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  •  I haven't exactly retreated. (1+ / 0-)
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    Hopeful Skeptic

    I give lab tours to young people and gave some talks and demos for my mom's high school physics and physical science classes. We're pro-science at eKos, a project in which we've invested substantial time and effort. I've engaged several times with global warming denialists and picked apart other anti-science comments on DK. I would like to focus on education to promote scientific literacy.

    I just don't enjoy arguing with people about religion, as it seems a pointless exercise. I'm not going to convince anybody to abandon their faith, and they won't convince me to join theirs. And I've never been bashed or persecuted as an atheist on DK (or anywhere else, for that matter).

    I'm all for engagement, but I have neither the time nor the inclination to seek out useless pie fights over religion. To be clear, I'm not claiming that you seek out said pie fights, but this was the point I was trying to make in my previous comments.

    eKos: Environmental diaries @ DK

    by patrickz on Sat Jul 17, 2010 at 12:35:43 PM PDT

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    •  Unless we are free to talk about our own (1+ / 0-)
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      non-religious convictions and philosophy here, without being subject to a torrent of hate, and thus choose not to talk about it, then we are, in fact, retreating.

      It should be possible to discuss religion and religious beliefs and belief in a god or gods, just as it is possible to discuss every other belief, ideology or opinion, without being immediately subjected to attempted censorship.

      The fact that every discussion about religion turns into an argument is primarily because religious believers, even self-labeled "liberal" theists, by and large do not tolerate such discussions.

      Ignoring the fact that there is a deep-seated American cultural taboo against questioning religious beliefs, and that there is a false equivalence made between questioning religious beliefs and attacking people, does not make it go away.

      Thanks for all you do, but the fact is that many atheists here who are not nearly as provocative or confrontational as I am have left because, no matter how gently or respectfully they try to raise questions, they are subject to exactly the same treatment I am - in fact, in many ways worse treatment if they don't fight back.

      That needs to change. It starts with people not ignoring overt expressions of prejudice.

      It starts with holding theists to the same standard of tolerance when it comes to expressing dissenting views on religion as on any other topic.

      Always make new mistakes - Esther Dyson

      by RandomActsOfReason on Sun Jul 18, 2010 at 11:59:05 AM PDT

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