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  1. TopTop #1
    Valley Oak
    Guest

    Religion Criticized

    Our society, that is the United States, talks very highly about freedom of expression but does not practice it thoroughly. Unlike European countries, Americans do not dare criticize religion because it is held a sacred cow here. The thinking goes along the lines of: "That's someone's else's religious faith, therefore you cannot criticize it." Nothing could be further from the truth.

    In the United States, religion and the church (especially christianity and all of its denominations), enjoy a level of impunity that is envied by any government, even dictatorships. This is because while there is covert resistance and hatred towards dictatorships, and they all eventually fall. In the U.S., however, people practice self-censorship when it comes to religious faith, paving the way for an infinite number of abuses and unjustified privileges, such as not paying taxes and many others.

    There are exceptions to this impunity, of course. For example, minority religions are discriminated against such as Islam ("the religion of the terrorists") and Paganism (federal government's refusal to provide tombstones with a pentacle to Pagan soldiers who died in Iraq). And another exception are the pedophile scandals plaguing the catholic church (much to the mouth-watering delight of non-catholic christians).

    But the general attitude of Americans towards religion and the church is that you cannot criticize it or reproach it in any way. Religion in the U.S. is treated as if: "Sure, you can criticize the evil government, evil business, and the evil public, but over there, God, He's on another plane; you can't criticize Him because he is above all of this. He's not even part of society."

    BULLSHIT!

    People create religion, church, the bible, canons, and everything else that goes along with it. But because people have faith in something that doesn't even exist they are completely blind to this enormous social scam. Religion, the church, etc, is simply another institution entirely made up by human beings, nothing more. And as another institution, religion, the church, and the buybull, need to be criticized and taxed and held accountable like anyone else. It is grossly unfair and unjustifiable to grant the religious community this incalculable privilege and unchecked over-representation in our country.

    And that's not going into detail about the humongous political influence that religious institutions have garnered in the U.S. Watch the movie: "Jesus Camp." Without the religious vote and daddy to help him get something that he isn't qualified, Bush and company wouldn't stand a chance against an intelligent candidate such as Gore.

    The religious political machine here in the States is unprecedented, financed by billions of dollars, and very well organized with a huge lobby not only in Washington DC but in every state capitol and numerous local government across "our" nation. This undue religious power over government is only equaled in Muslim fundamentalist countries such as Iran and others. What a paradox. But the U.S. is the only democratic country in the world with this kind of religious influence in its public policy.

    In the year 2000 alone, individuals and organizations (foundations, businesses, etc) donated over 203 billion dollars to the nonprofits and other entities. The nonprofit sector includes churches and other religious organizations, which are not taxable under federal law. Guess what: one third of those 203 billion dollars went to religious organizations and not a penny was taxed. What a waste of all that money when we could be doing something useful with it as a society.

    We need to wake up, rub our eyes open, and strip the veil of impunity away from the church politically, economically, but most of all, ethically. It is because of our mistaken ethical principle that we cannot, should not, and do not criticize religion that it gets its special treatment and undue influence. The church does not have this kind of privilege in democratic countries anywhere in the world. It is strictly and uniquely an American social character deficiency.

    Edward
    Last edited by Valley Oak; 05-16-2007 at 11:29 AM.
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  2. TopTop #2
    Dixon's Avatar
    Dixon
     

    Re: Religion Criticized

    Yes, Roble, you are right on about this! And I'm glad to see you reasoning instead of just spouting the puerile shock and gross-out stuff of a couple days ago.

    Atheist blessings!

    Dixon (Recovering former religionist)


    Quote roble wrote: View Post
    Our society, that is the United States, talks very highly about freedom of expression but does not practice it thoroughly. Unlike European countries, Americans do not dare criticize religion because it is held a sacred cow here. The thinking goes along the lines of: "That's someone's else's religious faith, therefore you cannot criticize it." Nothing could be further from the truth. ...
    Last edited by Barry; 05-17-2007 at 12:38 PM.
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  3. TopTop #3
    Valley Oak
    Guest

    Re: Religion Criticized

    Well, gee, Dixon, aren't you the one who says that even if god doesn't exist that people are still happier believing in it?

    Edward

    Quote Dixon wrote: View Post
    Yes, Roble, you are right on about this! And I'm glad to see you reasoning instead of just spouting the puerile shock and gross-out stuff of a couple days ago.

    Atheist blessings!

    Dixon (Recovering former religionist)
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  4. TopTop #4
    Braggi's Avatar
    Braggi
     

    Re: Religion Criticized

    Quote Valley Oak wrote: View Post
    ...
    In the year 2000 alone, individuals and organizations (foundations, businesses, etc) donated over 203 billion dollars to the nonprofits and other entities. The nonprofit sector includes churches and other religious organizations, which are not taxable under federal law. Guess what: one third of those 203 billion dollars went to religious organizations and not a penny was taxed. What a waste of all that money when we could be doing something useful with it as a society. ...
    You mean like the Mormon polygamist sect we've seen in the news lately? I think there's plenty of people dissing religions of all stripes. Some of it is open and in the news, but most of it is "in the beauty shops and barber shops."

    I agree that churches should have little to no influence over politicians and the "believe in God" litmus test most politicians must submit to is disgusting to me, personally.

    However, a great deal of that donated money was not wasted. Christian organizations are extremely efficient at providing food and shelter to the needy, for instance. After hurricane Katrina it wasn't FEMA or the North Bay Pagan Alliance feeding the hungry; it was the Salvation Army. I have no problem making donations to them even if I don't agree with their (lack of) thealogy. Christian groups do a lot of good in the world and make their money stretch amazingly far due to low wages and donated labor. That is something worth emulating. Christian churches are unique in their ability to get things done with volunteer labor.

    -Jeff
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