Open Thread

Cain’s Coffin

Artist - Adam Zyglis

In other news, this is why we can't have nice things.

Religious people distrust the world’s estimated 500 million atheistsas much as rapists, a study found Friday in the wake of a poll that said less than half of Americans would vote for an atheist president. [...]

The study published in the current online issue of Journal of Personality and Social Psychology found that outward displays of belief in God are viewed as a proxy for trustworthiness.

That explains the Republican party, wouldn't you say?

Programming note... I will be offline from Sunday to Wednesday while I move from Kentucky to Ohio.

  • cousinavi

    Kentucky to Ohio?

    “As Ashby’s undercover investigation into the dumbest god walloping regions in America continues, our intrepid reporter leaps from the frying pan into the fire.”

    Good luck, JM.

  • Razor

    Religious people trust atheists as much as they trust rapists… unless it’s a Catholic priest, then they trust the rapist more.

  • Zen Diesel

    Good luck on your move, hopefully your not moving into “Boners” district.

  • muselet

    This week’s The World in Words podcast (as I type this, it’s not up at The World’s website; try iTunes if you’re interested) has a cheerful argument about a new, secular translation of the Bible (17:29–25:04, but the whole thing is worth a listen). The segment is from the BBC; I can’t imagine such a polite discussion on the subject taking place on the public airwaves here in the US. We really need to grow up.

    More importantly: Ashby, I’ve been through enough moves to know they’re a whole lot of no fun. Hope your move is trouble-free.


  • nicole

    Hope your move goes smoothly, Ashby!

  • mrbrink

    Sunday to Wednesday…?!

    Nope, nope, nope.

    It’s Kentucky to Ohio, not Kentucky to Uzbekibekibekistan!

    Tell Ohio I said, “hey.”

    • JMAshby

      Wednesday is the earliest I could get cable installed.

      • Bob Rutledge

        Ah. To me it was that you were going to have to swim all your stuff across the river.

  • Scopedog

    Man, that sucks.

    Look, I’m a lapsed Catholic and all and am no full-blown atheist (and never will be) but still–why can’t we accept that yes, some people believe in God (or a higher power) and some don’t? Your own faith–or non-faith–should be your own business. It’s how you conduct yourself that matters.

    Yeah, I know. Sounds so bloody idealistic.

    I mean, is it that hard? Granted, I get pissed at some of the New Atheists like Dawkins and Harris, but it’s not for their atheism–rather, it’s about how their attitudes, sadly, seem to mirror the attitudes of the fundamentalists they criticize.

    Wonder what Franklin Schaeffer and Karen Armstrong would say about this?

    • jmby

      Great post, and agreed. Similarly, it always bothers me when non-religious people are nasty to or about those of faith. Also a lapsed Catholic who has both my own wishes for deep faith and a mind that nonetheless leads me to question faith, I can’t understand what makes some folks so angry at those who believe strongly in God or a particular religion. Especially when those who don’t believe get very, very nasty.

      I TOTALLY get being very angry at the nuns who taught/tortured someone in school, or the minister and religion who said to a child all his life he’d burn in Hell with non- believers, but what is it to anyone if religion or faith brings comfort to someone else? I’ve known shitty religious leaders and some (of many different beliefs) who were stunningly beautiful people. I often WISH I had a strong faith.

      Believe, don’t believe – just live and let live and be nice to each other.

      • Scopedog

        “I’ve known shitty religious leaders and some (of many different beliefs) who were stunningly beautiful people.”

        Agreed. I remember listening to the Dhali Lama speak in Central Park a few years ago, and it was an experience I will never forget. I truly felt then–and now–that I was seeing and hearing someone who was truly spiritual, in a way that I cannot put into words. Call it a non-rational feeling. He condemned no one but respected everyone.

        One could also say the same about Dr. King.

        Perhaps one of the best quotes I read from Isaac Asimov–himself an atheist–was that one of the best things he liked about the US was that here, you had the right to believe or NOT to believe. It was your choice, and no one could take it away from you.

        Like you said, “Believe, don’t believe – just live and let live and be nice to each other.” It isn’t easy, but hey, the alternative is much worse.