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Double standards

I was watching this DarkMatter2525 video on youtube. I recognise a lot of this stuff. At about 3 mins in, I got deja-vu all over again Smile
Sh**. That's me Johnny the bummer at 1min minus the drinking. People are consistent at saying I'm failing at school because God condemned me for being an atheist. I know well for a fact that it's due to my anxieties. When I'm doing great at school, being smarter than most everyone else, they say it's because I want to prove atheists are better but it's not going to happen because God's going to make sure that I fail. The truth is being poor, I really don't have much option but work my butt at school. Now that I'm a drop out, a bummer, and have no job, I can only imagine what these people are saying. And being an atheist doesn't even motivate me to be better. Yeah, bashing my atheism really helps a lot, thanks. And I'm not even a religion basher. I even help them with the bible, because that's what I read mostly during free time. I am poor and will continue to be poor because I'm an atheist.

This is obviously not true. Considering the number of bums in the Philippines and the fact there's about 98% of Christians means there are a lot of lazies who are Christians. I bet some go to church at Sundays and just lay flat at home during weekdays. Some probably also suffer from poverty and anxieties with no school and job. Although I could only count atheists on my fingers, I'm pretty much sure there are atheists who are well-off even in my country. I'm guessing tingkagol is well-off because I remember him mentioning about having a car. Here, that means you're at least in the middle class but most likely well-off. Heck, Zuckerberg is atheist.
<childish snigger supressed> Sorry, bummer means something different in uk english - think of it as based on the root verb 'to bum' and then consider that bum here refers to backside rather than hobo/tramp...yes, that's right...It is the rather childish homophobic abuse word I last used when I was about 12 I think Smile
Having said that, the US version has probably pretty much replaced it in anyone under 30 I suppose - which shows we are making progress in social attitudes if not linguistic integrity Smile
I have a very limited vocabulary. Lazies was the best I can come up with and it's not even linguistically impressive. Smile
Wow, pretty nice video, if the sentence at the end of it would be removed. Behind the sarcasm/irony used in there, it presents two visions of the world. Ofc i'm not going to say what visions, that would be too easy.
I think I'm gonna download it and make a project about it:"How atheists see themselves".
Thanks for the video!
This is an older video, and there was a particular incident that sparked it, but i can't remember for the life of me what that was. i vaguely remember that it was particularly relevant to one of the later comparisons in the video, possibly the cancer one. It might have been when Hitch announced his cancer.

What i'd like to see is a video that does essentially this, from a different perspective. Instead of showing Christians and atheists doing the same thing, then showing the very different perceptions of them... i'd like to see a video of Christians and atheists who are viewed with the same perceptions, then showing the very different realities of what they're doing.

In other words, instead of saying: here's an atheist speaker, and here's a Chrsitian speaker; the atheist speaker is arrogant, angry and a disrespectful bigot etc. but the Christian speaker is proud, fair and spreading the good news etc..

... this instead: here's a militant atheist, and here's a militant Christian; the militant atheist is Richard Dawkins, the militant Christian... Anders Brevik (or James Kopp or Shelley Shannon or Micheal Bray or Paul Hill or Eric Rudolph or John Salvi or ...).

Syryus wrote:
I think I'm gonna download it and make a project about it:"How atheists see themselves".

Because what atheists really need is yet another theist telling everyone how we think.
Something along these lines I guess
(this was hurried together and could be much improved with a bit of attention).
i LOLed, literally, when you compared the crimes. ^_^;

Well, it's nice, but it's more clinical than what i was imagining. It's a perfect example of a calm and rational presentation of the problem... but that's not what i was thinking of. ^_^; i had in mind something more visceral - the same kind of overwrought presentation DarkMatter2525 used in his video. Complete with silly touches like changing the background colour from blue to red for each person, changing the music from pleasant to sinister, and so on. Granted, that's just what i had in mind, and it may be a stupid idea.

Perhaps the best way is a hybrid approach that captures some of the foot-in-the-balls lack of subtlety i imagine, but keeps the calm and reasoned tone you managed. Because, really, the DarkMatter2525 video is a little... ham-handed and silly. ^_^; On the other hand, it's such a childish issue, i thought it deserved a childish presentation. (i mean, really... calling Dawkins "militant"? When i hear that i feel like that guy from The Princess Bride: "You keep using that word. i don't think it means what you think it means.") i imagine such childish tricks a googling "militant christian groups" and "militant atheist groups". Try it. ^_^ The number one hit for both searches for me were Wikipedia pages. In the Christian case, it was a page on Christian terrorism, listing dozens of murders, bombings and so on. In the atheist case, it was a page on a Communist-Era Soviet anti-religious organization called the "League of Militant Atheists". Wanna hear the best part? Wanna know what the League did that was so militant?




They printed books. ^_^;

Seriously. ^_^;

And stuff like this - an image showing Jesus being thrown out with the garbage:

That made me LOL again. ^_^; How awesome is it that even back in Soviet Russia atheist organizations were tongue-in-cheek funny enough to call themselves "militant" for printing books and pamphlets.

(Bear in mind, though, those guys weren't teddy bears. They were active Party members, engaged in the government-sponsored suppression of religion. Still, their idea of "suppression": books and pamphlets and speakers mocking religion. As far as i can tell, they weren't violent in any way.)

Anywho, for specific things about the video:

i don't agree with conflating "militant" and "fundamentalist". They're related, sure - fundamentalism usually implies militancy - but it's not a strong enough relation to use the two terms interchangeably.

i also don't agree with conflating militancy with crimes. Again, there's a relation, but it's too loose. In particular, while i thought it was funny to list the fact that the three most "militant" atheists have, among them, a single arrest for dodgy political reasons (although, honesty compels me to point out that Hitchens was arrested dozens of times - in fact here's a picture of him being arrested in Oxford in the '60s (source)), simply pointing out that Hill - for example - committed two murders disguises the scope of what he was. It makes him sound like any old killer. i mean, there's a particular and important difference between someone like Hill and Dennis Rader (the BTK killer), though they were both devout Christians who killed. Hill killed because he was Christian, and explicitly for Christianity (as he saw it) - Rader did not.

i thought the "militant views" section was very weak. Granted, you later clarified that all of the atheists specifically advocate NON-militancy, despite their disdain for religion, but, as written, the atheists' "militant views" look pretty much just as nasty as the theists'... just less specific about the details. In other words - and i know you're not doing this consciously - you're using excessively harsh versions of the atheists' positions, but excessively watered down versions of the theists' positions. Even in the "definitional dichotomy" you're being unfairly harsh to the atheists rather than the theists. When describing a militant atheist, you say they're openly critical... but that's not always true. Atheists get called militant for simply saying they can be "good without God", or even just announcing that they exist, let alone that they deserve certain rights, and equality. And when you describe the militant theist: a militant is not someone who is simply willing to go to any means... it's someone who explicitly advocates extreme actions. Even Dawkins might be willing to kill to protect his right to non-believe (if forced into such a situation), but that's not a militant position. The thing with Hill, Shannon and Bray is that they don't simply say they're willing to go to extreme measures... they say their extreme measures are the right thing to do. A militant doesn't just say "we must be ready to kill", they say "we must kill, now".

But all of that is part of what i said originally about being too calm and reasoned in the approach. You're too used to politely giving your opponents ground in a debate (probably because you know it won't help ^_^;) and it shows here.

Now, i loved the Dawkins video - perfect example of his "militancy". But the counter videos are not great. The Christian fundamentalist isn't really militant, just judgemental and dickish. And the Muslim demonstration... i think it would be a stretch to get people to accept them as mainstream (though, technically, they are).

And, as another example of being too cautious and reasoned... ^_^ "Maybe they have advocated violence or condoned violent acts against the religious? Absolutely not." Good so far, then... "I don't believe that any of them would ever advocate such a thing and I know that none of them has done so." (Was this edited? i vaguely recall it being even weaker on first viewing.) i'll grant that you can't know with epistemological certainty that Dawkins or Harris would NEVER advocate violence... but i think it's a safe enough bet to gamble on ^_^; that you can really hammer the point home: "Absolutely not. All are on record explicitly asserting that any violent anti-religious acts are wrong." That kind of thing.

But i do love the concluding line. ^_^
Yes, I think your critique focusses on points that I also thought were weak.
I'll remake it when I get the time. The problem is, as you highlight, I'm used to reasonable debate where one politely makes one's point and equally politely listens to the opposing point.
As regards the 'definitional dichotomy' point - I understand what you are saying, but I didn't want to leave an avenue open to critics - if I'd gone for something less than 'openly critical' then the counter-charge would be that I'm not representing the 'militant' atheist view, just the mainstream. Your point on militant theists, though, is well made - I was too soft on that. Likewise the point about advocating violence - I agree that 'I believe' is downplaying it too much (yes, the first version was even softer, you remember correctly Smile
Bikerman wrote:
The problem is, as you highlight, I'm used to reasonable debate where one politely makes one's point and equally politely listens to the opposing point.

There's nothing wrong with reasoned debate. ^_^; It's just sometimes you get the most response from a full-on groinal assault. Take Michael Moore's films, for example. i wouldn't hold them up as examples of good journalism... but damn they get people talking.

Bikerman wrote:
As regards the 'definitional dichotomy' point - I understand what you are saying, but I didn't want to leave an avenue open to critics - if I'd gone for something less than 'openly critical' then the counter-charge would be that I'm not representing the 'militant' atheist view, just the mainstream.

The thing is, i wouldn't suggest a video like this as an avenue to dialogue. It's to get people talking... but not to you, with each other. The only response you should ever have to make to a criticism for a video like this is: "But it's true."

And it is. You know and i know that atheists do get called militant just for announcing their existence. Not wanting to say that true fact just because it will get some religionist's ginch in a knot is cowardly, really. If anyone makes that criticism, the response is just : "But it's true (citation provided)".

Just load the video up with the truth - just a-chock-full of statements that you can provide documentary evidence for - whether those truths might irritate religionists or not. Truth is truth. Fill the video with truth, then dump it - along with additional notes were you show your sources - on the public. Then you're done. Don't engage; don't discuss. The video is true. That's the end of it. How viewers choose to respond to reality is not your responsibility.

The only criticisms of the video you should respond to are criticisms of fact, based in fact. For example, if someone points out that you got the facts wrong, and they can back it up. Then you should respond, possibly by fixing the video. Otherwise, it should all be white noise to you.

What i'm suggesting is that you change the way you think of yourself and what you're doing. You're not an educator laying down the first exchange in a debate. You're an agent provocateur - a gadfly - baring the nasty bits of reality to the public eye, and daring them to face it.

You're exposing naked bigotry and intolerance, and - presuming you've done your homework and backed up your claims in the video - the only responses you can possibly get are agreement ("yeah, that's true"), justification ("but atheists deserve it") or stupidity ("atheists do it too!" among other things). There's nothing to say in response to agreement. There is no justification for the double standards applied to atheists. And stupidity doesn't even deserve an answer. So... there's nothing to respond to. This is not the start of a debate, it's an exposé, and the only job a whistleblower has is to prove their claims are real... and you did that when you backed up your claims. Your job is done.
I tried another tack which I could get motivated better for - Dog Squad.
First couple were just getting a feel for the medium and I think the one I've just done is pretty good - it made me laugh, so I have to either believe others might find it OK or believe my taste is atrocious or ego driven that my objectivity is shot Smile
I do get the 'read it and suck it up' attitude and it's one I'm going to work on, but every now and again I feel the need to have fun with them, otherwise it can become a chore and one can get emotionally tired from seeing the same silliness and downright ignorance repeated ad nauseum.
Using the dogs was a nice chance to try and anthropomorphise the real characters in a nearly surrealist way - three deliberate mistakes, each a parody of a theist approach - number one being the use of type and kind Smile.
i passed it on to a couple people here, and if their response is any indication, the idea is a hit. ^_^; The consensus seems to be that the deep-voiced one is creepy, the "pope" is great but the "cardinal" in the background is sublime, but the number-one favourite is the stuffy, scholarly black-and-white girl. ^_^

Yeah, the "here are the facts, suck on them" approach isn't satisfying, largely because it precludes dialogue. But it is the most effective way to make a point. Maybe there's a middle way.
LOL... I thought that might be a probable reaction in academe - I tried to voice Maddie (she is the b&w collie) in a way that I recognise and that academics must certainly recognise from colleagues - an amalgam of vocal mannerisms, choice of vocabulary, slight condescension but in a jolly, knowing way and so on...I was most pleased with her characterisation. Max is supposed to be a bit creepy, though I think i've overdone it a bit and might pull the voice up a couple or three semitones. Skip - the pope- is closest to the real character of the dog - imagine a good looking, nice natured, slightly dim but very earnest chap, who has also just done a nosefull of Columbian marching powder - and you will be close Smile

I'm still wondering about the best method. On youtube I take the view that there is sufficient variety such than any contribution is only as good as the notice it attracts and unfortunately my more 'take it and stick it' vids are the least watched - hence the gimmick with the dogs....I think I'll do another couple of Dog Squad vids and see how I feel about them, then look again at how to proceed.
At the moment I'm busy with short responses and threads involving Willy Came Late and his fans
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