The Raving Theist

Dedicated to Jesus Christ, Now and Forever

Have It Your Way

May 23, 2007 | 9 Comments

Alice Shannon’s letter to Alaska’s Peninsula Clarion, circulating around the internet for several months, suggests a possible way to counter the influx of immigrants to this country:

It’s time to stomp out atheists in America. The majority of Americans would love to see atheists kicked out of America. If you don’t believe in God, then get out of this country.

The United States is based on having freedom of religion, speech, etc. which means you can believe in God any way you want (Baptist, Catholic, Methodist, etc.), but you must believe.

I don’t recall freedom of religion meaning no religion. Our currency even says, “In God We Trust.” So to all the atheists in America: Get out of our country.

Atheists have caused the ruin of this great nation by taking prayer out of our schools and being able to practice what can only be called evil. I don’t care if they have never committed a crime, atheists are the reason crime is rampant.

Legal and sociological questions aside, it’s worth noting that Ms. Shannon’s viewpoint is effectively an atheistic one. Whatever the Constitution might say, no religion actually holds that people should believe in God any way they want. Rather, each establishes a particular definition of a deity with defined powers and moral views, and disqualifies all other proposed beings from holding the title of “God.” To pronounce, as Ms. Shannon does, that it doesn’t matter what meaning is given to that word is to render the concept meaningless.

Comments

9 Responses to “Have It Your Way”

  1. jeremy
    May 24th, 2007 @ 1:12 am

    I’d be willing to leave if any tolerant countries would give me full citizenship.

  2. Ubs
    May 24th, 2007 @ 1:17 am

    I hadn’t seen this letter until now. I guess the Theists now have their Anne Coulter.

  3. Crosius
    May 24th, 2007 @ 1:27 am

    The newspaper that published this letter has established that it was a contrived letter (ie. a hoax), written by Alice Shannon to provoke comment.

    Link

  4. Joan
    May 24th, 2007 @ 2:07 am

    So if I’m a devout Pastafarian, that means I get to stay?

  5. Lonnie Bruner
    May 24th, 2007 @ 7:23 am

    Any chance you would reprint that “Let’s Just Keep Fishing” letter? Sounds much more interesting.

  6. Professor Chaos
    May 24th, 2007 @ 8:26 am

    Ubs, the theists already had their Anne Coulter. Her name is Anne Coulter.

  7. Andy Holland
    May 24th, 2007 @ 1:32 pm

    Apparently you have not encountered the Eastern Orthodox religion; “Rather, each establishes a particular definition of a deity with defined powers and moral ….”

    In Orthodoxy, God is unknowable in essence hence undefinable. You can say things that are true of God such as God is love, yet love is undefinable and unbounded in essence. You can say what God is not, and God is not limited to mechanism for example, nor is God merely moral force or merely natural law.

    The god atheists do not believe in is a god that is definable, a god who is a caricature of oneself or any number of obvious false gods.

    Moral law is based on the spiritual truth of love, and love is not passion but rather charitable – willing to give without expectation of anything in return but rejection, mockery, and even death. Yet love conquers all.

  8. Infidelis Maximus
    May 28th, 2007 @ 5:15 pm

    >>no religion actually holds that people should believe in God any way they want. Rather, each establishes a particular definition of a deity with defined powers and moral views, and disqualifies all other proposed beings from holding the title of “God.”

    That’s not quite right. Buddhism and other nontheistic religions do not hold that one deity is superior to all others. As Einstein said, Buddhism has the characteristics required to incorporate both the natural and the spiritual without requiring deities or dogma.

    Also, you’re leaving out polytheistic belief systems that incorporate other gods quite comfortably. For example, the state religions of Ancient Rome and Ancient Greece regularly accommodated other religions and their deities (provided the systems could be shown to be sufficiently ancient). They even retained a placeholder god–the Unknown god–in case they left any out. Perhaps Zeus was supreme, but, by Jove, they let in just about any god that wanted into the pantheon. They did not, as you say, disqualify ‘all other proposed beings from holding the title of “God.”‘

    The same is true for pantheistic belief systems and other systems that do not necessarily feature a single supreme being. They may or may not recognize other religions’ deities. You seem to be thinking of this only from a monotheistic standpoint.

  9. Steve
    May 28th, 2007 @ 7:59 pm

    Just a correction: Atheism is the lack of belief in Deity in any form. What Shannon said actually makes her a heretic, not an atheist.

    Not that it makes your point any less valid. :)

  • Basic Assumptions

    First, there is a God.

    Continue Reading...

  • Search

  • Quote of the Day

    • Fifty Random Links

      See them all on the links page.

      • No Blogroll Links