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Does Religion Make You Nice?
Skeeve
I read a very interesting article at Slate last week and forgot to post it.

http://www.slate....m/all?Paul

Does Religion Make You Nice?
Does atheism make you mean?
By Paul BloomPosted Friday, Nov. 7, 2008, at 7:05 AM ET

Many Americans doubt the morality of atheists. According to a 2007 Gallup poll, a majority of Americans say that they would not vote for an otherwise qualified atheist as president, meaning a nonbeliever would have a harder time getting elected than a Muslim, a homosexual, or a Jew. Many would go further and agree with conservative commentator Laura Schlessinger that morality requires a belief in God—otherwise, all we have is our selfish desires. In The Ten Commandments, she approvingly quotes Dostoyevsky: "Where there is no God, all is permitted." The opposing view, held by a small minority of secularists, such as Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennett, Sam Harris, and Christopher Hitchens, is that belief in God makes us worse. As Hitchens puts it, "Religion poisons everything."


Also follow the links in the article, more stuff worth reading.
Edited by Skeeve on 11/23/2008 14:04
"The world is my country, and do good is my religion." - Thomas Paine
 
Bob of QF
Does religion make you nice?

The evidence does not support this.

A simple test can me made, if it were remotely true: people in jail would mostly NOT be composed of religious people.

And, people who get into jail, get converted, and get out, would mostly NOT return to whatever it was that got them in jail in the first place.

A close examination shows that neither case is true.

Thus, murderers who "get Jesus" become Christian murderers.

Child molesters who "Get Saved" become Christian child molesters.

Adulterers who "Find Christianity" become Christian adulterers.

Nothing much changes, except perhaps, these people don't feel guilt for what they did and do any longer....

References: the percentage of prison population with respect to religious belief.
Quantum Junction: Use both lanes

Reality is that which is left, after you stop believing.
 
catman
Of course religion doesn't "make you nice". Many Christians in jail are the result of 'jailhouse conversions', and I suspect they only do it in hopes of getting out sooner.
Edited by catman on 11/23/2008 17:05
"If I owned both Hell and Texas, I'd live in Hell and rent out Texas." - General Sheridan
 
Sugarfree
LOL. The only people that could truly believe 'religion makes you nice and atheism makes you mean', are those that have little or no experience with non-believers. I dont believe in England such an argument would ever be made. Too bad for you guys accross the pond Angry
Sf.
 
Hypatia
Well said Bob.

No, religion doesn't make me nice. It makes me pissed, and I don't think it makes the people who practice it nice either. What Bob said.

I think if non-believers were more vocal in refusing to be discriminated against - in any venue - and demanded to be treated as equals to any other citizen, then the believing citizens would, at some point in the near future, have no choice but to elect us into public office along with anyone else. It would be a matter of mind sets evolving, but if we do more to demand equal consideration for equal qualifications I think we'll begin to get there much quicker.

We have to start somewhere, and we can't wait for 'them' to 'give' it to us, or to 'allow' us to 'have it' - we're going to have to expect it, demand it and take it to have it.

My two cents.

Grrrr. I'm mean, and nice.

Wink



 
neilmarr
Hitchens puts it well when he asks: "Can you think of one good act -- any good act -- performed by a Christian that could not be performed by an atheists?"

And I'm afraid I can't remember who it was who said: "In a world of non-believers, you would find good people doing good things and bad people doing bad things. It takes religion to make good people do bad things."

Neil
 
willie
No religion does not make one nice, neither does it nessecarilly make one bad. Likewise the absence of religion.
 
Sugarfree
neilmarr wrote:
Hitchens puts it well when he asks: "Can you think of one good act -- any good act -- performed by a Christian that could not be performed by an atheists?"

And I'm afraid I can't remember who it was who said: "In a world of non-believers, you would find good people doing good things and bad people doing bad things. It takes religion to make good people do bad things."

Neil

Steven Weinberg.
 
Sugarfree
One of my favourite quote Neil, i might add Smile
 
neilmarr
Thanks, SF. Neil
 
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