to be the ones who throw this sentence around.
A recent study by the Barna Group concluded that 34 percent of non-denominational conservative Christians are divorced as are 29 percent of Baptists. Other Christian groups weigh in around 20 to 25 percent.
To top matters off, one author has said that nearly 90 percent of divorces amongst conservative Christians happens after they’re “saved”.
On the other hands, we non-believers have the lowest percentage of divorces when compared to Christians and Jews. We weigh in at 21 percent.
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t have anything against divorce. I’m divorced from my first husband and frankly wish one of my sisters would leave that louse she’s shackled to. Divorce is not, IMHO, a bad thing by default. It can be the best thing to happen to some one or some couple.
What I have a problem with is being told in so many words that I’m doing something harmful to my family by not praying to a being I do not believe exists. That’s pretty offensive in my book.
I wonder what they’d think if we all started wearing shirts that say “the family that sleeps in different beds ends up sleeping in different houses”. Group sleeping is the thing to do in some parts.
If it weren’t for a blogger over on the Chicago Tribune it’s highly likely that many of us would have never heard of Monique Davis’ anti-atheist tirade. Since that time only one non-theist organization appears to have said anything and that was the Council for Secular Humanism which issued a press release calling for Davis to resign.
Everyone else has been conspicuously silent in the aftermath.
There’s not a word about it on the American Atheists site and the Secular Coalition who says it’s mission is to handle this kind of shit has also kept it’s mouth shut. The Atheist Alliance doesn’t appear to have anything to say either. The Freedom from Religion Foundation has nothing either. Even the Out Campaign whose purpose is to get scared atheists to come out of their closets has remained silent.
I’d at least have expected to find a rant over on AA about it and the Secular Coalition? It’s frigging mission statement says it’s purpose is “to increase the visibility and respectability of nontheistic viewpoints in the United States”.
One would think that a sitting representative telling someone with a “nontheistic viewpoint” that they have no right to participate in government affairs would be an opportunity for them to increase “the respectability of” said viewpoint.
This is quite disappointing. So, where are the leaders and why have they kept their mouth’s shut about this?
Here’s something to chew on. An atheist man has sued his Catholic ex-wife. At issue is the school their 14 year old son will attend. Mom and the son have chosen a Catholic school, but Dad wants him to attend a public school:
As a practicing Catholic whose eighth-grade son, Michael, has always attended parochial schools, Susan Bisig says it would be best for him to attend St. Xavier High School.
The 144-year-old Catholic secondary school also happens to be Michael’s first choice.
But Bisig’s ex-husband, David Ryan, an atheist who has joint custody of their 14-year-old son, wants Michael to attend a nonreligious high school.
And he says the Kentucky Constitution is on his side because it says no one shall be “compelled to send his child to any school to which he may be conscientiously opposed.”
The battle between Ryan and Bisig, both commercial pilots, has landed in Oldham County Family Court, where Judge Tim Feeley has said he will decide within the next couple of weeks where 14-year-old Michael Ryan will attend high school next year.
Whichever parent wins will pay Michael’s tuition, Feeley said.
As the mother of a five year old, I’m quite grateful her father and my husband is also an atheist. I can’t see either of us ever converting to any religious belief short of a lobotomy so I doubt we’ll ever have to walk that tightrope.
Here’s some statistics about atheists to brighten your day:
Alternet recently kicked off a fundraising event and having apparently registered with the site at some point I received an email asking for money. Having fallen far behind on my reading this past month or so I decided to check out what Alternet had up that I may have missed. Well, I apparently missed the earth shattering event of Chris Hedges discovering that someone, presumably an atheist, had taken a piss in his cheerios.
The author of American Fascists has a new book out titled “I don’t believe in Atheists” and Alternet decided to publish an article by Hedges that’s just a stone’s throw from being completely unhinged. Well, that’s a lie actually. There’s not a trace of anything that suggests the article was ever hinged to begin with.
Did you know that we modern atheists “embrace a belief system as intolerant, chauvinistic and bigoted as that of religious fundamentalists” who want to see to the “silencing or eradication” of those who disagree with us?
Yes, it was news to me also. I suppose we should notify the leaders of the Gay Agenda that they aren’t the only ones out to destroy civilization itself.
I got a nice surprise this morning. Judith Hayes has reopened her site after being absent these last couple of years and will once again be writing her excellent columns. You can check out some of her older columns here .
An excerpt from her new column “What’s Your Favorite Bible Verse“:
… we are definitely heading toward a theocracy—a Protestant, Christian one naturally. If I’m wrong about that, how can the above quotes exist?
Making it all the more ominous is the fact that Mike Huckabee won in the Iowa Caucus.
The numbers are frightening because of what Huckabee stands for. To say he’s a Christian fundamentalist is not news. Evangelical? Same. Insane? Possibly. When you read the following keep in mind that as a citizen Huckabee certainly has the right to believe anything he wants to believe. But to think that so many American citizens believe that a man with his brand of faith should be the Leader of the Free World is astonishing and scary.
I’ve been an “out” atheist since I was a teenager when I was put on the spot about the truthfulness of the Bible. Having grown up in the backwater areas of the United States the only other atheists I knew were my brothers and my dad. I was in my early twenties and half way around the world before I met another atheist.
I’ve met other atheists (real life, not online) since then, but the pendulum remained squarely on the theistic side for the most part. Then September 11, 2001 rolled around and Muslim extremists finally succeeded in their attempts to bring the World Trade Center down. Since then atheists have been coming out of the wood work, especially here in America.
Sam Harris’s The End of Faith, published in August of 2005, became a rallying point and a best seller. Before long he was joined by others and in what seems like a blink of an eye, the atheist movement had arrived and has been growing ever since.
I, for one, am sick of the movement. It seems to me that it is populated by assholes. No, I am not talking about Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins or the other horsemen. I’m talking about the people who’ve decided that there are two kinds of atheists. The “good” kind of atheist they just happen to be and everybody else.
The ‘everybody else’ group is populated by atheists the “good” atheists have deemed unacceptable for a variety of reasons. They’re described as hostile, irrational, unreasonable, dogmatic, ignorant, “just like the [favorite disliked group of theists]” and so on and so forth.
In the real world, such shit is, at the very least, extremely rude, but in the “movement” this good vs. bad atheist mentality is the golden rule. Why? Because I’ve gotten several comments/emails about how “atheist whoever” and/or “atheistic whatever” is an affront to the “movement”.
I expect this from theists as it’s the old ‘divide & conquer’ tactic and dismiss it on the spot. With other atheists though, I’ve decided to see where this comes from and it’s my firm opinion that the problem is the “movement”.