So, it turns out atheists can be as nasty and dangerous as theists

Posted by Atheist in FundyLand     Category: Miscellaneous Blog Entries, Sticky, Throne of Thought



After my post on elevatorgate, I watched as the atheist community–if you can call it that–imploded. I should have realized it was coming. The only thing atheists share with each other is a position on a single point. We don’t believe in god. That’s it. Every other belief is pretty much up for grabs. Unsurprisingly, it turns out atheists are jealous and proud of it; petty, unjust, unforgiving control freaks; vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleansers; misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bullies…to quote another somewhat misogynistic atheist bully.

The biggest offenders are batshit men’s rights activists and, to a lesser extent, their batshit counterparts, militant feminists. As a woman subscribing to mostly men’s YouTube channels, I saw more of the former than the latter. Yes, I find both extremes disgusting, but I observed much more craziness from the men than I did from the women; therefore, this post will focus on the craziness of men’s rights activists who happen to be atheists. This is similar to my past decision to focus on Christianity because I live in a nation where Christianity is the number one religion. This nation also discriminates against women far more often than it discriminates against men. There are some exceptions (male circumcision and custody rights come to mind), but for the most part, men are in a position of power in this country. This makes the over-the-top misogyny in the atheist “community” even more heinous in my eyes.

I’ve seen men wonder why they don’t see more lady atheists. Well, as a lady atheist, I don’t particularly want to hang around with the likes of The Amazing Atheist and others who have completely lost all sense of common decency. At one point, I didn’t even want to hang around with myself because I had been blind enough to subscribe to said nutjobs.

Here are some lovely quotes from a Reddit thread penned by T.J. Kincaid, the self-styled “amazing” atheist. He was talking to someone who self-identified as a rape victim:

Yeah. Well, you deserved it. So, fuck you. I hope it happens again soon. I’m tired of being treated like shit by you mean little cunts and then you using your rape as an excuse. Fuck you. I think we should give the guy who raped you a medal. I hope you fucking drown in rape semen, you ugly, mean-spirited cow. Actually, I don’t believe you were ever raped! What man would be tasteless enough to stick his dick into a human cesspool like you? Nice gif of a turd going into my mouth. Is that kind of like the way that rapists dick went in your pussy? Or did he use your asshole? Or was it both? Maybe you should think about it really hard for the next few hours. Relive it as much as possible. You know? Try to recall: was it my pussy or my ass?

Nice, eh? Did you notice the projection? I don’t think I’ve ever encountered anyone more mean-spirited than T.J. Kincaid and his flock of sycophants.

By the time I found this little gem, I’d already unsubscribed from The Amazing Atheist. His views are so incredibly vile I also unsubscribed from everyone who was still subscribed to him and noticed in hindsight that many of them tended to rely on personal attacks rather than reason to address the problem of religion. What a blind fool I was.

Disgusted by the infighting that ensued, I unsubscribed from every YouTube atheist except for mister deity, who appears to be a kind, well-balanced individual. Granted, there are a lot of other decent YouTube atheists, but at that point I was finished with the atheist movement. As with most other causes, it was co-opted by a bunch of shrill extremists and I no longer wanted anything to do with the lot of them. I still don’t.

So, what the fuck do I do now?

Ostracized by a Thousand Cuts: Cut One

Posted by Atheist in FundyLand     Category: FundyLand Community Chorus, Miscellaneous Blog Entries, Ostracized by a Thousand Cuts, Throne of Thought

Just before the FundyLand Community Chorus™ sang Mendelssohn’s Elijah, one of the soprano soloists got sick. Upon hearing the news, a voice in the chorus rang out, “Let’s have a group prayer!”

Something deep inside me began to sob. If this went down, I would have to “out” myself as an atheist to everyone who didn’t already know. Every single time I’ve “come out” to a Christian, I’ve been rejected on some level. The first and worst time, my friends tried to cast a demon out of me (no, I’m not kidding) then abandoned me. I’ve never fully recovered. Like all old, very deep wounds, this one hurts like hell every time I think about it.

Lately I’ve decided to pick my battles, but this was a battle my conscience would not let me ignore. FundyLand Community Chorus™ is funded by the state. A group prayer would violate both my civil rights and the establishment clause of the First Amendment of the US Constitution.

As the familiar burning sensation of remembered rejection seeped from my heart into my thorax and throat, I prepared myself. Oh god, this was going to suck.

My singing buddy (the only black person in the chorus and one of the few black people in FundyLand™) shouted, “Yeah, let’s do it!” She doesn’t know I’m an atheist. What would she say if she found out? What would she do?

I glared at the chorus director. He and I have had our own problems over religion and from my perspective, he owes me a huge-ass apology: an apology I’m likely to receive about the same time Harold Camping accurately predicts the rapture.

My eyes said, “Do it and you’ll be hearing from the ACLU tomorrow.” His eyes met mine for a split second. Was that guilt I saw in them? I hope so.

“OK, chorus,” he said, “I want to look at ‘The Fire Descends’.”

“That’s right, you little Ned Flanders clone,” I thought. “That’s right, you little fundy fucker. Move along. Move along.”

I wasn’t in a very charitable mood. Thinking about it again just now, I’m still not in a very charitable mood.

Chorus members were dropping like flies due to some godawful bug. During the rehearsal, I asked the alto soloist how she was doing.

“OK,” she said. “I’ve had a few issues with my voice, but I had my husband pray for me and anoint me with oil.”

Anoint you with oil????

I envisioned her husband dumping an entire quart of high-viscosity Pennzoil 10W-30 over her head.

“Hey, that’s wasteful!” I imagined telling him. “Just baptize her in the Gulf of Mexico, why don’t you? Hire a helicopter pilot to fly you out to the Deep Horizon plume, tie some weights to her legs so she’ll be certain to make it to the proper depth and give her a little push. While you’re at it, why don’t you take the entire church? You can ask some of the other churches to join you. Turn it into a big ‘Anointing with Oil’ party. Hell, take the whole fucking town! It’ll be just like the rapture!”

Maybe then I could have some peace of mind. Maybe then someone halfway interesting would move into this god-infested town and actually stay for more than six months.

After the final concert, I was sitting in the church’s reception room frantically erasing notes I’d made in my score (it was a rental). My singing buddy, Louise—the one who had seconded the “Hey! Let’s violate the first amendment!” motion—gave me some mammoth ivory and some lovely beads for my web store. It was a very sweet thing to do. I was touched.

But in the back in my mind, Atheist in FundyLand™ was on the warpath: “What do you think would happen if she found out you’re an atheist, hmm? Do you think she’d give you beads then? Would she still want to sit with you in chorus? Would she even want to be in the same room with you?”

Experience tells me she would not.

Louise had brought the beads in a little black shopping bag that said “Sephora” on the side. As cramps began to creep into my hand, a pair of fellow altos started talking about their churches and made plans to visit the church of a pastor who was in the chorus. By that point I was fundied out. I just wanted to erase my score and get the fuck out of there.

Another alto approached me and read the word on the bag. “Sephora…isn’t that the name of the village Jesus helped build?”

I nearly wanted to scream. While Church Chat was going on in one ear, I was being “Jesused” to death by a third fundy in the other. This was the same fundy who once told me scientists had learned the carbon in potassium decayed at a much faster rate than previously thought. (If you don’t immediately know why this is batshit crazy, take a look at the periodic table of elements.)

Sephora? I’ve never heard of such a thing. It’s certainly not in the bible and it’s not in any history I’ve ever read. What I wanted to say is there isn’t a whole lot of evidence Jesus even existed, but you can guess how that would have been received. Personally, I believe there was some crazy-ass sonofabitch running around Israel circa 30 AD and the religitards of that time attached their own mythology to him (See The Life of Brian). But it hardly matters. Jesus, if he existed, was not the son of god. He didn’t walk on water. He didn’t turn water into wine. He wasn’t born of a virgin. And he most certainly did not rise from the dead.

As the nosy fundy prodded, I became VERY engrossed in erasing my score.

When she finally walked away, I took an objective look at the chorus. Every single person—except for a couple of college students—is older than I am. Most have gray hair.

I peeked into the auditorium and took an objective look at the lingering audience: White, gray and blue hair dominated. Nearly everyone was caucasian.

I’ve come to the conclusion that this town is dying. Maybe religion will die with it, but in the meantime I’m trapped here.

As always, this is Atheist in FundyLand™ saying, “Won’t you please, PLEASE, PLEASE send help?”

The Creationist Fossil and Rock Store Owner

Posted by Atheist in FundyLand     Category: Evolution, Humor, Miscellaneous Blog Entries, Throne of Thought

If I can manage to read Gary the Wonder Fundy’s book, I’m going to write notes in the margins and send it to my friend. I wish Gary would read a book of my choosing, but that ain’t gonna happen. In fact, I tried that with a fundy today. It’s why I’m up at 4 a.m. writing instead of lying snugly in bed. I can’t get the conversation out of my head.

After the craft fair I decided the bead snob was right about one thing: I need higher quality metal beads. So I decided to take a trip to a rock and fossil shop downtown and ask the lady there what kind of beads would be best for my necklaces. We have had pleasant conversations in the past. I bought most of my Otodus obliquus teeth from her. Her husband runs Open MIC Night where I’ve regaled reluctant patrons with classical music.

While I was there I decided I’d vent about the craft fair, which was educational, fun, exasperating, humiliating and frustrating all in one fell swoop. You know…kind of like life. Because she ran a rock and fossil shop, I thought I was on safe ground. She certainly couldn’t be a fundy…could she?

“I take it since you run a rock and fossil shop you’re not a young earth creationist.”

A really uncomfortable expression took over her features. “You mean a Christian? Yes, I’m a Christian.” I guess she hasn’t heard the news that acceptance of evolution and Christianity are not mutually exclusive.

That little voice came back: “Oh shit! This can’t go well. Maybe you should just gloss this over and leave before you earn an even worse reputation in this stupid town.”

Nearly every night I dream about having it out with my family over religious and political ideas. I dream about it because I can’t do it in real life. It’s simply not worth the amount of stress and bad feelings that follow. I’ve managed to train my family not to bring up religion and politics, but every night I’m yelling and screaming at them in my dreams, telling them how batshit crazy they are and how lonely I am because there is no one with whom I can share my passions—paleontology and evolution—and my hard-won world view.

So, I ignored that little voice. How in the hell, I thought, can this woman own a rock and fossil shop and not believe in evolution? “Belief” is such a weak word, especially when it comes to evolution. Evolution is a fact.

I was appalled to discover she was so ill-educated and so narrow-minded. What must she tell customers who buy 55-million-year-old Otodus fossils and Madagascan ammonites from the Cretaceous?

She brought up that ancient creationist argument about flawed carbon dating and a picture came to my mind: that of Captain Picard facepalming and saying, “Oh no, not this shit again!”

“You do realize,” I said, “that there are many other forms of radiometric dating. One of the most reliable—potassium-argon dating—has a very long half life and is well-suited to dating the age of the earth. It works by analyzing volcanic eruptions. Dates of fossils are posited by their positions above and below the volcanic eruptions.” (I was too nervous to say it this well, but it’s what I meant and I hope I managed to finally blurt it out.)

I don’t think she had any clue what I was talking about. “All these stones and fossils you see in my shop were carbon-dated.”

“There’s NO WAY that’s true,” I said. “Carbon dating only works for young material. There’s no way those ammonites from the Cretaceous were carbon-dated. Pick anything from this shop…anything! I’ll go home, research it, come back and tell you how it was dated.”

She didn’t want to go for that.

She started in about science being wrong about things and I said, “Yes! That’s the beauty of science! We get closer and closer to the truth by weighing the evidence and changing our minds when the evidence mounts up. You, on the other hand, start with an unchanging book written by goat herders in the bronze age. There is no change. You’re locked into a way of thinking and you cannot change. Quite frankly, that scares the hell out of me.”

“There doesn’t need to be change because I know the truth.”

It felt like my heart was burning a hole through my thorax. “That scares me,” I said. “The fact that you would ignore new evidence and base your entire life on an outdated book full of fairy tales is…well, it scares me.”

I nearly said it was “fookuh doop.”

“OK, here’s a proposition,” I said, “I’ll read any book you like if you read a book of my choosing.”

“No, I don’t want to do that.”

“Why not?”

“I’m 54 years old and I know the truth.”

“So what? I’m 43 and I’m still learning. I reserve the right to change my mind as new evidence comes in.” I tried a different tack: “Do you know what peer review is?”

She didn’t.

I explained that part of the scientific method and she, quite predictably, wasn’t impressed.

I really pushed her, probably too far. I think I’ve been holding it in for so long that I just couldn’t stand one more fundy getting in my face about evolution and fossils, telling me it takes more faith to “believe” in evolution than it does to believe in god.

The problem is I need her to like me. She’s part of the jewelry-making network and is heavily involved with Open MIC Night. I should probably apologize, but I’m just too pissed right now.

I had this conversation with my friend concerning “ways to apologize”:

(“Galadriel” is not my other user name. I’m withholding my real user name to protect my anonymity.)

Galadriel: I’m sorry you are uneducated and refuse to open your mind?
X’s Laptop: Word it a bit more nicely and yeah ahahahaha
Galadriel: I’m sorry you’re so bamboozled that you completely dismiss any evidence of being bamboozled?
Galadriel: I’m sorry you aren’t teaching your customers anything?
Galadriel: I’m sorry you are lying to them and yourself?
X’s Laptop: LOL
Galadriel: I’m sorry you’re so fucking afraid of the truth you won’t even have a look?
Galadriel: I’m sorry you think 54 is old enough to know everything?
Galadriel: I’m sorry you have no thirst for knowledge?
Galadriel: I’m sorry that you just accept things on blind faith and then accuse those who rely on science of doing the same thing?
Galadriel: I’m sorry you are so afraid of learning something new because then you will be an outcast like me?
X’s Laptop: You know, I didn’t think much about that being a reason
X’s Laptop: But it makes so much sense
X’s Laptop: Geez that must be scary
Galadriel: I’m sure it is a reason
Galadriel: I’m too mad to be sorry just now.
X’s Laptop: I can understand that
X’s Laptop: Its not your fault people are morons
X’s Laptop: And its hard to deal with
Galadriel: I’m sorry it’s not my fault you’re a moron…
Galadriel: OK
X’s Laptop: AHAHA
X’s Laptop: Thats the perfect apology
Galadriel: :)
X’s Laptop: Oh man
Galadriel: I’m sorry you’ve polluted your head with Fox News?
Galadriel: I’m sorry you can’t hold an opinion unless someone tells you what it is first.
Galadriel: LOL
X’s Laptop: I love the “Well the bible says so” as the end-all be-all when you ask them why they believe it
Galadriel: “I’ve studied it.”
Galadriel: I’m sorry you’re so afraid you’re wrong.
Galadriel: :D
X’s Laptop: haha
Galadriel: OK, seriously
Galadriel: I’m sorry I assumed you were intelligent.
Galadriel: This is not getting me anywhere
Galadriel: OK, break it down.
Galadriel: I’m sorry I’m the only atheist in the county
Galadriel: It’s not your fault I’m the only person in this conversation who cares about the truth?
Galadriel: Dear Exceedingly Uneducated Owner of a Fossil and Geology Store…
Galadriel: Does that sound just a little harsh, maybe?
X’s Laptop: Pft, no way.
X’s Laptop: Fitting
X’s Laptop: ;)
Galadriel: haha
Galadriel: Dear XXXX,
Galadriel: I asked about your position on young earth creationism because I assumed someone as intelligent and knowledgeable as you appear to be….
Galadriel: No, that won’t work either. I apologize for asking about your stance on young earth creationism. There is a difference between Christianity and Young Earth Creationism
Galadriel: Not all Christians are batshit insane like you are.
Galadriel: Um…no
Galadriel: Even the Roman Catholic Church accepts evolution. The USA is far behind in matters of science.
Galadriel: That’s a fact.
Galadriel: But is it an apology?
Galadriel: It amounts to: “It’s not entirely your fault you’re stupid.” Sigh.

Here it is a couple of days later and I still don’t know how to apologize without lying through my teeth. Sigh. Maybe it’s time to start thinking about leaving FundyLand. I’ve tried before, but my health problems and economic status are blocking me.

Once again, this is Atheist in FundyLand saying, “Get me the fuck out of here!”

The Bead Snob and Gary the Wonder Fundy

Posted by Atheist in FundyLand     Category: Evolution, Humor, Miscellaneous Blog Entries, Throne of Thought

This is part of my third letter to The Thinking Atheist. By now he must think I’m stalking him. ;)

______________

Is there such a holiday as Facepalm Sunday? I think I just celebrated it, but instead of lasting one day, it has lasted most the week, kind of like Hanukkah but without the festive candles and presents.

For the first time I got a booth at a craft fair. I only took in enough money to cover the cost of the booth—most of which was negated by trips to food vendors—so that didn’t go well. I also got stuck between two people who made my faith in humanity go down a few notches.

The first was a lady who looked down her nose at my necklaces. She was tactless enough to inform me that my only real customer (so far) was coming to her to get his necklace re-beaded. Just thinking about it makes me wish I had two heads like Zaphod Beeblebrox so I could knock them together a few times. For what it’s worth, I think she did a terrible job re-beading the necklace. I always try to match the color of the fossil shark tooth. She simply re-beaded it using green and white beads that didn’t match at all. She told me I had used cheap beads that would wear and tarnish easily. That is a fair criticism, but it would have been nice had she gone about it a different way. Besides the “cheap” beads, I had also used some expensive bone beads that matched the colors of the fossil tooth. I thought it looked pretty good, so I felt disheartened, discouraged and insulted when my customer went to the bead snob to have his necklace re-done.

The guy on the other side of my booth was selling copies of a book he had written about baseball. Whenever someone asked how he was, he would say, “I’m blessed. How are you?”

My ears perked up.

I tune into such little things because knowing who is and who is not batshit crazy for Jesus can be important when you are the only atheist in town. “Verily, verily I say unto you, ‘Engage thy fundy-dar, for the fundies, they are many and the atheists, they are few. Or one. Or something.'” I Hitchens 4:22

About that time my atheist friend from San Jose showed up. I was so happy I could have kissed her. “Watch out for Gary the Wonder Fundy over there,” I said, glancing in his direction. “He’s a really nice guy, but he doesn’t have all his bats in the same belfry, if you get my drift.”

For awhile we tried to whisper and use code words, but during the course of two long days, we ditched the code words and just became ourselves.

“Hey, did you see the new episode of Mr. Deity?” I asked.

“No.”

“Oh my god, it’s ‘sofa king’ funny. He’s trying to read a text message from Lucy and complains he doesn’t know some of the words, like ‘fookuh doop’ and ‘as-sholey.’ I about busted a gut.”

Awhile later, Gary the Wonder Fundy came over to talk. “You know, when I was doing a book-signing in Barnes and Nobles there was this book full of obscenities…right out where any kid could pick it up and just read it!”

He had actually taken a photo of the book’s cover with his cell phone. “It’s full of profanity!” exclaimed Gary, waving the cell phone in our faces.

Looking at my atheist friend, I said, “Dude, that’s fookuh doop.”

She said, “Yeah, really fookuh doop.”

______________

WARNING! Parenthetical Material from YouTube Follows:

• AtheistinFundyLand
5 days ago

I think your mispronunciation of “fucked up” should become a meme. I would like to contribute the proper spelling, if I may.

Ahem: fookuh doop.

That is all.

• misterdeity
4 days ago

@AtheistinFundyLand Yes, by all means. I love the thought of it going viral. I love the phrase because it takes a bit of the offense of it away, but completely conveys the meaning. Meme it, baby! Meme it!
______________

I’m not entirely sure Gary knew what we were saying. He looked kind of confused and shuffled back to his table.

Previously I had expressed my misgivings about selling fossils that were marked as being millions of years old. I love the fact that some of my fossil shark teeth date back to the Cretaceous, but in my passion, I’ve been chastised by young earth creationists who don’t “agree” with my dates. “If that happens,” I told my friend, “please defuse the situation for me. I’m there as a vendor, not to defend the fact of evolution. Just grab their attention, say something about this not being the time or place for a debate and refer them to a book. Let’s see…they hate Dawkins, so we’d better not go there…um, uh, tell them to read Why Evolution is True by Jerry Coyne. I don’t want to deal with fundy shit this weekend. Hell, I never want to deal with it. I get so excited by fossils. Then some lame-ass creationist rains on my parade. I really, really hate it.”

We were selling little bags of fossil material from Morocco for $2 apiece. Most of the fossils were sand-tiger shark teeth, but there were ray crusher plates, shark vertebrae and some sea snake vertebrae in the mix as well. The fossils were 55 to 70 million years old. As we were hawking the bags of Moroccan fossil material and entering people to win a lovely 4-million-year-old megalodon-tooth necklace, Gary the Wonder Fundy came and stood right in front of the table.

“Would you like to hear about the fossil history of the giant shark called megalodon and how we can trace it straight back to Otodus obliquus via transitional forms?” I asked, pointing first to the meg-tooth necklace and then to an Otodus-tooth necklace.

“No,” said Gary. “Would you like to hear the history of Jesus and the true history of the Earth? It dates back 4,354 years.” (It took me until tonight to figure out he was talking about the date of Noah’s Flood.)

I would very much like for my friend to describe the look on my face. I bet it was interesting as hell.

“And now we switch over to you, Jessica,” I said in an announcer’s voice. “Jessica, what do you have to say to Gary?” I’m sure she didn’t remember what we’d talked about. I don’t think she’s even read the book by Jerry Coyne, but I’d gone ahead and dumped the entire awkward situation right in her lap.

I have no idea what she said to Gary because the little voice—is that you Galadriel?—that tries to keep me sane had my total attention: “Don’t say anything. It’s not worth it. You don’t have the energy for this shit. Just keep your stupid mouth shut.”

“This is sofa king fookuh doop,” I told the little voice.

“Shut the fuck up and do as I say,” said the little voice.

“Atheist in FundyLand, is that you?”

“Shut up.”

For the most part, we got along just fine with Gary, watching his booth for him when he was away, laughing with him about certain things, but there was always this tension. I gave him a little bag of fossils from Morocco. At the end of the craft fair, he pulled me aside and said, “If I give you one of my books, will you read it?” I told him I would. I hope I can stomach the darn thing. I hate baseball and hate Christianity even more. He signed the book for me and said, “I’m also gonna give you a scripture.”

I haven’t looked it up, but it’s something in I Corinthians and I bet you dimes to doughnuts—as Mr. Deity would say—I know the verse. I bet I had it memorized at one time.

Would Gary read a book of my choosing? I bet not.

Second Letter to The Thinking Atheist

Posted by Atheist in FundyLand     Category: Miscellaneous Blog Entries, Throne of Thought

Dear Seth,

I’ve been listening to more of your podcasts. Of course, you know you have a great voice for this sort of thing, right? ;)

Out of curiosity, did you visit my sites: http://www.atheistinfundyland.com and (URL deleted for privacy reasons)? If not, it’s cool. You’re a very busy man.

When you mentioned the books that influenced your coming out, I realized you must be a fairly new atheist. I came out back in 2001 when my mother asked me, point blank, whether or not I believed in god. I had just read Dan Barker’s book, Losing Faith in Faith, and was too optimistic about how I would be received. Mr. Barker’s parents both became atheists. I thought my mother would respect me as much as Dan Barker’s parents respected him. I was wrong.

At the time, I was having complications from eye surgery. I was functionally blind, so there was no way to escape the yelling and screaming that ensued. (Yeowch!) (Actually, I think this was a different argument regarding my playing Dan Barker’s music…but whatever. It still sucked.)

Incidentally, Dan Barker became an ordained minister in my home county, which is definitely rural and definitely full of fundies. I once e-mailed him a picture of the church they rebuilt on the spot where his old church was. Get this: It’s called “The Cowboy Church” now. :D

Yee-haw! Rustle me up some cattle fer Jesus-ah! Bring them little dogies to Christ-ah!

I wonder if they have a bull-riding machine in the foyer?

Mr. Barker asked me how “such-and-such” was doing and if I knew “who’s-his-face.” I knew most of the people he mentioned. Small towns suck. ;)

I was out of the closet and vocal for several years, but as I mentioned before, the fallout makes me angry. I’m not in good health, so I have to pick my battles carefully. Also, now that I’ve officially started a business, I’m worried people won’t buy from me if they know I’m an atheist. Of course, in a small town like this, word gets around. I bet most people know I’m one of those horrible, horrible atheists. All I wanted was to be liked for who I was, but with fundies that’s too much to ask, apparently.

I’ll be listening to more of your podcasts and watching your videos. You excel at what you do.