Addicted to Hate

Way to go, Republicans and the ADL:

While a high-profile battle rages over a mosque near ground zero in Manhattan, heated confrontations have also broken out in communities across the country where mosques are proposed for far less hallowed locations.

In Murfreesboro, Tenn., Republican candidates have denounced plans for a large Muslim center proposed near a subdivision, and hundreds of protesters have turned out for a march and a county meeting.

In late June, in Temecula, Calif., members of a local Tea Party group took dogs and picket signs to Friday prayers at a mosque that is seeking to build a new worship center on a vacant lot nearby.

In Sheboygan, Wis., a few Christian ministers led a noisy fight against a Muslim group that sought permission to open a mosque in a former health food store bought by a Muslim doctor.

At one time, neighbors who did not want mosques in their backyards said their concerns were over traffic, parking and noise — the same reasons they might object to a church or a synagogue. But now the gloves are off.

In all of the recent conflicts, opponents have said their problem is Islam itself. They quote passages from the Koran and argue that even the most Americanized Muslim secretly wants to replace the Constitution with Islamic Shariah law.

Republicans, teabaggers, Palinite mouthbreathers and the talibangelicals unite to get their hate on. The best part about this is that all of these folks just love to quote the Constitution, as they work overtime to deny their fellow citizens the protections afforded to all Americans:

Recently, a small group of activists became alarmed about the mosque. Diana Serafin, a grandmother who lost her job in tech support this year, said she reached out to others she knew from attending Tea Party events and anti-immigration rallies. She said they read books by critics of Islam, including former Muslims like Walid Shoebat, Wafa Sultan and Manoucher Bakh. She also attended a meeting of the local chapter of ACT! for America, a Florida-based group that says its purpose is to defend Western civilization against Islam.

“As a mother and a grandmother, I worry,” Ms. Serafin said. “I learned that in 20 years with the rate of the birth population, we will be overtaken by Islam, and their goal is to get people in Congress and the Supreme Court to see that Shariah is implemented. My children and grandchildren will have to live under that.”

“I do believe everybody has a right to freedom of religion,” she said. “But Islam is not about a religion. It’s a political government, and it’s 100 percent against our Constitution.”

Sigh.

The ADL is nowhere to be found, which, considering their recent shameful stance in the NYC mosque, is probably a good thing. If Foxman were to speak up, it would be to help the teabaggers make protest signs.






243 replies
  1. 1
    stuckinred says:

    But, but the French are worse!

  2. 2
    Elizabelle says:

    I was so glad to see you all tear into the ADL on this one a few days back.

    Thought I was alone in my anti-semitism. You know, because I can see another side to the mosque issue and believe in freedom of religion.

    My bad.

  3. 3
    Kate says:

    In Temeculah, only one dog actually made it to the “rally”, the instigator went into hiding weeks before the event and the turnout of mosque supporters outnumbered the protestors 10-1. Yay the fruits and nuts of California!

  4. 4
    El Cid says:

    There have also been suggestions to have public Quraan burning ceremonies, to show of course how much they treasure the 1st Amendment, respect religion, and love Jesus so much that they’ll fucking kill you if you don’t understand how much Jesus wuvs you.

  5. 5
    Scott says:

    Christianity in America is a dead religion.

  6. 6
    MikeBoyScout says:

    See, there is really no good reason to spend money on public libraries. It is not like folks go to read and learn.

    Race to the bottom! weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

  7. 7
    Snarla says:

    Hey, mother/grandmother, islamophobes have been crying about the Islamization of Europe for at least fifteen years and Europe’s still only 3% Muslim. So take a deep breath, you reactionary sucker.

  8. 8
    licensed to kill time says:

    These people are playing with fire in unleashing the Hounds of Hate. Let’s hope we don’t ALL get burned.

  9. 9
    MeDrewNotYou says:

    “As a mother and a grandmother, I worry,” Ms. Serafin said. “I learned that in 20 years with the rate of the birth population, we will be overtaken by Islam, and their goal is to get people in Congress and the Supreme Court to see that Shariah is implemented. My children and grandchildren will have to live under that.”

    As a young person, I worry. People like you have foisted all their problems on my generation and have contributed to our fucked up discourse. Why don’t you let young non-bigots/racists/etc. deal with all those scary brown people? These are issues that you assholes can’t get right that we won’t mind dealing with. In the meantime, shut the hell up.

    John- I’m depressed by the world, and I suspect I’m not alone. How about some reunion photos, especially of Tunch, to brighten things up?

  10. 10
    Glenn Beck's Chalkboard says:

    There is a new mosque being built in my county, near Houston, Texas. It’s only the second, mind you, in a county of almost 300,000 people, and yet the crazies are entirely out in force. A story in the local paper drew over 30 comments, every single one of the them nasty and ill-informed, even from some of the regular commenters who are normally sane.

  11. 11
    Davis X. Machina says:

    The mosque in North Quincy, MA is 200 yards from where the Navy built warships for most of the 20th century, and no one seemed to mind, least of all the admittedly small number of Muslim workers in the shipyard, who surely found it convenient.

    If only we had known, and torn down the mosque, WWII would have ended in ’44 and the Cold War in ’58.

    The community dates back to the end of WWI, it took them 30-40 years to get a permanent home, but that was the Depression mostly.

  12. 12
    beltane says:

    @Scott: American Christianity is a bastardized zombie of its former self. It teaches that if you worship greed, and throw stones at the enemies of the Republican party, Jeebus will reward you with a big shiny pick-up truck, a $100,000 Wal-Mart shopping spree, and the biggest TV in your whole subdivision.

  13. 13
    jrg says:

    I learned that in 20 years with the rate of the birth population, we will be overtaken by Islam

    Now that’s some advanced wingnut mathemtology.

  14. 14
    Keith G says:

    The thing is, we really could use a bold leader to launch a campaign to call out this terrible and destructive misbehavior. To borrow (with liberties) from Burke: All that is necessary for this type of hatred and bigotry to triumph of is that the people who say they love justice to do nothing.

    Seems that we do have a leader who might want to get of his ass (on this topic) and…err…lead.

  15. 15
    beltane says:

    @Snarla: The whole “20 year” thing is laughable. If it comes to pass in Europe it will only be because people there have abandoned Christianity entirely, making Islam the most practiced faith, even if it only represents a tiny percentage of the population.

  16. 16
    Mike S says:

    Anybody else having issues with the front page? The text runs wide right and is covered up by the ads and links. No issue within the comment page though.

  17. 17
    stuckinred says:

    @Keith G: Yea, it would be really smart of Obama to make this issue the centerpiece of his administration.

  18. 18
    beltane says:

    @Keith G: The only leader these people would listen to is Glenn Beck. You surely don’t mean to imply that they would listen our KenyanNaziIslamofascist president.

  19. 19
    Pixie says:

    I live in Murfreesboro, tn and I am happy to say there are just as many people FOR the mosque as against it and we are JUST as vocal. It seems to be the same core crazy folks leading the opposition.

  20. 20
    Mark S. says:

    Diana Serafin, come on down! You are stupidest person on the planet!

  21. 21
  22. 22
    Brachiator says:

    Republicans, teabaggers, Palinite mouthbreathers and the talibangelicals unite to get their hate on. The best part about this is that all of these folks just love to quote the Constitution, as they work overtime to deny their fellow citizens the protections afforded to all Americans

    I guess this bullshit is consistent with the tea bagger mythology that the Constitution is really a lost book of the Bible, Revised Standard Christians Only Version.

  23. 23
    Gravenstone says:

    Woot, Shebaghdad gets a name check in the NY freakin’ Times! I’ll be that gives the local wingnuts a warm fuzzy. People may view WI as a blue state, but around here it’s scarily conservatard blended with aggressively stupid.

  24. 24
    dmsilev says:

    I’ll bet if someone asked that “mother and grandmother” whether she thought of herself as prejudiced, you’d get an emphatic “No, of course not” as a response.

    dms

  25. 25
    Frank says:

    @Scott:

    Christianity in America is a dead religion.

    Yup, no doubt about it. Pat Robertson advocated the assassination of a democratically elected official in a foreign country a few years ago.

    There was a poll a few years ago that showed far more Catholics approved of torturing terrorists (how do they know they are terrorists if they haven’t been convicted?) than compared to atheists.

    Or how about the war in Iraq? The Pope from Rome strongly opposed it, while Christians in this country were all for it. Heck, the so called Prophet of the Mormon church in Utah came out for it.

    So much for the “love your enemies” and “turn the other cheek”. These fake Christians in our country are a cult and have nothing to do with the real teachings of Christ.

  26. 26
  27. 27
    beltane says:

    @Frank: I’m not 100% certain that I am an atheist, but I chose to call myself an atheist just to avoid the moral taint of being associated in any way, shape or form with the Christianists.

  28. 28
    scav says:

    Bless their little hearts, they’re trying to strong-arm their own precious law of god into the laws of state and nation and see a reflection of themselves every night under their beds. No wonder their sheets are wet when they put them on.

  29. 29
    LiberalTarian says:

    @Elizabelle:

    Try this again, and try to be coherent. WTF are you saying?? I’m confused by your double back sideways jujitsu lack of actual wordplay.

  30. 30
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @dmsilev: Isn’t “mother and grandmother” redundant? Doesn’t one need to be a mother in order to become a grandmother?

  31. 31
    Frank says:

    @beltane:

    I’m not 100% certain that I am an atheist, but I chose to call myself an atheist just to avoid the moral taint of being associated in any way, shape or form with the Christianists.

    I hear you. While I still consider myself a Christian (that’s how I was raised), I would never attend a Christian church.

  32. 32
    EconWatcher says:

    I checked over at The Corner today, and Andy McCarthy and Jonah Goldberg seemed to be having a disagreement with a less liberal guy (!!!) about the Cordoba Project. Not about whether the mosque and community center should be built, mind you–all were in vigorous agreement that it’s an outrage.

    No, the debate was over whether allowing it would be (1) a desecration, or rather (2) an actual surrender to Bin Laden. McCarthy and Goldberg took the position that it’s a bit too extreme to call it an actual surrender to Bin Laden, while of course it would be a desecration.

    I recently made some ill-advised comments on this blog about how the Corner was not quite as uniformly crazy as some here might think. I’m sorry. So, so sorry.

  33. 33
    LiberalTarian says:

    @Frank: Yeah, it’s pretty depressing.

  34. 34
  35. 35
    Keith G says:

    @stuckinred: I think that ya gotta stand for something. Great men and women seem to find a way to lead on important issues. Maybe we are just saddled with the less than great.

    Besides, does it need to be the center piece? Maybe it does.

    @beltane: I am not thinking about that crowd. I am thinking about the other 70%. These are people who are likely to listen to strong, thoughtful voices appealing to the better angels of their nature.

    Yeah, not a sure thing by any means, but where the fuck are we if we let this infection grow?

  36. 36
    Keith G says:

    @Keith G: Where the Houston area mosque is causing concern.

  37. 37
    dadanarchist says:

    “As a mother and a grandmother, I worry,” Ms. Serafin said. “I learned that in 20 years with the rate of the birth population, we will be overtaken by Islam Mormons.”

    Fixed!

    More proof these people are nuts – Muslims are 0.8% of the American population. I’m not good at math, but it would be fascinating for someone to reverse engineer Ms. Serafin’s ignorant bigotry and figure out exactly how many children American Muslims would have to have to “overtake” us in “20 years.”

  38. 38
    Keith G says:

    Glenn Beck’s Chalkboard: which community is the mosque being built.

    FYWP

  39. 39
    Roger Moore says:

    I think you, and the media, are largely misreading this. The anti-muslims aren’t going national with the hate because they’re strong. They’re doing it because they’re weak. They no longer have enough strength locally to block mosques, even in relatively wingnutty places. The haters are going down kicking and screaming bloody murder, but make no mistake, in this case they’re going down.

  40. 40
    ellaesther says:

    This seems like a great place to once again pimp something I put together on Friday:

    A very small collection of the many, many unequivocal statements/fatwas/etc that Muslims have made rejecting extremism and violence over the past decade*.

    Muslim responses to extremism.

    I ask quite genuinely that you pass it on, not to improve my page views but because I think that far too many people still believe that nothing like this has been said by anyone.

    *plus a little from the Qur’an and the Prophet Muhammad.

  41. 41
    beltane says:

    @dadanarchist: And what would building a mosque have to do with this anyway? It’s not like they’re having babies in mosques. How long will it be until the Right voices their more common response to perceived demographic threats?

  42. 42
    MattF says:

    I guess we can drop the ‘neo’ from ‘neo-Fascist’. And I’ve got a question for Mr. Foxman: “What, exactly, do you think the word ‘defamation’ means?”

  43. 43
    ellaesther says:

    @Gravenstone: “aggressively stupid.”

    I’m sad to think just how many people that phrase describes.

  44. 44
    GeorgeSalt says:

    The best part about this is that all of these folks just love to quote the Constitution, as they work overtime to deny their fellow citizens the protections afforded to all Americans

    Earlier this year, when the Glenn Beck and his followers started talking about repealing the 17th Amendment (direct election of Senators) I knew that was a warm-up for their real objective — to repeal the 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments. They want to go back to the Constitution of the pre-Civil War era, or perhaps the Constitution of the Confederate States of America.

  45. 45
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    @stuckinred:

    But, but the French are worse!

    They’re really not.

    There are mosques all over the place.

    And, since I know what you’re probably referring to, you should read this.

    There was a march a few years ago by Muslims about the idea of a ban – they were marching because they support it.

    Not all do of course, and it’s controversial to be sure, but opinion is not divided up the way people might assume.

  46. 46
    Ash Can says:

    It would be nice if there were some organization around today that did what the ADL originally did. The ADL is dead, and no other organization has stepped in to fill the void it has left. That’s the worst thing about the ADL’s demise.

  47. 47
    stuckinred says:

    @Keith G: “Maybe we are just saddled with the less than great.”

    “At such moments, accomplished elder statesmen invariably quote Zhou Enlai’s answer in 1971 when he was asked for his view of the significance of the French revolution: “It’s a little too soon to say.”

  48. 48
    Corner Stone says:

    @Keith G:

    Where the Houston area mosque is causing concern.

    There’s a MOSQUE…in H-TOWN?!
    To the TorchMobile!

  49. 49
    stuckinred says:

    @Bill E Pilgrim: So I should have said Sarkosy?

  50. 50
    Corner Stone says:

    @Keith G:

    Maybe we are just saddled with the less than great.

    Moor like equivocators and accommodationists. Or should I say “pragmatists”?

  51. 51
    inkadu says:

    In late June, in Temecula, Calif., members of a local Tea Party group took dogs and picket signs to Friday prayers at a mosque that is seeking to build a new worship center on a vacant lot nearby.

    Do Muslims have problems with dogs? Or is this a German-Shepherds-at-a-civil-rights-rally kind of thing?

  52. 52
    Bruce (formerly Steve S.) says:

    I think that the anti-Cordoba people can froth about this all they want, as long as the thing gets built anyway. In fact, provided that they don’t somehow put a stop to it I think it might be beneficial for the anti-Cordoba buffoons to get as worked up as they possibly can and then look back on this episode ten years from now.

    BTW, I’ll marry the Muslim girl at the bottom of the page if her dowry is big enough.

  53. 53
    And Another Thing... says:

    @beltane: As proof of the ascendancy of Islam Mark Steyn uses as evidence the frequency of the birth name Mohammad. At my NYC apartment building, 3 of the 4 regular doorman are named Mohammad, including 2 who are brothers. Steyn & his fellow travelers are certain we’re all going to be murdered in our beds. It’s enough to make you question of the wisdom of democracy as a form of government.

  54. 54
    Bubblegum Tate says:

    @jrg:

    She’s a scientician!

  55. 55
    Keith G says:

    @Corner Stone: The Dawa Center is in a rather impressive and imposing 1930’s bank building.

  56. 56
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    @stuckinred: That works.

    Actually, to tell you the truth, I’d give even him an edge on these fools I read about in the stuff John posted here.

    As has been pointed out many times by me and others, despite being hideously right wing, if Sarkozy were plopped down in the US system he’s be a Clinton Democrat, basically. Except that Clinton was pro-death penalty which puts him to the right of Sarko. Considerably, actually, that’s an extreme right position even ol Sarko wouldn’t touch. You can’t compare straight across is the point really, but I find that it’s pretty telling as a thought experiment.

    Trivia: Sarkozy in Hungarian means “between the mud” and is pronounced with a sh sound for the s which makes it sound related to “shark” when my Hungarian friend says his name.

  57. 57
    cmorenc says:

    Where is ex-President George Bush when, for once, we actually need him to come out of retirement and make a similar public stand as he did shortly after 9/11 that the proper focus is NOT against Muslims or Mosques, but only against an aberrant minority of them in a few selected places who are violently inclined toward terrorism? This is about the ONLY situation where I miss *that* all-too-brief version of George Bush and where he could be genuinely useful back on the national stage, and he’s totally AWOL. Just like back in his military days – an empty flight suit.

  58. 58

    I think it was Doug who first posted:

    Religious bigotry is religious bigotry is religious bigotry.

    However, just because the ADL went to hell that does not constitute proof that all the other Jews in the community are bigots.

    Also, just because a number of fundamentalist Christians went to hell does not constitute proof that all others are bigots.

    I think that now would be a good time to judge people individually. Or, as Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “by the content of their character”.

  59. 59
    ellaesther says:

    @inkadu: There’s a cultural discomfort in Islam with dogs. I don’t know that it rises to the level of a religious edict, but as a really broad (probably too broad) rule, Muslims don’t cotton to dogs.

    There’s this odd tension in Iran, in fact, over the fact that lately many wealthy women keep those wee, little toy dogs that get carried around a lot, and more traditional types think that’s just not right, etc.

  60. 60
    licensed to kill time says:

    @inkadu:

    Dogs are considered unclean by many, not all Muslims.

  61. 61
    Corner Stone says:

    @Keith G: I know, I pass it all the time.

  62. 62
    ksmiami says:

    Actually, at this point in history, I find all religion dangerous except for buddhism which is really more of a lifestyle / cultural way. If it were up to me, I would buy out all the churches / synagogues etc and turn them into shopping centers, day spas, charities and fitness clubs.

    But

    you have to be very self-confident and mentally strong to be an atheist and I am not sure most people could really handle it.

  63. 63
    IM says:

    Congress and the Supreme Court

    What is missing? Well there is obviously already a muslim in the White House!

    Take heart: A country electing someone named Baruch Hussein president can’t be that bad.

  64. 64
    Brachiator says:

    @inkadu:

    Do Muslims have problems with dogs?

    There is some bizarre tea bagger mythology that dogs are to Muslims what crosses and garlic are to vampires.

  65. 65
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    @ksmiami:

    I find all religion dangerous except for buddhism

    Zen koans in the hands of the uninitiated can wreak havoc. You’re supposed to stay away from the brown ones but do people listen?

  66. 66
    licensed to kill time says:

    @Bill E Pilgrim:

    What is the sound of one tea bagging?

  67. 67
    Bruce (formerly Steve S.) says:

    @ksmiami:

    you have to be very self-confident and mentally strong to be an atheist

    I’m afraid I don’t understand this.

  68. 68
    QuaintIrene says:

    “As a mother and a grandmother, I worry,” Ms. Serafin said.

    I don’t know how old this chick is, but did she also believe that if we elected a Catholic president, the pope would run the country?

  69. 69
    MTiffany says:

    They quote passages from the Koran and argue that even the most Americanized Muslim secretly wants to replace the Constitution with Islamic Shariah law.

    The Christian Dominionists (aka Republitards) are just afraid that the Muslims will beat them to the punch.

  70. 70
    sven says:

    @dadanarchist: Lots of people are mocking this quote:

    “As a mother and a grandmother, I worry,” Ms. Serafin said. “I learned that in 20 years with the rate of the birth population, we will be overtaken by Islam, and their goal is to get people in Congress and the Supreme Court to see that Shariah is implemented. My children and grandchildren will have to live under that.”

    Ms. Serafin is clearly parroting a totally inaccurate claim which has been widely debunked. However, the NYTimes has now done worse, it has published the same claim without rebuttal. If the author believes any reader will just know the claim is ridiculous, Ms. Serafin herself is proof to the contrary.

    As with so many other stories, the Times here seems to think journalism is allowing both sides to air their opinion but Ms. Serafin is not just expressing an opinion, she is making a claim which can be evaluated.

  71. 71

    @Snarla:

    Hey, mother/grandmother, islamophobes have been crying about the Islamization of Europe for at least fifteen years and Europe’s still only 3% Muslim. So take a deep breath, you reactionary sucker.

    As Charles Johnson’s been pointing out over at LGF, the American anti-Islam bigots have just been borrowing their talking points from Europe’s anti-Islam bigots, so it’s no wonder they’re a little stale.

  72. 72
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    Actually in terms of sheer numbers, you’d think they’d be more panicked about yoga classes taking over the country.

    Or maybe they are? They should be, if I were a Republican the last thing I’d want people to be is flexible and relaxed.

  73. 73
    FoxinSocks says:

    Some Muslims have issues with dogs. I’m not an expert, but Islam is a religion of cat lovers. The Prophet had cats, we actually know the name of at least one of them (Muezza), and there’s a wonderful story about his cat falling asleep on his robe and the Prophet cutting off that piece of the robe rather than disturb the cat.

    Most of the anti-dog stuff comes from one of the Prophet’s followers, whose name translates roughly into Man Who Loves Kittens. He said that an angel would not come into a home that had a dog in it, because dogs were unclean. So said Kitten Man. But I believe there’s a passage in the Koran that suggests otherwise and in my experience, whether a Muslim likes dogs or not is a matter of personal preference.

    A family friend isn’t a dog lover to begin with, so he uses his religion as a reason to keep away from dogs. Then again, the very devout Muslim family who used to live nearby would always run up to play with my giant black slobbery dog, so it all depends on the person.

    Interestingly enough, the government of Iran bans all dogs that don’t provide a service, such as hunting or protection, which has caused an illegal dog trade in the country and a lot of people claiming their pet Chihuahua is really a vicious guard dog.

  74. 74
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    @licensed to kill time: Tea for one?

  75. 75
    suzanne says:

    God. I just woke up, and now I’m already all pissed off.

    I’m a supporter of the Coffee Party, and they sent around a “Civility Pledge” on Facebook yesterday. I refused to sign it. I refuse to treat these people as if they didn’t just commit the ideological equivalent of shitting on my front lawn.

    Fuck being nice to these people. Once you show what a horrible, hateful bigot you are, you deserve to be shunned from polite society.

  76. 76

    @inkadu: Islam in general considers dogs to be impure animals, and many Muslims won’t have dogs in their houses; IIRC, this was a big deal a few years back in Iraq because American soldiers were conducting house searches using Alsatians.

  77. 77

    @Roger Moore:

    I think you, and the media, are largely misreading this. The anti-muslims aren’t going national with the hate because they’re strong. They’re doing it because they’re weak. They no longer have enough strength locally to block mosques, even in relatively wingnutty places. The haters are going down kicking and screaming bloody murder, but make no mistake, in this case they’re going down.

    The only thing that keeps me out of the clock tower is the belief that what we’re witnessing are death throes, and not a movement in resurgence.

  78. 78
    Frank says:

    @Linda Featheringill:

    Also, just because a number of fundamentalist Christians went to hell does not constitute proof that all others are bigots. I think that now would be a good time to judge people individually. Or, as Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “by the content of their character”.

    It sure would be nice if people that refer to themselves as Christians had the same mindset. This community center near Ground Zero is a perfect example of that. Just because some Muslim extremists are bad, it doesn’t mean that all Muslims are bad.

    But I have driven by the closest church to our house. I saw a bumper sticker at the church parking lot saying “First Iraq, then France”.
    Seriously, I want nothing to do with that church.

  79. 79
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Anton Sirius:

    As Charles Johnson’s been pointing out over at LGF, the American anti-Islam bigots have just been borrowing their talking points from Europe’s anti-Islam bigots, so it’s no wonder they’re a little stale.

    What’s neat is that you don’t even need to change the ranting about the gates of Vienna, or at the most add “and Reston”.

  80. 80
    Bill Murray says:

    Tom the Dancing Bug had a similar cartoon this week (August 6)

    http://www.gocomics.com/tomthe.....010/08/06/

  81. 81
    Tonal Crow says:

    Ironically, this brouhaha about Islam arises largely from a strongly-religious mindset. Thus, we’re treated to the point-and-laugh spectacle of radical Christianists (e.g., the burn-a-Koran churches) screaming about radical Muslims — and not only that, but treating every Muslim as if he or she’s a radical.

    Strong religious adherence trains the mind to accept rather than to inquire and evaluate. Once the mind is trained in this way, it has no problem accepting — indeed, eagerly seeking — all manner of gibberish, even self-contradictory gibberish. And once the mind seeks gibberish, charlatans can lead it anywhere.

  82. 82
    Amir_Khalid says:

    @And Another Thing…: According to the Guinness Book of World records, Mohammad is the commonest name in the world. And as you’ve observed, it’s quite common for a Muslim boy to be have Mohammad (or some variant like Ahmad, Mahmud, Amadou, etc.) as just one of two or more names. This Mark Steyn has a lot to worry about.

    @ellaesther: But for all these statements, your country’s right wing persists in claiming that Muslims don’t condemn terrorism. I guess that their denial extends wherever it’s convenient for them. And statements like you’ve gathered don’t get much mention in the media. Is it because of pandering to prejudice, or fear of provoking the crazies? Or do mainstream Muslims in America just not know how to get the media’s attention?

  83. 83

    @Corner Stone:

    Moor like equivocators and accommodationists. Or should I say “pragmatists”?

    I’m going to give you credit for the pun and not the typo there.

  84. 84
    Mark S. says:

    She also attended a meeting of the local chapter of ACT! for America, a Florida-based group that says its purpose is to defend Western civilization against Islam.

    I was curious what ACT! for America was. They sound like a fun group.

  85. 85
    Cliff says:

    You know, Serafina here almost hits on a fundamental paradox of liberal society – by its open nature, it has to accept the presence of those who would destroy it.
    Freedom of speech and ideas means that those who would bar freedom of speech and ideas get a voice as well.

    I don’t expect that Serafina can really grasp the idea that the Constitution gives rights to those who hate the Constitution.

    Nor do I expect that she would understand how this applies to her and the other revisionist, Dominionist, Christianist, secessionist Teabaggers.

  86. 86
    Chad N Freude says:

    @QuaintIrene: She probably did in 1960.

  87. 87
    stuckinred says:

    @ksmiami: Ever read Zen at War?

    “Zen at War” is the saddest news of all. No Zen student can help but be devastated by learning that our childhood heroes — Shaku Soen, D.T. Suzuki, Sawaki Kodo, Harada Daiun Sogaku, Yasutani Hakuun, Omori Sogen, Yamada Mumon, and many others — were enthusiastic supporters of Japanese imperialism. Far from calling for peace, far even from serving as a moderating influence, Japanese Buddhist leaders vocally endorsed the killing of Chinese, Korean, American, or any other people who lacked the supposedly superior understanding of the Japanese people. The pseudo-dharma jibberish that these “enlightened masters” put in print to condone murder and cultural exploitation is agonizing to read.

  88. 88
    Bnut says:

    @That Other Mike:

    I’ve never heard someone actually use the term “Alsatian” when describing a german shephard. Is this a regional thing?

  89. 89
    ellaesther says:

    @Amir_Khalid: I think it’s all of these things:

    I guess that their denial extends wherever it’s convenient for them. And statements like you’ve gathered don’t get much mention in the media. Is it because of pandering to prejudice, or fear of provoking the crazies? Or do mainstream Muslims in America just not know how to get the media’s attention?

    I think there’s denial, I think that when a narrative is already in place (“Muslims are exotic and dangerous”) it’s hard to knock loose, I think some people in media pander, I think some people in media don’t think, I think some people in media fear the right, and I think that by-and-large Muslims have failed to successfully get the rest of the media’s attention. Fear does powerful things to a nation.

  90. 90
    Ivan Ivanovich Renko says:

    Another small thing helping push the crazy– some 25% of Muslims in America are African Americans.

  91. 91
    ellaesther says:

    @Ivan Ivanovich Renko: I actually think that fact would come as a real surprise to most non-Muslim Americans. (Not to mention the fact that among Arab-Americans, only 25% are Muslim).

    ETA: Not sure that’s clear! I meant to say: I think most non-Muslim Americans would be surprised to learn that 25% of Muslim Americans are African-American and would also be surprised to learn that 75% of Arab-Americans are in fact not Muslim.

  92. 92
    Tonal Crow says:

    @sven: This. Please write the Times to criticize both this article and its general tendency to print “both sides” gibberish without rebuttal. Email an LTE to letters@nytimes.com , and/or contact the article’s author at http://www.nytimes.com/auth/lo.....index.html .

  93. 93
    Napoleon says:

    @dmsilev:

    I’ll bet if someone asked that “mother and grandmother” whether she thought of herself as prejudiced, you’d get an emphatic “No, of course not” as a response.

    Of course she isn’t, because if you goggle her name you learn she is pure wingnut tea-bagger and they are never prejudiced according to people like Andy Bienbart (sp?).

  94. 94
    Chad N Freude says:

    Everything I know about Islam I learned from reading “The Protocols of the Elders of Mecca”, Gingrich, N. and Palin, S.

  95. 95
    IM says:

    @Bnut:

    I once read -here on the internet – that it is a WW I propaganda term.
    Like liberty cabbage. Or the windsors.

  96. 96
    MikeJ says:

    @IM: Wikipedia sez:

    The direct translation of the name was adopted for use in the official breed registry; however, at the conclusion of World War I, it was believed that the inclusion of the word “German” would harm the breed’s popularity,[15] due to the anti-German sentiment of the era.[16] The breed was officially renamed by the UK Kennel Club to “Alsatian Wolf Dog”[15] which was also adopted by many other international kennel clubs. Eventually, the appendage “wolf dog” was dropped.[15] The name Alsatian remained for five decades,[15] until 1977, when successful campaigns by dog enthusiasts pressured the British kennel clubs to allow the breed to be registered again as German Shepherd Dogs.[5]

  97. 97
    Amir_Khalid says:

    @Napoleon: There’s also the fact that we generally can’t see our own biases, prejudices and bigotries. When they’re pointed out to us, we get defensive: we call them obvious facts of life, or we put up elaborate arguments to defend them, or we accuse the person who confronts us of having the opposite bias. Disabusing ourselves of our prejudices is usually a painful process.

  98. 98
    kdaug says:

    @And Another Thing…: And the meltdown is enough to make you question the wisdom of capitalism…

  99. 99
    Mark S. says:

    @ellaesther:

    Not to mention the fact that among Arab-Americans, only 25% are Muslim

    Really? I would not have guessed that. What are they, Christians? Druze?

  100. 100
    sven says:

    @Tonal Crow: It’s a good point; I write WaPo pretty often but haven’t dinged the Times lately…

  101. 101
    Ella in New Mexico says:

    I pretty much just sigh and dismiss the crazy Christianists who spout their anti-Islam bigotry. It’s a waste of time to argue with these people, because their beliefs border on delusional disorder. These types have been a solid element of the landscape in our country forever, and they always will be here. They’ll have new target for their hate, but they’ll use essentially the same modes of argument and rationalization.

    The ones who really cause me to stop and take a deep breath are the people I know who are normally sane, centered, non-bigoted people who believe some of the anti-Muslim rhetoric. They’ll say, without batting an eye, that they believe in religious freedom but not for Mulims.

    They simply cannot get past the intense fear they have they will be duped by these people, generated by the fact that the 9-11 terrorists, as well as most of the rest of the Islamic terrorism attempters, all “passed” as peaceful, freedom and American-loving people before their deeds. They can’t get over the “secret terrorist cell” aspect of Islamic jihadists. They hold the UK and Europe up as examples where “Terrorists are allowed to Breed in the Midst of Freedom.” They think mosques are just places to train new terrorists, and that we are being foolish to encourage their freedom of religion.

    The other day, a co-worker (who is a nurse in the Air Force reserves, so that probably has a bit of an influence) dropped the “Don’t you think it’s a slap in the face to us if they’re allowed to build a mosque at ground zero?” statement into the normally superficial and light cross conversation that takes place in our insanely busy ICU. I had neither the time nor inclination to get into a long, complex and potentially explosive political answer as to why, No, I didn’t, so I simply answered “No, because I don’t think they are the same people who blew up the Twin Towers and we have freedom of religion in this country.” She responded matter of factly “They shouldn’t . They’ll just create more of them to come blow us up there. It’s only a matter of time.”

    I come to my beliefs about many things because I have studied history and political science. Some things are not obvious to these people because they haven’t done that, but they are not hopelessly lost, like the Christianists. I need a short, sensible, and pithy answers to be able to respond to these people without insulting them or driving them away. Seriously, any suggestions would be nice.

  102. 102
    Gian says:

    @Ash Can:

    I’m waiting for the Southern Poverty Law Center to ID the ADL as a hate group
    but as of this check, not there yet:

    http://www.splcenter.org/get-i.....les/groups

  103. 103
    Redshift says:

    @Frank: I think the biggest mistake made by mainstream Christian churches was not raising a stink when fundamentalists insisted the proper name for themselves was “Christians,” and the media went along with it. A recent profile of Huckabee in the New Yorker contained the ludicrous statement “As recently as the mid-nineteen-sixties, many influential ministers believed that Christians had no place in politics.”

    I mean, WTF? How could any journalist write that sentence and and not understand how ludicrous they sounded echoing fundamentalist propaganda, considering what religion were nearly all politicians in the 1960s?

  104. 104
    kdaug says:

    @Cliff: http://vimeo.com/13788403

    Without further comment.

  105. 105
    kdaug says:

    @Bnut:
    There’s a story (not sure if it’s true) that during WWII people in England and America would go around kicking Daschunds they saw on the street because they were “German dogs”.

    Oddly, they didn’t do the same to German Shepherds.

    (Or perhaps one guy did, and everyone else learned from the example.)

  106. 106
    Chad N Freude says:

    @Redshift: In context, it appears that the reference is to fundamentalist ministers, although I agree that could be made clearer.

  107. 107
    Geeno says:

    @Bnut: That’s actually the proper name for the breed now. The AKC changed it some time back. I believe it’s always been the more common name for the breed in Europe.

  108. 108
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    @MikeJ: AKA “Freedom Dogs”. Basically.

  109. 109
    ellaesther says:

    @Mark S.: Mostly a variety of Christians (the Druze are a very small community, but I would imagine that there are some Druze here as well!).

    A couple of really good sources on the Arab American experience are

    Gregory Orfalea’s excellent (very human and really well researched) Arab Americans: A History: http://www.amazon.com/Arab-Ame.....038;sr=8-1

    And Moustafa Bayoumi’s terrific collection of portraits of individual Arab Americans: How Does It Feel to Be a Problem? Being Young and Arab in America. http://www.amazon.com/Arab-Ame.....038;sr=8-1

  110. 110
    kdaug says:

    @Ella in New Mexico:

    Shallow comfort, I know, but remember that this country was founded by religious zealots who were banished from their home countries for espousing some really wacky ideas. Once here, they promptly set about burning witches at the stake, setting up public “dunking chairs”, banning cats, etc.

    This line of thought has always been here. It exists in the USA’s DNA, and in different forms, in all countries.

    It’s to us to counter it, but it is by no means new. It seems to be a vestigial aspect of our evolution, but in our lifetimes, it’s here to stay.

  111. 111
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @ellaesther:

    I think most non-Muslim Americans would be surprised to learn that 25% of Muslim Americans are African-American and would also be surprised to learn that 75% of Arab-Americans are in fact not Muslim.

    And they would also be very surprised to learn that roughly zero percent of the exceedingly few people they see wearing turbans are Arabs OR Muslims.

  112. 112
    Kryptik says:

    The most infuriating thing is that, in assuming the worst about Muslims and the Muslim world as a whole, these assholes simply express the worst of the American Christian and the Judeo-Christian world. And thus, we get a self-repeating, self-fulfilling cycle that only folks brave enough to buck the hate can stop. And yet we’re told that we’re only truly brave when we’re killing brown people, especially if they’re part of that there Izzlamb cult.

    The problem isn’t whether the mosque will be built. I think, just from pure legal and property standpoints, they won’t be able to stop it. But what they have done, and what the real problem is, is totally poison the discourse and mainstream the narrative of ‘YES, WE ARE AT WAR WITH ISLAM AND WE MUST KILL ALL THOSE BROWN MOTHERFUCKERS TO DEATH’. And in that…they’ve fucking succeeded to such a nasty degree that it makes me want to strangle every single last one of those fuckers for making sane Middle East policy a pipe dream.

  113. 113
    BDR says:

    Tell you what – I’ll get righteously angry at the Republicans campaigning on bigotry when Obama and prominent Democrats denounce them for it, OK?

    It’s not Republican assholosity that’s the problem, it’s Democratic pussiness.

  114. 114
    IM says:

    I think the number of Muslims is complicated by the nation of Islam. A sect that isn’t very islamic, but rather black nationalistic. Do you count them in or not? If you do, there are more muslims, but more of them are black.

    Of course you could also be a black muslim because your ancestors hail from, say, Kenya. :-)

    The number of christian arabs in the middle east much diminished nowadays means that more of them are in the West, especially in the US and Canada. During the first Gulf war the media had much fun with a guy called Saddam Hussein in Canada, a christian arab.

  115. 115
    kdaug says:

    @FlipYrWhig:
    Yeah, that’s the worst part. The knuckle-dragging Neanderthals can’t even get their hate straight. The Sikh who operates my local Stop&Shop had his windows broken out after 9/11… WTF?

  116. 116
    wilfred says:

    Anti-Muslim bigotry is the last acceptable form of bigotry left in the country.

    Imagine if it was synagogues or Black Baptist churches involved here. How much do you want to bet there’d be a national response?

  117. 117
    IM says:

    @BDR:

    That is a bit unfair. Weiner and Shumer are just shy, that is all.

  118. 118
    MeDrewNotYou says:

    @Ella in New Mexico: I thought about this for a little bit. My first instinct is to say that someone who believes that is on the same level of unteachability as the Christianists. Since you know the woman, however, I assume you know enough to think she can be reached. In that case, the only argument I can come up with is that what’s to stop a group from doing the same to her? What if, after a Planned Parenthood bombing, people decide to crackdown on fundamentalist Christians?

    Pretty weak and unconvincing, but if you don’t see how the first amendment is there for everyone, I don’t think any argument is going to work. If you can’t imagine the powers that be ever turning against you, there’s very little that can be done to make you understand the Bill of Rights.

  119. 119
    Mike in NC says:

    It’s not like they’re having babies in mosques.

    But they could be, right? Maybe Senator Graham can launch an investigation into why dozens, maybe even hundreds, of mosques are suddenly being thrown up all across America.

    Could it be that thousands of Muslim women are sneaking across our borders to drop their anchor babies in these mosques every year? Future terrorist training camps!

    Expect to see this theory on wingnut blogs and hate radio in about a week.

  120. 120
    Gregory says:

    Republicans, teabaggers, Palinite mouthbreathers and the talibangelicals

    What’s the difference?

  121. 121
    Mike in NC says:

    25% of Muslim Americans are African-American

    When the teabaggers find this out, they’ll consider it a “twofer”.

  122. 122
    sunsin says:

    @dadanarchist: I did the math roughly a while ago, and though I’m no genius with numbers, it seemed to indicate that EVERY Muslim woman in the States would have to have about 25 children in the next two years for this to be valid (remember, the kids have to grow to voting age after being born). They’d have to mass clone them.

  123. 123
    gwangung says:

    Tell you what – I’ll get righteously angry at the Republicans campaigning on bigotry when Obama and prominent Democrats denounce them for it, OK?

    NOT OK.

    Bigotry is bigotry. You don’t have to wait for anyone else to denounce what’s wrong.

    Don’t be a pussy yourself.

  124. 124
    gwangung says:

    @MeDrewNotYou: Depressing, isn’t it. They’re repeated the EXACT SAME PHRASES as they did against Catholics, Chinese Americans, Japanese Americans and Filipino Americans, and they can’t see what they’re doing.

    It’s easier to drive home the point when I say it, because I have a non-white face to bang it over the head (and Asians are considered honorary whites)(and I use the honorary white card). Dunno how you can do it if you’re the same group…

  125. 125
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    @sunsin:

    would have to have about 25 children in the next two years for this to be valid

    That explains why Sarah Palin is so freaked out about this. It’s not paranoia, it’s projection.

  126. 126
    Martin says:

    @IM: Nation of Islam is pretty Islamic, actually. It varies like any subset of any religion, but I wouldn’t consider them to be a significant outlier. Sunni/Shia are comparably ethnic focused throughout most of the middle east – just look at Iraq.

    Sorry, but 9/11 was just a big excuse by a subset of Christians to get their religious hate on. There’s nothing new here – they’ve treated the Jews, atheists, and other groups the same way. There’s nothing that Islam could do to change it. The crusade never ended, it just got quieter.

  127. 127
    Kryptik says:

    @wilfred:

    The Shirley Sherrod case proves otherwise. Anti-Muslim sentiment just hasn’t moved on to the point where they’d need to couch it in a narrative of ‘Muslims are just counter-prejudiced against Christians!’.

  128. 128
    Yutsano says:

    @sunsin: I for one welcome our new Muslim overlords.

    Also, thread needs more duck.

  129. 129

    Atheists make me very tired with their superiority about their particular religion. Look, assholes – you can no more disprove the existence of a god than the other side can prove it. You can run out all the gibberish psuedo-science you care to and you fail. You hold what you do about a god on the basis of faith and nothing else, all your “rationality” to the side. Your beliefs are as exactly laughable as those you mock.

    I don’t give a good goddam what people want to believe about gods, but I do object to facile bullshit parading as reason. YOU CANNOT PROVE YOUR POINT, it can’t even masquerade as a theory – it is a faith based proposition. I, for one, don’t consider you any safer than any other religion and your attitudes make my point for me.

    Let me make my view clear – what people want to believe about a god is their business as long as they don’t shove my face in it – and that includes you atheists. On the basis of faith you are in no way superior so quit being assholes about it.

  130. 130
    Mark S. says:

    “The Mooslims are outbreeding us!” meme fits into so many conservative tropes (racism, anti-feminism, anti-immigration) it’s no wonder it’s the favorite topic of conversation on National Review cruises:

    I am standing waist-deep in the Pacific Ocean, both chilling and burning, indulging in the polite chit-chat beloved by vacationing Americans. A sweet elderly lady from Los Angeles is sitting on the rocks nearby, telling me dreamily about her son. “Is he your only child?” I ask. “Yes,” she says. “Do you have a child back in England?” she asks. No, I say. Her face darkens. “You’d better start,” she says. “The Muslims are breeding. Soon, they’ll have the whole of Europe.”

  131. 131
    IM says:

    @Martin:

    But the superiority of the aryan – persian – race is not a part of the beliefs of shiites. I always understood black nationalism as core of the beliefs of the NoI. But perhaps my information is just dated.

    In the end, well. If they say they are muslims, so what. It is a bit like Mormons and Christianity.

  132. 132
    suzanne says:

    @wilfred:

    Anti-Muslim bigotry is the last acceptable form of bigotry left in the country.

    I’m gonna have to disagree with you there.

    Anti-woman, anti-African-American, anti-disabled, anti-LGBTQI, anti-fat, anti-immigrant, anti-intellectual… all of these seem to be just thriving.

  133. 133
    Catsy says:

    How do you say Krystallnacht in wingnut?

  134. 134
    Yutsano says:

    @Catsy: Drunk Saturday Night.

  135. 135
    Catsy says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    Atheists make me very tired with their superiority about their particular religion

    And mischaracterizing atheism as a religion is, I guarantee, the quickest way to signal to all present that you have no idea what you’re talking about and are best ignored.

  136. 136
    suzanne says:

    @Catsy: Wet dream.

  137. 137
    Svensker says:

    The thing that no one has addressed so far is that we’re not really allowed to talk about the problem involved in our relations with the Muslim world. You are not allowed to have a rational discussion about why some Muslims may have hated the US enough to blow up the WTC. You are not allowed to have a rational discussion of the Pal/Israeli issue. But UNTIL you can have those kinds of discussions — in public and rationally — a large bulk of Americans are just going to believe that “those Muslims” hate us for our freedoms and are simply crazy people whose behavior is inexplicable. And if that’s true, why would one type of Muslim be any different from another?

    The crazies on the far right and the Likudniks — the Pam Gellers, the Daniel Pipes, the David Horowitzes, the Eliot Abrams, the John Boltons, et al — have done their job of sowing fear of those scary Muslims very well.

    Don’t blame the tea-baggers. The planting of the seeds of hatred go back a long way….they are just now starting to bear fruit.

    As far as Christian Arabs in America go, the ones I know are Baptists and Maronites, with some Syrian Orthodox thrown in. Lots of Egyptian Copts, too, but Egyptians aren’t Arabs.

  138. 138
    Ruckus says:

    @Tonal Crow:
    Strong religious adherence trains the mind to accept rather than to inquire and evaluate. Once the mind is trained in this way, it has no problem accepting—indeed, eagerly seeking—all manner of gibberish, even self-contradictory gibberish. And once the mind seeks gibberish, charlatans can lead it anywhere.
    I am at once reminded of Jim Jones. And Charles Manson.

  139. 139
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    @Catsy: Whatever night William is on FOX. I think it’s “Sunday”.

  140. 140
    AhabTRuler says:

    @Kryptik:

    the Judeo-Christian world.

    I dislike this construction for two key reasons:

    First, it assumes a necessary relationship that does not exist, in the sense that it is impossible to remove Jewish doctrine, practice, and history from Christianity. One can deny it, to be sure, but the contribution remains.
    OTOH, Judaism and its history do not share a similar inherent relationship with Christianity. While Christians have influenced the history of the Jews as a people, actual Christian practice and beliefs can be removed from the picture wholesale from the picture without altering Judaism as a practice (of course, leaving aside the contributions that interfaith dialogue provide viz. incorporating alternative viewpoints into theological debate, &c., but that is getting far into the weeds).

    and,

    Secondly, the construction fails to recognize the explicit connection that Islam has to those very same religions.

    I tend to prefer the term Abrahamic religions, which I believe better captures the relationship, identifying a common starting point.
    That being said I am always open to what others think about the subject, so:

    Discuss.

  141. 141

    @Catsy:
    YOU don’t like my thumb in your eye? Fuck that, you have all your little spoken tenets and the rest of the dressings of any other religion including your obnoxious insistence on the superiority of your faith.

    You don’t like it, try agnosticism which at least attempts a rational approach of can’t know, not important. Nope, that’s too weak a tea for the faithful. Don’t bullshit me, I don’t mind drop kicking it right back in your face. I’ll reiterate – I don’t give a damn about your or anybody elses faiths.

  142. 142
    IM says:

    but Egyptians aren’t Arabs

    as long as the speak the language…

    Now the descent – who knows. The syrians are actually not arabs either but, well syrians and until recently syrian christian churches still did use syrian as an liturgical language.

  143. 143
    AhabTRuler says:

    During the first Gulf war the media had much fun with a guy called Saddam Hussein in Canada, a christian arab.

    Well, to be fair, the media are pretty childish and stupid, so it’s not really their fault.

  144. 144
    Scott says:

    @Chuck Butcher: It’s impossible to disprove the existence of something. The burden of proof falls on believers-in-gods to prove that gods exist. Thus, the issue isn’t that atheists can’t prove their point — it’s that religionists are unable to prove theirs.

    Sorry if that bugs ya, but that’s just the way it is.

  145. 145
    West of the Cascades says:

    @Frank: A lot of them (us) do have that mindset … it’s a shame that a group of people who all claim one label (“Christians”) but range from wildly regressive to wildly progressive in their politics sometimes get tarred with the same brush.

    One of the great things about this blog is the frequent use of the term “Christianists” to refer to hate-filled, right-wing Christians who loosely use religion and cherry-picked bits of the Bible to cloak their own bigotry. There are a lot of Christians in this country who feel motivated by their religious faith to come down on the liberal/progressive side of social and political issues. Even in the Times article that started this string, note that the counter-protest in Temecula, the one which SUPPORTED the Muslim group and its right to build their mosque/community center, was led by a Mormon who said the obvious – “they’re Americans, they deserve to have a place to worship just like everybody else.”

    A lot of churches feel this way – the Christian denomination I belong to formally supported the ruling in Arizona enjoining the “driving while brown” law (http://www.ucc.org/news/ucc-le.....izona.html) and I expect within the next week there’ll be similar support for Judge Walker’s ruling on gay marriage (the UCC – last C for “Christ” – sanctifies gay marriages) and strongly supporting the Cordoba House mosque in NYC.

    Just because someone chooses to call him or herself a “Christian” does not mean automatically that he/she is a bigot or thinks remotely like the screaming Christianists that get all the time on the cable news shows.

  146. 146
    Ruckus says:

    @kdaug:
    Puritans came here not to escape religious intolerance but to practice it.

  147. 147

    @Scott:

    The burden of proof falls on believers-in-gods to prove that gods exist

    Theo-sophmoric bullshit – you make an assertion that you cannot back up. It doesn’t make shit difference that it involves “none” versus “something.” If you want to run down that path you’d better try agnosticism because you’ve got no ground to stand on and science and logic both won’t let you. None of either side can prove their assertions and your little game won’t change that. You don’t say that it its unlikely and you don’t say that it is improbable you assert that it does not exist.

  148. 148
    MeDrewNotYou says:

    @gwangung: Heh. I like the phrase “honorary whites.”

    American ignorance of history, especially their own is frustrating. I remember a History Channel program where this white woman in her 50s was being interviewed in the late 1960s-early 1970s. She said she didn’t care what blacks did, and she might let a ‘good one’ in her house, but, “I don’t want to live next door to a nigger! Do you understand that? I just don’t want them near me.” I have a feeling she’d be in the anti-Islam/teabagger crowd nowadays.

    The little hope I have comes from incidents like one I had the other day. I was in the car with my mom and her sister, both Baby Boomers. Listening to the news, the New York mosque was mentioned and my aunt said we need to kick them out of the country because they’re all terrorists. I was about to go off on her, but my mom said bluntly, “You only think that because no one talks about the peaceful ones.” Even though she probably wasn’t swayed, that shut my aunt up. But the fact that my conservative, slightly racist mother said something like that was encouraging. I think there are enough people like that who, even though they don’t really like Muslims or outsiders or whatever, know the difference between wrong and right.

  149. 149
    That's Master of Accountancy to You, Pal (JMN) says:

    @Bruce (formerly Steve S.):

    @ksmiami: you have to be very self-confident and mentally strong to be an atheist

    I’m afraid I don’t understand this.

    I think she’s saying that you don’t have to be smug and self-congratulatory to be a jackass, but it helps.

  150. 150
    oldswede says:

    Here in Connecticut, we just had a taste of the inflamed hatred for Islam. Take a look at this photo and story. Imagine attacking children leaving a worship service. America is in deep trouble.
    I had posted this in a earlier thread, but I think I came too late to the party, as usual.
    oldswede

  151. 151

    @That’s Master of Accountancy to You, Pal (JMN):

    Kick their little anthill and watch what happens … er, is happening.

  152. 152
    kdaug says:

    @Ruckus: My point exactly. Well said.

  153. 153
    Svensker says:

    @IM:

    The syrians are actually not arabs either

    Um, so why is the country called the Syrian Arab Republic?

  154. 154
    K. Grant says:

    @kdaug: The Spike Lee film, Inside Man, had a great scene wherein a Sikh banker, even though a victim of a bank hostage scenario, was manhandled by the cops because he wore a turban, and the cops thought he was some ‘Arab’. (If I am remembering the scene correctly.)

    Great film, by the way. Denzel Washington, Clive Owen and Jodie Foster were outstanding.

  155. 155
    Scott says:

    @Chuck Butcher: I get the feeling you aren’t actually interested in any sort of discussion, just to vent your towering fury that atheists are allowed to exist. So have fun with that, religionist.

  156. 156
    That's Master of Accountancy to You, Pal (JMN) says:

    @Scott:

    It’s impossible to disprove the existence of something. The burden of proof falls on believers-in-gods to prove that gods exist. Thus, the issue isn’t that atheists can’t prove their point—it’s that religionists are unable to prove theirs.

    It’s always fascinating to see someone who doesn’t understand the distinction between believing that something does not exist and not believing that it does.

    It’s also interesting to watch people who think that we should conduct social relationships based upon strict rules of logic.

  157. 157
    Scott says:

    @oldswede: Oh hell, Flip Benham. I’d thought he was dead or in jail by now. :(

  158. 158
    Chyron HR says:

    @Scott:

    So have fun with that, religionist.

    Noooo, Chuck isn’t religious. He’s just reduced to mindlessly screaming obscenities whenever someone says they don’t believe in God. Not religious at all.

  159. 159
    Jane says:

    @Scott:

    Islam means violence and it is written in the koran-fact. The koran/hadiths talks of Jews & Christians as Monkeys & Pigs. Is that how a secular society should be?

    Arab Muslims are killing africans and it’s all because they are black… they like the blacks that have African blood in them. look at Morocco… once an African country, now has no black Africans living there… same with Algiers. It’s now happening in Sudan & Somalia… even as far as south Africa, it’s starting there. 1975 Muslims started a genocide against Lebanese Christians.

    Arab muslims believe they are the purest people. They are racist and bigots.

  160. 160
    Erik T says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    Theo-sophmoric bullshit – you make an assertion that you cannot back up. It doesn’t make shit difference that it involves “none” versus “something.”

    Um, dude. It totally, totally does. This is a pretty foundational point of the entirety of rational discourse. Christ, I hate to stoop to the invisible-purple-dragon-in-my-garage cliche, but we may have to resort to that. Or a good old clue-by-four.

  161. 161
    That's Master of Accountancy to You, Pal (JMN) says:

    @Scott: Ah, the trifecta, since you’ve now hit upon the, “Disagreeing with me at all means that you are angry at my very existence,” fallacy.

  162. 162
    That's Master of Accountancy to You, Pal (JMN) says:

    @Chyron HR: Actually, Chuck is right. Atheism, as generally used, is not a negative statement about the lack of proof of the existence of god. It’s a positive statement about god not existing.

  163. 163
    IM says:

    Th inhabitants of Syria and Egypt etc.
    are not immigrated from the arabic peninsula but (mainly) descendants of the pre arab conquest population. They switched over time from their original languages to arabic. Because they all speak arab now, we and themselves call them arabs.
    The berber are not called arabs – different language. But I don’t think anybody thinks the berber in algeria are the only indigenous population and anybody else immigrated.

    And yes that is also true for I/P.

  164. 164
    sven says:

    @Chuck Butcher: Yeah, and screw all you people who don’t believe in Santa Claus! If you can’t prove he’s illusory then our claims must be equivalent!

  165. 165
    Scott says:

    @That’s Master of Accountancy to You, Pal (JMN): I don’t think the question was about conducting social relationships. It was about disproving that god existed, which, ya know, isn’t actually possible.

    Maybe it’s not possible to conduct social relationships on logical terms, maybe it is, I dunno, but it’s not something I’d feel comfortable getting yelled at about, one way or another.

  166. 166

    @Scott:
    Wrong and nice dodge attempt, sort of garden variety version. In point of fact no religion would claim me and I claim none and am only mildly deistic – primarily as a way of managing a 12 Step Program to stay out of my own way. I could care less what stripe of god opinion anyone is, I made clear that I object to dress-up superiority complexes.

    I know, that doesn’t make you a martyr at the alter of some religiosity and all by me – but smug stupidity in the pursuit of an “anti” position is just that. Faith is fine by me, whether it is a “no god” faith or a “my god” faith but playing dress-up isn’t adult and it isn’t reasonable and it certainly isn’t basis for condescension to other faithful any more than a Christian or Islam is.

  167. 167
    Scott says:

    Oh, I cannot resist.

    It’s a positive statement about god not existing.

    Cite?

  168. 168
    Martin says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    Let me make my view clear – what people want to believe about a god is their business as long as they don’t shove my face in it – and that includes you atheists.

    Thank you for shoving our face in your views, Chuck. FWIW, it’s not up to use to make the case. It’s up to everyone else to. Our case is that reality is what you can measure it to be – nothing more. Everyone else is trying to superimpose their assertion that reality isn’t what we measure it to be, but really the act of some invisible all-powerful space fairy. Just not the invisible all-powerful space underpants gnome that the *other* guys believe in, though.

    We’re trying to stay out of it and insist that policy be based on what we can observe, not on the ‘you gotta trust me, man’ ideas of which Power Ranger we’re going to piss off if I kiss another guy.

  169. 169
    That's Master of Accountancy to You, Pal (JMN) says:

    @Scott: Well, there’s the very construction of the word. If what you want is a negative statement, then the word you should use is “agnosticism.”

    There is slippage in usage, but if you’re insisting on a formal argument based upon philosophical rules, man up and do it right.

  170. 170

    @Erik T:

    You don’t get it, you are making an affirmative statement without any backing other than that the other side cannot prove what they already call faith. The fact that the statement contains “none” doesn’t make it any less affirmative. It makes no difference whether anybody in the universe believes in a god – you assert that there is none. Your argument is not based on their belief except as an “anti” statement. That is why you’re all twisted up in knots here – I’m not declaring anything to be fact other than that you’re bullshitting with the superiority crap.

  171. 171
    That's Master of Accountancy to You, Pal (JMN) says:

    Forget it. I’m tired of watching people in this thread who insist that, because there are some Christians who believe in something, it’s just fine to assert that they all do. I’m not even a Christian myself, but it’s insulting.

  172. 172
    Erik T says:

    I am wholly uninterested in the 90min discussion it would take for us to even agree on a set of definitions for things like “athiest” or “agnostic”, never mind the ensuing panty-twist black hole.

  173. 173
    Bruce (formerly Steve S.) says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    Atheists make me very tired with their superiority about their particular religion. Look, assholes – you can no more disprove the existence of a god than the other side can prove it.

    I’m afraid you’re a little confused. Baseline atheism isn’t involved in proving or disproving anything, nor is it a “religion”, it’s simply a position statement.

    YOU CANNOT PROVE YOUR POINT, it can’t even masquerade as a theory – it is a faith based proposition.

    I’m afraid you’re a little confused. Atheism is neither a theory nor a proposition, it is a position statement on someone else’s proposition.

    Let me make my view clear – what people want to believe about a god is their business as long as they don’t shove my face in it – and that includes you atheists.

    This perhaps explains your confusion. You’ve had an experience with an “in-your-face” atheist? I’m afraid this no more justifies your rambling bigotry than having a bad experience with a black person justifies racism.

  174. 174

    @Martin:
    Show me where I shoved any belief in your face – do it or fuck yourself. Block quote it motherfucker – you do not lie about me in front of me.

  175. 175
    Kryptik says:

    @AhabTRuler:

    I mostly used the term because…well…look at who have been the most annoyingly and infuriatingly rigid about this. People casing Islam as an ‘other’ religion, outside of the ‘accepted’ Christianity and Judaism, hyper-religious Christians who act like they and they alone are America, and Jewish leadership who seem to follow the same line, with the additional wrinkle of ‘Muslims want to eradicate Israel, thus all Muslims are threats to Judaism’.

  176. 176

    @Bruce (formerly Steve S.):

    Nice try to once again posit your position on the basis of someone else. What? You can’t even take credit for your own beliefs? Now you’re trying to turn atheism into agnosticism and it isn’t. If you’re confused by the fact that “No” is an affirmation then you’d better study up some.

  177. 177
    Martin says:

    @Chuck Butcher: No, we’re not. Our assertion is that there is no God until you can produce evidence. Prove it. It’s the same standard as *every other goddamn thing in human culture* yet religion is so deeply ingrained that if we stop and say ‘prove God’ we’re accused of making a positive statement about the existence of it. Tell me how I can disprove the existence of God and then I’ll become an agnostic until that theory can be tested. Until then, it’s just unicorns and fairies.

  178. 178

    @Chad N Freude:

    Oh my.

    Everything I know about Islam I learned from reading “The Protocols of the Elders of Mecca”, Gingrich, N. and Palin, S.

    So, am I clever because I am familiar with the reference or dirty because I know what you are talking about.

    Your point is taken, though, about “I read a book of fiction once and now I know everything.”

  179. 179
    Martin says:

    @Chuck Butcher: I did blockquote it. You demanded that we accept your definition of what proper behavior is by atheists. Fuck you. We will not be held to a different standard as everyone else. You don’t like it, move to Iran where the atheists can be executed. In the meantime, we’re stuck with everyone else’s fantasy beliefs embedded in our public policy, on our money, our pledge, and countless other places. Get rid of all of that, and then we’ll shut up, okay?

  180. 180
    AhabTRuler says:

    @Kryptik: ‘scool, I wasn’t picking on you, merely the use of it I noticed when I felt bothered to post the above. I don’t get too het about it in general, ’cause then it would just be a hobbyhorse.

  181. 181
    Bruce (formerly Steve S.) says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    Nice try to once again posit your position on the basis of someone else. What?

    I made love to twelve different supermodels last night. Do you believe it?

    You can’t even take credit for your own beliefs?

    “Credit” has nothing to do with it.

    Now you’re trying to turn atheism into agnosticism and it isn’t.

    I’m afraid you’re a little confused. Agnosticism has two generally accepted definitions; the position that knowledge of God/gods is not possible, or the position that I as an individual don’t know if God/gods exist or not. Since neither of those statements describe my position I am not an agnostic.

    If you’re confused by the fact that “No” is an affirmation then you’d better study up some.

    I’m afraid you’re a little confused. Baseline atheism makes no “no” affirmation.

  182. 182

    @Martin:

    Still an affirmation, you can play at it all day long and it will remain the same thing. You are as much a theosophist as the ones you despise or mock. You’re dangerously close to making the case for agnosticm, you’ve only a whisker to go from that. Agnosicism isn’t anything like a religion – it is a philosophical point of view that doesn’t assert either point as truth. It accepts an inability to KNOW and moves on from there. I don’t have any problem with people having faiths or none, though almost all people do operate quite a bit out of faith and call it something else.

    You’re assuming that I give a damn whether you believe in a god or don’t and I do not and I’m not even postulating nor have I the existence of one.

  183. 183

    @Martin:

    We will not be held to a different standard as everyone else

    So you justify yourself on the basis of others? You really are a fuckwit. So it’s all about resentment? I thought it had to do with reason and shit like that.

    I’m not holding you to any standard that I don’t hold anybody else to and yes, you do sound just about exactly liked the Christianists in some regards and the other overly enthusiastic … ones.

  184. 184

    @<a h@Bruce (formerly Steve S.):
    You just got done doing it and calling it something else is sophistry and ought to be beneath you.

  185. 185
    Keith G says:

    @Yutsano:

    This is much belated, but that is one of the sharpest comments I have read here since…forever.

    I’m awe struck…and still giggling.

  186. 186
    Bruce (formerly Steve S.) says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    You’re assuming that I give a damn whether you believe in a god or don’t

    One might assume that, given that your entry into this thread was to declare atheists “assholes.”

  187. 187
    wagonjak says:

    @MeDrewNotYou: WE WANT TUNCH!, WE WANT TUNCH!, WE WANT TUNCH!, WE WANT TUNCH!, WE WANT TUNCH!, WE WANT TUNCH!, WE WANT TUNCH!, WE WANT TUNCH!, WE WANT TUNCH!, WE WANT TUNCH!, WE WANT TUNCH!, WE WANT TUNCH!!!!

  188. 188
    Martin says:

    @Chuck Butcher: No, you’re clearly excusing the tidal wave of religious justification that takes place in this country and then going on about how the atheists are the ones that piss you off because they won’t shut up. You’re advocating that we never speak up. Hey gays, why the fuck won’t you guys stay in the closet?

    Sorry, but the religious shit isn’t coming from the weeds, it’s coming from elected officials and the brokers of power in this country in a steady stream. It’s not about resentment, its about not getting completely marginalized for another century.

    I thought you were a liberal? Why the fuck are you yelling at the minorities? Sack up, pal.

  189. 189
    LiberalTarian says:

    @wilfred: No, it’s still OK to hate on, be rude to, and other such horrible behavior toward fat people. And, in some parts of the country, LGBT hatred is still the norm.

    I’d hate to be overweight AND Muslim AND LGB or T.

  190. 190

    @Bruce (formerly Steve S.):

    was to declare atheists “assholes.”

    Nope, the attitude of superiority is assholery, the idea itself is just a thing of indifference to me. Some of you just got done with the same kind of religious bigotry you thought you were decrying … and on the basis of the same kind of faith – which you angrily deny and then engage in.

  191. 191
    Bruce (formerly Steve S.) says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    Since you refuse to address the issues at hand without rank emotion and personal insult I can only conclude that you would rather wallow in your own bigotry than attempt to learn about the positions other people hold. Have fun with that.

  192. 192
    LiberalTarian says:

    @Bruce (formerly Steve S.): The dude is a troll. By definition he is not interested in your response, but in pushing your buttons. Have a conversation with someone else.

  193. 193

    @Martin:
    I didn’t say shit about complaining about bad behavior by those who engage in it – you just managed to do it yourself and you got called for it and don’t like it. Sack up yourself.

    You are again justifying yourself on the basis of others and it is pathetic. I said not shit about the religious of your or any other strain being bigots being ok or or anything like it. You read your resentments onto me and you’re barking up the wrong tree.

    You know better and it is a measure of your attachment to your religion that you’d even think about making such a statement.

  194. 194
    Bruce (formerly Steve S.) says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    Nope, the attitude of superiority is assholery,

    Nope, your exact word was “assholes.” Twice.

    Some of you

    Nope, you didn’t say, “some of you.” You said “atheists”, period. Twice.

  195. 195
    eemom says:

    I think Chuck B is right that there is, among some atheists — not all, by any means — an attitude of superiority and contempt towards believers.
    Just as there are equally insufferable attitudes by some believers towards others who don’t share their faith.

    In other words, some atheists are assholes, just like anybody else. Why is that something to argue about?

  196. 196

    @LiberalTarian:

    he is not interested in your response

    He keeps saying the same thing in different ways to make it not fit a definition he doesn’t like. You can arrange words any way you care to when you mean one thing and it won’t change the meaning. I read it and I understand it and he keeps doing it because he’s stuck there. He wants it to be all reasonable and logical and then won’t follow the rules of that and just engages in sophistry. Why should just roll over and say, “oooh – you’re soooo right?”

    I never postulated that faith was reason or fact – he does.

  197. 197
    Bruce (formerly Steve S.) says:

    @LiberalTarian:

    No worries, I’m quite calm. Trolls aside there is no shortage of misunderstanding about issues of god belief here in the USA, so expressing myself briefly and straightforwardly can’t but help.

  198. 198
    ksmiami says:

    @stuckinred:

    But I attribute WWII Japan to collective insanity, not to any particular religion. That one small insulated and homogeneous Island nation with nationalistic tendencies went nuts hardly disproves the value of an entire religion. On the other hand, if in 2010 you still need some dude in robes to translate life for you, it doesn’t matter to me. But if you start trying to put that bullshit into law, or using it as a way to harm others, then I will call you on it.

  199. 199

    @Bruce (formerly Steve S.):

    You said “atheists”, period. Twice.

    Dude, I’ve read your horseshit lumping the religious into a nasty clump before today, so your complaint falls on very deaf ears. As nice as eemom is being about it, it is more a feature than a bug. Now you may resent the behavior of some of the other religions regarding you and I can understand that but it also doesn’t make less bigotted.

    I’m quite sure a gay will be president or a supreme before an atheist or Muslim and the fact that it is so is bullshit. That is foreign to my thinking, and my unenthusiastic deism puts me about a half-step in front of you. So fucking what? I don’t tar the religious with the brush of biggotry because some of them or even a lot of them are – not on just that cause – religion. I’m an equal opportunity bigot whacker and you guys played that card.

  200. 200
    ksmiami says:

    @Bruce (formerly Steve S.):

    In America, a lot of social life and community is based on a religious affiliation of some kind… I think most people would be hard-pressed to give it up.

  201. 201
    sven says:

    If three consecutive comments in one thread are by the same author an automatic system should enforce a 15 minute time-out.

  202. 202
    sven says:

    @ksmiami: Would you characterize Japan as having a dominant religion?

  203. 203
    AhabTRuler says:

    @ksmiami:

    But I attribute WWII Japan to collective insanity

    And yet that would be incredibly wrong. WWII Japan can be understood as easily as any other wartime nation; that Americans generally don’t is often…regrettable.

  204. 204

    Folks, read your responses to what I wrote. You’re reacting in the same way a southern christianist would if I pointed out the BS of using their prophet to justify things he clearly opposed. We’re not talking about reason when it gets like that. You ascribe to me things I never said or implied because I’ve poked you some place you don’t like. Your reaction is real similar to the very people you mock if their religion gets poked. I say it is for the same reason, which is that faith isn’t about reason or logic or proof.

  205. 205
    General Stuck says:

    WWII Japan can be understood as easily as any other wartime nation;

    Now that is a crock of shit.

    More like suicidal homicidal maniacs.

  206. 206
    Bruce (formerly Steve S.) says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    The issue at hand is your highly charged emotional state and apparent bigotry toward atheists. It seems to grow from ignorance, since when I explain to you simply and straightforwardly what atheism and agnosticism are you act befuddled and angry. Those are the basics of the conversation, though every reply of yours is more disjointed and irrelevant than the last.

  207. 207

    @General Stuck:

    As an equivalence it is bullshit, but I’d say you could find features of the excesses pretty easily and could find common roots as well.

  208. 208
    Bruce (formerly Steve S.) says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    Folks, read your responses to what I wrote. You’re reacting in the same way a southern christianist would

    Justifying bigotry with more bigotry is not helpful.

    You ascribe to me things I never said or implied

    I’ve ascribed your own words to you. “Atheists” are “assholes.” Those were your own words.

  209. 209
    Svensker says:

    @IM:

    I know the Egyptians aren’t Arabs. But I was pretty sure the Syrians were — both Wiki and the US State Dept say they are (State says 90% Arabs, the rest a mix of Kurds, Armenians, Turkoman, etc.) What are they if they’re not Arab?

  210. 210
    ksmiami says:

    @sven:

    Actually, I wouldn’t – it appears that Japanese buddhism is more of a societal framework than an absolute marker of faith. In fact, I bet if you asked most Japanese how often they went into a temple, they would look at you askance and laugh. Think modern Italians and Catholicism. The religion is all around them, but people are pretty wizened to its limits. And they have universal health care too. But you know, most of our American history is based on beating each other up until someone from the outside attacks us, at which point we rally together. It’s wrong and terrible, but as a large diverse nation, sort of expected.

  211. 211
    Brachiator says:

    @Svensker:

    The thing that no one has addressed so far is that we’re not really allowed to talk about the problem involved in our relations with the Muslim world. You are not allowed to have a rational discussion about why some Muslims may have hated the US enough to blow up the WTC. You are not allowed to have a rational discussion of the Pal/Israeli issue. But UNTIL you can have those kinds of discussions—in public and rationally—a large bulk of Americans are just going to believe that “those Muslims” hate us for our freedoms and are simply crazy people whose behavior is inexplicable. And if that’s true, why would one type of Muslim be any different from another?

    Obama tried to guide the country away from the “Muslims” hate us for our freedoms stuff, and yet the Republicans and the tea baggers and the neocons just won’t hear it. Sadly, neither will large numbers of other Americans.

    On the other hand, I don’t fully accept the “we’re not allowed” to talk about it angle. People have all kinds of reasons for hewing to a particular party line.

  212. 212
    General Stuck says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    but I’d say you could find features of the excesses pretty easily and could find common roots as well.

    Well yea, there are all types and degrees of imperialism and warmaking to promote that, but most pale in brutality, ambition, and nationalistic fervor as compared to WW 2 Japan.

  213. 213

    @Bruce (formerly Steve S.):
    You mean after you repeat back to me the definition of agnosticism that I used and then accuse me of ignorance of the subject? Ah, moving onward and upward. wiggle wiggle wiggle

    I don’t know why I have to keep repeating that atheism is of no particular interest to me – certainly not enought to be angry about it. I explored it as an alternative to things I didn’t want to espouse and found it lacking. Particularly lacking in regards to what I’ve stated, an honesty about the faith involved. Agonsticism was pretty comfortable until trying to practice a 12 step program inside that got pretty contradictory so I settled on letting myself believe in a god I could believe in and I assure you that no organized religion of any stripe would approve of it. I certainly do not advocate for it for anyone else and I don’t care what anyone else thinks about it or believes about it. It has nothing to do with anyone else – just me.

    Ya’ll got cracked on for unjustified assumption of superiority. I find the same thing offensive from all religions and I crack them for it as well. You don’t like getting whacked, then knock it the fuck off. You ain’t any better or worse than them other than what you do with it.

  214. 214
    AhabTRuler says:

    Stuck, your argument is with Marlene Mayo, not me. Beyond that, it has been clear for quite some time that you don’t have the first fucking clue when it comes to Japan in the early 20th c.

    Cheers!

  215. 215
  216. 216
    General Stuck says:

    @AhabTRuler: The lady you link to specializes in post war occupied Japan, not before the end of the war, which is what I’m talking about. Granted, I am no expert on the psychology of the Japanese people for the period leading up to and during WW2, but I know something about the things they actually did, all of it pure brutal aggression and justified by their own sense of superiority over pretty much every other human on earth they ironically termed barbarians.

    They have become decent world citizens since that time of being conquered, and that is a good thing.

    And it has been clear for some time here that you are a fucking apologist for the behavior of about every country except America.

  217. 217
    Bruce (formerly Steve S.) says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    You mean after you repeat back to me the definition of agnosticism that I used and then accuse me of ignorance of the subject?

    Your ignorance was first evinced by your obvious misunderstanding of what atheism is, secondarily by your false statement that I am “trying to turn atheism into agnosticism.”

    I don’t know why I have to keep repeating that atheism is of no particular interest to me

    An obvious falsehood since your first post in this thread was a rant about how “atheists” are “assholes.”

    I explored it as an alternative to things I didn’t want to espouse and found it [atheism] lacking.

    Baseline atheism is not an “alternative” to be explored, you either believe god propositions or you don’t. Do you believe the statement I made above about supermodels?

    Ya’ll got cracked on for unjustified assumption of superiority.

    Meaningless statement.

    You don’t like getting whacked, then knock it the fuck off.

    I’ll keep that in mind.

  218. 218
    AhabTRuler says:

    you are a fucking apologist for the behavior of about every country except America.

    Really, in what way? I merely ask that America be held to the same standards as everyone else.

    And Marlene Mayo specializes in Modern Japan, a period that includes both the pre- and post-war periods. She is most notably known for her association with the Prange archives at the University of MD, but don’t let her experience fool you.

    Dr. Sumida would also be unimpressed by your assertion that the motives of the Japanese people as a whole were: “dey was kerrrrrazzzzy!”

  219. 219
    sven says:

    @ksmiami: I found the Japanese relationship with religion to be one of the most interesting aspects of their culture. As this very forum has shown, Western societies have a very Manichean view of religion itself. I was always struck by the willingness of many Japanese to simultaneously accept seemingly contradictory propositions; not the least of these was professing Buddhism, Shinto, and Atheism side-by-side.

  220. 220
    General Stuck says:

    @AhabTRuler: I didn’t say they were crazy, I said they were aggressive and murderous and extraordinarily brutal. Go ask the Koreans or Chinese about this. Not to mention the Filipino’s and the survivors of Pearl Harbor and any numbers of peoples across the Pacific Rim, including POW’s. Fuck a bunch of noodle head apologists.

    I don’t hesitate to slam American stupidity like with Iraq, and any number of dumbass military escapades that were unjustifiable via a casus beli. Afghanistan was justifiable imo, but it’s neglect and mismanagement by Bush was not.

  221. 221
    General Stuck says:

    Really, in what way?

    In about every way, and this thread is a good example.

  222. 222
    Svensker says:

    @Brachiator:

    On the other hand, I don’t fully accept the “we’re not allowed” to talk about it angle. People have all kinds of reasons for hewing to a particular party line.

    Looked what happened during the Presidential run, when Ron Paul tried to talk about it. He was laughed off the stage. It is not done. Name me one prominent national politician who has talked about it.

  223. 223
    AhabTRuler says:

    @General Stuck:

    Fuck a bunch of noodle head apologists.

    It’s clear that you never tire of speaking about things that you know nothing about.

    But I’m game: where do I excuse or apologize for Japanese actions in this thread?

    And if you are going to criticize academics, you really should frame it from the left, otherwise you sound like another Gooper anti-intellectual.

  224. 224
    General Stuck says:

    @AhabTRuler:

    WWII Japan can be understood as easily as any other wartime nation;

    With this statement, the one I responded to. Equating not only their behavior with all others in WW2, but as a general statement, and as you know we have a history on this topic here. I called the above statement bullshit, or a crock of it, and stand by it. Japan’s behavior during ww2 is not understandable as any other war time nation. Period. For all the reasons I already stated and likely more.

    It’s clear that you never tire of speaking about things that you know nothing about.

    Well, you are just going to have to suffer through it, I suppose, or whine through it, being one of our experts at that.

    Or maybe you could whine some more how Mr. Kain gets yer panties in a libtard twist.

  225. 225
    AhabTRuler says:

    WWII Japan can be understood as easily as any other wartime nation

    This, in your mind, is a controversial statement? Your comprehension skills are sadly lacking.

  226. 226
    Lysana says:

    And the polytheists sit and watch the agnostics, atheists, and monotheists duke it out. Thanks for the entertainment that clearly has nothing to do with us!

    (The first atheist to claim the proofs against triple-omni’s existence apply to non-omni gods gets asked to explain how imperfect entities with limited skills are supposed to perform the same way every time like a law of physics. The second one gets laughed at.)

  227. 227
    General Stuck says:

    @AhabTRuler:

    This, in your mind, is a controversial statement? Your comprehension skills are sadly lacking.

    Maybe, But I comprehend you just fine.

  228. 228
    AhabTRuler says:

    But I comprehend you just fine.

    No, I can assure you that you don’t.

  229. 229
    General Stuck says:

    @AhabTRuler:

    No, I can assure you that you don’t.

    Assurances are like assholes, everybody got one.

  230. 230
    AhabTRuler says:

    Assurances are like assholes, everybody got one.

    Wait, what? What does that even mean?

  231. 231
    General Stuck says:

    Wait, what? What does that even mean?

    You’re the genius, figure it out.

  232. 232
    Bruce (formerly Steve S.) says:

    @Lysana:

    And the polytheists sit and watch the agnostics, atheists, and monotheists duke it out. Thanks for the entertainment that clearly has nothing to do with us!

    I have no god beliefs, so whatever deities you believe in I don’t. If I am engaged in a competition, as you suggest, and I win then your gods cease to exist. So you might want to try a different metaphor.

    The first atheist to claim the proofs against triple-omni’s existence apply to non-omni gods

    This atheist does not waste time attempting to disprove the existence of deities, omni or otherwise. Like Chuck Butcher you seem to have a misapprehension of what atheism is.

  233. 233
    AhabTRuler says:

    @General Stuck: It doesn’t make any sense. It’s just empty posturing and devoid of meaning.

  234. 234
    General Stuck says:

    It’s just empty posturing and devoid of meaning.

    It means, I think you are full of shit on just about any topic

    That clear enough?

    Including your attempted mind reading on what I don’t and do comprehend.

  235. 235
    Nick says:

    @Keith G: Yes I’m pretty sure if only Barack Obama did what he was…uh…doing, people who hate Islam would listen to the President they think is Muslim.

    Look at how his leadership in fighting the Arizona Immigtration Law is paying. Only just above half of Immigrant-friendly New York supports it.

  236. 236
    Nick says:

    @Keith G: I

    am thinking about the other 70%. These are people who are likely to listen to strong, thoughtful voices appealing to the better angels of their nature.

    Anybody who is so bigoted, they think an entire religion should not enjoy the same rights guaranteed to other religion including their own is not likely to listen to strong, thoughtful voices appealing to thee better angels of their nature. They have no better angels. They’re hateful people.

  237. 237
    AhabTRuler says:

    @General Stuck: As I said, empty posturing.

  238. 238
    General Stuck says:

    : As I said, empty posturing.

    LOL, if you say so.

  239. 239

    […] tribalists have problems with it. The same crowd that can’t handle gays or Scary Black People doesn’t want mosques. […]

  240. 240
    lou says:

    The thing that kills me about this whole brouhaha is the imam who wants to build the muslim community center is a Sufi. Equating him with Osama bin Laden is like equating a Unitarian with a Southern Baptist.

  241. 241
    Catsy says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    YOU don’t like my thumb in your eye? Fuck that, you have all your little spoken tenets and the rest of the dressings of any other religion including your obnoxious insistence on the superiority of your faith.
    __
    You don’t like it, try agnosticism which at least attempts a rational approach of can’t know, not important. Nope, that’s too weak a tea for the faithful. Don’t bullshit me, I don’t mind drop kicking it right back in your face. I’ll reiterate – I don’t give a damn about your or anybody elses faiths.

    Well, that’s a relief. For a moment I thought I was going to have to waste valuable time and effort authoring a reasoned response to a rational argument. Finding out that you’re just another internet douchebag with sand in his vagina who’s looking for a convenient target for his spittle-flecked rantings relieves me of that burden.

    It was good for lulz, though.

  242. 242
    Tonybrown74 says:

    “I do believe everybody has a right to freedom of religion,” she said. “But Islam is not about a religion. It’s a political government, and it’s 100 percent against our Constitution.”

    And with this statement, Irony just died.

  243. 243
    RobW says:

    Man, I haven’t even peeked into comments here at BJ for months. Thank you, Chuck Butcher, for reminding me why.

    Jesus, what an asshole.

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