Episode 20.11: Russell and Jen


There were some technical issues with this show and the video may have chunks missing. Never fear, though; an intact and higher res version will most likely be up in the next few days.

Comments

  1. africanamericanatheistsandagnostics says

    The female caller from Chicago made me shake my head in pity, she is totally irrational and naive, she has no understanding of how some things came to be

  2. Russell Glasser says

    Yes, that’s the guy I meant. I’m not an expert on accents, but he sounds extremely similar to me. Not just the accent but the pitch of his voice, the slowness, and the style of argument.

  3. Mark Yoon says

    Thanks again Russ, and Jen. To your question if the callers could hear what’s going on, before the show, I could. There we’re some missing parts of my call, I hope the patched version is released at some point. Keep up the great we work!

  4. timeflier says

    Yeah, I think that’s probably Hamish. I guess if that’s him, he’s not a fake then. I enjoy his calls though, they’re entertaining.

    And as for today’s episode. That woman near the end… How can she so blatantly have a double standard in her head, and be ok with it? “I don’t think you should be sharing your opinions… Oh, but it’s ok for me to do it”. I mean, I know why she does it, and why other Christians do it, but I don’t understand how they can rationalize that in their head and be ok with it.

  5. Mark Yoon says

    It’s a bit of indoctrination, mixed with some willful ignorance. Her religion is most likely all she has. Her entire life is probably tied to it. To me, it seems she is just protecting her world, by trying to shut down conversation in opposition. The young people comments directed at the hosts, sounds like personal experience. I think someone close to her came out as an atheist. She seems to be trying to justifying her own position by lashing out at an outlet. She views the show as about as helpful, as we view churches. I think she just needs to take some time, and try uh to have an open discussion with the true intended recipient of her criticism. Let’s all hope she at least understands the secular world view, even if see he never accepts it.

  6. Joe E Dangerously says

    I’m sure this will make me the most popular person here as usual and I NEVER get any hate mail for this or anything. But this country kind of was founded on Christianity. Kind of. Christian privilege is exactly the thing I’m talking about. Washington and the rest of them may not have intended that or been Christian in a lot of cases but it has always been the dominant religion and our laws are very much based on Christianity. Not the Constitution necessarily but a lot of laws. Local, state, and even Federal laws have had a very Christian bent since day one and even before. Here’s the thing that I think is tripping us up. That is not and never will be a reason it SHOULD be that way. You could easily make the statement that we were founded on racism too. A lot of us are trying to change that but it is true. Homophobia, same thing. Gay marriage has been legal for how long? It’s only very recently that our laws started to reflect another view. You could easily say homophobia is part of our national identity. Does that make it right? No. Is it the truth? Yes. It sucks but it is. I’m not gay or queer in any way so maybe someone who is can tell me they’ve not experienced any homophobia in their lives at all. I doubt that will happen.

    What we’re doing now is spinning our wheels about something that is ultimately the wrong point to make.
    You CAN say we’re a Christian country. Over 70% of us are Christian. And yes, that is like saying we’re a white country. First, learn a new line. Secondly, over 70% of us are white the last I checked. So you can say that and it’s technically legitimate. But so what? Okay, if I acknowledge that a lot of what our society is, is based on Christianity or whiteness or whatever, now what? It doesn’t mean that white people can do whatever the fuck they want to non-whites. It doesn’t mean Christians can do whatever the fuck they want to non-Christians. Christian privilege, like white privilege, straight privilege, male privilege, etc. is a very real part of society and has been for as long as any of us can remember. I’ll freely acknowledge that and stand by it. So now that I have, what now? Domestic violence and rape, very much parts of our society, disproportionately affect women and girls, right? Okay, so does that mean it should be allowed to continue and thrive? No? So then why would acknowledging that our society has largely been centered around Christianity be any different? We’re wasting our time here. They do have legitimate points. Just not in the way they think. Admitting that does not weaken our side. Perhaps it would be better to examine what these things mean and challenge the intent behind them rather than spinning our wheels over the same arguments again and again. I think it’s a waste of time. Our eye is off the ball. We need to fix that.

  7. Freddy J says

    If my argument is that our government has an obligation to save as many souls for Jesus as possible, how could you argue that my claim is not valid? Is saving our citizens from eternal torment not in some sense preserving their well being? After all, we are a Christian nation, and these atheists are doing harm to people by jeopardizing their afterlife. It may not be pleasant now, but our country believes in Jesus and the afterlife, and one’s well being in an eternal after life is more important to any discomfort they suffer in this temporary life. This reasoning is appropriate for government since Christianity is our basis of law.

    Thankfully, the United States is a secular nation. Our government and public sphere are governed by secular rules and secular purposes. There is a difference between a Christian nation and a nation with an overwhelmingly Christian population. The label “Christian nation” affects the way people act and think, it justifies and normalizes Christian prejudice. This debate, this point, ensures that the issues are framed in the proper context. It’s not taking our eye off the ball, it’s making sure that the ball conforms to league standards.

  8. Monocle Smile says

    @Joe
    I recommend not trying so hard to be a prick right off the bat.
    Our laws largely reflect ideas that Christianity appropriated from humanism. They are not Christian ideals. A couple of the things you mentioned have Christian influences, but it’s just plain wrong to pretend as if this country was set up to be a Christian theocracy. I don’t typically use this as an initial argument, but it’s a legitimate counter to the bald assertion that the founding fathers wanted a “Christian nation” and that this is what the law intends. There’s a very good reason the Constitution doesn’t mention any deity.

  9. Conversion Tube says

    Joe is basically arguing that we should be arguing Hume’s IS/OUGHT problem and not specifics of the way society currently (IS).

    “This is a Christian nation”.

    Fine, it’s a Christian nation, call it what you want. Now just because it IS, doesn’t mean it OUGHT to be.

    So we should be phrasing our discussion like this
    ——————————————–
    Ok, it’s a christian nation. Here are the list of things we “ought” to do to change that.

    Not like this.

    “No we are not a christian nation, Our for fathers bla bla bla……..”””

  10. Kudlak says

    As at the founding, it being a “Christian Nation” only means that the majority somewhat identify with some variety of Christian, not that they all share the same Conservative moral values, as is implied by those who tend to argue this.

  11. corwyn says

    Do you think there is a difference between a country with 100% Muslims under sharia law, and a country with 100% Muslims not under sharia law?

  12. africanamericanatheistsandagnostics says

    @Mark
    you are correct!!! It’s a lot of indoctrination, fear, ignorance, and family traditions. It’s so sad that the female caller from Chicago mind is trapped in a four-cornered box of fallacy religion. She renews her own self-imposed mental prison at the beginning of each week called Sunday school and church. She won’t have the mind to question how and why she is a Christian. For the sake of this argument, I’m assuming the caller was an African American female. Many African American people in this day and age of 2016 are mostly protestant Christians due to what was forced on them during slavery. Most slave master in those times were protestant Christians, as part of the assimilation process slaves celebrate their conquers ideology. The assimilation process begins to morph into an accepted social norm or a cultural identity especially when it is passed from generation to generation unbroken. Indoctrination is a world of its own that rotates on its axis regardless of how rational it is. You can go to many African Americans and ask them why are you a Christian and why are you mostly protestant, you won’t get many rational answers, you will get mainly because of their mother, grandmother or a prominent family member. Many African Americans in general will- and especially single mothers, blindly accept their family’s irrationality over anything else, which are based mostly on emotional feelings, philosophical stories, traditional roles, and fundamental ideology. They will blindly accept irrationality as if it was a God was given mission over the voice of reason and logic. The reasoning of why they are willing to blindly accept because it doesn’t require any thought, logic, or reasoning, it doesn’t require a person to put forward any effort. All one has to do is accept and believe and that’s it, thinking is not required. The caller doesn’t have a clue that there is a high probability she a Christian due to what went on the plantation. If the plantation owners were all Muslims, she would be saying that Allah and the Koran are her God. Why is it when a rational person is opposed to an indoctrinated person’s religious ideology the rational person automatically is defaulted to evil or the devil. Why is it a rational person gets defaulted to not having any morals, or that secular people would just go out and start committing all kinds of acts of violence. Religious people can never give any accountable reasoning for the acts of violence that was committed in the name of their God, and if you do get an answer it will be that God did it, the devil did it, God is a mystery, God. My question to all theists if God is a mystery how can you know, see, understand, and write about a mystery, the only thing can you know, see, understand, and write about is more indoctrination, fear, and ignorance due to that the theists foundation is flawed from the beginning.

  13. says

    That second to last caller… it may have been due a very bad connection, but she seemed to be hearing what she wanted to hear.

    “Do you think ‘God is not Dead’ forces anything on anyone?’

    “Yes I agree, God is not dead.”

  14. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    The numerology thing was called theomatics.
     
    Article: Russell’s “Theomatics Debunked”

  15. Kudlak says

    @ corny #12
    My understanding is that everyone who considers themselves Muslim adheres to Sharia law to some extent, just as anyone who calls themselves “Christian” can pick out something in the Bible that they follow as a general principle. That said, I would be rather surprised to find any country approaching 100% of any faith nowadays and not having the more conservative leaders of said faith working towards establishing a strict theocracy.

  16. at87 says

    If by some slim chance the lady from Chicago is reading this I have a question for you. Chicago has been plagued with gang violence that has gotten worse in recent years. Most gang related activity would be considered immoral (murder, robbery, drug dealing etc). While I haven’t spoken to these gang members i would wager some of them believe in a higher power and would even go as far to suggest that some of them are Christians. How would you explain this if morals come from god?

  17. corwyn says

    @17

    to some extent

    Replace follow ‘sharia law’ in my post with ‘100% of sharia law’ and ‘not sharia law’ with ‘0.1% of sharia law’ and recalculate your response.

  18. Wiggle Puppy says

    @7: Do you have any sources or more information? The American legal system was largely based on English common law. Christians try to insist that Americans laws were based on the Ten Commandments because we set up laws against stealing and murder and such, but this has it backward. Pretty much every religion in the world has similar rules, because when ancient people were setting up communities, it was really easy to do a little thought experiment and determine that a society that permitted stealing and killing would be a society that didn’t last very long, and so these basic rules of morality got wrapped up in cultural and religious life. Do a Google search for “golden rule in world religions” sometime. So, because we have laws against murder and theft, Christians try to say that our laws are based on the Bible, but it would make just as much (or as little) sense to say that our laws are based on Confuscianism or the Dhammapada. It’s more that our laws are a recognition that a society without basic rules and laws will spiral out of control really quickly (or in Thomas Hobbes’s famous phrasing, life would be “nasty, brutish, and short”). It’s true that states and localities put pro-Christian laws into effect later, but who cares? They shouldn’t have ever been there in the first place, and – to take Texas’s ban on atheists serving in public office as an example – they don’t tend to last very long when challenged on constitutional grounds.

  19. tony_r says

    Cosmology – to maybe make it a tiny bit less incomprehensible for theists to grasp, the ‘initial’ state of our universe is considered to be a concentrated (!) point of energy, not matter. The energy then condensed into matter particles and some time later, here we are.

  20. Mark Yoon says

    I don’t understand why we argue science with theists. They don’t analyze their beliefs with science. We need to lead as upstanding individuals, so that our actions speak for us. It is totally emotional, society, and hope with them. Yes, they argue scientific points, but most don’t know even the definition of the scientific method. Just look at it from their point of view. Try to show them through actions. You can’t reason out of something that wasn’t entered into without reason. Remember, they are still people.

  21. Robert,+not+Bob says

    @22 Mark Yoon, many theists can be reached-even some you wouldn’t think so are fighting doubts. The main thing is, they’re always arguing, whether we argue back or not. If we let them be the only ones talking, no one will know they’re wrong, will they?

  22. Mark Yoon says

    True, but, dehumanizing them won’t work. We should lead by example, and pick our battles.

  23. corwyn says

    @24:
    How is explaining science to them, ‘dehumanizing’?
    If we lead by being upstanding individuals, they will (and do) just assume we are Christians.
    One of the battles I pick is Science.

  24. Ronald Kappes says

    Mark Yoon Re your comment that it is a waste of time to argue logic with theists I would just like to say this: I have heard many callers to the show tell us that they abandoned their religion & became atheists after listening to the AE. & its archives. They are a potent source of reason & logic to everybody & all they need is an internet connection. The show has become a worldwide phenomena judging by the calls from the Middle East, The Philippines Scandinavia etc etc. If the show disappears the AE will still be here.

  25. Monocle Smile says

    Mark yoon, that is either extremely condescending and wrong or concern trolling. Take your pick.

  26. Mark Yoon says

    I am over generalizing, I get it. Science speaks for itself. What I meant is, we should try to show our friendly and caring nature. Of course if someone brings up an unintended false scientific argument, we should do our best to help them understand the real science. But, we don’t have start debates with science. Just point out the wrong points they make with facts. Ultimately, (and again I’m generalizing ) the conformation bias will force them to resort to “faith ” claims. It’s hard to argue science to a person who thinks scientists just make shit up. Yes, it will help some, but my pick your battle statement meant we should assess and converse based on the individual, and their personality.

  27. corwyn says

    @29:

    we should try to show our friendly and caring nature.

    I can’t imagine anything MORE friendly and caring than helping someone understand the nature of reality, and how best to interact with it. If you think that praying will cure your sick child, my efforts could well save you from a lifetime of remorse, over that dead child. But that doesn’t mean we should always be gentle, sometimes it takes a bit of forcefulness to get the point across.

    we should assess and converse based on the individual, and their personality.

    How odd that you think that everyone here doesn’t already do that.

    Thank you kindly.

  28. Ethan Myerson says

    “The numerology thing was called theomatics.”

    More generally (in uses outside the bible, for instance), it is called “Gematria”, a word that I’d learned shares etymological roots with “Geometry”. I suspect I’d been told that as a way to impart some authenticity-by-association to the magic tea leaves of Hebrew numerology.

  29. KiwiDaveo says

    Further to Wiggy’s excellent points I would also add that the US was specifically setup not to be a “Christian” country. Remember at the time the revolution, Britain was( and still, by in large, is) formally a Christian state, with the monarch being both a temporal leader and a religious one. Rejection of the monarchy wasn’t just a denial of a political power system, but a rejection of a religious one as well. Speeches against the revolutionaries in the House of Commons when it was debating sending troops to North America mention that the rebels were rejecting christian government. European Monarchy in the 18th century was presented as the ideal form of christian government, with the ruler being selected by god to rule on earth on his behalf.
    This was present to in the many people who in the 13 colonies who continued to support the King. Many of the “loyalists” gave the reason that this was preordained by God that the monarch have the right to rule. Even when Britain was a Republic (after the English civil war) it had remained a formal Christian state, as did every other example of Republics that had existed up until then, so the US adopting a republican form of government wasn’t an automatic acceptance of it being secular republic. In fact, the 1st amendment is probably the most novel principle in the the entire document, as many of the other concepts where from British or other european laws.

  30. Umbert Lapagoss says

    @Russell Glasser
    I wish I could direct this to Jane Peoples, too.

    It was a pity that both hosts tried to avoid open and honest discussion with Kir. I would like to point out several things here.

    1. Russell said that it is not a meaningful question whether Islam is the most dangerous religion by far.
    On this piont, I would like to say that it is a very important question. Not all ideas are created equal. Some of them are more dangerous than others. Currently, of all the major religions, Islam appears to be the most dangerous. In any given month, the absolute majority of terrorist acts are committed by people attributing their actions to Islam. For reference,
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_terrorist_incidents,_January–June_2016

    2. Jane said that “that’s a very regional thing” and that “in this country, Islam is not the most dangerous religion”.
    Given the share of Muslims in the population of the United States (0.9%, which is almost the same as 0.7% of Buddhists and 0.7% of Hinduists), it may be surprising that 9/11 even happened. We do not have a 9/11 by Buddhists, Hinduists or adherents of Judaism who have a 1.9% share in the population. Yet Jane mentioned years-old cases of terrorism committed by Christians who have a vast 70% majority in the country. Meanwhile, in countries where Muslims constitute comparable proportions of the population, terrorist attacks are much more frequent. Add to that the international terrorism (of which 9/11 and the very recent Brussels attack are examples), and Jane’s claims just don’t hold water. Islam and islamic terrorism are international phenomena, and even in the United States, islam appears to be the most dangerous, given the above figures.

    3. As a reply to Kir’s citation of many more people dying in Muslim terrorist attacks as opposed to Christian ones, Russell simply said “I disagree with your statistics” and hung up on Kir.
    This was simply a disgraceful instance of intellectual dishonesty on the part of Russell. The facts are present, again for those who missed the link above,
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_terrorist_incidents,_January–June_2016

    Islam does appear to be the most dangerous religion nowadays. It is very disappointing to see both hosts trying to avoid open discussion of the matter.

    For those wondering why this was an important question, consider this. Thousands of researchers worldwide are trying to find cures for cancer. They are not occupied with urgently finding cures for baldness. The first is a much more dangerous condition than the second. Similar reasoning should apply to why we should at least acknowledge that Islam is currently the most dangerous religion.

  31. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @Umbert Lapagoss #33:

    I wish I could direct this to Jane Peoples, too.

    I’m sure Jane will appreciate your attention to detail.

  32. Monocle Smile says

    @Umbert
    Firstly, baldness doesn’t kill people. The analogy is pathetic.
    Secondly, the Western world is plagued with the problem of not labeling terrorist attacks by Christians as terrorist attacks. The Bundy Ranch and Oregon occupation were not labeled terrorist attacks, yet I’m reasonably confident (I’ll try to find stuff later) that “god” was mentioned at least once in both incidents.
    Thirdly, our foreign policy over the past twenty years has not involved going into countries with high Hindu and Buddhist populations and fucking them up.

  33. Ethan Myerson says

    @Umbert Lapagoss #33
    Your 2nd point is riddled with flawed thinking.
    A. You’re looking at terrorist attacks committed by adherents to religions, proportionally to their representation in US population. That’s a silly way to look at who is the “most dangerous”. You should be looking at it as which group is most likely to commit the act of violence in raw numbers, not adjusted for percentage of US population.
    B. Jen’s point was specifically that you have to assess the danger regionally, so bringing up international statistics does nothing to refute her point.
    C. Further, bringing up international statistics only serves to refute your initial claim that Muslims are more dangerous because they represent a smaller proportion of US population. You can’t both bring in international statistics, and try to claim that Muslims are a tiny percentage of the population.
    D. I think terrorist attacks are a dismal way of assessing the “danger” of any particular group, but I can’t fault you for that since the show hosts decided to take it in that direction. The fact is, though, any one of us has statistically a near zero chance of dying or even being near a terrorist attack on US soil. There are far more real impacts of the dangers of religious groups, such as religiously-motivated hate crimes, religiously-motivated civil rights violations, and religiously motivated biased legislation. I’ll leave it to you to determine which groups represent the greatest dangers under that definition.

  34. Kudlak says

    @corwyn #19
    As with Christians who claim to follow the Bible 100%, you’re likely to get a very wide range of interpretations from Muslims, with some being your worse fear and others being the nicest kind of folks you can imagine knowing.

  35. corwyn says

    @37:
    I am not asking Muslims, I am asking Christians.
    Since clearly the point is being lost, Let me more precise: Would Christians be more comfortable in a Muslim country under sharia law, or a Muslim country not under sharia law? Does anyone think they will say the former? So, the tiniest bit of empathy would translate that to people not Christians in country with or without biblical based laws.
    Lost cause I know.

    Thank you kindly.

  36. Sean Jackson says

    “I disagree with your statistics.” Disagreeing with facts and reality because they conflict with your world view. Now what kind of person does that Russel?

  37. Monocle Smile says

    @Sean
    Because Kir’s statistics were wrong. Why do you assume they are correct? And what does raw body count actually reveal?
    Furthermore, it’s pretty irrelevant. Callers who freak out about Islam often do so for the sole purpose of distracting from the problems caused by Christianity, Wizard of Oz style.

  38. Russell Glasser says

    Hi Sean,

    That’s not the situation. I disagree with the statistics because they are factually incorrect.

    The caller said, and I quote: “If there were to be a terrorist attack in America tomorrow, what do you think the most likely religion of the perpetrator would be?”

    I’m going to reference some actual statistics here, since the caller’s assertions are based on feelings.
    http://www.usnews.com/news/blogs/press-past/2013/02/26/the-1993-world-trade-center-bombing-a-new-threat-emerges
    “Of the more than 300 American deaths from political violence and mass shootings since 9/11, only 33 have come at the hands of Muslim-Americans, according to the Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security. The Muslim-American suspects or perpetrators in these or other attempted attacks fit no demographic profile—only 51 of more than 200 are of Arabic ethnicity. In 2012, all but one of the nine Muslim-American terrorism plots uncovered were halted in early stages. That one, an attempted bombing of a Social Security office in Arizona, caused no casualties.”

    The latest version of that report referenced is here:
    https://kurzman.unc.edu/files/2016/02/Kurzman_Muslim-American_Involvement_in_Violent_Extremism_2015.pdf
    That report reveals that last year there were 81 Muslim Americans suspected of terrorist activities, which is an all time high since the report’s first appearance in 2001. The average is 26 per year.

    An FBI report indicates that between 1970 and 2012, somewhere between 2% and 6% of terror attacks on US soil were perpetrated by Muslims.
    http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2013/05/muslims-only-carried-out-2-5-percent-of-terrorist-attacks-on-u-s-soil-between-1970-and-2012.html

    As always, this is not to say that Muslim terrorism does not happen, that it is not a serious concern, or that it is not driven by faulty religious beliefs. But the randomly asserted statement that, other factors unknown, a terrorist attack in the US is mostly likely to have been committed by a Muslim, is false.

    So please, tell us more about who disagrees with facts and reality because they conflict with your world view.

  39. Kurt says

    I sort of cringed when Russell suggested to Jordan from Ohio that he block his parents on social media. I think that has the potential to be more harmful. They might become suspicious that he is hiding something from them. I have a suggestion that may be worth sharing with future callers in similar circumstances.

    I don’t know about other social media sites, but Facebook has very customizable privacy settings, and they can be controlled on a post by post basis. I got tired of alienating my religious friends, so I created a list I named “People I Might Offend.” Any time I make a post that is critical of religion, contains potty humor, etc., I simply click the advanced button under privacy, then select “Share with: Friends” and “Don’t share with: People I Might Offend.” That way all of my friends can see it except the ones on the list. And even if someone were to re-share it, it would still not be visible to the list. It’s been over a year and a half (I remember the exact date, because it was precipitated by a heated discussion the previous night at a 4th of July party) and it has worked like a charm. All my friends can still still see all my stupid NFL memes, everyone except the ones with sticks up their asses can see my Christopher Hitchens quotes, and no one is the wiser.

  40. Kurt says

    @Devocate:

    When you block users on Facebook, they don’t see anything you post. They don’t see you. They are no longer on your friends list. They can’t even find you if they search for you. I’m suggesting that Jordan (and others in his situation) not block his overly sensitive friends and relatives, but simply judiciously apply privacy settings and prevent them only from viewing his potentially triggering comments. They can remain his friends. They can still see his innocuous posts. They will have no idea there’s anything they’re not seeing. In fact, from their point of view, Jordan will have made an improvement. They might say, “I’m so glad Jordan has turned his life around and stopped posting all that blasphemous hogwash those Satanists in Austin were filling his head with.” It will ease the tension between Jordan and his parents, not exacerbate it.

  41. Monocle Smile says

    @Kurt
    I could not possibly disagree more. That’s called living a lie. Are those people really his friends if they have a false image of him in their heads?
    Sure, if there’s a high cost to being out, one can do things to fly under the radar, but if the cost isn’t anything extreme, it’s much better for atheists to be out. Avoiding the discussion by pretending there isn’t one to be had is not a solution.

  42. Kudlak says

    @#38 corwyn
    If you’re interested in the opinion of Christians why are you asking someone on an atheist blog?

    If I were to guess, however, I would say that they would probably be less comfortable in a “Muslim country” under sharia law because our examples of such countries these days tend not to generate much confidence in their protecting the rights of minority faiths. To be fair, that’s the same for any theocracy. Muslims tend not to feel so at home in Jesusland, USA either, and for the same reasons, albeit to a lesser degree in most cases because there still is a secular law that curbs the behaviour of those Christians (for now, at least).

  43. Kurt says

    @Monocle Smile
    I see no indication that you listened to the call in question or read my comment. I’m not suggesting Jordan pretend he’s not an atheist. I’m suggesting he not piss off his parents while he is living under their roof.

    In my own case, I’m pretty sure all my friends know I’m still an atheist. I just don’t let people who are prone to lose their shit on me see things such as the meme I made from a screen cap of The Passion of the Christ, featuring a Roman nailing Jesus to the cross, with the caption: KNOWS JESUS IS INNOCENT. STILL DOES HIS JOB.

  44. corwyn says

    @46:

    You don’t understand this blog do you? Or the concept of rhetorical questions?

  45. Monocle Smile says

    @Kurt
    I see no indication that you read my comment, either.
    You didn’t just refer to Jordan’s parents. You broadened your suggestion to pretty much everyone in his life that isn’t also an atheist. That’s unworkable.
    Unlike with Jordan, I have little sympathy for you. It’s one thing to be an out atheist and spread a positive message and start discussion. Posting memes like the one you made is extremely counterproductive; it’s low-class “ridicule” for the sake of being antagonistic, not to spread a message or start discussion. And if people are going to give you a hard time merely for being an atheist (if you didn’t post dumb memes like that one), then why are you friends with them, either in life or on social media?

  46. King Lam says

    I didn’t know where else to ask this question so I posted it here. Sorry if it causes a problem.
    I just watched this lost episode and I’m curious to know where these people are today? Are they still with the ACA or have they gone elsewhere?

  47. Dan Allen says

    @Russel Glasser (41)

    Don’t you think it’s a little dishonest to conflate figures of ‘political terrorism and mass shootings’ with Islamic terrorism? It is a false equivalence – the terrorist incidents committed on American soil have not been politically driven (San Bernadino, Boston, 9/11) in nature, as say IRA attacks in the 1980s was, nor are they mass shootings along the lines of Columbine etc etc. as the motivations and cause of these are not equatable. Additionally, mass shootings are almost exclusively an American issue.
    Really though, this argument is just another deflection from the issue at hand: Islamic terrorism is driven and justified by Islamic doctrine. I don’t see why you try and avoid talking about this and to compare it to something like the Bundy ranch affair is merely committing a logical fallacy, which for a skeptic is bad enough, but really, it’s laughable you try and do so.
    How convenient for you to be able to say ‘In America, it’s not a major issue’ (or Jen at least). Look at the terrorist attacks this year alone. Who is committing them? Ask yourself why the vast, vast majority of them are by Muslims. It’s not coincidence.
    Furthermore, it’s not a matter of terrorism being the only issue. Many ideas are widely held by Muslims to be true that are completely antithetical to western, secular democracy, such as the role and rights of women, homosexuals, sharia law and apostasy rules, for some.
    As one comment above points out, why do you appear to have this inherent desire to avoid talking about this honestly?

  48. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    the Bundy ranch affair

    Also driven in some large part by religious doctrine. Have you not heard of sovereign citizens, the Embassy Of Heaven (who issue “license plates”), dominionism, etc.?

  49. Monocle Smile says

    @Dan Allen
    Your post is a non sequitur to Russell’s post in 41 and you make the same mistake as Sean concerning what gets labeled terrorism. It is also laughable that you claim IRA attacks had nothing to do with religious doctrine.

  50. Safudas says

    This show runs the risk of sounding parochial if the hosts continue to pre-empt short discussions with international callers because their concerns don’t apply to Austin, Texas

  51. corwyn says

    @54:

    Is that what they did? Or was it rather that when asked why they *acted* as they did, said they acted in the environment of their locality? What are you referring to?

  52. James Boggs says

    I am disappointed in the intellectual dishonesty afoot. You shut down Kir’s argument with “I don’t agree with your statistics” then end the call. This is the very tactic religious people use when they deny evolution or global warming. “For people who would like us to respond to that…don’t care”. I am disappointed at this behavior. Use your favorite search engine to pull up a list of Christian terrorist attacks in the last few decades, then do the same for Islamic Terrorist attacks, then honestly tell everybody that you simply disagree with those statistics. If you want to base your argument that this disparity in statistics is for reasons other than religion and perhaps they are political, sociological, cultural…okay, then base your argument on that. I think these would be weak arguments that could be easily debunked, and I think you know this as well, but at least it wouldn’t be as blatantly intellectually dishonest as “I don’t agree with your statistics” then further dismissing the argument by simply refusing to give any response at all.

  53. Russell Glasser says

    Then I presume you have read my comment #41 where I explained the statistics.

  54. Monocle Smile says

    @James Boggs
    Might want to read the thread next time. This has been discussed plenty.