There’s Hypocrites

Then there’s fucking hypocrites.

[Anyone following this blog recently may have noticed my ‘problem’ with hypocrisy. One day all may be revealed.]

Via Twitter I came across this interesting article:

Group targets school kids in atheism drive

A story (on a religious web site) lamenting that the National Federation of Atheist, Humanist and Secular Student Societies (AHS) in England are “targeting” children to inform them that religion may not provide the best ethical and moral guidelines.

In what is some of the most hypocritical statements (and I’ve heard plenty over the last 18 months), and some of the best cognitive dissonance I’ve seen (at least in the last few minutes) in a while, comes these pearls of wisdom:

“It is deeply worrying that they now want to use children to attack the Christian ethos of their schools.

“Many parents will also be anxious at the thought of militant atheists targeting their children.”

OMFG! Like the many and varied churches haven’t been using children to boost their incoherent, inconsistent and blatantly stupid beliefs for the last couple of centuries!! Like the churches (eg. Catholic, Anglican & Muslim) haven’t, not only setup their own schools to indoctrinate and brainwash the unfortunate  children, but have also managed to get RE into a lot of public schools. Like religion hasn’t used children and schools to attack atheism, evolution, and promote their particular narrow minded view of the world.

If it wasn’t for the stranglehold religions have on children, there probably wouldn’t be any religions. If religion was expressly forbidden to be indoctrinated or taught to anyone under the age of 18 how many people do you honestly think would believe in it?

Why do you think so many religions espouse having lots of children? Why do you think so many religions (particularly the Catholics) have problems with contraception?

Because if children weren’t indoctrinated from birth in the faith of their parents, if children were dutifully informed about religion and how it came about. If children were informed about the many and varied faiths; they probably wouldn’t become religious. Then the particular faith would wither and die a natural death.

As A. C. Grayling says [paraphrased]

Tell an averagely intelligent adult hitherto free of religious brainwashing that somewhere there is an invisible being, who was born of a virgin, performs miracles, that wants us to worship them or else they’ll burn in hell. Then ask them which of several religions, that fit this description, they wish to believe in, most likely they will say: none of them.

Hypocrisy at it’s best, religions have schools that promote a particular religion, but then have a problem with a group that wants to promote healthy positive, alternative, critical thinking.

Another, slightly less biased story is here.

What do you think? Are the religious being hypocrites? Do they have anything to be concerned about? Is the AHS on to a good thing?

What more could be done to promote critical thinking in schools?

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18 Comments

Filed under atheism, atheist, christian, critical thinking, education, god, religion, religious

18 responses to “There’s Hypocrites

  1. This isn’t even an issue of hypocrisy, it’s an issue of a newspaper lying for Jesus. The entire original report was wrong in many many ways:

    http://atheistblogger.com/2009/04/26/telegraph-caught-lying-for-jesus/

  2. I can’t begin to tell you how this makes me feel here. Maybe I’ll send you an email later.

  3. Hi there,

    Thanks for covering this!

    Here’s some more information. The AHS’ official response to the article and also a quote I sent to the journalist as prep materials for his article, which i invite you to compare with what he actually printed.

    http://www.ahsstudents.org.uk/press/releases/3

    My quote:

    Some readers may be concerned that this new initiative will offend the religious or that it is even trying to ‘stamp out religion’ as atheists are supposedly hell-bent on doing. I’d like to address both these points. Firstly, talking to one another about our beliefs or lack thereof is important. It helps us understand each other. It also treats religious people more like adults, by properly engaging with them instead of assuming that they need special protection. Secondly, atheists want everyone to be treated equally. A secular state where no one belief is privileged by extra public funding, platform, government representation or exemption from public policy and law is the only way forward for a multicultural society. This fostering of dialogue and an ethos of equal treatment is what we’d like to encourage students to take up. – Chloë Clifford-Frith, AHS Cofounder

    The article:

    Atheists are becoming increasingly militant in their desperate attempts to stamp out faith. It is deeply worrying that they now want to use children to attack the Christian ethos of their schools. Many parents will also be anxious at the thought of militant atheists targeting their children. – Simon Calvert, The Christian Institute

    • Thanks for your feedback, it’s clarified matters. I hope the newspaper prints your response.

      As Adrian points out in his article, it seems to be a case of “Lying for Jesus”

  4. “If religion was expressly forbidden to be indoctrinated or taught to anyone under the age of 18 how many people do you honestly think would believe in it?”

    You mean like in China, where this is official government policy?

    You mean like in China, where 40 years ago Christianity was declared to be non existent in the whole country?

    You mean like in China, which is today the nation with the fastest growing Christian community on the face of the earth?

    You mean like in China which is predicted to be the largest Christian nation on earth within 20 years?

    Just wondering.

    Look, of course it blatant hypocrisy. Of course it’s sickening. Hypocrisy always is.

    What I can’t understand is, since every single person on the face of the earth (including you) is a hypocrite to one degree or another, why do you act surprised when you find hypocrisy? And why do you act surprised to find it in a Church? We Christians are the ones who admit to every shortcoming known to humankind. That’s is why we became Christians in the first place.

    • Like China, that has an officially approved form of Catholicism (one that isn’t aligned with Rome, since that isn’t in China’s interest)? Funny how if you can’t be a Christian in China yet they have churches. Weird that.

      That’s is why we became Christians in the first place.

      What? Not because you were indoctrinated from an early age? It was because you admit to every shortcoming known to man, instead? What a weird reason for being a theist.

      • Sanitygrl

        ” We Christians are the ones who admit to every shortcoming known to humankind. That’s is why we became Christians in the first place”

        some do (massive guilt trips -\perfectionism and neurosis plus jugementalism of others)
        who’s seen “easy A” or saved ??
        Others just get sold to.
        Me – indoctrinated from birth, heavily guilt tripped from 11 escaped at 18. Believed it wholeheartedly and did my best – still like some of the ethics but chucked out the crazy bits. Human ethics plenty ta. Peace.

    • I think you may find that the rise in Christianity in China is due to intense evangelizing. The Chinese have a long history of supernatural beliefs, thus it is relatively easy to convert some of them to a different supernatural belief.

      Christianity may have been declared to be non-existent in China, but was in fact quite strong (albeit mainly an ‘underground’ movement). The sudden apparent rise maybe due more to the greater overall freedoms the Chinese population has been experiencing in recent years. These freedoms have allowed the Christians to be more open about their long-standing faith.

      Reading a few articles on the rise of Christianity in China, it appears a few other factors are also in play. One of the main ones being Christianity is seen to be more modern and “Western”, aspects many (particularly younger, well educated) Chinese aspire to be.

      Makarios, I appreciate your “Just wondering.” You have certainly brought up some good points.

      There does seem to be many Chinese who are suddenly becoming Christians, who were not raised within a Christian environment.

      Whilst I admit that there will always be people who become religious at an older age without prior religious knowledge. I still submit that the teaching of children, basically from birth, is the major source of new and consistent religious believers.

      Here’s a quote (out of context) from one of the articles:

      “In China”, says one, “the two-year-old Christian teaches the one-year-old.”

      As far as the hypocrisy goes, I’m not so much acting surprised as being somewhat aggrieved. [long story I’m not going into here] I don’t find it surprising to find it within the church, just disappointed when I see something so blatant as this.

      Have to disagree with your statement:

      “We Christians are the ones who admit to every shortcoming known to humankind.”

      Perhaps if more Christians did admit to their shortcomings we atheists wouldn’t have so much to discuss.

  5. Very interesting post..and comments.

  6. Religion is full of hyprocites. GGRRR!!!

  7. hyprocites = hypocrites It’s early..

  8. Yes admit to shortcomings then not do anything about them ;). Better to ask forgiveness later.

  9. “Yes admit to shortcomings then not do anything about them”

    I see the wink but I don’t understand the comment.

  10. Sanitygrl

    “Perhaps if more Christians did admit to their shortcomings we atheists wouldn’t have so much to discuss.”

    When I was Christian we weren’t allowed to be a “bad witness” as we called it so it’s unlikely that a Christian will feel able to admit to doubts or criticise the church. Don’t be too hardh on them those who haven’t ever been one. It’s way

  11. Sanitygrl

    ..oops sorry got cut off – it’s way harder to get out of that mindset if you don’t know any nonchristians… Which is why the faith schools want to exclude other faiths and/ or none. I had to leave almost all of my friends behind it was v upsetting but I refused to carry on going and pretend ( plenty of church people there just like the social life and free childcare plus they do teach ethics – there aren’t many humanist ethics clubs for kids yet) mainly I hated the endless insistence that I should evangelise and the creationist cheat sheets / FAQ response drillings. Always felt people could read the bible or Koran or any book and use their brains to chick out the bad and keep the good. Not good enough for them.

  12. Sanitygrl

    Atheists are becoming increasingly militant in their desperate attempts to stamp out faith. >>
    evidence?
    Hardly desperate …
    And coming from a culture that has mass evangelism in mind that’s rich..
    I’ve never seen an atheist talk to children about their beliefs but Christians target them all the time.

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