Respect my Right to Believe

From twitter

though i do not an believe in atheism i will respect the rights of those who do. But in return i expect you to respect my right to believe

I respect all believers (religions of all varieties) rights to believe whatever they wish.

What I don’t respect is what those believers do in the name of their beliefs, especially if it impacts negatively on the rest of the population that doesn’t happen to believe in their particular brand of belief. What I don’t respect is believers trying to force their beliefs on others, particularly when those beliefs are not backed by any evidence whatsoever. I don’t respect believers who indoctrinate their children into their beliefs. I don’t respect believers who prevent condom use, prevent abortions or euthanasia purely on religious grounds not any logical or scientific grounds. I don’t respect beliefs that encourage people to harm others purely because they don’t have the same beliefs. I don’t respect beliefs that subjugate women or children and that discourage scientific investigation and research. I certainly don’t respect that governments hand out billions of tax dollars to religions purely because they promote religion. Just because it’s “religion” should not automatically mean it gets respect.

As Richard Dawkins said recently about Muslims [paraphrased] “… it’s because I fear you, don’t ever think it’s because I respect you”.

In other words, I respect your right to believe but don’t expect that I’ll respect you simply because you believe in some form of religion and/or god(s).

How can you not believe in atheism? It’s like saying you don’t believe in non-stamp collecting. You don’t have to like the idea that there are millions, if not billions, of people on this planet who are atheists, but you can’t not believe that such an idea exists. Whilst ever there is a principle called theism there will be a principle called atheism.

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7 Comments

Filed under atheism, atheist, beliefs, god, religion

7 responses to “Respect my Right to Believe

  1. The Christians I’ve been in contact with are very convincing. They aren’t just religious, they have personal relationships to their God and so I just bite my tongue. When you wrote ” It’s like saying you don’t believe in non-stamp collecting.” Yeah, it’s just like that. I’ve been busy but I’ve been keeping up with your posts. I hope you are happy and well.

  2. “though i do not an believe in atheism”

    “It’s like saying you don’t believe in non-stamp collecting.”

    Honestly, to me this is a matter of semantics. I think that jdcriveau meant he does not personally take stock in atheism, not that he believes there are actually no atheists or that atheism does not actually exist. His use of words was unfortunate, but I do not get the feeling that he intended it the way you took it.

    “… it’s because I fear you, don’t ever think it’s because I respect you”

    That is an excellent line.

  3. Welcome to new readers @zebulonthered and @ Unikraken and you are probably correct about what jdcriveau meant.

    Oh, and welcome back Green-Eyed Momster, I am happy and well actually.

  4. the chaplain

    I’m so sick and tired of believers saying, “respect my right to believe,” when what they really mean is, “respect my beliefs.” You’ve stated very well why atheists and agnostics don’t respect particular religious beliefs. Of course we respect believers’ rights to believe; it’s the flip-side of our right not to believe.

  5. I will always respect ones right to believe or disbelieve, the choice is their choice and theirs alone
    jd

  6. Geez…why is it so hard for some people to grasp that atheist means lack of belief in God or active disbelief in God.
    I like this post. 🙂

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