A Flea in the Fur of the Beast

“Death, fire, and burglary make all men equals.” —Dickens

Category: Religion

Today in Pointless Gun Deaths, Where’s Your God Now?!?!?!?1?! Edition

by evanmcmurry

I missed this one, but it has everything a pointless American gun death could want: an AR-15, an argument that would have ended in a fistfight at worst were it not for the ownership of an AR-15, video games, drugs, and GOD:

An Oakland man enraged by a friend’s attempt to disprove the existence of God reportedly retrieved his AR-15 assault rifle and fired several shots at the man, killing him instantly.

[snip] Yim, Phan, and a third friend, Paul Park, were drinking, smoking marijuana, and playing video game in Yim’s house in the early morning hours of April 2, 2011, when the ontological argument erupted.

[snip] According to Park, Phan had been teasing Yim about his religion, asking him where his God was every time he won the game they were playing.

Eventually, the debate escalated to name calling and Phan angered Yim by asking him where his God was when Yim’s father died of a stroke.

And the heartbreaking, perfect detail, straight out of a Benjamin Percy story or something:

A bullet also struck Park’s finger as he raised his hand to stop the shooting.

I like to think of that finger as the one he raised every time he made a point. More:

a) This guy totally needed an AR-15.

b) At least they weren’t arguing about Kant (or were they?!?)

c) This seems like an all-time refutation of my least favorite argument against atheism, namely that a belief in god, or more specifically a deity-ordained moral system, is all that keeps us secular beasts from murdering each other. Apparently the pious need background checks, too.

God Is Concern-Trolling Us

by evanmcmurry

To atheists’ credit, this is kinda proof God doesn’t exist:

Who can people call when religious doubts arise, but they’re afraid to talk to their faith leaders or families?

A group that helps people “recover” from religion says it’s ready to pick up the phone.

Recovering from Religion, which has about 40 support groups in the U.S. and Britain, plans to launch a hotline that will offer doubters an anonymous place to ask difficult questions and find communities of like-minded nonbelievers.

The group plans to staff the help line 24 hours a day and is modeling it after services like suicide prevention hotlines.

So About That Study Saying Muslims Are Gonna Sharia Us All…

by evanmcmurry

Steam is already coming out of the ears of conservative AVIs over PEW’s new survey, which found an overwhelming majority of Muslims worldwide favor entwining sharia law into politics and policy. (Oklahoma! Look out!)

Nobody, however, seems to be reading the VERY NEXT PARAGRAPH:

At the same time, the survey finds that even in many countries where there is strong backing for sharia, most Muslims favor religious freedom for people of other faiths. In Pakistan, for example, three-quarters of Muslims say that non-Muslims are very free to practice their religion, and fully 96% of those who share this assessment say it is “a good thing.” Yet 84% of Pakistani Muslims favor enshrining sharia as official law. These seemingly divergent views are possible partly because most supporters of sharia in Pakistan – as in many other countries – think Islamic law should apply only to Muslims. Moreover, Muslims around the globe have differing understandings of what sharia means in practice.

The survey – which involved more than 38,000 face-to-face interviews in 80-plus languages with Muslims across Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Africa – shows that Muslims tend to be most comfortable with using sharia in the domestic sphere, to settle family or property disputes.

So in other words, they sound like…Christians. And by and large more tolerant than, say, people who legislate against other religions, like, say, lawmakers in Oklahoma. And frankly, I’ll take the folks in the above graphs over this guy or these guys any day.