new study proves it

Religious People Rapidly Vanishing From America

Fab Five Freddie told me everybody's high, DJ's spinnin' are savin' my mindGood news, atheists: The mythological “Rapture” appears to be happening, in America! But it’s happening very, very slowly: While the United States was 86% Christian less than two decades ago, in 1990, last year that percentage fell to 76%. And a full 15% of Americans now say they are not religious at all — nearly double the percentage of godless heathens since 1990. Socialist pagan Barack Obama plans to accelerate this trend by putting Rick Warren on national teevee at least once a year, so that people having second thoughts about this whole religion thing will look at this fat turd and then quickly dump their bibles in the incinerator. [FoxNews]

About the author

A writer and editor of this website from 2006 to early 2012, Ken Layne is occassionally seen on Twitter and writes small books and is already haunting you from beyond (your) grave.

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138 comments

  1. ohiolobbyist

    Why, oh why, would Fox News not have a comment section, especially with a story like this, whose potential comments would be so chock full of Teh Crazy.

  2. ManchuCandidate

    Silly me, I thought it was the mind numbing stupid, power hunger, vapid bloodlust and hypocrisy among the most fanatical of the devotees like the Taliban or the US America equivalent “The Budweiser Taliban” that was killing the rest of religion.

  3. Yaybuls

    The times, they are a-changing. I seriously doubt a “Religulous” would’ve been allowed to be made in 1990.

  4. Advocatus_Diaboli

    I also heard on elitist public radio this morning that my state (Vermont) has the largest percentage of heathens atheists in the country. Hooray! I’m going wrap entrails around a fir tree and make monuments that track the sun’s movement to celebrate.

  5. WhatTheHeck

    No, they haven’t vanished into thin air. They just became Scientologists.
    Which explains why they are not religious anymore.

  6. President Beeblebrox

    The explanation is simple. More people are becoming vampires. Why else would there be a literal vampirical explosion in arts and letters? True Blood, Moonlight, Twilight and its 10,000 sequels – the latter of which is basically a Christian vampire story where Edward waits until marriage to bite Bella. (Yes, Stephenie Meyer is a Mormon, yet the books don’t contain things like vampire sealing ceremonies, Celestial Vampire Rooms, and magical vampire underwear…)

  7. V572625694

    But many, many Muricans are “spiritual,” whatever the fuck that means. Some potential definitions:

    * I’m against abortion until my daughter needs one.

    * I believe in God to the extent that doing so doesn’t conflict with my desire to fuck my neighbor’s wife and/or daughter.

    * I feel happy when nice things happen.

    * I think Eckhard Tolle is creepy looking, but says a lot of good things about “now” as opposed to “then.”

  8. SayItWithWookies

    What the hell’s wrong, America? Organized religion has been adding to human misery for over three thousand years — and suddenly you turn away from it now? Stay the course!
    And don’t forget to pay attention to Ted Haggard, the de facto head of the RNC.

  9. shortsshortsshorts

    An interesting point is that the Muslim population actually went up, from .3% to .6%. Apparently the White House is hiring so many anti-American terrorists (who HATE ISRAEL mind you) that they needed to start importing.

  10. Gin-o-saurus

    Clearly, Harriet Hayes is NOT happy about this.

    I hope she doesnt take it out on Matt in a “walk and talk” scene.

  11. DeLand DeLakes

    Do ALL male evangelicals have teh gay? Those teenagers in the picture seem not remotely interested in the topless Debbie Harry impersonator before them.

  12. Lascauxcaveman

    [re=260634]Advocatus_Diaboli[/re]: Now if you did that, you wouldn’t be an atheist, would you? You’d just have a different kinda religion to get all nutty about. IIRC, Christians were begat by Jews who were begat by folks who wrapped entrails around trees or somesuch.

  13. freakishlystrong

    [re=260641]V572625694[/re]: And the big one for them; “Oh yeah, and fuck the poor”..

  14. Scarab

    Wait a minute… I think that photo is Cyndi Lauper singing, ‘Girls Just Want to Have Fundamentalism.’

  15. V572625694

    [re=260650]freakishlystrong[/re]: Exactly. Poverty is just something that some people have to go through — part of their spiritual development, and nothing for me to worry about.

  16. totoro

    My theory: Religion is aiming for total revenue now, not sales. Less people attending, but those who do are shelling out for Joel Osteen, et. al. DVDs big time. Catholic Church and similar are dying because they focus on headcount, accumulating a bureaucracy, and blinged out buildings hogging valuable real estate. All of which cost massively—it takes a hell of a lot of indulgences to pay for the lawyers. And Osteen doesn’t have to pay to protect rapists and holocaust deniers, he just has to keep his wife from smacking up flight attendants. Yeah, its a complete abdication of the normal religious imperialist impulse, but the almighty dollar trumps the almighty.

  17. Norbert

    don’t worry: those 85% percent do more than enough believin’ to make up for the rest of us

    funny, I always thought it was “DJs spinnin’, and I said ‘my, my’”

  18. mookworthjwilson

    [re=260627]ohiolobbyist[/re]: Ha…I was thinking the same thing…That would have been more entertainment than I could have handled…

  19. BadKitty

    [re=260663]chascates[/re]: I never know whether to laugh or cry when I hear from those folks. OH NOES! TEH WORLD IZ ENDING! REPENT, U EVUL SINNERZ!

  20. SayItWithWookies

    [re=260663]chascates[/re]: How I love WorldNetDaily — now that there’s not an election at stake and I’m not longer afraid they’ll swing the loopy bloc, I can really enjoy their crazy.

    And I like how Wilkerson predicts a calamity starting in New York City and spreading to the rest of the world. It would’ve been more impressive to predict that two years ago, before the economic meltdown, but predictions are definitely more accurate when they’re about things that have already happened.

  21. Fivetree

    Fifteen percent is a pretty decent percentage, higher than some of the ethnic groups that get a lot of attention in this country and about on part with the listenership of Limbslob. The Jesus Globlins definitely need to go, but while we’re at it let’s jettison the Jihadists, Scientologists, Jewish settlers and New Age nimrods as well. Any irrational belief system that has the potential to influence national affairs or the careers of vitally important Hollywood stars has to be stopped in its tracks.

  22. pat robertsons personal trainer

    “I’m sorry. I can’t talk to you when you got gotcher tits hanging out like cabbages.” Thanks, Kenny Powers.

  23. SayItWithWookies

    [re=260685]american mutt[/re]: If I get my paws on her before Jesus does, then yes.

  24. sailingthestyx

    scary thought….that 15% of Americans believe solely in themselves…so much anger, from that 15%, focused on people who might simply want to look beyond themselves and share a different philosophy…I’ll take the happy of faith over the anger of emptiness any day…

  25. sailingthestyx

    [re=260685]american mutt[/re]: probably not, but Debborah Harry’s out of here…

  26. loudmouthredhead

    I’d be happy to be “Left Behind” as it were. I don’t think I’d even miss Kirk Cameron…well, maybe a little.

    Ok, now where’s all them heathen womenz? Call me!

  27. problemwithcaring

    20 years ago, when I was a kid attending a Christian, “love they neighbor” Holiness Church in rural Mississippi, preachers would used all the “hocus-pocus” found in the text of the Bible mainly to infuse ALL parishioners with a supernatural sense of self esteem: Jesus cared about everyone. The main thing was to attend and believe that.

    Nowadays, I can’t sit five minutes in a predominantly Black Church in Los Angeles before they are proselytizing on the dangers of Gay sex, single women clubbing, abortionists and the latest fucked up thing the city council is doing.

    It’s worst than watching cable news shows, because I can’t yell – Aww, Shut the fuck up!” at the pulpit.

  28. Custerwolf

    [re=260701]sailingthestyx[/re]: Believing in one’s self, according to quantum physics, is as empty as believing in a god.

  29. Doglessliberal

    [re=260634]Advocatus_Diaboli[/re]: ah, but then you would be a heathen, not at atheist. If you believe in entrails, you believe in something.

  30. CorkPopper

    [re=260701]sailingthestyx[/re]: Maybe 15% of Americans believe in our obligations to other members of the human family, and the planet that brings us life, not some supernatural being. Try it some time, you’ll find it doesn’t feel angry and empty at all.

  31. Gallowglass

    [re=260701]sailingthestyx[/re]: The happy of faith is all well and good until they start telling other people what they can and cannot do based on the tribal customs of Bronze Age pastoralist nomads. Atheists may be angry (although most of the ones I know are jollier than any religious person) but I’ve never heard an atheist condemn stem cell research, deny a rape victim an abortion, support Sarah Palin or, in contravention to empirical fact, claim evolution and global warming are unsubstantiated theories.

  32. Mad Farmer Manifest

    [re=260736]Custerwolf[/re]: Didn’t Jesus (in his divine mercy) just use a river to eat your house? Repent!!!

    In all seriousness, I hope you and your family are doing well.

    But–repent!!!

  33. norbizness

    [re=260704]sailingthestyx[/re]: I agree that it’s probably desirable that both groups exist; after all, what would a class full of people wanting to learn something about the world look like? Some sort of overachieving purgatory! We need the simple salt-of-the-earth types who people in a higher power, that higher power being airplane model glue they liberated from Dad’s workbench.

  34. Custerwolf

    [re=260771]Mad Farmer Manifest[/re]: No lie – my boyfriend’s brother is ABSOLUTELY convinced it happened because we are not married and are therefore living in sin (he’s Catholic). My evangelical sister, of course, thinks it’s because we grind up stem cells and smoke them.

  35. Zadig

    [re=260658]V572625694[/re]: Jesus said “the poor will always be with us” or something, so why fucking bother helping them out?

  36. Mad Farmer Manifest

    We clearly have many atheists here. That’s all well and good. We’ll join you against the Jesus Goblins and the Jihad Monkeys. After that’s all over, you damn well better start worshiping the Sun or some trees or a patch of sand or Advocatus_Diaboli and I will be wrapping YOUR entrails around a tree. Got it?

    In all seriousness, many pagan (Asian, American, European, African, Australian) traditions include ideas about letting others believe what they want to believe, even if it seems wacky. Most atheists are on that same page. I think that is the key difference between a healthy belief system and off-the-rails judgemental craziness.

  37. AfghanVet

    [re=260794]TGY[/re]: Deborah Harry was probably feeling the affects of actual ecstasy.

  38. Custerwolf

    [re=260795]Zadig[/re]: Thomas Malthus put it this way – the demand will always exceed the supply.

  39. SayItWithWookies

    [re=260701]sailingthestyx[/re]: Neither I nor any atheists I know are angrier than a reasonable person ought to be. I don’t, however, disguise my anger as humility and know enough to temper it with reason. And what you think of as anger is more likely my ilk trying to keep the pious from rubbing my face in their piety every day. Now go and be happy — I’ll be sitting here chiseling the “In God We Trust” off of this big stack of quarters.

  40. Mad Farmer Manifest

    [re=260790]Custerwolf[/re]: See, this is why I’m disappointed in my own creativity. I think that I’m being over the top and silly, but I’m just predicting what some Bible thumper is actually thinking. Lame.

    Did that Catholic brother ever consider that rivers are known to move around a bit within their floodplains? Probably not. Is it wrong for me to hope for a virus that only kills stupid people?

  41. comradepaulson

    [re=260695]ph7[/re]: I stand with Bill and his bong any day of the week, twice at 4:20.

    [re=260701]sailingthestyx[/re]: Oh Jesus Christ on a Pogo Stick sodomizing a gopher. We (the heathens) are not angry at you or anything else, OK? I’m only “angry” and “empty” when the bong is clogged and the pizza guy is late. Otherwise, I’m just chilling with my tea bags, OK?

  42. RobPetrified

    [re=260633]WadISay[/re]:
    AMEN, brother.
    I’d pray for it, but that would cut into my drinkin’, swearin’,and whorin’ time.

  43. Custerwolf

    [re=260808]Mad Farmer Manifest[/re]: Surely you must know that rivers move only at god’s behest?

  44. Custerwolf

    [re=260824]sailingthestyx[/re]: Well at least you religious twats aren’t the least bit arrogant or condescending.

  45. comradepaulson

    [re=260824]sailingthestyx[/re]: Wait, this was part of a study? When are you paying me for my participation? Insights into the “heathen brain” don’t come free, you know.

  46. TGY

    [re=260800]AfghanVet[/re]: Oh, that’s Blondie! I didn’t recognize her since she’s doesn’t appear to be a zillion years old. She looks better than I remember, which is why they say memory is either the first or the second to go, I forget which.

  47. Gallowglass

    [re=260824]sailingthestyx[/re]: Agh! Tricked again! Damn you, sailingthestyx! Damn you!

  48. Mad Farmer Manifest

    [re=260819]Custerwolf[/re]: If that is true, then I say Salmon 1, Humans 0. All this flooding, while a pain in the ass for us two-leggeds, helps create good spawning and rearing habitat for salmon. So God must be favoring the salmon over us. Tell Mr. Catholic to put that in his Jesus pipe and smoke it.

  49. southernfried

    I’m a Christian (Episcopalian to be precise) and I’m more angry than any atheist I know about fucktard fundegelical rapturists. Think about it: “the world is shit (and I helped make it that way by voting Republican because they fed me a bunch of crapping about banning teh geh), but who cares, I’ve got a Jeebus Jetpack ™ to whisk me all away from it — see ya, suckas!” Is that cold, cold shit or what? Really nasty stuff. And guess what, tributards! Jesus thinks you suck, this I know, for the Bible told me so.

    I used to mumble a feeble, “We’re not all like that, though” and try to make a case for “liberal Christianity” but now I mostly just STFU and try to love mercy, do justice, and walk humbly with my God.

  50. Custerwolf

    [re=260851]Mad Farmer Manifest[/re]: We now have the 2 best salmon and steelhead (and swimming) holes right in front of what’s left of our house. During the flood the river formed a wicked swirling eddy that dug nearly 8 feet deep into the bed. The bears will have something to look forward to next run.

  51. Colander

    [re=260858]southernfried[/re]: My roommate is like you (in that he is logical and it manifests as librulism) but he also is pretty dern Catholic. It makes me angry cuz I wish he would just take the last leg out the pool and join me in my socialist anti-god non-belief structure.

    [re=260701]sailingthestyx[/re]: You come across as condescending, which you probably already noticed.

  52. Neon Trotsky

    Though this “opium of the people” may be in decline, there are many others (NASCAR, Bud Lite Lime, snuggies, etc.) quite ready to take its place…

  53. frumious_bandersnatch

    I hereby volunteer to take on the task of being suitably angry so that sailingthestyx doesn’t feel like their time was wasted. I should explain in advance that the clown suit with the five attached penii and d-cup boob cutouts *is* indeed necessary to convey the full depth of my wrath. Just go with it.

  54. agitpropster

    [re=260643]Watchreader[/re]: L-R: My dear friends keyboardist Jimmy Destri, former bassist Nigel Harrison,former guitarist Frankie Infante and One of the Top Five Drummers In The World, Mr. Clem Burke. Had huge, bitter courtroom battle for the rights to the name. Harrison and Infante lost and were replaced. This culminated in one of the most vile, unsavory moments in R ‘n’R Hall of Fame history when that lineup of BLONDIE were inducted and Ms. Harry REFUSED to play with Nigel and Frankie onstage and there was almost a fist fight. The year before, there was an extremely ugly scene when Pete Thomas, the extraordinarily talented bassist for Elvis Costello’s Attractions, played his very last performance with them after their induction. After that, the new rule was that you must perform with the musicians with whom you were inducted but Debbie just ignored it and was just poisonous and rude to those guys. It was an embarrassment and cringe-worthy in the extreme.

    [re=260753]loquaciousmusic[/re]:

    A face is raining
    Across the border
    The pride of history
    The same as murder
    Is this living
    He’s been careering
    The steady hand as planned
    Behind the reasoning
    No claim for property
    Both sides of the river
    There is bacteria
    Is this living
    He’s been careering
    Trigger machinery
    Mangle the military
    No one should be there
    Is this living?

  55. AnnieGetYourFun

    These trends in religious practices swing like a pendulum. Always have, always will. Right now, we’re going to see a swing towards liberalism and rationalism, and ten years from now, we’ll be treated to Time magazine covers that shriek about the uptick in conservative Christian churches (there will be a new angle – last time, it was the mega-churches; next time, it will be micro-congregations or whatever).

    Over time, I’m sure that the Western world will trend toward a more rational, scientific perspective. But if this nonsense has gone on for as long as it has, in as many terrible forms as it has, I don’t see any real fall of the big three (plus Hinduism) anytime soon.

  56. southernfried

    [re=260908]Colander[/re]: Some of us think religion is true in the way that music or art is true, rather than in the way science is true. I continue to engage with it on those terms, as I suspect your roommate might, also. I also “got religion” after reading Kierkegaard, so I’m probably not your typical “born again” taking orders from a radio preacher in Colorado Springs because I’m afraid of everlasting damnation.

    Could be a lost cause, but if the existentialist ethic is, among other things, committment to that which one can never know with certainty, I find it useful to continue to engage with that which has been, for good or ill, the repository of much of humanity’s deepest thinking about itself. And in the West, that’s Christianity viewed through the lens of the Enlightenment.

    Apologies for being snark-free and I’ll shut up and wait for the right opening to make a potty joke and redeem myself.

  57. TheMac

    Heh. This post follows a conversation I was having with a friend about spirituality and “the rapture,” to which I quickly asked, “The Blondie Rapture or the Christian wingnut Rapture?”

    My friend, a hardcore Catholic, was not amused.

  58. S.Luggo

    “About 12 percent of Americans believe in a ‘higher power’ but not the personal God at the core of monotheistic faiths.” What? 110 kV transmission lines? Pilates? Coke? Simon Cowell? The NSA?

  59. populucious

    The polling turned radically in the atheists favor when they stopped getting their random samples entirely from people exiting church buildings on Sunday afternoon.

  60. TGY

    Oh, Blondie in Rapture. Good thing there’s YouTube. No, she’s still not hot. Must just be spring or something.

  61. southernfried

    [re=261033]TheMac[/re]: Catholics don’t believe in the Rapture and their Church teaches against it. (Not that most American Catholics pay any attention to what the Vatican says, but that’s another story.)

    The Rapturists started out as a small theological movement called “dispensationalism” in the early 1800s. It stayed small until the 1950s when a guy named John Walvoord (president of Dallas Theological Seminary — Texas fucking with us again) and another guy named J. Dwight Pentecost published best-selling books on that topic. It really took off in the 1970s when Hal Lindsey published “The Late, Great Planet Earth.” So its pretty “new age” in Christian terms.

    It’s primarily an North American evangelical movement and not in the mainstream of world Christianity, even though they’re pretty omnipresent in the USA — still, for some strange reason, but any day now, they’ll be gone and THEN y’all will be in a world of hurt!

    Oh, dear God… I’m being serious on Wonkette again.

  62. Lascauxcaveman

    [re=260908]Colander[/re]: As an ex-Catholic, I think maybe the reluctance to giving up the whole religion thing is a matter of wanting to believe in some big, comfortable family of God, with all the rules laid out in stone tablets so you don’t have to think much about stuff, just follow those ten simple rules. Your brain doesn’t get overly tired that way, and any horrible thing you can’t work out gets chalked up to pesky ol’ God working in his mysterious ways. I was sorta like that until I got tired of the world proving me wrong every day. Nowadays, on those rare occasions when I find myself at a Catholic mass (Weddings, baptisms) I just roll my eyes and think “What the hell was I thinking?” every time the Nicaean Creed rolls around.

    The spaghetti dinners and KofC breakfasts are still pretty good; so there’s that, anyway.

    [re=260967]AnnieGetYourFun[/re]: Haha! Time magazine exists ten years from now? I can’t believe in that either!

  63. southernfried

    [re=261109]Lascauxcaveman[/re]: Could you be anymore condescending? I question how much of the faith of which you are “ex” you actually learned about beyond whatever childish drivel you glommed onto in the obviously piss-poor catechism class they made you take for first communion. I’d give you a reading list, but you’re so obviously comfortable in your smugness I wouldn’t want to tire your brain out. I was sorta like that until I got tired of being an ill-informed shitwit engaging with lazily constructed straw men and “winning” every time.

  64. Inadequate Blackmail

    I’ll say this: There are a lot of good, mundane Christians out there who vote reasonably, don’t hate people and don’t want war. If we arbitrarily throw shit at them simply because we don’t want to bother to tell them apart from the Crazies, then they may stop being so reasonable.

    Tolerance is bisexual. Hit it.

  65. oldguy

    [re=260643]Watchreader[/re]: I think the picture is from the sidebar on Fox – Colon Detox Cleanses Reviewed. Or maybe it’s just a Colon Rapture.

  66. problemwithcaring

    [re=261109]Lascauxcaveman[/re]: And sadly, I think most of people think of “ex-Catholics” as shorthand for gay abortionist. Not me, though, as I happen to be an ex-Catholic and gay abortionists.

  67. Mr Blifil

    What I wouldn’t have given for a chance to hit that back in 1979. Now? Not so much.

  68. comradepaulson

    [re=261109]Lascauxcaveman[/re]: [re=261141]southernfried[/re]: [re=261156]Inadequate Blackmail[/re]: Wow, people on this thread got all angry and shit about religion. Just relax, man. Hippie Jesus will come back down and get rid of the Douchebags for us and smite Politico and bring the good weed and we’ll all be happy forever and ever, amen.

    At least, this is what I’m hoping he’s all about if he’s real. If it goes the other way, I’m fucked.

  69. Custerwolf

    If we could just admit that it’s a part of human nature to want to find security we would have a better understanding of how all these religious institutions came about in the first place, and what purpose they serve. Even meditation is just another method of trying to cope with ourselves. That’s just what we do.

  70. southernfried

    [re=261187]comradepaulson[/re]: Dude, I have no problem with snarky atheists but HATE fucking stoners. YOU are going to hell, hippie.

  71. Custerwolf

    [re=261183]Mr Blifil[/re]: Yeah, only back then could you imagine her straddled atop you whilst sitting on a toilet at CBGB’s.

  72. frumious_bandersnatch

    [re=261003]Gallowglass[/re]: I will run out at once and get an extra. Then we can angry-juggle!

  73. tawaen

    Are the people who believe in a higher power, but are not religious, physicists? Sweet! Gravity be with you! Particles are holier than thou!

  74. hobospacejungle

    [re=261141]southernfried[/re]: Could you be anymore condescending?

    How was he condescending? He’s simply saying that, from his non-believing perspective, the core tenets of christianity seem fairly irrational. That’s not condescending, that’s just fact. If one chooses to have faith & believe that god put his son on earth, the son was killed on a cross, came back to life after 3 days and now rules heaven & earth at the right hand of god, that’s fine. But to a lot of people it’s a fairy tale that just seems silly.

    I don’t feel any special need to say this out loud to believers, unless they are in turn trying to change this country so that their irrational beliefs, or legislative agenda extrapolated from those beliefs, become the law of the land. Like gay marriage, abortion, telling the poor (or slaves, in yesteryear) to accept their plight, etc.

  75. rocktonsammy

    People run back to church in throngs when there is a national emergency or the pope dies.

    Apparently we have underestimated the national emergency we’re in now and just run to the liquor store instead.

  76. Custerwolf

    [re=261291]rocktonsammy[/re]: I misread your post. I thought you said people run back to church in thongs.

  77. Lascauxcaveman

    [re=261141]southernfried[/re]: Wow. Didn’t expect that. All I was saying was, in my mind, logic > Catholicism.

    Also, Fuck You. I’m very comfortable with my ex-Catholicism. Today, I drove my kids go to the same Catholic school that I went to for 8 goddamn John-the-23rd-Vatican-Two-Pope-Paul-the-6th years. My six brothers and sisters went there too. My parents paid what seems today like chickenfeed tuition then but what seems like now a new car every year type tuition to send us there. And I’m happy to pay that tuition, voucher-free, because it’s the best fucking school in town, academically speaking (and spiritually, I guess). I have no hard feelings whatsoever about the place. I was never reamed in the ass by priest or nun, but by God, I put in my hours there, so don’t tell me I don’t know what I’m talking about.

    I’ll let you draw your own conclusions, and I am willing to let them draw theirs. Someday they will grow up and start looking to humanity for the solutions to life’s little problems. Not Jesus, because he’s a fairy tale, basically. They’ll figure that out.

    Someday, you might too. Maybe.

  78. Lascauxcaveman

    [re=261141]southernfried[/re]: Haha, you’re not going to believe this, but just as I finshed typing my previous comment, “Communion” by Debra Harry (“Debravation” album) just came up on iTunes.

    A sign from GOD !??!!! !!!1!!111

    (oogety boogety!)

  79. zhubajie

    So are they being Raptured or dragged off to Hell like Faustus or swallowed up by the earth like the Sons of Korah or what?

    Zhu Bajie

  80. zhubajie

    [re=260634]Advocatus_Diaboli[/re]: Probably the US is about to have ANOTHER Great Awakening, converting a whole new crew of victims for the televangelicrooks. :-(

    Zhu Bajie

  81. zhubajie

    [re=260644]SayItWithWookies[/re]: Probably we would find Nationalism, Social Darwinism, Communism quite as useful for excusing the usual crap. It’s worked for the Europeans for the last 100 years.

    Zhu Bajie

  82. assistant/atlas

    [re=260676]Fivetree[/re]: I’m with ya on Scientology, but you’ll never get rid of loopy New Agers. It’s just part of the “vibe” in these part. My recommendation is just let ‘em be since they’re too stoned all the time to really get in people’s faces. They’re basically like slightly cleaner hippies, which, in California, is an improvement.

  83. Custerwolf

    [re=261340]Lascauxcaveman[/re]: Sounds like a good plan. I feel for my beloved little nephews (7and 10) who will have to quit private school because their Mom and Dad voted into office a moranic leader who kamikazeed our economy into oblivion. It was a wonderful christian school (as opposed to the Warren-esque styled church they attend), but they can no longer afford the fees. The up side is that they’ll be interacting with children who have different belief systems than what they’ve been indoctrinated with, so it will provide an opportunity for questioning.

  84. southernfried

    [re=261340]Lascauxcaveman[/re]: I apologize for projecting onto you an assumption about background and motivations. I normally don’t rise to the bait when someone says “People who are religious can’t deal with reality” and I slipped up after a bad day of dealing with this sort of bullshit from oh-so-open-minded liberals seventeen times before lunch. Mea culpa. You go your way and I’ll go mine. For what its worth, I have HUGE issues with the Catholic Church myself.

    But you should be aware that there are plenty of sophisticated, educated Christians who are not lunkheaded literalists when it comes to the Bible and/or Creeds and see Christianity as a historic and ongoing articulation of relations between the finite and the infinite, the tension between limits and possibilities of human existence. It’s not all “magic Jesus” folk superstition. ‘Nuff said in this forum and I’m sure it all sounds like hot air if one is primarily interested in getting drunk and/or laid or whatever, but there is a long tradition of inquiry into such matters by some fairly brilliant minds.

    None of this has anything to do with the cryptofascist hard right North American evangelicalism that I suspect most liberals have a purely knee-jerk reaction to. I co-founded a residential program that trains young (and a few not so young) people in sustainable agriculture. We’re modeled on a Benedictine abbey — self-sustaining with a rhythm of work and prayer. We’re frankly Christian, though we tend to emphasize common spiritual practices, rather than some kind of dogmatic purity. Some of graduates continue with an explicitly Christian spiritual practice after they leave, others do not; all agree that participating transformed their lives in some profound way.

    Now that “green” is hot, we have a steady stream of visitors, mostly “liberals”. A significant minority feel a compulsion to spend their visit attempting to argue us out of our orientation, even though it’s deeply woven into who we are and what we do. As my co-founder sardonically remarks, “If we packaged this up as ‘wisdom from Tibet’ they’d be standing in line to pay $895 for a ‘weekend intensive’, but instead we spending our time answering for Jerry Falwell for free.”

    Granted, organized Christianity as the ‘state religion’ of the West has a pretty poor track record in living up to the ideals of Christ, which, in some way, people such as myself who claim the name have to own. But, as G.K. Chesterton observed, “It’s not that the Christian ideal been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried.”

    All I’m saying is please cut those of us who are trying it some slack. I’m sure we’re failing in our own way, but it’s not the way you think. Many of us are just as liberal, sophisticated, scientifically literate, and socially engaged as self-identified secularists. To think otherwise is, frankly, its own form of reactionary fundamentalism.

  85. DustBowlBlues

    One nice Sunday afternoon, my husband and I were actually coming home after a lovely service at our little United Methodist church and listening to the news on the radio. My husband said, “It makes me so sad to say this, given how nice our church is, but this country would be so much better off if the churches disappeared.”

    BTW–The so-called Rapture is total bullshit that isn’t even mentioned in the Bible. But tell that to one of the Republitard wingnuts around here. Giant mega-churches exist for the day Jesus says, “Fuck the Sermon On the Mount” and charges in on a stallion while he slashes people to death with his magic sword until blooded rises to the neck of his steed.

    The above is the archetype of the Sarah Palin voter.

  86. Jazzman

    Dustbowlblues: You are so right. If any of these jerks would actually read the New Testament instead of fantasy books about being “taken” in the Rapture while all the kids that treated them bad in school get kneecapped, burned and tortured while working in Satan’s septic tank workhouse and eating shit sandwiches every morning for breakfast; they would discover that these megachurche preachers are direct descendants of the Temple geeks that Christ abhorred and preached against. Christianity and evolution are not mutually exclusive, but apparently intelligence, morals, good taste and the Christian right are.

  87. aflurry

    [re=260701]sailingthestyx[/re]: Show me the “happy of faith.” Cuz all i see is the spiteful, venomous, ignorant, warmongering of faith, m’self…

    Also, the 10% drop seems more impressive to me if you allow that immigrants are probably more religious on average, so that 10% net decrease is after the increase from latin american immigration, etc.

    Give me an N, give me a an O, give me a G, give me an O, give me a D…. whats that spell? Give me an Abortion! Yaaaay.

  88. aflurry

    [re=261706]southernfried[/re]: Dude, people know all this already. They are just sick and tired of goddamn Christians.

    What, i should be ashamed of have a knee-jerk reaction to cryptofascism? And i should be more dainty lest some fellow travelers get their feeling bruised?

    The burden is on you, as a “sophisticated, educated Christian” … control these fuckers! Don’t sit back and defend them or whinge on about how the Libs and Secular Humanists paint with too broad a brush. Man, go home with that shit. They hurting the world in your name… kick their asses, man. What are you waiting for? What kind of Christian sits back and watches this happen? Until you do something serious about repairing your church, you are just going to have to take a little shit.

    As a Christian, this is your fault. Even if you don’t promote it yourself, you have failed to stop it. And for that, you suck.

  89. southernfried

    [re=262108]aflurry[/re]: Sure, I’ll get to work on controlling all the Christians in the world and tell them to shape up. (I’m thinking if I can get them all on Twitter it might be easier.) You go to work on the secular, non-religious types. That’s where the growth area is anyway, right? That guy who walked into the Baptist Church and shot the preacher dead on Sunday? I think he was one of yours, but maybe you were off-duty. I hate Baptists anyway, since they’re all fundie freaks fucking up our Republic, so don’t even worry about it. Seriously. We’re cool.

    But that’s nickel-and-dime stuff. I’ll take responsibility for fucking up on the Inquistion (about 50000 dead) and Crusades (about a million dead), but Stalin’s purges (about 3 million dead) and Mao’s Cultural Revolution (27 million dead), that’s on you, right? Good atheists just gone a little bad. Happens. Let’s split the difference on Hitler — he was one of yours, but Christians were in general pretty bad on enabling anti-Semitism, so it was a perfect storm of fucked-up-ness.

    People do evil, crazy, murderous shit, man. Some just do on their own recognizance and some do it for a higher purpose — God, Lebensraum, a Great Leap Forward, scientific materialism, free enterprise you name it.

    And for that, you suck.

    As do I.

  90. billy rubin

    [re=262178]southernfried[/re]: Are you seriously TRYING to kill all the snark? Seriously, what’s with all the sanctimonious drama? Are you 18 years old, or just poorly socialized, or both? Sweet-baby-Jesus-on-a-dinosaur, I guess the suble difference between “lunkhead” Christians you hate, and oh-so-awesome “sophisticated” Christians is completely wasted on callow old me; I thought I got it, but the more you wrote, the more unclear it became. In the name of Sophisticated, Educated Jesus(tm), STFU

  91. Frumious Can'braSnatch

    Damnit Frumious Bandersnatch, you have finally driven me to register by my need to pedantically remark that there’s no such word as penii. Our angry clown suits may have “penises”, or “penes” if we like being pedantic classicists (ooh, yes, baby). Also, I wanted that nick. But my new variant is totally awesome, so I guess all’s beamish.

  92. Frumious Can'

    [re=260931]frumious_bandersnatch[/re]: also, please forgive my noob error with the missing link.

  93. southernfried

    [re=262284]billy rubin[/re]: Dude, I always STFU after a Nazi reference. How’s that for socialization?

  94. billy rubin

    [re=262305]southernfried[/re]: I guess my only recomendation is to just try to STFU just a little harder, m’kay? Every humorless, pissy keystroke of yours is making “sophisticated baby Jesus” cry tears (of pure, vintage chardonnay.) …I wish I didn’t have to explain this… You see, normally most people try to *avoid* pulling a Godwin, especially as part of a red-faced, unfunny tirade (i.e. everything you did in this thread.) Here’s a helpful hint: really, [i]argumentum ad Hitlerum[/i] not your ace-in-the hole, God-boy — Especially on a fracking political satire website! It’s the digital equivalent of the really drunk guy at a party taking a shit in the jacuzzi. Go on, give it another try: STFU.

  95. Custerwolf

    [re=262178]southernfried[/re]: Hey – this isn’t about history – it’s about the beliefs people hold right NOW in their EVERYDAY mundane lives. Individual responsibility starts with what you are choosing to believe right this very second.

  96. Dustin de Wynde

    4 out of 5 Americans surveyed do not attend church on Sunday.

    So, the question is, Raymond, how is it that 20% of the American population holds sway over 80% of the National Dialogue of the United States?

  97. southernfried

    [re=262331]billy rubin[/re]: Noted. And I jumped in on an uncharacteristic what-the-hell impulse, frankly, to swim a bit against the stream. Perverse, I know. I tried to use hyperbole and bombast to keep it interesting/funny, but the style here is ironic detachment, so it wasn’t a good fit. And, no, this isn’t an appropriate forum for a “core values” type discussion. Apologies all around and back to a heapin’ helpin’ of your regularly scheduled snark!

    And, no, the irony of emerging to say you’re going to STFU isn’t lost on me.

  98. aflurry

    [re=262627]southernfried[/re]: nah, i for one think you handle the snark ok… but yr still wrong about everything, forever. also.

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