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Is atheism hate speech?

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Religious people seem to love to mischaracterize non-believers as people who "hate Jesus", "hate God", or "hate religion."

When you hear someone use these terms, ask yourself what it says about them? Do they "hate" anything they disagree with? Isn't that a bit harsh? What does this say about the mental and emotional stability of someone making such a claim?

To hate someone means to have intense malice towards them. Atheists have no hatred whatsoever against whatever deity a theist may believe in. It's not rational nor logical to have contempt for something which we don't believe exists. So what we have here are theists projecting their own fertile contempt and intolerance upon others.

In fact, I'd venture to say most atheists don't hate anybody merely because of their beliefs... that's a construct that is typically promoted by religious doctrine, and yet one of the many reasons why atheists dismiss religion as being counterproductive, oppressive, irrational and unethical.

The next time you hear someone suggesting a non-believer "hates" this or that, ask them, "Do you hate Santa Claus?" "Do you hate the tooth-fairy?" Why not? You don't believe in them, right? So is not believing in something analogous to hating it?

If a web site is critical of Christian doctrine or scripture, is that "hate speech?"

It's a shame some closed-minded people can't distinguish between criticism and hatred. Does this site suggest that Christians be rounded up and persecuted? No!

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Ironically though, if you read the bible, there are many passages in the bible which support the notion that non-believers should be persecuted. So the irony here is that freethinking critique and information is not hate speech, and in fact, often an expose of the hate speech perpetrated by religion.

--Pile 17:24, 6 November 2007 (CST)

Unfortunately, even among atheists there are people with character flaws. A few, on occasion, choose to actively and publicly seek provocation with direct attacks on religion. In turn, dismayed religious leaders express their outrage to their followers about atheists' nature and avocations based on these few. In very general terms, followers later develop a stereotype that helps to portray all atheists as vulgar heretics and immoral beings. Evil commits to memory easier and the true nature of atheist majority becomes overlooked. For those individuals who are living in rural areas where sole interaction is with similar minded religious population, it is very easy to be swayed by a common opinion about people they never met in mass.

--Indivisible April 02, 2008


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