It’s been a long busy day, and I am exasperated that I get online now and discover that my fellow atheists have been desperately gleeful to have discovered excuses to justify evading any responsibility for the murders of Deah Shaddy Barakat, Yusor Mohammad, and Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha. The killing was over a parking spot; he was one of those crazy gun-fondlers. Let’s sieze any excuse to deflect an obligation to think. It’s just like with Elliot Rodger: he didn’t shoot those people because he hates women, it was because he was mentally ill.
That he was a member of my group is just a coincidence, we’re blameless, it’s his membership in some other group that is at fault!
I do not accept that. I do not think that atheism compelled him to kill Muslims, just as I don’t think Islam compels one to become a suicide bomber, or Christianity compels one to bomb abortion clinics. But I do think that the ideology must accept some responsibility for failing to teach people not to do those things. And too often, atheism has more than failed to do something, it has actively promoted action. Consider the eloquence of Hitchens attached to the propaganda driving the war in Iraq, and used to foster hate against Iran. Can we honestly say that modern atheism condemns such activity?
We can be outraged at the hypocrisy of the Catholic church that claims to be a force for the highest moral good, yet shelters pedophiles, promotes unsafe sex in Africa, and enslaved women in laundries…somehow, some atheists think they’re better because they declare that atheism imposes no moral obligations at all. We avoid the charge of hypocrisy while instead embracing the charge of amorality.
We have to own our failings. It’s the only way to improve ourselves.
It’s OK to say that atheism doesn’t promote murder of believers — it doesn’t. But we’re going to have to admit that as it stands now, atheism did not equip the killer of Deah Shaddy Barakat, Yusor Mohammad, and Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha with the moral compass to stop and recognize that taking a life — whether it was over a parking spot or their Muslim dress doesn’t matter — was wrong.
Own up to this lethal failure of atheism, and of our culture.
Then we can think about fixing it.
Christ. And then there’s this.
— AOA (@AtheistsOnAir) February 12, 2015
Yeah. Owning an ATV says absofuckinglutely nothing about whether you should murder your neighbor. And apparently, neither does atheism, and whoever put that image together thinks that’s a good thing.