They Do It Themselves

I received a message from a reader today, via the Contact Form. I sent him an email, asking him to elaborate, but the email bounced. He had given me a fake email address. I guess he’s a coward.

Anyway, this is what he wrote:

Rest assured, that no matter how you slander Christians and even Jesus himself, God will always welcome you home with love.

Keep seeking, ask God into your heart and he won’t let you down.

No, Kevin. I don’t slander Jesus or Christians. I don’t need to.

God hates Phelps

23 Responses to “They Do It Themselves”

  1. YogaforCynics Says:

    By their own words they will be exposed…

  2. Jeff Eyges Says:

    I’ve notice that a disproportionate number of them have private Blogger profiles.

    For people whose lives are in God’s hands, they’re pretty fucking paranoid.

  3. OtherRob Says:

    No matter what else I might believe in this life, I could never, ever believe in a god as small as the one presented by the parents of those kids.

  4. Thomas Says:

    This is exactly the kind of thing that Dawkins was talking about when he said, “there’s no such thing as a Christian child.”

  5. Dale Says:

    Nothing short of child abuse.

    Disgusting.

  6. s. Says:

    I can’t imagine anyone putting that on their child!! how horrible!

  7. Syldoran Says:

    I hope those kids see these pictures when they’re old enough to understand what the shirts meant, and rebel. Parents who do that to their innocent kids disgust me.

  8. Magnus Bergmark Says:

    Assholes! :’-(

  9. Mike aka MonolithTMA Says:

    Slander would be lying about Christians. It’s not slander if you simply report their actual actions.

  10. Another Steve Says:

    Mike aka Monolith TMA;

    Of course, you realize that once we’ve re-established this country as a theocracy, the legal definition of slander can be replaced with heresy. Then, you can be stoned to death.

    By the way, “TMA” stood for Tycho Magnetic Anomaly. Clark has always been one of my favorite authors. One of my favorite Clark books was The Songs of Distant Earth.

    And in other news: I tried to go to the godhatesfags web site. I don’t think I’ve seen a server with so little band width. It took 10 minutes for it to load. I haven’t even begun to look around on the site yet, but first impressions aren’t as good as the URL. What a bunch of idiots.

    Cheers

  11. Parrotlover77 Says:

    I don’t think I’ve seen a server with so little band width.

    It would not surprise me in the slightest if that site is the frequent recipient of DDOS-style attacks. It couldn’t happen to a more deserving group of scumbags.

  12. K-Fed Says:

    I’m sorry, but I have to get this out there: I don’t like blog posts like these. You know, the theist version could read:

    “No. I don’t slander atheists; I don’t need to.”

    And then show a picture of Pol Pot, Mao, or Stalin doing some torture or mass murder. Now I know these actions were motivated by rigid belief in ideology other than atheism, but the fallacy is still the same: Religion allows individuals to justify hatred, Atheism allows individuals to conduct terrible crimes without conscience.

    It’s the same ad hominem they’re so fond of.

    And I believe you *are* slandering the vast majority of Christians who aren’t a member of the Phelps family when you post pictures like this and say “Christians slander themselves!” with the implication that this is what Christianity leads to, encourages.

    I would have liked to see an article on the fundie psychology behind the sending of the Jesus-loves-you message. Perhaps an exploration into the reliance of anecdotal tales and instant conversion stories or ‘seed-planting’ in fundie culture?

    Or at least a description about how Abrahamic monotheism has historically affected and provided the means to marginalize LGBT culture.

    A picture of a radical Christian sect aimed to discredit Christianity by proxy is shallow, shameful, and a cop-out. You can do better.

    I… I think I’m done now.

  13. Ron Britton Says:

    K-Fed:

    Sorry, but you could not be more wrong. I know you are a regular reader, and that is what makes your comment so insulting. I expect comments like this from people who have only see one or two posts I’ve written. You’ve seen the broad spectrum of articles. Apparently this entire blog is a failure, since that totality has not been conveyed.

    I’m sorry, but I have to get this out there: I don’t like blog posts like these. You know, the theist version could read:

    “No. I don’t slander atheists; I don’t need to.”

    And then show a picture of Pol Pot, Mao, or Stalin doing some torture or mass murder. Now I know these actions were motivated by rigid belief in ideology other than atheism, but the fallacy is still the same…

    No. The fallacy is not the same at all. There is no fallacy in what I wrote.

    I was accused of slandering Christians. I do not slander Christians on this blog. Yes, I will gently poke Christianity in general from time to time, but all of my hard, sharp jabs are directed at very specific people or sub-groups within Christianity. These are all people who bring disrepute upon the religion itself and/or damage society in various ways. That was the purpose of the photo above. Those are the people this blog is directed against. Phelps and his kin are the most extreme members of this disreputable lot, but everyone I target is guilty of this sin.

    Religion allows individuals to justify hatred, Atheism allows individuals to conduct terrible crimes without conscience.

    No it does not. Yes, terrible people are terrible people. Some of them find that religion gives them plausible deniability. They can pass the buck on the guilt. It isn’t them that is hateful (they tell themselves); they’re just following God’s laws.

    There is no comparable atheistic doctrine. There is no atheistic philosophy that allows or justifies genocide or hatred.

    And I believe you *are* slandering the vast majority of Christians who aren’t a member of the Phelps family when you post pictures like this and say “Christians slander themselves!” with the implication that this is what Christianity leads to, encourages.

    As I said above, Phelps is only the most extreme example. I hardly ever talk about him. The vast majority of the fundies I talk about are not as extreme, yet they equally slander Christians by their actions. This blog is about that vile sub-group. It is not about Christians in general.

    I would have liked to see an article on the fundie psychology behind the sending of the Jesus-loves-you message. Perhaps an exploration into the reliance of anecdotal tales and instant conversion stories or ’seed-planting’ in fundie culture?

    Or at least a description about how Abrahamic monotheism has historically affected and provided the means to marginalize LGBT culture.

    And that is the insulting part of your comment. That is what this blog is about. I often delve into the psychology and social effects of fundamentalism. I do more analysis than a lot of other blogs, and it costs me readers. What do you think the whole Darwin Was Wrong series is about? That will end up being about 13 articles in length. I’ve covered the huge cash cow of opposing abortion. How many other blogs try to define the characteristics of fundamentalism and turn the lens inward to see if any of us are guilty of the same crime?

    Do you have any idea how frustrating it is to spend several hours writing a thoughtful analysis of a pressing social issue, and then have the article ignored? And then I re-publish some stupid comic strip that somebody else wrote or an old email that’s been floating around for ten years and they end up generating 20% of my traffic in perpetuity? Or seeing blogs that only publish fluff or quick overviews get ten times the readership? That’s fine. I have my niche. But don’t accuse me of not filling it.

    A picture of a radical Christian sect aimed to discredit Christianity by proxy is shallow, shameful, and a cop-out.

    It was not “aimed to discredit Christianity by proxy” at all. I stand by that picture, because it does no such thing.

  14. Bacopa Says:

    Seems they don’t hate race-mixing. Right hand kid could be half white if mom or dad were dark. But then they may adopt in mixed-race kids to increase their ranks. There are some verses in the Bible against race mixing. Others claim race is irrelevant in Christ. Some of the people in Acts were African in origin, possibly even some Bantu people. Bantus got around and black folks didn’t have that hard a time in the Roman Empire. Put The Eagle on a post in your village and you’re cool anywhere in The Empire.

    I think the Phelps cult has pretty correct interepretation of scripture. God hates fags. Good thing I don’t take scripture that seriously or I’d have to hate fags too.

  15. K-Fed Says:

    Ooh. This is going to be good 🙂

    Listen, I may be a talentless loser who mooches off the fame of his ex-wife, but I still got a beef with your beef with my beef.


    There are two distinct ways to view this post.

    1: Phelps gives Christianity a bad name more so than I, Ron, ever have and, ironically, he calls himself a Christian.

    2: Phelps illustrates why Christianity in general is bad.

    I take issue with #2.

    I thought you were going for #2 because I’ve seen many cases of someone taking an extreme view and using it to vilify the ideology as a whole. Like a conservative blogger who responds to a comment by grabbing a picture of an anarchist and saying “This is why Liberals suck”.

    You said your critique was directed at the fundies, but, to me, this pic seemed like pot-shot against the contactor’s religion in general more so than an attack against Capt Crazy.

    So I guess this whole little spat could be summed up in connotations/meanings of ‘slander’:

    1: Falsehood

    2: To show its dark side

    It seemed to me that you were equating Phelps with Christianity. If you weren’t, well oops, but that’s what the picture can be interpreted to mean.

    Now! On a completely unrelated note: My line here: “Atheism allows individuals to conduct terrible crimes without conscience.”
    Wasn’t an argument; it was a summary of a fallacious statement. Woohoo.

  16. Parrotlover77 Says:

    I think the Phelps cult has pretty correct interepretation of scripture. God hates fags. Good thing I don’t take scripture that seriously or I’d have to hate fags too.

    I have to agree with you there. I always found the “but after Jesus, you can ignore all the old laws” a bit of a cop-out. Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad most modern Christians do throw them out, but the fact remains that the hatred is right there in the bible as clear as day, as obvious as the race war was in The Turner Diaries.

    Do you have any idea how frustrating it is to spend several hours writing a thoughtful analysis of a pressing social issue, and then have the article ignored? And then I re-publish some stupid comic strip that somebody else wrote or an old email that’s been floating around for ten years and they end up generating 20% of my traffic in perpetuity? Or seeing blogs that only publish fluff or quick overviews get ten times the readership? That’s fine. I have my niche. But don’t accuse me of not filling it.

    I’m not going to get in the middle of this little heated discussion, but I do want to point out, Ron, that your analytical articles are very appreciated. I came for Those That Shall Not Be Named™, but stayed for the thoughtful analysis and discussion. It’s true that you will always get more links and search queries for fart jokes than research papers, but that’s just the hook! Once you are found, it’s the rich content that keeps people coming back.

  17. Ron Britton Says:

    I thought you were going for #2 because I’ve seen many cases of someone taking an extreme view and using it to vilify the ideology as a whole. Like a conservative blogger who responds to a comment by grabbing a picture of an anarchist and saying “This is why Liberals suck”.

    I hate that about some of the bloviators on the right. If I ever do that, somebody needs to smack me.

  18. BK Says:

    This is far more valid than when a Christian uses it, considering you can show ~in the Bible~ where God justifies murdering children for petty crimes, having his people go into cities and steal their wives (ie mass rape), and other such things.

    We don’t forgive war criminals because they did it a long time ago. That’s not how civilized society works.

  19. Mike aka MonolithTMA Says:

    @Another Steve,

    The funny thing is, while I had seen 2001 and had read other Clark books I had never read 2001 and had no idea that TMA was connected with Monolith. I used to have a character in an online RPG called Clan Lord. The character was named Monolith The Good, I stopped playing for some time and when I came back everyone had passed me by with their abilities so I jokingly renamed myself Monolith The Merely Adequate or Monolith TMA for short.

  20. Ron Britton Says:

    Hey, I used to play Clan Lord! I didn’t play for long, because the company running it had a lot of issues. I also decided it would be too much of a time sink, and I haven’t touched an MMORPG since.

    I see the game is now free, but the graphics are as sucky as ever.

  21. Jeff Eyges Says:

    I do want to point out, Ron, that your analytical articles are very appreciated.

    Seconded.

  22. Mike aka MonolithTMA Says:

    @Ron Britton I played Clan Lord for several years, both in the beta period and after they went commercial. I still log in every couple of years to check things out. I still see some of the folks from the old days. I only played one other MMO and that was EQOA of Everquest for the Playstation 2. No time consuming MMO’s since then.

  23. OtherRob Says:

    K-Fed, I do think that a few (some? many?) skeptics/atheists/whatevers do tend to lump all Christians in with wackos like Phelps and use his as the exemplar of the religion. (I do not think Ron does this.)

    Part of the reason for this, I believe, is that we don’t see more (any?) Christians condemning the likes of Fred Phelps. Where are the Christians marching against him? Shouldn’t it have been church groups blocking him from soldier’s funerals instead of bikers?

    Ron is in the middle of a series of articles about an anti-evolution/anti-science symposium held at a church. Where are the churches denouncing Intelligent Design? How many pastors have gotten up in their pulpits and praised science to their congregations?

    Until we see more Christians and churches standing up to the people that Ron is criticizing in this blog, I think you’re going to find more and more non-believers seeing other Christians as fellow travelers instead of people who don’t interpret Christianity the same way as folks like Phelps.