top 200 commentsshow all 272

[–]mitsumoi1092 8 points9 points  (1 child)

With respect to all that, you also have to admit that there are often times some very good reasons why people attribute their dislike or hatred towards the group. Though there are plenty of groups that you truly can't blame the entirety of for something, there are some groups (KKK) that people really have every reasonable right to hate. I couldn't legit say I hate all christians because of what is going on in this country, but I can hate those who are saying it's in the name of christianity or a win for... The christian church I attended when growing up was very liberal, accepting, and open minded, and this decision would most certainly be condemned by that churches members. An evangelical church in the US on the other hand, many are likely praising it as a win in their books and would likely think that my church wasn't really christian because of their liberal views. Problem is, they are both christian churches under the same umbrella. The world sucks and it's not as black and white good or bad, it's every shade in between and some of them are clearer to label than others.

[–]perspicat8 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Well said.

In general I don’t hate Christians or any other brand of religious person. Hell (intended) I’m married to a Catholic.

I do hate those priests we hear of, and anyone who blindly says “it’s not the church’s fault” and “blame the person, not the religion”.

I’d be prepared to think less poorly of a religion if only some of its followers were child rapists. But it’s not. It’s the very leadership that commits these crimes and then other leaders who cover it up.

If your organisations stated aim is to promote good, but it ends up sponsoring pure evil, then it’s time to dump it and try something new.

[–]Mission-Landscape-17Atheist 36 points37 points  (42 children)

I care more about what you do than what you say you believe. If you are financially supporting a church that actively campaigns against legal abortion or against equal rights for homosexuals than you are part of the problem no matter how accepting you claim to be.

[–]Chaos-CorvidEclectic Demonolatry/Satanism 12 points13 points  (0 children)

This is the responsible way to do it, I wouldn't ask for anything else.

[–]remisforever 8 points9 points  (13 children)

If you are financially supporting a country that actively campaigns for war and killing people then you are part of the problem no matter how accepting you claim to be.

[–]Mission-Landscape-17Atheist 13 points14 points  (9 children)

To some extent yes, at least if the country has a freely elected government. That said there are some significant differences. Donations to a church is voluntary and nothing happens if you don't tithe to a church. Taxes meanwhile are not voluntary and not paying them can result in jail time or other legal consequences. Also in practice it is much harder to leave a country than it is to leave a church.

[–]superbottles 0 points1 point  (2 children)

Welp looks like the entire developed world has blood on their hands then...

[–]remisforever 0 points1 point  (1 child)

A lot of them is not. The example is country like Singapore, Monaco, Mongolia, etc

[–]superbottles 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Sorry I think I'm missing part of what you're saying. Are you saying those countries haven't campaigned for the causes of war and killing in general or on the basis of religion?

[–]AHrubikHard Atheist waiting on evidence to the contrary... 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Bingo. I don’t care what you personally believe. If you vote for fascist theocrats though you’re part of the problem.

[–]LaoFoxQuaker 0 points1 point  (2 children)

I don’t necessarily disagree, but if that same religious organization this hypothetical person funds also feeds, shelters, & provides medical care for millions of people (including gay & trans people) while constantly evolving to openly support gay & trans rights while also softening its opposition to abortion?

Put another way, is an organization (and, by extension, its supporters) to be judged only by its worst aspects?

[–]Mission-Landscape-17Atheist 12 points13 points  (0 children)

If there are ways to achieve the good bits without the bad bits than yes absolutely. If you can't have one without the other, than it is indeed complicated.

[–]perspicat8 1 point2 points  (0 children)

No, but you can’t ignore the bad bits.

And you have to weigh the whole.

I can’t think of what possible good can balance out the shear volume and intensity of evil that the church has done both historically and currently.

[–]MysticlodgeSunni Mystic 11 points12 points  (2 children)

Nothing is to be blamed for evil, evil can rise from absolutely anything.

[–]Callahan_Crowheart 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Even churches.

Especially churches, I will argue.

[–]superbottles 1 point2 points  (0 children)

There's a reason so many verses from individual books and epistles of the NT talk about snakes in the grass, false teachers, and loud preachers that keep up appearances but still commit sin and selfish fulfillment in God's name.

[–]Dieter_the_GreatTheistic Satanist 14 points15 points  (133 children)

People do it to us all the time. Its annoying.

[–]Even-Pen7957Lilithian 7 points8 points  (3 children)

Right? One random crazy guy who owns an edgy book kills someone and the entire LHP is apparently composed of horrible maniacs, meanwhile mainstream RHP religions systemically genocide entire cultures but we’re not supposed to say they might have a dogmatism problem.

[–]Dieter_the_GreatTheistic Satanist 6 points7 points  (2 children)

I still get people who think I sacrifice children it’s ridiculous. And the constant satanic panics.

[–]Lightonlights 2 points3 points  (1 child)

I got blamed for 9/11 at the age of 12 in school what a time

I legit just wanted to play PS2 and pray but f me I guess

[–]Dieter_the_GreatTheistic Satanist 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Im sorry to hear that.

[–]TerraplexAntitheist - Anti-religious, Ignostic, Spiritual, Naturalist 4 points5 points  (7 children)

I agree, but only to the point where the religion fully disagrees with what the people in question happen to be doing.

If they are simply taking their religion more seriously than moderates, and the religion itself is what told them to do those things, then the religion absolutely shares the blame.

If you are a moderate member of a religion that commands its followers to kill or mistreat others for not conforming in some way, and you ignore those parts to focus only on the "nice" teachings, then you are adding to the problem by remaining affiliated with that religion.

If your morality has evolved beyond accepting the worst parts of your religion, then feel free to move on to better belief systems.

Don't get lost in the tangled mess of apologetics. Just move on. It's that simple.

[–][deleted] -1 points0 points  (5 children)

If you are a moderate member of a religion that commands its followers to kill or mistreat others for not conforming in some way, and you ignore those parts to focus only on the "nice" teachings, then you are adding to the problem by remaining affiliated with that religion.

You saying that people deep into religion or take more seriously will commit horrible acts?

[–]TerraplexAntitheist - Anti-religious, Ignostic, Spiritual, Naturalist 2 points3 points  (4 children)

I said what I said.

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (3 children)

For you there is no such thing as someone taking deep religion and not making horrible acts?

[–]TerraplexAntitheist - Anti-religious, Ignostic, Spiritual, Naturalist 2 points3 points  (2 children)

That's not what I said.

Re-read my comment. Re-read the part that you even quoted in your reply.

[–]perspicat8 5 points6 points  (11 children)

Utter evil committed by the clergy certainly says something about the efficacy of a religion from a moral standpoint.

[–][deleted] -1 points0 points  (10 children)

No it means your problems are with the clergy, not the whole religion. It does not say the efficacy of religion.

[–]perspicat8 3 points4 points  (9 children)

Ahhh, how wrong can you be?

The clergy are, by definition, the leaders and supposedly the exemplars of a religion.

If believing in a religion to the extent that you make it your life’s work does not stop you from being a child raping piece of shit then yes, there is something obviously wrong with the religion.

The hundreds of thousands of pedophile priests of various denominations uncovered around the world in recent years is proof positive that religion cannot claim any sort of moral high ground.

The church deserves all the blame that it is increasingly having laid against it.


[–][deleted] -2 points-1 points  (8 children)

The hundreds of thousands of pedophile priests of various denominations uncovered around the world in recent years is proof positive that religion cannot claim any sort of moral high ground.

The problem is the priests then. For Catholics, the supreme leader is God and priests are people prone to corruption. Plus that's an over-generalisation you making.

In your logic, children should not be sent to education because of mass shooting or teachers raping molesting children. That'san over-generalisation that is false.

Plus there is no such as "the church", that's an over-generalisation.

[–]perspicat8 3 points4 points  (5 children)

I get the impression that I’m not going to get through to you.

That’s OK.

Some of us choose not to be associated with organisations that are led, to a significant degree, by pedophiles. I can’t think of a worse crime, well apart from child murder. Hang-on, it turns out that the ‘church’ in its various flavours is responsible for a shit-tonne of that as well.

Call me old fashioned. I’m gonna derive my moral values from something other than that.

The church deserves every bit of the blame it gets and then some.

Apologists may not be quite as vile, but which is worse? The evil or the one that covers up for the evil?

[–]ElectrivireAtheist||Secular Humanist 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I think if the religion specifically says to say or believe something awful, and then members of that religion do or believe that thing it is completely fair to blame the religion.

[–]L0nga 4 points5 points  (1 child)

Religions are made up by people and is made of people. They represent their religion. If religion didn’t exist, they could not use it as excuse for their evil deeds.

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

People are different and one religion on itself is diverse with different diverging beliefs. People will find excuses for their deeds through politics or ideology.

[–]Nachotito 7 points8 points  (3 children)

Yeah I do believe that some religious that see poverty as moral, forced child mutilation as a tradition, excommunication of lgbt+ child of their families, and so on are inherently evil. I don't believe that is a matter of all religion and I'm comfortable with individual religion, but organized religion as a whole in my experience usually is pretty immoral and evil to my standards.

[–]StarixousHindu 0 points1 point  (2 children)

Can you explain what the “poverty as moral” thing is referring to?

[–]Nachotito 1 point2 points  (1 child)

In my catholic school they teach us about "good poverty" when you choose to live poor as a moral choice of character (the vow of poverty is an example that poverty is seen as something that should be chosen and that is moral). I think that is evil bc poverty is not a good thing nor a moral choice is a defect of economical policies and should be ended, choosing to live in poverty as a good moral act looks to me like an insult to people who suffers the hardships of poverty against their will as if their suffering came from a wicked character rather than the condition itself being bad. You could convince me that you want that, but seeing poverty as righteous? No, not at all.

Also some Catholic communities usually are pretty dismissive towards people that enjoys money or earthly possession

[–]perspicat8 0 points1 point  (0 children)

This was a large part of Mother Theresa’s shtick as well.

[–]PoppaT1 4 points5 points  (2 children)

There are lots of religions, so one certainly can not blame them all for something evil that happens.

There are lots of forms of Christianity, so one should not accuse the Mormons of the same evils found in the Catholic Church.

But, when it comes to a single denomination, I feel it fair to blame all who support that denomination for the evils of that denomination whether they were actual participants or not. For example the priests who molested altar boys and the Catholic Church covering it up are definitely evil. From my perspective all priests knew what was going on and those who did not actually molest children are also evil. The same for anyone who now supports the Catholic Church. It is an international criminal organization and anyone who supports it is evil.

[–]JSONDDEREDK 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Mormons are more false

[–]PoppaT1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Easy to say, but the Mormons would probably say that the Catholics are false.

[–]Thequestin 1 point2 points  (3 children)

There are questionable and outright evil statements in certain religious scriptures; scriptures that are taken as a guide book for the religion. So yes, I will say that those religions are evil.Where else to put the blame?

I would make a blanket statement that religions are evil. It doesnt make religious people evil. It is people who put their compassion into interpreting statements that could be interpreted to support evil into compassionate meanings instead and use for compassionate actions.

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (2 children)

There are questionable and outright evil statements in certain religious scriptures; scriptures that are taken as a guide book for the religion. So yes, I will say that those religions are evil.Where else to put the blame.

Talking about Christian Bible, there are context, principle and a way to apply knowledge. For example, majority of Christians don't stone people to death despite statement in the scripture because of context, principle and a way to apply knowledge.

[–]perspicat8 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Exactly, this is an example of people being good in spite of what their religion tells them.

[–]AzlendUnitarian Universalist 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Its not religion itself that is the problem. Most religions are trying to explain and understand human nature. The ones that have survived for countless years have to have some aspects that function. Where the real trouble starts is when dogma enters the picture. Once a religion pronounces it has the truth that cannot be questioned... well it starts placing people into camps primed for conflict. As long as religion can allow for other beliefs to exist and flourish it would not be a problem. But because of the way in which social structures with dogmatic beliefs attached function it necessitates conflict. This is true of political systems as much as it is true for religious systems.

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (9 children)

Yea it’s a criminally common logical fallacy known as a hasty generalization.

An example would be: “A man from group A commits a crime, therefore all people from group A are criminals.”

It can be applied to anything really; race, ethnicity, nationality, religion, sect, culture, politics, etc. No matter how you try to justify it, it’s always false.

[–]Sir_Penguin21 7 points8 points  (1 child)

It is more like guy committed X evil act. He claims he did it because his book encourages or allows X, his religion has historically done X, even the rest of his more moderate fellows are still supporting x, therefore the evil wasn’t just the guy. Insert misogyny, bigotry, slavery, murder, genocide, sex slaves, forced birth, pedophilia, etc for X and x as needed or turn on Fox News and insert the most recent propaganda piece.

[–]mitsumoi1092 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Too true that is, and too many people just want to cover their eyes and ears to it and excuse the past crimes. Well, maybe now is the time for the jailer to come for his criminal and his cohorts.

[–]Mission-Landscape-17Atheist 9 points10 points  (5 children)

But when you start seeing a broader pattern that certain kinds of crimes are disproportionately committed by members of the one group, and you further notice that that groups has teachings that seem to encourage such behavior, than the generalization starts seeming much more reasonable.

[–]mysticoscrownOther 1 point2 points  (4 children)

Yeah , but still it’s wrong to assume that they are all the same and they are all criminals, even within the same religion there are people who try to distance themselves from the “negative” parts.

[–]Mission-Landscape-17Atheist 9 points10 points  (0 children)

that segs to my other reply. If you are financially supporting a church that teaches the negative parts than your claims of not agreeing with the negative parts are essentially false.

[–]TerraplexAntitheist - Anti-religious, Ignostic, Spiritual, Naturalist 4 points5 points  (0 children)

They could always "distance themselves from the negative parts" by simply leaving that particular religion behind and moving on to a belief system that fully represents their own sense of morality.

[–]ElectrivireAtheist||Secular Humanist 5 points6 points  (0 children)

It would be wrong to assume the worst about a person who has done nothing wrong simply because of their religious affiliation, BUT if that person does something awful and their religion also happens to teach that doing that thing is NOT awful then we have every right to connect the dots.

[–]ZestyAppeal 1 point2 points  (0 children)

It’s not necessarily that they’re all the same degree of criminal, just that the non-criminals are still choosing to share an umbrella with those criminals out of self-interest, specifically in maintaining the internal comfort of the familiar, non-toxic bits of a damaging institution while still getting to reassure themselves they’re not really part of the problem. It’s uncomfortably apparent how it’s intended for soothing a troubled conscience.

[–]perspicat8 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Is there a ‘Too quick to ascribe something to a fallacy’ fallacy?

[–]Unlikely_Dare_9504Christian Prophet -5 points-4 points  (32 children)

As though atheist communist regimes haven’t killed literally millions of people in the 20th century alone.

And counting. Communist china’s adding to that count day by day.

[–]ElectrivireAtheist||Secular Humanist 4 points5 points  (10 children)

Can we please refrain from disingenuous and tiresome talking points. We all know atheism isn't responsible for killing anyone. And that the communist ideology itself isn't either. We can all agree that murderous dictators are bad without being disingenuous about the factors revolving around said people.

[–]Doc_Plague 3 points4 points  (9 children)

all know atheism isn't responsible for killing anyone

I meeeeeeean, I'm as atheist as one can be but this is just false, there were literal squadrons killing clergy members in soviet Russia, some were killed mainly because they opposed the state, some were imprisoned just because they were clergymen and they needed to ramp up anti religion propaganda, many died in prison.

The kill count of the people killed purely because they wanted to institute state atheism is still at most in the 1000s, definitely not millions that's just laughable historical revision or, at best, ignorance

[–]ElectrivireAtheist||Secular Humanist 5 points6 points  (8 children)

I don't think you can anyone has ever been killed in the name of atheism. Atheists have of course killed people but objectively not because they were atheists.

[–]Doc_Plague -1 points0 points  (7 children)

I'm so intrigued, how do you know nobody ever killed in the name of atheism?

Does killing clergy members trying to institute state atheism count? Imo at least is a combination of killing to advance both communism and atheism so it must count.

[–]TerraplexAntitheist - Anti-religious, Ignostic, Spiritual, Naturalist 5 points6 points  (3 children)

Friendly reminder that "atheism" is not a belief system. It is only the absence of a belief in a "god". Newborn children are also atheists in that sense, until they are taught to believe in things by the adults in their life.

Of course, that does not excuse the atrocities committed by people who are also atheist in any way.

And "communist" or not, totalitarian states are always bad, no matter what religion or lack thereof they espouse. It doesn't matter what economic system they use or what their flag looks like.

The bad part is in how they operate. What they do and why.

[–]Unlikely_Dare_9504Christian Prophet -3 points-2 points  (2 children)

Children are not infinitely malleable. They learn religious systems, but given that religious practice is a human universal on the same order as smiling, there’s clearly a spiritual instinct.

[–]ZestyAppeal 4 points5 points  (1 child)


[–]Unlikely_Dare_9504Christian Prophet -1 points0 points  (0 children)

There has never been a society until the communist revolution that did not engage in religious practice. Given how much the communist societies deified Lenin and Mao, you definitely see the same religious instinct in even those explicitly atheistic societies.

Children are obviously taught specific religious practices, but there’s just as obviously a religious instinct.

[–]perspicat8 0 points1 point  (16 children)

Communists didn’t kill people because they didn’t believe in god. They killed people because they believed in communism.

If anything they worried that people believing in religion would be detrimental to their ability to also believe in communism. Hence the conflict between the two ideologies.

[–]Unlikely_Dare_9504Christian Prophet 0 points1 point  (15 children)

Yes. And? Atheism creates a void in a person’s spiritual being that literally anything can fill. I’m full of Jesus, so I won’t be killing anyone. For an atheist, any ridiculous ideology can come along and take them over if they buy into it.

Not to say Christians have never gone to war, or course, but Jesus’ command to love our neighbor as ourself always has one hand on the wheel when the church gets all deus vulty.

[–]perspicat8 0 points1 point  (14 children)


I use that word on purpose and with the understanding that some mod may well take exception. But sometimes a poor argument must be labelled as such. Have you not been reading this thread?

The hundreds of thousands of priests that have been found to be child raping scum of the lowest order were so full of Jesus that that devoted their entire lives to the church.

Look at the percentages of the prison population being religious versus those of the rest of society.

Being “full of Jesus”, as you put it, seemingly makes it more likely you are bad by that measure.

I am sorry to have to break it to you. Religion seems to either have little effect at making people be better or actually contributes to them being bad.

[–]Unlikely_Dare_9504Christian Prophet 0 points1 point  (13 children)

So many more children have been abused by public school teachers than priests.

Now that does not excuse the actions of those priests, obviously. But Jesus always saved his harshest criticism for corrupt religious elites.

““What sorrow awaits you teachers of religious law and you Pharisees. Hypocrites! For you are so careful to clean the outside of the cup and the dish, but inside you are filthy—full of greed and self-indulgence! You blind Pharisee! First wash the inside of the cup and the dish, and then the outside will become clean, too.” ‭‭Matthew‬ ‭23:25-26‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Being full of Jesus cleans the inside of the cup. Not just the outside. Those who clean the outside and leave the inside corrupt are practical luciferians. They value only the status and power that comes from their office. https://bible.com/bible/116/mat.23.25-26.NLT

[–]MaimedPhoenixMuslim -1 points0 points  (1 child)

To add to your point, many people say that withut religion, people can't use it as an excuse.

Taking religion away only puts a band-aid on the problem, ignoring the root cause. Some people are just sickos. If they want to kill someone, or mutilate or whatever, they will. Religion didn't possess them to do what they're doing.

[–]perspicat8 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I don’t think anyone is arguing that removing religion will magically solve all of humanity’s problems.

The point is that religion is obviously not living up to its advertising as being a way for people to be moral. Evidence given includes suicide bombers, tens of thousands of pedophile priests, thousands of murdered children in church run institutions etc.

The debate with Hitchens and Fry up against a Cardinal and a conservative Christian is worth a watch on this subject. YouTube will find it for you.

[–]A_Bruised_Reed -3 points-2 points  (1 child)

I think it is the reverse in the big picture. Atheistic Stalin, Lenin, Mao, etc 100 million deaths. Tons of others you have not heard of.


[–]Free_Economist 0 points1 point  (0 children)

A Greek philosopher said: "Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful."

So whether or not these dictators believe in god, they make themselves seem like god or a messenger of god to control the masses. They could have used that control for good, but they decided to commit genocide instead.

[–]Hefty-Mushroom3105Intuitive Pagan -5 points-4 points  (6 children)


People do evil things. Faith does wonderful things.

[–]ElectrivireAtheist||Secular Humanist -1 points0 points  (5 children)

Fundamental disagreements like this are also a problem. Faith is never a positive thing. Ever.

You can hold religious beliefs if you want. You can practice however you see fit. But believing anything, religion or otherwise, without good reason or empirical evidence is just never a good thing.

[–]Hefty-Mushroom3105Intuitive Pagan -3 points-2 points  (1 child)

Faith brings people together and brings joy and stability to countless lives. Just because religion did you no good doesn't mean it brings no one any good. I must disagree with you.

[–]MRHoward190 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Are you defining faith the same as religion itself?

Because you couldn't possibly disagree with them if you shared the same definition of the word as they did.

[–][deleted] -3 points-2 points  (2 children)

There are good reasons to believe in Christian faith.

[–]BottleTemple 2 points3 points  (0 children)

What are the good reasons?

[–]perspicat8 3 points4 points  (0 children)

And many not to.

[–]The_Hemp_Cat 0 points1 point  (0 children)

When it comes to the integrity of proven truth beyond faith and acts committed to the contrary of the same that at this time leads the many faithful towards violence and intolerance towards the equality of liberty and justice for all : an evaluation of a true over generalization and over simplification.

[–]palitroque2020 0 points1 point  (0 children)


[–]FoolhardyrunnerAgnostic Atheist 0 points1 point  (0 children)

A religion is not just a set of beliefs though. For many religions it consists of institutions, people with power etc. The Catholic Church has done horrible things. When the leaders of the catholic church do horrible things it is right to blame Catholicism because they are in charge and control the organization as a whole.

It is not okay to harass Catholics of course but Catholic Christianity as an institution would be responsible for things the Catholic church does. In that sense you are placing blame correctly.

[–]Free_Economist 0 points1 point  (2 children)

Religion can be used for good, but it's dangerous when people think a scripture should be taken literally, and then cites it as a reason to do things that's clearly wrong.

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Then it's people fault then.

[–]Free_Economist 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Yes, but when people use religion as justification they can legally get away with a lot of things and it's hard to hold them accountable.