Saturday, September 24, 2011

The Atheist Threat (Cue Evil Laugh)

"I know you are but what am I?!"
And various other playground taunts sprang to mind as I read this recent Chortle piece, "Atheists are as big a threat as climate change deniers." I have to admit I know nothing about the comedian Frank Skinner. He may actually be funny. Fortunately for him you don't always have to be smart or insightful to be funny, though the best comedians are both.

Basically, the whole thing is a rehash of various myth and stereotypes that have been refuted and debunked countless times. The only new aspect is his comparison of atheists to climate deniers. I find this both disturbing and amusing. I'm an atheist in part because I prefer to acknowledge reality rather than deny it. My views are guided by what can be reasonably proven. Climate deniers are, as the phrase implies, deniers of reality. It is also an odd comparison since there is no reason denial or acceptance of climate change needs to have a direct connection to religion or non-religion.

The irony of the claim provides a bit of entertainment. The whole tone of the piece also loans itself to a type of playground theology. The bully is right because if you say otherwise he'll taunt and smack you around some more. In a weird way it is also flattering. Theists are the majority. Theists dominate every aspect of life with the majority of top leaders in politics, economics, society being religious. Yet, atheists are a threat. I find that pretty impressive. Foolish and delusional but it would be nice if it were true.

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