I have found my boyfriend and I to be somewhat of outcast amongst outcast in the nontheist community. Most atheist we know are very liberal in their view of the world while I myself consider myself in most respects to be conservative. I am pro-choice and I believe in gay rights 110% but thats pretty much where it ends. I'm a good old southern girl who likes her BBQ and gun rights. I have never felt so free as when I shrugged of the chains of the Death Cult of christianity so its hard for me to understand why people pick up a new yoke of controling people's individual rights with any sense of entitlement. If this life is all we have why do some of us feel the need to tell anyone how to live it?

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Tags: atheist, conservative, freedom, gun, liberal, rights, speech

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Comment by Steve Thomas on October 10, 2010 at 5:03pm
Red, thought of you this morning with regards to pretty much a different issue. I gots a new hero I think, maybe 'heroine'--not trying at all to suck up to anyone but MAN it seems like women are coming on fast these days. Anyway, thing is that this lady's Muslim. :) Practicing, far as I'm aware. I know. It's Shirin Ebadi, who happened also to win the Nobel Peace Prize (if that makes any difference). So what it amounts to is that we're really in a mixed world, I think. I expect "team sweatshirts" will still be readily available but that it will get more difficult to really identify with "sides" as time goes on, or even tell the good guys from the bad ones.

Other top favorites (just to illustrate?) include Annie Laurie Gaylor--pretty much self-identifies as a "huge" liberal who says she has "mixed feelings" about another hero of mine having associated herself with the conservative Heritage Foundation: Aayan Hirsi Ali.

Personally I have to say I hate religion. Hate even to say 'hate' there but I can't think of any other word that fills the bill and would be honest. Despite those feelings, I have no choice but to side with any religious person who actively involves themselves with human rights, for instance. To me the two things seem like oil and vinegar, but people like that do exist, many are both fierce and effective.

The guy who wrote this article about liberalism and conservatism himself has to risk being labeled Scientologist--since he is seriously anti head-med.

You're looking at or are in medicine? Science really is great since it has a way of getting to the bottom of things eventually. And religion no question has been one of the biggest barriers. But check this film out if you have 17 minutes. Film doesn't show it but the guy was tossed into an insane asylum for his beliefs. Religion not a factor, just denial. It took not just Pasteur but Heinrich Koch and nearly a half-century before doctors--science people--quit resisting the truth. Sorry off-topic a little but worth knowing.

You asked in your original post why so many are so driven to control other people. Psychologist Alice Miller--regarded by her peers the same way Semmelweiss was regarded by his--might have answered that it's a voluntary choice, their part, but that the explanation lies in the fact that they were themselves controlled. So it's a matter of repetition compulsion and revenge, really, while at the same time a way denying and defending the dishonestly of their parents, far as I'm concerned completely the same as with religion. With the US constitution government for the first time split off from religion, but it takes a bit of denying to claim that even 'secular' control doesn't still share the same original root: that somehow there can exist any moral basis at all to own, in one way or another, at either the individual or state level, a fellow human.

Which takes me back to human rights, a "leftist" cause. It isn't really, is the thing. Freedom is what everybody wants but was so systematically denied to our ancestors that we don't know how to act once we see it. That's I think why Fromm had to write "Escape From Freedom". The right runs to religion while the left runs to the state. Neither is the answer and it's disappointing so many "freethinkers" have such apparently tremendous trouble seeing that.

If I could make an excuse for myself--I've been interrupted a biunch of times trying to write this, train of thought derailed, and I'm seriously out of time to polish, much. But just try this: check the Freedom From Religion Foundation's podcasts, if you haven't already (Annie Laurie and Dan Barker). They self-identify as liberals but let them call themselves what ever they want. What's important is that they put themselves in the face of religious bullies. That's the way it has to be with human rights: "Anyone who lives inside the United States can never be considered an outsider anywhere within its bounds. ", King wrote from Birmingham jail. While the ffr foundation sticks pretty strictly to church/state separation issues, when it comes to human rights the same is as true of a neighborhood as it is the country and the planet too--it's humanly irresponsible to look the other way.

Oh man. Did I just do a sermon?! That sucks! People should goof OFF, Sundays!

Hope all's well there, I'm gone.
Comment by Red_Lillith on November 7, 2009 at 11:32pm
Thank you Steve and I will say it cause I don't give a rat's patooty. YOU GO BOY! Tonight is a sad night for all true freedom loving Americans. The healthcare bill has passed the house by a vote of 220 to 215 it will go to the senate sometime at the first of the year. Democrats will hold this back as long as possible to ensure their reelection because they think we are just dumb enough to put them back in so they can't push this bull down our throat. We can't let that happen. If this bill passes we will have three choices. Pay for healthcare, Pay a fine of $700 a year, or go to jail for five years. This takes away our CHOICE this is not freedom. Its do or die time people. Are we the USA or the USSA?
Comment by Steve Thomas on November 7, 2009 at 7:45am
Hi Red,

Madalyn Murray O'Hair said that the thing that makes atheists dangerous is that if they can question 'the ultimate authority' then they can question any authority. And she's right. The more questioning we do the more dangerous we are. I'm trying real hard not to say "You go, girl!" but basically that's what I'm thinking. And that's not because I consider myself conservative but just because I love people who resist conforming. I reject the notion that I must bow my head to one side or the other to begin with. Always have. I hate bowing my head. To anybody. It makes me puke. To me the inspiration of Jefferson was that he believed deep-down in ordinary people, in the basically anti-government, apolitical notion that we can work stuff out for ourselves. If not as individuals then we could do it as local, independent groups. Is that 'liberal'? 'Conservative'? I don't know. I know his main political enemy was Alexander Hamilton, who said something like: "The people is a great beast," basically wanting (and I think succeeding at getting) a bunch of his rich banker buddies to run the show as much as possible. That sounds "conservative" of him. At least according to the liberal definition. But my experience is that people who describe themselves as liberal are just as mistrusting of innate human nature as Hamilton was, just as fearful of what would happen if we were ever allowed to "do our own thing". I respect the hell out of you and your boyfriend's refusal to accept the authority of the left, bottom line. In its way the left is just as hypocritically "lettuce help you" as any evangelical Christian religion there ever has been. I think just as oppressive, too. Yeah. I'll even say misanthropic. Not like Jefferson at all, is the point. Whew.

Hillbillies and rednecks forever!! That's what I say! Have you ever seen Dolly Parton's cover of "Imagine"? The thing about brings me to my knees, makes me proud, really. There's something really right about people. We just gotta find it, bring it out and quit trying so goddam hard to control each other. Because "control" is, exactly as you said, what governing really is. Calling the people who end up "governing" people "leaders" is nothing but to buy into another big, huge, stinking delusion. All right I'll shut up. You guys just keep right on questioning all authority. You're completely right to do that.
Comment by Red_Lillith on November 7, 2009 at 5:21am
Hi guys I've been gone offline a few days life is insane! Again thank you for all of your comments. Dallas I agree that Bush was terrible couldn't stand the man. The patriot act is a terrible thing and Bush is the one that started the bank bail outs not Obama.I totally agree. They are both awful but Obama is worse. He would like to see net neutrality, pushed fox news out of the press pool and told people to be careful what they put on facebook. All attacks on our individual freedom of speech. You should never threaten someone because they differ in opinion from you thats what makes this country great and what made him president.

On taxation. When I am Dr."Lillith" M.D. I am sure that I will be making several 100k a year and my taxes will go up by thousands a year and thats ok. I won't go hungry and I know two things. While I was poor my taxes were returned to me and now that I am more fortunate I need to make sure my roads and state services keep on running. Cool. However if you read through Obama's 1800 page healthcare plan (actually there are 5) and I did (I know I have no life) then you will see that under government run healthcare Dr's pay will be cut not in half not in thirds but to a quarter. YES a quarter! If I was ok with making a nurses pay I would go to nursing school ya know?
Comment by A Former Member on November 5, 2009 at 11:35am
Louis said: All political labels are unreasonably overloaded, and if one is not overloaded, it's only 'not overloaded yet.'

I tend to agree, although I have no problems of labeling myself a liberal.

That makes it all too easy for people to form an opinion of you and people's opinions are notoriously wrong -- especially when it comes to other people.

Yes, but this is a problem not because people label themselves, but because people take their opinions from pundits and politicians and radio hosts, and not from actually learning about the other person or group.

I work with a conservative woman, who I actually get along with very well, but she is a NRA-Bill O’Riley-Sarah Pallin-lovin’ kind of a woman, and she says the most ridiculous and inaccurate things about liberals that I’ve ever heard. And she gets it from listening to Fox News, not from exposing herself to liberals or their beliefs. Thus, the fault is her own, not the liberals for using the liberal label.

When someone asks me about my party or my politics I tell them to ask me about an issue, and I'll tell them what I think.


I suppose that can be an effective and sensible way of going about it.
Comment by A Former Member on November 5, 2009 at 11:17am
Red Lillith said: Obama is by no means the first president to attack our civil liberties so don't think I am singling him out by any means. I by far give him credit for being the most dangerous in my short lifetime because of his charisma, he has that in spades.

Again, you are not making sense to me. What are you talking about? I fail to see how Obama as attacked our civil liberties. Bush Cheney & Co attacked our civil liberties, perhaps more than any other president, with the Patriot Act.

When a man speaks of "fairness" by means of taking one person's hard earned income and giving it to another is fundamentally wrong.

That depends on the circumstances. My tax dollars are siphoned out of my area and into less populated and poorer areas of Texas for the purpose of building infrastructure, roads, and providing water and electricity. Is that unfair to me? Well, not if you consider that by providing these people with this kind of infrastructure, they in turn are able to work in other areas, transport goods and services, and be a part of the general economy. When they prosper, the economy prospers, and I also prosper. How is that a bad thing? I believe the alternative would cost me more in the long run.

I am not in favor or excessive taxation or the misuse or misappropriation of tax dollars, but I do think taxes are necessary for our government and for our infrastructure to be effective.

Everyone loves the fantasy of a modern day Robin Hood but thats just it, its a fantasy because its dumbs down innovation (a great part of our country) and premotes mediocrity.


That is a broad-sweeping generalization and completely inaccurate. I see no indication that “everyone” loves this fantasy, or that taxation has dumbed-down innovation. Technological and green energy innovations are happening faster than we can keep up with them, or the market can even support.

Why would I bother to put myself through med school (which I am doing BTW) if my greedy overblown doctor salary (which I have worked like a dog for eating ramen noodles to attain) is granted "undeserved and unfair".

I have never heard anyone ever say that a doctor’s salary is "undeserved and unfair,” except for far-right pundits who make that up stuff up just to get people riled up. Yes, there are discrepancies in salaries that should be addressed. For example, I think that it is right that we should question a company in which the CEO makes a 6 million dollar bonus (on top of a regular salary) but the employees are denied a yearly raise or health coverage because the company can’t afford it.

My money will be taxed to nothing and likely my livelyhood taken over by a socialized medical sysem.

Again, another broad-sweeping generalization and completely inaccurate. I’ve never seen a doctor who wasn’t well off and living in a nice home and driving a nice car, unless they were the kind of doctor working for the Peace Corps, Doctors Without Borders, or some such NGO. Your money will not and never will be taxed to nothingness. These kinds of inaccurate and hyperbolic statements are why it is so difficult to have accurate and intelligent conversations on politics in the US today.

The fundamentals this country were built on were that every individual was RESPONSIBLE for the quality of their own life.

Sure, except for the women who couldn’t vote, the slaves who had no rights and freedoms, and the Native Americans who were basically marginalized and ostracized and subjected to a whole slew of other injustices. Don’t get me wrong. I’m glad America is here, and I love being an American. But the process that got us here was paid for by the blood of many people who didn’t sign up for the job.

Also, how could a black man in the 1960s be “responsible for the quality of [his] own life” when he was denied equal access, opportunity, and legal standing as a citizen. While others were prospering around him, he was forced into poverty because he wasn’t granted the same rights and privileges as the rest of society.

Lastly, there was no universal vision among the founders as to what the “fundamentals” of our country were supposed to be. In a recent documentary, I learned that some people even wanted to establish a monarchy after we liberated ourselves from the British. And of course, there were big differences over whether or not the states should be unified under a central Federal government.

American history—and indeed the meaning of America—is full of many contradictions, inconsistencies, and injustices, as well as manifest advantages, disadvantages, opportunities, freedoms, liberties, restrictions, and conundrums that cannot easily be understood, justified, embraced, or even flat-out rejected from moral, intellectual, or ethical perspectives.

That no one else had to work hard to support anyone but their own family or community if they chose.

And I think you fail to see how interconnected we all are. No one lives in a vacuum. If Texas does poorly from an economic point of view, that would affect the states around it.

Its all about choice and thats being taken away. When we are no longer free to choose we are no longer free at all.

How is your choice being taken away? Please elaborate.
Comment by Edward Teach on November 5, 2009 at 9:13am
;-)
Comment by Jaume on November 5, 2009 at 8:59am
I can only guess that the "under God" add to the pledge comes a close second ;-)
Comment by Edward Teach on November 5, 2009 at 7:19am
I'm with you, Louis!

It is a false dichotomy. I imagine the odds against me determining my own political views, and those views just "happening" to completely match the platform of one of the two major parties, must be astronomical!

Regarding civil liberties, there has never been a single peice of legislation in my life time that robbed our citizens of civil liberties as much as the Patriot Act.
Comment by Louis on November 5, 2009 at 3:07am
Why even call yourself a Libertarian?

All political labels are unreasonably overloaded, and if one is not overloaded, it's only 'not overloaded yet.' That makes it all too easy for people to form an opinion of you and people's opinions are notoriously wrong -- especially when it comes to other people.

When someone asks me about my party or my politics I tell them to ask me about an issue, and I'll tell them what I think. If they're going to form a necessarily flawed first impression of me, as is the case with everyone of everyone else, it may as start with something more meaningful than Party A,B, or C.

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