I was reading an article in the "Atheist Revolution" blog and I came across this snippet:

When I encounter a parent telling her children about Santa Claus, I may find it unfortunate that someone would lie to one's own child merely for entertainment purposes. The potential for harm here seems trivially small. I cannot say the same for the Muslim parent instructing his son in the virtues of martyrdom or the Christian who tells her daughter that her Jewish friends will go to hell because they have not been "saved."

Could we not add something like the following to the last sentence:

...or the jew who tells his kids that he's "chosen" and has a covenant with god that entitles him and his "people" to the land of Israel, and then uses that as justification for a bloody occupation of Palestine.

The one-year anniversary of Operation Cast Lead is approaching (Dec. 27th) and I think we should take a look at where we've come since then. The Goldstone Report: buried. Settlements: expanding. Palestinian house demolitions: continuing.

As atheists, we should be appalled whenever religion is used to justify actions that result in suffering or death. We do not seem to hesitate to speak out when a child dies because a Christian Scientist eschewed Western medicine in favor of prayer. We do not seem to hesitate to speak out when a Muslim nutjob finds motivation in his religion to grab some firearms and gun down some people. Why are we silent when an ethnic group uses a story about chosen people and covenants in The Big Book of Jewish Fairy Tales (aka, the Old Testament) to justify what is looking more and more like a slow, methodical ethnic cleansing campaign? Why do the Jews need to have Jerusalem all to themselves? Why is it so important to them to have a Jewish majority that they'll turn Gaza into a prison camp and The West Bank into Swiss cheese where the Palestinians are forced to live on smaller and smaller plots of land and endure more and more restrictions on their movement? If this were being done to a Jewish population they'd be screaming about a second holocaust.

The bottom line is that all three major religions are guilty of many modern-day atrocities and have a great deal of blood on their metaphorical hands. Why do we only bewail the actions of two of those three major religions?

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BBC hasidic going to conscription.. gettn' hot those religious.. i mean culture.. conflicts?

Sale of weapons...purveyors of death...were we given the abillity to annihilate one another just to fatten the asses that carry the gold?  Are you willing to give your life to be able to carry shiney objects.  As the song goes, "when will we ever learn?".  Awaken, my love, seek truth, not hardware.

My love (and yes, I liked that very much), if you have removed the blinders of religion, please don't stop there.  Remove also the earplugs.  Childhood indoctrination can leave traces, such as unsubstantiated antisemitism blamed for everything from circumcision to world domination. And in our efforts to feel empowered over our world, each of us wants to believe we know the truth.  Communication, back and forth, helps to open our eyes -- and our ears -- if only we allow.

The problem with equating the badness of all religions can be illustrated this way:

A house on fire, burning to the ground and killing an entire family, small children and old grandparents, is a disaster.

A tornado ripping through a small town and destroying virtually everything is a disaster.

An earthquake setting off a tsunami, more earthquakes, and a nuclear disaster is a disaster.

They are all disasters, therefore, they are all equally bad.

Perhaps if you read this thread from the beginning, you'll find that "Jews" and "Israelis" and apartheid and male genital mutilation have all been conflated, in this thread, with the suggestion that Jews are equally bad or worse than Muslims and Christians.  There is propaganda applied to support these contentions but not science, history, or any other representation of reality to suggest that Jews have so much negative effect on all the world -- particularly when Jews comprise only 2% of the USA and 0.2% of the world.  Christianity and Islam both branched off, and both, historically, have been trying to coerce Jews out of existence through arm-twisting evangelism or death, so along with this, antisemitism has subtly been included in the earliest indoctrination in both Christian and Muslim cultures.  That doesn't make such indoctrination true.

I understood, and I stand by my response.  You could, by the same token, point in the opposite direction, noting where people have behaved quite well, doing so based on their respective religions, and therefore count all religions as equally good.  (Examples:  Germans who hid Jews during WWII, at risk to their own lives and the lives of their families; Christians in Egypt who recently made a human barrier of themselves to protect fellow Egyptians who were Muslims at prayer; Israel, as a Jewish nation, flying Muslims in from the battlegrounds of the former Yugoslavia because they were the focus of Croatian genocide in their home country and, before that, taking in Laotian and Vietnamese boat people, escaping the cruelties of war in their native lands, and then making them Israeli citizens.)  Your point has this obvious counterpoint.  My point is to look skeptically at such equivalence as spin and to look, instead, at the very data to see what is real.

Rob if you will read the history of Jews you will be told of religiously based anti-semitism which produced unspeakable persecution century after century. And you will realize that the holocaust was nothing more than the culmination of this anti-semitism and scapegoting. During the holocaust there was very little sympathy for jews in europe or even the us. Denmark is  notable exception.

Jews needed a homeland. It was ultra evident. The notion that jews are chosen people and jerusalem is that chosen place is not at all the singular basis for zionism. It is pure political expediency under exigent circumstances. And it was a jewish homeland and jews continued to live there after there diaspora. So there was some basis for there occupation and they were willing to share. The arabs were not. And I am not saying that jews have always done the right thing where palestinians are concerned. I am saying Machiavelli is valid now as it was then. 

There is such a DOUBLE STANDARD where jews are concerned. Those same bleeding hearts who pit the poor palestinians often could care less about genocide and human rights violations anywhere else on the globe. But they love to point out how wicked the jews are. Jews have far greater justification than americans do for their treatment of native americans. Not even close. And a gazillion other examples.

And jews are not big into prosletyzing like muslims and christians. They aint spreading their shit at the point of a sword or engaged in the myriad forms of persecution that muslims and christians are or were.

Jews -- generalization here, but what the heck, the preceding posts prove it true -- have the tendency to blame every crime that they've ever committed on everyone else but themselves using the historical persecution card. It has almost uncanny resemblance to those black drug dealers that blame their situation on slavery that happened over 250 years ago. They will indirectly attack Christians and Muslims, ironically, for acting in the name of religion; while attacking Americans for usurping the Native-Americans, ironically, while expanding settlements illegally. They will criticize others for what they perceive they themselves should not be criticized. Let's talk about Israel: a religious country that forces its citizens to pledge upon their religion, that declares its existence in the name of the Bible, that refuses to share Jerusalem to a 2-state solution because a passage in the Bible they misconstrue say that all of the Palestinian land belong to them, and the tribes of Israel.

Yet, if I go back to China and demand that some plot of land belongs to my ancestors, people will laugh at me internationally, and it isn't hard to see why. If any of the hundreds of ethnic minorities that populate any given country demand that the UN determine for them a piece of land in another country, because every ethnic group deserves their own country, they will be promptly ignored, and possibly laughed at.

If anyone declares that race X is a warmongering, bloodthirsty, people that should be punished under the justice of God, he is a racist. And yet, that is the position of many Muslim terrorists ultra-orthodox Israeli Jews whose parties are often the dominant party in the Israeli political system.

To be fair, there are a lot of thinking Jews out there, like there are in other religious denominations (yes, even Muslims), or ethnic groups (yes, even Semites *cough* I mean Palestinians). But let's call a duck a duck. Ignorant Jews, ignorant Christians, ignorant Muslims, and ignorant atheists all belong in the same corner.

Nice job!  You just boxed yourself right into that "same corner."  No kidding.

Don't worry, I see you here too. Another conservative Jew posing as an atheist. Christians and Muslims are horrible, but Jews... oh I couldn't even go on for it would be politically incorrect!

Oh, dear.  There you go misusing the term "conservative Jew", again.  And along with it, your tirade gives the impression of a child having a tantrum, name-calling and making false accusations.  Just how old are you, really?

...says the Jew that's been name-calling and making false accusations all day...

You mean as opposed to the self-proclaimed antisemite who's been name-calling and making false accusations all day?  Right.  Yep.

I'm not only a Jew and an atheist, I've got decades of scientific background.  Nice!

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