Nope. I Won’t Sign Your Petition

Twice in the last few days Iwas accosted by someone and asked to sign a petition to overturn California’s law requiring schools to allow transgender students to use the “other” bathroom. I politely declined but it got me thinking.

To what extent should we allow ourselves to be inconvenienced by other people’s “needs?” Should we tell transgender students to just “deal with it” or should we¬†try to accommodate?

So, I got to thinking about all the other people we spend money, time, and effort to accommodate. There is the ADA act. (Americans with Disabilities Act). This law is the bane of many a landlord. By virtue of law, it is illegal to not provide wheelchair access, hand rails, and on and on ad nauseum. Rarely do we encounter a property owner who discovers they have to remodel bathrooms, re-pour concrete steps, build ramps, install rails, lighting and a whatever else just because someone in a wheelchair might want to come in their building! Utterly rediculous, but is it? Personally, I am happy we make ourselves do these things for the very small minority who really needs that helping hand.

The transgender issue in schools fits the same pattern. We are talking about a very small minority who have very specific needs and challenges. Is it really going to overturn society to allow them to use the bathroom they choose? Are we really that fragile?

What about all the trouble that goes into helping students with severe allergies? Is that wrong? Are we ruining ourselves because we keep peanut butter sandwiches away? Really? Of course, there are those who think evolution should be allowed to take its course and “deal” with them, but that is precisely the position I am arguing against.

What disturbed me even more is that both times I was asked to sign the petition, it was within a Christian context. Now that is even more wrong. I have to ask that irritating question, What would Jesus do? Do you really think he would sign the petition? Really?

Think about a time in the past when the government protected the rights of Churches to forbid dogs in the sanctuary. Anyone with a little internet search can look at all the places in the Bible where it talks about dogs, and it’s not very good. Nowhere does the Bible say we can bring dogs into church. In fact it even says that if you sell a dog, you can’t use that money to make your offering (just like you can’t give God the proceeds of your whoring–Deuteronomy 23:18). Dogs are unclean, marginalized, and represent wicked people.

Now think about the first time a blind person brought a seeing-eye dog to church! Believe it or not, it required LEGISLATION to force churches, schools, stores, restaurants, etc. to allow these dogs. Now it is illegal to forbid entrance to a public space to someone who is using a service dog.

Can’t you hear the conservatives howling? This place is going to be overrun with dogs. Every kid who has a mongrel is going to bring it to church! They are going to pee on the posts! We’re going to have dog hair in the communion wine! And, furthermore God says dogs are unclean!!! We are going to stand on the Bible! It is our religious right to keep them out. Of course we LOVE blind people, we just don’t like their dogs. Blind people are welcome, we love them, just leave your dog at home! Love the blind man and hate the dog–what’s wrong with that? And on and on…

Fortunately those arguments ultimately fail every time they are trotted out. They will fail again. Transgender people are part of our human family. I believe it our human duty and Christian obligation to love and protect and even allow ourselves to be inconvenienced if it helps them feel more safe and secure.

That is why I won’t sign the petition.

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Intelligent Design and Paganism

Way back when, gods did everything. They made it rain. They made babies grow in tummies. They caused war. They brought famine or harvest. They made us, they killed us, they made us happy or sad. Gods did everything. And, they MADE everything.

Ancient cultures all have their gods, festivals, and rituals. These ancient gods also wanted things from us–or at least we might gain their attention and favor by offering sacrifices or doing things.

Christianity sees itself very much superior to this primitive way of thinking, because Christians have just one God who does everything all those other gods used to do. So, Christianity calls all these other religions and gods “PAGAN.” (Intended to be a pejorative.)

My theory is the common thread among all these pagan gods is their worship and cult was based on ignorance. Just as soon as we figured out what makes rain, the gods stopped doing that. When we figured out what causes disease, it suddenly was no longer gods, spirits, or spells. It was bacteria, viruses, and biology. Floods, harvest, war all were found to have natural causes with natural explanations. Suddenly the gods were disenfranchised.

Ever since the Enlightenment, gods and God have been on a steady retreat. Every time science discovers a means to explain yet another “miracle,” God is forced to step backwards.

Envision if you will, a spherical blob hanging in space. This represents human knowledge. Every day, every moment, the blob expands in some direction, in multiple directions. It started very small, but its size increases exponentially through time. Some even predict its expansion will be infinite. Now, think about everything that is just beyond the outer borders of this “knowledge blob.” That’s where God lives. God is simply what we don’t understand.

God is ignorance. That part of knowledge we do not yet possess is where God is and is what God does. Who started the Big Bang? We don’t know, so Intelligent Design Pagans say “God did.” Who pre-existed the Big Bang? We don’t know. Neither do the Intelligent Design Pagans, so they say it was God. Who “designed” the universe? We don’t know. That knowledge does not exist, so who is it? Of course, it’s God. The God of the Gaps or Ignorance.

Follow the logic. Everything that is unknown is attributed by Intelligent Design advocates as being the purview of God. The Intelligent Design movement has simply taken the ancient pagan notion that gods are the powers greater than us, they have warmed it over by adding a ton of informational pseudo-science and called it “Intelligent Design.”

It’s not intelligent. It’s just ancient ignorance writ new and writ large. And it’s Paganism. They worship what they don’t know. Being ignorant makes them feel small, so God must be out there somewhere, (because certainly God is not anywhere we can see), and that is somehow comforting.

The next time you are bothered by an Intelligent Design argument, pose the question: So, if ancient paganism was simply human beings creating gods to be place-holders for their ignorance, how is that different from your Intelligent Design idea that suggests the great complexity of the Universe we don’t understand or can’t imagine how it came to be is the work of an unseen Designer? Isn’t Intelligent Design simply a fancy new term for Paganism?


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Mars Curiosity Confirms Noah’s Flood

PASADENA, CA–The Mars Curiosity project released photos earlier today which some say provide stunning proof for the accuracy of the Bible. Images taken from the surface of earth’s nearest neighbor clearly show geological strata or layers very similar to those seen on earth.

Biblical apologists and defenders of a literal interpretation of the Creation and Flood stories in Genesis have long pointed to stratified rock formations as clear proof of a world-wide flood. Natural geological phenomena like the Grand Canyon and Bryce Canyon are cited as dramatic examples of geological layering that would have formed as the turbulent waters of the flood settled. Rapid erosion is said to have occurred in the Canyons as the flood waters receded.

The pictures created quite a sensation at the JPL Laboratories in Pasadena, CA. Dr. Bill Evenything, one of the supporting engineers on the Mars Curiosity project said “There are a lot of surprised people around here! When we saw those pictures come in, you could hear the gasps, and then you could hear all the atheists in the room start scratching their heads and rubbing their chins.”

“Now we can look at another planet and clearly see the same evidence. This is truly amazing!” said Dr. Morrey Henris, “I look at those pictures and ask my self how anyone today can doubt the Biblical record.”

In an interview, Dr. Henris went on to describe how Creation Scientists will now have the opportunity to revise their theories on how Noah’s flood actually took place. The first suggestion is that of course, the flood waters reached much higher than 40 feet above the mountains, and engulfed the red planet. “There are other theories already being floated” said Dr. Henris, “One of them being that the flood waters actually left this earth and went to Mars, which would explain where all that water went.”

Another theory is that the flood waters engulfed the planet Mars first, and then came to this earth. This would explain what the Bible means when it speaks of the “windows of heaven” being opened to create the downpour of the flood.

Reaction from Christian leaders has been equally enthusiastic. “Many people had thought the Mars Curosity mission would provide data that supports Darwin’s theory of Evolution. Today they were proved wrong. The Bible is true! There in front of our eyes is evidence of Noah’s flood!!!” said Dr. Crane Leg, a prominent Christian apologist.

Christian theologian and defender, Dr. Ravishing Zacharia said “We now must ask, what does this mean? Of course this is good news. But as with so many other Biblical truths there is bad news to go with it. That is the beauty of the Gospel. We must now ask does the blood of Jesus cover Mars as well? Did the grace of God provide a Noah for the planet Mars? These are important questions! God is so good.”

Discussion continues among Creationists as to which will be found first, the Noah’s ark of earth or the ark of Mars.

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I like being under cover

It is fun. My Christian credentials are still in tact. I can debate Christians from the inside, never making the direct atheist argument, but destroying faith’s foundations.

This week I ran into an evangelical guy who was very confident about Truth. It is singular. It is knowable. It is universal; and best of all he’s got it!

I directed the conversation toward ethics and then said, “I wish so much that Abraham had said to God, ‘No, I am not going to do that. Human sacrifice is unethical, filicide is unethical, and I don’t care who you are, I am not going to commit an evil act.” You should have seen his face! He was stunned at the idea that Abram and God were unethical!

I continued, “What if, Abraham failed the REAL test?” (Now my double-agent-speak begins) “What if God, being good, WANTED Abraham to say NO? What if he was supposed to decline? Unfortunately he didn’t. He took the boy, went to the mountain and was about to plunge the knife into Isaac’s heart when God finally stopped him. This was a complete ethical failure.” My friend was shaken. He’s going to do some thinking now.

The advantage of being under cover is that what I say is not immediately discarded in the atheist filter. My only problem is, what about the ethics of doing this? That’s what bothers me.

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A Better Gospel

Atheist ethics are better than Christianity. Rather than trying to tell Christians they are wrong and God doesn’t exist, our message needs to be a positive statement of ethics and morality based on nature.

Christians claim to have better ethics, better morality. Without God we would all be evil. This is nonsense of course. Atheism has the better ethical claim, but how do we convince Christians of this point?

I believe it is easier to persuade someone of a better idea rather than convincing them they are wrong. We need to “sell” Christians the better ethic. Once they buy it, God is doomed.

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Launched My Site

This week I opened my Twitter account to start sharing my ideas about Atheism. It’s tough to fit everything into 160 characters, so this is where I will elaborate!

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