Whenever I come out Atheist .. they assume I must have no ethics or morals whatsoever and that I am willing to do just about anything --- like lie, cheat and steal.

Anyone else have this happen to them?

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Oh same here Joan. I get students that are visibly upset when I teach them Evolution and Natural Selection.

Well, we are just going to have to put up with some name calling and resistance. But I remember the old school marm who was trying to teach girls how to protect themselves from unplanned and unwanted pregnancies and she was fired. Just plain STUPID. There is no polite word for what happens when religion gets its nose in the door of education and politics. 

Geez! as I get older I get more determined that reason underlies decisions that impact us all, not dogma. I must sound like an old school marm. 

True Joan we will have to put up with resistance and name calling.
Religion has no place in science education.

It only takes a few minutes to discover Christians history of domination and oppression. If a christian  calls you morally depraved because you are atheist, there is plenty of evidence that religious history is full of moral depravity. For examples:

Orthodox Serbian Christians murdered masses of Muslims in Bosnia

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2SJqRJeeMdc

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Christians: "Why is homosexuality wrong". This was the first item that came up on Google, but many other follow.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_n078cvLw8I&feature=related

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Christian Crusades 1050-1240 

All articles I found were apologetics for Christian occupation of Jerusalem. I hope you have better luck. I don't perceive the Crusades as a noble undertaking. 

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Conquest of the Americas, supported by Christian values 

http://www.regis.edu/content/sl/pdf/Alvarez_AmericanHolocaust.pdf

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Christianity's Justification of the Slave Trade

http://etori.tripod.com/slave-justify.html

 

Try this:

I have 2 questions for you. The first is: would it be fair to say that you are saying that we need God to be moral, and without God's morality we get murder, theft and the rest of your list

Presumably they'll say "yes" and when they've finished giving you a list of all the things that happen if we don't have morality from God, and perhaps pointed to Paul's list in Romans 1: 18 hit them with the second and final question: 


What's wrong with living in a society full of thieves and murderers? (and please humour me with a serious answer...)

With any luck they'll say something like:

You don't feel secure. You need to look after your possessions, spend money on insurance. Be careful about personal safety. It destroys trust in others.

Then, by getting them onto specifics, start agreeing with them - and pointing out that they are just like you:

eg.

In other words, if we want to feel secure, trust others, not worry about insurance or personal safety, we need to live in a basically moral society - one without thieves, murderers and the rest from your initial list. There is absolutely no need to introduce God into the equation. It is entirely possible to deduce a morality without God, and it's not just everyone deciding their own rules. I can agree with you about why thievery is bad, so we can 'work backwards' to the behviours we all need to follow to make it so.

And if they leap to anything in the bible - as moral, get them to explain some of the god-commanded baby killing and female rape in Hosea and Numbers.
 

Thank you Richard I will try that. I welcome the advise.
What did I miss here Jonathan? I need to look back in the posts.

Oh my goodness, NO. I had fun with the concept as well and fooled around with the idea today. It gave me a different way of posing the questions. You just know that your response was splendid!. 

No one seems angry that I know of.

I think they got your point. They understood your message.

My delay in answering was because my computer was down. I'm back in business. 

These are very good questions Write4U.

I like your questions, Write4U.

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