Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Aiming to marginalize

Religious apologists complain bitterly that atheists and secularists are aggressive and hostile in their criticism of them. I always say: look, when you guys were in charge, you didn’t argue with us, you just burnt us at the stake. Now what we’re doing is, we’re presenting you with some arguments and some challenging questions, and you complain.-A. C. Grayling
Really? Tim Chaffey replies: 
Finally, Grayling’s quote is ridiculous. When were atheists burned at the stake by Christians? Christianity was the dominant faith in the U.S. for over 200 years. When has an atheist ever been burned at the stake in the U.S.? When were atheists burned at the stake in Europe? Did the Catholics do that? I know that many Christians were burned at the stake (Hus, Ridley, Latimer, Cranmer, Sattler, et al.). So where is the evidence that Christians in power burned atheists at the stake?
Most importantly, are atheists just arguing? No, some of them seek to marginalize religious belief. This is their stated purpose. Here is actor Chris O'Dowd: 
“There’s going to be a turning point where it’s going to be like racism. You know,You’re not allowed to say that weird shit! It’s mad! And you’re making everybody crazy!


Unknown said...

I equate those killed for heresy as being the equivalent of atheists.

Heretics openly oppose the dogma of the dominant religion. Atheists oppenly oppose the dogma of any dominant religion. Tomatoh, tomato.

You should go read this post:

There, the author appears to defend burning heretics with this rationale:

Biblelight Author: "If you think that the Inquisition was evil or misguided, just consider the state of those countries today where the Inquisitions were the most active – Spain, Portugal, and Italy. Nearly everyone in those countries is Catholic, and consequently, all three of those nations have the most restrictive abortion laws in the world. / Over the course of six hundred years, the Catholic Inquisitions sent between forty to sixty thousand individuals to the scaffold to be burned by the secular authorities. This is less than half the number of abortions done in the United States every month."

Ilíon said...

God-deniers -- every single one of them -- are lying about the First Question. Why is it a surprise that some of them lie about lesser questions?

jdhuey said...

From Wikipedia:

"How dangerous it was to be accused of being an atheist at this time is illustrated by the examples of Étienne Dolet who was strangled and burned in 1546, and Giulio Cesare Vanini who received a similar fate in 1619. In 1689 the Polish nobleman Kazimierz Łyszczyński, who had denied the existence of God in his philosophical treatise De non existentia Dei, was imprisoned unlawfully; despite Warsaw Confederation tradition and king Sobieski's intercession, Łyszczyński was condemned to death for atheism and beheaded in Warsaw after his tongue was pulled out with a burning iron and his hands slowly burned. Similarly in 1766, the French nobleman Jean-François de la Barre, was tortured, beheaded, and his body burned for alleged vandalism of a crucifix, a case that became celebrated because Voltaire tried unsuccessfully to have the sentence reversed."

Jakub Moravčík said...

Well, there are two points:

- on the one hand, christian really haven´t burned atheists at stake. But mostly from the reason that in middle-ages were, if I am not mistaken, no atheists at all, at least for sure not in modern dawkinsian style. To be honest, if atheist existed in middle-ages and around, I think they would for sure be burned or at least heavily punished.

- on the other, what about killing the 400 000 catholics of Vendée during french revolution just because they were catholics? And their murderers definetely weren´t christians. They were at best deists.

Kevin said...

Ideologically those doing the killing during the French Revolution seemed quite similar to today's New Atheists.