The Daily Bork

July 01, 2005

Irrational rationalists

Sometimes you have to wonder what on earth some people think they are going to achieve...

Humanists seek platform to halt religious advance

Moonbat alert in the second paragraph...

"With US society sliding towards theocracy, and religious belief – even fundamentalism – on the rise in every continent we have to take a stand," says Roy Brown, President of the International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU).


US sliding towards theocracy, pull the other one (personal disclosure, I am an atheist). Fundamentalism on the rise, yep, but what do they bang on about?

European humanists, delighted at success in their campaign to keep any reference to a deity out of the troubled European Union constitution, were shaken at what many call the 'media madness' over the death of Pope John Paul II.

In protests to newspapers and broadcasting bodies, they argued that the saturation coverage of his funeral – and the inauguration of his successor – amounted to free advertising for Catholicism at the expense of rational thought.


He was a leader of millions and gets mass coverage just like any other who shuffles off. Just look at the evil little tick Arafat and how they feted his life when he finally popped off. Get over it.

Humanists note that his successor, Pope Benedict, has declared the Enlightenment "one of the greatest evils to have befallen mankind" and vowed to fight secularism.


Well, really, how many people is that going to buy into the faith? It is better everyone gets to hear it and judge rather than repressing it.

Across the Atlantic, US humanists and atheists see Christian fundamentalists backing 'born-again' President George W. Bush extending their influence into the schools, science laboratories and even into famed museums.

They argue this is a threat to social harmony, setting the religious not only against non-believers but also against each other. "Surely we are on the brink of religious factionalism," wrote Paul Kurtz, editor of the journal Free Inquiry.


And the duels between Christian fundies and idiots like the ACLU have been going on for decades. But, crucially, the US has the constitution and rule of law to keep it all under control.

In largely sceptical Britain, humanists say, Bush's Iraq War ally Tony Blair – the most overtly religious prime minister for a century – promotes 'faith' schools, allowing some to teach that Charles Darwin's theory of evolution is wrong and that the universe and everything in it was created by an all-powerful god.


This is a bizarre sentence. The Iraq War promotes faith schools? What?

Across much of Africa, according to the London quarterly 'Focus on Africa', US-sponsored evangelical Christian movements are edging out Catholic and Episcopalian churches – as they are doing in Latin America.


Ahhh, US-backed churches are more eeeevvvviiiilllll than the Catholic church even. Actually, I don't see how this upsets them since it is replacing one religion with a very similar one. Except by definition the "US backing" is more troublesome than the Pope who called the Enlightenment evil. Go figure.

In formally secular India with its often warring Hindu and Muslim communities, says Innaiah Narisetti of the Radical Humanist Association, government leaders play up to religious figures, involving them in state ceremonies.

Even Communist administrations in power in some states – like Kerala – financially support religious ceremonies, arguing that this helps promote tourism, says Narisetti.

In Russia, which under communist rule in the old Soviet Union kept religion under strict control, the Orthodox Church has been coopted into the new system, humanists say.


Newsflash, communism is a religion, which is why it kept other religions under strict control. Show me an atheist communist and I'll show you a repressed bible thumper.

In some Islamic countries, non-believers are shunned as apostates and in many places can face official persecution and even death, says Ibn Warraq, raised as a Muslim in India and a writer on religion in the Middle East and Asia.


Yes, but non-believers of every stripe (ie Buddhists and Christians) as well as those believing in the wrong flavour of Islam. A little more serious than some school trying to teach creationism.

Then we get to the real illogic...

In Iraq under former president Saddam Hussein and his immediate predecessors in the Baath Party, the state was largely secular, allowing little room for Muslim religious leaders to exert influence in contrast to many of its neighbours.


So Saddam ran a secular state, but still murdered his subjects by the tens of thousands, raped, pillaged and warred with everyone. Is the fact that Iraq was nominally secular compared to Iran supposed to make this better???

Two years after the US-led invasion to overthrow Saddam, a Shi'ite-led administration is in place in Baghdad, while in Iran next door an Islamic hardliner has just won the presidency.


So a government is in place that isn't murdering freely but the fact that it is "Shiite led" is supposed to be far more of a problem than Saddam's secular state. Wait I get it, the government is US backed, backed by those evil creationists who go around teaching crap science but somehow manage not to gas their own population.

"Whatever emerges, we expect humanists around the globe to gain strength from the knowledge that their are many millions of us united in the struggle in the defence of rationalism and the secular ideal," says Gogineni.


You know what Gogineni? You give rationalism a bad name and your secular ideal seems to be nothing more than reflex bigotry based on left wing bullshit that worries that a Shiite majority rules in Iraq rather than Secular Saddam. You are no more a humanist than Uncle Joe or Fidel.

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